Annual giving at the leadership level—$1,000 and above—is indispensable to the growth of the Annual Fund. Macalester’s academic excellence and programmatic innovation require investment in the Annual Fund, and leadership donors are full partners in creating a bright and accomplished future for Macalester.
Leadership gifts are recognized in the following ways at Macalester:
The Grand Society
Membership in the college's Grand Society is given each year to those who contribute Annual Fund gifts of $1,000 - $2,499 annually.
As a Grand Society member, your gift is a concrete expression of your engagement with Macalester today and your concern for the college’s future.
Your Grand Society gift provides critical funding toward Macalester’s:
- Extraordinary academic quality, including a low 11:1 student-faculty ratio, study away programs, and internships;
- Engagement in the local and world communities through the new Institute for Global Citizenship; and
- Commitment to accessibility — approximately two-thirds of Mac students receive need-based financial aid.
The Scot Society
Macalester’s Scottish Presbyterian founders laid the foundation for the college’s distinctive, outward-oriented character. Members of the Scot Society help sustain this character by supporting the college through Annual Fund gifts of $2,500 to $4,999 in a fiscal year.
The Tartan Society
Membership in the college's Tartan Society is given to those who contribute Annual Fund gifts of $5,000-$9,999 annually.
The Macalester tartan represents the college’s Scottish origins and the care with which its founders created a liberal arts college that would prepare students to understand and serve the larger world. Woven of strong fabric and vibrant colors, the tartan symbolizes the streets of our city, the crossroads of our world, the intersection of disciplines that constitute a liberal arts education, and the threads that form the fabric of the Macalester community.
Macalester’s Tartan Society recognizes donors who provide unrestricted Annual Fund gifts of $5,000 to $9,999 each fiscal year. Through their commitment to support the college’s operations – the teaching and learning activities at the heart of Macalester’s mission – over a sustained period of time, members of the Tartan Society enable the college to set and attain new levels of excellence.
As a member of the Tartan Society, you will be assured a high level of communication with the college through periodic letters from the president. You will receive a Macalester shield pin, and if you are a Macalester alumnus or alumna, your registration fee for Reunion will be waived.
About the Tartan:
In 1948, Chief of the Clan of MacAlister in Scotland, Lt. Colonel Charles Godfrey Summerville McAlister of Loup and Kennox, adopted the college into the Clan. Ever since, the college’s Pipe Band and Highland Dancers have worn the authentic tartan of Clan MacAlister.
The Highland Society
Membership in the college's Highland Society is given to those who contribute Annual Fund gifts of 10,000 to $24,999 annually.
Like the Scottish Highlands, Macalester enjoys proud traditions and a rich cultural history. The Scottish Presbyterian heritage of Macalester’s founders laid the foundation for much of the college’s development as a nonsectarian, outward-looking institution of higher learning and for its commitment to the highest standards of quality.
Macalester’s Highland Society recognizes donors who provide unrestricted Annual Fund gifts of $10,000 or more each fiscal year. Through their commitment to support the college’s operations – the teaching and learning activities at the heart of Macalester’s mission – at leadership levels over a sustained period of time, members of the Highland Society enable the college to set and attain new levels of excellence. This support is both a vigorous endorsement of Macalester’s work and an investment in the lives of students who will, in their turn, make their communities and their world a better place to live.
As a member of the Highland Society, you will be assured a high level of communication with the college through periodic letters from the president and an invitation to an annual dinner hosted by the Board of Trustees. You will receive a Macalester shield pin, and if you are a Macalester alumnus or alumna, your registration fee for Reunion will be waived.
What is heather?
Heather is a symbol of Scotland and its Highlands, where this plant thrives. The heather wreath used for the Highland Society is open, not closed, do symbolize the openness of the Macalester community and the fact that the development of our students – and of ourselves- is still in progress.
The Piper Society
The piper leads the procession, and members of the Piper Society do the same. They step up to lead the way with generous support of the programs through which Macalester carries out its mission. Membership is extended to those who make Annual Fund gifts of $25,000 or more in a given fiscal year.
The music of a single piper opens and closes a great many Macalester events, both on campus and off. Few things can compare with the thrill of marching into Commencement ceremonies behind the college’s Pipe Band in full array. The skirling pipes and the beating drums quicken the heart and put electricity into the air.
The Piper Society: Leading the Way through Generosity
Members of the Macalester College Piper Society are stepping up to play a leadership role through their generous support of the teaching and learning at Macalester. Their exemplary participation, individually and collectively, provides significant support to the college and is certain to generate added interest on the part of others.
Membership in the Piper Society is extended to living individuals whose outright gifts for current, capital or endowment purposes are between $25,000 and $99,999 in a given year. (Macalester’s giving year is June 1 – May 31.)
