UCLA Monday announced a $10 million gift from film and television producer and New York Giants co-owner Steve Tisch to establish scholarships for undergraduate students, particularly those from middle-income families.
According to the university, half of the Tisch Fund will be distributed over the next five years to provide four-year scholarships beginning with students entering UCLA in the fall of 2020. The other half will be used to create an endowed fund to ensure Tisch scholarships will continue in perpetuity and challenge other donors to create similar scholarship funds.
“We know a college education provides individuals with long-term financial benefits, as well as making them more well-rounded and engaged in their communities,* Tisch said in a statement released by UCLA. “But as the cost of college continues to climb, it is becoming more difficult for many hardworking middle-class families to attain. It is an honor for me to help provide opportunities for young women and men to access the value and experience of a UCLA education and positively impact the trajectory of their lives.”
Tisch’s contribution “answers a need for UCLA students whose family income is too high to qualify for grant aid but not enough to cover full educational costs,” according to UCLA. “In California, a student from a middle-income family might typically receive a scholarship from the state of $1,300 to $5,200 each year, but that accounts for only 3% to 15% of the annual cost of attending college.”
Youlonda Copeland-Morgan, UCLA’s vice provost for enrollment management, said the gift was much needed.
“Scholars from every background imaginable want to come to UCLA. Middle-income families face unique challenges in that they do not often qualify for sufficient federal and state financial aid to make UCLA affordable. As a result, too often, these students miss out on one of the finest college educations in our nation,” Copeland-Morgan said.
“UCLA wants to ensure that all students, including those from middle-income backgrounds, have an opportunity to benefit from the amazing academic and co-curricular experiences Bruins enjoy. The university is enriched by the contributions that these students make to the socio-economic diversity of our campus and our communities.”
Tisch, 70, has given to UCLA for nearly 25 years, including a $10 million gift in 2014 to establish the UCLA Steve Tisch BrainSPORT Program focusing on concussion care and education. Both that gift and the latest contribution have been part of the Centennial Campaign for UCLA, which is scheduled to conclude in December.
“UCLA is grateful to Mr. Tisch for his generosity and the attention it brings to the affordability challenges of middle-income families, which we hope will encourage others to give,” Copeland-Morgan said.