University of Michigan

Campaign FAQ

Why does the university have fundraising campaigns? How does a campaign differ from normal fundraising year to year?

A fundraising campaign provides a discipline for setting fundraising priorities. It creates excitement, intensity, and a series of deadlines that serve as motivation. It also creates pride and energizes alumni, faculty, and staff.

How does private giving affect the university’s overall budget picture?

Private giving provides the margin of excellence that helps elevate us from being one of the best universities in the country to being one of the best in the world. During this time of declining state budget support, philanthropy is ever more important to maintaining that excellence. We rely on private donors to ensure that we can continue to attract the best faculty and students and offer the highest quality academic programs.

How did you establish the three campaign priorities of student support, engaged learning, and bold ideas?

Identifying our campaign priorities was the result of nearly two years of collaboration amongst our university leadership. Former Provost Philip Hanlon and current Provost Martha Pollack led an effort among deans and directors of units to identify these compelling priorities and to develop a university case statement.

How does Michigan compare to other public universities in terms of tuition increases and costs?

For the past four years, of 650 public institutions, U-M’s net price increase was lower than 567 of them. Net price increase is the average yearly price charged to first time, full-time undergraduate students who receive student aid, after deducting the aid. The net price is arrived at by subtracting the average amount of federal, state government, or institutional grants and scholarship aid from the total cost of attendance (tuition, fees, books, supplies, the average cost of room and board, and other expenses). We have been able to achieve this lower net price increase, in part, through philanthropy and aggressive cost cutting, and we expect this trend to continue.

What is the significance of the campaign name, Victors for Michigan?

At Michigan, the idea of being a victor has always extended beyond the athletic arena to a university community whose members continually better themselves to make the world a better place. By giving to this campaign, donors reaffirm their commitment to that invaluable U-M tradition.

How might the university’s bicentennial fit into this campaign?

The university’s bicentennial will be a landmark event. For nearly 200 years, Michigan has stood as one of the world’s finest institutions of higher learning, due in no small part to its history of private support. We are running this campaign to ensure that Michigan remains great for the next 200 years and beyond. As part of our campaign work, we will be celebrating U-M’s heritage of excellence and working to build on it going forward.

How much of the university endowment is geared toward student support?

The endowment is made up of approximately 7,800 separate funds. About 20 percent of the endowment, or $1.7 billion, has been set aside for student aid. Nearly 70 percent of all Michigan undergraduate students receive some form of financial aid, which includes grants, work-study, and loans.

Learn more about student support with these helpful infographics that illustrate how donors can help, what U-M is doing and more about the power of the endowment.

Student Support: What Donors Can Do

Student Support: What U-M is Doing

Student Support: The Power of Endowment

What is the difference between endowed funds and expendable?

Endowments are funds that are invested in perpetuity. The interest may be used to support specific donor designations, but the principal is left intact. Expendable funds are those that may be spent completely in support of whatever a donor designates.

The Regents of the University of Michigan has 501(c)(3) non-profit tax exempt status; our federal tax ID number is 38-6006309.

Copyright © The Regents of the University of Michigan
Gifts to endowment will be administered as a permanent endowment under Michigan law and University policies.
The University of Michigan Office of Development, 3003 South State Street, Suite 9000, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1288