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vol. cxlviii, no. 77

Faculty members voice few opinions on strategic plan Many faculty members have not reviewed the draft of the plan since it was released last week By KIKI BARNES SENIOR STAFF WRITER

Faculty members interviewed expressed no strong opinions about President Christina Paxson’s strategic plan draft, which was released to the community last Wednesday. The plan will be presented and discussed at Tuesday’s faculty meeting before being voted on by the Corporation — the University’s highest governing body ­— during its meeting Oct. 24-26, just over four weeks from now. The 11-page document addresses many faculty-related issues, including incentivizing research, reforming sabbatical policies, growing the number of faculty members and increasing faculty diversity.

since 1891


“I haven’t had a chance to read the strategic plan yet,” wrote Nancy Jacobs, associate professor of Africana studies and history and chair of the Committee for Faculty Equity and Diversity, in an email to The Herald. Professor of Religious Studies and East Asian Studies Harold Roth expressed similar sentiments. “I’ve been too busy to read (the plan),” he wrote in an email to The Herald, adding, “I would imagine others are in the same boat.” Professor of Political Science and Urban Studies and Vice Chair of the Faculty Executive Committee James Morone said he would be interested to hear more faculty feedback about the plan, to which he contributed input during last year’s planning process. Though Paxson held a forum Tuesday to solicit feedback from students, faculty members and staff members, no faculty members voiced opinions at the event. But those who worked on the plan » See FACULTY, page 5

UCS, student group leaders analyze Paxson’s plan


The Council expressed concerns that the plan does not emphasize financial aid or advising By MAXINE JOSELOW SENIOR STAFF WRITER


Students enjoyed the last legs of summer weather by studying and playing games on the Main Green.

Cohen begins settlement talks with federal prosecutors A deal could include charges against both the Corporation trustee and his hedge fund By ELI OKUN UNIVERSITY NEWS EDITOR

Corporation Trustee Steven Cohen P’08 P’16 could find a way out of his legal troubles, as he has begun negotiations with federal prosecutors to reach a potential settlement of the charges against his hedge fund and himself, multiple news outlets reported Tuesday. The talks are still in initial stages. Sources with knowledge of the case told the New York Times that Cohen’s hedge fund, SAC Capital

Advisors LP, could have to pay up to $2 billion and plead guilty to settle. Prosecutors brought a criminal suit against SAC in July, charging the firm with four counts of securities fraud and one count of wire fraud. Investigators have been examining possible alleged insider trading at SAC for years — eight employees have been implicated in improper trading schemes, and four have pled guilty. Cohen was personally charged in a civil suit this summer for allegedly

“failing to supervise” two of the eight accused SAC employees. Both of those employees will stand trial in the next few months. If found guilty, Cohen could be banned from the securities industry. The potential settlement would be expected to encompass both the fund’s criminal charges and Cohen’s civil charges, the Times and Bloomberg Businessweek reported. SAC’s lawyers initially approached New York prosecutors to suggest the possibility of settling, Bloomberg reported. Though most outside investors have pulled funds from SAC this year, prompting some speculation

about the firm’s demise, top Wall Street banks have helped keep it afloat through continued trading and financing. A settlement might provide a route for SAC to stay in business. If reached, this would not be SAC’s first settlement: The fund paid out $616 million to the government in March to resolve two civil cases against individual employees. In various statements, Cohen has denied all the charges against him and SAC. In the past, the University has not commented on whether the charges against SAC and Cohen could affect his Corporation membership.

Members of the Undergraduate Council of Students critiqued President Christina Paxson’s strategic plan at Wednesday’s UCS general body meeting, saying the plan does not mention advising, does not prioritize financial aid and emphasizes graduate programs over the undergraduate experience. Council members and student group leaders — including leaders of Brown for Financial Aid and the Brown Conversation — split into small groups and shared opinions about the strategic plan, which Paxson released to the community last Wednesday. The Council will compile the input from the small group discussions into a “student feedback report,” which it will present to Paxson and Provost Mark Schlissel P’15, said UCS President Todd Harris ’14.5. He added that Paxson and Schlissel will be guests at the Council’s general body meeting next week. The plan’s lack of emphasis on advising services — which Harris made a key tenet of his presidential agenda — emerged as a major topic of discussion. “There needs to be more attention to advising, because it wasn’t mentioned,” said Heather Sabel ’17, adding that the strategic plan should have included specific improvements to advising, like allowing undergraduates » See COUNCIL, page 4

With revisions in place, environmental program looks to grow Leadership will expand the environmental faculty and aim to strengthen advising By MOLLY SCHULSON SENIOR STAFF WRITER


More masters

Generational gap

Get schooled

The Brown Plus One program facilitates graduate level studies while abroad

Corvese ’15 calls for a break in the cycle of blame between “millenials” and older generations

Newlon ’14 defends Teach for America, citing a new study






The Urban Environmental Laboratory currently houses the Center for Environmental Studies. CES will focus on revising the environmental studies and environmental sciences curricula.

