IRVINE, CALIFORNIA, USA, May 16, 2015 (UCI): May 9th marked the public celebration of the establishment of the "Thakkar Family-DCF Presidential Chair in Vedic and Indic Civilizational Studies", at the School of Humanities at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). A $1.5M gift from the Thakkar Family and Dharma Civilization Foundation ("DCF") established the endowed chair in January 2015. Additionally, the UC President will be funding half a million dollars to establish a total endowment of 2 million dollars.
The Dean of Humanities at UCI, Dr. Georges Van Den Abbeele, hosted the event at the UCI campus which was attended by over a 100 guests. Dr. Abbeele thanked the donors and remarked, "This new endowed chair anchors UCI's religious studies program by permanently securing faculty-led research and instruction in one of the world's most influential religions, i.e. Hinduism." He also expressed hope that this Chair would mark the beginning towards the creation of a Center of Excellence for Indic Civilizational Studies, at the UCI. This chair is intended to foster the study and understanding of Hinduism and Vedic traditions. Plans are under way to create several other Chairs, dedicated to Jain, Sikh, Hindu & Buddhist studies respectively, together constituting a one of a kind, unique "India Center" focused on the Indic civilization and its contribution to the world.