BetterPlanet Project Reaches Milestone, Exceeds $200-Million Goal

June 13, 2014 - News Release

The University of Guelph has reached a milestone in its BetterPlanet Project campaign. It’s surpassed its $200-million fundraising goal by more than $3.5 million dollars, President Alastair Summerlee announced today.

The fundraising campaign has garnered a total of $203,581,299 through donations from more than 65,000 individuals, families and organizations.

“The BetterPlanet Project was a call to action for the University and concerned citizens everywhere to work together to improve life on this planet,” said Summerlee.

“We are grateful for their investments in the University and ultimately, a better future.”

U of G publicly launched the campaign in 2010 to improve quality of life here and around the world by focusing on University strengths in food, environment, health and community.

Campaign funds are enhancing teaching and learning, research, scholarships and facilities in those areas, said campaign chair Tye Burt, a U of G alumnus and former vice-chair of the University’s Board of Governors,
“The impact of this campaign has been tremendous,” said Burt.

He said campaign support is giving U of G researchers and scholars needed tools to make discoveries and translate innovation into practical applications.

“It will allow the University to use its interdisciplinary expertise to help solve global challenges. This campaign has honoured Guelph’s history and it emphasizes our mission to change lives and improve life.”

Of the total raised, nearly $39 million will be used to enhance teaching and learning campus-wide, including expanded first-year seminars, new undergraduate arts scholarships and a student-centred accounting program.

Nearly $37 million will be used for food-related teaching and research, including food security and safety and improved food production and processing.

Almost $22 million was pledged to environmental projects, including a state-of-the-art plant cryopreservation centre, DNA barcoding and a new engineering complex.

More than $60 million will support animal and human health initiatives, including global health efforts and research to improve quality of life for pets and people.

Almost $46 million was raised for community initiatives, including the restoration of Macdonald Institute, revamping of the athletics centre and upgrades to the Library’s historical archives.

“The success of this campaign has demonstrated that we are not done,” Summerlee said. “Achieving this $200-million milestone provides even greater momentum to advance our strengths and continue to build a better planet.”

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338,; or Kevin Gonsalves, Ext. 56982,

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