Six UC Santa Barbara Senior Women Awarded Surprise Cash Academic Prizes

Six graduating women will receive cash awards totaling $51,000 from the now-defunct Santa Barbara City Club, whose members established the program 30 years ago to reward top female graduates at UC Santa Barbara for "a job well done."

The City Club Prize, believed to be one of the top cash awards for graduating seniors in the nation, is divided annually among the highest academically achieving women majoring in a social science.

A computer identifies the women with the top six grade-point averages, who are then notified by mail about the checks that they will receive.

The amount of each award is based on the ranking of the students by grade-point average.

The prizes generally come as a complete surprise to the recipients, who can spend the money in any way they wish.

The six 2010 winners, their hometowns, academic majors, and prize amounts are:


Rachel Ashby, Fresno, global studies: $10,500


Keri Rushing, Taft, sociology: $9,500


Megan White, Murrieta, feminist studies: $8,500


Katrina Sill, Shoreline, WA, communication and cultural anthropology: $8,000


Lauren Bogart, San Diego, communication: $7,500


Erica Johnson, Tucson, AZ, communication: $7,000

The Santa Barbara City Club was established in the 1920's by a group of women who were interested in the political process.

The club disbanded in 1978, sold its property, and donated the proceeds to UCSB with the stipulation that income from the gift be used "to reward the achievements of women who best exemplify the ideals of the club."

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