For Alaska The Campaign for the University of Alaska title typography

For Alaska The Campaign for the University of Alaska

In spring 2021, the University of Alaska system publicly launched its first-ever comprehensive fundraising campaign, with the goal of raising $200 million — the most ambitious philanthropic undertaking in state history.

Aptly named For Alaska, the campaign is surpassing expectations. The quiet phase of the campaign, which began five years ago, has been integral to the effort. To date, 16,500 generous donors have given more than $160 million to strategic priorities across the UA system since 2016. All funds raised benefit the area of support chosen by each contributor.

Throughout the campaign, UAA has raised $62 million thanks to 6,600 #SeawolfStrong donors and partners. Our collective impact For Alaska will help write the next chapter in the state’s history.

Our vision is a vibrant, bold tomorrow for all Alaskans. Our path must be built upon our shared Alaska spirit of determination and resilience that encourages us to achieve new heights. To forge ahead with an unwavering persistence for a better and brighter tomorrow.

At UAA, this bold vision For Alaska focuses on five strategic priority areas:

Priority #1: Expand the culture of education

To achieve this, we seek investments in the following priority areas:

  • Multi-year scholarship endowments.
  • Student success programs.
  • Building renovations to shape dynamic, welcoming gathering and learning spaces.
Jennifer Booz Headshot
“The mission of UAA is to transform lives in a diverse and inclusive environment. This mission has been formalized in our UAA 2025 strategic plan. Some of the ways we are working on becoming more diverse and inclusive include the Alaska Native Success Initiative, our focus on celebrating history and heritage months through the YouAA initiative, as well as strengthening our recruitment practices to attract diverse students, faculty and staff.” — Jennifer Booz, UAA chief diversity officer

Priority #2: Build a skilled workforce

To achieve this, we seek funding to:

  • Ignite opportunity for students through scholarships and awards that encourage students to enter fields of study most needed by our state.
  • Lead the way in Alaska health, engineering and business through faculty support that attracts talent in key areas of study and allows us to build capacity in serving students.
  • Create expanded and upgraded spaces and career laboratories that provide hands-on skill-building experiences in high-demand workforce programs.
Raymond Weber Headshot
“What UAA provides is a place where the community and employers can come together, discuss the needs of their industry and the state, and work with us to develop educational pathways forward. UAA is an untapped resource of knowledge and benefit to any and all industries in Alaska. By having technical programs and a broad range of programs throughout the university, we are able to provide a competent and complete workforce. The complete knowledge base that the university provides to Alaska is critically important to growing and maintaining industries.” — Raymond Weber, dean, UAA Community and Technical College

Priority #3: Grow UAA’s world-class research

To achieve this, we will:

  • Develop or enhance sustainable research programs that improve the economic and social well-being of Alaskans.
  • Focus on research that informs Alaska economic, educational, health care, and Arctic policy through the Institute of Social and Economic Research.
  • Formalize and strengthen undergraduate research through a dedicated director of undergraduate research and faculty support.
  • Endow chairs and professorships in key areas such as public policy, engineering, entrepreneurship, global logistics, women’s studies, business analysis and health care.
Micah Hahn Headshot
“There are two main reasons why conducting and offering research opportunities to students is critical to UAA. One, in Alaska we’re on the frontlines of environmental change and it’s really important we use the university’s expertise to help communities adapt and learn how to be resilient in the face of climate change, among other areas, to envision what the future looks like for our state. Two, having research projects on campus gives graduate and undergraduate students the opportunity to apply what they’re learning in the classroom to real world problems.” — Micah Hahn, assistant professor of environmental health, Institute for Circumpolar Health Studies

Priority #4: Contribute to a diversified economy

To achieve this, we seek funding to:

  • Develop an Alaska Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab that supports all colleges and ensures students learn how to use big data and new technologies to solve problems in growing fields such as cybersecurity, data science, coding and AI in health care.
  • Create an Innovation and Entrepreneurship Hub to lead the growth of Alaska’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem led by the College of Business and Public Policy.
Kenrick Mock Headshot
“Currently, there’s this nexus between business and research circling around artificial intelligence — which is kind of like the engine behind so many industries. Right now, AI is a huge opportunity for Alaska, and something I think we should be investing in so we can be a player. AI can be used in research, like natural resources for data analysis to business for manufacturing optimization, or creating new industries we haven’t imagined yet. Graduating students fluent in these technologies will help establish use of AI and meet the current needs of industries in Alaska.” — Kenrick Mock, dean, UAA College of Engineering

Priority #5: Support student-athletes’ quest for excellence

To achieve this, we seek vital funding to:

  • Create a lasting endowment for Seawolf Athletics, which will provide a first-class experience for our student-athletes and fuel UAA Athletics to compete successfully at the highest level.
Greg Myford Hadshot
“Oftentimes, student-athletes’ success is measured in wins and losses but overall we know that’s only a part of what we do for our students who are athletes. Really what we’re doing is using the athletic experience to prepare our students for what comes next after UAA. We’re focusing on how we can best educate and supplement all that they’re gaining in the classroom with their experiences as a student-athlete.” the late Greg Myford, director, UAA Athletics