Despite Staff Layoffs, Univ. Continues to Hire Student Workers

Amid recent layoffs and a reduction in the size of its workforce through incentivized retirement and attrition, the University doesn’t have plans to make any major changes to student employment, although the administration conceded that it is still unclear how budget cuts will impact specific student positions.
According to the Office of Financial Aid and Student Employment, 6,976 students worked 11,433 hourly jobs for on-campus employers and local community service agencies during the 2008-2009 academic year, although the number of hourly student employees has decreased slightly over the past three years.
At this time, however, the administration is not concerned about a significant decrease in jobs as a result of the University’s perilous financial situation.

Dir. of Asian Amnesty Int’l Speaks on Human Rights

World-renowned international human rights lawyer and activist Saman Zia-Zarifi ’90, the new Director of the Asia Division of Amnesty International, spoke to students and faculty yesterday at Myron Taylor Hall in a speech entitled, “Counter Terror with Justice: The Dispatches of Terror and the Axis of Evil.”
“[Zia-Zarifi] is such an important person in our community, and is such an amazing role model for students wanting to do international human rights work,” Larry Bush, executive director of the Clarke Center for International and Comparative Legal Studies said. “He’s at the pinnacle of human rights advocacy and activities in the whole world.”

2008-2009 S.A. President-Elect Prepares to Usher in New Era

Having served on the Student Assembly for the past three years, the 2008-2009 president-elect Ryan Lavin ’09 has seen a lot. And by the end of his term, he hopes that the undergraduate community will be looking at an improved and more effective S.A.
“I’ve been on the assembly from an era that had a lot of internal problems,” Lavin said. “People labeled it as corrupt, unproductive … That was an assembly that wasn’t able to get much through for the student body.”
He explained that a disconnect exists between the way the S.A. is perceived by the community and the way it sees itself.

Students Host Dinner to Raise Funding for Trip to Nicaragua

Last night, Cornell’s Bridges to Community hosted 75 guests for an evening of local delicacies — from Wegman’s sandwiches to pizza from the Nines — and musical performances at the Statler. The event raised over $700, which will benefit the group’s trip to Nicaragua next March.
The money raised at the benefit dinner, which was made possible by donations from local eateries and the services students in the School of Hotel Administration, will help Bridges to Community members support the Nicaraguan economy by funding local masonry labor building materials for important construction projects in Nicaragua.

Milstein Delivers Keynote Address

Cornell Entrepreneur of the Year 2008 Howard P. Milstein ’73 delivered the keynote address, “Opportunity Always Knocks if You’re Listening,” at the culmination of Entrepreneuship @Cornell’s annual Entrepreneurship Celebration yesterday in the Statler Auditorium.
“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty,” Milstein said to open his speech, quoting Winston Churchill. “Nothing you encounter, or think of, is being done as well as it can be. There is opportunity in everything.”

Cornell Crisis Team Helps Students in Need

Justine Oller grad spent the early morning hours of Jan. 30 without shoes, her wallet, a jacket or a cell phone, watching her East Spencer St. apartment as become consumed by flames.
The blaze had been started by a stray cigarette, which burned all night after being thrown from the window of a neighboring duplex. The fire spread from the adjacent apartment to Oller’s duplex, destroying her next-door neighbor’s apartment and damaging hers. Fortunately, no one was hurt, but Oller was left without a place to live.

Some Students Accept Risk, Opt Out of Health Insurance

With the 2008 presidential campaigns now underway and each of the three top candidates offering universal healthcare solutions, “the uninsured” has become a ubiquitous term in today’s news. But until an anonymous Cornell student revealed to The Sun that he has evaded the school’s mandatory health insurance policy for the past two years, it has never seemed quite so close to home.
The financially-independent student was insured by a family member’s plan before coming to Cornell, but a change in the insurance policy left the student uninsured. When faced with the obligation to purchase coverage through the University’s Student Health Insurance Plan, the student claimed to be covered by an old policy in order to avoid paying the premium.