The University’s endowment grew 13 percent in fiscal year (FY) 2010 to $512.9 million, which, according to Chief Investment Officer Anne Martin, puts Wesleyan in the middle of the pack as compared to the returns of peer institutions, which saw returns ranging from about 8 percent to 17 percent.
Martin placed the endowment at $533.3 million for September 2010, a 5.6 percent increase since June. But this figure has not yet been audited by an external agency. Martin also said that the endowment did especially well in December, but that she had no final numbers.
According to Martin, gifts to the University also increased in FY 2010 to $12.3 million as compared with $8.8 million in FY 2009.
The University drew $35.7 million from the endowment for its operating budget in FY 2010, a slight increase from $35.4 million in FY 2009.
President Michael Roth said that he is glad to see gains in the endowment, but emphasized the importance of keeping an eye to the future
“I’m most excited about the fact that our new Chief Investment Officer, Anne Martin, has put in place a process for the rational management of the endowment for the long term,” Roth said. “I think what’s really important is that over the long haul we protect the endowment and we help it grow and not be subject to the swings that we’ve seen in the past.”
Martin said that she is optimistic for the future, and that aside from a need to increase exposure to emerging markets, the endowment is on track to meet its goals. Currently, the Investment Office is focused on hiring managers to oversee the various assets in the endowment portfolio.
“We had originally thought we would hire at all levels, but my thinking has evolved, and I’m really trying to hire the top people first,” Martin said. “I need people that can come in and hit the ground running.”