Oxford University's Campaign reaches billion pound mark

Fri, 29/10/2010

Oxford University's fundraising campaign, Oxford Thinking, has reached the milestone of £1 billion in record time, in spite of the global financial crisis. Oxford's Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Hamilton, described the generosity of donors as "fundamental to Oxford's future".

The campaign is the largest in European university history, with a goal of a minimum of £1.25 billion to support world-class teaching, research and facilities. Professor Hamilton, the Vice-Chancellor, said: "For almost half of the six years that Oxford has been raising funds for the Campaign, the world has been in an economic downturn - yet our alumni and supporters have continued to give. In the last year alone we have raised more than £230m. Their generosity, which is a huge vote of confidence in Oxford, is fundamental to Oxford's future at a time when government funding is so stretched... Though we are well on the way to achieving our initial goal of £1.25 billion, it is very clear that the extraordinary generosity of our donors will become even more important in future. Given the major recent cuts in government funding for teaching, they have a particular role to play in the preservation of the tutorial system."

The University website has reported a few of the many ways that funds raised by Oxford Thinking are already transforming Oxford life:

  • This month, the first ever Indigenous Australian students started studying at Oxford thanks to scholarships from the Charlie Perkins Trust, supported by the Australian and British governments, Rio Tinto and Quantas. They join numerous other students supported by new scholarships raised through the Campaign.

  • The only research in the UK into a very rare, incurable condition that turns muscle into bone (fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva) is continuing at Oxford thanks to a donation from Richard Simcox.

  • Oxford's study of China has received a major boost with a £10m donation from Dickson Poon towards a dedicated building for the new Oxford University China Centre at St Hugh's College.