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Founded 1876 daily since 1892 online since 1998

Friday March 13, 2020 vol. CXLIV no. 28

Twitter: @princetonian Facebook: The Daily Princetonian YouTube: The Daily Princetonian Instagram: @dailyprincetonian

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U. SENDS STUDENTS HOME INSIDE THIS ISSUE

Spring semester will finish completely online One student in self-isolation, awaiting test results

News: 5 who went to in-town party have tested positive

By Zachary Shevin head news editor

By Marie-Rose Sheinerman

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Prospect: For all the frustrated tigers

MARK DODICI / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

By José Pablo Fernández García

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Opinion: Fighting the news’ blues By Brandon Gautier

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COVERAGE ONLINE

See how students in Frist Campus Center were feeling just hours after the U. announced the policy change last night. Subscribe to the ‘Prince’ on YouTube today.

Listen to The News every weekday morning for all the stories you need to know. Find the ‘Prince’ on Spotify or Apple Podcasts.

An orange moving bin sits in front of Nassau Hall, two months too early.

Students told to evacuate by March 19, with exceptions By Princetonian News Staff On Wednesday evening at 7:46 p.m., the University announced all undergraduate students “who are able” must return home and stay there until the end of the semester. Dean of the College Jill Dolan’s and Vice President for Campus Life Rochelle Calhoun’s letter, sent to all students, enumerated specific

criteria students would have to meet in order to remain on campus. Students who do not fall into these criteria and register with the University will lose prox access by March 19. In a statement provided exclusively to The Daily Princetonian, University President Christopher L. Eisgruber ’83 acknowledged that it “has been a challenging week

as all of us deal with the rapidly evolving situation.” “Here at Princeton we have made a number of tough calls throughout the past week,” he wrote. “Throughout that process, our highest priority has been, and will continue to be, to protect the health and safety of this community.” See LEAVING page 3

Students abroad scramble after Trump cuts off travel from most of Europe By Linh Nguyen and Zachary Shevin associate news editor emeritus and head news editor

After the Trump Administration announced a sudden ban on travel from Europe, the University is instructing students studying abroad on the continent to return home as soon as possible. On Wednesday night, President Donald Trump announced a suspension of “all travel from Europe from the United States See ABROAD page 6

JON ORT / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

Louis A. Simpson building, home of the Davis International center.

A student exhibiting flu-like symptoms was tested for COVID-19 at McCosh Health Center yesterday afternoon and was immediately placed in isolation, notes an update from the University. This student is an undergraduate, University deputy spokesperson Mike Hotchkiss confirmed on a call with The Daily Princetonian. “The student will remain in isolation at McCosh until the results are received in the coming days,” University spokesperson Ben Chang said to the ‘Prince.’ “The student has had no known exposure to anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 and had not recently traveled to any locations of concern,” Hotchkiss added. Chang said that McCosh has been “ready and prepared” for this situation to arise, and the See PATIENT page 2

NCAA cancels championships Women’s basketball, hockey among those preparing for now-scrapped tournaments By Josephine de La Bruyère associate sports editor

The NCAA announced March 12 that it will be cancelling all winter and spring championships. The decision comes a day after the Ivy League’s cancellation of all spring athletics. “This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities,“ Director of Communications Stacey Osborn said in a statement. See NCAA page 6

Mercer County declares State of Emergency Municipality, community County Exec. Hughes issues executive order respond to COVID-19 crisis associate news editor

On Thursday, March 12, Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes issued an executive order announcing a county-wide State of Emergency to aid the fight against COVID-19. The announcement follows New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy’s proclamation of a State of Emergency Monday night. Executive Order 2020-01 declared that Mercer County agencies are “authorized to take appropriate action to assist municipal governments in containing, preparing for, responding to, and recovering from this COVID-19 outbreak.”

Mercer County will be following infectious disease guidelines and protocol as given by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The County Health Officer can alter sanitary and health codes to combat the disease. County employees are banned from out-of-state business-related travel. All public gatherings of more than 250 people have been canceled. McCarter Theater has also suspended all performances, classes, and events through March 31 to abide by this guideline. “We understand that our residents are concerned about this rapidly evolving situation, and we’re determined to take whatever steps are necessary to mini-

mize the risks for the people of Mercer County,” Hughes said. The executive order also allows Mercer County to seek reimbursement from the federal government for measures taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19. While no Mercer County residents have been diagnosed with COVID-19, one Burlington County resident who works in Robbinsville Township is the first presumed positive case to be associated with Mercer County. Five out-of-state attendees of a party in Princeton have also been diagnosed with the disease. Additionally, two University staff members who were at this party are still waiting for their test results.

By Caitlin Limestahl assistant news editor

In response to the coronavirus pandemic, several town organizations have followed the University in canceling, postponing, or virtually conducting previously planned events. Over recent days, local schools and businesses have enacted a slew of new procedures. “COVID-19 is a serious public health threat, so these decisions are understandable despite their social and economic costs,” Mayor Liz Lempert wrote in an email to The Daily Princetonian. “We’ve also been working to spread accurate information to the public about

In Opinion

Today on Campus

Guest contributor Sarah Lee ’22 details room draw improvements, and guest contributor Ana Pranger ’22 criticizes the inherent unfairness in the primary process.

