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On April 4, The New York Times featured the article “College Made Them Feel Equal. The Virus Exposed How Unequal Their Lives Are,” written by Nicholas Casey. Casey juxtaposed the lives of two students studying at Haverford College, one who “sat at a vacation home on the coast of Maine,” and the other who had to “keep her mother’s Puerto Rican food truck running.” I applaud Dartmouth’s decision to make spring term credit/no credit to accommodate students who, like the New York Times story pointed out, must work a job or care for their family. However, social class and alleviated academic pressure aside, the online learning experience has not measured up to Dartmouth’s traditional classroom setting.
When Dartmouth announced its intention to host the entire spring term online, many students and professors were both disappointed and anxious. It was nearly impossible to imagine how the Dartmouth experience would translate to a remote format. As expected, attending Dartmouth virtually has not been the same as the on-campus experience. However, in our first week and a half of remote learning, professors have been remarkably innovative and accommodating. The online format, and the hard work of professors to make it work well, have allowed many students to continue their education relatively smoothly in spite of the challenges of learning from home. If Dartmouth can accommodate all 6,500 of its students learning in a remote format with only three weeks’ notice, the College should be able to offer a remote option for undergraduates who might need to take a term at home in the future.
Dartmouth’s enactment of a mandatory credit/no credit grading system was met — perhaps surprisingly — with widespread frustration among students. Students have cited various issues with this new system, including the lack of opportunity to raise one’s grade point average or to show achievement in a particular course. This reaction is a testament to the strong work ethic of Dartmouth students. While it’s natural for high-achieving, aspirational students to feel lost in a class without the incentive of an A, we don’t have to see things that way. Instead, now’s the chance to view the credit/no credit grading system as an opportunity to embrace learning for its own sake and — as too infrequently happens at Dartmouth — to focus on our passions without the stress of grades.
It’s not an election year unless Florida has a surprise up its sleeve, and this year the surprise in question just might involve the restoration of voting rights to felons. Just last week, a federal appeals court ruled that the state cannot use unpaid fees and fines related to conviction to bar felons from voting. This decision built off a 2018 amendment passed by referendum that promised to enfranchise over a million Floridians with felony convictions who had completed their sentences.
Put complaints of an overlong ceremony, political speeches by out-of-touch celebrities and awards predictability aside. Today, the most significant issue with the Oscars is the lack of diversity.
Flip to any news channel or open any newspaper or news site — or take a stroll across Dartmouth’s campus — and I doubt you’ll be able to last more than a few minutes without encountering the concept of “electability.” With the upcoming Democratic primary and New Hampshire’s today, voters want to pick whoever they think has the best chance of defeating Donald Trump come November. And while there are many bright, politically astute people on this campus and in this town who are wrestling with this concept and this decision today, I encourage them to fret not — because the concept of “electability” and everything it entails should be your last priority at the voting booth.
Dartmouth College remains one of the few remaining elite, academic stalwarts clutching to the tradition of a “swim test” one untimed 50-yard lap in the pool as a graduation requirement. And try though I may, I simply cannot shake my befuddlement as to why this exercise sticks around.
During the 2018 midterm elections, a record-breaking 185 women ran for congressional seats, resulting in an historic 117 female members of Congress. The unprecedented surge of women’s congressional participation led many to call 2018 “The Year of the Woman.” The election of so many women into the top political offices of the United States electrified feminists across the country, and the 2020 election cycle has seen more women than ever before seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.
The next Democratic debate, on Jan. 14, will likely have only five presidential contenders. There will be the three clear frontrunners — Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren — along with Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar, both of whom recently cleared the DNC’s threshold for a debate stage appearance.
In the next few days, people will come together to mark the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. As a moment of triumph over division and repression, the event deserves recognition. But it would be a mistake to believe that the bringing-down of the wall, and the reunification of Germany that followed, marked an end. Germany is still not a unified nation, and the repercussions of this are only now coming to popular attention.
The term “cancel culture” is the latest euphemism for political correctness. Often a term lobbed leftward, cancel culture refers to the online public shaming, usually of a celebrity, for some past action now deemed inappropriate. The intention is to encourage others to “cancel” consumption of the celebrity’s work.
This term has been particularly trying for me. My run-in with a head injury and my adjustment to a more social Dartmouth experience has sent my highly structured schedule as a freshman last year into a new chaotic normal.
Dartmouth has a rigorous honor code, and students are frequently reminded of this fact. Summaries of Dartmouth’s rules against prohibited collaboration and other forms of academic dishonesty are conveniently printed on the cover page of many in-class exams, and verbal reminders are often given when a take-home assignment like a lab report is handed out.
When I arrived on campus in the fall of 2016, I became the first student — to my knowledge — from Nevada Union High School to ever attend Dartmouth College. Even if I wasn’t the first, I may as well have been. The comfort and security I knew from growing up in a small town where the kids I graduated high school with had known me for a majority of my years vanished the instance I accepted my offer of admission. The ’20s I had been fortunate enough to know prior to our arrival — namely, two boys I had become friends with at debate camp in high school — provided me with the perfect opportunity to latch onto the safety of familiarity. What I did not realize, however, was that there was a categorical difference between the familiarity I was developing with new people at Dartmouth and that which I had treasured at home.
As I mill about the beloved Class of ’53 Commons (colloquially adored as “Foco”), I cannot help but stop and reminisce on a somewhat nostalgic cavalcade of bygone pizzas and one-off lobster dinners. It strikes me that this glorious facility — this Sistine Chapel of student sustenance — has proven the backdrop of my most iconic collegiate memories.
With more than 400 days until Election Day, an overlong list of Democratic candidates shows no signs of shrinking. The slate of candidates is polling at numbers as varied as their experience, policies, backgrounds and tones. At the forefront of the minds of presidential candidates and Democratic voters alike is how to beat President Trump in the 2020 election.
Members of the Class of 2023 fresh out of First-Year Trips gave Divest Dartmouth a lot of attention during last week’s activity fair. Divest Dartmouth is a well-known brand at Dartmouth — they have almost 1,500 followers on Facebook and their stickers give MacBooks and Nalgenes around campus more personality. Divest Dartmouth also has a mission: “That Dartmouth College ceases to invest in coal, tar sands and the Climate Action List of the most harmful oil and gas companies identified by the Fossil Free Index and Union of Concerned Scientists.”
The legalization of the birth control pill was one of the greatest victories for feminism in recent history: Its use is prevalent, and its effects are profound. Though they were aware of the pill’s potential for women’s liberation, the women who worked to legalize the pill strategically prioritized legal goals over making an ideological statement.
While e-cigarettes are now, for the first time, attracting serious national attention, their popularity is nothing new to me. Nearly five years ago, there existed a sort of underground market for e-cigarettes at my private high school in Louisiana. The profiteers in this racket, a handful of sophomore boys, used all sorts of ingenious means to buy product to skirt legal age restrictions — fake IDs, siblings over 18 and online purchases made with Bitcoin.
On Aug. 7, federal Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents conducted raids in Mississippi targeting immigrants working in food-processing factories across the state. Around 680 immigrant workers were detained by the more than 600 ICE agents in the largest single-state coordinated sting operation in U.S. history.