Illinois State University has raised a record amount of donations for the 2019 fiscal year.

The record amount of $37.3 million follows a growing trend of donations. This is the fifth consecutive year of donations totaling more than $21 million.

Also in 2019 the university fundraising campaign, Redbirds Rising: The Campaign for Illinois State, surpassed its goal of $150 million. The campaign does not officially end until 2020.

In addition to the Redbirds Rising campaign, the university began a separate fundraising initiative for the 2019 fiscal year.

Birds Give Back took place in late February and encouraged current and former students alike to contribute to the university.

The week-long campaign raised more than $625,000.

Private donations and endowments totaled more than $140 million for the university. The endowments are managed by the Illinois State University Foundation, which invests the private gifts as well as determines where they will be distributed.

“The endowment’s growth is a reflection of the upward trajectory of Illinois State,” ISU Foundation Board of Directors Chairman Eric Burwell said in a statement. “The Redbird community is investing significantly in the direction of the university.”

Donations to ISU support student scholarships and professors' research, as well as program enhancements and improving learning spaces.

ISU President Larry Dietz is elated with the university’s fundraising prowess, alluding to the strength of Illinois State’s network to repeat a triumph of this caliber.

“If the success of the past can predict the future, we know that together, we will continue to rise to meet new opportunities for excellence,” Dietz said in ISU’s release.

ELIZABETH SEILS is a News Editor for The Vidette. She can be contacted at Follow her on Twitter at @SeilsElizabeth 

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