Headlines @ U.Va.
ALL TUCKERED OUT
Travis Tucker, the U.Va. student who made quite a run on the live performance competition show, “American Idol,” finally said goodbye on March 9. The 21-year-old made it to the semi-finals of the competition, but his voice failed to win the judges over and get him into the final round. Tucker is in his fourth year of a joint bachelor’s and master’s program for math education. (Potomac News, March 10)
U.S. DOCTORS TREATED YUSHCHENKO
A team of U.S. doctors, headed by a University professor, secretly flew to Vienna in mid-December to assist in the treatment of then-Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko, according to U.S. officials, two of the doctors and the head of the Austrian clinic visited by Yushchenko. The team’s role in Yushchenko’s recovery from an apparently deliberate case of massive dioxin poisoning had been undisclosed until now, largely because U.S. officials and the doctors did not want to appear to interfere in the political drama of the Ukrainian elections. … Even today U.S. officials are reluctant to officially say they assisted the medical team. Dr. Gregory Saathoff, the lead doctor and executive director of U.Va.’s Critical Incident Analysis Group in Charlottesville, would confirm only broad details after saying he received permission from the family to discuss it “on a very limited basis.” He said the U.S. government was not involved in his team’s work. (The Washington Post, March 11)
Mark Bernardino is the ultimate champion. Champion’s leader, that is. No two coaches have as many ACC titles as Bernardino, who, in 25 years at the helm of the U.Va. swimming and diving program, has nine men’s titles and five women’s titles. The U.Va. men’s swimming team recently won its seventh straight ACC championship, the second-longest active streak in the ACC next to the nine straight titles won by the Duke women’s golf team. (Roanoke Times, March 23)
SEXUAL ASSAULT POLICIES AMENDED
U.Va. officials announced changes March 17 to its sexual assault policies after criticism from students. The University expedited the process of investigating rapes and assaults, clarified confidentiality rules, suggested establishing a full-time advisory committee and added a lesser charge of sexual misconduct — so that students might be less reluctant to report problems and there could be more leeway with the severity of punishments. (The Washington Post, March 18)