Capital Giving

What is a capital gift?
Why are capital gifts needed?
How are capital gifts used?

What is a capital gift?

Any gift that is designated for a particular initiative, such as endowment support, scholarship assistance, or building renovation, is a capital gift. Capital gifts are made in the form of cash, securities, or property. Capital gifts of a certain magnitude may be used for naming opportunities - for example, a classroom or a scholarship fund may be named for the donor or in honor of another person of the donor’s choosing. Capital gifts of a certain magnitude may also be used to endow a fund (such as a scholarship, faculty chair, or book fund) in the name of the donor or another.

The Fletcher School currently hosts ten endowed faculty chairs:

The School is seeking additional endowed faculty chairs, in the following areas of study:

  • Chinese Studies
  • International Human Security
  • International Law
  • International Negotiation and Conflict Resolution
  • International Political Economy
  • Latin American Studies
  • Modern Turkish Studies
  • Politics and Diplomacy in the Islamic World
  • Public Diplomacy
  • Southeast Asia Studies

For further information about these funding opportunities, please contact:

Kate Ryan, Senior Director, Office of Development and Alumni Relations, The Fletcher School, Tufts University Medford, MA 02155; Tel: +1.617.627.2720; Fax: +1.617.627.3659; Email:

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Why are capital gifts needed?

As is the case with nearly all private academic institutions, tuition paid by Fletcher students does not cover the cost of each student’s education. In 2006-07, for example, the cost of educating a Fletcher student was approximately $50,000, including tuition of $30,705. Contributions by alumni and friends cover the deficit and allow the School to continue to grow and excel as the premier school of international affairs.

The School’s top three priority needs are:

 • Increased endowment support for existing and new professorships. The Office has a number of endowment chair projects underway. This fall, all members of the permanent faculty and senior staff will convene for a two-day retreat. One of the anticipated outcomes of the retreat is the prioritization of Fletcher’s curricular/academic needs. Until such a list is in place, the Office of Development and Alumni Relations will continue to work closely with the Dean and Academic Dean on its activities in this area.

• Increased financial aid to further enhance the School's ability to yield the best students from all over the world

• Raising funds that will enable the School to complete its master plan facility renovation phases While the School has identified the preceding as its top three needs in Fiscal Year 2004, the Office of Development and Alumni Relations will seek and support fundraising opportunities for other projects as they arise in consultation with Dean.

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How are capital gifts used?

Some donors choose to apply their gifts to The Fletcher School’s endowment. Interest earned on the endowment supports general operating costs, financial aid, and professorships. Currently, The Fletcher School’s endowment is approximately $103 million. While the size of the endowment is healthy, the School aspires to grow the endowment in coming years, to maintain its advantage over peer institutions.

Alternatively, donors may wish to designate their gifts for particular projects. Examples include building renovation, the sponsorship of a one-time event, or the creation of a limited-time scholarship fund.

Finally, donors may prefer to give unrestricted gifts. These gifts are used to cover the most urgent funding needs. Those needs are determined by Fletcher’s Dean, in conjunction with the faculty and administration of the School. Because The Fletcher School is recognized as a non-profit institution by the United States Internal Revenue Service, gifts to the School are usually tax-deductible for US citizens. Non-US citizens are encouraged to check their local tax laws to determine the tax deductibility of their gifts. Please note that Tufts University has established charitable foundations in Greece, France, the United Kingdom, and Hong Kong to provide the greatest tax benefits for donors in those locations.

For more information about capital giving opportunities at The Fletcher School, please contact:

Kate Ryan, Senior Director, Office of Development and Alumni Relations, The Fletcher School, Tufts University Medford, MA 02155; Tel: +1.617.627.2720; Fax: +1.617.627.3659;

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How Your Gift Makes a Difference

Ashley McIlvain
Ashley McIlvain, F'05

"I knew having an international post for my internship was necessary to prepare me for a job in my field upon graduation. There is really nothing like putting into practice the theories you learn in the classroom. I simply couldn’t have had this experience without the funding provided by Fletcher.”