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MIT Technology Review

James ’72 and Muguette Alder

June 16, 2020
Matthew Busch

Boerne, Texas

Jim Alder’s 40th reunion in 2012 marked a new era in his involvement with MIT. He began to volunteer as an educational counselor, and he and his spouse, Muguette, made their first planned gift to the Institute, a charitable remainder unitrust (CRUT) through the Office of Gift Planning. The couple has since also established endowed scholarship and graduate fellowship funds.

The flexibility of planned giving. A CRUT provides income to donors and their beneficiaries. When it terminates, the gift goes to a designated cause at MIT—scholarships, in the Alders’ case. “Supporting scholarships is especially important to me, as I had financial issues while at MIT,” says Jim. He and Muguette reevaluated their giving in 2019 and terminated the CRUT, having learned they didn’t need the additional income in retirement, which gave MIT access to the funds sooner. They also invested in an MIT donor-advised fund (DAF). “Establishing a DAF was a logical next step,” says Jim. “Our current plan is to accumulate money in the fund over the next several years, then give most of it to MIT.” 

Supporting students. The Alders suggest that for those considering a gift to MIT, a CRUT through the Office of Gift Planning is a great starting point. “Attending MIT events and listening to students’ incredible stories and achievements are what made me want to get more involved,” says Muguette. Jim agrees: “Hearing from MIT students will tilt you pretty quickly toward the advantages and the value in the money you will donate, no matter what type of gift you make.”

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