Monday, May 31, 2021

U.C.L.A. student officers' drill, first drill on opening, Westwood

Caption of this photograph reads, "A group of students participating in a military drill on the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in Westwood. Houses can be seen in the hills in the distance." The photo dates to 1929 when the campus opened or possibly later.


Vets Opera by UCLA Professor: Free Virtual Performances

Prof. Kenneth Wells. The cast of “Veteran Journeys.” From left to right: Bernardo Bermudez, Todd Strange, Patrick Blackwell, Jamie Chamberlin, Jennifer Wallace.

From the Press-Telegram: Veterans issues, such as homelessness and mental health, are often considered taboo or difficult topics to talk about. So one UCLA professor decided to sing about them instead. Dr. Kenneth Wells, professor at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, Semel Institute and David Geffen School of Medicine, wrote the music and libretto for “Veteran Journeys”, an opera about pressing issues facing servicemen and women once they’ve returned home from war and retired to civilian life.  “Veteran Journeys” will premiere on Thursday, June 3, with a second performance scheduled for Sunday, June 6.

“One reason that I integrated a focus on art/composing with areas of my clinical and research work, is that community partners in our community-participatory research on depression emphasized the importance of arts as an engagement strategy to address stigma,” Wells said.

Wells based the opera on research interviews conducted by the RAND Corporation and UCLA. Researchers interviewed veterans and their families with 10-year follow-ups and recorded the conversations. Wells listened to these recordings while writing the opera, though he’s disguised the interviewees in order to maintain the confidential nature of the tapes...

Full story at

Register to watch the opera (free) on Thursday, June 3, or on Sunday, June 6, at:

Preview at link below:

Or direct to

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Before the Storm

Caption reads "Regents and their wives at a dinner at the Balboa Pavilion." UC President Clark Kerr second from the left in back row. Photo taken June 1964, before such events as the student unrest of the late 1960s and the termination of Kerr.


The Train Is Coming - Part 4

From Metro:

Driveway Installation at UCLA Lot 36 and Veteran Ave.

  • Metro contractors are continuing preconstruction activities at UCLA Lot 36 for Section 3 of the Purple (D Line) Extension. Work includes potholing, sound wall installation, fence removal, tree removal, banner placement, and driveway installation. Work will be ongoing through June 2021.  
  • Driveway installation on Veteran Ave is scheduled for June 2 to 7. 
  • South sound wall installation is scheduled for June 14 to 18. 
  • Work hours: Monday to Friday, from 9 am to 3:30 pm


Traffic Control:

  • Intermittent lane reduction on westbound Wilshire Blvd between Gayley Ave and Veteran Ave.
  • Intermittent sidewalk closures on Veteran Ave and Wilshire Blvd adjacent to UCLA Lot 36.
  • Intermittent lane reduction on northbound Veteran Ave between Wilshire Blvd and Kinross Ave.



  • All work has received the necessary permits and approvals.
  • Access to driveways, residences & businesses will be maintained at all times unless notified in advance.
  • Access for pedestrians will be maintained outside of construction zones.
  • Access for the Fire Department and emergency responders will be maintained.
  • Parking restrictions will be implemented in the immediate area of the work zone.
  • For construction-related issues needing immediate attention, please call Metro’s 24-hour Hotline at 213.922.6934.


Metro Access

  • During construction, some Metro bus lines could be affected, and some bus stops might be relocated.
  • For information on changes to Metro service, please call 323.GoMetro or visit:


Saturday, May 29, 2021

Letter on IT Restructuring Concerns

Background: The central administration is proposing a centralization of IT functions referred to as "Hub and Spoke." Many department chairs in the social sciences are concerned. Some of them feel that there will be a cost reallocation that will strain their budgets. Others fear that they will lose the ability to adapt their IT facilities to departmental needs. Some are concerned about the cybersecurity implications. 

Yours truly has done a limited amount of prowling around to understand these issues. Not all schools and departments have these concerns. But obviously, many do.

Below is a letter from social science chairs that was sent to the chancellor and EVC a few days ago.

