UNLV Foundation

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FAQs

What is the UNLV Foundation, and what is its purpose?
The UNLV Foundation is an IRS Code 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that seeks and manages gifts to the university. It was founded in November 1981 to coordinate all private giving for UNLV. The Foundation solicits, receives, and administers gifts and financial resources from private sources for the benefit of all programs of the university. Gifts to UNLV through the Foundation each year provide scholarships, research facilities, equipment, and other enhancements that improve the quality of higher education. Earnings from the UNLV Foundation endowment also provide a dependable, long-term source of income for the university. As a public nonprofit organization, the Foundation has members and no capital stock.
Why should I give to UNLV through the Foundation?
Gifts made to the Foundation for the benefit of the university are voluntary investments from individuals, corporations, and philanthropic foundations. The nonprofit 501(c)(3) structure legally protects the private nature of the gifts and the donor's anonymity when requested. The Foundation, through its exercise of trust and fiduciary responsibility, gives donors additional confidence that their gifts will be used in accordance with their wishes and to enhance programs rather than replace state support. In fact, Foundation funds cannot be appropriated for other purposes.
Why does UNLV need private support?

As UNLV has grown and become more complex, the ability of the Nevada Legislature to fully fund all of the programs at UNLV has declined. Private funds are now essential to the people who study, teach, and conduct research at UNLV. Without private support, the quality of the educational experience at the university would be much poorer and the ability of the university to support the economic growth of Southern Nevada would be crippled.

Private support enables the university to respond to faculty, students, and the community; to take entrepreneurial steps forward; to adjust to changing circumstances; and to deal with special needs. In short, gift support helps UNLV ensure that the public good is achieved even in the face of diminished state support.

How much am I expected to contribute?
The size of the gift you make is entirely up to you. Contributions of all sizes are important and are gratefully accepted. Every charitable dollar the university receives has the potential for exponential impact as it helps UNLV leverage its most valuable skills — research, teaching, and community service — for the benefit of our entire community.
What is an endowment?
An endowment fund is built through gifts of financial assets that are given with the stipulation that only the income earned by the assets can be used. Since an endowment's principal is not spent, these funds create financial stability, allowing UNLV to be less dependent on unpredictable sources of revenue, such as government support or research grants. UNLV’s endowment funds are professionally invested and managed by the Foundation. Each spring, the Foundation's Finance and Investment Committee meets to review the endowment management policy and determine the amount of money to be disbursed to each separately endowed academic and athletic scholarship and program maintained by the UNLV Foundation.
What endowment-naming gift opportunities are available at UNLV?

Named-endowment funds offer donors an opportunity to associate the name of a family or individual with a project or program of enduring worth.

Endowment opportunities at UNLV range from scholarships to athletics to faculty support. The minimum levels to establish a named endowment range from $30,000 for a student scholarship or support program to $1 million for endowed faculty support.

May I designate how my gift will be used?
Yes! You may designate support to one or more colleges, departments, programs, or projects. You may also choose to leave your gift unrestricted, which means support is applied to the areas of greatest need. Many donors do both with multiple gifts.
What is the difference between unrestricted and restricted gifts?

Although both unrestricted and restricted gifts are welcome, unrestricted gifts are of critical importance because they allow the university to provide funding in the areas of greatest need to meet unexpected challenges, take advantage of unique opportunities, and meet the many day-to-day challenges of modern higher education.

On the other hand, restricted gifts are earmarked for specific purposes chosen by the donor, such as an endowed scholarship or professorship, program, or building.

Unrestricted gifts provide a source of funds to UNLV that are not limited to specific program uses in colleges and departments. These gifts are used where needed most throughout the institution and may provide resources to help recruit top faculty, create scholarship programs and internship opportunities, and enhance the intellectual life of the campus.

How much of my gift goes toward administrative costs?
A portion of the unrestricted funds – those intended for use as discretionary funds – may be reinvested in the university's ongoing fundraising and development efforts. This money may be used for operating expenses, travel, hosting, and university receptions to produce further gifts.
Are all gifts tax-deductible?
Gifts to the UNLV Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, are fully tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Please consult with your tax attorney or financial advisor to determine if your gift is tax-deductible.
Can I receive a tax deduction for equipment or supplies I give to the university?
Yes. If you donate equipment or supplies, which would be referred to as a gift-in-kind, you will be provided a contribution receipt for items given and be recognized for the value of those gifts that have been properly documented. Documentation through a receipt, invoice, or other instrument must be submitted at the time the gift-in-kind occurs in order to establish a value for the items donated. Please consult with your tax attorney or financial advisor to determine if your gift-in-kind is tax-deductible.
How will I be recognized for my gift?
UNLV is pleased to recognize donors to all campus programs in a variety of ways, including honor rolls in printed and online publications and membership in societies to recognize cumulative giving and estate gifts. Donors will also receive special correspondence from the UNLV President and other campus leadership, invitations to campus and community events, and updates through campus communications such as UNLV Magazine and college and program publications.
How is the Foundation governed?
A Board of Trustees oversees the management of Foundation operations.
How does the Foundation remain accountable to donors and the university?
Each year, the Foundation contracts with an outside firm to audit its books. The Foundation also presents an annual report to the Board of Regents.
What is the Foundation's fiscal year?
The Foundation's fiscal year begins July 1 and ends June 30.