There are no on-campus events scheduled for today, according to princeton.edu/events.

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ways to protect themselves and others,” she added. “Our Health Department has been meeting with various organizations, churches, schools, and businesses to help them with their contingency planning in the event they may need to restrict activities, and also referring them to current guidance from the CDC.” Lempert emphasized that the municipality has taken steps to protect Princeton’s first responders. “The municipality has also developed plans for our first responder teams to ensure we have adequate coverage in case of a local outbreak,” Lempert wrote. Chief Frank Setnicky, See COMMUNITY page 2

WEATHER

By Naomi Hess

HIGH

70˚

LOW

35˚

Rainy chance of rain:

70 percent


The Daily Princetonian

page 2

Friday March 13, 2020

Five who attended party in town have Several schools exploring tested positive; none from the area remote learning options COMMUNITY Continued from page 1

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JON ORT / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

By Marie-Rose Sheinerman associate news editor

Five total attendees of a Feb. 29 private party in Princeton have now tested positive for the coronavirus. Three of the patients are Pennsylvania residents, whose test results were announced Wednesday, March 11, according to Planet Princeton. Two of the attendees who tested positive were Boston residents and previously attended the Biogen Conference. They tested positive after returning to New England from Princeton. Massachusetts’ state health department said on Tuesday that 70 patients presumed or confirmed to be infected to the state have links to this conference, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The World Health Organization announced Wednesday morning that the COVID-19 outbreak is now officially considered a “pandemic.” The Princeton Health Department was alerted to the Pennsylvania residents’ test results on Wednesday morning. The results are considered “presumed positive” until official confirmation from the Center for Disease Control is obtained, but there is no estimate at this time how long such confirmation will take. The CDC has not yet verified any of the New Jersey presumed positive cases. N.J. state officials told reporters on Wednesday that “they have not been given any explanation for the delays,” according to Planet Princeton.

Princeton Health Department has confirmed there were 47 attendees at the party, including servers, according to a statement from the municipality sent to The Daily Princetonian. Fourteen of the party-goers were Princeton residents and all have been contacted by local health officials, according to Planet Princeton. All have been advised to self-quarantine and health officials are “tracking them for the development of signs and symptoms.” Nine of the residents have reported “one or more symptoms” and are presently being evaluated. Two South Brunswick residents are known to have attended the party, and “schools in the area have been closed to limit potential exposure.”

of the Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad (PFARS), elaborated on these plans and how his squad has prepared for a potential outbreak. He wrote in an email to the ‘Prince’ that, among other steps, PFARS has increased the amount of personal protective equipment on hand, begun cleaning equipment more frequently, and utilized virtual alternatives to in-person meetings. Furthermore, PFARS has updated its procedures to follow guidance from the CDC and the New Jersey Office of Emergency Medical Services. “If we have a suspected case we will limit the number of first responders responding or treating the patient as not to expose those more than necessary,” Setnicky wrote. “If transporting a suspected case we limit the number of personnel in the ambulances and will try and not take a family member with us.” Businesses are also taking precautionary measures. Jack Morrison, the president of the Princeton Merchants Association, told the ‘Prince’ in an email that “informational tools have been utilized to step up safety procedures in all workplaces throughout the community to ensure the public, as well as, our staff members are secure.” Several Princeton-area public schools have adopted additional safety protocols. Princeton Public Schools is closing early on Thursday and Friday to explore the possibility of remote learn-

ing for students. A Community Park School parent and child are currently under self-quarantine after the parent was exposed to a co-worker awaiting results from a COVID-19 test. “We will use this time to continue our preparation for remote instruction as well as to organize meals for our nearly 500 students who participate in the federal lunch program,” said Princeton Schools Superintendent Steve Cochrane. Princeton Public Schools is also postponing events with large numbers of attendees as part of “social distancing” protocol. The South Brunswick School District announced that it will briefly implement “remote learning” after a South Brunswick High School student and adult community member underwent evaluation for coronavirus. Both individuals were present at the same privately-held event as community members who have since tested positive for coronavirus. “We live in a small, interconnected town,” Lempert wrote to the ‘Prince.’ “The University and larger community are tied together in multiple ways. So when we put social distancing protocols in place, it makes it more challenging to meet and interact with each other and the general energy level in the town feels quieter.” “This is tough [sic] time for everyone and my hope is that we can find a way to build community and strengthen partnerships and supports through this epidemic, even if we have to keep our physical distance to limit the spread of the disease,” she wrote.

Chang: U. ready and prepared PATIENT Continued from page 1

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MARK DODICI / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

McCosh Health Center, where one undergraduate is self-isolated while awaiting testing results.

student was placed in isolation “out of an abundance of caution.” The Princeton Health Department has been notified of this incident, according to Hotchkiss. The two University staff members in self-quarantine, as announced on Tuesday, are also “awaiting their results,” according to Chang. These two staff members “were possibly exposed to coronavirus (COVID-19) at an off-campus gathering,” notes the University website. “These two staff members have been tested and continue to self-quarantine while awaiting test results. More information will be shared when available,” the website adds.

