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img December 10, 20175:29 pmimg 0 Comments

Just looking at this gives me anxiety.

Bucket List represents the intellectual privilege we enjoy as Columbia students. We do our very best to bring to your attention important guest lecturers and special events on campus. Our recommendations for this sparsely populated reading week are below, with no specifically recommended events. If you notice any events that have been left off the list, or a correction, please leave them in the comments.

Monday, December 11

  • “Introducing Bangsokol: A Requiem for Cambodia” 7:00-9:00 PM, Buell Hall.
  • “Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, Captured: The Corporate Infiltration of American Democracy” 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM, Joseph D. Jamail Lecture Hall, 3rd Floor, Journalism Hall. (RSVP).

Tuesday, December 12

  • “Turkey: Freedom of Expression in the Dock” 6:00-8:00 PM, World Room, Journalism Hall.

Wednesday, December 13

  • “How Far Can Facts Take Us?: Einstein and Bergson, Ghosts and Demons” 6:00-8:00 PM, 801 NYU Gallatin School of Individualized Study, 1 Washington Pl.

Thursday, December 14

  • “The Uzbek Diaspora And The Immigrant Experience: Radicalization, Transnational Networks, And Media Portrayals” 5:00-7:00 PM, 404 IAB.
  • “Uprising 13/13: Revolt- Foucault in Iran” 6:15-8:45 PM, Casa Hispanica. (Email for RSVP).

Friday, December 15

  • “Gravity: A Status Report” 7:00-9:00 PM, Room TBD (follow the signs), Pupin Hall.

i’d rather not via Public Domain



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img December 05, 20174:51 pmimg 8 Comments

Oh Christmas tree oh christmas tree

Every Tuesday Bwog brings you a recap of the previous night’s ECS meeting. Bureau Chief Finn Klauber recounts this week’s ESC meeting which covered a range of interesting topics, from the tax bill to home destruction. 

VP Policy, Zoha Qamar

VP Qamar discussed the “wellness machines,” vending machines with health products such as emergency contraception, with Dr. Bernitz of Columbia Health, who was fairly receptive to the idea. Contraception such as Plan B would be offered for $25, which is half the price demanded at Duane Reade. Columbia just has to make sure they’re allowed to sell contraception without a pharmaceutical license, so they’re working with a Cornell unit to determine if they can sell these products without breaking federal or state law. If everything works out, ESC could begin stocking products within the school year.

Qamar also met with other members of the Mental Health Task Force to discuss the Residence Hall Leadership Organization’s (RHLO) proposal to place peer advocates in every resident hall. This plan would begin with Wien and Broadway, two dorms specifically selected by RHLO. Generally, RHLO would like to focus on dorms with upperclassmen, as there are fewer residence hall activities and a resulting lack of community. This plan is stymied, however, by the fact that freshman dorms would not be able to responsibly have freshman peer advocates. Other issues include space requirements, which vary from dorm to dorm, and the fact that instituting a peer advocate plan without optimizing CPS will just exacerbate the current mental health issues relating to that department.

Click here for impeachment, taxes and fire



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img November 21, 20172:20 pmimg 0 Comments

When Thanksgiving break comes quicker than the 1 train

Despite the short nature of this weeks ESC meeting and the fast approaching Thanksgiving break, Bureau Chief Finn Klauber does not disappoint with his report on this weeks happenings of the engineering community.

President Aida Lu

President Lu met with both Dean Brovman, SEAS Associate Dean for Undergraduate Student Affairs, and Scott Wright, Vice President for Campus Services. The discussion with Dean Brovman consisted of updates to the SEAS faculty tech talks, improvements to the SEAS study abroad experience, and concerns raised at last week’s meeting regarding Engineeers Without Borders’ funding issues. The discussion with Scott Wright, on the other hand, mostly related to Lerner updates. The Lerner space changes, which were discussed in the last few meetings of both CCSC and ESC, are continuing with renovations of Lerner elevators. Already, one elevator has been shut down for these renovations, which will continue for the next year at least; the elevators are being gutted entirely and modernized in succession. Furthermore, Wright is already investigating the implementation of a dishwasher in Ferris via an ongoing study. Finally, Summer projects for Columbia will include renovations of Woodbridge and Hartley, with the addition of disability access to Wallach and Hartley.

