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College News From Around The World

Kimberlee Parton
Staff Writer

Grenoble, FranceA team of researchers at the University of Grenoble-Alpes in southeastern France have found that men with higher levels of the hormone testosterone have a tendency toward spicy food. The study, titled, “Some Like It Hot,” which was published in the journal, Physiology and Behavior, gathered men ages 18 to 44 to eat a meal of mashed potatoes, pepper sauce and salt. The men who were able to take the heat — some adding more hot sauce to their food — were also found to have higher testosterone levels in their saliva. Although a correlation has been established, the researchers insist that more work needs to be done to account for how “genetics, physiological, psychological and social forces influence the liking and consumption” of spicy foods.STANFORD UNIVERSITY
Stanford, CA, USA

The Stanford community is mourning the loss of Professor Emeritus Carl Djerassi, a world-renowned chemist and author who contributed to the development of the first birth control pill. “The Pill,” as it is commonly referred to, helped to transform healthcare, sexual practices and women’s lives. Born in Vienna, Austria in 1923, Djerassi and his mother fled Nazi Germany during WWII and settled in the United States, where he earned his PhD. in chemistry at the University of Wisconsin in 1945. Spanning five decades, his careers in science and academia took him across North America before accepting a position at Stanford University in 1960. Djerassi died at his San Francisco home on Friday, Jan. 30, from complications from liver and bone cancer. He was 91.

Vancouver, BC, Canada

UBC is the latest Canadian university that is launching a divestment campaign from fossil fuels. The Vancouver Observer reports more than 220 professors at the university have signed a petition pledging to cast their votes urging UBC to “sell off the university’s holdings of the world’s ‘200 most polluting’ fossil fuel companies.” Supporters of the divestment campaign argue that the billions of dollars the university controls in endowments and pensions could be used to “stimulate a wider social push against fossil fuels.” Despite UBC’s commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions from its operations, it also lists ExxonMobil, Chevron, Halliburton, Cenovus, and Kinder Morgan as recent stock purchases. Currently, over 30 other Canadian universities have active divestment campaigns, including McGill University and the University of Toronto.

Philadelphia, PA, USA

A private, all-women’s college outside of Philadelphia made headlines last week after a controversial email was sent out to some of its 2,000 registered students, offering those with an “elevated” body mass index entrance to a fitness program. Students and the surrounding community called the email “unethical” and an “invasion of privacy,” since students’ health information was provided by the campus health center. On Friday, Dr. Gary Kerr, the director of the campus health center, sent out a separate email apologizing to those whom the initial email may have upset, and also stating that he did not know students’ private information had been collected. The fitness program, which offers students free counseling, nutrition advice and a fitness plan, had been offered to students via email twice in the past without stirring any complaints.

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