By Aria Miran
The University of California Board of Regents met today at UC Los Angeles to discuss the creation of a law school at UC Irvine, its 2007-08 budget and Proposition 1D.
The UC Regents are a decision-making body made up of governor’s appointees and members who serve by virtue of holding certain positions. The group has been gathered at UCLA since Tuesday and ends its session today. Following yesterday’s meetings, hundreds of students gathered outside the school’s architectural focal point, Royce Hall, to protest what they perceive to be unequal admittance of minorities into the UC system.
Yesterday’s meeting, which opened at 8:30 a.m. for public comment, was followed by a session in which the Regents received an update on long-range academic planning activities.
The Regents then discussed the effect of Prop 1D on the University of California system. This measure, which passed during the Nov. 7 election, allocates money from bonds to K-12 schools, and also to higher education institutions including California State Universities and the University of California. The bond measure will provide funding for two years.
The prop’s passage has profound financial consequences for the UC. According to the UC Office of the President, the system will receive $345 million per year for its facilities programs to be used in addressing issues of campus growth, seismic safety needs and the renewal of general infrastructure.
The UC will also garner $200 million over the two-year period to be used in expanding its medical schools.
Following the passage of Prop 1D, UC President Robert C. Dynes expressed gratitude and stated that the funds would help increase safety and modernize the University.
“At the University of California, this funding will make an important contribution to our efforts to reinforce buildings that are vulnerable to earthquakes, construct academic facilities to accommodate continued rapid growth in our student enrollments and renovate outdated infrastructure and research space to meet modern needs,” Dynes said in a press release.
The Regents also heard a presentation from UC Irvine Chancellor Michael Drake regarding the formation of a law school on that campus. According to UCI Assistant Director of Media Relations Christine Byrd, the board postponed the decision to approve the new program.
“The Regents will vote during tomorrow’s Committee of the Whole [regarding the creation of a law school,]” Byrd said.
The conclusion of the meeting saw a large gathering of students protesting issues of UC minority enrollment. The activists hailed from different UCLA minority groups, including the Afrikan Student Union, the American Indian Student Association and the Asian Pacific Coalition. Groups of students from other UC campuses also attended.