Under the leadership of President Harry J. Elam, Jr., Occidental is strengthening its long-standing commitment to equity and justice.
As outlined in the College’s Equity and Justice Agenda, shared with the campus community in March 2021, our goal is to develop and maintain an educational environment at Oxy in which all students, staff and faculty are welcomed and valued, where they can belong, thrive and excel. Occidental has various funds that support the College’s Equity and Justice Agenda, including scholarship funds that support our efforts to attract a diverse student body. Many of these funds were established by dedicated alumni, who have a legacy of caring deeply about these issues.Therefore, as part of The Oxy Campaign For Good, gifts of any amount can be contributed to the funds below:
Asian Pacific Islander (API) Current Year Scholarship
A current year (non-endowed) need-based scholarship established in 2013 by a small group of API alumni to help students of Asian or Pacific Islander descent attend Oxy.
José F. Silva ’84 Endowed Memorial Scholarship
Previously named the Latino/a Scholarship, this fund was founded in 1994 and endowed in 2000 to empower future changemakers from the Latinx community. Recipients are selected on the basis of their demonstrated leadership, academic excellence, financial need, commitment toward social justice, and involvement within the Latinx community. After his passing in 2008, the scholarship was renamed in honor of José F. Silva ’84, who founded Occidental’s Latino/a Alumni Association (OCLAA).
Cleveland Gillis ’72 Memorial Endowed Scholarship
Previously named the African American Scholarship, this fund was created by the College’s Black Student Alliance (BSA) in 2004 to provide need-based scholarship support to African American students at Oxy. In 2007, the fund was renamed in memory of late alumnus Cleveland “Cleve” Gillis ’72, who was a leader of the BSA and Black Alumni Organization, and a former member of the Alumni Board of Governors.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Endowed Scholarship
A need-based scholarship established in 1968 by Occidental’s Board of Trustees to honor the memory of Dr. King and his leadership in the cause of justice and equality for all. The scholarship supports students who have contributed to better understanding among members of different races on the campus and in the community.
Mary B. Barkman and John J. Barkman ’60 Endowed Scholarship
A need-based scholarship established in 2001 by late alumnus John J. Barkman ’60, this fund gives preference to first-generation students.
Anson J. Credille ’97 Scholarship
Established in 2007 by Andre V. Coleman ’97 and Octavio V. Herrera ’98 in memory of late alumnus Anson J. Credille ’97, this need-based scholarship gives preference to racially minoritized students pursuing a degree in science.
Grant and Janet Dunlap Endowed Scholarship
Established in 2001 by late alumni Grant Dunlap ’46 and Janet Dunlap ’46 P’69 P’71, this need-based scholarship gives preference to students of Native American origin.
Other Endowed Funds
African American and Underrepresented Student Success Fund
Established in 2019 by Alice Walker Duff ’69 and Joe Duff ’68, Gene Grigsby ’66, Carl Ballton ’69, and a host of alumni, this endowed fund supports the academic and life success of African American and underrepresented students. The fund allows for flexibility to address evolving needs and can be used for everything from internships to promoting an understanding of the lasting effects of slavery and segregation in the U.S.
Mary Jane Hewitt Endowed Department Chair in Black Studies
Established in 2021 through an anonymous gift, this fund supports a course release for the Black Studies Department Chair, a stipend for the Chair’s scholarly work, and discretionary funding to use for the department’s most pressing needs. The endowed chair honors the influential legacy of Professor Mary Jane Hewitt, the first Black woman to serve as a tenured faculty member at Occidental.
Stafford, Ellis, Bowman Wright Lecture Fund
This endowment, established in 1987 by Occidental’s Black Alumni Organization, enables the College to bring distinguished Black leaders in a variety of fields to campus for lectures and other events for the benefit of all Oxy students. These scholars-in-residence typically engage with the Oxy community through a presentation and visits to relevant classes. The fund is named in honor of the first Black graduates of Occidental: Dr. Janet M. Stafford ’52, George F. Ellison, Jr. ’52, and Barbara Bowman-Wright.
Current-use Gift Opportunities
Equity and Justice Fund
Gifts of any amount can be directed toward the College’s Equity and Justice Fund. Contributions make an immediate impact, providing vital current-use funding to support Oxy's greatest needs and innovative new initiatives in these areas.
General Current Year Scholarship
Growing our funding for general current year scholarships will support Oxy’s efforts to enroll a diverse student body. With 74% of our students receiving financial aid, this support is critical to providing students from all backgrounds equitable access to an Oxy education.
Intercultural Community Center (ICC) Programming
Established in 1988, the College’s Intercultural Community Center (ICC) seeks to uplift and support the experiences of students who identify as BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, low-income, and/or first-generation. The ICC also provides community-wide resources and opportunities for learning related to social justice. Gifts to ICC programming will support, for example, facilitated conversations and trainings, celebrations of culturally rooted national holidays, and the training of student leaders as Equity Ambassadors to further institutionalize social justice.
Multicultural Summer Institute
Occidental’s Multicultural Summer Institute (MSI) is a four-week academic, residential program for incoming first-year students who represent a variety of ethnic, regional, and cultural backgrounds. MSI participants get a head start on their College experience, become familiar with campus services, make lasting friendships before the start of the academic year, build support networks, and sharpen their leadership skills. Gifts to MSI will enable Oxy to continue providing this transformative experience to about 50 students each summer—supporting the retention and success of the program’s diverse participants.
Center for Gender Equity
The mission of the College’s Center for Gender Equity (CGE) is to address the needs of women, men, non-binary, agender, and transgender members on campus by providing support, advocacy, and programming that promotes awareness, personal empowerment, mutual respect, and equity. Located in the lower lounge of Oxy’s Steward-Cleland (“Stewie”) residence hall, the CGE also serves as space for students to study, relax, and find resources related to issues of gender, sexuality, identity, and diversity. Gifts to the CGE will support its vital mission and gender-related programming that resonates with our diverse student body.