Environmental studies and human impact on nature were highlighted as one of seven key “integrative themes” for the University’s next decade in President Christina Paxson’s strategic plan, released last week. But changes are already underway at the Center for Environmental Studies: With a new leadership team, the center is working to expand its faculty, adjust to recent

curriculum changes and improve advising and cohesiveness under new leadership. In May, Dov Sax, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, and Kurt Teichert, senior lecturer in CES, were named the center’s director and associate director, respectively. Their primary goal this year is to begin implementation of the University’s new environmental curriculum, Sax said. The Committee to Review the Environmental Studies Concentration recommended changes last semester to the environmental studies and environmental science concentrations. These originally included increasing » See CES, page 3 t o d ay


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2 university news calendar TODAY


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R.I. Medieval Circle Lecture

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Joint masters program to expand New partnerships will make early graduate-level study possible in more countries, including Spain By STEPHEN ARK SENIOR STAFF WRITER



LUNCH Falafel, Red Pepper Frittata, Hot Turkey Sandwich with Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Carrot Ginger Soup

Vegetarian Sub, Grilled Santa Fe Chicken, Vegan Dal Cali, Chicken Caesar Salad Wrap, Sugar Cookies

DINNER Cheesy Zucchini Casserole, Tortellini Provencal, Grilled Pork Chops, Brownies a la Mode with Fudge

Butternut Squash Formato, Tequila Lime Chicken, Curried Shrimp or Tofu with Coconut Ginger, Brownies



Students will have more opportunities to get a head start on their graduate studies while abroad as undergraduates through the Brown Plus One program with a newly-launched University partnership in Spain and other locations under consideration. This semester, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona became the fourth location for Brown Plus One, a joint master’s degree program coordinated by the Office of International Programs. The University also offers complementary master’s degree programs at Trinity College Dublin, the University of Edinburgh and the Chinese University of Hong Kong. “We want to have Brown Plus One partner universities on each and every continent,” said Associate Dean and Director of International Programs Kendall Brostuen. Participants in the program spend either a semester or a year at a partner

institution during their junior years, earning credit toward their master’s degrees. After students graduate from Brown, they may finish their graduate degrees elsewhere. Though participants are encouraged to continue their relationships at the partner institutions after graduation, they must reapply to those schools, according to the OIP website. As the University expands the program’s offerings, it seeks universities that offer classes taught in languages other than English, Brostuen said. “When we were developing Brown Plus One, we were looking at some of the lead universities that offer oneyear master’s degree programs,” he said. “Pompeu Fabra is certainly one of them.” Pompeu Fabra ranks considerably lower than Brown and its other international university partners, which tend to earn high marks from the QS World University Rankings. This year, Pompeu Fabra placed 281st on the QS global ranking system. Trinity College ranked 61st, Chinese University ranked 39th and Edinburgh ranked 17th. Brown placed 47th. Some students said the strong reputations of the partner schools attracted them to the joint degree

program. “Edinburgh is ranked highly, and I was definitely interested in attending a strong school for my study abroad experience,” said Lisa Goddard ’14. “That, coupled with its great rankings for linguistics (and) language sciences, made it pretty clear that it would be a good fit for me.” Brostuen said other factors also play into the selection of partner universities. “We’re looking at schools that are leading in their part of the world,” he said. Brostuen said the University looks for one-year master’s programs in non-English speaking areas that “run across many disciplines and cater to as many concentrations as possible.” Brostuen said a Brown Plus One option for engineering students is currently in the works, adding that he expects more information about the program to be available by the end of 2014. A lower number of engineering students choose to study abroad, The Herald previously reported. “If we only look at ranking, we’re not going to get diversity of geography, which is very important for getting different perspectives,” Brostuen said.





Harvard kicks off $6.5 billion capital campaign Harvard announced Sept. 21 that it hopes to raise a historic $6.5 billion with its new capital campaign, the Harvard Crimson reported Saturday. Achieving this target amount would make this capital campaign, known as the Harvard Campaign, the largest fundraising initiative ever undertaken by a higher education institution, the Crimson reported. Campaign organizers said they have already received $2.8 billion in pledges and donations during the past two years of the campaign’s “quiet phase,” the Crimson reported. Harvard announced it intends to spend 45 percent of the campaign’s funds on teaching and research, 25 percent on “the student experience” and financial aid, 20 percent on “capital improvements” and the remaining 10 percent on “flexible funding,” the Crimson reported. Brown’s total endowment is currently about $2.6 billion. The Campaign for Academic Enrichment, the University’s most successful capital campaign, raised $1.6 billion. The current record for the largest fundraising push in higher education is held by Stanford University, which raised $6.2 billion in its capital campaign that ended in December 2011, the Crimson reported.

