Thursday night marked the launch of Phillips Academy’s capital campaign, “Building on the Surest Foundation.” “We hope to generate excitement about the campaign. To say thank you to the people who have already donated, and to raise the enthusiasm level to go all the way and reach our goal,” said Barbara Chase, Head of School, on Wednesday. Andover is launching the public phase of its campaign with $178 million already raised out of the $300 million goal. The opening ceremony will take place in the Chapel with speeches by Chase, Oscar Tang ’56, President of the Board of Trustees and David Underwood ’54, Honorary Co-Chair of the Campaign Steering Committee. “There will be presentations in the Chapel to show how the philanthropy has affected the school, from the campus to the students lives and faculty experiences,” said Chase. Students and faculty alike were invited to attend the launch of the campaign, which took place at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday in Cochran Chapel. The Board of Trustees and several volunteers and donors from the nearby community were also invited to attend the launch. “Everyone who is interested in the Academy or who has supported the academy is invited,” said Chase. The event was expected to have over 300 attendees. Tang said, “Given the current economic situation, people are reexamining their situation and their priorities, it’s our job to address that doubt and show that Andover is a worthy cause.” According to Tang, the remaining goal is to raise money to make Andover more accessible, incorporate a more global perspective and increase faculty support. “We have the luxury to improve our program on a global perspective, since the last campaign focused on residential life,” said Tang. “My hope is that in recent years the graduates have seen the school blossom and get ever stronger. They understand the kind of program they have been a part of,” he said. “We emphasize service at Andover, and part of that service is returning something to the institution that provided the graduate with the opportunities that Andover provides,” he added. Tang stressed that Andover is built on the contributions of prior generations, and as long as the graduates believe in the school’s mission, as defined by the Strategic Plan of 2004, the school will flourish. “For the younger graduates, all we are hoping for is participation,” said Tang. As of press time, Faiyad Ahmad ’10, School President, planned to speak on behalf of the student body. Temba Maqubela, Dean of Faculty, planned to speak as well. “[In my speech], I thank the attendees for their generosity and highlighting some of my great experiences at Andover. It’s basically a thank you speech, with a few reasons why I and many of my peers appreciate their contribution to Andover,” said Ahmad. “My hope is that they realize and remember how multifaceted Andover is, and how much my ability to try new things and do all the things I love doing has impacted my Andover experience,” continued Ahmad. Anne Gardner, Director of Spiritual and Religious Life, also addressed the group. According to Tracy Sweet, Director of Academy Communications, dinner in the Smith Center will follow the speeches with a program including a multimedia introduction and performances by The Yorkies and SLAM. “The Academy is really about the students, and so there will be some student performances,” said Chase. Once the public phase of the campaign has been launched, Chase will be traveling across the nation to raise funds. “I’m not sure it will be that much more traveling [than usual], but I’ll be talking more specifically about the campaign, and meeting privately with donors,” said Chase. According to Chase, the public phase of the campaign informs the community of the campaign and its goals. “Once we’ve made sure that we have enough support, we announce that the campaign is going strong, and open the floor for donations,” said Chase. “The public phase of the campaign serves to let everyone know about [the campaign], and invite them to join us with gifts of all sizes, every one of which is important and precious,” Chase continued. Chase sees the public phase of capital campaign as an opportunity for the Andover community to become united in a common goal. “We have a lot of rituals, and the launch of the campaign is a time where we all agree to work together to gather resources we need to make the academy vision a reality,” said Chase.