The University of California, Los Angeles has announced a $20 million gift from the Samueli Foundation in support of efforts to expand the diversity of undergraduate students in engineering and computer science.
The gift from alumnus Henry Samueli and his wife, Susan, to the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science will fund a new program that provides a combination of scholarships and internships for as many as fifty freshman students annually. With the aim of connecting academic studies to real-world experiences, the Samueli Foundation Engineering Undergraduate Scholarship Fund will provide students with exposure to problem solving in a commercial environment or research lab early in their undergraduate careers.
Samueli, who earned three degrees from UCLA ('75, '76, '80), was a member of the engineering faculty in 1991 when he and student Henry Nicholas co-founded Broadcom Corp. The school was named for him in 1999 in recognition of a $30 million gift from the Samueli Foundation, which at the time was newly established. In 2016, the foundation contributed $10 million in matching funds to endow faculty chairs in engineering and support the school's planned growth. Spurred by growing demand for undergraduate engineering education, the school plans to increase its enrollment over the next few years by a thousand students, to a total of more than sixty-five hundred, while also adding fifty faculty members.
The Samuelis' latest gift will count toward UCLA's $4.2 billion capital campaign, for which Henry Samueli serves as Orange County chair.
"Susan and I hope this gift will spark the thrill of problem solving in UCLA engineering freshmen and ease financial burdens that would otherwise deter them from reaching their full potential," said Samueli. "In particular, the technology sector lags in the number of engineers who are women and underrepresented minorities, and it is our sincere hope that this scholarship program will help support the professional growth of those students at UCLA."