Media Advisory: Wake Will: The Campaign for Wake Forest Hits Half-Billion Dollar Mark

Two years earlier than projected, Wake Will: The Campaign for Wake Forest has reached the half-billion dollar mark in total campaign commitments and is more than 83 percent toward its Reynolda Campus goal.

As of June 30, 2015, Wake Forest has raised more than $503 million of its $600 million goal for the Reynolda Campus. The University received over $100 million in gifts and commitments between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015, signaling the institution’s largest-ever fundraising year.

“When we launched Wake Will: The Campaign for Wake Forest, we did so with great ambition and transformational dreams,” said Wake Forest President Nathan O. Hatch. “Our alumni, parents and friends embraced our vision for Wake Forest’s future and helped secure our traditions while inspiring innovation. Today, we celebrate reaching the half-billion dollar milestone – a truly significant moment for the University – and the impact it has on our campus.”

Wake Forest publicly launched its campaign in October 2013 and, in conjunction with the Wake Forest Baptist Medical School’s campaign, intends to invest $1 billion in student, faculty and facility support. Wake Will already has made possible a number of wide-ranging benefits to the Reynolda Campus, including:

  • Scholarships and financial aid – Wake Will has raised more than $154 million in scholarships and financial aid, with a particular focus on increasing access for first-generation and middle class students, as well as completing an important initiative for international scholarships.
  • Faculty, academic and campus program support – Gifts totaling more than $151 million support everything from individual academic departments to University-wide campus life initiatives, including:
    • Recruiting and retaining world-class faculty, including securing eight endowed Presidential Chairs and launching a $40 million initiative aimed at providing academic and departmental endowed funding;
    • Strengthening the nationally-recognized Office of Personal and Career Development, which guides students’ college-to-career journeys, by endowing key positions and programs within this office;
    • Furthering Wake Forest’s Thrive program, a model for others in higher education for a comprehensive approach to wellbeing that aims to transform the way colleges support healthier, balanced living for students, faculty and staff; and
    • Assisting the Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship program, designed to create and sustain an educational environment that inspires and equips Wake Forest students to become innovative thinkers, value creators and entrepreneurial leaders.
  • Facility improvements– This year, Wake Will has made possible a number of new capital projects.
    • Renovations are underway for the Law Commons in Worrell Professional Center, and an additional wing is being built for Health and Exercise Science.
    • Several classrooms around campus are scheduled for enhancement and renewal this summer as well.
    • The Z. Smith Reynolds Library is undergoing improvements and the expansion and renovation of Reynolds Gym into a dynamic hub for wellbeing continues.
    • Fundraising for the McCreary Field House is complete, and construction is nearing the halfway point. The Haddock House, home of Wake Forest men’s and women’s golf, and the soccer field renovation also are underway.

“Never before have we witnessed this kind of momentum. But we aren’t done yet,” said Hatch. “Wake Will carries the weight of tradition and the promise of a better tomorrow. And so we will continue the work together.”

Indeed, every dollar from every donor counts. Seventy-eight percent of donors to the campaign have committed less than $1,000 (up from 74 percent this time last year). Fifty-four percent of donors have given less than $250 (up from 47 percent).

“We can celebrate because thousands have seen the importance of our need and responded in kind. A full two years ahead of schedule, Wake Will has reached the half-billion dollar milestone,” said Donald E. “Don” Flow (MBA ’83), chair of the Wake Will Campaign Cabinet. “This generosity is simply overwhelming and the spirit of Pro Humanitate is inspiring. I am honored to be part of a community that is committed to making a difference in the world, starting with the lives of the young people educated at Wake Forest.”

Harsh Patolia, a senior biophysics major, is one of the young people who has benefitted from the generosity of Wake Will donors.

“I would not be at Wake Forest University without the support of its financial aid opportunities,” said Patolia. “As a Gordon Scholar, Wake Forest has immersed me in the liberal arts through co-curricular and extracurricular experiences. From service abroad in Rwanda to researching on the campus for a summer to studying in Vienna for a semester, many of the incredible experiences I’ve had over the past three years were possible due to Wake Forest’s financial aid opportunities. The financial aid provided by Wake has facilitated my intellectual and personal development as both scholar and citizen.”

Additional information about the campaign is available at



Categories: Media Advisory, President, University Announcement, Wake Will