UCLA establishes Barbra Streisand Institute

Barbra Streisand
MALIBU, CA - JUNE 02: Barbra Streisand attends the CHANEL Dinner Celebrating Our Majestic Oceans, A Benefit For NRDC on June 2, 2018 in Malibu, California. Photo credit Rich Fury/Getty Images

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Barbra Streisand is establishing an institute at UCLA to conduct research into a range of social issues, ranging from climate change to environmental health to gender relations and how to combat disinformation at a national level.

The Barbra Streisand Institute will be located in UCLA's division of social sciences and consist of four centers that will address specified areas of concern.

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The four centers will be, the Center for Truth in the Public Sphere, the Center for the Impact of Climate Change, the Center for the Dynamic of Intimacy & Power Between Men & Women and the Center for the Impact of Art on the Culture.

“Building upon her decades of work as an artist and activist, Barbra Streisand's visionary act of generosity will enable UCLA scholars from many different fields to collaborate on research that will move society forward,” UCLA Chancellor Gene Block said in a release.

Streisand is an accomplished and celebrated recording artist, actor, director, producer, screenwriter, author and songwriter. She is the first woman to direct, produce, write and star in a major motion picture, the first woman composer to receive an Academy Award, the only recording artist who has achieved No. 1 albums in six consecutive decades, and the first woman to receive a Golden Globe Award for best director.

Additionally, Streisand has been a supporter of civil rights, gender equality, and advocate for democracy. She helped fund some of the earliest climate change research at the Environmental Defense Fund beginning in 1989.

“It is my great pleasure to be able to fund an institute at UCLA, one of the world's premier universities,'' Streisand said in a release. “This will be a place where future scholars can discuss, engage and argue about the most important issues of the day; where innovators will speak truth to power, help save our planet, and make glass ceilings for women an anachronism; and in the process give us a chance to have a brighter, more promising future.”

The Barbra Streisand Women's Heart Center at Cedars-Sinai was named after her in 2012. She has supported cardiovascular research and education at Cedars-Sinai since 2007. She established the Streisand Chair in Cardiology at UCLA in 1984. In 2014, the Barbra Streisand Women's Health Program was established at UCLA.

“The future Barbra Streisand Institute will bring to bear the full range of UCLA's social sciences expertise on the most pressing societal issues of the day, guiding policy and informing solutions to benefit all,” Darnell Hunt, dean of social sciences in the UCLA College, said in a release.

The Center for Truth in the Public Sphere will be the first area of study in the institute. It is an area Streisand is especially passionate about.

“While it's easy to reflect on the past, I can't stop thinking about the future and what it holds for our children, our planet and our society. The Barbra Streisand Institute at UCLA will be an exploration into vital issues that affect us all...and the fact that my father, Emanuel Streisand, was an educator makes this Institute even more meaningful to me,” Streisand said in a
release.