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March 9, 2015

UCSD Extension is one of the largest and most sought-after training providers for workers in San Diego County. It also produces over $312,000 in scholarship funding annually, hosts a prestigious lecture series, and houses UCSD-TV, which boasts over 4 million viewers a year. Serving everyone from K-16 students to lifelong learners ages 55+, the institution strives to support the critical lifelong knowledge and skill development needs of individuals, organizations and the community.

This wide range of services is designed to focus beyond academics, creating better citizens from all walks of life. “We don’t just focus on academics; we have a social change model built into our programming,” says Ed Abeyta, UCSD Extension Assistant Dean for Community Engagement. “We focus on value systems and social change while teaching students how to learn about themselves, which isn’t always easy.”

One way they accomplish this is by creating programs that are open to all populations, bringing together students from varied walks of life. “We see first-generation college-bound students gaining confidence to compete and students from higher socio-economic backgrounds building an appreciation for things they previously took for granted,” Abeyta says. “Students find common ground and then common purpose.”

UCSD Extension is a vital partner of SDWP’s Life Sciences Summer Institute (LSSI), which exposes students to life sciences careers through a summer training and internship program. Every year UCSD gives LSSI participants the ability to earn transferable college prep credits through the program. “Our partnership with UCSD strengthens the effectiveness of LSSI by validating the work that students do in research laboratories,” says Erika Aranguré, LSSI Program Coordinator. “These credits become a tangible takeaway students can add to their portfolios and share with potential employers.”

The institution also provides over $25,000 in scholarships, allowing three to four LSSI students to participate in their Academic Connections Research Scholars program in which the students live on campus and work individually with a UCSD faculty researcher in a chemistry, biochemistry, biology or nanotechnology lab on campus while earning academic credit.

For more information on UCSD Extension, visit

LSSI applications are now open. Visit to apply.

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