Endowment “Shrinks” in “Cold” Economy
EVANSTON—Frigid economic conditions have shrunk the size of Northwestern’s endowment, according to new reports from President Bienen’s office. University spokesman Steven Westerstein released a statement yesterday downplaying the so-called “shrinkage” effect on NU’s performance.
“We here at Northwestern University have always felt that it’s not about the size of the endowment, but how you use it that really matters. Besides, it’s not like our endowment is that small. At least we’re still bigger than Wash U.”
Northwestern student reactions were very mixed about the news of the endowment’s shriveling. “Oh, that concerns me a lot. The main reason I decided to go here was the size of the endowment,” said Weinberg junior Melissa Bergson. “I don’t know if my experience will be quite the same anymore.”
“I think a lot of universities are concerned too much with endowment size,” said SESP freshman Julie Howitzers. “They don’t realize that students don’t really care that much. NU has a lot of other great benefits besides its endowment. It just has a strong personality, which is important to me.”
In his final months at Northwestern, President Bienen wants to extend the life of Northwestern pride far beyond his tenure. “The goal is to keep it going in the long run. We’ve been around since 1851, so there will always be some bumps in the road. We just need to stay focused to extend our prosperity.
The dwindling size of NU’s endowment presents a problem to school administrators. “Once the stock market warms back up,” explains Westerstein, “we’ll be back to normal size. Hopefully, with our endowment re-erected, performance will return to normal.”