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Naming of Facilities, Endowed Positions and Honorary Grants

Business/Finance and Facilities

PDF Version: BOT Naming Rights Policy


  1. Introduction
  2. Roles and Responsibilities
  3. Policy Statement
  4. Policy History

I. Introduction

  1. Authority: C.R.S. § 23-54-102, et seq. (2019) authorizes the Trustees of Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSU Denver) to establish rules and regulations to govern and operate the University and its programs. The Trustees retain authority to approve, interpret, and administer policies pertaining to University governance. The Trustees authorize the President of MSU Denver to approve, administer, and interpret policies pertaining to University operations.

  2. Purpose: This policy governs the naming rights to facilities, endowed positions, and honorary grants at MSU Denver.

  3. Scope: This policy governs programs and facilities funded solely by Metropolitan State University of Denver and should be read in conjunction with the Metropolitan State University of Denver Foundation, Inc. “Gift Acceptance Policy”; the Metropolitan State University of Denver “Other Revenue Generating Programs” and “Sponsorships” policies; and the Auraria Higher Education Center, campus-wide policies regarding the naming of shared facilities, areas, and spaces, as developed by the AHEC Policy Development and Shared Operations Committee.

II. Roles and Responsibilities

  1. Responsible Executives: Chief Advancement Officer, Chief Operations Officer

  2. Responsible Administrators: Chief Academic Officer, Chief Human Resources Officer, and Chief Facilities Planning Officer

  3. Responsible Office: Foundation Office

  4. Policy Contact: Foundation Office, 303-615-0065

III. Policy Statement

  1. Introduction

    1. In fulfilling its mission, the University receives support from individuals, corporations, foundations, nonprofit organizations, and other donors. Support in the form of donations allows the University to minimize its dependence upon public funding and to maximize its autonomy through the creation of its own wealth. 
    2. Provision for naming rights enables the University to:
      1. honor those who have rendered outstanding service to the institution; and/or
      2. recognize those who make a prominent and/or permanent investment in the University through donations.
    3. Naming rights may be granted in relation to:
      1. the name of a building, part of a building, a complex, and any other University facilities;
      2. schools, departments, and centers;
      3. an academic position, an academic program, and a lecture or series of lectures; and a scholarship, and a prize or award.

  2. Fitness Clause

    1. Naming rights may be offered to those whose service and/or generosity to the University:
      1. advances the academic mission of the University;
      2. is consistent with the core values of the University;
      3. furthers the capacity of the University to meet its objectives; and
      4. enhances the growth and reputation of the University.

  3. Rescinding Recognition

    1. If a naming is deemed to no longer be in the best interest of the University or the donor, it is possible that the naming may be revoked by the University, the donor, and/or the donor’s family following consultation with the Vice President of University Advancement, the President of the University, the MSU Denver Foundation Board, and the Board of Trustees.
    2. Final rescission of a naming must be approved by the Board of Trustees.

  4. Aims of the Naming Rights Policy

    1. The Policy on Naming Rights is designed to:
      1. support the development of an active culture of recognition;
      2. provide a comprehensive framework within which to administer naming rights; and
      3. provide incentives for companies, individuals, and other donors to support the University.

  5. Naming Facilities

    1. The naming of a building, part of a building, a complex, and any other University facilities or portions of facilities (Facilities) shall be governed by the following:
      1. A Facility can reflect the name of any person or entity subject to the Fitness Clause.
      2. Gifts in excess of $1 million must be approved by the University’s Board of Trustees. Gifts less than $1 million may be accepted by the President of the University after consultation with the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan State University of Denver Foundation, Inc. (Foundation Board) or a committee of the Foundation Board.
    2. Gifts should generally be equal to 50% of construction costs of a Facility; however, a higher or lower percentage may be applied dependent upon the prestige associated with the Facility, the uniqueness of a Facility’s location, the uniqueness of the role played by the Facility, and/or the uniqueness of construction costs associated with a Facility. Funds donated in connection with the naming of a facility need not necessarily be applied to the construction cost of the facility, but can be used for other purposes as mutually agreed with the donor. Deviations may be approved by the University’s Board of Trustees.
    3. The duration of naming rights is generally considered to be for the useful life of the Facility. Accordingly, naming rights will typically expire in the event a Facility is replaced, renovated, destroyed or ceases to be used by MSU Denver. Notwithstanding, an estimated useful life should be established and agreed upon by the donor and University beforehand. A right of first refusal to the continued naming of a Facility may be granted on mutually agreed terms.

  6. Naming Endowed Positions

    1. An Endowed Position can reflect the name of any person or entity subject to the Fitness Clause.
    2. The endowment levels below indicate the minimum funding required from donors. Each chair, professorship or other endowment may need to be funded at a higher level to meet the needs of a specific program:
      1. $25,000 minimum for partial Endowed Scholarship
      2. $75,000 minimum for a Full Endowed Scholarship (amount to be adjusted as necessary to address future changes in tuition)
      3. $100,000 Lectureship
      4. $500,000 Professorship
      5. $1.5 million Chair
      6. $1.5 million Program
      7. $3 million Center/Institute
      8. $5 million Department
      9. $10 million School or College
      10. Price may be higher based on prestige and visibility
    3. All endowed position minimums will be reviewed on a regular basis (at least every 3 years) to allow for adjustments based on the prevailing current market.

  7. Honorary Naming Rights

    1. The naming of any Endowed Positions or Facilities without an associated donation to the University or its foundation (Honorary Grant) shall be governed by the following:
      1. Any eligible, natural person can receive an Honorary Grant, subject to the Fitness Clause. Companies or other forms of entities may not receive Honorary Grants.
      2. The University may honor those in the community who deserve recognition by naming a Facility or Endowed Position after such person without requiring any donation to the University. However, the University recognizes any Honorary Grant imposes an opportunity cost on the University’s ability to raise funds in connection with the naming of such Facility or Endowed Position. Consequently, all Honorary Grants should be carefully considered and any decision to offer an Honorary Grant should weigh the opportunity cost against the desire of the University community to honor the grantee.
      3. Active politicians, University members, and Board of Trustee and Foundation Board members are not eligible for Honorary Grants until at least 12 months after they have ceased to serve in such position.
      4. Honoree naming rights shall have a maximum term no greater than the term which would otherwise be granted if the right was granted for philanthropic purposes (i.e., the useful life of the Facility).
      5. Any Honorary Grant must be approved by the Foundation Board and the Board of Trustees.

IV. Policy History

  1. Approved by: Board of Trustees

  2. Effective: April 1, 2019

  3. Original Enactment: December 4, 2015

  4. Review: This policy will be reviewed every five years or as deemed necessary by University leadership.

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