The Globe News Brief

Written By Caitlyn Scott, Co-News Editor

University of Pittsburgh to lift mask mandate within campus buildings 


On March 28, University of Pittsburgh students will no longer be required to wear a mask within campus buildings. Although masks will still be needed within healthcare centers and university shuttles, students will no longer be mandated to wear them within the classroom. However, if students come into contact with someone who may be positive for COVID-19, they will still need to follow quarantine and isolation procedures along with needing to wear a mask for 10 days outdoors or indoors afterwards. (WPXI) 


Port Authority free fares expire 


On March 27, the Port Authority resumed payment for fares on both bus and light rail transportation systems following staffing shortages caused by the continuation of the vaccination mandate for employees. Riders, who had been able to use the Authority’s transportation for free for the last two weeks, will now be required to pay full prices through cash or by connecting card payments. Although shortages continue, the Port Authority recommends that those planning on using their transportation check schedules through the TrueTime system before heading out. (KDKA) 


Southwestern Pennsylvania breaks winter records for March 


Within the month of March, Southwestern Pennsylvania has experienced over 16.2 inches of snow, double its usual monthly average of 7.6 inches. The region has recorded the snowiest March since the March Blizzard of 1993, which accumulated over 34 inches of snow that fell within the month. Along with the snow, temperatures have also been reportedly close to setting new record-low temperatures for the month, with the last coldest day in March being 15 degrees in 1885. On Monday, March 28, the temperature was reported to be 26 degrees, despite temperatures projected to skyrocket throughout the end of the month. (Trib) 


Will Smith under fire after on-air altercation during Academy Awards 


On March 27, viewers of the 94th Academy Awards witnessed the live altercation between Will Smith and Academy host and comedian Chris Rock. After poking fun at the hair of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith – who had shaved her head after being diagnosed with alopecia, a condition that leads to hair loss  – Smith stormed the stage  and slapped Rock in the face. Smith then returned to his seat and scolded Rock for making the joke. The altercation has since trended on Twitter, with wildly varying opinions by spectators and people who did not tune in for the show.. Despite this, Smith ended up taking home an Oscar shortly after for ‘Best Actor’ for his role as Richard Williams in the movie “King Richard.” (ABC New York)


Foo Fighters drummer, Taylor Hawkins, passes away at 50 


Taylor Hawkins, who spent over 25 years as the drummer of the music group the ‘Foo Fighters,’ passed away on March 26 at the age of 50. The band, which was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame in 2021, was going to play at a festival in Bogota, Columbia the night of his passing. Hawkins had been on tour with the band in South America, with his last performance taking place in San Isidro, Argentina. Tributes from fans and celebrities such as Ozzy Osborne and Mikey Cyrus have since flooded social media. At the time of writing, no cause of death has been officially confirmed. (CBS News)