The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has gifted $14 million to Claremont Graduate University to fund a new, multi-disciplinary health research center at the university.
Claremont Graduate University announced the gift, which is one of the largest in its nearly 100-year history, earlier this month.
The money will go towards creating the Yuhaaviatam Center for Health Studies, which the university describes as an “innovative, multi-disciplinary health research center rooted in a health and well-being initiative.”
Yuhaaviatam means “people of the pines,” referring to the original inhabitants of this area who are the ancestors of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.
Jacob Coin is the Executive Advisor to the Chairman of San Manuel. He says the new research center will address chronic health disparities in the Inland Empire.
“If we found anything during this COVID pandemic, it is that some of these underserved populations, including Indian Country, have suffered disproportionately from COVID-19 and it's largely because these underserved communities are typically facing co-morbidity issues. They have high levels of diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and other issues that challenges their overall well-being, and we believe that a research center like this will help find solutions, find options for these underserved populations to be able to get better access to healthcare and quality well-being services," Coin says.