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This First-Year Finds Community in Cooking

Courtesy Meals Shouldn’t Come at a Price



Charly Bliss Comes of Age, Led by Clive Davis Alumna

Judo at NYU, a Balancing Act



Unexpected Charges Leave Students Distrustful of Courtesy Meals Program Some of those who used the Courtesy Meals Program found funds from their financial aid diverted to covering its cost. By VICTOR PORCELLI News Editor The Courtesy Meals Program, which is supposed to be free, affected some financially vulnerable students’ aid packages this week, leading to confusion and distrust of the program. The CMP provides students with Dining Dollars — and, as of recently, meal swipes — to ensure they don’t go hungry. However, a small group of users received an email from the Office of Financial Aid on Wednesday notifying them that their financial aid packages would be adjusted due to their use of the program. Student government Chairperson and Gallatin senior Jakiyah Bradley previously served as a Senator atLarge for food-insecure students. Bradley first learned about the policy change through a constituent, but saw Instagram stories drawing attention to it being widely circulated by students. Bradley said immediately after hearing about students’ financial aid being affected, she brought the issue to administrators who said they would begin working to resolve it. One of the first to post it to their story, Steinhardt senior Elaine Cao had $150 taken out of their workstudy to go toward the CMP. JULIA MCNEILL | WSN


Entrance to the NYU Academic Resource Center, one of the Courtesy Meals locations.

NYU Students Don’t Know if the Degree Is Worth the Debt By AASHNA AGARWAL Contributing Writer Phillip Youmans was 17 when he started production of his feature film “Burning Cane,” 18 when he submitted it to Tribeca Film Festival as an NYU first-year and 19 when he became the first black director to win the best U.S. narrative feature. He is the youngest director to ever be featured at the festival. The would-be NYU sophomore

student’s film — which made the New York Times Critic’s Pick list — premiered on Netflix on Nov. 6. But Youmans doesn’t credit NYU for his successes. Currently on a leave of absence as he travels the world with his film for festival premieres in Canada, Iceland, the U.K. and more locations, Youmans is unsure whether he’ll return to film school. He is already $40,000 in debt for student loans from his first year. “We’re still shooting with still frames

and Canon DSLR when we’re paying near $80,000 a year,” Youmans said. “To be taking stills? It opened my eyes to how much like a business this college feels sometimes.” Youmans’ issue is that if he chooses to drop out, he will be expected to pay back his loans within a much less forgiving time frame. He must now choose between pursuing his career full-time along with a heavy financial burden or returning to school with an even greater debt but more time to pay it off.

NYU has long been one of the most expensive private universities in the United States. College Factual reports that a third of undergraduate students at NYU take out federal loans. Meanwhile, 62% of NYU students come from the top 20% of the income bracket but only 6% come from the bottom 20%, according to the New York Times. “The one-size-fits-all design of the NYU film school kind of messed me up when it was time for the festival,” Youmans said. “I was trying to scram-

ble to get my film ready for exhibition in a theatre, and because I had no money, I was at the mercy of other people’s schedules. I tried to communicate that to NYU and to my professors, and while I got a lot of congratulations emails, I also got a lot of simultaneous Fs on my transcript.” Youmans isn’t the only NYU student who is now second-guessing their decision to take out loans to attend their dream school. CONTINUED ON PAGE 4

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Unexpected Charges Leave Students Distrustful of Courtesy Meals Program CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

“I think it’s a cash grab,” Cao told WSN. “I don’t think it’s the first time the university has promised us a service that’s supposed to be helpful that ended up harming students, especially vulnerable students.” Cao cited issues with the Bias Response Line and Counseling and Wellness Services as other instances where disadvantaged students have felt let down by NYU. Although angry as well, Cao said they were mainly confused over what had happened. After receiving an initial email on Thursday notifying them of a change in their financial aid package — which made no reference to the CMP — Cao called NYU Student Affairs Chief of Staff Elizabeth Kuzina, who is listed on the CMP’s website. According to Cao, Kuzina said her of-

fice was notified of the change 24 hours prior and, in addition to reaching out to affected students, her office would be notifying future users of the CMP that it could affect their financial aid. This led Cao to believe, moving forward, their financial aid would be lowered by using the CMP — but, one day later, they received an email from Interim Director of the Office of Financial Aid Virginia Weiner which said the “technical adjustment” of their financial aid was unnecessary and their aid would be reverted back to its original award. Cao used the CMP because they were in a financially vulnerable position. Changes to their financial aid or workstudy mean potentially not being able to afford essentials, yet NYU administrators didn’t seem to be on the same page as each other regarding how or why the change

Med School Renamed NYU Grossman School of Medicine


Dr. Robert I. Grossman and Ken Langone after the renaming announcement. NYU Langone Health is renaming its medical school NYU Robert I. Grossman School of Medicine.

By VICTOR PORCELLI News Editor Medical school students will have a mouthful when asked where they attend college from now on, as NYU School of Medicine was renamed after dean of the school and NYU Langone Health CEO Robert Grossman on Nov. 4, according to a press release. Kenneth Langone, chair of the NYU Langone Health Board of Trustees, announced the news at NYU Langone’s annual Violet Ball fundraiser. “None of the milestones NYU Langone has achieved would have been possible without the boldness, resiliency and the passion for patient care and quality that Bob Grossman brings to this institution,” Langone said, according to the press release. “He always strives to elevate the quality of what we do. He brings out the best in people and he’s brought out the best in this institution.” Under Grossman’s tenure, NYU School of Medicine expanded by 8 million square feet, became the first medical school to offer free tuition and opened NYU Long Island School of Medicine, which offers a three-year medical degree program focused on primary care. Email Victor Porcelli at

had been made, or if it was permanent. In a statement to WSN, university spokesperson John Beckman said the issue had been resolved for most students as of Friday. “In hindsight, we should have sorted out the issue before communicating with the students about what turned out to be a resolvable problem. We regret the misunderstanding that resulted,” Beckman said. “But, to be clear, by Friday afternoon, in less than 72 hours, we had addressed the issue and told the students we had done so.” Based on his statement and Cao’s account, it seems that students whose use of the CMP caused their aid packages to exceed their cost of attendance were the ones whose aid were affected. For Cao, whether or not it had been resolved, not knowing what was going was distressing.

“I was just confused for the whole week, worried about missing out on almost a whole paycheck,” Cao said. “I wish none of us had to go through this week of panic and confusion over NYU, feeling betrayed and tricked into buying meal swipes.” Gallatin junior Sofia Licir had a similar experience after they realized $300 of their financial aid was redistributed from a Pell Grant to the CMP. “I was originally confused because the email never outlined that my financial aid was affected because of Courtesy Meals,” Licir wrote in an Instagram direct message to WSN. “It wasn’t until I spoke to my friends who also participated in Courtesy Meals when we found out that was the reason.” A CAS junior who asked to remain anonymous due to the sensitive nature of food insecurity was charged $75, affecting

her student loans. She found out about the change through a friend. “I was just confused and disappointed because I just felt disrespected,” she said. “I felt like NYU didn’t keep its integrity, I felt like I’d been lied to. I’m asking for you to help and then you’re just doing this behind my back.” Each student interviewed by WSN said they were discouraged from using the program again and many others have shared the news to their Instagram stories. Though the changes have been rectified, students say the reputation of the CMP has been seriously affected. “It’s a deterrent for me taking out Courtesy Meals again, and I think that it’s likely that it would deter others,” Cao said. Email Victor Porcelli at

Tisch Awards MetroCard Scholarships for Students Who Live On Campus By LISA COCHRAN Deputy News Editor On-campus Tisch students commuting to far-away acting studios for their classes have been awarded stipends for MetroCards, according to an email sent by Tisch dean Allyson Green last month. The announcement of the scholarship follows a petition with more than 1,500 signatures, started by Tisch senior Emily Goes in September. The petition demanded MetroCard subsidies for Tisch acting students who live on campus and have to commute to studios up to a 45-minute walk away that are unaccessible by NYU shuttle routes. The scholarship covers costs for studios that require coming and going three times a week — Adler, Atlantic and the New Studio on Broadway — all of which are a substantial distance from NYU’s Washington Square campus. Students tend to have class in studios three to five times a week “These students presented a special, disparate situation: they incurred additional transportation costs that their peers also living on campus but assigned to other studios did not, and so Dean Green sought to rectify this gap,” Tisch Dean of Student Affairs Dean Robert Cameron said in a statement to WSN. Without the scholarship, subway commutes to the three studios generate total costs of up to $231 for students over a 14-week semester. For Tisch students, who already have to pay the highest tuition among students of any NYU school, the costs add a significant burden, students said. “Eligible students will have 86% of their additional transportation costs subsidized under this plan,” Dean Green said in an email to qualifying students. “We assume that many students will avail themselves of discounted multiple-ride MetroCards, bringing their costs closer to the $200 figure.” While Goes expressed gratefulness that her efforts received an administrative response at all, she was not pleased by the conditions of the new scholarship. She said students who live off-campus often do so because they cannot afford on-campus housing, which can cost anywhere from $4,250 per semester for a low-cost triple at Rubin Residence Hall — which only houses first-years — to $11,386 for a single in Alumni Residence Hall. “It just baffles me that Tisch truly believed that the solution to this longing for financial security

was to exclusively reward those who can afford on-campus housing,” said Goes, who works two jobs while enrolled in 21 credits this semester in an effort to graduate early and lessen tuition costs. “There are students who live on campus and are receiving the scholarship that are in the 1%.” The email sent to students receiving the scholarship by Green thanked all those who brought the issue to administration and referenced multiple consultations with university officials. “You presented your views with admirable vigor, clarity and civility,” the email stated, addressing students. “No one was in doubt that you were right; I am only sorry it took so long to arrive at a solution.” Although she was the creator of the petition, Goes did not receive the email because she lives off-campus and was not eligible for the scholarship. Amidst the commotion of students discovering whether or not they received the scholarship at her studio, the New Studio on Broadway, Goes said she felt disheartened and confused. “I wish those who did not receive the scholarship received some form of a letter of explanation, or a letter of hope,” Goes said. “Off-campus students never received any hope or recognition.” Tisch third-year Sorosh Wein is a recipient of the scholarship who commutes from his dorm, Greenwich Hotel Residence Hall, to the Stella Adler Studio of Acting.

