Campaign to bankroll faculty hires, construction, aid


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Eileen Barroso
Writing professor Margo Jefferson ’71JRN (from left), physics and mathematics professor Brian Greene, and history professor Carol Gluck were among six eminent Columbia intellectuals to discuss “What We Don’t Know” at the September 29 campaign kickoff.

About 40 percent of the money to be raised will be invested as part of Columbia’s endowment, currently valued at about $6 billion. Interest accrued on the endowment is a critical source of faculty salaries, financial aid, and graduate student support—all key target areas for the campaign. For example, officials aim to raise $440 million in new endowment specifically for undergraduate aid. New fellowships and endowed chairs will be created at all Columbia’s schools, with $150 million planned for new professorships in arts and sciences, $90 million at the law school, and $100 million at the Columbia University Medical Center.

Another goal is to raise $1 billion for new facilities and renovations, and thereby ease Columbia’s long-standing space constraints. The University plans to construct several buildings: one for

The business school, an interdisciplinary science building on the Morningside campus, the Jerome L. Greene Science Center at the proposed Manhattanville development in West Harlem, new facilities for athletics programs and for the School of the Arts, and new buildings at the Medical Center. Major renovations and technology upgrades also are planned for Columbia’s libraries. The campaign, which is scheduled to run through 2011, will also raise $1.4 billion to cover current program operations, rather than being invested as part of Columbia’s endowment.

“How can we, in our time, do the work needed to lift up generations of Columbians yet to come?” asked President Lee Bollinger at the New York City launch event, connected via satellite to gatherings of Columbia alumni in London and Hong Kong. “To answer that question requires the collective commitment of a University campaign, one as ambitious as the academic ambitions it will make possible.”