UC Davis Going SmokeFree by 2014 By Felicia Alvarez If you take a whiff of air as you walk outside the CoHo or the Law School’s King Hall, there is no question that UCD has a significant population of tobacco smokers. Although UC students are half as likely to smoke as the rest of the nation, the smell of cigarette smoke isn’t a rare scent when you walk on campus. The days of this reality, however, are quickly coming to an end. In 2012, UC President Mark Yudof declared that a system-wide smoke-free policy would be implemented. Since then, a committee of students, in collaboration with the UCD Police Department, have been devising new plans for putting this new policy into practice. The committee, formally titled the Smoke-Free Policy Implementation Committee, made it their ambition to make UC Davis a smoke-free campus by 2014. These policies haven’t come out of the blue however. According to The SmokeFree Policy Proposal, the UC system has a variety of statistically supported reasons to go smoke-free. Historically, Californian legislation has placed bans on smoking in many public places such as restaurants and workplaces. On average, Californians smoke much less (11.9%) than Americans (19.6%) making it easier to implement a ban. Smoking bans on campuses are not unique to college campuses or the UC system. On the national level, 586 other campuses throughout the nation, including all UC Medical Centers, have smoke-free policies.
A smoker near Olson Hall. A special committee is working to make UC Davis smoke-free by 2014. Photo by Chris Whang.
The proposal cites health and environmental concerns as its main reasons for banning smoking on campus. It stands by the statement, “There is no safe level of smoke,” and hopes to decrease harmful effects of secondhand smoke that students are subject to under the current policy. Although the current policy in place states that smokers must move 20-25 feet away from a building on campus, some worry that this isn’t being regulated enough and that more action must be taken. The litter from cigarette butts is another factor pushing the UC system towards a smoke-free policy. The Smoke-Free Committee has already begun devising a strategy to make UCD smoke-free. Primarily, they hope to do this through an educational approach. This would include spreading awareness of the policy, providing resources for smokers who want to quit, and creating a system where students can inform the police of infractions. Another approach would be
carried out by campus police who would give out fines for infractions. These fines would increase in amount if an individual has multiple smoking offenses on campus and could ultimately lead up to a marking on one’s student record. As for opposition to this new policy, no groups have come out with a formal statement against UC Davis turning smokefree yet. The Smoke-Free Committee has concern as to how it will affect on-campus housing that includes dorms, various fraternity and sorority houses, and the West Village apartments. Although the current policy states that residents aren’t allowed to smoke inside these residences, the Committee is worried that these groups may have particular opposition to the new policy. However, both the implementation of this new policy and concerns regarding it are still in progress. The coming months may reveal new developments and debates over the policy.
Up In Smoke The cigarette. Soldiers were given rations of them during both World Wars. Women were told they were fashionable to smoke, and brandished the cylinders as a sign of liberty during the Women’s Rights Movement. Workers have been aided by the stimulating effects of nicotine for the last century. Hipsters are now puffing on organic tobacco. Juxtapose that with the “cancer-stick”. Surgeon General warnings on the back of packages. Thousands of cases of cancer and other deadly health problems. Addiction. Second-hand smoke. However different they may be, each of these discourses is part of the complex history of cigarette-smoking in this country. But the most recent debate concerns various laws banning smoking altogether, including one that has been introduced at UC Davis but has yet to be enforced. In terms of liberty, the smoking ban at UC Davis highlights two questions: what about the right to be responsible for one’s own health? What about the freedom to exert one’s independence by engaging in a completely legal activity? These are the questions at odds with UC
President Mark Yudof ’s systemwide anti-smoking initiative. There’s no doubt that the requirement for all UC campuses to develop and implement a smoking ban by 2014 is wellintentioned. The ban is in line with an effort by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, called the Healthy People 2020 initiative, which attempts to reduce the amount of secondhand smoke and environmental pollutants by repealing citizens’ ability to smoke in public places and aims to encourage current smokers to quit. Many public places, including restaurants, workplaces, and even cities, have banned smoking over the last few decades for these same reasons. Yet even the Southern California city of Calabasas, which just a few years ago implemented what The New York Times called “the toughest anti-smoking law in the nation,” still allows offices and businesses to designate smoking areas away from foot-traffic. Yudof ’s plan does not call for this. The entirety of the UC Campus, including residence halls, outdoor eating areas, and open spaces outside of classrooms, despite being open-air, low traffic areas, will be smokefree. Those who are addicted, those who make the personal choice to smoke for various reasons, those who are aware of the health detriments and still choose to smoke, are ignored. Instead, they are mandated to ignore their right to purchase tobacco products if they are over 18 as well as to give up their right to choose what to do with their body. This infringement on smok-
ers rights is the reason that this ban is not a complete answer to solving the health and environmental concerns that relate to cigarette smoking. Designated smoking areas should be included in the legislation, in addition to the already proposed programs to help smokers quit. Public health should certainly be taken into account, yet individual freedom also needs to be a priority.
