Regents Deliberate Improving Current Educational Policy During Opening Day

The UC Board of Regents convened at UC Riverside yesterday for its two-day meeting tackling strategies to compensate for the system’s budget shortfalls.

Chair of the Board Sherry Lansing started the assembly with an announcement that the board’s May 16 and 17 meeting is scheduled to move from UC San Francisco to Sacramento where a rally encouraging higher state funding for higher education will occur at the State Capitol. Today the board will shift from yesterday’s focus on educational policy and discuss the impact Gov. Jerry Brown’s Jan. 5 budget will have on the system’s operations.

UC Office of the President Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs Larry Pitts, who presented a report on diversity within the university system during yesterday’s meeting, said the results depicted limited advancements toward its outlined goals.

“I share your disappointment,” Pitts said. “Glaciers actually move faster than progress in this department.”

However, Pitts said the analysis noted an increase in gender diversity among faculty over the past five years as well as significant gains in undergraduate Hispanic enrollment. UC Riverside and UC Merced are now identified as Hispanic serving institutions.

According to UCSB Chancellor Henry T. Yang, the campus is 3 percentage points away from qualifying due largely to the administration’s advocacy efforts at local schools.

“I’m afraid when it comes to diversity sometimes a little top down effort is what counts,” Yang said. “Every day you have to mow the lawn — if you don’t, the lawn will turn into weeds — so we mow the lawn every day.”

Additionally, UC officials said UCOP will announce a plan next Tuesday for a summer business program geared toward black students.

UC Student Association President Claudia Magana spoke to the board about its lack of student representation and said an amendment to the board’s bylaws is necessary in the current budget climate.