It’s one of the best times of the year as we prepare for Westwood to once again become a bustling neighborhood of students eager to start the new academic year.
And as the weather turns to fall, there are plenty of advocacy opportunities for our higher education advocates.
At the local level, UCLA Day in Downtown LA will be held on October 25. Daytime meetings with County Supervisors and City Councilmembers as well as the evening reception will be opportunities to highlight UCLA’s commitment to training the workforce of today and tomorrow. It’s an important day to show our university’s daily contribution to the local region through programming and partnerships.
And as you no doubt know, our resolve on national issues has been tested mightily the last several months. Much of our recent attention has gone into crafting a message and making our voices heard when it comes to the rescinding of the DACA program.
At UCLA alone, it is estimated that approximately 1,000 students are a part of that program, let alone the 800,000 countrywide. Higher education advocates have worked to mobilize quickly on this issue, and we ask you to take a moment to support these students through the UC’s most recent call to action.
We are also keeping a close eye on the federal budget process, with the hopes that previously called for cuts to important agencies that fund a great deal of UCLA research will never come to be. Although cautiously optimistic that Congress indeed shares our vision for robust and groundbreaking research, it is important to keep the pressure on and let members know we don’t intend to go backwards on federally funded research that is so vital to this nation. Stay tuned for more call-to-actions on this front.
Elsewhere, we have celebrated two school openings, the Mann UCLA Community School and the Geffen Academy at UCLA. It’s been a great summer for getting to know several of our California Assembly members as they visit campus, and we also spotlighted a major player at the state level, the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies.
Overall, UCLA is committed to supporting, and if need be, protecting our students, and we have made sure to come out strong on issues important to our students, such as DACA and supporting protection for sexual violence survivors. Creating a campus of compassion and understanding will always be a top priority here, and we hope you will continue to lend us your support on these and other important issues as we move forward into the fall.
Keith S. Parker
Government & Community Relations
Assistant Vice Chancellor