The University of California San Diego welcomed its most diverse incoming class of freshmen and transfer students on Sept. 22 with additional resources that support diversity, inclusivity and student success. The new initiatives include identity-themed housing for LGBTQ, black and Latino students and a mentoring program for students who come from under-resourced high schools and/or are the first in their family to attend college, among other programs.
“We are pleased to welcome these dynamic, diverse and talented students to our Triton family,” said UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla. “We are committed to providing all of our students with the best possible college experience and opportunities, and preparing them to become our next-generation leaders.”
Of the 5,750 incoming freshmen, 24 percent come from historically underrepresented groups including black, Native American and Mexican American/Latino students. Underrepresented students make up about 20 percent of the campus’s 2,950 incoming transfer students. In addition, approximately 29 percent of new freshmen and 38 percent of incoming transfers are the first in their family to attend college.
The freshmen for fall 2016 have an overall grade-point average of 4.05 and average SAT Reasoning scores of 610, 661 and 621 for SAT reading, math and writing respectively. The campus’s new transfer students bring with them a 3.51 grade-point average. These students were joined by more than 25,000 continuing students.
Among UC San Diego’s first-generation freshmen is Charles Adams of Porterville, Calif., who is on track to become both a nano engineering and chemical engineering major. “Being a first-generation student can be scary because you need to be able to talk to people about the process of going to college; however, my parents have been my biggest inspiration,” Adams said. “They have always said that I can do whatever I want, and they will be proud, which drove me to pursue what I love, which is science and engineering.”
Adams attended UC San Diego’s Summer Bridge, a five-week program for first-generation students where they live on campus, earn college credit, and develop a higher level of academic skills and abilities, all at no monetary cost. “After Summer Bridge, I fell in love with the campus and truly felt at home,” the Warren College student said. “I am so excited to attend UC San Diego because the science and engineering programs are the best.”
Like Adams, the vast majority of UC San Diego new students are from California with most hailing from Southern California (49 percent of freshmen and 55 percent of transfers).
New freshmen and transfer students to UC San Diego have access to San Diego’s unique college system, which merges the campus’s world-class education with a sense of community amongst students.
An estimated 5,357 freshmen will be living throughout campus in various residence halls; approximately 1,996 transfer students will be living in the Village at Torrey Pines, a community at the northwest part of campus specifically for transfer students. Overall, about 13,113 new and continuing students will be on-campus residents, making up nearly 40 percent of the total campus enrollment.
New projects, facilities and initiatives underway on campus for the 2016-17 academic year include:
- Identity-Themed Housing
UC San Diego has launched identity-themed housing on campus to foster a diverse and inclusive campus community. The housing communities are open to students from all six colleges.
New LGBTQIA apartments at Muir College are designed to create a housing community for sexual and gender diversity that supports personal wellbeing and development through educational initiatives, social events and personal support. In addition, Sixth College is home to the African Black Diaspora Living Learning Community. The mission of the housing community is to establish an environment of personal and academic excellence through the affirmation and celebration of blackness in its various expressions. And at Eleanor Roosevelt College, there is the Raza Interest Housing which was unveiled last year. Residents in this community are committed to appreciate and understanding the Chicana/o and Latina/o experience in the United States and the histories and cultures of Latin America.
- Student Success Coaching Initiative
UC San Diego’s Student Retention and Success unit within the Office of the Vice Chancellor Student Affairs is launching a new Student Success Coaching program to support the incoming freshmen who are first generation, come from under-resourced high schools, or are recipients of selected institutional or community-based scholarships. A team of student success coaches will work in collaboration with students to provide guidance, referrals, and learning strategies that further develop the personal, academic and professional skills needed to make progress toward their degree and transition into life after graduation. These knowledgeable coaches will act as supportive guides who can assist participants in their transition as a student at UC San Diego, while facilitating students’ knowledge of and participation in educational opportunities that exist across the campus. Click here for more information.
- Ocean View Dining to feature Joint Kosher and Halal Kitchen
Ocean View Dining is re-opening its doors this fall after going through comprehensive renovations. In addition to a diverse menu, the revamped dining operation will feature prepared kosher and halal dishes and will be the first dining operation on the campus to operate 24 hours a day. The kitchen is the product of a collaborative effort between, the Muslim Student Association, the Union of Jewish Students and Housing, Dining, Hospitality as well as Thurgood Marshall College.
- New Location and Programs for CARE at the Sexual Assault Resource Center
CARE at the Sexual Assault Resource Center is moving to an expanded and renovated location, still on the fifth floor of the Student Services Center. The additional space demonstrates the university’s commitment to enhancing trauma-informed services at UC San Diego. This year, students can also look forward to more peer-to-peer education. As part of orientation, all new students were introduced to the resources CARE offers via the campus’s mandatory online training program. Now, all new incoming students receive in-person presentations on sexual consent and its definition, healthy relationships, cyber safety and more. Later this year, the “Colors of CARE,” a campuswide campaign for preventing sexual violence and supporting survivors, will be rolled out. In addition, a new in-person staff education course has been developed for university staff that may need to support students who are victims or survivors of sexual assault, relationship violence, or stalking. For information on UC San Diego’s CARE at the Sexual Assault Resource Center, click here.
- New Phone App for Students
The now@ucsandiego smart phone app is designed to be a best-of-the-breed mobile informational application that gives students access to location-based shuttle information, timely news and events, surf as well as weather information and more. By using the time and location capabilities of mobile devices, the app pushes contextually relevant information to the user based on where they are located. It is available now on iOS devices and will soon be available on Android. The app is open sourced to anyone who has thoughts or ideas about developing new features for it. Visit the iTunes store to download the app for iPhones.