Gift Policies

Policy Statement

Trevecca Nazarene University strongly encourages the solicitation and acceptance of gifts that enable it to fulfill the University’s mission of providing education for leadership and service. Private gifts are essential for an institution dedicated to higher education. Trevecca Nazarene University depends on the generous support of alumni and friends for advancing the mission. Any individual or group wishing to fund a project through donations from outside the university must first obtain approval of the Vice President for External Relations. Depending on the nature of the request approval by the President’s Cabinet may also be necessary.

Gifts may be sought from individuals, corporations, foundations and other organizations. However, they may be sought only for purposes, positions, and programs which have the appropriate academic or administrative approval.

Gifts to the University will be accepted for unrestricted use or for any of the many special funds and programs that have been established. The University may also accept a gift designated for a special purpose for which no special fund has been established as long as it is within the scope of the University’s mission as determined by the President’s cabinet.

Gifts to the University must not inhibit the University from seeking gifts from other donors, be they similar or different, foreign or domestic. Further, no gift can be received that limits, beyond a general definition of subject area, the research that a faculty member or student can perform. The University values and will protect the integrity and independence of the organization as well as the academic freedom of the University community. Gifts that may expose the University to adverse publicity, require expenditures beyond their resources, or involve them in unexpected responsibilities because of their source, conditions, or purposes will be referred to the Vice President for External Relations. This individual may withhold approval of acceptance of the gift, pending a review.

The University cannot accept gifts that involve unlawful discrimination based upon race, sex, age, national origin, color, handicap, or any other basis prohibited by federal, state, and local laws and regulations. Nor can the University accept gifts that obligate it to violate any other applicable law or regulation, or that violate the University’s certificate of incorporation or bylaws. Further, the University cannot accept any gift which is inconsistent with the mission and priorities of the institution.

This policy is designed to provide guidance to the University communities and the general public so as to facilitate the gift-giving process. It is not intended to stifle philanthropic creativity. Therefore, this policy is to be interpreted liberally so that prospective donors may enjoy the greatest freedom possible in formulating their gifts.

Inappropriate Gifts

In order to maintain its Christian witness and influence among its constituency, Trevecca Nazarene University is obligated to refuse some gifts which violate the University’s bylaws or are in conflict with the manual of the Church of the Nazarene. Any gift which would, by its acceptance, either tacitly or overtly sanction immoral behaviors should not be accepted by the University.

This policy should be administered in a spirit of Christian love and brotherhood. The purpose of the policy is to provide an example. If, in providing that example, the University creates a spirit of enmity between the potential donor and the church, irreparable harm may be done as a result of the University’s good intentions.

Gifts that may be inappropriate for the University to accept should be referred to the Vice President for External Relations. This individual may withhold approval of acceptance, pending a review.

Methods of Giving

Many types of gifts may be used to provide gifts for the University. A variety of methods of giving allows donors to choose the most appropriate for their circumstances and interests.


All appraisals of real and personal property contributed to the University shall be done in accordance with IRS Publication 561. Expenses incurred obtaining an appraisal will be the responsibility of the donor unless special circumstances exist that make it appropriate for the University to share the cost. Any appraisal cost born by the University must be approved by the Vice President for External Relations in consultation with the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration.

Cash Gifts

The most frequent method used to make a gift to the University is a check. Checks should be made payable to Trevecca Nazarene University and mailed or delivered to:

Trevecca Nazarene University
333 Murfreesboro Rd.
Nashville, TN 37210

Charitable Gift Annuity

The charitable gift annuity is an arrangement in which the University pays the donor (and a surviving beneficiary, if desired) a fixed annual income for life. Because it is a contract rather than a trust, all assets of the University stand behind the commitment to make the payments to the income beneficiaries.

An initial annuity contract will be issued for a minimum gift of $10,000. Additional contracts with the same donor(s) may be issued for $5,000 or more. A charitable gift annuity may be established with cash or marketable securities. Use of other assets to fund a gift annuity requires approval of the Vice President for External Relations.

