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Because of you, our students and graduates are poised for lifelong leadership in their communities and fields of practice. You have planted the seeds for their success, and these will bear tremendous fruits for decades to come.
President seth bodnar


Excellence Fund

Gifts to the Excellence Fund, the University’s unrestricted gift fund, ensure UM’s president has the ability to direct resources where they are needed most, the priority being to support students. Gifts of all sizes to the Excellence Fund during Campaign Montana combined to create opportunity across the institution. Gifts to this hardworking fund help students facing unexpected financial hardship due to the pandemic, and allow students to seize opportunities to enrich their academic experience such as taking part in research projects and participating in student competitions.

University Scholarships

Donors supported student scholarships more than any other area during Campaign Montana. With more than $97 million contributed, UM provided more than 14,000 students with scholarships over the Campaign’s seven years. While an $11 million gift from UM alum Tom Cotter in 2014 represented the largest pledge for scholarships in UM history, gifts for scholarships came in all sizes. These donors helped make higher education accessible for students with dreams of earning a college degree.

Montana Access Scholarships

In April 2019, the Montana Legislature approved $2 million for state need-based student aid that, when matched one-to-one by private donations from each campus’ fundraising foundation, will provide a total of $4 million in financial aid for students across the Montana University System. Through the state’s Montana Access Scholarship program, Campaign Montana donors gave more than $436,000 to support need-based scholarships for Montana residents.


A $1.25 million pledge by longtime UM supporters Dennis and Gretchen Eck is enabling the institution to create its S.E.A. Change Initiative for UM Students, a new program that prepares students to be change-drivers who champion gender equity. UM launched its broader S.E.A. Change Initiative – which stands for “Safe. Empowered. Accelerated.” – in spring 2019 to amplify its efforts to foster a safe environment that uniquely empowers all students to reach their full potential and accelerate them into careers of impact.

The Eck gift makes possible the related S.E.A. Change Initiative for UM Students, a program that provides student participants with the skills necessary to understand, navigate and change systemic biases as they seek to become influential professionals and leaders fostering allyship across all gender identities. The program provides opportunities for participants to become part of a cohort of UM students who support gender diversity and who are committed to inspiring positive change. UM students who participate in the program will have the opportunity to become paid mentors to high school and middle school students and will run a S.E.A. Change summer camp on the UM campus.


We’ve achieved so much during Campaign Montana.
We will continue the momentum with these fundraising priorities.

Student Success
Opening the doors to higher education is not enough – we must provide the services and resources students need to persist and succeed. Enhancing our student success program is a top priority over the next several years, and we hope our vision will inspire you to support these efforts.

Connect every student with both a professional academic adviser and a faculty mentor and offer a structured pathway to navigate career preparation and opportunities.

Ensure students participate in high-impact educational practices, such as first-year orientation and seminars, internships, co-ops, undergraduate research and capstone projects.

Create an emergency grant fund to empower students to transition past a moment of short-term financial need and continue in their college career.

Help students, especially those who are first-generation and underrepresented at UM, find their home on this campus, with tailored opportunities and support to help them persist to graduation.

Augment traditional classroom learning with more access to special summer experiences, such as field coursework, study abroad programs and internships with local companies.

Drive innovation in the classroom through enhanced pedagogy and collaboration.
Excellence Fund
Unrestricted support maintains the essential resources students and faculty need. With your gifts, we can nimbly respond to both challenges and opportunities, ensuring faculty and staff can continue serving students and our state.
University Scholarships
At UM, a little generosity goes a long way. A modest investment in a student can lead to great returns. A primary goal of our campaign is to increase the number of scholarships available to students in all schools and colleges. These include recruitment scholarships for incoming students, need-based awards, Presidential Leadership Scholarships for academically gifted students, graduate student fellowships to enhance our research enterprise, student-athlete scholarships, and field-of-study awards.
S.E.A. Change
The S.E.A. Change Initiative amplifies UM’s efforts to sustain a safe campus that accelerates and empowers all students. Launched in spring 2019, this leadership initiative will prepare UM students to influence broad societal change.

Your support of S.E.A. Change Initiative for UM Students will provide UM undergraduate and Missoula-area high school and middle school students with educational opportunities to be empowered change makers who understand, navigate and address societal biases.

These students will grow into successful and influential professionals committed to gender equity. Essential future contributions will support holistic programming in four areas: mentorship and research, mindset building, entrepreneurship and leadership.

UM continues to invite support of critical programs and services that advance efforts to sustain a safe campus that accelerates and empowers all students. These ventures include the Student Advocacy Resource Center; the leadership training program Women’s Leadership Initiative; Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies; and Pursue Your Passions, which fuels entrepreneurship among UM women.

Make no small plans. Donate