What Newsweek Missed It seems that every contemporary piece written on college students and the stresses we endure focuses on one of two things: test preparation and whether college is even worth our expense in the first place. It’s no wonder that we’re losing our minds. If we need to be coached through an activity every UC Davis student undertakes at least twice every two weeks, what hope could we ever have had to succeed? Furthermore, when major media outlets point out our apparent inability to hammer down jobs in the real world, how could we not sink under the weight of such a mas-
sive exercise in futility? The mainstream media must think us a bunch of prima donnas, unable and naïve to the way job markets work in a recession, if they believe the sources of our “exceptional” levels of stress are truly limited to just these two items, as these points do little if not nothing to distinguish our hardships from those of the rest of society. But for better or for worse, we know that this isn’t true; these articles only offer half of the story. What many people fail to internalize is that our school lives consist of more than just wanting to do well on tests. As young adults, we yearn for revelation and purpose. A successful college experience is defined by more than whether the new graduate gets a job. It’s about getting the right job. It’s about starting - not just any career, but - the career: that special calling that will define the rest of one’s life. In short, to us college is more than just a means to material wealth: it is a means to true fulfillment. At least, it was. Unfortunately, it is becoming increasingly hard for many students to balance these concerns with the practical ones demanded by the unprecedented level of competition in today’s post-secondary academic and professional markets. As basic economics would dictate, as these markets become more competitive, more is demanded from resumes. As a further consequence, students feel the pressure to do whatever they can to get ahead. Concerns once solely attended to by seniors are now cause for great distress in underclassmen. Internships are being taken up earlier and earlier.
Former Student’s Legal Actions Against AEPi, Regents, Unsuccessful By Hannah Helpio Over a year after lawsuits against the UC Regents and the Davis chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi, an international Jewish fraternity, were first filed, the original suits have been dismissed. However, the legal showdown between former UC Davis student Ryan Clifford and the Regents continues. Clifford, who attended the University until spring 2010, has sued AEPi and the Regents before, but both of his earlier suits were dismissed. He then filed an appeal to the Regents case in May 2012; the appeal is ongoing. All three cases stem from Clifford’s alleged fraternity hazing in the spring of 2008, in which he claims he was forced to drink alcohol and was sexually and physically abused, among other allegations. Clifford was rushing AEPi’s Davis chapter, and claims these events occurred because he was not Jewish. It was not until November 2011, however, that Clifford took legal action, represented by Los Angeles civil rights attorney Lisa Holder. He sued the UC Regents and two UC Davis employees, Tracy Grissom and Paul Cody, for allegedly ignoring his hazing claims, which he said amounted to negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The lawsuit was quickly picked up by several media outlets, including the Huffington Post and Fox News, and elicited a response from Chancellor Katehi, emphasizing the safety and well being of all Davis students.
“We take the recent allegations in this lawsuit very seriously, and are committed to a fair outcome, wherever the facts may lead. I also want to protect our students and staff from unjust accusations, and will ensure we have all the facts before reaching any final conclusions,” said Katehi. After a large yet brief media flurry over the Regents suit, the case was quietly dropped in April 2012 due to the statute of limitations – the claims being more than two years old when the suit was filed – and
lacking “sufficient evidence”, as stated in court records. Clifford also filed a suit against Davis’ AEPi chapter; that lawsuit was also dismissed in April 2012. The current president of AEPi, Michael Charles, declined to comment. Currently, Clifford is appealing the Regents suit and representing himself; according to court records, the basis for his appeal is that his claims are not, in fact, barred by the statute of limitations. Among other contentions in the suit, he claims he did not realize the Davis administration was “not doing anything” until after January 6, 2011, thus falling within the time limits. Per university policy, one of the attorneys of the Regents and Davis administration, Nancy Sheehan, declined to comment. Claudia Morain, UC Davis Interim Director of Strategic Communications, however, offered comment on the original Regents case. “We thought this [motion to dismiss the case] was the right decision,” said Morain.
