The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Thursday September 29th

University



Protestors gather around Silent Sam on Aug. 20, 2018, hours before the statue was toppled.

University used social media monitoring in Silent Sam and pro-choice protests

The University has been using Social Sentinel — an AI-based service — since 2016 to “identify threatening or concerning public social media posts.” The contract will end in October. The program scans publicly available social media content for keywords and phrases and alerts the administration about when and how those words are used.  Documents show that UNC used Social Sentinel to monitor campus protests through geofencing, and pulled data from public posts on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube and Reddit.

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Banners fly on UNC's South Building on Oct. 11, 2021.

Detectable levels of lead found in drinking fountains of eight campus buildings

Lead has been detected in drinking fountains in eight campus buildings this month, according to emails sent to building occupants and further confirmed by a University spokesperson. The affected buildings include Hamilton, Fordham, Manning, Phillips, Carrington and Issac M. Taylor Halls, South Building and Wilson Library. Drinking fountains in multiple buildings yielded over 25 times the detectable lead threshold set by the Environmental Protection Agency.

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Water fountains in Hamilton Hall, pictured on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022, are reported to have lead.

Column: What's in your water bottle?

"When water contamination is discovered, it should be immediately made publicly known, not just another message in an inbox of emails. It should not be limited to just occupants of the building either like incidences in Phillips, Manning, Hamilton, Fordham and South Building were."

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Students walk across the quad on the evening of Thursday, Oct 14, 2021. Behind them, a banner offers support following the death of two UNC students by suicide that month.

UNC becomes home to new Suicide Prevention Institute

The UNC Suicide Prevention Institute, primarily run by Dr. Patrick Sullivan and Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody, is a new addition to UNC's campus that aims to reduce the prevalence of suicide in and beyond the UNC Health Care system.  The Institute comes as the result of a $25 million donation from William Starling, a UNC alumnus, and Dana Starling, who lost both of their sons to suicide. 

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DTH Photo Illustration. Graduate schools are no longer requiring the GRE- a standardized test previously used for admission.

GRE testing no longer required for all UNC graduate school admissions

UNC’s Graduate School Administrative Board recently passed a motion that will no longer require Graduate Record Exam (GRE) standardized testing in the admission process for graduate schools.  Individual programs will still be allowed to opt-in to requiring the GRE as part of the admissions process.  “Really look at standardized testing," UNC senior Kristina Vaher said. "You just learn how to take the test, you learn how they want you to answer certain questions on the test. You’re not really increasing your ability to learn in any other aspect." 

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First-year pre-business student Hannah Vance enjoys a coffee chat with junior psychology student Marleny Nolasco in Stone & Leaf Cafe on Thursday, Sept. 22, 2022.

Editorial: It's time to get rid of Friday classes

"The University has also introduced 'Well Being days' in recent semesters. These sporadic days off were put in place to support student mental health. While this is a step in the right direction, I propose that the University take things a step further — it is time we move to a four-day school week."

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DTH Photo Illustration. UNC hosts a variety of viewpoints on campus.

Questions remain about UNC's implementation of freedom of speech resolutions

In July, the UNC Board of Trustees passed two resolutions related to free speech on campus: one affirming viewpoint neutrality when it comes to organization funding and one adopting the Kalven Report — which supports institutional neutrality.  The Kalven Report, a 1967 document developed at the University of Chicago, outlines institutional neutrality on college campuses.  “You really want the University to be a forum for free and open discussion,” UNC BOT member Perrin Jones said. “And if you end up putting your finger on the scale, as it were, then I think it's difficult for that free and open discussion to occur.”

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