University of South Alabama Reaching “Upward & Onward” With $150 Million Fundraising Campaign


Posted on October 13, 2015 by Bob Lowry
Bob Lowry


Upward & Onward logo data-lightbox='featured'

The University of South Alabama today announced the largest fundraising campaign in its history. “Upward & Onward” is a $150 million comprehensive fundraising campaign that will elevate and accelerate every aspect of USA's mission — education, research, service, health care, economic development, athletics, and the arts and humanities.

“The University’s strategic priorities — Student Access and Success, Enhancement of Research and Graduate Education, Global Engagement, Excellence in Health Care, and University-Community Engagement — are critically important for our students and the wider community,” said Dr. Tony Waldrop, University of South Alabama president. “Our best opportunity to achieve the goals within these priorities is to ensure that we have the financial means to do so.”

USA’s Upward & Onward campaign began two years ago with a quiet phase, and to date $73,129,165 has been raised, representing 20,734 gifts from 15,492 donors. The campaign will conclude in 2020.

“The phrase ‘Upward, Onward’ is found in the lyrics of our alma mater, and it describes today’s University of South Alabama perfectly,” said Dr. Joseph Busta, vice president for development and alumni relations. “Although South Alabama is a relatively young university, we have accomplished much and are always striving to accomplish more. This is what our Upward & Onward campaign is all about.”

Dr. and Mrs. Steven H. Stokes are serving as co-chairs of the Upward & Onward campaign. Stokes and his wife, Angelia, are USA alumni. She completed her business degree in 1979, and he received his medical degree in 1980. He is a practicing radiation oncologist in the Dothan area and has served on the University’s Board of Trustees since 1993, including a term as chair pro tempore.

“My wife and I have benefited enormously from our University of South Alabama experiences,” Dr. Stokes said. “The opportunities we had are opportunities that we want others to experience as well.”

“USA has given us so much,” said Mrs. Stokes. “We both are compelled to give back in a way that will encourage others to give, too. The Upward & Onward campaign will enable many more students to experience what we have experienced, which is a life-changing University of South Alabama education.”

Businessman and longtime USA supporter Abraham “Abe” Mitchell, whose record $50 million gift in the quiet phase of the campaign led to the creation of the University’s landmark Mitchell-Moulton Scholarship Initiative, has agreed to serve as the campaign’s honorary chairman. Mitchell last year was named an honorary trustee in recognition of his service to the University.

For information on Upward & Onward, visit www.southalabama.edu/campaign, email campaign@southalabama.edu, or call (251) 460-7032.

About Upward & Onward: A Campaign for the University of South Alabama

Upward & Onward: A Campaign for the University of South Alabama is a $150 million fundraising campaign that will elevate and accelerate every aspect of USA's mission — education, research, service, health care, economic development, athletics, and the arts and humanities. Our aspirations are bold, but they are within our reach. We intend to achieve our broad vision for the future through five focused priorities that form the components of the Upward & Onward campaign: Student Access and Success; Enhancement of Research and Graduate Education; Global Engagement; Excellence in Health Care; and University-Community Engagement.


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