The Alpha Epsilon Pi house on Russell Boulevard. Ryan Clifford, a former UC Davis student, sued the fraternity for alleged hazing abuses. Photo by Kendyl Yonamine.
Proposed Davis Law Seeks to Curb Underage Drinking By Chris Whang and Adrian Glass-Moore The drunken stumble home may be in danger in Davis. The Davis City Council is set to consider an ordinance that would make it illegal for minors to have certain levels of alcohol in their bloodstreams while in public. If the so called Minor Alcohol Preclusion ordinance passes in March, any minor with a blood alcohol content (BAC) above 0.05 percent would be issued an infraction. Davis has several drinking related regulations on the books, including drunk in public and open container laws, but does not currently forbid minors from merely having alcohol in their system.
Davis Police Department headquarters. Photo by Chris Whang.
The Davis Police Department originally tried to pass the ordinance last March as a tool to curb underage drinking and rowdy behavior. Several ASUCD officials have come out strongly in opposition, citing enforcement, safety and privacy issues. The problems associated with underage drinking should be “fixed by education, not a ticket” said Josh Gelfat, City and County Affairs Director for ASUCD. Last March when the bill was first seen by City Council, student leaders from ASUCD and Greek organizations spoke during public discussion, criticizing the measure for targeting the student population and recommending instead a focus on educational efforts. Several Davis residents including the Davis High School Vice Principal brought up safety and health concerns caused by juvenile and binge drinking as rationale to support the bill. The Council voted to send the ordinance to several commissions for greater community input. Over last April and May the bill was reviewed by a working group that included representatives of ASUCD, Davis High School, and the UC Davis Health Center. The original language of the bill made it illegal for any person under 21 years old to have a BAC level above 0.01 percent in public places. But the working group’s recommendations led Davis Police Captain Darren Pytel to propose a revised version that “would remove the .01% Blood Alcohol Content as the requirement for the infraction,” according to meeting minutes. Pytel’s revised ordinance also made “disruptive behavior” the reason why someone
might be targeted under the ordinance, according to the minutes. This addition appeared to address criticism that there were few guidelines restricting who a police officer could stop. Two members of the working group, ASUCD President Rebecca Sterling and Human Relations Commission member David Greenwald, voiced strong concerns with the ordinance, even after Pytel’s revisions. While the original ordinance considered all minors in public with a BAC over 0.01 to be in violation, the revised version deals with minors differently based on increasing BAC levels. In the new version, minors with a BAC below 0.02 percent would not be in violation, and those with a BAC between 0.02 and 0.05 percent would not immediately be presumed to be in violation, but would be “considered with other competent evidence in determining whether the person was affected by an alcoholic beverage,” according to the proposed law. Having a BAC above 0.05 percent would automatically be considered a violation and would result in an infraction. The bill includes a sunset clause that would make the bill expire in July of 2014 and a 911 emergency clause protecting minors who call emergency services with intoxicated minors present. In an interview, President Sterling voiced her strong opposition to the ordinance, despite the changes, citing a safety concern that people under 21, afraid they might be stopped while walking home from a party after drinking, will choose to drive or bike home. Sterling also said the ordinance gave police too much discretion in who they would stop, and would lead to profiling people based on how they look. “We need to focus more on education,” Sterling said. Gelfat, the City and County Affairs Director, echoed some of Sterling’s concerns, calling the ordinance a potential “invasion of personal space” and reiterating the safety issue of students feeling afraid to walk
9 Freshmen enter their first year having planned their academic and even professional careers from the outset. Dissatisfied students are reluctant to leave major programs they don’t like, because to leave would mean to “fall behind” the pack. What’s worse is that many of them stay, and subsequently become “locked” into careers that they sense will too only continue to bring them discontent. Many are so consumed by the mindset that they will not even admit there is a problem, and in doing so, they inadvertently pressure their peers to follow them down. It is this balancing act that constitutes the true root of our stress. In the process of trying to manage under such an unforgiving time crunch, we have been forced to place impactful concerns regarding our identity and happiness on the backburner. We have been pressured to gamble with one of our only means to lasting fulfillment. No stake could be higher, and no issue could be more stressful. Thus, the spirit of liberality, open-mindedness, and experimentation that once defined the college experience has been distorted to the point of unrecognizability. This isn’t to say that these practical concerns aren’t understandable. The prospect of not having a job at all, let alone the right one, is terrifying. There certainly are merits to a reasonable level of proactivity. Yet it’s become clear that our attempts to reconcile these two often conflicting paradigms have brought us to a very dark place.
