Dalhousie wraps up coast‑to‑coast launch of Bringing Worlds Together

Events attracted over 1,600 alumni, friends, and benefactors

- June 5, 2024

Scenes from Dal's campaign launch events. (Cody Turner images)
Scenes from Dal's campaign launch events. (Cody Turner images)

When Dalhousie University President Dr. Kim Brooks announced on April 2 that the university was Bringing Worlds Together, she promised a campaign for transformational change. Six events and more than 4,500 kilometres later, that promise is starting to be fulfilled.

The university has wrapped up a series of launch events across Canada to share the news about its  $750-million fundraising campaign — the largest-ever undertaken by an Atlantic Canadian university.

The campaign will make significant investments in enhanced and new programs, supports, and facilities that will have far-reaching impacts, including scholarships, research, and community clinics.

High hopes, strong support

Held in Halifax, Truro, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary, the launch events attracted more than 1,600 alumni, friends, and benefactors. They also featured several special guests, who joined Dr. Brooks, to share their hopes for the campaign and their reasons for supporting it.

At the kick-off event in Halifax, Dr. Brooks welcomed longstanding supporters Drs. Fred Fountain, CM, (LLB’74, LLD’00) and Elizabeth Fountain (LLD’22), who are serving as honorary campaign co-chairs with the Honourable A. Anne McLellan (BA’71, LLB’74).

“We support Dalhousie because we believe Nova Scotia needs the best possible university it can be — but we also see that the world needs that too,” said Fred Fountain.

In photos

Dal's Bringing Worlds Together cross-country tour


“We believe [the campaign] represents the best opportunity we have as a society to find solutions to the pressing challenges we face and to do it on a timeline and a scale that makes a difference both now and for future generations,” added Elizabeth Fountain.

In Truro, Jeannie van Dyk (Ag Class of ’78), a dairy farmer and vice-chair of the Agropur Dairy Cooperative's board of directors, shared her vision for the type of solutions that will be possible through Bringing Worlds Together.

“It is often said that there is no other sector that is more poised to take on the world’s biggest challenges than agriculture,” van Dyk said. “From food security and nutritional security to climate change, alternate fuel sources, and economic prosperity, this campaign presents the best possible opportunity we have to solve these issues. And who could be better poised to solve these issues than a diverse university like Dalhousie?”

Renewing a promise for transformational change

Cheryl Fraser (BSC’78, MES’85) agrees. The chair of Dal’s Board of Governors joined attendees in Ottawa and Vancouver to share how the promise of transformative change drew her, and her family, to Dalhousie.

“That same promise has brought me back to Dal since then,” she said. “More recently, it was the opportunity to chair the university’s Board of Governors. The thought that I could help shape Dalhousie and its future just as it had shaped me, and my family, excited me.”

Dal Board Chair Cheryl Fraser addresses supporters in Vancouver.

Fraser added that Dal is renewing its promise for transformational change through the campaign, thanks to the support of extraordinary partners and the power of philanthropy. “I’m really inspired by all the work that has gone into this campaign,” Fraser says. “I am even more excited by the thought of what will come out of it. And everyone here can help make that happen.”

Jeff Leger (BScPh’95), campaign co-chair along with Dr. Ruma Bose (MBA'99 LLD'22), and CEO of Shoppers Drug Mart, is one of several Dal alumni who have stepped up to support Bringing Worlds Together. At the Toronto launch event, hosted by Ripley’s Aquarium of Canda, he said it was the vision behind the campaign that inspired the pharmacy chain to make a gift to support the Faculty of Health’s efforts to make health care more diverse and equitable.

"When we think of tackling some of society’s biggest challenges and problems, we really need to bring together universities, governments, communities, and, obviously, companies to find solutions,” Leger said. “So, this is why we're very excited to be partnering with Dal to support the Faculty of Health with a $2.5-million contribution."

Shoppers CEO Jeff Leger speaks at the Ripley's Aquarium of Canada in Toronto.

Better together

At Dal’s final campaign launch event in Calgary, Dalhousie Alumni Association President Alana Riley (MBA’17) engaged the audience with humour, intellect, and insight on the Bringing Worlds Together campaign, and the transformational change it will empower through the campaign’s three pillars: inspiring future-ready leaders, engaging in high-impact research, and lifting our communities.

With the launch events wrapped up, momentum continues to grow for Bringing Worlds Together. To date, the campaign has raised $387 million — nearly 52 per cent of its fundraising goal. Gifts made to the campaign include a $50,000 commitment from Dal alum Doran Donovan (BComm’90, MBA’94) in support of the Oulton-Stanish Centre and $8.2 million from entrepreneur and conservationist Ross Beaty and his family to support the creation of the Beaty Centre for Marine Biodiversity.

“We seek donors and partners who want to drive lasting change that leaves no one behind; who want to accelerate talent and create impact with a meaningful difference; and who want to lift our communities,” says Dr. Brooks. “We can make a better world. And we can do it together.”

To explore how you can help bring worlds together, please visit dal.ca/worlds-together.

President Brooks shares an embrace with an attendee at the Halifax launch.


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