TIAA Anniversary video

Building and Sharing Knowledge Together for Over 20 Years

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Message from the Head

Stephanie Bell-Rose


Since 1998, the TIAA Institute has been providing leaders in education, nonprofit and public-sector institutions with knowledge and insights that help inform decision making. On the occasion of our 20th anniversary, our focus is on our partners and supporters—those who have made the Institute’s work possible.

We are honored to collaborate with them in pursuit of building and sharing knowledge with those at the helm of our nation’s colleges and universities, and with other thought leaders who make a difference in the world through their innovative research on retirement security, financial well-being, and academic workforce trends, among other critical topics.

For 20 years, the Institute has helped those who make a difference in the world and we will continue to support them for years to come. Read more below about how we are celebrating our anniversary this year.

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Signature Research

Institute research fills important knowledge gaps pertaining to financial security, higher education and endowments and foundations. We believe scholarly research, focused on real-world problems, is critical for effective decision-making and strategic planning. This year we will be releasing research findings from two signature Institute projects—the TIAA Institute-GFLEC Personal Finance Index and our Behavioral Finance Initiative with the Pension Research Council at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

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Honoring Leaders

The Institute’s Samuelson Award, named for the Nobel Prize-winning economist and former CREF trustee, recognizes scholarship that advances lifelong financial well-being. This year’s Samuelson Award winners included Institute Fellows from Harvard and Yale. Our Hesburgh Award, named for the former University of Notre Dame president, honors campus leaders who embody Father Hesburgh’s values and commitment to higher education.

Be sure to check out this year’s Hesburgh Award winner and our leadership insights report featuring 10 past Hesburgh Award winners.


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Celebratory Convenings

Institute convenings assemble leading thinkers with diverse views to assess critical issues in financial security, higher education, and public policy. Our signature gatherings include Fellows symposia that explore practical applications of research. To commemorate our anniversary, this year we are holding a special dinner to celebrate leadership excellence in higher education at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African American History and Culture.

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Strengthening Partnerships

Partnering with premier research centers, think tanks and associations helps the Institute broaden its reach and impact. Anniversary year collaborations include a roundtable on higher education leadership with the American Council on Education; the next iteration of our Personal Finance Index created with the Global Financial Literacy Excellence Center at the George Washington University; and several new studies exploring key topics in behavioral finance with the Wharton School’s Pension Research Council.


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Engaging Fellows

The Institute’s Fellows Program includes accomplished thought leaders in financial security, higher education, and endowment and foundation management. Institute Fellows help shape our research agenda and have conducted more than 100 studies on our behalf. They also present at, and sometimes co-host, Institute convenings and serve as judges for our awards. This year the Institute will name several new Fellows.