Surrounded by palm trees, sand and the Caribbean Sea during her spring break, President Martha Pollack announced the opening of a Global Hub in La Romana, Dominican Republic on Tuesday.
According to the University’s website, Global Hubs are partnerships with foreign academic institutions that bring together faculty, students, alumni and local communities.
“Cornell Global Hubs are your point of entry to a world of high-impact opportunities,” the website reads.
In La Romana, the University will partner with Universidad Casa de Campo — a famed institute of higher education located on the southeastern tip of the island — to bring Cornellians a truly immersive experience.
“I am proud to open this fantastic partnership with Universidad Casa de Campo,” Martha said. “Students will have the opportunity to truly pursue Ezra Cornell’s founding mission of ‘any person, any study,’ while gaining valuable cultural understanding in one of the world’s most beautiful locations.”
The university boasts a wide range of academic programs and opportunities, including a physical therapy program, one of the world’s best dance programs — spearheaded by the visionary professor Altos de Chavón — and a strong mixology program, all with many different offerings.
All of these courses are taught at one of UCDC’s three main campuses — Minitas, Catalina and Saona — while students have the option of living in either townhouses or suite-style dorms. Students are eligible for the UCDC program only if they belong to Greek life and do not require financial aid to attend Cornell.
Students largely reacted positively to the announcement, excited for UCDC’s course offerings.
“I’m really excited to take some dance classes with Professor Chavón,” said Bailey Ando ’25, who is part of the Alpha Sigma Sigma sorority. “She teaches several amazing courses, including ‘Grinding’ and ‘The Macarena.’ Me and my Alpha Sigma Sigma sisters plan to study there next spring, and we’re going to make sure to all take one of her classes together, maybe even with some of the guys from Tri Chi.”
Like Ando, Dak Kerry ’23 — a brother in Rho Upsilon Mu — expressed readiness for several mixology classes.
“I heard that the Public Intoxication class taught by Professor Bacardí is really good,” Kerry said. “I’m excited really for the labs there — I heard you hardly remember them, so it’s certainly better than my biology labs here.”
Some students pointed out that opening a campus in the Dominican Republic would simply give Martha yet another reason to not be in Ithaca, where she has spent a total of 69 of the last 420 days.
“Guys! I found Martha!” wrote /u/IndianPabloWithAss on a Reddit thread entitled “Leave it to Martha to ignore the ithaca campus. Jfc I hate this fucking school so much.”
The University declined to comment on whether or not Martha would be living in Ithaca full-time or move to the Dominican Republic to help get the new hub off the ground, but the email that The Sun received was entirely in Spanish.
Waldo Ware ’24 said that he had never seen Martha on campus and speculated that she would spend all her time in the Dominican Republic.
“I thought that I was the one who was supposed to be found!” said Ware Waldo, whose friends often play a game called “Where’s Waldo?” with him. “But I’ve been here almost three years, and she’s literally never been in Ithaca. I’m starting to think she’s a Columbia double agent with how much time she spends in New York City.”
Ware said, however, that he doesn’t blame Martha for opting to spend time in the Dominican Republic.
“I mean, shit,” Waldo said, “it’s like negative four hundred and twelve degrees with eighteen feet of snow here into the ass end of June. I’d go to the Caribbean too.”
Other students, meanwhile, expressed worry that the University was playing an unwitting role in American neocolonial imperialism over smaller Caribbean countries, calling other students to action.
“We need to storm Day Hall and prevent these globalists from taking over yet another country,” said John Smith ’25. “I say, down with the patriarchal neocolonialist white trash. Communism now!”
However, UCDC president José Cuervo said that he was excited for the partnership between himself and Martha, but that he may have come on too strong and may have needed to be chased at times.
“Martha has probably had enough of me,” Cuervo said. “When I first reached out about this partnership, she said, ‘We’ll give it a shot.’ Well, one shot led to another, and she’s now passed out on my couch.”
Prima Vera ’23 is a senior in the Nolan School of Hotel Administration. She can be reached at [email protected]