UCSC research and activities receive widespread news coverage

Research and activities of UC Santa Cruz professors and students generated a great deal of media coverage as the summer came to a close. The following reports appeared in newspapers, magazines, online, and on the air since the middle of August. Citations are listed beginning with the most recent.


Ocean scientist Raphael Kudela and biologist Tim Tinker received widespread coverage for the discovery of a freshwater toxin poisoning sea otters, including stories in the New York Times, Greenwire, AP, UPI, Watsonville Register-Pajaronian, E&E News, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, Contra Costa Times, Santa Cruz Sentinel, Monterey County Herald, and PhysOrg.com as well as radio interviews on KCBS, KUSP, and KMUD.

Jonathan Fox, professor of Latin American and Latino Studies, wrote op-eds in leading Mexico dailies El Universal andLa Jornada. The articles stem from a new book, Subsidizing Inequality: Mexican Corn Policy Since NAFTA, published by the Woodrow Wilson Center, for which Fox is a co-editor and author. In addition, La Jornada wrote about the book's publication.

The Arizona Daily Star ran a story about competing efforts to build a giant telescope, with quotes from astronomer Jerry Nelson, project scientist for the Thirty-Meter Telescope.

Geologist Andy Fisher was quoted in Canadian newspapers (Vancouver Sun, Windsor Star, and B.C. Times Colonist) covering an expedition he is leading to explore sub-seafloor environments off the coast of British Columbia.

Research on mobile ad-hoc networks led by computer engineer J. J. Garcia-Luna-Aceves was featured in an in-depth story about reinventing networking on the blog ReadWriteWeb.

Jim Whitehead, professor and chair of computer science, was quoted in a story about computer game design in the Barstow Desert Dispatch.

PhysOrg ran a story about research on nanopipette technology by biomolecular engineer Nader Pourmand and undergrad exchange student Queralt Vallmajó Martín.

Science Letter ran a story about research on West Nile virus led by biologist Marm Kilpatrick.

Physical anthropology graduate student Chelsey Juarez was quoted extensively in a Mother Jones magazine article on migrants who die in the desert. Juarez is researching techniques to identify the geographic homes of people who die crossing into the United States and are otherwise unidentifiable.

The Associated Press quoted sociology professor and department chair Craig Reinarman in an article about the Los Angeles County sheriff arguing that all marijuana dispensaries are in essence criminal operations.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel wrote about education professor George Bunch winning a grant to study language challenges of community college students whose first language is not English.

The Sentinel also noted that six UCSC students have won Fulbright scholarships to study abroad.

Electrical engineer Holger Schmidt's development of an optical device that can slow light pulses on a chip was covered by Popular Science, EE Times, Electronic Products, Science Daily, The Register, PC Pro, Nanowerk News, Gearlog, Smart Planet, Science Blog, and Government Computer News.

The death of George Hitchcock, poet, painter, publisher and UCSC lecturer emeritus in creative writing (Literature), received widespread coverage, with stories in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Portland Oregonian, San Jose Mercury News, and Santa Cruz Sentinel.

Britain’s guardian.co.uk, one of the world's leading online newspapers, featured a story on The Dickens Universe, the annual gathering hosted by UCSC’s Dickens Project, known for its unique draw of both top academics and ordinary fans of author Charles Dickens.

 The Huffington Post featured a story on alumna Caitlin Williams Freeman, a former UCSC photography student whose art-inspired pastry deserts can now be found at SFMOMA's new rooftop sculpture garden café.

The Contra Costa Times ran a story about humanities alumnus Eugene Rodriguez, founder and executive director of the Los Cenzontles Mexican Arts Center in San Pablo, who was one of six local leaders honored by KQED television for Latino Heritage Month.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported that Art professor Lewis Watts and American Studies professor Eric Porter were presenting a lecture on New Orleans at the San Francisco Jazz Preservation Center on the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

Astronomer Douglas Lin was quoted in stories in the New York Times and Science News about new planet discoveries.

Physicist David Smith was interviewed for the program "Lightning Strikes" broadcast on the Weather Channel.

Campus veterinarian Dave Casper was quoted in stories about shark strandings in the Santa Cruz Sentinel and Monterey County Herald.

