Seventy-five per cent of endowment funds come from individual and group donations, and UBC takes its fiduciary responsibility to these donors very seriously. Indeed, the University has a legal obligation to manage the donated funds prudently and in a manner consistent with the terms of the donations.
Tens of thousands of donors have supported the endowment with over half of the funds coming from donors who have contributed donations of $1 million or more.
Endowment funds are held in perpetuity and used to generate investment income. The income drawn from these donations is used to support a range of academic priorities, from research chairs to infrastructure projects to student financial support.
Following their passions, donors typically make gifts to support specific faculties, programs, awards or scholarships or to other projects at the university.
Usually, donors specify how they want their money to be used and expect the university to ensure that their gifts will continue to generate income for the purpose they have specified.
What does this endowment support?
Student scholarships and bursaries: The endowment provides financial support directly to UBC students through scholarships and bursaries. This includes assisting students in athletics, fine arts, music, medicine (e.g. MS and brain research), and many other disciplines.
Funds for specific purposes: Donors want to contribute to UBC’s work in areas about which they care deeply. Whether it is supporting cancer research, athletics, or the arts, donors see giving to specific purposes at UBC as a long-term way to give back to society.