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Jun

10

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Our thoughts are with Shariq and his family

Last week on June 5, rising second-year student Shariq Jumani was hit by a car as he crossed Riverside Drive and 115th. After being rushed to St. Luke’s, he has had open-brain surgery, abdominal surgery, and orthopedic surgery for the broken bones in both of his legs. Jumani will undergo many operations and a year of rehab, but doctors are optimistic about his recovery.

However, this tragedy will leave him and his family with a high stack of medical bills. To offset the costs, his friends created a Gofundme today, encouraging his other friends, peers, and generous strangers to contribute. Jumani is described as an excellent scholar, kind community member, and “full of joy.” We encourage you to visit the page, where you can read more about him and contribute to his cause.

May

9

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I’ve probably spent more of my life in Blue Java than I have in my own suite kitchen, so I’ve wasted a great deal of time staring at and connecting with the little cards stuck in the pastries. But I assume (hope) most of you guys have lives and haven’t really noticed how ridiculous some of them are. Here are some of my favorite ones, enjoy.

Apr

28

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straight up to my face

Ever since the ban/relocation of the Columbia University Marching Band’s Orgo Night, there has been a series of mishaps and miscommunication on the part of the Columbia administration. Bwogger Amara Banks calls them out on their fake love. 

Since last semester, a collection of frustrated Columbia University Marching Band alumni has penned a total of 10 defenses of Orgo Night. Created in the style of pamphlets, the group desired to express their disagreement and frustration with the tradition’s cancellation.

After its 10th publication on March 26th, a letter addressed to President Bollinger (and emailed to several other campus administrators, including Ann Thronton and Deantini) essentially asked, “What’s the deal?” Their letter opens with a summary of the group’s communications with the university—emails and letter sent to him, Thornton and Valentini. According to Hamiltonius, the administration’s response has consistently been: “The University administration knows best and that no action will be taken in response to alumni concerns.”

The group began drafting and publishing pamphlets in another attempt to start conversation with the administration, sending the essays both via email and snail. The letter included a summary of the conflict and their frustration before ultimately calling for a response:

“Where do we go from here? We are alumni who love Columbia, who actively participate in alumni events and reunions, who return to Columbia for homecoming and Days on Campus, who interview high school students for the Admissions Office, and who attend athletic events to cheer on our Lions… What do we want? We want you and Dean Valentini to stop ignoring us and putting us off with platitudes and form letters.”

Nice turkey where’s the beef

Apr

21

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No guarantees MoHi spicy tuna rolls actually look like this

Like off-brand toilet paper and the John Jay rice bowls, spicy tuna rolls are really hit or miss. If you get one from the right place, they can serve as a perfect deli lunch, but if you hit up the wrong joint, they can also serve as a perfect disappointment. Bwog Bagel Amara presents you with a guide to MoHi deli tuna rolls. 

I’ve been you before. Your class releases at 2:25 but your recitation starts at 3, which is just not enough time for a sit-down lunch. You want to grab a quick sushi roll but you don’t want it to be nasty… where should you go?

1. Milano (<$8): Milano has very fresh ingredients and makes their rolls fresh throughout the afternoon. This means the rice will be pretty soft (not like refrigerator crunchy), and the spicy mayo they put on top has little red flakes in it. They don’t make the sushi extra spicy or anything, but they look hardcore.

2. Appletree (<$7): I honestly want to give Appletree the award for best deli in Morningside. Even though it’s a few blocks deep, their ingredients are really fresh and tasty. At first, I thought only their sandwiches were good, but then I learned their spicy tuna rolls are super good too! The rice is a little harder because they leave it in the fridge for longer, but it’s still super good. Definitely worth the hike; also pick up a cantaloupe cup (they sell one of the best in MoHi as well).

3. Morton Williams (<$8) (but only before 6pm): I know what you’re thinking– can Morton Williams do anything right, other than being overpriced and open 24 hours? Yes. When the sushi chef is there, the rolls are actually pretty quality. The tuna is a little spicier than the others, so if you’re looking for a kick, head to 116th!

spicy tuna rollage via stu_spivack on Flickr

Apr

19

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With voting kicking off today, we would like to take a moment to endorse Sam Ackerman for University Senate. We were impressed with his airtight platform and are confident he will be an effective advocate for the improvement of student life.

