CSULA Breaks Ground on Bioscience Innovation Center

November 23, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Cal State Los Angeles broke ground on the Rongxiang Xu Bioscience Innovation Center, which will house the future LA BioSpace incubator, during a ceremony last week.

Cal State LA holds a ground breaking ceremony Nov. 18 for the new Rongxiang Xu Bioscience Innovation Center. (Office of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard)

Cal State LA holds a ground breaking ceremony Nov. 18 for the new Rongxiang Xu Bioscience Innovation Center. (Office of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard)

The LA BioSpace incubator hill house startup bioscience companies that will work with Cal State LA students and faculty to develop new technologies in the hopes that the startups will move into the community to create jobs.
The center is part of the county’s regional plan to create a bioscience corridor in the communities surrounding Cal State L.A. Funding for the center was made possible by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration and the National Rongxiang Xu Foundation.

Program to Tackle Heroin and Opioid Abuse Launched at Local Colleges

October 6, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Federal prosecutors in Los Angeles Tuesday announced the launch of a community program to tackle the growing epidemic of heroin and prescription opioid abuse.

Over the coming weeks and months, law enforcement and public health officials will present programs and panel discussions at Occidental College in Eagle Rock, Cal State Los Angeles and Chapman University in Orange to highlight the impact opiates have on individuals and families.

“The increased use of heroin and opioids has infected communities from coast to coast and in many neighborhoods within our district,” said Eileen M. Decker, the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles.

“Prosecutors in my office have targeted drug traffickers who import heroin and doctors who issue prescriptions for addictive painkillers without any medical purpose,” she said. “We are working with our law enforcement colleagues to develop new strategies to investigate drug trafficking

organizations that import and distribute opioids and heroin (and) to better track prescription drugs that may be diverted to street users.”

Law enforcement agencies throughout the country are seizing record amounts of heroin and other opioids, said John S. Comer, U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency special agent in charge.

“DEA will continue to target the illicit trafficking organizations responsible for these detriments, but we’re also committed to educating the public about the dangers of drug misuse and reducing demand — awareness is a crucial element in combating this epidemic,” he said.

Beginning this week, federal prosecutors will be joined by DEA agents, expert physicians and public health officials on local campuses.

The events are designed to educate students on the dangers of prescription drugs, the presence of counterfeit drugs and what to do in the event of a potential overdose.


Participants will be able to view excerpts from the FBI-produced film

“Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opioid Addict,” which is available on YouTube and illustrates the harsh reality of opioid addiction.

Prosecutors hope to bring the program to other campuses across the region and welcome input from the public on what more the Justice Department can do to combat the problem, Decker said.


CSULA Boosts Garfield Students STEM Skills

August 18, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

No they are not doctors, but twenty students from Garfield High School were presented with white lab coats following their completion of a two-week Grifols Summer Science Academy at ?Cal State LA.

The students were also presented with certificates denoting their program participation during a formal ceremony earlier this month attended by County Supervisor Hilda Solis.

(J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)

(J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LA)

During the academy, students participated in a number of sessions that focused on microbiology and molecular work. The lab and research experience exposed these students to STEM-related careers and prepared them to succeed in college. The final day included a luncheon, student presentations, and a tour of Grifols Biologicals Inc.

Cal State LA has been designated by the National Science Foundation as the top baccalaureate institution of Latino science and engineering Ph.D. recipients among all predominantly undergraduate and master’s degree colleges and universities in the continental U.S.

Grifols is an international firm that develops plasma medicines, diagnostic systems and hospital pharmacy products. Its U.S. headquarters is adjacent to Cal State LA and employs about 1,000 people. Roughly 100 of the employees are alumni of the University.

Mariachi Experience of A Lifetime

August 13, 2015 by · 2 Comments 

For a group of young mariachi performers from all over the county, the chance to study their musical craft under some of the best national mariachi performers in the country was the chance of a lifetime.

The Fourth Annual Mariachi National Summer Institute at Cal State LA Aug. 5-8 drew 175 mariachi performers from low-income families around the country.

No student was turned away, regardless of their ability to fund their experience.

