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Brenda Ortiz

Summer Programs Enhance Students’ Success in High School and Beyond

Araceli Hernandez could have been playing video games, swimming or sleeping in over summer break, but instead she was doing math. And she’s happy about it.

Hernandez took part in one of three summer programs on campus developed by UC Merced’s Center for Educational Partnerships (CEP) with funding from U.S. Department of Education Trio grants aimed at increasing the number of youth from disadvantaged backgrounds who complete high school and enroll in and complete their postsecondary education.

Summer Outreach Programs Foster Learning, Community

Taking part in a summer program can help students develop new skills, get hands-on experience, meet other students with similar interests and get a taste of college life. It’s also a plus on college applications — it shows that the student is committed to learning.

For elementary, middle and high school students from Merced, Fresno and beyond, UC Merced has been the perfect place to participate in a variety of special summer learning opportunities.

Grad Student Awarded Thesis of the Year for Work in Public Health

UC Merced public health graduate student Erendira “Dida” Estrada's master’s thesis, “Development of a participatory health communication intervention: An ecological approach to reducing rural information inequality and health disparities,” was named Thesis of the Year by the Health Communication divisions of the two most prestigious associations in communication — the International Communication Association (ICA) and the National Communication Association (NCA).

Alumnae Staff Members Honor Family With Endowed Scholarships

In creating scholarships to help future generations of Bobcats succeed, UC Merced staff members and alumnae Monique de Villa (’16) and Danielle Armedilla (’12) are cementing the legacy they are leaving for campus.  

De Villa and Armedilla were honored for their generous contributions at last month’s scholarship signing ceremony on Bobcat Day — a thank-you tradition that began a few years ago.

Perseverance, Leadership Key Themes of Campus’ Spring Commencement

UC Merced’s exuberant spring graduates got the chance to demonstrate their gratitude during the 13th Spring Commencement ceremonies this weekend as many of them paused to thank the faculty members and loved ones who helped them through their college journeys.

During the two ceremonies, UC Merced graduated more than 1,200 students, conferring 1,151 bachelor’s degrees, 18 master’s degrees and a record 49 doctoral degrees.

New Scholarship Pays Homage to Persistence and Research

A generous gift from the grandmother of a UC Merced alumna and current staff member is benefitting two undergraduate students who put the UC Merced Library to good use.

Melissa Becerra, a third-year psychology student, and Nathan Parmeter, who graduates this week, are the first recipients of the Carter Joseph Abrescy and Larry Kranich Library Award for Student Research Excellence.

New Endowment Enhances Alumni Association’s Initiatives

Last month, the UC Merced Alumni Association (UCMAA) established the UC Merced Alumni Association Journey Endowment with $25,000 it collected through fundraising efforts to support initiatives throughout campus.

Over the past several years, UC Merced alumni — especially UCMAA board members — have directed contributions to the alumni association to support the educational journeys of current and future students.

Grad Student’s Passion for Prince Fuels Research

Dig if you will, a picture: the chance to study Prince – the musician and purveyor of all things purple -- as a subject of academic research.

UC Merced’s Dalena Ngo did. For years, Ngo – a Minnesota native and lifelong Prince fan – wanted to examine aspects of the musician’s 40-plus year career and his influence as a cultural icon. As a graduate student in the Interdisciplinary Humanities program, she’s been able to do just that.


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