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Philanthropy in the News

Racks of computers in a datacenter.

Improving Data Center Efficiency

Facebook donates $1.5 million to Institute for Energy Efficiency to support research into data center efficiency

A new partnership of UC Santa Barbara’s Institute for Energy Efficiency (IEE) and Facebook will accelerate research into energy-efficient data centers and artificial intelligence (AI). Facebook, a leader in developing, building and operating highly reliable and efficient data centers, will provide a three-year, $1.5 million grant in support of the institute’s pioneering research.

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Henley Hall.

Model of Efficiency

Institute for Energy Efficiency settles into its state-of-the-art new home, the donor-funded Henley Hall

Their award-winning research has been the foundation for numerous energy-saving innovations, including bright and energy-saving white light LED lighting that reduces energy usage in buildings worldwide. How fitting, then, that UC Santa Barbara’s Institute for Energy Efficiency is now housed in one such building.

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Several online stores displayed in browser windows.

Recommended for You

Researchers receive Google grant to build better conversational recommender systems

An emerging generation of artificial intelligence could get one step closer to passing the Turing test. With $1 million in funding over three years from Google, a team of computer scientists that includes UC Santa Barbara’s William Wang hopes to gain insights that could lead to a more seamless conversation with online recommender dialog systems

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artists concept of data science, numbers and lights.

Teaming for Technology

The campus and Amazon team up on new research initiative in machine learning and data science.

To advance knowledge in critical next-generation technologies, Amazon has made a substantial gift to UC Santa Barbara. The investment will support graduate student researchers in computer science and in statistics and applied probability, as well as ongoing lectures series in machine learning and data science.

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Sculpture of Jain god at Pisanhari ki Madhiya, Jabalpur.

‘A Major Contribution’

Donors join forces to establish a $1 million chair in Jain studies, within Department of Religious Studies

Adding an important layer to an already robust and well-regarded program, a trio of generous donors has teamed to support research and teaching in Jain studies within the UC Santa Barbara Department of Religious Studies.

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Ann Louise Bardach.

An Enduring Gift

Archives of journalist Ann Louise Bardach at UCSB Library continue to inspire filmmakers, journalists, scholars, public

Let’s just stipulate Ann Louise Bardach had reach. The award-winning American journalist wrote about such disparate characters as Fidel Castro, Sid Vicious, JonBenet Ramsey, Larry Rivers, William Burroughs and Benazir Bhutto.

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A Gift for the Ages

Family of scholar, author Robert J. O’Brien donates his collection of over 1,400 theatrical recordings of Shakespeare to UCSB Library

It would be fair to say that few men had as great a love of voices — especially those reciting Shakespeare — as Robert J. O’Brien. The scholar and author amassed a collection of more than 1,400 theatrical recordings of the Bard’s works. Now, thanks to the generosity of his family, that collection has a home at the UC Santa Barbara Library.

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UC Santa Barbara lagoon.

Steadfast Support

The university again exceeds $100 million in philanthropic gifts for fiscal year 2019-20

Amidst the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, UC Santa Barbara raised $100,022,411 in new gifts and pledges in fiscal year 2020 — the sixth consecutive year the campus has received more than $100 million in philanthropic donations.

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A mail carrier  wearing a surgical mask pushing his mail delivery cart.

Essential Workers, Vital Scholarship

Researchers to study pandemic’s impact on the underserved in second project of Pahl Initiative on the Study of Critical Social Issues

By nearly every measure, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a disproportionate toll on the disadvantaged. How this disparity might be addressed will be the focus of new research at UC Santa Barbara through the Pahl Initiative on the Study of Critical Social Issues in the Division of Social Sciences. The Pahl Initiative is a gift of alumni Louise and Stephen Pahl to support rigorous social science research on topics of pressing social importance.

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Schmidt Fellow Kelly Speare conducting research in the waters off Moorea, near UC Gump Station.

Supporting Solutions

Schmidt Environmental Solutions Fellows program receives additional two years of funding to support 23 students in environmental science

Aiming to foster high-impact research on everything from machine learning techniques for early locust swarm detection, to understanding the impact of algal blooms across the Atlantic Ocean, to reducing microplastic pollution in stormwater, Eric and Wendy Schmidt have extended by two more years their funding for the Schmidt Environmental Solutions Fellows at UC Santa Barbara.

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Nicole Lamartine, Sorensen Director of Choral Music

A New Tune

Nicole Lamartine ready to do the heavy lifting as UC Santa Barbara’s new choir director

When Nicole Lamartine agreed to become the inaugural Sorensen Director of Choral Music at UC Santa Barbara, she knew she was in for a challenge. What she didn’t expect, maybe: no students on campus.

