UCLA announces plans for $35-million academic center to benefit athletes

Mo Ostin at the Silverlake Conservatory of Music gala on September 29, 2018.
UCLA alumnus Mo Ostin has provided $15 million toward an academic center that will serve the school’s athletes.
(Marc Patrick / )

UCLA announced plans on Wednesday for a $35-million academic facility on campus to support its athletes that will be named after principal donor Mo Ostin.

Ostin has provided $15 million toward the Mo Ostin Academic Center for Student-Athletes, designed to serve the school’s nearly 700 athletes in 25 sports programs. UCLA is seeking another $20 million in private donations to fund the balance of the three-level facility, which will be located centrally on campus next to the J.D. Morgan Center.

“UCLA has a deep commitment to academic success for all of our students, particularly those with demanding schedules, like our student-athletes,” UCLA Chancellor Gene Block said in a statement. “Their dedication to success both on the field and in the classroom will only be enhanced by this new center. We remain grateful for Mo Ostin’s wonderful support and our shared vision as UCLA begins its second century.”

Construction will begin as fundraising milestones are reached. Gifts of $50,000 or more will be recognized inside the facility and gifts of $250,000 or more will be recognized with a dedicated naming opportunity.


The facility will include both individual and group study spaces, individual and group tutorial areas, state-of-the-art technology labs and offices for athletics, academic and student services staff. There will also be a new Hall of Champions entry display showcasing UCLA’s 116 NCAA championship trophies.

Ostin, who holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from UCLA, had already contributed $10 million toward the Mo Ostin Basketball Center, which opened in the fall of 2017.

“It is my hope this academic center for student-athletes will serve as a resource for the most elite student-athletes in the country, at the country’s No. 1 public institution, to excel not only athletically, but also academically,” Ostin said in a statement. “For decades, UCLA has developed talented student-athletes, to include legendary Academic All-Americans like Mike Warren, John Sciarra, Bill Walton, Denise Curry and Jamaal Wilkes, to not only perform at their best athletically, but thrive in a very competitive academic environment. Assisting future student-athletes to reach their academic best is extremely important to me, and I am thrilled to be a part of this new academic center.”