Why universities cut budgets rather than tap from their massive endowments

There's a reason why colleges won't dip into their endowment funds to cover shortfalls amid the COVID-19 shutdown — they typically can't.



August 21, 2020 - 2:34 PM

General view of the University of Texas Tower on the University of Texas campus in Austin, Texas. Photo by Ronald Martinez / Getty Images / TNS

FORT WORTH, Texas — While colleges and universities slash budgets in the face of historic losses, a common echo on every campus rings, “Use the endowment!”

Stanford University, with the nation’s fourth-highest endowment at $26.4 billion, cut 11 sports from its athletic department.

TCU, with an endowment of $1.7 billion, has scaled back benefits for employees, and high-ranking coaches and administrators have taken pay cuts.

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