Dear Chancellor Block and EVCP Carter, 

As members of the faculty who wish to see UCLA thrive, we are writing to ask that you release detailed proposals on the Bruin Budget Model, the IT Transformation (previously referred to as IT Hub and Spoke Model), and the Research Hub and Spoke Model and that you put a pause on implementation of these plans until the proposals have been made widely available and have been thoroughly discussed, including how the changes fit together

We strongly believe that the public provision of detailed proposals (rather than the controlled release of power points and selective engagement with few faculty) will help avoid costly unintended consequences.  We believe you have already learned at the various listening sessions and fora that the deans, chairs, directors, and faculty generally, have expertise that can be used to improve the plans. We make this request not out of a resistance to change per se, but rather, because we have serious concerns about both the formulation and implementation of these plans.   

Our top concerns and priorities as faculty members, chairs, and center directors differ, but we enumerate below some of the issues faculty members have identified. 

We have several broad concerns about the IT Transformation and the Research Hub and Spoke Model

1) The premise behind Hub and Spoke may be false.  The management literature recognizes that Hub and Spoke models slow decision making, block innovation, alienate team members, and overload leaders.[1]  The IT Hub and Spoke initiative at the schools of Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Public Health has degraded service.   The Academic Senate reports that, “The DGIT centralization created new administrative positions, centralized decisionmaking, and moved local IT services, which had been distributed at departmental and unit levels, into a centralized group structure.  The promise, like the currently proposed Deloitte model being considered for the rest of campus, was increased cybersecurity and efficiency.  However, many faculty have experienced a decline in service levels for their nonclinical activities and a frustrating tin ear from the new IT structure to ideas that have not originated within a more limited group of decision makers.”[2] 

2) UCLA’s prior experience has revealed centralized IT to be unresponsive to faculty needs and slow to catch up to the technological frontier.   

3) Our leadership is misinformed regarding network security. We request more consultation about this issue with faculty.  Provided they are properly managed, multiple networks are more secure than centralized ones because they limit the scope of damage, and do not act as a visible and more easily accessible target for hackers[3].  We are aware of no significant breaches of distributed academic networks on the central campus at UCLA.  The major breaches in the UC system have been at UCSF and the recent enormous one at UCOP.  We find it disconcerting that prior to the UCSF breach which cost them more than a million dollars in bitcoin ransom[4], their CIO was on the review team that concluded UCLA needed more centralization.  We are angry and frustrated that rather than monitoring its own systems UCOP is spending resources to monitor ours, and that ITS is spending time assessing research software even though the biggest security breach – the one at UCOP which has endangered not just us but also our children, arose from using an outdated file transfer system.   It is very upsetting that we have received so few details regarding this breach, although data revealed from the Dark Web indicate that this could be yet another failure associated with UCPATH[5].  We strongly support our leadership implementing the best security realistically possible on critical administrative data. Most faculty, however, have no desire to be centrally connected to what is clearly a very tempting target for hackers

4) There has been no transparency on the financing of the IT Transformation and of a Research Hub and Spoke system.  The suspicious will infer that these systems are likely to be highly expensive and that they will be financed by taxes or reduced transfers in the Bruin Budget Model. 

5)There has been no transparency on which units are unhappy with their IT services, making it hard to assess what the inequities are and how they should be resolved.  

6) While we recognize that IT security is becoming increasingly important, we fear that UCLA is not recognizing the limits to any risk assessments and insurers’ growing unwillingness to provide cyber insurance as hackers seek out those with insurance.[6] Bureaucratic unwillingness to take risks on academic software will lead a slowdown in research and will affect adversely the time to degree of our students.  Many of us already have seen a deterioration in research services because of demands for risk assessments of commonly used research software.

We humbly suggest that it would be better to establish the feasibility of centralization and Hub and Spoke models for administrative networks and computing over several years before any changes are made to academic networks and computing. 

