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Welcome to the Muir Family

John Muir College, the second undergraduate college at UCSD, is named after John Muir, the environmentalist, writer, founder of the Sierra Club. While we do not have an academic requirement that students study the environment, we do include environmental issues in the college, Our motto, "celebrating the independent spirit" is inspired by Muir's life, travels, and political activism to change the fabric of the nation.

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Land Acknowledgment

Muir College is built on Mat kulaaxuuy in the unceded territory of the Kumeyaay Nation. We acknowledge the eighteen American Indian tribes of this territory - including the Kumeyaay, Payómkawichum, Cupeño and Cahuilla - as well as the many Indigenous communities from the Americas and the Pacific who call San Diego home, and whose relations exist beyond colonization. We acknowledge that the Kumeyaay lands stretch beyond the present-day US Mexico border, including Kumiai village communities in Baja California, Mexico. We commit to building good relationships with the Native peoples of these lands.

Muir Pow Wow 2019
Jim and Julie Environmental Justice Award Winners Jim and Julie Environmental Justice Award Winners

Response to Anti-Asian Violence

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander (AAAPI) communities are experiencing a rise in racism, xenophobia, and acts of violence as a result of COVID-19 in the U.S. and across the globe. In the twenty weeks between March 19 and August 5 of this year, over 2500 anti-Asian hate related incidents were reported, with 46% of these reports coming from California. From verbal assaults and the more insidious “shunning” to violent hate crimes, in businesses, on streets, and in public parks, with women targeted more than men, this alarming rise of anti-Asian racism is deeply concerning and affects many of our students, staff, and faculty in the Triton Community.

To quote from Professor Simeon Man, Director of the Asian American & Pacific Islander Studies Program:

The tragic killing of 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee and the violent attacks against Asian American elders in the Bay Area in the past two weeks have centered national media attention on anti-Asian violence once again. Anti-Asian violence has a long history in this country, and that history tells us the violence is systemic, inseparable from the violence of policing. As communities come together to condemn the violence and to enact collective care, we must refuse and speak out against solutions that call for more policing, even and especially those that do so in the name of protecting Asian Americans, and those that call for “community” or “less-lethal” forms of policing. In our collective responses, we must refuse the perpetuation of carceral logics and anti-Blackness.

We recognize this pandemic also disproportionately affects our AAAPI members who embody other marginalized identities including disabilities and chronic illness, LGBTQ+, and migrant/refugee communities. Such compounding experiences, coupled with the systemic erasure, invisibility, and conflation of AAAPI communities across a wide range of ethnicities only serve to further exacerbate existing disparities and fuel xenophobic and racist acts that often go unnoticed or underreported.

We also acknowledge the similar and stratified experiences of Black, Native, and Latinx communities that are deeply impacted by the same stream of hate and ignorance. We honor the intricately intertwining histories of oppression against these communities as well.

We condemn the rise of anti-Asian racism occurring in the U.S. and around the world as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We stand in solidarity with our Asian, Asian American, and Pacific Islander communities.

Our understandings about Anti-Asian violence and its relationship to other forms racism is being actively debated and created. We encourage all of us to keep educated on the latest thinking about the roots of racism and the actions that we can take. Here are some important places to start below:

o On Anti-Asian Hate Crimes by Michelle Kim

o Anti-Asian Hate Crime During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Exploring the Reproduction of Inequality

o Report from the National Institutes of Health: Anti-Asian sentiment in the United States – COVID-19 and history

o Anti-Asian violence and US imperialism - authored by Simeon Man, Associate Professor of History, UC San Diego

o What Does An Abolitionist Asian American Politics Look Like? with Dj Kuttin Kandi, Rachel Kuo, and Phal Sok

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