Notes of Appreciation
Members of the Piper Society will be recognized in such publications as the donor report and an annual Piper Society roster which is located in the Weyerhaeuser Hall Lounge. Members will receive invitations to select events, including a trustee dinner each year, as well as a special President’s Letter.
The Summit Society
The Summit Society recognizes regular giving. When you have given an Annual Fund gift five years in a row, or when you contribute in your senior year at Macalester, you become part of the Summit Society. Your membership will continue as long as you continue to give each year.
Building and stewarding a committed group of Annual Fund supporters is key to maintaining a solid financial foundation for the college. The continued generosity of our alumni, parents, and friends gives Macalester the resources to provide an excellent academic experience for any student, regardless of financial situation. For this reason, we recognize and celebrate the Annual Fund donors loyal in their support of the college.
Donors who support the Annual Fund for five or more consecutive years, or who have made a gift every year since graduation, are recognized through membership in the Summit Society. All members receive a special designation in the Advancement Report.
The Old Main Society
Membership in the Old Main Society is extended to living individuals who have donated for any purpose in 25 or more fiscal years.
Built in 1884, Old Main stands as a stalwart symbol of permanence and strength. The building symbolizes, perhaps more than any other landmark on campus, the beginnings of this magnificent college. As the very first building, Old Main was the foundation for the campus we know today.
The Old Main Society exists to thank living individuals who have provided a financial foundation by donating 25 or more fiscal years. Like Old Main, members of the society provide invaluable leadership to Macalester, by providing steady, consistent support to the college.
Members of the Old Main Society, valued members of the Macalester community, will be recognized in such publications as the donor report and receive invitations to select events.
James Wallace Heritage Society
Membership in the James Wallace Heritage Society is open to those who have made provisions for future support of the college in an estate plan or through a life income or other planned gift.
General Giving Societies
Bell Tower Society
Membership in the Bell Tower Society is extended to living individuals whose giving to the college for current or capital purposes amount to $100,000 or more in a given year. Membership is renewable each year (Macalester's giving year is June1 - May 31).
Edward Duffield Neill, who founded Macalester in 1874 as a place to educate leaders for the nation’s new frontiers, venerated the sense of tradition found in the best colleges in the East. Neill, who had already established public education at every level in the Territory of Minnesota, obtained a bell for his new private college. It was manufactured in 1855 and is believed to be the oldest bell in St. Paul. The bell received a permanent home when the Classes of 1927 and 1928 contributed the Bell Tower that now stands as a campus landmark.
For years, the bell has called the community together for convocations and official events. Its deep, clear tone reverberates across campus in a timeless summons to community.
Responding to the call of the bell is one of the first ways in which students learn to participate in the life of Macalester College.
The Bell Tower Society: Commitment and Leadership
Members of the Macalester College Bell Tower Society have participated in the life of the college in countless important ways. The Bell Tower Society exists to recognize their extraordinarily generous financial support in the form of outright gifts for current, capital or endowment purposes.
To support the college at this level is to exercise exemplary and steadfast leadership in the life of the college. These gifts make possible significant and tangible educational benefits such as student financial aid, faculty salaries, important educational programs, and facilities. Moreover, they inspire others to be generous in their own contributions.
Like the historic bell in its landmark tower, members of the Bell Tower Society, by their example, invite others in the community to participate more deeply in the life of Macalester College.
Tokens of Appreciation
Members of the Bell Tower Society will be recognized in such publications as the donor report and an annual Bell Tower Society roster which is located in the Weyerhaeuser Hall Lounge. Members will receive invitations to select events, including a trustee dinner each year, as well as a special President’s letter and use of the Alumni House.
Charles Macalester Society
Membership in the Charles Macalester Society is extended to living individuals whose lifetime giving has reached or exceeded $1 million.
Charles Macalester was a philanthropist of the highest order. He was a trusted advisor and friend to many U.S. Presidents including Jackson, Van Buren, Polk, Fillmore, Pierce, Buchanan, Lincoln, and Grant. A fervent supporter of the arts and educational enterprises, Macalester left a tremendous legacy by giving a title to a hotel in Minneapolis, which was sold to pay for land in St. Paul.
Members of the Macalester College Charles Macalester Society have participated in the life of the college in countless important ways, helping to build a strong financial foundation. The Charles Macalester Society exists to recognize their extraordinarily generous lifetime financial support.
Members of the Charles Macalester Society will be recognized in such publications as the donor report and a Charles Macalester Society roster. Members will receive invitations to select events, including a trustee dinner each year, as well as a special President’s letter and use of the Alumni House. A unique memento will be given to each Charles Macalester Society member to honor their generosity.