“I think they did well but I think they could also do better,” Wein said, referencing the lack of resources for off-campus students. “Once again this institution should tune into the issues of the students — they serve us.” Tisch Chairperson Ruben Polendo responded to complaints about the new scholarship at a Drama Student Council meeting the night that the scholarship was announced. According to Goes, Polendo said students who choose to live off-campus have already decided to take on the inconvenience of commuting. “I thought that was a terribly generalized statement and looked on the NYU website for answers, but I failed to find any information [that] alluded to his statement on the NYU campus,” Goes said. Goes said she has emailed the administrators involved to extend her thanks and make clear that she will continue voicing her opinion, as she believes Tisch is not living up to what it has assured students in the past. “NYU says that they ‘are here to deliver on the promise that all students will have the support and resources they need to thrive in this dynamic learning environment,’” Goes said. “With peace and optimism in my heart, I say that, frankly, this promise is being broken.” Email Lisa Cochran at


Some Tisch students will receive a MetroCard scholarship — but it’s not without drawbacks.

Washington Square News | News


Tandon Students Organize World’s Largest Cyber Security Competition

CSAW is an annual cybersecurity hackathon hosted by Tandon students.

By MINA MOHAMMADI Deputy News Editor Against a sullen gray background, a Tandon School of Engineering gymnasium was packed with colorful balloons and tables of excited competitors with eyes glued to their laptops, prepared to compete in the world’s largest student-led cyber security contest: Tandon’s annual Cyber Security Awareness Week games. Universities from over six countries took part in the CSAW’s 17th edition on Thursday and Friday. The competition was started in 2003 by the students of Professor Nasir Memon, founder of NYU Tandon’s cyber security program. Originally a small, local event, the competition has grown into a global initiative to support cyber security education with two different competition categories: one for collegiate level hackers and another for high school students, called CSAW-Red. Perfect Blue, comprised of students from four universities, was the team that won the collegiate competition, while Montgomery Blair High School of Silver Spring, Maryland was first in the high school category. The current CSAW organizers are part of NYU Tandon’s student-led Offensive Security, Incident Response and Internet Security laboratory, which is home to weekly hackathon trainings and student research. OSIRIS leads the CSAW-Red and CTF Challenges.


The organizers spoke about the difficulty of making this global competition possible. “It has been a lot of restless nights,” Tandon Senior and OSIRIS lab member Marcus Barbu said. “We had to correspond with people from many different countries and timezones, make sure the venue can support many people — trying to get everything organized is a big commitment but we are glad that it has run smoothly.” The most important of their tasks, however, is the development of the competition itself. CTF competitions are “Jeopardy”-style with tasks of different point values. Participants earn points after each task is completed. OSIRIS prides itself on formulating unique tasks for competitors. “We are different because our tasks are story-driven and have real world applications,” Barbu said. “Students are hacking in the form of an investigation cycle and submit a report at the end. They are graded on the level of depth and understanding within the final report.” In this year’s competition, OSIRIS simulated a city organization in which students had to find vulnerabilities in security protocol and explain how to fix them. OSIRIS drew inspiration for these challenges from job and internship interview questions and current issues within cybersecurity. Some examples include recent Ransomware attacks on manufacturing firms and surveillance breaches at Customs and Border Patrol.

OSIRIS has made efforts to highlight the two all-girl high school teams that competed this year. In a field where women represent only 24% of the global workforce, OSIRIS, CSAW and Tandon as a whole have worked to make the games a gateway for more women in STEM. Julia Curd, a Red Team finalist and part of the all-girls team from Niwot High School in Longmont, Colorado, talked about her excitement for her team’s participation. “The whole point of cybersecurity is to have innovative ideas that protect people,” Curd said. “Having a diverse array of ideas and solutions is super important, and the people working in cybersecurity should represent that.” Other participants talked about the newfound attention cybersecurity has been receiving. “With issues of privacy being at the forefront of technological innovation people are giving cybersecurity the attention it deserves,” Poolesville High School senior Ishida Chatterjee said. “It’s great to be in New York City and being amongst others with the same interest.” Tandon has offered up more than $1 million in scholarships in total divided among the CSAW Red Team Competition finalists. CSAW not only works as a competition, but an organization that emphasizes awareness of cybersecurity and informing people who may not be interested in STEM at all. “I have heard people here complain about multi-factor [authentication] for logging into Albert,” OSIRIS Lab Manager and Tandon junior John Cunniff said. “What people don’t understand is that Duo works as a preventer of phishing, where emails are sent to you with links that are falsified as Albert and steal your login.” President of OSIRIS Lab Kyle Martin said cybersecurity is relevant to everyone. “Everything we now do, regardless of discipline, is online somewhere,” Martin said. “Security matters because we are all connected to the internet. Having a better understanding of security for everyone is something CSAW works to accomplish.” Email Mina Mohammadi at


Missing Plug in Weissman Building By CRIME BOT Robot Reporter From Nov. 1 to 7, the NYU Department of Public Safety received two reports of Criminal Trespass, three reports of drug law violation, one report of harassment, nine reports of larceny and 12 reports of liquor law violation. Criminal Trespass On Nov. 2 at 6:10 p.m., a staff member reported a trespass at 19 W. Fourth St. Public Safety escorted the unknown person out without further incident, and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 7 at 4:15 p.m., a staff member reported an attempted trespass in Third Avenue North Residence Hall. NYPD notification was requested and the case is open and under investigation.

Drug Law Violation On Nov. 2 at 3:12 a.m., an RA reported witnessing a drug law violation in Lipton Residence Hall. Public Safety confiscated a small amount of marijuana, and the case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 3 at 3:56 a.m., an RA reported a drug law violation in Lipton Hall. Public Safety confiscated a small amount of marijuana, and the case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 7 at 2:53 p.m., Public Safety reported to an allegation of a drug law violation and recovered a small amount of marijuana in Gramercy Green Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards.

Harassment On Nov. 4 at 5:15 p.m., a student reported being followed by an unidentified person in the Silver Center. The person left without further incident. Police notification was declined, and the case is open and under investigation.


Stern Alumnus Pleads Guilty to Insider Trading By VICTOR PORCELLI News Editor One year after graduating, Stern alumnus Bill Tsai was arrested for leveraging his position at an investment bank to illegally make almost $100,000 off the stock market — something he pleaded guilty to last month, according to court documents. Tsai worked as a junior analyst at RBC Capital Markets after graduating, where he learned that private equity firm Siris Capital Group would buy a digital printing technology company, Electronics for Imaging. Tsai proceeded to buy 187 EFI call options before it was announced that Siris acquired them — something that increased the stock value from $29.40 to $38 per share, allowing Tsai to make an estimated $98,750, according to court

documents. Tsai’s use of non-public knowledge to make a profit off of the stock market violates his employment agreement with RBC and resulted in his arrest. On Sept. 19, Tsai pleaded guilty to the charges against him in federal criminal court. He is also expected to settle a civil lawsuit by the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to court documents. “In recent weeks, we have engaged in productive settlement discussions with defendant Tsai, who also pled guilty in the Criminal Case on September 19, 2019,” SEC attorney Melanie A. Maclean wrote in a letter to the judge. “Based on these discussions, we anticipate being able to resolve this matter through a settlement.” Sentencing in the criminal case against Tsai is set for Jan. 17 of next year. Tsai’s

Initial Pretrial Conference for the civil case, during which the status of his case will be reviewed, is set for Jan. 8. Email Victor Porcelli at


Bill Tsai is a 2018 Stern graduate who came under fire earlier this year after his arrest for insider trading.

On Nov. 1 at 8:19 p.m., a student reported a bike missing from the Citi Bike racks outside 18 Washington Place. A police report was filed and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 2 at 1:25 p.m., a student reported a missing pair of Apple AirPods and charging case in Weinstein Residence Hall. Police notification was declined and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 2 at 2:30 p.m., a student reported a missing purse from Coral Towers Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 9:40 a.m., a staff member reported a missing power plug from the Weissman Building. The item was returned and the case is closed. On Nov. 4 at 9:43 p.m., two nonNYU affiliates reported missing personal items from Vanderbilt Hall. A police report was filed and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 5 at 11 p.m., a student reported a missing coat from Tisch

Hall. Police notification was declined and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 6 at 9:30 p.m., a student reported a missing wallet from 35 W. 4th St. Police notification was declined and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 7 at 3:55 p.m., a student reported a missing laptop from Tisch Hall. A police report was filed and the case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 7 at 6:14 p.m., a student reported a missing ring from Second Street Residence Hall. Police notification was declined and the case is open and under investigation.

Liquor Law Violation On Nov. 1 at 11:40 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Palladium Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 2 at 4 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Clark Street Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 2 at 6:31 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Rubin Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 2 at 11:20 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Othmer Residence Hall. The case is open and under investigation. On Nov. 2 at 12:34 a.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in University Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 6:20 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Gramercy Green. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 7 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Gramercy Green. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 8:45 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Goddard Residence Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 8:45 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Goddard Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 4 at 8:50 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Goddard Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 7 at 8:50 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Rubin Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards. On Nov. 7 at 9:37 p.m., an RA reported underage alcohol possession in Founders Hall. The case is closed and referred to the Office of Community Standards Email Crime Bot at

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Edited by CAROL LEE

NYU Students Don’t Know if the Degree Is Worth the Debt CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

CAS senior Jessica Sharan, a 21-yearold studying neuroscience, has taken out $25,000 in loans so far. She made that decision as an 18-year-old, when NYU was her dream school and living in the city seemed possible only by taking on debt. “Seeing how it’s added up financially, it doesn’t feel as worth it to me anymore,” Sharan said. “It’s kinda scary. I don’t think NYU cares a lot about its students’ financial situations, or they would give out more aid, scholarships and resources to us.” According to 2019 CollegeBoard statistics, NYU met 65% of need, with 12% of students having their full financial needs met. A study by One Wisconsin Institute reports that it takes an average of 21.1 years to pay back the student loan debt accumulated from earning a bachelor’s degree. But financial burden doesn’t seem to significantly prevent prospective students from applying. The university received over 84,000 applications for firstyear fall admissions in 2018, almost twice the number as they had 12 years ago. “We know there are times when students and families find paying for college a hardship,” university spokesperson Shonna Keogan said in a statement. “We wish we had far more money to provide for scholarship aid. But, we do a good job of making financial information available, we do a good job of graduating students we accept, we have expanded our scholarship budget, we have mechanisms in place to help those who face new financial hardships, we have succeeded in restraining the increases in

the cost of attending NYU, we are more economically diverse than our peers, and our graduates go on at high rates to good jobs with good pay.” Many think that NYU’s price tag is a worthy investment due to the value of its brand. The university boasts 96.6% of students working or furthering their education within six months of graduation. The private university has a great international reach and an NYU degree can lead to opportunities far beyond the city. “Having NYU on your resume definitely means something,” said Stern sophomore Yug Chauhan, who studies finance and computer science. “Tuition is only $52,000 I believe, which is not abnormally high for a private school. The rest is lifestyle cost which varies very heavily from person to person and can definitely be adjusted.” Maria Escoto met her husband while pursuing her master’s at the NYU College of Dentistry, a degree that caused her to accumulate about $250,000 in loans. Now 52, she and her husband own their own dental practice in Miami. She credits NYU for much of the good in her life today. “There was a huge difference between what I learned as a dentist in the Dominican Republic and what I learned at NYU’s program,” Escoto said. “When my patients see my NYU degree — that I am very proud of, I actually have it on my wall — they often come in and say, ‘Wow, you’re an NYU graduate, that’s awesome.’ I think it made a huge impact.” NYU’s cost of attendance is not abnormal for a private university in one of


Some students question the value of a NYU diploma due to the high debt they have incurred from student loans.

the most expensive cities in the U.S., but $300,000 is a gamble for students whose average post-grad income in 2019 was only $14,000 higher than the national average, especially in a city whose median household salary is already $23,000 higher than the national average.s. Some students feel that they won’t know whether the financial risk is worth it until after they graduate. According to a study by Opportunity Insights, about 3.6% of students from low-income families at NYU become wealthy adults.

