Because of you
Because of You
Because of You
Photo - students in the Great Court


As we look back on 2019 in this report, I wish to extend my personal thanks for your support of The University of Queensland. In 2020 – the final year of our current philanthropic campaign – we have all been presented with unprecedented challenges.

Even amidst such global disruption, we have already seen our UQ community exceed every expectation in continuing their support – from accelerating COVID-19 research to providing emergency assistance to our students experiencing hardship.

Now, more than ever, I have been reflecting on the many ways I have seen our community join together to achieve our vision of “knowledge leadership for a better world”.

Your generosity enables us to pursue this vision as we continue to tackle the most pressing global challenges.

Because of you, our students, researchers and teachers are well prepared to continue in the pursuit of knowledge and creating real change, even in the most uncertain of times. I have no doubt that the ripple effect of your contribution will be felt for many years to come.

Thank you for partnering with us to create a better future.

Professor Peter Høj AC, Vice-Chancellor and President

Photo - Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Peter Høj AC


Thank you for your dedication to making a positive impact in the world. Your support has made all the difference.

The philanthropic campaign we are privileged to chair is now entering its final year. In 2019, as part of Not If, When – the Campaign to Create Change, we called on you to become “ChangeMakers”. More than 3800 of you kindly responded to the call, donating over $108 million throughout the year. Your generosity has been vital to creating a better future. With your help, talented students have been empowered to overcome financial barriers and achieve their dreams.

The teaching and learning environment has also evolved, equipping the great minds of tomorrow with the skills they will need to make an impact.

And researchers have been able to move further towards remarkable discoveries – something particularly close to our hearts – after all, it was the support of donors like you that enabled Ian and Dr Jian Zhou to develop the life-saving cervical cancer vaccine, Gardasil.

In this report, you will learn about just a few of the stories of success that you have helped to unlock. We hope you enjoy reading them.

Thank you for being a ChangeMaker.

Professor Ian Frazer AC FRS and Mrs Caroline Frazer,
Not If, When – the Campaign to Create Change Co-Chairs

Photo - Campaign Co-chairs Professor Ian Frazer AC FRS and Mrs Caroline Frazer
Infographics - 2019 in numbers
Infographics - $108.5 million raised a record year for philanthropy at UQ
Infographics - $108.5 million raised a record year for philanthropy at UQ
Infographics - 2019 in numbers
Infographics - number of donors and gifts
Infographics - 83% of gifts were under $1000
Infographics - every dollar counts
Infographics - UQ Investment Fund performance
Infographics - UQ Investment Fund performance
Infographics - UQ Investment Fund performance
Infographics - campaign success
Infographics - 13,694 donors
Infographics - 13,694 donors - two-thirds of campaign participation goal achieved

Fostering the future of medicine

Medicine scholarship helps launch careers of tomorrow’s medical leaders

The future for the health of the community, and the careers of promising medical minds, is looking brighter following the landmark establishment of the UQ Medicine Scholarship Endowment.

Thanks to a groundswell of support from donors like you, the inaugural scholarship was recently awarded to a deserving and talented medicine student, Christina Read.

These scholarships, which will be awarded annually, will ease the burden of expenses like tuition, travel, living allowances and residential fees – all of which are costs generally required of students undertaking a first-class medical education.

For Christina, the scholarship has empowered her to participate whole-heartedly in her study, including through a regional placement opportunity in Bundaberg, one of UQ’s four Rural Clinical School sites.

“The money from this scholarship will pay for my rent in Bundaberg this year, which significantly relieves the financial pressure I was under,” says Christina.

“I am already enjoying the learning opportunities immensely, and I am looking forward to participating in local projects.”

Because of you, more medical students like Christina will be able to become the medical leaders and caregivers of tomorrow.

Infographic - 161 gifts in 2019 to the UQ Medicine Scholarship Endowment Fund

Image: Students undertake a range of practical training as part of UQ's medicine degree.

Photo - UQ medical students undertaking practical training

Empowering community

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander scholarships open doors

Because of you and your support of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Scholarships initiative, more Indigenous Australians like Sherice (pictured) will be able to use their talents to pursue their university goals and create change in a way that positively influences society.

In 2019, more than $80,000 was donated to the UQ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Scholarships fund.

Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement), Professor Bronwyn Fredericks, says gifts to this fund are empowering current students, and will ultimately set a valuable example for future generations.

