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Quick Takes: Furor Over Allegations About Duke Athletes' Party, Broader Impact of SAT Mistakes, Ex-President of Sierra Cleared, Strike Ends at Ontario Community Colleges, Bomb at French University, 98-Hour Lecture

March 27, 2006
  • Duke University on Saturday announced that it would forfeit two men's lacrosse games -- amid mounting criticism of the conduct of players at a party March 13. A woman who says that she was one of two dancers hired to perform at the party has told authorities that she was raped there. The woman, a student at North Carolina Central University, described the night for The Raleigh News & Observer, saying that attendees became abusive and shouted racial slurs at the dancers, both of whom are black. Some are suggesting that members of the lacrosse team are protecting one another and declining to cooperate -- although press reports indicate that 46 members of the team have provided DNA samples to the police and Duke officials have stressed that many team members did not attend the party. The announcement about forfeiting the games said that while facts remain in dispute, it was already clear that the party involved the hiring of private dancers and underage drinking. Richard C. Broadhead, president of Duke, issued a statement in which he urged full cooperation with the investigation and said that "physical coercion and sexual assault are unacceptable in any setting and have no place at Duke."
  • The broader impact of the recent discovery of thousands of SAT scoring errors may be on scholarships, not admissions decisions, The New York Times reported. Colleges generally say that they do not use SAT cutoffs, so small changes in SAT scores should not -- in theory -- lead to many changes. But many states and other entities use cutoff levels to award scholarships, the newspaper noted.
  • A grand jury has cleared Kevin Ramirez, the ex-president of Sierra College, in California, of accusations that he violated election rules with donations during bond campaigns for the college, The Union reported. The grand jury also urged the college's board to apologize for the charges, which led to Ramirez's ouster, the newspaper reported.
  • Faculty members at Ontario community colleges will return to work today, following an 18-day strike. While the union and college leaders remain apart on some key issues, both sides agreed to arbitration to settle those differences. One faculty member -- John Stammers, who taught accounting at Centennial College -- died during the strike from injuries when a car struck him while he was on a picket line.
  • A professor was killed and up to 20 people may be missing following an unexplained explosion Friday at a chemistry institute affiliated with Haute-Alsace University, in France, Reuters reported.
  • A lecturer in applied botony at Mangalore University finished a 98-hour lecture Sunday to claim the world's record for longest lecture, The Times of India reported. The previous record, 88 hours, was held by a South African academic.
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