The inaugural Chancellor’s Award for Community-Engaged Research, which is supported by the Chancellor’s office and the UCLA Center for Community Learning, has allocated six $10,000 research grants to develop new undergraduate research courses.In each course, students will carry out research activities in partnership with local community organizations. The course will advance their professor’s research goals and also benefit the communities that the partners serve.The inaugural 2019-2020 cohort and the courses they will develop are:
- Maylei Blackwell, associate professor of Chicana and Chicano studies. In her course, Blackwell plans to use community archives and oral histories to map the Latin American indigenous diaspora in Los Angeles.
- Arleen Brown, professor of medicine. In Brown’s course, students will work with community organizations and academic faculty to reduce chronic disease disparities in Los Angeles County through community-engaged collaborative projects.
- Jenny Jay, professor of civil and environmental engineering. Jay’s course will center around environmental research that engages community members.
- Marissa Lopez, associate professor of English and Chicana and Chicano studies. In Lopez’s course, students will partner with the Los Angeles Public Library to build a geolocation smartphone app that displays historical images of Mexican Los Angeles.
- Rashmita Mistry, professor of education, and Karen Quartz, director, UCLA Center for Community Schooling. Their course will have students delve into educational research methodological approaches using an equity and social justice lens.
- Meredith Phillips, associate professor, public policy and sociology. Phillips’ course will have students use student and staff survey data to improve K-12 education.
The cohort will spend the next academic year developing their courses and will begin offering them to undergraduates in 2020-21 or 2021-22.
“Community-engaged research creates outstanding learning opportunities for undergraduate students, advances the research of our faculty, and benefits our community,” Chancellor Gene Block said. “The Community-Engaged Research Scholars will deepen UCLA’s commitment to public service by creating more opportunities for students and faculty to pursue research that has a positive impact on our world.”