The George Lucas Family Foundation has granted the USC School of Cinematic Arts with a second endowment of $10 million to provide financial support to African-American and Hispanic students, raising the foundation’s student diversity support effort to $20 million.
The foundation was established at the school in the fall 2016 semester with an initial $10 million endowment for students from underrepresented communities who qualify for financial support. Minority students in both undergraduate and graduate programs will receive priority consideration for financial support.
“This endowed fund allows us to recruit storytellers whose voices are underrepresented in cinematic media, and whose inclusion benefits all of us,” said Michael Renov, vice dean of academic affairs.
“The George Lucas Scholarship really opened the door for me because I wouldn’t have been able to attend USC without it and my acceptance letter would have just been decoration in my room,” said Jonathan Curtiss, a SCA production student who was among the first George Lucas scholars. “Filmmaking is what I was created to do and this scholarship means I have fellowship, opportunity, and the ability to inspire younger filmmakers in my community to dream without limits.”
In addition to the George Lucas Family Foundation Endowed Student Support Fund for Diversity, the School of Cinematic Arts has several other endowments that are specifically earmarked for student support, including: the Hollywood Foreign Press Association Endowed International Student Support Fund, which supports students with financial need who came to SCA on student visas; the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Fund for Student Support, which supports any undergraduate students with financial need; the Shriram Family Graduate Student Support Fund, which supports graduate students with demonstrated need; and the Kelly and Ron Meyer Family Fund for Student Support, which supports a deserving undergraduate with significant financial need.