Protestors are expected at the UC San Diego campus today, as the Regents will decide whether to pull UC investments from Sudan.
According to a press release by the UC Sudan Divestment Task Force (UCSDTF), at least 200 students from the UCLA campus will travel to La Jolla, Calif., today to protest before the vote, which is to take place during the 10:30 a.m. open session period in UCSD’s Price Center. Though no formal statements have been released, protestors from other campuses are expected as well. The Regents will also decide whether to grant $153.8 million requested by UCSB for the San Clemente Graduate Student Housing Project.
According to the UC Office of the President’s (UCOP) meeting agenda, passing the vote on Sudan would mean UC would divest its share of holdings in business operations in Sudan, a country that the U.S. government believes is waging a genocide against its citizens. UCSDTF says the University has made more than $100 million in foreign investment transactions with Sudan-affiliated companies.
Though no protestors were present at today or yesterday’s meetings, UCSD students reported a tense atmosphere around campus, especially after UC Regent and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger made a short appearance early in the morning.
“All over Price Center, there were barricades and police everywhere,” Natalie Bain, a junior management science major at UCSD, said. “Stairways were blocked off, and there were guys standing everywhere wearing earpieces.”
Julia Joshel, Associated Students Chair of Revelle College Council, said that no UCSD groups that she knew of were planning protests for tomorrow. However, she said many students were concerned with the situation in Sudan.
“It doesn’t seem like there have been any big protests organized [by UCSD students],” Joshel, a senior biology major, said. “But there have been people on Library Walk every day, tabling and handing out flyers. Also, people are publicizing it in classes.”
Joshel also said that UCSD’s Associated Students issued a formal statement to Chancellor Marye Anne Fox and the student body regarding the situation.
“We did pass a resolution last week condemning what’s going on in Darfur and asking the Regents to divest,” Joshel said.
According to Joshel, two students from each of UCSD’s six colleges will meet with the Regents for lunch tomorrow. Joshel is also attending the meeting.
“We probably won’t talk about Sudan,” she said. “It will probably just be lunch.”
UCSB’s request for $153.8 million for the San Clemente housing project is an amendment to a previous request for funding from the Regents. The amendment asks for an additional $37.1 million.
San Clemente, which will be built on El Colegio Road where Storke Field currently stands, will be designed to accommodate 976 bedrooms, 786 indoor parking spaces, 217 outdoor parking spaces and “associated support facilities” for graduate students, according to a UCOP meeting agenda. The additional funds are being requested to ensure “a project that will have a more efficient and logical internal circulation plan and space layout, and be more straightforward in terms of architectural, structural and mechanical systems,” the press release said.