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Cornell University Endowment Fund

Name: Cornell University: Office of University Investments

Assets Under Management:  $4.9 Billion (Source: CBS News)

Annual Report:  Cornell University Endowment Fund’s 2014 March Quarterly Report

Portfolio Insights: “Fund Objectives: Charitable Trust Investment Fund (Income) and Combined Endowment (Fixed Income) Seek maximum current income and price appreciation consistent with the preservation of capital.

Charitable Trust Investment Fund (Equity) and Combined Endowment (Equity) Seek long term appreciation.

Pooled Life Income Funds (PLIF) The investment objective of the High Yield Pooled Life Income Fund is to secure a liberal rate of income (approx. 3.7%) consistent with the preservation of principal. Fund investments are diversified and may include equities as well as debt securities in the proportions that seem advisable in light of current market and economic conditions.

The investment objective of Balanced Pooled Life Income Fund is to achieve a reasonable rate of current income (approx. 3.1%) combined with longer term growth in both income and principal through the utilization of common stocks, securities convertible into common stocks, and fixed income securities.” (Source)

Our team, the Endowment Fund Association (EFA) and is the #1 community and most visited website dedicated to endowment fund professionals.  We provide endowment funds with buy-side co-investment and direct investment deal origination services, outsourced chief investment officer selection help,  and also provide Endowment 500 research and Endowment Database Solutions.

Top Cornell University Endowment Fund Headlines:

1) Most of the Endowment that Cornell Actively manages is the Long Term Investment Pool (LTIP). It is a balanced fund consisting primarily of high-quality, readily marketable stocks and bonds. Generally stated the investment objective of the LTIP is to maximize total return (investment income plus market value changes) within reasonable risk parameters. Specifically, the objective is to achieve a total return, net of expenses, of at least 5% in excess of inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index, over rolling five year periods. The achievement of favorable investment returns enables the University to distribute increasing amounts over time from the LTIP so that present and future needs can be treated equitably in inflation adjusted terms. (Source)

2) David Skorton’s appointment as president of Cornell University seven years ago ushered in a $4 billion fundraising campaign, the school’s largest ever and first in more than a decade.

Skorton has since increased the goal to $4.75 billion and extended it four years to 2015. Now he’s preparing to kick-start a second effort to finance a $2 billion technology campus as the upstate New York Ivy League school expands on Roosevelt Island in Manhattan. (Source)

3) Cornell University is a private institution that was founded in 1865. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 14,393, its setting is rural, and the campus size is 745 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Cornell University’s ranking in the 2015 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 15. Its tuition and fees are $47,286 (2014-15).

Cornell University, located in Ithaca, N.Y., has more than 500 student organizations on campus, which range from the Big Red Marching Band to the International Affairs Society. First-year students live together on north campus, and the university has housing options for upperclassmen and graduate students, though many choose to live off campus. Cornell has a thriving Greek life, with around 70 total fraternity and sorority chapters. Cornell has more than 30 NCAA Division I varsity teams that compete in the Ivy League. The Cornell Big Red are perhaps best known for their successful men’s lacrosse team, which won seven consecutive Ivy League titles from 2003 to 2009. Cornell also has a strong hockey program. (Source)

4) Cornell University has announced a $12 million matching gift in support of its Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, an interdisciplinary institute focused on sustainable agriculture and food systems.

The gift from David and Patricia Atkinson will fully endow the director’s position at the center — a position currently held by Frank DiSalvo, the John A. Newman Professor of Physical Science — and partially endow faculty director positions in energy, environment, and economic development. Those positions currently are held by Todd Cowen, professor of civil and environmental engineering; Alex Travis, associate professor of reproductive biology at the Baker Institute for Animal Health; and Wendy Wolford, associate professor of development sociology. The faculty directors will play a significant role in the implementation of the center’s new strategic plan, which is focused on addressing urgent and complex world challenges by leveraging sustainability research at the university into partnerships with outside companies, people, and organizations. (Source)

5) Cornell University serves as trustee for charitable remainder trusts and charitable lead trusts and administers other gift arrangements such as pooled income funds and charitable gift annuities. Cornell’s Office of Trusts, Estates, and Gift Planning has been managing all aspects of various life income gifts for alumni and friends since the Tax Reform Act of 1969.

The assets of Cornell’s gift annuities are managed by the Cornell University Investment Office, our professionally staffed investment office that manages the university’s endowment assets. Cornell University’s Office of Trusts, Estates, and Gift Planning has contracted with BNY Mellon Wealth Management to manage the administrative aspects of gift annuities, and a Cornell staff person serves as an interface between BNY Mellon and Cornell to ensure that every beneficiary receives timely payments and tax information. (Source)


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