THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018 VOL. CXXXIV NO. 60
THE INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA
Hillel hosts Gutmann for Chanukah CIS students face long wait times to see TAs
CAROLINE GIBSON | ASSOCIATE PHOTO EDITOR
Penn President Amy Gutmann joined the Chanukah celebration at Hillel, and lit the menorah for the fourth night of the Jewish holiday on Wednesday. Earlier this week, a giant gumball-dispensing menorah was installed in front of Van Pelt Library. See page 6.
Law students petition unjust evictions
The dept. is facing overwhelming enrollment
As of Nov. 26, the petition had garnered 176 signatures
KIMAYA BASU Contributing Reporter
ALEX GRAVES Director of Web Development
Students in the computer science class CIS 120 can spend more than an hour waiting to meet a teaching assistant for help on their homework assignments — even though the class has more than 36 full-time TAs. This is just one of the many repercussions of the recent spike in the popularity of programming classes at Penn. The Computer and Information Science Department is taking steps to improve the long wait periods for introductory CIS courses, in addition to already holding office hours nearly every day and hiring more TAs. But students say they are still frustrated with the extensive wait times. “There’s actually a very long wait time, and that depends on the homework. When the homework is hard, I need to wait one hour and 20 minutes,” said Wharton and Engineering junior Yutong Liu, who
Over 100 Penn Law students have signed an open letter calling on Philadelphia City Council members to support a proposed housing bill that would prevent unjust evictions. The bill, which was introduced in October 2017, would require landlords to have a “good cause” to evict tenants or terminate their leases. Valid reasons include damaging property, not paying rent, and breaching a lease. The bill also aims to alleviate discriminatory practices, such as termination based on race or sexual orientation. Penn Law students are promoting the legislation through the online petition, which had collected 176 signatures as of Nov. 26. According to the letter, there were 22,062 evictions filed in Philadelphia, resulting in 10,264 total evictions in 2016 alone. This was the fourth highest number of evictions
SEE CIS PAGE 3
SEE PENN LAW PAGE 2
Men’s basketball powers past ACC foe Miami in impressive home win
Penn Dems welcome Avenatti’s withdrawal
Penn’s first win against ACC team since 2001
Avenatti says he will no longer run for the 2020 presidency
JONATHAN POLLACK Senior Sports Editor
MAX COHEN & GRANT BIANCO News Editor & Contributing Reporter
MEN’S BASKETBALL MIAMI (FLA.) PENN
There were clear skies outside, but inside the walls of the Palestra, it was raining all night long. Just not for the Hurricanes. Behind a blistering first half and a total of 13 threes, Penn men’s basketball held on to beat Miami (Fla.), 8975, for an emphatic statement win. The story of the night for the Quakers (7-2) was their three-point shooting. Especially in the first half, where they shot an incredible 61.1 percent from deep, the Quakers used the deep ball to build and maintain a double-digit lead for much of the game. Freshman forward Michael Wang led the way with five treys and 23 total points. “We have really great confidence in our shooters, especially Mike,” junior forward AJ Brodeur said. “If he gets an open look, I don’t care if guys are running at him, trying to hedge over a screen, we want him to shoot that. If he doesn’t shoot that, then that’s when we start to get on him.” The win is Penn’s first over a Power Five conference team since the 2002-
CHASE SUTTON | SPORTS PHOTO EDITOR
The Quakers stood out in their three-point shooting, where they shot an incredible 61.1 percent in the first half. Freshman forward Michael Wang led the way with five treys and 23 total points.
03 season. Coupled with the lightsout shooting was the Quakers’ textbook fast-paced ball movement. All night long the Red and Blue were zipping passes around the court, as they finished with 24 assists. Everyone on the floor got involved with give-and-gos, inside-out looks, and cross-court feeds to find the open man. The assists totals showed that: Junior forward AJ Brodeur lead with six assists, while the guard trio of seniors Antonio Woods and Jake Silpe and junior Devon Goodman combined for 13 assists. The Quakers took an early lead on a Bryce Washington three, but for the first
10 minutes or so, they were in front by just a few points with physical defensive play. The Hurricanes (5-4) brought the score to within three with eight minutes to play in the half, but Penn started to pull away behind a barrage of threes. Led by Wang, the Red and Blue opened up a sizable 50-36 lead at the break. The game slowed down in the second half, but the Quakers continued to build on their lead. Instead of three-point shooting, it was the efforts down low led by Brodeur that helped the Quakers take as large as a 19-point lead. But the Hurricanes didn’t go down without a fight.
OPINION | Social media censorship
“Should employers have control over how much of their employees’ bodies are on display on their own social media accounts?” — Sophia DuRose PAGE 4
SPORTS | Dreaming of Tokyo
Senior epee and men’s fencing captain Justin Yoo is postponing his final semester at Penn for a year and a half to train for the 2020 summer Olympics in Tokyo. BACKPAGE FOLLOW US @DAILYPENN FOR THE LATEST UPDATES ONLINE AT THEDP.COM
Slowly but surely, Miami clawed its way back into the game, as a five-minute scoring drought and a bevy of fouls by the Quakers allowed the Hurricanes to shrink the deficit all the way to four points with just three minutes left to play. All of the momentum was pointing towards the Hurricanes. Enter Devon Goodman. The junior guard stopped the drought and brought the team, and the Palestra, back to life with two consecutive layups, pushing Penn’s lead back up to nine. Both shots were heavily contested at the end of the shot clock, but the first was most imSEE BASKETBALL PAGE 8
In the aftermath of the 2018 midterm elections, Penn Democrats welcomed then-presidential hopeful Michael Avenatti to speak on campus. But following domestic violence allegations that led to Tuesday’s announcement that he would not run in 2020, Penn Dems members expressed their relief at his premature withdrawal. The 1996 College graduate, who had positioned himself as a prominent adversary of Donald Trump, announced his decision in a tweet on Dec. 4. “I do not make this decision lightly — I make it out of respect for my family,” Avenatti wrote. “But for their concerns, I would run.” Members of Penn Dems greeted the news, saying Avenatti’s recent domestic abuse allegations, lack of progressivism, and controversial reputation turned them off to the lawyer. Just a month before, however, 47-year-old Avenatti visited the University of Pennsylvania on Nov. 9 for two different events hosted by the Philomathean Society, Penn Democrats, and the Government and Politics Association. “No one who has done what he has been accused of doing has any role running for president,” said Penn Dems Communications Director and College senior Jack Weisman. “As far as I know, there’s certainly no pro-Avenatti sentiment anywhere,” Weisman said, noting that the attorney has not garnered a lot of sympathy among Penn Dems members. Avenatti’s announcement came amid a turbulent past couple weeks for the celebrity lawyer. Days after he
NEWS Grad student unionization at standstill
NEWS Art piece installed on Franklin
spoke at Penn, Avenatti was arrested on felony domestic violence charges, which he has denied. Since then, the District Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles announced it would not press felony charges. The city attorney is still reviewing the case for a possible misdemeanor charge. Before the Dec. 4 announcement, Political Science professor Marc Meredith said even if Avenatti were proven innocent, the allegations would have still damaged his shot at the White House. “I think that there’s going to be such a large Democratic primary field, the number of candidates is going to get big really quick, that even if he’s running he might become yesterday’s news really, really quickly,” Meredith said. Penn Dems member and College freshman Jay Falk said she never thought Avenatti had a chance at winning the presidency, but she is glad Avenatti isn’t running. “Running for president isn’t about sinking to Trump’s level, trading nasty nicknames, or punditry,” Falk said. “It’s about championing policy changes that will build roads, fix schools, and improve health care and more.” The attorney’s lack of experience concerned some of the club’s members, who preferred candidates with a background in government. “I think it’s best for the Democratic party if we have leaders not just with experience, but a proven progressive track record,” College freshman and Penn Dems member Zach Reznikoff said. “So I’m glad he’s out.” Prior to disqualifying himself, however, Avenatti told Politico on Sunday that he thought his “chances [had] only gone up.” Meredith disagreed with Avenatti’s assertion and said the Penn grad’s chances were “essentially zero.”
