List of colleges and universities in the United States by endowment

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Harvard University has the largest endowment in the world (Annenberg Hall pictured).

Many institutions of higher education in the United States maintain financial endowments, sums of money that are invested in stocks, yielding returns that fund a portion of an institution's operational expenses and help ensure that it survives in perpetuity.

U.S. colleges and universities maintain some of the largest endowments in the world, and make up the strong majority of educational institutions with endowments greater than $1 billion.

In 2005, the endowment table below totaled $219.37 billion. By 2015, the table totaled $394.96 billion, an increase of 80%. As of 2018, the total further increased to $479.23 billion.

The National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) maintains information on college endowments.[1][2]

Enhancements and levies[edit]

The tabulated data below are from NACUBO. Some universities benefit from endowments that are not under their direct control but which are nonetheless dedicated to the welfare of one or several institutions. Examples include The Duke Endowment, the Robert A. Welch Foundation, and the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust.

In 2017, a federal endowment tax was enacted in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 in the form of an excise tax of 1.4% on institutions that have at least 500 tuition-paying students and net assets of at least $500,000 per student. The $500,000 is not adjusted for inflation, so the threshold is effectively lowered over time.[3][4]

The endowment tax provision of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has been criticized as funding tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy at the expense of education.[5][6] Critics note that the tax could threaten financial aid for low-income students, stifle social mobility, and obstruct life-saving research.[6][7] There continue to be vigorous efforts that advocate the repeal of the tax.[8] Repeal legislation has been introduced in Congress with bipartisan cosponsorship.[9][10]

Endowments currently greater than $1 billion[edit]

Private schools[edit]

Institution State 2019 endowment
(billions USD)[11]
Harvard University Massachusetts $40.58
Yale University Connecticut $31.20
Stanford University California $28.95
Princeton University New Jersey $26.56
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Massachusetts $18.50
Medical College of Wisconsin Wisconsin $1.23
University of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania $14.88
University of Notre Dame Indiana $11.96
Northwestern University Illinois $10.93
Columbia University New York $11.26
Duke University North Carolina $8.47
University of Chicago Illinois $8.20
Washington University in St. Louis Missouri $8.42
Emory University Georgia $7.04
Cornell University New York $7.22
Rice University Texas $6.16
Johns Hopkins University Maryland $6.75
Vanderbilt University Tennessee $6.92
University of Southern California California $5.91
Dartmouth College New Hampshire $5.98
New York University New York $4.32
Brown University Rhode Island $4.38
California Institute of Technology California $2.84
Williams College Massachusetts $2.84
Carnegie Mellon University Pennsylvania $2.67
Boston College Massachusetts $2.58
University of Richmond Virginia $2.41
Amherst College Massachusetts $2.57
Pomona College California $2.26
Boston University Massachusetts $2.30
Rockefeller University New York $2.29
University of Rochester New York $2.33
Wellesley College Massachusetts $2.29
Swarthmore College Pennsylvania $2.10
Grinnell College Iowa $2.09
Smith College Massachusetts $1.91
Tufts University Massachusetts $1.89
Case Western Reserve University Ohio $1.85
Georgetown University District of Columbia $1.86
George Washington University District of Columbia $1.80
Bowdoin College Maine $1.78
Texas Christian University Texas $1.68
Washington and Lee University Virginia $1.63
Southern Methodist University Texas $1.65
Liberty University Virginia $1.71
Tulane University Louisiana $1.45
Lehigh University Pennsylvania $1.39
Syracuse University New York $1.39
Wake Forest University North Carolina $1.35
Baylor University Texas $1.39
Baylor College of Medicine Texas $1.20
Trinity University Texas $1.27
Saint Louis University Missouri $1.20
Berea College Kentucky $1.25
Middlebury College Vermont $1.13
Vassar College New York $1.10
University of Tulsa Oklahoma $1.07
Loma Linda University California $1.04
Brandeis University Massachusetts $1.07
Northeastern University Massachusetts $1.07
Santa Clara University California $1.03
Wesleyan University Connecticut $1.05
University of Miami Florida $1.05
Hamilton University New York $1.02

Although not listed, Brigham Young University has an endowment worth $1.72 billion (2017), according to NCES.[12]

Public schools[edit]

