The Bucknellian has created a new and improved website at bucknellian.net.
The LGBT Affinity Program, Fran’s House, hosted its first register on Nov. 8 in the Summit House basement. Three-hundred people attended the event.
The register is the product of planning by different groups on campus, including the LGBTQ Resource Center, Residential Education, and the Affinity Program. Bill McCoy, director of the LGBTQ Resource Center, collaborated with Tatham Dilks ’15, the Affinity Program RA, and Kate Albertini ’14, the house leader for the Fran’s House Affinity Program, in hopes of providing an alternative social scene to the Greek-lettered organization events on campus.
“It was really special to see people of all class years, backgrounds, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, and ability statuses dancing together, as well as both Greek organization-affiliated students and independent students,” Albertini said.
The event was held in the basement of Summit House from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. and drew students from all different backgrounds. Attendees included Greek organization-affiliated students as well as independent students.
“There was a safe space for everyone: whether you wanted to have good conversation and catch up with friends, or actually get down and dance,” Manisha Kaur ’16 said. “Also, I’ve never been to a party with snacks so that was a nice alternative to alcohol. It was everything a person would want in a register, without the drunk messes and creepiness. I think this is what college parties should really be like.”
The theme of the event, “NO(v) H8,” was aimed to include all students and provide a safe, non-alcoholic space. The register admitted students with valid BU IDs and guests with appropriate identification. Justin Westdyke ’15 and Zac Westdyke ’15 were DJs at the register.
“We are very proud of how it turned out,” Richelle Kozlusky ’14 said. “It completely fulfilled its purpose of providing a safe space for anyone to enjoy themselves without fear of discrimination. The atmosphere of the night reflected the absence of unwanted social pressures. Everyone really seemed to be having a great time.”
On Nov. 2, the Bucknell Brigade organized the Making it to Managua 5k in order to raise money for
its upcoming trip to Nicaragua, where the group will participate in various community service projects.
The Bucknell Brigade is a humanitarian group founded in 1999 following the devastation of Hurricane Mitch. The organization is comprised of students and faculty who travel to Nicaragua to volunteer as well as learn about the history and culture of the Central American country.
The 5k took place in Hufnagle Park and students, faculty, and community members ran in the race. Event volunteers were present and past members of the Brigade.
The Brigade raised around $600, but
is hoping to fundraise more money.
“People can still support the Brigade and help us run the 2073 miles to Managua by signing up to run the race at home,” Margaret Benson ’15, co-leader of the Brigade Fundraising committee said.
The Brigade is involved in many service projects, and is particularly connected with a free health clinic in Nueva Vida.
“We are a group that travels to Nicaragua two or three times a year and works alongside Jubilee House Community, our host agency, in the Nueva Vida Community,” Benson said. “The clinic serves the community and provides care and medicine at reduced or no cost to patients. They also just started a dental program.”
The Bucknell Brigade takes advantage of the opportunity to explore Nicaragua, and the trip includes a chance to participate in many different activities.
“Brigades do different activities every year but they generally include projects at the health clinic, projects at our host agency, Jubilee House Community, trips to El Porvenir, a coffee plantation, and historical tours of Managua, the capital city,” Jenna Weaver ’15, co-leader of the Brigade Fundraising committee said.
The Bucknell Brigade has ambitious plans for the future and does not plan on stopping its service project in Nicaragua any time soon.
“We are always selling homemade Nicaraguan crafts and fair trade coffee,” Weaver said. “You can usually find us at events around campus, or stop in the Office of Civic Engagement. Our next fundraiser: selling Mr. Sticky’s sticky buns at the Lewisburg Downtown raid on Dec. 6.”
University President John Bravman announced the induction of three new trustees in an email to faculty and staff on Oct. 5.
During the general meeting, which was held from Oct. 3-5, the Board of Trustees welcomed new members Susan Ginkel ’76, Kirsten Heinemann ’81 P’12 P’15, and Chris Sullivan ’92.
“We are grateful to them for making this commitment of leadership and service to the University,” Bravman said.
Kirsten Heinemann and her husband, Steven, recently contributed their second seven-figure gift to the University. The gift will make possible a newly endowed professorship, Bravman said.
“We are grateful to Kristen and Steven for this expression of continuing generosity and support for Bucknell, which helps make the case to other donors who are considering making campaign gifts,” Bravman said.
