Quick Takes: Supreme Court Refuses Appeal on Tissue Ownership, Dartmouth Replaces Loans With Grants, Archibishop vs. Coach, Hunger Strike Ends

January 23, 2008
  • The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, without comment, refused to hear an appeal of lower court rulings that said a professor who left Washington University in St. Louis did not have the right take with him tissue samples donated to the university for research there. Many research universities feared that if the appeal had been heard and the decisions reversed, the stability of many laboratories could have been disturbed. A statement from Washington University said that the Supreme Court's action "affirms the critical role of research institutions to develop and maintain stable repositories of biologic material for medical research."
  • Dartmouth College on Tuesday became the latest college to announce significant improvements in its financial aid program. The college will replace loans with grants for all students eligible for assistance, and assure that students from families with incomes up to $75,000 don't need to pay anything to attend. In addition, the college announced that it was extending its need-blind approach to admissions to international applicants. Very few colleges -- even among those with need-blind admissions for American applicants -- extend that to foreign applicants.
  • Archbishop Raymond Burke of St. Louis is calling on St. Louis University to discipline Rick Majerus, the basketball coach, for stating his support for abortion rights and stem cell research, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. "When you take a position in a Catholic university, you don't have to embrace everything the Catholic church teaches. But you can't make statements which call into question the identity and mission of the Catholic church," the archbishop said. University officials said that the coach's comments -- at a campaign event for Hillary Clinton -- were not in his capacity representing the university.
  • Uri Horesh, a lecturer in Arabic at the University of Texas at Austin who went on a hunger strike last week to protest the lack of benefits for the partners of gay employees, has ended his hunger strike -- without a change in the university's policies. In an e-mail message to supporters, he said he had become to weak to work on his dissertation and that while he felt guilty, he needed to end his fast. Horesh said he believed his strike had attracted more attention to the issue, citing extensive press coverage in Texas and elsewhere.
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