June 4, 2008

School May Be Out for Summer — But the Newsroom Is Up and Running

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For those of you who stalk The Sun’s website looking for the latest in Cornell news, here are some recent headlines to keep you busy.

Margaux Powers ’05 Murdered By Ex-Boyfriend
On Saturday night, Cornell graduate Margaux Powers ’05 was slain by her ex-boyfriend in the apartment they used to share in Chelsea. She was 26. After slitting her throat, Jonathan Smith, 34, jumped to his own death from a Manhattan high-rise, leaving only a note that expressed regret for what he had done, according to the New York Daily News. A statement released by her family said that Powers “recently moved to Manhattan where she was pursuing a career in finance. Margaux was a sweet, caring young woman and a friend to all who were lucky enough to know her.” At Cornell, Powers earned a bachelors degree in English.

Johnson Museum Enters a New Era
The Johnson Museum broke ground on its 16,000 square foot addition in May, prompting a celebration. At the event, President David Skorton decided to get a little creative and read the following Haiku:
yellow hat on gray
new building rising today
new era for art
The 35-year-old museum will receive $20 million, which will go towards the addition of a lecture room, new galleries, a workshop studio and more storage space. Though the University still lacks $1 million of the money needed for the addition, the new Johnson is scheduled to open in 2010.

Cornell Ranks Ninth on List of Most Billionaire Alumni
In May, Forbes Magazine named Cornell ninth in its ranking of the top “billionaire factory” universities. Tied with five other schools, Cornell boasts nine graduates who have gone on to become billionaires. Harvard came in first place on the list with 50 billionaires, with Stanford trailing behind in second with 30.
Explaining what makes some schools more likely to produce such high-earning alumni, Forbes wrote, “For one thing, they offer excellent educations. But they also offer networking, which in many cases amounts to a ticket to the old-boys network, still very much in existence these days.”
MetaEzra, a Cornell blog run by two non-billionaire alumni, speculated that, “the distribution of billionaires might affect the way the University seeks to conduct its fundraising. Given that we have less billionaires than peer institutions like Columbia and Penn, it might make sense for Cornell to approach fund raising with a more egalitarian philosophy, like making the alumni magazine free to all alums.”

Please continue to check back for the latest from the news department!

Ben Eisen is The Sun’s city editor