Friday, November 27, 2009
The program, typically open to University of California juniors, gives students the opportunity to live and work in Washington, D.C., while taking UC classes.
Though the program is available at all UC campuses, Anderson believes UC Merced's size gives her an added advantage.
“... There are far fewer people applying here, so there is a far greater chance of being accepted. Like my mother always said: It’s low-lying fruit; pick it while you can.”
The recent vote by the University of California Regents to raise student fees beginning spring 2010 has some prospective students and their parents concerned and confused. The Regents voted to increase fees for students to off-set diminished funding from the state.
However, student aid programs already in place will alleviate much of the burden for eligible families.
“About 60 percent of our current students have already had their gift aid awards increased to cover next semester’s higher fees,” Browne said. Those students include anyone eligible for UC or Cal-Grants, and those who qualify for the UC system’s Blue and Gold Opportunity Plan.
The plan, initiated by the Office of the President and approved by Regents earlier this year, waives UC fees for students whose family income is $60,000 or less per year. Beginning fall 2010 – when fees will increase again -- the income threshold for the plan increases to $70,000 per year.
Monday, November 23, 2009
David Cheng is the brilliant young film producer who created the “We Believe” video that helped woo Michelle Obama to campus for Commencement in May. He's also the founder and president of LightStudio, a multimedia production club at UC Merced and in 12 countries across the globe. In his spare time, he's performed original compositions for the piano at a number of student recitals.
But that was freshman year; this is now.
LightStudio, renamed Film Association, has grown at UC Merced. The dramatic increase in membership has also brought in a wider variety of interests and skill levels; Cheng redesigned the club to feature two departments, one for beginners and traditional filming, and the second for more advanced techniques, including animation and special effects.
“People can see our work and see that we are a group of students who are really interested in multimedia production. We actually go out there and film, and we do production. We are attracting more and more people who are passionate about film.”
Friday, November 20, 2009
The students are participants in the School of Engineering's Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) program. The multidisciplinary program gives undergraduate students the opportunity to work with faculty mentors to solve engineering-related problems for nonprofit organizations.
Students earn academic credit for their work and gain real-life engineering experience. The added bonus is that the students’ work benefits the community.
Volkan Ceylan is one of 10 students on the EPICS Wetlands team.
The group’s goal is to launch a Web site that will contain blog postings and information about the role wetlands play in supporting area wildlife. The group also plans to install a wireless, solar-powered Webcam in a wetlands area, which will capture images so that viewers can see the area “up close” via a computer.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
On Thursday, Nov. 19, the University of California Board of Regents approved a request to include the Yosemite Field Station as part of the UC Natural Reserve System (NRS).
The station, which is part of UC Merced's Sierra Nevada Research Institute (SNRI), is located inside Yosemite National Park.
“The addition of the Yosemite Field Station to the UC Natural Reserve signifies our strong commitment as a campus, and as part of the UC system, to develop a sustainable presence in the central Sierra Nevada,” said SNRI director Roger Bales. “Being a part of the NRS will strengthen UC research to this critically important region.”
Donna Birch Trahan
Members of UC Merced’s campus community and the public are invited to share their thoughts about the campus’ outdoor environments on Friday, Nov. 20, during “Our Sustainable Opportunity: UC Merced Landscape Design Symposium.”
The symposium, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. in UC Merced’s California Room, features a panel of nationally recognized landscape architects and arborists.
Take advantage of this opportunity to influence the form, function and aesthetics of the UC Merced!
RSVP by Thursday, Nov. 19, to email@example.com
The event is sponsored by UC Merced Physical Planning, Design and Construction division and the Sierra Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects.
Monday, November 16, 2009
The UCDC program provides students the chance to observe public policy processes and gain an extensive range of cultural experiences as interns for agencies such as the Smithsonian, the National Institutes of Health, the White House and the Senate.
For economics major David Do, who is in his final semester at UC Merced, working in Sen. Barbara Boxer’s office has proved to be such a valuable experience, he is looking for a job so he can stay in Washington, D.C.
