Endowment grows faster than average

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February 9, 2007

1:45 PM

p. A new report on university endowments provided mixed news for the College. The report showed that the College’s endowment has increased 12.3 percent from $437,724,000 last year to $491,629,000. However, its rank relative to other universities fell in the report.

p. The College said that it was pleased with the endowment report.
“I think clearly this puts us in the top quartile of colleges and universities,” Chair of the William and Mary Foundation, the group that manages the College’s endowment, Howard Busbee said. “Our endowment has grown significantly; we’re very pleased with it.”

p. However, the report released by the National Association of College and University Business Officers shows that the College continues to lag behind many wealthier schools, falling one spot in the rankings of largest endowments in the nation this year to 128th. The College’s endowment ranking has fallen each year since records were available in 2002, when it was ranked 115th. The College’s endowment is the fourth highest in Virginia, after the University of Virginia, the University of Richmond and Washington and Lee University.

p. Busbee said he was less concerned with how the College ranked compared to other universities.

p. “The rankings as far as the size of the endowment is really not our goal,” he said. “I can’t say we’d want to be the biggest. What we want to do is simply maximize our investments.”

p. NACUBO reported that the College’s endowment growth was above the average endowment increase of 10.7 percent this year.
According to the NACUBO, “factors such as growth from gifts, reductions due to expenditures and withdrawals and investment returns determine an endowments fiscal year-end market value.”
Endowment growth generally occurs through investment and gifts.

p. The Flat Hat reported Oct. 6, 2006 that the portion of the endowment managed by the William and Mary Foundation experienced a 13.7 percent investment return this year. However, not all of the College’s $492 million endowment received that investment return. The portion of the endowment increase from gifts was also strong this year. The College announced today that it had completed its $500 million Campaign for William and Mary. See Campaign, page A1.

p. Harvard University continues to top the list of largest endowments, with an endowment of $28,915,706,000, a 13.5 increase from last year.

p. The College also continues to lag behind universities that it considers peer institutions. Of the 16 public and private peer schools that were ranked on NACUBO’s list, the College was ranked higher than only than State University of New York — Binghamton, the University of Connecticut and the University of New Hampshire.

p. The William and Mary Foundation said that their goal is “to aid, strengthen and expand in every proper and useful way the work, usefulness and objects of”’ the College.

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