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July 3, 2000

Conferences and camps keep UCSC busy for the summer

By Francine Tyler

Some 15,000 visitors from more than 30 countries are expected to come to UCSC this summer to participate in more than 100 conferences, academic institutes, camps, and outreach programs.

The ten-week conference season started on June 18 and will run to August 26 this year. Its diverse offerings range from a conference focusing on the biology and ecology of larval forms of life to an annual retreat for the El Camino Youth Symphony.

The conference program generates more than $3.5 million annually for UCSC. Conference guests occupy the 2,400 beds at UCSC's nine residential colleges, purchasing food and other services from the campus. Income from the summer helps to offset room-and-board rates charged to UCSC students by about $200 each year. Income is also returned to UCSC's colleges to help support student programs.

"The conference season greatly benefits members of the local community as well," said Nancy D'Angelo, assistant director of Housing, Dining, and Child Care Services. "The 15,000 visitors brought to the area by these conferences and camps often spend money at local businesses."

Approximately 60 percent of summer bookings come from UCSC Extension, Summer Session, and academic programs sponsored by faculty and staff. Businesses, sport and school groups, and professional organizations make up the remaining 40 percent.

For more information about this summer's conferences or about services offered by UCSC's Conference and Summer Housing Office, call (831) 459-2611 or go to their Web site. This year's conferences include:

Larval 2000 (June 24-28). At the Fourth International Larval Biology Meeting, some 200 researchers and professors will discuss the ecology and evolutionary biology of the larval stages of all aquatic organisms. Through informal symposia and reports of research-in-progress, the conference will address questions such as: Are larval forms of fish and invertebrates being destroyed by toxic releases from sewers, agriculture, and oil production? Where do fish and invertebrates birth their young? Why do organisms, from rockfish to barnacles, take up residence where they do?

Johns Hopkins-Center for Talented Youth (June 25-August 4). The Center for Talented Youth draws students from 40 states and 38 countries who are within the top 2 percent of their age group academically. The youth participate in three-week sessions. Students from grades five and six study topics such as writing and imagination, and those in grades seven, eight, and nine tackle subjects ranging from engineering design to neurobiology and the cold war.

California State Summer School in Mathematics and Science (June 26-July 22). This new summer school program, nicknamed "COSMOS," introduces academically gifted high school students to advanced topics not traditionally covered in high school curricula. COSMOS programs are taking place this summer at UC Santa Cruz and UC Irvine and were started in partnership with the state legislature. At UCSC, 150 students will explore Earth and ocean sciences, learning skills that include analyzing satellite pictures and writing programs to control simulated robots.

National Summer School in Nuclear Physics (July 3-14). This summer school program provides young researchers with broad exposure to the major themes in the field of nuclear physics. The program is cosponsored by the UCSC Division of Natural Sciences, the University of Washington, and the Department of Energy's Institute for Nuclear Theory.

Proyecto Avance (July 5-29). This intensive four-week residential program enhances academic achievement for migrant students from Monterey County. Most of the students--from grades five through seven--are two years older than their classmates. Avance offers a rigorous, all-day academic schedule, with an emphasis on English-language and study skills, important math concepts, computer literacy, and self-advocacy abilities.

Yo Puedo (July 5-29). Yo Puedo aims to provide migrant high school students with the skills they need to succeed academically. Through a rigorous study program of academic classes and leadership training, participants gain communication skills and self-confidence. Students in the four-week residential program earn 10 units toward their high school graduation.

Summer School on Adaptive Optics (July 8-14). Graduate students, researchers, and others interested in learning about adaptive optics will learn techniques for using adaptive optics technology and how it is applied in practice. Adaptive optics is a method for removing the blur caused by distortions within optical systems, and its use has implications for astronomy and vision science. At the weeklong conference, a series of lectures will explore such topics as atmospheric turbulence and the fundamentals of vision. The conference is sponsored by UCSC's Center for Adaptive Optics and the National Optical Astronomy Observatories.

Summer Youth Leadership (July 11-August 18). Ninth- and tenth-grade students attending East Side Union High School in San Jose will learn about higher education at this summer program. The students come from disadvantaged backgrounds and most would be the first in their families to attend college. The students will learn how to apply to colleges and develop a four-year academic plan. Workshops are designed to enhance study habits and improve note-taking, time management, critical thinking, and analytical skills. The program is run by UCSC's Educational Partnership Center.

Dickens Universe/Victorian Waste (July 30-August 6). At the 20th annual Dickens Universe conference, scholars, graduate students, teachers, and members of the general public will discuss Dickens's last completed novel, Our Mutual Friend. The conference features lectures and seminars, a book fair, daily workshops for teachers, Victorian teas, a Victorian dance with live music, and evening film screenings of the BBC movie version of Our Mutual Friend. A related conference focuses on the topic of Victorian waste. The programs are sponsored by the Dickens Project, and conference volunteers may attend for free. Call (831) 459-2103 for information.

UC College Prep AP Summer Institute (August 13-17). This summer institute for high school teachers focuses on Advanced Placement courses and exams. Participants will learn the latest College Board guidelines, learn from other teachers how to teach the courses successfully, and gain new strategies for turning the curricula into positive exam results.

El Camino Youth Symphony (August 13-18). Young violinists, flutists, and other school-age musicians will make use of UCSC's Music Center this summer as part of the El Camino Youth Symphony. The annual retreat allows the symphony to prepare for its upcoming season.

Forum2000 (August 20-23). The theme of the 14th annual Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) Forum is "e-Xtreme server synergy," encompassing web-enabling applications, professional services, servers, and development administration. The forum is an annual conference for business and information technology professionals that combines keynote speakers, seminars, exhibitions, and social events. More than 2,000 people are expected to attend.

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