Sam has worked on the Student Health Advisory Committee and on the Insurance Committee, advocating for expanded gatekeeper training and strengthening the columbia student insurance plan. He plans on taking this experience to Senate and introducing some new ideas to improve student life. We were impressed with Sam’s clarity, direction, and organization, as he clearly outlined how he planned on achieving each of his goals. In order to reduce stress culture, for example, he believes creating a hardship policy for midterms (comparable to two finals per 24 hour cap) and plans on going through the Student Affairs Committee to do so. We also admire his interest in making faculty diversity statistics publicly available to at least inform students, but to also pressure Columbia to improve the diversity of its instructors. These issues, along with others mentioned in his platform, struck us as both relevant and achievable.

As stressed yesterday’s endorsement, what we feel most important is that you get out and vote! Follow this link to cast yours now.

Sincerely,

Amara Banks, Editor in Chief
Betsy Ladyzhets, Managing Editor
Finn Klauber, Internal Editor

GOTV via Sam’s Facebook

Apr

18

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April is in full bloom! While we’re sneezing our guts up and counting down the days until summer, CC has been getting ready for another year of student council. Before voting begins, we would like to endorse the Grassroots Party: Ruben Rui Diaz-Pacheco, CC ’18, for President, Richard Nederlander, CC ’18, for Vice President of Policy, and Cindy Liu, CC ’18, for Vice President of Campus Life. We were impressed by their commitment to improving student life at Columbia, and we believe they will bring refreshing ideas to CCSC.

Something that stood out to us was their dedication to improving support for first-generation students. Ruben told us about how his experience as a first-generation student has motivated him to run for CCSC, as he found the programming and resources available to such students lacking. We also admire Grassroots’ plan to combat food insecurity, as they are committed to moving CU closer to guaranteeing food to all students. Their platform includes the establishment of a CCSC food bank, as the only resources available for CC students facing food insecurity are currently student-run. They believe Columbia should absorb at least some of this responsibility, and want to use their positions in CCSC to do so.

Grassroots is also passionate about preserving campus traditions. They are committed to supporting The Band and to working with the administration to negotiate a plan for Orgo Night to take place in 209. They also plan on throwing a carnival in the fall to create a large-scale, exciting, campus-wide event for students to look forward to in the fall. Imagined as an ultra-club fair, student groups will host booths where they can display unique, representative attractions for the community to enjoy. Ultimately, their goal would be to bring together the community for a day of fun outside. In addition to student-group carnival booths, CCSC would provide some attractions as well, such as a bouncy castle and games. Notably, Grassroots understands the severe limits placed on any plan for a full fledged Fall Bacchanal, and their plan is not only reasonable and actionable, but also unique and exciting—unlike the precipitous plans of the other CCSC parties.

Ultimately, we are attracted to Grassroots’ outsider perspective. As a group of students who have been here for three years, they have first-hand experience with the real issues Columbia students face, and want to fix them. We recognize a genuine passion to create changes that will survive their tenure, and trust their desire to improve student life at Columbia. But regardless of who you want to be in charge next year, please don’t forget to vote!

Sincerely,

Amara Banks, Editor in Chief
Betsy Ladyzhets, Managing Editor
Finn Klauber, Internal Editor

Apr

1

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Warm, tender, delicious, and necessary for survival

I will never forget how hard my first day of college was. I was lost. Afraid. Alone. I knew no one. I had no friends. In the middle of my first lecture, the hole of being alone and loneliness started to eat me alive. Literally. I felt like there was a hole inside of me. Eating me. Alive. It sucked. I wanted to go home, but I knew that I couldn’t. So instead, I decided I would go to the bathroom. I squished past the people next to me in the cramped Hamilton lecture hall and marched to the restroom. Despite the oasis of natural light and full length mirrors, I still felt incredibly terrified and stressed out. I knew there was only one thing that would calm me down. I reached in my pocket and pulled out a chicken strip.

Immediately, all of my nerves evaporated. I felt as if every single drop of loneliness had been absorbed by a paper towel of crispy skin, juicy white meat, and the delicious flavor of chicken. I reentered the classroom with a newfound sense of confidence and positivity, a spirit I think everyone at Columbia should be able to experience. I walked out of Hamilton that day wondering, “why doesn’t Columbia provide students with chicken strips in every bathroom?” To this day, that question still puzzles me.

