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David Geffen Donates $100 Million For Scholarships To UCLA Medical School

The $100 million donation adds to Geffen’s previous $200 million donation in 2002. It makes him the single-largest individual donor to any single academic campus in USA

David Geffen / Getty

David Geffen / Getty

By Yael Segev /

David Geffen has donated $100 million to UCLA medical school. This extremely generous donation comes in addition to previous $200 million donation in 2002 when the  School of Medicine at UCLA was named the David Geffen.

The last donation makes Geffen the largest individual donor to  the academic campuse. The fund grants top medical students full tuition, lodging, books and all other .

supplies and enables  the carefully-elected students to complete their 4 years medical education program without worrying about their growing financial debts.

.All incoming students consider  to be automatically eligible.

In a statement to the press Geffen said that: “We need the students at this world-class institution to be driven by determination and the desire to do their best work and not by the fear of crushing debt”.

  And indeed, Geffen, who celebrated his 70th birthday last February knows a thing or two about making your desires come true. The son of two Jewish immigrants from the former British mandate Palestine who immigrated to Brooklyn, New York, has succeeded to climb to the top of the music records industry just a few years after being kicked out from college.

After dropping out from The University of Austin, Texas, after one semester, Geffen went back to New York and looked for a temp position. CBS TV  offered the  energetic young lad a position as the studio  receptionist. Although, soon enough Geffen was fired  for suggesting some changes in the scripts.  However, just before he was out in the streets again, one of the casting directors identified that the young drop out might become a good agent. That remark inspired Geffen to look for a job in the showbiz industry. A short while after, young Geffen was earning $ 55 dollars a week at the ‘William Morris Talent Agency’ mail room with a guy named Elliot Roberts.

Geffen’s friendly nature made it easier for him to interact with young and promising artists and 18 months after joining the agency he was handling the  careers  of artists like |Laura Nyro, Jony Mitchell, Bing Crosby and Janis Joplin. At age 25 he already earned his first million.

Driven from his quick success Geffen soon turned to his first entrepreneurship and founded Asylum Records in 1970 with his mail room body, Roberts. Asylum signed music artists like Jackson Brown, the Eagles and Bing Crosby. One year after, Geffen sold the company to Warner Communications, but kept his president position. In 1975, Geffen was offered the position of vice chairman of Warner Brothers Pictures.

In 1980. Geffen decided to return to his first love and established Geffen records, signing first-class  artists like John Lenon, Donna Summer, Jony Mitchell and Elton John and successful bands like Guns N’ Roses and Nirvana.

Geffen realized that his gift and knowledge of human nature should not be limited just to the music industry.  His ambition was shifted to a new direction – Movies, that welcomed him with open hands.

In the early nineties, Geffen entered other arenas, and used his talents in producing hit movies such as “Interview with the Vampire” and several successful Broadway shows. However, the real breakthrough emerged 4 years later,  in 1994, when Geffen, director Steven Spielberg and producer Jeffrey katzenberg founded “DreamWorks”, a movie studio and entertainment production company, producing  blockbuster movies such as “Saving Private Ryan” and “Antz”.

Geffen special talent of foreseeing the future proved itself worthy again towards the end of the millennium, with the creating of Pop.com, an internet

entertainmentcompany, producing short films, music clips, games and performance acts.

David Geffen and Cher

David Geffen and Cher

Along with his career, Geffen’s personal took some turns as well. He had a long romance with the seventies hit singer, Cher. The singer later told the press she was the right

person for him at that time in his life. Despite the two-years love story, Geffen’s name was usually connected with men and lately he finished a 6 years relationship with former college student Jeremy Lingvall, who is 41 years younger than him.

Being one of the greatest moguls of the media industry, Geffen could expect a certain amount of criticism over the years.   Singer Carly Simon also revealed a few years ago that he was the inspiration for the beloved character in  her hit song :”You’re so vain”.

Geffen had  long and turbulent  relations with former president Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary. Geffen used to be a close friend  and one of the major donors for Clinton’s campaign,   but the relationship broke down when the couple failed to meet Gefen’s expectations in some cases. For example, Geffen could not accept the president’s refusal to pardon an Indian activist who was accused with murder.  Clinton himself blamed Geffen’s movies for increasing America’s current violent atmosphere.

At age 70, Geffen , who was defined by many as the most powerful figure in showbiz, seems more interested in donating each new dollar he makes for charity causes. Possibly, Geffen might have left his social mark not only on the showbiz industry, but for being the largest donor to academic research in the US.

 

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