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New Dean of Students Shares Vision and Goals

Jonathan Grady brings more than 14 years of experience as a researcher, educator and leader in academia to his new role as associate vice chancellor for Student Affairs and dean of students at UC Merced.

Grady comes from University of Michigan, Flint, where he was assistant vice chancellor of student success and was responsible for the vision and direction of Educational Opportunity Initiatives, Counseling and Psychological Services, Orientation, Disability and Accessibility Services, Intercultural Programming, and the Student Success Center.

Downtown Campus Center Fueling Business Optimism

Nearly 300 UC Merced employees will begin moving into the new Downtown Campus Center at 18th and N streets in January, and local business owners are taking note.

Thad Raczkowski, co-owner of Little Oven Pizza, is thinking about a move. His shop on Main Street has been so successful, he’s eyeing a piece of property down the road that would enlarge Little Oven’s footprint.

“You can directly connect it to the Downtown Campus Center,” Raczkowski said. “It has brought a lot of attention to downtown.”

Homecoming Unites Campus With Community

Traditional UC Merced events — Homecoming, Preview Day and Family Weekend, plus the Chancellor’s Scholars recognition ceremony — came together for a first-of-its-kind bundle of activities that highlighted the campus for current and prospective students, alumni, family members and friends, and the community. Events included a women’s volleyball game, information sessions, women’s and men’s soccer games, a tailgate party and karaoke.

Beyond the Basics: Training Better Teachers

It was only after graduate school, while working as a professor, that James Zimmerman realized something had been missing from his education.

Trained as a nuclear scientist, Zimmerman was well-prepared for a life in the laboratory, where success is measured in data and discovery. Though confident in his ability to understand the atom, Zimmerman was less certain of his ability to lead a classroom.

New Initiative Helps Students Explore Green Careers

When Chigoziri Ibechem attended her first planning commission meeting in downtown Merced last November, she had no idea where it might lead.

After the meeting, the psychology major from Los Angeles was greeted by the city of Merced’s principal planner, who noticed her enthusiasm for the city’s Local Transportation project. He invited her to apply for an internship program UC Merced’s sustainability office launched earlier this year to give students education and applied learning opportunities in sustainability-related careers.

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