University of California, Merced

University of California, Merced

name = University of California, Merced
motto = "Fiat lux" (Latin)
mottoeng = Let there be light

established =2005
type =Public research university
endowment =US $24 million cite web |url= |title=UC Annual Endowment Report, Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2007 |accessdate=2008-03-28 |publisher=Office of the Treasurer of the Regents of the University of California|date=2008]
staff =
faculty =89 []
chancellor =Sung-Mo "Steve" Kang
provost =Keith E. Alley
enrollment =1,871 []
doctoral =
city =Merced
state =California
country =USA
campus =Rural, 910 acres (3.7 km²)
colors =Royal Blue & Gold color box|#000066color box|#CC9900
mascot =Golden Bobcats
address =University of California
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95344
affiliations =University of California
website = []
The University of California, Merced, otherwise known as UC Merced or UCM is the tenth and newest of the University of California campus. Located in the San Joaquin Valley at Merced, California, UC Merced is the first American research university built in the 21st century. [ [ UC Merced - Mission Statement ] ]


As the San Joaquin Valley was the state's largest and most populous region without a UC campus, on May 19, 1988 the Regents of the University of California voted to begin planning for a campus in the region, in response to increasing enrollment and growth constraints at existing UC campuses. [citation|url=
title=Battle for California Campus Waged Far From Urban Glow |newspaper=New York Times | date=November 26, 1988 | accessdate=2008-01-27 |last=Reinhold|first=Robert
] On May 19, 1995, the University selected the Merced site near Yosemite National Park as the location for the University’s tenth campus. [cite web
title=UC Merced Planning - Project Overview
] The campus groundbreaking ceremony was held October 25, 2002, and the first day of class was September 6, 2005.

Organization and governance

UC Merced is headed by a chancellor. After a nation-wide search, on January 17, 2007, the Regents of the University of California named Sung-Mo (Steve) Kang, dean of the University of California, Santa Cruz, Baskin School of Engineering to be the university's new chancellor. [ [ U C Merced - Steve Kang Named New Uc Merced Chancellor ] ] Previously, the position was held by Carol Tomlinson-Keasey from 1999 until she resigned on August 31, 2006. She returned to teaching and research in psychology in 2007. [] On September 21, 2006, the Regents named Roderic B. Park, a former interim chancellor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, as the acting chancellor for UC Merced. [ [ U C Merced - UC President Appoints Roderic Park Acting Chancellor of UC Merced ] ] Park remained acting chancellor until Kang took office in early March 2007.

Although UC Merced is located in a rural area associated with agriculture, it emphasizes cutting edge interdisciplinary research grounded in natural science, math, and engineering. The campus takes advantage of the surrounding environment by investigating issues relating to environmental systems of the Central Valley and Sierra Nevada, and of its youth by having programs in genetic research conducted in state of the art research labs. It also benefits from proximity to Silicon Valley and other major universities. Research in fields like language acquisition and cultural issues is facilitated by the highly diverse ethnic makeup of the Central Valley.

University of California, Merced operates on a semester basis rather than the quarter system for its academic term. The Berkeley campus is the only other UC campus on a semester system.


As of now, UC Merced has 3 schools:
* School of Engineering
* School of Natural Sciences
* School of Social Sciences & Humanities and ArtsThe campus offers 18 undergraduate majors:
*applied mathematical sciences
*biological sciences
*chemical sciences
*cognitive science
*computer science and engineering
*earth systems science
*environmental engineering
*literatures and cultures
*material sciences and engineering
*mechanical engineering
*political science
*psychologyIn addition, 18 minors are offered:
*American studies
*applied mathematics
*cognitive science
*natural sciences education
*political science
*services science
*writing [ [ UC Merced - Undergraduate Majors ] ] For graduate-level study, UC Merced has 9 emphases: applied mathematics, biological engineering and small-scale technologies, computer and information systems, environmental systems, mechanical engineering and applied mechanics, physics and chemistry, quantitative and systems biology, social and cognitive sciences, and world cultures. [ [ Graduate Division - Welcome to the Graduate Division ] ]

Kolligian Library

The library was the first building to open on campus. During the Fall 2005 semester, while construction on the Classroom and Science/Engineering buildings was still going on, all academic courses were conducted in the library. Its official motto is "Not what other research libraries are, what they will be."

The Library building is named for Leo and Dottie Kolligian. The first floor of the library was dedicated by Ed and Jeanne Kashian. The McFadden-Willis Reading Room is located on the fourth floor and named in honor of the McFadden and Willis children by Christine McFadden. The Library also has a technology classroom dedicated by Doris Gonella in honor of her late husband Louis, The Gonella Discovery Room.

There is a café located on the first floor, and doors roll up in good weather providing an indoor/outdoor feel. Nearly 300 laptop computers are available for checkout. Currently, the electronic holdings are nearly three times the size of the print holdings, consisting of about 19,000 online journals and 150,000 electronic books, in addition to 60,000 print books.