At least one of these two individuals is associated with the University’s Program in Gender and Sexuality Studies (GSS), which canceled “all events” and sent out a request to “refrain” from using their program office on Tuesday — according to an email from Program Coordinator Jaclyn Wasneski obtained by the ‘Prince.’ Yesterday, University Health Services (UHS) suspended routine appointments — remaining open for “urgent, acute care needs for students, including students seeking care for COVID-19.” According to a statement from Hotchkiss yesterday, UHS “remains equipped and prepared to see students with coronavirus at the McCosh Health Center and is in frequent communication with the NJ Department of Health.”

Photo of the Day Students gather in Henry Courtyard to enjoy one last afternoon together on campus.

MARK DODICI / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN


Friday March 13, 2020

The Daily Princetonian

page 3

Dolan, Calhoun: Our goal is to limit the number of people on campus LEAVING Continued from page 1

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Classes will move online for the rest of the semester, extending the plan announced Monday to use the Zoom platform. This plan was originally intended to last at least until April 5. “I’m asking you now to do the most important thing that you can do in order to protect your own health and the health and safety of our community, and that is to go home after completing midterm examinations,” Eisgruber wrote to the ‘Prince.’ University students will be permitted to remain living on campus for the remainder of the semester “only if” they meet one or more of nine criteria. Students will not be forced to leave if they “must conduct lab or other Princeton-based research on campus” required for their senior thesis. Additionally, “athlete[s] still in competition and required to be on campus” can stay, though the Ivy League canceled all spring athletic events through the end of the academic year earlier today and left deciding whether or not to compete in postseason competition to “individual institutions.” Students currently residing in “family housing” will also qualify for remaining on campus. Financially-insecure and homeless students will be permitted to stay on campus too, as well as anyone certified “independent for the purposes of financial aid.” Any international student who falls into one of the above-listed categories will be able to stay on campus. International students will also be permitted to stay if they live in an area with “extremely limited internet connectivity,” cannot leave due to immigration, travel, or visa restrictions preventing them from leaving, or live in certain highly-impacted countries — countries currently designated as Warning Level 2 or 3 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or U.S. Department

of State (USDOS) Level 3 or 4 for COVID-19. Students who fulfill these criteria must register to stay on campus using this form. Unregistered students will lose prox access to campus buildings by March 19. “For those of you, who for one reason or another, cannot return home and must remain on campus, we will of course continue to support you,” Eisgruber added. For students leaving campus, the Dolan’s and Calhoun’s letter recommended trying “to pack in ways that will allow you to leave campus yourself, rather than requiring family members to assist you.” “Our goal remains to limit the number of people on campus,” the letter notes. For students on financial aid, the University is offering $150 in credit to their student accounts to “help with the expense of moving out.” The University has offered assistance to those with existing round-trip travel plans or those who face challenges re-booking and other financial difficulties. The Provost’s Office and the Office of Finance and Treasury will arrange pro-rated reimbursements of room and board charges for the period during which students are not on campus. Credits for room and board will have no impact on financial aid packages. The letter bore no mention of a refund for tuition in any form. University Deputy Spokesperson Mike Hotchkiss did not offer comment on beyond what was written in the letter. The letter notes the University is further “considering accommodations” for students who hold spring term campus jobs and those who expected to continue receiving wages from their employment. “Please bear with us as we assess how best to provide these resources,” the letter noted. For students with further financial hardships that are not compensated by the room and board refund, the Office of the Vice President for Campus Life has of-

fered limited assistance to “high financial need students who are suffering severe hardships.” For emergency funding consideration, students are asked to complete a Google Form. As announced on Monday, all classes, lectures, seminars, labs, and precepts are moving to virtual instruction beginning Monday, March 23. Although the initial Monday letter from President Christopher L. Eisgruber ’83 indicated that the decision would be reassessed on April 5, the new letter from Dolan and Calhoun indicated that classes will now remain online through the end of Spring 2020, including final examinations. “We realize that some of your coursework will be significantly hampered by this teaching format. We’ll help your instructors accommodate this shift in the best possible way,” they wrote. “As we continue remote instruction, we’ll guarantee that you’ll be able to complete your Princeton academic work for the spring semester.” The Office of the Dean of the College (ODOC) is actively considering how to manage the disruption of this semester, and is “studying a variety of strategies.” The options under consideration to “alleviate the stress for students and faculty” include P/D/F options for the entire semester, reweighting midterm examinations, and other policy adjustments. Students who are completing junior independent work this semester will be in contact with their departments and instructions on how to finish. The letter did not mention any alteration in the policy of students taking midterms. Presumably, students are still expected to attend class this week, and the midterm exam policy remains unchanged. This morning, however, ODOC urged faculty administering midterm examinations to administer midterms online using Blackboard or Canvas, allowing students to pick up the exam and take it on their own “under the auspices of