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Jeffrey Milem

A Lasting Legacy

Anonymous gift establishes Jules Zimmer Dean’s Chair in the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education

An anonymous gift from a technology company headquartered in Santa Barbara, and made in Jules Zimmer’s honor, has established the Jules Zimmer Dean’s Chair at Gevirtz School. Jeffrey Milem, current dean of GGSE, is the inaugural holder of the administrative chair.

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A 10,000-pixel MKID array made by the Mazin lab for the DARKNESS instrument at the Palomar 200-inch Telescope.

Snapping A Space Shot

Physicists will develop instruments to directly image exoplanets

The search for life on planets beyond our solar system has long been the purview of science fiction, but a UC Santa Barbara team supported by the Heising-Simons Foundation is now building the technology to do just that.

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Artificial intelligence blurs the line between man and machine

Our Machines, Our Selves

A pair of public lectures kicked off the new Mellichamp Initiative in Mind & Machine Intelligence

As technology brings us and our computers into an ever more seamless existence, we seek to understand our place in the complex relationship between human and machine intelligence. Enter UC Santa Barbara’s new Mellichamp Academic Initiative in Mind & Machine Intelligence, a multi-year research effort made possible by a generous gift from Duncan and Suzanne Mellichamp.

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Gauchos in study mode at the Student Resource Building

Keeping a Promise

Foundation Trustee Betty Elings Wells gifts $500,000 to Promise Scholars program to support high-achieving, low-income students

Philanthropy plays a huge role in the program’s success — and the student scholars have now inspired a significant gift. Betty Elings Wells, longtime benefactor of the campus and current chair of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board of Trustees, has donated $500,000 to support Promise Scholars.

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A manuscript page from William Faulkner’s “Light in August”

Faulkner in His Own Hand

The UC Santa Barbara Library has acquired a facsimile edition of the great American writer’s manuscripts

The campus’s library has acquired a 44-volume facsimile edition of manuscripts of the American author’s best-known works. The hunt for the manuscripts was inspired by a trip Candace Waid and her students took to the University of Virginia, thanks to a grant from philanthropist and UC Santa Barbara English department alumnus John Arnhold.

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Plastic bottles and other trash collected in a river by a floating boom

River Recovery

Benioff Ocean Initiative and The Coca-Cola Foundation announce $11 million in funding to clean up rivers and stem flow of waste to oceans

The partnership combines The Coca-Cola Foundation’s commitment to support behavioral change projects regarding recycling and the Benioff Ocean Initiative’s expertise in developing innovative ways to collect and analyze waste from our rivers and oceans and address the plastic crisis.

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UCSB lagoon with wooden stairs leading to the walking trail

Service and Commitment

Five alumni join UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board of Trustees; philanthropist Betty Elings Wells named chairperson.

An elected trustee since 2013, Wells assumes the role of chair as the foundation also welcomes five new members — all UC Santa Barbara alumni — for the 2019-2020 academic year.

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Areial view of Storke Tower and bike paths

Enduring Generosity

In a landmark year for philanthropy to the campus, UC Santa Barbara raises $180 million in new gifts and pledges.

UC Santa Barbara’s five-year annual fundraising totals now average $125 million, a 25% increase over prior years, and fiscal year 2019 marks the best fundraising year in campus history.

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One of endless breathtaking views at Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Laboratory, part of UCSB’s Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserves in Mammoth.

It's a Match

Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserves gets a $1 million gift to expand support for students, staff and researchers, and upgrade infrastructure.

The private grant-making Tambour Foundation has awarded VESR $1 million to support students, staff and researchers, and outreach programs for all ages, as well as essential infrastructure projects at the two research outposts, which are part of the UC Santa Barbara Natural Reserve System (NRS).

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Two hands holding a globe with a city background

A Sense of Urgency

Gift from philanthropist Wendy Schmidt launches fellowship program to promote research aimed at solving environmental problems.

The Environmental Solutions Fellowship Program will support 21 graduate students and 11 undergraduate students conducting research directly targeted at solving problems that compromise the health of our environment.

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Jack and Kim Johnson worked alongside students from the Department of Public Worms, a composting collective, during the inaugural workday at the Edible Campus Student Farm

Seeding Community

Alumni donors and mentors Kim and Jack Johnson lead inaugural volunteer workday at Edible Campus Student Farm.

The all-ages, hands-on affair, which drew some 60 participants, was led by alumni Kim and Jack Johnson. The pair have been partners and mentors on Edible Campus, a multifaceted food sustainability initiative, since its inception and, through their Johnson Ohana Foundation, devoted donors to the project, too.

