Architecture, Interior Architecture, and Designed Objects: SAIC Closes In On $50 Million Fundraising Goal

CHICAGO–The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), a global leader in art and design education, is closing in on a $50 million goal in its first-ever major public fundraising campaign, Beautiful/Work: The Campaign for SAIC. One year ago, SAIC President Elissa Tenny and Chancellor Walter Massey publicly announced the campaign. The effort has now raised $46.4 million, providing increased scholarship opportunities, faculty support and programming. 

“For more than 150 years, School of the Art Institute of Chicago students, faculty and alumni have made groundbreaking contributions to art, design, and scholarly pursuits, and the early success of the Beautiful/Work Campaign reaffirms our commitment to educating the cultural and creative leaders of tomorrow,” said Elissa Tenny, SAIC’s president. “Through the generous support of alumni, faculty, staff, parents and all members of the SAIC community, students and faculty will have increased access, opportunities and resources to help shape our world.”

The funds raised as part of Beautiful/Work: The Campaign for SAIC have contributed to an increase in scholarships. Since the start of the public phase of the campaign, more than 75 percent of current and incoming students have received scholarship support, and for the fiscal year 2015–16, the School awarded a record number of scholarships totaling approximately $40 million. More than 1,700 individual donors have made contributions, and alumni have donated a record $10.5 million, a significant increase in alumni giving prior to the campaign.

Specifically, Beautiful/Work: The Campaign for SAIC has:

  • Established more than 30 new endowment scholarship funds that support undergraduate and graduate students, including eight merit scholarships that cover the full cost of tuition for graduate students.
  • Established seven faculty support endowments, including four full professorships, one directorship and two part-time faculty awards.
  • Supported nearly 90 Chicago Public High School students through scholarships and financial assistance from the Walter and Shirley Massey Chicago Scholarship Fund, SAIC’s College Arts Access Program and SAIC’s Bank of America Scholars program.

SAIC has 1,325 faculty and staff and more than 3,500 undergraduate and graduate students. Alumni have artwork in museum collections throughout the world; work in communities as organizers and advocates; have designed remarkable objects, images and systems; and are scientists, scholars, mentors and cultural workers.

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“Alumni, faculty, parents, staff, friends, foundations, corporations and civic partners have played a critical role in making SAIC a world-class art and design school,” said Cheryl Jessogne, SAIC’s Vice President of Institutional Advancement. “Through their leadership, President Tenny and Chancellor Massey have paved the way for the School to reach its fundraising goal, and ultimately build a future where interdisciplinary opportunities for our students and faculty are fortified through philanthropy.”

For the latest news on the campaign or to support Beautiful/Work: The Campaign for SAIC, visit Watch this video to learn more about the impact of giving.

About the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

For 150 years, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) has been a leader in educating the world’s most influential artists, designers, and scholars. Located in downtown Chicago with a fine arts graduate program consistently ranking among the top three graduate fine arts programs in the nation by U.S. News and World Report, SAIC provides an interdisciplinary approach to art and design as well as world-class resources, including the Art Institute of Chicago museum, on-campus galleries, and state-of-the-art facilities. SAIC’s undergraduate, graduate, and post-baccalaureate students have the freedom to take risks and create the bold ideas that transform Chicago and the world—as seen through notable alumni and faculty such as Michelle Grabner, David Sedaris, Elizabeth Murray, Richard Hunt, Georgia O’Keeffe, Cynthia Rowley, Nick Cave, Jeff Koons, and LeRoy Neiman. For more information, please visit

Press/Media contact

Bree Witt
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