Yesterday morning, about 48 hours after the tragic terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, the university decided to cancel all of this weekend's athletic schedule.

The decision -- the result of lengthy discussions between President Hunter R. Rawlings III, Athletic Director Andy Noel and Vice President of Academic and Student Services Susan Murphy -- affects football, men's and women's soccer, men's and women's cross-country, volleyball, field hockey, women's tennis and golf.

"We are canceling all sports events Friday to Sunday," Rawlings said. "All intercollegiate sporting events have been canceled, both home and away."

"It just seemed obvious to not concentrate on intercollegiate athletics," Noel said, adding that it is now more important to "reflect on the tragedy and focus on family and friends."

"Given the scope of this tragedy, I believe it is appropriate to cancel our entire competitive calendar this weekend," added Associate Director of Athletics, Bob Chaddock.

The announcement comes as no surprise, considering several other universities, including Yale, Brown, Dartmouth, Penn and Harvard in the Ivy League have taken similar measures. However both Rawlings and Noel were quick to stress that Cornell's decision was undertaken independently, unaffected by the choices of other schools.

"I've been on the phone -- since I'm the chair of the Ivy League -- and different universities have taken different positions," Rawlings explained. "Some have canceled everything, others are deciding on a case by case basis. There was not an Ivy Group decision."

"The Ivy League has dealt with important issues on an institutional basis," Noel concurred. "The general feeling is that every university has to reflect on the situation and make its own decision."

As a result of the Ivy League's position, schools have pursued very different policies. Yale, for example, chose to postpone all events through the weekend as early as Wednesday; Dartmouth, on the other hand, permitted a volleyball match to take place the same day. (Since, it has also canceled all events through the weekend.)

"We respected the administrations at Yale and Dartmouth very much," said Noel, "but we knew we had to decide for ourselves."

The decision has been brewing since a few hours after the attacks.

"Discussion started as soon as the events began to sink in," Noel recalled. "For many, many hours, we were in disbelief as to what happened."

Though events have been canceled, no such decision has been taken for practice schedules.

"[The approach to] practices are the same as holding classes," Rawlings said. "It's healthy to have them. Otherwise life becomes abnormal.

"You need to concentrate on what you're doing. Getting together in groups is very positive...especially in settings that you're familiar with."

As of now, no rescheduling plans have been set. Some events, including the football game against Bucknell will likely be canceled all together.

Archived article by Shiva Nagaraj

November 22, 2015

Students Rally to Remember 1993 Day Hall Takeover

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Friday’s commemoration of the 1993 Day Hall Takeover took on a new face this year at the Latino Living Center’s Café con Leche event, as students expressed anger over what they felt were inadequacies in President Elizabeth Garrett’s response to a Nov. 13 incident in which a Latino student from Dartmouth was allegedly assaulted by a police officer at the annual Latinx Ivy League Conference at Brown University.

The event, which drew approximately 40 students and faculty members to the front of Day Hall, commemorated the 22nd anniversary of the Day Hall Takeover — a four-day student occupation in 1993 that eventually led to the creation of the Latino Living Center and an expansion of the Latino Studies Program at Cornell.

At the rally in front of Day Hall, demonstrators gave quick speeches about the events that occurred in 1993 and read the same list of demands the protesters read in 1993 when they took over Day Hall.

Following the rally, participants marched to the Latino Living Center, where approximately 60 students, administrators, professors and alumni discussed racial issues affecting the Cornell Latino community. The event organizers said they did not want the march to living center to be silent because silence is part of the problem.

“The Latino community at Cornell is especially upset because there were Cornell delegates at the conference and it very much could have been them [who were attacked],” said Barbara Cruz ’19, programming vice president of La Asociación Latina.

Jason Ben Nathan/ Sun Staff Photographer La Asociación Latina’s Cafe con Leche commemorate the 22nd anniversary of the Day Hall takeover with a short rally and march on Friday, November 20, 2015

Jason Ben Nathan/ Sun Staff Photographer
La Asociación Latina’s Cafe con Leche commemorate the 22nd anniversary of the Day Hall takeover with a short rally and march on Friday, November 20, 2015

Ryan Lombardi, vice president for student and campus life, and dean of the law school Eduardo Peñalver ’94, who led the Day Hall occupation in 1993, also attended the discussion.

“I’m proud of what my classmates and I were able to accomplish in 1993, but it was also clear from the meeting that we still have a long way to go to create a supportive and welcoming climate on campus for all Cornellians,” Peñalver said.

While Peñalver and Lombardi both said they were there more to listen to concerns than to speak, Lombardi added that what he heard is already beginning to highlight ways the University can better address race relations.

“With regard to the Brown conference in particular, I understand that our lack of a direct response to our Cornell delegates caused pain, and I regret that,” Lombardi said. “We are listening, we appreciate the dialogue, and we look forward to our continued engagement.”

Members of Cornell’s Ujamaa Residential College also attended the discussion and voiced their desire for cohesion among marginalized groups at the University.

“As people of color here, we support each other because we are going through similar struggles and the administration needs to acknowledge that,” said Isabel Macias ’16, co-president of LAL.

Several of the students at the living center discussion mentioned they would like to see a unified effort to incite change in the administration.

“It’s important for us in the Ivy League to stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters of color because when they falter, we falter,” Cruz said. “When they succeed, we succeed.”

Many of the demonstrators also said that while Cornell’s racial issues do not often make headlines the way incidents at the University of Missouri, Ithaca College and Yale University recently have, racial tensions are still a part of everyday life for students of color.

“There’s always a racist incident happening, probably weekly,” Macias said. “It’s kind of numbing now because it happens so often, but now that universities are finally speaking out about it, it’s inspiring for us to do something so that we don’t have to go through this every day.”

Despite widespread complaints of lack of University action, members reported that they feel that commemorating the events of 1993 can help to illustrate current racial struggles on the Hill.

“The annual demonstration shows how things that happened 20 years ago are still issues to this day,” Cruz said. “It shows how much we have progressed, but at the same time it shows how much we have not.”

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