Providence College cancels talk by gay academic Providence College Provost Hugh Lena announced Sept. 21 that his institution rescinded an invitation to a gay philosophy professor to deliver a lecture supporting same-sex marriage, the New York Times reported Monday. Nine departments and programs at Providence College had agreed to co-sponsor the lecture, to be delivered by John Corvino, philosophy department chair from Wayne State University in Detroit, MI. Corvino, a public advocate for same-sex marriage — who has written a book entitled “What’s Wrong with Homosexuality?” — told the Times he wanted to speak at Providence College to spread his message to a more conservative campus. But Lena wrote in an email announcing the cancellation of Corvino’s lecture that the proposed talk contradicted the Catholic institution’s policy of presenting “both sides of a controversial issue” because Corvino would not be facing off against a same-sex marriage opponent, the Times reported. Lena also cited a 2004 document produced by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops that stated Catholic institutions should refrain from honoring individuals who oppose the Church’s “fundamental moral principles,” the Times reported. The lecture’s cancellation drew criticism from Providence College Faculty Senate President Fred Drogula, the Times reported. Drogula told the Times the college’s policy does not require opposing viewpoints at every lecture and that Lena was wrong to cite the 2004 Catholic bishops’ document.

Rhodes scholarships to expand in wake of record gift Students from Brazil, China and Russia may be able to apply for Rhodes scholarships after a $120 million donation to the program has resulted in plans to expand the scholarships’ international reach, the Globe and Mail reported Sept. 19. The donation — the largest ever received by the Rhodes Trust, which runs the University of Oxford scholarship program — was given by Canadian businessman and former Rhodes scholar John McCall MacBain. Rhodes scholarships are currently open only to applicants from British Commonwealth nations, Germany and the United States. But McCall MacBain told the Globe and Mail the donation will help the scholarship program expand “in the next five to 10 years” to other countries, highlighting Brazil, China and Russia as targets for expansion.

Washington and Lee to review admission data reporting The president of Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA, has ordered a review of the institution’s admission data reporting process after the Washington Post reported the school had included many incomplete applications in calculating its application total, the Post reported Monday. President Kenneth Ruscio asked for the review following a Post report that revealed Washington and Lee had included more than 1,100 incomplete applications as part of its count of 5,972 applications for the class of 2016. The inclusion of the incomplete applications artificially lowered Washington and Lee’s application rate from 24 percent to 19 percent, the Post reported. The incident comes amid heightened concerns over U.S. universities’ manipulation of admission data to appear more selective than they actually are, the Post reported.

