Harvard School of Public Health launches $450 million fundraising campaign

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Jonathan Lavine, M.B.A. ’92, co-chair of the Campaign for Harvard School of Public Health, last night announced the School’s intention to raise $450 million by 2018. The announcement marked the end of the two-year “quiet phase” of the campaign, during which the School raised $167 million for priorities such as student financial aid, professorships, and research programs. The Campaign for Harvard School of Public Health is part of the $6.5 billion Harvard Campaign, which launched on September 21.

Speaking as the School observed the 100th anniversary of its founding as the Harvard-MIT School for Health Officers in 1913, Lavine reflected on the institution’s record of success in its first century. “I believe that Harvard School of Public Health succeeds so often because people here are not rigid in their thinking,” said Lavine. “Instead, they allow the nature of the complex, life-and-death problems they deal with to shape their approach to finding solutions. These problems demand solutions that cross boundaries, break some rules, and go beyond the conventional. They also demand a kind of stubborn optimism.”

Lavine also commended the School for focusing its campaign not just on a set of institutional priorities, but on how the School can make a difference in the world. The campaign will focus on advancing research, building infrastructure, and supporting the work of students and faculty to address four major threats to global health: old and new pandemics, harmful physical and social environments, poverty and humanitarian crises, and failing health systems.