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UC San Diego to Receive $750,000 Bequest from Alumnus and Chancellor’s Associate James Kaplan

Funds will go to support campus’s greatest needs

Photo: Jim Kaplan

Jim Kaplan

It was some 12 years ago that James Kaplan remembers first receiving an invitation to attend a Chancellor’s Associates event at UC San Diego.

“I remember being at the event and thinking ‘this is so important, the work that the campus is doing,’” said Kaplan, who graduated from UC San Diego with a degree in computer science. “I wanted to support that work.”

Kaplan made the commitment then to become a Chancellor’s Associate, joining a loyal network of alumni, parents and friends who each make an investment of $2,500 each year. Considered UC San Diego’s premier donor group, their gifts give the chancellor the flexibility to respond to the university’s most urgent needs and critical priorities. Now, Kaplan has taken his commitment one step further and made a $750,000 bequest to Chancellor’s Associates.

“UC San Diego would not be where it is today without the vision, support and drive of many dedicated and talented people such as Jim Kaplan,” said Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla. “His generous gift advances our mission and goals as a student-centered, research-focused, service-oriented public university.”

Founded in 1966, Chancellor’s Associates has been an integral part of UC San Diego’s history of achievement and helped lay the foundation for its future. Gifts from Chancellor’s Associates donors have supported scholarships and fellowships for students, helped recruit and retain world-class faculty, provided seed money for groundbreaking research, and facilitated public service and community outreach.

In 2013, Chancellor’s Associates funding helped establish the Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship program. Created by Chancellor Khosla to improve the pathway for all qualified students to achieve a higher education, the scholarship program ensures the university can meet one of its most urgent needs and critical priorities–ensuring access and affordability to UC San Diego for local students.

Through the program, the university provides $10,000 a year for four years at UC San Diego for each eligible student. When combined with the University of California’s Blue + Gold Opportunity Plan—which covers fees for California residents whose families earn less than $80,000 a year and qualify for financial aid—the scholarships effectively provide a full ride to UC San Diego.

The program initially served students from Gompers Preparatory Academy, Lincoln High School and The Preuss School UCSD. It has since been expanded to eligible community college transfer students from San Diego City College, Southwestern College and, most recently, Imperial Valley College. Other additions to the scholars program include eligible students from federally recognized tribes and Reality Changers, a non-profit organization that provides inner-city youth from disadvantaged backgrounds with the resources to become first-generation college students.

For Kaplan, the goals of the Chancellor’s Associates Scholarship program resonate strongly.

“Ultimately, I want the money to be used for what the chancellor sees fit,” he said. “But, if my gift helps someone have an opportunity at a great education, an opportunity they might not otherwise have had, that would be wonderful.”

He added: “I got a lot out of UCSD—a great job, good life experiences. It would be incredibly rewarding to give someone else that chance.”

With his bequest, Kaplan is also now a member of the UC San Diego York Society. Named in honor of Herbert York, UC San Diego’s founding chancellor, the York Society recognizes and thanks an exceptional group of alumni, faculty, parents, staff, community leaders and other friends whose generosity through planned gifts helps secure the future of one of the world's greatest universities.

For more information on the York Society, visit the UC San Diego Office of Gift Planning at giftplanning.ucsd.edu. To learn more about Chancellor’s Associates, visit chancellorsassociates.ucsd.edu.