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This brings us to Campaign UCLA. We're now 18 months away from the
end of the Campaign. Already, the goal of $1.2 billion has been
reached, and it has been increased to $1.6 billion. To what do you
attribute this phenomenal success?
One might be prone to say that it's because the financial markets
have done so well, but I think it is much more than that. I think
the most important factor is the uniqueness of UCLA. There is no
other public university of the quality of UCLA that draws support
from such a major metropolitan area. The people of Los Angeles and
Southern California in particular, whether they are alumni or not,
feel a connection to this university and want it to be excellent.
They also want this university to be more involved in their communities.
have received many gifts, large and small, and each makes a significant
contribution. There have been some very generous gifts from people
who never even attended UCLA - Lew and Edie Wasserman, for example.
They are not alumni of UCLA or of any other college or university,
but they made a $10-million gift for undergraduate scholarships.
They recognize that it is important for this university to be excellent
and to educate students who might not have the means to come here
on their own.
there was the gift for the arts from Eli and Edythe Broad. Again,
they are not alumni of UCLA, but they are people who care deeply
about the arts in the Los Angeles area and deeply about education.
This level of appreciation of UCLA as the public university in the
heart of this vital community is something we underestimated.
Having raised the goal of the Campaign, are you concerned about
the possibility of donor fatigue?
You do worry about how it will be interpreted; perhaps people will
think we have raised the goal simply because we can, rather than
because we have very real needs. But I think people have come to
understand that the needs we have at UCLA are far greater than the
$1.2-billion goal we originally set. At the time that goal was set,
it was considered an extraordinarily ambitious stretch to go for
$1.2 billion. It was the largest campaign ever undertaken by any
public university anywhere.
even with the goal at that level, there were unmet needs. By raising
the goal, we hope to address some of those needs. We are seeking
funds, in particular, for capital improvements in the College of
Letters and Science. There's so much building and construction that
has taken place to meet seismic requirements, yet there also are
programmatic needs. We must have a new physics and astronomy building
and new facilities for the life sciences. We also want to raise
as much as we can for student scholarships, particularly for graduate-student
support. And we need funds for faculty support, including endowed
chairs and funds for research. Our libraries need help. So you can
see, there is still a lot that remains to be done.