The campaign began with a quiet opening in January 2007, in conjunction with the inauguration of President Michael T. Benson, who ably led the campaign until his departure in June of last year. With a boost from the public launch on September 16, 2011, the campaign has garnered unprecedented private and public support for the Cedar City University.
The Future Is Rising campaign has laid a tremendous foundation for future growth and has placed SUU on a trajectory for success,” according to the University’s new president, Scott L Wyatt. “The outpouring of support from private individuals, foundations and corporations truly has provided that margin of excellence that will serve to enhance the university experience far beyond what can be achieved through state funding alone.”
“Our friends and benefactors have truly astounded us at their level of commitment and support for the University, our students and higher education,” said Vice President for Institutional Advancement Stuart Jones, who oversaw the campaign.
“We will never be able to adequately thank the many individuals, families and organizations – both public and private – who have so graciously given to SUU’s cause.”
Among the highlights of the campaign, more than $22 million raised in the campaign will directly support enriching student life, such as new student scholarships, many of which created endowments to ensure ongoing scholarship support in perpetuity. Among them, nearly $5 million to support the Leavitt Scholarship Housing and a $2 million gift from the Alsam Foundation to support pre-pharmacy scholarships and undergraduate research.
The Future Is Rising campaign garnered over $12 million to support academic excellence, including a $4 million endowment for the College of Science and Engineering, to support scholarships and research initiatives and to name the Walter Maxwell Gibson College of Science & Engineering.
More than $50 million was raised for new construction, increasing classroom, research and communal student space — all necessary to maintain the University’s hallmark personalized, experiential education and small class sizes. Among these brick and mortar improvements:
• Beverley Taylor Sorenson Center for the Arts
Moved forward by a $6 million gift from the Sorenson Legacy Foundation of Salt Lake City and a $5 million gift from the Engelstad Foundation of Las Vegas, the University’s planned multi-million dollar arts center, in partnership with the Utah Shakespeare Festival, will further establish SUU as a regional arts mecca.
Named for the long-time arts and education champion, the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Center for the Arts will incorporate visual arts, live theater and dynamic arts education on the SUU campus and will dramatically magnify the cultural life of Cedar City and its surrounding region. It will also serve as home to the Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA) and the new Shakespeare Theatre of the Utah Shakespeare Festival, and will include an artistic/production building for the Festival.
• L.S. & Aline W. Skaggs Center for Health & Molecular Science
Since its completion, the Center has greatly enhanced opportunities for students engaged in the sciences at SUU. The state-of-the-art facility not only accommodates outstanding experiential learning opportunities but also serves to bolster undergraduate research output—both key elements in the success of students as they pursue post-baccalaureate education or careers in the sciences.
• Cedar Hall (student housing)
Designed around the idea of shared living space, which includes multiple community kitchens, television lounges and group study rooms, Cedar Hall has promoted a communal living environment in which students experience a better opportunities for socialization and support, which leads to greater student success in the classroom.
Annual scholarship support also boosted the University’s general scholarship fund. Central to this during the campaign was a marked increase in unrestricted scholarship funds used to recruit and retain the best and brightest students each year. Much of this was raised through the annual giving efforts of the SUU Fund and highly successful annual SUU employee giving campaigns that averaged 80-percent participation over the life of the campaign.
Other significant contributions of ongoing support were given in support of SUU Athletics, the Gerald R. Sherratt Library, the Utah Summer Games and the Utah Shakespeare Festival.