A Growing Endowment

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On one hand, the story of SUNY Oswego's endowment is one of numbers—how the gifts made from generous donors to the Oswego College Foundation have been wisely managed to support the institution. On the other hand, it is a story of people—how alumni, faculty and friends give generously; how the Oswego College Foundation, stewards of the fund, manage those gifts, and how Oswego students and faculty members ultimately benefit.

Oswego's endowment provides basic support to the college in the form of scholarships, improved facilities, quality faculty and research. Less than 20 percent of SUNY Oswego's revenues come from New York State appropriations, down significantly from decades past. As a result, SUNY Oswego's growing endowment plays an ever-increasing role in allowing it to offer the world-class education often named to lists of best value colleges, top public universities and best Northeastern colleges

Wise Investing, Careful Stewardship

Endowment GrowthAs the endowment continues to grow, so grows more opportunities to give students an exceptional education at an affordable price. 

In 2003, SUNY Oswego's endowment barely topped $4 million. Today, that number has grown by over 350%, and is poised to grow even more significantly in the coming years. 

By the end of June 2014, the endowment reached $18.6 million. 

The Foundation's investment committee members look at each fund and its long-term spending goal. They consider the need to generate sufficient returns to make the desired annual awards and to keep pace with inflation. The goal is to generate long-term annual returns in the 8 to 9 percent range, since an endowment typically spends 5 percent each year.

Oswego's 10-year return rate is 8.5 percent—even given the 2008 crash of the financial markets.

Oswego's endowment has consistently shown earnings ranking in the top 10 percent of nearly 500 participants in an annual study conducted by the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). Of the 493 institutions that reported their 10-year rate of return from the years 2003 to 2012, Oswego ranked 51st, higher than universities with multi-billion dollar endowments such as Princeton and Stanford.

In fact, for the past 10 years Oswego has outperformed most peer institutions, including some colleges and universities with more than $1 billion in investments, according to NACUBO. 

For more information, contact the Office of University Development at 315-312-3003 or email develop@oswego.edu.