Treasury & Endowments

A Business Process Managed by Accounting Services & Office of Investments & Banking



Between 1851 and 1857, the United States Congress granted 144 sections of land for use and support of a university. The lands granted by the United States are owned by the State of Minnesota and managed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The federal grant lands are often referred to as the “permanent university fund lands”.

The 1851 Charter for the University of Minnesota created a perpetual fund that is known as the Permanent University Fund (PUF). Revenue from the permanent university fund lands is deposited into the PUF.

In the early years, income from the investment of the revenue in the PUF was used to reduce debt incurred in establishing the university. In more recent years, the revenue from management of the permanent university funds lands has been split among the following accounts:

  • The Endowed Chair Account - Income used to provide endowment support for professorial chairs in academic disciplines.
  • The Endowed Mineral Research Account - Income allocated to the Duluth and Coleraine facilities of the Natural Resources Research Institute for mineral and mineral-related research.
  • The Endowed Scholarship Account - Income distributed through the Iron Range Scholarship Program
  • The Endowed Mesabi Range Account - Income used for operating a mining, metallurgical, or related engineering degree offered through the University of Minnesota at the Mesabi Range Community and Technical College, and for scholarships for students to attend the program.


The University has three investment pools in which University of Minnesota departments participate.

  • Group Income Pool (GIP) – Long-term operating reserves of the University created from auxiliary enterprises and departmental reserves. The funds support various capital and infrastructure needs.
  • Consolidated Endowment Fund (CEF) – All public and private gifts to the University of Minnesota. Most of the funds are gifts that were received prior to the establishment of the University Foundations in 1962. These funds are generally maintained in perpetuity and are spent according to the donor’s wishes.
  • Permanent University Fund (PUF) – A public endowment derived from sources such as state iron ore taxes, royalties, and federal land grants. By legislative mandate, PUF assets are used to match private contributions with the goal of providing substantial financial support for endowed chairs and professorships throughout the University.

What is a University of Minnesota endowment?

An endowment is a long-term investment in the University of Minnesota that provides benefits to students, faculty or programs year after year, generation after generation. For endowed funds, the donor stipulates that the principal must be invested and that all or a portion of the income be expended to carry out the donor's purpose. The goal is to ensure that the principal maintains its purchasing power over time to support future generations.

What is the University of Minnesota Foundation?

The University of Minnesota Foundation was established in 1962 by 21 alumni and friends. The Foundation advances the University's mission of teaching, research, and outreach to the community by raising and managing private dollars for scholarships, world-class faculty, leading-edge research, new facilities, and academic programs on all five campuses of the University of Minnesota. All new gifts to the University of Minnesota generally go through the University of Minnesota Foundation.

Business Processes


EM01 Pool and Participant Set Up
EM02 Endowment Participant Transactions
EM03 Investment Manager Transactions
EM04 Pool Position Update
EM05 Income Distribution
EM06 PUF Reporting
EM80 Batch Processing
EM90 Integration


TR01 Accounting
TR02 Bank Administration
TR03 Cash Positioning & Forecasting
TR04 Bank Reconciliation
TR05 Settlements
TR06 Financial Gateway
TR07 Manage and Administer Deals
TR80 Batch Processing TR90 Integration


DMS/STARS: Access the University of Minnesota Foundation system. The foundation supports the U by raising & managing funds for scholarships, faculty, research, facilities, and academic programs on all five campuses.

University of Minnesota Fund: The University of Minnesota Foundation (UMF) is a key partner with the University in building and sustaining excellence among students and faculty, and fueling discovery in important areas on all University of Minnesota campuses. UMF accomplishes this by raising and managing gifts from individuals and organizations.

For more information about giving to the University visit

Training: See the materials prepared by Training Services for more information about the endowments business process.

What are the responsibilities of departments?

Departments are to be good stewards and follow the purpose of the endowment that was stipulated by the donor. Departments can view a summary description of the purpose of the endowment in PeopleSoft or can view all of the donor’s correspondence, which has been scanned into the Donor Management System (DMS).

What is the Donor Management System?

The Donor Management System (DMS) is used to manage alumni and development activities at the University of Minnesota. Access to DMS is for University-authorized personnel for purposes deemed appropriate by the University of Minnesota Foundation, the business owner of the system. DMS contains many tools to help department be good stewards. Some of the tools include: Fund statements, Scholarship tracking and reporting tool (STAR), gift transmittal online tool, executive reports and queries. Donor Management System.

How does a department get money from an endowment to spend according to the donor’s intent?

University of Minnesota funds – Endowments held by the University of Minnesota are generally old gifts that pre-date the start of the University of Minnesota Foundation. The funds are invested by the Office of Investment and Banking. Departments may choose to receive income from these endowments automatically on a quarterly basis or make a manual withdrawal from the PeopleSoft Cash Management module. Instructions are available in the Endowments Manual. (pdf)

University of Minnesota Foundation (UMF) funds – All new gifts made to the University of Minnesota go to the University of Minnesota Foundations. UMF was established in 1962 to support the University of Minnesota. Departments can withdraw funds from the UMF endowments by creating an EFS invoice in PeopleSoft. Click here for instructions. (pdf)

Funds that are at both the University and Foundation (PUF) – Legislative mandates that PUF assets are matched by private contributions and spent at a proportionate rate. In order to withdraw funds from PUF endowments, departments must create a manual withdrawal from the PeopleSoft Cash Management module AND create an EFS invoice in PeopleSoft. An automatic PeopleSoft withdrawal transaction and EFS invoice can be done by setting up the PUF endowment up to receive the quarterly income distribution. Click here for instructions. (pdf)

Treasury Accounting

Treasury Accounting is responsible for accounting functions related to the University's endowment fund and other investments, in addition to the University's long-term debt, which consists mainly of bonds and commercial paper. The Treasury Accounting department is also responsible for the University's over all cash procedures and bank reconciliations.

Visit the Policy Library for information about:


Training materials related to these processes are available on our training page.