The Fallacy of American Exceptionalism Former Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney often attacked President Obama during the campaign for a foreign policy based upon “apologizing for American values”. Congressional Republicans have reiterated this attack after deeming the Obama administration’s response to the attacks on U.S. embassies in Libya and Egypt weak. American exceptionalism is the belief that the United States is a perfect democracy whose goal to spread our values and our government style to the rest of the world, cannot be infringed upon nor apologized for. It is propagandized by Republicans and Democrats alike, though most unabashedly from the right. But is America still the beacon of light, the house on the hill as many politicians claim? Do we have anything to apologize for? The question comes in two parts - are we still an elite nation unlike any other in terms of economic prosperity, moral principles and military might, and does that afford us the right to meddle in other nation’s af-
fairs freely? Certainly we can argue that because of our success in both world wars, and our persistence in the Cold War, we have undeniable military dominance. We spend more than any nation in the world on our military, $711 billion - five times as much as China, the second most. Clearly we pay our way to military dominance, but why do we need to prove our might and elicit fear from other nations if we’re so perfect in our endeavors? We may have superior military might, but as far as democratic process and personal liberties are we really all that special? Unlike most of the richest countries in the world, we do not have universal healthcare and we’re certainly not winning any awards for income equality. Some may argue that our protection of personal liberties is what makes us stand above the rest, but aside from gun rights, we don’t seem to have a firm grasp on advancing human rights protections. Many western nations have legalized same-sex marriage - such as Canada, Belgium and Denmark - and many more recognize civil unions for same-sex couples. Meanwhile, gay unions are not only unrecognized in a majority of U.S states but are even banned in many state constitutions. On top of that we have a U.S. federal law, the Defense of Marriage Act, that explicitly denies same-sex couples the same legal privileges and rights as heterosexual couples. The United States has involved itself in countless invasions of other countries in its history but few less warranted
than in the case of the Iraq war. With such an indefensible and bloody attack on the sovereignty of another country in our recent history, how can we possibly still claim to hold any moral duty to spread our righteousness and democracy, to free all people of the bonds of tyranny? We may once have been “exceptional” in the words of mid19th century historian Alexis de Tocqueville, but our legacy has been stained with war, uncontrolled capitalism and less than noble democracy. To this day, U.S. politicians still argue religion versus proven scientific phenomena like evolution and climate change, and over the validity of rape. How can we pretend to be that shining house on a hill when we cannot even recognize the equality and dignity of our own citizens--even as a changing world passes us by in human rights victories? No doubt the concept of American liberty, born from an unprecedented revolution, led to a truly unique democracy valuing personal freedom and self-determination. But our democracy is tired and our leaders have grown to love politics and special interest money more than the wishes of the people that elected them. Our “exceptional” nation is in need of a reboot and a bit of new found humility may yield the introspection necessary to eliminate this false conception that we are so great a nation that we are immune to change and have already succeeded in protecting the rights of all of our citizens. America is no longer exceptional and we must start acting like it before we can again be the unique model of democracy
11 KANSAS, U.S. Two members of the outspoken homophobic Christian group, the Westboro baptist church, disaffiliated themselves from the church and have begun to publicly speak out against the anti-gay protests the organization puts on all over the country, including at the funerals of U.S. soldiers killed in action. The Washington Post
CAIRO, EGYPT A court in Egypt told the government to block YouTube for a month because of a video posted on the website last year, called “Innocence of Muslims,” that depicted the Muslim Prophet Muhammad offensively and incited riots in several nations. The New York Times
WASHINGTON DC, U.S. President Obama was inaugurated for his second term as President of the United States. His address laid out several ambitious liberal mainstays to accomplish in his second term, such as income equality, climate change and immigration reform, and for the first time in a Presidential inaugural address, advocated for marriage equality for homosexuals couples. The Washington Post