CAS senior Shraman Sen is a 21-yearold who has taken out over $75,000 in loans and expects to go another $25,000 deeper into debt by the time he graduates. Ever since moving to the city, leaving has seemed unfathomable to him — even after he found out last fall that he needed to take out loans to continue at NYU. But Sen is now unsure of his decision. In order to feel like his degree and the accompanying student debt are worth it, he needs to know what his future will

hold. He believes the value of his degree is contingent on the success, financial or otherwise, that he reaps in his career. “If I go along the path I’m going — getting my master’s, which will put me in additional financial burden, getting a good job, then eventually getting my ultimate job — then I don’t even mind if I’m paying it off well into my 30s or 40s,” Sen said. “That is, if it all works out.” Email Aashna Agarwal at

This First-Year Finds Community in Cooking


Gallatin first-year Alex Christiano often cooks for friends in his Third Avenue North Residence Hall dorm room.

By CALAIS WATKINS Dining Editor Upbeat drums, rhythmic guitar and the raspy voice of Iggy Pop fill the air and bring the cramped kitchen alive as “Lust for Life” reverberates through the room. When Gallatin first-year Alex Christiano cooks in his Third Avenue North Residence Hall dorm room, his go-to playlist sets the scene. Christiano cooks three to four times a week on average, often making do with leftovers for the days in between. His favorite dish to experiment with is pasta, noting the possibilities for variation and inexpensive ingredients. But Christiano also has all of the

proteins down — chicken, salmon and steak are frequently featured in his recipes. However, when cooking for people other than himself, Christiano goes all out to make more complex meals. While making a large meal to enjoy with his friends, Christiano battles to work within the confines of his spatially-limited kitchen. Tonight’s menu consists of chicken confit, pasta, salad, yams and butternut squash. “This kitchen is so tiny. I’m literally cooking right now and I don’t have space for sh-t,” Christiano says while looking for a place to store his pan. “I have to put stuff on the stove top […] I keep stuff on top of the fridge. There’s literally stuff everywhere. And

no dishwasher.” While this wasn’t a challenge Christiano faced when he began cooking for his family in Southern California when he was 16 years old, he finds that the joys of developing his skills and sharing his food outweigh the constraints of the small space. Christiano’s roommate, Gallatin first-year Connor Sovak, constantly reaps the benefits of Christiano’s affinity for cooking. “I like having a roommate that’s a chef. Third North dining hall is terrible and dining halls get old,” Sovak said. “He works his magic, and it’s amazing.” But Sovak couldn’t help but bring up Christiano’s biggest cooking horror story since arriving at NYU. Christiano begrudgingly filled in the details, explaining how smoke and splattering hot oil set off his fire alarm, almost triggering the fire alarm for all of Third North. “That was really stupid,” Christiano said. “But in general, I think making mistakes is how you learn it’s really important. I can confidently make some dishes because I messed them all up a hundred times.” After taking an early interest in the YouTube cooking community, Christiano realized his talent during his sophomore year of high school. “I started by watching YouTube videos and making things in middle school,” Christiano said. “But one year, I cooked the turkey for Thanksgiving and that was when I realized I could actually cook meals for my family.” However, despite spending a summer working back of the kitchen for an Italian

restaurant in California, Christiano doesn’t have professional culinary aspirations. Rather, he’s majoring in Politics and Spanish, hoping to use his love for conversation, debate and food to work within global food politics. To Christiano, cooking has benefits he finds more important than working for profit in a restaurant. After starting school at NYU, Christiano began posting Instagram story recipes. Each 10-second video illustrates a step of the process, providing personal tips and tricks to his 1,383 followers. He keeps the ingredients simple, hoping his recipes are something any beginner college dorm room cook could replicate. Christiano’s motivation behind starting the Instagram story recipes was not only to help out other young aspiring cooks, but also to create a conversation starter upon his arrival to NYU. Just like every other first-year, Christiano was worried about meeting people in New York City. “It actually ended up being super helpful in making friends,” Christiano said. “That was a really cool way to meet people and they already knew a little bit about who I was because I had attached myself to something besides just my major.” Christiano often hosts groups of people in his dorm to enjoy his freshly cooked food. Rory Meyers first-year Kora Quintana is a regular attendee. “It’s nice when you’re missing home and home-cooked meals,” Quintana said. “The dinner-party meals are really cool. He’s only done a couple but it was cool because

I met a lot of people through that who I’m still friends with.” After seeing the impact his food has had on his friends this semester, Christiano decided to create an Instagram page dedicated to cooking — @christianocooks. While the Instagram story recipes remain a prominent feature of this new page, he also recommends unique restaurants that friends can go to in order to share a unique experience together. Once the transitional phase of adjusting to college winds down, Christiano hopes to start a dinner party business where he will cook dinner for groups of people at an affordable, college-friendly price. Christiano has a lot of advice or students who are finding it challenging to become self-sufficient in the kitchen after moving away from home. There are ways to collect ingredients (such as vegetables from the salad bars) using meal swipes. “If you’re waiting in line at a dining hall or waiting for your food at a restaurant, you’re probably spending just as much time on your food as you would be cooking it yourself,” Christiano said. Living in New York City, it’s necessary that we all find something to help us escape from the constant chaos. For Christiano, cooking is therapeutic, not only in the process but also in the way it connects him to people. He hopes to inspire this mindset in others, and trust me, he’ll talk about it with anyone willing to listen. Email Calais Watkins at

Washington Square News | Culture


Better Than Sex Mascara Fails to Impress By GABY BALDOVINO Staff Writer Mascara is one of the hardest beauty products to f ind fault with. Unlike foundation, blush and concealer, mascara tends to come in one shade, the blackest of blacks, so you don’t need to worry about it not matching your skin tone. And unlike eyebrow pencils and eyeliner, mascara doesn’t require years of practice to perfect your application. The ingredients in mascara don’t vary from brand to brand either, even between drugstore and high-end brands. But when mascara goes wrong, it goes very wrong. Simply put, the results can be disastrous. Think of the spidery, clumpy lashes you gave yourself when you bought your f irst tube of Maybelline Great Lash in middle school: that’s pretty much what you get when you purchase Too Faced’s Better Than Sex Mascara ($25). Reviews on the Sephora website claim that the mascara, hailed as a “Sephora Favorite,” gives your lashes a “full, long, and fluffy” look and a “fanned out” effect. When I f irst purchased Better Than Sex, I was excited. My lashes are decently long and curlier than the average, but they sometimes appear sparse on camera. I prefer to use mascaras that volumize rather than lengthen, which is why I was f irst drawn to Better Than Sex’s large, hourglass-shaped brush. I

Too Faced’s Better Than Sex Mascara.

didn’t really understand how the brush was “inspired by the curves of a woman’s body,” as it’s described on Sephora, but I found it interesting nonetheless. When I started to apply the mascara, however, everything went south. My all-time favorite mascara is Milk Makeup’s Kush High Volume Mascara ($24), which I usually apply two to three coats of in order to build the volume. When I use The Kush, the brush is structured to minimize clumps on the bristles, so I assumed Better Than Sex would be similar. Only it wasn’t. The brush on Better Than Sex grabs hold of your lashes in order to apply as much color on them as possible, but that results in an extremely clumpy and wet f irst layer. Not to mention that when I blinked, some of the product stained my contact lenses. The entire process of trying to take my now-blackened contacts out without ruining my lashes was so cumbersome I decided to just take a makeup wipe and start over. The second time around, I made sure to wipe off some of the excess product on the brush before applying it. Still, my lashes were clumpier and less natural-looking than I would have preferred. Not working out for me, Better Than Sex mascara didn’t exactly live up to its name. Email Gaby Baldovino at



Sophomore Wants You to Feel Good With ‘Private’ Underwear Company


LS sophomore Brenda Liang will soon launch her own brand, Siren Basics, to provide cute, comfortable and affordable underwear.

