University Advancement 

​Endowment Gifts

Endowment gifts are invaluable to the strength, quality and success of Washington University. Endowed professorships, endowed scholarships, endowed academic and research programs and endowed facility funds together provide critical permanent support for our faculty’s teaching and research and our students’ educational experience. 

Washington University’s Endowment

The endowment is a collection of nearly 2,500 individual funds invested for the long term. Most endowment funds have their own sets of restrictions and guidelines, which the donor sets, as to how the income may be used. Endowment funds cannot be redirected to purposes contrary to donor instructions. Some of these endowments are more than a century old and will live on through all the university’s days.

The Board of Trustees has established an oversight board that approves and takes action with respect to endowment investment policy, including investment return and risk objectives, strategic asset allocation and new asset classes. The endowment is managed by the Washington University Investment Management Company. The university’s goals are to provide stable support from the endowment each year to address the demands of funding current operations and to preserve the long-term value of the endowment to provide support for future generations.

Endowed Professorships and Scholarships

No greater honor is bestowed on a faculty member than an endowed chair, which signifies prestige and professional recognition earned for outstanding scholarship, inspired teaching, and leadership. Similarly, students who are endowed scholarship recipients benefit from a tradition almost as old as Washington University itself: a commitment for constant renewal and growth in enrolling learners of high ability and great promise. For many gifted students, such scholarships are the critical difference in creating opportunities and access for families that could not otherwise afford college. 

Endowed Facilities and Academic Programs

Endowments also generate much-needed continuing income for buildings, classrooms, laboratories, libraries and studios, as well as for academic programs, research and myriad issues important to society and to the university’s exceptional living and learning environment. All such gifts honor in perpetuity the donor, the institution and those students and families who benefit from the support endowments make possible. 

Establishing an Endowed Fund

If you are interested in establishing an endowed fund, please feel free to contact Pamella Henson, Executive Vice Chancellor for Alumni and Development Programs, by telephone at (314) 935-5850 or by email.

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