ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURE

Approving, Planning and Appointing Endowed Chairs, Professorships, or Faculty Fellowships

Gifts are accepted by the University of Minnesota for the purpose of creating endowed chair, professorship, or faculty fellowship positions.  Requests to set up a position should be sent to the University of Minnesota Foundation (Foundation). Once approved, the Foundation will establish the gift endowment account for the department.

Approval of matches from the Permanent University Fund for chairs and professorships is done by the Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost. Request for a match is to be submitted for approval before conversations with prospective donors take place regarding a match possibility.

The request should include:

  • The amount requested
  • Draft MOA for the position
  • Amount raised to date
  • Rationale for the request

Positions

Endowment of Chairs

A permanent chair may be established when:

  • $2,000,000 or more has been placed in an endowment that provides in perpetuity the annual funds needed for support; or
  • $200,000 per year of expendable funds is made available for at least ten years.

In the latter case, the fund purpose will continue during the term of the support. The combination of recurring funding from the unit and chair endowment payout/income distribution must be sufficient to provide salary and fringe benefits for the recipient, staff support, travel and other expenses. Units with Permanent University Fund (PUF) chairs must follow the spending requirements outlined in MN State Statute. In the case of chairs established on a term basis, the number of chairs in a particular unit is limited in accordance with other applicable University policies to avoid excessive dependence on nonrecurring sources of support.

Endowment of Professorships

A permanent professorship may be established when:

  • $1,000,000 or more has been placed in an endowment that provides in perpetuity the annual funds needed for support; or
  • Alternatively, professorships may be established if a minimum of $100,000 per year of expendable funds if made available for at least ten years.

In this latter case, the fund purpose will continue during the term of the support. The combination of recurring funding from the unit and endowment payout/income distribution must be sufficient to provide salary and fringe benefits for the recipient, staff support, travel and other expenses. Units with PUF professorships must follow the spending requirements outlined in MN State Statute 137.022. In accepting the gift, the department or other unit accepts responsibility for providing additional funds as may be necessary for the faculty member(s) holding the professorship to carry out the intent of the gift.

Endowment of Faculty Fellows

Faculty fellows require a minimum of $500,000 in permanent endowment or a minimum of $50,000 per year of expendable funds if made available for at least ten years. Generally, these funds are used to supplement a faculty member's salary, to provide stipends and support for fellowships, or to cover expenses incurred in a lecture series.

Plan and Select Endowed Position

Once it becomes obvious that the fund raising goals will be met, the unit should develop a plan for how and when the endowed position will be filled and choose one of the distribution options mentioned in Administrative Procedure: Calculating and Planning the Distribution of Endowment Income.

The unit should begin plans to budget for the position. This budgeting should consider search, start up costs, and ongoing operating expenses. This will ensure that funds are available for spending as soon as the endowed position is filled or reinvested if appropriate.

The selection process should culminate in a written agreement between the person filling the endowed position and the department(s) involved.

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