According to the Columbia Spectator:
Barnard’s endowment of around $200 million is markedly smaller than those of similar institutions. In comparison, Wellesley College’s endowment, the largest of any women’s college, was $1.6 billion in 2007.Even with recent shifts in fundraising at women’s colleges, Barnard’s endowment is still much smaller than Smith’s $1.3 billion or Bryn Mawr’s $678 million.
Martha Dean, Director of Development at Bryn Mawr College, speculates that women’s colleges have faced unique fundraising challenges because “women, at least historically, have approached philanthropy more tentatively than men.” According to Dean, women tend to leave money to their colleges as part of their estates, while men donate more throughout their lives.
Maybe more donors need to be told that Barnard and Columbia have separate endowments and, moreover, “the Barnard endowment does not receive money from Columbia’s fundraising efforts.”