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UWC-USA

FEBRUARY 2013

SECRETS BEHIND THE SELECTION PROCESS Shobhit Kumar (USA-MD ’14)

THIS WEEK PAGE 3 CAMPUS NEWS Learn all the behind-the-scene info on the US UWC selection process, the results of assassins, and the CLAD cultural day!

PAGE 6 WORLD NEWS Flip right to page 6 to hear about everything from Carnival around the world to the gigantic monster snowstorm in the Northeast. Don’t worry about missing the news - we’ve got all the highlights covered in the World News section! PAGE 10 OPINION Hear the Literati staff’s opinion on everything from the Oscars coming up this Sunday to horse meat that has recently been found in food!

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When you look at your fellow US students at this school, you may sometimes wonder to yourself, “why was this person admitted?” Each of the 50 students who hail from different states across the country are eclectic and unique in their own special way. To get some insight on the selection process, I talked to Bill Kolb, a co-chair of the US Selection Committee and briefly chatted with other members. From Friday to Sunday, the US Selection Committee was on campus to narrow down 600 applicants to 120, who will then receive interviews. Bill described the atmosphere during this first process as not tense; laughter is sometimes even heard when funny essays are read. Every application this past weekend was read at least twice and then graded on a 1-3 scale (3 being the highest). After this, the applications which received two “3s” were given first priority for interviews. What do the committee members

look for in a candidate? Wellroundedness, initiative, and the most crucial: the ability to thrive in a UWC environment. These next few weeks, interviews will be conducted in 7-9 sites across the country with UWC graduates and committee members present. Interviewers are selected on the basis of time and interest and graduates are selected on the basis of location. An interesting fact is that the possibility of Skype Interviews t o s ave m o n ey i s b e i n g considered for the upcoming years. In my opinion, that isn’t preferable, but it’s a possibility nonetheless. The Committee is composed of both alumni from UWCs and professionals in the field of education. They have two full meetings a year and will get together again in April to select the 50 Davis Scholars, which is more intense and is accompanied by tons of sticky notes. After debating and selecting the 50 students, (continued on page 3) 1


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A MESSAGE FROM THE EDITORS Dear Readers, Canada might just have some kind of culture, and CLAD which addressed the juxtaposition Another cultural show down and for first years, of joyous people and the perils of imperialism. 3 more to come and for second years, finished 5 out of 5 cultural shows down, but far more for our time here. Let us not remark on the of the year still to come. implications this has for time second years have left on this campus, but rather remark on the Thanks for reading. great times we’ve had at all 5 cultural shows during the time here. Each cultural show is Until Next Time, unique. In END, we saw techno dancing and Patrick on behalf of the Literati Editors what a cultural show might be like, in AND, dancing redefined, and in MAAD an example of the commonalities cultures might have despite their great differences. This year we saw NAD which proved to us that the U.S. and

LITERATI STAFF EDITORS Patrick Drown USA-MA ’13

Lara Norgaard USA-CO ’13

WRITERS Abraham Amador Mexico ’13

Edgar Jaramillo USA-CA ’14

Adrian Jennings South Africa ’14

Shobhit Kumar USA-MD ’14

Arissa Moreno Ruiz Peru ’14

Carlin RIng USA-IA ’14

Emily Venturi Italy ’14

Valentin Herrgesell Austria ’13

Caetano Hanta- Davis USA-VT ’14

FACULTY SPONSOR: PARRIS BUSHONG

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Bieke Bekker The Netherlands ’14

Alexandra Hemmer Singapore ’14

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CAMPUS NEWS (from page 1) everyone’s name is written on a sticky note and placed next to a sign of the school that was their first choice. Then, sticky notes are moved around to different schools to accommodate the number of spaces each school has for US students. Out of the 50 students, 25 are female and 25 are male in order to maintain a “balanced social structure.”

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Bill served as the Director of Admission at the University of Florida and first learned about the UWC movement during a presentation at the IB headquarters in Cardiff. During that same trip, he toured Atlantic College, fell in love, later joined the Committee, and even began a scholarship program for UWCers at UF. Bill returns year after year because he strongly believes that he is able to make the world better for his children and grandchildren. All of us have gone through rigorous selection processes to be here, and because of this, Bill offers one piece of advice: “You all are the kind of students that most universities cherish. Don’t stress about college!”

