Serving Harvard University
Harvard’s endowment is a dedicated and permanent source of funding that maintains the teaching and research mission of the University. Established in 1974, Harvard Management Company invests these funds as a single entity, the revenue from which contributes more than one-third of the University’s annual operating budget.
Endowment at Work
Made up of more than 13,000 individual funds invested as a single entity, the endowment’s returns have enabled leading financial aid programs, groundbreaking discoveries in scientific research, and hundreds of professorships across a wide range of academic fields.
This past academic year, Harvard set a record in financial aid by distributing $414 million to students across the University. That number included roughly $175 million in need-based aid for Harvard College undergraduates—more than half of whom receive financial aid—graduate student grants and fellowships, and a variety of additional loan-free funding opportunities.
The Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies is a world leader in fine arts conservation, research, and training. The center’s laboratories are where conservation, conservation science, and curatorial practice intersect, coming together to enrich the understanding of and care for the approximately 250,000 objects in the Harvard Art Museums’ collections.
In 2015, the venerable Harry Elkins Widener Library turned 100 years old. Widener is the centerpiece of the Harvard library system, and also the largest university repository of books and manuscripts in the world.
Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have developed new wound dressings that dramatically accelerate healing and improve tissue regeneration.
Since HMC was founded in 1974, annual distributions from the endowment to Harvard University have grown significantly and now account for more than one-third of the University’s annual operating budget. In total, HMC has distributed nearly $35 billion to Harvard. The need to generate this critical funding, while managing the endowment for the long term, underscores the importance of delivering strong investment returns, maintaining sufficient liquidity, and exercising good risk management.
Growth of $1000 Invested in HMC
Harvard’s endowed funds provide a perpetual revenue source in support of the teaching and research mission of the University. This requires HMC to take a long-term view of our investments and their associated risks. We believe that identifying and monitoring environmental, social, and governance factors in our investments aligns with our mission to provide strong, long-term results.