Wendy Eads remembered that some years ago UCR produced a video to introduce new students to the school and to the community they were moving into. There were comments from lots of neighbors including children and teens. They talked about what they loved about living in the University Neighborhood, and some of the things they didn’t appreciate about living in the neighborhood next to UCR.
It made a positive impact as incidents of unruly behavior abated or so it seemed. That video tool disappeared for reasons unknown. I’m sure Jeff Kraus could find out or get a copy to review.
The reliance on social meida by the college population is pervasive. In the spirit of reinventing that video tool for today’s social media landscape, why don’t we do a revised edition? It could be re-deployed into the orientation process. It’s an easy way to help UCR students connect with the neighborhood and it reaffirms what University Neighbors love about living here.
Connecting students with the communities where they live, or teaching them the ways to love a place should be part of the college experience. It makes for good neighbors, good taxpayers and good citizens. Many students and neighbors share that in common.
We need only witness the countless treks up to the “C” in the Box Springs Mountains or the numbers of students, faculty staff or neighbors buzzing about our streets taking care of business. One of the principles for protecting and preserving any natural environment is use it, but don’t abuse it. This could prove an easy way raise that awareness for those who need the coaching the most. Educated communities are healthier communities.
Speaking of education and healthy communities, congrats to UCR’s Medical School. With the first class at the first medical school to open on the West Coast in thirty years, this is a really big deal for several reasons. The educational focus is on community based health outcomes. This is another major milestone. It an investment in public health that may actually deliver good health to the community. We all want healthy communities.
One happy benefit of having a medical resource in the heart of the University Neighborhood would be if public education and public health went hand in hand.