Original UCLA Today Article:Apr 08, 2011 By Jessica Nazar
UCLA K-12 Outreach, a new website created by a team of staff members, provides students, parents and educators with a simple and accessible way to find out about the numerous programs that UCLA offers to complement K-12 education. Taken on as a team project by a group of UCLA staff participating in this year’s Professional Development Program (PDP), the website now serves as a valuable resource for parents seeking academic and recreational opportunities for their kids.
PDP, offered by Campus Human Resources, is a highly regarded leadership program designed to help UCLA staff enhance their professional and management skills. An important component of the yearlong program is a team project — not simply an exercise but an actual work project for a campus department.
Lauren Na, a management services officer in the Humanities Division, proposed a project to centralize information about UCLA programs available to young Bruins.
“As a parent of three children, Na was eager to find opportunities for her children at UCLA — and ideally, in one location,” said project sponsor Julie Sina, chief of staff in the dean’s office of the College of Letters and Science.
Na’s idea reached the PDP team of Anna Guzman, Ivonne Nelson, Jaya Vaswani, Jill Rochefort and Troy Brown, whose interests in K-12 education made them eager to take on the project. Late last October, they began their work on what looked to be a daunting task.
“The most difficult part was just getting started,” said team member Rochefort, recalling a list of nearly 200 UCLA departments that each had to be contacted for information about programs for youth. Dividing the list between them, the team spent three months compiling content for the website. In early January, they passed the information on to the College’s Center for Digital Humanities, which transformed the hard data into an attractive and easy-to-use website.
UCLA K-12 Outreach lists more than 100 different programs to help parents, students and educators take advantage of campus resources, from an Acting & Performance Institute offered by the School of Theater, Film and Television to a writing workshop aimed at preparing college-bound students. (Story continues below image)
Website visitors can search by the group they are part of (parents, students or educators), the grade level they are interested in, and the type of programs, which include classes and workshops, summer camps and more. Each program listing includes a brief description, grade levels served, cost and scholarship availability, contact information and a website link. A News & Resources column provides links to stories about campus programs of potential interest.
Said Sina shortly before the new website went live, “The PDP group is doing an amazing job of connecting the dots and making Lauren’s hope a reality. It is our goal that faculty, staff and students will be able to easily find all that UCLA has to offer our youngest Bruins.”
Visit UCLA K-12 Outreach here.