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UCSB Women's Tennis player Lise Sentenac PreviousPauseNext1 of 2 Lise Sentenac in action for the UC Santa Barbara women's tennis team

Match Point

Gift from alumnus John Arnhold and wife Jody will propel Gaucho tennis programs for student-athletes, fans, community.

Arnhold’s passion for the sport and steadfast belief in its values is perhaps matched only by his firm belief in his alma mater, UC Santa Barbara. Together with his wife Jody, Arnhold ’75, a trustee of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation, has donated $5.25 million to UC Santa Barbara Athletics in support of its women’s and men’s tennis teams.

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Stephen and Louise Pahl

For the Common Good

With major gift for social science research, Louise and Stephen Pahl aim to foster interdisciplinary solutions to array of societal challenges.

UC Santa Barbara alumni Louise A. Pahl ’77 and Stephen D. Pahl ’77 have donated $1.1 million to their alma mater to help pave a path toward solutions for massive societal challenges. Their gift establishes the Pahl Initiative on the Study of Critical Social Issues in UC Santa Barbara’s Division of Social Sciences.

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Der Theater an der Wien in 1900, the location of the 1904 premiere of “The Mock Marriage.”

An Operetta for the #MeToo Era

UC Santa Barbara Opera Theatre presents a 115-year-old work by Franz Lehár with feminist themes, celebrating collectors Michael and Nan Miller’s gift to the UC Santa Barbara Library.

The Miller’s donation consists of more than 175,000 scores of operas, operettas, and other musical-theater works, including "The Mock Marriage."

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Las Varas Ranch

‘A Living Legacy’

Philanthropist Charles T. Munger makes a gift to UC Santa Barbara of the 1800-acre Las Varas Ranch.

UC Santa Barbara has received formal approval from the UC Regents to acquire Las Varas Ranch, an agricultural property totaling 1,800 acres six miles west of the campus. The ranch extends from the Pacific Ocean to Los Padres National Forest.

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Jack and Kim Johnson help break ground on UCSB's Edible Campus program student farm

Grow On, Now

Alumni, donors Kim and Jack Johnson help UC Santa Barbara break ground on its student farm, culminating years of effort.

Three years after formally launching its Edible Campus program — a multifaceted effort to grow food on campus, for campus — UC Santa Barbara has broken ground on an expansive garden. 

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UC Santa Barbara campus beauty sun in the trees

Return on Investment

UC Santa Barbara reaches $100 million in fundraising for fourth straight year; receives more single donations than ever.

Thousands of new donors and a $100 million year. For the fourth consecutive fundraising year, UC Santa Barbara in the 2017-18 fiscal year raised $100 million in gifts and pledges — a testament to the strength of the university’s relationships with alumni, parents, staff and faculty, and friends.

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Duncan and Suzanne Mellichamp

For Distinguished Leadership

Duncan Mellichamp, professor emeritus of chemical engineering, receives the UC Academic Senate’s 2018 Oliver Johnson Award.

Mellichamp, a professor emeritus and a founding faculty member of the Department of Chemical Engineering at UC Santa Barbara, and his wife, Suzanne, have endowed 16 mid-career faculty chairs at UCSB in the areas of systems biology and bioengineering, globalization dynamics, sustainable chemistry and chemical engineering.

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Books and Laptop

The Gift of Time

Professor Charles Bazerman endows a fellowship fund for continuing lecturers in the UCSB Writing Program to pursue research and professional development.

A distinguished professor of education at UC Santa Barbara, Bazerman has committed $300,000 to the university to endow a faculty fellowship for continuing lecturers in the UCSB Writing Program. The new gift, made with his wife and UCSB colleague Shirley Geok-Lin Lim, a professor of English, makes permanent the support Bazerman has provided to continuing lecturers since 2015.

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Underwater Coral Reef

Moving the Needle

Through their Zegar Family Foundation, Merryl Snow Zegar and Bloomberg co-founder Charles Zegar gift UCSB $1.04 million to address climate change through science.

Coral bleaching is at the center of a new research effort at UC Santa Barbara being funded by a gift from the Zegar Family Foundation. The nonprofit organization founded by Charles and his wife, Merryl, is supporting three new UCSB-based projects — the other two are focused on food supply — aimed at finding environmental solutions.

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Sven Holcomb (left) and Chris Jenkins (right) in the Lazarus Sound Lab

The Art of Sound

UC Santa Barbara’s Department of Film and Media Studies unveils new state-of-the-art sound mixing program.

Named for donor (and former screenwriting instructor) Paul Lazarus and his family, the Lazarus Sound Lab promises to train students in the latest programs and techniques for capturing, editing and mixing high-quality sound. Additionally, renovations to an existing screening room were made possible by donor and UCSB alumnus Scott Frank (’82).

