September 27, 2019

The Catholic University of America launched its first comprehensive fundraising campaign at a black-tie event at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium on Thursday, Sept. 26. 

Light the Way: The Campaign for Catholic University will support a broad range of  scholarships, endowed chairs, academic programs, and capital projects. At the kickoff event, it was announced that to date, more than $259 million has been raised. A video on the Campaign premiered at the event.

“This campaign will enable us to provide the best facilities and learning environment for our community, build support to attract the most brilliant scholars, and offer financial aid for deserving students,” said University President John Garvey. “We are grateful for the tremendous foundation of support we have already received. And we hope that our entire community will join us in bringing to fulfillment the vision our founders conceived for Catholic University 132 years ago.”

Of the amount raised thus far, $40 million was from Bill and Joanne Conway to support the School of Nursing, which was renamed in their honor. A new gift of $13 million was announced at the event, to benefit the Busch School of Business and the Institute for Human Ecology. 

The name of the Campaign is taken from the University’s motto, Deus Lux Mea Est (God is my light). It will help fund University initiatives on three fronts:

  • Academic Environment: including new laboratory spaces and buildings, and interdisciplinary programs and institutes 
  • Student Success: undergraduate scholarships, improved athletic facilities and community spaces, and enhanced career services
  • Faculty Excellence: endowed professorships, fellowships, graduate scholarships, and new centers of research

“Catholic University has a broad vision to improve the physical campus, dramatically increase scholarships, and enhance our research capability to attract students and top faculty,” said Joseph Carlini, chairman of the Board of Trustees and a 1984 graduate of the University. “I witnessed transformations when I was a student here, myself, particularly when the 40-acre DuFour Center Athletic complex was being constructed. As a parent, I’m also thrilled that my daughter, who is a student athlete studying at the Conway School of Nursing, will feel the impacts of this Campaign.”  

Among those supporting the school in this ambitious endeavor were alumni and friends of the University, local business leaders, politicians, five bishops, and the General Secretary of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

MEDIA: To obtain further information about the event or request an interview with University leadership or lead donors, or to obtain photo or video assets related to the campaign, contact the Office of Communications at or 202-319-5600.