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UCLA Magazine Fall 2002
The Little Marias
Coming Home
The Scholar and The Poet
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Man on The Street
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Fall 2002
Man on the Street
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Q: But outreach is not new to the university.
A:
I keep hearing the word outreach, but I don’t believe it’s an accurate description of what we are doing. We have to do more than reach out; our relationship with the community is much more symbiotic and interactive. I prefer terms like partnership and engagement. We are working at the intersection of where the campus and community touch each other. We’ve been engaged around the greater L.A. area in health care, the arts, education, public policy, engineering. The challenge now is to harness that dynamic, to give it meaning and substance, to find ways to nurture and extend existing relationships and to identify and develop new ones.

Q: What are some of the best examples of this kind of synergy?
A:
The Hope Street Family Center in downtown Los Angeles is a wonderful model that focuses on helping to establish and promote connections between quality early development and a child’s ability to reach his or her potential in school and life. It is a place for families to obtain critical support services — early-childhood education, parenting skills, literacy education, enrichment programs for their children, community building and job training. We have UCLA staff and students there. We have faculty there doing research.

There are many other places where this synergy exists. For example, UCLA urologist Mark Litwin M.P.H. ’93 is running a three-year program, funded with $50 million from the state, to provide free high-quality prostate-cancer treatment to more than 200 under- and uninsured men living below the federal poverty line throughout California. They receive care in their own communities from specialists contracted by UCLA; nurse case managers who act as patient advocates counsel them. Programs like these build real relationships with communities and make a profound difference in people’s lives.

Q: Where will you seek community partners?
A:
Clearly, we can’t be all things to all people. The chancellor has identified three broad areas where we will focus our efforts: with children, youth and families; in health and medicine; and the arts. These are all areas where the campus already has specific strengths.

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