To NC State Faculty, Staff, and Students:
We all know that we have faced a number of challenges over the last few months, but I don’t want them to overshadow the great academic year we have had so far. We welcomed our strongest freshman class in history, we just opened the first phase of the Talley Student Union renovation, and we had the exciting Park Scholars announcement, which helps grow our endowment and sustain the incredible opportunities for those scholar students.
We have another opportunity to enhance our endowment and provide outstanding new educational and research opportunities for our students and faculty with the $150 million from the sale of the Hofmann Forest. Those funds will allow for strategic investments in the College of Natural Resources.
You can read more in the press release about the Hofmann Forest Agreement
The Hofmann Forest is a part of NC State’s history, and a change in ownership does not alter that. There will be the opportunity for research for our students and faculty, continued timber and agricultural production and conservation.
The proceeds from the sale have the potential to generate an estimated $6 million a year – three times the current yield from the forest. That endowment income will be invested into the College of Natural Resources, which was the intent when the Endowment Fund received the forest as a gift in 1977.
These additional resources will go a long way to support a number of programs and initiatives in the college – with student success being at the top of the list. The college will be able to provide additional scholarships, fund hands-on student learning opportunities and help launch interdisciplinary research
The recent $50 million gift to the Park Scholars Program and the $40 million Lonnie and Carol Poole gift in 2010, for example, dramatically increased our endowment. Generous gifts like those have a huge impact on our ability to support our students. Increasing our endowment will continue to be a priority in the coming years.
NC State has faced repeated reductions in state funding. In fact, over the last ten years, we have had to administer $163 million in recurring cuts. That trend is not unique to NC State – it’s happening at public universities across the country.
More and more, we will look to our endowment to help support impactful programs for students. Growing the endowment will come from gifts like those mentioned above, but also from thoughtful management of assets like the Hofmann Forest.
Our endowment has continued to grow in the last few years and I look forward to NC State maintaining that momentum. A robust endowment will help us maintain our position as a world-leading research university and educate the next generation of leaders.