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West Virginia University at Parkersburg sets $5M fundraising goal

PARKERSBURG — West Virginia University at Parkersburg announced it will begin a $5 million fundraising campaign in January 2022 with the goal of raising the money in three years.

The campaign is an extension of the WVU Parkersburg Proud fundraising initiative, which doubled its $3 million goal in two years instead of the originally planned three-year timeline. Its success was due to private donations and successful grant writings.

Last year, the college received the largest donation in its history through Arnold Ventures. The $1.7 million grant kick-started the WVU Parkersburg Ascend program. Ascend provides academic, personal and financial supports to help students in certificate and associate programs complete their degrees on time.

“I saw an opportunity for WVU Parkersburg to exceed its own expectations in fundraising,” college President Dr. Chris Gilmer said. “When I arrived in July 2018, we had never truly undertaken a systematic, goal-driven, long-term fundraising initiative to support WVU Parkersburg, but I believed this community wanted to support its college if invited to do so.

“Successful grant writing has been a part of my advancement strategy for 25 years. Money follows purpose, so we had to start by recommitting to our purpose as a student-focused, community-serving institution. When we did that and started our outreach for funds in a deliberate way, we exceeded a goal many thought was too ambitious. Now, based on that success, we are setting an even more ambitious goal.”

In addition to grant writing, the college always accepts donations for student scholarships and activities, as well as for special projects and faculty and staff development.

“The WVU at Parkersburg Foundation provides an opportunity for our community to invest in itself by sharing its generosity in a way that helps so many students. As they improve their education, they take on local service and working roles to help it continue to be enriched and grow,” said WVU at Parkersburg Foundation President and CEO Dr. Torie Jackson. “Our alumni and our students surround the Mid-Ohio Valley and give us so many reasons to be WVU Parkersburg Proud.”

To learn how to be a part of the WVU Parkersburg Proud legacy by visiting wvup.edu/foundation.

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