History Department Seeks Student Feedback on Major

As Cornell attempts to “Reimagine” the future of many of its internal functions, the History department has began to re-examine itself. A panel of professors within the history department held an open meeting yesterday in McGraw Hall with students to discuss the future of the major and the department.
“Periodically, we like to revisit the major and take the time to touch base with the students,” Prof. Maria Cristina Garcia, history and American studies, said at the beginning of the discussion. “We like to make sure that the requirements aren’t too onerous or too easy and see what else the students hope to gain from the department.”

Zambian Editorial Board Faces Prison Time for Prof’s Editorial

The editorial board of a major Zambian newspaper will be facing up to six months in prison as a result of a column written by a Cornell Professor in defense of the paper’s imprisoned editor.
On Aug. 27, Prof. Muna Ndulo, law, director of the Institute for African Development, wrote a column in The Zambia Post, the primary opposition newspaper in Zambia, criticizing the government’s arrest of that newspaper’s editor, Chansa Kabwela, on charges of distributing obscene materials.

Rooker ’10 Runs For City Council

Each year, thousands of Cornellians embark from Ithaca, intent on improving the world we live in. Edward Rooker ’10 is hoping to do so while he is still here by running for Alderperson of the fourth ward on the Common Council.
“Collegetown contains the most expensive properties in Ithaca and generates a huge portion of the city’s tax revenue,” Rooker said. “I want to work to make sure that my ward gets the services it deserves.”

Debate Continues Over Collegetown Urban Plan

The City of Ithaca Planning and Development Board held a public hearing yesterday at City Hall to hear concerns over the proposed plan for Collegetown. The plan, known as Part One of the 2009 Collegetown Urban Plan and Conceptual Design Guidelines, proposes a number of revisions to the current zoning of Collegetown, including raising height limits in central districts, improving access and the price of parking and increasing mixed-use development. In addition, there are a number of proposed changes to the maximum heights in some of Collegetown’s residential districts. These plans have been met with criticism from a number of members of the Ithaca community.

Entrepreneurs Seek Next Big Idea in Competition

Ezra Cornell’s development of the telegraph made him a leading entrepreneur of his time. Following in Cornell’s spirit of entrepreneurship, this year’s Big Idea competition celebrated ingenuity of students in the fields of business and social enterprise.
Organized by Entrepreneurship@Cornell, this year’s Big Idea competition, which began with submissions in December and continued through a series of eliminations this week, culminated Friday when the winning ideas in the two categories were selected from a pool of 12 finalists.
Whether aiming to alleviate massive social ills or filling a missing niche in the consumer market, each of the ideas at the competition attempted to provide unique solutions to current deficiencies.

Students Petition Against Closing of Science Library

The University, in an attempt to maintain economic buoyancy, has had to reduce the variety of services offered, often to the chagrin of the students. One recent example was the closing of the Physical Sciences Library in Clark Hall, which generated much backlash from concerned students. The decision to close the library at the end of 2009 was made in early March by the University Library System in an effort to minimize its sizeable deficit.

C.U. Sights Appeal to Tourists

With its sweeping hills and unique architecture, Cornell offers a great deal of beauty for its students. But is that beauty enough to turn Cornell into a tourist destination? In The New York Times Travel Section from Mar. 1, Jane Margolies praised the Ithaca campus as one of five campuses that “have become popular tourist draws for their cultural offerings.”
Ithaca, as the urban capital of the Finger Lakes, is a common stop on journeys to the various vineyards and other local attractions for New York City residents, according to The Times. Cornell, as the largest attraction in the city, draws a large number of those visitors.

Pundits Argue Over Validity of CALS Degrees

In the arena of American political discourse, almost every area of life, ranging from religious convictions to familial relations, is subject to attack and satire. This past week, those attacks have hit Cornell particularly hard, as Ann Coulter ’84, right-wing political pundit, mocked the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences on her website.
In a blog post last Wednesday, Coulter, who attended the College of Arts and Sciences, questioned the educational background of Keith Olbermann ’79, one of her left-wing counterparts, who attended the agriculture college.

Speaker Evaluates Kosovo One Year After Independence

Correction Appended
After centuries of occupation, war and genocide, the people of Kosovo, a small region within Serbia, declared its independence on Feb. 17, 2008. Yesterday, Florian Bieber gave a lecture entitled “How Independent Is Independent: Kosovo, Year One,” in which he outlined how the new nation has been handling its autonomy. Bieber, who has taught at universities throughout central Europe, including positions in Belgrade and Sarajevo, focused on the various social and economic woes facing Kosovo, including the disunity experienced by the many ethnic groups within the small region.