Vice President Policy Zoha Qamar

Although VP Qamar was absent yesterday, various council members took over for her updates. Regarding the Academic Success Program, Qamar met with Dean Morrison, SEAS Vice Dean of Undergraduate Programs. They determined that writing a proposal to expand ASP is the next best step. This proposal will outline the current objectives of ASP, what ASP’s future holds, student testimony, and pricing. VP Qamar also met with Dean Brovman regarding Global Programs and SEAS study abroad, who was enthusiastic about ESC’s “mock study abroad” pamphlets which outline how a SEAS student can organize their class schedule and requirements to study abroad at specific institutions.

VP Student Life Ben Barton

VP Barton discussed the first meeting of the new University Life Events Council—a new and well-funded body which is supposed to create new events and traditions for the “entire Columbia community.” They hope to maintain four large events per year. At the last meeting, specifically, they drafted mock ideas for new events.

University Senator Izzet Kebudi

Senator Kebudi also discussed the changes in Lerner, renovations which are supposed to begin imminently. The LGBT and student of colour spaces are almost ready, but instituting more changes would create a “domino effect.” Specifically, because they do not want to eliminate any reservable student space during construction, they plan to convert the Lerner computer room into reservable space to offset the elimination of the East and West Ramp Lounges. The computer lab, however, has to be moved into the AV tech room, where the air ventilation is less than ideal. A team of architects and engineers are currently working on this problem. When they finish—hopefully by April—the room switches can finally take effect.

Miscellanious Updates:

  • ESC is hoping to run a “TedX type of event” with about six presenters. This would be a short event, with a headliner, a professor, and then students or student groups. At the moment, however, it’s still just an idea.
  • Overheard during meeting: “When people heard [Got] FU’d they thought ‘got fucked up.'”
  • The Academic Freedom Resolution, which has been bouncing around the University Senate for about a year in one form or another, is delayed once again. It makes us wonder how hard it really is to plainly state Columbia’s policy regarding academic freedom.
  • The 2019 Class Council held a meeting with a 1968 alumnus, who recounted an old Columbia tradition from the 50’s and 60’s that the Junior class may try to bring back in a lesser form. Back in the day, the SEAS Junior class would spend the five weeks after school ended out in the woods, living and camping together. This was called “Camp Columbia.” Honestly, it sounds really fun.
  • Dean Brovman was interested in ESC’s input regarding future faculty tech talk ideas. Suggestions from ESC included: the 3d printing of food and soft materials, AI, modernization of healthcare, nano materials, 3d animation, digital health, cryptocurrency, organic electronics, and the use of nanoparticles to fight autoimmune diseases.



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img November 14, 20175:55 pmimg 0 Comments

This, apparently, is how EWB: Morocco takes their money overseas. At least, this is how we imagine it.

Once again, ESC has shut out both Bureau Chief Finn Klauber and his Spec counterpart from observing their “off the record” discussion. In the “public” meeting, however, ESC met with the Morocco division of Engineers Without Borders (EWB) and discussed funding issue. Also there was a cappella drama, but what else is new. 

President Aida Lu

President Lu reviewed her meeting with Dean Morrison, SEAS Vice Dean of Undergraduate Programs. The main point of their conversation included the transformation of the course evaluation system—a topic which was (once again) discussed off the record as it relates to President Lu’s participation in the Committee on Instruction. Because SEAS is transitioning to canvas, the college will mostly likely implement a new tool for course evaluations. Dean Morrison primarily hopes to increase student participation in the course evaluations. They also discussed major representation at career fairs—a source of concern to ESC for the past three years. As ESC has already collected a list of engineering companies and firms which they hope to see, the only real roadblock is the Center for Career Education.

VP Policy, Zoha Qamar

VP Qamar discussed a variety of topics relating to low-income and first generation students. She met with Columbia First-Generation Low-Income Partnership (FLIP) to review their efforts with the FLIP lending library, Giving Day fundraising, summer aid and housing, and the student work contribution. She also discussed expanding the Academic Success Program (ASP) with First Generation and Low Income Representative Carolina Garcia, President Lu, and FLIP. The main issue with expanding ASP is the inconstant cost of the program. ASP generally consists of four weeks of funding students’ classes, meals, and housing—but the number of ASP participants changes every year. Furthermore, some amount of funding for ASP is provided through New York, meaning that the exact price per capita for ASP is unclear. Meanwhile, VP Qamar wants ESC to outline and publicize the exact objectives of ASP, emphasizing the formation of an ASP community, by gathering student perspectives on the program.

Click here to read about Mental Health Student Training and a cappella drama



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img October 17, 20177:31 pmimg 1 Comments

Dark wings, dark words.

