Despite dif­fi­cult eco­nomic times, North­eastern Uni­ver­sity has con­tinued to sur­pass its fundraising goals, securing $63.3 mil­lion in new gifts and pledges.

Since 2005, Northeastern’s annual fundraising average has tripled. Sup­port from all mem­bers of the community—alumni, stu­dents, par­ents, friends, and uni­ver­sity partners—has been inte­gral to this momentum. And under­grad­uate alumni played a key role during the last fiscal year, with an impres­sive 13,103 donors making gifts—a record for Northeastern.

These gifts are fueling the launch of Empower: The Cam­paign for North­eastern Uni­ver­sity, a com­pre­hen­sive fundraising drive to secure $1 bil­lion in sup­port of stu­dents, fac­ulty, and research inno­va­tion. The cam­paign, announced in May, will amplify Northeastern’s strengths in cre­ativity and entre­pre­neur­ship, and rede­fine the university’s lead­er­ship on a global scale.

North­eastern has a bold vision for the future and the phil­an­thropic sup­port of our com­mu­nity and friends give life to this vision,” said Joseph E. Aoun, pres­i­dent of North­eastern Uni­ver­sity. “Our momentum is unprece­dented. It is our goal to strengthen it for gen­er­a­tions to come by remaining at the leading edge of research and con­tin­uing to attract world-​​class stu­dents and faculty.”

  • Kim Biesterfeld, SSH’13 (left), and guest Rebecca McBride help kick off the Empower campaign festivities in London on July 2.

  • Khalid Al Dabal, DMSB’14 (left), with Abdulaziz Albassam, DMSB’12, and William Pitisongswat, SSH’12.

  • Maxwell Montpetit, DMSB’16 (left), and Les Kernan, AMD’16, competed that week in London’s Henley Royal Regatta along with their men’s rowing teammates.

  • Trustee Michael Zamkow, DMSB’79, and Sue Berman, university benefactors, joined in the celebration.

  • Distances posed no barriers to a gathering of these international Northeastern ambassadors.

  • President Joseph E. Aoun and his wife, Zeina, hosted Northeastern alumni, students, and parents in Paris on July 8.

  • Diane MacGillivray, senior vice president for university advancement, introduced the Empower campaign.

Con­sis­tent with its global out­look, North­eastern fol­lowed the Empower campaign’s offi­cial kick-​​off in Boston with cel­e­bra­tions in London and Paris in July. Nearly 150 mem­bers of the university’s inter­na­tional com­mu­nity gath­ered to cel­e­brate the campaign’s public phase—the point at which, with sig­nif­i­cant funding in hand, an insti­tu­tion calls upon every con­stituent for sup­port. North­eastern seeks to raise $500 mil­lion from gen­erous donors, and $500 mil­lion from cor­po­ra­tions, uni­ver­sity alliances, and government.

At North­eastern, these funds are highly inter­de­pen­dent and syn­er­gistic,” said Diane N. MacGillivray, senior vice pres­i­dent for uni­ver­sity advance­ment. “A donor’s gift may sup­port a fac­ulty member, who brings in grants—which ignite dis­cov­eries, inspiring addi­tional gifts. Phil­an­thropy has the power to change lives—both of those who give and those who benefit.”

During the coming months, North­eastern will con­tinue hosting national and global Empower events. On Nov. 15–16, the greater uni­ver­sity com­mu­nity will con­vene family-​​friendly cam­paign cel­e­bra­tions during Home­coming Weekend. Guests will have the oppor­tu­nity to expe­ri­ence the future of North­eastern through inter­ac­tive exhibits show­casing the inno­va­tion, entre­pre­neur­ship, and research of the university’s excep­tional stu­dents, fac­ulty, and alumni.

Empower cam­paign sup­porters are already making a remark­able impact across dis­ci­plines at North­eastern. They have estab­lished a pio­neering part­ner­ship with the Ocean Genome Legacy Center of New Eng­land Bio­labs to house a renowned col­lec­tion of marine genome sam­ples; the inno­v­a­tive Michael J. and Ann Sherman Center for Engi­neering Entre­pre­neur­ship Edu­ca­tion; and the North­eastern University-​​​​Boston Ballet Edu­ca­tion Pro­gram, a ground­breaking edu­ca­tional pro­gram to help pro­fes­sional ballet dancers earn under­grad­uate and grad­uate degrees to pre­pare them for careers after dancing.