University of Melbourne celebrates the impact of its Believe campaign

University of Melbourne Old Quad.

The University of Melbourne has concluded its most successful fundraising and engagement campaign.  Visionary philanthropic support and committed volunteers have together enabled world-changing research, student support initiatives and major infrastructure projects.

Believe – The Campaign for the University of Melbourne commenced in 2008 and launched publicly in 2013. Since then, nearly 30,000 donors have made more than 73,000 individual gifts to the University, its colleges, and affiliates.

University of Melbourne Chancellor, Mr Allan Myers AC QC has been a major part of the Campaign since its inception.

“From the graduates we produce, the research we explore, and the campuses we share, this generosity has shaped the University’s public contribution to society,”  Mr Myers said.

Generous donors have enabled research across multiple and diverse fields such as – identifying targeted treatments for growing numbers of ovarian cancer patients, saving the endangered Eastern Barred Bandicoot from extinction through genetics, and enhancing technologies that improve brain function for those with epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease.

The Campaign has also greatly enriched the lives of our student community, with the establishment of 473 new scholarships and awards funds, supporting thousands of students over 14 years. In 2021 alone, more than 1882 students received philanthropic-funded scholarships or awards.

Significant gifts have funded projects which have transformed the University’s campuses, including the Melbourne Arts Precinct in Southbank, enhancing students’ educational experience and engagement opportunities for the public.

Over the course of the Campaign, donors have contributed more than $1 billion.

“I believe one of the fundamental roles of a university is to reflect the accumulated wisdom and aspirations of the society we serve. We question, explore and work to make a difference and extend the canon of human knowledge for the better. Our global donor community have shown they trust us to play this critical role and we are grateful for their generosity,” Mr Myers said.

The University also engaged more than 100,000 alumni during the Campaign, with more than 8,000 of them mentoring more than 16,000 students.

University of Melbourne Vice-Chancellor, Professor Duncan Maskell said philanthropy is an important part of the University.

“The best universities recognise that philanthropy brings major benefits to future generations, not only of scholars, students and alumni, but of nations and communities everywhere," Professor Maskell said.

“Incredible outcomes have been made possible by generous contributions of time and financial support since Believe commenced in 2008. While this campaign has concluded, philanthropy and the engagement of our alumni remain at the heart of our most ambitious objectives.”

University of Melbourne Deputy Chancellor, Ms Jane Hansen AO said the campaign has built philanthropy and engagement into the fabric of the institution.

“I’m proud to be part of a community that is working to enrich the lives of so many. From students who now have opportunities to help them realise their full potential to researchers who can drive real change, this campaign has forever changed the face of Melbourne,” Ms Hansen said, who is both a generous donor and deputy chair of the Believe campaign.

Read more here about the Believe campaign.