How to Give a Gift

Donate Online

Use the button below to donate securely through PayPal.

Donate by Mail

We appreciate your contribution by personal check, money order, or cashier's check. Checks should be made to the Shawnee State University Development Foundation and mailed to:

Shawnee State University Development Foundation
940 Second Avenue
Portsmouth, OH 45662

Please be sure to include your name and address so that we may thank you properly. If you are sending a gift in memory or honor of someone, please include the name and address of the person to which you would like us to send an acknowledgement of your gift.

Donate by Phone

We are also able to accept your donation via Mastercard, VISA, or Discover. If your donation is $40 or more, you can choose to pay quarterly. If your gift is $120 or more, you can choose to pay monthly. To make your gift by credit card, please call (740) 351-3284.

To learn about other ways of giving, please contact the Development Office at (740) 351-3284.

Levels of Giving

The Shawnee State University Development Foundation appreciates every gift we receive, so every donor, no matter the size of your gift, is listed in our Annual Report. Donors become "Friends of Shawnee State" with a gift of as little as $1.00. Individuals who contribute $100 or more become members of one of our giving clubs for the year of their gift.

Giving Clubs

The 1986 Club Reserved for alumni when they make a first-time gift of $19.86 or more
The Century Club $100 or more
The Bear Club $1,000 or more
The Blue & Gray Club $2,500 or more
The Platinum Club $5,000 or more
The President's Club $10,000 or more

Commemorative Opportunities

Naming opportunities in the form of a brick on the Alumni Green or tile in the Children's Learning Center are available for as little as $100, or we invite you to select a program, room, or building with which to affirm your partnership with SSU and our students. We would be happy to discuss these opportunities with you.


View a Summary of Commemorative Opportunities at Shawnee State (PDF)

Honorary Giving

Honoring a loved one's memory through a gift to charity is the highest form of remembrance and helps to sustain a legacy of philanthropy that lasts forever.

Other donors take advantage of honorary giving to say "happy birthday" or "congratulations" to their friends or relatives who "have everything." Donations in their name might be the perfect substitute for a gift.

If you would like, we will send an acknowledgement to your honoree or to the family of the person in whose memory you made a gift. Please include that person's name and address and your name and address, so we can inform them of your generosity. The amount of your gift will not be included unless you direct us to do so. However, we will gladly send an acknowledgement for a gift of any size.

Ways to Give

Gifts of Cash

Charitable gifts are most often made in the form of cash and checks and may be made in one transaction or as a pledge, in several installments. They can even be made via credit card. Cash is the simplest donation and provides immediate benefits.

First, you are entitled to a charitable income tax deduction. The IRS allows you to claim up to 50% of your adjusted gross income for cash gifts. If necessary, you may carry forward your donation for five more years.

Gifts of Securities

Making gifts of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds can bring even more tax savings. Gifts of appreciated property that have increased in value can reduce taxes on up to 30% of your adjusted gross income and can help you avoid the capital gains tax you would have owed if you had sold them.

When owned for more than one year, you may deduct the full market value of your holdings, not just the original cost. Remember, if you have investments that have decreased in value, it would likely be better to sell them to create the loss that is deductible from your taxable income before making a gift of their proceeds.

Gifts of Personal Property

You may contribute works of art, antiques, rare books, and similar property to the Shawnee State University Development Foundation. Should you choose this kind of support for the University, you may need to secure an independent appraisal for tax purposes.

Shawnee State University has also created the Luther Community Collection, to showcase your collection or favorite treasures. We invite you to talk with us about donating them or any other property so we can help you avoid possible pitfalls.

Gifts of Real Estate

Real estate may provide a convenient way to support the University. Gifts of appreciated real estate are like gifts of appreciated stock. In many cases, you may deduct the full fair market value while avoiding capital gains taxes. You may contribute real estate as an outright or deferred gift. For example, with a life estate agreement, a donor can make a gift of a home or farm while retaining the right to live there throughout life.