university news 3 » CES, from page 1

to facilitate all of the concentrators to program to have that source of fundtake a lot of the same classes.” ing as a department and ability to hire the required core from two courses to A class that used to be one of the people as environmental studies profesfour and constructing four tracks, in- two core classes, ENVS 0110: “Humans, sors, not as sociology professors teachstead of letting students choose their Nature and the Environment: Address- ing a class in environmental studies,” own focus areas. ing Environmental Change in the 21st Parker said. “I think it’s a shame that “For the current curriculum, it has Century,” is no longer required. it doesn’t exist yet.” just been too wide open for interpreta“That was one of my favorite classes On the other hand, since environtion, and it has been difficult to guide at Brown, and it was kind of unclear mental studies are interdisciplinary, students through that process,” Teichert why it is not being required when it has Parker said she appreciates “that as a said. so far been a lot of people’s introduc- center, it can draw from a lot of different The tracks were created to make tion to the concentration,” Parker said. departments.” sure students “get enough depth in Deciding whether ENVS 0110 There are no pressing problems that a particular area to complement the should remain a required course was a would require the center to become a breadth,” Sax said. “There’s a danger in complicated issue, Sax said. The course department, Lynch said. the existing curriculum that someone will be encouraged but not required, “The cool thing about Brown is that can get too much of a hodgepodge of he added. you can do concentrations that aren’t courses and not enough of a focus. The Requiring environmental studies tied to departments. You can have those problem there is that without enough concentrators to take an economics independent concentrations but also disciplinary depth, you are in danger class was another point of disagreement have interdisciplinary concentrations of not actually having the expertise to in the public forum last semester. that span departments,” she said. go solve a problem.” Drury has already At a public forum held Tuesday But in March taken the economabout the University’s strategic plan, “For the current students at a public ics requirement. “I Provost Mark Schlissel P’15 responded curriculum, it forum voiced opposithink economics is to a question about the center’s status tion to several of the has just been too applicable to almost by saying that the area’s interdisciplinproposed changes. everything, and it’s ary nature would make it difficult to wide open for Students particularly just a good life class,” consolidate into a department. But interpretation, and she said. objected to the lack as one of the University’s “integrative of a track relating A rudimentary themes,” environmental studies would it has been difficult to food and health understanding of receive more attention, including hiring to guide students economics is impor- opportunities and expanded funding, topics, The Herald reported at the time. tant to studying the he added. through that In response to environment, Sax Since the concentration is so broad process.” student and faculty said. and interdisciplinary, the creation of feedback, the pro“Finances and de- four core classes in the curriculum will Kurt Teichert posed tracks were cisions over the use of help students meet each other and share ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR scarce resources drive their experiences, Lynch said. revised this spring to ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES include Air, Climate most of the environ“The manifestations of an environand Energy; Consermental problems that mental studies concentration are really vation Science and Policy; Land, Water we have on the planet,” he added. different from one student to another … and Food Security and Sustainability in Another change in the curriculum so people didn’t tend to systematically Development. relates to the distinction between Bach- intersect with each other” in the past, Some students said they appreciate elors of Arts and Bachelors of Science Lynch said. With the new curriculum, the revisions but called the changes to degrees. Currently, students obtain ScBs “we know that nobody is going to fall the track options insufficient. if their focuses are in the natural sci- through the cracks, which is really im“I would still like to see more focus ences and ABs if their focuses are in the portant.” on environmental health and food from social sciences or humanities, Sax said. not really a food security perspective “The way the new curriculum is set Amending advising but more of a food justice perspective,” up, whether you get an AB or ScB is The CES is also working to improve said Katie Parker ’14, an environmental actually based not around your interests its advising services. studies concentrator. but how extensive your coursework “All of the faculty members are on Parker said she also believes an en- is,” Sax said. the same page about the advice we are vironmental health track should have The AB degree will require a total of giving students,” Lynch said. “By havbeen created. “It was a little frustrating 14 courses, while the ScB will require ing the tracks, we can now talk with to me that it wasn’t added despite a lot 19 courses. students about what interests them, of student support and a lot of Brown and we can point them to a particular professors who have focused on that in Department debate track, and everyone knows what that the past,” she said. Currently, CES is in the process of track looks like.” Sax said he wants to focus on getting hiring one new faculty member as a The center has stopped its longthe four tracks in place before creating joint appointment with the sociology standing Thursday seminar series and any additional ones. department, Teichert said. now holds regular meetings Wednes“The hope would be that we’re going As an academic center, CES cannot days at noon, with less focus on semito continue to hire faculty and continue grant tenure and consequently must nars, Teichert said. “We are trying to to grow, and as we do that … we can partner with a department to hire cer- make more community time and open add tracks,” he said. tain faculty members, Sax said. up lines of communication,” he said. Having concentrators take the core “CES was set up to allow students Communication and organization classes will help build a shared lan- to do an interdisciplinary concentra- will be key for the next few years, as guage within environmental studies tion that was focused the center will adand sciences at Brown, Sax said. “It on the environment, “There are whole minister both the will create a shared understanding of so it involves faculty existing and the new fields that we can’t curriculums based on the different disciplines that we view from all over the as essential in solving environmental campus, from geolconcentrators’ class hire into.” problems,” he said. ogy to sociology and years. The required classes for the new economics,” Lynch The classes of Dov Sax curriculum include ENVS 1509: “In- said. 2014 and 2015 will DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR troduction to Environmental Social The partnerships continue with the ENVIRONEMNTAL STUDIES Sciences,” GEOL 0240: “Earth: Evo- get more people existing curriculum, lution of a Habitable Planet,” ENVS involved with the while the class of 1350: “Introduction to Environmen- center and bring in “higher-caliber” 2016 has the option of declaring eital Economics” and Introduction to applicants, Sax said. ther. The class of 2017 will be the first Environmental Life Sciences. Some of But the restriction means the center class required to declare under the new the courses are still in development, cannot hire someone who has a spe- curriculum. Teichert said. cialty in a field that is not present at “How we balance all of that will be “I think it’s great in theory, and if Brown, Sax said. a bit of a logistical challenge. The good it works, it would be awesome,” said “There are whole fields that we can’t thing is we have faculty that are really Eliza Drury ’16, who is planning to hire into,” he said. interested in putting their time into concentrate in environmental science. The possibility of turning CES into this,” Sax said. “The faculty are pas“I think one of the key parts of environ- a department is “worth considering,” sionate about these topics and want mental studies is that you can approach Sax said. to work with the students, and that’s a it at many angles so it would be hard “I think it would really help the really good situation to be in.”

4 university news


» COUNCIL, from page 1 to choose their advisers sooner or making adviser training mandatory. The plan also came under attack for what some students called a weak commitment to improving financial aid. “We were worried about financial aid, because that wasn’t mentioned very clearly, especially going needblind for international students,” Yuki Anaba ’17 said of her group members. Alex Mechanick ’15, president of Brown for Financial Aid, said he was disappointed that only one of the priorities outlined in the strategic planning Committee on Financial Aid’s report — requiring all students on financial aid to apply for aid reassessment each year — was included in the plan. Several of the groups agreed that financial aid should be the University’s top priority moving forward, over other options such as online learning, renovations and sustainability. “Nine out of the 14 of us in my group voted that financial aid should be a top priority,” said UCS Secretary Andrea Wistuba-Behrens ’16. “Whether or not this is how the larger student body feels — I think that’s something we should talk about.” The plan was also criticized for what some students said was a focus on expanding graduate programs at the expense of the undergraduate experience. “We were worried about more emphasis on the graduate experience, because that might detract from the undergraduate experience,” Anaba said. Marguerite Joutz ’15, a leader of the Brown Conversation — a group that aims to promote dialogue about campus issues — said one of the University’s top priorities should be remaining a “university-college” by focusing on the undergraduate experience, echoing sentiments she expressed at the strategic plan open forum Paxson and Schlissel hosted


The Undergraduate Council of Students and leaders from other student groups critiqued President Christina Paxson’s plan for not focusing enough on financial aid and emphasizing graduate programs over the experience of undergraduates. Tuesday. The plan received praise from some for its emphases on renovating residence halls and promoting sustainability. UCS general body member Jon Vu ’15 said he thought focusing on sustainability was “smart” because it did not require a large capital investment. “Our endowment is limited, so we’re picking our battles,” he said.

