Archive for January, 2012

Spectrum | Jan. 31 9:29 pm EST

Three more traditions, including the Columbia-Barnard relationship

Amalia Rinehart / Spec

Hello and a very warm welcome to the third installment of Senior in the Springtime. This week I continued the journey of completing the traditions that remained on my list. I was able to complete three more, as best as I could, and I’m confident that the other 42 will be conquered in due time.

Again, the numbers alongside the tradition reflect their placement in the original list. My three for the week:

75. Realize Williamsburg isn’t the only place in Brooklyn worth visiting. More »


Spectrum | Jan. 31 7:27 pm EST

Jim Gilchrist speaks back

Vince_Lamb / flickr

At Columbia, we hate free speech. We hate it so much that we invite dictators, agitators, and even reality TV stars to speak to us. We hate free speech so much that we hold multiple three-hour complain-fests every time an even remotely controversial decision has to be made.  And when that’s not enough, some of us go door-to-door to hear even more free speech.

As you may know, the College Republicans are thinking about inviting Jim Gilchrist, founder of the Minuteman Project, to speak at Columbia. Not because they agree with his views, but to protest the unbelievably anti-free speech environment that exists here at Columbia (outlined above). To clamp down on any possible free exchange of ideas or expression, Spec has only published two news articles and a blog post about this possibly-upcoming event that currently only exists in the minds of the College Republicans.

Gilchrist, apparently not understanding that we are uninterested in free expression, took some time to respond to these articles in the comments section (a part of our site that we must have forgotten to get rid of when we decided that free speech is lame). Unfortunately, the blog post and the news articles have receded from view as other, non-Jim Gilchrist news has happened. So, because we hate free speech so much, we’re republishing all of his comments here so that everyone can see them (warning: they’re quite long). But remember: to respond would be a violation of the secret anti-free speech pledge you all signed at NSOP.

More »


Opinion | Jan. 31 4:44 pm EST

Just Ask Emily: Say anything

Alex Eylar / flickr

As usual, we begin by reminding you to submit your questions, comments, concerns, and queries right here. Now, in this week’s installment of Just Ask Emily, one reader wants to say anything, and one reader wants to talk about personal space.

Dear Emily,

What do you do when you kind of know someone, but not really? At what point do you say hi? At what point does it become too late to introduce yourself when you’ve been sitting next to someone for a long time and talked but have never introduced yourself?


Speechless More »


Spectrum | Jan. 31 2:16 pm EST

Samantha Kwek, SCE, dies


A School of Continuing Education student died this weekend.

Samantha Kwek died on Sunday evening, Dean of the SCE Kristine Bilmer wrote in an email to SCE students and faculty.

Kwek hailed from North Port L.I. and was enrolled as a postbaccalaureate student studying quantitative studies for finance, according to Bilmer.

Kwek reportedly jumped to her death on Sunday at 11:40 p.m. from a luxury high-rise in midtown.

Bilmer wrote, “Losing a member of our community to an untimely death is deeply troubling, especially for family and friends. … Know that we are here to support you during this difficult time.”

The memorial service for Samantha Kwek will be held at Nolan & Taylor-Howe Funeral Home on Friday, Feb. 3 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. There will also be services at the same location on Saturday, Feb. 4 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. and again from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Students can contact Counseling and Psychological Services at 212-854-2878 or 212-854-9797 and Barnard’s Rosemary Furman Counseling Center at 212-854-2092. Students can also contact Columbia–Barnard Nightline, an anonymous peer counseling hotline, from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. nightly at 212-854-7777; the Center for Student Advising at 212-854-6378; the Office of the University Chaplain at 212-854-1493.

Update: Kwek’s brother wrote in an email to Spec that Kwek’s death has not been ruled a suicide.


Sports | Jan. 31 2:02 pm EST
five questions

Five questions: A wrestler from Idaho loves something French

Courtesy of Columbia Athletics

Kevin Lester (CC ’12) is wrapping up his final year as a Columbia Lion with many noteworthy accomplishments. The team co-captain from Nampa, Id., currently holds an overall record of 22-7—the best on the team. Most recently, Lester took home the 285-pound title at the New York State Wrestling Championships and this past weekend won his 13th consecutive match, a streak including seven pins and one major decision. The senior sat down with Spectrum to talk a little about himself and his successes. Read after the jump for the latest installment of “five questions.” More »


Spectrum | Jan. 31 11:11 am EST
SGA Roundup

Discussing discussions, recognizing clubs

Highlights from last night’s Barnard Student Government Association meeting:

  • Jessica Nunez, SGA’s Administrative Advisor, spoke about motivating the SGA representatives to follow through on their duty to actively represent the Barnard student body. She noted that SGA does an excellent job at informing the administration of what SGA is working on, but there could be better communication with the student body about what SGA exists to do. She encouraged all SGA representatives to get to know more students around campus.
  • Following a discussion last week about whether to make SGA meetings non-mandatory, representatives voted on five ways to make SGA meetings more efficient. The three motions that were passed were:
  1. Limit all discussion topics to 10 minutes, after which point a topic will be cut off. (However, there is always the option to motion to extend the discussion).
  2. Each representative may only get on the speakers list once per discussion, until every representative has spoken.
  3. Only two direct responses are allowed on a point, others who want to speak will be added to the speakers list.

Spectrum | Jan. 31 8:49 am EST

Helping veterans, swimming, entrepreneurship, and Postcrypt

Naomi Cohen / Spec

Good morning, Columbia!

Read This: Columbia’s Counseling and Psychological Services and the School of General Studies are now working to help veterans on campus. [News]

Know This: Whether you struggle with injuries or would like to prevent future ones from developing, swimming is really good for you. [Sports]

Here’s More: Arvin Ahmadi experienced DevFest last weekend and believes there are misconceptions about entrepreneurship and the technology industry. [Opinion]

Postcrypt returns but with more student performers this semester. [A&E] More »


Spectrum | Jan. 31 1:11 am EST
the one eleven

‘I can only count to 6!’

It’s late. You’re up. Hopefully it’s because you’re working and not watching dramatic television.

A new Pretty Little Liars episode and the 100th episode of Gossip Girl (!!!!) doesn’t warrant sacrificing sleep. Studies have shown (meaning I recently took an Alice! sleep assessment that said) this will be your downfall. More »


Spectrum | Jan. 30 10:26 pm EST
awkward at cu

Why are you ‘Columbia’-ing me?

Hey, there! It’s me. Remember me? How could you not, I’m the guy in your CC class who always exchanges knowing glances with you when “that guy” who never does the reading just won’t shut up. Oh, no? Of course you don’t. Well, I’m also the one whose shoulder you insisted on using as a handkerchief at that frat party on Saturday night. The one who held your hair back when you… oh, that rings a bell? Okay, well then why do you act like you’ve never seen my face when I walk by you on Broadway?

The first time it happened, I was convinced it’s just your face. Now I’m pretty skeptical. More »


Opinion | Jan. 30 8:23 pm EST

Making and breaking plans

As reading, papers, and internships kick in, life becomes more and more an attempt get away from campus after classes. This was only the second weekend of the semester—has that moment arrived? Or were you able to make it outside the bubble?