Choose how you wish to give

Whether you choose to create a scholarship or endowed chair, provide funding for a new or enhanced building, or support a specific educational program, there are many different types of gifts to meet your personal, family and business objectives in conjunction with your long-term philanthropic goals.

  • Unrestricted Gifts



    When a donor chooses not to specify the way his/her gift may be used, this gift is called "unrestricted."

    Unrestricted funds are a very powerful form of private support because they allow the University to use them as it sees fit, where current (and often time sensitive) needs are greatest.

    Unrestricted funds may be used for many kinds of assistance, including:

    • Student support
    • Faculty support
    • Research aid
    • Books, collections and supplies purchases
    • Technological upgrades

    Unrestricted funds are used by a requesting unit to handle costs that other funding may not cover. Unrestricted funds provide a pool of available resources that can easily be directed to where they are needed most.

  • Designated Gifts



    Funds given by a donor for a specific purpose or to support a particular department are called designated funds.

    The best way to make a designated donation is to discuss your wishes with a development staff member. He or she can help you draft a request letter for a more efficient, effective gift process. Email us or call 708.235.7559 to discuss your wishes.

    Examples of designated funds include:

    • Scholarships
    • Athletic or fine art programs
    • Building or renovation projects



    The GSU Foundation deposits 100% of each designated gift into an account established by president, deans, department chairs or program heads.

    Gift money is actually spent by the GSU administrator, faculty or staff member in charge of the account(s). Upon that person’s request, the Governor State University Foundation writes the necessary check.

  • Annual Giving



    Annual gifts are a type of current funding that provides an important source of operational revenue. They are usually used in the year they are received and can support day-to-day needs, making an immediate impact on the lives of students and faculty. Growing annual giving is a top priority for the University.

  • Memorials & Tributes



    Commemorative gifts are a thoughtful way to honor or memorialize a loved one while supporting a cause you believe in. Your memorial gift can establish an endowment, renew a scholarship, or help fund other projects.

    There are several ways to establish a memorial gift, including:

    • Making an outright gift to fund at any time
    • Making a bequest in your will to provide funding after your lifetime
    • Setting up an endowment to fund a special program or project in perpetuity


    Recognition for a memorial or tribute depends on the gift, but may include:

    • Honoree’s name engraved on a plaque or bench
    • Building named after honoree, solely or along with other honorees
    • Endowed fund named after honoree
    • Scholarship named after honoree 

    Questions? Email or call 708.235.7559


  • Endowments



    Many of our alumni and friends have not only provided annual funds year by year, but have also helped to build a permanent financial foundation for Governors State University by contributing to the University’s endowment.

    Of all forms of private giving, endowments offer perhaps the most influential of investments in higher education by creating self-renewing, living legacies that span generations. An endowment is an investment in the lives of those to come, a promise without end, made by today’s donors to the future.

    In an endowment fund, the principal is invested in perpetuity and only a portion of the investment’s earnings is spent. The rest of the earnings are channeled back into the fund, so that the endowment grows over time.

    In this way, the endowment becomes a long-term source of funding for whatever a donor wishes to achieve with his or her philanthropy. Endowments may be either restricted or unrestricted, depending on whether there are purpose restrictions on the use of the income from the endowment.

    A strong endowment increases the University’s ability to more readily predict one of its revenue streams, acting as a potential buffer for political or economic fluctuations. Because an endowed fund continues in perpetuity, an endowed gift has both an immediate and a continuing impact on the University today and in the future.


    Creating an endowed fund gives you an opportunity to put your name, or the name of another person or organization in memory or tribute, on a fund for a specific cause. Endowments help fund:


    • Faculty chairs and professorships
    • Graduate fellowships
    • Undergraduate scholarships
    • Program support
    • Visiting scholars/lectureships
    • Research support
    • Student internships
    • and more

    An endowment can be created through an outright gift, through a bequest in a will, or through a life income gift such as a charitable gift annuity or a charitable remainder trust.

    To minimize administrative costs, the minimum amount required to establish a separate, permanent endowment account is $25,000. Lesser amounts are sometimes accepted with the understanding that they will grow to $25,000 within a reasonable period, usually within 3–5 years.

    The following steps are used to establish an endowment: 

    1. Contact Will Davis by email or call 708.235.7494
    2. Identify the kind of endowment you would like to establish (e.g. scholarships, annual giving, faculty or research support, etc.)
    3. Identify your short- and long-term charitable priorities
    4. Review the various levels of endowment available and the minimum amounts needed to set them up
    5. Decide on a planned or an outright gift (e.g. cash, real estate, stock, bonds):
    6. Outright gifts may be donated or pledged to establish your endowment fund and to help it grow over time
    7. Planned gifts (e.g. bequests in your will, a trust, life insurance, retirement plan assets) and/or deferred gifts from life income arrangements (e.g. gift annuities and charitable remainder trusts) may also be used to create your endowment or add to it at a later time. 
    8. Allow the GSU Foundation to prepare a draft agreement outlining the purpose for the fund and sign the agreement along with a designated Foundation official and the appropriate university administrators.


    To endow an annual gift, include a bequest in your will stating that the money should be added to our endowment. When your gift is invested as part of the endowment, it generates a total return (income plus growth) along with the rest of the endowment. A portion of that return will be paid out each year in your name.