Exterior image of the Carlson School of Management at night with maroon and gold up lights.

Rising to the Moment

Friday, October 8, 2021

Earlier in this issue, we had the pleasure of sharing the results of the Carlson School’s Driven philanthropic campaign, our 10-year effort to transform the Carlson School now and into the future. In alignment with the University-wide Driven campaign, we set out with an ambitious goal to raise $150 million and to increase the Carlson School’s ability to develop leadership talent as one of the nation’s top business schools.

When we began this journey through conversations and listening to feedback from our alumni leaders, community partners, and donors, we envisioned an all-encompassing case for support that focused primarily on our people. While philanthropic campaigns always reflect an institution’s needs and priorities, they also evolve to align with what donors and alumni are passionate about and view as critical to an institution’s success. The Driven campaign was no exception, as you helped drive and refine our priorities.

Our success in Driven, surpassing our initial goal by nearly 25 percent with an incredible $190 million in gifts and private grants committed to the school, reflects what the Carlson School community cares about. We realized along the way that certain priorities resonated with our donors, and they spoke through their giving that making education more accessible, supporting students, and expanding experiential learning is what sets the Carlson School apart. As the leader of our school’s advancement team, it has been a humbling and gratifying experience to see alumni, donors, and corporate partners come together and feel connected to our vision of business as a force for good.

We now look forward to what’s next in the life of the school. While scholarship support for our students will always be a focus, we are launching a comprehensive $15 million initiative to advance the work of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the school. In addition, we will be seeking support to enhance and retain our world-class faculty as well as embark on an exciting renovation of our flagship building to meet the needs of students, faculty, and the business community.

I hope you share my excitement for what we’ve accomplished together and for what the future holds for the Carlson School. On behalf of a grateful Carlson School community, thank you for your critical role in making our success together a reality!

Travis Smith Headshot


Travis Smith
Assistant Dean

What's Next?

The Carlson School’s philanthropic goal to establish the Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Business, recruit and support students from diverse backgrounds, enhance curricular offerings, and advance DEI priorities.

Philanthropic support is needed to recruit top talent, support the important research undertaken by faculty, and provide opportunities for faculty to partner with our business community to gain insights and improve the way business is done.

Reimagining our flagship building to create space for making connections and empowering actionable knowledge, a sense of belonging, and thought leadership.

Driven Campaign

Driven Campaigns: $150M Goal; $190M Raised; Major Gifts = $188M; Corporate/Foundation Gift = $51M; Annual Gift = $17M; Private Grants = $4M
Driven Campaign: Endowment for FY21 total is $305M in FY12 total was $137M; Scholarship Funds for FY21 total is $5.5M in FY12 total was $1.7M; Study Abroad Scholarship Awards for FY21 total is 417 awards, in FY12 total was 107 awards


Uncover the impact of meaningful gifts to the Driven Campaign.


Gifts in Total


Gifts of $250 or Less


Major Gifts of $50,000 or more


Discover the vital role of our generous donors.


Total Number of Donors


New Donors


Faculty and Staff Donors

Note: Unless noted, all of these figures are from the Driven campaign, which launched in 2012 and closed on June 30, 2021.

Fall 2021 alumni magazine cover

This article appeared in the Fall 2021 alumni magazine

Our world, our lives, and our work have changed. We must continue to adapt.

So, how do we do that? Where do we go from here? What’s next?

Fall 2021 table of contents