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Wealthy universities receive millions of dollars, but poorer students don’t always benefit

Rich universities could be doing more to share the wealth.

That’s the conclusion of a study on university endowments published Thursday by the Education Trust, a research and advocacy organization focused on educational equality. The report analyzed tax data from 67 private, non profit universities that are among the nation’s wealthiest universities and found that 35 of them spent less than 5% of their endowment in 2013. If those schools ticked up their spending to equal 5% they could fund the tuition of 2,376 students from families making $30,000 or less.

“These endowments at these institutions are really subsidized by all taxpayers,” said Andrew Nichols, the director of higher education research at the Education Trust and one of the authors of the report.

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