Chancellor's Friday Letters

Potpourri of messages

Potpourri of messages

October 15, 2010

Dear Friends,

Potpourri Friday!

Saying thanks. We are very grateful to the Governor and legislature for starting to re-invest in California’s higher education systems this year.  Of particular importance to the Inland Southern California community is the fact that the state has now invested in the start-up costs of our emerging School of Medicine (http://medschool.ucr.edu/ ).  This achievement is a real tribute to our broad community that worked relentlessly to insist this outcome occur.  Many of you participated in our advocacy effort this past year by writing, calling or visiting members of the legislature. On behalf of the faculty, staff and students, our many thanks for your effort.  It made a big difference.

Shining a light on education. Next Tuesday I will join with President Obama and several others from around the nation as he signs a revised Executive Order regarding the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans.  As one of the few research  universities in America that is designated a Hispanic Serving Institution, and in order to reach the ambitious education goals we have set for our nation, we must provide the opportunities needed to raise Hispanic education attainment.  America’s future competitiveness in a global economy depends on this.  You can watch the signing at the HUB room 355, scheduled to start sharply at 10 a.m. on  October 19th. http://newsroom.ucr.edu/news_item.html?action=page&id=2458

Deadly serious, and I seek your help. UCR is near both the San Andreas and San Jacinto faults.  It is inevitable that we will be hit with a large damaging earthquake, which as your Chancellor and as a parent is of obvious concern.  We have thousands of students living on campus, and thousands more students, faculty and staff in our buildings almost 24 hours a day. Thus, I ask you to take seriously the opportunity to participate at 10:21 a.m. next Thursday, October 21, at the UCR Shakeout, part of the largest earthquake drill in U.S. history. It is clear that the difference between death and survival in a major seismic event lies in proper preparation.

The Great California ShakeOut (www.shakeout.org. ) is an annual statewide practice for a high-magnitude earthquake in California.  Our piece of this at UCR will include a campus-wide earthquake drill, a public lecture on earthquake science and emergency response, and an informational outreach fair in the middle of campus. http://www.insideucr.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/display.cgi?id=1700

Ph.D. pride.   The National Research Council recently ranked America’s Ph.D. programs.  The last time this occurred in the mid 1990s, six percent of UCR’s programs ranked in the top quartile across America.  This time around, because of the hard work of our faculty, staff, graduate students and post-docs, 30% of our Ph.D. programs were in the top quartile, and 52% in the top third. Our entomology program was among the top two in the nation! Such recognition is a compelling point of pride and ascension at UCR, one that will continue in the years ahead. http://newsroom.ucr.edu/news_item.html?action=page&id=2437

A must-visit. UCR has renovated Gaylord Rouse’s former chic 19th and 20th century department store building, returning it to its former glory, except that now it is a cutting-edge contemporary facility that embraces the arts: the Barbara and Art Culver Center of the Arts.  It is part of a vibrant ARTSBlock in downtown Riverside, a new Southern California Mecca for a range of visual, creative and performing arts that feeds the hearts, souls and minds of all who enter. http://www.culvercenter.ucr.edu/

With best regards,


Tim White, Chancellor

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The Professor and the Activist
UCR Historian and China scholar Perry Link has been speaking out on behalf of Liu Xiaobo, an imprisoned Chinese activist who won the Nobel Peace Prize. Listen to National Public Radio’s Robert Siegel interview with Professor and Chancellorial Chair Link.

Tea, Biscuits and History
I had the pleasure of talking with British Counsel-General Barbara Hay over tea and biscuits in my office recently. Tomorrow in Los Angeles she will be awarding the Order of the British Empire to UCR historian Henry Snyder for his service “to English Studies worldwide” for his work over 32 years on the English Short-Title Catalogue.

Making Time for Community Service
I am proud that UCR students have a generous impulse when it comes to community service. Project Josh and Friends, which provides comfort and resources to children admitted to the Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, is a project that started in UCR’s Honors program.

Find out what else is going on at UC Riverside: http://www.ucr.edu/happenings/

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