Policy Library

665 Indiana State University Naming

Last updated on: October 12, 2018
Authority: Approved by the Board of Trustees

665.1 Purpose

To set out the rules by which University property and other entities will be named. 

665.2 Authority to Name

The ISU Board of Trustees, upon the recommendation of the President, has the authority to name all University facilities, properties, and academic entities (i.e. all buildings, major portions of buildings, academic colleges, schools, centers, professorships, University streets or roads, athletic fields, plazas, malls, and other large areas of major assembly or activity).  Naming decisions related to a building, a chair or professorship, an academic program or college, will be made subsequent to or concurrent with approval of the establishment of the facility, program or academic entity by the President and his/her cabinet, and in some cases the Board of Trustees.  The Board may delegate to the President the authority to name individual rooms, limited areas and individual items or features within buildings, individual landscape items or features, limited outdoor areas and other minor properties.  The Board of Trustees, upon recommendation of the President, must approve all proposed names.

Primary consideration for naming or renaming facilities, properties, and academic entities is given in recognition of a significant gift to the Indiana State University Foundation.  However, naming in recognition of other significant contributions to the welfare of the University may also be considered.  Discussions with potential benefactors for naming opportunities will follow established guidelines for the protection of confidential donor information.

665.3 University Naming Approval Criteria

Recommended names must comply with the following criteria to be considered for naming or renaming facilities, properties and academic entities:

  • The proposed name will not conflict with other named facilities or academic entities associated with Indiana State University.
  • The proposed name does not call into question the public respect of the University and is consistent with the University’s mission and core values.
  • The proposed name does not imply the University’s endorsement of a partisan political or ideological position or commercial product; provided, however, that the proposed name may be that of an individual who previously held public office or the name of an individual or a company that manufactures or distributes commercial products. In the case of a proposed academic entity name, the Provost has approved the establishment of the proposed academic entity.
  • In the case of a proposed facility name, the University Treasurer has approved the building construction or renovation project, including a financing plan.
  • If the benefactor does not meet the full cost of the facility, property or academic entity, the naming is subject to completion of satisfactory funding arrangements by the University.

665.4 Criteria for Removal of an Approved Name

Unless otherwise agreed to in the gift agreement and as approved by the President or as set forth in Section 665.10, an approved name will remain in use for the life of the facility, property or academic entity.  However, there are situations that could cause the removal of the name either during the planning process or after project completion.

  • When the named facility or property is demolished or is otherwise no longer in existence, the name will not be transferred to a new facility except in such cases when a useful facility is relocated to serve the greater interest of the University. The transfer of the name will be approved by the Board of Trustees.
  • The name on an existing or proposed facility, property or academic entity may be removed if its continued use calls into serious question the public trust afforded to the University, is contrary to Indiana State University’s mission, vision, and values, or would otherwise reflect adversely upon the University.
  • The name of the facility, property or academic entity may be removed if a benefactor ceases payment on a pledged donation for the facility, property or academic entity.
  • In the case of corporate donors, the name of the facility, property or academic entity may be changed to reflect a new corporate name resulting from the company’s decision to change its name or a corporate merger.
  • If the University is unable to complete the project, or establish the program or endowment, the potential benefactor will be entitled to redirect, retract or seek a refund of their contribution.
  • In those instances where a building has been razed, property eliminated, or an academic entity has been discontinued, the University will make every effort to recognize the individual family or corporation in question in a manner consistent with the original naming.  With respect to a former building and upon approval by the President, recognition will include an official marker identifying the site for posterity.

665.5 Benefactor Naming Requirements and Funding Levels

665.5.1 Benefactor Naming Requirements

Benefactor naming opportunities will be first considered for recognition of a substantial gift to the University when the Vice President of University Advancement approves the formal initiation of the naming approval process and determines the following requirements have been met:

  • The name meets the requirements as presented in the Naming Approval Criteria in Section 665.3.
  • The gift meets the funding level requirements as presented in Benefactor Naming Funding Levels in Section 665.5.2.
  • The gift is recorded on the Foundation and University Gift Agreement form which summarizes the mutual understanding of the donor(s), and the University regarding the use and terms of the gift and meets the requirements presented in the Naming Policy Operating Procedures.
  • The gift commitment is expressed in cash or a written pledge to be paid within five years of the naming of the facility or entity.
  • Subject to any necessary approvals required by the State of Indiana, a portion of the gift may be an irrevocable deferred gift provided that:
  • It represents up to only one-third of the overall gift commitment for a new building.
  • The face value of the gift is at least seventy five percent of the replacement value of an existing building at the time the gift is made.
  • It meets the current guidelines established by the ISU Foundation regarding Acceptance of Planned Gifts.

665.5.2 Benefactor Naming Levels

Endowed funds may be established within the ISU Foundation subject to its policies governing the establishment of endowed funds.  The minimum amount required to establish an endowment is $25,000.  The required funding level for specific types of endowments are higher depending on the type of the award as addressed below.

