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Tracking COVID-19 at UCLA2020 Racial Injustice Protests

Week three: Admissions scandal further fraught, USAC candidate pool depleted, gymnasts enter NCAAs

(Amy Dixon/Photo editor, Kanishka Mehra/Daily Bruin, Rachel Hefner/Daily Bruin)

By Audrey Pham

April 19, 2019 8:43 pm

This Week in the News serves as The Quad’s space for reflection on current events at and around UCLA. Every week, Daily Bruin staffers will analyze some of the most significant stories to keep readers up to speed.

As the third week of the quarter comes to a close, midterm season isn’t the only thing that’s beginning to pick up. From athletic admissions scandals to chemical explosions, here are some of the most momentous campus happenings from the past week.

UCLA investigated athletic admissions violations in 2014, prior to recent scandal

UCLA, as it turns out, is no stranger to college admissions scandals.

In 2014, UCLA looked into two student admissions that had violated UC Regents policies, which prohibit admission decisions influenced by financial and political actions that may benefit the university.

The 2014 investigation uncovered the admission of a track and field student-athlete who would not have qualified for the Division I team at UCLA, but was nonetheless accepted upon her parents’ $100,000 donation to the athletics program. Another student was also granted provisional acceptance on the basis of her participation in the women’s polo team, but was ultimately denied acceptance into the university.

The 2014 cases were uncovered in the wake of the recent college admissions scandal uncovered by federal investigators in March. UCLA men’s soccer coach Jorge Salcedo was indicted for allegedly accepting $200,000 in bribes in exchange for the admission of two students as student-athletes. Neither of the two students would go on to play their respective sports at the university.

UCLA announces revised policy for animal restrictions on campus

On Tuesday, UCLA sent out a revision of Policy 135, which regulates animal presence on campus. The policy further restricts which animals, based on their status as assistance animals, pets or service animals, will be allowed into campus buildings.

In addition to the categorization of animals, the animal owners’ responsibilities were also further clarified. All owners must make sure their animals do not act inappropriately or pose dangers to the places they occupy.

The UCLA Office of Environment, Health and Safety will be hearing comments and concerns regarding the policy through May 16.

Several uncontested and unrepresented positions in USAC elections this year

The Undergraduate Students Association Council is facing an unprecedented shortage in candidates for the 2019-2020 term.

Of 15 available positions, there are only 17 candidates. Three positions – financial supports commission and two general representative offices – remain empty. The shortage is in stark contrast to the 2018-2019 election, which saw 39 candidates run for 14 available positions.

Current council chairs and members believe the candidacy shortage has a lot to do with internal issues that USAC has faced in the past year. Election Board Chair Kyana Shajari attributes the shortage to the lack of advertising for the election.

To fill up the spots for which no candidate is running, Shajari anticipates USAC will hold a special election in fall quarter.

Fresh Off the Grill: After record-breaking, viral season, gymnastics enters NCAA title defense

This weekend, UCLA gymnastics will compete in the NCAA championships to defend their title.

It shouldn’t be too hard: UCLA gymnastics has churned out record-breaking victory after record-breaking victory since the start of the season. Senior Katelyn Ohashi’s floor routine in the Collegiate Challenge scored a perfect 10, and went on to amass 117 million views on social media.

The record breaking doesn’t end there.

The average attendance of gymnastics meets in Pauley Pavillion in the 2018-2019 season are at an all-time high, averaging at 10,242 – significantly higher than that of men’s basketball.

From stars such as Ohashi to jam-packed stadiums, UCLA gymnastics proves to be a force to be reckoned with as it takes on the NCAA championships.

Chemical explosion occurs in lab in Molecular Sciences Building

A chemical explosion that occurred Tuesday night in the Molecular Sciences Building left a student with minor injuries. The Los Angeles Fire Department responded immediately to the incident and took the student to a nearby hospital.

LAFD later turned the scene over to UCLA officials once Hazmat officials had deemed the explosion stable. UCLA officials then proceeded to conduct routine cleanups and investigations.

‘Game of Thrones’ season 8 recap — Episode 1: ‘Winterfell’

After a two yearlong hiatus, “Game of Thrones is back for its eighth and final season – and the hype was unreal.

Keeping in line with the themes of fantasy and drama that fans have come to love, the episode follows clashing familial relations and political unrest amid threats of the White Walkers, an ice zombie army.

The overall reception of the long-awaited return of the HBO series was positive. Fans such as third-year cognitive science student Laura Green thought the premiere was a strong opening that set the stage for an unforgettable finale. Others such as third-year nursing student Julia Wenzel thought the premiere episode was fast-paced, but necessary to advance the plotline.

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Audrey Pham
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