News In Brief

UCI Creative Writing Alumna Wins Prestigious Award

Vicki Forman, a 1994 graduate of UCI’s M.F.A. program in writing, won the prestigious 2010 PEN USA Literacy award for creative nonfiction for her memoir “This Lovely Life.”

Her work follows her experience giving birth to twins three months prematurely, the ensuing grief and her tremendous struggle as the mother of a pair of special-needs children.

“This Lovely Life” has received enthusiastic reviews from Publishers Weekly and The San Francisco Chronicle. Publishers Weekly stated, “Forman portrays herself (sometimes shockingly) as deeply flawed and forgivingly human.”

PEN awards will be presented at the Literary Awards Festival in Los Angeles, and will honor winners in 10 categories including fiction, drama, journalism, translation and screenplay. Winners receive a $1,000 cash prize.

Former PEN award winners include Ray Bradbury, Robert Fagles, Tony Kushner, Jonathan Safron Foer and Cormac McCarthy.

Forman received her B.A. from Yale University before attending UCI and later wrote a column titled “Special Needs Mama.” She also co-edited “Gravity Pulls You In,” an anthology about parenting autistic children that was a finalist in the International Book Awards in fiction. Last spring, she made an appearance at UCI speaking on a memoir panel at Literary Orange.

Attempt at World’s Largest Dodgeball at UCI

On Wednesday from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., ASUCI is hosting UCI’s first Blue and Gold Spirit Rally at Bren Events Center, which will include a bid for the world’s largest dodge ball game.

The current title-holder is George Mason University with 1,257 participants and 100 balls on September 3rd.

An adjudicator from the Guinness Book of World Records will be present to ensure compliance and confirm number of participants. All participants included in the count must be present at the start of the game at 12:00 p.m.

Welcome Week at UCI

Tuesday: Work-study and Career Job Fair will be held on September 21 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. between the Cross-Cultural Center and the Career Center. Work study and non-work study options are available, with positions at over 30 departments on campus. Career Center tours are ongoing throughout welcome week.

Wednesday: Toy Story 3 will show on the Aldrich park commencement lawn at 7 p.m, sponsored by ASUCI. Admission is free, along with free kettle corn.

UCI Libraries will hold a used book sale in the Science Library Courtyard on Wednesday September 22. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m, the event is open exclusively to UCI students, staff and faculty, and then will be opened to the public from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Thursday: The first annual All-UCI Dance Team Battle will take place from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. in the Student Center Pacific Ballroom C. Participating teams include: BBoys Anonymous, MCIA, CADC, Floorteenth and Common Ground. The event is hosted by BBoys Anonymous and is free to all students.

Friday: Women’s Soccer will play Oregon State at Anteater Stadium at 6 p.m.

Men’s Water Polo game against Long Beach State begins at 7 p.m. at the Anteater Pool.

Women’s Volleyball faces Cal Poly (SLO) at Bren Events Center from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. All students get in free with validUCI ID.

Professor Alan Barbour is New Academic Senate Chair

Dr. Alan Barbour, professor of medicine and microbiology & molecular genetics, will begin his one-year term as Chair of UCI’s Academic Senate this month.

Professor Barbour will be UCI faculty’s lead voice on UC governance. However, he begins his term confronted by many problems, the most serious of which are the proposed changes to faculty retirement benefits.

The situation has compounded over two decades because faculty and other UC employees had not been contributing to the pension fund. In the face of California’s massive debt and rising costs, faculty could be asked to contribute greater percentages of their salaries to the retirement fund.

Professor Barbour is concerned that lower faculty income levels will drive away new teaching and research talent from UCI, adding to the mountain of existing problems from the budget cuts such as larger class sizes.

UCI Seismologist Upends Earthquake Theory

UCI Seismologist Lisa Grant Ludwig, professor of public health, has found evidence that earthquakes occur along the San Andreas Fault far more often than previously thought.

Her findings were published in the Sept. 1 issue of “Geology.” They indicate that major earthquakes occur ever 45 to 144 years rather than every 250 to 400 years as was previously thought. The last major earthquake along the San Andreas Fault was in 1857 — more than 150 years ago.

Professor Ludwig began her investigation of the San Andreas when she was a graduate student in the 1980s. She noticed clues of a different, more compact, earthquake timeline in the San Andreas’ visible section, 120 miles north of Los Angeles. She collected carbon samples but, because carbon dating technology was still unreliable at the time, she saved the carbon in her garage, hoping that someday the equipment would improve.

In the past decade, as carbon dating technology caught up to her needs, Professor Ludwig gathered more samples, excavating for samples of charcoal in the fault.

Professor Ludwig worked on the study with her long-time colleague Sinan Akciz and scientists from Arizona State University.

ASUCI Merger For New Buses, Routes and Schedules

The UCI shuttles are undergoing major changes for the 2010-11 year.

In addition to a merger between ASUCI and Parking and Transportation Services, the routes and buses themselves are also shape-shifting.

The shuttle buses are no longer solely under ASUCI. Rather, Transportation and Parking Services have come together with the Associated Students to create an umbrella of transportation superpower called the Anteater Express.

Old buses are being rotated out for what were previously OCTA buses. Now, they have been revamped, repainted and unveiled as the new method of transportation for students. No more bumpy rides in school buses.

Furthermore, new routes have been introduced amongst the army of changes. Not only will the buses take the usual routes of Vista Del Campo, VDC Norte, Arroyo Vista, Parkwest apartments and Newport, an added Spectrum/Irvine train station bus will run on Saturdays. The two new housing communities, Camino del Sol and Puerta del Sol, will also have shuttle routes.