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Photo by Erik Jepsen/UC San Diego Publications

Chancellor’s Associates Scholars Program Welcomes Record-Breaking Class

Chancellor Khosla meets largest and most diverse class of scholars on first day of school

“Walking around campus feels so comfortable,” said Sephun Dabi, an incoming UC San Diego freshman and recipient of a Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship. “I just feel happy and very blessed to be here.”

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As the new school year kicked off last week, UC San Diego welcomed the largest and most diverse class of Chancellor’s Associates Scholars at a special welcome reception hosted by Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla. The number of incoming Chancellor’s Associates scholars nearly doubled this year with 184 new scholarship recipients, bringing the campus total to 356 scholars.

The Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship Program was created by Chancellor Khosla in 2013 to improve the pathway for qualified students from all backgrounds to achieve a higher education at UC San Diego. When paired with the UC Blue + Gold Opportunity Plan, the program essentially provides a full scholarship for eligible students.

In what has become an annual tradition, incoming students gathered and mingled with each other and current students, as well as with UC San Diego faculty and staff members who are dedicated to helping ensure that the students thrive academically, emotionally and socially once on campus.

“You belong at UC San Diego. You are here because you have already demonstrated that you are smart, talented and creative. And that is something we want to nurture,” said Chancellor Khosla. “We are here to help you achieve your goals and your dreams. You are part of a special family of Tritons.”

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Scholarship recipients wore their honor cords, which they received at the spring Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship reception for incoming scholars and their families. The cords, which usually are only given to UC San Diego graduates, symbolize the campus’ commitment to ensuring the students’ success throughout their time at the university. As part of the fall welcome event, the students also received pins to signify their inclusion in the Chancellor’s Associates Scholars family.

Incoming freshman Dabi, who graduated from Health Sciences High in San Diego, plans to major in biology with plans to pursue a career as a pharmacist. He attended the welcome event with his friend, and fellow Chancellor’s Associate Scholar Fuad Rabi, who graduated from The Preuss School UCSD and now plans to explore majors that will allow him to use his passion for math.

At the event, the two shared that they have more in common than just the scholarship. “We were enemies,” said Dabi, with a grin, as he went on to explain that he and Rabi played on rival basketball teams. Now, the two friends are excited to start their journey together on campus and expressed that the scholarship, and the support system that has been put in place to help Chancellor’s Associates Scholars acclimate to campus and succeed, has made a big difference for them.

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“The Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship made a big difference in my decision to attend UC San Diego,” said Rabi. “Because of the scholarship, I won’t have to worry about getting loans to cover my education.”

Chancellor’s Associates Scholars are eligible for a range of services and opportunities including summer transition programs to help them prepare for life on campus, as well as priority enrollment, extended library privileges, and guaranteed on-campus housing. As part of the Chancellor’s Associates Scholars Program, students also have access to a dedicated study lounge, faculty and peer mentoring, courses on critical thinking and communication, and individualized financial aid and academic counseling.

Learn more about Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship program, click here.