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Foundation Endowment

CSULB's high-quality academics, inclusive character, exceptional affordability, and beautiful and expansive campus grounds combine to make it a university of choice for a remarkably diverse and talented student body.  But if the university is to sustain its upward trajectory in an era of declining government support, then it must join forces with private partners who recognize the importance of investing in one of California’s largest and most popular public universities.  Increasingly, we are turning to friends and alumni to fill gaps in funding and to make the visionary gifts that will allow the university to grow in its role as a national leader in student-centered learning.  As CSULB seeks to rise ever-higher within the ranks of the West’s finest public universities, endowment emerges as the single most important resource available for advancement.

The University’s endowment comprises hundreds of individual funds.  Each was created by an agreement between the Foundation and a donor(s) for a particular purpose.  The donor is allowed to place restrictions on how the funds are to be spent; these are called restricted funds.  If the donor does not specify a restriction, the University may use the funds for purposes the University President deems most pressing; these funds are called unrestricted.

Because of the required reporting and accounting, endowed funds will only be established with a minimum $25,000 account value.  Some fund purposes have a higher minimum.

How do they work?

The Foundation has an Investment Policy that seeks to maximize long-term real returns with acceptable risk. The Foundation invests with the intent to earn the annual spending policy distribution amount, plus account for inflation and cover any fees incurred.  By investing to cover the rate of inflation and fees, the purchasing power of the endowment can be assured for the future.

Each donor-created endowed fund is allocated as a percentage of the overall endowment, much like an owner of a mutual fund owns “units.”  The CSULB 49er Foundation may distribute an amount up to 4.5% of each endowment fund’s corpus based on a 36-month moving average market value. The valuation date shall be December 31 for the following fiscal year’s allocation.

At the time of valuation, no distribution will be made from an individual endowment if its corpus value is equal to or less than 80% of its historical gift value. Partial distributions will be made as long as a distribution shall not cause the historical gift value to drop below 80% (e.g., if an endowment’s corpus is 82% of its historical gift value, a partial distribution of only 2% will be made.)

Once the funds are transferred to the endowment’s associated operating account, the faculty member (or administrator) responsible for those funds (Project Director or Principal Investigator) may utilize the funds in accordance with the terms and conditions of the endowment.  Funds should be spent directly from that associated operating account to facilitate easy reporting back to the donor as to how their funds were spent.  This report is done annually in the form of an endowment report, following the close of the fiscal year.

New endowed funds must meet the minimum required for that type/purpose of endowed fund before an annual distribution will commence.  Endowed funds created prior to June 30, 2008, will make an annual distribution subject to the above policies, even if they don’t meet the current minimum requirements.

Endowment Minimums

  • Dean’s Chair  $2.5 million
  • Endowed Chair  $1 million
  • Endowed Research Fellowship  $250,000
  • Endowed Graduate Scholarship  $100,000
  • Endowed President’s Scholar $100,000
  • Endowed  Scholarship  $50,000

Annual Reports & Performance


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