Research institutes

*The Sierra Nevada Research Institute

Planned institutes
*The World Cultures Institute
*MERI (Merced Energy Research Institute)
*The Biomedical and Systems Biology Research Institute
*National Parks Institute

In 2007, UC Merced researchers obtained nearly $7 million in funding from the National Science Foundation. [cite news |last=Doyle | first=Michael | title= UC Merced leads research funds race | url= | publisher= The Modesto Bee | date=October 13, 2007 | accessdate= 2007-10-15]

Campus layout

Gold structures in terms of their high energy efficiency and low environmental impact. [citation
title=Case study: University of California, Merced, Enlightening Sustainability: University research facility is a teaching tool for eco-minded students
date=January, 2008
] The campus is located about seven miles (11 km) north of downtown Merced in the middle of a cattle ranch. [citation | last=McKinley | first=Jesse | title=California’s Newest State University Is Short of Students | url= | date=July 26, 2006 | newspaper=New York Times | accessdate=2008-01-16]

Rather than build on 40 acres of protected land east of Lake Yosemite, where endangered fairy shrimp hatch in vernal pools, the school will build on a convert|230|acre|km2|sing=on parcel of grazing land south of campus, under a revised layout. The fledgling campus will cover a total of convert|810|acre|km2, rather than the convert|910|acre|km2 proposed in 2000. [citation
title=The Turbulent History of UC Merced. The University of California's proposed tenth campus encounters thorny environmental problems
journal=National CrossTalk
publisher=National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education
date=Winter, 2001
] The new design will impact a total of 81 acres of native wetlands in the region compared to the convert|121|acre|km2 forecast in the 2000 footprint. [cite news | title= UC Merced changes expansion plans to protect sensitive wetlands | url=| publisher= Mercury News | date=October 10, 2007 | accessdate= 2007-10-15]


UC Merced has yet to field any official varsity athletic teams. However, it does have intramural and club sports (baseball, lacrosse, softball, soccer, ultimate frisbee and volleyball).

On November 13, 2006, the University officially opened its gymnasium. The Joseph Edward Gallo Recreation and Wellness Center, named after the rancher and dairy farmer who donated money for the facility's construction, features a "NCAA-sized basketball court, workout facilities, room for performances, wellness and fitness education and the Rajender Reddy Student Health Center". []

At the opening of the facility, UC Merced officials stated their intent to have competitive sports teams, starting with baseball, men's soccer and aquatics, and women's soccer and volleyball. The campus's goal is to compete at the NCAA Division II level.

Greek Life

Set to begin in Fall 2008 University of California Merced estimates having ten new Greek organizations added to its campus life.

tudent life

About 800 students currently live on campus in the Valley Terraces housing area, 4.2 miles (6.8 km) away from the city of Merced. The campus dining area offers a variety of ethnic foods including Asian, Mexican, and Italian. The on-campus housing system has a two kitchens to be used if reserved and allows the use and storage of a refrigerator and a microwave oven. The most recent addition to Residence Housing was Tuolomne Hall, one of two parts to the Sierra Terraces, which opened for the freshmen residents in Fall of 2007. Mariposa Hall of the Sierra Terraces will be opened in Spring 2008. The dining commons are closed during Thanksgiving weekend, Spring Break, Veterans' Day, Presidents Day, and Cesar Chavez day.Much of Student life in the Residence Halls is run by the Residence Assistants (R.A.s) through various programs and activities.

The campus diversity in 2007-2008 was:
* 32% Asian American
* 28% Latino
* 25% Caucasian
* 6% African American
* 1% Native AmericanThe remaining students were nonresident aliens or declined to specify their ethnicity. [cite web
title=UC Merced - Fast Facts

The campus hasn't been as established as the other UC schools, and the city is not yet active as a college town yet many students find a short trip to the metropolitan city of Fresno worthwhile for increased entertainment options (or a trip to the San Francisco Bay Area), as choices are limited in the immediate Merced area. The university attempts to engage students in on-campus activities like dances and movie nights. Many students go to Lake Yosemite which is near the main campus. Students can walk, jog, picnic, barbecue, and swim at the lake. Merced has several artistic venues which host plays, concerts, and art shows. They include The Mainzer Theater, The Partisan, Merced Multicultural Arts Center, and Playhouse Merced. Castle Air Museum is within close driving distance from Merced. Merced is known as the "Gateway to Yosemite" and it is common for students to take day trips to Yosemite where they can hike, snowboard, rock climb, and camp overnight.

Student publications include "The Prodigy" newspaper, "The Fury Shrimp Times" and literary journals, "The Kumquat" and "Imagination Dead Imagine".

tudent government

The student governments at UC Merced comprise the Graduate Student Association (GSA) and the undergraduate body called the Associated Students of UC Merced (ASUCM).

The founding graduate students, who joined the Graduate School of UC Merced in early 2004, initiated the GSA in that year, before the university officially opened its doors to undergraduate students in the fall of 2005. The constitution and by-laws were prepared by them. They were then approved by all the graduate students.

The undergraduate students of UC Merced have recently inititated and established their first student government. The Committee on Constitution and By-Laws was established in fall 2005 and was responsible for writing the constitution for the Associated Students of UC Merced (ASUCM).

Elections for the ratification of the constitution were held in April, 2006. The constitution was approved by a majority of the student body, officially establishing ASUCM, which serves as the official representative and voice of students at UC Merced.


There are approximately 74 student run clubs, including:

*American Medical Student Association
*Circle K International
*Dance Coalition
*Muslim Student Association
*HHM (Hip Hop Movement)
*Rock Climbing
*Intervarsity Chrsitian Fellowship (


* [ Dormitory floorplans]
* [ Diversity of founding class]

External links

* [ Official website]

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