ASSASSINS

usually consisted of bright water guns or small bottles. The reason for playing this game of “Assassins” was CLAD week. While we tried to ‘kill’ each other within a cartel structure for fun, it is a serious issue in the CLAD region. The most famous example is the ongoing drug war in Mexico but many other countries have comparable problems and many lives have got lost already. The game was a way to bring it to the general attention. Still, even though it is a very serious topic, the game was very amusing as well. Just one day in, paranoia reigned and people only trusted their cartel members. The classic drug cartel structure was followed quite closely with often one or two evil genii on top, some killers and also people gathering intelligence. Cartel C for example kept close track of all the information they had, to figure out the structure of the game. This was supposedly iniated by Dana B. (USA-WA ’13) who was one of the many taking this game very seriously. Especially with people getting shot at while using the bathroom or taking a shower, it got very intense. The most common used way was just hiding until the target entered the view. Mikaela (USA-VT ’13) tried a very different approach, using psychological warfare as a main strategy and eventually ending up surprising Fini (Austria ’14) at 2 AM.

The whole set-up as a kind of simulation

Bieke Bekker (The Netherlands ’14)

Although assassinating people doesn’t really seem to fit in our mission statement, it is a popular pastime at UWC-USA. Especially in this past week, it was more of a rule than an exception to see people sneaking around corners with weapons hidden behind their back. These weapons though JUST READ IT.

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game did work especially well in the last days. The last ones standing were the most sly, evil killers. About 10 people ran around the school in the middle of mobs only, locked their rooms all the time and were just generally at their paranoid top. The atmosphere got increasingly tense until finally a winner came out: Mai (Israel ’13). This is probably as close as we can get to the terrible reality of cartel violence but it is a good way to better understand the terror of living in fear all the time and the impact of this problem in the CLAD region.

More Than a Show, More Than a Night Arissa Moreno Ruiz (Peru ’14)

CLAD week has come to an end. For some of us, it was our first experience being part of a cultural show; for others, this will be the last time they participate in or witness a show of this nature in our school. Even though the

experience has been different between firsties and second years, we all have turned this event into an important part of our UWC journey, and furthermore, into something worth remembering in our lives in general. All the hours of rehearsals, the repetitive auditions, the brotherhood and the unity between the members of our region made this show a great opportunity for outsiders to see what we are made of and what we are capable of. Coming from a very diverse region where there is no pattern of behavior, culture social life or traditions, it is difficult to gather all these features and sum them up in one week. This was one of the major challenges for CLADers. We highlighted all the stereotypes: the dinner allowed people to see that CLAD has delicious food and the environment demonstrated that we are very emotive and welcoming individuals; moreover, the show displayed that we are a region with skillful dancers and colorful personalities. But at the same time, we went against the misconceptions and common beliefs, we showed the other face of CLAD: the one that not many remember, the one in which we are an organized and integrated Photo credit: Katherine Cutts Dougherty

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micro-community in the world with lots of diverse problems in each one of our countries, but united by the desire of collective progress and development. Two hours of singing, dancing, acting and speaking out our minds are not enough for manifesting our differences and similarities in their broad sense, but they are a vivid proof of our multi-diversity. Maybe, some of the spectators could not perceive the authentic reflection of our region or the paradoxical paradise that we live in during the show, but they got to see at least our substance. Many of us are glad the show, and all the stress it brings with it to our lives, is completely over. However, I bet that a considerable amount of CLADers will miss dedicating their weekends or their hours after check to have a perfect show to offer to our classmates and guests. All the activities (not only the show), but also the new format of Global Issues, Cartel Assassin’s, Loving in The Tobago, Dance Fun, Party in the Carnival style have shown our capacity to innovate structures and mentalities. The fact of spending so many hours of our day together has brought us closer and has strengthened our ties. We did our best, and showed our best too. Now, we are all gathering together to watch it and enjoy the fruits of our hard labor and dedication.

