Archive for May, 2012
President Obama has left campus and Barnard seniors are now Barnard graduates, but students in the School of Engineering and Applied Science have their own class day ceremony beginning at 4:30 p.m.
Ursula Burns, SEAS ’82 and the CEO of XEROX, will be the speaker.
We won’t be liveblogging it, but you can watch a webcast of the ceremony here.
We’ll update this post with pictures and highlights from the speech later.
Good morning, Morningside Heights! President Barack Obama, CC ’83, is returning to campus to deliver the address at Barnard’s Commencement, his first visit to campus since September 2008 and possibly the first visit to campus by a sitting president (see below for more: it seems like it was the first visit by a sitting president in about 50 years, though). It’s going to be a hectic day, with ultratight security locking down all of South Campus. Graduates are scheduled to arrive in Roone Arledge Auditorium at 8 a.m., four hours before the procession is due to begin.
Spectator will be bringing you coverage from inside and outside of the ceremony but we urge anyone on campus to send in pictures or stories to email@example.com and tweet @CU_Spectator using the hashtags #ObamaAtCU or #Barnard2012.
Didn’t get a golden ticket to commencement? Don’t worry, you can watch Obama’s speech streamed live here. We’ll be liveblogging the whole day, from the 8 a.m. arrivals to what it’s like inside the press filing room, from the procession at noon to the speech, to the moment Obama leaves campus at around 3 p.m.
(UPDATE: 3:21 p.m.) Photos after the jump, too.
It’s late. You’re up. Your sleep schedule is probably still messed up thanks to the week-which-must-not-be-named.
At the moment, I’m trying to decide whether I want to skulk around the Barnard campus all day in hopes of catching a glimpse of Mr. President, or avoiding the area altogether by going to Flushing and drowning my sorrows in soup dumplings and kebabs because I didn’t get an invitation…
Mitt Romney responds with: “Culture…matters…Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman.” I could make a jibe about his overemphasis of the word one, but that would just be petty.
For the second year in a row, the School of Engineering and Applied Science has picked a computer science major as valedictorian. This year’s valedictorian is Yuan Kang, according to a spokesperson for the Division of Student Affairs.
But with less than 24 hours remaining before the SEAS Class Day ceremony Monday afternoon, SEAS students do not seem to have been notified about their valedictorian. Engineering Student Council President Nate Levick, SEAS ’12, told Spectator that he hadn’t heard anything about a valedictorian, as did several other SEAS students.
[Updated]: The salutatorian is electrical engineering major Tao Mai, according to the DSA spokesperson.
Columbia College announced Zach Brill as its valedictorian April 17, and the School of General Studies announced Maxwell Bertolero as its valedictorian April 13.
Check back for a full story from the News desk tomorrow.
The School of General Studies held its class day this morning on Low Plaza. You can read our news story on it here. We asked some of the graduating seniors how they feel now that it’s all over. These were some of their reactions:
Lydia Chan, psychology major, came from Singapore and attended Westchester Community College for two years before arriving at Columbia. “I wanted a good education — an excellent education.” She found the School of General Studies by chance. Now that it’s over, she says she feels “happy, tired. Tired!” Next up: grad school, right here at Teacher’s College.
Ben Wirtshafter, political science major, came to Columbia after having spent time as a professional actor in New York. “I realized I wanted to continue my education and this was the best place to do it,” he said. He came to Columbia after a friend told him about the General Studies program.
“I was really intrigued by the concept of people who’ve taken some time off from school, who’ve tried to learn another vocation or learn something outside of the academic realm, and getting to be in classes with people like that, and also being able to be around a bunch of 18- to 20-year-olds who are brilliant and genius in their own way.”
Now that it’s all over, he says he feels “Relieved. I still have to finish a paper that’s due on Wednesday.”
Kayran Abasali, sustainable development major, started her journey to Columbia from Trinidad. After she scored well on her SATs, her friends encouraged her to go to America for school. She went to FIT for two years, and then decided she wanted something different. She applied to Columbia and was accepted.