The University of Texas has the largest system-wide endowment of any American public higher education institution (UT Dallas Student Services building pictured).
Institution State 2019 endowment
(billions USD)[11]
University of Texas System
Texas $30.96
Texas A&M University System
Texas $13.59
University of Michigan Michigan $12.48
University of California
(system-wide regents portions only)
California $12.14
University of Virginia Virginia $7.26
University of Houston Texas $1.01
Ohio State University Ohio $5.28
Pennsylvania State University
Pennsylvania $3.40
University of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania $4.17
University of Minnesota Minnesota $3.87
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill North Carolina $3.71
University of Wisconsin–Madison Wisconsin $3.15
Michigan State University Michigan $3.07
University of Washington Washington $3.08
University of California, Los Angeles California $2.88
Purdue University
Indiana $2.59
Indiana University
Indiana $2.43
University of Illinois system
Illinois $2.40
Georgia Institute of Technology Georgia $2.17
University of California, Berkeley California $2.12
Virginia Commonwealth University Virginia $1.99
University of California, San Francisco California $2.01
University of Florida Florida $1.85
University of Kansas Kansas $1.81
University of Missouri
Missouri $1.73
University of Iowa Iowa $2.53
University of Alabama
Alabama $1.42
Rutgers University
New Jersey $1.48
University of Delaware Delaware $1.45
University of Cincinnati Ohio $1.40
University of Colorado Colorado $1.53
University of Maryland System & Foundation Maryland $1.50
University of Nebraska
Nebraska $1.74
University of Kentucky Kentucky $1.31
North Carolina State University North Carolina $1.42
Virginia Tech Foundation Virginia $1.34
University of Tennessee system
Tennessee $1.34
University of Georgia & Related Foundations Georgia $1.36
Texas Tech University
Texas $1.28
University of Utah Utah $1.07
University of California Irvine California $1.04
University of Arkansas Foundation Arkansas $1.21
Iowa State University Iowa $1.10
Washington State University Washington $1.08
Oklahoma State University Oklahoma $1.21
University of Oklahoma Oklahoma

Endowments per student greater than $1 million[edit]

Princeton University has the largest endowment per student in the United States (Blair Hall pictured).
Rank Institution Endowment per capita (2020)[13]
1 Princeton University $2,864,026
2 Soka University of America $2,785,613
3 Yale University $1,864,075
4 Stanford University $1,562,919
5 Harvard University $1,546,888
6 Massachusetts Institute of Technology $1,431,191
7 Pomona College $1,340,629
8 Swarthmore College $1,298,813
9 California Institute of Technology $1,296,611
10 Amherst College $1,230,609
11 Williams College $1,204,157
12 Grinnell College $1,177,767
13 Olin College $1,100,455
14 Juilliard School $1,019,944

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "National Association of College and University Business Officers". NACUBO. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  2. ^ Ken Redd (May 26, 2020). "Historic Endowment Study Data". National Association of College and University Business Officers.
  3. ^ "Wealthy colleges face uncertainty as they seek ways to avoid new endowment tax". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 2019-01-10.
  4. ^ "The wealthiest universities are paying big endowment tax bills, but how much are others who are on the hook paying?". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 2020-02-21.
  5. ^ "End the Endowment Tax". The Harvard Crimson. 20 February 2018. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  6. ^ a b Wilson, John. "Why the Endowment Tax Is Unconstitutional". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  7. ^ Powell, Alvin (21 December 2017). "Tax on university endowments passes". The Harvard Gazette. Harvard University. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  8. ^ Kreighbaum, Andrew (23 April 2018). "Endowment Tax Fight Not Over Yet". Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved 29 March 2020.
  9. ^ "H.R.5220 - Don't Tax Higher Education Act". United States Congress. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  10. ^ "H.R.4438 - Don't Tax Higher Education Act". United States Congress. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  11. ^ a b "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Endowment Market Value and Change* in Endowment Market Value from FY18 to FY19". National Association of College and University Business Officers. 2019.
  12. ^ "Endowment funds of the 120 degree-granting postsecondary institutions with the largest endowments, by rank order: Fiscal year 2017". National Center for Education Statistics. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  13. ^ "Rankings | Highest endowment per student". College Raptor. Retrieved 3 August 2020.