Supporting Cal Poly: Your Questions and Answers
How to Make a Gift
Wills & Bequests
If Cal Poly is named in my will, do I need to notify anyone?
After I've included Cal Poly in my will, can I change it?
After I establish a charitable remainder trust, can I change it?
Do I decide how my gift will be used?
Stewardship of Your Gift
Who manages my annuity or endowment gift after I make it?
What is “development reinvestment?”
What is the rationale for the reinvestment?
What will the reinvestment dollars fund?
Do other public universities in California use reinvestment?
How will the collection process work?
Will any gifts be exempt from the reinvestment requirement?
How does Cal Poly compare to other universities and nonprofits
in terms of what it costs to raise money?
Cal Poly has a solid track record in making the best use of its advancement resources and private support. Cal Poly leads the California State Univiversity System in charitable gifts from both alumni and parents. Moreover, in the most recent year reported, it cost Cal Poly only 12 cents to raise each dollar. The 23-campus CSU system's average cost to raise a dollar is 16 cents.
The California Polytechnic State University Foundation qualifies as a public charitable organization and meets the requirements of Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3). Gifts to Cal Poly are deductible at the highest limits allowed for federal income or estate tax purposes.
Its federal tax identification number is 20-4927897. A copy of Cal Poly's IRS determination letter is available here
Yes. We process your online transaction in the same manner as mailed forms. After we process your transaction, we will mail you an official tax receipt letter for your records.
Cal Poly's Office of Planned Giving is always willing to provide information about the various gift vehicles that may be appropriate for you, including tax benefits they may offer. However, that should never be construed as specific legal or tax advice. We recommend that you have your own advisors and tax professionals, who know your circumstances, answer your tax questions. Cal Poly staff can work directly with your advisors, if you prefer.
How to Make a Gift
Yes. We are committed to protecting your privacy. Our secure server software (SSL) is the industry standard and among the best software available today for secure commerce transactions. It encrypts all of your person information, including credit card number, name, and address to avoid anyone reading the information as it travels over the Internet.
You may make a credit card gift over the phone by calling the Cal Poly Fund at (805)756-6448. Or you can send a gift through the mail by printing out the form through the link:
Gifts to Cal Poly programs are made through the Cal Poly Foundation. The Cal Poly Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization that manages private funds to advance Cal Poly's mission.
The Foundation's legal/corporate name is The California Polytechnic State University Foundation and its federal tax identification number is 20-4927897.
Your employer may provide a matching gift with your donation -- more than 13,000 employers do. Through matching gift programs, you can double or triple the value of your gift at no cost to yourself. In addition to matching charitable donations of their employees, some companies will also match donations made by spouses, retirees, and even members of their corporate board of directors.
Wills & Bequests
You are not required to tell Cal Poly about your intent to leave a bequest. However, it is helpful for the university's planning purposes to be aware of future gifts. The Office of Planned Giving can be your resource to ensure a bequest gift is worded to be most useful in the future. See our sample bequest language. You may also be interested to know about our Legacy Club, which honors the bequest commitments made by generous members of the Cal Poly family just like you.
Absolutely. A bequest intention is considered a "revocable gift," meaning it can be modified as often as you wish to suit your circumstances and charitable priorities.
A trust is a separate, legal entity that is "irrevocable," meaning that in exchange for the income and tax benefits, you relinquish control over the funds. As such, the terms of the trust cannot be changed after it is established. However, additional gifts can be used to easily create a new trust under different terms.
As with every gift made to Cal Poly, it is you, the donor, who decides how it will be put to use. You are able to designate your gift to support any college, department or program, student scholarship, faculty support, or anything else you are passionate about at Cal Poly. We can assist you in ensuring that your specific interests are carried out. You are also able to allow your gift to support Cal Poly's greatest needs as determined by the president.
Stewarding Your Gifts
Your planned giving and endowment gifts are faithfully stewarded by a partnership of professionals:
- Cal Poly and the Cal Poly Foundation ensure that your generosity is used as you have intended and sets investment policies that minimize overall market risk while maximizing overall return.
- The Cal Poly Corporation administers trust, annuity and endowment documentation and accounting.
- Kaspick and Company is a Bay Area firm that specializes in planned giving investments and has been hired to advise the university and provide day-to-day management of our investments.
If you have any questions about how any gift or endowment assets are invested or managed, we invite you to contact us.
Cal Poly reinvests five percent of all gifts it receives to help fund efforts increase the amount of private support raised in the future. The five percent reinvestment leverages a small portion of all gifts to boost overall giving in the coming decade. Other major public universities, such as Virginia Tech and University of Florida, use reinvestment to help increase their fundraising dollars.
The majority of advancement activity at Cal Poly is currently funded through the California state budget. However, as state resources grow more uncertain, securing additional private support will become critical if Cal Poly is to continue providing the quality educational experience it is nationally known for. Our students understand this need, and in fact have consistently voted to impose additional fees on themselves to fund learning enhancements such as equipment, field trips, student projects for competitions, etc. Additionally, a blue ribbon Cal Poly task force of alumni, CEOs and other business leaders convened by President Emeritus Baker to study advancement funding models recommended the university institute the reinvestment effort.
Reinvestment dollars will help build infrastructure for Cal Poly’s next fundraising campaign and other fundraising activities. Cal Poly’s successful Centennial Campaign (1998-2004) was the largest campaign ever for a public master’s university, raising $264M that created additional scholarships, endowed chairs and professorships, new buildings, laboratories, sports complexes, leading-edge computer labs, and outdoor learning spaces. It also tripled the endowment, adding almost $100 million. We anticipate that our next campaign will be even more successful.
A recent survey of California public universities showed that over half of the CSU schools currently make use of reinvestment, with most in the five percent category. Eight of the 11 UC campuses also employ reinvestment.
The reinvestment will be collected as each gift is received. For pledges documented after January 1, 2009, the reinvestment will be collected each time a payment is received.
Depending on the donor’s preference and the needs of the campus, the reinvestment may be collected in different ways:
- The reinvestment will be collected directly from cash gifts or from the net proceeds of gifts-in-kind converted into cash.
- Donors may choose to contribute an additional amount to cover the reinvestment.
- A donor may choose to pay the reinvestment for the benefit of another donor.
- With pre-approval, a gift of more than $100,000 can be invested until it earns enough to cover the reinvestment. However, this method would delay the implementation of the gift.
Certain gifts may be exempt from development reinvestment, including:
- Gifts in kind that are not converted to cash and for which there is no cash portion.
- All grants that are assessed indirect costs.
- Gifts from foundations that have published guidelines prohibiting such an assessment.
- Gifts which the President, at his discretion, may decide to exempt from the reinvestment or to reduce the level of the reinvestment.
You can contact Cal Poly University Advancement during business hours at 805-756-6448 and our staff will be happy to answer your question. Or, you can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, you can click here to submit a question via e-mail.