GW Founders' Pledge FAQ

What is the Founders’ Pledge?

The Founders' Pledge is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to document their intent to donate a portion of their venture’s future success to GW through a personal, non-binding commitment.

Who can sign up?

Any founder, entrepreneur, or owner who wants to be innovative in their philanthropy and partner with GW to solve the world’s biggest problems can make a pledge.

How does it work?

Simply complete the pledge form on the site or contact us to request a hardcopy form. Individuals have full control over the amount, designation, and timing of their gift – typically after a successful event (i.e., an IPO, merger, acquisition, or other exit) or steady growth of revenue. Staff from GW Development and Alumni Relations can help you determine where to direct your support to meet your philanthropic goals, as well as share vehicles for making the gift. It’s an easy, low-risk, and rewarding way to give back and demonstrate your commitment to GW and its students. (Of course, annual gifts throughout the pledge are encouraged; every gift, no matter the size, helps move GW forward.)

Why sign up?

When making the Founders’ Pledge, you publicly signal your intent to support GW and join an exceptional group of committed entrepreneurs. It’s a way to incorporate philanthropy into your growth mindset while inspiring others to do the same, and it’s an opportunity to give back and support the future of GW.

Is there a minimum amount for my contribution?

No. Every gift is deeply appreciated and helps support GW students, faculty, and research. While annual giving is encouraged among all alumni, the Founders’ Pledge is intended to be personally significant and guided by the impact you want to have at GW. It marks a notable milestone in your entrepreneurial journey.

Where can I designate my gift?

You can direct your gift to any area of the university (i.e., scholarships, annual funds, or the student experience). If you desire to help fellow entrepreneurs, the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship provides programming, education, and connections for students and faculty to progress with their ventures.

What are the tax ramifications?

There are no tax ramifications associated with making the Pledge: tax considerations come into play when you make your gift, just as with any charitable contribution. All gifts to the George Washington University are tax-deductible.

Is the Founders’ Pledge legally binding?

This is a non-binding commitment, indicative only of your intention to support GW.

What happens if the business fails?

If the company’s success is not realized, the commitment is nullified.

What opportunities are available for me to get involved with GW student entrepreneurs and share my expertise? 

Whether you have only an hour to spare or desire a deeper level of involvement, the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (OIE) has a variety of volunteer opportunities, ranging from speaking at a virtual brown bag lunch to GW’s Mentors-In-Residence program. Our New Venture Competition, one of the country’s largest collegiate contests for unrestricted cash prizes, needs judges and team mentors.  The GW Summer Startup Accelerator capstone experience welcomes speakers, subject matter experts, and mentors.   

How can I connect with GW alumni, students, and other professionals interested in entrepreneurship?

The GW Innovation Exchange is our online hub for connecting, sharing resources, and keeping up to date on news and events. The platform creates a community to find potential collaborators, build teams, and become or find a mentor.  As our Founders' Pledge membership grows, there may be exclusive opportunities for this cohort.

How do I get more information?

Reach out to Anthony King at [email protected] for more information. We are happy to answer any questions and discuss your specific situation.