C.U. Policies Could Limit Free Speech

Student activism is a long-standing tradition at Cornell, and the University’s creed pledges full and equal protection of students’ rights; but there is a devil in the details.
Cornell’s policies on harassment, tolerance, respect and civility contain so-called speech codes — “Trojan horses” embedded within University guidelines that limit the scope of free speech on campus. [img_assist|nid=37744|title=Freedom speech|desc=Will Creeley, director of legal and public advocacy for the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, speaks in Goldwin Smith Hall yesterday.|link=node|align=left|width=336|height=233]

C.U. Looks Within as Deficit Looms

With Cornell’s current budget deficit still totaling a grave $135 million, the University has been forced to seriously reconsider its future. Reimagining Cornell — an effort the University is touting as “one of the most comprehensive self-examinations in its 144-year history” — will, once complete, provide a strategic plan that top administrators hope will set the university on stable financial footing.

Marine Lab Shows Promise of Sustainability

APPLEDORE ISLAND, Maine — About seven miles off the coast of the Maine and New Hampshire border lies Shoals Marine Laboratory, a model for sustainable living. From wind and solar power to on-island composting, SML harnesses Appledore Island’s limited resources with maximum efficiency.
Operated jointly by Cornell University and The University of New Hampshire, SML offers students a wide array of courses and internships in marine biology, ecology and sustainability, with choices expanding each summer.

Charter School Planning Proceeds, But Questions Still Remain

The global movement for building a sustainable world is planting new roots in Ithaca.
The New Roots charter school, set to open in the fall, may be Ithaca’s answer to the United Nations’ call for a “rethinking of education.”
In 2005 the U.N. began the Decade for Education for Sustainable Development with the vision to “integrate the principles, values and practices of sustainable development into all aspects of education and learning,” according to UNESCO.org.
The New Roots School is meant to be an application of those ideas, expanding beyond the classroom and into the streets and natural areas of Ithaca.

Controversial Changes to Facebook’s Terms of Service Put to Vote

Facebook got a facelift in February, and the new site layout elicited many a group in its opposition. Though less visible, changes in the site’s governing documents also generated controversy. The new language in Facebook’s Terms of Service implied that the site owned all content, even after profiles were deleted. Site officials recently put the change to a vote, inviting all 200 million members to decide between the existing governing documents and the controversial proposed ones. The week-long voting period ended last Thursday. Participation was low, with only 600,000 ballots cast, but the old terms were reinstated with 75-percent approval.

Annual Awards Recognize Greeks

Positive Greek publicity was the focus and the outcome of yesterday’s 22nd annual Greek Awards ceremony, an event designed to recognize outstanding individuals and chapters in the Greek system for excellence in leadership and service.
17 awards and scholarships were presented at the ceremonies in the Willard Straight Hall memorial gallery, where representatives of many chapters on campus gathered in business attire on an unseasonably warm Ithaca afternoon.
Susan Murphy ’73, vice president of student and academic services, delivered a keynote speech.
“We often decry with frustration what hits the headlines [about the Greek system],” Murphy said.

Faculty Vote in Favor of Labor Day Class Cancellation

Beginning in 2010, Cornell students and professors may be able to look forward to a long weekend at the start of the Fall semester. The Faculty Senate voted April 8 to cancel classes on Labor Day, the first Monday in November.
Provost Kent Fuchs must approve the changes before they are incorporated into the calendar.
“I’m pretty sure that he will make an affirmative decision. He was there when the vote was taken and he didn’t say anything negative,” said Prof. Georg Hoffstaetter, physics, chair of the University’s educational policy committee.
“Labor Day is already free for all staff, but not for faculty,” Hoffsteatter said. “Faculty taught, but there was no staff support.”

Nat’l Geographic Expert Traces Human Origins

“Where did we come from, and how did we get to where we live today?”
So read the flyer distributed by The Cornell Center for Comparative and Population Genomics promoting yesterday’s lecture by Spencer Wells, PhD., director of the Genographic Project at the National Geographic Society.
There were few empty seats in Call Auditorium in Kennedy Hall yesterday evening, where Ithaca residents and members of the Cornell community gathered to hear Wells speak.
“It’s great to see such a high turnout, especially on tax day,” Wells said. “I’m glad all of you aren’t off doing strange things with teabags.”