Chapter 9: Faculty as Representatives of the University/Service

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9.H Fundraising and Gifts to the University

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Michigan’s tradition of academic excellence is sustained and strengthened by financial contributions from alumni and friends, corporations, foundations, and associations. This generous support is reflected in buildings, endowed chairs, programs, scholarships, and fellowships. Although the Regents have designated the Office of Development as the official University of Michigan entity responsible for directing, guiding, and coordinating development activities, fundraising at Michigan is best described as a partnership involving faculty members, deans, and executive officers who work with development professionals in the schools and colleges and in the Office of Development.

The U-M’s institutional advancement program has four major components:

  • principal gifts
  • major gifts and planned giving
  • corporate and foundation support
  • annual giving

In addition, each school and college works to maximize volunteer and alumni involvement in the solicitation of gifts to support programs in that unit. Because the University strives to solicit the largest possible gift from each potential donor, central staff members help schools and colleges coordinate and time their requests. Faculty should keep in mind that solicitation of funds is permissible only with prior approval from the president or a delegated representative (typically the dean or school or college development officer) and that University resources may not be used for solicitation of funds without prior approval (bylaw 3.06).

Gifts are transmitted to the University through several means. The most common is by cash or check made payable to the University of Michigan. Gifts also are received via appreciated marketable securities, real estate, or personal property (such as rare books and manuscripts or works of art). Specific requirements often pertain to non-cash gifts, and the University encourages donors to contact their attorney, tax counsel, or the Office of Development. Gifts of money or property are received through the Office of Development, departments, or the development offices in the schools and colleges. As part of the University’s efforts to promote positive donor relations, the Gifts Processing Office in the Office of Development records and acknowledges all gifts (bylaw 3.05).

Faculty members on the Ann Arbor campus who want more information about how they can participate most effectively in fundraising at U-M should contact the dean or development officer in their school or college or the central Office of Development (647-6000). U-M Dearborn and U-M Flint development offices work in coordination with the Ann Arbor office. Faculty on those campuses should contact their respective development offices: U-M Dearborn 313/593-5130; U-M Flint 810/762-3350.