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. 30 - Why get a flu shot? / Science informing policy

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Abstract of a stairwell at the Claire Trevor School of the Arts. Photo by Steve Zylius/UCI

Ask the Expert

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

Today’s question is answered by Dr. Maryam Rahimi, professor of internal medicine and primary care:

Why do I need to get a flu shot this year?

Vaccination still remains the best way to prevent both influenza and COVID-19. Without the flu vaccine, most people recover within 10 days, but for some, the flu can lead to pneumonia and death. Last year’s flu season was milder than most, thanks in no small part to COVID-19 safety measures such as masking, physical distancing, closures of schools, offices and businesses, as well as restrictions on gatherings in large public spaces. Now, however, with children back in classrooms and many people returning to work, congregating in public places and traveling, this year’s strains of influenza can spread more easily and pose a danger for the vulnerable among us. It’s too early to predict how effective this year’s vaccine will be. However, studies show that people who've been vaccinated for flu have less severe episodes of illness and recover more quickly.


Get your free flu shot - walk-in clinics open this week

All undergraduate and graduate students are invited to get a free flu vaccine on the way to class at one of the walk-in clinics this week - no appointment needed. The clinics are located at Anteater Plaza in front of the Langson Library. As a reminder, all students must comply with the UC Flu Vaccination policy. Please have your student ID number ready and your daily wellness check completed. Although this is an outdoor event, please wear your mask while in line and getting your shot. Below is the clinic schedule:

Wednesday, Dec. 1
1:30 - 4:30 p.m.

Thursday, Dec. 2
10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Friday, Dec. 3
10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

If you can’t make this pop-up event, make an appointment for your flu vaccine at the Student Health Center.

Wellness Room & massage chairs open for students

The Wellness Room is a peaceful space designed to help students relax throughout the school year, as well as to practice mindfulness. There are several amenities to help facilitate a sense of relaxation and restore balance, and there are new cleaning and sanitation procedures.

12th annual food drive

All are invited to donate to UCI's Clash of the Cans food drive through Dec. 22. Drop off your nonperishable goods at any of the donation bins on campus to support the FRESH Basic Needs Hub, a student-initiated effort to make UCI a basic needs-secure campus. 

Holiday safety and inclusiveness

With the holidays around the corner, it is important to follow all safety guidelines while demonstrating our commitment to equal opportunity, diversity and inclusiveness. Please take a few minutes to read the EH&S Holiday Safety Reference Guide. Additional considerations are also available on the UCI Forward Celebrations and Holiday Gatherings webpage. In addition to safety, in light of the broad representation of religious beliefs, practices and observances that enrich our university community, the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity has developed recommended guidelines for inclusive celebrations

UCI Podcast: Bringing science to White House policy making

In this episode of the UCI Podcast, Ann Marie Carlton, a professor of atmospheric chemistry, discusses why it’s a challenge to ensure that science informs policy.


UC leaders urge Biden to strengthen DACA program

University of California leaders have come out in support of a proposed rule by the Biden administration that would preserve and fortify the program that provides legal protections for young people who were brought to the United States as children.

FDA looking at take-at-home pills for COVID

An FDA advisory committee is meeting today to consider whether to recommend a new antiviral pill for COVID-19 treatment. Take-at-home pills could be a game-changer for keeping COVID-19 in check, and helping people recover from early stages of the disease. If authorized by the FDA, the new antiviral pill, molnupiravir, would be the first oral home treatment available for mild to moderate COVID-19.


A Conversation About COP26 United Nations Climate Conference with Shyla Raghav, '07
Thursday, 10:30 a.m. (sponsored by UCI Solutions That Scale)

Queer and Present Danger
Thursday, 11 a.m. (sponsored by School of Social Ecology)

Pride Tamales: A Holiday Cooking Demonstration and Conversation in Honor of UCI’s LGBTQ+ Community
Thursday, noon (sponsored by UCI Illuminations)

Embodiology: From Ancestral Movement-Music Practices to Phenomenal Being
Thursday, 1 p.m. (sponsored by Illuminations: The Chancellor’s Arts & Culture Initiative)

Music Lecture Series: Mark Burford
Thursday, 4 p.m. (sponsored by UCI Music)

New Slate showcase of original choreography
Thursday, 8 p.m. (sponsored by Department of Dance)

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.

Irvine leaders approve $5.7 million deal to make UCI Health the Great Park’s top promoter

The Orange County Register, Nov. 26
Cited: Chad Lefteris, CEO, UCI Health

What I learned eating at 8,000 Chinese restaurants

BBC News, Nov. 24
Cited: Yong Chen, history professor

S.Korea 'Squid Game' Boom Sparks Surge in Nostalgia

NHK World-Japan News, Nov. 24 (Video)
Cited: Kyung Hyun Kim, professor of East Asian Studies [Starts 2:30]


What an anteater is really saying from an emoji.

What an anteater is really saying from an emoji. Intense screaming because it is hard being a college student but you will still do it tho, LOL. Intense screaming because it is hard being a college student but you will still do it tho, LOL. Intense screaming because it is hard being a college student but you will still do it tho, LOL. Zot! Zot! Zot! What do you do after graduation? LOL Do we bring our backpacks that day?

Alltruism (“all true”) is a project supported by the Barnes & Noble Scholarship that aims to create connections through community, compassion and the creative arts. The initiative was part of The Alltruism Project, and more letters can be found on Instagram.

#UCIconnected spotlights student, alumni, faculty and staff photos, essays, shoutouts, hobbies, artwork, unusual office decorations, activities and more. Send submissions via email or post on social media with the #UCIconnected hashtag.


Three new campus cases

Three students tested positive for COVID-19 on Monday. 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.