The minimum age of a beneficiary of an immediate payment gift annuity is 50 years. A deferred payment gift annuity will be issued to a beneficiary age 40 or more. A maximum of two income beneficiaries may be included on a gift annuity contract. The receipt of income from a deferred gift annuity may be deferred for a period of no more than 20 years.

The rate of payment from a gift annuity shall be that which is fixed from time to time by the Council on Gift Annuities. However, the CGA recommendation notwithstanding, the rate of payment shall not exceed the three-year moving average yield on U.S. Treasury notes with a maturity that matches the life expectancy of the annuitant rounded to the nearest five-year increment, or as otherwise fixed by applicable University policy.

Corporate Matching Gifts

All matching gifts received by the University as the result of an employee or employees contribution(s) will be directed to the operating funds for the University unless specified otherwise by the donor or the contributing corporation.

Credit Card Gifts

Gifts made by credit card are considered cash gifts. Currently, the University accepts gifts made on MasterCard or Visa. Donors may use the University website link or call the Office External Relations to provide the information.

Gift by Will or Revocable Trust

Gifts made by will or revocable living trust are completed only at the death of the donor and/or a surviving beneficiary. These gifts may provide for a specific dollar amount in cash, specific securities, specific articles of tangible personal property or a percentage of the residue of the estate.

Bequests may be given as unrestricted or restricted gifts. Unrestricted bequests are used for general purposes and can be applied to current needs. A restricted bequest supports a certain purpose or program designated by the donor. Among donors’ options are residuary and contingent bequests. A residuary bequest will give the University all or a portion of the estate after all debts, taxes, expenses, and all other bequests have been paid. A contingent bequest will ensure that, despite unforeseen circumstances, specified property will pass to the University rather than unintended beneficiaries.

Donors may also direct income to be paid to survivors before the assets come to the University. The bequest can be used to establish a charitable remainder annuity trust or charitable remainder unitrust. If such a gift is made by will, the principal will pass to the University only after the death of the life income beneficiary.

Gifts may be made to the University on behalf of the University through the execution of a new will or living trust or through a codicil or amendment to an existing document. Donors may also add either a residual or contingent codicil to their wills.

Donors are encouraged to recognize that over the many years following the establishment of a deferred gift, the needs, policies, and circumstances of the University can change in unforeseen ways.

The University’s Board of Trustees, in consultation with the University administration, must have the flexibility to make use of the funds in the best interest of the institution and in accord with donor interests and specifications. Thus, donors are encouraged to avoid detailed limitations and restrictions for their gifts. Donors considering bequests for a specific purpose are encouraged to consult the University’s Director of Planned Giving.

Because they are subject to change, gift commitments by will or revocable living trust do not generate current tax deductions for the donor nor are they counted as current gift revenue for the University. However, donors are encouraged to advise the University of these provisions to assist the University in its future planning. All such notifications are held in strictest confidence, unless the donor gives express written permission for their plans to be made public.

Charitable Remainder Trusts

Charitable remainder trusts are irrevocable arrangements that pay income to the donor and/or other beneficiaries for the life or a term of years. The University will accept gifts valued at $25,000 or more to either charitable remainder unitrusts or charitable remainder annuity trusts. In instances where accepting gifts of a smaller amount may be advantageous to the University, the Vice President for External Relations may waive the minimum gift requirement.

Assets other than cash require prior approval of the Vice President for External Relations and the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration before acceptance.

Income paid to the non-charitable beneficiary(ies) must be a minimum of five percent of the value of the trust assets. With an annuity trust, the payment remains the same throughout the term of the trust and no additional contributions can be made. With a unitrust, the payment varies each year, as the trust assets are revalued annually. Additional contributions can be made to a unitrust.

While the rate of payment must be a minimum of five percent, the maximum rate is negotiated between the donor and the University. The rate selected must take into account the income needs of the donor, preservation of the trust assets for ultimate use by the University, and any IRS regulations regarding payments.

