Founded in 1937, the UGA Foundation enriches the quality of education at UGA by supporting scholarships, endowed chairs and professorships, and other programs that rely on private funds. The Foundation manages $1.8 billion in assets, more than $1.5 billion of which is endowed, and provides an average of more than $80 million annually to UGA to advance the University’s mission of teaching, research, and service.
In its 84-year history, the Foundation has weathered its share of uncertain times: the Great Depression, recessions, and global crises. Through it all, the Foundation has remained committed to UGA and to its students, faculty, and programs. This past fiscal year was no different, even in the face of the pandemic.
UGA’s Student Emergency Funds support those hit hard by the unexpected. The funds’ resources were quickly depleted in the first few months of the pandemic as student need for food, rent, and other essentials soared. Led by President Morehead and the UGA Foundation Board of Trustees, donors stepped up and replenished the funds several times over. For its part, the Foundation’s trustees directed $500,000 to student emergency funds—bringing total Foundation support to over $1 million since March 2020.
Despite a turbulent year, the Foundation’s endowment continues to grow, thanks to strong investment returns and improving economic conditions. The pandemic brought about once-in-a-decade buying opportunities, and the investment portfolio responded accordingly. The Foundation saw its best fiscal year investment performance in four decades, and the investment portfolio ended the year at all-time highs. With favorable returns this year, the Foundation is positioned to provide even greater support to the University in future fiscal years.
Undergraduate and Graduate Student Emergency Funds rely on private support. These funds became an essential resource for students experiencing unexpected financial hardships during the pandemic, as many students lost income, were left without a place to live, or both. The relief provided from these funds paid rent, food, medical care, technology costs, and more.
An endowment is an opportunity for a donor to create a permanent legacy at the University of Georgia and allow future generations to benefit from today’s generosity. When an endowment is established with a new donation, the gift is invested with two goals in mind: to provide spendable income for the donor’s specified purpose and to grow the principal faster than inflation. Any investment return that exceeds allowed spending is channeled back into the fund to increase growth.
*The Foundation’s fiscal year ended June 30. Investment returns are preliminary, with some investment managers not yet reporting as of the date of publication.
|ASSET CLASS||ALLOCATION RANGES||ASSET CHARACTERISTICS|
|PUBLICLY TRADED EQUITIES||35%-65%||Capital appreciation, global diversification, highly liquid|
|FIXED INCOME AND CASH||0%-30%||Capital preservation and income, highly liquid|
|PRIVATE EQUITY||7%-25%||High return potential, illiquid|
|FLEXIBLE CAPITAL||10%-20%||Moderate return potential with low volatility|
|REAL ASSETS||5%-10%||Inflation hedge and income generation|