The University of South Alabama has raised $11.5 million in charitable gifts and commitments this year, a six-fold increase from the 2002 level of $1.8 million.
In addition, $2 million in new estate gifts was also committed.
The 2004 gifts and pledges more than double last year's pledges of $5.5 million.
USA President Gordon Moulton said the growth in gifts and donors to the University shows the community's commitment to the institution, and is a positive sign for future growth. USA is the fastest-growing university in Alabama, with a 19% enrollment growth since 1999.
"We are pleased with this news, since private giving and alumni involvement have never been more important to the growth and development of public universities, allowing us to provide an even greater margin of excellence in teaching, research, service and health care," said Moulton.
USA has also marked tremendous growth in the total number of donors from across the community, including alumni, athletic donors and medical development. In 2004, some 4,638 donors gave to the University, up from 3,622 last year and 1,960 in 2002.
Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations Dr. Joseph Busta said it is important for USA to build both the dollar-amount of gifts and the number of donors.
"If you're really building a program for the long haul, broadening the base of donors is key to substantial giving in the future," Busta said.
Meanwhile, the USA National Alumni Association had a banner year, adding new members and increasing the number of alumni chapters to 11 with the addition of a Washington, D.C. group. The group has created two new scholarships, helping to attract top-quality students to the University. It has honored faculty members and exceptional employees, as well as launching the first two named alumni award endowments: The Andy and Carol Denny Excellence in Teaching Award and The Olivia Rambo McGlothren Outstanding Faculty Scholar Award.
In the last year, the Medical Alumni Association presented a $50,000 gift for scholarships to the College of Medicine, which was matched by the University. The group awarded 13 scholarships, and established a chapter on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.