Q: What is a capital campaign?
A: A capital campaign is an opportunity to create a strong network of support for a university to raise gifts for capital projects. The Ragin’ Cajuns Strong campaign will secure funds for projects identified in Tier 2 and Tier 3 of the Athletics Facilities Master Plan.
Q: What is the fundraising goal of the capital campaign, and how will the money be used?
A: Full implementation of the Athletics Facilities Master Plan will require an estimated $115 million – easily the largest expenditure in the history of our program. Funding for these projects will require both philanthropic support and future bond sales.
Our initial goal of $50 million will fund projects set out in Tier 2 of the Athletics Facilities Master Plan.
This $50 million will allow us to pay down the bond debt from Tier 1 and start construction projects that will also generate additional revenue streams needed to help fund the remaining projects within the Athletics Facilities Master Plan.
Q: Why are these facilities really needed?
A: Last year, no other athletic program in the country won as many conference titles in its most high-profile sports. As the trophies and the milestones piled up, the Ragin’ Cajuns were catapulted into the national spotlight as never before. Attendance and local interest reached record levels.
The national spotlight that shone so brightly on our program revealed the need and the absolute necessity for major upgrades to our athletic facilities. Now more than ever, it is imperative that our facilities match the high standards that have been established by our student-athletes and coaches.
It is not by coincidence that great athletic programs are housed in great arenas and great support facilities. State-of-the-art facilities not only provide student-athletes with an improved training environment, but will serve to attract recruits, retain coaches, enhance the game experience and school spirit, and bring benefits to the community as a whole.
Q: How will these facilities benefit all students at the University?
• A full service cafeteria with a student meal plan option
• Campus bookstore and merchandise outlet
• A more conveniently located Athletics Ticket OfficeModern and state-of-the-art facilities will enhance the game atmosphere and student experience
Q: Why do you need to raise funds for these facilities? Doesn’t the University charge enough for tuition?
A: UL Lafayette is highly regarded as one of the most affordable universities in the nation.
However, state funding is limited and decreasing. The state of Louisiana has and will continue to provide funding for the University, but that amount has become a smaller portion of our University’s budget every year.
Tuition costs have increased to offset the loss of state funds.
Among NCAA Division I-FBS schools, 75 percent have used private funds to improve their major sports facilities. More and more universities are being forced to solicit and use private support to achieve their capital goals. If the Ragin’ Cajuns are going to continue to attract and retain the best student-athletes and coaches while competing and being successful at the highest level, our athletic facilities must improve to maintain a competitive balance with other universities.
Q: I was told the University sold bonds to fund the construction and enhancements to our athletic facilities. Is that true?
A: Yes, bonds were sold to fund the Tier 1 projects. However, funds must be raised for the construction of the Tier 2 and Tier 3 projects, thus the genesis of the Ragin’ Cajuns Strong campaign.
Q: If I make a donation to this campaign can I pay it over a few years?
A: Yes, absolutely. The typical pledge is completed within three (3) years or less. The timeline for pledges can be extended on a case by case basis up to five (5) years.
Q: We own some stock that we might donate. Does the University accept stock gifts?
A: Yes. The University Foundation has four established brokerage accounts to receive gifts of stock from anywhere and can be wire transferred from the donor’s broker to the Foundation’s broker(s) in a short timeframe. A stock donation transfer form can be found at www.ullafayettefoundation.org under Resources page.
Q: Some campaigns offer naming opportunities. Will this be the case with the Ragin' Cajuns Strong campaign?
A: Yes, there are various naming opportunities remaining. For more information about these opportunities contact RCStrong@louisiana.edu
Q: What gifts count toward the campaign goal?
A: All gifts to the Ragin’ Cajuns Strong campaign (regardless of the project designation) count as part of the campaign. Therefore, whether you support the general campaign fund or donate specifically to a particular project, your gift will help toward meeting the campaign goal.
Q: Who do I contact if I want to learn more about making a gift to Ragin’ Cajuns Strong?
A: Please contact the Ragin’ Cajuns Athletic Foundation at (337) 482-5393 or email at RCStrong@louisiana.edu with any questions on gift receipting, pledges, investment of funds, types of gifts received, or any other fund inquiries you may have.
Q: Is there a minimum gift amount? How much does it take to make an impact?
A: In general, there is no minimum gift amount. Together, all gifts make a difference and have an impact.
Our mission can only be accomplished by pulling together to ensure the Ragin’ Cajuns take their place among the nation’s elite.
This is your opportunity to hold on to the rope and make Louisiana RAGIN’ CAJUNS STRONG!
Q: How will this help Acadiana?
A: Sports competition has a dramatic economic impact on a community. Louisiana Economic Development Authority (LEDA) conducted a study based on the 2013 football season and found that home games generated about $27.3 million for the local economy and that the expansion of Cajun Field will pump an additional $20.2 million into the local economy each year.
And that’s just football. The Athletics Department hosts over 100 home events each year and consistently rank among the nation’s attendance leaders in both baseball and softball. Other sports including football and basketball lead the attendance rankings among Sun Belt Conference peers.
Another example on the effects of home attendance and its effect on the local economy is the 2014 NCAA Softball Regionals which attracted over 10,000 fans and, according to the LCVC, generated approximately $600,000 to the local economy over the three-day weekend.