Each week, rain or shine, healthy or sick, snow or drought, ESC Bureau Chief Finn Klauber reports on Engineer Student Council’s activities. For the first time in multiple weeks, ESC actually had an open discussion section—and, boy, was it a doozy. 

As most people at Columbia are aware, Lerner Hall experienced a number of protests last Tuesday night due to the speech of the infamous Tommy Robinson, co-founder and previous leader of the English Defence League. While Columbia reiterated its policies that peaceful protest is entirely within the realm of acceptable behaviour, the administration also accosted protesters physically disrupting the event, collecting UNIs and serving the offending students with notices of rules violations. In the wake of the protest and drama surrounding Robinson’s speech, ESC internally wrote, voted upon, and approved their own official statement regarding the various incidents. However, as VP Policy Zoha Qamar recalled before opening this week’s discussion topic, VP Student Life Ben Barton—among others—privately told VP Qamar that he had issues with the statement. As a result, VP Qamar scrapped the entire official statement until after ESC could discuss the various incidents as a general body.

Both VP Barton and 2019 Representative Asher Goldfinger described how the discarded ESC statement lacked any significance or meaning. Specifically, Goldfinger claimed that the “main part of the statement is something that was in our constitution,” and that any ESC statement “should be something new and meaningful.” Barton, on a slightly different note, criticized the discarded statement on grounds that “it’s totally fine to take stances on an issue.” Barton advocated that “all future statements from ESC should be more divisive,” and that such statements “shouldn’t be non-partisan.” In response, VP Qamar attempted to address how these issues were actually raised in the process of writing and approving the original drafted statement—namely, that “you should publicly disagree if you want to disagree.” VP Barton answered that “maybe people didn’t want to themselves to seem to disagree with the language” of the statement, essentially claiming that nobody would stand out alone and disagree with the apparently milquetoast statement for fear of being identified as supporting or condemning the statement’s diction.

What does the class of 2019 say?



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img October 10, 20176:29 pmimg 1 Comments

I might come back and add a SEAS logo somewhere in the picture.

As every week, Bureau Chief (and Internal Editor) Finn Klauber reports on the activities and goings-on of the Engineering Student Council. Not much has changed since last week, so get ready for Update Mania 2: ESC Boogaloo.

Just as in last week’s ESC meeting, the discussion section of last night’s ESC session was deemed “off the record”—though it may have had something to do with President Aida Lu’s meeting with the Committee on Instruction. Regardless, this week’s post will, once again, take the form of updates.

President Aida Lu

President Lu attended a meeting with Deans Kachani and Kromm, CUIT, and various graduate school reps regarding “Third Level Domains for Pan University Reps.” In essence, instituting a “third level domain” will allow recognized student groups to request and maintain a website, supported and run by CUIT. This issue rose to prominence because “[there was] no one clear path for any new student group requesting a website from Columbia,” according to President Lu. ESC will apparently take advantage of this, so as to not spend student activities fees  on website maintenance.

President Lu also discussed the new student group adjudication process, a new panel which will oversee student group violations under the Student Conduct and Community Standards. This was originally an “admin driven process,” but will be implemented in the same manner as the Greek Judicial Board. That means the board will not review internal violations of group constitutions. As for ESC’s representative, the council elected VP Policy Zoha Qamar to sit on the new board.

Read about Task Forces, AXO, and Orgo Night here



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img October 03, 20172:06 pmimg 0 Comments

Ooooh mysterious conspiracies and secrets.

Every Tuesday Bwog brings you a recap of the previous night’s Engineering Student Council (ECS) meeting. Bureau Chief Finn Klauber recounts this week’s ESC meeting which covered a range of topics, from increasing student-faculty interaction to the scheduling of midterms.  

Seeing how Engineering Student Council blocked off an entire discussion section for a ~private~ discussion—which is the third occasion in the past three weeks where ESC discussed a topic privately—this week’s recap of ESC will be in the form of extended updates.

President Aida Lu

  • President Lu met with Dean Brovman, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Student Affairs and Global Programs within SEAS, and discussed a variety of ways to increase student-faculty interaction within SEAS. The brunt of the conversation concerned a proposal for “faculty chats,” which would occur twice or three times a semester. The chats would take the form of question-and-answer periods with a panel of two to three faculty, followed by a reception.
  • The SEAS Dean’s Travel Fund, which funds student groups’ travel to engineering-specific conferences and competitions, increased to $17,000 due to matching contributions from the Dean’s Office and ESC.
  • ESC is hoping to facilitate student interest in SEAS Study Abroad, “which [Dean] Brovman likes to call ‘STAB,'” by reiterating that, as President Lu put it, “study abroad for SEAS students is possible.”

