Lippe-Klein Wins Strauss Scholarship
Jenna Lee Lippe-Klein, a junior anthropology major at Occidental College, has been awarded a $10,000 Donald A. Strauss Scholarship to tutor underprivileged children at the Garment Worker Center (GWC) in Los Angeles.
Lippe-Klein, a Palo Alto Senior High School graduate, also will expose the children to higher education opportunities and set up a social justice curriculum.
“Garment workers spend long hours on the job and are often required to continue their work at home to get by, limiting the attention they can give their children,” Lippe-Klein said. “A majority of GWC members are immigrants and do not speak English, which again makes it difficult for children to receive homework assistance or learn about higher education opportunities.”
The center, located in the downtown Fashion District, is a resource for workers seeking information on wage and hour laws, health and safety regulations, and civil rights protections. It also serves as a meeting place for garment workers to organize. Los Angeles is home to the largest garment industry in the country, with more than 100,000 workers and 5,000 contractors, according to GWC.
During her yearlong activities at the center, Lippe-Klein will recruit children to the tutoring program and organize field trips to various colleges and universities in Southern California. She is currently a regional organizer for United Students Against Sweatshops and a lead organizer in Occidental’s Student Labor Action Coalition.
“Jenna is a remarkable student and campus leader,” said Peter Dreier, Dr. E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics. “She has been a strong voice for helping Oxy students appreciate the important role of campus employees and of linking Oxy students to struggles for justice in the community. She is committed to using her skills to improve society. She has the kind of passion that makes for an effective advocate and the kind of common sense that understands the importance of pragmatism and compromise.”
The Newport Beach-based Donald A. Strauss Scholarship Foundation awards at least 14 scholarships a year to juniors at Occidental and 13 other California colleges and universities, including Caltech, Stanford, UC Berkeley and UCLA. The late Strauss, an Orange County business executive, had a lifelong interest in education and public service.