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UCLA Acquires Defunct University In Rancho Palos Verdes And San Pedro

An aerial shot of a college campus includes buildings and tennis courts. The Pacific Ocean can be seen in the background.
UCLA will acquire the former campus of Marymount California, which closed this year.
(Image via Marymount California University)
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UCLA has purchased the now defunct Marymount California University in Rancho Palos Verdes and its residential site in San Pedro.

UCLA Acquires Defunct University In Rancho Palos Verdes And San Pedro

The $80 million purchase will enable the instruction of 1,000 students. It's the largest land acquisition in UCLA's history.

“As demand for our academic offerings continues to grow, this acquisition will allow us to expand student access in line with UC’s 2030 goals, strengthen our connections to the greater L.A. region, and deepen our institution’s research and public service impact," UCLA Chancellor Gene Block said in a statement.

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Those goals include producing 200,000 more undergraduates and graduates, achieving a 90% graduation rate and eliminating gaps in the graduation rates among first-generation and underrepresented groups.

UCLA is already a large landowner in L.A. County, with spaces in downtown and more than 250 patient care facilities.

Marymount California University President Brian Marcotte pointed to a shared mission in explaining the decision to sell to UCLA. Developers were also interested in the properties.

“We are certain UCLA will be an outstanding steward of the campus for the city of Rancho Palos Verdes, San Pedro and the South Bay," he said in a statement.

Marymount California University closed at the end of this summer, attributing the decision to the COVID-19 pandemic, declining enrollment, rising costs and a failed merger with Saint Leo University in Florida.

Enrolled MCU students were given the option to transfer to more than five dozen schools, including a majority of California State University schools and UC Merced.

UCLA is establishing a task force to plan how best to use the property, and officials say it may be up and running as early as next year.

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