Quick Takes: UCLA Will Alter Taser Rules, Contract in Doubt, Ex-Trustees Seek Antioch Changes, Impact of Ariz. Anti-Immigrant Law, Student Sues Over Suspension for Web Site, Biola Sues Bankers, Compromise on Printing Tool, The Top College Mottoes

August 2, 2007
  • The University of California at Los Angeles announced Wednesday that its police department is reviewing and changing guidelines for when Tasers can be used. Among the changes are limiting their use to violent subjects and barring their use on passively resistant subjects or handcuffed subjects. An incident last year in which Tasers were used on a student in a library infuriated many on the campus and worldwide when a video of what happened appeared on YouTube. UCLA police officials conducted an investigation, which concluded that no policies were violated. That report remains confidential. An outside review commissioned by the university and released Wednesday, however, found that violations of policy did take place. That outside review said that there were "other options and opportunities reasonably available to de-escalate the situation" in the library without Taser use.
  • A tentative contract may not hold for faculty members at the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. A strike was averted in July with a last-minute deal, but the Associated Press reported that union leaders believe that the official contract they were sent for ratification contained provisions that were counter to the agreement they made with administrators in July. So now, the union leaders are urging the rank and file professors to reject the contract.
  • Seven former Antioch University board members, including the last three board chairs, this week wrote to the current board, urging it to immediately create a separate board to govern both Antioch College and the university's distance education unit, to give the new board specific fund raising goals, and the authority to plan for the college's re-opening and to hire and fire its president. The letter from the former trustees notes that the plan from the current university board to suspend the college's operations has generated "a deep distrust" by many, and said changes are needed to protect the college's role. Antioch University is currently governed by a single board -- and critics have said that governance reform is crucial to any effort to save the college. Arthur J. Zucker, the current board chair, responded to the letter with one of his own, in which he thanked the former trustees for their thoughts, and pledged that the board believes it is time "to tackle the governance issue." He also said, however, that the board must consider the "financial implications" of any governance changes, and evaluate them "honestly and realistically and professionally."
  • Nearly 5,000 people in Arizona have been denied certain education benefits -- such as financial aid or in-state tuition rates -- because of a new state law barring such benefits for immigrants who lack the legal right to be in the United States, The Arizona Republic reported.
  • A student who was suspended from the University of Delaware because of material on his Web site has filed a federal lawsuit charging that his First Amendment rights have been violated, the Associated Press reported. Delaware officials are not commenting, but the student said that the concerns focused on material such as a list of imaginary sexual acts, such as "The Sociopath," in which one seduces a partner with romance, has sex and after she falls asleep, set her on fire. The student was eventually cleared of charges of violating its computer policy, but was suspended over failing to stay away from his dorm, as he was ordered to do when the computer issue arose.
  • Biola University, in California, is suing Bank of America and BNP Paribas for $25 million or more in damages that the university says it is owed because it was overcharged in the process for issuing bonds on its behalf, Bloomberg reported. Bank officials declined to comment.
  • A backlash among local and university print shops to the latest version of Adobe Reader, which includes a button that sends documents electronically to the nearest FedEx Kinko's store for printing or mailing, seems to have resulted in victory. Owners of the smaller businesses, who are heavy users of Adobe software, argued that the arrangement could undermine universities' quality control and give Kinko's stores an unfair advantage. Starting in October, the next version of Adobe Reader will no longer include the button, although users who find the feature convenient will be able to continue to download Kinko's-equipped software at the FedEx Kinko's Web site. At the same time, Adobe is creating a "Print Advisory Council" to potentially look into incorporating third-party services into future versions of the free software.
  • Motto Magazine, a new publication that describes itself as helping people "work with purpose, passion and profit," has released a list of the top 10 college mottoes. The winners and their mottoes are: 1. Cornell University: “I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study." 2. Brown University: “In God we hope.” 3. Wellesley College: “Not to be ministered unto, but to minister.” 4. Stanford University: “The wind of freedom blows.” 5. University of Pennsylvania: “Laws without morals are useless.” 6. Seton Hall University: “Whatever risk, yet go forward.” 7. Dartmouth College: “A voice of one crying out in the wilderness.” 8. Carnegie Mellon University: “My heart is in the work.” 9. Clark Atlanta University: “I’ll find a way or make one.” 10. Brigham Young University: “Enter to learn, go forth to serve.”
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