The University will not pay a finder’s fee or commission to any third party in order to secure a charitable remainder trust, with the exception of standard commissions on the sale of real property, securities, or similar payments necessary to the operation of the trust.

Charitable Lead Trust

A charitable lead trust provides immediate support for the University through income generated by the assets in trust for a set period of time, after which the assets pass to a non-charitable beneficiary such as the donor, the donor’s children, or other persons the donor specifies. Thus, a charitable lead trust is conceptually the opposite of a charitable remainder trust. In a lead trust, the donor gives the University the current economic benefits of the transferred assets and retains the right to reacquire possession and control of the assets at a future date.

The donor during his or her lifetime creates an irrevocable trust agreement for a period of ten years or more. The agreement may take effect during the donor’s lifetime or be part of the donor’s will. Assets are transferred to a trustee, with the stipulation that the income from the assets will be paid to the University for the life of the trust, after which the principal or corpus of the trust reverts back to the donor or others of his or her choosing.

A lead trust may be advantageous for donors who have a larger income than they currently need and who desire to transfer assets to heirs at a reduced cost.

Trustee for Gifts in Trust

The University will serve as trustee of gifts that require the appointment of a fiduciary, provided that the University is named as remainder beneficiary of a substantial portion of the assets. Trustees’ fees will be assessed by the University according to a published fee schedule. If the donor chooses, he or she may also designate a trustee other than the University or, when permitted by law, the donor may serve as trustee.

Gifts of Life Insurance

Life insurance can be the medium for giving funds to the University. With it, the donor can make a substantial gift for a relatively modest annual outlay. For instance, a donor may irrevocably assign to the University an existing life insurance policy that is no longer needed for family protection, making the University both the policy owner and the beneficiary. Premium payments made by a donor for a policy for which the University is both the owner and beneficiary are tax deductible to the donor. If the donor does not choose to continue paying the premiums, the University may elect to:

  • Continue paying the premiums and receive the full face value of the policy at the donor’s death;
  • Convert the policy to paid-up insurance in a reduced amount with no further payments; or
  • Surrender the policy for its present cash value. It is also possible for the donor to purchase a new life insurance policy for gift purposes. Once

again the University must be named both owner and beneficiary of the policy. In this case, however, the donor will make annual tax-deductible gifts to the University in the amount of the premium due on the policy. The University, in turn, will pay the premium to the company. Donors are strongly encouraged to select premium payment schedules that will allow a build-up of excess cash with the policy so that earnings on the cash and policy dividends will be sufficient to pay the premiums after five to seven years. If a donor stops making premium gifts before the policy is self-supporting, the University will have the options outlined above in regard to the policy.

Before contributing gifts of life insurance to the University, donors should consult with the University’s Director Planned Giving.

Gift of a Remainder Interest in a Personal Residence or Farm A donor can give a remainder interest trust in a personal residence, such as a home or

condominium, or a farm to the University. The donor or other occupants may continue to occupy the residence or operate the farm without disruption for the duration of the donor’s life. Thereafter, the residence or farm will either be sold or used by the University for purposes specified by the donor, if any. The procedures for evaluating proposed gifts of real property, as outlined above, also apply to gifts of a remainder interest in property.

If a life estate is retained in the property, expenses for maintenance, real estate taxes, and any indebtedness relating to the property are to be borne by the beneficiary of the life estate.

Gifts of Securities

Publicly-traded securities, shares of stock in closely-held companies, bonds, and government issues may be given to the University. The value of a gift of securities will be determined as noted below:

  • Publicly-Traded Securities

    These are securities regularly traded on a public stock exchange. The fair market value of the gift will be the mean of the highest and lowest selling prices quoted for the security on the day of the gift. It is the University’s policy to convert the securities to cash as soon as possible.

  • Closely-Held Securities

    These are shares of securities in entities which have been organized for profit-making purposes, and are rarely traded on stock exchanges. Donors may give shares of closely-held corporate securities to the University in the same manner as publicly-traded securities. The value of closely-traded securities in excess of $10,000 may be valued at the per share cash purchase price of the most recent transaction. Normally, this transaction will be the redemption value of the stock by the corporation. It is the University’s policy to convert closely-held securities to cash. While it is permissible for the donor or donor’s company to purchase the securities at a fair market value, there can be no redemption agreement, either formal or implied, prior to the gift.

