uc merced

Kinsey Brock

RadioBio is a podcast that educates and informs listeners about science. It's produced by a team of graduate students at UC Merced. Kinsey Brock, Cristie Donham and Sonia Vargas were recently in our studio to tell us why they’re using creative means to improve science literacy.

RadioBio will host a live campus event, ValleyBio, on October 18 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Vault Works on Main Street in Merced.

 

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

The U.S. Forest Service estimates 147 million trees in California died following the state’s prolonged drought. New research out of UC Merced suggests a culprit: Extremely dry soil.

Monica Velez / Valley Public Radio

Preschoolers played with a robot in the hallway outside of their classroom at the Huggins Early Education Center at Fresno State. They chased it and laughed as it rolled down the long corridor.

 

Most of the parents of these kids are students at Fresno State. Brittney Randolph, program director for the Huggins Center, said 70 percent of the slots are set aside for students, and having the center on campus can be really beneficial.   

 

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

Thirty years ago, a BBC program called Tomorrow’s World captivated viewers with a seemingly simple demonstration: A blowtorch pointed directly at an egg. Its shell slowly blackens, but it neither cracks nor erupts in flames. “This is no ordinary egg,” warns presenter Peter Macann with a smile.

On this week's Valley Edition: we return to the story of Ethan Morse, the son of the former district attorney in Merced County who was gunned down in March. Some say the murder was tied to Morse’s arrest six years ago.

And how do you use science to recreate a mysterious 30-year-old invention shrouded in secrecy? Students at UC Merced throw their hats in the ring, together with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Plus child abuse is a huge problem in the Valley - we learn about the scope and take a look at some solutions.

 

UC Merced

UC Merced Chancellor Dorothy Leland announced Monday she will be stepping down from her position on August 15. After eight years as chancellor at the university, 71-year-old Leland says she is ready to follow other academic pursuits and spend more time with her family.

Listen to the above interview to hear more about what made her want to work in the San Joaquin Valley and what's next for UC Merced's 2020 project. 

Rudy Diaz / Central California Women's Facility

There’s a garden in Chowchilla off of Road 22 that’s surrounded by miles of farmland. Only women tend to this garden. There are wildflowers, succulents, lavender, thyme, and perennials to name a few.  

 

Sol Mercado helped build and design it a year and a half ago.

 

“We had mulch in our eyes, we had dirt. It was really hot, but we still pushed through and we got it done,” the 33-year-old says. “We were all working as a team and it was really nice.”

 

© 1978 George Ballis/Take Stock

Adios Amor tells the story of one woman who should have made it into the history books but didn't. Maria Moreno was the first female farm worker to be hired as a union organizer.

 

Originally from Texas, Moreno lived with her husband and 12 children working in the fields. She was an indigenous woman with only a second-grade education but used her voice to rally support for farm workers' rights. 

 

Monica Velez

A UC Merced professor spent 18 months examining how religion mixed with political advocacy helped people who were formerly incarcerated reintegrate into society. Edward Orozco Flores explores these issues in his new book, “Jesus Saved an Ex-Con.” He spent time in LA and Chicago.

Listen to the above interview to learn more about Orozco's research and why some formerly incarcerated people wanted to use their voices to change legislation.

Jessica Trounstine

We’ve heard a lot about how government policies in San Joaquin Valley cities and beyond have created race and class segregation for more than a century. Well, now Jessica Trounstine, a UC Merced political science professor, has written a book about this American phenomenon called "Segregation by Design: Local Politics and Inequality in American Cities."

 

Listen to the interview above to hear more about how local governments intentionally use policies to segregate cities by race and wealth.

 

Carlos E. Osorno

Every year UC Merced presents the Alice and Clifford Spendlove Prize in Social Justice, Diplomacy and Tolerance. This year, the speaker and award recipient is Nobel Peace Prize winner Rigoberta Menchú Tum. She’s been fighting for women’s rights and social reform since she was a teenager in

Guatemala. We are joined by UC Merced Professor Arturo Arias who wrote a book about her. Listen to the interview above to hear more about the work she's done.

The event will be on November 5 at 6 p.m. at the Merced Theater.

Lance Johnson / Licensed under Creative Commons from Flickr user LanceJohnson http://www.flickr.com/photos/lancejohnson/5703722259/

A medical school at UC Merced has been on the table since before the university was even built. Now, the University of California and a local legislator are renewing their efforts to make it happen.

A report published this week by the University of California Office of the President estimates a medical school at UC Merced would cost $150 million in up-front costs alone. That doesn’t include the roughly $30 million dollars needed annually to run it.

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

This past Sunday, April 22, was Earth Day. But did you know that the day before was the birthday of conservationist John Muir, or that the day after was the day widely believed to have been the birth and death of William Shakespeare? These may seem like unrelated occasions, but one special event brought all three together in Yosemite National Park.

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

Ten years ago, the city of Merced was ground zero for the housing crisis in California. Just a few years before that, the University of California’s brand new Merced campus opened outside the city, which arguably drove the overdevelopment that set up the city to fall so hard during the recession. Now, a decade later, the university has invested in the city with a new downtown building—but that’s not the only new development happening at UC Merced.

Ezra Romero / Valley Public Radio

California’s historic drought may be over, but scientists are still hard at work assessing its impact on the ecosystem. Perhaps nowhere is that work more interesting, or important, than with the Sierra’s Giant Sequoias. These ancient trees have weathered drought, fires and floods for millennia. But how did they fare in this most recent dry spell, and what can their health tell us about other problems in the forest?

Veronica Adrover

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, antibiotic resistant bacteria cause around 2 million infections and 23,000 deaths in the U.S. each year. Researchers across the globe are working to combat this growing problem, and a team at UC Merced recently published a study contributing some much-needed data to the field.

AT&T/Ezra David Romero

On a hill overlooking Millerton Lake in Fresno County a group of workers are gathering around a cell tower. They’re watching a tiny white drone slowly circle the tower from the ground all the way to the top. Quasie Jones is with the drone imaging company Skycatch.

“So what it’s doing is taking a picture every two seconds,” Jones says. “So by the end of it it’ll basically have probably like five or 600 photos. So then our technology renders that and creates a 3D model.”

Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

UC Merced isn’t the first place people think of when it comes to finding new ways to prevent the spread of HIV globally. But thanks to one professor the university is now working with scientists around the globe to find an alternative way to prevent the virus from infecting people.

Valley Public Radio

This week on Valley Edition our team reports on two medical schools possibly coming to the region and about HIV prevention research underway at UC Merced. We also hear from YouTube famous doctor Zubin Damania, MD or ZDoggMD who grew up in Clovis.

Fresno State / Official Facebook Account

A new bill introduced in the California Legislature last week by Assemblymember Joaquin Arambula calls for the authorization of a new medical school at California State University, Fresno. Arambula, who is a former emergency room physician from Fresno County, says training more doctors locally is one way to help solve the valley's chronic physician shortage. 

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