The service will be shut down on April 1st. Please see this page for more information.

state of the university


This page is designed to play host to information obtained by the GSA and by rest of the grad student community pertaining to the events of November 18th as well as the wider conversation about the state and direction of UC Davis and the entire higher education system in California. Please feel free to add information or links to information you feel is pertinent to the various topics listed below. Please make every effort to properly cite and source your information and think carefully before providing links to other pages that have poor citation of their sources. You should also feel welcome to add new topics to the list. Finally, comments will be open on this page. Please keep opinions and discussions in the comment thread rather than in the main body of the page, which we hope will become a resource for those seeking information about these subjects.

The UCD Library is also gathering an [WWW]archive to support research on the Nov 18th events.

GSA Resolutions and Statements

GSA Approved Resolutions

The University of California, Davis, Graduate Student Association represents the interests of graduate students. It serves as an open forum to discuss graduate student concerns and University policy. In the days after the events of November 18, 2011 a special meeting of GSA representatives was called. Representatives presented and discussed concerns, comments and calls for action. These actions span a range of topics from those directly related to the police incident to broader concerns about state funding and shared governance at UC Davis. At our November 30 meeting, the representatives of the Graduate Student Assembly approved the following resolutions - view "GSA Letter of Approved Resolutions.pdf" available at the following link:[WWW]

GSA Censure Letter to Chancellor Katehi

The Graduate Student Association at its meeting on November 30, 2011 passed a motion to Censure Chancellor Katehi, a non-voting member of the GSA, for her part in events related to the incident on November 18th, 2011. As a result the executive council drafted the following censure letter:

The General Assembly of the Graduate Student Association censures Linda P.B. Katehi, Chancellor of the University and non-voting member of the Association, for her part in events related to the incident on November 18th, 2011. The GSA is concerned with potential failures on the part of the administration and the Chancellor in responding to student protesters in the Quad. Alternative methods of addressing safety and security concerns that might have averted the tragedy did not receive sufficient consideration. The authorization of a large police presence in riot gear represented an over-display of force. Given the events at other UC Campuses, the likelihood of subsequent escalation should have been considered by authorities making decisions.

Leadership is ultimately the responsibility of the Chancellor and the Assembly pointed to deficiencies in this regard. At several points during the incident, leaders did not exert sufficient control over the situation. Once the situation had deteriorated, the Chancellor did not seem to give it her immediate and full attention. The first two statements made in the aftermath demonstrated a lack of attention and awareness and the deflection of responsibility onto the police and victims is unacceptable.

The General Assembly has approved a series of statements and calls for action from the university administration, including a significant and permanent increase of communication between the Chancellor and graduate students. The Graduate Student Association expects the administration to give each of these serious attention and consideration.

Statement from The UC Davis Graduate Student Association Executive Committee

On November 18th 2011, UC Davis police used an excessive degree of force against seated, passive student protesters. The Executive Committee of the UC Davis Graduate Student Association is shocked and saddened by the actions of the police on that day. We stand in solidarity with the students who sat on the quad last Friday. Students should enjoy the same rights as any citizen: to publicly gather in non-violent protest and to be treated with dignity and respect. We are working with other stakeholders to identify the failures in policy or action on the part of university personnel.

We appreciate that the administration has taken quick action to place the involved police officers and the chief of UCD Police on administrative leave. We echo the call for a timely and transparent investigation into the chain of command that authorized the deployment of pepper spray and we are working to place graduate students on the investigative task forces. We appreciate that Chancellor Katehi has accepted responsibility for authorizing police to clear encampments from the quad and quickly opened dialog with student leaders, including the Chair of the Graduate Student Association. We recognize that these are positive first steps towards constructive engagement on the important issues that face UC Davis students.

We wish to also emphasize what brought students out in the first place: the de-funding of public higher education by the California state legislature and the excessive tuition increases required to replace those funds. The Graduate Student Association continues to work with all stakeholders to inform students, policy makers and the general public about the important role that graduate students play in the educational and economic landscape of California. We hope to use our position to facilitate communication between students and the university in order to achieve a sustainable future for higher education in California.

The students who occupied the quad demonstrated admirable resolve, holding their ground against excessive force in the name of accessible higher education in California. We will not lose sight of this goal.


