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Naming Gifts for Endowments

The University will establish special purpose endowment funds upon acceptance of gifts or commitments that meet approved criteria. The prestige and discretionary funding usually associated with an endowed position can often be persuasive in the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty.  The conferring of an Endowed Chair or Endowed Professorship is the prerogative of the University, not the donor, and does not imply tenure.  Endowed funds are also often established to provide perpetual scholarship support or to assure the continuance of academic programs.   At Pacific, there are two types of endowed positions:

  1. An Endowed Chair is created when an endowment gift (or gifts) made to name a position totals at least $2.0 million.  These positions are critical to the academic reputation of the University and are awarded to faculty who have distinguished themselves at the national level with their teaching, scholarship and service in the field designated by the endowed position.
  2. An Endowed Professorship is created when an endowment gift (or gifts) made to name a position totals at least $1.0 million.  Faculty who receive this honor have distinguished themselves by their contributions in teaching, scholarship, and service in the field designated by the endowed position.

Other common endowments and the thresholds for their funding are as follows:

  1. An Endowed Fellowship may be established to provide supplemental funding for visiting professionals or to enhance scholarly faculty activities by supporting travel, teaching improvement, research and publication projects, or other faculty development opportunities with a minimum gift of $500,000.

  2. An Endowed Lectureship may be established to assist in short term guest lectureship and faculty exchange programs or to conduct special seminars and colloquia with a minimum gift of $250,000.

  3. An Endowed Scholarship may be established with a minimum gift of $50,000. 

  4. The University is willing to work with prospective donors on the terms and conditions of other restricted or unrestricted endowment funds, provided they support traditional institutional activities or functions and are large enough to yield a meaningful annual income.


A donor may contribute the minimum corpus required for an endowment fund over a period of up to five years.  The funds will be placed in a holding account and will accrue interest for the donor specified purpose, but no funds will be released for program purposes until the corpus reaches the appropriate fund threshold.  If a donor is unable to complete the funding of an endowment, he or she will have the option of directing that his or her gifts be aggregated with other endowment gifts (perhaps of a more general purpose), or expended to support a specific program.

Because conditions change over time, all endowment instruments shall contain the following language:

The principal of this endowment fund shall be held in perpetuity in accordance with applicable California State laws which govern the management of such funds.  It is the practice of the University to credit gains, realized and unrealized, to the fund principal on an annual basis.

In the event that, at some future date, the purposes for which this fund is established can no longer be satisfied for reasons not now foreseeable, the University’s Board of Regents, after taking into consideration the expressed intent of the donor, is authorized to use the annual distribution from this endowed fund to benefit the University in a manner which will most nearly meet the donor’s intent.

About This Policy
Last Updated
Original Issue Date

Responsible Department
Board of Regents