April AVC Message: 2017 Federal Outlook

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The first three months of the new administration in Washington has raised a number of concerns for those of us in higher education. While most of the appointments below the cabinet level have not been made yet, there have been a number of significant decisions made by the Trump administration in several important areas. The “skinny budget” released in March proposed massive cuts to federal agencies and departments such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Department of Energy (DOE). These impacted agencies and departments are major funding sources for UCLA’s $1 billion research portfolio. Continue reading

UC responds to state audit report on University of California Office of the President

UC’s Office of the President and its governing Board of Regents today (April 25) addressed issues and recommendations contained in the state audit report about the budget practices and administrative expenditures of the Office of the President, welcoming most as constructive while raising significant concerns about others.

In a six-page letter to California State Auditor Elaine Howle, President Janet Napolitano responded to recommendations in the report that dealt specifically with UCOP, agreeing with the vast majority of them. Much of what the audit report recommended was already underway at UCOP or is on track to be implemented soon.

The audit report made other recommendations directly to the UC Board of Regents and the state legislature. In a separate letter to the auditor, Board of Regents Chair Monica Lozano and Regent Charlene Zettel, chair of the Compliance and Audit Committee, formally requested the removal of audit recommendations that encroach on the constitutional autonomy of the university and are inconsistent with the constructive recommendations about improving processes, accountability and transparency.

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UCLA Advocates Bring Grad Research To Life Before Legislators

Assemblymember Reggie Jones Sawyer speaks with graduate students Brian Woodward and Angela Ocampo in his Sacramento office during a recent advocacy trip.

Four graduate students and two faculty administrators formed a UCLA coalition that traveled to Sacramento for the annual UC Graduate Student Research Day on April 19, with the goal to communicate the critical impacts of graduate research, taking it beyond the classroom and outside of the lab, and expressing its importance in the real world. They also made the case to state legislators for $9 million in state funding for 900 more graduate students system-wide.

“It was eye-opening for me,” said Brian Woodward, who is finishing up his graduate studies at the school of education’s urban planning division. “That was the first chance I’ve gotten to interact with representatives on a personal level. We’re trying to not only get these representatives interested in what we do as graduate students, and to see the value in why graduate students should be funded, but also trying to make a direct tie-in with what [research] we do as graduate students, and how that might benefit their respective districts, or even California as a whole.”

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TAKE ACTION: Support Federally Funded Research For UCLA, UC

Dear Advocates,

As a supporter of the University of California, we ask you to join us in urging Congress to support robust investments in federal research funding. Federal funds are the university’s single most important source of support for research.

Federally funded research is the fuel that drives UC breakthroughs to improve health, advance science and create knowledge. UC researchers identify disease causes and develop cures and life-enhancing biotechnologies – but the funding that makes this possible is at risk.

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UCLA Medalist John Lewis: ‘I found a way to get in the way’

UCLA Chancellor Gene Block bestows the UCLA Medal on Congressman John Lewis. (photos by Marc Roseboro)

U.S. Rep. John Lewis, a living icon of the civil rights movement, relived for 1,300 rapt listeners in Royce Hall today key moments in the long struggle for equality, telling compelling personal stories — sometimes dark, but other times light-hearted anecdotes — taken right out of the pages of American history.

In a talk interrupted frequently by thunderous applause, standing ovations and laughter from the audience, Lewis vividly recalled from his childhood the warnings his family gave him to keep quiet when he questioned why black children had to sit in the balcony to watch movies at their local theater and why he was denied a library card when whites could borrow books from the local library.

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Run As One 5K Invites Veteran Collaboration

The Run As One 5K began at Jackie Robinson Stadium for the second year in a row. (all photos by Jonathan Van Dyke)

For Joe Thompson, the sight of so many veterans lined up for a morning run, jog or walk (with an assist from the occasional four-legged friend) was a sign that bringing veteran groups together was as needed as ever.

Thompson, membership coordinator for Team Rubicon, helped organize the Sixth Annual Run as One 5K on April 1, which began from Jackie Robinson Stadium, located on the campus of the West Los Angeles VA, for the second year in a row. The event is a collaborative effort between veteran organizations Team Rubicon, Mission Continues and Team Red, White and Blue. This year, Student Veterans Association (SVA) and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association (IAVA) were also involved in the effort. There were approximately 150 veterans and civilians in attendance and more than 15 veterans-oriented vendors came to support and inform at the 5K.

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