University of Nebraska rises on America’s Favorite Charities list

Contributors who give to the University of Nebraska at every level once again helped to make the university a favorite charity.

The University of Nebraska has been named to America’s Favorite Charities for 2021. The Chronicle of Philanthropy, an industry publication that focuses on the U.S. nonprofit sector, released the top-100 ranking.

The University of Nebraska came in at No. 85 in the ranking of the nonprofits that raised the most in cash and stock contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations during 2020. It rose in the list from its previous spot at No. 87.

Brian Hastings, president and CEO of the University of Nebraska Foundation, said it’s coincidental that the University of Nebraska would make No. 85 because this year also marks the 85th anniversary of philanthropic giving to the university. In 1936, a group of business and community leaders founded the University of Nebraska Foundation to serve as the university’s designated private charity.

“Of most meaning as we celebrate 85 years of philanthropic giving is that donors at all levels are instrumental in helping to keep education accessible and affordable for students, to recruit and retain high-quality faculty and to provide life-changing research and medical care,” Hastings said. “We’re extremely grateful for their commitment to the university’s more than 50,000 students who ultimately benefit from their generosity.”

The University of Nebraska Foundation manages more than 11,200 funds that benefit the University of Nebraska System and its health care clinical partner Nebraska Medicine. Contributors direct more than 99% of gifts to specific areas and causes.

Universities and colleges account for 41 of the organizations that made the favorite charities list, including 22 public institutions.

For higher education institutions, the Chronicle used data from the annual Voluntary Support of Education survey conducted by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education. It also used data from the Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System.

The Chronicle’s announcement about America’s Favorite Charities, including the top 100 list, is available at

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