While we agree that we need a more transparent budget process which recognizes the political reality of decreased state funding, we also have several broad concerns about the proposed Bruin Budget Model

  1. The system of taxes and transfers means that units cannot rely on educational funds following students.   The starting point of the new budget model entrenches prior inequality in faculty and staff to student ratios.   This hurts our students.    It also harms our research mission because faculty recruitment and retention is harder when classes are enormous.  The experience of faculty at the University of Michigan under a similar model suggests that there is no reward for efficiency. 
  2. The model provides no guarantee that even over a period of five years taxes will not increase, thus creating disincentives for entrepreneurial activities, whether in fund raising or establishing new programs, both of which require a large fixed, upfront cost. 
  3. The model incorporates the false premise that we are sitting on many endowed funds which we could be spending.   This is an accounting chimera.  Endowed funds, including those which permit graduate student support, are allocated to specific uses.   
  4. Because units cannot rely on educational funds following students, units face the prospect of being in permanent deficit to the center.  The response of units will thus be to devolve costs to individual departments but, other than SSDPs and summer session, the new model provides no guarantees to individuals departments that they will benefit from serving more students
  5. The system of taxes and transfers enables the use of educational funds for administrative projects in the guise of education and without faculty oversight. 

We agree that it is important to implement reforms which will make UCLA stronger and enhance our teaching and research missions.  However, we do not wish to rush into a plan in haste only to repent at leisure.  Details have been so scarce that it is hard to assess the appropriateness of plans which would implement major changes in how UCLA is run.   The details matter.  Unfortunately, the engagement with faculty before the EVCP leadership transition has been selective and at a level where there would be no knowledge of the details of day-to-day administration.   Engagement now is complicated by the limits on faculty bandwidth imposed by the pandemic and more than a year of remote education.  An hour-long town hall on complicated plans with no chat function and no detailed documents to read beforehand is not sufficient.   Full disclosure of plan details, time for the faculty to study those details during the new academic year, and open discussions that are recorded for all to view will do much to build trust between the faculty and the administration

We acknowledge that you and the other VCs have been communicating with faculty and been receiving input, and we thank you all for this listening. We understand that there have been changes to these programs based on our conversations.  What has been lacking, however, is communication back to faculty about which concerns were taken seriously and what changes to the plans resulted.  For example, have the Academic Senate recommendations[7] on the IT Transformation been implemented?  As the plans are finalized, it is time to provide a clear working version that incorporates the faculty input so we may help identify remaining or new problems arising from these sweeping administrative changes. The State of California requires a comment period for proposed change to regulations, why should UCLA not also follow the wisdom of this approach?  UCLA has an outstanding team of academic experts that can and should be more involved, and who have legitimate questions regarding these initiatives that still need to be addressed. 

We also urge you to consider structural reforms so that there can be real faculty oversight into determining whether the Bruin Budget Model, the IT Transformation, and Hub and Spoke Models are serving UCLA’s academic mission. Many of the answers at the faculty forum on the BBM held on 5/18/21 amounted to “trust us, we’ll get the answer right eventually”. That trust simply does not exist. Oversight by faculty from across the University and the diversity of roles that faculty serve would help ensure the integrity of the process with regards to supporting the University’s core mission. 

Respectfully yours, 

Dora Costa, Professor and Chair, Economics 

Gregory Okin, Professor and Chair, Geography 

Jason Throop, Professor and Chair, Anthropology 

Andrew Apter, Director African Studies Center 

Susan L. Foster, Distinguished Professor, Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance 

Christopher Evans, Brain Research Institute 

Timothy Taylor, Professor of Musicology 

Dan Froot, Chair, Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance 

Alex Purves, Professor and Chair of Classics 

Peter Lunenfeld, Chair, FEC, School of Arts and Architecture 

Jenny Sharpe, Professor of English, Comparative Literature, and Gender Studies and Associate Dean of Equity, Diversity & Inclusion for the Humanities 

Gavin Lawrence, Professor and Chair, Philosophy 

Tobias Higbie, Professor History and Labor Studies, Chair of Labor Studies 

Carla Pestana, Professor and Chair, History 

Colonel Sean M. McBride, Commanding Officer / Professor of Naval Science, NROTC Unit Los Angeles Consortium 

