CU Boulder values donations, whether monetary, gift-in-kind, asset, property or other and we appreciate those who donate to our organization for the purposes of fulfilling our mission of education, research, collaboration and developing the leaders of tomorrow.

As such, gift fund accounting plays an important role in ensuring proper stewardship of the organization's funds and assets by segregating funds according to their intended purposes. The intent of each gift is made known by the donor at the time of the donation - some donors' gifts are intended for specific purposes, while others are provided to the university for more general use. Some are short-term gifts, while others are long-term.

In order to best protect and manage these gift funds, CU Boulder, in conjunction with the CU Foundation, has established a variety of methods in order to properly position those monies, fund group, gifts-in-kind, assets, property or other gift items.

Below are a few general questions for you to consider as you identify the best way to classify these gifts:

  • What are the sources and uses of the funds?
  • Where did the money come from, and what is it for?
  • Are the funds unrestricted or restricted?

  • Who decides how it is to be used?
  • Are the funds current or non-current?
  • Can we use it now, or are we holding it in some way?

Accounting Handbook | OUC 

Accounting Handbook | How and when to accept donations of goods, property, or services.

 Gift Revenues & Recognition
Accounting Handbook | How to classify and record donations (gifts) of cash.

More Guidance and Resources:

 Gift Accounting | The Guide Chapter 15
Provides background information on gift accounting and explains how to establish and administer gift funds.

 Gift Setup Process Overview
Use this flowchart to determine how to process donations received by your department.

 Gift Fund Journals
Provides guidance on JE rules and restrictions including cash transfers.

 Gift Purpose Crossover Table
Matches CU Foundation gift purpose codes with CU expense purpose codes in order to assure that gift funds are spent in accordance with donor wishes.

Revenue Decision Matrix
For guidance in determining the types of revenue - gift, sponsored project, auxiliary and self funded, or fundraising event.

Gift Fund Tools - User Guide
Provides guidance on the Tableau gift utilization workbook, Cognos reports, m-Fin reports and CU Foundation reports.