Arlene Mitchell said the commitment to the cancer institute was the fulfillment of a decades-long dream the family had since Mayer Mitchell survived cancer after traveling out of town for treatment.
“We’re very devoted to the University. Because (Mayer) has been a victim of cancer and a survivor of five different types of cancer, we felt very strongly that this is where we’d like to devote this particular gift,” she said. “To be able to stay in Mobile or close to home and have the state-of-the-art medical service, I think, will be a tremendous help.”
In addition to his giving, cancer survivor Mayer Mitchell has served on the USA Board of Trustees for more than 31 years, including a term as chairman.
“Cancer has afflicted our family, and to be able to help develop an institution here in Mobile to serve the metropolitan Mobile area for people who are less fortunate than we are, who could not go places for treatment, that’s the inspiration,” he said. “I think it will mean a lot for families. People can get the best possible treatment for deadly diseases like cancer right here in Mobile, Alabama, without the burden, stress and strain of having to leave their communities to seek that out.”
This latest Mitchell gift kicks off the public phase of “Campaign USA,” the University’s first comprehensive campaign. The institution has set a goal of $75 million over the next three years that will benefit all areas of the institution.
“Through teaching, research, outreach and health care, the University of South Alabama has forever improved the quality of life for the Gulf Coast region and beyond,” said Moulton. “The University has helped lead to a higher standard of education, better health care, an enhanced economy, and richer art, cultural and entertainment opportunities for all people.
“Through Campaign USA, we will depend on the generous assistance of alumni, friends and supporters to further strengthen our position of leadership.”
“Of the University of South Alabama’s many contributions to society, none has been more important and profound than improving the lives of our individual citizens,” said James A. Yance, a USA alumnus and Mobile attorney who is leading the campaign’s volunteers.
“Any investment toward enhancing USA’s leadership will pay substantial dividends and lead to the betterment of our community.”
Since its founding in 1963, the University of South Alabama has been one of Alabama’s fastest growing universities, currently enrolling more than 13,300 students in a wide range of academic programs in Allied Health Professions, Arts and Sciences, Mitchell College of Business, Computer and Information Sciences, Continuing Education and Special Programs, Education, Engineering, Medicine, and Nursing. The University has awarded more than 56,000 degrees.
In addition to teaching and research, USA is one of the largest health care providers in the Mobile region, with its faculty physicians and two hospitals – Children’s and Women’s and USA Medical Center -- involved in more than a quarter million patient encounters annually.
Begun in 2000, USA’s Mitchell Cancer Institute was created to provide the upper Gulf Coast region with comprehensive cancer education, prevention and treatment services in an academic research setting. Primary objectives include developing innovative new treatments and becoming a National Cancer Institute designated research center. With these latest gifts, the Institute has received more than $125 million in public and private funds, including assistance from Mobile City, Mobile County, federal and state support, USA Foundation and private giving.
For more information about USA’s Mitchell Cancer Institute, call (251) 460-6993 or go to www.southalabama.edu/cri/
For information on Campaign USA, go to www.CampaignUSALeadership.com or call (251) 460-7032.