Quote Block Templates

POORE | Remember What It Means to Be a Student

This past week has been a banner week for me. When pre-enroll opened on Monday, I had resolved on taking Hotelie wines, CALS wines, Magic Mushrooms and not much else. Feeling disillusioned from academia, I planned to spend my last semester at Cornell like a petulant child, sipping wine Tuesday through Thursday (with no class on Monday or Friday) and generally making myself as troublesome and acid to the institution as I could manage. But then I had a meeting with my advisor to submit my application to graduate. Somehow, we ended up talking about the purpose of the modern university.

Quote Block Templates (60)

BETTEZ | So You Think You Want to Be a Doctor?

My small hometown’s emergency medical services was so understaffed that at one point they started training some high school kids to be certified EMTs. Throughout junior year, my classmates and I took night classes so that the next year we could carry pagers around school and respond to  ambulance calls during the day. We learned how to do CPR, identify a stroke, treat burn injuries — pretty much the worst cases of every scenario. But once we were on real calls, I started to realize how bloodthirsty we had become. Secretly and out loud to each other, we hoped for emergencies — and not just minor injuries that would get us out of class.

Quote Block Templates (59)

WANG | On China, on Hong Kong, on Us

Hong Kong businessman Jimmy Lai plays with fire in the same bored manner I play with my hair. Lai, who has been everywhere recently, has been at the heart of anti-Chinese protests that have consumed Hong Kong in the past few months and has emerged as a vocal figure in its surge to democracy. He has supported anti-government initiatives, called out Xi-Jinping as a dictator and refused to submit when other business leaders have gravitated to the pull of Beijing. He’s his own man and his own empire: He’s a majority owner of NextDigital, a company that publishes reporting critical of China, and if that wasn’t enough, he publishes a weekly column to support protestors as the crisis has gone from mild to middling to full blown seismic. For their part, the Chinese government, so incensed by him, struck out his name in his family records, leaving him a man with no name but plenty of positive press.

Quote Block Templates (58)

GUEST ROOM | Hazing and Its Prevention: Shut It Down

Hazing can be deadly. On Nov. 2, the Piazza, Gruver and Braham families shared the tragic stories of their sons’ deaths due to fraternity hazing with a full house of students in Bailey Hall. Their presentation “Love, Mom and Dad” was the keynote at the A.D. White Annual Summit for Sorority and Fraternity Life. The stories shared and their grief were an emotional gut punch, reminding me of the tragic death of George Desdunes in 2011 and Cornell’s slow progress rooting out hazing.

Quote Block Templates (57)

GUEST ROOM | How Composting Changed Me

My first-time composting did not end well. I was 19 and not great at handling adult responsibilities, but I wanted to be more ecologically ethical, so I gave it a try. Discouraged by the amount of counter space the compost pail took up, I pushed it under the sink where I promptly forgot about it. That is, until one day I remembered it was there and as I pulled it out and maggots spilled everywhere. Disgusted, I threw the whole thing away and did not even think about composting again until now.

Quote Block Templates (52)

DERY | Where Is the Dorm Pride?

Not all Cornell dorms are created equal. From the moment we arrive on campus, we quickly conclude that the back alleys of the Low Rise community pale in comparison to air conditioned, plasma TV-lit, Mews Hall lounges. Before we know it, our freshman year housing perceptions extend to the greater campus, locked into a standard metric: West is best, the Gothics are much less desirable and South Campus is the housing annex. Campus culture accustoms us to evaluating a dorm based on its amenities rather than what a residential community can offer beyond a roof over our heads. A residence hall and a community have become two very different things at Cornell.

Quote Block Templates (2)

SULLIVAN BAKER | Greek Life and the Exploitation of First-Year Vulnerability

The Saturday before last, I woke up to a flood of Facebook posts depicting a smiling young man, Antonio Tsialas ’23, an 18-year old freshman who, according to one of the posts, had just been hired as a campus tour guide. Antonio had been missing since Thursday night, when he attended a fraternity event, and the posts implored anyone who knew his whereabouts to contact the authorities. As the hours passed and more “missing student” posts appeared in my timeline, the pit in my stomach grew and grew, and I braced myself for a tragedy. Late Saturday evening, my fears — Cornell’s fears — were confirmed with a brief mass email that told us Antonio’s body had been found in Fall Creek. I had never met Antonio, so my entire knowledge of his personality, of his humanity, came from three lonely adjectives in the mass email: thoughtful, smart, outgoing.

Quote Block Templates

GUEST ROOM | As Panhellenic Council Votes, Cayuga’s Watchers Is Taking on Party Culture

As advocates of a safer social scene for more than five years, Cayuga’s Watchers greatly appreciates the sentiment of Panhellenic President Maya Cutforth’s ’20 efforts to improve event safety. We were founded in 2012 at a similarly pivotal moment, in the wake of another senseless student death. Cayuga’s Watchers positioned itself as a uniquely student-driven response to an intractable national crisis — the normalization of high-risk alcohol use and insufficient safety measures at collegiate parties. Our goal has never been to stop partying, but to instead educate and promote safer behaviors throughout Cornell’s vast social scene, building partnerships and only ever showing up when we are invited. The mandates proposed by Cutforth would see trained employees of Cayuga’s Watchers required at every event hosted by a fraternity.

Image from iOS

KENKARE | A Love Letter to North Campus

My freshman year at Cornell was probably the best year of my life so far. I stayed up until 5 a.m. every night participating in hallway-wide gossip sessions, proudly strode into Sunday RPCC brunches in pajamas and last night’s mascara and never, ever called home — because when you’re 18 and having the time of your life, why would you? The sheer novelty of the college experience, the number of smart-mouthed, like-minded people I met at Cornell, definitely contributed to my incredible year. But upon reflection, I realize there was another factor. Although I’m sure the creators of North Campus meant to construct another damp and depressing group of dorms (West Campus reminds me forcibly of J.K. Rowling’s Knockturn Alley), they somehow stumbled upon the formula for a home, a community unto itself.

Quote Block Templates (3)

CONTRERAS | Dairy’s True Colors: Racism at Dairy Day

If you haven’t noticed the bubbling racial tension on campus as of late, you should probably come out from under your rock. From the unjust removal of and discrimination against Julia Feliz to racially insensitive Halloween costumes across campus, there is reason for people of color at Cornell to be on edge. So, when some friends informed me that they heard a member of an on-campus organization, who requested not to be named, say, “I’m not racist, but I just don’t like Mexicans,” I felt compelled to respond. As a Mexican-American student at Cornell, I am appalled that one of my peers felt comfortable to not only announce their racist beliefs, but do so at a public University event. The racist comment occurred on Oct.