Michael Chwe, Professor and Chair, Political Science 

Greg Schachner, Associate Professor and Chair, Archaeology IDP 

Abigail Saguy, Professor and Chair, Sociology 

Leisy J. Abrego, Professor and Chair, Chicana/o and Central American Studies 

Abel Valenzuela Jr., Professor of Chicana/o Studes and Director, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment 

Kerri Johnson, Professor and Chair, Communications Studies 

Juliet Williams, Professor of Gender Studies and Chair, Social Science Interdepartmental Program 

Kathryn Norberg, Professor and Chair, Gender Studies 

Natalie Masuoka, Associate Professor and Chair, Asian American Studies 

Grace Hong,  Professor of Asian American Studies and Gender Studies and Director, Center for the Study of Women 

Randall Akee, Associate Professor and Chair, American Indian Studies IDP 

Willeke Wendrich, Professor of Egyptian Archaeology and Digital Humanities and Director, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology

Kathlyn M. Cooney, Professor of Ancient Egyptian Art and Architecture, Chair of the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures 

Cheryl L. Keyes, Professor of Ethnomusicology and Global Jazz Studies and Chair, Department of African American Studies 



Friday, May 28, 2021

Some Soul Food for Thought

The LA Times has an editorial entitled "The struggle for the soul of UC" about the pressure from the legislature to cut out-of-state students at UC. In essence, the editorial suggests that since folks are angry when their kids don't get into a UC, more capacity at UC is needed, i.e., a new campus. But, says the Times, building a new campus would take a long time. So, instead, it suggests converting a CSU into a UC.  

There are some problems with that approach. 

1) The essence of a UC is its faculty, not a collection of buildings, and where the new faculty would come from to populate the former CSU campus is not discussed. 

2) The former CSU faculty members would go where, exactly, when they were abruptly replaced by the newly recruited UC faculty?

3) The faculty-to-student ratio at a UC will be higher than at a CSU and some of the faculty's efforts go to graduate students, so you likely end up reducing the net state undergraduate capacity (UC+CSU).

4) To deal with problem #2, the LA Times suggests that maybe the community colleges should offer more BAs. 

The editorial reads as though someone had an idea but didn't think it through. You can read the editorial at:

We have said many times on this blog that if California wants to rethink its higher ed policy, it needs to recreate something like the old Master Plan process, with emphasis on the word "process." Otherwise, you get ad hoc suggestions (as from the Times) and ad hoc pressures (as from the legislature) with no coherent structure.

As P.T. Barnum is supposed to have said...

"There's a sucker born every minute." So - says UC-Berkeley - why not exploit that situation to do some fund raising? 

Most of us will never win a Nobel Prize, but the University of California, Berkeley, is offering everyone the opportunity to purchase the next best thing: nonfungible tokens (NFTs) for the patent disclosures at the heart of two Nobel Prize-winning inventions from the university’s research labs.

The NFTs link to online digitized documents — internal forms and correspondence that document the initial research findings that led to two of the most important biomedical breakthroughs of the 21st century: CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing, for which UC Berkeley’s Jennifer Doudna shared the 2020 Nobel in Chemistry; and cancer immunotherapy, for which James Allison shared the 2018 Nobel in Physiology or Medicine. UC Berkeley will continue to own the relevant patents.

The university minted an NFT for Allison’s cancer immunotherapy invention today (May 27) in advance of a 24-hour auction that will begin after the piece is listed as early as Wednesday, June 2. The auction will take place on Foundation (, an Ethereum-based NFT auction platform. Ethereum is a blockchain network that uses ether, or ETH, for transactions. The proceeds of the auction in ETH will fund education and innovative research at UC Berkeley, including work in the campus’s blockchain hub, Blockchain at Berkeley.

Within the past few months, NFTs have rapidly become popular as a means of selling digital assets, including artwork, video and even Twitter posts. Non-fungible refers to the fact that they are unique objects — one of a kind, if you will, unlike interchangeable money — and the blockchain token is the verifiable provenance of the object. In March, an NFT of a collage of images by the artist known as Beeple sold for $69.4 million. On Foundation, Edward Snowden sold an NFT for $7M in support of the Freedom of the Press Foundation and New York Times journalist Kevin Roose raised nearly $1M for the sale of an article about minting an NFT.

