UCLA receives $1M for scholarships established in honor of Jackie Robinson
Jackie Robinson's name continues to inspire greatness.
UCLA announced the creation of the 'Jackie R. Robinson Centennial Scholars Endowed Scholarships' to support student-athlete scholarships in the four sports Jackie Robinson participated at UCLA ... baseball, football, men's basketball and track & field.
The $1M donation, via local philanthropists and other benefactors, will be used to support those 'who pursue a quality education while earning their degrees', according to a release by the school on Tuesday.
"Jackie Robinson was a difference-maker on so many levels, and he continues to inspire and touch the lives of generations to come," said UCLA Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero in the release. "His famous quote -- 'A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives' -- could not ring more true, and these generous gifts are proof of that. To be able to honor his legacy while supporting the education of student-athletes is truly remarkable, and we are grateful to all those involved who made this happen."
Robinson was a four-sport student-athlete at UCLA from 1939 to 1941. In football, he earned honorable mention All-American accolades while playing offense and defense, returning punts and kicking extra points. In basketball, he twice led the Pacific Coast Conference in scoring. In track, he won the NCAA championship in the broad jump. And in baseball, he began his legendary journey as a highly-regarded shortstop for the Bruins.
But it was six years later when Robinson cemented his name in history when he made his debut for the Brooklyn Dodgers, thus breaking the color barrier in Major League Baseball. Despite enduring abuse from fans, teammates and opponents, Robinson earned Rookie of the Year honors and a National League Most Valuable Player award in addition to helping the Dodgers win the 1955 World Series. A career .311 hitter, Robinson played in six World Series, six consecutive All-Star games was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962 during his first year of eligibility.
In 2014, UCLA renamed its series of recreation and athletics facilities in honor of Robinson and also retired his number 42 across all 25 sports.