Beast Escapes the Fire in Annual Dragon Day Festivities

This story was originally published on March 18.

The dragon lives on, as this year’s annual celebration of Dragon Day culminated in the burning of a symbolic nest, instead of the usual destruction of the first-year architects’ creation. Endowed with moving wings, claws and heads, this year’s dragon was instead able to escape the fire, finding refuge in Rand Hall instead.

In honor of the 108-year old tradition, the dragon journeyed across Central Campus on Friday, just as Spring Break began. Starting at Rand Hall, the dragon traveled up University Ave, down East Ave, and then made a right onto Campus Rd. As the fiery red dragon passed the Engineering Quad, the engineers unveiled their creation, a bright yellow phoenix. Finally, the dragon made its way to the Arts Quad.

Traffic Report

Cornell students who lack prior arrangements to move their vehicles daily should not leave their vehicles parked on the streets of East Hill and Collegetown over Spring Break, as the City of Ithaca Department of Public Works will begin its annual street cleaning program this Monday, according to a University press release. “No Parking Zone” signs will be posted 24-hours in advance of the cleaning. Violators will have their vehicles ticketed and towed at the owner’s expense. To see the full schedule of the street cleaning program, visit the City’s website, Students that need parking facilites should contact Cayuga Street Parking Garage (Pro Park) at (607) 267-7275. Students with further questions can contact the Streets and Facilities Office at (607) 272-1718.

Board of Education Discusses Phasing Out Lehman Middle School

The Ithaca Board of Education met last week to discuss a three-year plan to phase out the middle school component of Lehman Alternative Community School, which is currently a 6-12 secondary school. Members of the Lehman school community attended the meeting to oppose the plan that would increase the enrollment at Lehman by adding about 50 high school students, according to The Ithaca Journal.
At the meeting, Ithaca City School District Superintendent Judith Pastel presented the proposal, describing it as “one potential scenario with dealing with the fiscal situation.”

Financial Aid Policy Targets Select Students

The concept of need-based aid has long been a hallmark of Cornell’s financial aid policy. However, the University’s most recent financial aid policy, which in part reflects its desire to more aggressively recruit some select students, has raised controversy.
Last November, Cornell announced a new financial aid policy with three main components. For students with family incomes below $60,000 and assets below $100,000, the first component promises to eliminate parental contributions. For students whose families have annual incomes above $120,000 but still need financial aid, the second component promises to cap need-based student loans at 7,500 annually. The third component addresses these selected students who will receive higher-quality aid, such as in grants rather than in loans.

C.U. Creates Dual-Degree Program With Indian University

Starting this summer, Cornell and Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in India will offer a dual-degree program in food science and plant breeding. Relocated to Coimbatore in 1906, TNAU is a leading provider of agricultural technology in India with colleges studying agriculture, agricultural engineering and horticulture. This program will be the first agricultural life science degrees offered by any U.S. university specifically to students in India.
15 Indian students have been accepted to each of the two-year degree programs in food science and plant breeding. Studying seven months in Ithaca and five in India, students will work towards degrees including a Master of Professional Studies degree from Cornell and a Master of Technology degree from TNAU.

Alumni Hope to Increase Early Involvement Despite Recession

The Cornell Association of Class Officers held its annual meeting this past weekend to discuss the University’s past, present and future.
The Mid-Winter Meeting, which was held in Philadelphia this year, is one of the largest alumni training programs for Cornell class officers, attracting over 600 people. Founded in 1905, CACO’s mission is to “assist class leaders in organizing their activities and managing their alumni classes,” according to their website.
At this year’s meeting, alumni involvement despite the economic environment was a major topic of discussion.

Cornell Law School Alumnus and Professor Join New Administrations

After the American citizenry ushered in a new reign of the Democratic Party in the recent elections, Cornell Law School graduates are taking on leadership roles in our nation’s policies.
President Barack Obama announced more members to the Office of the White House Counsel last Thursday. Among the newly appointed counsels, Alison J. Nathan ’94 will be an Associate Counsel to the President. Nathan received her bachelor’s degree and J.D. from Cornell. During her time at the Law School, Nathan served as editor-in-chief of the Cornell Law Review.