President Napolitano announces UC Oakland Partnership
OP has launched a new outreach project, the UC Oakland Partnership, to strengthen ties between OP and the community by supporting local businesses and civic organizations and awarding scholarships to Oakland high school students planning to enroll at a UC campus.
UC President Janet Napolitano formally announced the project last week during the Oakland Museum’s annual lunch celebrating leaders and leadership.
“I live and work in this community,” Napolitano said in describing the partnership. “We at the Office of the President need to support and celebrate Oakland as our home. We need to be better, more engaged neighbors.”
The UC Oakland Partnership has three primary objectives: to build and enhance the Oakland community, to engage OP staff with the community, and to fund the new UCOP Oakland Scholarship.
To support these objectives, OP is participating as a charity partner in the March 22–23 Oakland Running Festival. Planning is also under way for OP to take part in Oakland Earth Day, Oakland cleanup days and the 2014 Economic Development Summit sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce.
As part of the effort to engage employees directly with the community, OP has teamed with the Oakland Sustainable Business Alliance to create UC’s own Oakland Grown gift card, which you can use for purchases at participating Oakland independent businesses. A percentage of gift card purchases will be channeled to the UCOP Oakland Scholarship fund. Every purchase with the card also accrues reward points that can be redeemed for a variety of local goods and services.
The partnership’s third objective, the UCOP Oakland Scholarship, will be available to graduating seniors from Oakland high schools who have committed to attending a UC campus and have engaged in community service in Oakland. The plan is to award two to three scholarships per year.
On top of proceeds from the gift cards, the scholarship will be funded by staff-generated events and sales as well as UCOP matching funds. More than $1,000 has already been generated for the scholarship through gift cards and Oakland T-shirt sales at an event in the Franklin lobby on Feb. 14.
Want to join in the partnership? Here are several ways you can participate:
- Learn more about the March 22–23 Oakland Running Festival.
- Get, register and use your UC Oakland Grown gift card; contact Tracy FitzGerald at Tracy.FitzGerald@ucop.edu.
- Tell your favorite local businesses about the Oakland Grown gift card and encourage them to join the list of participating businesses.
- Get your own Oakland T-shirt ($20 each), also by contacting Tracy FitzGerald.
- Look for news in the coming weeks about more community activities and opportunities to volunteer.
UCOP’s Franklin office has been at its current location since 1998, and OP had offices in the Kaiser Center prior to that. UC’s long history with Oakland dates to its 1868 founding at what is now the Downtown Merchants’ parking lot at 13th and Franklin. The early university remained there from 1869 to 1873, then moved to the Berkeley campus.