The 2012 WESTOP Student Leadership Conference, sponsored by the Southern California chapter of the Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel, will bring together more than 400 students concerned about their communities. Each student team completes a pre-conference project on an issue about which members feel passionate. Conference workshops and activities then build on that experience.

Many participants will be working on issues of physical, mental and community health, including body image, bullying, drug and alcohol abuse, nutrition, obesity, homelessness and gang violence. Other teams will focus on access to education and technology.

“The conference targets high school students from various federal programs, such as TRIO and GEAR UP, designed to prepare underrepresented students for higher education,” says Tony Hwang, director in UCI Center for Educational Partnerships’ Upward Bound program, one of the event sponsors. “We have filled the conference to capacity. These are really inspired, energetic young people committed to a better future for their communities.”


High school and community college students from Thousand Oaks to San Diego will tackle issues such as bullying, body image, homelessness and gang violence at a leadership conference that helps develop young civic problem solvers. U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez of California will present scholarships.

UCI Physical Sciences Lecture Hall (bldg. 411, grid G7 on campus map)

08:00 a.m.