Dartmouth recently decided to suspend standard grading for the upcoming spring term and move all courses to a credit/no-credit grading system. We urge the Dartmouth administration to reverse this decision. The College’s argument is fallible, peer institutions have moved to more flexible grading systems and there will be a detrimental effect on post-graduate opportunities as a result of the new policy.
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In response to the spread of COVID-19, Dartmouth joined with peer institutions and announced that its entire spring term would be conducted remotely. This move, although disappointing for many, should be considered a necessary step in securing the wellbeing of Dartmouth students and residents of the Upper Valley. However, in moving to online instruction, the College must continue to prioritize the educational success of its students. One way to do this is to institute a mandatory pass/fail grading system for the spring term. Here, I echo the sentiments of The Daily Princetonian’s Editorial Board and of the student-run National Intercollegiate COVID-19 Coalition and urge Dartmouth to take that step.
Last week, Daniel Bring ’21 and Alexander Rauda ’21 wrote an apology in The Dartmouth in response to the criticism they received regarding their handling of the College Republicans’ attempt to bring U.S. Senate candidate Bryant “Corky” Messner to campus. The vast majority of the criticism they received focused on the inflammatory subject line “They’re bringing drugs…,” which introduced the campus-wide email inviting students and other members of the Dartmouth community to the event with Messner. While their apology is appreciated and long overdue, their removal from positions of leadership will likely do little to ameliorate the polarization plaguing this campus.
Last week, at the invitation of the Dartmouth College Republicans, U.S. Senate candidate Bryant “Corky” Messner — who is running against incumbent senator Jeanne Shaheen (D) — was scheduled to deliver a talk titled “Building a Wall Against Drugs: The Need for Border Security to End the Opioid Crisis.” I was involved in the planning of a two-pronged peaceful and educational protest against this event; that is, before the College Republicans cancelled it due to alleged “security risks.” I will speak briefly about my own political opinions and my personal motivation to protest peacefully. However, I also want to challenge the College Republicans’ cheap strategy of condemning the figure of the liberal protester rather than engaging in real political discourse with opposing ideas.
We are the former leaders of the Dartmouth College Republicans, and we regret the impact of our actions and decisions on that organization and on the Dartmouth community. Let us make one thing perfectly clear: It was never our intention to hurt the organization that we worked so hard to build and grow. We recognize that recent events have brought scrutiny to the College Republicans, and we take any and all responsibility for the organization’s failures during our tenure.
After two or three years, Hanover can begin to feel small. No matter how honed your pong skills might be, we all crave a break eventually. To many, the idea of a Dartmouth foreign study program — the wildly different experience of going to school in another corner of the globe — is certainly attractive.
The woman sitting next to me at the nail salon on a sunny January morning extended her french-tipped fingers to be massaged as we engaged in that timeworn ritual of womanhood: chatting with the stranger sitting next to you at the beauty parlor.
An athlete who inspired a generation can be a rapist. A parent can be a rapist. Someone who died too young can be a rapist. And yes, Kobe Bryant was a rapist.
Culture matters. The sentence’s brevity belies its gravity. After a few frenzied days of threats and debates about targeting Iran’s cultural heritage sites, we’ve seen the triumph of legal frameworks and precedents that prevent the deliberate destruction of culture. These laws, treaties and conventions are all important, and to ignore them flagrantly is wrong and weakens our country’s moral standing.
As talk of “Medicare For All” begins to dominate the Democratic presidential primary, discussion of “Big Pharma,” or the pharmaceutical industry, become all the more frequent. The rising price of life-saving drugs contributes to a fast-growing sense of insecurity in the American health care system.
Last year, I arrived on campus as an excited freshman. A strong conservative with a wide background in Republican campaigning, I leapt at the opportunity to challenge the hegemonic liberal campus culture and grow the Republican Party here. I became involved with Dartmouth College Republicans and was fortunate to be chosen as the organization’s secretary that fall. It was 2018, and political groups on campus were gearing up for what would be a monumental midterm election cycle. The tactics used by these groups were varied, and I quickly realized that the Dartmouth College Democrats were using a mixture between guerrilla marketing and harassment.
Going to school in New Hampshire is a dream come true for any political junkie. As one of the last truly “purple” states, razor-thin margins decide our elections: Maggie Hassan, New Hampshire’s most recently elected senator, won by 1,017 votes, or about one class at Dartmouth. Our status as the first-in-the-nation presidential primary makes the Granite State a hotbed for grassroots campaigning and opinionated political action, and this political involvement has defined my time at Dartmouth.