The Council also concluded the process of internal elections that it started at last week’s general body meeting. Abby Braiman ’15 was elected to maintain the relationship between the athletic department and the Council as Student Athlete Advisory Committee Liaison. Marileni Benopoulo ’17, Marcus Sudac ’17, Erika Byun ’17 and MacKenzie Daly ’17 will help decide which service groups get

$200 of baseline funding as members of the newly created Service Group Funding Board. Miyo Malouf ’16 and Yuki Inaba ’17 will report the council’s projects to the faculty as faculty liaisons. Sudac was elected UCS-UFB liaison last week, but withdrew from the position because of other time commitments, Harris told The Herald. A member of the Undergraduate Finance

Board has expressed interest in filling the position and will likely be elected to the post next week, unless other candidates come forward, Harris said. The Council also approved student groups’ requests to change their names. Brown Student Television will now be called Brown Motion Pictures, and Brown Animal Rights Club will now be called Brown Vegetarian/ Vegan Society.

university news 5


Palestinian diplomat lambasts Oslo Accords’ legacy

Ashrawi faults Israel and the international community for impeding a two-state solution in the Middle East By DREW WILLIAMS CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Palestinians will remain in a “situation of captivity and enslavement” if Israel does not move toward a two-state solution, said Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization executive committee, to a half-filled Salomon 101 Wednesday. Ashrawi’s lecture — entitled “Oslo: Process versus Peace” — was sponsored by the Department of Middle East Studies in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the 1993 Oslo Peace Accords signed between Israel and Palestine. The accords marked the first time the governments of Israel and Palestine recognized each other as legitimate entities. Israel promised to withdraw from Jericho and Gaza, and Palestine called for an end to acts of terror against Israel. Twenty years later, the number

» FACULTY, from page 1 said there was significant faculty contribution to the draft of the strategic plan. Professor of Engineering and Chair of the Faculty Executive Committee Iris Bahar said strategic planning was “a long process” and “a good number of faculty members (were) a part of that evaluation.” “I really believe that most of the faculty believes” there is a good balance in the draft, Bahar said. After the interim reports on the strategic planning process were released in January, many faculty members voiced concern over the trajectory of the process. Roth said at the time that though the reports addressed “a lot of good things,” they overlooked many vital problems with the University, such as tuition assistance for employees and general health and retirement benefits, The Herald reported at the time. None of those issues were mentioned in the more recent draft of the plan. Other issues that faculty members supported did make it to the new draft. During faculty forums to discuss the interim reports in January, faculty members

of Israeli settlers on the West Bank has grown, and divisions similar to “an apartheid system” have emerged, Ashrawi said. Ashrawi attributed what she called the Oslo Accords’ failure to sustain peace to five fundamental flaws in the pact. The agreement was signed in secret, preventing the people of Israel and Palestine as well as the international community from knowing its terms, Ashrawi said. Both sides agreed to the accord without consulting any legal advisors, she added. Ashrawi also faulted the pact for focusing only on “peripheral issues.” The two sides took an “administrative approach, not a territorial approach,” with negotiators attempting to improve Palestinians’ quality of life under Israeli authority and ignoring Palestinians’ desire for a separate state, Ashrawi said. Another key problem with the

accords was the division of Palestinian communities, causing a refugee situation where many were placed “in limbo” in Jerusalem under Israeli control, Ashrawi said. The accords laid out an overly gradual peace process, Ashrawi said, linking the agreement’s long timeline to ongoing land and resource theft by the Israeli government. Without firm deadlines, “temporary became permanent” for oppressive conditions, Ashrawi said. “(Palestinians are) the ones who launched the peace process,” Ashrawi said. A lifelong diplomat and human rights activist who claimed to have never lost an election, Ashrawi stressed that her side is ready for an end to conflict. “We will make peace, we want to make peace, but it must be peace with justice,” she said. But Palestinians must work on the “internal improvement” of their own government to prevent losing further control of the region’s future, Ashrawi said.

