Advancing UCLA's efforts to generate endowed funds dedicated exclusively to aiding students, two longtime supporters have made pledges totaling $4 million to three separate campus units.
The donations by Lynda R. and Stewart A. Resnick (through the Resnick Family Foundation) are part of the Bruin Scholars Initiative launched by Chancellor Gene Block in January 2009 to bolster predictable, ongoing funding earmarked for student support amid increasing fees and a diminished economy affecting family incomes. Since its launch in 2009, the initiative has generated $45.3 million in gifts and pledges.
"In these challenging times, it is imperative that the very best students, regardless of their economic background, have the means to thrive at UCLA and to graduate with reduced debt burdens," Block said. "These generous gifts by the Resnicks are excellent examples of the kind of support needed to ensure UCLA's continued academic excellence."
The Resnicks donated:
- $2 million to support Ph.D. candidates in the UCLA-Caltech Medical Scientist Training Program at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
- $1 million to provide loan forgiveness to recent UCLA School of Law graduates who enter the field of public interest law.
- $1 million to provide need-based support for undergraduate and graduate students in the department of art at the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture.
The Resnicks made their gift to the medical scientist training program in honor of Dr. Gerald S. Levey, who stepped down in January after 15 years as vice chancellor for medical sciences and dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. The gift established the Gerald S. Levey, M.D., Medical Science Scholars Fund.
"In addition to honoring the service of our friend, Jerry Levey, it gives us great satisfaction to support UCLA students studying in fields that are of personal interest to us," the Resnicks said. "We're proud to play a role in helping to maintain access to UCLA and advance its mission of research, education and public service."
The Resnicks are longtime UCLA supporters. They contributed $15 million to the construction of the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, which opened in June 2008. In 2005, UCLA's neuropsychiatric hospital was named the Stewart and Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital at UCLA in honor of their support for UCLA's medical care programs. In 2002, they received the UCLA Medal, the university's highest honor, in recognition of their extraordinary contributions to the campus.
Stewart Resnick holds degrees in business administration and law from UCLA, and serves on the advisory board of the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Lynda Rae Resnick serves on the board of trustees of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
The Resnicks are the owners of Roll International Corp., a Los Angeles–based firm whose holdings include Teleflora, POM Wonderful, Fiji Water and other companies.
UCLA is California's largest university, with an enrollment of nearly 38,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The UCLA College of Letters and Science and the university's 11 professional schools feature renowned faculty and offer more than 323 degree programs and majors. UCLA is a national and international leader in the breadth and quality of its academic, research, health care, cultural, continuing education and athletic programs. Five alumni and five faculty have been awarded the Nobel Prize.