845 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, QC H3A 0G4
Principal: Heather Munroe-Blum
Board Chair: Ram Panda

Charitable Reg. #:11912 8981 RR0001


Ci's Star Rating is calculated based on the following independent metrics:

[Charity Rating: 5/5]



Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity’s website.



Grade based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.



The demonstrated impact per dollar Ci calculates from available program information.


Charity's cash and investments (funding reserves) relative to how much it spends on programs in most recent year.



For a dollar donated, after overhead costs of fundraising and admin/management (excluding surplus) 64 cents are available for programs.

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About McGill University:

Founded in 1821, McGill University (McGill) is a public university in Montreal, named after fur trader James McGill for his donation of a 46-acre estate to build the school’s campus. Today, McGill University spans three campuses: a downtown Montreal campus, a Macdonald campus, and the Gault Nature Reserve for wildlife research. McGill has more than 80 departments, which offer over 300 undergraduate and 400 graduate programs of study. McGill’s main programs are education and research, for which it does not provide a spending breakdown.

In fall 2020, McGill University had 39,736 enrolled students. This included 27,484 undergraduate students, 10,265 graduate and PhD students, 1,349 residents and fellows, and 638 postdoctoral scholars. McGill reports that around 47% of its students are from Quebec, 23% are from the rest of Canada, and 30% are from outside Canada. It states that 11% of its students are currently pursuing PhDs as part of their graduate studies, compared to 7% of students at other Canadian research universities.

McGill reported 1,730 tenured and tenure-stream faculty members in F2020. During the year, McGill signed 198 government and industry-sponsored research contracts, valued at around $20m. It also signed 26 new clinical trial agreements in F2020. Currently, McGill is home to 174 Canada Research Chairs.

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Results and Impact

According to the 2021 Maclean’s University Rankings, McGill University is the top medical-doctoral university in Canada. McGill has retained this ranking for 16 consecutive years. In 2021, McGill also ranked 36th in the QS World University Rankings and 40th in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of McGill University’s results and impact. This charity is not yet rated on impact (n/r).

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McGill University is a Major 100 charity, one of Canada’s largest charities in terms of donations. It received cash donations of $156.3m in F2020. During the year, McGill also received $731.1m in government funding (55% of revenues) and $380.9m in tuition and contract fees (29% of revenues).

Administrative costs are 23% of revenues (less investment income) and fundraising costs are 14% of donations. This results in total overhead spending of 36%. For every dollar donated to the charity, 64 cents go to the cause. This is just outside of Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. McGill was previously within this reasonable range in F2019. Its fundraising ratio rose in F2020 due to a 12% drop in donations and a 6% increase in fundraising costs.

McGill has $498.7m in net funding reserves ($1.8 billion in liquid assets less $1.3 billion in interest-bearing debts). Its liquid assets also include $1.5 billion in donor-endowed funds, resulting in a negative net program cost coverage ratio. McGill’s gross funding reserves, excluding donor-endowed funds, can cover 31% or less than four months of annual program costs.

Charity Intelligence has sent this update to McGill University for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on August 30, 2021 by Eric Zhao.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending April
Administrative costs as % of revenues 22.7%22.7%24.0%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 13.8%11.3%14.6%
Total overhead spending 36.4%34.0%38.6%
Program cost coverage (%) (123.4%)(119.2%)(119.4%)

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 156,295178,015130,883
International donations 7,2364,7976,100
Goods in kind 7001,500500
Government funding 731,128682,203636,215
Fees for service 380,930363,777335,937
Business activities (net) 119,455134,915132,227
Investment income (59,225)78,44165,651
Total revenues 1,336,5191,443,6481,307,513
Program costs 861,842841,078806,894
Grants 45,09147,62242,571
Administrative costs 316,307309,772297,700
Fundraising costs 21,49520,18719,097
Other costs 40,76637,67536,240
Total spending 1,285,5011,256,3341,202,502
Cash flow from operations 51,018187,314105,011
Capital spending 223,247239,074249,901
Funding reserves 498,701647,209645,568

Note: Ci included endowment contributions in donations and investment gains (losses) from endowments in investment income. This affected revenues by ($88.6m) in F2020, $44.8m in F2019, and $406k in F2018. Ci removed gifts in kind included in donations to report them separately. Ci reported sales of goods and services net of costs in business activities, affecting revenues and expenses by ($15.6m) in F2020, ($19.7m) in F2019, and ($19.1m) in F2018. Ci gathered fundraising costs from the charity’s T3010 filings with the CRA and removed the amounts from program costs. Ci excluded amortization expenses.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 7,027

Avg. compensation: $125,865

Top 10 staff salary range:

$350k +
$300k - $350k
$250k - $300k
$200k - $250k
$160k - $200k
$120k - $160k
$80k - $120k
$40k - $80k
< $40k

Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2020

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

No comments have been added by the charity.

Charity Contact

Website: www.mcgill.ca
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 514-398-4455


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001