the Honor Code,” or re-weighting the examinations in the grading rubric, in order to “acknowledge student stress and confusion.” Academic enrollment services including sophomore A.B. concentration declaration and fall semester course selection will continue online as scheduled. Room Draw will also proceed as planned. “We understand that some classes — dance classes, rehearsals, performances, labs, experiential courses, and service courses — won’t transfer easily to digital formats,” the letter wrote. “We’ll be working closely with faculty to substitute for these in-person experiences as much as possible.” For students remaining on campus, meals from Whitman dining hall “will be available from campus serveries to box up and take back to your dorm room” at no charge regardless of whether they are on a meal plan. Eating clubs and co-ops will be closed. All student organization events for the remainder of the semester will be “canceled, postponed, or held remotely” — and other events will “most likely” be canceled or postponed as well. According to this release, no final decisions have been made regarding Commencement or Reunions. “Given the uncertain nature of this health crisis, we believe it’s premature to cancel those plans based on the information currently available,” it says. This letter introduces a “virtual community” for these students “to reduce social isolation and encourage connections while many on-campus opportunities are suspended.” The page proposes activities such as remote movie nights for students, doing online workout classes, or organizing your room to stay busy while adhering to these social-distancing protocols. Dillon Gymnasium, University Health Services, and campus libraries will remain open, though on revised schedules and with these social-distancing protocols in place. Information on these up-

dated hours of operation has yet to be released. The letter refers students experiencing stress related to this “crisis” to seek help through Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS), residential college staff, and campus life centers like the Office of Religious Life. “College staff are currently working on ways to stay connected to their students remotely and will follow up with communications in the respective colleges,” the letter reads. CPS is also recognizing socialdistancing measures, and virtual counseling sessions are now being offered. This shift from in-person meetings will be effective beginning Monday, March 16. Saoirse Bodnar ’22, who said she currently still plans to remain on campus, expressed feelings of “shock” upon reading the letter. “This is separating me from the people I consider my family,” she said. “I’m shocked and anxious, and I’m kind of afraid to see how the rest of the semester is going to play out.” In their letter to students, Dolan and Calhoun expressed their empathy to the campus community and thanked the faculty, staff, and students “who have responded thoughtfully to this public health emergency.” “We truly do understand how devastating this guidance will be for all of you. This is not how we expected Spring 2020 would unfold,” Dolan and Calhoun said. In his statement, Eisgruber thanked the University community for coming together to support the health and welfare of those around them. “We all cherish the projects and relationships that we have here on this campus, but this is a rare time when it’s crucially important for all of us to do what is best for the community,” he wrote. “This is a special community, and while these are really hard challenges, I know that we will succeed in facing them if we do so as a community,” he concluded.

MARK DODICI / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN


Opinion

Friday March 13, 2020

page 4

{ www.dailyprincetonian.com }

When your vote doesn’t count Ana Pranger

Guest contributor

A

fter the kerfuffle that was the Iowa Democratic caucuses, the merits of placing one state in such an important position are increasingly questionable. The political importance of the votes in Iowa and New Hampshire seems outlandish, given their population size and overwhelming whiteness. Iowa won their first-place privilege due to their complicated caucus process and a desire to make the primary process more inclusive after the 1968 convention. New Hampshire is so early simply because they were in 1920, and have not changed it yet. Now that both states are used to going early, their voters expect the economic boost due to political visits (exhibit A: the Iowa state fair) and political pandering every four years. The concept of rotating the first state of the primary has been tossed around as a solution to this dilemma. However, this rotation does not solve the fundamental issue of fairness between the states.

The early-voting states will still have more candidates as options, but “waste” votes on candidates that drop out before the convention, whatever the states are. The only proper solution is to hold a single election day. When the first caucus was held in Iowa, voters chose between eleven candidates. Even though some consider caucuses undemocratic by nature, these voters could choose the candidate that best fit them — nuances and all. When my Chicagoan family walks into the polls on March 17, there will be three remaining candidates on the ballot, assuming Tulsi Gabbard lasts that long. Those registered in New Jersey will have to wait until June 2 to choose between the two remaining viable options. How is that democratic? Whatever my political preferences are, I should be given the same opportunity as any other American to choose from the wide array of candidates. It is irrelevant whether condensing this primary to a single election day would have changed results or not. What matters is that it would allow every voter to choose the can-

didate of their choice without sending a vote for a drop-out candidate or settling for their second (or third or fourth) choice. It would eliminate the risk of early voters choosing a candidate that is out of the race by the time their vote is counted — like the Iowans who caucused for Buttigieg or the Bay Staters that voted for Warren. It would eliminate the undue power held by Iowa and New Hampshire, whose populations are very white and do not represent the Democratic Party or America as a whole. It would cut down on the seemingly endless string of headlines and drop-outs and endorsements that leave later voters with more information and fewer options than earlier ones. Moreover, it would cut down on the vicious attacks between primary candidates, which weaken the winner for the general. Especially since Donald Trump has no competitive primary, Democrats are bamboozling themselves with friendly fire. By dragging out the primary, we elicit unwarranted attacks on character and en-

courage messy, frenetic debates that only stand to hurt the chances of beating Trump in the general. Biases against women and candidates of color force them to drop out before they get a chance to prove their worth. It is this process that took us from the most diverse primary field in history to a choice between two white male millionaire septuagenarians — albeit ones with different ideas. Even more, many of the candidates are current public servants. Asking sitting senators, governors, and representatives to take so much time from their work to campaign only hurts our democracy. Focusing on a day gives these elected officials more time to do their jobs. The voting system as it stands is a major problem. The answer is a Super-Duper Tuesday. Turn these four months of chaos into a few weeks where everyone can vote, and, finally, focus on the general. Ana Pranger is a sophomore in the Economics department from Chicago, Illinois. She can be reached at apranger@princeton. edu.

