Tag Archives: UC Berkeley

Crime

Berkeley police: Drug was used in Cal fraternity rape case

Delta Upsilon at UC Berkeley. Image: Google maps
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Update, Oct. 17: The case against Eugene Quillin has been dismissed, and he has been exonerated and found factually innocent.

Original story, Oct. 7: A 20-year-old UC Berkeley student has been charged with raping a woman at a Cal fraternity in late September who also had been drugged, according to authorities.

The Alameda County district attorney’s office charged Eugene Franklin Quillin this week with rape by use of drugs, in that he “did unlawfully have and accomplish an act of sexual intercourse with a person … where said person was prevented by resisting by an intoxicating, anesthetic, and controlled substance.” … Continue reading »

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Berkeley police make frat house arrest in rape case

Delta Upsilon at UC Berkeley. Image: Google maps
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Update, Oct. 17: The case against Eugene Quillin has been dismissed, and he has been exonerated and found factually innocent.

Original story, Oct. 3: Police have arrested a 20-year-old UC Berkeley student in connection with a sexual assault reported last weekend.

Berkeley police arrested Eugene Quillin on Thursday at UC Berkeley’s Delta Upsilon fraternity house at 2425 Warring St. after serving a search warrant there, authorities said. As of Friday afternoon, Quillin had been released on bail, according to the Alameda County sheriff’s department.

Thursday, the University of California Police Department sent out an email notice to report two instances of sexual assault at fraternities Saturday. Both had been reported to the Berkeley Police Department.

Berkeley police also received a report of a third sexual assault Saturday that “may have occurred in a fraternity,” according to UCPD. No further information on those incidents has been released.  … Continue reading »

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Photos: Rally on UC Berkeley campus marks 50th anniversary of the birth of the Free Speech Movement

The Free Speech Movement rally held at UC Berkeley on Oct. 1, 2014. Photo: Ted Friedman
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Oct. 1 marked the 50th anniversary of the Free Speech Movement, a protest that lasted for three months but set the stage for the turbulent 1960s.

On that day, thousands of UC Berkeley students protested on the Cal campus, surrounding a police car parked near Sproul Plaza. Jack Weinberg was inside the car and stayed inside it for 32 hours, having been arrested for distributing political material on university grounds despite rules that forbade it.

A graduate student, Mario Savio, climbed on top of the police car at one point and demanded Weinberg’s release. He also spoke out against the university’s restrictions against handing out political material. That impromptu speech catapulted him into the leadership of what would come to be known as the Free Speech Movement.

Read more, and enjoy these photos taken by Ted Friedman at the rally held 50 years later at the same spot at UC Berkeley when FSM veterans — including Weinberg and Savio’s wife, Lynne Hollander Savio — joined current students to mark the movement’s golden anniversary. … Continue reading »

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Op-ed: UC profits from the fossil fuel industry

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It doesn’t make sense for the University of California to hold millions of dollars of stock in the fossil fuel industry and at the same time espouse a goal of carbon neutrality by 2025. Students at UC Berkeley and throughout the UC system have demanded that the Regents vote to divest from their stock in fossil fuel companies. On Sept.17, 2014, the Regents ignored their wishes.

In a hasty process involving only four one-hour meetings over the summer, a task force … Continue reading »

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Berkeley’s colony of spotted hyenas closes after 30 years

The colony has donated seven hyenas to the Oakland Zoo, where the animals live in a wooded ravine and enjoy splashing in water. Photo: Oakland Zoo
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Tucked away in the Berkeley Hills is a swath of land where females are in charge and always get first dibs on dinner.

It’s no feminist utopia — just UC Berkeley’s captive colony of spotted hyenas. The noisy animals, whose whoops are audible from the fire trails, have been fixtures at the Field Station for the Study of Behavior, Ecology, and Reproduction for decades. But when the researchers who study them lost their funding, the animals had to start finding new homes. In a couple weeks the colony will shutter for good.

The 30-year project was one of a kind. In 1985, UC Berkeley biologist/psychologist Stephen Glickman, and animal behaviorist Laurence Frank, brought 20 newborn spotted hyenas from the Maasai Mara region of Kenya to Berkeley. What followed was unprecedented research on hormones, reproduction, and social behavior. … Continue reading »

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Cal prof Joshua Bloom makes earthquake alert kit for $110

Joshua Bloom's homemade earthquake early warning alarm, in a Gregoire box. Photo: Joshua Bloom
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When the Napa earthquake struck on Aug. 24, Joshua Bloom had a 5-second warning.

That’s because the UC Berkeley astronomy professor likes to tinker.

It was when Bloom was a beta tester in the prototype ShakeAlert system being developed by a consortium of seismological researchers (including UC Berkeley), that he came up with an idea.

“I thought it was silly that every time I closed my laptop, I couldn’t get a warning,” he said.

So Bloom cobbled together his own earthquake alarm for just over $100, using a Raspberry Pi single-board computer ($36.39), a wired speaker ($14.99), a mini-WiFi adapter ($6.71), and SD card.

To house it, he uses a box from Grégoire, the local restaurant group known for its crispy potato puffs. And he keeps the device in the living room of his North Berkeley home, next to the fireplace.

ShakeAlert triggered a 10-second early warning alert for the Magnitude 6 Napa quake last month. Bloom’s device provided a five-second warning. (Bloom details how it worked on his blog.)

Meet Joshua Bloom at Uncharted on Oct. 24-25. Get your early-bird tickets now!