The mariachi performers studied traditional Mexican music under the tutelage of nationally known mariachi performers and educators such as Jose Hernandez and Mariachi Sol de Mexico.

Lea este artículo en Español: Competencia Nacional de Mariachi en Cal State Los Ángeles
Eleven-year old Joe Feda is a member of the Mariachi Juvenil Alma de Mexico band, who won second place at Mariachi Nationals Summer Institute last week. (Photo by Camille Tarazon)

Eleven-year old Joe Fata is a member of the Mariachi Juvenil Alma de Mexico band, who won second place at Mariachi Nationals Summer Institute last week. (Photo by Camille Tarazon)

The young people also performed at Grand Park in downtown L.A. and participated in an adjudicated festival competition at Cal State LA’s State Playhouse Theater on Saturday night, where the two top mariachi bands and the winning vocalist were announced.

The first place band was Mariachi Estrellas de Chula Vista which received $2,500. Second place went to Mariachi Juvenil Alma de Mexico from San Jose, receiving $1,500.

The winning vocalist, was 11-year-old Joe Fata from Mariachi Juvenil: he received $1,000.

Mariachi Chula Vista, 1st place winners. (Camille Tarazon)

Mariachi Estrellas de Chula Vista, 1st place winners. (Camille Tarazon)

Competencia Nacional de Mariachi en Cal State Los Ángeles

August 13, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

El Instituto de Verano Nacional de Mariachi en su cuarta edición se llevó a cabo en Cal State LA del 5 al 8 de agosto atrayendo a 175 jóvenes intérpretes de mariachi de familias de bajos ingresos en todo el país.

Ningún estudiante se le fue negada la asistencia al instituto por falta de recursos económicos. Los niños y jóvenes estudiaron la música tradicional mexicana bajo la tutela de artistas y educadores de mariachi reconocidos a nivel nacional como José Hernández y el Mariachi Sol de México.

La banda ganadora del primer lugar fue Mariachi Estrellas de Chula Vista, quienes recibieron $2,500 y el segundo lugar fue el Mariachi Juvenil Alma de México de San José, ganadores de $1,500.

Joe Fata, de 11 años de edad, de Mariachi Juvenil fue el vocalista ganador de un premio de $,1000.

Read this article in English: A Mariachi Experience of a Lifetime


El maestro José Hernández (centro) con miembros del Mariachi Juvenil Alma de México, ganadores del segundo lugar y el niño Joe Feda (der.), vocalista ganador del primer lugar. (Camila Tarzón)

El maestro José Hernández (centro) con miembros del Mariachi Juvenil Alma de México, ganadores del segundo lugar y el niño Joe Fata (der.), vocalista ganador del primer lugar. (Camille Tarazon)

El maestro José Hernández con el Mariachi Estrellas de Chula Vista, ganadores del primer lugar. (Camille Tarazon)

El maestro José Hernández (izq.)con el Mariachi Estrellas de Chula Vista, ganadores del primer lugar. (Camille Tarazon)





Delegación Alemana de las Olimpiadas Especial Entrena en Cal State Los Ángeles

July 23, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Cerca de 200 atletas, entrenadores y personal de la delegación alemana llegaron a Cal State LA el martes por la tarde para hospedarse por tres días y entrenar antes del inicio de las Olimpiadas Especiales el 25 de julio.

Los anfitriones del la delegación alemana son Lincoln Heights, Monterey Park y Alhambra. El miércoles por la mañana el equipo alemán comenzó su practica en la cancha de futbol, mientras otros atletas ocupaban el gimnasio y la pista de carreras.

El viernes a las 11am en el gimnasio de Cal State LA se llevará a cabo una celebración pre-comienzo de las Olimpiadas Especiales y para desearle buena suerte al equipo alemán.


(J. Emilio Flores/Cal State L.A.)

(J. Emilio Flores/Cal State L.A.)

Solis Touts CSULA, Eastside As Biotech Opportunities

July 9, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Los Angeles lags far behind big California cities like San Francisco and San Diego when it comes to attracting biotechnology and science industries to the region, but on Wednesday, L.A. County Sup. Hilda Solis was at Cal State L.A. singing the praises of the campus and the greater East Los Angeles area as viable investment opportunities for the full spectrum of bio-related industries.

