Above and Beyond


One of the things I enjoy most in my role as chancellor is meeting with Bruins in Los Angeles and around the world, and that has been particularly true during our Centennial Celebration year, which kicked off last May.

The love for UCLA is palpable, from Mexico City to New York City to London to Hong Kong. Even further evidence of this deep affinity is the tremendous success of the Centennial Campaign for UCLA.

When we announced the campaign in 2014, with the goal of raising $4.2 billion, it was the most ambitious fundraising goal initiated by any public university in the United States.

I am so pleased to share that we have surpassed that goal to reach $5.49 billion through 574,000 total gifts.

Additionally, of the 220,000 total donors, more than half were first-­time supporters of UCLA, and more than 80% of all gifts were less than $1,000 — showing us that every gift makes a difference.

The numbers are only the beginning of this remarkable story. Efforts by students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, volunteers and donors across the globe resulted in funding for many of UCLA’s greatest needs and priorities — a testament to the confidence people have in UCLA’s ability to put their contributions to the best uses possible. This includes support for students and faculty, research and innovation, and new and improved spaces.

In fact, funds from the campaign are already making an important difference on campus and in the community. Thanks to our many supporters, we will provide more effective care, enhancements to the patient environment, and services for uninsured and vulnerable patients through the UCLA Health System President’s Strategic Fund.

We will work to address the multifaceted needs of foster youth through the UCLA Pritzker Center for Strengthening Children and Families.

We will develop an academic minor in Iranian music, thanks to the Farhang Foundation.

And we will provide scholarships to undergraduate students from middle-­income families through the Steve Tisch Academic Excellence Fund — one of 1,141 new scholarship and fellowship funds to support students.

These are just a few of the myriad ways the Centennial Campaign is benefitting our campus and community, with many more to come.

I encourage you to visit LetThereBe.ucla.edu, and stay connected as we continue to share great news over the coming weeks and months.

While this is a time for celebration, we are also aiming to harness this momentum to continue to raise funds for top priorities, including additional student scholarships — a key component to keeping UCLA accessible to deserving students from diverse backgrounds.

I am incredibly grateful to everyone who had a hand in this triumphant success.

UCLA is a vital institution to Los Angeles, California and the world. We take pride in that important role and will continue to advance education, research, service and progress for all through our second century and beyond.