“I believe this will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that I need to do while I am young,” he said. “Being part of the process I understand better how everything fits together. It takes an exorbitant amount of work, and I have a better respect for Congress.”
Do says his experience hasn’t been all work and no play. He spends his free moments attending book discussions at Politics and Prose, a mom-and-pop bookstore. He has also visited all the free monuments and attractions that D.C. has to offer.
“The best advice I have received here is never sit around and do nothing, because there is so much to see and do,” he said.
“We are here to serve the students who live here, to make their lives better.” Perez said. “Housing is very supportive; we go to them first to solve problems. They usually include easy fixes like installing a second printer or putting up more signs.”
However, there is a limit to what RHG can do.
“Complaints like ‘the laundry rooms are too small’ deal with infrastructure issues. We can’t really do anything about that except bring it to the attention of Housing and trust that they will take it into account when planning future resident buildings.”
Friday, November 13, 2009
UC Merced will host International Education Week from Nov. 16 through 20.
This year’s theme, “Embracing the Spice of Humanity,” will celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange with a variety of fun, informative and culturally rich activities designed to foster interest in the global community.
Students, faculty and staff are invited to join in the week’s activities ranging from a hunger banquet to an international tea party to the second annual passport fair. Students will also have the opportunity to audit language classes and attend a presentation by Doctors Without Borders and discussions about collaborative international research projects.
Jose Palma, who is spending the year studying in Spain, says he learned more about UC Merced’s Study Abroad program during IEW last year and knew it was something he couldn’t pass up.
“Attending IEW helped me see what opportunities are available out there,” he said, “From checking out the different programs to talking to Education Abroad Program staff, it was good way to compare and contrast.”
Palma encourages all Bobcats to take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad, “You meet different people with different views and cultures that make life richer. It will also look great on your resume or grad school application.”
For a list of activities taking place, visit the International Education Week Web site.
Just after her freshman year, Aguilar offered to volunteer in the lab of marine biologist Monica Medina. Not long into her sophomore year, she was an undergraduate research assistant working with Medina and her graduate students on the study of coral reefs.
This past summer, she applied for and was accepted to both the UC LEADS and Community Scholars programs -- both of which give her even more research experience and are preparing her for her future goal of attending medical school.
“The rigors of research and medical school are both pretty high,” she said.
Crosby will be honored during a public lecture at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 20, on the UC Merced campus. A question-and-answer session will be included. Her lecture will center on the theme of connection.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Campus officials announced today (Nov. 10) the completion of a 1 megawatt solar power system at dedication ceremony which celebrated the university's first effort to produce renewable power.
“We are here today to celebrate a remarkable milestone,” said Mary Miller, vice chancellor for administration. “The solar array project exemplifies UC Merced’s founding vision to become an international model for sustainable development and environmental stewardship.”
The system consists of more than 4,000 solar panels that follow the
sun’s movement during the day. The system will supply two-thirds of
the campus’ electricity on summer days and 20 percent of the campus’
annual electricity needs.
The project was developed through a power purchase agreement with
SunPower Corp., a Silicon Valley-based manufacturer of high efficiency
solar cells, solar panels and solar systems. SunPower designed,
installed and maintains the system. UC Merced owns the renewable
The solar array will provide UC Merced with an abundant source of
clean, renewable power and save more than $5 million in electricity costs over the next 20 years.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
“I never thought I would get hands-on experience so quickly,” she said. “I’m writing stories for the Web site and having dinner with donors and trustees. I never know what I’ll be doing next. Where else could a sophomore be in such a position?”
“Measuring those ions can determine the level of contaminants and pollution found and whether they are high or low,” Moon explained. That, in turn, can give researchers insight into factors that affect water resources.
Moon works with professor Roger Bales, director of SNRI and a professor in the School of Engineering. A lot of Bales’ research involves how climate change affects water resources. Moon started working in the lab last summer after taking one of Bales’ classes during his freshman year.
“It’s been a great opportunity,” he said. “I get to do everything – lab work, data analysis and field work.”