- The Obama Administration reassured German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Oct. 23 that the United States was not monitoring her cell phone. While the German government did obtain evidence that suggested otherwise, the White House reiterated that it “is not monitoring and will not monitor” their communications, said White House spokesman Jay Carney. This latest allegation followed another allegation made by French President Francois Hollande that the NSA spied on thousands of French citizens. (Reuters)
- Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi will stand trial for alleged bribery. He is accused of paying a left-wing senator over three million Euros to defect from his own party to Berlusconi’s People of Freedom party. The defection resulted in the collapse of the government and elections that returned Berlusconi to power. (BBC Europe)
- On Oct. 23, Pope Francis suspended German Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst, otherwise known as the Bishop of Bling. Pope Francis ordered the bishop to vacate the Diocese of Limburg immediately while a final decision still has not been made yet. The decision came in the wake of the German Bishop reportedly spending lavish amounts of money, including $20,000 on a bathtub. (ABC News)
- The United States suggested that Iran could retain limited nuclear enrichments capabilities for non-weapons purposes under controlled conditions, a view that is not shared by a number of other Middle Eastern States. Saudi Arabia and Israel are among the states that have expressed disapproval of the American stance. Top Israeli and American officials have called for the complete dismantlement of Iran’s nuclear program since the enrichment process started in 2003. (Washington Post)
- Early on Oct. 21, New Jersey became the 14th state to legalize gay marriage. Governor Chris Christie dropped his appeal of the judicial decision. Judge Mary C. Jacobson of New Jersey’s State Supreme Court ruled in September that New Jersey had to allow same-sex marriage after the Supreme Court decided in June that same-sex couples had access to the same federal benefits as heterosexual couples. (New York Times)
- The U.S. Navy was rocked by a bribery scandal earlier in the week involving a foreign defense contractor, a Navy commander, and Naval Criminal Investigative Service senior agent. The company, Glenn Defense Marine, is accused of overbilling from tugboats to fuel sewage disposal. They are also accused of providing prostitutes and tickets to a Lady Gaga concert in Thailand. (Washington Post)
- Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the deceased Boston bombing suspect, has been implicated in a triple murder. The murders took place on Sept. 11, 2011, in which the victims had their throats slashed, their bodies covered in marijuana and thousands of dollars in cash. Documents were filed on Monday in preparation for the trial of his younger brother, Dzhokhar. (AFP)
- Two separate attacks at schools took place this week, one in Nevada, the other in Massachusetts. In Sparks, Nevada, a seventh grade student shot killed Michael Landsberry, a math teacher at the school who was also a former Marine and member of the Nevada National Guard. The shooter also wounded two students before taking his own life. In Danvers, Mass., teacher Colleen Ritzer was found dead in a wooded area behind her school. Police have charged Phillip Chism, 14, as an adult in his alleged involvement with Ritzer’s death. (ABC News and The New York Times)
Over 40 students crammed into the Lewisburg Council Chamber on Oct. 15 to ask questions and express concerns about the Borough Council’s continued discussion of downtown housing ordinances on social gatherings.
In an hour long discussion of the issue that occasionally became contentious, students raised questions about the purpose, specifics, and implementation of housing ordinances
that are currently being discussed by the council. Though the council’s discussion is still in its infancy, the police commission provided council members with a sample of the town of Bloomsburg’s social gathering ordinances as an example of steps which could be taken in the hopes that they will provide a safer and quieter atmosphere in downtown Lewisburg.
Bloomsburg’s ordinance, issued in 2010, required any student at Bloomsburg who is hosting a party involving alcohol and more than 150 people to obtain a permit from the town. The ordinance also instituted strict rules concerning time, security, restroom facilities, and post-party clean up.
Though exchanges between the Lewisburg Council and University Students were at times hostile, both students and municipal leaders expressed approval of the level of student participation.
Henry Gabriel ’14, who resides off campus and attended the meeting, expressed disappointment at some aggressive approaches at the meeting and hoped that ongoing dialogue would be helpful for both the town and students.
“I was disappointed that some students were so confrontational. I think that it was good that the council listened to our concerns and hopefully there is room for compromise,” Gabriel said.
Rachel Franz ’14, who also attended the meeting, said she hopes that a productive dialogue can develop between students and the borough.
“We are really grateful that the council gave us a voice in the matter. It is really nice that they are considering working with us,” Franz said.
Lewisburg Mayor Judy Wagner acknowledged the importance of communication between students and the borough, and stressed a group effort in ensuring public safety rather than a divisive dispute between students and the municipality.
“I don’t want it to be us against them,” Wagner said. “We need to work together–we may not always see eye to eye, but we can compromise.”
Wagner said at the meeting that the council will not make a hasty decision. She said that the council has debated ordinances for the past six years, but have been unable to reach a consensus on the best plan of action. She recommended that students nominate a University student to participate in the police commission that is currently discussing the specifics of an ordinance.
Wagner could not speculate on a specific timeline for voting on any ordinances.
The Bucknell Student Government (BSG) is currently forming a group of 15 members that will attend future meetings, Class of 2014 Representative Kelsea Alderman ’14 said.
Alderman said that BSG will organize the selection process, but that representatives will be a diverse population of
University students, and BSG involvement after the group is formed would be limited. Alderman hopes the committee will be formed in time to attend November’s council meeting.
“Our goal is to help the council make an ordinance that benefits the town but keeps the students in mind,” Alderman said.
Buffalo Valley Regional Police Chief Paul Yost, who originally proposed the institution of ordinances for safety and budgetary concerns, was not available for comment.
