Defense contractors help to found UCSD

Those who supported the introduction of a University of California campus in San Diego envisioned a steady flow of engineering and science graduates to supply an able workforce to the burgeoning local defense industry. With the Cold War accelerating to fearful proportions, the aerospace industry needed an increasingly larger pool of engineers to meet the demands to create bigger and more powerful weapons.

Industrialist John Jay Hopkins, founder of General Atomics, made a $1 million pledge to help construct UCSD as a technical research institute. That, with the city's promise of land for an undergraduate university convinced the UC Regents to open a campus in San Diego. Additionally, the "first faculty appointments for the School of Science and Engineering was made in July, 1957, and was supported by a large grant of funds from the General Dynamics Corporation."

UCSD is not unique in its integration of DoD funding and defense-based engineering and science curricula. A 2002 report by the Association of American Universities, suggests nearly 350 universities conduct Pentagon-funded research. (Turse 35)

Date/sDecember 31, 1954
Taxonomyeducation » arms industry » founding » funding
NRHP classificationevent-funding
Location32.87398147583008, -117.2421646118164
  1. "Forty Years of UCSD Perspective" by Joanne Gribble San Diego Metropolitan (Sept. 10, 2000)
  2. University of California History (Digital Archives): San Diego: Historical Overview
  3. Turse, Nick. "The Complex: How the Military Invades Our Everyday Lives." Metropolitan, 2008.
See alsoProject Orion developed by General Atomics at Camp Elliot General Atomics General Atomics Electronic Systems General Atomics Aeronautical Systems General Atomics General Atomics General Atomics Photonics Division General Atomics Nuclear Waste Processing Facility NWPF-1 General Atomics Nuclear Waste Processing Facility NWPF-2 General Atomics Nuclear Waste Processing Facility NWPF-3
Record createdJune 3, 2011
Defense contractors help to found UCSD