With massive cuts being made to the higher education system, it has meant that many universities have had to find new ways to find funding and attract international students to their campus.
Over the weekend, the University of Sydney looked to do just this by launching their largest ever fundraising campaign to help them find $600 million to help the campus move forward.
The campaign has already seemingly had seriously private backing as the university revealed that they had already raised half of their intended target.
With the aims to raise the necessary funds within the next couple of years, the University of Sydney are hoping to cement their place as one of the leading fund-raisers in the whole of Australia.
During the past two years, Sydney has led the way in terms of raising funds having amassed a total of $160m in funding.
Many of the institution’s leading lights are hoping that their efforts will show that the Australian higher education sector will survive despite the heavy cuts made in the national budget. These views were echoed by vice chancellor Michael Spence who told The Australian that “if we are to evolve in this challenging environment and if we are to support the future of tertiary education and inspire future generations of academics and students to make a difference beyond the walls of academia, we need to think creatively about funding avenues.”
It comes at a time when universities are looking to overseas models to help adapt to a stronger fund-raising model. For example, universities in the UK receive huge backing from private sources with over 180,000 donors supporting British institutions.
Whilst it is unlikely for Australian colleges to quite achieve that number of backers, it shows that private funding can prove to be a viable source of income for institutions.
Many people will now turn to see what the University of Sydney can achieve in their latest campaign and see how the new future of Australian universities will take shape.
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