“Donor-supported scholarships for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at UQ enable our students the opportunity to be the best they can be, and to inspire those who will follow in their footsteps,” said Professor Fredericks.

“The generosity of donors ensures equality of access to education, opening doors and creating change that extends beyond the individual student to their families, communities and the nation.”

Photo - UQ Medicine graduate and Indigenous Australian, Sherice Ansell

Support where it's needed most

Donors to the University’s Greatest Need make a lasting impact

Photo - Students studying together

We know ensuring your gift reaches the area it's needed most is of the utmost importance. The University’s Greatest Need Fund directs donations to support our highest priorities, which are assessed annually. In 2019, approximately $167,000 was donated to the University’s Greatest Need Fund. These gifts were distributed among the following causes of high importance, while $15,000 was added to the University’s Greatest Need Endowment, which ensures funding continues to grow year after year.

Young Achievers Program

Donations to the Young Achievers Program provide much-needed assistance for talented students to prepare and assist them as they embark on the journey to fulfil their tertiary study and life ambitions. In 2019, this funding allocation was used to award bursaries to four students facing extenuating financial hardship.

Stroke research at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience

By 2050, it is estimated that 1 million Australians will be stroke survivors. The damage caused by stroke is currently irreversible, and survivors often live with the effects for the rest of their lives.

Because of you, this could soon change. With the support of funding from donors, Professor Glenn King (pictured) and his lab at the Institute for Molecular Bioscience (IMB) are making encouraging progress towards a future without stroke-induced brain damage.

The research team have steadily advanced a promising treatment candidate using spider venom to protect the brain from cell death following stroke, limiting brain damage and disability. This treatment could be administered outside of hospital, enabling crucial action in the immediate period following detection of a stroke.

The support of donors like you is vital to advance this work into preclinical and clinical trials, and ultimately into the community.

Startup Adventure Scholarships

With your help, the entrepreneurial minds of the future are gaining skills in global startup environments through UQ Ventures internships in the world’s most vibrant startup hotspots – including Shanghai, Singapore, Tel Aviv, San Francisco and Shenzhen.

Fiona Kennedy Memorial Scholarship Endowment Fund

Established in honour of Fiona Kennedy, an inspiring UQ staff member who passed away in 2019, gifts to the Fiona Kennedy Memorial Scholarship Endowment Fund support Indigenous Australian students who are experiencing financial disadvantage.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Scholarships

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Scholarships are awarded to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples seeking to study at UQ. With the assistance of a scholarship, students are empowered to achieve their goals as game-changers and future leaders in our communities and around the world.

Infographic - 442 gifts in 2019 to The University's Greatest Need Fund

Photo - Young Achievers Program participants holding "Thank You" sign
Photo - Professor Glenn King with a spider in the research lab
Photo - Startup Adventure Scholarship participants in front of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

"After I finish my degree, I want to be someone like you, who gives back to those who are struggling in life, because so many people deserve an opportunity of hope.

Thank you for helping me get through the struggles in many areas in my life. Thank you for giving me so many opportunities that I would not have taken."

- Anna, Bachelor of Psychological Science (Honours) student

Photo - Anna is a UQ student and Young Achievers Program scholarship recipient

Making change

The ChangeMaker Fund sparks wave of giving

Photo - David, a UQ graduate and scholarship recipient, in an engineering workshop.

Inspired by the motivation of donors like you to make change and create a better world, the ChangeMaker Fund was established to harness the community’s philanthropic efforts to make the biggest impact.

This year, all funds raised have been directed to empowering students to overcome financial barriers. To maximise the benefit, the University matched each donation dollar-for-dollar.

Thank you for your support of the ChangeMaker Fund. You have made all the difference to the recipients of the following scholarship initiatives.

Young Achievers Program Endowment Fund

The Young Achievers Program (YAP) increases and supports the long-term tertiary education aspirations of state high school students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Supported by generous donors like you, program participants receive financial support through bursaries and accommodation scholarships, as well as mentoring advice and the opportunity to participate in camps as they approach their high school graduation.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Scholarships

These scholarships ensure more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students have the opportunity to access a university education, determining their own exciting destinies as innovators and leaders.

Aspire Scholarship Endowment Fund

Aspire Scholarships support the ambitions of promising first-year students who face significant challenges to accessing education. Providing a much-needed financial boost early in their time at university, the scholarships relieve financial pressure to enable students to focus on their studies.