BAMAKO, MALI France began a military offen sive in Mali, a former French colony, to root out militant Islamists who threatened to overrun the West African nation. French forces are accumulating on the ground; 2,500 are expected to be deployed in total. Experts say the Islamists will not be easily located and engaged because they have extensive geographical knowledge, large amounts of weaponry and are embedded in the local population. Mali became independent from France in 1960. The New York Times BEIJING, CHINA Beijing officials urged residents to cut down on the use of fireworks during celebrations of the Chinese New Year in an attempt to control pollution in the city. Pollution in Beijing rose to hazardous levels in January, with Air Quality Index ratings as high as 755 - much higher than the top of the scale used by the U.S. En-
The military recently made new opportunities available to a minority. No - we’re not discussing gay servicemen and the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. We’re talking about women. Women were up until recently barred from many of the frontline posts of war, like the infantry. But on January 24th Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced that women would finally be allowed to assume many of the combat roles that used to be the exclusive domain of men. This is another positive step - following the repeal of D.A.D.T. - for the equal treatment of every military man and woman. We believe that anyone who joins the military and wants to serve in combat should be judged based on their fitness and their ability to do their job, not their gender. Candidates should be evaluated on their
physical and mental merits, not how many y-chromosomes they have. In reality, many women are already serving in combat situations. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have blurred the front lines of combat. Servicewomen in both these wars have been subject to the constant threat of large-scale attacks by insurgent combatants and improvised explosive devices. Women even sometimes serve alongside combat troops as temporary attachments. So, who pressured Panetta into formally allowing women into combat? It was the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the heads of each division of the U.S. military, who urged Panetta to remove the restraints on women’s role in the military. And if any group of people is qualified to determine what is best for our military strength, we believe that it is probably the Joint Chiefs
vironmental Protection Agency, which goes from 0 to 500. For ratings between 301 and 500 it is considered dangerous to be outdoors. CBS News/The New York Times BERLIN, GERMANY Germany’s education minister resigned after an anonymous posting online alleged that the minister, Dr. Annette Schavan, plagiarized certain passages of her doctoral dissertation. This is the second minister to resign from the German government because of plagiarism in two years; defense minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg lost his post in 2011 after similar accusations. An anonymously-run web site in Germany called VroniPlag, which exposed Guttenberg’s plagiarism, is specifically dedicated to examining the dissertations of government officials. The New York Times
of Staff. We took particular note of the negative effect that the combat ban - enacted in 1994 - had on women looking for long-term careers in military service. As reported by The New York Times, experience in certain combat divisions like the infantry is a crucial precursor to some higher leadership roles in the military. But women have been barred from such positions, putting them at an unfair disadvantage for job promotion. Panetta’s decision means that servicewomen will be fighting on the front lines in Afghanistan against a deadly Taliban force. That is a place we don’t want anybody to be, frankly. But Panetta was right in reversing a discriminative policy that not only relegated women to secondary roles but denied them opportunities for advancement.
5 home after a night of drinking. Davis Police Chief Landy Black, in a phone interview, said that the ordinance only enforced existing drinking law, namely the prohibition of drinking for those under the age of 21. Black denied that the bill was guilty of profiling in any unusual way. “The current drinking age is targeting underage people. So the profiling nature of
the ordinance is just a natural characteristic of law,” Black said. 33% of people between the ages of 18 and 20 reported binge drinking in the past month, according to data from the 2011 National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The Center for Disease Control reports that binge drinking, defined as having a BAC above 0.08 percent, is associated with a
greater risk of high blood pressure, stroke, liver disease, and neurological damage. Regardless of the outcome of the ordinance, Sterling says she wants to work on improving education efforts to expand awareness of the effects of drinking.