“Someone might ask, ‘Why would I want a digital version of some internal university form?’ Because it represents something magnificent,” said Rich Lyons, UC Berkeley’s chief innovation & entrepreneurship officer. “There are people who recognize and care about symbols of great science, and even if they never intend to resell the NFT, they want to own it and they want resources to go back to Berkeley, where the basic research behind these Nobel Prizes came from, to support further research.”

“People give us donations all the time because they care about the institution and the science,” he added. “So here is a way for somebody to invest in the institution in a slightly different way.” ...

Full news release at

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Waiting for the Roar

The governor keeps saying California is roaring back. But by the measure we have been following - new weekly claims for unemployment insurance - it is hard to hear that roar.

Basically, in California, new weekly claims have been flat - see the chart above - although in the U.S. as a whole, they have been dropping. 

Data (always) at

UCPD Revisions


The Daily Bruin has provided a chart of new proposed UCPD policies (above). See:

Note that the proposed changes listed are abstracted from actual occurrences in which police intervene. Apart from conventional crimes such as robberies that occur on and around the campus, it might be more helpful to address how police would actually intervene in specific circumstances. For example, what should be the response to the recent event in the video below that is more likely to be linked to a college campus? If campus police don't respond to such events, presumably the LAPD would respond. What would be the difference?

Or direct to

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Cal State Westwood (again)?

UC seems to be much in the news of late. Yesterday's LA Times carried an article about an effort in the legislature to limit UC enrollments to out-of-state students from 19% to 10%:

As the University of California faces huge demand for seats — and public outcry over massive rejections by top campuses in a record application year — state lawmakers are considering a plan to slash the share of out-of-state and international students to make room for more local residents. The state Senate has unveiled a proposal to reduce the proportion of nonresident incoming freshmen to 10% from the current systemwide average of 19% over the next decade beginning in 2022 and compensate UC for the lost income from higher out-of-state tuition.

This would ultimately allow nearly 4,600 more California students to secure freshmen seats each year, with the biggest gains expected at UCLA, UC Berkeley and UC San Diego. The share of nonresidents at those campuses surpasses the systemwide average, amounting to a quarter of incoming freshmen. UC, however is pushing back, saying the plan would limit its financial flexibility to raise needed revenue and weaken the benefits of a geographically broad student body.

“It’s not about ending out-of-state students — they really add to the mix and the educational experience,” said Sen. John Laird (D-Santa Cruz), whose Senate budget subcommittee on education discussed the plan this month. “We just have to make sure there’s enough spaces for in-state students.”...

Full story at

What makes campuses such as UCLA desirable - and thus hard to get into - is that they compete with prestigious privates on many dimensions, not just undergraduate admissions. Research, of course, is one of those dimensions. Roughly one out of ten dollars flowing into the UC budget is coming from the state.

A quick look at Harvard undergrad admissions is that it is roughly the reverse image of what is being pushed in the legislature in terms of the proportion of locals vs. outsiders. Check out: Most of Harvard's undergrads don't come from New England. 

Stanford reports that 35% of its students are from California: What frustrated parents want is for their kids to get into a prestigious institution without paying the kind of tuition the privates charge. 

If UCLA were transformed primarily into an undergraduate processor, it would become Cal State-Westwood. And we could also have Cal State-Berkeley, Cal State-San Diego (La Jolla?) And if that were to happen, there wouldn't be the high demand to get in. That's the paradox. And although those in the legislature propose to compensate UC for the lost out-of-state tuition revenue that would result, we are only one budget crisis away from seeing that kind of "commitment" vanish the way other supposed deals on funding have when Hard Times arrive.

We have noted that the dropping the SAT/ACT by UC seems to have attracted more applicants, but in no way creates more slots for admission. So rejection rates go up, angering more parents who then complain to the legislature. It's not clear the Regents thought about that effect when they made their decision.

It's nice to think about how admissions were back in the 1950s. For those with nostalgia, see the pretty picture in our previous post. But, as they say, nostalgia ain't what it used to be.

