Chancellor Michael F. Collins announced the public phase of a $250 million comprehensive campaign to support UMass Medical School’s ongoing pursuit of excellence and to shape advances in biomedical research, education, and community and global engagement well into the 21st century.
Pathways of Promise is the largest fundraising effort since the school was founded in 1962 and represents an unprecedented opportunity for supporters, private-sector partners and granting organizations to celebrate and strengthen the school’s ability to fulfill its mission of advancing the health and well-being of the people of the commonwealth and the world, according to a press release from UMass.
“The Pathways of Promise campaign represents a defining moment for UMass Medical School,” said Chancellor Collins. “This campaign will build upon the singular atmosphere at our health sciences university and allow us to partner with those who are inspired to demonstrate their confidence in our medical school through their generosity. We are challenged to imagine our promise and what we can accomplish together.”
The quiet phase of the campaign began in July 2012 and has already exceeded $150 million in gifts and pledges from individuals, corporations and foundations.
“The great power of philanthropic giving is the transformative impact that can be achieved and the opportunities that can be afforded to many, thanks to the generosity of others,” said UMass President Martin T. Meehan. “I have great faith that the faculty, students and leaders of our world-class medical school will reach new heights through this campaign, which will benefit our commonwealth and the world.”
Highlights of the campaign include:
- The establishment of 14 new endowed chairs since 2012, allowing some of the school’s most renowned faculty members to pursue innovative and trailblazing research;
- A $7.5 million grant from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, enabling UMass Medical School to rapidly respond to the Ebola crisis in Liberia; and
- A $1 million gift from grateful alumna Diane Riccio, PhD (’03), and her husband, Dan Riccio, to the UMass ALS Cellucci Fund, which represents the largest alumni donation ever to the medical school.
The campaign prioritizes support for three critical areas of the medical school’s mission.
With more than $280 million in external research funding in fiscal year 2016, UMass Medical ranks in the top quartile of American medical schools that receive NIH funds and among an elite group of medical schools consistently working to transform our understanding of human health.
Scientists at UMass Medical School thrive in a uniquely collaborative atmosphere that is one of its greatest strengths and that encourages and benefits from cross-disciplinary perspectives. Our esteemed clinical and basic science faculty include a Nobel Laureate, Breakthrough Prize recipient, Lasker Award winner, multiple investigators of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and seven members of the National Academies, who lead research teams making seminal discoveries in RNA, gene therapy and neuroscience, impacting diseases including ALS, cancer, diabetes, HIV, and global and community health.
Teaching and Learning
UMass Medical School is consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report in the top 10 percent of all U.S. medical schools for primary care education, and its own graduates rank the school at the top for student satisfaction. Home to three graduate schools—the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and the Graduate School of Nursing—UMass Medical School has maintained fidelity to its founding mission of providing affordable, high-quality education, rooted in a commitment to serving our communities. UMass Medical School has recently expanded its School of Medicine class to include a limited number of highly qualified out-of-state students and launched a regional campus, UMMS-Baystate, located in Springfield, Mass., that will be home to the Population-based Urban and Rural Community Health (PURCH) educational track, to help increase the number of physicians serving the western part of the state.
Community and Global Health
As the commonwealth’s first and only public medical school, service to our community is at the core of UMass Medical School’s mission. Our faculty, students and staff work in myriad ways to improve the health and lives of our neighbors. Whether treating patients at free clinics; creating successful pipeline programs to introduce local children to STEM careers; ensuring that residents have fresh fruits and vegetables to eat; supporting education and economic development in Worcester by investing $1.5 million in the “One City-One Library” program to prepare youth for the high-skills regional economy; leading international service trips; or serving Thanksgiving dinner to veterans who have served our nation, we work to apply our expertise to the common good, enriching the communities around our commonwealth and around the world.
In 2014 when an Ebola outbreak threatened to ravage western Africa, UMass Medical School responded by deploying teams to Liberia to educate local doctors, assist in public outreach efforts, enhance diagnostic and lab capabilities in the heart of the country, deliver much needed medical safety supplies and produce training literature around infection prevention and control. This rapid response built upon a nearly decade-long relationship with Liberia’s A. M. Dogliotti College of Medicine. To this day, a UMass Medical School team remains in Liberia to sustain public health lab resources and deepen our understanding of the disease in the hope of preventing another outbreak.
In 2008, UMass Medical School was honored to become the first medical school in the nation to be awarded the Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement Classification in recognition of the institution’s civic and academic missions.