UCI Forward

UCI Forward is our commitment to the well-being of our community as we ramp up campus operations. Working together, each of us doing our part, we can move UCI Forward.

December 17 - Updates on COVID-19

Section 1

virtual party

Our risk-o-meter says the safest New Year’s Eve party looks like this. You can even kiss the screen at midnight.


Newsletter hiatus

Unless something dramatic happens (in 2020, you never know), this will be the last COVID-19 newsletter of the year. We wish everyone a joyful, healthy and peaceful holiday break and New Year! Thank you for reading these missives over the past nine months. We’ll be back Jan. 4.

13 new cases on campus

A two-day streak of no new student cases ended Wednesday with eight on-campus students and five campus employees testing positive for COVID-19. Visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard for more information.

Holiday COVID testing schedule for students

During the winter break, COVID testing will be limited to two locations (the Division of Continuing Education and Plaza Verde) and will take place only on Dec. 21-22, Dec. 28-29 and tentatively on Jan. 2-3 (at DCE and the Bren Events Center). Testing will be closed Dec. 23-27, Dec. 30-31 and Jan. 1.

Pick up your library materials this week

The last day for pickup services of library materials before winter break will be Friday. Pickup services will resume Jan. 6.


steve z

Mr. Campus Snapshot

If you’ve enjoyed the “campus snapshots” that frequently top our newsletters, here’s a picture of the shutterbug behind them, UCI photographer Steve Zylius. Look for more of his work when the newsletter returns next year.

AI tool predicts COVID outcomes

UCI Health researchers have released a free online tool that uses artificial intelligence and a patient’s medical history to predict whether someone diagnosed with COVID-19 can be sent home or will eventually need ICU care. Used since March, the tool has proved to be 95% accurate.

One more vaccine photo

We only had room yesterday for a handful of the wonderful pictures taken during vaccine welcome day at UCI Medical Center. Here’s one of our favorite outtakes:



The 10 biggest (non-COVID) science stories you might have missed in 2020

These stories would have been big news in any other year, but were often overshadowed by the pandemic. Here’s what you may have missed while you were busy washing your hands.


This section curates noteworthy coronavirus news, trends and opinions. No endorsement by UCI is implied. Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York TimesWall Street Journal and OC Register for students, faculty and staff.

Who’s next in line for California vaccines

Teachers, first responders, grocery employees and restaurant workers were among those recommended to get the next round of scarce vaccines in California, as were florists and sawmill operators, who fall into the broad category of essential workers.

State sets daily record for coronavirus cases, deaths

California broke its statewide records for both coronavirus cases and deaths reported in a single day on Wednesday. The state logged 51,724 cases, breaking the previous record of 42,088 cases set on Monday, according to a Los Angeles Times tally. California also reported 393 COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday, breaking the previous record of 295, set on Tuesday.

Did Thanksgiving fuel the current surge? Experts differ

NPR interviews doctors and epidemiologists about the fallout from holiday gatherings and finds mixed opinions.

California church creates fund for merchants who disobey shutdown

A large Northern California church has established a “freedom fund” to give thousands of dollars to local businesses, but not the ones that have closed their doors during the current lockdown. Instead, the fund will support businesses that defiantly stay open.

The saga of a top scientist who questioned March lockdowns

After Stanford epidemiologist John Ioannidis challenged conventional coronavirus wisdom, a fierce backlash ensued.


Amid the heartbreaking loss of life and economic hardship wrought by the coronavirus, we recognize the need for stories of kindness, hope, courage and humor.

The magic of snow globes

There’s something relaxing about staring into a snow globe and wondering, “What are they thinking about in there?”

Camel shops at Bath & Body Works

We’ve heard of people bringing emotional support animals on airplanes, but taking a dromedary to the store?

winter break