Joining Solis at Cal State L.A. was U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Jay Williams, who like Solis is a proponent of leveraging the bioscience industry to promote economic development.

According to Solis’ office, the two discussed the possibility of a future biotech corridor that would stretch from Cal State L.A. to the Los Angeles County+USC medical center in Boyle Heights, an area represented by the supervisor and former labor secretary.

Los Angeles County Sup. Hilda Solis (pictured in red) toured the Cal State LA campus Wednesday along with U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Develoment Jay Wiliams, (center).  (EGP Photo by Eddie Ruvalcaba)

Los Angeles County Sup. Hilda Solis (pictured in red) toured the Cal State LA campus Wednesday along with U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Develoment Jay Wiliams, (center). (EGP Photo by Eddie Ruvalcaba)

The biotech corridor would bring thousands of jobs to East Los Angeles, as well as promote cutting-edge research, the supervisor’s office said in an email.

“As former U.S. Secretary of Labor, I am committed to job creation and the biotech corridor is part of that vision,” said Solis, whose Supervisorial First District stands to gain from new jobs that will come as a result of this project.

Williams and Solis were given a tour of Cal State’s laboratories by President William A. Covino who talked about the University’s successful efforts to prepare students to excel in Ph.D. programs in STEM-related disciplines. They met students who are conducting research under the direction of professors Howard Xu and Cecilia Zurita Lopez.

Breana Luna, who is pursuing a master’s degree in biology, talked about Cal State L.A.’s role in fueling her interest in science.

“I’m sure your family is proud of you. Congratulations,” Williams told Luna.

Solis pointed out that Cal State L.A. plays an important role in training future researchers who will help the bioscience industry thrive in the area.

The university is at the center of the regional effort to expand bioscience businesses in the LA region and is in the process of building a bioscience incubator on its campus being paid for in part with a $3 million grant from the county.

According to Cal State, the incubator will provide laboratory space to private startup ventures to fuel their growth.The university said faculty and students will collaborate with the companies to share expertise that will benefit the university and the private sector community.

Cal State L.A. has applied for a $3 million grant from the Economic Development Administration of the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, the agency headed by Williams. The federal grant would be used to construct a new building for the incubator on the 175-acre campus.

To date, local companies have pledged to hire 300 new workers once the incubator is built. The university anticipates construction will be completed by the end of 2016.

“Employment in the field of biotechnology is important. These specialize jobs represent our future economy,” said Solis. “We need to prepare our young students so that they can seamlessly take on these research jobs.

“But, this biotech corridor will also bring construction jobs to East Los Angeles, and it will provide entrepreneurial opportunities for small businesses in the area.”

Two Teens Shot at CSULA

April 2, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

 Two males, one 14 and the other 18, were shot and wounded in a parking lot at Cal State Los Angeles Sunday.

Teens inside a van that made its way through an area east of downtown Los Angeles taunted people as they went and when they drove into a parking lot at the university about 9:15 p.m. someone fired on the vehicle, striking the victims, said Lt. Peter Gamino of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Hollenbeck Station.

Both were taken to County-USC Medical Center, he said. Their conditions were not immediately available.

University police were investigating the shooting, which appeared to be gang-related, Gamino said.

No suspect information was available, he said.

Journalist Ruben Salazar to be Focus of Cal State LA Panel

January 29, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

A panel discussion on the relevance Mexican American journalist Ruben Salazar’s life and work has in today’s society will take place Feb. 4 at Cal State University, Los Angeles.

Titled “Rubén Salazar – Siempre Con Nosotros/Always With Us,” the discussion is being presented in conjunction with the multimedia exhibition, “Legacy of Rubén Salazar: A Man of His Words, a Man of His Time,” on display through March 26 at the University’s John F. Kennedy Memorial Library.

Both events are free and open to the public.

