Living Its Tradition: Siena Begins Comprehensive Campaign

Maria Hayes In the Headlines

LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. — Siena College community members packed the Marcelle Athletic Complex earlier this month to inject energy, enthusiasm and excitement into the school’s latest initiative — a $50 million comprehensive campaign.

Designed to help Siena continue to grow and evolve, while pursuing goals established in its strategic plan, the campaign is already more than halfway complete. By the time of public launch on Oct. 5, the college had raised $34 million.

To thank those who have donated so far, the school released a music video starring friars, students and staff members set to the tune of Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer.” Titled “You Give Because You Care,” the music video features familiar faces such as Siena College president Kevin Mullen, OFM,‘75, history professor Daniel Dwyer, OFM, ’74, and college chaplain Greg Jakubowicz, OFM.

Recent Innovations
The school completed several additions to the campus this year, including the Trustco Bank Center and Richard and Joan Rosetti Hall. Other facilities projects underway, including renovating both the Sarazen Student Union — to be completed in September 2014 — and the Alumni Recreation Center in August 2015.

“By any measure, Siena’s 75-year history is a success story, but we are especially proud of the 34,000 alumni who made the story their own and have embodied the Franciscan spirit in their personal and professional lives,” said Kevin in a president’s address. “Now, we come to a pivotal point in the story. Education costs are rising, the pool of high school graduates is shrinking and the resulting challenges for small, private colleges like Siena are multiplying. … How will Siena continue to grow and develop while remaining faithful to its mission, to its core values and to its Franciscan, Catholic and liberal arts identity?

“Siena’s story is the narrative of incredible yet very real growth and transformation,” he continued. “Having just celebrated Siena’s first 75 years, I am confident that ‘Living Our Tradition: The Campaign for Siena College’ will shape the story in such a way that all of us will be proud to tell it.”

Campaign Initiatives
The trustee phase of “Living Our Tradition: The Campaign for Siena College” was launched in June 2011. That month, the friars of Holy Name Province committed a sizeable donation to endow the Center for Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity, which promotes collaboration between students and faculty mentors in order to prepare students for graduate schools and future careers. Numerous other donors began giving gifts as the campaign moved into the leadership phase during January 2012.

The campaign has been divided into 14 initiatives that will help enrich the mind, body and spirit of Siena students. Some of them include additions and modifications to the campus, while other initiatives include funding for academic programs and undergraduate research, the annual fund, scholarships and college athletics. Each initiative is outlined in detail on the campaign’s website.

Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, a Siena College trustee, is an honorary campaign committee member.

“It gives me something to be proud of that we friars started a place like Siena College back in 1937 and it has flourished,” he said.

 Maria Hayes is communications coordinator for Holy Name Province.