USG x Housing: How students helped enact change to 2020 room draw Sarah Lee

Guest contributor

I

n the spring of 2019, students found similarities between the 2018 and 2019 room draw times, uncovering randomization errors in the University room draw process. An article published in the ‘Prince’ on March 3 addressed these issues, citing students’ “concerns about the draw,” but failed to acknowledge the changes that are effective starting this year. In reality, since the ad hoc data analysis, the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) has worked extensively in conjunction with Student Housing to fix randomization and improve Room Draw for 2020. In the spring of 2019, USG passed a resolution approving the USG Committee on Student Housing with the purpose of “ensuring an informative, transparent, and accessible response to student concerns,” after investigating “the root causes of draw fairness and communication difficulties in the 2018 and 2019 Room Draws”. I currently serve as Chair of the USG Committee on Student Housing, along with Betsy Pu ‘22, Yafah Edelman ‘20, Lachlan McCarty ‘22, and Alec Leng ‘21. Since September, we have advocated to improve the student experience with Room Draw and Housing. In a series of four technical

meetings we collaborated with Housing administrators such as Dorian Johnson, Dennis Daly, Lynn Grant, Joe Johnson, Michelle Brown, and Angie Rooney to investigate 2019 Room Draw and provided student input to improve the Room Draw experience. None of us were reached out to during the reporting of the March 3rd article. Our “belief” that this year’s room draw process “will run smoothly” isn’t based on pure optimism, but rather the culmination of several months of work and advocacy. In the fall, Housing extensively tested the randomization of various groups in the new in-house system and with the latest update of CBORD, Housing found the randomization issue to have been fixed. We compiled our findings in a report released to all undergraduates through the USG Senate newsletter on Feb. 16. In addition to fixing randomization, further changes will be ref lected in the 2020 Room Draw: 1) The timer to complete the specific room selection (5 minutes in 2018, 8 minutes in 2019) will be extended to 10+ minutes 2) A full list of available rooms will be on the website 3) A confirmation email of selected room assignment and meal plan will

be sent at the conclusion of each day of room draw 4) Information about the waitlist process (timing, further steps, for both upperclassmen and residential college room draw) will be released 5) There will be extended time between room draw groups Earlier in February, Housing’s Instagram (@princeton_st udent hou si ng) hosted a Q&A for students to easily submit questions about room draw, utilizing social media for communication outreach. A comprehensive Room Draw guide for all class years can be found here, and students with further questions can ask their Housing engagement specialists or attend lunch sessions at the residential colleges hosted by Michelle Brown. When room draw times are released on March 18, our Committee members will be working through Spring Break by running a statistical analysis to ensure the randomization of 2020 Room Draw. Once our analysis is completed, we will be releasing the results through a USG email to all undergraduates. Our efforts show that student voices can have significant impacts on the development of housing policy at the University. I urge students who have lingering concerns to voice them to myself and other mem-

bers of the Undergraduate Housing Advisory Board (formerly named Students’ Housing Advisory Group). UHAB meets monthly and is a space where students can speak with Housing administrators and provide valuable feedback on campus issues relating to student life, housing, and facilities, such as coops, pest concerns, policies, processes and more. This is my second year serving on UHAB. Before each meeting, I request questions from students through an Instagram poll on @ucouncilee, and post meeting minutes on the account after. Change can be enacted by proactive outreach. Your feedback is valuable and can lead to tangible results. UHAB is accepting applications, and I encourage you to apply! All students who currently live on campus or have lived on campus in the past can provide a unique perspective that will assist Housing policy. Furthermore, I urge you to reach out to your student representatives and your Housing engagement specialists for your concerns to be heard. Only by voicing our experiences can we as students truly create a community that works for us. Sarah Lee is a sophomore from Adams, Tennessee. She can be reached at sarahlee@ princeton.edu.

editor-in-chief

Jonathan Ort ’21

BOARD OF TRUSTEES president Thomas E. Weber ’89 vice president Craig Bloom ’88 secretary Chanakya A. Sethi ’07 treasurer Douglas Widmann ’90 trustees Francesca Barber David Baumgarten ’06 Kathleen Crown Gabriel Debenedetti ’12 Stephen Fuzesi ’00 Zachary A. Goldfarb ’05 Michael Grabell ’03 John G. Horan ’74 Joshua Katz Rick Klein ’98 James T. MacGregor ’66 Betsy L. Minkin ’77 Alexia Quadrani Marcelo Rochabrun ’15 Kavita Saini ’09 Richard W. Thaler, Jr. ’73 Abigail Williams ’14 trustees ex officio Jonathan Ort ’21

144TH MANAGING BOARD managing editors Benjamin Ball ’21 Elizabeth Parker ’21 Ivy Truong ’21 Cy Watsky ’21 Sections listed in alphabetical order. chief copy editors Lydia Choi ’21 Anna McGee ’22 associate copy editors Celia Buchband ’22 Sydney Peng ’22 head design editor Harsimran Makkad ’22 associate design editors Abby Nishiwaki ’23 Kenny Peng ’22 head features editor Josephine de La Bruyère ’22 head multimedia editor Mark Dodici ’22 associate video editor Mindy Burton ’23 head news editors Claire Silberman ’22 Zachary Shevin ’22 associate news and features editor Marie-Rose Sheinerman ’22 associate news editors Naomi Hess ’22 Allan Shen ’22 head opinion editors Rachel Kennedy ’21 Madeleine Marr ’21 associate opinion editors Shannon Chaffers ’22 Emma Treadway ’22 editorial board chairperson Zachariah Sippy ’22 head sports editors Tom Salotti ’21 Alissa Selover ’21 associate sports editors Josephine de La Bruyère ’22 Emily Philippides ’22