Click here to see other updates



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img September 26, 20171:37 pmimg 0 Comments

Bureau Chief Finn Klauber covered this week’s ESC meeting which focused on the SEAS drop deadline, F@CU, JCCC, and more. If you weren’t able to make the meeting or view the livestream, here’s what you missed: 

The SEAS Drop Deadline

The brunt of ESC’s (on the record) discussion concerned the late date of the SEAS drop deadline. The deadline, currently set for November 16th, occurs much later in the semester than CC’s deadline, leading President Aida Lu to present a conversation regarding the advantages and disadvantages of the late date. After 2019 Vice President Asher Goldfinger asked the council if anybody knew the origins of this date choice, 2019 Representative Montana St. Pierre responded with the information which his advisor related to him. That is, he spoke about how the grading policies in SEAS are different than CC’s, specifically in relation to the ease with which CC students can “take a ‘W’ or an official withdrawal after the drop deadline,” as well as the limitations on which SEAS classes can be taken pass/fail. He later added that the SEAS drop deadline occurs in the same week which marks the end of being able to “get a partial refund” after dropping a class. 2019 Representative Walker Magrath then claimed that “it’s almost impossible to pass/fail because of the accreditation for your major.”

More on ESC after the jump



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img September 24, 20171:28 pmimg 0 Comments

Literally us praying for our tests tomorrow.

Look, we know you think you don’t need any absolution for the various things you got up to this weekend. Whether you were drinking champagne at a frat party or blazing in Brooklyn, there are definitely things you need to get off your chest. Sorta like going to confession.

We were going to put in some nice Bible selections to emphasize just how much you need to come to Lerner 510 at 9:00 PM tonight, but that isn’t really necessary at this point. You know you need to absolve your sins in a sweet release of gossip, discussion, and Trader Joe’s snacks. Bwog can only help those who help themselves.



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img September 19, 20174:24 pmimg 1 Comments

Mudd is honestly soul sucking, maybe you should renovate the hallways, too.

Every Tuesday, Bwog presents a recap of the Engineering Student Council (ESC) meeting from the day before. ESC Bureau Chief Finn Klauber recounts this week’s meeting, wherein ESC debates the ways in which it can preserve its institutional memory for future council members. Click below to read about other updates in ESC.

In the wake of the Engineering Student Council retreat this past weekend, the entirety of the substantive discussion yesterday evening concerned an informal proposal to streamline internal documentation of ESC action. This discussion was just the latest in a thread of discourse winding back to the concerns of former VP Policy Sidney Perkins regarding institutional memory. To recap, student councils at Columbia rotate almost entirely each year, with new members filling empty spots—and these newly filled positions usually have a year’s worth of action, planning, and deliberation which are almost entirely forgotten. President Aida Lu recalled, for example, how she didn’t remember everything she accomplished and learned as a freshman class representative while writing her end-of-semester report.

The reinstitution of this end-of-semester report is just half of the informal proposal presented by 2019 VP Asher Goldfinger and Technology Representative Andres Aguayo. The semesterly report is fairly self explanatory, as each member of ESC ought to summarize their experiences and connections, what worked and what failed over the year, into an easy-to-read document to be passed on to their successor. President Lu recounted how this report used to be filed each year, implying that, recently, the practice ceased. Various members offered suggestions regarding these reports, such as 2018 Representative Cristal Abud who said that “having a template for the transition document with key points of contact, how they helped…would be better.”

Read more about the ESC meeting here



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img September 12, 20172:06 pmimg 0 Comments

Artistic representation of ESC meetings

Most of last night’s Engineering Student Council meeting consisted of discussions regarding resolutions, goals, and plans initiated at the end of last year or during the Summer. Of particular interest were informal resolutions on logistical changes and Fall elections. And, of course, ESC Bureau Chief Finn Klauber was back on hand to cover everything that went down.

Logistical Changes

If you try to keep up with each meeting of ESC using their livestream, you may have noticed that no live recording of the Council appeared last night. This was no oversight. According to President Aida Lu, the idea of the weekly livestream was “to increase accessibility of our discussion in ESC and general body meetings.”

