Fund Raising

UCLA to Receive $200-Million for University and Community Projects

February 14, 2011

The University of California at Los Angeles will receive $200-million from a private foundation to run a community-based fund that will support UCLA scholarships and research, as well as the work of outside nonprofit groups, the university said on Monday. At least half of the money will be dedicated to UCLA.

The new fund, called the Dream Fund, will be financed by a transfer of assets from the Lincy Foundation, which was started in 1989 by Kirk Kerkorian, a billionaire investor in Las Vegas casinos and resorts. The Lincy Foundation, named for Mr. Kerkorian's daughters Linda and Tracy, will close its doors after the transfer. The foundation previously had given away more than $1-billion to schools, hospitals, and Armenian charities.

The asset transfer requires the approval of the California attorney general.

The UCLA Foundation will manage and administer the fund. Rhea Turteltaub, vice chancellor for external affairs, said UCLA already managed about 10 such donor-advised funds—though none is as large as the Dream Fund—and she expects UCLA will be able to manage the new fund without hiring a larger staff. An advisory committee of people from inside and outside the university will review grant proposals and make recommendations to the university of where to give. Preference will be given to organizations that work to solve societal problems.

UCLA plans to use money from the Dream Fund to create challenge grants and matching funds for student scholarships and endowed faculty chairs.

By using the money to encourage people to donate to the university, "this gift actually stimulates greater philanthropy and is not seen as the be-all, end-all solution to our needs," Ms. Turteltaub said. "Our needs are greater."

The Lincy Foundation's gift comes less than a month after UCLA received a $100-million gift, a donation from an alumni couple that will be used for the university's School of Public Affairs and a residential-conference center.