Why give at the leadership level?
From the university’s first days, a Stanford education has been subsidized by the generosity of the founders, alumni, and other donors. When you make a leadership gift, you have a powerful impact on students’ lives and inspire others to give back.
Philanthropy is key to advancing a range of university-wide priorities—including patient care, research, faculty support, undergraduate education, and financial aid.
of Stanford’s operating expenses are covered by the endowment, which means that more than two-thirds of the university’s operating expenses must be funded from other sources.
of all Stanford undergraduates now receive need-based aid directly from the university.
of university revenue comes from tuition, and tuition covers only about one-half of the real cost of undergraduate education at Stanford.
of Stanford’s endowment is restricted, limiting the university’s ability to spend more to cover expenses as needed.
Scholarships: A defining commitment
While there are many ways to give in honor of your reunion, undergraduate scholarships are among the university’s highest fundraising priorities.
Stanford’s long-standing practice of need-blind admission is backed by a promise to meet the full demonstrated need of all U.S. undergraduates throughout their four years on campus. Only a handful of colleges and universities can uphold such a pledge.
Endowed scholarship funds are the foundation of Stanford’s financial aid program. Dedicated to supporting students in perpetuity, they help carry Stanford’s commitment into the future.
Expendable scholarships through The Stanford Fund help bridge the gap between endowed scholarships and other sources of financial aid. The combination of endowed and expendable gifts enable Stanford to keep its historic promise to students.
To amplify the university’s commitment to the affordability and access of a Stanford education, a generous match is being offered to support and increase the impact of leadership gifts to financial aid. The Fast Forward Match provides a 1:2 match to fund current-use Stanford Fund scholarships and endowed need-based scholarships.
of students graduated debt-free in 2022.
is the median amount of debt for Stanford students who do take out loans—far below the national average.
of new Stanford undergraduates are among the first generation in their families to attend a four-year university.
undergraduates received flexible one-time grants through the Opportunity Fund this year.
“Thanks to the financial support I receive from the university, I have been able to fully explore my interests without constraints. I am forever grateful to study at Stanford. I appreciate the opportunities it has granted me and my family.”
Adam Acevedo, ’23
Like nearly half of all undergraduates, Adam received need-based aid from the university, thanks to The Stanford Fund and endowed scholarships.
Why I give
“Stanford profoundly impacts my world in ways big and small. The new Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability has the potential to unlock much needed solutions to the world’s climate crisis. I support Stanford so that more lives can be touched, individually and at scale.”
Grace Yuan, ’98
“I made my first gift to Stanford while in medical school. I was so well prepared that I wanted to show my appreciation for my outstanding education. It was small, but it meant a lot to me to contribute.”
Melynda Barnes Oussayef, ’03
“The world needs creative, cross-functional solutions to the existential challenges we face. Stanford is a special place in a constant state of renewal, and it requires work from alumni to keep it special. I want to play my very small part in that.”
Calley Means, ’08
The impact of annual and multiyear giving
Many alumni choose to make annual gifts through The Stanford Fund because these gifts can have an immediate impact.
Stanford Fund gifts are unrestricted, so they can be used where they are most needed within the undergraduate program. In Stanford’s overall budget, very few sources provide this flexibility. When critical needs arise, The Stanford Fund plays a major role in meeting them.
Reunion commitments often take the form of multiyear pledges, typically over a five-year period. The entire amount of the pledge counts toward your class’ reunion giving total. Check your employer’s policy on matching gifts—your company may double or triple your reunion gift.
Many alumni commemorate reunions by combining an annual or multiyear commitment to The Stanford Fund with a gift of endowment for a scholarship, professorship, athletic program, or other purpose.
Ways to give during your 2023 Reunion Giving Campaign
2023 reunion campaigns will run from January 1, 2023, through December 31, 2023. All gifts and pledges made during your reunion calendar year count towards your reunion campaign.
Endowed need-based undergraduate scholarships
Gifts of scholarship are critical to fulfilling Stanford’s pledge to meet the demonstrated financial needs for all qualified undergraduates.
$250,000 and up (can be made in multiyear pledges)
$175,000 and up when established by recent alums with undergrad degrees from 15 or fewer years ago
Gifts of endowment
Endowed funds establish permanent investments and provide a continuing source of support.
Professorships: $6 million
Senior Fellows: $6 million
Faculty Scholars: $4 million
Graduate Fellowships: $2 million
Leadership giving through The Stanford Fund
The Stanford Fund’s most generous annual donors are recognized at the following giving levels:
Stanford Fund Scholarship: $25,000 or more per year, or a pledge of $125,000 or more
President's Fund: $10,000 or more, or a pledge of $50,000 or more
President's Fund (young alumni): $5,000 or more for alums five to nine years after graduation, and $1,000 or more for alums one to five years after graduation
Leadership Circle: $1,000 or more, or a pledge of $5,000 to $49,999
Leadership Circle (young alumni): $500 or more for alums five to nine years after graduation, and $100 or more for alums one to four years after graduation
Parent Partners: $2,500 or more from parents of current undergraduates
Create a Donor Advised Fund at Stanford
You can make a tax-deductible gift of $1 million or more to establish a fund today and advise as to how the university will use your gift—in its entirety or in incremental designations—in the future. Find more information about donor advised funds here.
Other vehicles for charitable support
Request a grant from your donor advised fund to Stanford University.
If you are over 70½ years old, instruct your IRA Administrator to make a qualified charitable distribution (“QCD”) to Stanford. Read more about how to make a QCD gift to Stanford.
Include Stanford University in your estate plans.
Fast Forward Match
Stanford has committed matching funds to help simultaneously fund current-use Stanford Fund scholarships along with endowed need-based scholarships.
Signaling the importance of this scholarship fundraising effort, the university has committed matching funds—at a ratio of 1:2 (match amount to donor amount). The university match will be added to the donor’s endowed fund. Over time, the intention is to seek additional outside matching fund support to further expand this initiative’s impact on Stanford students. (Note: The match also applies to current-use Buck/Cardinal Scholarships combined with endowed athletic scholarships.)
How Fast Forward matching works:
* Based on Stanford Fund Scholarship award of $25K.
** Based on annual fund payout of 5.5% and average scholarship award of $52K. Because award amounts vary based on each student’s demonstrated need, the number of recipients supported will vary. As the endowed fund’s value increases over time, the fund may support more students.
Ready to make your leadership gift?
All reunion donors are recognized in online honor rolls published to the entire reunion class throughout the reunion year.
Additionally, reunion donors who give through The Stanford Fund at the President’s Fund Level ($10,000 or more) receive invitations to annual receptions and special events. A leadership gift of $25,000 or more per year establishes a Stanford Fund Scholarship and provides a range of benefits, including a personal connection to students.
Why I give
“Stanford attracts a steady flow of extraordinary people who push the boundaries in every field. They inspire me to be my best. Giving back is just the right thing to do; it ensures Stanford will continue to benefit future generations.”
Lisa Holtz, ’93
“As an institution dedicated to training an open minded, increasingly diverse, and well-informed group of alums, Stanford is more important now than ever. I am proud to support an institution looking ahead to create a better future for our grandchildren.”
Robert Van Nest, ’73