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UTSA Launches $500 Million Campaign to Advance Student Success, Research Excellence and Strategic Growth | UTSA today | UTSA


OCTOBER 7, 2022 — The University of Texas at San Antonio today launched the public phase of Be Bold: A Campaign for Our Future, a $500 million fundraising campaign to support UTSA’s growth as a model of success in students, major public research university and model for strategic growth and innovative excellence.

The fundraising campaign, first conceived in 2017, has been in what is traditionally called the “quiet phase” and has already raised $311 million in donations and pledges. University leaders have prioritized fundraising areas to support UTSA’s transformative vision. These areas of focus include scholarships, graduate scholarships, endowed academic positions, special programs, and capital projects across the university’s campus network.

Increasing funds for scholarships, graduate scholarships, and endowed faculty positions is critical to recruiting and retaining some of UTSA’s most talented minds. The university currently has 555 endowments to support students, innovative research, and impactful programming. Nearly two-thirds of these endowments, or nearly 350, support undergraduate scholarships for high-achieving and high-need students.

UTSA also has nearly 20 endowed graduate scholarships, over 80 endowed faculty positions, and over 100 program endowments. These funds pave the way for UTSA to deliver the highest quality teaching and research programs characteristic of a Tier 1 research university.

“Institutions like UTSA are the cornerstone of world-class cities. They drive social mobility and economic prosperity, educate tomorrow’s leaders and uncover new insights to address society’s greatest challenges,” said the UTSA President. Taylor Eightmy. “This comprehensive campaign, the largest in the university’s history, will create new opportunities, expand strategic partnerships, and improve our campus infrastructure for the benefit of all of our students and faculty. Simply put, this campaign will change lives by building a university of the future right here in San Antonio.

Since the start of the Be Bold effort, more than 39,446 supporters from 19 countries and all 50 states have made 116,000 donations and pledges of all sizes in support of UTSA. In 2021 alone, the university received three transformational gifts.

Carlos and Malú Alvarez committed a $20 million donation to the UTSA College of Business, attracted by UTSA’s high-caliber students and the couple’s desire to give back to San Antonio, where Carlos Alvarez built his business. The Alvarez family’s gift, the first of its kind in the university’s history, advances research enhancement activities. It supports the creation of endowed faculty positions, graduate research fellowships, and undergraduate research programs. The donation led to the naming of the Carlos Alvarez College of Business, the first named college in UTSA history and the first business college in the University of Texas system to be named after a Latino.

Philanthropist MacKenzie Scott donated $40 million to support UTSA students in need, drawn by the university’s strong commitment to creating pathways to success for first-generation students and students from families with low income. UTSA awarded this transformational gift to its Bold Promise program, which was established in 2019 to provide high-achieving Texans from low- and middle-income families with 100% of their tuition and fees for up to four years. To date, the program has served 2,368 students.

Former CEO and Chairman of the Board of Valero Bill Klesse and his wife, Margie, has pledged $20 million to the university’s College of Engineering and Integrated Design, attracted by the opportunity to create pathways for women and students of color to enter STEM fields. Their generosity supports scholarships, faculty support initiatives, and student success programs. In recognition of this donation, UTSA named the college Margie and Bill Klesse College of Engineering and Integrated Design.

During the initial phase of the Be Bold campaign, UTSA also secured donations and pledges from:

  • Graham Westonwho is co-chair of the Be Bold Campaign Leadership Council and donated $15 million to establish the School of Data Science in the downtown San Antonio tech corridor;
  • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundationwhich awarded UTSA researchers a $5 million grant to help the university strengthen community partnerships to advance racial justice;
  • Harvey E. Najimwho committed $3 million to create the Harvey E. Najim Innovation and Career Advancement Center, providing unique hands-on learning opportunities for UTSA students;
  • USAA, which donated $1 million to provide 100 Bold Promise scholarships to UTSA students, following a $100,000 emergency fund contribution for students affected by the COVID-19 pandemic; and
  • Dell Technologieswhich awarded UTSA a technology grant to support cutting-edge technologies and a new research infrastructure platform at the university.

Be Bold has also inspired multi-million dollar giveaways to transform San Antonio into a destination for the nation’s most competitive Division I student-athletes. Through Bold Champions, a $70 million fundraising effort under the Be Bold campaign, UTSA Athletics received $35.5 million in gifts and pledges from 6,629 donors in seven countries and 48 states. These commitments include a pledge of $5 million from James H. and DeAnna Bodenstedt to support the Roadrunner Athletic Center for Excellence. The $41.5 million state-of-the-art athletic facility supports the health and well-being of UTSA student-athletes.

Bold Champions already provides support for UTSA student-athletes and several capital projects outlined in the UTSA Athletics Master Plan.

“San Antonio’s future largely depends on how UTSA evolves over the next decade,” said Sam Dawson, Chairman of the Campaign Leadership Council. “I envision UTSA becoming a model research university that attracts the most talented students and faculty from around the world, and I envision an unprecedented economic engine that drives innovation and entrepreneurship. It is essential that our community supports this important effort.