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Rich Wolski

Vision and Commitment

Computer scientist Rich Wolski named to the Duval Family Presidential Chair in Energy Efficiency, made possible by a gift from Glenn ’80 and Bettina Duval.

“Bettina and I are excited to be able to make a small contribution to a better, more energy efficient future,” said Glenn Duval, a trustee since 2012. “We firmly believe that utilizing all energy more efficiently will allow mankind to continue economic growth into the future while providing for a more sustainable, ecologically sound, cooler planet. We view this contribution as an investment in our children’s future and we encourage others to follow a similar path.”

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Shirley Graves Kennedy

An Eternal Flame

Papers of Shirley Kennedy, influential educator and activist, are gifted to the UCSB Library’s Special Collections.

The Kennedy family, working with the UCSB Center for Black Studies Research (CBSR), has donated the Shirley Kennedy Papers to the university. They will be housed at the California Ethnic and Multicultural Archives (CEMA) at the UCSB Library and be made available to those who want a glimpse of the inner workings of the progressive, multifaceted woman.

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Leon Balents, Craig Hawker, and Edward Telles

‘Intellect, Creativity and Commitment’

Three scientists and scholars are elected to the 238th class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Professor Leon Balents holds the Pat and Joe Yzurdiaga Chair in Theoretical Physics, Professor Craig J. Hawker holds the Alan and Ruth Heeger Chair in Interdisciplinary Science, and Professor Edward E. Telles is a Distinguished Professor of Sociology. Their selection brings to 37 the number of UCSB faculty members who have been named fellows of the academy.

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The world’s most advanced camera can detect planets around the nearest stars.


UCSB physicists team up with Caltech astronomers to commission the most advanced camera in the world.

“Taking a picture of an exoplanet is extremely challenging because the star is much brighter than the planet, and the planet is very close to the star,” said Mazin, who holds the Worster Chair in Experimental Physics at UCSB.

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Umesh Mishra

The Next Big Challenge

Electrical and computer engineering professor Umesh Mishra to deliver the 2018 Faculty Research Lecture.

Mishra, the Donald W. Whittier Professor in Electrical Engineering, is recognized for his considerable contributions in the research and development of energy-efficient microwave and energy conversion power electronics. It is the highest honor bestowed upon UCSB professors by their peers and recognizes extraordinary scholarly distinction.

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Students Celebrating Give Day in Pavilion Gym

A Story of Giving

UCSB Give Day 2018 raises more than $5.6 million in just 24 hours.

You’ve outdone yourselves, Gauchos. Big time.

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UC Santa Barbara Baseball Player Up to Bat

Light It Up

Addition of lights to Uyesaka Stadium will enable night games, enhancements to benefit student-athletes, campus and community.

Creating new opportunities for Gaucho baseball, for Gaucho fans and for the Santa Barbara community at large, UCSB Athletics will soon install lights at Uyesaka Stadium. A goal of the department for many years, the $1.3 million project has now been made possible through the generosity of multiple donors.

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Mabel Normand in

Funny Ladies

Carsey-Wolf Center film series pays homage to women in comedy.

“Women in Comedy” pays homage to the women comedians of today and yesteryear and also to the Carsey-Wolf Center namesake Marcy Carsey, a UCSB Trustee and Honorary Alumna.

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Two students laughing

The Next Chapter

UCSB’s second Give Day, a 24-hour digital fundraising event, will take place April 12.

Celebrating those stories while crafting a new chapter — all with an eye toward the future — UCSB will hold its Give Day 2018 event Thursday, April 12. The 24-hour “digital pep rally” will employ social media and other digital tools to unite the university’s many communities around their UCSB connections and experiences, while engaging donors and raising donations.

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Helen Macdonald

Living After Loss

Award-winning memoirist Helen Macdonald will give a public reading and work with students in the Writing Program.

Made possible by a gift from Diana and Simon Raab, the writer-in-residence series gives undergraduate writing and literature students at UCSB a unique opportunity to engage with masters of the craft. Creative writers, humanities scholars, journalists and filmmakers give public lectures or readings for the Santa Barbara community, and while in residence, they meet with students in a classroom setting to explore the craft of writing.

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Charles R. Hale

New Dean Takes the Reins

Acclaimed anthropologist Charles R. Hale assumes role as the dean of social sciences at UCSB.

As the new SAGE Sara Miller McCune Dean of Social Sciences, Hale oversees 12 academic departments and programs with more than 6,500 undergraduate and 400 graduate students.

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Two children holding a sea urchin above the touch-tank

Making Waves

Betty Elings Wells’ major gift to UCSB’s REEF touch-tank and ocean education facility will fund improvements and enhance outreach.