The students at this school experience more stress than any other university. According to this survey, Columbia students say the word “stressed” more than “privilege,” “I disagree,” and “lettuce” combined. In fact, 100% of the students at this school go to this school, which means that we’re all pretty stressed out. Columbia needs to do something about it! I think a good place to start would be putting chicken strips in every single bathroom on campus. That way, no one has to experience being stressed out ever again.

This author is actually not even a person but instead a literal chicken tender. She enjoys being crispy, juicy, and smelling like chicken. To contact this piece or to submit your own, please place it in a glass bottle and hit her over the head with it.

Chicken strips via Pixabay

Mar

30

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Barnard’s doing some good things.

Yesterday, Barnard announced a new scholarship that will completely fund the education of a student whose education has been interrupted as a result of result of war, persecution, conflict, natural disaster, or crisis. Called the Ann and Andrew Tisch Scholarship for Refugee Women, the scholarship generously covers all academic expenses a student would encounter during their time in college, including tuition, housing, meals, books, travel, and even stipends for internships and other co-curricular activities.

Barnard parents Ann and Andrew Tisch are excited to fund this scholarship, as they both have notable involvement in educating girls and  young women. Ann founded and currently presides over Young Women’s Leadership Network, while her husband is currently writing a book about immigration. The idea came from Barnard senior Maia Bix, who felt frustrated that Barnard hadn’t done more about the Syrian refugee crisis. After approaching President Spar in 2016, she was encouraged to draft a proposal advising the College on what it could do. Ultimately, she settled on a scholarship because she believes “it’s a concrete, impactful response.” Her peers are on board as well, as the Class of 2017 plans on donating 25% of the money raised through the Senior Fund to the scholarship program. Read more about it here.

Photo via Bwog Archives

Mar

23

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Next on our Barnard Housing Review tour is 110, or sometimes called College Residence (both very innovative, creative names). Many people say Cathedral Gardens is the dorm to live in if you’re looking for a grown-up experience, but often fail to mention 110. With its own distance from campus, non-college habitants, and residents’ privileges to buzz up their visitors,  you’ll feel just as adult as your CG peers.

Location: 601 W 110th St (Between Broadway and Riverside).

Nearby Dorms: Nussbaum, Harmony, the 113 farts and sororities.

Stores and Restaurants: While most Barnard students will spend their days getting ripped off by MoWill’s high prices and limited selection, you’ll have access to Westside (110 st.) and Garden of Eden (108 st.).

Cost: unofficially $9,230 for a multiple, $10,712 for a single, and $16,000 for a studio single.

More on this unique dorm after the jump!

Mar

10

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I feel like this heart

After years of writing posts complaining about the things we can’t stand about this school, Bwog editor Amara Banks realized there is also some good at CU. Bwog Love stands opposite to our Call Out series, where we share how much we appreciate something about campus. Is this cute or corny? 

There are countless departments on this campus that affect me every day–Administration, Philosophy, Library, Facilities, etc. But I’ve felt a special warmth from CU Dining. Every time I walk into Ferris, the staff is so friendly and sweet. Multiple people ask about my day, my weekend plans, if I’m okay (because I look a little tired), and even roast me a little bit when I burn my waffle (which honestly happens 1/3 times I use that grill).

I also believe CU Dining is one of the departments on campus that is most sensitive to our requests and complaints. They were extremely apologetic about JJ’s death, and communicated its plan for recovery in an email sent to all students. They asked students what they would like to name the new smoothie bar, the winner being JJ’s Cool Zone. CU Dining even restocked their banana supply in response to a conspiracy post we wrote when we hadn’t seen our yellow friends in John Jay after a while.

This post is nothing more than me sharing how positive my experience has been. I love you, CU Dining. That is all. ♥

Feb

26

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Not a castle, but close

In the interest of contrasting her industrial-modern experience from the other day, Bwog Bagel Amara Banks visited The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary. Below are some useful stats as well as her opinion of the library. 

