Grace College & Seminary, Winona Lake, Ind., hosted a celebration dinner on Thursday night to mark the conclusion of its two-year comprehensive campaign. Launched in March 2017, the ASPIRE Campaign sought to raise $37 million to fund Grace’s vision to be an exemplary, Christ-centered educational community characterized by innovation, affordability and real-world preparation.
Grace College & Seminary President Dr. Bill Katip announced that the ASPIRE Campaign raised $38.5 million.
“This remarkable figure represents the generosity and sacrificial giving of 7,339 individuals. Not only did our friends give above and beyond what we had hoped, but they did so a full year ahead of expectation,” said Katip. “We praise God and thank each of you for partnering with us to make lasting investments in Grace College & Seminary that will impact individual lives, this community and our world for years to come.”
Throughout the night, three current and former students shared their stories: business management major and track athlete Martin Schiele, recent alumna and local teacher Meredith Smith, and blended degree student Hannah Deblois. The students’ stories personified the impact of the Aspire Campaign and highlighted campaign projects including the Bernard & Linnie Key Track & Field Complex, the Dr. Dane A. Miller Science Complex, and the Grace Fund.
There were many individual accomplishments of the ASPIRE Campaign to celebrate. Since 2017, Grace has launched several new, high-demand academic programs including agribusiness, mechanical engineering, digital marketing and worship arts, while making significant investments in other programs such as exercise science, chemistry and nursing. Grace also commenced its modern seminary program, Deploy, the first competency-based seminary program of its kind in the country.
Through the ASPIRE Campaign, Grace has made long-awaited investments in its athletic facilities including its first-ever track and field complex, a new competition-level soccer stadium and a rebuilt softball diamond. In addition, the school has reshaped campus traffic flow and added new green space to beautify and enhance its outdoor space.
Dinner guests were taken on a livestream tour of the new $8 million Dr. Dane A. Miller Science Complex. They saw where and how the Lilly Center for Lakes and Streams utilizes the facility for additional research capabilities and education opportunities for area students.
Katip concluded the evening by previewing what’s next for the college. “We are still aspiring at Grace,” he said. “We will continue to pursue our vision through programs, facilities and scholarships that promote educational excellence, connected community, a culture of innovation and sustainable affordability.”
Katip said new projects on the horizon include an updated dining common, new third spaces and investments in the growing School of Business.