Category Archives: Campus Times

Honoring MLK Day

How do we commemorate the man who, in President Obama’s words, ‘took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the promised land?’ How do we rightfully honor a civil rights activist who gave his life fighting for justice?

Most schools in the country, including UR, were closed for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which is a federal holiday. It seems to have become a custom to memorialize a person or an event with a day off. But this year, it is important to ask ourselves what better honors a person: a day off or a ‘day on.’

While cancelling classes for MLK Day seems appropriate – and students look forward to the day off (even on the heels of vacation) – is this really the right approach? As we’ strolled through Marketplace Mall, went skating or watched a movie, did we even remember why we were given a day off from classes? Were we conscious of the man whose life and death merited this holiday?

http://www.campustimes.org/2010/01/21/honoring-mlk-day/

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In Hip-Hop I trust

As published in the Campus Times

Hip-hop isn’t a genre of music it’s a movement, a culture of freedom and community. Yet, it’s often associated with violence and misogyny. It seems as if our morally satiated society is simply too pure for a rebellious culture like hip-hop. But, any rational person should be able to decipher that the hip-hop culture that’s criticized is merely a mirror of the general music industry. However, the commercialization of hip-hop has seemed to be singled out from the Punk Rockers who originally had a social agenda.

Ever since one student told me that he would never listen to Jay-Z because he’s not into the whole ‘shooting” and ‘violent” thing, I’ve felt a social obligation to deter this contagious ignorance on our campus especially as an active member of UR Hip-Hop where our quest is to recapture hip-hop’s essence.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2009/12/12/in-hip-hop-i-trust/1

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Frmo the Pressbox: Ortiz v. Berto

Thirty-five years ago, boxing fans sat on the edge of their living room sofas to see the once indestructible “Big” George Foreman make his grand return against Ron Lyle, 15 months after falling prey to Muhammad Ali’s Rope-a-Dope tactics in Zaire. On paper, Lyle v. Foreman appeared to be the perfect equation for an all-out slugfest, with the majority of fans assuming that Lyle would eventually succumb to Foreman’s trademark power.

But every boxing fan knows that this was hardly the case — the so-called “measuring-stick” bout quickly transformed from a mundane welcome-back showcase for Foreman into one of the greatest heavyweight brawls of the century.
“A good right by Lyle!” the late sports commentator Howard Cossell bellowed in that round. “Lyle’s all over him, he has Foreman in trouble! Foreman is down.”

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http://www.campustimes.org/2011/04/21/from-the-pressbox-92/

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Afrikanza celebrates Africa and culture: the examination of stereotypes and misconceptions of Africa on the UR campus

Music, food, good company and culture managed to bring people indoors on the sunniest day in Rochester so far this year. On Saturday, April 9, from 6 to 8 p.m., students, family and faculty, including Assistant Political Science Professor Valerie Sinclair-Chapman and Office of Minority Students’ Affairs Counselor Thomas Crews, sold out the May Room for the Pan-African Students’ Association’s second annual Afrikanza exhibition — a culmination to this year’s Africa Week. But Afrikanza was not merely a cultural showcase and gathering — it was a celebration and denunciation of prevalent stereotypes about the continent.

“Not only are we showcasing the richness of Africa and its culture, but we want to educate people about the real Africa by taking on stereotypes,” sophomore and PASA president Marius Kothor said in her opening statements.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2011/04/14/afrikanza-celebrates-africa-and-culture-the-examination-of-stereotypes-and-misconceptions-of-africa-on-the-ur-campus/

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Naomi Tutu discusses humanity during Season for Nonviolence

Peace, healing, unity and a little humor were all manifested at the podium of Strong Auditorium last Sunday, as the Season for Nonviolence culminated with a speech by Naomi Tutu, the daughter of world renowned South African activist Desmond Tutu. President Joel Seligman introduced Tutu to a mixed crowd of Rochester residents, students, staff and faculty, including University Vice President Paul Burgett and Rochester Center for Community Leadership Director Glenn Cerosaletti.

Tutu charged the audience to recognize a shared humanity amongst their friends and enemies alike. Tutu repeatedly stressed that, for the cases in which individuals fail to respect another’s humanity,  both parties are dehumanized. She even went as far as to say that she partially dehumanized herself in her early hatred for the South African government and their imposition of apartheid. But Tutu stood by her principle, saying that oppression does not warrant dehumanization.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2011/04/07/naomi-tutu-discusses-humanity-during-season-for-nonviolence/

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Chairman and CEO of Xerox to speak at commencement

As published in the Campus Times

It’s  official — Senior Council and the University have finally announced their choice for the speaker for this year’s 161st college commencement address. On Sunday, May 15, Ursula M. Burns, 52, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Xerox Corporation, will be receiving the University of Rochester’s George Eastman Medal for Outstanding Achievement and Dedicated Service and delivering the commencement address to the Class of 2011.

Burns, a native New Yorker and former resident of the Lower East side Housing projects, earned her Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from the Polytechnic Institute of New York University in 1980 and then embarked on her professional career as a summer intern for Xerox Corporation.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2011/03/31/chairman-and-ceo-of-xerox-to-speak-at-commencement/

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Taking the pledge

As published in the Campus Times

“Making peace must start within me and my campus community.  At  the University of Rochester, on this day, I, Jerome Nathaniel, [class of] 2011, commit myself, as best I can, to become a nonviolent and peaceable person.”

Looking around the Robert B. Goergen Field House on the evening of Tuesday, Feb. 15, one could sense an overwhelming feeling of unity and sincerity as several UR students and community members all took the pledge of nonviolence.

“To respect myself, to affirm others and to avoid uncaring criticism, hateful words, physical attacks and self-destructive behavior,” we all said in unison.

When the circle dispersed, we all walked up the stairs from the field house and received our “I took the pledge” pins and a witness signed pledge sheet.

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http://www.campustimes.org/2011/02/17/taking-the-pledge/

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