Eleanor Roosevelt College (ERC), the fifth of UCSD's colleges, was named after Eleanor Roosevelt, First Lady of the United States from 1932 – 1945. Over her lifetime, Mrs. Roosevelt actively pursued educational, economic, social, and racial equality in the United States and abroad. She was also a strong advocate of community service. In later life, as a United States delegate to the United Nations, she had a pivotal role in drafting and securing adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Eleanor Roosevelt College continues her global view of citizenship by emphasizing the combined importance of knowledge, leadership, and service as core characteristics of the well-educated student.
The college, founded as Fifth College in 1988, opened as the Cold War was ending and continues to educate students to work effectively in a rapidly changing world. The required Making of the Modern World (MMW) sequence offers a multi-disciplinary, cross-cultural approach to Western and non-Western civilizations. Through MMW, students explore other political, social, and religious traditions in a supportive academic community. Although not required, Roosevelt students are strongly encouraged to study abroad as part of their UCSD education.
ERC's general education program challenges students by leading them to learn from the world's great civilizations and languages; to explore scientific, quantitative, and artistic subjects; and to write proficiently. Students choose from a range of courses for every college requirement.