Message from the Executive Vice President
As we reflect on the 175-year history of the University of Notre Dame, we are grateful for the progress that our University has made because of the dedication and perseverance of our faculty, staff, and administrators, the partnership and support of our alumni and benefactors, and the diligence of our students. Together, we are advancing our aspirational vision of being a great Catholic university for the 21st century.
We are committed to not only advancing our academic programs and being leading researchers, but we are also dedicated to ensuring that an education at the University of Notre Dame is accessible to all. To that end, we have invested $140 million in University resources toward undergraduate financial aid this fiscal year, and we are proud that we have met the full, demonstrated financial need of all of our undergraduate students since 2000. Furthermore, we have continually enhanced our graduate student stipends to make graduate study more accessible and to attract the highest quality of graduate students.
Our endowment is an increasingly important component of our budget, and our prudent stewardship of our endowment resources empowers us to support critical elements of our mission. In fiscal year 2017, nearly one-third of endowment spending distributions supported scholarships and fellowships while another 18 percent of spending distributions were allocated to professorships. Over the past decade, endowment distributions have increased 132 percent, while the overall value of the endowment pool has steadily increased, providing a buffer against future inflation and volatility in financial markets.
As Father Jenkins noted, we have completed seven new academic and student life buildings this year that serve to elevate several of our academic departments and create space for the new Keough School of Global Affairs. During this time of tremendous physical growth, we have diligently adhered to our construction funding policy, which requires that the entire cost be pledged and 75 percent of funds received before we break ground on a facility.
We continue to invest in our infrastructure. Recently, we made significant investments in information technology, security, construction, renovation, and consistent facility maintenance. In addition to the physical growth of campus, we have also strengthened our programs and facilities at our Global Gateways, through the expansion of the new Beijing Global Gateway at the Genesis Beijing complex and the complete renovation of the Villa at the Rome Global Gateway located on the Caelian Hill that will house all of our undergraduate students studying in Rome.
We have announced strategies to strengthen our residential communities. These will enhance our longstanding residential mission of forming communities that are inclusive of all members and dedicated to the intellectual, moral, and spiritual development of Notre Dame undergraduate students. Because we know that our residential model excels best when we have members of each class year contributing to community life, we seek to build two new undergraduate residence halls to accommodate more students on campus.
As we remain committed to our Catholic intellectual tradition, which leads us to be a force for good in the world, we are grateful for the like-minded faculty, staff, administrators, students, alumni, and benefactors who join us in our mission.
John F. Affleck-Graves
Executive Vice President