Interim Chancellor Nathan Brostrom joined colleagues and partners from the Central Valley to present Governor Gavin Newsom with a draft of the Fresno DRIVE plan.
UC Merced has been a partner in the creation of DRIVE (Developing the Region’s Inclusive and Vibrant Economy), a regionally focused, inclusive, and holistic approach to economic development planning to generate increased investment in the Greater Fresno region from the public and private sectors.
Emphasizing neighborhood development, human capital, and economic development, and led by the Central Valley Community Foundation, Fresno DRIVE is a pilot effort inspired by the Governor’s Office on Business and Economic Development’s Regions Rise initiative.
UC Merced factors into several initiatives in DRIVE’s draft plan, including a partnership with Fresno State and other higher education institutions around the creation of an ag-tech and food innovation hub, and with UCSF Fresno in the expansion of medical education through the growth of a branch campus.
The plan is expected to be discussed extensively at the upcoming California Economic Summit taking place in Fresno on Nov. 7 and 8.
At the Capitol meeting on Oct. 31, DRIVE partners received initial feedback from the governor before getting back to work to further refine the strategy, in anticipation of seeking state support in the coming year.