Frequently Asked Questions about the VFIC

Questions and Answers

How would you define the unique roles of the VFIC and its colleges?

The VFIC is a strong statewide organization that raises money to support the 17 leading independent colleges and universities in Virginia. These colleges, educating more than 33,000 students a year, provide small classes, low student-faculty ratios, personal attention to students, and a time-tested residential liberal arts and sciences experience – important and distinctive options compared to large public universities. Clearly, one of the VFIC’s fundamental purposes is to preserve Virginia’s small independent college sector as an option for students now and in the future.

Why should an individual, corporation or foundation support the VFIC?

There is a statewide issue in play here. All Virginians, particularly our young men and women, benefit when the Commonwealth has a vibrant independent college sector. The VFIC provides a central, convenient and effective way for donors to support independent higher education throughout Virginia. The VFIC’s approach is founded on the basic theory that a rising tide lifts all boats – so with one contribution, donors impact 17 colleges and universities statewide, benefiting thousands of young men and women simultaneously.

Beyond academic programs, how else do the independent colleges benefit Virginia?

Economic development – these colleges are vital engines of commerce for their regions, with an overall economic impact of well over $1 billion to the state’s economy. Workforce development – each year, a high percentage of the graduates of VFIC colleges move directly into business and professional careers here in Virginia. Quality of life – these colleges provide arts, cultural and educational opportunities for citizens of all ages in towns, cities and regions throughout the Commonwealth.

How do the colleges use the VFIC money?

Donor designation is the key. Unrestricted gifts go to the colleges for them to use where needed most, generally to enhance educational programs. Gifts to the VFIC’s scholarship initiatives go to the colleges in the form of financial aid for need-based students. Donors also regularly support other VFIC programs designed to meet priority college needs, such as for libraries, undergraduate research, ethics programs, faculty grants and campus technology needs.

Is the VFIC interested in gifts toward its endowment?

Yes. If you wish to assure the permanent flow of funding to these colleges, and have established endowments at the VFIC. These named funds are invested, and 4.55 percent is drawn down each year to support the colleges. The advantage of these gifts is that the colleges can count on this support in perpetuity.

How do I make a contribution to the VFIC?

There are many options available for your contribution. Please visit our Donor Information page for more details.