Questioning the institutional practice of asking for alumni donations

April 26, 2016

“I didn’t pay to do my undergraduate degree, paid for my master’s, and was then on a scholarship for my PhD. Am I duty bound, in some way, to pay again?” asks Richard Budd before discussing the purpose and mentality behind alumni donations. Budd questions the morality of public universities asking for donations after charging students for tuition. He then briefly discusses the history and tradition of universities asking for donations, as well as the institution’s need for funding to compete on a national and international level. “The state should, I think, support universities to the point where they don’t need to look elsewhere,” he concludes, “I just can’t get my head around the moral logic of the thing, whichever way you slice it—let’s face it, alumni donations are just weird.” Times Higher Education