Boston College announces $3 billion Soaring Higher campaign

Initiative prioritizes academics, financial aid, and student life

Boston College has announced the largest capital campaign in its history, a $3 billion initiative to raise money for key priorities in academics, financial aid, and student life.

Soaring Higher: The Campaign for Boston College, doubles the goal of the University’s 2008 Light the World campaign, which ultimately raised $1.6 billion upon its completion in 2016.


Funds raised through Soaring Higher will enhance teaching and scholarship across all of BC’s schools and colleges, and enable the University to double the number of endowed faculty chairs and fellowships, strengthen faculty research, and support curricular innovation.

Central to the campaign is an initiative to raise $1 billion to boost financial aid for low- and middle-income families, helping BC to maintain its commitment to need blind admissions and meeting the full demonstrated need of undergraduate students. It will also increase student internships, graduate fellowships, and support for international study. This academic year, Boston College will award $166 million in undergraduate need-based financial aid, an allocation that will be significantly increased through the campaign.   

Soaring Higher will also generate additional funding for the University’s student life priorities in formative education, campus ministry, service immersion, and intercollegiate and intramural sports, while providing resources for the construction and renovation of campus facilities, including residence halls and space for student activities and wellness programs.

In addition, the campaign will provide support for Messina College, a residential, two-year program for underserved students that will open at Boston College in 2024. 

Money raised through Soaring Higher will be allocated for the following strategic priorities:

* Academic Programs                                           $1.15 billion

* Financial Aid                                                         $1.1 billion

* Student Life Initiatives                                       $750 million            

To date, a total of $1.13 billion has been raised towards the $3 billion campaign goal.       

“Soaring Higher represents the largest fundraising effort in the history of Boston College and invites consideration not only of BC’s heritage and mission, but also its future, which is full of such promise,” said University President, William P. Leahy, S.J.  “I am confident that the campaign’s focus on obtaining additional resources for academics, financial aid, and student life will help the University to maintain its upward trajectory.”   

“Boston College’s rise during the past 40 years to its place among the nation’s best universities is one of the greatest success stories in American higher education,” said BC Board of Trustees Chair John Fish, chair and CEO of Suffolk Construction.  “I take pride in BC’s consistent momentum and am honored to be a part of a campaign that will help Boston College to achieve its goal of being the world’s preeminent Catholic university.”

The Soaring Higher campaign will be co-chaired by Fish and his wife, Cyndy; Trustee Phil Schiller ’82 and his wife, Kim Gassett-Schiller; Trustee Marianne D. Short, NC ’73, JD ’76 and her husband, Raymond Skowyra; Trustee René Jones ’86 and his wife, BC Regent Brigid Doherty ’96; and Trustee Patti Kraft and her husband, Jonathan.

Soaring Higher was launched at a September 28 kickoff gala on the Middle Campus for 300 University trustees and benefactors. In addition to Fr. Leahy, John Fish, and Phil Schiller, the event featured remarks by Provost and Dean of Faculties David Quigley, Haub Vice President for University Mission and Ministry John Butler, S.J., Vice President for Student Affairs Shawna Cooper Whitehead, and BC student Rowah Ibnaouf ’25, a Goldman Sachs Alumni Scholar and informations systems major in the Carroll School of Management. The evening also included a violin performance by Nova Wang ’21 and a moving rendition of “For Boston” by the Screaming Eagles Marching Band.

Photo of Gasson Hall by Gary Wayne Gilbert