Endowments & Foundations

February 2022

Since 2018, the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) and TIAA have jointly produced an annual study on higher education endowment and foundation investment performance and governance. The NACUBO-TIAA Study of Endowments (NTSE) is a natural outgrowth of the longstanding relationship between TIAA and NACUBO, both of which are dedicated to enhancing the financial sustainability of our nation’s colleges and universities. The 2021, 2020 and 2019 endowment summary results are accessible to the right.

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. In general, we find that the typical investment committee member has financial credentials of some form and has experience as an executive or serving on other boards. We also find that most investment committee members are themselves donors to the university.

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. The Davidson Trust has increased the access to Davidson College of students from lower and middle-income families, contributing to a more economically diverse student body. Pre-Davidson Trust, need-based financial aid was accorded to approximately 33% of Davidson students; post-Davidson Trust, an average of 45% of entering students is qualifying for need-based aid.