From the PLO’s standpoint, peace cannot be obtained without the “devolution of occupation and evolution of statehood,” Ashrawi said. “One side has all the power and the other has none, except for moral and legal power.” In order to overcome these challenges, the international community must help, Ashrawi said, criticizing the United States’ role in the conflict. She blamed Secretary of State John Kerry for what she called an ineffective new round of peace talks that resemble the Oslo Accords. Kerry should not be holding negotiations between Israel and Palestine in secret, Ashrawi said, because any resolution will not be legitimate without popular support. Palestine prefers a “multilateral approach” with multiple nations involved, rather than a U.S.-driven process, Ashrawi said, calling U.S. diplomats “lawyers for Israel, instead of intermediaries” between the two sides. The international community has placed unreasonable demands on

expressed need for “enhanced sabbaticals” to do research, said Mary Louise Gill, professor of philosophy and classics and then-chair of the Faculty Executive Committee, according to previous Herald coverage. The current draft of the plan includes a proposal to restructure the academic year, which would open up blocks of time for faculty members to conduct research, and a proposal for recently tenured faculty to receive 100 percent of their salaries when on sabbatical, rather than the current 75 percent they receive. Though not explicitly stated in the document, the student body would likely grow by about 1 percent per year under the plan, Paxson said in a forum Tuesday. The faculty would grow at a corresponding rate to maintain current student-faculty ratios, she said. “I can’t speak for the faculty in general, but I would think the faculty would be generally supportive of an increase in both the faculty and student body as long as it was done in a thoughtful and controlled manner,” Bahar said. -With reporting by Mathias Heller

Palestinians to fix regional security concerns before they can gain sovereignty, Ashrawi said. “Palestinians have to prove that we are worthy, that we deserve a state,” she said. She also blamed communications with Israel, adding that Israeli negotiators want “unconditional talks” only after their own conditions — including complete control over Jerusalem — are met. Palestinians want a return to the 1967 borders, with Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, Ashrawi said. Ashrawi responded to an audience member’s question about the potential integration of both sides into one democratic state by saying a one-state solution would not work because Palestinians would still face discrimination by Israeli officials and subsequently emigrate. Assessing Americans’ exposure to the conflict’s current status, Ashrawi praised social media for establishing a way for the U.S. public to gain information outside of what she called “biased” coverage from mainstream news outlets.


The strategic plan includes a proposal to restructure the academic year, which would open up further research opportunities for faculty members. Herald file photo.

comics A Horse of Any Other Name | Zach Silberberg

Cat Ears | Najatee’ McNeil

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Our neighbors to the (religious) right This week, Providence College, a Roman Catholic institution, canceled a lecture that was to be given Thursday by John Corvino, a gay philosophy professor at Wayne State University who supports same-sex marriage. After receiving national attention and criticism, PC released a statement alleging the cancellation was “not really about academic freedom, but rather … the meaning of being a Catholic college.” This justification, along with several other rationales they offered, is unconvincing. We urge PC to reconsider its decision, and if the college fails to do so, we encourage Corvino to visit the University and engage with Brown students, PC students and the greater Providence community about the true meaning of academic freedom. Attempting to explain its decision, the provost and senior vice-president of Providence College told the Providence Journal, “the event was canceled only when it became clear” that “a free and fair discussion … would not be the case.” But a response from Corvino undercuts this rationale — he claimed that he had offered to do a debate instead of a one-sided lecture but that his offer was declined. When PC administrators finally decided a debate format would be more balanced, they asked Dana Dillon from their own philosophy department to present the opposing viewpoint. Provost Hugh Lena then proceeded to argue that “it is simply not fair” for Dillon to have less than a week to prepare for a debate. Not only is this line of reasoning absurd — Professor Corvino was invited in February, and the College had plenty of time to prepare a speaker — as Corvino notes, it is quite telling that Lena “believes no one (at PC) can persuasively articulate the Catholic position on marriage with a week’s notice.” The leaders of Providence College clearly didn’t want this debate to happen for fear of the controversy it could generate. Furthermore, the administration of Providence College seems fundamentally confused about the definition of academic freedom. Lena cited a church document from 2004, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ statement “Catholics in Political Life,” in arguing that PC, as a “Catholic institution, should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles.” It is disconcerting that Lena apparently doesn’t understand a lecture does not honor its speaker; rather it gives him or her a platform for academic discourse. What makes the situation more absurd is that Corvino is not particularly radical — he has been a speaker at more than 10 Catholic institutions and is a frequent participant in socalled “friendly” debates with religious leaders opposing gay marriage. Perhaps we should not expect so much clarity or freedom of debate from an institution that just 13 years ago suspended three students for posting pro-choice flyers on campus. Of course, we recognize we are buying into somewhat of a false equivalence when we talk about a “debate” about same-sex marriage given that we believe equal status for LGBTQ individuals is a basic human right and not up for debate. But we admire Corvino’s attempt to use reason and intellect, rather than resorting to argumentative vitriol, to change people’s hearts and minds. We hope Providence College administrators will open their minds to debate and inclusiveness. But until then, we would be happy to engage Corvino at Brown.



U. plan should incorporate campus’ feedback To the Editor: I condemn the administration’s decision that “the draft of the (strategic) plan will not be revised prior to October’s Corporation meeting.” Such action only proves the decisions have already

“I definitely wouldn’t consider that because it’s more than the price of getting eight tickets.” ­— Nihaal Mehta ’14 See parking, page 8.

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Joseph DiZoglio, Jr. ’15


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been made, and greater community input is an afterthought. The administration may as well abolish these feints of forum and discussion if it does not produce a second draft before the October meeting.