144TH BUSINESS BOARD chief of staff Carter Gipson ’21 chief strategy officer Louis Aaron ’22

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Friday March 13, 2020

Opinion

page 5

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Fighting the news’ blues Brandon Gautier

Contributing columnist

J

ust a few weeks ago several multi-way ties in multiple Iowa caucus districts had to be decided by coin toss. Two years ago, the race for the majority-determining seat in Virginia’s House of Delegates tied and was decided by pulling a name out of a hat. A randomly selected slip of paper determined the state’s entire legislative agenda for two years! Evidently, your one vote has the power to change history, and it ought to be a responsible one. But how do you strike a balance between informed and overwhelmed? According to the Pew Research Center, over two thirds of Americans feel “worn out” by news fatigue, and, in this super-polarized era, being politically informed can seem like an invita-

tion not just to burnout but also to melancholy and rage. Where’s that nice civic middle ground between ignoring it all and throwing a drumstick at your uncle during Thanksgiving? Trust me, it’s there. You can be politically informed and keep your soul (and your friends) at the same time. All it entails is a smart and actually more convenient news diet. Half of our generation gets their news online. To consume online news responsibly, it helps to think about it in terms of another illicit substance: social media. Conscientious users have to treat The New York Times like they treat Twitter and avoid binging. Headlines can be catchy, speaking of destruction and chaos and “[insert here] will never be the same again.” One story contains many links to others, and it’s easy to fall down a rabbit hole. Where Instagram has infinite

scroll, the NPR One app has infinite listen, with an algorithm that determines what kind of news and podcasts you like and plays them for you eternally. Endless podcasts! Endless, that is, until you shut off the app after an hour or so, or your phone does it for you, and you don’t return to it for another day. Casually timing your consumption of news is doable, and it stops you from sacrificing chunks of your day to get over-read instead of wellread. Use your phone’s setting if possible, download a third-party app if necessary, or read a good-old-fashioned clock if you can (kudos to you). Limiting the intake means limiting the newscast heartache. Another fun and anachronistic way to do this is to read an actual paper newspaper. You cannot lose yourself in a paper because all the information is self-contained in the pages. You read

it once, in the morning or afternoon, and you’re ready to face the day knowing everything you need to, and, as the Nassau Weekly recently reminded us, crosswords just hit differently when done in pen anyway. There are abundant fresh dailies provided every morning in Firestone! Limiting your intake has another benefit, too: maximizing your humanity. The ubiquity and ease of access to news and information means our generation, to quote the comedian Dave Chapelle, can’t care about anything “because we know every goddamn thing.” If you read about tragedy every day, you become numb to it, and death and despair lose reality. Psychologists call it compassion fatigue. Controlling your intake is the first step to regaining this empathy. Also, there’s no need to catch up every day. The 24-

hour news cycle is a business model, designed to ensnare our attention. Colorful f lashes of “BREAKING NEWS” often reveal that nothing is actually broken. A story developed a little is all there is, and it makes no real difference whether you learn about it immediately in a FOMO f lurry or in a few days on a leisurely Saturday morning in a “weekly roundup” article. Finally, fret not about understanding every little thing, like what UBI or Soleimani refer to. Know enough to be confident at the ballot box and be understanding in debate with your relatives and friends “on the other side” because, in the end, we’re really not on different sides — just different television channels. Brandon Gautier is a firstyear from New Orleans, La. He can be reached at bmg4@princeton.edu

PROSPECT

For all the frustrated Tigers

JOSÉ PABLO FERNÁNDEZ GARCÍA / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

By José Pablo Fernández García staff writer

By Wednesday morning my microeconomics midterm exam had been postponed just before it was scheduled to start, and all I wanted to do was go somewhere to let out all my frustration with this week. I wanted to go to the middle of Poe Field and yell until my vocal cords could produce only silence. I wanted to teleport to my dog at home and just nap while holding onto her. I wanted to take my microeconomics midterm exam as scheduled and just absolutely crush it more than I had ever wanted to take any other exam in my life. I wanted my biggest worries this week to be intertemporal budget constraints and whether the salvation of bears is a normal good just like they had been about a week ago. I am filled with frustration, and I feel this same frustration all around me in the campus community. I have friends frustrated that their theater

performances have been reduced to cancellations. I have friends frustrated by having to decide whether to go home with — up until Wednesday night — little guidance other than a strong suggestion to do so without nuance for all the particular difficulties their lives may present. I have friends frustrated that midterms had mostly been continuing as planned despite everyone’s lives being communally turned upside down. This frustration is oddly familiar for me though. It is a frustration due to uncertainty and a frustration due to lack of control, and these frustrations seem familiar to me because they have run through much of my life. The most recent example of these frustrations taking hold in my life is when nearly a year and a half ago I was faced with taking a year-long leave of absence barely more than a month into my first attempt at a freshman year here. I took the leave because, out of the first thirteen days of classes

