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Local news briefs

By Sara Bloomberg

Colleges removed from sanction

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges removed three colleges from their respective sanctions this month. Cuesta College and College of the Redwoods were both on “show cause” and the commission moved them up to less severe sanctions. Cuesta is now on “warning” status and Redwoods is now on probation, according to official commission documents.
The commission also removed the College of Marin from “warning” status. All schools must continue to submit periodic follow-up reports, which is a normal requirement of the accreditation process. Comprehensive reports are made every six years.

by Cassandra Hendry

Accreditation Update

The Ocean campus Associated Students Council discussed the March 15 accreditation deadline at its regular meeting on Feb. 6. The council expressed its concern and hopes the accrediting commission moves the school up from “show cause” to probation. They encouraged students to communicate and keep up with information, including attending the Board of Trustees meeting on Feb.28 to speak out during public comment. The board meeting will be held in the Multi-Use Building in Room 140 at 6 p.m. A protest is being planned to coincide with the board’s meeting.

Clubs get funding
Several clubs were officially recognized by the Associated Students Council on Feb. 6, which was the last day to receive $200 in funding. Clubs that made the deadline included the Cheer/Dance team, F1 Club, Green Corps, PEACE, Students Making a Change, the Veteran’s Alliance, Student Parents United, WISE club, Poetry for the People, Project Survive, Literary Magazine and the ARCS Club. The council also reimbursed the Korean Language Club $100 that they owed the club from fall semester. Feb. 20 is the last day for clubs to be eligible to receive $100 in funding from the council.

New senator sought for council

A new senator was elected on Feb.13 to the Associated Students Council at Ocean campus. Hanin Benchohra will fill a vacant seat on the council for the remainder of the semester. In her campaign speech she said that she wants to find ways to help students mingle more. The Ocean campus Associated Student Council meets every Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. in the Student Union in Room 208.

World news briefs

By Madeline Collins

Vatican City
Citing a “lack of strength of mind and body,” Pope Benedict XVI announced that he will be resigning Feb. 28, becoming the first Pope to do so in over six centuries. Benedict, 85, had been showing signs of age in the months preceding his resignation. The Rev. Georg Ratzinger, Benedict’s 89-year-old brother, said that the Pope’s weakening health had led him to step down. Benedict will retire first to his summer residence in Castel Gandolfo, in the hills outside Rome, and later to a monastery in Vatican City.

North Korea
North Korea confirmed that it had conducted its third nuclear test Feb. 12, challenging the United States and South Korea’s attempt to keep the country from becoming a full-fledged nuclear power. It detonated underground a lighter and smaller nuclear device than previously tested. The Obama administration has threatened to penalize the country in the event of another test, possibly imposing even further sanctions on an already deeply impoverished country.

Afghan leaders are under pressure from other world leaders to negotiate a peace deal with the Taliban. With little happening in the way of negotiations, there is little promise of the Afghan government and Taliban leaders meeting before the final withdrawal of American fighting troops set for 2014. The United States, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Taliban all have different views about a post-2014 peace agreement.

BAGHDAD- Attacks in Shiite neighborhoods in Baghdad killed 21 people and injured 125 Feb. 17. Four car bombs exploded in the Sadr City district and several more car bombs were set off in the market area of Husseiniya, northeast of Baghdad. More than 200 people have been killed in attacks across Iraq since January. At the time of this publishing, no group has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

BUDAPEST- Students attending state-funded universities are now required to sign a contract that requires them to stay and work in Hungary two years for every one year of study. If a graduate finds a good opportunity overseas before the allotted time, they must pay back their tuition in its entirety.

A Carnival Cruise Lines ship stranded without power in the Gulf of Mexico for 3 days after a fire broke out in the engine room was towed back to a port in Mobile, Alabama on Feb. 13. The incident gained significant media attention after it came to light that the some 4200 passengers were forced to defecate in plastic bags. Media organizations are reporting that one lawsuit has already been filed against Carnival Cruise Lines.

MOSCOW- A flash lit the sky in Russia on Feb. 15 as a meteor entered the Earth’s atmosphere and exploded. Students inside the Chelyabinsk Railway Institute, one of many buildings damaged by the explosion, gazed at bright light moving across the sky when moments later the windows blew in. Around 1,200 people were injured, 200 of them children. No deaths have been reported. The meteor weighed 10 tons and measured 10 feet in diameter according to Russian Academy of Sciences experts. It was traveling towards Earth at about 10 to 12 miles per hour and scientists believe it exploded upon hitting the lower atmosphere. Though a meteor moving through the atmosphere is not an unusual event, this particular meteor was unusual because its material was so hard that it allowed small fragments to reach the Earth’s surface.

The Guardsman