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I defended my senior fellowship project, the culminating experience of my undergraduate career, Tuesday morning. I’m taking one class this term and have a few edits to do on my thesis, but I walked out of my defense meeting feeling happy. I was essentially done with Dartmouth, and it had been an incredible time. Not three minutes later I was fighting back tears when I learned that something else was done with Dartmouth: the venerable late-night institution Everything But Anchovies.
“The causes of death were family, finances and fatigue. The tasteful tombstone is set amid the soothing green of a field of Perrier bottles,” wrote Time magazine in an “obituary” of the yuppie. The year of death: 1991.
In 1944, one year before the end of World War II, the British Special Operations Executive — a secret wing of the British military formed for the purposes of espionage and sabotage behind enemy lines — devised a plan to kill Adolf Hitler. In its design, a German-speaking marksman fluent in the dialect of the Bavarian district of Berchtesgadener Land would parachute in and assassinate Hitler from afar as he walked to his morning tea at the Berghof, his Alpine retreat in Bavaria, Germany. Using information provided by one of Hitler’s personal guards, captured at Normandy on D-Day, plans were drawn up for Operation Foxley, which would be the third attempted execution of the Fuhrer. But those plans, and the operation, were never realized.
When you hear about algorithms — like the one Facebook uses to construct your personal newsfeed or the one Google is fine-tuning to fight the spread of fake news — it’s likely that you’re hearing about predictive analytics. An algorithm is just a series of instructions: Multiply the two, carry the three or go to class at these three times every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Predictive analytics, as the name might imply, are algorithms meant to collect and use data to generate a prediction about an outcome that cannot be definitively known until the event occurs. Based on what you know, is a given person going to make it to class? If it’s Green Key Friday, then that probability might go down.
When I leave Streeter Hall every morning, I am usually too distracted to notice my surroundings, but last weekend I felt unsettled after registering that my daily route is adjacent to a cemetery. There is nothing particularly odd about the cemetery itself, but its integration into campus feels unusual. What bothered me about the cemetery was not that it was there, that it lacked a border or the feeling of encroachment on a spiritual space, but rather what its vicinity symbolized about Dartmouth.
Sixty-one percent of students admitted to Dartmouth’s Class of 2021 accepted their offer of admission, the highest yield rate in the last 25 years according to the College. This figure is almost 10 percent higher than recent yield rates, which may lead us to instinctively believe that it signifies something important, perhaps the success of the Moving Dartmouth Forward initiative or an increase in the caliber of current students.
If French president-elect Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the French presidential election can be called a landslide, then the column inches hyperbolically trumpeting it as the wholesale rejection of global populism can rightly be called a tsunami. The authors of a Washington Post piece on the election couch the French people’s decision in mythological terms, saying that “France ... shrugged off the siren call of right-wing populism.” CNN asserts, in heroic language, that Macron defeated populism in the “great political battle between globalism and nationalism that is underway in Western democracies.” The Huffington Post calls Macron’s victory “somewhat comparable to Napoleon Bonaparte.”
I was delighted to read Eliza Jane Schaeffer ’20’s article on “the essence of the professor-student dynamic.” Schaeffer is exactly right about what empowers students — and what fosters learning. She writes that “building a relationship between students and professors, helping students engage with the material outside of the classroom [and] approaching learning as a collaborative endeavor” forms the basis of that relationship. These factors have long been a hallmark of the Dartmouth experience, and their importance is well-documented in the teaching and learning literature.
This past Tuesday, the Hanover town meeting voting process underwent a “stress test” resulting from the welcome but unprecedented student turnout, spurred by the inclusion of a proposed zoning amendment addressing “student residences.” Elected officials and a staff of volunteer assistants, who typically prepare for 1000 voters but expect far fewer, needed to process about 3,500 voters, including 244 same-day registrants. As always, students came to vote in several surges throughout the day, often by the busload.
Many Southerners remain confused about the Civil War, its origins and the implications it bore for the Confederate States. Harvard professor John Stauffer reported in a 2011 Harvard Gazette article that nearly 70 percent of white Southerners believe that states’ rights were the underlying cause of the war, while slavery was only a secondary cause.
I don’t have Netflix. Therefore, whenever my friends discuss “13 Reasons Why,” I can only sit and listen. From the information that I’ve gathered, this show vividly illustrates — rather dangerously — the hyper-judgmental environment that many of us lived through in high school. As much as we attempt to overcome the peer pressure surrounding how we speak, act, dress and exist, many fail to do so. “13 Reasons Why” did not catch my attention because of its accurate portrayal of high school or shock-value; it caught my attention because of its stark contrast to Dartmouth’s culture of embracing embarrassment.
After midnight, the party in the fraternity basement had simmered to a dull roar. Most bedroom doors were shut so the brothers could get some sleep.
Today, the town of Hanover will have its annual ballot to vote on new zoning articles and town officers. Potential new laws are of special interest to the Dartmouth community. This year, Hanover’s town meeting is acutely relevant to the College, thanks to one high-stakes petition article.
When French president-elect Emmanuel Macron’s victory in Sunday’s election was announced, my first reaction was a breath of relief. My second was an inane little voice inside my head whispering, “Oh, no. It’s still just us.” The fact that Front National candidate Marine Le Pen failed in France — and by a wide margin — while President Donald Trump succeeded in the United States gives us one less excuse for our now cartoonish image on the world stage.
Today, Dartmouth students have a rare opportunity to improve the town they call home. Students make up about a third of eligible voters. Yet we rarely vote, missing critical chances to impact laws that will affect future generations of Dartmouth students. We can change that today. At its annual Town Meeting from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Hanover is holding a vote on proposed changes to Hanover zoning laws. Article 9 is a proposed ballot item that has the potential to positively impact both students and townspeople. A “yes” vote for Article 9 on Tuesday is a vote to improve Hanover.
This week alone, the College is holding almost 40 lectures, not counting those at its professional schools. These include presentations by a noted novelist, an expert on the philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein and a federal judge. All of these talks are free to students and the public. Most students will not have regular opportunities to go to events with speakers of this caliber ever again.
Depression is a serious issue among college students. It is one we often discuss but rarely act to resolve. Because we cannot assume that students with depression will reach out for help, we may not react in time to help a student in need. May is Mental Health Awareness month, and I believe it’s up to students — and not just College programs — to take action to end depression rather than waste time discussing it.
“A Keurig brewer on every counter and a beverage for every occasion” is a motto that rings more like a prophecy. Over the past year, the Keurig company has sold over nine billion K-cups that are not biodegradable nor easily recyclable. Nearly a quarter of homes in the United States own one and every Dartmouth department office, snack bar and house center has one as well.
Dispelling the myths surrounding the term “political correctness” requires me to make both a concession and a confession before addressing the article’s central thesis.
The Met Gala is arguably fashion’s biggest night. It’s an event where attendees are expected to abandon traditional conventions and be creative with their outfits, presenting their interpretation on the night’s theme. This year’s theme, “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between,” had the potential to be amongst the most innovative to date.