November 7, 2017

At Texas A&M University, we are lucky to have dedicated former students and friends who are committed to ensuring the success of our institution through philanthropy—both during their lifetimes and after.

The Texas A&M Foundation provided a record $103.9 million to the university in fiscal year 2016. The stewardship of gifts is our greatest responsibility, and we strive to honor every donor's wishes. We are currently in the middle of the Lead by Example campaign—the most ambitious fundraising campaign our university has ever undertaken and the largest ever in the state of Texas—with a goal to raise $4 billion by 2020. Thanks to friends and investors, we have raised more than $2.7 billion as of August 31.

Planned gifts are vital to our continued success, as gifts from individuals’ estate plans lay a foundation for sustained excellence at Texas A&M. A planned gift is a contribution that is arranged in the present and allocated at a future date. Commonly donated through a will or trust, planned gifts are most often granted once the donor has passed away.

“Texas A&M gave our daughters a strong education, taught them how to be servant leaders and pushed them to be better people. Even though we didn’t attend Texas A&M, We are proud to support  a university that promotes values.”  - Jane and Jerry Kingsley, Heritage Members since 2016

Our planned giving department is among the nation’s best: In fiscal year 2016, we documented 129 planned gifts for more than $131 million toward the future benefit of Texas A&M. Planned gifts demonstrate a commitment to education and support the future of the university’s outstanding students, faculty, research, programs and facilities.

The Office of Gift Planning at the Texas A&M Foundation works with passionate individuals who wish to leave a legacy at Texas A&M University. Gift methods and size options range from person to person, but no matter the size, each gift signifies a commitment that will always be felt in Aggieland. 

Heritage membership in the A&M Legacy Society is the Foundation’s way of celebrating and honoring those who have included Texas A&M in their estate plans. Members receive an invitation to annual appreciation events as well as special mailings and opportunities to network with fellow Aggies.

To become a Heritage Member, an individual names the Foundation as the beneficiary of a planned gift of any size. A wide range of planned gift options are available, including bequests, trusts, life insurance gifts or charitable gift annuities, allowing you to tailor a gift to your unique financial needs and support your specific interests at Texas A&M. 

As part of their estate plans, Heritage Members Susan '74 and Bill Ouren '74 included a bequest to the Texas A&M Foundation that will benefit Cushing Memorial Library and Archives and continue to support scholarships they
have already established.

Heritage membership totals 2,472 donors—117 of whom were welcomed in 2016. Generous gifts contributed by these individuals total $1.135 billion since 1999. Within the past 11 years, more than $186 million of those planned gifts were put to work, with every dollar going to support Texas A&M. 

The Office of Gift Planning works hard to serve donors through the estate planning process and ensure the Foundation’s mission of uniting generosity and vision. In fiscal year 2016, the Foundation documented more than $120 million in planned gifts in sizes ranging from $10,500 to $10 million. Support for Texas A&M is on the rise, and gift planning officers find that donors typically make their largest contributions for the university as planned gifts. 

“It’s less about how much you give and more about being committed to give something,” said Heritage Member Bill Ouren ’74. “The needs of Texas A&M are so broad that if you work with the experts and specialists at the Foundation, you can fashion a way to feel proud about what you do. Once you start giving, the rewards you receive in return are priceless.”

Creating an estate and gift plan can achieve a lasting impact. People who create an estate plan are usually amazed at how easily it can be completed. Don't be intimated by the prospect of creating a will. It's about as simple as writing a letter. A well-written will tells the world what is important to you. It affirms your hopes and protects loved ones and cherished causes. The most complicated part of preparing a will is taking the first step: deciding to do it.

Our Estate and Gift Planning Kit can help you get started.  Our Estate and Gift Planning Kit contains a workbook that helps your inventory your estate and is a place to keep important names and numbers. Our How to Give booklet describes all the different assets you can use to make a gift and all the methods available to you from beneficiary gifts to charitable trusts.