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018
THE DAILY PENNSYLVANIAN | THEDP.COM
A look into the end-of-semester course evaluations 90 percent of students fill out these evaluations ASHLEY AHN Contributing Reporter
Nearly 90 percent of University of Pennsylvania students fill out course evaluations to express their frustration or gratitude toward professors at the end of the semester. While Penn Course Review obtains the data and makes it public to Penn students, student evaluations can also directly impact faculty members. The University, department administrators, deans, and the Provost use course evaluations to evaluate faculty, which can affect tenure and contract renewals. Students are required to either fill out the evaluations or choose to opt out to view their final grades. After students complete the evaluations, a software system organizes and pushes the information to a data warehouse. From there, university officials can access the feedback, said Rob Nelson, executive director for Education and Academic Plan-
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for a large city in the U.S. In September 2017, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney formed the Mayor’s Task Force on Eviction Protection and Response to provide recommendations on how to reduce eviction. In the Task Force’s report, which was released in June 2018, “good cause” legislation is listed as a legal policy recommendation. “Landlords regularly force renters to move out of their housing for unjust and discriminatory reasons both during a lease and at the time of renewing a lease,” the open letter read. Student organizers are also taking additional steps to continue garnering support from city council members and Penn students before the bill is voted on next week. Maddi Gray, a first-year Penn
ning. Bruce Lenthall, executive director of Penn’s Center for Teaching and Learning, leads the center that advises professors on how to improve after receiving poor evaluations. When professors receive multiple subpar reviews, the next course of action depends on the department and instructor’s position, Lenthall said. Course evaluations can also affect faculty members, such as assistant professors, who are hired onto the tenure track to receive a permanent position. “In deciding whether to give someone tenure, the University has to weigh their teaching,” Lenthall said. Poor course evaluations signal to the department that the instructor should be placed into another course, or the instructor’s standing in the tenure process should be reevaluated. “Someone who is on the tenure track is not going to get fired tomorrow, but if their teaching is not at a sufficient high quality, they may not
get tenure,” Lenthall said. For non-tenured track faculty, such as lecturers, Lenthall said course evaluations are also considered for contract renewals. “Evaluations are not the be-all and end-all, but it is something the department administrator is looking at,” Lenthall said. When tenured professors receive multiple poor evaluations, Nelson said it is on department leaders to initiate discussion with them. He added that it is common for professors to get advising from the Penn Center for Teaching and Learning to improve their teaching. However, if a professor receives exceptional feedback, Lenthall said the evaluations do not lead to an automatic bonus. Nevertheless, committees that review teaching awards, such as the Lindback Award, do consider positive evaluations. “The evaluations become a trigger for the department to think maybe this is someone we want to nominate for a teaching award and find out more about their teaching,” Lenthall said.
Law student and one of the petition’s organizers, said students hand delivered a copy of the letter to every City Council member’s office on Nov. 27. They also set up a table in the Penn Law School lobby to engage other students on campus. Council members Blondell Reynolds Brown, Bobby Henon, and Maria Quiñones-Sánchez did not respond to requests for comment. An assistant to Councilman Al Taubenberger, whose vote Gray said the students hoped to sway, said their staff had no record of receiving the open letter. Gray said since many students are new residents of Philadelphia, many of them were surprised to learn that the bill’s protections are not already in place. First-year Penn Law student Sam Whillans, who also helped draft the letter, said they aimed to garner support from council members and to engage students
with the greater Philadelphia community. “As a law student, it’s easy to put blinders on and just interpret the law,” Gray said, adding that she hopes the open letter will make Law students “step back and think how this is affecting a whole class of people in Philadelphia.” Third-year Penn Law student Alyssa Chai said she signed the letter because she thinks the legislation will benefit native Philadelphia residents. “Especially since I’m not from Philadelphia, and I’m moving in, I always want to be conscious of the effect that has on people who have been living in the city in certain areas for such a long time,” Chai said. The legislation is scheduled to be voted on at the next Philadelphia City Council meeting on Dec. 6. Gray and Whillans said even if
For student teaching assistants, course evaluations have little to no impact on their positions, said Engineering junior Jane Xu, who is the head TA for CIS 120. Xu said her TA staff does not have access to other TA evaluations. “The course feedback isn’t taken into consideration,” Xu said. “It’s more for personal introspection.” However, Xu said she has reservations about the current evaluation format. “Course evaluations are so vague, because they don’t ask many specific targeted questions,” Xu said, citing the lack of specificity of the “Overall TA comment” section. Engineering senior Wenting Sun also said she found herself writing less in recent semesters. “The first couple years, I filled evaluations out pretty meticulously,” Sun said. “Now for the professors I feel like were fine, I think the rating is sufficient.” “One of the ways to encourage students to answer these freeform questions is to make clear how that information is used,” Nelson said. He
MONA LEE | NEWS PHOTO EDITOR
After students complete the evaluations, a software system organizes and pushes the information to a data warehouse.
added that he would like to create a system that allows students to fill out different responses for each question in two separate free response sections — one section that would be feedback for faculty members, while the other section would be feedback just for other students to see. While the idea has not been officially proposed, Nelson hopes it will become part of the Next Generation Student Systems Project that is working to replace Penn InTouch in
the next three to four years. Nelson’s main goal is to incorporate course evaluation data into the new registration system. “The part I am most excited [about] is the way that the Penn InTouch systems that students use when registering for classes are going to be revamped and made better,” Nelson said. “Putting course evaluations at students’ fingertips when they are making those decisions is a really big part of that.”
SHARON LEE | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
According to the letter, there were 22,062 evictions filed in Philadelphia, resulting in 10,264 total evictions in 2016 alone. Organizers hope the petition will make students “step back and think” about Philadelphians.
the bill does not pass next week, they will still continue advocating for it. If the bill fails to pass at either of the two remaining City Council meetings for this
year, however, it will have to be reintroduced in 2019. “As a City Councilperson, we urge you to work in the interest of all of your constituents,” the
letter read. “That includes working-class constituents, poor constituents, and tenants who cannot afford the cost of a move for an unjust reason.”
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018
Grad. students at Penn cynical about union progress Students believe admin. would challenge their efforts COURTNEY DAUB Staff Reporter
Graduate students at Penn said that the prospect of a student union is not on the table even though students at Columbia and Brown have both recently voted to unionize. At Brown University, graduate students voted to unionize after over a year of campaigns, and at Columbia University, administrators officially recognized the student union following years of resistance. Graduate student members of Penn’s union advocacy group, Graduate Employees Together — University of Pennsylvania, though, decided not to move forward in the unionization process. “Unfortunately, [GET-UP is] in a very different legal position [from Columbia], which means [the Columbia and Brown progress] doesn’t do much for us,” political science Ph.D. candidate and GET-UP member Gabe Salgado said. GET-UP, founded in 2000, was revived in fall 2015 following the
New York University administration’s 2014 decision to voluntarily recognize the nation’s first graduate student union at a private institution. GET-UP hoped the National Labor Relations Board under the Obama administration would allow the group to hold a vote recognizing Penn graduate researchers and teaching assistants as employees. Amid these efforts at Penn, Columbia saw its own landmark decision in August 2016 when the NLRB voted to give its graduate students the right to vote to unionize, setting a precedent for private universities. In the two years since, the Columbia administration has fought the decision and did not recognize the union until Nov. 19. The framework gives Columbia graduate workers bargaining power. However, it also requires that these students give up the right to strike until April 2020. The union agreed to accept the terms within a week. “It’s been wonderful to see other grad campaigns continuing to build precedent and grad power across the country,” Salgado said. “It’s too bad that [the strike ban] was part of the conditions for them to be able to
move forward in terms of getting a contract.” Despite continued university resistance, after a four-day election, Brown graduate students voted in favor of a union on Nov. 19. Upon certification of the vote, Brown must inform the NLRB that it will recognize the union. In an official statement on the GET-UP website before Columbia’s union officially ratified the administration’s framework, GET-UP urged Columbia’s graduate union advocacy groups — Graduate Workers of Columbia-UAW and Columbia Postdoctoral Workers of ColumbiaUAW — to vote against the bargaining contract. “Agreeing to these terms means that GWC and CPW enter the bargaining agreement with their hands tied behind their back,” the statement reads. “This is a crucial issue and a strong indicator that Columbia is seeking to use false urgency and secrecy to undermine the union’s power.” GET-UP member and political science Ph.D. candidate Katie Rader also said she was concerned about the logistics of the Columbia
agreement. “I don’t think Columbia is an exercise in good faith,” Rader said. “It’s not just out of benevolence that they want to start working with this.” For both Salgado and Rader, the decisions at Brown and Columbia will likely not lead to a union at Penn anytime soon. In the wake of the 2016 NLRB Columbia decision, the NLRB granted GET-UP the ability to hold a campus vote on unionization in December 2017. With the vote scheduled for some time in spring 2018, GET-UP decided to withdraw its petition on Feb. 15 out of fear that Penn’s administration and the now Republican-majority NLRB board would not grant GET-UP status as a union — effectively overturning the Columbia precedent. The decision to stop unionization efforts in order to protect the Obama-era Columbia precedent that students can be considered employees is a move paralleled by unions at Yale University, University of Chicago, and Boston College. Salgado added that while the Penn administration objects to a
PHOTO FROM GABE SOLGADO
Even after peers at Columbia and Brown voted to form unions in November, Penn’s graduate students said their position isn’t entirely comparable.
union on the grounds that students should not be treated as employees, both he and Rader believe that decisions at other universities will not stop Penn from challenging unionization efforts. “We still have every reason to believe that Penn will act in the same way,” Rader said. Despite administrative resistance, GET-UP members are still optimistic for the future, with Rader calling the developments at Brown and Columbia “a step in the right direction” for the unionization movement.
