Columbia University

Giving to Arts and Sciences

The Arts and Sciences at Columbia is flourishing and helps to make the University one of the world’s premier institutions for teaching and research. To continue to flourish, to grow in strategic directions, and to seize opportunities to create new knowledge and improve teaching, we must make investments far beyond the means that tuition income alone could provide. Among the highest priorities of The Columbia Campaign, launched in September of 2006, is raising philanthropic support vital to the future of the faculty and students of the Arts and Sciences, Columbia’s academic core.

Philanthropic investment in the Arts and Sciences, especially through gifts to build the endowment, is essential to ensuring that Columbia will continue to attract and retain the best faculty, nurture the most promising students, and provide a campus environment conducive to learning, scholarship, and a thriving academic community. Nothing is more important to the University as a whole: A total of $1 billion in new gifts, one-quarter of the entire Columbia Campaign goal, is dedicated to the needs of the Arts and Sciences, with 60%, or $600 million, earmarked for endowment.

The Campaign comes at a critical juncture. We seek to fund a larger percentage of our instructional budget through endowed chairs, enabling us to expand the faculty by 10% over the Campaign period, in great part to meet increased teaching demand in large undergraduate majors and to maintain the small classes that Columbia is known for. We also seek funding to endow a number of prestigious postdoctoral lectureships to be held by recent Ph.D. graduates with special responsibility for teaching in the Core Curriculum. Increased endowment in support of instructional faculty will permanently strengthen the Core, lower the student-to-faculty ratio, and increase student access to faculty.

Endowment for student financial aid, undergraduate and graduate, is also a very high priority. We are committed to need-blind admissions for Columbia College and we have implemented an expensive plan to provide full funding for our Ph.D. students across the Arts and Sciences. These commitments make a Columbia education possible for the brightest and most gifted students regardless of socioeconomic background and are vital to sustaining the quality of our student body. To maintain them we need to solidify our financial support for scholarships and fellowships. Other aspects of an integrated student experience — career counseling, internships, academic advising, residential life — are also reflected in the opportunities presented by the Campaign.

Among many generous gifts during the first public year of the Campaign, two stand out as milestones: John Kluge (’37CC) has pledged $400 million for financial aid, with $200 million dedicated for financial aid for students in Columbia College; and Trustee Gerry Lenfest (’58LAW) has pledged $37.5 million to the Arts and Sciences to create a matching program for endowed professorships. The Lenfest Challenge provides half of the $3 million necessary to fund each of 25 professorships, encouraging others to make gifts to name the chairs. These gifts are inspiring others, helping to bring within reach the ambitious goals for the Arts and Sciences in the Campaign.

The Columbia Campaign for Undergraduate Education $865 million
Columbia College financial aid endowment $400 million
Endowed professorships $170 million
College Fund (annual) $85 million
General Studies financial aid endowment $15 million
General Studies annual fund $10 million
Other student, faculty, and program initiatives $185 million
Graduate School of Arts and Sciences $40 million
Endowed financial aid $30 million
Annual giving $10 million
School of the Arts $20 million
Endowed and current use financial aid $20 million
School of International and Public Affairs $75 million
Endowed financial aid $25 million
Institutes and centers and other programs $25 million
Endowed chairs $19 million
Dean's Initiatives $3 million
Facilities renovations $3 million