Each year, scholars around the nation are nominated to join the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest general scientific body. This year, five Cornell faculty were named Fellows, according to a University press release.
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.
In its two decades of existence, the website RateMyProfessor.com has become notorious on college campuses. While some students turn to the review site for informal evaluations of their prospective professors, many criticize the site as unfairly biased and unrepresentative.
After weeks of exams, papers and responsibilities, fall break offers a welcome respite for students to destress and relax. Many Cornell students decide to go home or get away from campus, though some students simply live too far away or choose not to step off campus for a quick vacation.
The local television access feed of the Lincoln at Gettysburg Book Project panel discussion in Barton Hall on Sunday upset me. But before I could complete a post about the choices some students made during their first intellectual experience at Cornell, I had a conversation with a distinguished university alumnus who boasts not one, but three grandchildren currently at Cornell. He related that he had taken them out to dinner the evening before and they had all proceeded in turn to tell him that they had navigated the course selection process (not one is new to Cornell) without so much as a conversation with a faculty advisor. The alumnus-grandfather expressed disappointment with Cornell; I was thoroughly embarrassed for the university that is my intellectual home.
A few years ago, Prof. Brian Earle ’67, communication, awoke to a phone call in the middle of the night from a student. It was Senior Week and the young man, along with his fraternity brothers, had decided that they would visit every bar in Tompkins County. At a stop along their journey, one of the brothers remarked aloud that they had arrived at a true “redneck bar.” At once, the young men were escorted out of the bar and into the parking lot, where one of the bar’s patrons poured beer in the students’ gas tank.
The Hartwell Foundation — which provides funds for translational biomedical research aimed at helping children — recently issued three grants and a fellowship to Cornell researchers. These funds, totaling $1 million, make Cornell the first research university to receive three faculty grants simultaneously from the foundation.
Last night, Weill Medical College Professor Harriet Baker gave a talk entitled “New Frontiers — Humanizing the Scientific Process” in Goldwin Smith’s Kaufmann Auditorium. Baker, a faculty member in the Neurology and Neuroscience department, addressed the causes, treatment, and ethics of Parkinson’s disease in her discussion.
Throughout the seminar, Baker drew on her own experiences as a Parkinson’s patient who has dealt with the disease for over 11 years.