Penn will not be able to “use the Trump administration to their advantage,” GET-UP member and molecular biology Ph.D. candidate Olivia Harding said. “There is a precipitously growing population in the U.S. […] that is realizing they can question what they had taken to be dreadful-but-immutable truths about our conditions, including our working conditions,” Harding said. “I think the emotions and motivations will resonate louder and louder at Penn over the next few years.”
Columbia prof. to teach mental health writing at Penn Students will discuss pieces about behavioral health KATHARINE SHAO Contributing Reporter
Acclaimed author and 1979 College graduate Stephen Fried will teach a new nonfiction English course on writing about mental health and addiction next semester. Fried’s class will be one of the first undergraduate courses of its kind on mental health writing in the country. Fried is an adjunct professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and was editor-in-chief of Philadelphia Magazine. He has worked as a lecturer at Penn through The Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing since 2009 and is a member of the advisory committee for the University’s annual Nora Magid prize. Students taking the spring class, titled “Advanced Nonfiction Writing: Writing about Mental Health and Addiction,” will read and discuss pieces about behavioral health. “There’s a lot of writing about mental illness that is heartfelt and powerful but it isn’t always evidence-based,” Fried said. “Our goal here is to teach people things they don’t know about illnesses and to also look at structural issues in these
kinds of writings.” Throughout the semester, students will hear from expert guest lecturers and will work on their own piece of nonfiction writing such as a memoir, investigative article, narrative long-form story, or medical science piece. After a career of covering stories about mental health, Fried said he understands the importance of making this class available, adding that sources and authors themselves can have limited knowledge of sensitive subjects. “In order to be more informed, [writers] have to go a little further,” Fried said, adding that such uninformed writing can contribute to a dearth of people seeking and staying in treatment for mental health illnesses. 2015 College graduate Sarah Smith, who covered mental health as a Daily Pennsylvanian reporter, said she wishes she could have taken a class like Fried’s before covering student suicides in 2014. “The sad truth is our own perception of mental health as a society has changed so much in the last four years, [but] this isn’t something people think about teaching journalism school students,” Smith said. Mental health groups on campus see the class as a step towards
de-stigmatizing the conversation around mental health and addiction. “I think we hear so much about mental health in the media but it’s really hard to talk about and portray it in a sensitive, informed manner,” said Active Minds Co-President and College senior Megha Nagaswami. “I think that a class like this would be really beneficial for anyone who’s interested in how to most accurately portray mental health.” Matthew Lee, graduate liaison for Penn Wellness and a fourthyear graduate Nursing student, said while he supports the idea behind the class, he is unsure of the impact it will have on the wider mental health conversation. “I like that the University is taking this step toward formalizing an improvement to health communication, but until it’s taken care of in a broader way, I don’t think it’s going to have the huge impact you would want,” Lee said. Fried said he believes training students can help writers better understand mental health. “I understand people’s concern that you can write about [mental health and addiction] wrong,” Fried said. “But I also think the solution to that is to teach people how to write about these things better, more responsibly, in a more informed way.”
PHOTO FROM STEPHEN FRIED
Students will write their own nonfiction work in the new English course, taught by acclaimed author Stephen Fried. Mental health groups on campus see the course offering as a positive step.
Take a Spring class in the School of Social Policy & Practice. Experience coursework rooted in social justice. Classes in the MSW program prepare students for leadership roles in developing and providing services to individuals, families, groups, communities and organizations. Graduate students from all disciplines are invited to enroll in most social work classes, including:
SWRK 768: Social Policy through Literature: W, 9:00 - 11:30 AM SWRK 711: Contemporary Social Policy: W, 12:00 - 2:30 PM SWRK 798.001: Policy & the LGBTQ Community: T, 12:00 - 2:30 PM SWRK 798.002: Policy & the Latino Community: T, 12:00 - 2:30 PM
ERIC ZENG | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Students have expressed concerns that Computer and Information Science courses lack sufficient TA staffing, given the growing demand for these classes. Some students report waiting up to two hours for TA help.
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took the course last year. “I think most of the problem comes from the confusion of the homework. People don’t know where to start.” CIS 120 TA and Engineering senior Emmanuel Suarez said the biggest issue is how quickly and unexpectedly CIS courses are growing in attendance. Approximately 400 students were enrolled in CIS 120 before the withdrawal period this semester, and for every ten students there is one TA, CIS Senior Lecturer Swapneel Sheth said. The department now has around 1,000 CIS majors, a drastic increase from the 400 students a few years ago. To address wait times, an online office hours queue is in the works for CIS 120. The queue will allow students to indicate which
homework assignments they find the most challenging and provide access to TA availability and wait times. The University of California at Berkeley already has a similar program in place, CIS 120 Head TA Jenny Chen said. The webpage would also allow TAs to round up groups of students with the same question instead of having to repeat the same concept to each one. The queue will likely launch by the end of the semester and will be fully implemented next semester, Sheth said. Sheth also noted that CIS 120 has one of the most active Piazzas, an online classroom forum, with an average response time of 5 minutes. “The most I’ve had to wait for a response was 20 minutes,” said Wharton sophomore Hardi Patel, who is taking CIS 120. Another helpful resource is Co-
dio, a software that allows students to access their homework on any computer or laptop. Students also use Codio to share their homework with TAs, who then can access students’ work even if they are not physically present at office hours. Students taking advanced CIS courses have also said they experience lengthy wait periods. Engineering sophomore Derya Yavuz, who is taking CIS 240, said wait times are long because there is only one TA per shift and it can take at least 20 minutes to help each student. She added that half an hour before office hours begins, students often start to line up and put their names down in a queue. “I could wait for two hours and still not have gotten help,” Yavuz said. “That’s just a very frustrating situation, and it’s like that every single time.”
SWRK 798.006: Animal Assisted Interventions: W, 4:00 - 6:30 PM SWRK 777.002: Cognitive Behavorial Therapy: W, 4:00 - 6:30 PM
SWRK 756: Human Sexuality: W, 6:45 - 9:15 PM
CHILDREN & FAMILIES
SWRK 722: Practice with Children & Adolescents: T, 4:00 - 6:30 PM SWRK 732: Integrative Seminar in Child Welfare: R, 4:00 - 6:30 PM
Requests for enrollment from undergraduate juniors and seniors are considered on an individual basis. For more information: www.sp2.upenn.edu/msw Register in Penn in Touch or contact SP2 Registrar for permit: email@example.com
OPINION STEM is sweeping through Penn, but the humanities deserve a chance too
THURSDAY DECEMBER 6, 2018 VOL. CXXXIV, NO. 60 134th Year of Publication DAVID AKST President REBECCA TAN Executive Editor CHRIS MURACCA Print Director JULIA SCHORR Digital Director HARRY TRUSTMAN Opinion Editor SARAH FORTINSKY Senior News Editor JONATHAN POLLACK Senior Sports Editor LUCY FERRY Senior Design Editor GILLIAN DIEBOLD Design Editor CHRISTINE LAM Design Editor ALANA SHUKOVSKY Design Editor BEN ZHAO Design Editor KELLY HEINZERLING News Editor MADELEINE LAMON News Editor HALEY SUH News Editor MICHEL LIU Assignments Editor MARC MARGOLIS Sports Editor THEODOROS PAPAZEKOS Sports Editor YOSEF WEITZMAN Sports Editor ALISA BHAKTA Copy Editor ALEX GRAVES Director of Web Development BROOKE KRANCER Social Media Editor SAM HOLLAND Senior Multimedia Editor MONA LEE News Photo Editor CHASE SUTTON Sports Photo Editor CAMILLE RAPAY Video Producer ALLY JOHNSON Podcasts Producer
DEANNA TAYLOR Business Manager
LILIAN’S LANE | Penn should encourage students to pursue passions over dollar signs
enn is a fan of nickeland-diming its students, keen to charge us $0.07 for each page we print. Students have long mocked and criticized such behavior, but hypocritically, we have begun to pick up this practice ourselves. Only this is done in a different context — we flock to fields of study that generate the highest income. It is hardly surprising that there has been a significant decrease in the number of students pursuing degrees in the humanities over the past few years. The Daily Pennsylvanian recently published an article citing an over 40 percent decrease in students majoring in subjects such as history and psychology between 2005 and 2014. The main reason for such a trend is transparent — STEM fields are considered less risky. Secure job positions and a growing demand for scientists lure hundreds of thousands of incoming college freshmen into pursuing a field they might not truly be passionate about. Over the years, competition across a large variety of jobs has dramatically increased. A growing pool of talented youths
ALICE HEYEH | DESIGN ASSOCIATE
