Private contributions from outside donors play a large role in university funding across the nation. The UW received approximately $227 million in last year’s private gifts, almost $28 million less than gifts from the preceding 2013-14 fiscal year.
“The [contribution] that is significantly smaller is [to] the School of Law,” said Walt Dryfoos, associate vice president for advancement services at the UW.
The decrease in the law school’s contributions may be in part due to Jack MacDonald, a generous donor, passing away in 2013, leaving his $187.6 million to be split up between the UW’s School of Law, the Salvation Army, and Seattle Children’s Research Institute.
This is the largest gift to the law school in its history, according to The Seattle Times.
With all of this money laying around, some people might wonder why public universities like the UW need funding from the legislature in the first place.