Campus Conversations

Oxy Engages LA

A core part of Oxy's mission is community and service.  Check out how Oxy gets involved with the city and beyond.

February 16, 2015

On February 10, 2015, Occidental College hosted a talk by one of the foremost economists in the world, Dr. Richard Wolff. His talk "The Game is Rigged: Winning an Economy for Everyone" addressed issues on economic reform. It was attended to a packed audience of students, faculty, staff and community members. The event was co-sponsored by the Politics, Economis and Urban and Environmental Policy Departments, The Office of Community Engagement and the ACLU of Southern California. Check out the entire talk below.

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March 25, 2013

We had the Mobile Mural Lab ( We did some really cool things with them while they were on campus, click through to see more!

A number of weeks ago, a large white van rolled onto the Occidental College campus, carrying with it gallons of paint, social justice initiatives, a mini-mural museum, and two dedicated and experienced artists. David Russell and Roberto Del Hoyo created the Mobile Mural Lab by combining their educations in studio art, their experience in elementary education pedagogies, and social engagement to produce mobile opportunities of expression for youth. The Mobile Mural lab defies the restrictive public art laws in Los Angeles by allowing youth to express themselves publicly on a surface that the entire community can enjoy. Starting as a white, previously-ran emergency vehicle, the van rolls into an environment with a predesigned outline for students to fulfill and blank spaces for complete artistic freedom. In honor of the Office of Community Engagement, our mobile mural featured our office emblem and symbols representing a community’s collective...

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February 25, 2013


MLK Week at Occidental College


For the past two years, the Office of Community Engagement has hosted MLK Week; it is a time when the Oxy community reflects on the ideals and values of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.   The week-long series of events is a fitting way to pay tribute and celebrate the legacy of Dr. King, the most revered leader in the Civil Rights Movement and a figure who visited and...

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November 19, 2012

Dylan Sittig is currently a Senior at Occidental College and in honor of Food Justice month we thought it would be appropriate to interview a student that is involved with Food Foward a partner that the Office of Community Engagement has worked with in the past and a group we hopefully will be working with in Janurary for our annual MLK day of service! Check out the interview and see what and who we work with.


1. How did you meet Food Forward? 
I first learned about Food Forward on the MLK Day of Service my Junior Year.  On that day a group of fellow students and I picked lemons and oranges from a house just three blocks from Oxy.  As we were picking, the little girl who lived there was standing at her back door and crying because we were taking her fruit!  That was really cool that even at that age she placed such value on the fruit.
2. What do they do?
Food Forward is a gleaning organization.  Homeowners...
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September 11, 2012

Remembering 9/11; Engaging in community

On Saturday, September 8, over 30 Oxy students spent their Saturday working with the Young Folks Urban Farmers, tilling the land, harvesting seeds and planting herbs.  Led by Oxy alum Daniel Lawler and co-founder Julia Carr, we all rolled up our sleeves to work with these two community activists on improving the garden.  Located at the LA Leadership Academy School, The Young Folks Urban Farm has had a deep impact on the school, involving the youth at the school in learning about and taking care of the garden.  This is our second time collaborating with the garden and we hope to come back often!


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February 10, 2012

As I reflect on the OCE's activities surrounding MLK Week, I can't help but be extremely proud of what we have accomplished. In a week-long series of events, we have teased out what it means to take non-violent social action with the legendary Rev. James Lawson, worked in partnership with community organizations in Los Angeles, reflected on Martin Luther King, Jr.'s speech delivered at Oxy in 1967 and experienced what it would have been like if Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. ever met. Throughout all this, we have come to recognize that a community of students, faculty and staff who are committed to engagement is extremely important. We understand that there is much to do, but together we can accomplish a great deal. Two of Oxy's core values are community and service. In our office, we aim to embody those two values with the programs we put together and the students we support. We put out the call for this to be a Spring of Service; not just a one... Read More

November 11, 2011

  From Brooklyn, NYC. Urban and Environmental Policy, 2014. Involved as a core organizer for the Youth Coalition for Community Action, programming assistant for the Intercultural Community Center, organizing intern for the Los Angeles Community Action Network, and organizer for Students Occupy LA. Currently, I am organizing in the Occupy Wall St. movement by connecting nearby campuses to Students Occupy LA , coordinating national student solidarity actions with the Occupy Colleges network, and planning how we can build this movement over the long-term. We are increasing our organizational capacity so that by spring semester we can be training student organizers en... Read More

November 4, 2011

Hailing from the Northwest, Kyle is our technical/media guru.  He has facilitated this post: no one is better, no one could be better.  Thanks Kyle.   Let the following be a testament to the consanguineous atmosphere at the Office of Community Engagement.   We all get along, and get along well.  This is Peter’s transmission.   I’d like to retell the success we had with our first Social Justice trip to the Great Wall of Los Angeles.  We worked with SPARC (Social and Public Art Resource Center) to organize the trip: Pete Galindo, our tour guide, was excellent, congenial, and informative.  We had a great turn out with fifteen students and, of course, our boss, the admirable Ella Turenne.  The tour lasted roughly two hours, as we toured about a half-mile of wonderful public murals.   On that note, we are planning our second social justice trip: as of now, its set for 15 November.  We will be going to Plaza de la Raza, a convergence... Read More

October 24, 2011

From left to right: Peter Beer, Helen Wright, Kyle Scoble and Alex LaRosa

Peter Beer: Universe: Milky Way.  Planet: Earth. Hemisphere: West. Continent: North America. Country: United States of America. Region: South West. State: California. County: Los Angeles. Municipality: Los Angeles. Borough: Eagle Rock. College: Occidental. Office: Community Engagement. Occupation: Project Manager. Tenure: 3 Years. Grade: Kindergarten. Major: ECLS. Character: Quixotic. Demeanor: Literary. Inclination: Community Engagement. In ascending order from the last, these are my communities: these are those communities to which I am beholden, those communities with which I...
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October 21, 2011

Hey Everybody! The OCE is back in action and doing it big for its 2nd year here at Oxy. It is halfway through the semester and we’ve already seen over 150 Oxy students participate in the 9/11 Day of Service, Social Action Week, and Trippin’ on Social Justice trip to the Great Wall of Los Angeles. It was my responsibility to organize Social Action Week and let me just say, the event was a success! We had 22 student organizations and outside community partners set up display tables on the quad to help inform students on how they can get involved in the community! Students were able to sign up to serve the greater Eagle Rock and Los Angeles area in many ways including planting community gardens, providing food for the homeless, and tutoring children. During the Social Action Fair, the office also threw our 1st annual Office of Community Engagement Block Party! Turns out… we know how to party! The students had a blast as they indulged...

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