Endowments & Foundations

Endowments Icon
Increasing organizations’ impact

A key priority for leaders is to build assets and increase their organization’s impact.  The TIAA Institute supports the sector’s efforts through our focus on foundation and endowment performance and impact. 

TIAA Institute Reports

Original research produced by the TIAA Institute—both independently and in collaboration with noted scholars—examines topics of interest to the academic, nonprofit and public sectors. The reports combine statistical findings with thoughtful, data-driven observations and conclusions to provide in-depth analyses that are informative and appropriate for both technical and general audiences.

March 2020

Donations to higher education have soared in recent times, along with concerns about how the money is being used.

October 2019

As a growing number of private foundations adopt a social justice agenda, their higher education grants reflect broad societal concerns.

April 2019

U.S. colleges and universities hold more than $500 billion in endowment assets, but many people have a poor grasp of these assets’ purpose and value.

March 2019

In an era of declining public funding, private philanthropy has played an increasingly vital role for both public and private institutions.

June 2017

Over the past decade, foundations and other entities awarding higher education grants have shifted their focus toward programs that encourage student retention and graduation, particularly for low-income and first-generation college students.

March 2017

Can a university’s characteristics be a better indicator of an endowment’s effectiveness than endowment size? 

June 2011

This paper summarizes a survey of university endowment funds, with a particular focus on the composition of endowment investment committees and how this composition is associated with a number of key activities.

September 2009

In 2007, Davidson College became the first private liberal arts college to offer its students a financial aid package that meets 100% of their demonstrated need without any loan component.

June 2009

Endowments are stocks of financial and real assets held by colleges and universities to generate income for current and future operations. Donors often place specific restrictions on the use of their gifts.