Meg Wilkie ’24 has a passion for running and a big dream: to run a marathon in all 50 states. Since she started racing in 2012, she has completed 28 full marathons in 15 states. This fall, she will tackle…
Syracuse Athletics Celebrates Second-Highest Fundraising Year
The ’Cuse Athletics Fund (’CAF) recorded its second-highest fundraising year during the 2021-22 fiscal year that concluded on June 30. More than 9,700 donors contributed $29.1 million, representing a 52% increase in funds from the previous year and drawing the second largest number of donors to Syracuse Athletics. This year’s total amount raised was only exceeded in 2019, when John and Laura Lally made a $25 million lead commitment to support the transformation of Manley Field House into the new John A. Lally Athletics Complex.
Donations to the ’CAF encompass all areas supporting Syracuse Athletics, including annual giving to the Athletics Opportunity Fund, support to individual sports teams, priority seating, and Legends Society commitments to the John A. Lally Athletics Complex.
“On behalf of our athletics department, coaches and staff, thank you to the thousands of ’Cuse Athletics Fund members who support our student-athletes and programs,” says Director of Athletics John Wildhack. “Every donation has an impact on the lives of our student-athletes and helps provide an enhanced experience that will shape them both during and after their time at Syracuse University.”
Philanthropic leadership from many individuals and families contributed to the successful fundraising year. The ’CAF’s Legends Society received more than $14 million in commitments and surpassed 125 total donors making multi-year philanthropic gifts. Legends Society commitments are above and beyond seating requirements and are separate from ‘CAF annual membership levels. These philanthropic commitments are used to support the construction of the John A. Lally Athletics Complex, which will enhance experiences across all 20 sports and benefit more than 600 student-athletes. In recognition of their philanthropic leadership, members of the Legends Society enjoy unique stewardship experiences and engagement opportunities in alignment with their support.
“We are incredibly grateful for the generosity from our Orange family and friends,” says Michael Paulus, senior associate athletic director and executive director of the ’Cuse Athletics Fund. “Private support continues to be a critical component of impacting the experience of all our student-athletes, and we cannot thank our ’Cuse Athletics Fund donors enough for what they do for Syracuse Athletics.”
The first phase of construction for the Lally Athletics Complex began in March and includes a new entryway and student-athlete academic support area. This state-of-the-art space will support student needs with private in-person meeting areas for expanded tutorial appointments and academic advising, as well as career and life skills programming. Available to all student-athletes, the expanded academic support facility will house private rooms for student-athletes to utilize for completing assignments or studying between classes.
The ’Cuse Athletics Fund continues to fundraise for future phases of the transformational project. Additional enhancements to the facility, known as Manley Field House for nearly 60 years, will be announced as new philanthropy is secured. As part of the vision for the John A. Lally Athletics Complex transformation, the Department of Athletics is considering phases that include the creation of a new Football Operations Center; an Olympic Sports Center, which will be utilized by all of Syracuse University’s Olympic sports teams; updated dining and nutrition facilities; renovated locker rooms, medical training and strength and conditioning facilities; and modernized facades on the exterior of the complex.
“The Lally Athletics Complex is a game changing project for recruiting and holistically developing our student-athletes. The leadership and support from Legends Society donors this past year is inspiring, and we look forward to building upon the momentum as we continue fundraising for the complex,” says Wildhack.
The enhancements at the Lally Complex are funded entirely through private donations and are in addition to other facility upgrades benefiting Syracuse Athletics. The University recently announced a new naming rights sponsor, JMA Wireless, which will benefit the gameday and fan experience, as well as future plans to install chairbacks inside the JMA Dome.
To learn more about joining the Legends Society and supporting the new John A. Lally Athletics Complex, visit the Legends Society webpage.
About Forever Orange: The Campaign for Syracuse University
Orange isn’t just our color. It’s our promise to leave the world better than we found it. Forever Orange: The Campaign for Syracuse University is poised to do just that. Fueled by 150 years of fearless firsts, together we can enhance academic excellence, transform the student experience and expand unique opportunities for learning and growth. Forever Orange endeavors to raise $1.5 billion in philanthropic support, inspire 125,000 individual donors to participate in the campaign, and actively engage one in five alumni in the life of the University. Now is the time to show the world what Orange can do. Visit foreverorange.syr.edu to learn more.