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.

Aug. 17 - Remembering Michael Berns; rainforest shipping pollution

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A roadrunner eyes the scenery at the UCI Ecological Preserve.

A roadrunner eyes the scenery at the UCI Ecological Preserve. Photo by Ian Parker


Michael Berns

Michael Berns will be remembered as “the father of laser microbeams.” Photo courtesy of Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic

Biomedical laser pioneer Michael Berns passes away

Michael Berns, who co-founded and directed UCI’s storied Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic, died Saturday at age 79. Renowned for his groundbreaking work using laser technology to manipulate cells, Berns was also a painter, avocado farmer and spy thriller novelist. His signature accomplishment – the Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic – began taking shape in 1979, when Berns won an NIH grant to set up the Laser Microbeam Program at UCI.

Amazon rainforest

Researchers track shipping industry emissions in Amazon rainforest

In an article for Environmental Research, Guaciara dos Santos, a Department of Earth System Science research scientist, revealed the discovery of shipping industry fuel emissions deep inside the Amazon rainforest. The team measured the rise in emissions after sampling and analyzing tissues retrieved from tree growth rings, and the reason for the rise, the team reports, is the burning of fossil fuels by ships that use the Amazon’s waterways to transport mined ore out of the region.

Jeanett Castellanos

Jeanett Castellanos joins American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education

Jeanett Castellanos, social sciences undergraduate associate dean and professor of teaching, will help lead the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education, a nonprofit focused on developing and increasing representation of Latinx faculty, senior administrators and students in higher education. Castellano’s research merges the fields of counseling and higher education with a particular focus on Latinx populations; her books on the subject include The Minority in the Majority: Expanding the Representation of Latina/o FacultyAdministrators and Students in Higher EducationThe Latina/o Pathway to the Ph.D.: Abriendo Caminos, and her newest work, Riding the Academic Freedom Train: A Culturally Responsive Multigenerational Mentoring Model.


How will the Inflation Reduction Act affect your healthcare?

Yesterday, the Inflation Reduction Act officially became law, marking the most significant change in American healthcare since the Affordable Healthcare Act legislation (aka Obamacare) of 2010. Under the new law, the U.S. government can negotiate prices on the costliest prescription drugs, cap costs at $2,000 per year for people on Medicare, limit the monthly cost of insulin to $35 for seniors, and extend subsidies for people buying their own health coverage. The law also provides free vaccines for seniors.


First Folio Friday with Andrea Mays
Friday, 11:30 a.m. (sponsored by UCI Libraries)

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.

Quantum Physics Could Finally Explain Consciousness, Scientists Say

Popular Mechanics, Aug. 17 
Cited: Jeffrey Barrett, Chancellor’s Professor of logic and philosophy of science

Inflation Reduction Act: What It Will and Won't Do to Lower Insulin Prices

Healthline, Aug. 15 
Cited: Keri Hurley-Kim, associate clinical professor

Salton Sea Policy-Making Excludes Vulnerable Purépecha Community Members

KCET, Aug. 12
Cited: Felipe Ochoa, public policy graduate program alumnus


Image of Taylor Fagins '17 with quote I'd rather spend my life creating the stories that should exist than being in the ones others created

Photo by Eric McCandless/ABC

You might remember him from Season 20 of ABC’s “American Idol,” but the story of Taylor Fagins '17 does not begin and end there. #UCIPride #UCIAlumni

#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.


15 new campus cases

On Tuesday, UCI recorded 15 new cases of COVID-19: 12 students and three employees. For more information, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.

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