Calling All Alumni & Friends of Geography!

Dear Friends of Geography, In these challenging times the Department of Geography recognizes how important it is for people to stay connected and support each other. We wanted to take the opportunity to reach out to you, our Friends of Geography, and let you know we are thinking of you as we indeed think about all the members of the UCLA Geography community. We very much hope that you are healthy and in good spirits. We thought that you might be curious about how the Department and UCLA is coping with the shelter at home situation and how we are planning for the summer and fall. We ceased in person classes at the end of Winter Quarter and all of Spring Quarter has been taught remotely using online resources such as ZOOM. As you can imagine, suddenly shifting curricula from traditional in person lectures and TA sections to fully remote instruction was a huge challenge for faculty members and TA’s. This was largely how many of us spent Spring Break. However, you would be proud of how quickly faculty and TA’s got the job done and implemented online curricula. We have heard from a number of people that UCLA Geography was one of the most efficient and effective departments in UCLA Social Sciences Division in making the transition. At the same time, our dedicated and hard-working staff had to transition working remotely. Kasi McMurray, Management Services Officer (MSO) and her team were models of efficiency and our administration is running smoothly. We have also been having all our meetings, including our formal Faculty Meetings, via Zoom and that has also gone extremely well. What does the near future look like? UCLA has announced that all summer courses will be taught remotely, and we anxiously await word from UCLA administration on what Fall Quarter will look like. We are hoping that there will be some limited access to campus by researchers and staff over the summer. It is also possible there will approval for some limited domestic fieldwork. Since March, our labs and offices have been deserted. Research is being done – but using online data and resources. Although UCLA Geography has coped remarkably well with the disruption, we do feel the sense of loss at not being able to interact with our students face to face, meet visiting scholars, or have informal chats over a coffee. We are sure everyone is feeling this sense of isolation, including all our Friends of Geography. The Department has instituted a weekly email


update each Friday where we all share news and accomplishments. As our FoG President, Marianne Wright, begins work on the FoG newsletter to keep our Friends in touch, we thought it would be nice to provide you the opportunity to also share your major accomplishments of the past year and hear what other Friends of Geography have accomplished. So, if you have had a particularly notable event, honor etc. over the past year, please send Kasi an email at Please use the subject line “FoG News”. We will share these in the Newsletter. By the way – if we do not have your current email, please email it to Kasi. We will not share it with marketers etc. It is just for Geography to use for FoG communications. Also, please join us on Facebook . In closing, we want to say again that we hope you are staying well and keeping spirits up. As geographers we all miss travel for sure. However, as UCLA Geographers, we are all doing our best to help meet the challenge of the COVID-19 Pandemic and looking forward to better days ahead! All the best! Glen MacDonald Co-Vice Chair of Geography

The Friends of Geography is an organization of alumni, emeriti and friends of UCLA Geography dedicated to helping you keep connected with geography and exploring of the world’s natural environments, peoples and cultures. The organization sponsors various events and opportunities for its members to enjoy talks, social events and fieldtrips – engaging with each other and the wider world. Faculty and students from UCLA Geography bring the latest insights and discoveries to you. Friends of Geography also supports the work of the UCLA Department of Geography including offering annual scholarships to undergraduate students. In addition to periodic announcements about new discoveries and opportunities and a Facebook page, the Friends of Geography produces a lively Newsletter recounting what is happening in geography, the UCLA Department of Geography and sharing Member’s milestones and achievements.

Read the current Friends of Geography Newsletter


To become a Member of the UCLA Friends of Geography, please make your tax-deductible check payable to “UCLA Foundation – FOG #6325” and mail it to the following address

Friends of Geography
UCLA Department of Geography
Box 951524
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1524

Or you may –  Donate and Join the Friends of Geography Online

Chair’s Council ($2500 and Above)

Includes UCLA Chancellor’s Society Benefits

Patron ($1000 and Above)

Includes UCLA Chancellor’s Society Benefits

Leader ($500 and Above)

Member ($100 and Above )

Student/Recent Grad ($20)


Feel free to e-mail the Friends of Geography at or via Facebook for further information. We look forward to hearing from you!

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