Beginning in the fall, students will be able to minor in Chicano/a studies, public health, chemical science, and environmental sciences and sustainability.
MERCED — The University of California, Merced, has added four minors this year to its slate of academic offerings.
Beginning in fall 2010, students will be able to minor in chemical sciences and environmental sciences and sustainability, both offered though the School of Natural Sciences . Minors in Chicano/a studies and public health will be offered through the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts .
"These minors represent UC Merced's commitment to cutting-edge programs that will prepare students to tackle some of society's most challenging problems," said Maria Pallavicini, dean of the School of Natural Sciences. "The chemical sciences minor enables students in multiple majors to broaden and enhance their knowledge in a disciplinary area that is fundamental to the world in which we live. The environmental sciences and sustainability minor exemplifies the campus' commitment to educating students to be stewards of the Earth."
"There has been great interest from students in adding these programs to our university," said Mark Aldenderfer, dean of the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts. "With an underlying emphasis on interdisciplinary studies, we think these minors will help produce well-rounded graduates with knowledge that will benefit them in the next chapter of their lives."
The chemical sciences minor will teach students to describe the major concepts and theoretical principles in chemistry. They will also be able to identify the central ideas underlying the principal subfields of chemistry — analytical, inorganic, organic and physical chemistry — as well as the broader interdisciplinary subfields of biological, environmental and materials chemistry.
The environmental science and sustainability minor will give students the knowledge and techniques to gather and report environmental data using appropriate measurement tools. Students will also be able to analyze information on environmental quality and recommend appropriate technical, political or economic solutions to environmental problems.
The Chicano/a studies minor will have students explore and address many questions, including the role that race and ethnicity play and have played in shaping the experiences of different ethnic groups in the United States, with an emphasis on Chicanos/as. Students will also explore the dynamics of migration and immigration, along with the ensuing changes in identity, language, social and cultural practices, and national (or transnational) allegiances.
The public health minor — an interdisciplinary program
that draws on the natural and social sciences and humanities
— includes a focus on health disparities observed in
different groups, sometimes related to economic resources and
race/ethnicity. Public health issues and outcomes touch the lives
of people throughout the world through activities ranging from
basic research to frontline efforts, such as vaccination programs.