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2020-2021 Grant recipients

The following projects will take place during the 2020-2021 academic year.

The Borderlands Experience ($5,000)

Submitted by staff in the Office of Social Justice Initiatives & Identity Programs Community Engagement Center (Office of Leadership, Service, and Career)

Inspired by the transformative, critical scholarship of Gloria Anzaldua in Borderlands/La Frontera (1987), we entitle this project "the Borderlands Experience." The Borderlands Experience will serve as an extension to the "Borderlands Book Club," a new initiative coming out of the Office of Social Justice Initiatives & Identity Programs. The project has four parts: 1) Students will be invited to join the Borderlands Book Club, in the Fall 2020 semester. The first 25 students to sign up and attend the first welcome session will receive a free copy of the book. 2) We will offer students the opportunity to receive an intellectual co-curricular experience badge (pending approval) for full participation in the book club and enrollment in the Borderlands Experience extension of the book club. 3) During the Spring 2021 semester, students who have signed up for the Borderlands Experience will meet regularly to discuss and elect the experiences that best fit their needs to explore intersectional identity, sense of belonging, and living in the margins, particularly as it relates to people of color in California. (This will be an opt-in extension of the book club program.) 4) We will create an alternative spring break program (paid for with the grant) for students that actively integrates travel, social justice education, and service-learning to equip and prepare students to lead a civicallyengaged lifestyle and to build critical multicultural relationships throughout and beyond their career at UC Merced.

Scholars with Dependents ($5,000)

Submitted by Tashelle Wright & Hope Reuschel, Graduate students

The application proposes the creation of a “Students with Dependents Network” at UC Merced. There is not a network like this at UC Merced, and both parenting students and students with other dependents would benefit from a collaborative and inclusive group and space to share concerns and share resources. The Scholars with Dependents Network will conduct outreach to undergraduate students and graduate students at the UC through word-of-mouth, tabling events, and through a Qualtrics survey disseminated campus-wide. We will also create a social media group on Facebook, where students with dependents can find and share relevant resources and information. Members of this group will serve as an advisory board on campus.

No Food Left Behind ($5,000)

Submitted by staff in the Office of Sustainability

No Food Left Behind is a new program to combat food waste and food insecurity at UC Merced that began in August 2019 and has quickly become successful. This text message service connects students, staff and faculty to events that may have leftover food, only if they purchase through on-campus Catering. The application proposes partnering with America to Go through Bobcat Buy to allow event planners who want to order food from external vendors to participate. This new component to the program will mean we can get more food from events onto people’s plates instead of going to waste.