Karen Cahill
Karen Cahill, a philanthropist and UCI volunteer, enjoys Shaping the Future campaign announcement at 2008 Medal Awards. Carlos Puma

Sparking breakthrough discoveries and tackling issues of importance to people in their daily lives is the goal of UC Irvine’s $1 billion fundraising campaign.

Announced by Chancellor Michael Drake at the 2008 Medal Awards on Oct. 4, the “Shaping the Future” campaign already has raised $405 million of the goal during its “quiet phase.” The public campaign will run through 2015.

The campaign will focus on increasing private support for five key areas: health, the environment, sustainable energy, educating tomorrow’s leaders, and embracing global opportunities in culture and business.

“The challenges we face in the world today have not overwhelmed hope, and solutions can be found. That’s what great universities do,” said Chancellor Michael V. Drake.

Every school and unit on campus is represented in the campaign, which is raising private support for scholarships and fellowships; new buildings, equipment and labs; creation and enhancement of academic programs; recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty; and interdisciplinary collaborations that are tackling today’s pressing global challenges. A local advertising effort to support the campaign is under way.

The university ended the 2007-08 fiscal year with a record-breaking $130 million in gifts and pledges – the third consecutive year the university has seen donors contribute more than $100 million.

“Our campus is an innovative and dynamic university, and it is also among the youngest universities ever to embark on a $1 billion fundraising campaign,” said Thomas J. Mitchell, university advancement vice chancellor. “Our alumni and community friends share the conviction that supporting UCI is a great investment in human potential. Their participation in this campaign will help us solve issues that matter to us here in Orange County and around the world.”

For information about the campaign, and how to get involved, please visit: www.UCIFuture.com.