The college launched a $50 million comprehensive capital campaign, the largest in Vassar's history. President Simpson said that the aim of the project was to “enable Vassar to sustain its place of leadership among American liberal arts colleges.” The national chairman of the drive was trustee Mary St. John Villard ’34.

The specific goals of the campaign were the faculty—additional chairs, salary increases, an improved leave system, and new faculty positions to accommodate the transition to coeducation—scholarships and financial aid, the Library and scientific equipment. The campaign aimed to raise the money by 1972.