Oakes College

Communicating Diversity for a Just Society

Oakes College’s theme, Communicating Diversity for a Just Society, prepares students to become active citizens and future leaders capable of communicating across differences to bring about a more egalitarian and just society.

Academic Requirements Communicating Diversity for a Just Society, the Oakes College core course, introduces students to the major intellectual, cultural, social, and political themes that have shaped the college for over four decades. The core course is designed to help students find their voices and to join the ongoing scholarly conversation that thrives at UCSC.

Video taken prior to COVID-19.
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Educational Enrichment and Extracurricular Opportunities

  • Oakes College is committed to intellectual, academic, and personal inquiry rooted in the possibility of affecting positive social and political change. Oakes is the home of the “Certificate in Community Justice and Service Learning”. This program provides students the opportunity to address social justice issues through critical reflection and action.
  • The theme residence program provides a place where differences are not barriers but invitations to grow and collaborate.
  • Each residence hall and apartment block was named by students to honor inspirational figures from the arts, government, politics, literature, and public advocacy.
  • A diversity of programs include our traditional “Core Café” discussion evenings in our lounges with Core Course faculty, dances, cultural celebrations, movies, and open-mic events.
  • Oakes Library and the West Side Writing Center are located in the Academic/Administrative building. The library is a quiet place for study and the Writing Center provides support for students to further develop their writing skills.
  • The Science Community provides students who are interested in science majors and careers an opportunity to live together in a dynamic, intentional learning environment, that fosters excellence through a range of special programs including: mentoring, collaborative study tables, and an on-site graduate student “scientist in residence”.

Housing and Dining

  • Oakes College student housing includes residence halls and apartments.
  • A cafe is located at the college.
  • A dining hall is nearby.

Dining hall renovation project

The Rachel Carson/Oakes Dining Hall will be undergoing renovation during the 2021-22 academic year. To provide additional service for the west side of campus, the nearby Porter/Kresge Dining Hall will offer expanded hours, including weekends and Late Night service. Also, the Oakes Cafe will be open 7 days per week and students will be able to use their meal plans for a limited number of meals each week at the cafe. As always, students can use their meal plans to dine at any open dining hall on campus, so they can visit a location that’s convenient to their next class, a trip to the gym, studying at a library, or meeting up with friends. more »

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