Skid Row Visit Shows Meaning Of Giving Back

Senior Lead Officer Deon Joseph gives a tour of Skid Row to a group of UCLA representatives.

Los Angeles Police Department Senior Lead Officer Deon Joseph has enough sad stories to fill a dozen seasons of “Law and Order”, but through his 17 years patrolling downtown L.A.’s Skid Row, he has not succumbed to despair. Joseph is hopeful, and he has a goal of opening the minds of Los Angeles residents.

On Dec. 11, a delegation of UCLA staff and students visited Skid Row to get a better sense of the area and the challenges presented to both police and human service volunteers in the area. They had an eye opening experience and were left with the knowledge that there is much to be done — via police enforcement, infrastructure investment and seriously tackling mental health and drug issues — in order to improve the area.

UCLA staff had met Joseph at a community forum in San Pedro on homelessness earlier this year, and the lead officer stopped by the UCLA Day in Downtown L.A. reception to chat with Chancellor Gene Block and again offer a special tour of Skid Row to discuss homelessness and the issues there, something he is looking to offer to any group in Los Angeles willing to hear him out. He was first assigned to Skid Row in 1997.

Continue reading

UCLA Advocate In Action: Rep. Ted Lieu Sees Higher Education Propelling The American Dream

U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu holds up a packet relating the UCLA Sustainable LA Grand Challenge.

U.S. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) won’t stop giving back to a country that gave his family so much.

“In my mind, my parents achieved the American Dream,” he said. “They went from being poor to owning a home, and gave my brother and me and amazing education. There are few places in the world where that can happen.”

The congressman earned the rank of Lieutenant Colonel during his career in the Air Force and remains a member of the JAG Corps. He has held office in the Torrance City Council, California State Assembly and Senate, and most recently won an election to replace longtime and beloved Rep. Henry Waxman.

Continue reading

Project SPELL Celebrates Another Successful Quarter

Students and employees gathered for a Project SPELL graduation and reunion event.

Project SPELL celebrated the conclusion of another successful quarter with a special graduation and reunion ceremony on Dec. 4.

Approximately 48 participants completed the quarter. There were 29 employees from UCLA Housing (housekeepers, food service workers, on campus housing maintenance) and 19 from UCLA Facilities Management (custodial, maintenance and alternation, MDDS and grounds).

Continue reading