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Princeton University’s inspiring informal motto, “In the Nation’s Service and the Service of Humanity,” challenges the University’s students, faculty, and administration to pursue a higher purpose in life and broaden their perspective from personal gratification to the well-being of all members of the human community.
Princeton University is world-renowned. Our endowment, at $23.8 billion in 2017, is bigger than the GDP of Iceland in 2016. Our students are increasingly diverse and hail from all 50 states and many different countries. Our alumni include presidents, astronauts, authors, and royalty.
This May marks the 40th anniversary of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. It is our time to focus on not only the successes of Asian Americans but also the overlooked barriers they continue to face. Asian-American women face unique challenges. They are victims of both glass and bamboo ceilings — invisible barriers that prevent women and Asian Americans, respectively, from advancing in their careers. While it is tempting to lump Asian American women in with either all women or all Asian Americans, this approach is shortsighted. Instead, we need to consider how the stereotype of Asian femininity compounds with the “model minority” myth, the stereotype that all Asian Americans are hardworking and successful without requiring help. The complex interplay of these stereotypes generates unreasonable expectations of extreme compliance and unquestioning service for Asian-American women. And it is these expectations that can severely restrict them from moving forward.
The power box appeared in my courtyard last week, stuck on a wood post and silent, the harbinger of spring in Princeton. Soon, the wooden fences will appear, unannounced and under cover of darkness, to be followed by white tents and finally white-collared alumni, ready for a weekend of nostalgic revelry. Reunions, our annual campus-wide, beer-fueled bonanza, is right around the corner, and among all the boozing and schmoozing, plenty of Tigers (this senior included) will be on the hunt for that special someone in orange and black.
For the past two weeks, Princeton University’s campus has been teeming with giddy high school students in bright orange lanyards and drawstring backpacks. Usually, they travel in packs of two to seven, though an occasional singleton can be found looking down at their phone before asking a passerby where the building called “Frist” might be. As I watch Princeton Preview unfold, I wonder: What will the Great Class of 2022 be like?
Sexual Health and Wellness Services are a major and valued component of Medical Services at University Health Services, located in the McCosh Health Center. An opinion column published by The Daily Princetonian on April 23, 2018 drew my attention. As the Director of Medical Services, I agree wholeheartedly with two of the primary points, that “the failure to disseminate knowledge about how such services work only heightens fear and apprehension in the student body,” and that there is always room for improving access to services. Therefore, I felt it important to respond by clearly communicating information about our approach to ensuring ready access to health care and a few of the specific services we offer.
Imagine a crowded living space with bad plumbing, old hallways, and exposed pipes, where toilets overflow and make an unsanitary disaster, where human feces are found in the shower, urine found in trash cans, shower curtains removed as pranks, and then people of color and people of unprivileged socioeconomic backgrounds have to clean it all up.
In the fall of 2018, Princeton’s history department will offer sixty-four courses. Of those courses, none are cross-listed with the Program in Latin American Studies. Only one, a junior seminar open only to juniors in the history department, addresses a Latin American topic: U.S. Imperialism in the Modern Caribbean.
There is a university that exists where everyone says hi to each other. They greet one another with a warm embrace, arms outstretched and welcoming. Most of the time, the hugs aren’t hollow. Everyone eats together. They live together. Community is more than a euphemism. Apartness is elided.
The first time I met the Class of 2019, I was Anna in the SHARE play. I met the Class of 2020 the following year, as a director. A funny thing happened to me when I did that. When I told people, “I’m directing the SHARE play,” more often than not, they would tell me their opinions about misconduct on campus. Sometimes, people would share a personal story. I learned that lots of people don’t know the University’s definition of sexual misconduct. I learned that many people, more than I originally thought, have dealt with misconduct, but would never dream of talking to the University’s Title IX committee and couldn’t handle the stress of an investigation. Moreover, I learned that people don’t talk so much about misconduct after freshman year. One RCA went so far as to say that juniors needed to see the SHARE play again — that they were the ones who needed it.
Last winter, the passage of the four referenda concerning the Honor Committee made it clear that students wished to reform the Committee. The implementation of the fourth referendum opened the door to changing practices of the membership without changing the Committee’s current institutional framework. While we may not be able to change the “rules” of the Committee, we can and should ensure members are “playing by the rules.”
The Board Plan Review Committee’s draft of proposed changes to the University’s dining plan claims they will create “more flexibility, affordability, and efficiency for an increasingly diverse community.”
I’ve been reluctant to write this — or anything pinning my issues onto my race. Anything impassioned about racism, to be honest. While I am appreciative of my heritage, I’ve always felt that I’m not defined solely by my ethnicity and, more than just being apathetic, I have found it unrelatable — I’ve been fortunate to never have felt openly discriminated against because of my skin. Yet, I want to write — I am uneasy.
To the Editor:
Dear Mr. Fingerhut,
On April 12, 2011 — seven years ago today — a much-loved senior Spanish lecturer at the University killed himself. The University had suspended him without due process, and in seeming violation of its own procedures. In the time since, there has never been an independent investigation of what the University did. Whenever I think of my Princeton experience, the University’s actions around the death of a beloved community member is what I remember most of all.
Political divisions are higher than ever in our country. A recent Pew Research Survey found that 44 percent of each party’s membership almost never agrees with their opposition —that’s close to half of both parties. Twenty years ago, the number was less than 20 percent. Congressional gridlock is extremely high: both parties are obsessed with political survival. We’ve already seen the government shut down once this year. If we can’t work together, we'll all lose.
In an article published last week, the Sexpert responded to a question posed by a “Curious Sub.” The article does an excellent job emphasizing communication, consent, and respect, and offers good practical advice on limits, safe words, and check-ins. As Princeton’s kink and BDSM club, we at Princeton Plays believe that the article falls short in other areas. It mischaracterizes BDSM (bondage, dominance/discipline, sadism/submission, masochism) dynamics that do permeate into day-to-day life. It also casts as harmful the wide variety of BDSM practices that exist completely apart from sex.
In March 2017, the Dean of the Faculty charged a newly created Ad Hoc Committee on Calendar Reform with developing a proposal for changing the University’s academic calendar to move exams before winter break, start the fall semester earlier, and create a new Wintersession period in January with additional opportunities for students. For the past year, we have served as the undergraduate members of this committee. With the faculty considering the committee’s proposed calendar at its April 2 meeting, we want to provide students with an explanation of calendar reform. The proposed calendar addresses the challenges created by holding fall final exams in January while still preserving many positive features of Princeton’s current calendar. Most notably, the new calendar would move fall final exams to December and create a two-week, non-credit bearing “Wintersession” in January before the spring term.
Imagine having to wear a shirt for the rest of your life that labels you as someone you’re not.