Image: David received a scholarship to assist him during his studies. He graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Mechanical Engineering) in 2019.

Photo - David, a UQ graduate and scholarship recipient, in an engineering workshop.

UQ's first ever Giving Day

More than $2 million raised in 24 hour campaign

Photo - Institute for Molecular Bioscience staff participating in Giving Day

On 23 October 2019, with your support, we held our first ever Giving Day.

Giving Day was a challenge to the community to partner with us to “Be a ChangeMaker”, with a goal to raise $1 million in 24 hours.

Funds raised as part of Giving Day were directed towards a range of important programs at UQ – spanning student scholarships, research programs and innovation in teaching and learning.

Alumni, staff and friends rose to the challenge with great passion and an overwhelming sense of community, triggering an outpouring of generosity that saw the campaign exceed all expectations.

Over $2 million was raised – more than double our initial goal – with every dollar making a remarkable difference to the lives of those each donation ultimately touches. Because of you, many more students will be able to overcome financial barriers to attend UQ.

Dental student An Tran (pictured below) aspires to become a specialist, and expressed that without the support of donors, she may not have been able to continue developing her passion for helping others in need.

“I couldn’t have done it without the scholarship,” she said.

“It helps me juggle the demands of dental school and the cost of living. It also allows me to honour my commitment to getting a quality university education.”

Through a donor-funded Aspire Scholarship – one of the initiatives supported by Giving Day – An received enough support to buy her dental equipment and was able to budget for purchasing textbooks each semester, while also easing the need to work so many hours while studying.

“Thanks to the support of donors, I was able to commit more time to my education, and to deepening my passion for restoring smiles and giving back to the community,” said An.

Following the success of the inaugural Giving Day, we look forward to launching our second annual Giving Day in 2020. More details will be made available in the coming months.

Photo - a representative from NFIA Patron's Walk for Charity presents a donation cheque on Giving Day
Photo - the UQ Calling Crew celebrating Giving Day

"Thank you so much for your support on Giving Day. You’ve given students like me the ability to flourish, and now my dreams are becoming a reality."

- An, Bachelor of Dental Science (Honours) student and scholarship recipient

Photo - An Tran, an Aspire Scholarship recipient, studying at her compute

Double the impact

Donors step forward to create change

In June 2019, donors to the University began to step forward to support students in need with the launch of the Create Change Scholarship Match.

Under this initiative, gifts of over $50,000 are matched dollar-for-dollar whenever the donation is directed to a need-based endowed scholarship. These scholarships enable donors to support students experiencing financial hardship, making higher education a reality for those who may have otherwise been prevented from pursuing their goals.

Just six months on from the initiative being announced, donors have pledged more than $7 million – increasing to a staggering total of more than $14 million following matching. A further $8 million in funding remains available for new Create Change Scholarship Matches.

Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Peter Høj, said this support is of vital importance to ensure the success of students from all backgrounds.

“Through no fault of their own, they found themselves in circumstances where attending university and succeeding at study would have been very difficult, if not impossible, without support,” said Professor Høj.

“Recent scholarship recipients include students from regional and rural areas who faced isolation and natural disasters, refugees or children of refugees and other people who had escaped violence, and some who had experienced family loss or illness at a very young age.”

Because of you, many more students facing financial barriers will receive scholarships, benefitting generation after generation.

Infographic - 16 new need-based scholarships established through the Create Change Scholarship Match to support students in perpetuity

Infographic - $7M pledged by donors through the Create Change Scholarship Match
Infographic - $7M pledged by donors, and $7M matched by UQ through the Create Change Scholarship Match
Infographic - $7M pledged by donors, $7M matched by UQ, and $8M matched funding available from UQ through the Create Change Scholarship Match

"You couldn’t possibly know the impact you’ve made on me and my family.

This scholarship program hasn’t just helped me for three or four years, but has entirely changed the trajectory of my life. Thank you."

- Braelan, Bachelor of Science student and scholarship recipient

Photo - Braelan is a scholarship recipient and member of the UQ Calling Crew

Responding to the call

More than 250 new donors join the UQ giving community through the annual phone appeal

From September to December 2019, an unassuming building on the St Lucia campus was host to 35 ambitious UQ students who gathered for a group project of a different kind.

The UQ Calling Crew spent evenings and weekends reaching out to our alumni and friends just like you to reconnect and share opportunities to donate to the causes that matter to you.

