One of the benefits that is supposed to come from attending an Ivy League university is a vast network of resources. Cornell students are ostensibly privileged with all the guidance and mentorship they can ask for, all at the tip of their fingertips. For the most part, this is true. If we truly need help with a particular problem, we can almost always seek it out. And at the core of this support network is the advising system.
My eyes glazed over the platitudes typed on the glossy notecards I was organizing during a guest-led advising seminar session. “Get good sleep.” “Have fun.” “Practice mindfulness.” Sounds like the perfect plan for a productive college career. Just one tiny question: How do I manage all those things with impending prelims and essay deadlines? The question lodged itself in my throat as I glanced at the mental health resources listed on a notecard — the same list I’d seen in every community email. In theory, the College of Arts and Sciences advising seminar is a great idea.
This is a change from last year, when the college offered placement on the Dean’s List based on a multi-tiered credit system, according to Duncan Bill, Director of Administration and College Registrar of Arts and Sciences.
Cornell’s College of Arts and Sciences boasts 40 majors, 59 minors and more than 41 foreign languages. It offers a dazzlingly vast array of subjects, a striking testament to the academic diversity that is representative of Cornell as a whole. I am extremely proud of my college; at very few other academic institutions could I sprint from an Italian discussion to an Oceanography lecture, only to backpedal to retrieve the planner I forgot in my government seminar. The College of Arts and Sciences’ academic breadth is its mark of distinction, its greatest strength. However, this breadth also represents the college’s greatest weakness.
Prof. Suzanne Mettler Ph.D. ’94, the John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions in the Department of Government — and a leading scholar in American political institutions — was among 167 scholars, artists and scientists awarded a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation on April 16. The Guggenheim Fellowship program is intended to help scholars work with as much creative freedom as possible. This year roughly 3,000 people applied. It provides grants to selected individuals for six to twelve months of time, which they can spend in any matter they deem necessary to their research. Since its establishment in 1925 to 2018, the fellowship has awarded $360 million to 18,000 individuals.
Cornell’s Prison Education Program, which seeks to provide college courses to inmates at maximum and medium security prisons in upstate New York, hopes to “counter a culture of punishment that predominates in the correctional system today,” according to Dr. Robert Scott, executive director of the Cornell Prison Education Program.
The new College of Arts and Sciences curriculum proposal passed Tuesday. The changes will allow students to take sign language to fulfill the college’s language requirement and will have a “social difference” requirement. The college is hoping to implement these changes in Fall 2020.
Gretchen Ritter ’83 told students on Monday that she is stepping down as the Harold Tanner Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences with the conclusion of her five-year term at Cornell, slated for the end of June 2018. Gretchen is the first female dean of the College and a third-generation Cornellian.
Downsizing the College of Arts and Sciences over the next few months will no doubt be a tough task, especially considering that the academic unit already endured a 6-percent cut to its operating budget this spring. With challenges fully laid out, the task force charged with proposing ways to streamline the college as part of the recently announced “Reimagining Cornell” is considering ideas that could lead to merging departments, abandoning some areas of study and further decreasing the number of faculty. Master planning initiatives faced that challenge head on by thinking of ways to envision the college with a 15-percent smaller budget.
A new statistical science major may be available for Arts and Science students in fall 2009, a college official said yesterday.
“I can not communicate specific information about major requirements [because the program is not yet official], [but] I can share that it is an interdisciplinary program designed to support students who wish to double major, and to encourage the learning of statistics in context,” Jennifer Wofford, assistant dean of educational programs at the Office of Computing and Informational Sciences, stated in an email.