UCLA Seen from Westwood: 1952

UCLA seen from Westwood in 1952 (colorized). Original photo at: 

Tuesday, May 25, 2021


From an email circulated this morning:

Dear Bruin Community:
Almost a year ago, I announced our intention to ramp-up research activities following a two-month period of dramatically curtailed research due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis and resulting city and county Safer at Home orders. 
Today, I am happy to announce that, effective June 1, 2021, the Research Operational Plan (ROP) program we launched with the move to Phase 2 of our ramp-up plan (PDF) is no longer required for research and creative activities, both on-campus and in the field; ROPs are also not required for research-related travel. PIs are able to populate their activities with researchers (e.g., staff, postdocs, graduate students, undergraduate students, high school students, volunteers, visiting scholars) as they deem necessary, so long as they continue to comply with all mandates from the CDC, California Department of Public Health, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH), and Cal/OSHA, including, but not limited to, those concerning personnel density, masking, and distancing. I am pleased to be able to remove this layer of additional review.
The elimination of ROPs means that personnel density limits and the restrictions placed on undergraduate researchers in campus laboratories are now lifted. Unfortunately, travel guidance for individuals who conduct field research remains unchanged. As such, with the ROP program ending, it is vital that you communicate directly with your department chair and dean (e.g., via email) prior to making arrangements for field research and other essential travel. PIs participating in field research are still required to complete a Field Safety Plan (DOCX) for EH&S review and approval.
As a reminder, LACDPH has not relaxed its masking requirements and Cal/OSHA continues to require masking and six-foot distancing in all workplace areas at the present time. It is the responsibility of each PI to ensure that their activities are in compliance with these requirements. PIs are further responsible for ensuring that they have articulated safety plans with all personnel on their team.
I thank you for the patience you have shown this last year. Please submit any comments or questions to
Roger Wakimoto
Vice Chancellor for Research and Creative Activities

UCLA in the News (in a good way)

From the LA Times: The year was 1969. It was a time of social protest over civil rights and representation issues. Those protests echoed at UCLA, where Mexican American students were demanding improved access to higher education, as well as greater resources devoted to the study of the Mexican experience in the U.S. Enter the university’s Mexican American Cultural Center, which was established to support research in what was then the new field of Chicano studies. In the 52 years since, that center — now known as the Chicano Studies Research Center (CSRC) — has grown from a small student- and faculty-led initiative to a full-blown academic center, supporting original research and publications, the maintenance of archival collections and a library.

Running the center for the last 19 years has been Chon Noriega, a professor in UCLA’s department of film, television and digital media, who has been a tireless advocate of Chicano representation. Key archives connected with figures such as Edward Roybal, who in 1949 became the first Latino elected to L.A.'s City Council since 1881 (and later a U.S. representative), as well as caches of historic documents and photographs related to publications such as the Spanish-language daily La Opinión and the 1960s-era activist newspaper La Raza (which generated an exhibition at the Autry Museum of the American West), are some of the acquisitions Noriega was instrumental in bringing to the research center.

He helped launch “A Ver,” an artist monograph series that has chronicled the work of important Latino artists such as Pepón Osorio, Judith F. Baca, Carmen Lomas Garza and Gronk (born Glugio Nicandro). He also helped curate key exhibitions related to Chicano and Latino art. Among them, the highly influential “Phantom Sightings: Art After the Chicano Movement,” which he organized with Rita Gonzalez and Howard Fox in 2008, as well as “Home — So Different, So Appealing,” a group exhibition of international artists, executed with Mari Carmen Ramírez and Pilar Tompkins Rivas — both shown at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

Now, after 19 years, Noriega is stepping down as director of the Chicano Studies Research Center (though he will remain on the faculty at UCLA)...

Full article/interview at

UCLA in the News (in a bad way)

From MyNewsLAAn obstetrician-gynecologist formerly employed by UCLA was taken into custody Monday in a Los Angeles courtroom on a 21-count indictment accusing him of sexually assaulting patients. The indictment was handed down by a grand jury last Thursday and announced on the day a preliminary hearing for Dr. James Mason Heaps was scheduled to begin. Heaps, 64, of Woodland Hills, who had been free on bond, was taken into custody on bail of $1.19 million, according to attorneys who represent hundreds of victims in a civil case against Heaps and UCLA.

