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UCLA Armenian Students’ Association Silently Protests Outside Kerckhoff Hall

Members of the UCLA Armenian Students’ Association gathered on the lawn outside Kerckhoff Hall today in a silent protest to advocate for political recognition of the 1915-1916 mass killings of Armenians by Turks as genocide.

Protesters stood on the lawn, with their mouths duct-taped, holding the Armenian flag. They also passed out fliers explaining their take on the issue.

The protest comes shortly after a bill was passed by the French Senate, making it a criminal offense to deny that the Turks committed genocide against the Armenians during World War I.

Razmig Sarkissian, the president of the UCLA Armenian Students’ Association, ripped duct tape off of his mouth to further explain the organization’s motives to Mojo.

The silent protest was called “Stain of Denial,” in reference to how both Turkey and the United States have yet to recognize the mass killings as ‘genocide,’ said Sarkissian, a third-year English student.

“We don’t want to see more genocides happen,” Sarkissian said. “Denial is a continuation of genocide.”

With reports by Kassy Cho, Bruin Contributor

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Advice from students on navigating the apartment hunt

The Experts: Fourth-year sociology student Rachel Borowski and fourth-year psychology student Ashley Shirk

1)   First, sit down with your roommate(s) and make a list of your apartment “needs,” – parking spaces, a big kitchen, etc. Identifying these essentials will help narrow down the list of possibilities.

2)   Start the search now. The earlier, the better. Begin by browsing Craigslist and taking a walk on the major streets in Westwood. Don’t be afraid to knock on doors if you like the look of certain apartments.

3)   Be persistent. If a landlord doesn’t call back, keep calling until you get someone on the phone. The decision to wait even a day before calling again may mean losing out on the apartment of your dreams.

4)   Landlord tours are useful, but try to get a tour from the current tenants. This way, you can get first-hand answers to important questions like how loud the street is, whether the landlord allows parties, etc.

5)   Don’t stress. You will find an apartment. Just start early, and aim to sign a lease by May at the latest.

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Five helpful tips to prevent any legal troubles while living in the apartments

The Expert: Liz Kemper, director of Student Legal Services

1) Actually read your lease. No, actually. Read it. Ask clarifying questions. It’s a legally-binding document, so take it seriously. Seriously.

2) After you move in, make sure to complete a checklist indicating the condition of each room at the time of move-in. This helps ensure you’ll get your security deposit back at the end of the year.

3) Make a roommate contract. Not only does this help smooth out any future conflicts, it also gives you legal rights in case a major issue arises.

4) Get renter’s insurance. It will protect you from property damage and theft. For example, if, by chance, your bathtub overflows and the water seeps into the ceiling of the apartment below, you’re covered.

5) Get it in writing. No matter what “it” is. If you and your landlord make an agreement – whether it’s allowing you to keep a kitten in the apartment or sublease in the summer – put it down in writing and make copies.


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L.A. resident managers reveal five tips to ease the search for the right apartment

The Experts: Nindy Camp and Tom Ma, resident managers at R.W. Selby & Company, Inc.

1) Be very specific in your written and verbal inquiries. Explain exactly what you’re looking for – expected date of move-in/move-out, ideal price range, etc. The more specific you are, the more likely the landlords will be able to tell you whether the apartment is a match for you.

2) If you leave a landlord a voicemail message, speak slowly. We get it – there’s a lot of information to share – but breathe and take your time. Remember, you can always call back. Also, make sure to leave your contact information.

3) Keep tabs on how quickly a landlord calls you back. The speed at which they respond is often a good indicator of how efficient future interactions will be. Be persistent, but don’t waste your time.

4) Make sure you’re on-time to your apartment-viewing appointment. Landlords usually only give a five-to-10 minute grace period, especially during the busy spring season.

5) Come prepared. Memorize, or write down, all of the questions you want to ask. Always bring a checkbook. This comes in handy if you suddenly decide that the apartment you’re touring is “the one.” If you have a checkbook, you’ll be able to put down a deposit right then and there. If you don’t have a checkbook, ask about other payment options. Some companies allow you to use credit cards and sign leases online.


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