“We have the world’s most loyal alumni ... it’s the talent of our alumni body coming back.” As soon as I heard that I knew I had to stand up. Pushing through my racing heartbeat, I got up out of my seat in Spaulding Auditorium, walked towards the stage and began to sing: “People gonna rise like the water, we’re gonna calm this crisis down.”
I’m a student athlete. Upon reading Osman Khan ’21’s April 26 column, “Admitting Our Athletes,” in The Dartmouth, I felt two initial reactions. First, I felt angry and hurt that another student so strongly believed that my teammates and I might not belong at the institution we worked so hard to be a part of. And secondly, I felt resentment toward The Dartmouth for publishing an article demonstrating a concerning lack of awareness of how so many students felt about campus athletics.
When I first enrolled as a Ph.D. student at Dartmouth, I understood that I was choosing to do graduate work at an undergraduate-focused college. That was one of the main reasons I chose Dartmouth: If I ultimately wanted to teach and be a professor, why not learn from some of the best undergraduate instructors in the world? I didn’t anticipate that as a graduate student I would often be an after-thought — expected to shut up and do my work and not really be a part of the Dartmouth community. But make no mistake, graduate students are fundamental to the success of the College, and it is about time the institution acted like it.
If we want to understand the state of small family farming in this country, we need to look beyond partisan fault-finding and demeaning stereotypes of farmers and their operations. Contrary to the suggestions of Thomas Knight ’22 in his May 9 column for The Dartmouth, titled “Trump and the Family Farm,” there are no economic indications that President Trump’s actions are worsening the decline of small family farming in New Hampshire or elsewhere.
For hundreds of years, Dartmouth did not fulfill its commitment to Native Americans. Dartmouth’s campus is built on the land of Abenaki indigenous people, and Dartmouth’s founding charter outlines that the school’s principal mission is to educate Native youth. But in its first 200 years of existence, Dartmouth only graduated 19 Native Americans. When Native students finally did matriculate to Dartmouth in meaningful numbers, many of them were not exactly thrilled to see that Dartmouth had an Indian mascot, and they widely protested it. Native students Howard Bad Hand ’73, Duane Bird Bear ’71 and Rick Buckanaga ’72 were among those who led the call to end the use of Dartmouth’s Indian mascot in the 1970s, and in 1974, the Board of Trustees agreed with the protestors that the mascot was inconsistent with the values that Dartmouth is supposed to uphold.
Everyone’s favorite New England postcard is in trouble. For years, tourists have flocked to the Upper Valley, where antique barns are framed by the rough-hewn fences that rein in gentle and photogenic Holsteins. If they’re lucky, they might even get a glimpse of a farmer who charmingly lacks a few teeth and says “ayup” with that old New England agrarian accent. But you would be hard pressed to find that today. The reality is that the Upper Valley and many rural farming communities around the country are feeling the squeeze. Family farms found some success in the later years of the Obama presidency, but since then, profits have decreased by almost a third. There is no question that family-run agriculture has been in decline over the last half-century, partly due to the changing demands of ever-changing consumer tastes.
Under Dartmouth’s 2018 “Telling Our Story” brand image guidelines, the College seeks to position itself as a “basecamp to the world,” where “scholars … love to teach” and “liberal arts [is] at the core.” Reading these three tenets of our identity, it is clear that the College places teaching and education at the center of its mission. And as the guidelines acknowledge, education is a broadly transformative force. At its best, the education system has the potential to expose students to new possibilities and remove their economic prospects from pernicious cycles of poverty. At its worst, the education system discourages critical thinking, reduces self-efficacy and reproduces inequality. With its ability to profoundly shape the development of its students, education deserves to be studied at the most comprehensive and rigorous level.
I am a student-athlete, and I received one of the “likely letters” that Osman Khan took issue with in his article last Friday in The Dartmouth. I’m not ashamed of that fact, nor am I ashamed that I wasn’t the top student in my high school class. That’s because, despite the derision with which Khan treats student-athletes at Dartmouth, I believe that our college is enriched by a diversity of experiences and abilities. There is a real and meaningful conversation to be had about increasing opportunity for historically disadvantaged groups at institutions of higher education. Unfortunately, this guest column does little to contribute to it.