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As summer trades its torrid weather for fall’s “maturing sun,” big decisions loom in the air regarding the future at the College. As anticipation builds up, we look within our community as well as outside it to find overlapping issues, from COVID-19 to systemic racism, all chipping away at our complacency. While it seems like we are approaching a boiling point, we also find ourselves asking: could this crisis present us with opportunities?
Days before the start of my senior year at Dartmouth, I went out for a run in my suburban Chicago hometown to celebrate my 21st birthday. Awaiting me after my run were not birthday messages celebrating my newly minted adult status, but rather news that would brand my class as part of Generation 9/11. Terrorists had just brought down the World Trade Center and hit the Pentagon. Days later, the halcyon senior fall we had long anticipated gave way to conversations about recovery efforts, military campaigns in Afghanistan and rising discrimination against Muslims.
On July 24, Julia Griffin, the Hanover town manager, penned an op-ed in The Dartmouth titled “Selfish Students.” In this article, Griffin warns students to “smarten up” and attempts to scare them by discussing the potential reversal of students’ future on-campus privileges. While I strongly agree that students must socially distance, Griffin neglects to address other Hanover community members who blatantly ignore guidelines. Instead, she bitterly characterizes Dartmouth students as the main threat. All of us, as a community, have the responsibility to uphold social distancing regulations. To point fingers in discourse, to cast blame and to depict Dartmouth students as enemies rather than community members does not protect Hanover; it divides us and dooms our community’s future.
“Opening an unconditional, fair and transparent investigation is our right and it is not an extraordinary measure as the school [has] claimed,” wrote Maha Hasan Alshawi in a July 24 Facebook post.
In her recent guest column entitled “Selfish Students,” Hanover town manager Julia Griffin criticized Dartmouth students currently living in Hanover for not wearing masks and not following social distancing guidelines. As a student currently living on-campus, I have also received many emails from college officials conveying a similar message, such as a July 3 email from Dean of the College Kathryn Lively informing us of “increasing … complaints from faculty, staff and other local residents” who have seen Dartmouth students ignoring the various recommendations. From my experience, however, Griffin’s sweeping claim is untrue at the macro level and the warnings of college officials — while well-intentioned — are biased and misguided. In fact, I see local Hanover residents committing social distancing violations just as often as Dartmouth students. By antagonizing students, the town and the college fails to acknowledge that local residents are part of the problem, putting us all at risk.
Without a single reported case of COVID-19, Hanover’s Kendal Retirement Community has been lucky in avoiding the reach of the pandemic so far. But with thousands of Dartmouth undergraduates soon to be returning to campus from all over the country and world — some likely to be traveling from infection hotspots — the possibility of spread to the town and to other vulnerable Upper Valley communities like Kendal has become a source of uneasiness.
When the influenza in 1918 caused Dartmouth to cancel student activities and postpone classes for two weeks, Clifford Orr, Class of 1922, wrote to his father that “the epidemic has killed what college life there was.”
The first time I played pong was during my freshman spring in the basement of Chi Gam. My partner was a Dartmouth senior, a Chi Gam member and a would-be Masters finalist. He was also my UGA. Thinking back, there was probably no better introduction to the illustrious game of Dartmouth pong. Unless, of course, I had learned in a sorority. But sororities hadn’t been marketed to me as open spaces, I didn’t know any sorority members and for some reason I was thrilled to be invited into a male space.
Victoria Xiao ’22 has suspended her campaign for one of the four New Hampshire House of Representatives seats in Hanover’s district.
Newly enrolled international students will not be able to enter the U.S. to take fully online courses at American colleges and universities during the fall term, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced in a press release on July 24.
Just when I thought Taylor Swift had surpassed every semblance of an expectation, she proved to be even more of a superwoman. The release of her eighth album, “folklore,” on July 24th comes only 11 months after the cheerful and flowery “Lover.” Written and recorded entirely in quarantine, “folklore” is a testament to the singer’s creativity as a musical powerhouse. “Folklore” stuns with its ethereal beauty and maturity, expressed through intelligent lyrics and gentle, haunting melodies.
As some undergraduates prepare to return to the Upper Valley in September, the College has compiled a committee of students to help administrators understand student concerns.
Fourteen undergraduate advisors, from those who work in upperclassmen and first-year residences to those who reside in Living Learning Communities, have voiced a variety of complaints against the Office of Residential Life that they are not adequately compensated for training and weekly responsibilities and that the ORL has not been adequately responsive to their concerns.
Undergraduate students returning to the Upper Valley during the 2020-2021 academic year will be subject to strict 14-day quarantine regulations that “exceed those prescribed by the state of New Hampshire,” including mandatory testing for COVID-19, whether they are living on or off campus.
Computer science Ph.D. student Maha Hasan Alshawi has entered the 14th day of her hunger strike after declining the College’s offer to investigate her harassment claims if she ended her strike and sought medical attention.
Joining other institutions across the U.S. facing unwanted online intrusions into meetings held on Zoom, the College experienced its first reported “Zoombombing” incident on Monday at a public event organized by the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy.
Members of the Class of 2024 will be arriving on campus to a somewhat nontraditional freshman fall experience, but some ’24s have taken it upon themselves to get to know their classmates before virtual New Student Orientation begins.
Addressing the July 1 joint statement from the Board of Trustees and College senior leadership on taking steps to address systemic racism at Dartmouth, a collective of Black faculty and staff began circulating an open letter on July 14 that calls for the College to take more concrete actions towards racial justice.
On July 9, a juvenile black bear was spotted in a tree behind the Parkhurst Administration building, the latest in a series of recent bear sightings near Dartmouth’s campus and in Hanover. The 200- to 300-pound bear, which stayed on the tree for about two hours before climbing down and disappearing into the woods behind Dartmouth Cemetery, is among the 11 bears in town this summer..