Giving

Giving

Every great city deserves a great university, and at every university’s core is a great library

Great university libraries influence our lives and impact our future.

In a diverse city like Houston, every person’s potential can be elevated simply by having a leading university library embedded in the community.

The transformative power of philanthropy

All great cultural and learning institutions, libraries included, succeed because donors like you know that their funding is deeply valued, transformative, and critical to community success.

We are introducing new spaces, services, and resources that fulfill our vision of a community, nurtured by curiosity and creativity, that drives lifelong learning and scholarship.

Giving Opportunities

Charitable giving is personal. Choosing a cause to support expresses your deepest values and reflects your vision of the world and yourself. The University of Houston Libraries offers opportunities for you to make a gift where it matters most to you:

Library Excellence Fund

The mission of the Library Excellence Fund to advance student success, knowledge creation and preservation, and globally competitive research.

The Library Excellence Fund is a non-restricted fund that the library utilizes to enhance and support its daily operations. Gifts to this fund have a direct and immediate impact on all users of UH Libraries – students, faculty, visiting scholars and community members – because they provide unrestricted support to be used to fill immediate needs.

Your gift ensures funding for innovation, research, classroom technology and so much more. What’s more, many donors can double or even triple their gifts through corporate matching programs.

Library Endowments

An endowment is a permanent source of funding, in which the principal amount stays intact while the generated interest provides a consistent stream of income to be used for purposes designated by the donor.

Funding an endowment is one of the most far-reaching acts of philanthropy because an endowed fund provides sustaining support over a long period of time. It is a permanent tribute to the person whose name it bears, and a sound investment in the future.

  • The Library Acorn Endowment Growth Fund

    The Library Acorn Endowment Growth Fund allows donors to support UH Library endowments with a minimum of $1,000. Funds in the Acorn Growth Fund are combined and invested. Earnings are used by the Libraries to support programs, special projects, collections and more. When an individual’s gifts to the Acorn Growth Fund reach $10,000 within five years, the donor may choose to build on that gift toward a UH Endowment which is fully funded at $25,000, and can take an additional five years to reach this level. When fully funded, the endowment can be named and criteria established for use of the funds toward the purpose most important to the donor.

  • UH Library Endowments for gifts of $25,000

    Endowments provide stability for the Libraries’ programs because the principal gift is retained to produce income on an annual basis, in perpetuity. Only a portion of the annual investment return is used for the purpose intended by the donor in support of the Libraries. The rest of the investment yield is returned to the principal, and over time, the fund grows. Creating an endowment is an excellent way to ensure your legacy at UH because UH holds the principal of your gift in perpetuity, and over time as, interest earnings bring growth to endowments. UH Endowments begin at $25,000 and may be paid over five years. You may name an endowment for your family, company, or in memory of a loved one.

  • Endowed Chairs and Professorships for gifts of $250,000 to $1,000,000

    Endowed Chairs and Professorships are an exceptional honor, bestowing upon a faculty member respect and recognition as well as additional research and teaching resources. These endowments allow the university to recruit and retain top faculty and reward those who are top in their fields. University Endowed professorships start at $500,000; College Endowed Professorships at $250,000; and Endowed Chairs at $1,000,000.

How are endowment gifts managed?

Endowment gifts to the UH System are placed in the UH System Endowment Fund for investment and oversight purposes. The UHS Board of Regents has adopted the broad objective of investing endowment assets to preserve both their real value and the long range purchasing power of endowment income. The board seeks superior investment returns through a diversified, professionally managed portfolio to minimize risks. Once an endowment is fully funded, it will take approximately one year to earn the appropriate interest for distribution. The distribution amount is a percentage (currently 4%) based on a three-year rolling average of the market value. The remaining earnings will be added to the principal to allow it to grow over time. Once a year you will receive a report detailing your endowment’s financial information.

Give to Special Collections

The mission of Special Collections is to preserve, safeguard, organize, and describe materials in our collecting areas, making them available for current and future generations. Special Collections supports the teaching and research activities of the University of Houston, and serves as a resource for the scholarly community and the general public.

The services provided include:
  • Reference and instruction
  • Archival collections and books processing
  • Digitization
  • Collection development
  • Exhibits
  • Marketing and outreach

Give your gift directly to the following core collections.

Campaign Priorities


Here, We Go: The Campaign for the University of Houston

By embarking on truly transformative endeavors that will change the very nature of libraries through thoughtful philanthropic support, your gifts become agents of change. They shepherd the community, embracing knowledge, serving as accelerators of ideas, and engines of creativity.
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Lisa A. German
Dean, Elizabeth D. Rockwell Chair



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Position UH Libraries as a leader in student success

Students learn by doing. We will develop robust services and learning programs that address growth in online and blended learning environments, facilitating deep learning experiences and critical thinking skills.

  • Student Scholarships & Awards

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Assure the quality and relevance of collections for our campus and global communities

Many of our Special Collections can be named as part of UH Libraries campaign to build the library of the future. They include:

  • Shuart Women’s Research Collection
  • Houston & Texas History Research Collection
  • Energy & Sustainability Research Collection
  • Hispanic Research Collection
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Houston Hip Hop Research Collection
  • Rare Books Collections
  • Performing & Visual Arts Research Collection
  • University of Houston Archives
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Transform UH library spaces to reflect evolving modes of learning and scholarships

Library spaces, both physical and virtual, make a statement about the quality of teaching and research that define UH. They can become destinations for creative and collaborative exploration.

  • Enhanced Learning and Study Spaces
  • Special Collections Exhibits

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Position UH Libraries as a leader in research productivity

So that our community will prosper from having a nationally competitive public research university in its midst. And, so we can better prepare students to envision the future, emerge as leaders, and launch careers that will transform the world. Exciting opportunities to move libraries forward include:

  • Digitizing our Special Collections
  • Digital Research Commons

Memorial & Honorary Gift

A gift to UH Libraries is a significant way to honor or memorialize loved ones, recognize joyous occasions, express gratitude, or commemorate lives that matter to you most –- while also empowering education and making a meaningful contribution to your community.

For big reasons, or no reason at all

  • Celebrate – birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, wedding anniversaries, bar or bat mitzvahs, births, graduations, holidays
  • Recognize achievements, promotions, retirements, or milestones
  • Offer condolences or sympathy

When you make a commemorative gift, an attractive personalized card & letter is sent to the person or family you specify. The amount of the gift is never disclosed unless you request us to do so.

We send a tax receipt to you, the donor, since UH Libraries are a part of the University of Houston, a tax qualified charitable & educational organization.

Each gift is used to improve and expand the  library’s facilities, equipment, and programs in keeping with our strategic plan. You will also receive recognition inside eligible donor publications.

A gift of $100 or more can be used to create a commemorative bookplate inside an item in a subject matter of your choice. Thereafter, anyone using this material will view your tribute. An electronic version will also be created in our digital record, and can be viewed online.

Faculty & Staff Campaign >

Make a one-time gift or donate through payroll deduction and designate the campaign priority of your choice.

Giving FAQ >

From deductions to donor rights, we’ve got answers to your giving-related questions.

UH Development Office >

Need more information, or just want to say hello? We’d love to hear from you!


Contact Library Development

713-743-9560