By ELIF KESIKBAS Staff Writer It’s no secret that a good pair of underwear can be a confidence boost. It’s also no secret that finding cute, comfortable but affordable underwear is exhausting. LS sophomore Brenda Liang’s soonto-launch brand Siren Basics aims to change that. Liang’s brand has its roots in her interest in the Danish concept of hygge, which is a word for coziness and contentment. When she was a freshman living in Third Avenue North Residence Hall, she designed her dorm room as hyggelig as possible. The concept soon spilled over to her clothing, motivating Liang to shop online for new underwear pieces that would make her not only look good, but feel good. “I had a very particular style in mind; high legs, ’70s bikini vibes, ’90s french-cut style, all-white and mesh,” Liang said. “But I just couldn’t find anything exactly how I wanted, and anything remotely similar was upwards of 30 or 50 bucks.” Shocked by the price of such a basic necessity, Liang quickly connected the dots. Her father Luke Liang is an entrepreneur, and from the age of 10, summer visits to his office had instilled the same drive in Brenda. She immediately called her father and pitched him the idea. He was all-in for his daughter’s idea, and he decided to invest in her business. “I wasn’t exactly surprised since she’s always been entrepreneurial-minded,” Luke Liang wrote in an email to WSN. “Or maybe it’s the side-effects of watching The Profit or Shark Tank episodes on CNBC when she grew up. I support her because it’s a good first step to learn how to handle challenges and pursue her financial independence.” Through her father, Liang reached out to her second cousin Huangdang, who was working in textiles in Guangzhou, China. Liang requested a sample pair of underwear

made from white mesh to better visualize her idea. “She sent me a sample and I literally went straight off of the aesthetic of it,” Brenda Liang said. “I was like, ‘It’s cute, got the product, let’s sell it.’” It turned out not to be that simple. When Liang threw the sample in the wash to test the fabric, the fibers of the mesh started coming off. She realized that she had to shift her attention to improving the quality of her product if she wanted to enter the competitive underwear market. She kept in touch with her cousin and asked her for more samples in different colors, which she would inspect in person on her family trip to Guangzhou in the summer. Liang’s family visit soon turned into a business trip. At her cousin’s suggestion, she set up a meeting with two lingerie designers, whose studio neighbored her cousin’s office. Liang walked in with ideas, samples and eagerness to learn more. She explained her idea and showed them all of the samples. She was not expecting to walk out with a deal. “They thought it was cute in a weird way,” Liang said. “Then they pull out these books of the appropriate materials to use, and they are like ‘You know what, we kind of see something in this idea of yours; we’re gonna partner.’ It was a huge step forward having someone, first of all, who knew what they are doing.” Liang is now waiting for the final samples from Guangzhou to arrive in the U.S., before giving the green light to production. Meanwhile, she is putting all her effort into designing a logo that fully reflects the brand identity of Siren Basics. While siren in English refers to the mythological half-woman, half-bird creatures who lure sailors off course with their songs, in Mandarin it means private. “I think that even though it literally does mean private, it’s not to say that Siren underwear should be a private thing,” Liang said. “If you

want to share, share it. At the end of the day, I feel like sometimes underwear is made not for the woman herself, not for the individual. It’s to be sexy or to be cute, but it’s kind of the idea that whatever you want to be, however you want it to take some kind of effect on your life, just let it happen.” Siren Basics is set to launch in 2020 with four colors available in cotton and mesh as thongs or full-coverage. The debut collection will be available to customers on the brand’s website and on Instagram. Liang also has collections planned for the next year and a half. Even though Siren Basics is Liang’s first attempt at growing a business, she is experienced in building her ideas from scratch. In high school, as a response to feeling out of place as an Asian student at an all-girls private Catholic school, Liang started a blog discussing beauty, fashion and her feelings. When she arrived at NYU, the connections she built here meant she no longer felt the need to continue the blog. “Since I came to NYU, my life has changed,” Liang said. “I had never met so many people that made me happy and were supportive. I don’t really have anything to write about now.” While Liang has a tight schedule between going to class and waitressing part-time at The Bowery Hotel Italian Gemma, she is committed to eventually growing her brainchild from an underwear brand to a basics brand featuring bodysuits, bras, bralettes and bikinis. Her dream is to have a pop-up store. “When I started Siren, there definitely was a fear in the back of my head saying ‘I’m not gonna follow through with it, I’m not capable of this,’” Liang said. “Now we have designers and a business partner to work with. I’m not turning back anymore.” Email Elif Kesikbas at

Washington Square News






On ‘New Age Norms 1,’ Cold War Kids Forget That People Actually Listen to Their Lyrics By CHARLES SMITH Contributing Writer Before “New Age Norms 1,” I was unfamiliar with indie rock group Cold War Kids. Their bold image suggested that they would offer some hard-hitting, inspired rock music for the modern day.

Unfortunately their newest batch of songs is painfully underwhelming. The best tracks sound like they were written by other bands and most of the lyrics feel weak and hollow for a group that’s trying to seem rough-and-tumble. In sound, this album is best described as split between the slow piano ballads

Review of Cold War Kids’ new album: “New Age Norms 1.”


of Ed Sheeran and One Direction, and the pop rock stylings of Maroon 5 and Tame Impala. Simply put, the former is ear death. When they’re playing rock, the side that lines up more with the experimental image they’re pushing alongside the album title, it’s decent. But that doesn’t make it original. Here’s the origin of that sound: a bunch of bands heard that guitar riff on Franz Ferdinand’s 2004 hit “Take Me Out” and realized, “Dude, we could make a career out of this.” Cold War Kids (who formed in 2004) must have loved that same riff, because it’s all over this album. Let’s face it — if the music makes you dance, it’s a success to at least some degree, and a bluesy, disco backbeat does make Cold War Kids’ songs very danceable. But we should expect a little more from rock and roll, a genre based in pushing boundaries and expressing complex emotions. The dance tracks “Complainer,” “Fine Fine Fine,” “Waiting For Your Love” and “Dirt in my Eyes” will find their place on alt-party playlists. The band obviously respects the bass guitar, and its use here feels good. It rumbles dutifully through all these tracks, putting a pep in your step. The standout track on the album is “Fine Fine Fine” for its brave absurdity. It begins as a normal track about being happy to grow old. The track reaches its chorus, and amid claps and hollers, frontman and California native Nathan Willet breaks out in an unmistakable country twang, “Yeah, I’m fine, fine,

fine!” Are Cold War Kids trying to cross over onto the country charts? The case of Lil Nas X goes to show that it wouldn’t be a bad business decision. One can just imagine Willet singing this tune live, moseying around on stage in his 10-gallon hat and Warby Parkers. The rest of the tracks are lyrically ridiculous. Cold War Kids play the nice guy on this album, a confusing companion to their hard image. They stress that they aren’t your typical bad boys on “Waiting for Your Love”: “I’m not that macho tough kinda man / I want you for your intelligence.” Of course, the rest of the song is about him and how he’s searching for her, a hypocritical shift of focus that paints him as rather self-absorbed. Their single “4th of July” is about having a pool party. In a pointed line, they tell us, “Don’t be critical / Only bring good vibes.” The rest of the song is similarly abstract and general. For a band called Cold War Kids to write a song about Independence Day and take no political stance seems like wasted potential. It could have just as easily been called “Spring Break,” or “Leif Erikson Day.” As it stands, it feels like this missed opportunity reveals a gimmicky undercurrent to the creative choices of the band. Other songs discuss fairly unexciting and unoriginal problems for a rock band, summed up as: “I am on tour and think you’re hot, but I have a girlfriend and adultery is a sin,” “I broke up with you very nicely, but you gossiped about

me, so I will turn the other cheek” and “You have problems, so I will forgive you for them.” Compelling stuff. Under all their posturing as bold and experimental, Cold War Kids could honestly pass for a Christian rock band. In the middle of complaining about girls on social media, “Complainer” has a line that goes, “Are you down to get spiritual?” It feels like they keep their religious references subtle so they can maintain their status as a hardened rock band, but it just makes those references feel more out of place. Rock can overlap with religion, but those instances require earnest commitment on the part of the band. Cold War Kids appear like they want to cross over somewhat into that realm, but they don’t want to give up some of the qualities of pure rock, leaving them with a product that doesn’t succeed very much either way. If Cold War Kids want to inhabit this Christ-rocker sphere, they should go all out. Perhaps they could look to Kanye West’s recent work for guidance. “New Age Norms II” should be a gospel record; at least then it would have a clear identity that it could be confident in. For now, the original “New Age Norms 1” suffers from an image and tonal crisis that puts the band short of the core hard rock image they’re sticking to and suggests that they would be better suited diving headfirst into another genre entirely Email Charles Smith at

Charly Bliss Comes of Age, Led by Clive Davis Alumna By NICOLE ROSENTHAL Editor-at-Large NYU alumna-fronted band Charly Bliss has had a whirlwind year, to say the least. The pop-rock outfit — formed in 2011 as vocalist Eva Hendricks’ entry product to attend Tisch’s Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music — has released a critically-acclaimed sophomore album, an accompanying EP and toured three continents over the course of 10 months. “When I try to wrap my head around what the beginning of this year looked like versus where we are now, it’s really hard to understand that all of this happened in the same year,” Hendricks said to WSN. “While I was at NYU, I was playing shows to nobody but my parents and my roommate […] so seeing that there are people all over the world who know about our music is really just something I don’t think I’ll ever get over.” The new record, “Young Enough,” is a pivotal departure from the group’s debut effort “Guppy” in its pop-infused melodies and consistent use of synths over guitars. Hendricks described the album, which garnered praise from the likes of Pitchfork and NPR, as a transitional move, in which the band flourished in both style and sound, according to Hendricks. “It was a lesson in learning how to stand behind your own choices,” Hendricks said of the stylistic shift between grunge guitars and pop synths. “I think [“Young Enough”] really marks such a big difference in self-confidence, trusting ourselves

as writers and moving into this new space as a band and as people. In terms of genre, we definitely moved further in the direction of pop, it’s closer to the music that inspires us, and the music we want to be making.” Over the course of the album production, watching fans list “Guppy” alongside albums by Carly Rae Jepsen and Robyn eased any fear that Charly Bliss would isolate themselves from fans by delving further into their pop roots. For Hendricks, the band’s fondness of the catchy hooks of Weezer and The Killers is an important part of their identity — and “pop” should not be a dirty word. “I think it would feel really sad to put out a record that was just chasing something that we had done before and trying to repeat it again,” Hendricks said. “It’s so important to us to make really honest music and most importantly that we stand behind it.” The new album has also tested the quartet’s skills both as songwriters and performers: with the addition of synths, the quartet is constantly switching between instruments on stage or playing two instruments at once, making for an interesting added wrinkle of performance. “It’s been a really fun challenge for us to figure out how to play some of these songs,” Hendricks said. “We all kind of move around on stage and take turns playing different instruments. It’s an ongoing challenge, and we’re always going back and trying new things and seeing how the audience reacts.” Alongside a constant instrument

switch, Charly Bliss shows can be characterized as nothing short of a pop-rockinfused energy boost. There can be many guarantees: the band will play all their fan-favorites, audience members will be grooving in place to the sounds of sparkling upbeat synth sound and Hendricks will be decked out from head to toe in a fun, outrageous getup inspired by “pink puffballs and pretty mermaids.” “It helps me to be kind of in character on stage,” Hendricks said. “A lot of the songs on this record are really aspirational — I think whenever I’m writing, I’m writing as the best possible version of myself and if there’s something I’m struggling with, I’ll write about conquering it instead of feeling really sad about it. I think it helps me on stage when I’m reliving these songs every night to feel like this superhero version of myself and larger than life, cause that’s how the music made me feel.” The songs are some of the darkest content the band has released to date. Contrasted with verses from “Guppy” about glitter and trampolines, “Young Enough” offers tracks about vulnerability, breakups, theft, loneliness and post-apocalyptic scenarios. But through the darkness are bubbly, danceable and ultimately hopeful anthems that seem to shed an optimistic light through the tumultuous verses. “These songs are about pain and growing up and trying to maintain a sense of hope and love for the world even when you experience some darkness,” Hendricks said. “I definitely use songwriting as a way to process my life and the things

that happen to me.” In fact, some of Hendricks’ favorite songs are the most vulnerable on the album, serving as a bonding moment between the band and the crowd during live shows. To Hendricks, “Chatroom,” a song about one of the most “awful moments” in her life, is a beacon of hope that can be intimately shared with audiences. “It’s comforting to see the journey of something you go through alone that makes you feel really depressed and scared and sad,” Hendricks said. “It can eventually kind of magically transform into this thing that connects you to people you’ve never met before and people all over the world. You can kind of help each other and heal each other. I think that that is the most beautiful [thing] I’ve experienced through

being in this band. And, that song is very fun to dance to.” Yet, despite the overwhelming attention the band has garnered over the course of the past year, Hendricks emphasized the importance of authenticity, humility and, above all, making music for herself. “I learned very quickly that as long as you’re being honest and as long as you’re making music that is authentic to you, whatever people say on the internet can’t really hurt you,” Hendricks said. “If someone thinks your band sucks, I find that it’s way easier to let that roll off of me and just know that, in spite of that, I made the record that I wanted to make.” Email Nicole Rosenthal at


NYU alumna Eva Hendrick’s band, Charly Bliss, has had an eventful year. From releasing a new album with an updated sound to going on tour in three continents.


