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Endowing the FutureThe growth of the University’s endowment during Fr. Locatelli’s tenure mirrors growth in the health of SCU as an institution and the continued confidence benefactors have in the future of Santa Clara.
“As our endowment grows, so does our reputation,” says Nancy Trish Calderon, assistant vice president for development who oversees fundraising for the University. “One of the things that national ranking organizations, such as U.S. News & World Report, look at is the size of the endowment, which speaks to the fiscal soundness of the University.”
Although the current economic instability has recently seen the endowment drop somewhat from its 2007 peak of $700 million, its value remains strong and the University continues to manage expenses prudently.
The University’s most recent campaign raised almost $95 million for the endowment, with the majority of those funds designated for scholarships: $32 million was raised for endowed chairs and almost $9 million for the Centers of Distinction.
Gifts to the endowment, Calderon explains, provide the University with a growing pool of invested resources that create “current use” dollars from some of the income earned on the investments. “Because the invested funds live on in perpetuity,” Calderon says, “these gifts keep on giving.”
Income and ExpendituresSanta Clara University’s primary source of revenue is tuition and fees from current students. Gifts to the endowment or capital projects are not used for operations and are not included in these charts. More than 75 percent of the University’s expenditures are in support of educational quality: competitive salaries and benefits for our outstanding faculty and staff, student financial aid and work study wages, and maintenance for campus facilities.
Santa Clara University practices fiscal responsibility at all levels. The University Finance Office manages the University’s financial resources, and rigorous accounting and control processes provide the information necessary for sustainable financial health and growth. The Controller’s Office is responsible for recording the inflow and outflow of University resources, ensuring they are used for the intended purpose. The Budget Office supports all offices and departments with budget management and planning, and develops the Five-Year Financial Operating Plan.
Restricted FundsUniversity endowments are important cornerstones in the overall stability of institutions’ financial health. Yet they are often misunderstood.
As is the case with most institutions, the majority of Santa Clara’s endowment is restricted by donors for specific purposes, such as student scholarships, faculty chairs, and endowed programs in support of the University’s strategic priorities. The University is legally and ethically bound to respect the donor’s designation.