To ensure that donors of closely-held securities receive the tax benefit of such a gift and that both the donor and the University comply with applicable IRS regulations, special handling is required. Gifts of closely-held securities may only be accepted by the Vice President for External Relations.

Methods of Delivery and Effective Date of Transfer

  • Hand Delivery
    If securities are hand delivered to the University, the value of the gift will be the mean of its fair market value on the date of delivery. Donors should endorse stock certificates only upon delivery to the University. For securities that are hand delivered, the gift date is the date the securities are delivered to the University, except in the case where ownership of the securities are transferred by a transfer agent and a new certificate is issued in the name of the University. In this case, the date of the gift will be the transfer date indicated on the newly issued certificate.

  • Mailing
    If the securities are mailed to the University, the value of the gift will be its fair market value on the date the securities were postmarked except in the case of securities transferred via a transfer agent as described above. Donors should obtain a stock power, signing it exactly as it appears on the certificates, and have their signature guaranteed by their banker or broker. The stock power and the letter of instruction should be mailed to the University under separate cover from the stock certificates. The University should be designated on the stock certificates, stock power, or related instruments of transfer as Trevecca Nazarene University. The stock certificates should be sent by registered mail, return receipt upon requested, to the University. Unendorsed stock certificates are non-negotiable. The postmark date on the stock power will be used as the gift date when the stock certificate and stock power are mailed under separate covers.

  • Electronic Transfer
    If securities are electronically transferred from a donor’s brokerage account to an account held in the name of the University, then the value of the gift will be its fair market value on the date on which the securities are transferred to the University account. Donors may contact the University to obtain transfer instructions which they will then give to their broker along with a letter of instruction regarding specific securities to be transferred. A copy of the letter of instruction should be sent to the University in order that the donor may be properly receipted.

Non-Traditional Investments

The University may accept gifts of non-traditional investments, such as partnership interests, after a thorough review of the following factors:

  • Marketability
  • Nature of any applicable restrictions
  • Legal and other liabilities associated with the asset
  • Carrying costs such as administrative and legal fees
  • Exposure to unrelated business income tax liability

Outright Gifts

Outright gifts are those placed with the University for immediate disposal and in which the donor retains no interest. They may be either restricted or unrestricted in purpose. Gifts that are donated to the University without any express limitation placed upon them will be credited to the Annual Fund.

Planned Giving

Planned gifts may be either deferred or outright. They involve the transfer of substantial assets which significantly impact the donor’s estate and final plans. These gifts often do not immediately confer institutional ownership and generally are not taken from the donor’s current earnings. The acceptable methods of creating deferred gifts to the University are described below.

Real Estate

The University may accept gifts of real estate, including houses, condominiums, commercial properties, farm land, rental property and undeveloped land, after a thorough review of the following factors:

  • The usefulness of the property for University purposes
  • The marketability of the property
  • The existence of restrictions, reservations, easements, and/or other limitations
  • The existence of encumbrances, such as mortgages and mechanics liens
  • Carrying costs, such as property owner’s association dues, taxes, insurance, and other maintenance expenses,
  • Fair market value in relation to the costs and limits listed above as determined by a qualified appraisal conducted in accordance with Internal Revenue Service standards Prior to the acceptance of any parcel of real property, an assessment of the potential environmental risks will be conducted. This assessment shall include the following:
    • An inquiry of the present owner regarding his, her or its knowledge of the history of the property
    • A title search to determine who the prior owners might have been
    • A consultation with federal, state, and local environmental agencies to find out whether the property has any history of hazardous waste contamination,
    • A visual inspection of the property for any evidence of environmental hazards An environmental audit conducted by a professional service may also be required. The decision to accept gifts of real estate requires the joint approval of the University’s Vice President for External Relations and Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration.