A pretrial hearing was scheduled for June 3, and the case was moved to a downtown courtroom, a spokeswoman for the courts confirmed. Heaps had been facing a total of 20 felony counts in a criminal complaint charging him with sexually assaulting seven patients between 2011 and 2018. The indictment now allows for a maximum sentence of more than 91 years, according to the attorneys handling civil cases against the doctor, although the District Attorney’s Office did not immediately confirm that calculation or the details of the grand jury’s findings...

In 2019, the UC Board of Regents paid $2.25 million to a woman who alleged that Heaps sexually assaulted her while he was practicing at UCLA and another $1.3 million to a UCLA nurse-practitioner who alleged sexual harassment and retaliation for her participation in UCLA internal investigations of Heaps. In January, a federal judge gave preliminary approval of a civil, class-action settlement in which the University of California system agreed to pay $73 million to more than 5,500 women who were patients of Heaps.

The agreement requires the judge’s final approval July 12, but at least 300 of Heaps’ alleged victims have opted out of the settlement, which also requires UCLA to ensure stronger oversight procedures for identification, prevention and reporting of sexual misconduct. The entirety of the $73 million would go toward compensating more than 5,500 women who received treatment from Heaps at either the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center from 1986-2018, the school’s student health center from 1983-2010 or Heaps’ university medical office from 2014-18...

Full story at

Monday, May 24, 2021

The Regents Are Meeting This Thursday...

...but you aren't invited.

The Regents are meeting this week (May 27) behind closed doors. They are selecting a new student regent. The process is even more mysterious then the selection of a pope. No white smoke is released when the process is complete. And unlike the selection of a pope, when there is at least speculation as to the major candidates, the selection of a student regent is totally opaque.

You may recall that in the case of the most recent UC president selection, the Regents set up a series of open meetings at the various campuses during which input was invited. 

In any case, here is the notice:

There will be a teleconference meeting, conducted in accordance with Paragraph 3 of Governor Newsom’s Executive Order N-29-20, of the Special Committee on the Selection of a Student Regent in Closed Session , on May 27, 2021, beginning at 1:00 p.m. Attendance is expected of Special Committee members only. 


Sunday, May 23, 2021

Town Hall on UCLA Fall Procedures

A "town hall" meeting by Zoom and YouTube was held on May 21 concerning procedures for generally returning to in-person instruction and work at UCLA in the fall. Some of the key points are shown above. Note that although enrollments of 60 are mentioned as a dividing line between in-person and remote classes, there are procedures for exceptions in both directions. That is, classes with over 60 students can be held in person through an application procedure. And classes below 60 can be held remotely by exception. If a class is designated as in-person, there will not be a requirement for adding some kind of remote option.

All of these points are subject to LA County rules, but the current expectation is that those rules will remain relaxed.

You can see the town hall at the link below:

Or direct to

Saturday, May 22, 2021

3% Coming Soon (but less soon for faculty)

From an email circulated yesterday afternoon:

To:  Faculty and Staff
Dear Colleagues:
In recognition of everything that UCLA employees have done to keep our institution moving forward this past year, we are very pleased to announce that all eligible, policy-covered UCLA faculty and staff will receive a 3% increase to their base salaries. 

This increase will be effective June 27 for staff paid bi-weekly and July 1 for staff paid monthly. For policy-covered faculty, the adjustment to the academic salary scales will be effective Oct. 1. [Italics added.]
We know our faculty and staff have faced daunting personal and professional challenges in the last 14 months, yet you have maintained a level of dedication to excellence that has kept our university at the forefront of education, research and service. We are grateful for this opportunity to acknowledge your contributions to UCLA, particularly as we were unable to provide the typical merit increases to staff last year.

