The Independent Association of Framingham State Alumni has agreed to pledge $500,000 to the university, over multiple years, one of its largest contributions, according to Framingham State officials.
The half-million dollars will help fund the university's first comprehensive fundraising campaign, which aims to raise additional private support for student scholarships, faculty support, new programs and other initiatives.
The university will undertake the fundraising campaign over the next few years, corresponding with the school's 175th anniversary in 2014.
The campaign is still in the early planning stages, so a fundraising goal and exact timeline are not finalized at this point.
“We are extremely grateful for this generous commitment from IAFSA as we enter the early phase of our first-ever comprehensive campaign,” Framingham State President Timothy Flanagan said in a statement.
“We are genuinely excited about this collaboration that will advance our common goal of supporting Framingham State’s students and faculty.”
Already one of the university’s largest annual contributors, the alumni group plans to support the campaign through designated contributions and increased support of student scholarships and loans.
"The comprehensive campaign represents an important opportunity to increase financial support for Framingham State's students and faculty," said Kelly Raymond, president of the alumni group's executive board. "We see this pledge as a way to play a leadership role and continue IAFSA's long tradition of service by expanding our student scholarship and loan assistance."
Leaders from Framingham State and the alumni association have met several times over the past few months to discuss how they can work in a collaborative fashion to best support students, faculty and alumni.
In addition to increased financial support, the alumni group has also agreed to make its Alumni House on Adams Road available for university and community use.
Framingham State has seen much growth in the past few years. The university recently decided to limit the annual increase in its overall undergraduate enrollment to 2 percent this September, and is planning to build a new $42 million, 350-bed dormitory by 2015 to help deal with growing demand for on-campus housing.
The university also plans to work with Framingham town officials to renovate and lease town-owned property at 14 Vernon St. for the next few years to help alleviate growing pains.
The university is also taking broad steps to become greener, spending $3.35 million on converting its power plant from oil to natural gas – a move that is expected to reduce the university’s carbon footprint by 30 percent.
Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org