Special Purpose Endowment Funds

The University may approve the establishment of special purpose endowment funds upon receipt of gifts or commitments that meet the approved funding levels and criteria established for the endowment. There are several types of endowments. The most commonly accepted are:

  • Endowed Chair

    A fully endowed academic chair may be established with total commitments of $1 million.

  • Fellowship

    A fellowship may be established with a minimum commitment of $10,000.

  • Scholarship

    An endowed scholarship may be established with a minimum commitment of $10,000.

  • Others

    The University will work with prospective donors on the terms and conditions of other endowment funds provided they support traditional academic activities or functions. An endowment may be established with a minimum commitment of $10,000. In all cases, the establishment of any endowment fund requires the approval of the University President. Any exceptions to the above guidelines must be approved by the Vice President for External Relations.

Restrictions on Endowment Funds

The Internal Revenue Service specifically prohibits the University from accepting gifts that are designated to benefit specific individuals. That is, a gift that benefits a specific individual is not tax-deductible, and acceptance of such a gift could jeopardize the University’s tax-exempt status.

Therefore, any endowment that is created at the University must be structured in such a way that no specific individual is the designated recipient of the proceeds. Donors considering creating an endowment are encouraged to consult the University’s Director of Planned Giving for further information. People may provide assistance to a specific individual directly through the Office of Financial Aid. Financial assistance to specific individuals cannot be acknowledged by the Office of the External Relations and will not be eligible for a federal tax deduction.

Tangible Personal Property

The University may accept gifts of tangible personal property, including works of art, jewelry, antiques, coins, stamps or other collections, automobiles, manuscripts, and books. Such gifts may be accepted only after a thorough review indicates the property is readily marketable or may be used by the University in a manner consistent with one of the purposes for which it was granted status. An essential issue for donors to consider before contributing a gift of tangible personal property is whether they would like the University to use or display the property.

Prospective donors should be advised that the University reserves the right to sell or otherwise dispose of the personal property in question, if such action is financially advisable or necessary. For goods-in-kind donations with a fair value of less than $500, the University must be furnished with the following information:

  • Donor’s name, address, and telephone number
  • Contact person, if the donor is a corporation
  • Donor’s social security number or federal tax identification number
  • Brief physical description of the donated asset, including an explanation of the method used to determine the fair market value
  • Date the University department acquired the asset and method of acquisition For good-in-kind donations with a fair market value between $500 and $5,000, the University must be furnished with the following information in addition to those listed above:
  • Appraisal of the donated asset by a qualified party no more than 60 days prior to the date of the contribution For goods-in-kind with a fair market value over $5,000, the University must be furnished with the following in addition to information required for $500 goods-in-kind donations:
  • An independent evaluation from a qualified appraiser that meets reporting requirements for IRS Form 8283, “Non-Cash Charitable Contributions Appraisal Summary.” In order that a donor may make appropriate provisions on his or her tax return, the University should advise the donor of its intention to sell the property.

Worthy Student Scholarship

The Worthy Student Scholarship Fund was created to support students with financial need in the current school year beyond their normal financial aid. All funds are expendable in the current academic year for scholarship support, as directed by the University Scholarship Committee. Donors interested in the purpose of the fund may make gifts to the University which reserves full control and discretion as to the distribution and use of donated funds.

Recommendations for students to receive consideration for assistance from the Worthy Student Scholarship Fund may be made to the University Scholarship Committee through the Director of Financial Aid. The University Scholarship Committee retains authority for the selection of scholarship recipients.

Students related to a donor to the Worthy Student Scholarship Fund will not be considered for an award. For example, a student whose grandparent makes a gift to the Worthy Student Scholarship Fund will not be eligible for consideration.

Final Approval, Acceptance, and Execution by the University

Documents effectuating the acceptance of all gifts, the creation of endowment programs, and the transfer of real or tangible personal property to the University must be approved by University legal counsel and executed by the Vice President of Financial Services or by the Vice President for External Relations.