Tegan, a third year Bachelor of Education / Bachelor of Arts student and member of the UQ Calling Crew said speaking with community members who have supported the scholarship program she benefits from was a humbling opportunity.

“Not only have I had the chance to share my story of how my scholarship impacted my life, but I get to hear first-hand how donors got through university and what challenges they faced,” said Tegan.

“What is truly amazing is that even after a short phone call, the community is on board to bridge this gap between opportunity and finances. Their support to help students in need is what makes this a truly rewarding experience.”

Over 11 weeks, the UQ Calling Crew had more than 5000 conversations with alumni, donors and friends. Over 650 donations were received, with almost 40 per cent of those gifts being made by first-time donors to the University.

Thank you to everyone who welcomed a call from our student-led UQ Calling Crew. Because of you, more students will have the chance to receive a first-class education, and more researchers can progress outcomes to reach the community sooner.

Photo - student callers in the phone campaign call room.
Photo - UQ Calling Crew member writing a note of thanks
Photo - members of the UQ Calling Crew walking on campus

A history of giving

UQ Alumni Book Fair® creates generations of opportunity

It’s more goodwill and determination than fairytale magic that has driven the success of the annual UQ Alumni Book Fair®.

For more than forty years, the Book Fair has thrived on the passion of volunteers, raising money to be donated by Alumni Friends of The University of Queensland Inc (“Alumni Friends”). In that time, the UQ Alumni Book Fair® has been recognised as one of the most reliable channels of philanthropic support for important causes at UQ, generating a significant portion of the more than $9 million that Alumni Friends has donated to support causes at the University over the years.

The coordination of the event itself is a complex undertaking, with an estimated 10,000-14,000 volunteer hours invested for each Book Fair to prepare many tens of thousands of books for sale.

Over the years, Alumni Friends has used funds raised at the Book Fair to support causes at UQ ranging from cancer research to student scholarships, bursaries and awards.

Alumni Friends was the first official alumni association in Australia, and has been a treasured partner of the University for 53 years. Thank you to the many members, donors and volunteers who have contributed to the proud history of Alumni Friends of The University of Queensland Inc. Because of you, our community will continue to benefit for generations to come.

For more information please visit

Photo - a selection of books being prepared for the Book Fair

Donor Charter

The University of Queensland recognises and celebrates the important role philanthropy plays in supporting its mission and strategic priorities. UQ is extremely grateful to all donors for their generous support and is committed to developing lifelong relationships of mutual trust and respect. UQ makes the following commitments to donors:

To be transparent, informative and professional

UQ adheres to the Universities Australia Code of Practice for Australian University Philanthropy.

Representatives of the University – whether they be staff, students or volunteers – will at all times identify themselves as such when they contact current or potential donors.

Once a gift has been received, the University will endeavour to keep donors updated about the use and impact of their philanthropy and the University’s evolving priorities in a timely fashion.

On request the University will provide its most recently published financial statements and other relevant financial information.

To use gifts effectively and ethically and in accordance with donor intent

The University endeavours to administer all gifts for their intended purpose, in accordance with Australian law and in an efficient, effective and ethical manner.

Unrestricted gifts will be used to support the University’s greatest need.

UQ reserves the right to decline gifts where acceptance would compromise the University’s fundamental principles, including that of academic freedom.

In the unlikely event that the University cannot satisfy the original purpose of a gift, UQ – in consultation with the donor or the donor’s representative where possible – may apply the gift to an alternate purpose deemed most consistent with the original wishes of the donor, in a process guided by The University of Queensland Act 1998.

To respect the privacy of donors

UQ will not disclose a donor’s personal information publicly unless consent has been provided by the donor or where it is required by law to do so.

The University will respect the privacy of donors and provide anonymity to donors who request it.

UQ is committed to the protection of every individual’s personal information and is required to abide by the Queensland Information Privacy Act 2009 and associated Information Privacy Principles.

To acknowledge and recognise donors and celebrate philanthropy

All donors will receive an official receipt suitable for taxation purposes, and appropriate acknowledgement, recognition and publicity as outlined in gift documentation.

UQ will recognise donors in a way that is consistent and in accordance with the University’s giving society framework.

To ensure the privacy of our donors, we are no longer publishing a donor honour roll. If you have any questions regarding your giving history with the University, please contact our Advancement team on +61 7 3346 3900.


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