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TAARIQ | Diversity Without Inclusion Is Not Enough

I am one of the lucky ones, right? Being able to come to an Ivy League university despite coming from a low-income community and a single-parent first-generation household. I am one of the lucky ones. Being able to completely forget the reality of home in my little ivory tower. I am lucky to have an unlimited meal plan, even though it was forced and the food is poorly seasoned.

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TAARIQ | Commit to Going Green

Cornell University is one of thousands of institutions dedicated to sustainability and carbon neutrality. Not only are the ecological benefits of these missions evident, but they could also mean savings in revenue for the University. According to a comparative analysis by Morgan Stanley Capital Investment, fossil fuel free funds increased 12.56 percent between years 2014 and 2018. This yields a 0.65 percent increase in returns compared to funds that contain fossil fuel equities. For Cornell’s endowment, this increase in returns could produce over $1 billion of asset increases in a span of at least five years.

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TAARIQ | Celebrating Black History Month at Cornell

Black History Month, which was officially recognized in the 1970s, is not only a celebration of people and events throughout Black history, but it is also a reminder of the freedom now held by those in the Pan-African diaspora. An accomplishment I feel may be taken for granted. In our modern institutional settings, where Black contributions are oftentimes overlooked, the month of February provides us with an important reminder of where we have come from, and what we can achieve. But what does the view of Black excellence look like from an ivory tower? Cornell University does have a historic commitment to diversity, which is in tune with its mission, “any person … any study,” created during the founding of the University.

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TAARIQ | After the CALC Affair, Going Steady With Our Alma Mater

About two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend the 2019 Cornell Alumni Leadership Conference as a Class of 2021 Class Councils representative, alongside around 100 other current Cornell student leaders. Generations of alumni also came to the event to engage in networking and small group discussions with students. I was also present for Paul Blanchard’s ’52 acceptance speech for the William “Bill” Vanneman ’31 Outstanding Class Leader Award. When Blanchard referred to the Hall of Fame pitcher Satchel Paige as a “Negro” and said “now they call them Blacks,” my jaw dropped, followed by stifled laughter. This was the same reaction I had to his earlier comment about surveying female students on the Arts Quad.

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TAARIQ | Cornell’s Misdirected Master Housing Plan

The number of students who want to live on-campus far exceeds the number that actually live on-campus, according to a housing survey. The current system consists of guaranteed on-campus housing for all incoming first-year students. Following freshman year, students have a variety of on-campus housing options, which include the West Campus House System, program houses and cooperative houses. In order to live on campus, students register online for housing, then receive a randomly designated General Room Selection timeslot. During this timeslot, they select a room and sign a housing contract.

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TAARIQ | Not So Wondrous Winter Land

As an environmental and sustainability sciences major, you would think that I would be against global warming. I understand that I am not from California or the South, but I’m tired of this winter after two decades on the East Coast. Of course I am concerned about the dysfunction and distribution of traumatic weather patterns due to anthropogenic activity, but this late winter and transition back to campus have been rough. This spring semester, I’ve come back with visions of professional development and academic success, but in the face of bone-chilling winds and hazardous slopes, my energy tank remains low. There are, however, some things I have employed to remain marginally functional.

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TAARIQ | How To Turn Your Semester Around in 3 Weeks

The worst part about a break is it happening in the first place. Doesn’t it seem like hedonism to peruse a false sense of pleasure, stuffing our face with food and sleeping for countless hours, when reality dictates that at the end of the day, you still have mounds of obligations to return to in only five days? Some students were still swamped with assignments during this time. Maybe that was a bit dramatic, and I am thankful for my opportunity to return home to family and unwind, but when I land back on campus the Band-Aid rips off and I realize my time is up. What in the world have I been doing since August?

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TAARIQ | Thankful for Thanksgiving

For the first time in a long time, many Cornell Students have something to look forward too. That one time of the year where we go home to fill our bellies and calm our minds. Although we must never forget the truth of this restorative holiday, and the genocide of a race of people whose graves we have built this country on, we shouldn’t hold back our joy to be reunited — even if it’s briefly — with friends and family. We hunker down to complete prelims and final assignments with our last drops of willpower, for on the last Thursday of November, we feast. We pack up our things, bear whatever tiring form of transportation we choose, arrive at our homes, drop our bags and collapse on the floor.

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TAARIQ | Why Aren’t We Voting?

As someone that is engaged in politics, passionate about advocacy and dedicated to creating legislation to improve the well-being of marginalized communities, it is quite ironic that I only just registered to vote. The last day to register to vote in New York was October 12, and just like many of my homework assignments, I waited until that day to do it. I have been of voting age for well over a year now, and just never had the stamina to take the few minutes it took to register. I pulled out my state ID, typed in a few numbers and then all of a sudden I was registered. After the satisfaction of finally checking a task off my list, I then had to stop and think to myself if I will actually bring myself to vote.

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TAARIQ | Care About True Self-Care

On Monday I did not go to any one of my classes. I was exhausted from a weekend-long trip in the woods for a Biology class, but the exhaustion was more mental than physical. Tonight I ate a pint of ice cream, a bag of chips and fruit snacks for dinner — and no I do not have a gym membership. On most days after class, I like to come back and take those loooong naps, where you wake up and feel even more stressed because you know you lost a lot of time. How do I justify these destructive behaviors?