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commentary 7


Stop talking about millenials GABRIELLA CORVESE opinions editor

Someone older and wiser than us posts an article about what we delusional 20-somethings need to do to be successful. An angry and jobless 20-something responds with reasons why we don’t deserve the criticism. Our elders shout back once more about our entitlement and absurd desire to major in the humanities. Does this process seem familiar? Of course it does — I like to call it the Millennial Criticism Cycle. Each and every day, a new column is published somewhere on the web that fires up members of Generation Y to defend ourselves as cogs in a system over which we have little control. There are responses, rebuttals and Buzzfeed posts full of GIFs. In the end, neither side wins, and the cycle begins anew. It is a fruitless chain of events that does nothing to change the state of affairs for either group.

As much as our aggressors need to stop criticizing us, we need to stop retaliating. Talking about the attitudes of people born in the ’90s accomplishes little besides a mildly interesting cultural analysis. In July, Forbes published the all-knowing article “20 Things 20-Year-Olds Don’t Get” featuring advice such as “Take Responsibility for Your Mistakes” and “Pick Up the Phone,” which sounds more like instructions my parents gave me in elementary school than actual guidance. That same month, cartoonist Matt Bors wrote a comic for CNN taking the side of the millennials. The problems with the economy aren’t our fault! Student loans are bringing us down! Though those points are certainly valid, they are hardly convincing enough for people of previous generations to cut us some slack. Animosity will always exist across generations, and no number of inspirational articles about American college students and our ambition will change that. Think of it as a modern form of “these darn kids and their

loud music!” On the business some of us prefer casual sex front, those from older genera- to committed relationships — tions seem much more occupied much to the chagrin of our hapby scoffing at us from the win- pily married elders. dows of their corporate boardBut ultimately, it’s up to you rooms than by fixing unemploy- to decide whether these values ment. I’m no economist, but are perks or flaws. At this point, there’s probably there’s no use in a better way to “Talking about the arguing about improve the U.S. them — especialattitudes of people ly since millennieconomy than by berating colals are not a sinborn in the ’90s lege graduates amorphous accomplishes little gular who are only trymass with unibesides a mildly ing to connect on form ideals. LinkedIn with interesting cultural Contrary to everyone they’ve the belief of preanalysis.” ever met. And vious generagiven the signifitions, some of cant lack of faith they have in us, us might be the hardworking, what are the chances of any one driven business people and fuof us becoming the next chair- ture CEOs that they expect us to man of the Federal Reserve, any- be, and some of us might be artway? ists with smaller incomes. While That doesn’t mean the millen- some will graduate with degrees nials are free of blame, though. in science, technology, engineerPlenty of us Generation Y-ers ing or mathematics, others will are responsible for precisely the study comparative literature. In criticism that X-ers and baby the end, success is determined boomers pin on us. by the individual, not by culturSome of us rely on our par- al expectations assigned to us by ents for money. Some of us fo- those unhappy with our generacus more on our dreams and tion’s performance. passions than our resumes. And Just as people need to stop

preaching to 20-somethings about what determines happiness and prosperity, we 20-somethings have to end the collective defense of what determines our happiness. History and sociology books a few decades from now may lump us together with generalizations of our values and accomplishments, but we should not let those determine our paths as they stand now. Perhaps I am just another bitter millennial that older generations look down upon, and perhaps I am only fueling the fire. But I hope that we stop talking about millennials. Sweeping generalizations are inevitable from both sides of the argument, but we must embrace the values we feel are appropriate in order to put our lives in motion. And whether that fate is becoming a barista or president of the United States — well, that’s up to you. Gabriella Corvese ’15 hopes this whole “passion and ambition” thing will get her a job and can be reached at

Let’s Teach For America CARA NEWLON opinions columnist

For years, Teach For America has been criticized as a vanity project of the elite: a highly selective two-year foray into teaching the underprivileged for Ivy League graduates right before they enter corporate lives of investment banking, lawyerdom or suburban parenthood. But the results are in: Teach For America works, and not just as an enlightening experience for college graduates attempting to explore the alien world of the impoverished. A new largescale random assignment study released this month by Mathematica Policy Research suggests that TFA teachers saw more success in teaching secondary math classes than certified teachers. “They were more effective across the board,” said Melissa Clark, a senior researcher at Mathematica, in an interview I conducted for USA Today. She noted that TFA teachers made progress with the students “equivalent to an additional 2.6 months of school for the average student nationwide.” The study examined the 20092010 and 2010-2011 academic years and involved 4,573 students

