UCI News

The Atlantic, May 20, 2022
Ngũgĩ in America
Ngũgĩ [wa Thiong’o, Distinguished Professor of comparative literature], moved two decades ago, joining the faculty at UC Irvine. It’s where he’s spent the last stage of a long literary career as one of Africa’s most prominent writers, a position that was confirmed again this year when he was awarded the PEN/Nabokov Award for Achievement in International Literature. His body of work explores the lasting effects of colonialism on all aspects of social and personal life, and the acts of resistance that maintain individuality and identity. … So much of his life has been defined by resisting the idea of sameness and, more than any other quality that unites his work, it’s this insistence on the distinctiveness of each human existence that matters most to him.

The Washington Post, May 20, 2022
The climate scientists are not alright
“There’s a broader recognition among professional scientists that the data won’t carry the day,” said David S. Meyer, a sociology professor at University of California at Irvine. “Deep down most scientists operate with this religious belief that getting the truth out is what matters. It’s harder and harder to hold onto that belief. What do you do when you realize that you need to package the truth with something else in order to save the world?” [Subscription required, campus-wide access provided by UCI Libraries. Sign-up here: https://guides.lib.uci.edu/news/post]

LAist, May 19, 2022
University of California Leaders Want To Make ‘Hidden Curriculum’ Less Hidden
Frances Contreras, dean of the School of Education at UC Irvine, said programs designed to support students as they transition to college, like summer bridge programs, break ties with students too early. “We need to think about how to extend first-year experiences throughout the tenure of an undergraduate’s trajectory,” she said. Contreras also noted the need for more faculty mentors, which she said were critical to her own success as a low-income, first-generation college student. “They helped me understand the system and how to navigate it. And they, in part, are the reason why I’m here today,” she said.

Self, May 19, 2022
Microplastics Have Been Found in Human Blood and Lungs—Should We Be Worried?
“This is the first study to identify plastics that we know are in containers, plastic bottles, clothing, and other products that we use, inside of people,” Andrea De Vizcaya-Ruiz, PhD, an associate professor in the department of environmental and occupational health at the University of California, Irvine, tells SELF. The two most common types of plastic found in the study were polyethylene terephthalate (PET), which is used to make plastic water bottles and clothing fibers, and polystyrene, which is found in food packaging, disposable utensils, and straws.

San Francisco Chronicle, May 20, 2022 (Subscription)
Hundreds of Sonoma farmworkers may have been exposed to toxic smoke during 2020 wildfires
According to the report by researchers at UC Irvine, at least 290 farmworkers were working within the perimeters of the LNU Lightning Complex Fire and Glass wildfires, while at least another 370 were working within a mile of the perimeters. The UC Irvine report came about when North Bay Jobs for Justice and the Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project, or MICOP, asked Michael Méndez, assistant professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy, to conduct a wildfire research project in Sonoma County. Méndez had conducted a similar case study in 2019 following the 2017 Thomas Fire in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties. [Subscription required, you can request an electronic copy of the article by sending an email to communications@uci.edu.]

Previously “In the News”