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July 28, 2016 Comments (0) Education News

Sit-In at UC Davis Protests Chancellor's Side Jobs


(Image: Ariel Robbins, The California Aggie)

(Image: Ariel Robbins, The California Aggie)

Close to 50 students, faculty, and staff in the University of California Davis held a protest within the quad on Friday seeking the removal of university chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi.

The protest, referred to as Fire Katehi, came because of controversy focused on the chancellor, who was said to have accepted paid board positions for two for-profit companies. ?The move caused students and state assembly members to increase up in criticism.

Katehi is said to have accepted a paid seat on the board of the for-profit education company DeVry Education Group, which is currently under investigation for falsifying claims over?job placement rates.

In addition, she took $420,000 over 3 years while serving around the board of textbook publisher?John Wiley & Sons. ?It is also said she served around the board?of King Abdulaziz University in Saudi Arabia, that has been accused of bribing its way into higher international rankings.

Demands range from the?immediate removal of Katehi, as well as for her replacement to be selected and approved by the students and workers from the school. ?Resignation forms were taped through the walls of her office, while chants of?\”Rain or shine, Katehi must resign\” and \”Katehi, you\’re fired” originated from demonstrators, writes Jason Pham for?The California Aggie.

About 35 of them continued the protest by marching towards the fifth floor of the administration building where they asked to speak with Katehi. A?sit-in?began following the group was told Katehi was in a meeting and may not address the protesters. ?It was unclear if she\’d come talk to them afterward.

On Monday, near to 20 students were still outside Katehi’s office waiting for her to speak with them. ?The audience received a letter from a vice chancellor stating they would be susceptible to?disciplinary consequences?and a report of misconduct if they were to remain in the campus administration building.

The letter also stated that failure to identify themselves to campus officials would result in an additional?violation of school policy. ?However, 21-year-old student Annie Ashmore said that no one originates to take their names as of yet, adding that the group planned to stay where these were until Katehi decided to meet with them. ?She said the audience has received an outpouring of support from the local community, even turning away offers of food because so much was given for them.

Ashmore continued to say the protest has turned into a study session because many students are taking their final exams this week.

UC Davis spokeswoman Dana Topousis said the group would need to make an appointment if they want to meet with the chancellor, adding that they have been told this explicitly.

Katehi?did meet?with students on Tuesday, although neither side appeared to be satisfied as a result. ?She told them she would like to meet with them at another time alongside her team so that they?\”know why decisions are made and how.\” ?However, annoyed that they would not meet with them right then after having waited five days already, the students?are continuing?their sit-in.

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