Please join us for Oxy's annual Holiday Party on Friday, Dec. 9 from 5:30-11:30 p.m. in Rush Gym and the newly completed Cannon Plaza next door. Hosted by the Office of the President, the party is open to all faculty and staff, who are cordially invited to bring a single guest (who must be 18 years old or older). The reception begins at 5:30 p.m. with dinner and a raffle kicking off at 6:45 p.m. Stick around for dancing at 8:45 p.m.! Everyone is asked to RSVP by Friday, Dec. 2. Questions? Please contact Rocio Ramos at or (323) 259-2558. We look forward to seeing you there!


As a reminder, the deadline to incur eligible expenses under the 2022 Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) is March 15, 2023. Claims for eligible FSA expenses incurred during the period January 1, 2022 through March 15, 2023 must be filed by April 30, 2023.

Congrats to our recent Boo Bash winners! 

Pumpkin Carving/Decorating Winners:
1st Place: Intercultural Community Center
2nd Place: Dean of Students Office
3rd Place: Chemistry Department

Costume Contest Winners:
1st Place: Anaid Garcia Figueroa, Office of VP, Finance and Planning as Wednesday
2nd Place: Donna Huebner, Bookstore as Flo
3rd Place: Guy Amick, International Programs Office as Plague Doctor
Best Departmental Costume: Hot Shots from the Business Office

Enjoy photos from the event here. 

Here is the latest list of arrivals and departures from October 22 to November 21.

Brittney Escobedo, Tiger Cooler cashier
Debbie Esparza, financial aid counselor
Erica Garcia, Campus Dining, senior administrative assistant
Erwin Gonzales, ITS, coordinator of network systems
Brittany Maciel, Neighborhood Partnership Program, academic advisor
Mary Maher, associate vice president for human resources/chief human resources officer
Tu'Shuna McMichael, Business Office, director of sponsored research
David Olmedo-Barrera, assistant baseball coach/recruitment coordinator/PHAC
Tahn Bae Park, assistant dean of students for student success and director of restorative practices
Leilani Ramirez, Biology, animal caretaker
Mireya Tellechea, financial aid counselor
Adelaide Zou, OxyArts programming and communications coordinator

Deborah Afar '10, Institutional Advancement, director of donor engagement and events
Homero Aguilar, Campus Safety officer
Cynthia Kossan, Hameetman Career Center, assistant director of career education & advising
Christopher Reyes, associate director of facilities
Alexandria Ross, Campus Dining, cook B



Cannon Named 2022 Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar
Associate Professor of Chemistry Jeffrey Cannon ’07 is one of eight 2022 Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholars nationwide named by the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. The prestigious award honors young faculty in the chemical sciences who have created an outstanding independent body of scholarship and are deeply committed to undergraduate education.

Media Arts & Culture student selected for Prestigious Television Academy Foundation Internship Program
Jamie Potter ’23 is one of only 12 students chosen from more than 2,000 applicants nationwide for the Fall 2022 program.

Ellie Findell ’23 Attends White House Meeting with Vice President
Former ASOC President Ellie Findell ’23 joined other student leaders from across the country in an October 14 White House meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris regarding reproductive rights and other pressing political issues on college campuses.

Kvien Discusses Modern Diplomacy as Obama Scholars Speaker
Social media has had a huge impact on international diplomacy over the past decade--a reality that has played out most dramatically in Ukraine, career diplomat Kristina Kvien '87 P'20 told an Oxy audience October 21.



From Alexandra Medina, benefits specialist: As always, Karen Salce goes beyond and did amazing with all the details that needed to go to Open Enrollment. 

From José Cisneros, JEID education specialist: I would like to shout out Jasmine S. McKay! Her kind heart, happy personality, and amazing skills and knowledge have made the Office of Equity & Justice a better place. David and I would not be able to do our jobs as well without her. I know that I can always count on her, and I hope everyone gets the chance to meet her at some point.

From Aly Escobar, administrative assistant, Intercultural Community Center: 
Kerri Miller: From the beginning of my onboarding process Kerri has been so amazing. She has taken the time to train me and guide me even with her super-busy schedule. I meet with her weekly and every single week I learn something new.
Katrina Weti: Katrina is so knowledgeable on all things Oxy and I am so grateful to be working with her. She is full of knowledge and has guided me through these first couple of months. I have had the honor to see all the wonderful programs she has put together here at the ICC. 
Robin Maxile: From the moment I started at the ICC, Robin was so welcoming and her positive energy just vibrates throughout the whole ICC. Robin is so full of knowledge and is so approachable, I see why students love coming to the ICC and having couch conversations with her.

From Justin (Ning Hui) Li, professor of computer science and cognitive science: I would like to submit a shout-out to Patty Micciche, for helping the Computer Science Department organize faculty candidate visits on really short notice. The search would have collapsed if Patty didn't wasn't around to coordinate travel and to figure out the schedule. I also have a belated shout-out to Alannah Isherwood and Desiree Ramirez Hale, who helped me organize three events about a month ago. Special thanks to Alannah for dealing with the lost delivery driver!

