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Weekly News Briefs: Oct. 16


Morehouse College names new president

Atlanta-based Morehouse college has named David A. Thomas as their 12th president. The college’s board members voted on Sunday, Oct. 15 for the 61-year-old to take office starting Jan. 1, 2018. Thomas was the former dean of the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business through the years of 2011 to 2016, where he led a campaign that raised over $130 million in five years. He has also taught at Harvard University. He told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that his main goal for Morehouse College is increasing enrollment from 2,200 to 2,500 students, as well as providing more schollarships, study abroad opportunities, and facilitatin faculty research. According to The Washington Post, the hire comes amidst a tough time for historically black colleges, which are facing competition with other institutitons for top students and faculty.

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5,700 burned in California

According to the Los Angeles Times, the death toll in the Northern California wildfires has increased to 40 as of Sunday, Oct. 15. Evacuations in Napa city were lifted on the same day, as the wildfires are expected to die down, and the weather is starting to cool. Firefighters have expressed optimism as far as keeping the fires under control. So far, the 15 branches of fires, which have been going strong for a week, have destroyed over 5,700 buildings, and burned through 220,000 acres.


Portugal fires kill 31 people

Civil defense authorities reported that the 145 fires blazing around central and north Portugal have left more than 31 people dead. The victims were in the Portuguese areas of Coimbra, Guarda, Castelo Brance, and Viseu. Fires broke out in the Galicia region of Spain but were worsened by Hurricane Ophelia, which is now approaching Europe’s western coast. According to BBC, Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy travelled to Galicia to meet with firefighters and stand in solidarity with the victims.

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