Wells, honorary alumna, UCSB Foundation trustee, real estate investor and philanthropist, has gifted the REEF with $1 million to create the Betty Wells Marine Science Outreach Initiative.

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Students Walking on Path with Ocean in the Background

Field Tripping

UCSB invests in students and augments their learning with fieldwork, an increasingly rare practice among universities.

Many UCSB field trips are made possible by donors. The Environmental Studies Program, for example, uses its Freudenberg Fund, an alumni-supported endowment named for the late William Freudenberg, who was a UCSB professor for a decade. For its vertebrate biology supplemental field trip to Santa Cruz Island, EEMB took advantage of alumni donor funds. The Department of Earth Science, too, relies on philanthropy — also largely from alumni — to subsidize more than half the cost of its field trips.

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The Jack and Laura Dangermond Preserve

Preserving Nature

UC Santa Barbara announces Dangermond Endowed Chair in Conservation Studies.

The $1 million endowment will further enhance UC Santa Barbara’s reputation for research and teaching in the environmental and Earth sciences, environmental sustainability and technological innovation. Holders of the Dangermond Chair will bring distinguished records of active scholarly engagement and teaching to new innovative research projects conducted, in part, at a new conservation preserve near Point Conception.

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A glimpse into the quantum world: A

Of Spins, Entanglements and Spooky Actions

UCSB KITP member Leon Balents is appointed to the Pat and Joe Yzurdiaga Chair in Theoretical Physics.

He is the second UCSB faculty member to hold the position named for longtime campus supporters Joe and Pat Yzurdiaga. Balents follows in the footsteps of prominent string theorist and UCSB Professor Emeritus Joe Polchinski.

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Cherríe Moraga, Ben Olguín and Celia Herrera Rodriguez

Major Additions

New faculty in UCSB’s English department bring vibrancy to Chicana/Chicano literature studies.

The Erickson Presidential Chair, which could be the first-ever endowed chair in Chicana literature advertised by a U.S. English department, was made possible by a gift from philanthropists John and Jody Arnhold. Duffy noted that John Arnhold ’75, a UCSB trustee, English alumnus and generous supporter of the campus, said the department could designate the chair in any field deemed appropriate. The faculty voted overwhelmingly for Chicano literature.

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Shopping Cart by Stop Sign Off of a Deserted Street

Confronting Poverty

Talk by Robert Reich will inaugurate new Blum Center for Global Poverty Alleviation and Sustainable Development.

The UC Santa Barbara Blum Center for Global Poverty Alleviation and Sustainable Development will bring the issues of poverty and inequity front and center, gathering faculty and students from a host of academic disciplines to teach, learn, conduct research and to explore opportunities for collective action and practical engagement.

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Two Students Dancing on Stage

A Bright Future

Jody and John Arnhold ‘75 endow a production fund for UCSB theater and dance, securing its programs for generations to come.

John Arnhold ‘75, with his wife Jody, a luminary in dance education, has gifted the UCSB Department of Theater and Dance with $1.25 million — the largest endowment in its history. The support establishes a production fund to secure the department’s programs for generations.

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UCSB Campus and Storke Tower

Commitment and Guidance

UC Santa Barbara Foundation welcomes four new trustees; alumnus Richard Breaux takes seat as board chair.

Alumnus Richard Breaux ’67, a highly successful builder with a strong background in education and a belief in the power of philanthropy, is the new chairperson of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation Board of Trustees.

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Joseph Walther

Digital Relationship Guru

Communication professor Joseph Walther is named to the Bertelsen Presidential Chair in Information Technology and Society.

Walther, who in fact pioneered the study of computer-mediated communication and its implications for intrapersonal relationships, has been named the inaugural Bertelsen Presidential Chair in Information Technology and Society at UC Santa Barbara. He will also be the director of UCSB’s Center for Information Technology (CITS).

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A graduate student works in the lab of John Bowers at UCSB's Institute for Energy Efficiency

‘Think Big’

Investor and philanthropist George Holbrook’s gift safeguards graduate research fellowships at the Institute for Energy Efficiency.

George Holbrook, local resident, venture investor and philanthropist, has pledged a $4 million bequest from his estate to fund continued support of the Holbrook Foundation Fellowships he created in 2011.

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UCSB Labyrinth

Sustaining Excellence

UC Santa Barbara reaches $100 million in fundraising in fiscal year 2017.

For the third consecutive year, UC Santa Barbara has reached or surpassed $100 million in fundraising, receiving a total $100 million in gifts and pledges for fiscal year 2017. Since 2011, yearly donations to the campus have more than doubled due to philanthropic support.

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UCSB Brain Initiative

Brainiacs Win Big

UCSB Brain Initiative wins Hearst Foundation award to amplify interdisciplinary effort.