Next Wednesday’s panel will be led by noted history and journalism scholars, Mario Garcia, Ph.D, who has published works on Mexican American and Chicano activism and Latino millennials, and Felix Gutierrez, Ph.D, who has written and spoken extensively about the biases of mass media and the need for diversity in journalism.

(EGP photo archive)

(EGP photo archive)

Panelists will speak to the importance of principled journalism in today’s polarized society, using the life and writings of former LA Times and KMEX-TV Spanish language news reporter Ruben Salazar as context.

Salazar, perhaps best known for his death at the hands of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputies during the 1970 Chicano Moratorium, was at the forefront of principled journalism during another period of polarization, the 1960’s civil rights and anti-war movements.

He was a nationally recognized foreign correspondent who reported on the escalation of the Vietnam War and on Latin America during the beginnings of the post Cuban revolution. When he returned to Los Angeles in 1969, he found a community in transition, fighting to be empowered.

Salazar’s in-depth reporting of the Mexican American and emerging Chicano movement for the Times and KMEX in many ways gave voice to that struggle, presenting leaders and common people as subjects, not objects, or stereotypes for mainstream media sound bites.

Early in his career, while covering jail conditions in El Paso, he was arrested while posing as a drunk and went on to describing life in the tank. One of his last columns before being killed, in moving detail described the plight of welfare mothers and children.

Salazar covered action on the front lines in Vietnam, the Tlateloco massacre in Mexico at the time of the 1968 Olympics, and he wrote about the beginnings of Cesar Chavez’ farm labor organizing before the strikes and boycotts. He also wrote about Chicano teacher Sal Castro years before he emerged as a major figure in the East LA Walkouts.

Salazar’s tragic death cemented his place as an icon of the Chicano Movement.

His return to Los Angeles in 1969 marked the establishment of the Mexican American/Chicano news beat, journalism to empower people.

In the year before he died, Salazar wrote over 100 articles on a wide range of issues from the barrios and fields in and around Los Angeles and nationwide.

The panel discussion will be held at 3pm, Feb. 4 in the Golden Eagle Ballroom 2, in the Student Union building. To attend, RSVP by Feb. 2 at http://www.calstatela.edu/events/ruben-salazar. For more information, call (323) 343-3066 or send an email to events@calstatela.edu.

‘Relato de Wyvernwood’ Una Exhibición de Arte Sobre una Comunidad

June 12, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Una exposición multimedia que resultó de una colaboración de un año entre los estudiantes de Cal State LA, profesores y residentes del Este Los Ángeles “celebrando” la historia de uno de los complejos de viviendas más grandes del área, atrajo a un gran número de personas a la universidad la semana pasada, incluyendo a algunos residentes de Wyvernwood Garden Apartment Complex en Boyle Heights.

“Relato Wyvernwood: Una exposición basada en la comunidad” se presentó al aire libre en el patio adyacente a la biblioteca de la universidad el 5 de junio e incluyó un gran número de fotografías y testimonios. Los organizadores dijeron que tenían la intención de iniciar un diálogo sobre la relación entre la identidad y el lugar donde residen.

Relato de Wyvernwood es un proyecto multimedia y de arte creado por estudiantes de CSULA y partidarios que se oponen a la demolición del complejo Wyvernwood en Boyle Heights. (EGP foto por Jacqueline García)

Relato de Wyvernwood es un proyecto multimedia y de arte creado por estudiantes de CSULA y partidarios que se oponen a la demolición del complejo Wyvernwood en Boyle Heights. (EGP foto por Jacqueline García)

La Facultad de la Asociación de California (CFA) y la organización El Comité de la Esperanza se asociaron con estudiantes del departamento de inglés de CSULA y el panel de investigación de Estudios de Pasantes para crear el proyecto multimedia.

Mientras que “el Relato Wyvernwood” fue en parte un esfuerzo por mostrar la rica historia de la zona, también exploró temas de la gentrificación y el “impacto cultural” y los cambios que tienen sobre las familias y los barrios.