New Laboratory Requirements at UC
implementation of new safety standards. Among these new standards, labs must display the Chemistry Hygiene Plan and Lab Safety Manual, and lab employees must undergo training in lab safety and standard operating procedures. Additionally, starting in Winter Quarter 2013, UC Davis students are now required by the new dress code to purchase and wear laboratory coats when working in a lab environment. These regulations ensure that UC schools will not violate the health requirement set forth by California Division of Occupa-
tional Safety & Health. UCLA, the location of the incident, was required to take extra measures to ensure its lab safety. UC Regents are yet to estimate how much these requirements are going to cost. Furthermore, the settlement includes the establishment of a $500,000 environmental studies scholarship in Sangji’s name. Although charges against UC Regents have been dropped, the case against Professor Harran continues.
By Mia Colvin The UC Board of Regents has instituted new chemistry laboratory safety regulations as required by a settlement in the Sheharbano “Sheri” Sangji case. The settlement agreement provides a list of changes to the structure and training of employees regarding safety in a laboratory environment. In December 2009, University of California, Los Angeles research assistant Sheri Sangji passed away after suffering severe burns when a highly flammable chemical agent burned through her clothing. Sangji was not wearing a lab coat when the accident occurred. The Los Angeles County District Attorney filed charges against both UC Regents and chemistry professor Patrick Harran for “willful violation of an occupational safety and health standard causing the death of an employee.” Charges against UC Regents were dropped after reaching the settlement that has required
Laboratory coats on sale at the UC Davis Bookstore are part of new safety regulations required by the UC Regents. Photo by Kyle Lam.
Obama Makes Moves on Gun Control By Ryan Wonders President Barack Obama announced on January 15 his much anticipated plan to curb a growing spike in gun violence. The President revealed at a press conference 23 new executive orders aimed at providing a more efficient and thorough background check system, increasing emergency response planning at schools and places of worship, instituting a national campaign in promotion of responsible gun ownership, and increasing resources for the mentally ill. The list of executive orders is part of a multi-faceted gun control strategy. The President announced that he will be asking Congress to pass a series of laws that would create universal background checks for all gun sales, re-establish the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban (which expired in 2004), ban firearm magazines with a capacity of more than ten rounds, and increase penalties for the illegal sales of firearms. These proposals come in the wake of a year riddled with mass shootings. Last July 20, James Holmes opened fire on a crowded theater in Aurora, Colorado, an incident which claimed the lives of 12 people and resulted in the injuries of 58 others. During part of the attack, Holmes used an AR-15 type assault rifle equipped with a 100 round magazine, though it is reported to have malfunctioned after about 20 rounds. Such weapons and magazines would be made illegal for sale under the President’s proposal. Holmes is also reported to have
Guns displayed at Big 5 Sporting Goods in Davis. Photo by Carissa Lowe.
had a history of mental illness. Last December 14, Adam Lanza killed 20 children and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut using an AR-15 type assault weapon which he was legally able to possess. The National Rifle Association (NRA) is speaking out against the President’s plan. NRA leadership attended a January 10th meeting at the White House in preparation for the new proposals and stated that they were “prepared to have a meaningful conversation about school safety, mental health issues, the marketing of violence to our kids and the collapse of federal prosecutions of violent criminals.” In an official statement following the President’s press conference, NRA leadership stated that “attacking firearms and ignoring children is not a solution to the crisis we face as a nation. Only honest, lawabiding gun owners will be affected and our children will remain vulnerable to the inevitability of more tragedy.” January 19’s “Gun Appreciation Day” marked an opportunity for gun owners and enthusiasts to show their disapproval of the President’s plan as thousands turned out nationwide to rally.
Opposition ran heavy in the state of New York, where Governor Andrew Cuomo recently passed sweeping gun control legislation, expanding on an already tough assault weapons ban. Despite vocal opposition, many have stepped up in support of the proposed laws. The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence released a statement, remarking that “the White House has shown tremendous leadership in convening stakeholders and engaging the country in a conversation that the Brady Campaign and so many Americans have been calling for in the wake of Aurora, Newtown, and the 32 gun murders that happen every day in our country.” If the President’s plan is to ever come to fruition however, it must first pass through bothhouses of Congress successfully, no small task. The majority of Republicans on the hill are likely to vote against the assault weapons ban portion of the measure, as are some Democrats that hold a more conservative constituency. However, President Obama’s proposals on mental health and background checks have strong support from political parties.