In fields ranging from mechanical engineering to molecular biology, psychology to philosophy, electrical engineering to English, top minds at UC Santa Barbara are striving — together — to solve this enduring puzzle by way of the cross-disciplinary UCSB Brain Initiative.

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Karen Scida

Rising to the Top

Chemist receives the 2017 Otis Williams Postdoctoral Fellowship for an innovation that uses bubbles to pump insulin.

The Otis Williams Fund at the Santa Barbara Foundation provides support for young Ph.D. scientists to work at the interface of biology and engineering. For her fellowship, Scida has a plan to engineer a solution to one of the world’s largest epidemics: diabetes.

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Kim and Jack Johnson

Taking Root

Alumni Kim and Jack Johnson team with UCSB’s Edible Campus Program on a teaching farm to promote sustainability, feed students in need.

Ever an institution to advance all things environment and sustainability, UC Santa Barbara is flourishing in a pursuit uncommon for a beachside campus: farming. Two years after pot-planting a duo of citrus trees beneath Storke Tower, UCSB has now added a hydroponic vertical garden near the Recreation Center.

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Alicia Escalante

A Chicana Warrior

Alicia Escalante, who led the fight for justice and dignity in the turbulent 1960s, has donated her papers to UCSB.

A poor single mother of five, she became one of the leading activists of the Chicano Movement in the 1960s. She founded the East Los Angeles Welfare Rights Organization (ELAWRO) in 1967 and participated in some of the most important Civil Rights struggles of the decade.

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Blue Whale Tail and Cargo Ship

Save the Whales

Benioff Ocean Initiative at UCSB announces first project, commits $1.5 million to finding solutions to whale deaths caused by vessel collisions.

The Benioff Ocean Initiative was founded in 2016 with an initial gift of $10 million from Lynne and Marc Benioff, the chairman and CEO of Salesforce. The experimental enterprise aims to combine university researchers, students and global ocean communities to identify problems and solve them with emerging technologies.

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360° video

Reality in All Directions

Electrical and computer engineering professor Kenneth Rose and his team search for better 360° video encoding.

With a $40,000 gift from the company InterDigital Communications, through its charitable affiliate the Signal Foundation for Wireless Innovation, Inc., Rose and his team will investigate methods of compression to decrease both the volume of data and the time needed to process it.

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Operetta Artwork

Michael & Nan Miller Donate Major Operetta Archive

Shelves fill nearly every wall of their home with operetta and music ephemera that will one day be housed at the UCSB Library.

The Millers plan to donate their entire collection, appraised at more than $2 million, to the Library after their deaths. They also created a $1 million endowment that will fund the costs of packing, moving, processing and sustaining the collection.

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Sedgwick Reserve

All in the Family

A major gift from alumna Linda Duttenhaver and her father, Morton La Kretz, will further research and teaching at UCSB’s Sedgwick Reserve.

Devotion to environmental causes runs deep in the La Kretz family; so does a passion for philanthropy. Put them together and it’s a true force of nature. 

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The papers of U.S. Congresswoman Lois Capps

'Challenges and Triumphs'

Newly retired U.S. Congresswoman Lois Capps donates her papers, two decades worth, to UCSB Library Department of Special Research Collections.

“The UCSB Library is honored to preserve and manage former Congresswoman Lois Capps’s papers, which will support generations of students and scholars interested in her 20 years of leadership and service,” said University Librarian Denise Stephens.

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The Club & Guest House

Be Our Guest

UCSB’s renovated faculty club, now The Club & Guest House, is open for business.

A grand opening celebration for the campus and community, including an open house, will be held at the new facility Tuesday, Jan. 31, from 3:30 to 6 p.m.

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The UCSB Greenhouse & Garden Project hosts students, faculty and staff to maintain their own garden plots.

'Inside, Outside and Beyond'

Unique collaboration of UCSB’s Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, Edible Campus Project and Orfalea Family Children’s Center seeds sustainability in preschoolers.

Given proper care and attention, a single seed can grow into something that flowers for generations. And that’s the hope — both literally and figuratively — of a unique new collaboration at UC Santa Barbara.

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Joseph Polchinski

Another Major Breakthrough

UCSB physicist and KITP permanent member Joseph Polchinski wins prestigious 2017 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics.

Awarded for his transformative advances in quantum field theory, string theory and quantum gravity, distinguished UC Santa Barbara physicist Joseph Polchinski has won the prestigious 2017 Breakthrough Prize in Fundamental Physics, which recognizes major insights into the deepest questions of the universe.

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Black Hole

Fundamental Fellows

With a gift of $1 million to create a high-level postdoctoral fellowship in fundamental physics, UCSB pushes to address the discipline’s most fundamental and vexing questions.

