Bursting pride in Butler University's men's basketball team — which fell two points short of winning the NCAA tournament — might translate into swelling the Indianapolis-based school's $130 million endowment fund.
The university, with a student enrollment of 4,500, received gifts and pledges totaling $11 million so far for its current fiscal year, which ends May 31, up from $10.6 million for all of its last fiscal year, said Bruce Arick, vice president-finance.
“Time will tell,” Mr. Arick said. “We certainly anticipate an increase in donations, if not to the university in general then to athletics.”
“I have to think everyone connected with this university has enormous pride in the (basketball) team” and their level of accomplishment. “They have represented the university with complete class,” said Marc Allan, associate director of public relations. “It will probably translate to more alumni pride and potentially alumni giving.”
Mr. Arick couldn't say how much of the new pledges is for the endowment, as opposed to more immediate spending or capital projects.
New money for the endowment fund would be invested across its asset allocation of 40% U.S. equity, 25% international equity, 15% fixed income, 5% funds of hedge funds, 5% natural resources, 5% private equity, and 5% real estate. Fund Evaluation Group serves as the endowment's investment consultant. Trustees have no plans at this time to change the investment structure, Mr. Arick said.
Last year, the fund returned 29%, outperforming the 25% of its custom benchmark, Mr. Arick said.
Butler on April 7 kicked off a campaign to raise $10 million to $12 million over the next two years for the renovation and preservation of the Bulldogs' home, the Hinkle Fieldhouse. It was built in 1928, when Butler had an enrollment of 1,000. — Barry B. Burr