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Chancellor Leland: Thank You for a Great Homecoming Weekend!

October 22, 2018

Dear Campus Community,

This past weekend’s homecoming festivities provided a perfect mix of Bobcats past, present and future.

crowd of students greeting each otherMany of our alumni returned to campus to find their campus transformed, with a new dining facility and residential housing, and much more construction underway. Students who have showcased exemplary work in the classroom were honored as Chancellor’s Scholars in front of their friends and families. Prospective Bobcats and their families explored UC Merced for the first time, getting a glimpse of not just our growing campus, but also our maturing academic offerings. The excellence of our faculty and dedication of our staff were on full display.

Homecoming provided several opportunities to open the doors to a university that has changed so much in the past year. Friday’s downtown block party highlighted the development of the Downtown Campus Center as a hub for the university’s continued connection to the community of Merced. A section of West 18th Street was filled with food booths, music and fun for the whole family. And RadioBio — led by an amazing group of UC Merced graduate students — held an enlightening “Valley Bio” event that shed light on our connections to the natural world in our region.

Saturday’s events included campus tours, a Community Showcase, an alumni town hall, and men’s and women’s soccer matches on the new Bobcat Field, providing a glimpse of the collaborative spirit that makes UC Merced strong.

Speaking of collaboration, I’d like to recognize the dedication and teamwork that helped make this weekend possible — staff in External Relations, the Office of Student Life, Admissions and Athletics, along with several academic schools and departments, Dining Services, Transportation and Parking Services, Facilities, Public Safety and many others, all worked tirelessly to create a fantastic series of events. Student, staff and faculty volunteers from across campus provided vital help.Crowd of people smiling at the camera

I’d also like to recognize the hundreds of students who were honored as Chancellor’s Scholars during a lovely event downtown, and the Undergraduate Division and Office of Student Life for their hard work behind the scenes. Also worthy of praise are the Center for Educational Partnerships for bringing over 300 high school students to our beautiful campus, and our men’s and women’s soccer teams for their Homecoming victories!

To those who came from near and far to be a part of the festivities, thank you for your continued support. We continue to thrive as a university, and we could not have done it without the spirit of teamwork and innovation you have incorporated into your time as a UC Merced Bobcat.

This is one of the things I love most about UC Merced: As we continue to grow, we also continue to strengthen our bond with our community; UC Merced and the city of Merced go hand-in-hand. Thank you to everyone who played a role in making our Homecoming a success. I look forward to more events like this throughout the year!


Dorothy Leland