UNC-Chapel Hill has announced a new initiative to attract and keep the best faculty, using a $10 million donation, along with plans to raise another $10 million.
The gift, from alumnus and former trustee John Ellison Jr. of Greensboro, was announced over the weekend as part of the university’s launch of a $4.25 billion fundraising campaign.
The effort involves raising dollars to match Ellison’s gift during the next year. The money would be used for salary supplements, research funds and other faculty priorities. It will largely be used in recruiting and retaining faculty. UNC officials say such funds are important to reward faculty at risk of leaving. For example, in 2015-16, the university was able to keep 79 percent of faculty who had offers from other universities. That same year, UNC hired 94 new faculty.
Ellison is chairman of Ellison Co. Inc., an X-ray, metal and equipment manufacturer in Greensboro. In addition to his $10 million gift to the faculty fund, he has committed artwork valued at $11.5 million for UNC’s Ackland Art Museum. He served eight years on the Board of Trustees, ending his term in 2011.
UNC announced its campaign goal on Friday, and it has already raised $1.7 billion toward the final target.