One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is, "Are my audiences being solicited?" This page helps dispel the myths about fundraising at CU.


The CU Advancement office is an independent, nonprofit foundation whose sole mission is to support the people, places and programs of the University of Colorado’s four campuses. Having an independent, nonprofit foundation results in greater fundraising efficiencies and benefits for the University by assuring proper stewardship of private gifts, managing assets strategically, engaging volunteers as informed advocates, and ensuring confidentiality of donor records.

The State of Colorado provides less than 6 percent of the University’s operating budget, down from 25 percent in 1990, so private support is more important than ever.

How are gifts spent?

Each gift received by CU Advancement, regardless of purpose or amount, is carefully processed to ensure that the donor’s wishes are honored and that the University receives the maximum benefit.

Can donors choose where their gifts go?

Yes, 98% of gifts are allocated to a specific purpose. Gifts are not spent outside their allocation. For example, if a donor makes a gift to the Cancer Center, every cent of that gift is given to the Cancer Center. That gift cannot be moved to a different campus, program, or initiative.

Who does the CU Advancement office solicit?

CU Advancement development officers solicit individuals, corporations, and foundations that they believe to have affinity and giving potential. These development officers are focused on higher-level gifts.

The Annual Giving program is focused on gifts of all sizes, small or large, and is executed via a call center, mailings, and occasional broadcast emails. The Annual Giving program reaches out to alumni, donors, and parents of CU students. “Friends” (individuals who are not alumni, parents, or donors) are not solicited by the Annual Giving program.

However, if a friend of the university attends selected university events, or is otherwise approached for a gift on an individual basis, they may be contacted directly by a CU Advancement development officer.

Are interns, residents, and fellows included in Annual Fund solicitations?


Are Residents, interns and fellows of the Anschutz Medical Campus solicited?

Residents, interns and fellows may be solicited on an individual basis depending on their past giving history.

Do constituents have the option to opt out of communications from CU Advancement?

Yes. On every email there is an unsubscribe link, which gives constituents the option to opt out of all emails from the University, or opt out of communications specifically from the CU Advancement office, while continuing to receive the communications they choose.

If I submit my school, department, or unit’s list of email addresses to CU Advancement, will those people be solicited?

Depending on the individuals on your list, it is possible. As is the practice at all major universities, we rely on alumni for gifts toward CU’s people, places, and programs, and we may reach out to them to encourage them to make gifts to CU. If you submit an updated address for an alumnus, that individual may receive communications if they haven’t already opted out of communications.