Home » Bellarmine University completes $100 million capital campaign

Bellarmine University completes $100 million capital campaign


LOUISVILLE (August 30, 2017) – Bellarmine University has completed a transformative capital campaign, raising more than $100 million for new buildings, new academic programs, additional faculty and student scholarships. 

“I offer my congratulations and thanks to everyone who played a part in bringing this successful capital campaign to completion, for the betterment of Bellarmine University and our students,” said Dr. Susan M. Donovan, who became Bellarmine’s fourth president this summer. “I consider it a privilege to build upon the great foundation this campaign provides, so we can move Bellarmine forward to even greater prominence and impact in the local, regional and global society.”

In all, $100,763,781 was raised through more than 44,000 gifts that ranged from a single dollar to $5 million. The fundraising and spending was guided by Vision 2020, an ambitious plan developed by former president Joseph McGowan that set a broad vision for new schools, new majors, new faculty, new buildings and new ways to serve Louisville, the state and the region.

Vision 2020 positioned Bellarmine as the premier independent Catholic university in the south, and thereby the leading private university in the commonwealth and region.

Donovan applauded the leadership of Bellarmine trustee and Maker’s Mark chairman emeritus Bill Samuels, who served as chairman of Bellarmine’s capital campaign.

More than $30 million of gifts to the campaign came directly from the university’s alumni.

The capital campaign funded 49 endowed scholarships for current and future students, five named or endowed professorships, four new learning communities, initiatives that encourage women to pursue careers in STEM fields, international study opportunities, programs for first-generation college students, the Institute for Advanced Analytics, expanded student health services and more.

These new opportunities fueled a 46 percent increase in Bellarmine’s student body since 2005. Despite the growth, Bellarmine remained committed to a personal focus on the needs of each student, reflected in its longtime 12-to-one student-to-faculty ratio.

Campus growth
Eleven campus facilities were constructed or significantly renovated with capital campaign funds, including Centro’s McGowan Hall, which features modern classrooms, faculty and administrative offices, a new admissions welcome center and is home to Bellarmine’s W. Fielding Rubel School of Business and the Institute for Advanced Analytics. A three-story atrium connects McGowan Hall to Centro’s two other halls – Horrigan and Treece – which were renovated through the capital campaign.

Other new construction included the University Dining Hall, the Clayton Truth Wall outside Our Lady of the Woods Chapel and a four-story expansion of Nolen C. Allen Hall.

Renovated spaces include Knights Hall, the Michael E. Hobbs Endowed Physical Therapy Service Learning Clinic and Joseph P. Clayton Hall, home of the School of Communication.

Annual Fund
The campaign raised $15 million for Bellarmine’s annual fund, which provides scholarships and other student aid.