General Meetings

General Meetings

Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UCSC General Meetings

Our members gather monthly, September through May inclusive, except in December, usually on the third Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon in the Colleges Nine and Ten Multipurpose Room to socialize, conduct business, and hear a speaker, often a UCSC professor. We greet, meet, and eat (fruit or cake, and coffee or tea), and interact with a speaker of note. At the first meeting of the year after the summer break, in September for 2019, in lieu of hearing from a speaker, we find out about and sign-up for interest groups.

Cancelled April General Meeting, , 10 a.m. – noon

We will update after May 1, 2020.

Location:  Colleges Nine and Ten Multipurpose Room, UCSC

Speaker: To be rescheduled:  Rebecca Covarrubias, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Psychology at UCSC



Topic: You never become fully independent”: Acknowledging the sociocultural experiences of low-income, first-generation students of color

U.S. classrooms reflect culture-specific ideas about the “right” way to be a student; specifically, they reward soft independence, such as self-expression and self-motivation. For students who are also guided by norms and practices of interdependence, such as low-income, first-generation students of color, the American educational institution is likely to be experienced as a “mismatch” or as a context that largely renders their culture invisible. In this talk, we examine how privileging soft independence ignores the familial commitments of low-income, first-generation students of color and other ways of enacting independence and, subsequently, undermines well-being and performance. We then discuss research on inclusive practices that better reflect and serve their values, intersecting identities, needs and strengths.

A social and cultural psychologist, Dr. Covarrubias is interested the importance of reflecting the cultural strengths and practices of students from diverse backgrounds in educational settings as a way to foster inclusion and equity. With her team of student researchers in the Culture and Achievement Collaborative, she works to translate research findings into practices that can shift the culture of institutions and help students thrive. Covarrubias is the faculty director of the Student Success Evaluation & Research Center, and she co-leads UCSC's first-generation initiative, which produces programming to support first-generation students and raises awareness about their needs and strengths.

Dr. Covarrubias graduated with a Bachelor of Science from The University of Arizona, where she was also a Ronald E. McNair Achievement Scholar. She continued at The University of Arizona to earn a Master's and Ph.D. in Social Psychology. After graduating, she was hired by the Department of Psychology to teach courses in Orvieto, Italy through the Arizona in Italy Study Abroad Program. Dr. Covarrubias then became a University Diversity Initiative Postdoctoral Fellow for the Center of the Study of Diversity and the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Delaware. She joined the Department of Psychology at UCSC in fall 2015 and presently is Faculty Director, Student Success Equity Research Center (SSERC), University of California, Santa Cruz

Program Chair

Our program chair, who finds and arranges for our speakers, is Barry Bowman. Please send suggestions for future speakers to him at