Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis Tours UC Santa Barbara

Completing visits to all ten University of California campuses since taking office


Tuesday, June 6, 2023 (916) 445-8994

Santa Barbara – This week, Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis joined Chancellor Henry T. Yang and student leaders to tour the University of California, Santa Barbara campus. The visit included a tour of two state-funded projects: the newly launched Interactive Learning Pavilion and the expansion and renewal of the University’s main library.  

This visit to UC Santa Barbara concluded the Lieutenant Governor’s tour of all ten University of California campuses since taking office. Since being elected, she has also visited 15 of the 23 California State University Campuses and plans to visit the remaining eight campuses. Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis is the only person to sit on all three governing boards of California’s public higher education system. 

Image of Lt. Governor on a tour of UCSB

Hearing firsthand from students, staffand faculty during my visits to the ten UC campuses has been invaluable and only reinforced that California has the best higher education system in the world, said Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis. These visits have been critical in shaping my priorities to build more student housing, address a backlog of maintenance needs, re-center the transfer system around student needs, and fight to keep tuition and fees affordable for families. It’s clear that we have more work to do to ensure our world-class campuses are accessible and affordable for all Californians.” 

Image of UCSB students

During her visit to UC Santa Barbara, Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis visited the Interactive Learning Pavilion which was approved by the Regents in 2019. The State of California provided most of the funding for the building in the 2019-20 State Budget. At the time of approval, enrollment at UCSB had grown by 17% in the prior five years, and classroom shortages threatened to slow graduation rates.  The state-of-the-art Interactive Learning Pavilion was prioritized to meet the needs of the instructors as well as provide 2,000 additional classroom seats. This was necessary to support current enrollment levels and lay the foundation for future enrollment growth. In 2022 the Governor’s Multi-Year Compact with the UC called for 1% year-over-year enrollment growth, facilities like the Interactive Learning Pavilion will be essential for meeting those goals. 

Image of Lt. Governor on a tour of UCSB with Chancellor

Image of Lt. Governor on a tour of UCSB

Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis also visited the University’s main library, Davidson Library, to tour the new additions and renovated North Wing, adding capacity for lecture events and student learning.