Location: 3041 Broadway, New York, NY, 10027. Right on the corner of 121st and Broadway

Hours: Typically 9am-10pm on weekdays; 10am-5pm on Saturdays; 2pm-10pm on Sundays; check the full schedule here

Contact: (212) 851-5606; burke@library.columbia.edu; Twitter @BurkeLibraryUTS

Seats: ~200 seats total, ~20 computers, 20 comfy chairs, 0 seats for talking

Amenities: 

  • Printers: 2 black & white Paw-Print stations
  • Scanners: 3 scanners
  • Chairs: Classic wooden chairs
  • Computers: multiple computer locations throughout the library’s three levels
  • Bathrooms: single-use, gender-neutral bathrooms are located on the first floor
  • Windows: The library’s walls are filled with windows, filling the study spaces with lots of natural light
  • Smoking: The library is located out of Columbia’s main gates so you don’t have to worry about finding a designated smoking area; just go like 20 feet away from the building
  • Books: This is one of the largest Theological libraries in North America. It houses includes the Bonhoeffer Collection, the Gillett Collection of American History and Theology, the Missionary Research Collection, the Sacred Music Collection, and more.

more about Burke Library after the jump

Feb

24

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Wow!

The only thing better than a cup of Joe coffee is riding the escalator upstairs to a modern/chic study space. Bwog editor Amara Banks continues our library review series with her take on the Science and Engineering library, located in Noco. 

Location On the campus level of the Northwest Corner Building, 401 Northwest Corner Building
550 West 120th Street New York, NY 10027

HoursThey vary. Typically, the library is open from 9am-11pm, but during midterms the library remains open until 3am. See the full schedule here.

Contact: (212) 851-2950

More of the review under the cut

Feb

9

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President Truman spoke at the services held on campus

President Truman spoke at the services held on campus

On Tuesday, April 9th, 1968 Spec reported on Columbia’s closure to mourn the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. College President Grayson Kirk announced the shutdown, closing all campus buildings and cancelling classes after receiving a letter from The Concerned Black Students (an ad hoc group formed on campus). He initially planned on closing Columbia for the part of the day that would disrupt Dr. King’s memorial service (held in St. Paul’s Chapel), but according to Thomas McGoey, vice president for business, their letter persuaded him to close for the entire day. In it they wrote, “we realize that closing University is a dramatic action. But we feel that the crisis in America is an imperative for such action. We would consider anything less than a shutdown of the University as an obvious affront to the memory of Dr. King and the principles he stood for.” Notably, Barnard independently decided to close for the day, and received a similar letter from students.

Feb

6

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16179089_1321820354546809_5354410505557383961_oTo kick off a month of remembrance and reflection, Tamika Mallory, civil rights leader and co-chair for the Women’s March on Washington, will speak tonight for Black History Month’s opening ceremony. Mallory has worked with the Obama administration on a number of different issues, as well as in NYC on the Crisis Management System. The event is free for all students with ID, and will take place from 7-10pm in Roone Auditorium. You can RSVP here. Here is their calendar of upcoming events this for month.

Jan

18

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CU admin is unfair. Prezbo is in there.

CU admin is unfair. Prezbo is in there.

Although the stress from finals seems far from our minds, Orgo Night drama has been relevant as ever. Over winter break, we received a tip that included the text of a resignation email the Head of the New Jersey Alumni Representative Committee (ARC), Kevin Chapman, sent to the rest of the organization. He cited the university’s attempt to terminate Orgo Night as his reason for leaving, calling their decision “wrong-headed” and “one that seems to be an attempt to censor the content of the Band’s performance in direct contravention of the principles of free speech for which Columbia purports to stand.” Chapman ties his frustration back to his role as a member of the ARC, saying that Columbia’s action and methods prevent him from “in good conscience, recommending Columbia to high school seniors as an environment of free expression, intellectual honesty, and open discussion of ideas.” He concludes the email with a call for other members to join him in hopes to invoke change.

Seeing alumni step up in defense of Orgo Night and a fair discussion between The University and The Band is pretty cool. Hopefully, more members of the alumni community will voice their support of the tradition (or at least more transparency) as well.

Edit, as of 10:15 pm: Kevin Chapman is the parent of one of our staff members. This member had no part in writing the post.

Read full email after jump

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