L&S Gift Management: UW Foundation Policy Overview

Below is an overview of the policies of accepting and processing gift funds, including how to request access access to the UW Foundation's website. 

The University of Wisconsin Foundationpan (UWF) is the official fundraising and gift-receiving organization for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and the university's development and financial partner. Each year, the UW Foundation transfers gift and investment income to UW-Madison to support campus priorities like scholarships, building projects, research efforts, and initiatives in specific schools, colleges, and programs.

The University of Wisconsin Foundation is a separate organization from University of Wisconsin-Madison so it is important to understand the policies and procedures that allow us to work together to support the mission of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. We are all responsible for ensuring that the correct policies are followed for the acceptance and administrative stewardship of gifts made directly to the University, as well as gifts made to the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association (WFAA) in support of the University.


Request Access to the UW Foundation Resources

The employee's supervisor needs to request access via the UW Foundation Access Request Form.

Questions can be directed to the Campus Unit Administrator (CUA) for L&S Jana Valeo

For more information, please review the Best Tools and Practices for Gift and Fund Management" on the WFAA Website.

Request form fields

Responses are sent by Jana Valeo. The name and email of the person completing the form are automatically recorded.
Request form fields
Field Description
Employee Name Name of employee who needs access added / removed / modified
Employee Work unit Name of L&S Department / Program
Employee Title Employee's job title
Employee Email Employee's email

Select from the following options:

  • Access for new user
  • Change for Current User
  • Remove Access

Add or modify access

Add / Modify Access
Field Description
Effective Date Effective date of their access, if adding a new user, or the
Supervisor Name Name of supervisor
Have they previously had access to the UW Foundation website? Yes / no question
Foundation funds
List the funds the employee needs to access. E.g., all department & sub-department funds, certain fund types.
If there are centers within a department, please list those. If they only need access to a subset of funds, like only student related funds, please note that as well.
Will they process financial transactions using Foundation funds? Examples: deposits, disbursements, or reconciliations, etc.?
Access to donor information

Do they need access to donor information to process thank you notes and other stewardship related activities? If so, please describe the information needed.

Donor stewardship

Is donor stewardship their primary job? If so, please describe access needs.

Removing access

Remove Access
Field Description
Removing access - effective date List the effective date to remove their access.

End of Form
Field Description
Additional information

Optional. List additional information or context if needed.

Form feedback

Optional. Please let us know if you have any feedback about this forms or related L&S KBs.

Policy and Spending of Foundation Funds

All payments made using Foundation/gift funds need to follow UW policies and procedures, as well as align with donor intent for the Foundation. The majority of expenses supported by Foundation funds will be paid directly through 233 projects at UW-Madison using the method appropriate for the expense (HRS, ShopUW, Purchasing Card, WiSH, e-Reimbursement, etc.).

Meal overages and alcohol purchases are not allowable on UW funds, including 233 projects. These items may be paid directly from UW Foundation with a check request. To ensure proper handling, review the policies below.

Once purchases have been made using a 233 project, funds will need to be transferred from the Foundation to the 233 project to cover for those expenses. (See L&S Gift Management: How to transfer UW Foundation funds to a 233 Project).

When reviewing the available balance of Foundation funds, it is important to review available income on the Foundation fund and also the balances and commitments for the corresponding 233 project(s) at UW as well. Since manual transfers are required to move Foundation funds to the 233 projects at UW, the balances of both need to be looked at together to get an accurate total of available funds.

Relevant Campus and WFAA policies:

Guide to Allowable Expenses

UW Foundation strives to be a good steward of donor money. All payments are looked at on a case-by-case basis with the donor in mind. If there is doubt that a payment is in line with the donor’s wishes, the payment will not be approved. Keep in mind that a discretionary fund allows you to spend money on any allowable expense. Furthermore, some funds will be limited to certain types of expenses: for example, a discretionary scholarship fund is discretionary within the realm of scholarship payments, it can’t be used for non-scholarship expenses.

Special approval is required for expenses that fall under the Official Functions guidelines so it is essential to become familiar with the activities that require extra approval and processing requirements. Some examples include:

  • Functions for Board of Visitors or officials from other public or private institutions.
  • Functions for graduating classes and their parents.
  • Employee recognition and morale/team building
  • House hunting trip for faculty or staff
  • Alumni events and activities
  • Nominal gifts—excluding gift cards and cash equivalents

Foundation funds can be used to pay for meal overages and alcohol, however, review the Business Meal policy for the current maximums allowed by the Foundation and proper procedure.

A UW business purpose is required for every expense, including purchases made using gift funds. If you cannot express a benefit to the UW, it is not allowable.All expenses need to follow UW policy, even when purchased using Foundation funds. Expenses that are not allowed by UW policy cannot be paid for directly by the Foundation, with the exception of meal overages and alcohol. This includes:

  • printing, unless prior approval obtained
  • gifts, except promo items of no perceived value (e.g. UW logo mugs, t-shirts, key chains, cinch sacks, etc.).
  • payments to other non-profits (e.g., other foundations, charities, universities, etc.).
  • gift cards
  • Payments to Individuals
  • non-public area furniture or office decorations, appliances for staff use (e.g., refrigerators, microwaves, toaster ovens, coffee makers)

Expenses that can be submitted through UW cannot be paid by UW Foundation. The UW Foundation works with Accounting Services to make sure all payments complement UW policy.

Key concept: using UW Foundation to circumvent UW policy is not allowed.

 L&S Administration Contacts

KeywordsFoundation, gift, 233, deposit, transfer, official function, community fund, policy, UWF, WFAA, WAA, Gift Management, 4WARD, GFM donor, donation   Doc ID123006
OwnerJana V.GroupL&S KB
Created2022-12-12 12:33:37Updated2024-05-08 14:51:21
SitesL&S KB
Feedback  0   0