However, as ESC meetings are already open, meeting notes are (allegedly) posted online each week, and few people actually utilize the livestream, the Executive Board has decided to suspend use of a livestream on a trial run basis. President Lu specifically claims that a lack of lively and diverse discussion in recent meetings could be attributed to the use of the livestream as “[it] might be making us more aware of the words we’re saying in meeting.” Of course, continuing ESC meetings after taking away a major avenue of transparency, regardless of the reasoning, may seem somewhat archaic—especially in comparison to CCSC. The presence of a livestream has not prevented previous statements of a controversial nature from being made by various council members, making it hard to understand exactly which parts of ESC’s discussions a livestream is consistently repressing.

And what’s going on with fall elections?



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img May 02, 20178:07 pmimg 2 Comments

Butler 209 will be hosting at least one thing this finals season.

A team of five sophomores from Columbia College and the School of Engineering and Applied Science is currently on course to endow the entrances to Butler 209 with bidirectional movement sensors to collect data for Seatz, a new Columbia Libraries seat-tracking app. An older app, CU Density, utilized WiFi data via campus routers to estimate the available space in various well-traveled areas, but has been plagued over the past years with spotty technical support, glitches, and UI issues.

Seatz, which instead utilizes data assembled from Raspberry Pi units and small processors installed at various doorways, will incorporate machine learning programs to analyze incoming data and estimate the capacity of each Library room. The largest challenge in such an endeavor, Project Leads Deniz Ulcay (SEAS ’19) and Lora Beltcheva (CC ’19) recounted in an interview this afternoon, involves the number of students who leave their materials in a room immediately after placing their belongings at an open space. While the bidirectional motion sensors will accurately record the number of students who have entered and exited the room, this statistic alone may not accurately imply how full the room is.

Ulcay’s team believes they “can statistically work around this,” given Butler Library’s Administration partnership with Ulcay in this project so far. In conjunction with the data analysis from the motion sensors, Butler Library’s VP for Digital Programs and Technology Services Robert Cartolano and Interim Librarian for Collections and Services Barbara Rockenbach have offered to collect real-time data on occupancy during Seatz’ beta testing period. “The libraries are trying to do a lot of stuff to destress students,” they explained, and “they’ve been quite supportive so far.”

We asked for a banana picture for size reference



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img April 25, 20171:24 pmimg 1 Comments

And they’re like, it’s better than yours.

This week’s ESC meeting focused on getting others involved in the Mental Health Task Force and collaborating with CCSC in the future. Oh, and we’re all hoping for JJ’s milkshakes.

Note (April 26, 2017): In a previous version of this article, specific references were made to the efforts of CC University Senator Sean Ryan under the influence of his participation in the Mental Health Task Force to transform the Schapiro Gym, a space open to all Columbia students, into a semi-privatized space for one specific community at Columbia, efforts crassly referenced in the irreverent tags of the article. While some of these tags were almost immediately removed by Bwog staff as they could possibly be seen as hostile towards said community—and I want to clarify that in no way were such criticisms intentionally meant in a hostile manner against any private person—I want to explain the purely political criticism of said University Senator’s endeavours to privatize this space.

This transformation under the University Senator was first raised in an aside at a previous ESC meeting, and was determined with minimal democratic participation of the student body in making such an impactful choice—especially given the earlier commendable decision to turn unused space in Lerner into a new semi-privatized area for this specific community. In the opinion of this specific journalist in the role of a political correspondent, the manner in which the transformation of the Schapiro Gym was determined has infringed upon the values which our Student Councils hold dear; that a democratic consensus ought to be attained, whether in the discussion of an elected and representative body or in legitimately gathered data, before instituting such wide-reaching policy and space changes. No announcement has been made to the student body of this plan, as far as I am aware, beyond the confines of my ESC coverage—despite the massive impact on all students who use this space already and the potential impact on student choice of dorms in Housing Selection. It may be that this change in status of the space is necessary and proper. However, the process of restricting access should impose a reasonable burden of proof upon those seeking limitations upon what is now a decidedly public area.

This criticism is launched against the University Senator not out of personal hatred or bias, but out of anxious concern from a Columbia College constituent and journalist who covers the efforts of the Mental Health Task Force and has found severe fault in such endeavours as led by the University Senator—endeavours the University Senator publicly defended on the most-watched conservative news show in America. This issue was brought to mind given the discussion in ESC of a desire to expand the Mental Health Task Force beyond undergraduate students in Columbia College and, specifically, those students primarily active in Columbia College Student Council and student government. As a journalist in a privately funded, staffed, and maintained news organization, who is intimately familiar with the mechanisms of student government, I desired to express the full magnitude of these concerns, which, while aimed at the University Senator, are intended to be based in a purely political context. Furthermore, Bwog may travel in satire, but it is never our intent to engage in satire which is either unnecessarily or undeservedly critical.

