Planned Giving

Note: this page covers Planned Giving. For Smith Fund information, see our Smith Fund page.

From Planned Giving Co-Chairs Jacquie Ottman and Adele Pike:

What is planned giving?     Avenues for giving     Reunion Bequest Intention (RBI)  Grécourt Society     Grécourt Match     Class Goal

What is Planned Giving? What is a Planned Gift?

Planned Gifts to Smith are legacy gifts: gifts that you plan now and that are donated to Smith in the future. Smith was founded on a Planned Gift from Sophia Smith, who  bequeathed funds in her will to establish an amazing, essential women’s college.
Today, alumnae arrange to make Planned Gifts in any amount and through a variety of avenues. What is wonderful about Planned Gifts is that they do not interrupt current cash flow during your lifetime, and they allow you to leave a legacy to Smith that helps future students benefit from all that Smith has to offer.
Legacy – or Planned Gifts- have a major impact on ensuring current and future Smith students can access all of the benefits and advantages of a Smith experience and a Smith education.

What are the avenues for making a Planned Gift?
There are multiple ways to make a Planned Gift to Smith. While some of these will require the help of an attorney, many do not. The information below is meant as an introduction to ways to make Planned Gifts. (Note: as Planned Giving Chairs, Jacquie and Adele are here to provide education; we do not offer financial advice, and so encourage you to take what you learn from this page to your attorney, financial planner, or to the Smith Planned Giving Office for additional guidance and ideas.)

  • Bequest: You can designate Smith as a beneficiary in your will or estate plan.
  • Account Beneficiary: You can identify Smith as a beneficiary to part or all of several kinds of accounts, including IRAs, Life Insurance Policies, Donor Advised Funds, Certificate of Deposits. Identifying Smith as a beneficiary of one of these types of accounts is very easy and does not require an attorney. You request a beneficiary intention form from the holder of your account, write in who you wish to be the beneficiaries and for what percentage, and return  the completed form to the holder of your account.
  • Charitable Gift Annuity: This is a contract you make with Smith where you make a minimum gift of $10,000 to Smith. In return, Smith invests your gift and pays you an annual income for life from the interest accrued on that investment. Upon your death, the balance of your original gift passes to Smith. In many cases, the interest rate on a Charitable Gift Annuity will be higher than interest rates you are currently receiving on other investments.
  • There are numerous other ways to make a Planned Gift: real estate, stocks and securities, personal property. There are ways that Planned Gifts can help reduce tax burdens, provide income to children, bring you peace of mind. More information about Planned Giving is found on the Smith Planned Giving web page.

What is Reunion Bequest Intention or RBI?
Starting with our 50th Reunion, Planned Gifts of $10,000 or more are eligible to be counted toward the Class of 1977’s Class Gift to the College. To be counted towards our Class Gift, intended Planned Gifts must be documented. This means that documentation, or evidence, that you have planned such a gift needs to be filed with the College’s Planned Giving office. Planned Gifts that identify Smith as a contingent beneficiary are essential to the college and most welcome; however, only gifts that identify Smith as a primary beneficiary count toward the Class Gift. We know, this is confusing! Check out more about documenting intended gifts here. Or, reach out to Adele or Jacquie; we’re becoming well versed in the ins and outs of documenting Planned Gifts!

What is the Grécourt Society?
Alumnae who have included Smith in their estate plans through a will, trust, retirement plan, life insurance policy or life income gift become members of The Grécourt Society. Planned gifts of any amount qualify for membership. This program, established in 1994, gives the college the opportunity to acknowledge your thoughtful planning for Smith’s future.
As of October 4, 2023, The Grécourt Society has 3,127 active members and 2,614 deceased members, for a total of 5,741 total membership. The Class of 1977 currently has 39 active members; 3 of our deceased classmates were Grécourt Society members.
If you have included Smith in your estate plans, and have not yet Smith know, please click on the Grécourt Society logo at right. Smith and your classmates would like to recognize and thank you for your generosity.

There is currently a Grécourt Match! What is that?
A new match, from an anonymous donor of the Class of 1982, began on July 1, 2022. Under this match, 10% of a new Planned Gift will be matched by a current contribution to Smith’s scholarship endowment (up to a limit of $10k per match.) The Match continues until the entire $1 million has been matched. How this translates is if you make a Planned Gift to Smith in the amount of $10,000, under the terms of this match, your $10,000 will generate $20,000 of gift to Smith!

What is the Class of 1977 Planned Giving Goal in the Lead-up to our 50th Reunion?

Our goal is to encourage another 18 members of the Last Competent class to make a Planned Gift to Smith.  That would take us to 60 members of the Grécourt Society, or 9% of our class.  So, start thinking about Planned Giving. Over the coming months and years, as you review your will, along with your health care proxy and durable power of attorney, please don’t forget to think about Smith College. Bequests of any amount are welcome and qualify for membership in The Grécourt Society.