spective income rather than pure interest when considering majors in college and career paths. Such student preference is apparent from course enrollment trends. Penn’s computer science department has had to create long waitlists for many of their courses, with many students outside the CIS majors keen to enroll in these classes. Often, students who enroll do so out of a
Secure job positions and a growing demand for scientists lure hundreds of thousands of incoming college freshmen into pursuing a field they might not truly be passionate about.” compete against each other for positions that may drastically be shrinking. Therefore, particularly following the 2008 financial crisis, when young adults watched their parents and relatives struggle with maintaining their jobs, a much heavier emphasis has been placed on pro-
pressure to learn coding instead of a genuine interest in understanding computing languages. After all, in the 21st century atmosphere of technological advances, we are constantly told that such STEM skills will become more necessary in the future. Such enrollment, driven
not by interest but by obligation, only reflects one of the many problems in our choice of classes and careers. In 2017, Wharton reduced the foreign language requirement from four semesters to two. Scott Romeika, Wharton’s director of academic affairs and advising, justifies this decision by claiming that doing so would help “put out a cutting-edge 21st century business education.” The decision stirred debate over the already declining interest in the field of language studies. On Quakernet, Penn’s student and alumni database, there are currently only 31 declared Hispanic studies minors and three majors currently enrolled at Penn. Wharton’s decision only further discourages students from pursuing the humanities, essentially staking the claim that a better business education is more important than the ability to communicate with people around the world. Furthermore, there are multiple STEM specialized programs, but few exist for the humanities. Even though the University tries to offer a liberal arts education that encourages the pursuits of
all careers, the reality remains that students are more encouraged to pursue the sciences instead of humanities. And many will continue doing so because of the pretty figures that matriculation from those programs have generated for past students. I am personally conflicted about this matter as well. Growing up in a family of doctors and engineers, I was always encouraged to pursue the sciences, as they would provide the most practical path and steady income in the future. However, I discovered the beauty of the English language during middle school, and ever since then, I have been entranced by English literature, linguistics, and Spanish. When I told my parents I wanted to double major in Hispanic studies and the biological basis of behavior, my father’s immediate reaction was to tell me that acquiring a major in a foreign language was impractical. It would be a safer bet for me simply to attend medical school, toil through the seven years and study hard, and emerge as a highpaying doctor. I’ve always been passionate about the sciences, and am constantly amazed by
the capabilities of technological advances in saving lives. However, I too know that I might be happier taking solely linguistics and Spanish classes. Deciding between a practical and highpaying field of study that I like and a less stable career that I love continues to be a struggle that I face on a daily basis. There are a few things that Penn could do to encourage students to at least consider both STEM and the humanities. Penn could try to curate more programs geared toward integrating different fields of humanities or integrating humanities with STEM. The new digital humanities minor is a perfect example of an attempt to bridge the gap between two contrasting fields. It is important to learn the technological tools that can aid humanities majors in their research. However, students shouldn’t feel pressure to forgo the humanities to pursue more lucrative careers that may come with studying STEM. I, too, am guilty of the nickel-and-diming that is prevalent among Penn students. Even though at the current stage it may seem somewhat hypocritical for me to say, I do believe that it is important to continue pursuing fields where your passions lie. If you want to make a career out of philosophy or art history, allow no one to dissuade you. LILIAN ZHANG is a College freshman from Beijing studying the biological basis of behavior and Hispanic studies. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Penn students are fascinating creatures — listen to their stories
THIS ISSUE GRACE WU Deputy Copy Editor ZOE BRACCIA Deputy Copy Editor LILY ZEKEVAT Copy Associate AOIFE COADY Copy Associate DANA NOVIKOV Copy Associate HADRIANA LOWENKRON Copy Associate DANNY CHIARODIT Sports Associate WILL DIGRANDE Sports Associate VARUN SUDUNAGUNTA Photo Associate CARSON KAHOE Photo Associate JOY LEE Photo Associate CAROLINE GIBSON Photo Associate KATHARINE COCHERL Photo Associate Unsigned editorials appearing on this page represent the opinion of The Daily Pennsylvanian as determined by the majority of the Editorial Board. All other columns, letters and artwork represent the opinion of their authors and are not necessarily representative of the DP’s position.
SNAKE PIT MEMOS | In my first semester, conversations with classmates taught me more than all of my lecture slides
string of half-finished, half-baked conversations has followed me at Penn. You know the type — a quick catch-up on Locust, a rushed lunch date at Commons, small talk thrown around in dorm hallways. We are all too familiar with the language of busy people with important things to do. There is a common structure to these exchanges. First, the backand-forth of “How are you?” is answered with narrow glimpses into each other’s lives — a rough summary of homework assignments or an anecdote from last Friday’s parties. Then, the allotted time slot for social interaction is over, and you are left to patch up the missing details and unfinished thoughts. But don’t worry, there is an array of conversation clinchers to choose from. Classic lines like “Where are you headed?” or “I should get back to my work” or “I really need to go to office hours” lead to a perpetual raincheck on whatever was left unsaid. And yet, in my mind anyway, there is always the yearning question of, “What if?” What if we had buried our fat pile of problem sets and responsibilities in some remote corner of our mind and let the conversa-
tion take over? What if we had enjoyed each other’s company for a bit longer? Because the conversations that I have had where both parties did just that — committed themselves fully to listening and exploring ideas — have been my most transformational experiences at Penn. The mantra that you can learn more from a few
And this power works both ways. If you want people to care about what you have to say, make sure to get them comfortable enough to lose track of the next bullet on their agenda. How to do that? Listen to them first. It’s amazing how much people will warm up when you just shut your mouth and give them your attention.
We’ve built up so many impulses to pivot away and check out when the subject gets intense or hits a nerve. Especially when it’s as easy as glancing down at our phones.” hours face to face with another person than from a semester of lectures rings true — it’s the difference between absorbing information and committing it to heart. When you listen to someone, look in their eyes, watch emotions rush across their face, their ideas resonate with you much more forcefully, and you are more committed to understanding them. Sounds cheesy, but human connection hits harder than a textbook.
One Wednesday night when I was close to drowning in a PowerPoint presentation, I collapsed onto the floor in my friend’s room. Gradually, more of my hallmates joined us and we conducted an experiment of sorts. The rules were simple. First, ask each subject the question: “Are you content?” Then, listen to them — really listen. That meant maintaining eye contact and only interjecting to ask openended follow-up questions.
“Am I content?” People initially responded with some combination of mistrust, confusion, and amusement. Gradually, they let the question sink under their skin, and then something incredible happened. They opened up, unraveled their thoughts, and evaluated their first semester of college with all its messy hopes and fears. They grappled with whether they had accomplished their goals what exactly those goals even were. You would think that it would be easy to just listen to each other. Yet, we’ve built up so many impulses to pivot away and check out when the subject gets intense or hits a nerve. Especially when it’s as easy as glancing down at our phones. But what if we fought that impulse, engaged in more of those lose-track-of-time conversations? Admit it — we’re all eager to unlock the secrets of those incredible people in our midst. One of my friends responded to the “Are you content?” question with the steps that she was taking toward her goal of developing a humanitarian startup. Another discussed his experience on the board of a nonprofit. Yet another explored her ambition to design and market fashion. It struck me then exactly why
JULIA MITCHELL Penn is so incredibly lucky that these individuals chose to go to school here. And still, those parts of their stories tend to get lost in every day, half-baked conversations, since long-term aspirations don’t fit neatly into 15-minute time slots. These moments of clarity — these full, effortless, open-hearted conversations that linger past three in the morning — make me remember exactly why I am grateful to be a student here. They remind me to build up a goal and pursue it wholeheartedly. And all it takes to reach this clarity is to ask, listen, and fight the impulse to check out at the first chance we get. JULIA MITCHELL is a College and Whar ton freshman from Yardley, Pa. studying international relations. Her email address is email@example.com.
