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Taking a "Hands-on" Approach to Gift Planning

Hal Beesley

"Regarding our contributions, it's a way to pass it along so someone else can benefit." Hal Beesley '74

During his long and productive career, Hal Beesley '74 has enjoyed taking a hands-on approach toward the various engineering projects he's worked on, and attributes it in part to the experience he gained during his days at Rensselaer.

That's one reason why he and his wife, Carole, give back to Rensselaer—and by contributing appreciated securities, it's a great way to reduce their cost of giving while benefiting Rensselaer with the full market value of the security.

Hal received his Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Rensselaer—followed by a master's degree in biomedical engineering. He also met Carole there, who graduated with a mechanical engineering degree. Hal went on to get a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Minnesota. Soon after he joined 3M where he remains today, having served in several quality control, research and production-related roles.

Hal regards all of his time at Rensselaer to be both valuable and useful. "Rensselaer provided a lot of hands-on experience in the labs—which was very important for me," he says. "Over the years I've used something from almost every class I was in and applied them to my job."

In return, Hal has shown his gratitude by donating to Rensselaer in 23 of the past 26 years, and he's increased his giving with gifts of stock from 3M, which has allowed him to double his gift through their corporate match program.

"Since my wife and I have worked for 3M for many years and purchased company stock along the way, it allows us to contribute stock shares from those early years and diversify our stock holdings by donating the shares to RPI," Hal says. "It was really the best option for us, and everyone benefits from the fact that the shares have appreciated nicely."

Hal readily recognizes how the contributions can help future students and programs. "I received a scholarship myself, so in a sense it's our way of giving back to Rensselaer so future students can benefit from new facilities and equipment, scholarships or faculty support."

Why not help the students of Rensselaer by giving appreciated securities today? Go to for instructions on how to make your gift.

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A charitable bequest is one or two sentences in your will or living trust that leave to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute a specific item, an amount of money, a gift contingent upon certain events or a percentage of your estate.

an individual or organization designated to receive benefits or funds under a will or other contract, such as an insurance policy, trust or retirement plan

"I give to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a nonprofit corporation currently located at 110 8th St., Troy, NY 12180-3590, or its successor thereto, ______________* [written amount or percentage of the estate or description of property] for its unrestricted use and purpose."

able to be changed or cancelled

A revocable living trust is set up during your lifetime and can be revoked at any time before death. They allow assets held in the trust to pass directly to beneficiaries without probate court proceedings and can also reduce federal estate taxes.

cannot be changed or cancelled

tax on gifts generally paid by the person making the gift rather than the recipient

the original value of an asset, such as stock, before its appreciation or depreciation

the growth in value of an asset like stock or real estate since the original purchase

the price a willing buyer and willing seller can agree on

The person receiving the gift annuity payments.

the part of an estate left after debts, taxes and specific bequests have been paid

a written and properly witnessed legal change to a will

the person named in a will to manage the estate, collect the property, pay any debt, and distribute property according to the will

A donor advised fund is an account that you set up but which is managed by a nonprofit organization. You contribute to the account, which grows tax-free. You can recommend how much (and how often) you want to distribute money from that fund to Rensselaer or other charities. You cannot direct the gifts.

An endowed gift can create a new endowment or add to an existing endowment. The principal of the endowment is invested and a portion of the principal’s earnings are used each year to support our mission.

Tax on the growth in value of an asset—such as real estate or stock—since its original purchase.

Securities, real estate or any other property having a fair market value greater than its original purchase price.

Real estate can be a personal residence, vacation home, timeshare property, farm, commercial property or undeveloped land.

A charitable remainder trust provides you or other named individuals income each year for life or a period not exceeding 20 years from assets you give to the trust you create.

You give assets to a trust that pays our organization set payments for a number of years, which you choose. The longer the length of time, the better the potential tax savings to you. When the term is up, the remaining trust assets go to you, your family or other beneficiaries you select. This is an excellent way to transfer property to family members at a minimal cost.

You fund this type of trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. You can also make additional gifts; each one also qualifies for a tax deduction. The trust pays you, each year, a variable amount based on a fixed percentage of the fair market value of the trust assets. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Rensselaer as a lump sum.

You fund this trust with cash or appreciated assets—and may qualify for a federal income tax charitable deduction when you itemize. Each year the trust pays you or another named individual the same dollar amount you choose at the start. When the trust terminates, the remaining principal goes to Rensselaer as a lump sum.

A beneficiary designation clearly identifies how specific assets will be distributed after your death.

A charitable gift annuity involves a simple contract between you and Rensselaer where you agree to make a gift to Rensselaer and we, in return, agree to pay you (and someone else, if you choose) a fixed amount each year for the rest of your life.

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