The University of Guelph’s 2015 United Way campaign raised a record amount of money and received two major awards from the local United Way.

The announcements were made today during a luncheon hosted by United Way Guelph Wellington Dufferin.

This year, the U of G community raised $625,000, its most successful fundraising drive ever. Nearly $18,000 above the campaign goal, the amount equalled the sum collected this year for the United Way by Linamar Corp.

“It was a race to the very end,” said local United Way chair Karen Farbridge in announcing the results.

Both U of G and Linamar received the “Overall Achievement Award” for most money raised.

The University had already met its $607,500 goal earlier this month, but additional individual pledges and event receipts pushed up the grand total.

The $625,000 tops the record set in 2014, when the University raised $616,910.

The U of G campaign exceeded $600,000 for the fourth year in a row and raised more than a half-million dollars for the seventh time.

U of G’s record-setting year and the University’s continued major role in the region’s annual fundraising campaign earned it the “Campaign of the Year” award in the public sector category.

“Every year, the University of Guelph continues to impress us with its ability to work as a community to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Farbridge said.

The University is one of the largest contributors to the regional United Way annual campaign, raising more than $7.2 million in recent years. This year’s regional campaign raised more than $3.6 million.

“It’s hard to feel more proud of our UG community than I do now,” said Rich Moccia, associate vice-president, research (strategic partnerships) and campaign co-chair.

“Faculty, staff, students and alumni all face competing demands for their time and charitable giving. This year’s campaign stands as an exceptional example of community spirit and caring for the world we live in.”

Moccia and Patricia Tersigni, director of academic programs and policy in the provost’s office, also won a “Employees Making a Difference” award from the local United Way.

In addition, U of G’s Open Learning & Educational Support and the College of Biological Science won Spirit Awards in the Education Division.