Should I censor my social media to appease admissions officers and employers?
woman shouldn’t have to be modest to be respected,” is printed under a photo series of Instagram posts on one of my close friend’s public accounts. In the pictures, she is boasting a beautiful smile … and some lingerie. While I wholeheartedly echo her sentiment, and wish I had the confidence to rock the same political statement, my first thought when I viewed the pictures wasn’t solidarity, but fear for what an employer would think if they checked her account. During the college application process, one of my high school teachers asked if I had any questionable social media accounts. Though I still don’t know how to use Facebook, and my Instagram is full of boring pictures of my face where every caption is a
THE OXFORD C’MON | How explicit, political, and free can we be online? as their Facebook profile photos, tucking away their worn-out Facebook pages until after admission. Though social media is meant to be an additional space for connecting to other people, sharing thoughts and creativity, and making yourself available to more people than you’ve ever been able to before, employers and colleges don’t want you to make yourself available in the “wrong” ways. Penn’s Office of Admissions has insisted that it does not routinely review applicant’s social media accounts, though they credit this decision more to the logistical obstacle of checking thousands of high schoolers’ Facebook pages, rather than “the sanctity of privacy.” As someone born in 1999, my entire adolescence has been inundated with social media,
Should employers have control over how much of their employees’ bodies are on display on their own social media accounts?” pun, the warning still rang loud and clear in my head. Some of my friends made brand new accounts with pristine headshots
and I’ve had an online presence since I was around 12 years old. At 12 years old, I didn’t know the very real and consequential
PHOTO (WITH EDITS): GUIAN BOLISAY // CC BY-SA 2.0
ramifications that can spur off of something as simple as posting the wrong photo. As an opinion columnist, I attach my name to a very public opinion every week, yet I am somehow more nervous for a potential employer to scroll through my Twitter, a recreational space for my thoughts, than I am my Daily Pennsylvanian articles. My question is, what am I so afraid of? I don’t post absurd or obscene pictures, yet I still find myself worrying. We’ve all heard the stories — someone gets accepted to the college of their dreams or to the perfect job, and
then their position is revoked on the basis of a Facebook photo of them holding a Red Solo cup. While proof of underage drinking or obvious hate speech on someone’s social media is very different than a teacher being fired for posting a photo with a glass of wine in her hand, to what extent can we be expected to censor the content of our posts? But what about my friend? What would a hiring officer at an engineering office think about my friend’s body-positive lingerie photos? Should employers have control over how much of their employees’ bodies are on
display on their own social media accounts? If employers have the power to put a limit on something as personal as your skin, how much farther can the restrictions go? My Twitter is nothing but political tirades and tweets about my own articles. Sometimes I question if I should make that account more of a neutral presence. Twitter is known for its political environment though, and if our president can make questionable tweets, why can’t I? People like my mother don’t have social media accounts, and when she was applying to jobs
last year, she didn’t have a Facebook link or Twitter handle to put on her application. She worried whether this would be to her detriment, and if making a clean social media account would bolster her chances at getting the position. Lo and behold, she did not get the job or make a Twitter account. To this day, she wonders if the two are related. I don’t think social media is going away anytime soon. If employers continue the trend of checking up on applicants’ social media presences, I think it will only become even more imperative that we find the right boundaries. If I want to be brave like my friend and post a photo of myself in a bra as a message of body positivity, I should be able to do so without fearing that my university or boss will punish me. SOPHIA DUROSE is a College sophomore from Orlando, Fla. studying English. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
KRISTEN YEH is a College sophomore from West Covina, Calif. Her email address is email@example.com.
Trying to focus on finals while Paris riots outside my window ALIFIMOFF’S ALLEY | Dealing with Paris’s historic protests in the liminal space of study abroad
his weekend, I went to the Louvre. This was partly because I had work to do for a class I’m taking on 19th century French painting, and partly because I thought I wanted to write my next column about museums. The French neoclassicism gallery at the Louvre is filled with canvases so big and so delicately painted that it feels almost as if you’re not careful you could walk right into one and leave this century behind entirely. From certain windows in the
Louvre, you can see the garden of the Tuileries, the l’arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, and beyond that, at the end of the Champs de l’Elysee, it’s more famous twin, l’Arc de Triomphe de l’Etoile. Most of the time, it’s a peaceful view, stately even. The Paris of film and imagination and “La Vie en Rose.” But for the past two weeks that view as been obscured with smoke and blocked by police barricades. Protests over increased fuel taxes by a movement called “the Gilet Jaunes” have morphed into violent riots. Protesters
This weekend, I slunk around the city, avoiding protests that I could only half understand.” have burned cars and looted store fronts. The police have fired tear gas and water cannons. This Saturday, the protesters overtook the ChampsElysees. They graffitied the Arc de Triomphe and vandalized the tomb of the unknown soldier.
THOMAS BRESSON // CC BY 2.0
Near the Louvre, they pulled the gates of the Tuileries down. But the violence of the “Gilets Jaunes” protests are merely the most eye-catching part of the problem. Something important is happening in Paris right now. It’s the center of a movement that’s sweeping across France and is tied larger economic trends across the world. The Gilets Jaunes movement began as a protests against fuel taxes that were put in place with the intention to slow climate change. But many felt that these taxes disproportionately placed the burden on lower and middle income people who are much more likely to live outside of cities in France. There’s a feeling that President Macron is governing to protect the interests of the rich, while lower and middle class French people are left behind. And as always, behind economic uncertainty there rests the insinuation of other types of grievances. There have been accusations that demonstrations have been infiltrated by both
the extreme left and the extreme right, as well as by rioters who are seeking to provoke violence. This weekend, I slunk around the city, avoiding protests that I could only half understand. I did my homework. I bought coffee. I went out. My high-handed thoughts on a column about art drifted around my head. Originally, I was going to say that to hold art to the standards of the profound and the sublime is absurd. The best art is a reflection of the human condition, and therefore holds within it the profound and the absurd. So in order to be engaged in art we don’t have to search for some great movement of emotion to seize us, but rather be engaged, even if that engagement comes in the form of small and quotidian examples. Even if comes in the form of selfies in front of art and attachment to small, absurd details. I wanted to say: Get out of the classroom! Enjoy art! Feel great about it or feel bad about it! Take a million selfies in front of “Liberty Leading the People to Freedom” or don’t. Compare Renaissance portraits to Kim Kardashian’s selfies, but do something. Get your hands dirty. Be engaged in this thing that often feels elitist and removed. But when it came to it, all of that felt silly. It felt disingenuous to not acknowledge that
REBECCA ALIFIMOFF something is going on here, even if it’s something that I don’t understand and don’t quite have a way of engaging with. Sometimes this whole liberal arts education thing that I’m doing here seems almost sacred and important. And sometimes it feels like a deliberate act of disengagement with the world. As this week continues, Paris will move on. President Macron has called meetings to address the continued unrest. The glass will be swept up and the burnt cars will be hauled away. The anger will stay. The Gilets Jaunes have promised to keep protesting every Saturday until things change. The neoclassical gallery has no windows, and it will stay as unchanged as it has for 200 years. REBECCA ALIFIMOFF is a College sophomore from Fort Wayne, Ind. studying history. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018
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Giant gumball-dispensing menorah celebrates Chanukah Chabad House hosted the menorah lighting on Dec. 3 OLIVIA CHENG Contributing Reporter
The world’s first-ever gumballdispensing menorah towered over the Button as a crowd of students, faculty, and Philadelphia residents gathered in front of Van Pelt Library to celebrate the second night of Chanukah. Penn’s Chabad House hosted the public menorah lighting on Dec. 3, which was kicked off by a Penn Band performance of “Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel” and “O Chanukah.” Chabad House’s Rabbi Levi Haskelevich spoke to the crowd about the meaning of light, both during the creation of the universe and during Chanukah, an eight-day Jewish celebration of the rededication of the Holy Temple. “We can’t just sit and dwell on
the negative,” Haskelevich said. “We have to focus on how we increase light every single day in our own lives.” Vice Provost for Global Initiatives Ezekiel Emanuel spoke about how the holiday of Chanukah stems from an internal civil war between different groups of Jewish people. He said that during Chanukah, he reflects on his Jewish identity. He also called on the Jewish community at Penn to think about its responsibility to protect key Jewish values this Chanukah. “We have a responsibility to take our privileged position and stand for the things that make us great: freedom, truth, free inquiry, and protecting people who are oppressed,” Emanuel said. This year’s Chanukah comes less than two months after the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Oct. 27, which was considered the deadliest attack on any
U.S. Jewish community in history. Penn alumnus Jerry Rabinowitz was among the 11 who died in the attack. Nearly 100 members of the Penn community stood in solidarity at a vigil honoring the victims two days after the attack. After concluding his remarks, Emanuel recited a Chanukah blessing and wielded a torch to light the candles of the menorah. Haskelevich then led the crowd in singing the Chanukah song “Maoz Tzur.” Chabad President and Wharton junior Jaime Moreinis helped organize the event, and said that although Chabad has had to increase security both at Chabad House and its events, he prefers not to focus on what has happened in the past and instead looks toward the future. “As a Jewish people, we have to continue to stand up and continue to do our traditions, and show that we can’t be deterred by a small
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group of people who are out, in the Pittsburgh case unfortunately, even to hurt [other people],” Moreinis said. After the menorah was lit, Chabad board members opened the gumball dispenser on the menorah, which was constructed by Chabad members for this event. Gumballs flooded out into a plastic bin for the crowd’s taking. Chabad members also passed out latkes, gelt, and menorah-making kits. For Wharton freshman Noga Even, Chanukah has always meant celebrating with her family back home. She said that the menorah lighting festivities made the holiday still feel special, even though it is often ignored in the midst of the Christmas season. Even also appreciated the gumball-dispensing menorah. “I think it’s cool,” she said. “It’s really colorful. I don’t really get it, like I don’t know, why gumballs?
