what we do

The UC Links Mission

UC Links is a network of university and community partners, working together to develop innovative after-school programs. UC Links sites bring underserved P-12 youth together with university students in guided activities that engage their minds and connect them to each other, their communities, and the world around them.

UC Links works to:

  • Prepare P-12 young people for higher learning.
  • Improve undergraduate and graduate education.
  • Build sustainable university-community partnerships.

The UC Links Strategy

Each UC Links site location is a collaboration among local community, school, and university partners. participating university faculty teach practicum coursework that places their students at local after-school sites and engages them in integrating theory and real-world experience.  

At each site, UC Links partners use digital and other hands-on resources to create learning activities for local youth. Guided by undergraduates, local young people take part in these activities, which stir academic engagement and inspire enthusiasm for higher learning. UC Links partners carry out and evaluate these activities locally and also share ideas and experiences with across sites in different localities. Together, we contribute to an increased understanding of effective learning activities for underserved youth from diverse backgrounds.  

History

Since 1996, UC Links has worked as a collaborative community-university network to sustain quality after-school programs that help prepare underserved youth for higher learning and lifelong achievement. Originally based on the Fifth Dimension  and La Clase Mágica programs, UC Links’approaches to after-school learning now include a wide array of program activities that make use of new digital media and other innovative educational resources.For example, see Beyond the Fifth Dimension.

As a network of programs, UC Links has grown from 14 sites in 1996-97 to 28 sites in 2014-15. In 2005, UC Links became a part of the University of California's Student Academic Preparation and Educational Partnership (SAPEP) programs.

UC Links has served over 40,000 young people in diverse communities throughout California.