After a three-year hiatus, the Boo Bash was back this morning! The Human Resources team revived the event and hosted the festivities on the AGC outdoor patio. Once again the children from Oxy’s Child Development Center entertained us with Halloween songs led by “Mr. Mario” (Mario Hidalgo ’80) and enjoyed trick-or-treating around the patio, thanks to the generous candy donations by staff. Departments competed in a pumpkin carving contest and showed off their creative costumes with both team and individual costumes. Congratulations to this year’s winners:

  • 1st place in the pumpkin carving contest: Intercultural Community Center
  • 1st place in the individual costume contest: Anaid Garcia-Figueroa, executive assistant to the VP & COO and the general counsel (a.k.a. Wednesday Adams)
  • 1st place in the department costume contest: the "hot shots" of the Business Office


Mark your calendars ... the 2023 Benefit Open Enrollment period is set to take place November 7-18. With the exception of Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), enrollment in benefits is "passive," meaning that if you would like to carry over your current 2022 benefit elections into 2023, no action is needed. In order to participate in the FSA plan for 2023, enrollment/re-enrollment is required during the 2023 Benefit Open Enrollment period. Employees will be able to utilize the online Ease enrollment platform to make changes to medical, dental and vision plans and to enroll/re-enroll in the FSAs. Employees will receive benefit materials via Oxy email on November 7 that will include a link to the Ease enrollment platform. Questions? Please email

If you need support with navigating life's stressors, the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a resource that is available to you. Administered by Ability Assist by Hartford, the EAP offers employees confidential, personal support for a wide range of issues, from everyday stressors to serious concerns. Oxy provides this program for employees and their families at no cost to the employee. Click here to learn more. 

PageUp Update: HR is continuing the development and refinement of Oxy's PageUp applicant tracking and recruitment requisition system. Partnering with ITS and the Business Office, we remain focused on delivering a user-friendly and intuitive system that employs data auto-population programming to reduce and simplify human data entry efforts. At the beginning of October, we implemented the system for use by HR, Business Office and applicants. Using this strategy, we effectively discover needs for further improvements and added functionality, in keeping with our interest to ultimately deliver an easy and seamless innovative experience to the end user in January 2023. In the meantime, Linda Escobar and Jessica Ochoa, Oxy's recruiters, will be the system's "legs," ensuring uploaded resumes and/or completed applications are delivered to the hiring managers. There is a good deal more to build, most importantly training materials and video "how to's," all while continuing with our regular duties.  We hope your excitement is growing—ours certainly is.

Homero Aguilar, Campus Safety officer
Emily Anaya, assistant director of career education and advising, Hameetman Career Center
Elizabeth Denny, Project SAFE director and survivor advocate
Attalie    Dexter, technical web administration/product manager, ITS
Priscilla Falter, assistant director of programs and administrator, McKinnon Center for Global Affairs
Cecilia    Garibay, project coordinator, UEPI
Mouloukou Kante, systems administrator, ITS
Katelyn Legacy-Roulston, archivist, Special Collections & Archives
William  Melgar, Campus Safety officer
Sonny Tran, information security analyst/administrator, ITS
Francisco Rubalcaba, grounds maintenance, Facilities
Mason Anthony Barrios, Helpdesk coordinator, ITS
Alison Escobar, administrative assistant, Intercultural Community Center
Kira McLean, academic advisor, Neighborhood Partnership Program
Daisy Navarro, academic advisor, Neighborhood Partnership Program
Zeke Sebastian, development and events coordinator, Institutional Advancement
Albert Tovar, evening Tiger Cooler coordinator, Campus Dining

Abraham Desantiago Loera, academic advisor, Neighborhood Partnership Program
David Jovanelly, evening Tiger Cooler supervisor
Melissa Hernandez, teacher, Child Development Center
Thomas O'Brien, Campus Safety Officer



Oxy Employs Variety of Methods to Reduce Water Usage
Oxy reduced its water usage by more than 2.9 million gallons over the summer as it responds to California's prolonged drought with a variety of different methods, allowing some lawns to turn brown while increasing drought-tolerant landscaping and improving its data gathering.

Billboard Names Oxy One of Top Music Programs—Again
For the third year, Occidental College’s Music Department has been named as one of the world’s top music business programs by Billboard magazine.

Ireland, Sanchez Are "Transformative Hires" for Oxy's Art & Art History Department
As the newest faculty members in Oxy's Art and Art History Department this fall, Janna Ireland and Jose Guadalupe Sanchez III will be teaching photography and painting, respectively. But the impact these two artists--Oxy's first Mellon Faculty Diversity Initiative Post-Doctoral Fellows--will have on the department extends far beyond their initial teaching assignments.


The International Programs team is so grateful to Julie Santos, associate director, for her 2 1/2 years of leadership and growing expertise in managing our student application, faculty recommendation and crisis management portal, Terra Dotta. We could not contribute to Oxy's strategic goals for global and civic engagement without Julie.

