Tag Archives: City of Riverside

CBU Listed On 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Honor Roll

(This article contains excerpts from the article published in CBU News & Events on December 8, 2014.)

Photo Credit: CBU
Photo Credit: CBU

California Baptist University has been listed on the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Honor Roll for exemplary community service. Approximately 700 institutions qualified for the list nationwide.

“The President’s Honor Roll recognizes higher education institutions whose community service efforts achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities,” said Ted Miller, chief of external affairs for the Corporation for National and Community Service. “This distinction is the highest federal recognition colleges and universities can receive for community service, service-learning and civic engagement. This recognition is part of our strategic commitment to engage millions of college students in service and celebrate the critical role of higher education in strengthening communities.”

To qualify, CBU submitted a lengthy application outlining the university’s community service and service learning participation. Students, faculty and staff contributed more than 600,000 service hours in 2013, with a value of more than $16 million to the community.

Riverside as a unified city is demonstrated by CBU’s staff, students and faculty in their compassion for and engagement with one another. They are working together to build our community and accelerate the common good for all.

To read the full article, click here.

Riverside Youth Judo Club Competes At The Largest Judo Tournament

Riverside Youth Judo Club is lined up in the middle. (Largest group of competitors)
Riverside Youth Judo Club is lined up in the middle. (Largest group of competitors)

The Riverside Youth Judo Club, a project of the Police Activities League, competed at the largest National Judo Tournament in the U.S. Saturday, December 6, 2014.  There were 709 competitors from all over the country (as far as New York, South Carolina, Florida, and Hawaii), along with a total of 100 veteran, long-standing judo clubs.

The two-year old “fledgling” judo club brought the largest group of fighters to the event.  The club had 50 competitors, many of which had never previously competed.  They are a charitable, non-profit club and have many students (about 50%) who are economically disadvantaged and sponsored by the City and Police Activities League.  They had several generous contributions from members of the Riverside Police Department and the judo club who helped sponsor many of the competitors, covering their $50 entrance fee.  They were able to fundraise the rest with Candy and Apple sales.

Riverside Youth Judo Club finished the day ranked as the #3 Top-Winning club of the tournament (again, out of 100 judo clubs attending).  They were only outdone by the 2nd largest judo club in the Country (Goltz Club) and the historical and aggressive Hayastan club.  The club outperformed 96 Judo clubs represented at the National Tournament!

It’s great that youth involved in the Judo Club have an opportunity to compete and do well because of the generosity of a community that cares.  Sponsorships and hard work from the City and Police Activities League continually model Riverside as a unified city.

To read more about the Riverside Youth Judo Club, click here.

White House Applauds Inland Education Effort

(This article contains excerpts from an article by Dayna Straehley, published in The Press Enterprise on December 4, 2014.)

At Thursday's Summit on College Opportunity, President Barack Obama praises the Riverside County Education Collaborative. Photo Credit: Alex Wong, Getty Images
At Thursday’s Summit on College Opportunity, President Barack Obama praises the Riverside County Education Collaborative. Photo Credit: Alex Wong, Getty Images

Alvord Unified School District’s partnership with San Diego State University to develop more effective school counseling was one of efforts announced, as was Cal State San Bernardino’s action to increase the number of graduates from its College of Natural Sciences by 25 percent in five years.

The county Education Collaborative formed in July after a request from U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan to Riverside County Superintendent of Schools Kenneth Young to gather a team, come to Washington and talk about preparing more students to go to college and earn degrees, Young said.

Federal officials asked the county to make commitments in four areas to improve college-going rates, Young said.

Temecula and Murrieta valley unified school districts are working with Mt. San Jacinto College and Cal State San Marcos, which has a Temecula campus. Moreno Valley and Val Verde unified school districts are working with Moreno Valley College and UC Riverside.

Representatives of those schools and colleges have been meeting monthly, and others are joining from other parts of the county, Young said.

“Overall, we’ve been working on increasing our county’s college-going rate,” Young said. The Riverside County Office of Education and schools have worked on many steps and are now targeting four areas with four school districts, he said.

By gathering and sharing data, schools, colleges and communities can focus on their goals and rally community support, the president said. For instance, high school counselors can see how many students have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and focus on the students who have not, Young said.

Alvord Superintendent Sid Salazar said his work at the Day of Action focused on making school counselors more effective at getting low-income, Latino and black students ready for college and empowering them to do their jobs. That work starts before kindergarten, he said.

Identifying and implementing collaborative partnerships like this are evidence of catalyst of innovation in Riverside.  Our leaders are constantly developing inventive approaches to equip our students for college readiness.

To read the full article, click here.

CBU Program Helps International Students Feel Connected

(This article contains excerpts from the article published in CBU News & Events on December 4, 2014)

Photo Credit: CBU
Photo Credit: CBU

Going to college is a big adjustment for anyone. Going to college in a foreign country makes the adjustment even bigger. California Baptist University has a program in place to help international students feel at home and connected.

The American Family Program, operated by the International Center, gives international students a family here in Riverside to serve as a support system far from home, said Marie King, a graduate assistant at the International Center. Students from Rwanda and students enrolled in the Intensive English Program are required to be in the family program, but all international students are welcome to be part of it, King said.

She finds families from the staff at CBU and local churches. Each student and family fills out a profile and then are matched. The commitment for families and students is for at least the academic year, with the potential of being longer, King said. Families have the students over for the holidays and often get together throughout the school year for other activities. Both sides are expected to communicate weekly.

Ken Sanford, student teacher supervisor, and his wife, Denise, started as a host family last year for two Chinese students and are continuing this year with those students. Sanford has been to China through participation in International Service Projects for five years in a row, and he has gotten to know international students at CBU. Sanford and his wife have had the students over for meals, gone out for dinner and visited an amusement park. They touch base with each other almost every day.

