Light the World Newsletter
In October 2008, Boston College launched Light the World, a campaign that asked alumni, parents, and friends to help BC advance St. Ignatius’s mandate to “Go, set the world aflame.” In just over two years, more than 96,000 members of the University community have heeded that call, propelling the campaign past the $750-million mark toward its ambitious $1.5-billion goal. Each gift to Light the World has strengthened Boston College, the work of its faculty and students, and its role as a beacon of light in our society.
“Light the World is rooted in Boston College’s rich heritage,” says Campaign Co-chair William J. Geary ’80, “and aims to secure its place among the greatest universities. Through the investments of so many, BC has made significant strides in areas critical to shaping students’ hearts and minds—the essence of the BC experience.”
The campaign is already having a positive impact across campus, and financial aid is one area of particular achievement. The University has increased need-based undergraduate financial aid by 7 percent or more each of the last two years to a total of $79.3 million. Such support is critical to Boston College’s ability to attract the most talented students since nearly 70 percent of all undergraduates receive some form of financial assistance.
The generosity of the BC community has also helped launch new programs and fields of study. The Institute for the Liberal Arts sponsors interdisciplinary programming for students and faculty; the Center for Student Formation nurtures and integrates students’ intellectual, social, and moral development; and the School of Theology and Ministry is the first new professional school to open since 1952.
“Leadership gifts enliven the intellectual life of the University,” says Campaign Co-chair Charles I. Clough, Jr. ’64. “What is critical is that so many of these new enterprises unite students and faculty in joint intellectual pursuit and then enable BC to share the knowledge gained with stakeholders outside the University.”
Perhaps the most visual impact of the campaign is the physical transformation taking place at the Heights. In October, construction began on Stokes Hall, the 183,000-square-foot building that, when completed in fall 2012, will house 36 classrooms, five humanities departments, and other student-life offices.
The BC community has also embraced the Light the World campaign’s three additional goals: the number of engaged volunteers has surged 90 percent to 3,700; a record 26,837 annual gifts from alumni were tallied in 2009–10; and the Shaw Society, which recognizes those who have made legacy commitments, recorded its largest membership increase last year.
“Under the guidance of Fr. Leahy, the Light the World campaign will continue to unite those who are invested in the future of our outstanding University,” says Campaign Co-chair Kathleen McGillycuddy NC’71. “Boston College is incredibly grateful to those who have supported the campaign so far, and the ongoing commitment of our community will strengthen the University for generations to come.”