You may leave provisions for Shawnee State in the body of your will or in a codicil (an addendum to it). You may designate either a dollar amount or a percentage of your estate to the Development Foundation. Whatever the amount, bequests to Shawnee State University are entirely free from federal estate tax and the estate and inheritance taxes of most states. Your attorney can help you with your estate gifts.

Shawnee State is eager to know now about your planned gift through a bequest. Even though we will likely not have use of the funds for many years, it is helpful in our planning if we are aware of future gifts. We would also like to be able to thank you for your commitment.

Gifts of Life Insurance

You may assign the Shawnee State University Development Foundation as the owner and beneficiary or a secondary, remainder, or residual beneficiary of your life insurance policy. When the Foundation is named as owner of a policy and/or the irrevocable beneficiary, the cash value of the policy may be deducted on your income tax return, and the premiums you pay thereafter also are income tax deductible.

Charitable Remainder Trusts

Charitable remainder unitrusts and annuity trusts pay you income for life and can also provide for a successor beneficiary for life. At the same time, they provide an immediate tax deduction and freedom from estate taxes. When the beneficial interest in the trust ends, the principal goes to the Shawnee State University Development Foundation to accomplish your expressed wishes. There are different rules inherent in the establishment of the two types of trusts, so it is wise to seek advice from your financial advisors. In both cases, the higher the rate of return, the smaller the charitable deduction. You and Shawnee State will reap the benefits of your planning. Trusts are especially appealing if funded with appreciated stocks because you will likely avoid capital gains taxes. They can also afford you guaranteed income in a time of a fluctuating stock market.

For those donors who wish to preserve their inheritance for their children, there is even a way to combine a charitable remainder trust with a wealth replacement life insurance trust so that your children will get the full inheritance you intended.

Charitable Gift Annuities

A gift annuity is an extraordinary way for you to make a gift to the Shawnee State University Development Foundation while you increase your income and lower your taxes.

It is a simple arrangement, via a contract between you and the Foundation, that guarantees you a fixed income for the rest of your life. Gift annuities may be especially valuable during a low interest rate environment, because your payment is generally higher and is always guaranteed. We will happily share with you the payment schedule for your gift.

Gifts of Retirement Plan Assets

Recent federal tax law changes and proposals are designed to make giving through your IRA or other retirement plan both easier and more attractive. In fact, a gift of an IRA, or other IRD assets like savings bonds, may save your heirs significant taxes. (Did you know that your heirs will need to pay income tax on your IRA or savings bonds when you pass away?) Your most tax burdened assets make the best gifts to charity while freeing other assets for your family. Note: New tax law passed in 2006, allows donors age 70 or older to make gifts to qualified charities directly from their IRA, with positive tax benefits.

Gifts of Your Time

So many of our friends gift their time and talents to Shawnee State as volunteers, and we are most appreciative. If you would like to help Shawnee State University, please give us a call. We'll gladly discuss with you the avenues. From stuffing invitations to mentoring children, your help is very valuable.

Matching Gifts

Do you know that you can double, triple, or even quadruple your contribution to Shawnee State? If you work for a company that has a matching gift program, it's easy. Here's how it works:

Under a corporate matching gift program, gifts made by eligible employees or retirees to Shawnee State University are matched with company or corporate foundation funds.

To initiate a matching gift, a donor generally completes the company's matching gift form and sends it, along with a personal donation, to the Shawnee State University Development Office. We will then certify that we have received the gift and that it is eligible to receive a matching gift under the company's guidelines. Then we will forward it to the company for payment.

If you are not sure your company has a matching gift program, you can inquire at the company's personnel office or call the development office at Shawnee State. We'll be glad to check for you. And please remember, matching gifts can only benefit Shawnee State when you participate!

Gift Assistance

To discuss these or other gift opportunities, please contact Eric Andrew Braun, director of the Development Foundation at (740) 351-3257. He is happy to help you formulate the right plan that fulfills your goals for the University, while taking advantage of benefits to you. President Rick Kurtz would also be pleased to talk with you at (740) 351-3208.

Use of Gifts

Your donations to Shawnee State are only part of the philanthropic equation. The stewardship of your funds-their investment and spending by the Shawnee State University Development Foundation-bring them to life.