It’s essential for international students to feel supported while far away from home, King said. The International Center also offers the Intensive English Program, helps run International Chapel and holds events for international students, such as a Disneyland trip and International Celebration Week, in hopes that they will connect with other students.

The American Family Program is a great representation of Seizing our Destiny’s unified city pillar. We are a caring community that has compassion for all of its inhabitants, and engages with one another for a better life for all. The long-standing diversity of the City provides a comfortable home for people from all backgrounds, cultures and interests – Riverside is a city for everyone and by everyone.

To read the full article, click here.

Research points to MS relief

(This article contains excerpts from the article written by Mark Muckenfuss and published in The Press Enterprise on December 2, 2014.) 

Seema Tiwari-Woodruff is an associate professor of biomedical sciences at the UC Riverside School of Medicine. Photo Credit: Pittalwala, UCR Today
Seema Tiwari-Woodruff is an associate professor of biomedical sciences at the UC Riverside School of Medicine. Photo Credit: Pittalwala, UCR Today

A UC Riverside researcher says she has tested a drug that may not only stop, but reverse the damage caused by multiple sclerosis.

Seema Tiwari-Woodruff is a biomedical science professor with UCR’s School of Medicine. She came to the campus in June from UCLA, where she had been researching multiple sclerosis therapies since 2007.

Tiwari-Woodruff said she and her team tested several ligands, chemicals that mimic estrogen. One particular ligand, Ind-Cl, was especially helpful for mice with multiple sclerotic symptoms.

The results were published Monday in the latest edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Photo Credit: UCR Today
Photo Credit: UCR Today

Multiple sclerosis affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide. The disease attacks the central nervous system, damaging or destroying the myelin sheath that surrounds the axons on nerve cells. The axons carry electrical impulses from nerve cell receptors to their synapses. The myelin acts as an insulator. Without it, the nerve cell can’t effectively send signals.

Mice that received the drug saw as much as a 60 percent improvement in their condition. Not only did the drug diminish the inflammation that accompanies flare-ups of the disease, but the degeneration of the myelin sheath on nerve cell axons, Tiwari-Woodruff said, actually began to be repaired.

Testing showed that the cells with regrown myelin were capable of transmitting nerve signals once more. So far, the drug seems to have few, if any side effects.

This medical discovery is an outstanding representation of Seizing Our Destiny’s catalyst for innovation pillar. The students and staff at UCR cultivate and support ideas, research, and products that accelerate the common good for all. Creativity and innovation permeate all that we do, which makes our community a trendsetter for the region, California, and the world to follow.

To read the full article, click here.

Old Buses Turned Into Green Machines

(This article contains excerpts from the article written by David Danelski and published in The Press Enterprise on Nov 30, 2014.)

Photo Credit: The Press Enterprise
Photo Credit: The Press Enterprise

An old Indianapolis bus looked more like a skeleton than a mass-transit workhorse as it sat in the workshop of a Riverside bus re-manufacturing company.

Gone were the seats, windows, floorboards as well as the diesel engine.

In a few weeks, the transformation was complete. What had been a soot-emitting behemoth became a nonpolluting, all-electric, green machine capable of traveling more an 130 miles before needing to be recharged.

Photo Credit: The Press Enterprise
Photo Credit: The Press Enterprise

Complete Coach Works has been rebuilding used buses at its plant off Spruce Street for more than 29 years. But it is now winning recognition for turning old polluters into zero-emission models.

The company got a big boost this spring when it won a $12.2 million contract from the Indianapolis transit agency to turn 22 worn-out diesel buses into clean electric vehicles.

“We are really excited,” said Justin Scalzi, an account manager for the company during a tour of company’s facilities in October. “Once we have these buses out on the road in Indiana, the other transit agencies will realize that we are the real thing.”

The company’s non-polluting bus propulsion system was recently recognized by the South Coast Air Quality Management District for advancing air pollution control technology, and the air district provided the firm $395,000 toward its research and development efforts.

Complete Coach Works development of zero-emission buses is a great example of Seizing Our Destiny’s catalyst for innovation pillar by leading the way in clean public transportation.

To read the full article, click here.

Smiles For Seniors Program Going Strong After 16 Years

Smile Seekers

(This article contains excerpts from www.SmileSeekers.org and retrieved on November 14, 2014.)

Smile Seekers is a Riverside home-grown non-profit corporation whose goal is to unite the youth of this country with the forgotten elderly.  Started 16 years ago by Jim Baldwin, the organization has literally connected thousands of adult and youth volunteers with the elderly through their convalescent-visitation program.

Baldwin came from a life of addiction.  After becoming clean, he was approached by some friends who needed a ride to visit their dying father in a convalescent hospital.  “While waiting for them, I decided to walk around and say hello to some of the people in the care center.  Every room I walked into, people were dying of loneliness.”  When he returned to Riverside, he called a local convalescent hospital and asked if he could visit even though he had no relatives there.  The woman on the other end of the phone asked if “we could come right now”.


While continuing his convalescent ministry today, Smile Seekers was also instrumental in creating Smile Seekers House in Nairobi, Kenya.  The 3-story stone building is a home for children made orphans due to Africa’s AIDS epidemic, and their “Goats for School” program provides the orphans with goats whose milk and offspring help offset the cost of their education.

Smile Seekers demonstrates Riverside as a Unified City – people coming together for common goals and interests for the betterment of all.

For more information on Smile Seekers, contact Jim Baldwin at (951) 452-9212 or visit their webpage.