Chancellor Holds First Town Hall Meeting of the School Year

Nationwide honors and accolades for UCR as compelling new metrics are announced

Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox addresses a capacity crowd of UCR community members on November 28, 2017, the year’s first Town Hall. john replogle

Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox held the first town hall meeting of the academic year on Nov. 28 at the HUB. Just under 200 members of the UCR community attended to hear an update on campus progress on a variety of fronts. The town hall can be viewed here in its entirety.

Wilcox began by providing a few examples of UCR’s growing prestige as a university based on a number of recent accolades. The honors include:

  • UCR was ranked No. 4 in the U.S. and 19 in the world in the Times Higher Education “Best Golden Age Universities,” which considers schools established between 1945 and 1966.
  • In the annual Washington Monthly rankings, UCR was listed No. 13 among national public universities.
  • Forbes named UCR as one of the nation’s “Best Colleges for Your Money.”
  • The Education Trust, a national non-profit that advocates for student success, listed UCR as one of 18 schools nationwide they deem “Top-Performing Institutions for Black Students.”

Wilcox continued by updating attendees on a number of key campus metrics:

  • UCR has continued to recruit racially and economically diverse cohorts of students who also demonstrated improved academic credentials. Between 2007 and 2017, the high school grade point average of the incoming freshmen has increased from 3.41 to 3.74. During that same time, the percentages of underrepresented minority students and those eligible for Pell Grants has remained above 40 percent. Wilcox posited that UCR is one of the few institutions in the country that can make such a claim.
  • The size of the UCR faculty has grown to 867, up from 671 in 2013. In addition, UCR has been successful in dramatically improving the racial and gender diversity of the incoming faculty cohorts.
  • After years of static growth, the number of full-time staff has increased by 300 over the last three years.
  • Fiscal year 2016-17 was the best yet in terms of philanthropic giving. Over the last year, UCR received just under $32 million in gifts. UCR has raised almost $188 million towards the $300 million Living the Promise Campaign goal.

Wilcox announced that American Campus Communities was chosen to be UCR’s development partner for the campus’s north district housing and mixed-use project. American Campus Communities was one of three developers who presented conceptual designs at a campus-wide event in October. The North District Project stands to be UCR’s largest ever capital project and aims to add 4,000 to 6,000 beds for undergraduate and graduate students.

Wilcox used the remainder of his comments to provide updates on the Campus Conversations. During last winter and spring quarters, Wilcox hosted a series of six conversations with the campus community covering topics ranging from campus communication to infrastructure and capital projects. Based on the feedback and ideas generated at the conversations, a number of projects and initiatives were instituted. Among the updates provided by Wilcox included:

  • Maintenance Services has addressed a backlog of over 1,200 work orders.
  • The R’Pantry has moved into new expanded space.
  • Mental health services for graduate and international students have been provided.
  • UCR has a new employee onboarding process, which includes a revised background check process.
  • A new Daily Digest premiered, with an improved design and easier access for campus community to post items.

Wilcox concluded the town hall by taking a number of questions from attendees.

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