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Annual Appeal

AA18 Banner 150th

The success of this appeal relies on the many smaller donations that our various alumni, friends and past donors provide. Whatever your gifted amount is, your support does matter and will help to make a huge difference.

Since we began our annual appeal giving campaigns in 2003, we have received over 6,000 generous gifts from you: our alumni and friends. Support has been received for scholarships and capital and research projects and programmes across the entire University. We hope you are in a position to contribute to this year's campaign.

You can make a one-off contribution, or set up a regular payment, and every dollar we receive will work hard for the future of the university.

We hope you can be a part of this exciting new journey.

AA18 Alumni Student Scholarships thumbnailAlumni Student Scholarships

Every year hundreds of gifted students apply for scholarships at the University of Otago. For some, this is their only chance to overcome the hardship and barriers associated with attending university. But many more miss out. Your donation could be truly life changing, it will allow a student to study and receive great support in the University life. This cost is out of reach for some families.

AA18 Arts facility mainMusic, Theatre and Performing Arts Facility

Our stated goal is "to have an international reputation for innovation and excellence in teaching, research, performance, and performance-as-research in the fields of Music, Theatre Studies and Performing Arts."

To this end, the University has committed to a $26m project to construct a new Recording Studio building and refurbish existing buildings to provide a purpose-built, state-of-the-art Music, Theatre and Performing Arts Facility with multi-use recording and performance spaces which will be available for students and the local community.

AA18 Marine Studies mainMarine Studies, Replacement Research Catamaran

Otago has operated a research vessel for more than 30 years and for the last 10 years has put the University on the map by extending the range and scope of our expeditions, and teaching more students, on the RV Polaris II. The Polaris II, an older wooden vessel, needs replacing as research challenges and teaching needs grow. Globally, there has never been a more important time for marine research. Our research requires greater technical capability and our teaching requires on-the-water training across a range of environments with improved technologies.

We hope you can join us and work towards building a fund to replace the Polaris II with a new 31.8m catamaran research vessel plus help support its annual operating costs.

AA18 EXPINKT mainEXPINKTTM - Cancer Rehabilitation Programme

Exercise provides valuable support for cancer patients and survivors through their treatment and helps them cope with related side effects. The EXPINKTTM Gym is a NZ one-of-a-kind private gym for cancer survivors of all ages and ethnicities to come together, take comfort, and rehabilitate from primary clinical treatment.

Clients are given individualised and carefully supervised training for 6-12 months before 'graduating' to group classes. Significant improvements in fitness, muscular strength, and quality of life have been observed. Today the gym sees 120 EXPINKTTM Gym members participating each week, some twice a week. There is nowhere in New Zealand that provides the type of support offered at Otago's EXPINKTTM Gym. Your support will ensure this valuable programme continues to be of service to our community for the next three years.

AA18 Alzheimers thumbnailBlood Test to Detect Alzheimer's

With improved healthcare and better nutrition people are living longer and enjoying healthier lives. Yet with longer life comes an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease. This disabling condition requires better means of early detection, so therapies can commence earlier – a recent discovery by the Brain Health Research Centre may address this.

AA18 150th anniversary 226px

Next year is the University’s 150th anniversary, and we’re celebrating!

Beginning with the Burns Night Supper in January and a family-friendly picnic on the Clocktower Lawn in February, the year will be filled with opportunities to celebrate the extraordinary achievements of New Zealand’s first university.

Commemorative events include a procession and convocation ceremony, an anniversary dinner, college lunches, concerts, rugby, a regatta, symposiums and a ball - all designed to bring together friends, students, staff, alumni and our wider community.

Registrations open late January, for further details visit
We’d love to see you!