The University no longer plans to build a new wrestling center and athletics leaderships facility. University President John Bravman made the announcement on Oct. 8 in his fall trustee update.
The project was originally planned after the University received a $9 million donation from two trustees. The construction plans were first revealed in the May 2013 trustee update.
Bravman stated that the cost of operating and maintaining the new building, which would have been built next to the Kenneth Langone Athletic and Recreation Center (KLARC), would not be financially sustainable or practical at this time.
The construction and maintenance would also add to the University’s budget. As of now, the University is still unsure of the fate of the original monetary gift, pledged by trustees Bill Dearstyne ’62 and Bill Graham ’62.
“It is still being discussed with the donors whether there are other areas where they might want to direct these resources or how their original intentions might be satisfied,” Andy Hirsch, director of media communications, said.
The trustee update also addressed the issue of the wrestling program’s need of a new facility.
“We are proud of our wrestling program and the way in which the team represents Bucknell,” Hirsch said. “We recognize that the program is in need of new practice facilities, and we will continue to look for ways in which we can address those needs.”
Aside from finding new ways to facilitate the needs of the wrestling program, the administration is seeking a way to incorporate the values that would have been emphasized by the leadership facility.
“Student leadership programs are so important to the student experience and the future of our campus climate,” Bravman said.
By Hannah Paton
The University received a $1 million grant from the Kern Family Foundation to continue its work as a member of the Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network, or KEEN program.
The grant marks the second given to the University for this program, the first being a $75,000 scholarship received in the Fall of 2011, according to Dean of the College of Engineering Keith Buffinton. This grant will continue to further the KEEN program’s goal of providing entrepreneurial skills and techniques to engineering students.
“The grant will fund four main aspects of the engineering program: it will continue competitions and workshops, promote course development and changes to the intro course Engineering 100, and involve more faculty,” Buffinton said.
According to Buffinton, the grant fosters extracurricular opportunities such as K-WIDE, the KEEN Winter Interdisciplinary Design Experience, and various competitions and workshops designed to give students 48 to 72 hours to create a new and efficient gadget. Buffinton said that in the last competition 10 teams of two to four students had 48 hours to create the most efficient beverage cooler.
In addition to competitions, changes to engineering courses in general will be made to create interdisciplinary classes and promote entrepreneurial thinking in engineering majors.
One example of such a change is the “elevator pitch” that several biomedical engineering classes now require, which tasks students with convincing a professor of their design in the short time span of an elevator ride. This exercise seeks to promote communication skills, persuasive qualities, and preparedness to speak confidently at any time.
The University is one of just over 20 institutions affiliated with the KEEN program. Buffinton said that he and other members hope that the grant will provide engineering students with a unique and useful set of career skills.
The University will offer a new summer course called “New Orleans in
Twelve Movements” starting in 2014. The class will be three weeks long, from May 19-June 8; the first and last week will be spent at the University and the second in New Orleans. Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering Kevin Gilmore, Assistant Director of the Teaching & Learning Center Brian Gockley, and Assistant Professor of Music Barry Long have been planning the course for two years.
The course will use the geographic information systems (GIS) application on an iPad to create a map of history through different layers. During the first week, in addition to learning how to work the app, the class will learn about the background and the history of New Orleans.
“Katrina is an interest point, but we want to tell the whole story,” Gockley said.
Students will spend the second week in New Orleans. In the morning, the class will do Habitat for Humanity work at St. Bernard. The afternoons will be spent touring social engineer attractions such as the rain pumping systems. Finally, the nights will be spent meeting musicians and watching performances.
“This is an integrated course. New Orleans is so rich in history,” Gockley said.
During the third week, students will spend time creating their projects on the GIS app and presenting them.
Applications are on a rolling basis until the course is full. New Orleans in
Twelve Movements is accepting 18 students.
Associate Professor of Chemistry Karen Castle received a $178,000 grant in March from NASA to study the planet Mars.
Castle will study Mars’ middle and upper atmosphere using a quantum cascade laser that was purchased with the grant. NASA’s Mars Fundamental Research Program awarded Castle the grant, which focuses on atmospheric and climate research.
The quantum cascade laser, which was purchased in August 2013, will be used to measure the kinetic energy created by the collisions between CO2 molecules. The laser allows a high degree of precision and variability needed to study Mars.
In addition to the purchase of the quantum cascade laser, the grant will be used to provide supplies such as research grade gases, optics, and liquid nitrogen. A portion of the grant will also be used to support student research at the University.
Prior to 2002, before working as a professor, Castle was a postdoc at the Air Force Research Lab and worked on several studies involving the upper atmosphere particularly, Earth’s upper atmosphere. Previously, Castle also was a co-principle investigator on another NASA grant.
Castle is currently collaborating with student researchers and several graduate students on the new Mars research.
“I hope we can offer, even if we don’t have full courses, being able to plug units into existing courses. I also hope that this work will help us build a bridge between departments and foster new connections across programs,” Castle said.