From Rob Flot, vice president for student affairs and dean of students: I'm giving a shout out to the Project SAFE staff for planning and hosting an amazing open house on September 14. It was very well attended, and it also provided an opportunity to highlight and remind the Oxy community about the support available for survivors of sexual assault and sexual misconduct, and the education and prevention resources that Project SAFE provides to our community.

From Dana Brandsey '02, director, alumni and parent engagement: This is a "shout-out" to the Homecoming & Family Weekend Planning Team: Leanne Sappington, Amy Reyes, Ranj Kulkarni, Kelsey Belli, Loralee Ocasio, Brigette Young, Kevin Brown, Kathy Lopez, Culley Johnson, and Sabrina Alfaro for an incredible job in creating a Tiger-rrific Homecoming & Family Weekend. Everyone's hard work brought our community together in a special way to celebrate the Oxy experience!

From Mary Maher, interim director of human resources: Often gone unsung as one of Oxy's "heros" I am giving a special shout out to Linda Escobar, Oxy's employment manager. What most never see is how talented and creative Linda is in securing talent for every Oxy hiring manager. When developing a hire offer strategy, she remains primarily focused on creating a win-win—advocating for the job candidate considering the offer while she remains a thoughtful and attentive steward of Oxy's precious resources. It isn't always an easy road—hiring manager anxieties in a tough employment market, limited and stretched budgets, economic pressures presented by the sought-after candidate—it's all a delicate balance that Linda calmly maneuvers through. Just the other day she mentioned it was a good thing she has a thick skin and I wholeheartedly agree! And in the face of that and more, Linda has not failed to secure a hire acceptance, finding renewal in her contribution of bringing together a new hire and supervisor. Many of my most favored moments are the ones in which I celebrate her successes, as they truly are Oxy's successes.

From Devon Sakamoto, assistant dean of students for Emmons Wellness Center: I would like to give a shout-out to the entire Emmons team. Emmons counseling staff have done a tremendous job managing mental health crises amidst the beginning of a very busy semester, in addition to providing their usual therapy services, drop-in spaces, and groups for various student populations. Emmons medical, administrative, and COVID operations staff have skillfully managed fall semester insurance issues, provided weekly COVID testing and contact-tracing, and offered several campus wide vaccination clinics to keep our community safe and healthy, in addition to their daily work of seeing patients at Emmons. Thank you, Emmons–truly the dream team!


Fabio Paolizzo, Mellon postdoctoral fellow in the Music Department, recently released a new album with artist Nicole Mitchell. Paolizzo used an A.I. program he designed to create the music. The album received positive reviews in the November issue of The Wire.

Associate Director of IPO Julie Santos will be traveling to Seoul, South Korea in November to be a speaker at CIEE's Global Education Conference. She will co-present a workshop about "Enhancing Mental Health Support for Study Abroad" which will explore ways to improve and expand on supporting students with mental health support needs in a holistic sense with an eye towards providing wraparound support for students. 

Invited to write on "Ficino on Beauty"  for an international scholarly book, Professor of History Maryanne Horowitz diversified the book's scope of coverage by contrasting Ficino's views with the printed conversation between Philo and Sophia of the first modern Jewish philosopher.

Assistant Professor of Politics Isaac Hale was interviewed for KCRW's Press Play about California Propositions 26 and 27, which are competing measures to legalize sports better either in-person or online. Listen here. 

In an op-ed for CNN, Billington Professor of History Thomas Balcerski writes about the history behind President Biden's decision of whether or not to run for reelection in 2024. Balcerski joined Tavis Smiley on KBLA this month to unpack the "great risk" that comes with Biden's waffling on a future presidential run.

KCRW's Press Play interviewed Associate Professor of Economics Andrew Jalil about how supply chain disruptions from COVID and the war in Ukraine, plus pandemic stimulus checks have contributed to today’s inflation and Federal Reserve policy. Listen here.

Will the Supreme Court ruling in Dobbs bring more women voters to the polls in November? Not necessarily, explained Associate Professor of Politics Jennifer Piscopo in The Washington Post. Other issues—like climate, gun control, and inflation—will also shape how women vote. 

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



Saturday, November 5Chris Kim will conduct the Occidental Symphony Orchestra at 4 p.m. for their fall concert. The event will take place in Thorne Hall and can also be viewed via livestream

Monday, November 7: Save the date for an exciting event on the history of Black political organizing with Dr. P. Gabrielle Foreman, titled, "Why Didn’t We Know?!: The Forgotten History of the Colored Conventions and 19th-Century Black Political Organizing."

Thursday, November 17: Oxy Arts presents an evening with GYOPO, collective of diasporic Korean cultural producers and arts professionals, and Stop DiscriminAsian (SDA) a coalition of workers within arts and culture who are confronting the racism, xenophobia and violence towards diasporic Asians that have been amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Contact the Office of Marketing & Communications
AGC Administrative Center

First Floor

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