Budget and Policy Reconciliation

VP for Policy Zoha Qamar reported her meeting with CCSC’s Nicole Allicock regarding future collaboration between councils. As there are now multiple positions between the two councils with the same goals (i.e. diversity reps, Student Services, etc.) there will be closer interactions between CCSC and ESC. Starting next semester, there will be at least one joint CCSC-ESC policy-wide meeting, so as to further this collaboration.

In terms of budgetary reconciliations, VP for Student Life Ben Barton explained how there is a lot of intertwining debt among the different school councils, with councils having accrued a certain level of debt so as to hinder interactions and planning between them. Therefore, there will be a giant meeting with the VPs for Student Life from across the three Columbia schools, their counterpart in Barnard’s SGA, and the council advisors. The goal is to “have everything fresh with no debt.”

More on ESC



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img April 21, 20173:48 pmimg 1 Comments

Peter and Jerry, deep into their stressing and illuminating conversation.

In another foray into theatre, Internal Editor Finn Klauber attended the performance of three one-act plays written by playwright Edward Albee. Through the absurdity and confusion, he managed to pick up on some essential thematic substance at the core of performance. 

At no point in the CU Players production of “Both Houses, a Plague” did I ever lose a deep seated sense of bewilderment. The play, an adaptation of three one-act performances penned by American playwright Edward Albee, consistently seemed to mock the dramatic structures integral to theatrical performance, juxtaposing the absurdity of plotlessness with dialectics on meaning and purpose. Though the three acts were connected theatrically by Director William Sydney (CC ’19), whether through the manipulation of theatrical space or unstated thematic links, the pure absurdity of the performance in some parts muddled the deeper meaning—if such meaning even exists.

It’s simple to recount and summarize the plot elements present in the three acts, despite this. In the first act, “The Sandbox,” Mommy, played by Ariana Busby (BC ’18), and Daddy, played by Rowan Hepps Keeney (CC ’20), set down the doddering and seemingly senile Grandma, Mommy’s mother played by Lily Whiteman (CC ’19), in an onstage sandbox. A shirtless Young Man, Spencer Tilghman (CC ’20), performs vaguely wing-like calisthenics while standing rooted in place above her, and a Musician, Olivia Loomis (BC ’19), plays a cello softly. The brunt of the act seems to concern Mommy and Daddy grappling with some unstated but critical decision, while Grandma addresses the audience and flirts with the Young Man. After a night has passed, Mommy and Daddy are spiritually rejuvenated, and they leave the decrepit Grandma in the sandbox. In opposition to the Young Man’s prior confusion over his name and purpose in this performance—a meta conflation of the dramatic performance with the reality of the play—he now leans down, realizing he is the Angel of Death, and takes Grandma away.

Peter and Jerry are up next



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img April 18, 201711:39 amimg 1 Comments

ESC plans to take steps so that incidents like this won’t ever happen again.

Large portions of this meeting consisted of discussion regarding expectations and crowdsourced guidelines for ESC member behaviour. However, the brunt of the discourse last night was in reference to the Physics TA incident which occurred a couple of weeks ago.

Sensitivity Training and the Physics TA Incident

About one and a half weeks ago, we reported that a Physics TA and GSAS graduate student from Russia had torn down an inclusive, pro-LGBT sticker and replaced it with a notice referencing the Biblical annihilation of Sodom and Gomorrah. Addressing this issue, both in terms of how this incident was reflected in the experiences of council members and what ESC could do in the long term to prevent such controversies from occuring in the future, though newly-elected President Aida Lu recounted how, in her meeting with Deans Kachani (Senior Vice Dean, Columbia Engineering) and Morrison (Vice Dean of Undergraduate Programs), Dean Kachani mentioned that some departments have printed and installed these stickers en masse.

2019 Representative Walker Magrath opened the discussion by explaining that he was a student of this physics TA, apologising in advance if comments seemed emotional charged. Notably, Representative Magrath’s stance was decidely hostile towards the Physics administration for the “absolutely unfathomable” decision to allow a graduate student with such a bio on the Physics website to TA an undergraduate class. The bio in question (which is still live) commends “Orthodox Christianity, the only true faith.” To an applause of snaps, Magrath proclaimed that it is imperative that ESC “strongly condemn these actions,” which “affect so many people in such a personal way.”

More on ESC

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