Fundraising is big at Columbia. In keeping with Columbia's bureaucratic traditions, each school has its own Development Office which is responsible for fundraising for that school. At the same time, the university-level Office of Alumni and Development is responsible for university-wide fundraising, and each school's development office technically reports to the larger organization.
Fundraising is actually just one component of what the university calls Advancement, which is essentially Alumni Relations (Events) + Development (Fundraising) + Stewardship (Thanking donors with more events). While the university primarily focuses its development efforts on alumni of the school, each school has specific outreach to corporations or foundations that might align with its goals.
Until the Campaign for Columbia (1966), Columbia's fundraising efforts had been ad-hoc and one-off in nature. Columbia's first endowed chair was literally just a chair. For someone to sit on. Anyway, it's been a long and bumpy road. 
- ↑ Fund Raising: Challenge for Columbia, Columbia Spectator, 22 February 1963. First in a 13-part series of Spec articles on Fundraising.
- ↑ Financial Condition and Present Needs of Columbia College, 2 April 1883. A pamphlet printed and distributed by the Trustees attempting to solicit $4.35 Million in endowments from the public.