Quick Takes: Judge Rejects Anti-Evolution Suit Against Berkeley, $200M to Columbia for Neuroscience, $200M to NYU for Ancient World, Soccer Deal for Rowan, Maine Calls Off Merger, Stem Cell Researcher Fired, Improving Job Market for New Grads

March 21, 2006
  • A federal judge has rejected a lawsuit that accused the University of California at Berkeley of unconstitutionally promoting one religious view over another through a Web site on evolution, the Associated Press reported. The suit focused on a Web site to help high school teachers deal with the evolution controversies by noting, in part, through a links section that identifies the many religious groups that do not oppose the teaching of evolution.
  • Columbia University announced Monday that it had received a gift valued at more than $200 million with which it plans to create a new neuroscience teaching and research facility. The gift, Columbia's largest ever, is from the Jerome L. Greene Foundation and Dawn M. Greene, and it will create the Jerome L. Greene Science Center, to honor Dawn Greene's late husband. The center will house Columbia's Initative in Mind, Brain and Behavior.
  • New York University is expected to announce a $200 million gift today -- to create a multidisciplinary research center on the ancient world, The New York Times reported.
  • New Jersey's Rowan University is considering a major role in a $1 billion deal in which Major League Soccer would place a new team in a studium to be built on a new Rowan campus, the Associated Press reported.
  • The University of Maine's Board of Trustees formally abandoned its plan Monday to merge the university's Augusta campus with the University of Southern Maine, the university announced Monday. The trustees had approved the plan as part of a broader restructuring in September 2004, but the board postponed the proposed merger in the face of significant opposition from legislators and other critics, who said it would undermine the campus's identity. The board plans nonetheless to shift the Augusta campus's focus from a primarily two-year to a four-year campus.
  • Seoul National University on Monday formally dismissed Hwang Woo-suk, the scientist whose highly publicized success in cloning human embryonic stem cells has been discredited, the Associated Press reported. Officials at South Korea's most prestigious institution said they had acted because Hwang had disgraced the institution; he and six other professors, who were either suspended or demoted, "fundamentally abandoned honesty and sincerity ... and caused the fall in the school's honor and the country's international confidence,'' the university said in a statement.
  • A report by a an employment consulting firm projects that this year's college graduates will find the best job market since 2001, Reuters reported.
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