of that fall semester, I spent eight of them in a bed in the infirmary of McCosh Health Center with a peritonsillar abscess restricting my ability to eat, drink, and breath all while causing great pain from my left ear down through my neck. As I lay in the McCosh bed waiting to recuperate enough to be discharged, as I sat in the Mathey College conference room with Director of Student Life Darleny Cepin breaking down over such a rough start to my time at Princeton, and as I slowly packed up my belongings from Blair Hall 309 so my family could take me back home, I was filled with many of the same feelings I have been feeling and have sensed in others this week. There’s the frustration I’ve already mentioned, and at times it can feel like it has boiled into anger. There’s the sadness over lost time with friends and lost time on this campus, especially for those for whom it is their last weeks on campus as undergraduate

students. There’s the coping laughter at the ridiculousness or surrealness of the situation. There’s the anxiety, and there’s even the sense of emptiness at times when it feels like the world is falling out from under you — when the ground is ever-shifting and you just want a moment of rest. Much like it is now, a year and a half ago, it was difficult to push through these emotions and find the positive ones. But they are still there. There’s compassion that emerges from us for each other. There’s excitement at new possibilities that weren’t previously possible — and that may seem impossible right now. There’s the sense of calm when one takes the time to find what’s still pretty alright in life. These things don’t seem like much, and they may be pretty hard to find at the moment — hindsight is a great friend in this case. But they are powerful. They can stop the ground from shifting or falling out from under you, even if only momentarily, and

provide that brief moment of rest that lets you prepare for the next thing this crazy, uncertain life might throw at us. I look back at the first half of this week, and yes, I do indeed see all the issues we’ve had to face. But I also see the amazing performance I was able to watch on Sunday of “A Little Night Music.” I see the wonderful weather that allowed for two dinners outside in the Forbes backyard. I see the striking blue sky on Monday that made all the buildings I walked by that day look even more beautiful than usual, especially the collegiate Gothic masterpieces like Firestone Library and Blair Arch. And yes, there is indeed something to be said that I have had two attempts at a freshman year at Princeton and neither have gone smoothly. I see humor in that — humor that brightens an otherwise gloomy week. As I write that, all I’m hoping for is that the saying “third time’s the charm” really holds come next fall.


Friday March 13, 2020

Sports

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{ www.dailyprincetonian.com }

Ivy League cancels all spring sport seasons By Alissa Selover Head Sports Editor

The Ivy League Presidents announced on March 11 that all Ivy League athletic events through the remainder of the academic year will be cancelled due to further developments in the outbreak of COVID-19. “In accordance with the guidance of public health and medical professionals, several Ivy League institutions have announced that students will not return to campus after spring break, and classes will be held virtually during the semester. Given this situation, it is not feasible for practice and competition to continue,” the press release from the Ivy League states. “Health and well-being

is always our top priority. I know this decision was made by the University Presidents with tremendous thought and consideration for the seriousness of the situation. As a former student-athlete who cared passionately about competing for Princeton, I feel for each and every student-athlete across the Ivy League who is impacted by this decision,“ Director of Athletics Mollie Marcoux Samaan ’91 wrote in a statement on behalf of Princeton Athletics. “We are truly heartbroken for the student-athletes, coaches and staff who have proudly represented Princeton not only this year but over their careers, and who will not have the opportunity to do so this season.”

Individual institutions will continue to decide whether or not winter teams and individual athletes who have qualified for postseason games and matches will participate or not. “Teams and individual student-athletes who have qualified for NCAA or ECAC Championships are preparing to compete in those events as scheduled,“ Assistant Director of Athletics/Communications Chas Dorman wrote in an email to The Daily Princetonian. “This is absolutely devastating. We’ve been training since the first day of classes in September and just want to test our speed against our competitors,“ senior rower Molly Milligan wrote in a text to the ‘Prince’.

Many winter sport Tigers had qualified for NCAAs

BEVERLY SCHAEFER / GOPRINCETONTIGERS.COM

NCAA

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The news came just ten days before women’s basketball was set to play its first March Madness games, and a week before six wrestlers were to head to Minneapolis, Minn. for a shot at making history. Some athletes were given even less notice; junior Sam Ellis, of men’s track and field had already traveled to Albuquerque, N. M., to compete tomorrow in the NCAA national championships for the mile.

“These are unprecedented times, not only in college athletics but in our country and around the world,“ wrote head wrestling Coach Chris Ayres in a statement to the Daily Princetonian. “It is devastating to have a historic season for our program come to an end in this way, but I am proud of my team and confident we have set a new standard for Princeton Wrestling. I am grateful for everyone that has supported us, not only the Princeton University administration but of fans and families who have joined us along the way.”