665.5.2.1 Faculty Awards Dean’s Endowed Chair.  Provides support to enable the University to honor or recruit an outstanding scholar who has demonstrated the potential of making exceptional contributions to his/her discipline and will serve as Dean of a University college. 
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $3.5 million

665.5.2.2 Endowed Chair or Director.  Provides support to enable the University to honor or recruit an outstanding scholar who has demonstrated the potential of making exceptional contributions to his/her discipline.  Provides income toward an outstanding faculty member’s salary and related expenses, including research and professional conferences, and who serves as chair of a department.
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $2.5 million

665.5.2.3 Endowed Professorships.  Provides support for an outstanding scholar with demonstrated excellence in the area of scholarship in his/her discipline.  Income from the endowment will provide support for the scholarship of this position.
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $1.0 million

665.5.2.4 Visiting Professorship.  Provides resources to support visiting scholars in an area important to the mission of Indiana State University.
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $500,000

665.5.2.5 Emerging Faculty Award.  Provides income to apply toward the scholarship (teaching, research and engagement) expenses of an outstanding emerging faculty scholar.  These funds will enable ISU to attract and retain the most promising young professors.
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $250,000

             665.5.2.6 Endowed Lectureship.  Provides income for distinguished lectures to be brought to campus.
             Minimum Endowment Gift:  $100,000

665.5.2.7 Faculty Research and Development Fund.  Provides an annual award to enhance a faculty member’s teaching and research activities.
Minimum Endowment Gift:  $100,000

665.6 Facilities and Programs

665.6.1 Entire buildings. If a building is to be constructed in total through private funds, the fund raising goal should equal one hundred percent of the construction cost of the building and naming rights will be awarded for a contribution equal to 40% of that amount.  If a building is to be funded through a combination of private funds, and other funding sources, the contribution must equal fifty percent of the private fund raising goal and no less than twenty percent of the total construction costs of the building.

665.6.2 Portions of Buildings. The naming of individual rooms or wings in new or existing buildings such as auditoriums, lecture halls and lobbies, will be determined in context of the total facility function.  However, in all cases naming will only be awarded if the gift is a minimum of twenty percent of the total construction costs of the new addition to the existing building.

665.6.3 Unnamed Existing Buildings. Currently unnamed buildings may be named by the establishment of an endowment equivalent to thirty five percent of the value of the building.  (To accommodate unforeseen circumstances, the value of unnamed existing buildings will be determined by the University).

665.6.4 Named Colleges, Schools, Centers and Institutes. The name of an individual, corporation or foundation may be associated with a college, school, center or institute in recognition of a significant financial contribution to support the program or   area in question.

Minimum Endowment Gift:  $15 Million, except in the event that significant renovation is not needed and then upon recommendation of the President.

665.7 Non-Benefactor Naming Requirements.

Naming may be awarded in recognition of former members of the University faculty or staff, former University Trustees, former Presidents, former elected officials, or former state employees concerned with the functions, oversight or control of the University.  Non-benefactor naming opportunities will be considered by the President when the Vice President of University Advancement has first approved the formal initiation of the naming approval process and the following requirements have been met:

  • The individual has achieved distinction in an academic administrative or other exceptional ways which have significantly contributed to the welfare of the University as long as there is no current relationship between the individual and the University.
  • The individual, whether they be a University or state employee, Board of Trustee member or state public official has been retired for a minimum of two years.
  • The name meets the criteria as presented in the Name Approval Criteria.

665.8 Final Approval for Named Facilities.

Final approval for the names of buildings and other facilities is subject to approval by the Indiana State University Board of Trustees, except for those naming rights delegated to the President. No public statements will be made about a naming opportunity until the President is prepared to recommend the naming opportunity for approval by the Board of Trustees.

665.9 Final Approval for Named Endowed Funds.

Final approval for named endowed funds is subject to approval by the CEO of the Indiana State University Foundation in consultation with the University Provost and President.  Endowed funds may be created with gifts of cash, marketable securities, planned gifts or pledge commitments to be paid out over a period of five years.  Other endowed funds not listed here may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

665.10 Short-Term Naming of Physical Spaces.

Naming of physical spaces within buildings or campus properties, such as conference rooms, meeting rooms, or other identified spaces may be approved by the Board of Trustees for a period of up to three years only if the following criteria are met:

            a.         The amount of the gift is equal to or greater than the distribution that would be required for an endowment gift made for that same naming opportunity.

            b.         All other requirements of the naming opportunity are met.

665.11 Naming Policy Administration.

A University Naming Committee, appointed by the President and chaired by the Vice President of University Advancement, will review, upon the President’s request, a proposed naming opportunity, applicable criteria and policies, and then make a recommendation to the President.

Related Information

Policy Administrator:
Division of Advancement
Policy Contact:
Office of the Vice President for Advancement
Division of Advancement
(812) 237-6100
Policy History:
Policy 665 was approved by the ISU Board of Trustees on February 27, 2009. Sections 665.1.1.5, 665.1.1.6, 665.1.1.7, and 665.3.1 were amended on October 19, 2017. Policy 665 was amended and approved by the ISU Board of Trustees on October 12, 2018