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10 beat on the street
Do you think banning smoking on campus is a good idea? “I think banning smoking on campus is a good idea. Because I am not a smoker myself, I find the smell of smoke to be really strong and it is very distracting to sit next to someone in class who has just been smoking. It is difficult for me to ignore it. Also, people who have asthma or other breathing problems may be affected by on-campus smoking” - Kim Chavarria, 4th year, Sociology “It’s not illegal so they [smokers] should be able to do it. I don’t choose to smoke, but I’m not for kicking them off campus.” - Rachael Caynek, 2nd year, Chemistry “I do. Because smoking is bad for you, and it’s a detriment to our campus. It’s incentive to quit. But as long as they let me do it, I’ll do it! - Nate M. “It’s a courtesy. No one likes smoke blown in their faces unless they’re in a hotbox car.” - Justin Nool, 3rd year, Human Development
Profile: Amy Tran Russell By Corey Ching Amy Tran Russell, the Assistant Director of Admissions to the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, is a San Francisco native and UC Davis Alumni. From competing in track and field as an undergraduate at UC Davis to working for the Summer Search Foundation in Seattle, Washington, she has come full circle and returned to the Aggie team. After graduating from Lowell High School in 1999, she attended San Francisco State University, wanting to stay close to home. However, after one year, she recognized she was looking for something more. “While I valued my time at SF State, I quickly realized I wanted more academic rigor,” Russell said.
She quickly transferred to UC Davis in 2000 and finished her undergraduate education in 2003 receiving a degree in History. While at Davis, Russell commented that she “absolutely loved her experience here... especially the amazing professors.” While working two different on-campus jobs, Russell was also a full-time student athlete, competing in both long jump and triple jump. Following graduation, Russell immediately pursued her Masters in Education at UC Santa Cruz where she acquired her teaching credentials. After that, she taught at Benicia Middle School, but was unfortunately laid off at the end of the year due to budget cuts. This was an important time in her life. She notes, “I wanted a job with more stability, but at the same time, one in which I was still able to give back and help others.” Russell took a turn in her career, adventuring to Seattle, Washington. During her stay in the northwest, she worked for the Summer Search Foundation - an organization with the goal to help low-income youth build the confidence, character and skills needed to complete college and achieve their full potential. In one year, she worked
her way up to Director of Outreach, leading efforts on a $375,000 grant received from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. After 5 years of philanthropic work, Russell moved back to Davis, looking to be closer to home. In August 2010 she began work for the Graduate School of Management and has since become the Assistant Admissions Director. From interviewing prospective students to reviewing applications thoroughly, there is a lot to be done. Her job involves helping prospective students find their best fit. “You may find a really great student, but this program may not be the right one for them. [If] so, we help them get into contact with the right people,” said Russell. However, one aspect of her job that many people do not know involves traveling abroad to promote recruitment for UC Davis. For example, Russell has gone on extended tours to Asia visiting several countries and cities, including Taiwan, India, Tokyo, and Bangkok. “One of the best parts is you get to create some really great friendships,” Russell said. “You work alongside MBA Admissions people from schools across the nation, such as Cornell, UW, and other great schools.”
Clockwise from top left: 1. Old tires accumulate in a corner of “The Shop” or the Unitrans Maintenance Facility, across from the Veterinary Medicine buildings. (Chris Whang) 2. While the doubledeck bus seems to be the unofficial symbol of Unitrans, most of the service vehicles are these modern CNG buses parked in the Fleet Services parking lot. (Chris Whang) 3. “The Shop” holds almost all the parts needed for routine repairs, like this rack of various engine wires. (Chris Whang) 4. Cuts to the Unitrans budget forced a change in the routes at the start of this academic year, which may lead to increased crowding on routes like the W line shown here. (Anthony Beck) 5. Unitrans employees leave their mark on a piece from a retired bus (Chris Whang) 6. In addition to daily route service, Unitrans also offers pick up and drop off services for the Davis Junior and Senior high school students, special occasion charters and, of course, Tipsy Taxi. (Chris Whang)
Edition 001 Week of february 11 www. davisbeat.org
smoking banned at uc 3
new drinking law proposed 4
labcoats required by regents 5
lawsuit against aepi dismissed 6
The Davis Beat Issue 1