News

U. unsure how long travel from U.K. will remain open ABROAD Continued from page 1

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for 30 days,” beginning on Friday at midnight. The Department of Homeland Security later clarified that this ban applies specifically to 26 “Schengen Area” countries — “Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.” At around 11 p.m. EST, many students studying abroad in Europe received “an urgent update” from Associate Director of Global Safety and Security Kara Amoratis instructing them to return home immediately. “While the situation is still unfolding, we are asking that all students currently studying abroad in Europe and the U.K. return to their permanent residence as soon as possible, but in any effect before the travel ban enters into effect on Friday,” the message read. “We know that this news is distressing; it is important to act swiftly and try to remain calm.” Given the timing of the Administration’s announcement, students were given less than two days to pack their bags. Kyle Barnes ’21, who has been abroad in Budapest, Hungary, said that he “woke up this morning with hundreds of text messages from people freaking out about everything happening.” “It wasn’t until I opened my email that I realized that I had to leave, too,” he added. According to The New York Times, Hungary has had 13 confirmed cases and no deaths as of noon EST on March 12. “It’s safer here than it is at home for me, but I still bought a ticket because Princeton said that I really have to,” Barnes said. Though the Trump Administration policy does not ban entry from the United Kingdom, the University is recommending travelers in Europe return home. “Currently, the ban does not apply to travelers coming from the U.K.,” the University website notes. “However, we are unsure how long that will remain the case and therefore strongly encourage anyone in the U.K. consider returning home as soon as

MARK DODICI / THE DAILY PRINCETONIAN

Frist Campus Center.

possible as well.” But after “some” students abroad in the U.K. and Ireland “requested to remain,” study abroad adviser Johanna Wagner sent students in those countries another notice. “Again, our recommendation is to return, but if you do choose to stay, you are required to fill out [a] waiver,” the email from Wagner read. “If you are seriously considering this, read through the information carefully and submit it to me via email.” The form requires students to “voluntarily accept the risks of travel and continued participation” in study abroad — including possible travel restrictions, health screenings, and flight cancelations. It also requires students staying in the U.K. or Ireland to “release Princeton University, and its affiliated organizations, trustees, officers, employees, and agents from all financial and personal liability for injury, illness, death, monetary loss, or property damage resulting from [a] decision to complete my study abroad program.” These damages include “without limitation, any claim whatsoever which arises or may hereafter arise on account of any health or medical services rendered [...] in connection with

an emergency or health problem during my time participating in a study abroad program.” University spokesperson Ben Chang told The Daily Princetonian that the University is monitoring this fast-moving situation as well as tracking federal government announcements and guidelines in real time — “doing our best to ensure we are looking out for the wellbeing of our community wherever it is, here or abroad.” The original message noted that Princeton’s Office of Global Safety and Security and the Office of International Programs (OIP) are “prepared to help [students] book flights if necessary and have reached out to World Travel at Princeton University for assistance.” Additionally, though the Trump Administration policy does not apply to lawful permanent residents or any relatives of United States citizens or permanent residents, the University is instructing all students abroad in Europe to act swiftly. “U.S. citizens will be permitted to enter, however, there are likely to be enhanced screening and quarantine requirements and we are unsure if the quarantine requirement can be carried out at home,” the University Emergency Management website notes.

This comes after an announcement sent on Monday to all students abroad giving them the choice between remaining abroad so long as the country in which they are studying is not at a CDC level 3, returning home — keeping in mind that “academic options [...] may be limited,” and completing courses online if students’ host institutions allow it. Students abroad were not given the option to return to campus or join the University’s online courses. “If your host institution cannot offer online courses or a suitable solution for completing coursework, you may need to take a leave of absence from the University for this semester,” the statement noted. Even in cases where the foreign university accommodates students’ sudden departures, other logistical details are less fixed. “At least I can still take online classes, but it’s just been a really anxious day because I haven’t been able to know with any certainty where I’m gonna be in the next week, or month, or even three months,” Barnes said. “All I know is that Princeton told me to go home.” But at other universities abroad, some students — including Wendy Ho ’21, who has

been studying in Singapore since January — have already shifted to an entirely digital semester. “In January, there were a lot of cases, but I think the government has been doing a pretty good job so far,” Ho said. “As soon as there were a few cases of community spread, they immediately went into Code Orange. All of the classes I was taking moved online and they suspended all club activities.” As of March 12, there have been 178 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Singapore. The announcement recommended that students “continue to monitor the Princeton University COVID-19 website and the CDC travel advisories.” Wednesday night’s travel ban is the third Presidential Proclamation suspending travel from certain countries due to the COVID-19 outbreak. In late January, Trump suspended travel from China. On Feb. 29, travel from Iran was suspended. This proclamation cites a World Health Organization (WHO) determination that “multiple countries within the Schengen Area are experiencing sustained person-to-person transmission of [the virus which causes COVID-19].” “As of March 11, 2020, the number of cases in the 26 Schengen Area countries is 17,442, with 711 deaths, and shows high continuous growth in infection rates,” the proclamation reads. “The United States Government is unable to effectively evaluate and monitor all of the travels continuing to arrive from the Schengen Area.” Vice President Mike Pence later announced that “Americans coming home will be funneled through 13 different airports” and then asked to “self-quarantine for 14 days.” University students abroad were not the only ones surprised by this announcement. On Thursday, various European Union leaders expressed their disapproval of the travel ban — exemplified by a statement from Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission Charles Michel and Ursula von der Leyen. “The European Union disapproves of the fact that the US decision to impose a travel ban was taken unilaterally and without consultation,” their statement read.

Profile for The Daily Princetonian

The Daily Princetonian: March 13, 2020  

The Daily Princetonian: March 13, 2020  

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