Former UC San Diego Chancellor and UC President Emeritus Richard Atkinson and his wife, accomplished psychologist Rita Atkinson, have pledged nearly $7 million from a charitable trust to establish and endow the Richard C. and Rita L. Atkinson UC San Diego Physician Assistant Education Program. The program will help address a shortage of physician assistants in the US.
“This generous investment from the Atkinson family will allow UC San Diego to expand access to health care by meeting the growing need for more medical professionals locally and statewide,” said current UCSD Chancellor Pradeep Khosla. “The university has been increasing its research and education efforts in the field of public health over the past several years, and this transformative gift brings UC San Diego one step closer toward our commitment and vision of creating a healthier world.”
Over the years, the Atkinsons have put roughly $20 million toward supporting the university, with a focus on Rady School of Management, Moores Cancer Center, and fellowships for graduate students. They have also endowed academic chairs, including the Epstein/Atkinson Endowed Chair in Management Leadership within the Rady School of Management, and the Atkinson Family Chair, which supports researchers in cognitive science, psychology, and neuroscience.
Mission Federal Credit Union and Junior Achievement of San Diego have teamed up to help local teens plan for the future. Mission Fed recently donated $1,675 to the JA Way to Save program, which provides students who complete a joint Mission Fed Junior Achievement financial literacy course with a $50 gift card once they open a checking or savings account.