ESPN: Gabriel Mendoza Coaches More than Soccer, He Coaches Life

Gabriel Mendoza

Gabriel Mendoza

Gabriel Mendoza, assistant coordinator of Academic Intervention Programs at the Academic Resource Center, and a UCR alumnus, was featured in a recent ESPN video, highlighting the impact his volunteer work as a youth club soccer coach had on a student.

The feature was specifically on Ashley Dean, a UC Santa Barbara student. Dean explained that Mendoza played a key role in her motivation to persevere. “He became someone that I really looked up to and somebody that was always there, and that wasn’t absent from my life,” Dean, a Yucaipa student, said of Mendoza in the video.

The absence of both her parents for most of her childhood, Dean admits, only made her stronger. Soccer was an escape and Mendoza was always there, cheering her on. Mendoza met her when she was a 10-year-old girl and coached her until she went off to college. The two things he always expected from Dean: all her effort on the field, and good grades.

The ESPN video, by Michael Zubach, shows Dean embracing Mendoza as he and his wife, Patricia, walked her onto the UCSB soccer field on the last home game — an honor typically reserved for family. In the video, Mendoza remembers Dean’s struggles while playing club soccer. “At half-time she had nobody to go to and get a bottle of water [from]. Everybody else had mom and dad there or at least one parent. I couldn’t help but to help her, because I knew how much soccer meant to her.”

At UCR Mendoza also served as UCR’s men’s soccer team volunteer assistant coach. For a time he also led physical education courses at UCR, in which he incorporated soccer skills.

Out in the community he leads an annual El Protector soccer clinic, in which he partners with the Riverside Police Department, UC Police, Highway Patrol, and gathers dozens of UCR student volunteers who serve as the day’s soccer coaches. The annual soccer clinic celebrated 21 years of service this past summer.

DiPatrizio to Lead Studies with the Sugar Stress Environment and Weight Center

Nicholas DiPatrizio, Ph.D., an assistant professor of biomedical sciences in the School of Medicine, has been selected as principal investigator to represent the Riverside campus in the University of California-wide Sugar Stress Environment and Weight Center (SSEW), to study the impact of chronic consumption of western diet on gut microbiota and interactions with gut-brain signaling that controls appetite and food reward.

Nicholas DiPatrizio

Nicholas DiPatrizio

“This work aims to identify key molecular signaling systems in the body that become hijacked by our western diet and drives us to overindulge in these foods.  It will also aid in the design and development of novel therapeutic strategies to combat obesity and other metabolic disorders,” said DiPatrizio, who will work with colleagues at University of California San Francisco School of Medicine on the project.

SSEW is a collaborative cross-campus center that consists of a diverse group of UC scientists and policy makers who aim to reduce the prevalence and adverse consequences of obesity and related metabolic diseases and disorders.

Researchers Win Best Paper Award at IEEE Network Protocols Conference

A team of researchers from UCR and Cisco won the best paper award at the 24th IEEE International Conference on Network Protocols (ICNP), which was held November 8-11 in Singapore.

The paper describes the development of a network protocol that identifies the overlap between related videos and merges them together to reduce their bandwidth. Titled: “CTCV: Coordinated Transport of Correlated Video in Smart Camera Networks,” the paper was authored by Vinay Kolar and Vikram Munishwar from Cisco, Nael Abu Ghazaleh, professor of computer science and engineering at UCR, and Israat Tanzeena Haque, a postdoctoral researcher at UCR.

Brandon Brown Named Board Member of Organization that Helps LGBT Community

Brandon Brown, an assistant professor in the Center for Healthy Communities at the UCR School of Medicine, has been named a board member of TruEvolution, a Riverside-based organization dedicated to fighting for LGBT justice and advocating for the prevention and elimination of HIV/AIDS in America.

Founded in 2008 as a response to the growing disparities faced by the LGBT community in the Inland Empire, TruEvolution was founded by UCR Alumnus Gabriel Maldonado, along with a group of youth activists determined to use education and leadership as vehicles for empowering marginalized and underserved youth in Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

Brandon Brown

Brandon Brown

Working with high-risk and underserved youth populations, the organization uses a holistic and humanizing approach to address factors that disproportionately impact them, such as homelessness, social displacement, and homophobia.

“I am honored to be named a board member,” Brown said.  “TruEvolution is leading the way to promote health equity, racial justice, gender and sexual equality for all underserved people in our region.  I am pleased to participate in this process with the board and members of the TruEvolution team.”

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