nationwide in eight states. Re- more selective schools. So why searchers randomly assigned stu- do they appear to be more effecdents to a TFA teacher or a certi- tive educators, at least in secondfied teacher for secondary school ary math? mathematics and then compared While TFA’s more cynical deend-of-year test scores. Even the tractors may feel that its parleast experienced TFA teachers ticipants use TFA as a resumeoutperformed the certified, ex- builder, TFA teachers are, by and perienced teachers. large, excited by the prospect of True, this study does not ex- teaching. They may have stronamine a wide berth of TFA edu- ger beliefs in the efficacy of edcators, who teach many different ucation and children’s potential. subjects at many In short, they’re different ages. less jaded. “Perhaps we There are TFAers TFA candishould focus our dates also face an in special education, English as a intense screening criticism on the Second Language With an public education process. and science. The acceptance rate system that made of less than 15 study only examined middle and TFA necessary — percent, getting high school eduin is comparable instead of on TFA to admission at a cators — and a significant numtop university. itself. ” ber of TFA teachCritics are still ers work with elementary school unsatisfied. “Sadly, Teach for students. But high-poverty America is a revolving door of schools have the most problems inexperienced teachers for the attracting qualified math teach- students who most need a highly ers, lending legitimacy to the qualified one,” wrote Julian Heistudy as a gauge of TFA’s effec- lig, associate professor of edutiveness. cational policy and planning at TFA teachers are younger and the University of Texas, in a New less experienced than most certi- York Times column. He refered fied teachers. They often have less to TFA as a “glorified temp agentraining in math. They’re thrown cy.” into inner-city schools after five But here’s the secret: Even weeks of training. They’re less with the high turnover rate, TFA likely to have advanced degrees, teachers are still better at teachthough they probably went to ing compared to their certified

counterparts. “They can still expect higher student achievement on average from hiring these Teach For America teachers rather than hiring a teacher from some other program who might remain teaching long term,” Clark said. Perhaps we should focus our criticism on the public education system that made TFA necessary — instead of on TFA itself. Teachers unions, for example, are mammoth organizations: financed and supported by 38 percent of the educators across the nation. In the rest of the workforce, about 12 percent is unionized. While workers’ rights undeniably deserve protection, teachers unions tend to benefit their members, not the students. On average it takes around two years and $200,000 to fire a bad teacher. Principals don’t even try. Once public school teachers achieve seniority, it’s virtually impossible to fire them — and their salaries continue to rise with every year they teach. A junior teacher, while possibly a more effective educator, will always be paid less. TFA detractors worry that participants steal jobs that more experienced teachers could fill. But if experienced teachers aren’t doing their jobs, a program like TFA becomes vital to educating children in highly impoverished

areas. In recent years, public school teachers have been piling on their advanced degrees, seeking masters’ and doctorates’ in exchange for higher pay. But according to the same Mathematica study, these extra courses don’t make much difference to a child’s education. “For each additional 10 hours of coursework that teachers took during the school year, the math achievement of their students was predicted to drop by 0.002 standard deviations,” the study stated. “These findings imply that a teacher who took an average amount of coursework during the school year, whether for initial certification or any other certification or degree, decreased student math achievement.” In other words, the extra degrees have very little effect on how well a teacher teaches. Perhaps the time and money could be spent better elsewhere — on rewarding teachers for results, not for seniority or empty degrees. In the meantime, continue to fill out your TFA applications. Rest assured, you’re making the world a better place. Cara Newlon ’14.5 can be reached at

daily herald city & state THE BROWN


City opens overnight parking passes to local students Residents may fill out a petititon to have overnight parking banned on their street By MARIYA BASHKATOVA SENIOR STAFF WRITER

Providence has amended overnight parking regulations to allow students who attend college in the city to purchase annual overnight parking passes for $200. Parking passes for residents are $100. Previously, only cars registered in Providence were eligible for overnight parking passes. Until 2012, all overnight parking in the city was banned. Students with a parking pass may also purchase a $25 guest pass — which can be used five times a month — to allow visitors to park on the street at night. Residents of a particular street can

sign a petition to opt out of overnight parking on their street, according the new regulations. On College Hill, residents of Benevolent Street have opted out. But overnight parking is allowed on most other streets in the area except for several major streets such as Waterman, Hope, Gano, Wickenden and parts of Thayer, according to a map available on the city’s website. Nadia Hannan ’14 said she would be interested in buying a pass if the streets near where she lives allow overnight parking, adding that she currently pays more to park at someone else’s house than she would if she purchases a pass. Most students she knows who have cars park in spots adjacent to their offcampus houses, she said. Nihaal Mehta ’14, who sometimes drives a car to the College Hill area from out of town, said the parking pass does not appeal to him because he only parks his car on the street for one or



Main streets such as Thayer, Waterman, Wickenden, Gano and Hope streets are not included in the new offer, and still ban overnight parking. two nights at a time. “I definitely wouldn’t consider that because it’s more than the price

of getting eight tickets,” he said, adding that he usually parks in a friend’s driveway. But buying an overnight parking

pass would make a lot of sense for students who live off campus and do not have their own parking spots, he added.




Steven Rougas, professor at the Warren Alpert Medical School, shared his musical talents during a discussion of medical practice.

Sunshine graced this week’s Farmers Market, which will continue to be held each Wednesday on Wriston Quad through Oct. 30. The markets feature locally produced fruits, vegetables and other goods.

Thursday, September 26, 2013  

The September 26, 2013 issue of The Brown Daily Herald

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