Washington Square News | Arts


‘Varda by Agnès’: a Revolutionary Retrospective By NICOLAS PEDRERO-SETZER Contributing Writer


Primarily set in an opera house, “Varda by Agnès” is the renowned documentarian’s posthumous film that beautifully accounts – and transcends – her life and her career.

Whether you remember her as a f ierce documentarian, French New Wave pioneer, fervid feminist, installation-piece wizard or potato-lover, there’s no doubt AgnèsmVarda has etched herself into our minds as one of the most loving creatives of this day-and-age. For those who are unfamiliar with the famed queen of the French New Wave, her f ilms, from 1961’s “Cléo from 5 to 7” to 2017’s “Faces Places,” have most assuredly inspired their favorite f ilmmakers. “Varda by Agnès,” the last f ilm she worked on before her death earlier this year, is a zig-zagging paean that eulogizes every facet of her life and career — political, personal and photographic. Primarily set in an opera house where Varda conducts a meandering retrospective on her career before a crowd of young cinephiles, “Varda by Agnès” simultaneously works as a closing signature for longtime fans and an invitation for new viewers to get invested in her life and art. Seeing as Varda conducts the entire retrospective bound almost motionlessly to a chair, she does a great job escaping the prosaic trappings of what could feel like a Keynote presentation displaying footage from her past. The f ilm constantly reinvents itself, splicing in varied and inventive

recreations of moments in her life. Varda gets to give the last word on her career, marking her oeuvre with a stamp that reif ies its meaning. But is it truly the end of her artistry? The f ilm highlights time and time again her avid love for recycling and repurposing art. With this in mind, the viewer can’t help but wonder whether her f inal f ilm, a self-portrait that collages her life into a two-hour narrative, is the def initive f inal entry in her career or a scrapheap of genius that’s meant to be recycled by future artists down the road. When a child exclaims, “It was a happy cemetery with fun colors” upon emerging from the video-sepulcher Varda erected for her once-beloved cat, you can’t help but wonder how that experience will inform the kid’s aff inity for artistic expression in their own future. At one point, when she stares into the audience and blurts out “I’m 90 and I don’t care,” it’s as though she’s commanding the slew of young cinephiles before her to also throw their arms up and respond, “We’re 20 and we don’t care, let’s go make something!” Whether this is Varda signing off or subtly trying to make a f inal wave in the art world, “Varda by Agnès” is a wonderful piece of closure for an artist who evaded f inality for as long as she could. Email Nicolas Pedrero-Setzer at

‘One Child Nation’: Fighting for the Right to Choose By MEGAN CHEW Contributing Writer As far as China is concerned, Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang’s documentary film “One Child Nation” does not exist. The film was wiped clean from any reporting platforms in China — according to Wang, there were no reports of it winning the Grand Jury Prize at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, although the festival itself was covered. It was taken down from the Chinese equivalent of IMDb, replaced by a page that says, “This film does not exist.” Why? For the very same reason the film was made at all — government censorship and propaganda. “One Child Nation” reveals the ugly face of China’s one-child policy — a policy implemented in 1979 that limited couples to one child to tackle overpopulation. The policy sparked many morally questionable actions, including abandoning babies to die, human trafficking, government-sanctioned abductions and abortion. NYU alumna Wang, narrating the film, returns to her homeland to uncover these acts by telling the stories of those affected by the policy, including her own family, and digs deep at the wider notion of mental sovereignty. The film is littered with images of propaganda throughout: writing on walls, posters and television shows praising the Chinese government and their policy. It’s almost comical how blatantly the so-called advantages of the one-child policy are thrown in our faces, but the impact of this propaganda is far from funny. “Policy is policy” is the sentiment

echoed by most Chinese people when Wang asks their views on the policy. This defeated resignation — this “shared sense of helplessness,” in Wang’s words — prevails throughout the film, from a village chief recounting how he had to carry out forced sterilization to a government official proclaiming that she had to place the national interest above her own. The film also features a midwife who admits to killing about half a million babies, so distraught that she has retired from being a state doctor and treats infertility to “atone for her sins.” “We didn’t make the decision, we only executed orders [...] but I was the executioner. I killed those babies, didn’t I?” she asks at one point. This is the central struggle faced by those who had helped the government enact the policy — how can one bear the consequences of a choice they did not make? The film then turns to the families torn apart by the policy. Wang’s uncle breaks down in tears recounting how he left his baby daughter to die in a marketplace. One family had a twin daughter taken forcibly by government officials, and when interviewed, her sister tearfully laments the life she could have had with a twin by her side, a life she will never get back. An U.S. couple is shocked to find out that the Chinese orphan they adopted was never really an orphan at all. The film does not shy away from showing the horrors that have resulted from the policy — one section of the film is a montage of images of fetuses wrapped in biohazard bags strewn amongst the trash. Human life reduced to waste — the mental-


NYU alumna Nanfu Wang and Jialing Zhang’s “One Child Nation” delves into China’s inhumane one child policy through heartrending personal interviews that reveal a tension between government policy and families.

ity that the Chinese government’s propaganda instilled in the people, in a nutshell. Wang’s outrage at the government’s crime against humanity injects a bias into the documentary, but it is the policy’s impact on her own life that

makes for such an emphatic, illuminating commentary on free will. In a final reflection, she notes the irony of her moving to the U.S., from a place where abortion was forced to one where it continues to be restricted — in the end, the same question emerg-

es: what choice do we really have? “One Child Nation” can be streamed on Amazon Prime. Email Megan Chew at

Washington Square News







The Unsung Struggle of Liberal Studies

By SOPHIA DI IORIO Creative Director When you’re a first-year in Liberal Studies, icebreakers are a depressing affair. Between the standard questions (“Where are you from?” or “How do you like New York?”), one question prevails: “Where are you transferring after LS ends?” How does one politely say that they have no f-cking clue? According to the Liberal Studies website, the LS Core Program is NYU’s “small college experience.” Simply put, the program is an undergraduate program wherein a student

spends two years enrolled in a liberal arts core curriculum before transferring into one of NYU’s other schools to finish earning their bachelor’s degree. This means that while simultaneously being enrolled in a highly-structured core curriculum, LS students are taking electives to figure out their eventual major. This isn’t to be confused with the Global Liberal Studies Core Program — that’s the four-year version of Liberal Studies, which includes a mandatory junior year spent abroad and an eventual thesis. Confused? So are most LS students. This general confusion about being in the program is a running joke among LS first-years. We laugh, “I have no idea how I got here!” without giving much thought to what it means to really be here. The culture of LS is one of alienation. We know we can’t stay here, but we also don’t know where to go next. This divides the program into two camps: the students who know their intended major and which school they’re transfer-

ring to, and therefore have already begun the process of taking electives that will help them leave, and the students like me, a few months ago, who had no f-cking clue. The constant pressure to look forward makes it difficult to put down roots in the LS program. The program is inherently temporary and we’re constantly looking (and being told) to leave it. The fear of the unknown is something that almost every student has to deal with, but the problem is made exponentially worse when you’re in a program that will push you out of the nest in two years whether or not you’re ready to fly. Ideally, LS advisors would help guide our journeys. Unfortunately, the reality is that advisors are burdened with understanding all of NYU’s colleges and the process of transferring into them, a task which is unrealistic and therefore rarely fulfilled in a comprehensive way. I have met with my advisor multiple times over the past year and the most meaningful

outcome of any meeting has been finding out that I’m on track to graduate. As for my potential transfer, my advisor can’t do much more than bounce me around to advisors from other NYU schools who can actually tell me the requirements I have to fulfill. My academic career has become a calculus of credits, requirements and deadlines. But the problem of knowing where to go can’t begin to be solved without a high degree of self-awareness and what you want out of your education. If your advisor can’t do much more than send mass emails with various spreadsheets detailing the various requirements for various majors, it’s still up to you to choose which of those spreadsheets to look at. Nevertheless, after much deliberation I’ve decided to continue down the LS path and major in Global Liberal Studies. Despite all the stress and fear I’ve experienced in this program, I still believe in it. The forced independence of being in LS has led me to

understand what I want from my degree. The classes — though they may be detached from my interests — are always taught by captivating professors who expand my worldview with every lecture. Yes, I would have liked more academic guidance and support, but I’ve learned to look to myself rather than the provided infrastructure to understand my own needs. I don’t have any solutions to the cloud of confusion looming over LS students; I don’t think that there’s a catch-all answer for the issues with the program. All I want is for LS to be seen for what it is: a beautiful, hot mess of misfit students whose advisors think that they all want to transfer into Media, Culture, and Communications. Perhaps this is the moment I put my Core Program education into practice and evoke a bit of wisdom from Socrates: “All I know is that I know nothing.” Email Sophia Di Iorio at


Beto’s Success Amounts to Pretty Privilege

By EMILY DAI Staff Writer Beto O’Rourke, tumbling in poll numbers and dwindling in fundraising figures, recently dropped out of the 2020 Democratic presidential primaries. After struggling to channel the momentum he garnered last year when he challenged Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) for his seat in the U.S. Senate, Beto announced, “we have to clearly see at this point that we do not have the means to pursue this campaign successfully.” Beto quitting the race seemed inevitable before it occurred, but his campaign launch was as optimistic as his demeanor. Looking at Beto’s scant resume — three terms in Congress and a failed

