Commemorative Gifts

Honoring or memorializing a special person or occasion with a commemorative gift to the University of Delaware can be tremendously satisfying.  While serving as a formal tribute to a loved one, friend, colleague or milestone, the gift also provides valuable support to the University.

Commemorative gifts of any amount can be designated toward any existing UD program or fund—often one that would be meaningful to the honored or memorialized individual.  Honorees and next-of-kin are informed of all commemorative gifts with a customized tribute notification.

Click the links below for more information on commemorative gifts.

Ways to Commemorate

Commemorative gifts can be given to acquire naming privileges at the University. Options and required gift minimums are provided below. To discuss commemorative gifts, please contact the Office of Development and Alumni Relations at 302-831-2104.

Endowment Gifts

Establishing an endowed fund provides support that will serve as a lasting tribute and will benefit the University in perpetuity. Endowments can create named scholarships, fellowships, professorships, capital projects and several other designations across campus. The minimum gift amount to establish a named endowed fund is $50,000; however, minimums may be higher, depending on the type of fund chosen. A gift agreement is required.

Term Gifts

Establishing a term fund provides a short-term tribute that will support the University via current-use funds. Term gifts can support colleges, departments, capital projects and several other designations across campus. The minimum gift amount to establish a named term fund is $25,000. A gift agreement is required.

Annual Scholarship Gifts

Establishing an annual scholarship fund provides a short-term, yet meaningful, tribute in the form of a four-year undergraduate scholarship. A total, minimum commitment of $20,000 ($5,000 per year for four years), articulated in a gift agreement, is required. Annual payments are due by December 31 of each year. The name of the fund will be: NAME OF DONOR(s) OR HONOREE(S) ANNUAL SCHOLARSHIP, e.g. “John and Sara Smith Annual Scholarship.”

Straight Gifts

Gifts can be made to existing funds in memory or in honor of an individual to support any area of the University (e.g. an academic department, student group, club, campus facilities, scholarships, etc.). Gifts may be for any dollar amount.

Delaware Diamonds Society Commitment Gifts

For those wanting a physical tribute on the UD campus, bricks on the Delaware Diamonds Walkway at Old College provide a commemorative option. Donors must pledge an annual gift of at least $1,000 or more per fiscal year over five consecutive years; at the completion of the pledge, an engraved brick with the commemorative language will be installed. A pledge agreement is required, signed by a maximum of two persons and/or households. One signer is identified as the primary stewardship contact, responsible for all payments and communications. At the signing of the pledge agreement, this contact will receive a commemorative replica brick as a sign of their commitment. As an added benefit, all donors in this category become annual members of the Delaware Diamonds Society, which offers additional privileges. To become a Delaware Diamonds Society member, and acquire an engraved brick, fill out and mail in this Named Brick Pledge Form.

Named Spaces

Capital projects provide unique opportunities to support the University’s infrastructure while paying tribute to individuals or milestones by naming a space on campus. Space options and required gift amounts vary by project, but might include benches, gardens, rooms, offices, walkways, laboratories, commons areas and floors/wings, in addition to the overall building name. Named spaces are available only on occasion as projects warrant them, and require the signing of a gift agreement.

Collaborative Giving

Donors may wish to unite with others to celebrate a graduating class, anniversary, milestone or any other occasion. With this thought, donors may make individual gifts to support the same existing, non-named fund at the University to make a unified impact in memory or in honor of an individual, milestone or occasion. Donors can also give to different existing, non-named fund at the University commemorating the same individual, milestone or occasion. Examples of collaborative giving include commemorating the retirement of a faculty member, a reunion or graduation year or remembering a loved one.

To discuss collaborative giving, please contact the Office of Development and Alumni Relations at 302-831-2104.

How to make a commemorative gift

Named spaces and other physical commemoratives have specific restrictions, as noted in the Special Naming Opportunities section, above.  The instructions listed here apply to all other commemorative gifts.

To make a commemorative gift via credit card, please use our secure online form.

  1. Be sure to answer Yes to the question, Is this gift an honorary or memorial gift? 

  2. Then, in the Special Instructions section, please give the name of the individual for whom you are making the gift and include the honoree’s or the next-of-kin’s contact information.

To make a commemorative gift via check, please follow these guidelines:

  1. Make the check payable to: “University of Delaware.”

  2. In the check’s memo section, please note the gift designation.

  3. Include a brief note with your check, to give the name of the individual for whom you are making a gift. Please include the honoree’s or the next-of-kin’s contact information, so that we can send them a customized tribute.

  4. Mail the check and the note to:
    University of Delaware
    Gift and Record Management
    83 East Main Street, 3rd Floor
    Newark, DE 19716

In most cases, commemorative gifts may be designated to any area within the University for restricted or unrestricted use, including to many (but not all) existing endowed funds. Examples include: academic departments, special interest groups, clubs, scholarships, etc.

If the donor does not indicate a designation, gifts less than $10,000 are directed to the Initiative Fund, which supports the areas that need it most at the University.  Those above $10,000 are directed at the discretion of the Associate Vice President.

Commemorative Gifts in lieu of flowers

Remembering Someone Special

After the loss of a loved one, you may choose to suggest in the obituary that friends and family make a gift to the University of Delaware in lieu of flowers.  The University truly appreciates your thoughtfulness during this difficult time. We encourage you to use the provided text below in an obituary when suggesting gifts be made to the University in lieu of flowers.

“In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to [designation or fund] at the University of Delaware. Please send contributions to: University of Delaware, Gifts Processing, 83 E. Main St, 3rd Fl., Newark, DE 19716. Make checks payable to ‘University of Delaware’ and include on the memo line the fund name and the person’s name for whom the gift is being made.”

Please notify us when you decide to encourage gifts in lieu of flowers, or with any questions.

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