The UC Davis Graduate Student Association Executive Committee:
Kathryn Kolesar, Chair
Adam Costanzo, Vice Chair
Colin Murphy, External Chair
John A. Peterson, Treasurer
Ethan Evans, Secretary
Erin Legacki, Campus Organizing Director
Marissa Hirst, Public Relations Officer
Lisceth Cruz, Graduate Student Assistant to the Dean and Chancellor

It has come to our attention that our previous Chair has circulated a letter calling for the immediate resignation of Chancellor Katehi. The UC Davis Graduate Student Association recognizes the views of its former Chair and appreciates his comments on the current situation. We wish to clarify that Brian’s comments reflect his own views, not those of the GSA. As yet, the UCD GSA has taken no official position on the status of Chancellor Katehi, nor has the GSA or any of its current officers called for her resignation. We will be discussing this issue and our membership will decide on the GSA’s official position, by vote, at our Nov 30th General Assembly meeting. We encourage all graduate students to share their views with their GSA representatives so that any decision we arrive at represents the collective will of UC Davis graduate students.

The GSA Executive Committee has issued a statement regarding the events of Nov 18th (which can be viewed at [WWW] Again, we wish to specify that this statement reflects the views of the GSA officers and is not an official GSA position, until it is approved by a vote of the GSA General Assembly.

Statements from Campus and University Officials, Groups, and Bodies

Statement from UC President Yudof

Letter from the Office of the President
President Yudof acts in response to campus protest issues

University of California President Mark G. Yudof today (Sunday, Nov. 20) announced the actions he is taking in response to recent campus protest issues:
I am appalled by images of University of California students being doused with pepper spray and jabbed with police batons on our campuses.
I intend to do everything in my power as President of this university to protect the rights of our students, faculty and staff to engage in non-violent protest.
Chancellors at the UC Davis and UC Berkeley campuses already have initiated reviews of incidents that occurred on their campuses. I applaud this rapid response and eagerly await the results.
The University of California, however, is a single university with 10 campuses, and the incidents in recent days cry out for a system-wide response.
Therefore I will be taking immediate steps to set that response in motion.
I intend to convene all 10 chancellors, either in person or by telephone, to engage in a full and unfettered discussion about how to ensure proportional law enforcement response to non-violent protest.
To that end, I will be asking the Chancellors to forward to me at once all relevant protocols and policies already in place on their individual campuses, as well as those that apply to the engagement of non-campus police agencies through mutual aid agreements.
Further, I already have taken steps to assemble experts and stake-holders to conduct a thorough, far-reaching and urgent assessment of campus police procedures involving use of force, including post-incident review processes.
My intention is not to micromanage our campus police forces. The sworn officers who serve on our campuses are professionals dedicated to the protection of the UC community.
Nor do I wish to micromanage the chancellors. They are the leaders of our campuses and they have my full trust and confidence.
Nonetheless, the recent incidents make clear the time has come to take strong action to recommit to the ideal of peaceful protest.
As I have said before, free speech is part of the DNA of this university, and non-violent protest has long been central to our history. It is a value we must protect with vigilance. I implore students who wish to demonstrate to do so in a peaceful and lawful fashion. I expect campus authorities to honor that right.

Steve Montiel
Media Relations Director
UC Office of the President
(510) 987-9157

Town Hall Meeting

For a summary of what happened at the town hall meeting that was convened by Chancellor Katehi, please visit the following link:

A Statement from the Chair of the Academic Senate

Linda Bisson, the chair of the UC Davis Division of the Academic Senate released a statement on November 28 (linked below), detailing the efforts of the Senate's Executive Council's actions since the November 18 incident on the quad. The document offers a look at how the largest faculty organization on campus has responded to this point. It also offers an interesting perspective on the events of the 18th because the Chancellor happened to be meeting with the Executive Council at the time.


Other Groups

A message from the Linguistics Grad Group [WWW]
A message from EdGSA [WWW]

Videos and News Articles about Nov. 18

Pepper Spray [WWW]

November 19, 2011

The aftermath: Here are some links to videos and commentaries

Silent Protest [WWW]

Why I walked Chancellor Katehi out of Surge II [WWW]

November 21, 2011

Rally on the Quad - This peaceful demonstration began with statements from the students who were involved in the November 18th demonstration. Other students, faculty, staff and community members were given time to make announcements. Amongst these was Chancellor Katehi. She made a brief statement in which she apologized for the events that transpired on November 18th, and expressed her sadness for the type of university we became for that day.

Campus Police and Personnel Policies

At the request of several members, the GSA looked into the personnel policies dictating that the police chief and those who used pepper spray be placed on paid administrative leave. For members of the police union, paid leave is the standard practice for an officer under investigation. That union contract is linked to from this page [WWW] For non-union police in management positions, it appears (although we are not certain) that the university's general staff personnel policy would apply. [WWW]That document also states that paid administrative leave is the appropriate action for employees under investigation. It has been reported [WWW]in the media that Lt. Pike holds, a non-union management position with the UCD police.


Note: You must be logged in to add comments

This is a Wiki Spot wiki. Wiki Spot is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that helps communities collaborate via wikis.