David Riefer, who taught in the psychology department at Cal State San Bernardino, has established an endowment for undergraduate psychology students.

The Dr. David Riefer Endowed Student Award Fund, established with a $52,000 gift from the retired professor, is to be used for, but not limited to, declared undergraduate psychology students with a minimum 3.0 grade-point average (3.0 high school GPA for incoming freshmen) who have financial need. Preference will be given to first-generation college students with an interest in Latinx, African American, or Native American culture.

“I always found the students here at CSUSB to be wonderful, and easily the best part of my job, so I wanted to give something back to them in the form of this endowment,” Riefer said.

 “His dedication and service to our department, college, and the university were exemplary, and this endowment is only further proof of his commitment to our students,” said Rafik Mohamed, dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, which houses the Department of Psychology. “I hope Dr. Riefer’s generosity inspires other faculty and members of the campus community to consider such arrangements in the future.”

Riefer, who earned his Ph.D. from UC Irvine, joined the CSUSB Department of Psychology in 1985, serving the university for 34 years.

He taught courses in cognitive psychology, statistics and experimental psychology. He won four Golden Apple Awards, which recognize outstanding teachers who have a significant impact on students, and in 2000 was named Outstanding Professor, the university’s top faculty honor.

He created the department’s Honors Program and has served as the associate chair for the department. He was also an assistant dean for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, serving as the college’s scheduling coordinator for more than 25 years.  

Riefer contributed substantially to his field as a cognitive and mathematical psychologist, publishing influential papers in virtually all of the top journals in the area, including the Journal of Mathematical Psychology, the British Journal of Mathematical and Statistical Psychology, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, Memory & Cognition, the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, Psychological Review, the Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, Psychological Assessment, and the Journal of Educational Psychology.  

For more information on the Dr. David Riefer Endowed Student Award Fund, contact Alicia Corral, director of philanthropy for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, at atrujill@csusb.edu.