Abasali said her experience her was good, though it had it’s ups and downs. “One of the ups was realizing that I can do anything, and that I belong here. The GS deans were awesome. One of the downs was realizing that some of the professors are difficult, and very set in their ways.” Overall, she says she’s glad she came here, “minus the $180,000 debt.” Next, she says, she’s “going to take over the world.”
Are you a graduating GSer? What was your experience at Columbia like? Share it with us in the comments!
The Columbia Neuroscience Society has launched a new website called “Healthy Columbia Brains.” Its aim is “to gather information on mental health, demystify mental illness, and increase everyone’s ability to access resources, find help and stay healthy.”
The front page of the site contains mental health facts as well as motivational images and quotes, while other pages advertise on-campus resources for help on issues from academics to relationships to nutrition. There’s also a full page of off-campus resources, for those who prefer not to go through Columbia.
In the event that any of your questions or concerns are not answered, there’s a feedback box where you can ask anything you want to know. Check it out!
It’s late. You’re up. Finals are over. You can sleep, you can shower, and the world is a whole lot pinker. Feels good, does it?
The 99% rejoices: JPMorgan Chase has announced that it has lost at least $2 billion in a failed hedge fund strategy. Though its stocks have fallen about 9%, JPMorgan is still expected to finish the quarter with a profit.
Facebook data use: Facebook plans to give you more info on how it’s using your info.
…and so can you! The TV host will be signing copies of his new book at the store from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. tomorrow, May 12. The book, I Am A Pole (And So Can You!) is a children’s story about a flagpole’s search for identity. Copies of the book can be purchased at the event.
Bank Street Bookstore is located at 112th and Broadway.
Colbert will be donating all profits from sales of the book to USVETS, an organization that helps homeless veterans.
The President is coming on Monday, so security is going to be pretty tight around here. Here’s how it will affect you, according to an email from Public Safety (The tl;dr version: If you’re not graduating from Barnard or a guest at their graduation, you should probably just stay away from campus on Monday).
Members of the Columbia Community:
On Monday, May 14, President Barack Obama will be on the Morningside Campus to deliver the keynote address at the Barnard College ceremony, held on the South Field Lawns at 12:30 p.m. This message provides important information regarding the extensive security measures that will impact lower campus operations and access.
Please know the logistics outlined here may change at any point, subject to White House and Secret Service discretion. Updates will be posted to the Columbia homepage. We ask for your cooperation and flexibility given these extraordinary circumstances. As a precaution, please carry your University ID card with you at all times on Monday.
AREA OF RESTRICTED ACCESS: MIDNIGHT – 6:00 A.M. MONDAY
All gates south of 117th Street, Low Plaza, College Walk, South Field and the following buildings must be vacated and locked down. There will be no entry or activity permitted.
Journalism, Furnald, Lerner Hall, Carman, Butler Library, John Jay, Wallach, Hartley, and Hamilton
Low Library, Kent, Dodge Hall and Miller Theater
After the jump, more places you can’t be on Monday! More »
It’s late. You’re up. I won’t congratulate everyone on being done with finals just yet, since there may be a few leftover take-homes, papers, or Friday finals (do those exist?), but I will say to everyone avoiding packing like the plague: I feel you. I don’t have to leave, right? Oh, Obama’s coming? Whoops.
Marriage: The day after Obama endorsed gay marriage, North Carolina demonstrated how far the U.S. still may be from realizing full marriage equality, on account of states’ rights. As per the state’s law banning same-sex marriage, a lesbian seeking a marriage license was arrested today after she and her partner refused to leave the government building. This also came two days after North Carolina passed a constitutional amendment defining marriage as being strictly between a man and a woman.
HIV prevention: Today, a panel of advisers to the FDA approved the the first drug shown to prevent HIV infection. The pill, Truvada, can be taken by anyone at high risk for contracting HIV, primarily gay and bisexual men, as well as heterosexual couples with one HIV positive partner. The FDA isn’t required to follow the panel’s advice and will make a final decision on June 15, but that doesn’t mean this isn’t a huge deal in the battle to fight and prevent HIV and AIDS. More »