Highest Needs

University of Richmond Annual Fund

The University of Richmond Annual Fund is the most popular form of support from Spider alumni, families, and friends. These gifts are unrestricted, meaning University leadership can use them wherever needed most. They have an immediate and meaningful impact on the student experience, supporting financial aid, academics, residential life, wellness, and extracurriculars. Last year, more than 4,200 individuals gave more than $1.7M to the University of Richmond Annual Fund.

Dedicated Annual Funds

Many donors like to direct their annual fund gift to their school or college. These gifts help the deans meet their most pressing needs. There are dedicated annual funds for the Schools of Arts & Sciences, Business, Leadership Studies, Law, and Professional & Continuing Studies, as well as for Richmond and Westhampton Colleges.

The Spider Athletic Fund (SAF) provides financial support for Richmond Athletics through philanthropic contributions from Spider alumni, fans, and families.  

Financial Aid

The University of Richmond prides itself on offering some of the best financial aid anywhere. We are one of a handful of universities that meets 100% of demonstrated need and is “need blind” in making admission decisions. In addition, all first-year applicants, regardless of need-based eligibility, are considered for merit-based aid, including full tuition scholarships and interest-based programs.

This generous financial aid is supported by endowed scholarships created by alumni, families, and others to ensure Richmond is accessible to talented students from all socio-economic levels. However, the need is even greater than the income on these endowments, and fluctuates annually based on economic factors and the composition of each class. Funds that can be used immediately are critical to meeting this need. 

Immediate Use Funds

Named Annual Scholarships: Donors may create a named annual scholarship with a commitment of $5,000 or more annually for five (5) years (a $25,000 minimum gift). Each year the gift is received, it will be awarded to a student, in its entirety, during the next financial aid award cycle.  

Undergraduate Financial Aid: Gifts to the Undergraduate Financial Aid are immediately available to help students with financial aid. There is no minimum gift or long-term commitment required.

Law Dean’s Opportunity Scholarships: Dean Wendy Perdue and her husband David established this new program with their own six-figure commitment in 2019 to support students with high need and high potential to help reduce the tremendous unmet need law students have for financial aid. With university support, endowment support, and current use gifts, the Law School awards approximately $8 million in financial aid toward students’ total $18 million annual need.


Opportunities for named, endowed scholarships begin at $50,000 and provide tuition support in perpetuity.


Sometimes students encounter a personal or family emergency or other financial challenge that interferes with their ability to succeed. The Student Emergency Fund was established in 2018 to help Spiders meet unanticipated expenses that are not part of the normal cost of attendance. Hundreds of students have received help since then; a recent example is the purchase of an airline ticket when a parent became very ill. When the pandemic struck, the Student Emergency Fund received more than 400 requests for funds to travel home or pay living assistance for students unable to do so because of border closings and quarantine restrictions.


The Career Opportunity Fund supports students needing assistance to purchase interview clothing, pay for travel to interviews for jobs and internships, pay graduate school application fees, or participate in Spider Road trips and academic conferences.