Monthly Message from Chancellor Howard Gillman
Classes have been underway for three weeks now, and students, faculty and staff are settling into the routine of the academic year. I hope each of you had a rewarding and fulfilling summer and is as eager as I am to embrace the challenges and opportunities that lie in front of us.
As we always do, we started the academic year by greeting our new freshmen and transfer students at convocation. This is always one of the highlights of my job – the excitement displayed by the newest Anteaters is contagious! This year’s incoming students are among the best and brightest, the most accomplished, in our entire state, and we are thrilled that they have chosen UCI to advance their dreams. I am looking forward to all they will achieve in the coming years.
Anteater Learning Pavilion
In late September, we celebrated the opening of our newest instructional building, the Anteater Learning Pavilion. From the moment of our founding, it has been a core credo of UCI to pursue excellence through innovation. This is especially true when it comes to our students, who are at the heart of everything we do at UCI. We take ongoing inspiration from this UCI tradition to elevate the experiences of our students as we perfect new methods of teaching and learning. We strive to do all we can to ensure that UCI students succeed in their educational goals. This beautiful building – the first in California and one of only a handful in the United States exclusively dedicated to active learning – epitomizes that commitment.
New dean of School of Humanities
Over the summer, we welcomed Tyrus Miller to campus as dean of the School of Humanities. He came to us from our sister campus in Santa Cruz, where he served most recently as vice provost and dean of graduate studies, overseeing 36 doctoral and more than 50 master’s programs. Dean Miller previously taught at Yale University, after earning a Ph.D. in English at Stanford University and an M.A. in creative writing and a concurrent B.A./M.A. in humanities at Johns Hopkins University. Holding appointments in the English and art history departments, he speaks and reads French, German, Hungarian and Italian, as well as English; has lived in Austria, Germany and Hungary; and has led interdisciplinary research projects in collaboration with universities abroad. Welcome, Dean Miller!
Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building
National data science and climate initiative
An example of the kind of big-scale interdisciplinary research that will be undertaken in the Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building is the recently announced initiative – funded by the National Science Foundation – to perfect the use of data science in climate studies. UCI scientists, joined by colleagues from the University of Chicago and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will pursue the creation of new methodologies in machine learning and network estimation to better understand the Earth’s climate system and its regional hydrologic impacts. This initiative was inspired by a UCI study showing that winter rainfall in the southeastern United States could be predicted by monitoring sea surface temperatures near New Zealand during the summer.
Cancer Moonshot grant
UCI School of Medicine researchers, led by Dr. Michael Demetriou, professor of microbiology & molecular genetics, as well as neurology, and a member of the NCI-designated Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCI, have been awarded a $3.4 million grant by the National Cancer Institute as part of the Beau Biden Cancer Moonshot initiative. The funding will support efforts to provide proof of principal data for an entirely new class of cancer-killing immunotherapeutics with the potential to treat highly diverse types of cancer, from leukemia to breast cancer. The Cancer Moonshot initiative was established to accelerate research and aims to make more therapies available to more patients, while also improving our abilities to prevent cancer and detect it at an early stage.
Alumni regent William UmWilliam T. Um ’90 was selected to represent all UC alumni as a two-year member of the UC Board of Regents, effective July 1. A dedicated Anteater holding bachelor’s degrees in economics and psychology, he has served on the board of directors of the UCI Alumni Association for the past five years. In addition, he belongs to the UCI School of Social Sciences’ Dean’s Leadership Society and is a board member of Inner City Law Center, a nonprofit tackling homelessness in Los Angeles. Um is a nationally recognized trial attorney and litigator with 25 years’ experience handling complex commercial disputes, arbitrations and mediations throughout the United States. He will serve as secretary to the Alumni Associations of the University of California – the umbrella organization acting on behalf of all UC alumni groups – during his first year as regent-designate and then become president of the AAUC and a full regent with voting rights. Congratulations, William!
Law school 10th anniversary
First Glimpse: Introducing The Buck CollectionLast year, UCI received the gift of the astonishing Buck Collection of modern and contemporary artworks, all by California artists and most unseen since their acquisition by the late Newport Beach developer Gerald Buck. Now 50 pieces from this long-hidden trove are on display at the University Art Gallery and the Contemporary Arts Center Gallery. This is the first exhibition staged by the nascent UCI Institute and Museum for California Art, and it will run through January 5, 2019. Curated by IMCA executive director Stephen Barker, dean of the Claire Trevor School of the Arts; Professor Kevin Appel, chair of the Department of Art; and Chancellor’s Professor Cécile Whiting, chair of the Department of Art History, the selected paintings and sculptures show both the breadth and the excellence of the Buck Collection. I hope you will take advantage of the opportunity to see this wonderful exhibition of the finest in modern California art.
Chancellor Howard Gillman