AMANDA HAUSMANN ’21
As a part of Summit, the College’s strategic plan for the future, Trinity will be launching a new capital campaign to help the College achieve financial sustainability, as well as support future projects focused on structural improvements to the campus.
This new campaign was alluded to as early as February 2017 in the executive summary for the Resources Subcommittee to the Bicentennial Strategic Planning Commission. In this summary, the Subcommittee detailed the College’s fiscal struggles, specifically referencing the College’s $8 million structural budget deficit. One factor to the “alternative revenue and cost containment possibilities” to combat the deficit proposed by the Resource Subcommittee in this summary states that “The College should start planning for a capital campaign soon after the completion of the strategic planning process.”
Plans for the campaign were referenced further in a complete outline of Summit published by the College on August 23, 2017. Under Summit’s third goal to “Build on Trinity’s historic past to ensure a vibrant, sustainable future,” the campaign is mentioned as a “strategic initiative” to “enhance fundraising efforts broadly and plan and undertake a comprehensive fundraising campaign to support our vision.” These goals, as detailed in the outline include achieving long-term financial sustainability, increasing the College’s position as a “first-choice college,” further connecting Trinity to the Hartford community, among others.
Details for the expenses associated with this new campaign were released via Trinity’s Operating Budget Overview for the 2019 fiscal year. As stated in the overview, the College should expect to see a “$2.3 million increase in endowment spending, including a $1.8 million special draw to support expenses for the upcoming comprehensive capital campaign.” While the College will experience an increase in spending due to this campaign, the campaign fundraising goal is upwards of 300 million.
The last campaigns of this size occurred over six years, beginning in 2006 and ending in the summer of 2012. In August of 2012, the College announced the successful completion of two simultaneous campaigns, the Cornerstone Campaign and the Legacy Campaign, that together earned $369 million for the College. Highlights of the campaigns listed in a press release published by the College on August 8, 2012 included “more than 75 new scholarship funds and 14 new endowed faculty chairs,” “the $33-million restoration and renovation of the historic William Burges-designed Long Walk buildings,” “establishment of the Center for Urban and Global Studies,” among others. This new capital campaign is expected to take approximately five years and in addition to helping the College achieve greater financial stability, it is anticipated to support projects such as renovating the Chapel and first-year dorms.
Trinity’s Advancement team, who did not respond to requests for comment, will be coordinating this campaign; however, a launch date has yet to be announced. The beginning of this campaign will demonstrate further progress with Summit, the College’s bicentennial plan, which so far has focused its efforts on defining its goals, establishing set initiatives, and assigning membership to govern the initiatives.