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Make a Difference Giving to Michigan State University

Guide to Giving at MSU

Michigan State University has a remarkable history of advancing the common good with uncommon will. But a rich past is worth nothing without an investment in the future. Donations to Michigan State are a critical resource that empower students, scholars, faculty and researchers to make seemingly impossible ideas possible and turn dreams into realities. Individual MSU donations become collective power—the power to lead a new generation of pioneers beyond today’s challenges and charge boldly toward the discoveries of tomorrow.



MSU’s online gift system is an easy, fast, secure and cost-effective way to give to the colleges, units or programs of your choice. Donor security is our first priority. Our online gift system authorizes transactions in real-time and does not record or store credit card information.

Two Types of Gifts

  1. One-time gift – your gift will be charged to your credit or debit card.


  2. Recurring gift – your gift will be charged automatically at the interval of your choice to your credit or debit card. Learn more about how to make a recurring gift, or click the button below to set up your gift now.



University Development
University Advancement
Spartan Way
535 Chestnut Road, Room 300
East Lansing, MI 48824

Please make check payable to “Michigan State University” and include the name of the fund you wish to support on the memo line of your check.


(800) 232-4MSU or (517) 884-1000

Mention the name of the fund you wish to support and provide your credit card number and gift amount.

MSU Greenline

Greenline is the voice of MSU Annual Giving. When you receive a call from MSU Greenline, you are talking to some of the brightest, most motivated students at MSU who are excited to learn about your experience at Michigan State and the impact it continues to have on you. Learn more about MSU Greenline



Some employers provide matching gifts that can double or even triple the value of a gift to Michigan State. Many companies will also match gifts made by employee spouses and retirees. To find out if a company has a matching gift policy, enter the company name below.

When setting up a matching gift, you may be able to access the forms directly through the search below.

Otherwise, please send the completed and signed form along with your gift to:

University Development
University Advancement
Spartan Way
535 Chestnut Road, Room 300
East Lansing, MI 48824


Visit My MSU Giving to view your lifetime and annual giving history to Michigan State University.



Current gifts can be cash contributions given now that provide immediate impact. Examples of current gifts are cash, securities, gifts of personal and real property (gifts in kind), bargain sales and gifts of closely held stock.


Gifts of cash are an immediate transfer of funds from you to Michigan State University. Gifts of cash can be made by personal check or credit card.


For more information on making a stock gift to MSU please contact Lynn Pfaff at (517) 884-1024 or

A gift of securities can be made with an electronic transfer of shares to Michigan State University. MSU has accounts established with multiple brokerage firms. A gift of securities can be a good option for accumulated stock that has appreciated in value and would be subject to a 20% capital gains tax if sold.

Current tax laws provide an incentive to make a charitable gift of stock at a low tax cost. Tax savings are achieved in two ways: (1) no capital gains tax is charged when appreciated stock is transferred (gifted) to Michigan State University (2) a charitable income tax deduction of up to 30% of adjusted gross income can be taken for the full fair market value of the stock on the date of transfer to Michigan State University.

The stock value is determined by the average between the high and low trade values on the date the stock enters MSU’s account. Whether making a stock transfer electronically, or by any other means, please submit a letter to University Development, Lynn Pfaff, Finance and Endowment, 535 Chestnut Road, Room 300, East Lansing, MI 48824-1005, explaining the intent to transfer (gift) the stock. The letter, which can be mailed or faxed, should contain the name of the stock, the number of shares, the gift designation, donor’s name, address and broker information. Gifts of securities may be accepted, but not negotiated by MSU, without a signed letter of instruction/intent from the donor(s).


A gift of tangible personal property, such as a work or collection of art, rare books, stamp or coin collection, etc., entitles the donor to a charitable deduction based on the full fair market (appraised) value of the gift if the gift complies with the standard of “related use” regarding the designation at and use by Michigan State University.

For example, a painting may be donated to The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum or rare books to the MSU Libraries for the exempt purposes of the university. The gift must be documented by a legitimate appraisal originated by, but not prepared by, the donor(s) or MSU. The “related use” charitable deduction is limited to 30% of adjusted gross income (AGI) and may be carried forward, if necessary, for five consecutive tax years until completely utilized. Property accepted and received by MSU but “unrelated” to the exempt purposes of MSU, then sold to create a gift, is eligible for a charitable deduction for the cost basis in the property, subject to a 50% AGI ceiling. If necessary, a five-year carryover period is available to take full advantage of the allowable charitable deduction.


The Office of Gift Planning at Michigan State University assists donors in exploring and executing charitable intentions in the most efficient and satisfying manner for the donor, their heirs and MSU. Through the creative planning process, charitable giving strategies are incorporated within comprehensive estate plans to fulfill philanthropic goals, reduce income taxes, avoid capital gains and possible estate taxes, retain a life income, increase spendable income, and/or reduce costs of estate settlement, all while enjoying the satisfaction of providing significant future financial support for Michigan State University.

Explore how you can make a planned gift.