Summer 2016: In Brief
Maple on the map
History professor Catherine Stewart’s new book, “Long Past Slavery: Representing Race in the Federal Writers’ Project” (University of North Carolina Press), tells the story of the Federal Writers’ Ex-Slave Project, a New Deal effort to interview the last generation of ex-slaves during the Great Depression.
“By the 1930s the last living generation of African-Americans who had experienced slavery were in their 90s, and some were over 100 years old,” Stewart said. “There was a sense of urgency about gathering their testimony before they passed away. It is still very difficult today for many Americans to converse openly and honestly about the past of slavery and its legacy. I think the history of the Ex-Slave Project has much to tell us about why these conversations about the past of slavery remain so challenging today.”
Cornell part of private college 529 tuition plan
Imagine that when it’s time for your child to go to college, you’ve already prepaid tuition in part or in full, to a selection of more than 270 private colleges and universities nationwide, including, yours truly, Cornell College.
Cornell is participating in the Private College 529 Plan, a program that offers families the ability to pay for college at a private institution without worrying about investment risk or tuition inflation.
Under the Private College 529 Plan, families prepay tuition, in part or in whole, by purchasing tuition certificates that act kind of like USPS Forever Stamps. As long as the certificates are used within 30 years of purchase, they will count toward tomorrow’s tuition at today’s prices.
Learn more here.
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist and author Thomas Friedman will share his insights on “Big Trends” as the 2016 Delta Phi Rho Lecturer Nov. 17 in King Chapel. Winner of three Pulitzer Prizes, Friedman has covered monumental stories from around the globe for The New York Times since 1981, and is the author of numerous books, including “The World is Flat.” His next book, “Thank You For Being Late: How to Find a Job, Run a Country, and Keep Your Head in an Age of Acceleration,” is scheduled for release just prior to his visit to Cornell.
Cornell joins Raise.me
Cornell College is now a member of the growing list of colleges and universities that have joined Raise.me, which links high school accomplishments to collegiate financial aid. As students advance through their high school years, they enter their individual accomplishments on a Raise.me profile, which automatically calculates and displays their growing financial aid package.
Students add a photo of themselves, information about their coursework, and information about their activities. They choose which colleges they will engage.
The colleges, in turn, can express who they are to students who are trying to find the right college. Students can get an idea of each college’s values through the scholarships they offer. For instance, while some colleges offer micro-scholarships for standardized test scores, Cornell College micro-scholarships are focused on leadership activity—because that’s what we value.
Here are just a few ways that students can earn micro-scholarships at Cornell through Raise.me:
- Participate in an extracurricular activity
- Take on a leadership role in an extracurricular activity
- Volunteer in the community
- Earn the Girl Scout Gold Award or the Eagle Scout Award from the Boy Scouts of America.
For students who find Raise.me enjoyable and motivating, it can provide a structure that breaks the big task of being college-ready into smaller tasks that are much less intimidating.
Ready to start? See here.
This past spring even Cornell’s close-knit campus community hasn’t been immune to the nationwide issues related to racial discrimination and diversity. A lack of compassion and adherence to our values of civil discourse created an environment of tension on campus for traditionally under-represented groups. Faculty and staff are fully behind taking the necessary actions to improve campus climate and ensure that our students have a productive learning environment. Discussions with a wide array of students accelerated our timeline in revisiting policies and implementing diversity training to ensure that every student knows they are welcomed, included, and appreciated.
At the closing of commencement for the Class of 2016, President Jonathan Brand addressed the issue when he told the class:
Sometimes, we believe that we are in a little bubble here on the Hilltop, detached from the ‘real’ world around us. And, though there is some truth to it in that we create our own community with a distinct set of values and norms, we are also decidedly of this world.
As many of you know, we are experiencing more incivility across the United States than we have seen in years. It has affected Cornell, including during our last block. Every generation, including yours, has an obligation to help move water up the mountain. Cornell has given you the tools to do that.
The opposite of knowledge is not ignorance. Rather, the opposite of knowledge is knowingness—the belief that you know everything that there is to know—or that you possess true truth. In fact, real knowledge is knowing what you don’t know; knowing that you can’t possibly know everything—and then figuring out where to learn what you don’t know. That takes effort and courage every single day.
As graduates of Cornell College, I charge you above all else, to influence others in ways that encourage greater civility—greater conversations. Be forces for good. Know what you don’t know—and stay open to learning and commit to kindness, especially when it is most difficult to do so. There is power in persistence and there is power in forgiveness—though often neither offers immediate gratification.
Show your purple pride
Now you can show your pride with official Cornell Purple Chucks. We’ve started the designs for you on the Converse website. All you need to do is select your size and add them to your cart. There are options for high tops or low tops, so you can pick whichever style fits you best and have them delivered to your doorstep. If you get custom Chucks, share a photo on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. Tag us: @CornellCollege or #CornellCollege.
Four student-athletes earned all-America awards for their athletic and academic accomplishments during the winter and spring seasons. Wrestler Trevor Engle ’16 captured his all-America medal by placing second at 149 pounds at the NCAA Division III Championships in March. Teammate Phillip Opelt ’17 also reached the all-America podium, placing sixth at 133 pounds. Phillip and Scott Smith ’16 were named Scholar All-Americans by the National Wrestling Coaches Association.
Sam Martinez ’16 earned her fifth and sixth career all-America medals with a fifth-place finish in the women’s 5,000-meter run at the NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships, and an eighth-place finish in the 3,000 steeplechase at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Teammate Abrah Masterson ’17 became the most decorated student-athlete in Cornell history with seven all-America medals after placing second in the 10,000 and fourth in the 5,000 at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
In his final collegiate competition, tennis player Thomas Weiss ’16 posted his 100th career win, becoming the third Ram to reach the century mark.
Softball coach Shanda Ness recorded her 200th Cornell career win on April 13. She joins three others who have reached that milestone: Paul Maaske (309, men’s basketball), Fred Burke ’70 (280, women’s tennis), and volleyball coach Jeff Meeker (267).