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WORLD NEWS CARNIVAL AROUND THE WORLD Emily Venturi (Italy ’14)

Carnival is the art of transforming one’s life for a week. Across the entire world, Carnival represents a great moment of happiness and celebration allowing people to discover what they have in common and encourages them to celebrate their differences. During this period thousands of people, children in particular, try to forget all their problems and difficulties, and engage in fun dances and parades. Transgression and freedom are the key ingredients of Carnival. Carnival celebrations occur mainly in Catholic countries in February during the week preceding Lent, a forty-day period before Easter when Christians give up one of their favourite foods or pleasures. The biggest celebrations take place in the Caribbean, South America and Europe. Every country and city celebrates this festivity differently, proudly emphasizing different characteristics of their particular culture. Starting off with the Carnival in Venice, first recorded in 1268, we notice the extreme elegance and tradition that invade San Marco’s square in the centre of the northern-Italian city. One of the most important events is the contest for the best mask, placed at the last weekend of the Carnival. A jury of international costume and fashion designers votes for "La Maschera più bella". The Venetian Carnival is one of the oldest Carnival celebrations, and is still the biggest annual event for the city, attracting tourists from worldwide.

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Photo Credit: Marino Fukanoshi (Japan ’14)

Moving to the dynamic Caribbean, in Trinidad & Tobago, the Carnival season lasts months and culminates in large celebrations in Port of Spain (the capital of Trinidad), on the Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. Bright colours and costumes parade down the streets, celebrating and enjoying the best month of the year, as enthusiastically shown in many CLAD performances. However, the biggest Carnival (and the best one as Silvia would tell you), is in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, with roughly two million people in the streets everyday. The typical Rio Carnival is filled with colourful floats, eccentric masks and adornments. Arissa Moreno Ruiz (Peru ’14) underscores how Carnival in Peru is more than a commercial and colourful celebration, it is a social phenomenon, gathering people to eat a big feast together and discuss politics, economics and social aspects of their country. 6


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No matter where you come from or where you live, Carnival always manages to brighten up your day and invade your home with colours and happiness, ready to celebrate and enjoy being different and breaking all stereotypes and cultural barriers.

MONSTER SNOWSTORM IN THE NORTHEAST Edgar Jaramillo (UWC-CA ’14)

Looks like Mother Nature just will not leave the Northeast alone. Just after Hurricane Sandy said goodbye, the same states she affected were greeted by a heavy snowstorm, better known to the world as the Monster Snowstorm. A Blizzard Warning system was activated on February 9th, showing that the affected areas went from New England to Michigan and slightly beyond. The mildly-affected areas were met with up to eighteen inches of snow while the worst conditions gave two and a half to three feet of snow. Much caution was given to motorists along many routes with a weather warning ranging from heavy rain to snowfall, with certain iced paths. Students were typically given a few days off school to avoid challenging journeys and unwanted accidents. This, however, seemed to be the only positive outcome of the snowstorm with children rejoicing over not having to attend classes, just like when Hurricane Sandy struck.

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showed that Montezuma would experience three consecutive days of snowfall in a week, one of which would consist of heavy snowfall. In this last week leading up to CLAD, we experienced a sudden nighttime snowfall on what the weather forecast said would be a sunny day. But then again, that most probably has less to do with the snowstorm than it has to do with Montezuma’s unpredictable weather! Unless, of course, we’re being affected because we’re a mountainous area! Other than that, there just isn’t a way to tackle with Mother Nature’s decisions at the moment, but our thoughts and concerns do go out to family and friends in the Northeast! Stay safe everyone – stay safe and warm!

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Though we, here at UWC-USA, are definitely not an affected area or in the North East for that matter, we too have been experiencing a bit of sudden snowfalls, haven’t we? As soon as the news about the Monster Snowstorm broke out, the weather forecast JUST READ IT.

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The New Face on the Nuclear Scene Adrian Jennings (South Africa ’14)

On February 12th, just hours before US President Barrack Obama gave his state-of-theunion address, North Korea executed its third nuclear test at the country’s Punggye-ri test facility. This came in defiance of international sanctions and threat of punishment, even from supposed allies China. South Korea’s defense ministry says the seismic impact of the blast indicated a power equivalent to 6-7 kilotons of TNT, compared with 2-6 kilotons in 2009, when North Korea last carried out a nuclear test. North Korean sources report that the bomb is also smaller, lighter and more powerful than those tested in 2009. Coupled with the development of the Unha-3 rocket, one of which put a satellite into space in December, the progress of the country towards assembling functioning warheads is more advanced than ever. The successful test has caused concern among nations of the world for many reasons: it brings North Korea closer to having an effective arsenal of nuclear weapons, it indicates that the http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/15/north-korea-morenuclear-tests

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new regime under Kim Jong-un will not attempt to move in a different direction from that of his father and grandfather, it shows that sanctions and international pressure alone cannot necessarily halt the progress of military nuclear development, it bodes ill in terms of ecological harm, and it indicates further tests to come in the near future. The test itself came as a surprise, as the actions and politics of North Korea are effectively closed off to the world. The occurrence does show that North Korea is making successful progress in its aims of arming itself against the West, though the exact intentions if the country ever reaches nuclear armament are unclear.

