Pillar 1

Attract Exceptional Talent

RIT is a diverse community of extraordinary individuals. We will continue to add top-notch students and ask premier faculty to join us, enabling everyone here to make their wildest dreams real.

Current pillar totals:

$116M

of $200M pillar goal
$116M Raised
$84M Left

Current Initiatives

Increase student quality and diversity through scholarships
Lead through faculty professorships
Grow student research fellowships

Increase student quality and diversity through scholarships
We were pleasantly surprised with the support we received. The financial aid office was willing to work with us on our individual needs both at the beginning of the application process during the next four years as our circumstances changed. The scholarships and loans my sons received, combined with choosing affordable housing resulted in RIT being my sons' choice.

Kathleen Class parent of Michael and Greg Coady ’13

Increase student quality and diversity through scholarships

We want the best and brightest minds at RIT, regardless of their financial circumstances. Your support will help us bring them here—and keep them here.

There is no greater need at RIT than increased scholarship funding. Your support will fund undergraduate scholarships based on both merit and need, to offer assistance with tuition, textbook purchases, and study-abroad experiences, and to increase the number of underrepresented students. The promise of a scholarship can literally change someone’s life.

Not all students are the same, nor are their educational needs and when a student steps on campus, they carry with them all of the problems they could be experiencing at home making it much more difficult for them to achieve their academic potential. Your support will enable the development and implementation of programs, policies, and practices that improve the graduation rate and on-time graduation of our students and that close the graduation gap associated with socioeconomic state, race, and other limiting demographic factors.
"We were pleasantly surprised with the support we received. The financial aid office was willing to work with us on our individual needs both at the beginning of the application process during the next four years as our circumstances changed. The scholarships and loans my sons received, combined with choosing affordable housing resulted in RIT being my sons' choice."

Kathleen Class parent of Michael and Greg Coady ’13


Lead through faculty professorships
We must continue to lead by example through our teaching and scholarly efforts and by creating opportunities that encourage and support the growth of critical thinking in all we do.

Jennifer Schneider, Ph.D. Eugene H. Fram Chair in Applied Critical Thinking, Rochester Institute of Technology

Lead through faculty professorships

Engaged, motivated students at all degree levels look for faculty members to offer a valuable mix of knowledge, inspiration, and exposure to opportunities that will help them set the stage for professional success. An increase in underrepresented faculty proportional to the number of underrepresented students is also an imperative of ours since we know that students are more likely to thrive in a setting where there are faculty with whom they can identify. We will hire distinguished faculty who are exemplary in their fields, and who attract students and additional first-rate faculty to our programs. We face stiff competition in this area, and must present highly competitive offers.

Great professors teach their students how to challenge assumptions and think across the boundaries of their disciplines. They ignite passion in their students by demonstrating that passion in their own research and scholarship. Your support of endowed professorships will help champion outstanding teaching and meet other objectives such as advancing a particular research area, studying teaching methods for a specific discipline, and creating new degree programs.
"We must continue to lead by example through our teaching and scholarly efforts and by creating opportunities that encourage and support the growth of critical thinking in all we do."

Jennifer Schneider, Ph.D. Eugene H. Fram Chair in Applied Critical Thinking, Rochester Institute of Technology


Grow student research fellowships
Undergraduate research was such an important part of my education at RIT. It made a tremendous difference in preparing me for my graduate studies and for my work here at NASA.

Julie Barsi ’97, ’00, instrument engineer, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Grow student research fellowships

Research that impacts the world starts with the people who conduct it. RIT is unique in our approach to student-centered research. A research opportunity extends students’ knowledge, enhances their interdisciplinary agility and fosters collaboration, resilience, and tenacity. The total student experience is enriched when students have the opportunity to participate in research early and often.

At the undergraduate level, student-centered research means that students are in the driver’s seat, conducting research assignments that their peers at other universities do not see until graduate school. This hands-on experience, offered early in their academic careers, gives them the chance to shape their future further. Your support of undergraduate research fellowships ensures that more students have the opportunity to engage in research building knowledge, skills and abilities.

Graduate students are tomorrow’s leaders in computing, engineering, business, science, the arts, and a host of other professions. Master’s and doctoral students collaborate with faculty on research to solve pressing global challenges. Graduate students make advancements in promising areas of knowledge that are the future. To ensure that more graduate students can continue to make these much-needed advances and to remain competitive against our peers, you support is needed so that we are able to offer substantially more research fellowships to attract the best and brightest.
"Undergraduate research was such an important part of my education at RIT. It made a tremendous difference in preparing me for my graduate studies and for my work here at NASA."

Julie Barsi ’97, ’00, instrument engineer, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center