UCI Forward

UCI Forward is our commitment to the well-being of our community as we ramp up campus operations. Working together, each of us doing our part, we can move UCI Forward.

Nov. 5 - COVID-19 and the holidays, staff appreciation winners

Section 1

Engineering wetness: Early morning sprinkles brought back those umbrellas we had to whip out during last week’s rainstorm

Engineering wetness: Early morning sprinkles brought back those umbrellas we had to whip out during last week’s rainstorm. Photo by Steve Zylius/UCI

In this continuing series, UCI experts answer questions about COVID-19, vaccinations, variants or the future of work. Submit questions via email.

GOT Winter is coming graphic

Today's question is answered by David Souleles, director of UCI’s COVID-19 Response Team:

Should we be concerned that eight students tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday?

One day’s case reports are never indicative of a trend, though case rates in general have been increasing in Orange County and in California, and we have also been seeing increased case activity among students and employees over the past few weeks. Several experts have predicted we may begin to see an increase in case activity as we move through the fall and winter holidays as we have increased interactions at holiday gatherings and increased travel. This is a good reminder to continue to be vigilant. Get vaccinated if you have not already done so. Ensure your children aged 5-17 are vaccinated as well. Continue to mask while indoors on campus and complete your daily symptom checker and test if you are concerned or are required to do so.


Best Group - Physical Sciences Student Affairs

Best Group - Physical Sciences Student Affairs. Photo courtesy of Student Affairs.

Staff ghosts with the most

UCI Staff Assembly revealed the winners of the 2021 Staff Appreciation Halloween Costume Contest and the 2021 Staff Appreciation Virtual Scavenger Hunt. Congratulations, all.

We expect too much from Earth

This year at the United Nations COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, scientists from around the world are discussing a frightening truth, our planet’s resiliency reaching a tipping point. Frank LaFerla, Chancellor’s Professor and dean of the School of Biological Sciences, and Travis E. Huxman, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and director of the Center for Environmental Biology, stress in an opinion piece that it’s time to heed the calls from ecologists and climate scientists alike and redouble our conservation investments and clean energy commitments.

Wind and solar could power the world’s major countries most of the time

Climate strategies for decarbonizing energy infrastructure are a trending topic at COP26, yet critics of renewables question the dependability of systems that rely on intermittent resources. A recent study led by UCI researchers tackles the reliability question head-on.

More on UCI and COP26

Michael Méndez, assistant professor of urban planning and public policy, will moderate a press conference on California’s approach to integrating environmental justice into climate solutions at 1:15 p.m. GMT on Monday, in Glasgow.

Businesses selling non-FDA-approved stem cell products grew four-fold in five years: UCI study

More than four times as many businesses and clinics than were identified in 2016 are selling stem cell products not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and lack convincing evidence of safety and efficacy, according to a five-year study conducted by Leigh Turner, professor of health, society and behavior. The analysis appears online in the journal Cell Stem Cell.


Friday fun fact

First in the family: 44 percent of UC undergraduates are first-generation students.

Friday funner fact

Before his upcoming return to the Irvine Improv, alum Jon Lovitz (drama, 1979) shared his craziest UCI memory, which involves another famous comedian.

In world’s first approval of a pill to treat COVID, British regulators authorize Merck’s molnupiravir

The drug, which will go by Lagevrio in the U.K., is the first oral antiviral medicine for the treatment of COVID-19 in adults. It has been submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency authorization.

Pfizer says its pill is 89% effective in study

The drug company plans to seek FDA authorization of a treatment that patients with mild to moderate cases could take at home to keep them out of the hospital, the latest encouraging performance for an early virus treatment.


Quick Bites - Alternative Eats
Monday, 12:30 p.m. (sponsored by Student Wellness & Health Promotion)

Job Search Strategies
Monday, 3 p.m. (sponsored by Division of Career Pathways)

Proposal Writing & Submission Workshop
Monday, 4 p.m. (sponsored by Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program)

Achieving 30x30 for Our Coasts, Oceans, and Communities Conference
Tuesday and Wednesday, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. (sponsored by Newkirk Center for Science & Society)

Faculty Book Talk: Jonathan Alexander
Tuesday, 5 p.m. (sponsored by UCI Illuminations)

Visit today.uci.edu to see and submit event listings. Events of general interest will be shared in UCI Digest two days before they occur.


Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York TimesThe Wall Street Journal, The Orange County Register and The Washington Post for students, faculty and staff.

Want to make sure your child is fully vaccinated for the holidays? Here is what to know.

The Washington Post, Nov. 4
Cited: Chulie Ulloa, assistant professor of pediatric infectious diseases

Hospital chaplains help health workers heal with compassion and spirituality

Orange County Register, Nov. 4
Cited: UCI Health Chaplain Pirjo Carlisle

One year on from American election

Sky News Australia (video), Nov. 4
Guest: Louis DeSipio, professor of political science & chair of Chicano/Latino Studies


8 new campus cases

Eight students tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday. For more information, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.

Remember to upload your vaccine record

Student Record Upload

Employee Record Upload

Potential workplace exposure

UCI provides this notification of a potential workplace COVID-19 exposure. Employees and subcontractors who were in these locations on the dates listed may have been exposed to the coronavirus. You may be entitled to various benefits under applicable federal and state laws and University-specific policies and agreements. The full notification is available on the UCI Forward site. If you have been identified as a close contact to a COVID-19 case, the UCI Contact Tracing Program will contact you and provide additional direction.

For COVID-19 questions

UCI Forward - information on campus status and operational updates

UCI Health COVID-19 Updates - important information related to UCI Health

UCI Health COVID-19 FAQs

UCI Coronavirus Response Center - available at covid19@uci.edu or via phone at (949) 824-9918

Contact Tracing and Vaccine Navigation Services - assistance with vaccines and vaccine uploads; available at contacttracing@uci.edu or via phone at (949) 824-2300

Program in Public Health chatline - answers to questions about COVID-19

For questions specific to your personal health situation, please contact your doctor or healthcare provider.