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Campus by the Sea Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of UCSB

1970’s

The protests of the late 1960s and the Isla Vista riots had a long-lasting, negative impact on UC Santa Barbara’s reputation. The school’s image transitioned from a button-downed conservative campus to a liberal, activist institution. As a result, UCSB was faced with declining enrollment, as well as a decline in the numbers of faculty.

El Gaucho, May 11, 1970
Daily Nexus, October 19, 1972

Yet the school continued to grow in other areas. Multiethnic majors, such as Black studies, and ChicanX studies, both founded in the late 1960s, expanded their programs during this time.

Environmental Studies
Film Studies
Chicano Studies 142
Daily Nexus, January 22, 1979

In 1979, UC Santa Barbara was selected as the site for the Institute of Theoretical Physics. This decision served as a turning point in the campus’s history and helped transform it into a preeminent research institution.