Senate run — it’s difficult to determine what exactly got him as far as he did. While some attribute his meteoric rise to him being “the next Obama,” it’s clear his popularity is partially due to the halo effect — his conventional attractiveness disproportionately garnered him media attention and public support. Beto’s unsuccessful but interesting campaign for Senate was what originally put him on the map. Millions of dollars from outside of Texas poured into his run and media outlets fawned over him. Beto raised more money than any Senate candidate in history. Supporters were taken with the young, “Kennedy-esque” Texan. Articles and Twitter accounts were created to discuss Beto’s undeniable charisma, six foot stance and above all, his attractive face. He skateboarded in a Whataburger parking lot; he was the bassist in a post-hardcore band; he said “f-ck” during his concession speech after his failed Senate campaign; a tweet about having sex with him went viral. Movements similar to Betomania have existed throughout American history. The halo effect is a bias wherein the physical attractive-

ness of a person, company or brand influences the observer’s thoughts about that entity’s character. This effect can be seen statistically — E.L. Thorndike demonstrated this after finding a high cross-correlation in military officers’ ratings in physical appearance, intelligence, leadership, loyalty and dependability. Political psychologists have posited that since we associate positive characteristics with attractive people, more votes will be cast for attractive politicians. This bias was famously demonstrated in the 1960 US presidential debate when elections first became televised. Those who watched the debate on TV preferred the young and dapper John F. Kennedy over the sickly and sweaty Richard Nixon, while those who listened to the debate thought Nixon had won. It’s perhaps this mania around Beto’s physical appearance that stuck the audacious idea in his head that he was somehow unique (when he himself has admitted that the government “at all levels is overly represented by white men”) and qualified to run for president. After losing to Senator Cruz, Beto entered the 2020 primary with tremen-

dous fanfare. He notably raised $6.1 million during the first 24 hours of fundraising. He was quickly endorsed by several Democrats and even praised by former President Barack Obama. His initial polling numbers suggested he would be a serious frontrunner — Beto polled at more than 10 percent according to some national polls. He announced his run for the White House in a cover story for Vanity Fair; an earnest, authentic Beto poses confidently on a country road, proclaiming, “Man, I’m just born to be in it.” This self-confidence and lack of an articulable reason for the need for his leadership gets at the heart of Beto’s campaign — one massive ego trip. It was Beto’s unfathomably large ego that led him to state he would not be dropping out of the presidential race back in August and challenge John Cornyn in a key Senate race because the Senate is simply “not good enough” for Beto. Despite these early victories and Beto’s unabashed faith in himself, Beto’s campaign was quickly derailed. Beto’s shtick of unnecessary urgency about milquetoast talking points while gesticulating furiously was charming

against Sen. Ted Cruz, but quickly proved less compelling against the slew of other Democratic contenders. His campaign was plagued with disorganization — Beto notably announced his candidacy before even hiring a campaign manager. Two key senior advisers who had worked on Beto’s Senate run and Sander’s 2016 presidential campaign unexpectedly quit. In the face of declining poll numbers and in a last-ditch attempt to resuscitate his campaign, Beto adopted needlessly divisive positions to attract media attention. However, all this did was further invalidate the idea that Beto would be a viable president. These failures quickly availed him of the initial support he had from his Senate race. The Beto craze early in his campaign serves as a reminder of the power of an attractive face and cool attitude. However, the sad end to his unequivocally pointless presidential run reminds us that good looks alone seldom land anyone a political office, no matter how much you feel you’re just “born to be in it.” Email Emily Dai at


Pursue Your Dreams, Not Your Parents’

By CHINENYE ONYEIKE Staff Writer Before college, I lived to make my parents happy. I allowed them to draw the outline of my professional future and it was my job to color it in. And when the picture drawn didn’t align with who I am as a person, speaking up against it felt terrifying. Telling my Nigerian mother that I wanted to study Media, Culture, and Communication instead of following in the rest of my family’s footsteps into the medical field served as my first step toward claiming my individuality. However, declaring my career path in a field foreign to my parents’ domain

of knowledge meant putting their pride in me on the line. As the oldest daughter in a Nigerian-American household, my parents set the bar for success pretty high. Although they weren’t strict, my parents instilled in me that my education needed to come first in order for success to follow. They never failed to remind me that I needed to set a good example for my siblings. To make them happy and to be a good role model, I told myself I had to be great no matter what. I worked tirelessly to do well in all my classes, make good connections with my teachers to ensure a great report and attend national leadership conferences. I was the poster child who took pride in her accomplishments, but I found it hard to take pride in myself. My extracurriculars gave me room to express myself; I took pride in my passions: dancing and writing. I made magic with my moves on a stage; the crowd cheering my name as I put my all into a routine completed me. And with a pen in my hand, my thoughts and ideas came to life on a piece of paper.

Through these outlets, I was able to genuinely put myself into something without receiving judgement or ridicule. Constructive criticism was always essential, but I never felt out of place in these environments. Upon arriving at NYU, I suppressed my passions and focused on becoming a doctor. I sat through pre-health seminars, allotted time in my schedule to practice subjects I struggled with and surrounded myself with other prehealth students to help myself feel motivated. My plan was to fake it until I made it. Slowly, I felt myself deteriorating as I rapidly lost interest in all my classes, which made it difficult for me to keep up with the workload. I dedicated hours of time to work that I couldn’t understand, and didn’t want to. My mind sunk into a dark hole that I couldn’t pull myself out of. A phone call with my mother served as a stepping stone out, because it allowed me to repave my career path based solely on my interests. My parents raised me to believe that pursuing medicine was the smartest choice to make, with support from my aunts, un-

cles and grandparents. My view of potential professions was narrowed and I dismissed any dream job I wanted that didn’t fall in line with practicality. But I realize now that practicality won’t lead me to success — passion will. I scared my parents with my new career path because, in their minds, I had entered unchartered territory. They knew nothing about the world of media and their hesitation to accept what I want to do with my life stemmed from not knowing if it would lead to success. Instead of having doubt and fear, I have used this as fuel to help maintain my passion. Since my first year, I have worked on my professional path and made it align with my talents and passions. I have chosen courses that allow me to contribute my own insight. I have joined organizations for women of color in media to expand my network and to increase my chances of gaining internships. Most importantly, I have put my all into my coursework. Switching majors strengthened my bond with my parents and I now feel comfortable expressing my individuality to them. Despite

their lack of familiarity with the media industry, my parents saw my accomplishments in and outside of NYU and that gave them the security they needed to be sure I had made the right decision. They show their support through helping me expand my network and telling me each day how proud they are of me; to hear my father tell his friends that he sees me landing an important job not only warms my heart but reminds me of his and my mother’s belief in me. When I visit home and hear my parents preparing my brother for his pre-college summer music program at Berklee and making plans to take my sisters to a dance camp in Italy, I recognize my parents’ growth. I take credit for them opening their minds to different careers for my siblings and me based on the talents they’ve seen us develop. They remind us to put our best foot forward on whatever road we decide to embark on and stop at nothing to help us reach our goal. Email Chinenye Onyeike at

Washington Square News | Opinion




The NYPD’s Subway Occupation Must End

By ASHA RAMACHANDRAN Contributing Writer A young black man, Adrian Napier, was sitting alone on the subway at the Franklin Avenue station in Brooklyn on Oct. 25. A gang of police officers assembled outside of the train, pointing their guns at him through the window. Adrian slowly lifted his hands in the air as passengers around him shouted and scrambled out of the line of fire. Moments later, the officers stormed the subway car with guns drawn and tackled the 19-year-old for alleged fare evasion and gun possession (no gun was ever recovered). A video of the incident went viral and was viewed millions of times, sparking nationwide criticism of the New York Police Department’s reckless and over-aggressive policing practices. Several more instances of police brutality in New York subway stations have been recorded over the past two weeks on social media, including attacks on Latino fruit vendors, homeless musicians playing their guitars, people resting on benches and black and brown youth. The common denominator is the NYPD’s targeting of marginalized and poor communities. The families of Ramarley Graham, Akai Gurley, Eric Garner and countless others are well aware of this; their loved ones’ encounters with the NYPD have brought endless heartbreak, loss and trauma to their communities and done absolutely nothing to make New York safer. On the contrary, police officers in this city have caused pain and destroyed lives and families for decades. The NYPD are notorious for targeting black and brown people. Who can forget New York’s own stop-and-frisk policy? An analysis by the New York Civil Liberties Union found that innocent New Yorkers have been subjected to police stops and street interrogations more than 5 million times since 2002, black and Latine communities being the primary targets of these tactics. Today, in the de Blasio era, the data on who the NYPD stops, frisks and uses force on show the victims are still overwhelmingly black and Latine. The militarization of the NYPD has also skyrocketed in recent years. In 2016, Mayor Bill de Blasio invoked the supposed “war on cops” to spend at least another $7.5 million on

Submitting to

military-style gear, including automatic ballistic helmets and vests, long guns, more powerful pepper spray and Tasers. “I have my own army in the NYPD, which is the seventh largest army in the world,” former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg boasted back in 2011. Given the NYPD’s long history of police brutality and misconduct, it is only right for New Yorkers to question the merits of increasing police presence in the city. Governor Andrew Cuomo is implementing a plan to install 500 new police officers in subway stations — in addition to the 2,500 already stationed there — which is estimated to cost the MTA an additional $260 million in operating costs over the next four years. For comparison, one ride on the subway costs $2.75 and the fine for fare evasion is $100. In other words, the NYPD would need to arrest 2.6 million New Yorkers in order to break even — more than a quarter of the city’s total population. The city’s initiatives are, in fact, not about lost revenue from fare evasion; rather, they are part of a concerted effort to criminalize poverty and homelessness, especially in communities of color. According to the Daily News, black and Latine New Yorkers make up 86% of all fare evasion arrests from April to June 2019. This stems from the deliberate placement of cops in low-income neighborhoods. Criticisms of the crackdown on fare evasion are loud and have been further amplified by massive protests and campaigns. Just last Friday, a demonstration by over 1,000 people took place in downtown Brooklyn, prompted by the viral videos of police violence in subway stations. Protesters called it “an emergency response” to these incidents. It was the MTA that worked with Cuomo to officially implement the transfer of 500 officers, a mix of NYPD, MTA, and Bridge and Tunnel officers, to 100 different fare evasion “hotspots.” The MTA has long been a proponent of criminalizing fare evaders; when Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance decided in June 2017 to end criminal prosecution of fare evaders in Manhattan, New York City Transit President Andy Byford partially blamed the decision for exacerbating the problem of fare evasion, telling reporters, “I think people heard that there would be less of a penalty and that that has led to more fare evasion.” Byford is peddling a long-disproven myth that being tough on crime actually leads to reduced crime, an idea that has been used to justify mass incarceration as well.