AUDREY TIRTAGUNA | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Rabbi Levi Haskelevich said Chabad chose the unique menorah because it would encourage people to interact with the lampstand.
But I’m glad that it’s there.” Haskelevich said that Chabad chose the gumball-dispensing menorah because he wanted people to physically interact with the lampstand.
On Dec. 4, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro will light a menorah at a second Chabad-sponsored event at 30th Street Station.
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018
Students critique wealth at U. with installation at Franklin statue
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The students’ intent was to call attention to the division of wealth at Penn and gauge passerby reactions as part of their FNAR 264 final project.
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people took photos and videos of it. “There was some negative reaction too, but I think even that was kind of cool,” Mattis said, “because it at least got people thinking about the topics that we were trying to bring awareness to.” Yao said the installation was not meant to portray Penn negatively. She acknowledged that the installation was left open to interpretation, but she said it was “part of the beauty of doing an art installation instead of putting out stats.” The group is currently trying to locate where the installation was taken. “Right now, we’re trying to get in contact with whoever’s in charge of the facilities and find out where they took it because there’s some stuff inside of the bag that people want back,” Mattis said.
Several Penn students created an art installation aiming to highlight the lack of socioeconomic diversity at Penn. The installation, which was placed at the Benjamin Franklin bench, was later taken down the same day. College sophomore Emily Yao, College senior Jake Mattis, and College sophomore Isabela Salas-Betsch placed a large bag overflowing with fake $100 bills on the Ben Franklin bench near the Compass on Dec. 4. The students also spray-painted each bill with the phrase “Admit One.” In Franklin’s hand, they placed a sheet of paper with socioeconomic statistics about Penn. “71% of students are from the
installation around 10:30 a.m. Later in the day, someone who told Mattis he was a detective picked up the flyer the students placed in Franklin’s hand “as evidence for a possible investigation into vandalism,” Mattis said. The officer eventually gave the paper back to Mattis and told him the police were no longer going to deal with the issue. Mattis agreed to take the installation down by 4 p.m. on Tuesday. When Mattis arrived around 4:30 p.m., however, the installation had already been taken down and none of their possessions were at the site. Yao said most of the reactions from passersby were positive and some people approached her to ask about its message. Mattis said he was surprised with the amount of attention the installation received, including from tour groups. He added that many
OLIVIA CHENG Contributing Reporter
top 20%,” the paper read. “3.3% of students are from the bottom 20%.” The installation was a final project for FNAR 264, Yao said, adding that the three members wanted to raise awareness that the majority of Penn students come from higher income brackets. Yao said the group chose Franklin, the founder of the University, to represent the connection between Penn and money. They also printed the fake $100 bill with Franklin’s face on them, mimicking real $100 bills. She added that the group painted “Admit One” on the bills to show that the students believe high socioeconomic status is a prerequisite to be accepted into Penn. The students were near the installation at different points throughout the day to film reactions to their project. Mattis said they encountered security officers soon after they put up the
A giant money bag was placed near the bench
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pressive: an acrobatic, floating and-one layup off of a nice feed from senior forward Max Rothschild. “I think there’s something about who he is that makes you feel like you can trust him,” coach Steve Donahue said about Goodman. “He works extremely hard at his game, and I’m not surprised that the growth in his game keeps getting better.” Coupled with a pair of turnovers by Miami and quality free throw shooting down the stretch, Penn was able to stave off the comeback. “It just took a lot of grit,” Brodeur said. “That’s something we really pride ourselves on, going through the adversity.” A double-digit win against a blue-blood ACC program is perhaps the most impressive win of the coach Steve Donahue tenure. In a week, the Quakers get a chance to top it against the defending National Champions.
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Penn Med launches new London center European patients will gain more access to Penn experts ALI S MOHAMMAD Contributing Reporter
Penn Medicine expanded across the Atlantic into the United Kingdom after the launch of the Penn Medicine London center last month. The center, which opened on Nov. 19, will allow patients from the United Kingdom and across the European Union to access Penn Med’s health experts through referrals and telemedicine service. It will also allow Penn to work closely with medical schools in the United Kingdom. “Penn Medicine has a long history – dating past the founding of our nation – as a global healthcare leader, and we are pleased to extend our reach with a physical presence in the U.K.,” Ralph
Muller, chief executive officer of Penn Med, said in a Nov. 19 press release. “We have always been proud of our role in training the world, and this initiative advances that mission by opening new doors and forging new relationships both in the U.K. and across Europe.” Penn Med has also had a global impact and previously partnered with European institutions. In 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a gene-altering cancer treatment that Penn Medicine designed. This chimeric antigen receptor T-cell (CAR T) treatment was then approved by the European Commission and has been successfully used to treat blood cancer across the globe. Switzerland-based pharmaceutical company Novartis also partnered with Penn Med to conduct the research.
The center, opened on Nov. 19, will allow new patients to access Penn Med’s health experts through referrals and telemedicine services. Penn Med has previously partnered with European medical institutions.
Penn Med has also collaborated with U.K. institutions, including a study that contradicted past findings about some health benefits of alcohol that was conducted with
University College London and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Penn Med also holds an affiliation with King’s College London
GKT School of Medical Education, where each school offers its final-year medical students clinical elective placements at the partner school.
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Myrna Cohen will retire after 34 years at Penn SARAH FORTINSKY Senior News Editor
After 34 years at Penn, Myrna Cohen, the executive director of the Weingarten Learning Resources Center, will retire from the University at the end of this semester, the Vice Provost for University Life announced Dec. 3. Cohen, who received her Ph.D. from Penn in 1992, has led Weingarten since it was created in 2004 and oversaw learning resources at Penn for the three years prior. She first came to Penn in 1984 after working at Rutgers University-Camden supervising student teachers, according to the VPUL press release. At Penn, Cohen is also on the senior staff in the College of Arts and Sciences and an adjunct professor of education in the Graduate School of Education, where she teaches
postsecondary academic literacy. Weingarten now houses the Office of Student Disabilities Services and the Office of Learning Resources. Students look to Weingarten for professional assistance in academic areas like reading and writing, time management help, and study strategies. Weingarten also manages accommodations and support for students with documented disabilities. Cohen helped students launch the initiative that aimed to overcome the “Penn face,” which refers to the veil students employ to disguise any
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feelings of distress or struggle in the highly competitive academic environment of Penn. Under her watch, Weingarten has hosted several workshops and facilitated study groups for first-generation, low-income students. The Center also launched the “Resilience Consortium” for students, faculty, and professionals from Ivy+ institutions to promote academic resilience. On Nov. 19 and 20 this year, the group held its inaugural international symposium at Penn. “My best moments were working individually with students, collaborating with campus partners, and making it all come together at the Weingarten Center,” Cohen wrote in an email to The Daily Pennsylvanian. She also wrote there that her replacement has not yet been appointed. She earned a master’s of education in the psychology of reading from Temple University and her bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University.
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018
Quakers to face stacked competition in Ivy League season FENCING | Columbia and Harvard among nation’s best SAMANTHA KLINGELHOFER Sports Reporter
As the 2018-2019 Ivy League fencing season begins, both the Penn men’s and women’s squads are preparing for tough competition coming their way. Last season, the men won their third straight share of the Ivy League title and finished
in eighth place at the NCAA Tournament. However, with the loss of several key seniors, the introduction of a new freshmen squad, and the departure of senior epee Justin Yoo for a shot at the Olympics, both Penn and the rest of the Ivy League fencing will look far different from last year. According to the NCAA Coaches’ Poll for the upcoming season, Columbia and Harvard are predicted to be Penn’s toughest competition. On the
men’s side, Columbia ranks No. 2, Penn No. 4, and Harvard No. 5. Senior sabre Julian Merchant did not disagree with the rankings. “I think pretty much every year [Columbia and Princeton are] probably one of the hardest competitions we have, but this year Harvard is probably one of the frontrunners also.” Coach Andy Ma, who was named Co-Ivy League Coach of the Year for the previous sea-
TAMARA WURMAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
son, affirmed the poll as well. “This year is pretty similar to last. … I think Columbia and Harvard are the best, then Princeton then Yale and Cornell. They are getting closer and better every year.” Eli Dershwitz and Geoffrey Tourette of Harvard were the sabre and foil champions, respectively, for the 2017-2018 season and should prove to be even stronger assets for Harvard team this season. Columbia also welcomes back Sidarth Kumbla and Nolen Scruggs, both of whom were named first team All-Ivy. When asked what sets this team apart from last and how that may play out this team, Merchant seemed a bit unsure. “We lost a lot of seniors from the epee team that were really good and were captains, so it is tough to tell what’s going on this season,” he said. This season, Penn will have to overcome the notable departures of Jake Raynis and Zsombor Garzo. The team also faces the setbacks of several injuries, but Ma seems optimistic that these won’t pose a threat to the trajectory of the season. “This year we have quite a few injuries, both men’s and women’s, so we [have to] adjust our training and people [have to] do their therapy… so we hopefully [will] bring them back in shape in January.” Despite the usual challenges that a team faces at the start
Senior sabre Julian Merchant will look to lead Penn men’s fencing through stiff Ivy League competitors, such as Columbia and Harvard.
