La Jolla News Nuggets: ‘Spaces as Places’ hearing; Bird Rock wreath contest; RSVP team; UCSD ranking; more

“Spaces as Places” gets hearing at the Coastal Commission in December

After months of waiting, the city of San Diego’s “Spaces as Places” program is being heard by the California Coastal Commission, which could make it law in the coastal zone that includes most of La Jolla.

The commission is scheduled to take up the matter at its next meeting, December 14-16 in Long Beach and online.

The Spaces as Places initiative, which went into effect in most parts of the city in mid-July, establishes regulations for eating and drinking areas in parking lots on city streets and other outdoor public spaces, and provides a process for transitioning existing temporary operations into permanent ones. Businesses must comply with the new regulations to be eligible under Spaces as Places.

However, the program cannot take effect in coastal areas until it has been reviewed and certified by the Coastal Commission. The review is necessary because the ordinance requires a change in local coastal programs, which serve as planning documents for coastal communities.

Bird Rock vendors are holding a wreath decorating contest

Vendors on La Jolla Boulevard in Bird Rock have started a friendly wreath decorating contest in advance of the December 10th BirdStock Music Festival & Holiday Market.

About 30 companies create a Christmas wreath to hang in their facility that best reflects or represents their business. Each wreath has a QR code that community members can use to vote for their favorite. The winner for best wreath will be announced at the BirdStock event, held on La Jolla Boulevard.

BirdStock will feature musicians, vendors and more, with proceeds going to the Bird Rock Foundation, which supports Bird Rock Elementary School.

SDPD Northern Division seeks senior volunteers

The San Diego Police Department’s Northern Division is seeking additional members for their Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) for La Jolla, University City, Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Mission Bay, Bay Park, Bay Ho, East and West Clairemont, Torrey Pines and the UTC area.

RSVP volunteers assist the SDPD with neighborhood patrols and use police radios to report to the department when necessary. They also assist sworn uniformed officers in redirecting traffic at the scene of accidents, crimes and fires, and support disaster preparedness and homeland security efforts. RSVP team members are authorized to issue subpoenas for vehicles violating parking regulations in disabled parking spaces and red zones.

RSVP volunteers also visit seniors to check on their safety and well-being as part of the You Are Not Alone program and can be assigned to conduct daily home security checks for residents who are on vacation.

Volunteers must be at least 50 years old, hold a valid California driver’s license, commit to three days of service per month (in addition to a short day of training), and pass a background check.

If interested, contact the Northern Division office at (858) 552-1737 and leave a message with your name and phone number.

UC San Diego rises to #29 in world reputation rankings

UC San Diego-La Jolla was named the #29 university in the world and rose five places in the Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings for 2022.

UCSD also rose four spots to rank 17th in the United States and 5th among the nation’s public colleges, up one spot from the previous year.

The Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings are based on the world’s largest invitation-only opinion poll of top-ranking published academics. Scholarship recipients are asked to name no more than 15 universities that they believe are the best for research and teaching in their field.

A total of 200 schools were rated in Times Higher Education’s final list.

In October, UCSD was ranked #15 in the United States and #20 globally in US News & World Report’s 2022-23 Best Global Universities. In September, the US News & World Report 2022 Best Colleges Ranking ranked the school the eighth best public university in the country.

The La Jolla Institute for Immunology welcomes four new board members

The La Jolla Institute for Immunology has four new board members: former US Rep. Susan Davis, philanthropist and research advocate Barbara Donnell, cellular and molecular biologist Sandra Schmid, and immunologist and science policymaker Linda Sherman.

Davis served ten terms from 2001 to 2021 as a representative of California’s 53rd congressional district. She has a master’s degree in social work and is an advocate for equal opportunity in healthcare and patients’ rights.

Donnell is a Type 1 Diabetes Advocate whose work includes coordinating the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and LJI Meet the Scientists Day for T1D patients and their families.

Schmid worked to uncover the molecular mechanisms and regulation of clathrin-mediated endocytosis, a process in cells that controls nutrient uptake. Her honors include a MERIT Award from the National Institutes of Health, the William C. Rose Award from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and election to the American Academy of Arts of Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. In 2020, Schmid became the first Chief Scientific Officer of the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub, a non-profit research organization.

Sherman is a past president of the American Academy of Immunology and professor emeritus at Scripps Research in La Jolla, where her lab shed light on how T cells respond to threats such as tumor cells. Sherman has also served on several NIH committees and national advisory boards tasked with reviewing grant applications and creating guidelines on federal funding priorities. She was also involved in the early growth and leadership of the non-profit organization Kids Included Together in San Diego, which provides childcare, after-school, and recreational opportunities for children with developmental disabilities.

— Compiled by La Jolla Light staff