Even back in December 2018, Byford was eagerly concocting plans to crack down on fare evasion by developing “eagle teams” or MTA workers that ride buses with NYPD looking for fare evaders. He also suggested putting such teams near subway station entrances and asking police chiefs to deploy some of their 2,600 transit bureau officers to create fare evasion strike teams to catch and deter evaders. Byford and the MTA have been colluding with the NYPD to criminalize poor people and scapegoat them for the city’s problems. There is good reason for New Yorkers to be angry. Cops are rarely held accountable for misconduct and the over-policing of low-income — predominantly black and Latine — areas means that those who are most marginalized must bear the brunt of the NYPD’s brutality. What’s worse, special privilege is being afforded to these subway cops to bypass accountability even further — the MTA confirmed that subway cops will not be required to wear body cameras as all other officers in the NYPD are. An MTA spokesperson justified this by asserting that the new officers are not actually part of the NYPD and belong to a separate force for the transit agency. This is misleading because many of the officers come from the NYPD and their policing requires active collaboration with the agency, making them virtually indistinguishable. The lack of body cameras gives the subway cops even more leeway to act with impunity. This is especially ironic in light of recent City Hall initiatives to increase surveillance in dozens of subway stations by installing live camera feeds, as a part of their efforts to address homelessness. Addressing homelessness apparently means criminalizing, surveilling and subsequently arresting homeless people for merely existing in public spaces. Civilians are now subject to more scrutiny and mass surveillance than armed police officers employed by the government and funded by taxpayer money. The government is demanding that poor New Yorkers pay the inflated and ever-increasing subway fare. But the system itself barely functions and is plagued by inaccessibility, routine delays, failing technology and deteriorating infrastructure. These fare evasion campaigns are thinly-veiled efforts to persecute the city’s most vulnerable populations. New Yorkers shouldn’t stand for this any longer.


Courtesy Meals Shouldn’t Come at a Price Students recently reported having financial aid, previously awarded for scholarships or work-study, be redistributed to pay for usage of the Courtesy Meals Program — which provides food-insecure students $25 Dining Dollars and five meal swipes upon request, no questions asked. According to a student interviewed by WSN, the Courtesy Meals Program Coordinator was informed of NYU’s decision on the same day that the students had been. By the end of the week, the university changed its response, saying that students wouldn’t be charged after all. Though NYU has said it would resolve the issue, it is still unclear if it has been taken care of completely. What’s particularly troubling is that the university only took action after students complained. Regardless of the specifics, one can’t help but ask: why did any of this happen in the first place? And more so than why, what does this mean for students who depend upon the program to meet their needs? The Courtesy Meals Program was launched in 2016 and aimed to help students struggling with food insecurity by offering them 75 Dining Dollars, no questions asked. That amount was modified this year to 25 Dining Dollars and five meal swipes. Before the 2017-2018 academic year, Courtesy Meals was not publicized due to fears by NYU’s administration that it would be exploited by students. Because of this, the program was only used by 30 to 40 students per semester. Last academic year, though, the university began to promote the program, and the number of participants dramatically rose to 1,933. This highlights NYU’s widespread problem of food insecurity — a nationwide survey reports that over half of college students face this problem. More so than the issue of communication — or lack thereof — this incident puts the reputation of the Courtesy Meals Program at risk. Though the problem at hand has been resolved, the idea that NYU would charge its students without notifying them will have a chilling effect on those who might need this service in the future. Students might be less inclined to use the program in fear of future charge. Why call this program a “courtesy” if students’ usage depends on

a financial exchange? Beyond criticizing the university for its lapse in judgement regarding this temporary issue, this situation gives us another opportunity to think about how we deal with the problem of food insecurity, and how many of the solutions we have in place simply aren’t enough. The Courtesy Meals program itself was formed to give assistance to NYU students who cannot afford to pay for their meals; these students constitute over 20% of NYU’s student body. When NYU decided to charge students for Courtesy Meals, it made a significant statement about itself and its values. The university has a responsibility to do all it can for those in need within its community. When it introduced the Courtesy Meals Program, NYU promised to help its food-insecure students; when NYU took money from those students’ financial aid to pay for the food that it had said would be free, the university reneged on that promise. Regardless of whether or not the money has since been returned, the original action stands: NYU charged students for a service that they promised to provide for free. The recent incident highlights multiple issues with NYU’s administration. NYU’s failure to clearly communicate the redistribution of funds for Courtesy Meals and its decision to reverse its actions after being called out by students reaffirms the notion that NYU will not act in its students’ interest until students force them to reckon with their injustices. The failure to advertise Courtesy Meals in the first place also sheds light on NYU’s dismissal of lower-income, food-insecure students. NYU’s confusing actions with the Courtesy Meals Program is symptomatic of its inability to deal with food insecurity among the student population efficiently. The university’s past failures to promote the program plus its failure to communicate the redistribution of funds for participants show that the administration has serious apathy about the problem of food insecurity. These actions have an effect on how students perceive the resources made available for their use. The university has an obligation to stick to the promises it’s made — and taking aid from students should never be the solution.

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Email Asha Ramachandran at

SEND MAIL TO: 75 THIRD AVE. #SB07, NEW YORK, N.Y. 10003 OR EMAIL: OPINION@NYUNEWS.COM WSN welcomes letters to the editor, opinion pieces and articles relevant to the NYU community, or in response to articles. Letters should be less than 450 words. All submissions must be typed or emailed and must include the author’s name, address and phone number. Members of the NYU community must include a year and school or job title. WSN does not print unsigned letters or editorials. WSN reserves the right to reject any submission and edit accepted submissions in any and all ways. With the exception of the staff editorial, opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and our publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them.

Washington Square News






Judo at NYU, a Balancing Act By MARIA LEVINE Staff Writer Judo, a martial arts sport with Japanese roots that can be traced back to the late 1800s, has created a small but vibrant community here at NYU. Coached by Senseis Frank Colonnese and Devin Cohen, the judo team practices at Palladium Athletic Facility two nights a week and fights in a handful of competitions throughout the semester. The competitions vary slightly, with some competitors coming from private clubs, while other matches are against solely collegiate teams. Altogether, the matches allow athletes of varying skill sets to compete at novice or advanced levels. Judo can be easily misunderstood by outsiders. It gets grouped together with other martial arts disciplines such as karate or taekwondo. But in reality, it has more in common with wrestling. “Judo is a mat sport or a grappling sport,” Colonnese said. “Throws, holds, arm locks — that’s how you win. No punching or kicking.” Almost every member of the team discovered the sport in a different way, some starting in college and some having competed at younger levels. Stern junior Nomunbileg Sukhbold and sophomore Annette Kim each joined the team in their first year at NYU. “I dabbled in other martial arts before,” Kim said. “But I think I like judo the best.”

Judo was originally introduced as a male-only event at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo. The 2020 Olympics — also in Tokyo — will be the first time that the International Judo Federation will send an equal number of male and female competitors. Tandon sophomore Adeola Akin has been competing in the sport since she was 15. She commented on her experiences as a woman in a sport that has long been dominated by men. “The first time I was like, ‘I’m the only woman here! I’m gonna get hurt,’” Akin said. “But honestly, most guys are pretty accommodating. I think once you build up your confidence and your strength, you get the equal footing to the other people. But it’s definitely more inclusive, and I’ve always appreciated that about the sport.” The name judo consists of two Japanese characters: Ju, meaning gentle and Do, meaning way. A common misconception about judo is the idea that the sport is inherently violent and aggressive when really it is heavily based on technical skill. “One thing people say is that softness beats hardness,” Sukhbold said. “Which means that you use the other person’s energy against them. And so it’s not using brute force to fight the person — it’s using as little power as possible. You’d think that most of the time the larger person would be dominant but as long as you have the technique, even the smallest person could throw someone twice as large as them.”


An NYU Judo club instructor demonstrates in front of the club in the wrestling room in Palladium Athletic Facility. The NYU Judo club is open to all students, faculty, staff and alumni.

It is a sport largely grounded in respect, every step of the way. Even in practice, members of the team bow to their fellow athletes before running through drills and technique demonstrations. “It’s respectful,” Akin said. “You’re

not just like pummeling people. You pummel people and then you say thank you.” Judo is a sport of balance. At NYU, this balance is applied not only to honing its skills, but also to forming bonds with one another. While the team con-

sists of students from various schools, majors and skill levels, they all choose to spend their time together, competing in a discipline they love. Email Maria Levine at

Is Load Management the Future of the NBA?

Load management is causing tension between the NBA and its fans.

By ARVIND SRIRAM Staff Writer Last season, Kawhi Leonard made headlines after he sat out 22 games due to “load management,” opting to rest his body while he was still recovering from the quad injury that sidelined him for much of the 2017-18 NBA season.

He went on to help the Toronto Raptors win their first title in team history, all while leading the league in minutes played during the playoffs. This season, the Los Angeles Clippers forward has brought the issue back into the mainstream conversation, after sitting out his team’s nationally-televised game against the Milwaukee Bucks on


Wednesday night — for the second time this season. Many fans and pundits have criticized Leonard and the Clippers organization for his sitting out so often and so early in the season. ESPN analyst Doris Burke even called it “ridiculous” and said that the NBA has a problem on its hands. Competitively, resting Leonard makes

sense for the Clippers. Last season, it was proven that not playing him in back-toback games in order to keep him healthy for the postseason worked for Toronto. The Raptors still managed to go 17-5 without him and a well-rested Leonard exploded in the playoffs, averaging 30.5 points per game en route to the championship. It seems the Clippers, a favorite to win the title this year, are implementing this same strategy of load management in hopes of replicating the Raptors’ success. While this may work out in the long run for the Clippers, many fans are displeased with the plan. When Leonard sits, thousands of fans who paid to go see him play are left feeling disappointed and angry. On Wednesday, fans were critical of the decision to sit Leonard since it robbed them of the chance to watch him face off against Bucks star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo — a rematch from last season’s Eastern Conference Finals. Load management is creating a clash between teams and NBA fans — the Clippers want to preserve their star player’s condition as well as they can in order to have a higher chance at winning the championship, while fans want the high-value entertainment they pay for each night. Many argue that other stars in the past have played all 82 games without rest and that Leonard is soft for sitting out. Michael Jordan, for example, missed a total of just six games in his six cham-

pionship seasons with the Chicago Bulls. Jordan, currently the owner of the Charlotte Hornets, was recently in the headlines for comments to his players, reportedly saying “You’re paid to play 82 games.” In 2017, the NBA implemented a rule prohibiting teams from resting healthy players in high-profile nationally televised games, attempting to placate its fans and lose as little money as possible. The league can pass a $100,000 fine against teams who break the rule. However, this rule has not proven effective so far, as the Raptors were able to rest Leonard for 22 games last season without retribution. In the two games Leonard has missed this season, the Clippers cleared his absence with the league, classifying his rest as injury-related. Even if the NBA were to fine the Clippers, billionaire owner Steve Ballmer would likely not worry about the $100,000 fine if Leonard’s rest led to an NBA championship. In order to fix this problem, the NBA must not attempt to force players to play, as that has not worked so far. Instead, the league must look to the root of the problem, the length of the regular season. However, decreasing the amount of games would lead to a revenue loss for the league. Without a clear solution as of yet, it seems that the issue of load management will continue to be a talking point for a while. Email Arvind Sriram at