Thanks to this major new gift, UC Santa Barbara aims to unleash promising young scientific minds on harmonizing the theory of relativity and quantum theory, finding a quantum theory of gravity, and other related topics.

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Samir Mitragotri

‘For Distinguished Contributions to Medicine’

UCSB professor Samir Mitragotri is elected to the National Academy of Medicine.

Mitragotri joins 79 new members chosen by the organization in recognition of their professional achievement and commitment to service.

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UC Santa Barbara continues to attract some of the best and brightest applicants in the world.

'Vision and Expertise'

UC Santa Barbara Foundation welcomes three new trustees for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Laurie Bentson Kauth, Claudia Webster and Howard Wenger join the leadership body that promotes the university by increasing philanthropy and managing and growing the endowment.

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Joseph Incandela

Physics Beyond the Standard Model

UCSB physicist Joseph Incandela will present the campus’s 61st Annual Faculty Research Lecture.

On Monday, October 17, Incandela will deliver UCSB’s 61st Annual Faculty Research Lecture, titled “Searching for the Genetic Code of our Universe.”  The highest honor bestowed upon a UCSB professor by his or her peers, the lecture recognizes extraordinary scholarly distinction. 

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Michael Gazzaninga, director of the center and a professor of psychological and brain sciences at UCSB

All in the Mind

With its visiting scholars program and other offerings, SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind at UC Santa Barbara blurs the boundaries between disciplines.

When computer scientist, bitcoin expert and noted hacker Emin Gün Sirer gave a public talk as a visiting scholar at UC Santa Barbara, the room was packed with engineers, rapt at attention. No surprise there, except maybe when considering the event’s host: the campus’s SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind.

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EAP Student Elaine Yoo

A Boost for Overseas Study

Freeman Foundation grant to fund 36 student internships in Asia through UCSB’s Education Abroad Program.

Building on its remarkable growth, the UC Santa Barbara Education Abroad Program (EAP) has received a $150,780 grant from the Freeman Foundation to fund up to 36 student internships in Asia during the 2017-18 academic year. 

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UC Santa Barbara Lagoon

'Resounding Generosity'

UC Santa Barbara marks its second-best year ever for fundraising in fiscal year 2016.

UC Santa Barbara raised $119 million in private gifts for fiscal year 2016. The generosity of donors propelled UCSB past its $1 billion goal for The Campaign for UC Santa Barbara and helped move the campus into a new era of fundraising.

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Microscope with glass slides

And the Winner Is …

Kudos to UCSB’s award-winning postdoctoral scholars.

Speaking to the strength of research at UC Santa Barbara, eight postdoctoral scholars have received recognition and support to help them further their studies. Many of the accolades are related to medical or health explorations, ranging from molecular level inquiries to practical application.

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The Benioff Ocean Initiative based at and led by UC Santa Barbara

Crowdsourcing Sea Change

With a $10 million gift from Marc and Lynne Benioff, UC Santa Barbara establishes the Benioff Ocean Initiative to study and solve ocean issues.

The Benioff Ocean Initiative, a bold new endeavor led by the University of California Santa Barbara, aims to research the root causes of these pervasive ocean problems and use science to solve them.

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SNARL Sagebrush

‘All This Rugged Beauty’

The Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserve in Mammoth Lakes, encompassing Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Lab and Valentine Camp, is a spectacle of nature and a hub for education.

Peeking through a grove of svelte, white aspens, dusty hills ascend from sagebrush, giving way to jagged, rocky peaks piercing an impossibly blue sky that extends as far as the eye can see.

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Tag-Team Shakespeare

UCSB debuts a unique course that combines its theater and English departments for a deep dive into The Bard’s works.

In a small theater at UC Santa Barbara, Irwin Appel and James Kearney are plowing new ground in an old field: the works of William Shakespeare.

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UC Santa Barbara's Actuarial Science program has received a number of awards and accolades

No Risk, No Reward

UC Santa Barbara’s actuarial science program receives multiple awards and grants for overall excellence.

While actuarial scientists — the number crunchers who use complex mathematical models to estimate risk — traditionally have been vital to the insurance industry, companies like Google and Uber are now hiring them to help assess opportunities for growth

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Alison Brysk, the Mellichamp Professor of Global Governance in the Department of Global Studies at UCSB

A Guardian of Global Rights

The International Studies Association recognizes UC Santa Barbara professor Alison Brysk’s accomplishments as a scholar and mentor.

Though most of us agree with the noble goals of human rights campaigns, there are many competing opinions about how to best organize an effective social movement. And Alison Brysk has heard them all.

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William Wise, an earth science professor emeritus at UCSB

A Cut Above the Rest

UC Santa Barbara's Bancroft Collection features a dazzling array of minerals and gem crystals.