of a new season, the men’s squad’s results will not be able to depend on Yoo, who is taking the next three semesters off to try to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. However, Merchant see’s Yoo’s potential qualification as a very positive thing for Penn fencing and the Penn community as a whole. To his teammates, Yoo’s legacy, whether or not he is able to make the Olympic team, will continue to motivate both old and new faces. “He’s brought great inspiration to all the freshman. All of the freshmen I’ve talked to are just excited to work with him and be inspired by how hard he works every day in practice and also outside of the gym,” Mer-
chant said. On the women’s side, Columbia ranks No. 1, Harvard No. 2, Princeton No. 6, and Penn No.7. Coming off a third place finish in the Ivy League Tournament last year behind both Princeton and Columbia, Penn looks to maintain its position. “We have a few injuries. We will try our best to maintain top four,” Ma said. However, the women are welcoming a strong incoming class to replace last year’s talented senior class. This season could be critical in allowing these new faces to find their footing, establish their influence on the team, and set the stage for the next few years of Penn women’s fencing.
We shouldn’t be surprised by Penn’s win over Miami guys are running at him, trying to hedge over a screen — we want him to shoot.” It certainly makes life easier for coach Steve Donahue, who may have been sweating after the loss of a top-two player on the team, Ryan Betley, five minutes into the season. Yet between Wang, junior Devon Goodman (who scored 16 against Miami), and rookie Bryce Washington, the Quakers have shown they will replace Betley’s outside scoring by committee this year — and that committee will blow up the boxscore, too. Penn shot 60 percent from the field against the same program that finished last season
If someone had told me three years ago that Penn men’s basketball would play an ACC team off the court and it wouldn’t even be all that big a surprise, I would have laughed until my sides split. Now, this is no longer fantasy. It’s real life. Penn blew the Miami (Fla.) Hurricanes out of the water on Tuesday night with a statement 89-75 victory over what was widely seen as a respectable power-conference opponent. Though Miami made it a close game for a brief stint in the second half, truth be told, it was over before halftime. The game started as a total shootout, with the scoreline at 30-27 to the Quakers 12 minutes in. But over the next ten-minute stretch, Penn left the visitors behind with a maelstrom of high-flying shots and frenetic defending that culminated in a pair of threes from rookie big man Michael Wang to cap a 16-5 run from which the ‘Canes could never
ranked No. 22 in the country. Take it all in. This is not a moment — the Donahue movement has taken full root in Philadelphia, and it’s here to stay for the foreseeable future. The Quakers are playing attractive basketball, and they’re having fun doing it. Tuesday’s signature win was brilliant, but it won’t be a one-off. Next Tuesday, Penn hosts Villanova, the reigning national champion. It might be unrealistic to say the Quakers are favorites over the Wildcats, but the beauty of the Quakers under Donahue in his fourth season in charge is that they have shown it’s far from im-
possible. Penn’s dunking on Miami represents a new phase of the program to outsiders, but players and close followers alike will know that they’re right where they should be. A double-digit win over a Power Five conference team did not come as a shock. That’s a beautiful thing. Can the Quakers bring a real surprise to the Palestra in a week? WILLIAM SNOW is a College senior from Nashville, Tenn. and is a Senior Sports Reporter for The Daily Pennsylvanian. He can be reached at email@example.com.
CHASE SUTTON | SPORTS PHOTO EDITOR
Penn men’s basketball handled an ACC team pretty comfortably in the best win of coach Steve Donahue’s tenure, defeating Miami on Tuesday.
recover. At halftime, Penn led 50-36. Let me rephrase that. Halfway through a game against a legitimate ACC program, Penn men’s basketball was on pace to drop 100 points. It was awesome. It was epic. But it wasn’t even a surprise. What may have caught some off-guard was Michael
Wang’s 23-point day. The big man made shots from every distance on the floor, and he made it look easy. But anyone who has watched him before saw the potential for such a day. “We have really great confidence in our shooters, especially [Wang],” star junior AJ Brodeur said. “If he gets an open look — I don’t care if
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Womenâ€™s basketball cruises Track set for first dual to easy win against La Salle meet of year at Harvard Quakers held Philadelphia opponent to just 34 points
â€œI think we were playing into their speed. â€Ś I try to bring everyone in, talk everyone down, and just say â€˜Hey! Next time, letâ€™s focus on getting good ball movement rather than throwing the ball all over the court and dribbledriving ourselves into a trap.â€™ Itâ€™s taking it one play at a time and not letting any of the past plays affect the next ones,â€? Russell said. Though it wasnâ€™t necessarily clear from the score that the gameâ€™s outcome was all but decided, the eye test told another story. The Quakers had taken La Salleâ€™s best shot, weathered the storm, and looked ready to run away with the contest. The rest of the game was a blowout. Sophomore center Eleah Parker had 15 first-half points and dominated the game on both ends of the floor. She was a difficult matchup for the Explorers on offense and anchored the Quakers on defense, allowing no easy buckets.
CHARLIE DOLGENOS Contributing Reporter
Make no mistake, this game was over in the first 10 minutes. On Wednesday, Penn womenâ€™s basketball defeated La Salle 65-34, dominating from start to finish. The Quakers (5-2, 2-0 Big 5) came out in a two-three zone that the Explorers (0-8, 0-2 Big 5) seemed entirely unprepared for. By the first media timeout, Penn had a 13-0 lead. The Explorers responded by ramping up their defensive pressure and increasing the physicality of the game, causing some Penn turnovers. However, the Quakers, led by the steady presence of senior guard Ashley Russell, quickly figured out La Salleâ€™s pressure and finished the first quarter with a 25-13 lead.
â€œI think it started with the coaches really preparing a scout for us,â€? Parker said. â€œOne of the key points was running the floor, and I think that was something that all of the posts did today. â€Ś It helped me get those quick easy layups. When we kept it simple, we were really successful.â€? The Quakers will look to continue their success at Iona on Saturday, but they think theyâ€™ll have to improve their focus on the offensive end. â€œ[We have to improve] in the turnover aspect of the game. I think if we set the tone and stick to the Penn way weâ€™ll be good,â€? Russell said. â€œWe canâ€™t speed ourselves up like we did today.â€? The Quakers have a good chance to build up momentum and start a winning streak before they get to the big guns, but it all started with taking care of business today. They will try do the same against the Gaels (1-6) on Saturday.
ARI STONBERG | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Sophomore center Eleah Parker led the Quakers to a Big 5 win against La Salle on Wednesday with a team-high 15 points along with seven rebounds and four blocked shots, giving Penn its fifth win this year.
Harvard women finished behind Quakers last year EMILY CONDON Sports Reporter
In a matchup that feels somewhat familiar, Penn track and field will take on Harvard in the Quakersâ€™ first dual meet of the season on Sunday. For the womenâ€™s side, the meet will pit last yearâ€™s top two teams in the Ivy League, as Penn came in first and Harvard came in second in both the Indoor and Outdoor Ivy League Heptagonal Championships. Coming off an impressive showing in New York last week, the Quakers are optimistic about their chances this weekend. â€œI always say, if you have a good fall, youâ€™ll have a good season, and this group has had an excellent fall,â€? assistant coach J.J. Hunter said. â€œWe are a well rounded program. We are competitive in every single event area, so we are a complete team, so that always bodes well when youâ€™re going head to head with somebody.â€? Senior Anna Peyton Malizia placed first at last weekâ€™s TCNJ Opener in the high jump with a 1.75 meter result, which junior
Olivia Welsh later matched in three attempts to place second and set a personal record. This weekend, Welsh is slated to compete against Harvardâ€™s Ann Giebelhaus, who has a personal best of 1.70m. â€œLast weekend was a really good starting point. For the team as a whole, the bar is set really high coming off of two championships last year. The coaches have put together a great schedule with elevated competition for us this year, and the team is really excited about it,â€? Malizia said. Pennâ€™s women also placed first and second in the weight throw event at TCNJ behind senior Rachel Lee Wilson and freshman Hawa Mahama. Wilson broke the program record, which she had previously set, with a throw measuring in at 20.04m. â€œItâ€™s definitely an exciting meet because we get to take Harvard head on in the indoor season before Heps because usually we donâ€™t see them until Heps,â€? Wilson said. â€œWe are probably two of the most stacked teams in the Ivy League for track and field â€Ś and itâ€™s just us two battling it out for whoâ€™s the better team.â€?
