Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000



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No. 32, SUPPLEMENT: Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000 (~ 375 k; 32 pages)

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The University will identify and secure the funds required to support its strategic goals.

The Department of Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) has pursued Agenda for Excellence goals in a wide variety of programs and initiatives since the Agenda's inception in July 1996. Fundraising for defined priorities has been a core element of our program producing over $900 million. The chart below provides a breakdown of results by priority area.

Agenda for Excellence

For the period July 1, 1996 through March 31, 2001

Gifts And Pledges

U/G Financial Aid d131,000,000
U/G Experience / Perelman Quad $53,000,000
Grad/Prof Financial Aid $73,000,000
Residences / Recreation $34,000,000
Faculty/Academic Programs
Chairs / Faculty Support $111,000,000
Academic Programs $196,000,000
Academic Facilities $199,000,000
Neighborhood Initiatives $2,000,000
Unrestricted/To Be Designated
Unrestricted $58,000,000
To Be Determined by School $33,000,000
Holding Funds (designations pending) $13,000,000
Total $903,000,000

Overall fundraising during the four and a half years of the Agenda has exceeded $1.24 billion (compared with the $1.4 billion raised during the seven years of The Campaign for Penn that concluded in 1994). This aggressive growth is reflected in the $312.5 million in gift receipts added to the University's endowment thus far during the Agenda. It is also evident in the dramatic increase in the number and size of the largest gifts to Penn. More than 30 gifts of $5 million or more have been raised to date during the Agenda, for a total of $325 million ­ double the number of such gifts made during the entire Campaign for Penn.

Specific new gifts have provided funding for:

  • Creation of the Humanities Forum
  • Fox Leadership Program
  • Vagelos Scholars Molecular Life Sciences Program
  • Establishment of Kelly Writers House
  • Perelman Quadrangle -- $40 million raised for more than 40 named spaces in the renovated and expanded complex at the historic heart of Penn's campus.


The first phase of the $60 million development program for the College Houses project has moved forward:

  • The Quad Renewal Project has raised $9.3 million toward its $35 million goal, with pending gift solicitations totaling $8 million and new gifts totaling at least $15 million expected to close during FY01.

Undergraduate aid:

  • Endowment has increased by $116 million, reaching 58% of the Agenda goal.
  • Challenge grants have had a particular impact (e.g., Trustee Challenge, Riepe Challenge, Kelly Challenge) in leveraging smaller gifts, many of them from younger alumni.
  • 386 new financial aid funds have been created to date during the Agenda, 64 of them by young alumni.

Graduate aid:

  • $66 million has been raised; 66% of the $100 million Agenda target for graduate fellowships. Notable successes include the Gamble Scholars and 21st Century Endowed Scholars Fund at the Medical School.

New recreational athletic facilities.

  • $13.5 million raised to date for improvement of campus recreation facilities.


  • Identify other University initiatives in the strategic plan that require external development support.

Endowed Chairs:

  • Approximately $81 million of the $92 million raised for faculty support has created 42 endowed chairs.


Academic Programs:

  • Agenda for Excellence gifts have provided support for a number of new and expanded graduate programs.
  • Goergen Entrepreneurial Management Program
  • Zell/Lurie Real Estate Center endowment
  • Boettner Center of Financial Gerontology
  • Annenberg Institute for the Study of Democratic Institutions
  • Korea Foundation's Korean Studies Program
  • Securing support for two interdisciplinary programs and facilities --Bioengineering and Life Sciences --is an important priority for FY01.
  • See also undergraduate academic programs described above under Strategic Goal 1.

Academic Facilities:

  • $194 million raised for new and renovated academic facilities.
  • Wharton's Huntsman Building project accounts for $122.4 million of the total.
  • University Museum concluded fundraising campaign for the Mainwaring Wing with $15 million toward construction and additional monies for endowment; moving ahead with plans for a substantial renovation program within the existing Museum complex, thanks to a $16 million commitment from Charles Williams.
  • Dental School's Schattner Center currently stands at approximately $13 million.
  • More than $7 million committed to Engineering's Levine Hall for Computer and Information Science.
  • GSFA's Addams Hall project completed, as additional fundraising efforts are pursued for named spaces within the building.
  • Change in direction for SAS facilities projects for Biology and Psychology; now combined into larger Life Sciences initiative, including a new building. Fundraising progress to date totals approximately $4.2 million.


  • Identify and engage alumni and trustees to assure that the fundraising goals are met.
  • Agenda for Excellence Council has played important role in development planning, personal philanthropy, and "door-opening" to build support for the Agenda.
  • Other leadership groups closely involved in fundraising include:
    • Penn Fund
    • Trustees' Council of Penn Women
    • University Committee for Undergraduate Financial Aid
    • College House Advisory Board
    • James Brister Society
  • Expansion of activities targeted toward young alumni participation has been a priority. More than 20 on-campus and regional events were held during FY00; 14 events and activities have been held thus far in FY01.
  • Identification of new prospects has been priority of DAR's Market Research and Analysis Office (MRA).
  • Prospect pool has increased 8% per year during the period FY97-2000, for a current total of 20,411 prospects.
  • At the $1 million+ level, the pool has grown by 14% annually, to more than 1,022 prospects.
  • Targeted Industry Program has begun in four industry sectors: High Tech, Biotech, Venture Capital/Finance, and Media and Entertainment.
  • More than 150 new prospects identified through this new approach, which has also yielded extensive information sources including company and contact lists.
  • Targeted Industry Program capabilities have assisted in development of prospect lists for several other development initiatives, including the Penn Breakfast Forum, the College House Project, the Medical School's Women's Health Project, and the 125th Anniversary of Women at Penn Celebration


Involve international alumni in the development process.

DAR has focused considerable attention on building development relationships abroad.

  • During the past five fiscal years, international gifts to Penn have totaled $54.2 million.
  • Rated prospects from outside the U.S. have also risen, during the past year alone from 735 to 947; 148 rated with a giving ability of $1 million+.
  • International alumni serve in a variety of volunteer leadership capacities, among them the University's Board of Trustees, school boards of overseers, and center advisory bodies. Some 26 international parents serve on the Parents Program Executive Board.
  • Wharton's three international executive boards in Asia, Latin America, and Europe involve 84 members representing 37 countries. Active participation by Executive Board members in regional annual meetings; all members closely involved as volunteers and donors in Campaign for Sustained Leadership.
  • Regional Wharton alumni meetings attended annually by about 1,000 international alumni. Recent meetings in Manila and Buenos Aires each drew approximately 300 attendees. (See also comments under Strategic Goal 6.)


  • Maintain a top-five ranking in gift receipts among peer institutions by launching a new University/schools fundraising drive for initiatives targeted in Agenda for Excellence.

During Agenda for Excellence, Penn has maintained and improved its fundraising position among the top tier of universities.

  • Within its Ivy/MIT/Stanford peer group, Penn has begun to move up in the rankings, even in the context of comprehensive campaigns at several of those institutions.
  • Ranked sixth in FY97, the first year of the Agenda, Penn moved to fifth in the most recent year for which comparative statistics are available (FY99).
  • Penn's average growth rate of 19% over the past five years, the highest of the Ivy/MIT/Stanford Group, is nearly five times greater than the average annual growth rate for the group as a whole.


PRINT this document

No. 32, SUPPLEMENT: Agenda for Excellence 1995-2000 (~ 375 k; 32 pages)

Note: To read Acrobat® files, download the Adobe® Acrobat® Reader for free!

Almanac, Vol. 47, No. 32, May 1, 2001