In an otherwise unassuming two-story building -- one of the first erected at UC Santa Barbara in the late 1950s -- sits treasures untold: an assemblage of minerals and gem crystals -- many quite rare -- known as the Bancroft Collection.

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Steve Hinkley of MOXI, with UCSB’s JoAnn Kuchera-Morin, a professor of media arts and technology and founder/director of the AlloSphere

Partnership and Collaboration

UCSB teams with MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation to engage the public in science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics.

Spurred by a common mission of public service, and a mutual aim to foster public engagement with what's known in education circles as STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics), UC Santa Barbara is teaming on a unique project with MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation

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Tom Steyer during a 2014 appearance at UCSB, with John Bowers, director of the campus-based Institute for Energy Efficiency

Bold Solutions

TomKat UC Carbon Neutrality Project, led by UCSB, launched with $300,000 donation to combat climate change.

The University of California today launched the TomKat UC Carbon Neutrality Project with a $300,000 gift from the TomKat Foundation, established by Tom Steyer and Kathryn Taylor. The TomKat UC Carbon Neutrality Project seeks to develop and deploy solutions to the challenges of climate change.

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Give Day Highlight

Gauchos Are Generous

With nearly 1,300 donors — and more than $3.7 million — UCSB’s inaugural Give Day was a resounding success.

UCSB’s first-ever Give Day delivered in a major way. The one-day digital fundraising drive scored 1,268 total donors, who together gifted the university $3.7 million in just 24 hours.

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UCSB Students at SRB


Inaugural Give Day at UC Santa Barbara launches new era of fundraising for campus.

Hoping to reach alumni in their regular hangouts and foster closer connections that inspire lifelong philanthropic support of the campus, UC Santa Barbara is holding its first-ever one-day digital donation drive.

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A Meeting of the Minds

Investigators from UCSB and Cottage Health present summaries of their work in the hope of forming collaborative research partnerships.

UC Santa Barbara biologist Michael Mahan’s groundbreaking work on antibiotic resistance may one day change the way these ubiquitous drugs are prescribed. 

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Giving to the Givers

UCSB First awards dinner disperses grants to student organizations with philanthropic plans.

Staying true to its central mission to help build a culture of giving of campus, the philanthropically focused student group UCSB First dispersed $4,250 in grants during its 2016 Philanthropy Awards Dinner.

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Real-World Scholarship

The Orfalea Center for Global & International Studies at UCSB celebrates 10 years of collaborative research on critical issues.

When the Orfalea Center for Global & International Studies at UC Santa Barbara was established 10 years ago, its mission was fairly simple: to provide support for speakers’ series and seminars. 

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Valued Partners

UC Santa Barbara Foundation welcomes two new trustees for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Michael Stewart and Jeffrey Worthe join the leadership body that promotes the university by increasing philanthropy and managing and growing the endowment.

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A Landmark Year

UC Santa Barbara records historic year for fundraising in fiscal 2015.

Buoyed by the largest single gift in the campus’ history and a surge of donors across the giving spectrum, UC Santa Barbara had a landmark fundraising season in fiscal year 2015.

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A Great Privilege

Philanthropist Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree named chair of UC Santa Barbara Foundation.

Prominent philanthropist Lady Leslie Ridley-Tree, a devoted campus benefactor and passionate advocate for education, has been named chair of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation.

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Real-World Science

Worster fellowships in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Marine Biology fund experiential learning for undergraduate students.

These UCSB undergraduates are among a group of students who had the unique opportunity to conduct research in the field thanks to Worster fellowships.

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New Center for SNARL

SNARL opens doors on new net-zero energy, high-tech classroom and lecture hall; Page Center named for longtime donors.

Two years after making a major gift to UC Santa Barbara to help fund a project they also helped to conceive, donors Paul and Kate Page celebrated the completion and dedication of the Kate and Paul Page Research and Learning Center at UCSB’s Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Laboratory (SNARL) in Mammoth Lakes.

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Putting UCSB First

The student-run organization committed to instilling philanthropic ideals in current Gauchos hopes efforts will bolster giving among future alumni.

Fluffy pancakes, fresh fruit, hot coffee — nothing like free food to draw out the college crowd. But it’s the camaraderie that keeps them hanging around even after the caffeine well runs dry.

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A rendering of UCSB’s Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics (KITP) Visiting Scholar's Residence

Investing in Ideas

With $65 million gift, business titan Charlie Munger invests in physics at UC Santa Barbara

Charlie Munger was first introduced to physics as a college student in 1941. That particular encounter was rather brief — World War II saw to that — but the hard science made a strong impact.

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