New Coastal Carolina endowment campaign aims to grow funding by $20 million

Coastal Carolina wants to grow endowment by $20 million

Izabel Dorst, sophomore theater major at CCU, said the college needs to grow their endowment funds so students have more opportunities to succeed and Coastal can be recognized nationally.
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Izabel Dorst, sophomore theater major at CCU, said the college needs to grow their endowment funds so students have more opportunities to succeed and Coastal can be recognized nationally.

Coastal Carolina University officials are trying to pump about $800,000 more annually into student scholarships and academic improvements, thanks to a new endowment campaign.

The “I’M IN” campaign, which launched last week, aims to increase CCU’s endowment by $20 million by 2020. The college currently boasts a $32.7 million endowment fund, which is “relatively small” compared to other colleges around the nation, according to Martha Hunn, associate vice president of communications.

$32.7 million Coastal Carolina University’s current endowment fund

CCU’s endowment is ranked 695 on a list of institutions ranked on market value, according to a 2016 study by the National Association of College and University Business Officers. College officials want to change that ranking to match the growing enrollment on the Conway campus.

“Our record enrollment of 10,000-plus students is a testament to the commitment and hard work of our board of trustees, administration, faculty and staff,” said President David DeCenzo in a release.

The endowment campaign is the first time CCU officials have jump-started this kind of fundraising, Hunn said, and so far $6.8 million has already been raised. Most of the money stems from donations and investment; a portion of the income is spent while the rest is returned to the principal for growth. Donors can finance six types of funds that support students, professors and local businesses.

Sophomore Izabel Dorst said a growing endowment is good news for current and future CCU students.

“We need to provide for students, and since we’re growing so fast and getting so well known, it’s important to start raising money now,” Dorst said.

In order to grow Coastal’s national image, students need to be brought in from all over the nation, Dorst said, and only with growth can the Conway college become nationally recognized. Students with financial barriers should be given a better chance at success through scholarships, Dorst added, and in order to do that officials have to ask for money.

Through our collective determination, the I’M IN endowment campaign will play a vital role in solidifying a promising future for Coastal Carolina University.

Mark Roach, vice president for philanthropy at CCU

More money also improves the college’s academic programs, which in turn retains the “best and brightest students.”

“We must increase the size of our endowment if we are to keep pace with an ever-changing educational environment, continue to expand our academic programs and provide greater access to students from a wide range of ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds,” DeCenzo said.

Donors can choose from the following programs to fund:

  • Student scholarships: Nearly 85 percent of CCU’s undergraduate students receive need-based scholarships or financial aid. Endowed student scholarships start at $40,000.
  • Professorships/Chairs: An endowed professorship or chair is the highest academic award CCU can give a faculty member. Awards begin at $250,000 and $500,000, respectively.
  • Naming opportunities: Naming rights range from buildings to labs to scholarships, and can be created with a single or multiyear gift.
  • Academic programs: Program funds provide resources for deans and department chairs to meet the “highest priorities” of their departments, and also provide resources when there is no current funding for a specific program.
  • TEAL 1000: Business owners and individuals can show their CCU support with an annual investment of $1,000. Revenue from all TEAL 1000 donations goes into an endowment, and the interest supports scholarships.
  • Woman in Philanthropy and Leadership: Donations provide scholarships to deserving CCU students and supports leadership programs.

To learn more about the campaign, or to donate, call the Philanthropy office at 843-349-2007 or visit

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