University News

University of New Haven Surpasses $100 Million Campaign Goal Ahead of Schedule to Support Innovative Academic Building, Scholarships

President Steven H. Kaplan Announces Significantly Increased Campaign Goal in Advance of the University’s Centennial Celebration in 2020.

April 2, 2019

Photo of the Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation groundbreaking
The centerpiece of The Charger Challenge: The Campaign for the University of New Haven is the Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation. Ground was broken last fall, and the facility is scheduled to open in early 2020, coinciding with the start of the University’s centennial year.

The University of New Haven announced today that its inaugural comprehensive campaign, launched as a precursor to the University’s historic Centennial in 2020, has exceeded its original goal of $100 million. This milestone was reached almost a year in advance of the official start of its 100th year.

Charger Challenge Logo

The Charger Challenge: The Campaign for the University of New Haven was publicly launched in 2016. Since its inception, more than 15,000 donors have contributed to the campaign, and the University has received 80 gifts of $100,000 or more and 20 gifts of at least $1 million. In addition to raising more than $100 million, the University has attracted more than $24 million in federal and state grants and contracts during the campaign.

“This is momentous for the University,” said President Steven H. Kaplan. “As we prepare to begin a year-long celebration of our first 100 years, we are proud to announce an unprecedented level of support for our future. Our founders would take great pride in seeing the dedication that today’s donors have to our mission. We are indebted to all of our alumni, faculty, staff, students, and friends who are ensuring our next century of success and achievement.”

“This is momentous for the University. As we prepare to begin a year-long celebration of our first 100 years, we are proud to announce an unprecedented level of support for our future."President Steven H. Kaplan

President Kaplan said that the goal for The Charger Challenge was increased to $120 million by 2020, and will focus on attracting additional resources for athletics and the new School of Health Sciences.

The Charger Challenge seeks to provide new support for educational opportunities that foster innovation, creativity, and social impact, while also enriching learning and co-curricular opportunities for students.

University of New Haven student
Students signed the final beam that was placed atop the new Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation.

The centerpiece of The Charger Challenge is the new Bergami Center for Science, Technology, and Innovation, a state-of-the-art, 44,000-square-foot academic facility. Currently under construction in the heart of the University’s campus, it is scheduled to open in early 2020. The University’s first new academic building in more than 40 years, the Bergami Center will include, among other cutting-edge features, engineering and science labs, state-of-the-art collaborative classrooms, and video production studios.

“Innovation isn’t just a buzzword at the University of New Haven. It is a core concept that we have embraced since our founding and that we continue to cultivate every day through the pioneering work of our students and our talented faculty."President Steven H. Kaplan

A central feature of the building will be its makerspace, where students will have the opportunity to explore their own interests and inventions; learn to use innovative tools and materials; and pursue interdisciplinary collaborative opportunities.

More than one-third of the building will be “open space” that will foster creative idea exchange and teamwork. Instead of traditional faculty offices, it will feature co-working spaces and areas that encourage and support the exchange of ideas between students and faculty.

Photo of William Bucknall Jr. ’63, ’65, chair of the Board of Governors, and his daughter, Elise, with recipients of the Bucknall Family STEM Endowed Scholarship
An important part of The Charger Challenge is increasing the amount of scholarship support available to students. Here, William Bucknall Jr. ’63, ’65, chair of the Board of Governors, and his daughter, Elise, with recipients of the Bucknall Family STEM Endowed Scholarship.

“Innovation isn’t just a buzzword at the University of New Haven,” said President Kaplan. “It is a core concept that we have embraced since our founding and that we continue to cultivate every day through the pioneering work of our students and our talented faculty. The Bergami Center will be a testament to the innovative spirit we strive to instill in every member of our community.”

In addition, The Charger Challenge has sought to substantially increase the amount of endowed scholarships and financial aid available to attract and retain highly talented students. Since the launch of the campaign, 94 new endowed scholarships have been created.