Research on star formation led by Laura Lopez, a graduate student in astronomy and astrophysics, was featured in Universe Today.


Education department chair Kip Téllez was quoted in a Monterey County Herald article on "Common Core Standards," a set of educational goals children in the United States should reach by the time they finish high school.

New Scientist magazine ran a story about research on black holes and dark matter led by physicist Stefano Profumo.

New Scientist also wrote about the use of data mining in online games included quotes from computer science graduate student Ben Weber.

Astronomer Douglas Lin was quoted in a Discovery News article about his research on planet formation.

Biologist Tim Tinker was quoted in a Scientific American article about the declining population of California sea otters.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel wrote about education researchers Betty Achinstein and Rodney Ogawa receiving a grant to study successful teaching strategies for Latino high school students. The paper also noted the economics department was ranked highly for research in international economics.

A San Francisco Chronicle article about the Angel Island Immigration Station’s 100th anniversary cited the “must-own volume Island: Poetry and History of Chinese Immigrants on Angel Island, 1910-1940,” co-authored by American Studies professor emerita Judy Yung, as well as her new book Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America, describing it as “the most comprehensive history of the place and its period to date.”

Professor of literature Susan Gillman appeared on KQED radio’s “Forum” program (SF Bay Area) to discuss Mark Twain and race.
Astronomer Steven Vogt was featured in a front-page story in the San Francisco Chronicle about the new Automated Planet Finder telescope at Lick Observatory.

Seismologist Thorne Lay's research on the 2009 Samoa-Tonga earthquake received widespread news coverage, including an interview on KCBS radio and stories in the New York Times, San Jose Mercury News, Santa Cruz Sentinel, Nature, Science News, Scientific American, Wired News, MSNBC, AP, BBC News, Daily Mail (U.K.), Australian, Deseret News, Salt Lake City Standard-Examiner, Asian News International, Thaindian News, Live Science, Softpedia, and Red Orbit.

Ocean scientist Raphael Kudela was quoted in stories in the San Jose Mercury News and Santa Cruz Sentinel about algal blooms in Pinto Lake.

Astronomer Claire Max, who served on a committee that released recommendations for the next decade of astronomy and astrophysics research, was quoted in stories about the report from Nature, MSNBC, and Space.com.

Biologist Seth Rubin's research on the retinoblastoma tumor suppressor protein was covered by Biospace.com and HealthCanal.com.

Physicist Joel Primack was quoted in a Discover magazine story about research on dark matter and galaxy formation.

Astronomer Douglas Lin was quoted in an article in New Scientist about a study he coauthored indicating that Jupiter may have swallowed a "super-Earth" planet early in the history of the solar system.

Astronomer and dean of physical and biological sciences Stephen Thorsett was quoted in a Science Now story about a new pulsar discovery.

The Sacramento Bee quoted sociology professor and department chair Craig Reinarman in an article on marijuana use in California and Proposition 19 on the November ballot that seeks to legalize it.

The New York Times quoted economics professor and department chair Carl Walsh extensively in an analysis of options open to the Federal Reserve in light of a slowing recovery.

Community studies professor Mary Beth Pudup was quoted in the Bay Citizen and the Bay Area section of The New York Times in an article on urban farming in San Francisco.

News that authors of a new book about the groundbreaking marketing techniques of the Grateful Dead are donating 25 percent of its royalties to UCSC was reported by United Press International (UPI), the Boston Globe, St. Louis Globe Democrat, and The Money Times, plus hundreds of blogs and online sites, as well as on the front page of the Santa Cruz Sentinel.

J.Weekly -- the Jewish News Weekly of Northern California -- ran two feature stories: one about UCSC’s new Jewish Studies major, quoting history professor and Jewish Studies program co-founder Nathaniel Deutsch, plus an article on American Studies professor emerita Judy Yung and her new book on the Angel Island Immigration station.

The UK-based global newspaper The Guardian Weekly published a feature story about emeritus professor of music David Cope and “Emily Howell,” the computer program he created to compose classical music.

The Contra Costa Times wrote about Yung's new book.

Productions by Shakespeare Santa Cruz were reviewed in the Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, Santa Cruz Weekly, Good Times, and Santa Cruz Sentinel.