METEOR SHOWER IN CHELYABINSK RUSSIA Caetano Hanta-Davis (USA-VT ’14)

Could you imagine walking to work or driving to school when all of a sudden a humongous fireball races through the sky and emits a blinding light spanning kilometers out in every direction? That is what occurred in the city of Chelyabinsk, Russia on Friday, February 15th. A meteorite weighing ten metric tons entered the earth’s atmosphere and broke apart into dozens of large pieces 30-50 km above the ground. The meteorite released a few kilotons of energy, which is the magnitude of a small atomic bomb. The meteorite caused an estimated 1,200 injuries in the area, and caused a shock wave that shattered windows, shook buildings, decreased cell reception, and caused car alar ms to go off. Although this extraterrestrial object presented imminent

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danger, no deaths were reported. The governor in Chelyabinsk said the event caused more than $30 million in damage to the city. A few local schools were evacuated and around 200 of the 1,200 injuries are reported to have been children.

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for in the appearance of the meteorite fragments in The Guardian on Monday. According to her the only true meteorite identification test is to “examine the specimen for oxygen isotopes.” Depending on the size and quality of the fragment, sellers are making money online, especially on Ebay. Some Russian websites are even selling pieces for as much as 6,500. At least those affected by this shocking event can look positively and turn this unusual occurrence into a profitable venture.

This phenomenon occurred 16 hours before 2012 DA14, the record closest asteroid to earth, was scheduled to pass earth. Although the two occurences are not related due to their different orbits, it makes us wonder when the next meteorite will hit, and maybe if it will be in our hometowns. If the meteorite had hit the earth’s atmosphere only a few minutes earlier, it could have easily landed in Northern Europe or anywhere else around the world. The difference between asteroids and meteors is that asteroids are large rocky objects that float in space, while meteors actualy hit the earth’s atmosphere and burn up, while meteorites hit the earth’s surface. After the event in Chelyabinsk, researchers, scientists, private space agencies and NASA are looking to develop state-of-the-art detection technology to identify when extraterrestrial objects will hit the earth. This meteor shower in Russia has created an interesting phenomenon, a so called “gold rush” for the meteorite fragments. Even though many have warned not to go near the meteorites, others have gone searching for the fragments, looking to make money. Dr. Natalie Starskey of the Open University even gave some tips on what to look JUST READ IT.

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OPINION OSCARS Edgar Jaramillo (USA-CA ’14)

The Oscars, an award show where beautiful people who star in movies with a lot of money congregate (commas to make clear?) with less beautiful people who edit or write songs for movies with a lot of money in order to celebrate their combined greatness, not unlike the Conference in Whales that’s going down this week (god knows how they’re going to keep that thing from eating them while they’re holding their meetings and such). Seth MacFarlane, yes the dude who created Family Guy and took it too far in creating the Cleveland Show, will be hosting this year. Now, the people who run this thing, and their subordinates who push the “BLEEP” button are nervous whenever anyone other than Billy Crystal is hosting. One recalls James Franco co-hosting with Anne Hathaway where Goblin Junior was what one would call stoned out of his mind. But that pales in comparison to what the censors are fearing from MacFarlane this coming Sunday. To put things into perspective, this is the voice of Peter and Stewie Griffin, he made a HITLER joke on national television in an event that is more a formality than anything else. As disappointing as it may be, I don’t expect him to get too raunchy during the program. The Oscars are a generally tasteful show. Last year, when Sacha Baron Cohen wanted to show up dressed as his character from The Dictator, it was extremely difficult to get approval from the Academy. Cohen repaid their trust by spilling the alleged ashes of Kim Jong Il all over Ryan Seacrest, earning himself an JUST READ IT.

unofficial blacklisting, as is Adrien Brody for frenching Halle Berry after he won for The Pianist. MacFarlane is still a young upstart by Academy standards, as he only made his first feature film, Ted, this past year. He'll have to walk a very fine line if he ever wants to get invited back, he doesn't have Billy Crystal's Rodeo Drive street cred.

