C.U. Extends Helping Hand to Farms

Even though the University has had to deal with its own internal problems brought on by the current recession, the Cornell Cooperative Extension is still making a concerted effort to help New York dairy farmers cope with the downturn of the dairy market.
“The milk market over the last 10 years has developed a pattern of spikes and valleys in prices,” said Carl Tillinghast, executive director of the Franklin County branch of CCE. “This is our fourth cycle; we had experienced higher prices over the last year or two and now we’re bottoming out. Time will tell if the price goes back up and to what extent.”

Univ. Reconsiders Smoking

Cornell’s smoking policy has coincided with recent New York state legislation restricting the venues where smoking is acceptable. In 2003, New York State passed the Clean Indoor Air Act, prohibiting smoking in all indoor work environments. Last year, Gov. David Paterson signed legislation to ban smoking in all dorms in both public and private colleges in the state. Cornell’s current smoking policy reflects these pieces of legislation by prohibiting smoking in undergraduate residence halls, indoor facilities, enclosed bus stops and University-owned or controlled vehicles as well as within 25 feet of the entrance to any building.

C.U. Proposes Hydraulics Lab Clean-Up

Over the past 111 years, the old Hydraulics Lab in Fall Creek has become a landmark at Cornell, akin to the clock tower, Morrill, McGraw and White halls. The lab’s collapse two weeks ago was not only met with surprise from freshmen on their daily walks past the gorge, but also confusion from the administration, which was not aware of the collapse and had no protocol in place to deal with it. University officials are now considering a proposal to clean up the debris from the lab’s demise.
“The University is looking at a proposal to clean up some of it and dismantle the rest,” said Simeon Moss ’73, director of Cornell Press Relations. “It’s just a proposal at this point and would have to go through municipal approval.”

S.A. Presidential Candidates Present Platforms for Future

In the wake of a historic national election, Cornell University’s student government elections are making history in their own way this year. This Tuesday marks the first time that the general student body will be able to directly vote for the president and executive vice president of the student assembly. Last night, WVBR broadcasted a forum amongst the candidates as part of “Sunday Forum,” a monthly talk show hosted by Tommy Bruce, vice president for University communications and Kara Capelli ’09. The forum was followed by a debate that aired on WVBR’s website.

CJC Considers Ban on Gorge Swimming

Ithaca is gorges. However, according to the city’s municipal code, it is in fact illegal to swim in Ithaca’s gorges. The University Assembly is now considering a resolution — proposed by the Codes and Judicial Committee (CJC) — to amend Cornell’s Code of Judicial Conduct so that the gorges on Cornell’s campus are off-limits as well.
At the assembly meeting last night, there was only enough time to briefly review the issue. The assembly will continue the discussion in its meeting next month.

Steinbeck’s Grapes Picked for Reading Project

Since Cornell’s New Student Reading Project started eight years ago, it has been a rite of passage for all Cornellians –­­ akin to the swim test, climbing the 161 steps to the clock tower and finding that elusive apple vending machine in Plant Sciences. Last year’s incoming class read Lincoln at Gettysburg, by Garry Wills, and the 2009 selection is John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. Just as Lincoln at Gettysburg was assigned in time for Lincoln’s bicentennial celebrations, the themes discussed in The Grapes of Wrath echo the economic climate today.

Economic Panel Critiques New Stimulus Plan

With the Obama administration’s new economic stimulus plan released last week, the panel “Advice for President Obama — An Economics Panel Discussion” held yesterday in Call auditorium was very well attended by members of the Cornell community and residents of Ithaca.
The discussion was sponsored by the Institute for the Advancement of Economics at Cornell and was moderated by Prof. Francine Blau, labor economics. According to Prof. Michael Waldman, economics, director of the IAEC, it is part of a series of discussions that the IAEC is hoping to conduct to draw attention to economics at Cornell.

Course Evaluations Serve As a Tool in Class Selection

Many students see course evaluations merely as a tedious end-of-the-semester chore. However, some of Cornell’s colleges are working to turn course evaluations into a tool students can use in considering which classes they should take. Last February, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Faculty Senate voted to make the numerical component of their course evaluations available to the Cornell community.

Saudi Arabian University Funds Cornell Energy Research

Last May, the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Rabigh City, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia awarded Cornell a grant to fund the KAUST-Cornell Center for Energy and Sustainability. Through the grant, Cornell receives $5 million dollars every year for five years from KAUST for sustainability research.
According to Prof. Lynden Archer, chemical and biomolecular engineering and a co-Principal Investigator of the of the center, KAUST is a university that the Saudi Arabian King Abdullah commissioned and is now in its early stages of construction. The university felt that it was important to develop research partnerships with leading schools around the world, using the Singapore-MIT alliance as a model.