Fundraise Smarter

What The Harvard Mega Donation Teaches Us About Major Gifts

Posted by Andrew Littlefield on Jun 18, 2015 12:22:00 PM

If you’ve kept an eye on the news lately, you’ve likely heard about the recent mega gift to Harvard University courtesy of John Paulson totaling $400 million.

Four. Hundred. Million. $400,000,000. A four with eight zeros after it.

He must have really small handwriting to be able to fit that on a check…

There’s been no shortage of opinions on the gift. In fact, in my Google Alert file I keep on major gifts, I saw one headline that read “Essay urges people to applaud Harvard's fund-raising success” and right below it another one that read “Essay criticizes the $400 million gift to Harvard.”

Everyone has something to say, and a lot of it is very compelling.

But aside from the Should-He/Shouldn’t-He debate, there are lessons to be learned for fundraisers.

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Topics: Major Gifts, major gift fundraising, major gift prospecting

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