BruinsVote rewrites its approach to encouraging civic engagement

(image by Kim Giang)

The student group’s tactics include classroom Zoom announcements and social media contests

This election season will be absent a familiar scene: student volunteers set up along Bruin Walk, asking their peers if they have registered to vote, and helping them do so if necessary.

But that doesn’t mean that UCLA students aren’t out there encouraging their fellow Bruins to get civically involved, and more importantly, to make their voices heard by casting their ballots.

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Campus leaders urge everyone to get counted in the 2020 Census

(Courtesy University of California)

Students who may be back home due to the coronavirus are asked to report the address where they live while at school

April 1 marked National Census Day, and UCLA leadership is encouraging every person in the campus community to make sure he or she is counted. Getting the message out is more important than ever because in-person classes have been suspended and students have been encouraged to continue their studies remotely from home through the end of the academic calendar because of COVID-19.

The California Complete Count committee — the state entity helping to carry out the census — is instructing students who may be back home due to the coronavirus to report the address where they usually live while at school.

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UCLA faculty share expertise about COVID-19 with Los Angeles city health officials

Anne Rimoin, left, and Gilbert Gee speak March 9 to the members of the Los Angeles City Health Commission about COVID-19. (photo by Jonathan Van Dyke/UCLA)

Two professors from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health shared their expertise on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) with the Los Angeles City Health Commission on March 9, opening an important dialogue between leading health officials and city leaders.

Anne Rimoin, professor of epidemiology, and Gilbert Gee, professor of community health sciences, addressed the commission, which advises and makes recommendations to the Los Angeles City Council.

Rimoin outlined the recent history of similar outbreaks, the origin of COVID-19 and what scientists and health experts know about how this new virus manifests and spreads. There is still a long way to go toward understanding COVID-19 completely, she added, but partnering and sharing with entities like the city and county of Los Angeles will go a long way.

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Changes make it easier than ever for Bruins to vote

Students, faculty, staff and even members of the public will be able to vote at the Ackerman Union beginning Feb. 22, and at the Hammer Museum beginning Feb. 29. (photo courtesy Los Angeles County Registrar)

There will be two locations – Ackerman Union and the Hammer Museum – and voters have multiple days to cast their ballots

When it comes to voting, there can be a litany of excuses as to why someone doesn’t make it to the polls on Election Day — you forgot, too busy to get there that day, working too far from your polling place, among others.

To erase as many barriers as possible to voting, Los Angeles County is implementing sweeping changes for voters leading up to the March 3 primary, and the UCLA campus community will be a major benefactor as the site of two vote centers — Ackerman Union and the Hammer Museum at UCLA.

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Black legislative leaders meet at UCLA to discuss future of public policy

Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, chair of the California Legislative Black Caucus. (photo by Leroy Hamilton)

The Bunche Center for African American Studies was key in bringing the annual State of Black California meeting to campus

As legislators gathered at the UCLA Meyer and Renee Luskin Conference Center to take stock of the state of affairs for African Americans in California, there was a sense of pride from the members of the UCLA Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies. Their years of research were woven into the many conversations that took place during Feb. 8’s State of Black California meeting.

“Today’s meeting is not about discovering the problems, it’s about looking at solutions, because we know what the problems are,” said Assemblymember Shirley Weber, chair of the California Legislative Black Caucus, which this year moved the annual meeting to UCLA for the first time. “We know where we are, whether in the schools, social justice or criminal justice reform. We know where we are. And the question is, how do we get to a better place?”

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UC and CSU team up to improve pre-K–12 teaching about climate change

From left: Marcelo Suárez-Orozco, Emily Carter, Vincent Del Casino Jr., Janet Napolitano and Eleni Tsakopoulos Kounalakis. (photo by Todd Cheney/UCLA)

UCLA hosted the Environmental and Climate Change Literacy Project and Summit

Four car-clogged freeways surround Darlene Tieu’s students at Horace Mann UCLA Community School in South Los Angeles. Days with clear skies in the area are few and far between. Just this past October, her students dealt with dangerous heatwaves and cancelled sports because of smoke from fires in Southern California.

“Right now, my students are doing their best at being teenagers,” Tieu told attendees of a conference held at UCLA that was focused on how to teach environmental science literacy. More than 200 higher education leaders, pre-K through 12th grade educators, researchers and policymakers gathered at the UCLA Luskin Conference Center for the Environmental and Climate Change Literacy Project and Summit as part of an effort to hash out the big ideas for educating the next generation of climate change-aware students.

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