Four people have been selected to receive the university's most prestigious honor, the UCI Medal, which annually confers lifelong recognition on those who have made exceptional contributions to the university's mission of teaching, research and public service. The four honorees are former associate chancellor Barbara Davidson, a member of the inaugural class in 1965 who raised the university's flag on opening day; former vice chancellor for student affairs Manuel Gómez; UC Irvine Foundation trustee Michael Mussallem; and Distinguished Professor of chemistry Larry Overman. Recipients will be feted at "A Celebration of Stars," the campus's largest fundraiser, to be held at the Bren Events Center 5-10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29.
A stunning and historic clubhouse at the doorstep of California's largest state park will be turned into a long-sought UCI field research center for biologists, astronomers, anthropologists and others, thanks to a generous gift from Audrey Steele Burnand, who has deep ties to the property and the small town in which it's located. The Desert Club, a sleek, airy structure built into a broad Sonoran slope bordering Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, is expected to become part of the University of California's 135,000-acre Natural Reserve System. It will provide much-needed shelter and laboratory space in a remote area where temperatures can top 100 degrees.
Facilities Management was awarded the 2011 Energy Efficiency Excellence Award from Southern California Gas Company in the Large Commercial category. The award recognizes the retrofit of Rowland Hall's air circulation system, which saves UCI an estimated $63,700 per year in natural gas costs. The project, which reduced campus CO2 emissions by 1,660 metric tons, is an important contribution to the campus goal of reducing green house gas emissions to year 2000 levels by 2014.