For Bloom, this is tinkering with a definite purpose. He sees his demonstration project as validation that Californians could have an earthquake alarm in every home for about the same price as smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms. And he hopes it adds pressure to the legislature to fund the $80 million it will take to roll out the ShakeAlert network beyond its few privileged early testers. … Continue reading »

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Gregory Grossman: Eminent scholar, always a gentleman

Gregory Grossman
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UC Berkeley economist Gregory Grossman, who died on Aug. 14, was considered a towering figure in the study of the Soviet economy who shaped the thinking of generations of scholars. Born in Kiev, and educated at Cal and Harvard, he went on to coin the term “command economy.”

Grossman was a polymath who also understood the political, ideological, social and cultural underpinnings of economic life in the Soviet Union. As a result, he was widely sought out by his peers for comments on their scholarship.

And Grossman, who always held a particular affection for Berkeley and the Bay Area, was also a consummate gentleman. As his UC Berkeley colleague George Breslauer noted: “I never saw him present his ideas aggressively. He let the evidence and logic speak for themselves. In the end, the passage of time proved him right on almost all scores.” … Continue reading »

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Obituaries

Remembering UC Berkeley economist Gregory Grossman

Gregory Grossman
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Gregory Grossman, 1921-2014

UC Berkeley, economist Gregory Grossman, considered a towering figure in the study of the Soviet economy, who shaped the thinking of generations of scholars, died on Aug. 14 at the age of 93, at a Berkeley care facility due to complications from a fall.

Grossman received his undergraduate degree in economics from UC Berkeley in 1942 and his Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1952, before returning to UC Berkeley, where he spent his entire career. He retired in 1993.

Grossman was born July 5, 1921 in Kiev, Ukraine. In early 1923 the family fled the post-Russian Revolution chaos and famine and took a month-long journey on the Trans-Siberian Railway to Harbin, Manchuria. After completing high school in 1937 in Tientsin, China, he headed to San Francisco aboard a Japanese ocean liner en route to attend UC Berkeley.

During World War II, Grossman served as artillery observer with the 731st Field Artillery Battalion during the Battle of the Bulge and completed his war duty in Czechoslovakia. … Continue reading »

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Cal mom to document her son’s life with Asperger’s

Nils Skudra poses with his dog, Beauregard. Nils has Asperger syndrome and currently attends UC Berkeley. Photo: Nils Skudra
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For teens across America, college is one of the major stepping-stones to independence, akin to getting a driver’s license or moving into your own place. Away from the constant supervision parents, young adults get their first taste of the “real world,” where they can finally take charge of their lives.

But that wasn’t the case with Nils Skudra when he entered UC Merced in 2010. His mother, Renee Skudra, went with him. And when he returned to the Bay Area to transfer to UC Berkeley, she followed. … Continue reading »

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Cal, city of Berkeley take steps to curb water use

Water runoff from one of Cal's lawns is a relatively common occurrence on campus. Photo: Patrick Hickey
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In response to the severe drought conditions that plague most of the state, Cal and the city of Berkeley have ramped up efforts to curb water use.

Runoff from several university lawns has been of particular concern to some local residents. Water from nearby sprinkler systems sometimes flows onto pathways and sidewalks around campus, but the runoff is unintentional and closely monitored, according to Sal Genito, associate director of Grounds, Custodial and Environmental Services for the University of California at Berkeley.

The university has already cut back on watering by 10 percent, as per a mandate from the governor’s office. … Continue reading »

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Soccer mania hits Berkeley, as do crowds, traffic

Around 62,000 people watched Inter Milan beat Real Madrid at Memorial Stadium on Saturday. Photo: Julia Flynn Siler
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Soccer mania hit Berkeley on Saturday when Real Madrid played Inter Milan at Cal Memorial Stadium, in a game that drew more than 62,000 spectators. Inter Milan and Real Madrid tied 1-1. Then, after regulation time, Inter Milan won 3-2 in a penalty shootout.

The game practically paralyzed the streets of Berkeley as fans tried to make their way to the stadium. Traffic came to a standstill all over town on major arteries like College, Claremont, Ashby and University avenues. … Continue reading »

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Cal Athletic director Sandy Barbour to step down in July

Current athletic director Sandy Barbour, Chancellor Nicholas Dirks and designated interim athletic director Michael Williams sit down for a press conference on Barbour's transition. Photo: Drew Jaffe
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UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks announced Friday that Sandy Barbour, the university’s athletics director, plans to step down from her post in mid-July.

“After numerous discussions with Sandy, we came to the conclusion that the time was right for her to pursue a different set of professional interests, which she has long harbored and which we have spoken about for several months,” Dirks said during a press conference Friday afternoon.

Dirks and Barbour cited a combination of organizational and personal interests as the motivation for her decision to leave. Michael Williams ’82, a former student athlete at the university and current vice chair of the Berkeley Foundation, will serve as the interim director in Barbour’s absence. … Continue reading »

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Bay Area Book Festival to launch in Berkeley in 2015

BABF
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A book festival is coming to Berkeley. Doubtless many people will say, “It’s about time.”

On Saturday June 21, a launch party was held for the Bay Area Book Festival, an ambitious literary love fest which will take place in the heart of downtown Berkeley on June 6-7, 2015.

The festival is the brainchild of Cherilyn Parsons who decided that it was time somebody started a book festival given that, in many other ways, the area is a literary mecca.

Parsons, a Southern California native who has long admired the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, and attends other literary gatherings around the world such as the Jaipur Literature Festival, was most recently the director of development and strategic initiatives at the Center for Investigative Reporting. … Continue reading »

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