Why do blacks account for fewer than 2 percent of undergrads at UCSD, which has become the poster child for poor campus race relations?

As we report, there are lots of reasons. One of them has to do with getting black applicants to say yes after they’re accepted by the university.

This is “partly because it plays second banana to more alluring schools, partly because of a bad reputation in the black community. It also uses an admissions formula that critics believe disadvantages black students because it doesn’t adequately weigh their grades and scores against the opportunities they may or may not have.” And potential legal hurdles make universities nervous about doing more.

In other news:

  • With all the problems facing our community, the local news in San Diego sometimes seems to run the gamut from bad to worse. That’s one of the reasons it’s nice to read about people whose lives set them apart, like Jackson Hom, who died recently at the age of 73 after a lifetime of filling stomachs.

    He came to the United States from China at the age of 19 and became a crucial player in the local Chinese restaurant scene. He co-owned one of the earliest and most popular Chinese restaurants in the city — it even had carhops — and supported local Chinese charities in an effort to give back.

    As our obituary puts it, he had a “love affair with food,” especially his signature dishes of wontons and prime rib, and never gave up on the Chargers. Our story has more, including details about why he was known as “Action Jackson” and an endearing worry that preoccupied some of his final moments. 

  • Wanna see what the city of San Diego’s budget expenditures look like in graphic form? OK, OK, don’t answer that. But even if you’re allergic to numbers, you might appreciate this new way to visualize — ooo, bubbles! — how the city spends our money. 
  • We’ve got more details about that perennially unfinished house in Point Loma that we wrote about earlier this week. Turns out it’s in foreclosure, and it’s not the first time its owner has been in the news.

    We tracked down a woman who used to sell homes for the owner’s group. “It’s someone’s personal project that they’re doing, and I don’t even know why it would be of interest to anyone,” she said. (Oh, I don’t know. Call me crazy, but maybe the people who live nearby or walk or drive by the mess each day?)

    “I’m sure that the people involved are going to feel like that’s none of your business,” the woman added.

    So there!

    We also heard from a bunch of readers about other housing projects that have gone on forever

  • A coalition of local environmental groups is out with a report card for San Diego City Council members. If you can guess who got an A and who got an F, well, we’ll just call you Captain Obvious. 
  • The corporate world’s least-favorite attorney, San Diego’s Bill Lerach, is finally free. We talk with the co-author of a new book about the rise and fall of Lerach, who put the fear of class-action lawsuits into the hearts of CEOs. 
  • Recovery, re-schmovery. The local unemployment rate is up to 11 percent. 
  • Is the city of San Diego really going to turn 100 in 2015? A city press release said yes. But it’s wrong, our Fact Check says. Either way, San Diego doesn’t look a day over 99. Maybe it’s had some work done. 
  • The Photo of the Day is just missing one thing: a caption. Can you bring the funny?

Elsewhere:

  • “Faced with mounting criticism over a $10 million fund used to dole out money to groups and initiatives they favor, San Diego County supervisors are moving toward cutting the program in half,” the NCT reports.

    We’ve written many stories about this controversial program. You can find links to our coverage here along with background on the issue.

  • In the U-T: “A federal court jury awarded an immigration agent $2.2 million Wednesday for injuries he suffered at the hands of Chula Vista police while he was working on an undercover surveillance job three years ago.” And inspectors and technicians are trying to figure out if a reported runaway Toyota Prius — it’s gotten national attention — has an accelerator problem. 
  • Yesterday, we linked to a CityBeat story about City Council candidate Lorie Zapf ‘s strongly anti-gay comments that she made in a private email several years ago. Now, as the U-T puts it, she doesn’t get why the comments were newsworthy: “It’s going to be a little sentence plucked out, taken out of context … and then used against me to try to destroy me and my family.”

    So, um, what was the context, exactly? 

  • Finally, our reporter Liam Dillon makes his San Diego Explained debut, appearing in our weekly NBC 7/39 video series to tell viewers about how the city is trying to privatize municipal services. We sent him to the dump and made him get into a trash truck. (Journalism is so glamorous.)

    This is your chance to guess where Dillon is from based on his accent. The first person to guess right — no fair if you already know — gets a mention in tomorrow’s Morning Report.

    And we’ll see about getting Dillon a shave. 

— RANDY DOTINGA

Dagny Salas

Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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