Thu 08/25/2022 – 08:16 | By: Hayley Taylor

With private philanthropy support from more than 2,800 University of Southern Mississippi (USM) alumni and friends, donations made through the USM Foundation totaled more than $16.9 million, including approximately $16.3 million in donations and pledges and over $680,000 in planned giving.

Over $12 million has been given to the University through the USM Foundation to support various academic scholarships and programs, including nearly 2,200 scholarships awarded, totaling approximately $4.9 million.

History was made in fiscal year 2022 with the launch of Give Wing: The Campaign for Southern Miss, the most ambitious fundraising effort in the school’s history. The $150,000,000 campaign is based on three priority pillars: student success, academic excellence, innovation and discovery and encompasses both academic and athletic initiatives. As of July 30, 2022, $126,356,468 has been raised to support academics and athletics, reaching 84% of the fundraising goal.

Fiscal 2022 also saw the groundbreaking and opening of the new home for the Center for Military Veterans, Service Members and Families on Friday, February 11. Named in honor of USM’s primary benefactor and alumnus Joe Quinlan ’73, and the Center’s founding director, Major General Jeff Hammond (US Army, retired) ’79, ’86, the 5,500 foot facility squares reflects the nationally recognized curriculum that USM offers to the military student community.

A huge supporter of Southern Miss students for over 20 years, the Luckyday Foundation of Ridgeland, Miss., recently made an additional commitment of over $9.6 million through the USM Foundation to support the Luckyday program. Scholars at Southern Miss. The Luckyday Foundation has provided significant financial and programmatic support, reaching more than 2,200 students with scholarships.

“The University of Southern Mississippi is a special place, and much of our distinction comes from our community of alumni and friends,” said Stace Mercier, executive director. “From long-time partners like the Luckyday Foundation to recent graduates making their first donation, the culture of philanthropy is strong. We continue to look forward to the transformation of our beloved university with every donation.

Founded in 1959, the USM Foundation is a nonprofit organization committed to serving the college community by overseeing fundraising efforts to secure private support for scholarships and other academic needs at Southern Miss.

For more information about supporting the University of Southern Mississippi, call the USM Foundation at 601.266.5210 or visit

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