Capital Campaign | Featured

Annual Report to Donors

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Capital Campaign | Featured

Annual Report to Donors

A review of giving at Franciscan for 2021-22, with thanks to generous benefactors, alumni, and friends.

Autumn 2022

In This Article

Many thanks to the faithful alumni and friends of Franciscan University by whose generosity we answer Christ’s call to Rebuild My Church. May God bless you for all you do to help us educate, evangelize, and send forth joyful disciples in the power of the Holy Spirit!


The Lord bless you and keep you. May he show his face to you and have mercy on you. May he turn his countenance to you and give you peace. The Lord bless you! —The Blessing of St. Francis


Total Giving By Constituency

From June 1, 2021, to May 31, 2022 (our Fiscal Year 2021- 2022), the total gifts received by Franciscan University increased dramatically, thanks to you, our extraordinarily generous donors. As the Rebuild My Church Campaign gained momentum, trustees, alumni, parents, and friends contributed unprecedented gifts in support of our 75th Anniversary Campaign’s top priorities.


Gifts By Donor Designation

Through the Rebuild My Church 75th Anniversary Campaign, many Franciscan donors have chosen to support the construction of new and the renovation of older campus facilities (50%). Unrestricted giving, which is critical to support the University’s annual operations, academics, and student financial aid, accounted for 22% of all dollars given. And additional scholarship gifts comprised 16% of all giving. Your gift designation within the various priorities of Franciscan University enables us to grow our mission. We are so grateful for your generosity!

Unrestricted Annual Giving

Philanthropic gifts to our unrestricted Step in Faith Annual Fund support the immediate needs faced by the University every year. Your donations fund deeply needed student financial aid, excellence in academics, faith-building student life activities, and Catholic outreach programs.


Unrestricted Annual Giving

Philanthropic gifts to our unrestricted Step in Faith Annual Fund support the immediate needs faced by the University every year. Your donations fund deeply needed student financial aid, excellence in academics, faith-building student life activities, and Catholic outreach programs.


President’s Circle Growth and Impact

Franciscan University’s President’s Circle is comprised of our most generous donors who contribute $10,000 or more annually. In the past two years, with the ongoing success of the Rebuild My Church 75th Anniversary Campaign, membership in the President’s Circle has grown to 173 donors, who gave an extraordinary total of more than $16 million last year! These donors supported a range of priorities, including construction of the new academic building, the Step in Faith Annual Fund, and critically needed financial aid for students. In fact, during academic year 2021-22, 279 students were awarded a combined total of $996,000 in President’s Circle scholarship aid, thanks to our most generous donors!


Day of Giving

We launched our first virtual Day of Giving on April 28, 2022, in celebration of Franciscan University’s 75th anniversary year. This fun, interactive opportunity to support Franciscan’s mission raised $200,046 through 473 gifts. Donors designated their gifts to a variety of priorities, from the Step in Faith Annual Fund to specific academic programs, athletics, building campaigns, outreach and evangelization, and more. Our first Day of Giving was a great way to start what we hope will be a growing annual event. Thank you to all who participated!


Franciscan Fire Monthly Giving

The Franciscan Fire program continues to grow, with 879 donors enrolled by the end of May 2022. Our faithful bene- factors maximize their total annual commitment by making a monthly gift of their choosing. Once set in motion, the gift continues automatically until the donor decides to change it. Franciscan Fire sustains the financial aid so vitally need- ed and gratefully received by our students, as well as other annual priorities.

“Thank You”

Esmeralda Jaenicke

Senior, Psychology – Alaska

As a high school student living in Alaska, Esmeralda Jaenicke was told by a Franciscan University graduate that the school was a special place where God would work in her life.

“After I looked into how much it cost, I didn’t think it would be possible,” she says. But she took a step of faith and applied. “Everything worked out so I could go. I think God really wanted me to be here.”

In fall 2020, Esmeralda transferred to Franciscan after a year at the University of Alaska in Anchorage, and she now is beginning her senior year. A psychology major, she hopes to go on for her master’s degree in counseling and work with children and adolescents.

Esmeralda says she is thankful to those who donated to the University and made it possible for her to pursue her education. Without that help, she would not have been able to study at Franciscan, because her family does not have the necessary resources.

“But I knew that if I went to a school like that, it was more likely I could have a better future. I’m really grateful because it gave me the opportunity to find hope when I didn’t have hope that my life was going to get better.”

Now, Esmeralda says, “My goal of becoming a therapist is closer than I have ever imagined. I will be able to help those who are struggling with mental health issues, which will be a dream come true. I have been able to grow in my faith, challenge myself more academically, and push myself out of my comfort zone.”

John LeBlanc

Senior, Business Management – Michigan

Two weeks before classes were to start last fall, John LeBlanc heeded the advice of a cousin who suggested he apply to Franciscan University.

“It’s going to be too late,” he told her, but she countered, “It’s worth a shot. Just do it.”

John was amazed to be accepted within days. He was even more astounded when the Financial Aid Office put together a package that, combined with a loan, made it possible for him to begin his studies that fall.

As the fifth-born in a family of eight that includes a sibling with special needs, John has had to find ways to fund his education. He attended a community college in his home state of Michigan for two years and had planned to transfer to a state university to finish his bachelor’s degree. When that didn’t work out, he was considering taking a semester off. But, with financial aid and earnings from various jobs, he is now on track to graduate this spring and plans to continue his studies toward a master’s degree.

John says he is grateful to those donors who made his scholarships possible and prays for them during his weekly adoration time.

“Without their generosity, not only would I have been unable to attend Franciscan and finish my degree in business management, but I would not have experienced the spiritual and intellectual growth the Franciscan community provides. They have gifted me with the opportunity to succeed and do so with humility, knowing that my success is dependent on their contribution.”

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