UCLA, UC Irvine law schools join boycott of U.S. News & World Report rankings
The Association of American Universities and the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology said in a joint statement Tuesday that the law schools joining the boycott also received rankings from U.S. News and World Report.
The universities, which represent some 5,500 undergraduates enrolled at colleges in California, were also included in the list last year.
The boycott announcement was first reported by the Los Angeles Times on Monday, but UC and UCLA officials did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
At the University of California, nearly 10,000 students are enrolled in the UC system, which is spread over six campuses in central California and parts of Hawaii. UCLA, with some 4,800 students, is located in Westwood.
The law schools participating in the boycott are: UCLA, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UC Irvine, the University of Southern California, the University of San Diego and the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
UC Berkeley law professor David Harris, who organized the boycott at the law school, said he was surprised by the university’s silence.
“UCLA is not a member of the Association of American Universities,” Harris said, adding that Berkeley is the only university to withdraw from the group since its formation in 1979 because of its anti-Israel views and because of its ties to the CIA.
The University of Southern California law school, which has some 3,500 students, did not comment on the boycott.
“The law schools have a First Amendment right to freedom of speech and expression,” said Barbara Vazquez, a University spokesman. “UCLA is not withdrawing from U.S. News because of that right, but because the U.S. News rankings are inconsistent with our commitment to academic freedom.”
Vazquez said the law school will publish an editorial in the school’s publication, the Daily Bru