Reunion Campaigns: Frequently Asked Questions
Reunion campaigns are a long-standing tradition at Stanford. They offer a meaningful way for alumni to give back and make a difference, while celebrating a milestone year. The generosity of alumni helps to support programs, departments, and new initiatives across the university—including patient care, research, faculty support, undergraduate education, and financial aid.
Reunion campaigns also fuel unrestricted annual giving, which can be used to address the university’s areas of greatest need. And most importantly, reunion giving helps Stanford maintain the promise of financial aid for all U.S. students who qualify, no matter their background.
There are many worthy giving opportunities, and classmates who are passionate about a particular program or research can find an area to match their philanthropic goals. No matter what you choose to support, your gift has a positive impact.
The majority of each class will be supporting Stanford with gifts through The Stanford Fund in honor of reunion. These unrestricted dollars are critical to the president and the provost, and are a reunion campaign priority. It is for this reason that we have a specific TSF goal as a subset of the overall reunion dollar goal.
Gifts made through The Stanford Fund go to work right away to support areas of the greatest need for undergraduates. In recent years, the university has increasingly relied on those gifts to help meet the financial needs of U.S. undergraduates. In 2022, nearly half of all students received aid, and 33 percent qualified for a full-tuition scholarship.
Even with Stanford Fund gifts and endowed scholarships combined, the university has needed to draw a larger share from its general funds to cover undergraduate aid—redirecting resources away from other educational and research priorities. Reunion campaigns focus on The Stanford Fund to help offset these costs, as well as to support innovative academic programs, student groups, and other important parts of the undergraduate experience.
Almost 75 percent of university’s endowed funds are restricted and must be used as the original donors intended. For example, funds given for research cannot be used for financial aid or be transferred from one academic school to another.
Each year, the university spends the maximum from the endowment that is sustainable over time. In a typical year, the endowment payout covers about 21 percent of Stanford’s more than $6 billion operating expense—so the university must fund about 80 percent of its annual expenses via other sources, including through gifts from the Stanford community.
The combination of endowed gifts and annual giving helps Stanford provide financial aid to all qualified U.S. students, regardless of their ability to pay.
Whether it’s through an annual gift, a multiyear pledge, or an endowed gift such as a named-scholarship, giving at the highest levels makes it possible for the university to remain innovative and accessible. Leadership-level support enables the university to meet its historic pledge of access for all qualified students despite increased need.
Leadership donors who give generously through The Stanford Fund are recognized starting at the $1,000 Leadership Circle level. Learn more about leadership giving.
Gifts of endowment, such as an undergraduate scholarship, start at $250,000—with lower minimum contributions for recent undergraduate alums*. Learn more about endowed gift opportunities (including a match).
Learn more about the Stanford endowment.
*In this context, a recent undergraduate alum is defined as someone who is 0 to 15 years post-graduation.
Yes! Most gifts made to Stanford are less than $1,000, but together they add up to millions. And the flexibility of annual, expendable gifts makes them especially valuable.
The annual payout rate of an endowed fund is about 5 percent. That means a $1,000 gift made through The Stanford Fund has the same budget offset as a $20,000 endowed fund. Such funding is vital for creating a rich and vibrant learning environment that benefits all students.
Give online with credit card, Apple Pay, or Google Pay
Make checks payable to “Stanford University” and mail to: Stanford University, Development Services, P.O. Box 20466, Stanford, CA 94309-0466. Write in the memo any gift designation.
Give appreciated securities, which provide attractive tax advantages. For more information on gifts of stock, contact our Gift Securities Team by phone at (650) 721-1917, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Make a matching gift through your employer and your gift can go even further. Find out if your employer will match your charitable contribution to Stanford.
Reunion campaigns are critically important to the success of the university, and help to ensure current students thrive. Consider making your reunion campaign gift or pledge today. Or get in touch with your class giving officer to discuss other ways to get involved. Together, your class can make a difference on the Farm!
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Your generosity helps create a vibrant educational environment by sustaining scholarships, undergrad research opportunities, clubs, activities, and mental health resources that promote student well-being.
How do you want to make an impact this year?