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.

June 10 - Unpredictable COVID surge; national water conservation award

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#UCIGrad: A weekend of commencement ceremonies kicked off in Bren Events Center this morning with the School of Biological Sciences’ graduation. Various schools hold ceremonies before Wednesday’s campus-wide commencement at Angel Stadium. Photo from Twitter/@UCIrvine


Campus sees surge in COVID-19 cases

In recent days, UCI has experienced a rise in new COVID-19 cases despite a 98% vaccination and booster rate. That’s a reminder that no matter the caution and preparation an institution may make, spikes can happen anyway. Spectrum News 1 reports today that David Souleles, director of UCI’s COVID-19 Response Team, expects case numbers to drop after Wednesday’s commencement ceremony, but what comes after that is impossible to say. “In some respects, the fall is like 100 years in COVID time,” Souleles says. “It can change on a dime.”

Aerial image of UCI's campus

The IRWD partnership and other projects have already pushed UCI well beyond the UC system’s policy goal to cut water use 26% by 2025. Photo by Ethan Rohloff

UCI receives Excellence in Action Award for water conservation

The university and Irvine Ranch Water District were honored with the WateReuse Association’s 2022 Award of Excellence, which recognizes the partnership using IRWD recycled water on campus for more than five decades. “Irvine Ranch Water District and the University of California, Irvine are celebrating more than 50 years of recycled water partnership with the completion of the university’s Central Plant Recycled Water Conversion,” states the national award, which notes the plant saves 80 million gallons of drinking water per year.

League of Legends competes in 2022 College Championship today

UCI’s Esports team battles Boston’s Bay State College around 4:30 p.m. or after the Riot Scholastic Association of America’s first quarterfinal match of the day pitting Michigan State against South Carolina’s Converse University. There will be a free watch party in UCI Esports Arena or you can see the event live on Twitch.tv.


Friday fun fact

Working hours: On average, undergraduates reported working 7.8 hours per week, 5 of which were related to their academic interests. (For the work hours data, click on the link, the carrot - > - at top right of the chart and then the Time Allocation tab.) 

Mysteries linger about COVID-19’s origins: W.H.O. report

In its first report, a team of international scientists assembled by the World Health Organization to advise on the origins of COVID-19 said on Thursday that bats likely carried an ancestor of the coronavirus that may have then spilled over into a mammal sold at a wildlife market. But the team added that more Chinese data is needed to study how the virus spread to people, including the possibility that a lab leak played a role.

Flu, hepatitis, monkeypox: Diseases suppressed during COVID are back

The pandemic has abated in much of the world and, with it, many of the social restrictions implemented to curb its spread, as people have been eager to return to pre-lockdown life. But in its place have emerged a series of viruses behaving in new and peculiar ways.


Politics, Violence, and Memory: New Insights on the Holocaust from Social Science
Tuesday, 4 p.m. (sponsored by School of Social Sciences)

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.

The Women Artists Who Found Inspiration in Friendship

Hyperallergic (review), June 5
Cited: Robert Irwin, former art lecturer and head of the graduate art program, and Nancy Buchanan, Marcia Hafif and Barbara T. Smith, students in UCI’s first MFA program

Latest Research on Cannabis as a Treatment for Chronic Pain Remains Unclear

Healthline, June 6
Cited: Daniele Piomelli, Distinguished Professor of anatomy & neurobiology and director, Center for the Study of Cannabis

If You Obsessively Check Social Media, You Probably Suffer From This Disorder

Your Tango, June 9
Cited: Gloria Mark, Chancellor’s Professor of informatics


Class of 2022 graduate Nikki Yamashiro

#IamUCI: Q&A with Class of 2022 graduate Nikki Yamashiro

Nikki Yamashiro’s passion for solving problems and helping others led her to pursue a career in nursing. Her path to UCI’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program started at Glendora’s Citrus College, where she trained to become a licensed vocational nurse, and Cal State Fullerton, where she earned a B.S. in nursing. Yamashiro’s clinical background includes work in home health, pediatrics and a men’s correctional facility. Still, she doubted her ability to gain admission into UCI’s highly competitive D.N.P. program and calls doing so “the biggest blessing of a lifetime.” Reaching the pinnacle of her profession led to self-reflection and a desire to be intentional about her goals: to diversify the nursing workforce and address racial health inequalities.

Graduating this year? Share your UCI story and photos! Tag us with #IamUCI on Instagram and Twitter.


39 new campus cases

On Thursday, UCI recorded nearly 40 new cases of COVID-19: 31 students and eight employees. For more information, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.

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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.