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Private Donor Gives SMC's Adelante Program $325,000

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By Lookout Staff

November 8, 2021 -- Santa Monica College's Adelante Program has received $325,000 from a private donor who has now given nearly $1 million to programs for minorities and students in need at the school.

The donation from Ann Wang will help provide the students with mental health counseling and emergency funds and help support food security programs, among other offerings.

Wang also donated $25,000 to establish a lending library at Santa Monica Early Childhood Lab School and $25,000 for SMC Foundation’s Gift of Books Fund.

That brings the total donations from Wang -- who oversees the Wang Joint Living Trust established by her in-laws -- to $900,000.

“There are really no words to describe the immense kindness Ann Wang has demonstrated for our students," said Dr. Kathryn E. Jeffery, SMC’s superintendent/president.

"Her generosity will have a profound, transformational effect on those who persist in their academic pursuits at Santa Monica College,” Jeffery said, adding that the gift "will have a ripple effect for years to come.”

Established in 1989, the Adelante Program was created by the SMC Latino Center to provide "a structured counseling and academic experience to foster student achievement, cultural awareness, and personal growth," SMC officials said.

The support system helps Hispanic students -- who make up 37 percent of SMC’s student body -- "successfully navigate college, and equip them for their academic/career journey beyond SMC."

Wang said she has been thinking about the Adelante program since meeting its faculty lead, Maria Martinez, and learning about the program almost two years ago.

"I am delighted that I can now provide the Latinx group/Adelante with an endowment that will fund program initiatives, both large and small, for years to come,” said Wang.

“I have seen what an endowment has done for the Black Collegians, and I know that in Maria’s capable hands, this money will change lives," Wang said. "I feel truly privileged to be a part of such a worthwhile effort.”

Wang's first large donation to SMC was a similar $325,000 gift to SMC’s Black Collegians Program Umoja Community to establish a fund to expand opportunities for Black Collegians.

She subsequently donated a seed funding gift of $200,000 to launch SMC Foundation’s Meal Project in March 2020, which provides nutritious, fresh meals delivered directly to the homes of SMC students who need the assistance.

Recipients of the meals program include foster youth, veterans, housing insecure individuals and seniors, college officals said.

For more information about SMC’s Adelante Program and the Latino Center, please visit

For more information about the Santa Monica College Foundation and giving opportunities including the Meal Project, visit

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