What is the purpose of the Third Century Campaign?
Centre College behaves like a college with a much larger endowment. Although the rankings suggest that we are in the top 50 of national liberal arts colleges, we have the lowest financial ranking of the schools in the U.S. News Top 50.
Despite this, we remain committed to directing our more limited resources toward putting the best student in front of the best faculty in the best educational environment, regardless of the student’s financial need. To secure Centre’s ability to continue to do this, we need to build our endowment to support student aid and scholarships, faculty and academic initiatives, and the living and learning environment.
Why is the campaign directed mainly toward building the endowment?
Most private colleges and universities have three sources of operating revenue: student tuition and fees, annual gifts, and income from endowment. While external factors, including social and economic shifts, affect the first two sources of funding, a college’s endowment provides a permanent base of funds, whose principal can never be spent, but is invested. A portion of the investment’s earnings is then used to support the operations of the institution, including support for student financial aid and scholarships.
In 2014-2015, Centre’s student aid commitments totaled more than $24 million. Even if ALL of Centre’s endowment was devoted to student financial aid—and it isn’t—we would still fall significantly short of fully funding that commitment through endowment. And that’s not even considering the support endowment earnings provide for the academic program, including faculty professorships and chairs.
In order to ensure Centre’s current status and to move the College to the next level of service and excellence, it is clear that the College needs a significantly larger endowment.
Didn’t we just finish a campaign?
The last campaign—A More Perfect Centre—ended in 2007 with $170 million against a $120 million goal.
I am interested in making a financial commitment to the Third Century Campaign. What are my options?
To find out more about payment methods, click here, or make a gift online. If you are interested in including Centre in your estate planning, or making a gift of stock, click here or call Jamey Leahey at 859-238-5209.