Washington Square News | Sports


Swimming and Diving Teams Win NYU Fall Open By BENJAMIN MICHAEL DAVIS Deputy Sports Editor Men’s Fencing The men’s fencing team opened its season at the Temple University Open last Sunday. While there was no team scoring, many Violets were successful. In the foil, LS first-year Owen McKenna and Stern first-year Miles Field finished first and third in their first collegiate tournament. Stern senior Eric Zobel placed 10th in the event. CAS junior Sam Bekker finished eighth in epee, and five Violets took home top-10 spots in saber. Tandon first-year Darren Yen was also competing in his first collegiate tournament, and he came in third. Gallatin junior Zachary Schindler, Stern first-year Nick Han, CAS sophomore Bradley Kaufman and Stern first-year Jamie Ren took home sixth through ninth place in the event. The Violets next tournament will be against Columbia University in the Top of the Park Clash on Thursday. Women’s Volleyball The Violets entered the UAA Championship in Chicago as the fourth seed this weekend. NYU then went 1-2 on the tournament, sweeping the University of Rochester and being swept by Carnegie Mellon University and Case Western Reserve University. The tournament opened on Friday, when the Violets were swept 25-15, 25-15, 25-17 by Carnegie Mellon. Later on Friday, NYU beat Rochester 25-18, 25-12, 25-15. The Violets only trailed once in the match in the third set. Team leaders included Stern first-year Haley Holz with 12 kills, Stern first-year Nicole Dao with 18 assists and CAS junior Jacqueline Kupeli with 16 digs. In their one game on Saturday, the Violets fell to Case Western Reserve 2523, 25-16, 29-27. This could be NYU’s last match of the season, as they wait for a potential ECAC tournament bid. Men’s Swimming Both the men’s and women’s swimming & diving teams hosted the NYU Fall Invitational against Princeton University, Stevens Institute of Technology and Drew University this weekend, and both NYU teams won their meet. Day one of the men’s side was on Friday. NYU won the 200-yard freestyle and 400-yard medley relays and three individual races. CAS sophomore Graham Chatoor won the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 4:37.65. Stern sophomore Jacob Haines won the 200-yard individual medley in 1:58.05, and Stern sophomore John Piccinic won the 50-yard freestyle in 21.59.

On day two, Tandon junior Josh Rine won the 200-yard backstroke in 1:54.35. Chatoor won the 1650-yard freestyle in 16:02.69, and Tandon junior Macarthy Adelman won the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 47.73 seconds. In dives, Rory Myers sophomore Cole Vertin won the three-meter board with a score of 323.25. The Violets return to the pool on Saturday, Nov. 23, when the divers travel to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and the swimmers take on Johns Hopkin University at home. Women’s Swimming The women’s swimming and diving team also won the NYU Fall Invitational this weekend. On Friday, NYU won the 200-yard freestyle and 400-yard medley relays. Individually, Rory Meyers senior Jaime Robinson took home the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:08.99. Stern senior Honore Collins won the 200-yard individual medley in 2:10.02, and CAS first-year Jessica Flynn won the 50-yard freestyle in 24.8 seconds. On Friday night, CAS senior Carmen White won both boards in dives, scoring 290.55 in the one-meter and 265.55 in the three-meter. On Saturday, CAS sophomore Ashley Brrodnick won the 1650-yard freestyle in 17:35.2 and the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 2:07.12. NYU’s next meet will be on Saturday, Nov. 23 when the divers head to U.S. Merchant Marine and the swimmers take on Johns Hopkins at home. Wrestling The Violets finished ninth of 12 teams in the Ned McGinley Invitational on Saturday. NYU finished with 51.5 points and two topfive finishers. SPS first-year Jason Geyer went 5-1 in the 141-pound bracket and finished with four pins, while SPS sophomore Kade Loughney also went 5-1 in the 165-pound bracket. This brought both of the wrestlers to the third-place match in their respective brackets, but neither could compete due to an NCAA rule preventing a seventh match. As a result, both finished in fourth place. NYU returns to the mat on Friday when they compete in the Roger Williams University Tournament. Men’s Cross Country The men’s cross country team sent six runners to the ECAC Championship race on Saturday. NYU finished in second with 69 points, seven behind St. Joseph’s College - Long Island. Eighteen teams ran the 8k course. CAS first-year Jon Diaz was the Violets’ fastest runner, finishing in 10th place with a time of 28:32.7. Tisch soph-

Stern Senior Honore Collins swims for NYU Women’s Swimming & Diving team.

omore Malcolm Silver-Van Meter placed 12th. Steinhardt junior Pat Xu was 13th. CAS junior Oliver Jacob finished in 15th, and Steinhardt senior Yuji Cusick took home 24th place. The Violets’ next meet is the NCAA Atlantic Region Championship on Saturday.


Monday Musings: On the Ducks, NBA Kicks and the Knicks’ French Connection

Women’s Soccer NYU lost a close match to Brandeis University on Saturday. The 1-0 game was tied until the 62nd minute, when Brandeis sophomore Daria Bakhtiari scored the lone goal in the match. Despite the low score, the Violets were outshot 17-11. Stern junior Meghan Marhan made eight saves, as both teams finished 11-7 and 2-5 in UAA play on the year. The Violets now wait for a possible ECAC Tournament bid, which will be announced on Monday. Men’s Soccer Men’s soccer also played what could be their last match of the year on Saturday, losing 2-0 to Brandeis. This game was closer than the score let on. Brandeis scored its goals in the 63rd and 77th minutes, and led in shots 14-7 and shots on goal 6-3. The Violets finished the regular season with a record of 7-7-2 and 3-3-1 in UAA play. The men’s season is now also contingent on whether they receive an ECAC Tournament bid, which will be announced Monday. Men’s Basketball The Violets opened their season with a 76-62 loss to Oberlin College on Saturday. NYU shot 50 percent in the first half and led 35-31 going into the break. A 9-0 Oberlin run early in the second half was too much for the Violets to overcome. Stern first-year Jaedon Khubani finished with 13 points, and SPS senior Jimmy Martinelli led the team with seven rebounds. The Violets next hit the court on Wednesday when they take on Hobart College. Women’s Basketball NYU beat St. Joseph’s College - Brooklyn in their season opener on Saturday. Five players scored in double figures in the 98-66 win. The Violets were down 17-7 in the first quarter, but a 15-0 run changed that, and they never relinquished their lead. Game leaders included CAS first-year Brooklyn Shelton with 21 points, CAS senior Annie Barret with 12 assists and Steinhardt sophomore Meghan McLaughlin with nine rebounds. NYU’s next game is at Farmingdale State University on Tuesday. Email Benjamin Michael Davis at



By BELA KIRPALANI Sports Editor Sabrina Ionescu Is the G.O.A.T. On Saturday night, the University of Oregon women’s basketball team beat the U.S. women’s basketball team 93-86 in front of a crowd of 11,530. It was the first time in 20 years that an NCAA program defeated the women’s national team. Talk about making history. The Ducks, led by Sabrina Ionescu, have put the basketball world on notice for this season and I, for one, am so ready. Ionescu is the best player in college basketball at the moment. On Saturday, she went off for 30 points and seven assists. Last year, she averaged 31 points, 12 rebounds and 17 assists per game on her way to becoming the all-time NCAA leader in triple-doubles, making her the best in both men’s and women’s college basketball history. Also, Ionescu is basically a lock for the No. 1 pick in this year’s WNBA Draft, which is held by the New York Liberty. If Saturday’s performance is a sneak preview, fans better be excited to see the G.O.A.T. tear it up at the Barclays Center next season. Check Out These Kicks I’m going to preface this by saying I am in no way a sneakerhead. However, by virtue of closely following the NBA and WNBA over the years, I have taken a slight interest in the sneakers that the world’s top basketball players wear on and off the court. While stars like PJ Tucker and Sue Bird are known for their extensive collections of kicks, Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie is changing the game one pair of shoes at a time. Dinwiddie always has fire on his feet. He started his own sneaker company in 2018 after none of the big names would sign him for a shoe deal. Last season, he wore a different pair of personalized kicks for each game. Dinwiddie designs each pair himself, often paying tribute to cultural icons like Nipsey Hussle, remembering historical figures

like Harriet Tubman or showing off his own personality. Dinwiddie then auctions off each pair of game-worn shoes and gives the money to charity. And for each pair of sneakers that get sold on his website, he gives about 25% of the earnings to charity as well. My personal favorite pair of kicks so far is inspired by Pablo Picasso and Jean-Michel Basquiat. The detail is pretty sick, if I do say so myself. The French Prince of New York I am officially declaring this the year of Frank Ntilikina. Toward the end of last season, many Knicks fans were getting fed up with the French point guard. After being drafted with the No. 8 pick in 2017, Ntilikina struggled to meet expectations in his first two years with New York. He averaged less than six points per game and was often too slow to make decisions offensively. On Friday night, however, the 21-year-old seemed to finally take that next step in his development in the win over the Dallas Mavericks. While he may not have stuffed the stat sheet, it was clear that he was the Knicks’ best player on the court. He provided his usual consistency and effort on defense, recording a game-high four steals and a team-high three blocks, and he also looked more comfortable on the ball, dishing out four assists and aggressively pursuing his own shots. For a team that has struggled to figure out its starting rotation so far this season, Ntilikina looks like the Knick’s best option for point guard, and all he needs is to be given enough time on the floor to shine. While he is not likely to be the team’s top scorer every night, the French Prince makes everyone around him better with his resilient defense and improved passing. The Sports Girl is a weekly sports column that will feature a girl’s take on sports. Yes, a girl. Yes, on sports. Email Bela Kirpalani at

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