HORSE BURGER Carlin Ring (USA-IA ’14)

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed or not, but generally speaking, the meat options available in the cafeteria are beef, chicken, pork, and occasionally turkey or fish. One option that you probably won’t find is horse meat. This is a fairly common absence in many places around the world, especially in the United States and Europe. However, the European Union is finding that their meat isn’t quite as beef oriented as they thought it was. Last Friday a Europe-wide scandal over horse meat in products labeled beef spread even further, with France beginning their own investigations in addition to the three British arrests that have already been made. The 2,501 tests carried out so far have only yielded 29 positive results involving seven products and five suppliers, but that’s still too many according to the UK’s Food Standards Agency. For a while it wasn’t thought to be a matter of health. Horse meat isn’t inherently bad for you after all, it’s more the fact that people weren’t aware of what was in their food that was the problem. However, it’s now been found that, at least in France, the horse meat in the beef may contain an equine painkiller that is harmful to 10


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humans. This, as you might imagine, creates a bit of a problem. So far, horse meat has been found in products located in Britain, France, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, and Ireland, and while three arrests have been made there is difficulty in tracking down exactly where the horse meat came from. One supplier of beef may sell to multiple distributers and one distributer will buy from multiple suppliers and these can be all over Europe, creating a problem when you have half a dozen governments trying to sort out the same issue. Of course, the levels of painkiller, or bute, that have been found would require a person to eat roughly five hundred burgers per day to produce negative side effects, but it isn’t something that people take lightly. Do not fear, steps are being taken to tighten things up nicely, with the Food Standards Agency ordering 100% testing of horse carcasses for bute and it is hoped that this will help to regulate the legitimate horse slaughter in the United Kingdom. As for the illegitimate, well we’ll just have to wait and see.

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the FLIPSIDE BY THE INFAMOUS AND CLASSY VALENTIN HERRGESELL

Attention Godless Sodomites, Another week has passed and once-again it's time for your Thursday-Tittle-Tattle, your weekly rumor ride, your gossip girl, theFLIPSIDE. Last week was Valentine's Day and some of you voiced their disappointment about the way we covered this particular event*. While I normally don't care about criticism - my suggestion box is a shredder - because I love you, this time I'll present you with theFLIPSIDE's Post Valentine's Day Coverage. While I was busy taking out my date - see picture - CLAD people organized a "Tobago Love" service. While I don't know what Tobago love is, after last Thursday I'm pretty sure I don't wanna experience it. Seriously guys! You could have at least offered some red roses... You all know what Valentine's Day is all about - Love. Or sometimes just pure naughtiness, right Malte? Love can be found in many different ways. A cute one - can't think of any right now, a weird one - Stephen (!), honestly girl, I did not see that coming - and besides other a predictable one Santi strikes again, this time in Mauritius. But love can be more than just a UWC flick. UWC Atlantic for instance collected a list of couples which came together during their time at UWC and ended up getting married. While I'd hesitate to make any predictions here, we have plenty of candidates to return to the 10th with a little junior in tow. Unfortunately I have a word limit so I cannot talk about everyone - Julius, Javier, your turn is next week. Also if anyone is wondering, Adrian has provided this column with some great material last semester so I'm leaving him and Silvia out this time. Finally, last week the EEs were due, Alexis began uploading ToK essays and I started passing down stuff I won't take back home. And with the pope resigning I also started thinking about what will happen when I'm not more. That's why I'm opening up theFLIPSIDE submission box! If you JUST READ IT.

are interested in taking over this column next week and would like to sacrifice your time and dignity then send me an email with - at least - one paragraph humorously reflecting on the campus life. So far I've only heard back form Shobit, Zhongliang and Reem - meaning if I'd be you** I'd immediately start writing. In totally not related matter six thirdyears returned - with the female firsties' favourite being Michael***, Dana (USA-Washington '13 ) wants to clean up the PublicStudent drive - hahaha, good luck, and seemingly half of Administration went to Cardiff. With Susie off campus for a week this means Anarchy. So stop attending classes, burn all event-registration-whatever-forms and smash lots of windows - do it, it's awesome. Also Abhimanju (India '13) wanted me to mention how many hickies have been spotted recently. Here you go girl. xoxo,

*in this case not at all **class of 2014 ***Seriously, next time try to be subtle! 12


The Literati Issue 15