The return of the woolly mammoths, and the return to New York City’s public schools.

Happening in the World: Led by American geneticist George Church, a team of researchers is trying to bring the woolly mammoth back to life— after 4000 years of extinction. On Monday, the Harvard scientist and his team received a $15 million investment from Colossal, a bioscience and genetics company. Although there is a lot of skepticism within the scientific community over the plausibility, and even necessity of such an endeavor— the founder of Colossal says that there is no pressure for the project to make money, suggesting that he sees it as a potential catalyst for innovations in biotechnology and healthcare. (CNN)

Happening in the US: The spike in the number of coronavirus cases due to the Delta variant has lead to hospitals in the southern United States running severely low on space in their intensive care units. At the moment, every one in four hospitals reports that more than 95% of its I.C.U beds are occupied. In Alabama, nearly all I.C.U beds are occupied leaving patients to be treated in the waiting room or in the backs of ambulances. Notably, many of the states with the lowest rates of vaccination also have the highest occupancy of I.C.U beds— supporting the findings of the recent CDC study that found that unvaccinated Americans are 10 times more likely to be hospitalized with Covid than vaccinated Americans. (NYT)

Happening in NYC: On the first day back to school in New York City’s public schools, attendance numbers were reported lower than they were in both 2019 and 2018— 82.4% as opposed to 90.1% in 2019 and 89.5% in 2018. These numbers do not include the 350 schools that are yet to deliver their tallies from Monday. NYC officials attribute the decrease in attendance numbers to the preliminary fluctuations that are expected at the beginning of the year. The numbers could also be representative of parents who decided to leave the public schooling system/city altogether over the course of the 18 months of remote education during the pandemic. Further, it could also reflect parents who chose to keep their kids at home due to safety concerns. Officials have declined to provide the overall enrollment figures, given that registration is open till October. (Gothamist)

Happening in the Columbia Community: If you want a fun way to cope with the stresses of the in-person learning experience that you are still not used to check out the Yoga Class in Earl Hall from 7 to 8 PM, today evening. Make sure to bring your own mat to this one, and arrive 10 minutes early to set up! You can reserve your spot at this link.

Poem of the Week: Imtiaz Dharker is one of my absolute favorite poets—and her poem, ‘Hiraeth, Old Bombay‘ breaks my heart a little bit every single time I read it for the incredible accuracy with which she captures the sense of loss that comes with living in the rapidly shifting landscape of a city where everything you grow to love is temporary.

Back To School Scrabble via Bwarchives