Local legislators provide valuable support
AMHERST, Mass. – A state matching funds program that serves as an incentive for public universities to raise funds from private sources has been adopted by the House of Representatives and the Senate in a supplementary budget.
Under the program, the University of Massachusetts system will receive $10 million in matching funds, which can be paired with private donations. Created in 1996, the Public Higher Education Endowment Incentive Program is intended to leverage private donations by providing 50 cents in matching state funds for every dollar raised by the public campuses for endowments designated for academic purposes, including scholarships, facility construction or named faculty chairs.
UMass Amherst Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy said, “We deeply appreciate the support of House Speaker Robert DeLeo, Senate President Karen Spilka, their leadership teams and, of course, our local delegation of Representatives Mindy Domb, Natalie Blais, Dan Carey, Paul Mark and Lindsay Sabadosa as well as Senator Jo Comerford. This creative approach provides incentives for fundraising that will enable UMass Amherst to engage more powerfully with our supporters and will have a lasting impact on student costs, academic achievement and improving research.”
The initial endowment match program sponsored by the Commonwealth was funded from 1997 to 2007 in a series of increments totaling $54 million from the state for the UMass system. That $54 million helped leverage another $100 million from private donors and its current day value is more than $275 million. This fueled the establishment of more than 70 endowed professorships and chairs and numerous scholarships for students.