From Yolanda Cisneros, admission pperations coordinator: Sending a special thanks to both Saraith Murillo, senior manager for catering & special events, and Ronald Munoz, master calendar coordinator, for all of their help and support during the month of November when the Office of Admission held several events. We could not have done it without their cordiality and willingness in assisting us during a most busy and demanding time in both of their departments. We are truly grateful to them and we know that together with them we can look forward to many more successful events in the future!

From Sharla Fett, Professor of History: A shout out to Ron Munoz for fielding our many event requests and helping us find the best spaces available. The Master Calendar work must be endless -- the faculty appreciate all you do!

From Michael Gasper, associate professor of history:
Shout out to Jake Garza in DOCS: Homie came through at the last minute and in the clutch to print a bunch of posters for the History Department Fall Event and stayed late to do it! Much appreciation from us at Swan Hall for his efforts!
Another shout-out to Robert Martinez in facilities: He might work the vampire-hour shift, i.e. the night shift, but he's about the gentlest and nicest dude you'll run into on our campus! Props to him!

From Mai Thai, Assistant Professor of Sociology: Thanks to Allison Keeler and Rachel Park in Strategic Initiatives/Institutional Advancement for helping faculty apply for funding (and at times with quick turnarounds)!


Billington Professor of U.S. History Thomas Balcerski appeared on NBC Connecticut's Face the Facts to discuss how midterm elections typically play out and why this year was different. Balcerski was also interviewed for the National News about the relative underperformance of candidates backed by former President Trump during the recent midterm election.

In new research, Assistant Professor of Politics Isaac Hale and co-authors found that the COVID-19 pandemic significantly affected voter behavior and attitudes during the 2020 U.S. presidential election, but not in line with conventional wisdom. Trump's campaign messaging about the negative economic impact of lockdowns and other pandemic-related restrictions likely drove increased voter support for him in the worst affected areas. Hale and coauthors also wrote a blog post for the London School of Economics USAPP blog about their recently published article on COVID-19 attitudes and the 2020 presidential election.

Hale was interviewed by several outlets about Propositions 26 and 27, which failed to pass during California's midterm elections. Hear Hale's interviews with Southern California News Group, KALW, and The Center Square

In a new article in Third Text, Media Arts and Culture Professor Katarzyna Marciniak and her co-author focus on the concept of "marginalia" in refugee cinema. They analyze refugee films that feature female protagonists grappling with the traumatic effects of the refugee crisis, offering an intersectional counter-perspective to the dominant media representations of male refugees.

Across Latin America, women legislators express more gender-equal attitudes than men legislators, demonstrates Associate Professor of Politics Jennifer Piscopo and coauthors in a new article in Political Research Quarterly. “Opening the Attitudinal Black Box: Three Dimensions of Latin American Elites’ Attitudes about Gender Equality” indicates that women legislators are much more likely than men legislators to model egalitarian attitudes for voters and to express support for policies that support gender equality. 

Following Brazil’s congressional elections, Piscopo spoke with NPR’s Carrie Kahn about why Brazil elects so few women to Congress. She highlighted problems related to Brazil’s election law and persistent discrimination against women candidates. 

In an article published this past summer, Associate Professor of Biology Marcella Raney and co-authors Oliver Artiga '19, Ana Bucy '20, Ruo Qiu '19 and Elaine Cramer '20 present the results of a 10-week physical activity intervention for Oxy cleaning staff. The combination of workshift stretching and functional application training improved flexibility and repetitive-use pain levels. The study serves as a model for community engagement by exercise science students.

Raney has also published an article in Landscape and Urban Planning with alumni co-authors Elena Daniel '20 and Nkese Jack '20. The article presents the results from a study examining the impact of schoolyard design and green space on child well-being. To decrease activity inequities in urban Title I schools, schoolyards should include multiple unique play zones, motor skill challenges, and non-sport-based nature spaces.

For more information on faculty scholarship and accomplishments, visit the Center for Research & Scholarship.



Thursday, December 1: Were you a first-generation student? Oxy staff and faculty are invited to share about their journeys and enjoy food and drinks with current first-gen students in our community at the First-Gen Student Reception.

Thursday, December 1: Celebrate the studio art class of 2023 at their Senior Comps Exhibition opening! The exhibition will feature seven works from studio art major seniors working in painting and sculpture. 

Saturday, December 3: Oxy's Jazz Ensemble performs its winter concert live in Booth Courtyard. Make plans to attend or stream it live on Youtube.

Sunday, December 4: Director of Choral and Vocal Activities Desirée LaVertu conducts the Occidental Glee Club in its winter concert. The event will take place in Herrick Chapel and will also be broadcast live on YouTube.


Contact the Office of Marketing & Communications
AGC Administrative Center

First Floor

Jim Tranquada
Director of Communications and Community Relations
Office: (323) 259-2990