Guidelines and eligibility criteria for policy-covered staff are available on the Campus Human Resources website. Eligibility criteria for faculty will be shared in the near future. Please note that this increase does not apply to exclusively represented employees and academic personnel who are receiving separate increases in accordance with applicable collective bargaining agreements and/or meeting-and-conferring under the Higher Education Employer-Employee Relations Act.
Staff may reach out with any questions to Campus Human Resources Compensation Services at 310-794-0890 or UCLA Health Human Resources at 310-794-0500. Faculty may direct inquiries to the Academic Personnel Office.
After an exceptionally difficult year, we hope that this positive news serves to lift spirits and bolster our shared resolve as we work toward our broader return to campus this fall. Thank you for your continued commitment to UCLA and to one another.
Gene D. Block
Emily A. Carter
Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

Note: "Policy-covered" refers to individuals not covered by a collective bargaining agreement. As noted on this blog, a similar letter went out on Monday from the UC prez: 

Friday, May 21, 2021

Mellow Yellow

From an email circulated today:

COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force

L.A. County continues to see promising declines in COVID-19 cases and has advanced to the least restrictive yellow tier in the state's pandemic response plan. New permissible activities went into effect on May 14 through the issuance of an updated Health Officer Order (PDF).
Dear Bruin Community:

We are happy to announce that UCLA is adopting several of these new allowances and expanded activities, effective immediately. Below is a summary of some of these changes (this is not an all-inclusive list, so please refer to the L.A. County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) Protocols for Institutes of Higher Education for details (PDF):
Cleaning protocols have been updated to align with the less stringent CDC guidance, with a focus on thorough cleaning rather than extensive disinfection (NOTE: Spaces occupied by an individual with COVID-19 who is self-isolating remain subject to more stringent disinfection protocols).
Restaurants on campus can operate indoors at 50% capacity with up to six individuals from up to six households allowed to sit together at the same table if fully vaccinated, otherwise only up to three households can sit together. Outdoors, up to eight households can be seated together (as a party of eight) if all are fully vaccinated.
Visit Plateia and ASUCLA for the latest hours and updates. This guidance does not change current operations for our residential dining halls and please refer to the dining website  for the latest schedule and updates.
Gyms can operate indoors at 50% capacity. Hot tubs, saunas and steam rooms may reopen. Please refer to the UCLA Recreation facilities webpage for reopening dates, updated operations and hours for the John Wooden Center and Kinross Recreation Center.
In-person activities and events are still recommended to be virtual or outdoors as much as possible. In all cases, they must follow the relevant LACDPH Protocol (NOTE: These are updated capacity limits that supersede our campuswide message from May 5):
  • Appendix BB: Protocol for Private Events (PDF) increases outdoor private events to 200 max, and 400 max if all guests are tested or show proof of vaccination. Indoor private events are not permitted at this time, unless all guests show proof of vaccination or negative test and then the limit is up to 200.
  • Appendix Z1: Indoor Seated Live Events and Performances (PDF) increases venues less than or equal to occupancy of 1,500 to 25% capacity or 300 max, and for venues greater than 1,500 occupancy to 10% capacity or 2,000 max and in both instances, 50% max capacity if all guests are tested or show proof of vaccination.
  • As a reminder, per Cal OSHA regulations, these event allowances do not apply in instructional, research or workplace settings at this time.
While this expansion is positive news in light of dramatic improvements in local health conditions, please note that the L.A. County Health Officer Order (PDF) remains in effect, and despite the recent announcement from the CDC and President Biden about flexibilities with masking outdoors, UCLA must continue to follow the stricter guidance of LACDPH and Cal/OSHA for wearing face masks on UCLA property. Requirements are listed below:
  • Face masks are required for everyone outdoors when physical distancing cannot be maintained, including when attending outdoor events on the UCLA campus.  
  • Individuals are not required to wear a face mask when on campus in their own personal living space, when alone in a closed office, or when eating or drinking in a designated dining area. 
  • Cal/OSHA still requires employees, including student employees, to wear masks on UCLA property when in contact or likely to be in contact with others.  
Thank you for continuing to follow these public health guidelines and for doing your part to keep yourselves and our communities healthy.
Michael J. Beck
Administrative Vice Chancellor
Co-chair, COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force
Michael Meranze
Immediate Past Chair, UCLA Academic Senate
Professor of History
Co-chair, COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force

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