Naturally, we are particularly pleased when you make unrestricted funds available. They allow us to meet opportunities and challenges as they face us, being proactive when possible, and reactive when necessary.

But, we also invite you to earmark your donations as you choose, and whether they are endowed or spent all at once is up to you.


  • Scholarships are often the first opportunity that donors consider when they plan their philanthropy. Indeed, scholarships are the life blood of any college or university. Contributions of any amount are accepted for inclusion in the Friends of Shawnee State Scholarship Fund. This general scholarship fund is designed to award academic, athletic, or artistic excellence and allow the University to choose the most deserving students.
  • Contributions of a specified minimum amount will be accepted as a separate named scholarship. A minimum of one third of the annual tuition and fees will create a one-time scholarship named for the giver or a person of his/her choice.
  • For a contribution of $25,000 or more, the University will create an endowed scholarship, named for the donor or a person of his or her choice. The principal will remain in place, and only yield may be used toward the awards. The investment policy of the Foundation has been formulated to encourage growth as well as earnings so that the scholarship can remain viable over time.


Shawnee State University also encourages the creation, through the Development Foundation, of endowed chairs, which serve to bring prestige to the professor holding the chair, the person who named it, and to the University. There are three ways in which to proceed, and we are eager to explore the options with you.

  • A contribution of $1,000,000 will be accepted to endow a named faculty chair. The earnings will be used to cover or help defray the cost of salary and other related costs
  • A contribution of $100,000 will be accepted to fund a one-year named professorship or visiting professorship. This will cover salary and other related costs such as secretarial assistance, etc.
  • A contribution of $300,000 will be accepted to create an endowed visiting chair. In this instance, the corpus will be invested until such time that sufficient earnings have been realized to fund the position. It is expected that a visiting chair could be appointed every three years.

Won't you be the first of Shawnee's donors to consider the creation of such a prestigious commemorative opportunity?

Other Opportunities

Individual arrangements can be made in regard to lecture series, performing arts series, film series, art purchases, equipment purchases, etc. Friends wishing to underwrite those activities are encouraged to meet with Eric Andrew Braun, director of development, or heads of the departments involved in the proposed activity.

Opportunities also exist to have buildings or specific rooms within buildings named for the donor or a person they designate. Where state funds are allocated for buildings, a minimum of 40 percent of the construction cost of the building is necessary for a naming opportunity. Where state capital funds are involved, naming of rooms is based on utility, placement, availability, and attractiveness from a commemorative standpoint. In the event that state funds are not available, full cost may be involved in order to facilitate a naming opportunity.

Donor Advised Funds

The Foundation welcomes the input of the donors who wish to remain active in the decision making involving the use of their funds through Donor Advised Funds. To that end, donors who establish undesignated endowments are invited to meet the director of development to help make that determination annually based on the University's needs, new opportunities, or donor interest.

Each of the suggestions listed are only that - ideas. We value your ideas as well and are eager to work with you to spend your money in a way that will make you proud.


It is your choice as well whether you wish your funds to be endowed. If that is the case, the Development Foundation will spend only the earnings of your funds, preserving your original gift and its buying power. You have our word that we will work diligently to be good stewards of the money you entrust to us so that you can feel assured that your legacy will not be forgotten.

Flexible Endowments

To make creating an endowment easy we have developed flexible endowments. Flexible endowments are much like regular endowments in that they are funds from which only earnings are spent, ensuring that donors' philanthropy lasts in perpetuity. Like all of Shawnee State's endowments, they may be funded over time, for as long as ten years. A nice feature of flexible endowments is that they allow donors to give a long-term gift but to see short-term benefits as well. While building their fund, donors make an additional gift, in the amount of the fund's expected earnings, which will be spent right away to fulfill the purpose of the fund.

That way, donors get two valuable benefits at once-growth in their fund and the joy of seeing their money being put to good use.

Development Foundation

Contact Information

Berndt Development Suite
Administration Building lower level

940 Second Street
Portsmouth, OH 45662

(740) 351-3284
Fax: (740) 351-3198

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