Why You Should Support Graduate Education at UC Santa Barbara

Spirited and innovative thinkers, UC Santa Barbara’s 3,000 graduate students are prized as future colleagues, sophisticated students, and insightful research partners. Our students conduct groundbreaking research in such diverse fields as nanotechnology, autism, the digital humanities, bioengineering, new media, global studies, theoretical physics, green technologies and the arts. The interdisciplinary nature of graduate education at UC Santa Barbara equips many students to view present-day problems through multiple lenses, which opens the door to new discoveries and creative problem solving. Their dedication to teaching and research is essential to UC Santa Barbara’s standing as one of the world’s top research institutions. A donation to the Graduate Division is a direct investment in brilliant minds and a better future.

Donor Match Program brochure cover

Graduate Division Match Program

The Graduate Division has launched a one-year program through June 30, 2016, to create new graduate student support across all areas of campus. Find out how to leverage your gift and increase impact on students through three new programs detailed in this brochure.

Gifts to the Graduate Division at UCSB

You can help UC Santa Barbara graduate students expand the boundaries of knowledge. Priority funding opportunities include:

  • Dean's Fund for Graduate Excellence and Innovation

    Gifts to the Dean’s Fund for Graduate Excellence and Innovation provide the Dean of the Graduate Division with flexible funding for emerging opportunities necessary to advance the leading-edge work of our graduate students. Investments in this critical fund enable the Dean to respond to opportunities to advance the academic and professional development of our graduate students and maximize their success. (Learn more: Find out how giving to the Dean's Fund has given our grad students the resources and support to thrive at UCSB.)

  • Graduate Division Student Fellowship Fund

    Gifts to the Graduate Division Student Fellowship Fund help to attract and retain the best and brightest graduate students from across the globe.

    Academic fellowships allow graduate students to dedicate their undivided attention to their research.  This core support – from first-year funding to the thesis or dissertation year – allows graduate students to fully immerse themselves in their studies, propelling them toward attainment of their degrees. A gift of $45,000 fully funds a graduate student for an entire year, including summer months, although any level of fellowship funding (including single-quarter support) is greatly appreciated by our students – your generosity makes their education possible. To learn about the Graduate Division’s matching program and how your specific interests can be aligned with a student’s needs, please contact Julie Karbula.

    Summer fellowships in the amount of $8,000 support research crucial to the completion of a dissertation, which may include costs associated with travel. Academic year fellowships do not include summer months, so summer funding is especially important.

    Top-off fellowships at $5,000 per year help UC Santa Barbara recruit the most competitive students in the world, by allowing us to match the offers of other top universities and bring the most diverse and original thinkers to the UC Santa Barbara campus.

  • Graduate Research and Travel Fund

    Gifts to the Graduate Research and Travel Fund cover costs related to research and professional opportunities. Many of our graduate students conduct research in field sites, museums, archives, or laboratories far from the sunny shores of UC Santa Barbara. By giving to the Graduate Research and Travel Fund, you might enable a student to travel to Siberia to document endangered languages, purchase additional datasets to more accurately estimate the economic impacts of climate change on Chinese agriculture, travel to Antarctica to study “sea butterflies,” or participate in economics lectures and discussions with Nobel Laureates at the Lindau Meeting in Economic Sciences in Lindau, Germany.

  • Grad Slam Fund

    Gifts to the Grad Slam Fund will be awarded to the top competitors in the annual Grad Slam, the campus competition for the best three-minute talk by a graduate student. The Fund provides prize money, financial support that can help students move toward an advanced degree. During the annual Graduate Student Showcase, UC Santa Barbara graduate students from all disciplines are invited to participate in the Grad Slam. In the preliminary rounds, students present their research or other big ideas in three minutes or less. The most riveting presenters advance to the semi-finals and on to the exciting Finals, where the Grand Prize winner receives a $5,000 research prize and two runners-up earn $2,500 each. Additional small prizes are awarded to all finalist participants and the winners of preliminary rounds.

    Participants are judged on:

    • Intellectual significance
    • Clear and compelling presentation
    • Ability to gear the talk for a general university audience
    The prize money is a strong motivator for students to participate, as they can use it for research, summer support, or other critical needs. During the process, students hone a valuable skill: the ability to broadly communicate the importance of their work to a wide array of audiences. The Grad Slam similarly benefits the campus and community by showcasing the excellence and diversity of research and education occurring at UC Santa Barbara.

 Click here to read inspiring stories of past fellowship recipients.

Become Part of the Tradition

Please join us in helping UC Santa Barbara’s graduate students to excel. For additional information about giving to the Graduate Division, creating a named fund, giving a gift with a restricted purpose, or making a planned gift, please contact Julie Karbula at 805-893-2190 or julie.karbula@ucsb.edu.