University of California, Riverside

Palm Desert Center

Academic Programs

Graduate Programs

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

MFAThe MFA in Creative Writing and Writing for the Performing Arts is a unique seven quarter low residency program that provides writers with a path toward publication and production in all genres of writing including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and screenwriting. Students explore multiple genres, allowing for a cross-disciplinary approach that is ideal for writers seeking the artistic latitude to move fluidly within the field. A unique feature of the program is that each student meets with a literary agent in their last quarter to examine their work. Visit MFA for more information.

Future Physician Leaders (FPL)

FPLThe Future Physician Leaders (FPL) program is a long-term summer mentorship program for prospective medical students who also want to fulfill a mission of service to the community. The seven-week summer program is made up of three components: the Leadership Lecture Series, Community Service and Research Project, and Physician Shadowing Rotations. One program site is here in the Coachella Valley based out of UCR Palm Desert! The community-based, collaborative program was started in 2009 by Dr. Raul Ruiz. For more information, please contact Sophia Rodriguez, Program Coordinator at (951) 827-6030 or sophia.rodriguez@medsch.ucr.eduAPPLY NOW!

Continuing Education

Explore. Advance. Connect.

Whether you're looking to train for a new career; advance in your current field; exploreUNEX the wonders of our changing world; or connect with people who share your interests, UCR Extension offers you more than 90 certificate programs and enrichment courses online and in classroom settings to meet your educational, career and enrichment needs. Visit UCR Extension,  search for classes, or find out more about the OSHER Lifelong Learning Institute.

Supervision and Leadership

Managing Through Workplace Inclusion

Meets 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, starting Sept. 13

Examines the strategies and techniques supervisors can utilize to ensure that organizational values, goals, and objectives are met--even in the presence of organizational discord or management conflict. You will explore the role of diversity in the workplace and how to create an environment in which men and women of different cultural, ethnic, religious, socioeconomic backgrounds and disabilities can work together agreeably. Enroll now! 

Moving Through Change: What is in It for Me?

Meets 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, starting Nov. 8

Discussion of the strategies and techniques to be a successful leader, guiding others through change management. Enroll now! 

Motivating, Managing, and Developing Others

Meets 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, starting Nov. 29

A thorough introduction to the various methodologies, techniques, and strategies available to business leaders, managers and entrepreneur's seeking to improve their staff's capabilities, engagement, innovation and flexibility. You will also examine the attitudes and attributes successful coaches and mentors use to empower others. Enroll now!

Managing High Performance Teams

Meets 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, starting Feb. 21

Focuses on the manager and the skills needed to be successful at developing people, and creating effective high performance teams to meet organizational goals and objectives.  

Project Management 

Project Management Essentials 

Meets Tuesdays 5:30 to 9 p.m., starting Oct. 16

Whether you just want to explore the basics of Project Management so you can understand the principles, or see if this is an area you want to pursue, this Project Management Essentials class is for you. It's just a taste--a small bite--and that may be enough to satisfy you. But if it makes you want more, continue on and your units will apply toward a Professional Certificate in Project Management, or a Specialized Professional Program in Project Management for Business. Enroll now!

Project Leadership, Communication, and Team Building

Meets Mondays 5:30 to 9 p.m., starting Jan. 7

Examine how to assess, plan, implement, manage and monitor a project's human resource, communication and leadership requirements. 

Lean Six Sigma

Basic Statistic for Lean Six Sigma

Meets 5:30 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays, starting Jan. 15

The primary function of Lean Six Sigma is to reduce and remove waste in processes and systems.  A critical aspect of waste reduction is the use of statistical methods and tools to identify key areas where waste reduction is required. This course provides you with the ability to develop ideas for making decisions based on data versus opinions. It simplifies and explains the basic Lean Six Sigma statistical methods and tools needed to develop and navigate in a Lean Six Sigma environment. 


Quickbooks: Accounting and Finance Application for Business

Meets 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Mondays, starting Jan. 28

Learn QuickBooks, a leading accounting and finance software package for small organizations and home-based businesses. 

California Indian Nations College 

Fall classes include Introduction to the Study of Race and Ethnicity (Oct. 1-Dec. 10); Introduction to Archaeology (Oct. 2- Dec. 4); History 17A: The United States to 1877 (Oct. 4-Dec. 13). All classes take place at UCR Palm Desert. Scholarship funds are available through the California Indian Nations College. Find out more about the classes here


California Naturalist Program


The UC California Naturalist Program is designed to introduce Californians to the wonders of our unique ecology and engage the public in study and stewardship of California's natural communities. The program uses a science curriculum to instill a deep appreciation for the natural communities of the state and to inspire individuals to become stewards of their local resources.
Courses combine classroom and field experience in science, problem-solving, communication training and community service. Students are taught by UCR lead instructor Dr. Cameron Barrows and a team of experts. Subjects covered include ecology, geology, plant communities, wildlife, communication and interpretation, citizen science, energy/global environmental issues, and much more. Our next information session will be 6 to 7 p.m. Dec. 10. Find out more here!

Become A Master Gardener


Would you like to learn more about gardening in the desert and share that information with the community? Beyond the joy of gardening, all Master Gardeners give back to the community through volunteer work, educating and training other home gardeners in safe and sustainable gardening practices.

For more information call: 951-683-6491 ext. 230, or email:

More Information 

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Department Information

UCR Palm Desert Center
75080 Frank Sinatra Drive
Palm Desert, CA 92211

Tel: (760) 834-0800
Fax: (760) 834-0796

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