Hamline on track to raise $110 million

Naiya Laskin, News Reporter

President Fayneese Miller has been orchestrating a fundraising campaign titled Take The Lead for the last eight years. This project, named after Hamline’s motto, aims to raise $110 million — and it’s only $5 million away from its goal. The project was announced in 2019, but had technically been in its “silent phase” since Miller first became president. 

Originally, the campaign was set to wrap up at the end of this fiscal year. The committee is still confident that the goal will be met by June, but many donors tend to wait until December because of tax deductions, so the deadline has been extended.

One issue the campaign has is its webpage, which can be difficult to find. First, one has to go to hamline.edu, then click on the About Hamline menu, and find the Alumni and Donors page. Then, one needs to wait for the Take The Lead banner to appear, which is where the relevant webpage can finally be found.

As this campaign is important for both current and future students of Hamline, having an easily accessible webpage is imperative in spreading awareness. 

The website details where the donations are slated to be allocated. One of the most sorely needed donation categories is financial aid and scholarships. Tuition across the United States is only getting more expensive, and if universities are unable or unwilling to lower costs, many students have to rely on offered scholarships and much-needed financial aid. The amount of aid offered can be the deciding factor between universities. Thus, every year, universities have to consider how much they can offer students. Take The Lead is set on raising $30 million for this purpose. 

The buildings on campus are also in need of improvements. $20 million has been set aside to achieve this. Committee members such as physics professor Jerry Artz remember Hamline as it used to be and want to make sure students can have the opportunity to fall in love with the university the same way they did.

Another $40 million will be split evenly between academic initiatives and support for innovation in students. This money will go to research projects, labs and real-world research opportunities. 

A personal favorite area for Artz is the $10 million slated to be for athletic programs. The tennis community needs new courts, which costs $250,000. Without that money this summer, tennis programs can’t get started. An additional $10 million will also be going to supporting students. This money will go to programs such as the Career Development Center and the Hedgeman Center.

Artz wants the Hamline community to know that this campaign is run entirely by volunteers — including alumni. They are giving their time to this project entirely out of love for Hamline, and because they know what this school is capable of. Every few months, they hold meetings to talk and learn from each other.

“It’s just a pleasure to work with these alumni,” Artz said.

The committee is confident that the goal will be met on time. If you know anyone who would like to donate, please contact Jerry Artz at jartz@hamline.edu.