‘Create The Future’ enhances educational resources for students
MELBOURNE, FLA.— Shattering university fundraising records and setting a new high water mark for Space Coast philanthropy, Florida Institute of Technology raised $123.4 million for its Create The Future campaign.
The total was announced Saturday evening at a black-tie gala on the Melbourne campus. More than 400 university supporters, alumni and community leaders filled the Clemente Center to celebrate the successful conclusion of the campaign—the most ambitious fundraising effort in Florida Tech’s nearly 60 year history, and the largest effort of its kind ever launched in Brevard County.
“When we first conceived the idea of the $100 million Create The Future campaign, some said that it could not be done,” said Florida Tech President and CEO Anthony J. Catanese. “That such a high-reaching endeavor was too ambitious for a university of our age, our size, our location. That we needed to be 100 years older, thousands of students larger, or located in a major metropolis to fundraise at that level.
“What this campaign has affirmed for us, and demonstrated to others, is that Florida Tech is a university which routinely exceeds expectations,” Catanese added. “With hard work, determination, and careful planning, possibilities arise that would not otherwise exist. We are grateful to our many friends and supporters for making this campaign possible.”
The campaign earned a number of key gifts, including:
- Research and Development Center—$13.1 million, 100,494-square-foot facility gift from the Intersil Corporation to create a new center for science and technology on Palm Bay Road
- Harris Student Design Center—$1 million gift from Harris Corporation to fund the 11,500-square-foot facility for students to construct science and engineering projects
- The Foosaner Art Museum—$1 million gift to reestablish the former Brevard Art Museum in downtown Eau Gallie
Other important gifts have supported programs such as the Nathan Bisk College of Business, allowing for its expansion and relocation to Babcock Oaks. Donations have benefited numerous student scholarships and boosted the university’s endowment as well as supported programs and research at its five colleges, two museums and library.
The public phase of the Create The Future campaign launched in January 2014, with its goal of supporting the priority needs of the university and enhancing educational resources for students. Florida Tech’s last fundraising effort, The Golden Anniversary Campaign, concluded in 2009 and raised $60 million.
The Create The Future campaign’s successful conclusion is a fitting tribute to Catanese’s tenure as president. He will retire June 30 after 14 years as Florida Tech’s leader and join the university faculty.
Florida Tech, which serves approximately 16,000 students annually, has collected a number of accolades over the past several months, including being ranked one of the top 20 universities in the world by the Times Higher Education, based on size. Florida Tech is also annually recognized as a Tier One Best National University by U.S. News and World Report and has been named one of the best colleges in the nation for return on investment by PayScale.com.
Watch video highlights of the gala by clicking here.