Pennâ€™s men also placed first in the weight throw at the TCNJ Opener last weekend due to the strong performance of sophomore Jake Kubiatowicz. Kubiatowicz, who recorded a 18.71m throw last week, is set to compete against Harvardâ€™s Gunnar Allison, whose personal best is 15.91m. Both menâ€™s and womenâ€™s pole vault secured the top three spots at the TCNJ Opener. Despite having to return from an injury last week, junior Sean Clarke had a notable performance at the competition, shattering his previous program record in the pole vault and placing first at 5.40m. â€œ[Harvard has], I believe, the number two guy in the northeast, Erick Duffy, so Iâ€™m excited to have someone to really jump against as opposed to last week where it was just me. I definitely prefer competition, and I think that will be exciting,â€? said Clarke. Players to watch in other events include sophomore Camille Dickson, who placed second in the long jump last weekend at 5.42m and will compete against Harvardâ€™s DaLoria Boone, and junior Maura Kimmel, who placed first in womenâ€™s shot put last week.
ZACH SHELDON | SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHER
Senior Anna Peyton Malizia placed first last week in the high jump competition at the TCNJ Opener, winning with a mark of 1.75 meters, which junior Olivia Welsh later matched to set a personal record.
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“I’ve wanted this since I was 10, when I found out that fencing was in the Olympics,” Yoo said. “Fencing really helped me through my younger years and coming to college, so I feel like this is something that I really want to do. It’s so hard to put into words how much this sport means to me.” As Yoo alluded to, fencing is something that has been important to him for much of his life, but oddly enough, the Los Angeles native’s journey in the sport began in a unique way. “I started when I was seven. My mom and I were at a mall, and there was a fencing demonstration there, and I was a pretty annoying kid, so she pushed me to watch it so she could go do her thing. And then I ended up really liking it.” The instructor of that demonstration pointed Justin and his mother to Los Angeles International Fencing Center, a
club run by the fencing coach of the 2004 U.S. Olympic team. With Yoo’s sights now set on an Olympics appearance of his own, he will be bouncing back and forth between Los Angeles and Korea to train. However, he will also be spending a great deal of time traveling the world and fencing in different countries. “There are many world cups; there’s like one every two weeks,” Yoo said. “So I’ll be in Vancouver, [Canada]; Doha, Qatar; Budapest, [Hungary]. It’s crazy; every two weeks I’ll be in a different continent. My coach is telling me that we’re going to stay in some of the European countries and train there after all of the competitions are done.” Yoo will find out whether or not he has made the Olympic team in April 2020, and regardless of the result, he plans to return to Penn and graduate in the fall of that same year. As for the rest of men’s fencing, the team will surely miss
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the star senior in its 2019 season. Yoo has earned a spot on the All-American team during all three of his seasons with the Quakers and is a huge reason why the squad has won three consecutive Ivy League Championships. While his teammates wish that Yoo could be with them for another Ivy title run, they understand how unique and special this opportunity is for him. “[There are] a couple of people that have made the Olympics that fenced at other colleges, and we know them from fencing throughout that, so it’s pretty cool just to know one of those people,” senior sabre Julian Merchant said. “And then just to see someone that we’re training with and working with every day, for them to make it, it’s good on us to see that we’re at least helping on that level.” With Yoo’s departure, the Red and Blue will lose a consistent performer and tough competitor. But they will also be losing a role model.
ALEC DRUGGAN | ASSOCIATE PHOTO EDITOR & CHRISTINE LAM | DESIGN EDITOR
“He’s really good outside of the gym, also, just gathering everybody and making sure everybody’s having a pretty good time here at Penn, so he’s a great leader,” Merchant said. With no more events on the
team’s schedule until January, Yoo will not compete again for Penn, as he begins his training at the start of 2019. However, he will continue to practice with the team until the beginning of winter break.
Yoo has accomplished so much during his college career, both from a personal and team standpoint, and now, he has the chance to represent Penn and the U.S. on the biggest stage of all.
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THURSDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2018 VOL. CXXXIV NO. 60
THE INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA
DREAMING OF TOKYO
Senior epee will travel the world as part of training for 2020 Olympics DANNY CHIARODIT Sports Editor-elect
Penn men’s fencing is primed for another great season. The group has both underclassmen and more experienced fencers who can contribute, not to mention three-time Ivy League Men’s Fencing Coach of the Year Andy Ma. But the team will take a big hit with
the absence of senior epee and captain Justin Yoo next semester. Yoo will be taking time off from Penn as he trains to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics. SEE YOO PAGE 11
ALEC DRUGGAN | ASSOCIATE PHOTO EDITOR
Izenson brings unique experience in her first year with Red and Blue
Freshmen making immediate impact despite inexperience
Freshman has experience fencing in several countries
Red and Blue rosters include a total of 13 newcomers
JESS MIXON Sports Reporter
Lark Izenson might only be a freshman, but she has been fencing for a decade already. An Atlanta native, Izenson provides a significant amount of international experience to Penn fencing’s sabre squad. She has been able to translate her years of experience into a very successful start to her college career. Izenson earned a third-place finish at the Penn State Open in early November, providing the only top-16 finish for the sabre team. She also contributed a very noteworthy performance to the squad at the Elite Invitational, providing consistent individual wins against her competitors. Over her four years on the national circuit, she turned in a number of noteworthy performances in countries including Poland, Bulgaria, Spain, and Costa Rica. Izenson considers her second-place finish at the Austria Junior World Cup the highlight of her international career. The national circuit requires that a fencer be in the top 12 of the national rankings to participate internationally, a standard Izenson was first able to meet in 8th grade. After a significant amount of time competing individually at a very high level, she says the transition to competing on a collegiate level has required
more of an emphasis on the team mentality. “Tournaments outside of college are very individual. I still had my club and my coaches, but I could fence someone from within my club. At college tournaments you fence other teams,” Izenson said. “You still fence by yourself, but everyone has to contribute to win a match.” Izenson comes from the same club as men’s fencing sophomore Andy Sun. Located in Atlanta, Nellya Fencers is known as one of the top sabre clubs in the country. Sun and Penn coach Andy Ma’s connections with her home club
were large factors in influencing Izenson’s choice to come fence for the Quakers. With valuable additions to the squad like Izenson, the team appears likely to be on a trajectory to defend its firstplace Ivy League status and continue to make strides at NCAAs. As for her role in the future of the sabre squad, Izenson hopes to play an integral part in ensuring the program’s future success. “We have a lot of upperclassmen and I know there are two freshmen coming in next year, so I want to continue to focus on building the women’s program.”
TAMARA WURMAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Hailing from Atlanta, freshman sabre Lark Izenson’s youth career has given her unique experiences in events throughout the world.
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PARKER JONES Sports Reporter
The Penn fencing freshmen have already made their presence felt early in the season. With six freshmen on the men’s team and seven on the women’s, many have already had standout performances to start their young careers. After the men’s team split its four matches at the Nov. 18 tournament at the Elite Invitational in Columbus, Ohio, freshman sabre Xiteng Lin has been a leader for the whole team, not just the freshmen. Lin dominated his competition, going an impressive 3-0 against both Ohio State and North Carolina, helping secure wins for the team. Two weeks earlier at Penn State, Lin had help from fellow freshman epee teammate Emon Daroian, who went 10-0 in the first two pools, followed by a 1-4 loss in the third pool and finished in the top 32. “For me it’s been more difficult from high school,” Daroian said of collegiate practice times and training. “It’s every day and longer.” Competing for the freshmen on the women’s team during the Elite Invitational were standout epee fencers Vanessa Dib and Margaux Games. Dib held her own in the Elite Invitational tournament securing a 3-0 victory against
Penn State, leading the epee group to an individual win. At Penn State, Dib and Games qualified for the third pool but did not end up qualifying for the top 16. “I think we did alright,” Games said. “We definitely still have a lot to work on, and it’s just the beginning of the season.” The fresh optimism from the incoming class has them hopeful for the rest of the season. “I’d be happy making NCAAs … I think that’d be fun,” Daroian said. Now, more than in recent years, there are more freshmen on both the men’s and women’s teams, and they are all going to have to perform in order for the program to be
successful. “I try not to think about it … I want to do my best,” Games said. “It’s more of a team sport now; it’s not really individual.” These freshmen come from all walks of life, with Lin hailing from China and Dib coming to the United States from Lebanon. Games and Daroian both acknowledge that it was family that got them into the sport, but the coaches, team, and competition that made them stick with it. “The team is super supportive” says Games. It has been a strong beginning for the 13 freshmen on Penn fencing, and there’s a bright future ahead for the group.
TAMARA WURMAN | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Freshman foil Jerry Wu is among the group of 13 freshmen who are trying to help the Red and Blue make yet another Ivy title run.
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