News Roundup 1.25.17

EMORY — A chemical flash in the Atwood Chemistry Center caused by hexane, a flammable chemical, resulted in a small fire that injured two Ph.D. students at 5 p.m. Tuesday, according to Associate Vice President for Media Relations Nancy Seideman. Building sprinklers were activated, and Emory Police Department, Environmental Health and Safety and DeKalb County Fire Rescue responded. The injured victims were transported by ambulance to Grady Memorial Hospital and have been treated for their injuries.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Donald J. Trump is expected to sign an executive order Wednesday that would direct the construction of a wall along the U.S. southern border, according to White House officials, The New York Times reported. Trump also plans to limit immigrants from “terror-prone” nations, and will implement a moratorium on immigration from Syria, the Times reported.

EMORY — The Equality of Opportunity Project conducted a study measuring student economic diversity among colleges. Emory ranked No. 2 among elite colleges for the highest percentage of students from households with an income in the bottom 40 percent. While 15.9 percent of Emory students come from households in the bottom 40 percent and 27.7 percent from households in the bottom 60 percent, 14.9 percent come from households in the top 1 percent, indicating that Emory’s student body is economically diverse relative to peer institutions. The report indicated that 38 American colleges have more students from households with incomes in the top 1 percent than the bottom 60 percent.

EMORY — Emory held four sessions between Jan. 17 to 20 intended for open dialogues with faculty members and students about University President Claire E. Sterk’s emerging priorities. Each session focused on a different topic: “Deepening Engagement with Atlanta,” “Strengthening Academic Excellence,” “Enhancing the Impact of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center” and “Global Health Innovations.” Attendees from all sessions agreed that Emory needs to better explain to the public how the institution educates students and excels as a research university. The majority of attendees at all sessions were Emory faculty members. The session with the highest number of attendees was the “Deepening Engagement with Atlanta” session, which about 90 people attended. The session with the fewest attendees was the “Enhancing the Impact of the Woodruff Health Sciences Center” session, which about 25 people attended.

EMORY — Changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) — previously scheduled to be implemented late November 2017 — have been postponed, according to Associate Vice President of Human Resources Theresa Milazzo. The changes would have affected 357 Emory employees, who would have received compensation for overtime and been paid biweekly instead of monthly. The implementation date was pushed back by the Department of Labor (DOL) following a Nov. 22 federal court case during which a Texas federal district judge opposed the changes, claiming that the DOL overstepped its authority to increase the minimum salary level, according to the National Law Review.

GEORGIA — Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency in seven counties Sunday and an additional nine counties Monday after tornadoes across the South killed at least 20 people. Search-and-rescue missions are ongoing, and Deal announced he will visit the affected areas Wednesday. Georgia is seeking federal disaster assistance. “We’ll be helping out the state of Georgia,” Trump said in a Jan. 22 inaugural ceremony.

ATLANTA — The Atlanta Falcons will play in the Super Bowl for the second time in history after winning the NFC Conference Championship game last Sunday against the Green Bay Packers 44-21. They played in the 1998 Super Bowl and lost. The Falcons will play the New England Patriots in the 51st Super Bowl Feb. 5. The Atlanta team finished the regular season 11-5 and defeated the Seattle Seahawks and Packers in the postseason to arrive at the Super Bowl.

Alex Klugerman contributed reporting.

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