Desde el 2008, el dueño de Wyvernwood, Fifteen Group Land and Development LLC, ha estado en una batalla constante con muchos de los residentes del complejo de viviendas y otros a través de sus planes de $2 billones para un uso mixto de reurbanización en el sitio de 70 acres que incluye 1.187 unidades de alquiler , 660 designados como de bajos ingresos. “Relato Wyvernwood” muestra la lucha por el futuro de Wyvernwood desde la perspectiva de si sus residentes de bajos ingresos, muchos de los que han vivido allí durante décadas y temen verse desplazados si se permite la remodelación.

Catalogado como un sitio histórico por Los Angeles Conservancy, la propuesta de reurbanización Wyvernwood ha llevado a “peticiones, protestas y conversaciones continuas” a favor y en contra del proyecto.

“Según la propuesta de Fifteen Group, muchas familias de bajos ingresos no podrán pagar los nuevos apartamentos”, el miembro del Comité de la Esperanza Rigo Amavizca dijo a EGP. El grupo llevó a cabo una conferencia de prensa durante la exposición para reafirmar su oposición al plan de reurbanización.

“Hemos estado allí durante 38 años y pagamos un poco más de $ 900 para un apartamento de dos pisos con tres dormitorios”, dijo Amavizca. Los nuevos inquilinos pagarán más de $1.500 por el mismo apartamento, agregó.

El profesor de CSULA Dr. Bidhan Roy lideró el proyecto y dice que este tipo de compromiso significativo con la comunidad “puede ofrecer a los estudiantes la oportunidad de hacer la investigación de formas innovadoras que producen nuevos conocimientos”.

“La CSUs no están separadas de las comunidades … así que nos aseguramos que si hay luchas que suceden fuera podamos trabajar juntos o ser solidarios con ellos”, Lawrence Gandara, un estudiante CSULA y miembro del proyecto dijo a EGP. Agregó que él tiene amigos que viven en Wyvernwood y escuchó testimonios de primera mano.

Mientras que el proyecto destacó a residentes de Wyvernwood opuestos a la reurbanización, no todos los que viven allí o en los alrededores del vecindario se sienten igual.

Los partidarios de “The New Wyvernwood” incluyen un número de residentes, grupos comunitarios y sindicatos locales que ven en el nuevo desarrollo como una manera de traer empleos bien pagados y más viviendas para la clase trabajadora de Boyle Heights y áreas cercanas.

“Muchas personas y organizaciones apoyan el complejo a quedarse como está, pero ellos no viven aquí, no saben lo peligroso que es”, Soyla Guerrero, residente de Wyvernwood por 39 años, le dijo a EGP. “Estoy a favor de la demolición al 100% debido a que [como está actualmente] si hay un terremoto todo va a ser destruido, los apartamentos son demasiado viejos”, dijo.

Los opositores dicen que el proyecto va a añadir más densidad en una zona ya densa, todo con el propósito de ganancias.

“Quieren demoler 1,187 apartamentos para construir 4.400 nuevos”, al mismo tiempo haciendo esas unidades asequibles para familias de bajos ingresos, dijo el presidente del Comite, Leonardo López, quien está luchando contra el plan desde que se dio a conocer en 2008.

Ana Ruiz, residente por los pasados 47 años en Wyvernwood, dijo que Fifteen Group debe pensar en las personas, no sólo los beneficios. “¿No importamos?”, preguntó durante la conferencia de prensa. Ella dijo que las rentas en otros lugares son extremadamente altas y ella odiaría perder su comunidad “arraigada”.

A principios de esta semana, Fifteen Group reiteró a EGP via email la posición de la empresa de que “todos los residentes que actualmente viven en Wyvernwood podrán permanecer en el sitio mejorado sin tener que pagar más alquiler de lo que actualmente están pagando”. Los residentes no serán desplazados durante la construcción, y podrán seguir viviendo allí, tal vez en una unidad diferente, “antes de mudarse a sus nuevos hogares”.

En su comunicado, Fifteen Group dijo que muchos residentes de Wyvernwood apoyan el proyecto porque saben que va a embellecer su comunidad, crear más parques, zonas comerciales, de vivienda asequible y generará “miles de empleos en la construcción” en el área de Boyle Heights.


Twitter @jackieguzman


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