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January 25, 2010


News Blog


Phase 1 of the Little Lake Park Amphitheater, a gift from the Class of 2009, is nearly complete. Please plan to join us on Bobcat Day, April 17 for the dedication. Check out pictures of the brick installation.

For all the latest UC Merced news and to reconnect with fellow UC Merced Alumni, join the UC Merced Alumni Association Facebook Fan Page.


Center for Research in the Humanities and Arts events – Jan. 27

Brown Bag Lunch Series, UC Merced Professor Cristían Ricci, “Tangier and Other Liminal Spaces in American, Spanish and Moroccan Literatures, 1952-2009,” noon, Jan. 27, Willow Room (COB 322)

Marne L. Campbell, (UC President's Postdoctoral Fellow, UC Riverside), "Angel Us: African American Women and Social Mobility in Los Angeles, 1850-1915," 4 p.m., Jan. 27, Willow Room (COB 322)

For information go to the event listings.

MTS Lecture Series – Jan. 28

The Mind, Technology, and Society (MTS) lecture series welcomes UC Davis philosophy professor Bernard Molyneux. Sponsored by the Glushko-Samuelson Foundation, the talks are free and open to students, staff, faculty and the general public. The lecture will take place at 4 p.m., Jan. 28 in KL 232.

Feb. 4 – J.P. Thivierge, Indiana University, Psychological and Brain Sciences

Feb. 11 – Linda Palmer, UC Irvine, Dept. of Anatomy and Neurobiology

Feb. 25 – Subrata Dasgupta, Louisiana, Institute of Cognitive Science

For information: e-mail jyoshimi@ucmerced.edu or visit cogsci.ucmerced.edu.

University Friends Circle Lunch – Feb. 2

“Local, State and National Economics: Where We Are a Year Later”

Members of the University Friends Circle (UFC) will meet from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 2 at the Merced Golf and Country Club, 6333 North Golf Road. Professor Todd Neumann will be the guest speaker. He will give an update on our economic condition with a presentation entitled, “Local, State and National Economics: Where We Are a Year Later.”

The UFC provides a forum for UC Merced staff and faculty, and their families, to engage in open discussion and interact with members of the surrounding communities. The cost, including lunch, is $20. For information on joining the UFC or to RSVP: Christine Howe, (209) 228-4190.

SSHA, CHRA, Office of Student Life, Amnesty International Partner in Film Series

The School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts has joined with the Center for Research in Humanities and Arts, Office of Student Life and Amnesty International to host a human rights film series next month.

The fourth-annual event, which is free and open to the public, will feature a film screening at 7 p.m. each Friday in February.

The following films will be part of this year’s series:

• “Afghan Star” – Feb. 5, California Room

• “Tapologo” – Feb. 12, California Room

• “Veiled Voices” – Feb. 19, California Room. (Filmmaker Brigid Maher will be on hand.)

• “Crude” – Feb. 26, California Room

For information, contact Robin DeLugan.


Save the Date: Chancellor's Associates Spring Reception April 29

Chancellor's Associates, please plan to attend the Chancellor's Associates Spring Reception Thursday, April 29, at the Chancellor’s residence. It will provide an opportunity to network with fellow Chancellor’s Associates, Chancellor Steve Kang and his wife Mia Kang and UC Merced staff and faculty. Invitations will be mailed out in the next few weeks.

For information on joining the Chancellor’s Associates, contact Terisa Rose at (209) 228-4109.


Total amount of awards in December:

Total amount of awards from July 1, 2009 to Dec. 31, 2009:



Applications Surpass 12,000 for Fall 2010

UC Merced studentsUC Merced has received a record number of freshman and transfer applications – 12,366 – for the 2010 fall semester. That's an increase of 21 percent from last year.

Fulfilling UC Merced's mission, the UC system received the highest percentage increase in freshman (5.6 percent) and transfer (31.6 percent) applications from the five-county Fresno region. Since the fall of 2004, the year before UC Merced opened, applications to UC campuses from Central Valley residents have increased 51 percent and admissions have risen 47 percent (as of 2009).

David Hosley Named Interim Vice Chancellor for University Relations

David H. HosleyDavid H. Hosley, who has served as president of UC Merced's Modesto-based Great Valley Center since February 2008, will step in as interim vice chancellor for University Relations, effective Feb. 1.

"We are very fortunate to have an individual of David Hosley's credentials to step into this vital role at our fast-growing university," Chancellor Steve Kang said. "John Garamendi Jr. established a very strong base upon which our University Relations team can build.  We thank him for his many contributions over the last four and a half years and look forward to a seamless transition under David's leadership in the weeks and months ahead."

His interim appointment is for one year. He will continue as president of the Great Valley Center during this time.

Prestigious Archaeologist Ready to Lead Fastest-Growing School at UC Merced

Mark S. AldenderferMark S. Aldenderfer said he plans to emphasize interdisciplinary research as he begins his tenure as dean of the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts with the university.

Aldenderfer, who began Jan. 1, said he was drawn to UC Merced because of the school’s opportunities, potential and mission to cross academic boundaries.

“I want to participate in a campus-building enterprise. You don’t get opportunities like that much,” Aldenderfer said. “I had no intention of being a dean at a place where I’m (solely) building an economics department and a psychology department. I want to find ways to create structures that are multidisciplinary in nature.”

Humanities Center to be Hub for Discussions, Ideas

In an effort to create more conversations about research, the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts has established the Center for Research in the Humanities and Arts. The center was formed in fall 2008 and continues to expand its activities, with several events planned this year.

The center, one of many throughout the University of California system, serves as a place where students and faculty can have open discussions about their interests and expand their knowledge into other fields. It represents the university’s focus on collaboration across disciplines.

Report Highlights Inventions Created by UC Merced Researchers

UC Merced may be the newest research university of 21st century but scientists here are already making significant contributions by creating innovative technologies that have the potential to transform a number of fields.

The Office of Research published a report, “Inventions of the Research Enterprise,” a 50-page document that highlights more than 40 market-ready inventions created by campus researchers between January 2007 and June 2009. Faculty from the schools of Engineering, Natural Sciences and Social Services, Humanities & Arts are represented in the report.


Professor Receives Esteemed Research Award for Interdisciplinary Work

Michael SpiveyUC Merced cognitive science Professor Michael Spivey has been awarded the 2010 William Procter Prize for Scientific Achievement, joining the ranks of many other researchers who have received the prestigious national award.

Past winners include mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot, paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould, economist Herbert Simon, primatologist Jane Goodall, anthropologist Margaret Mead and engineer Vannevar Bush. The award is given by Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society, to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to scientific research and has successfully communicated its value and significance to scholars in various disciplines.


Ph.D. Student Studies “Survivalist” Fish Species

Jason BaumsteigerJason Baumsteiger, who is earning a doctorate in the School of Natural Sciences’ Quantitative and Systems Biology program, is studying a type of fish called sculpin to learn why they have been able thrive in fresh water environments.

“Most sculpin are marine-based,” said Baumsteiger, a population geneticist and conservation biologist. “But there is a whole group that is found in freshwater. We’re finding these sculpin in a bunch of different environments along the West Coast, from Ventura to southern Alaska.”

Baumsteiger said learning how to protect and restore the diversity of life on Earth is one of the driving forces behind conservation biology.

“These fish appear to be doing fine and have adapted to modern conditions,” he said. “So, instead of focusing on something that is disappearing, we’re looking at how these have evolved. We want to learn why it’s a good survivalist.”

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