Tag Archives: student life

Foss Hill Times

UPDATE 3/31/14: I rescind my earlier comment about spring coming/being here. Obviously I am delusional as there’s currently a solid inch of snow on my front steps… 

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Oh Foss Hill. You beacon of all the best non-class-related times at Wesleyan. I have been eagerly awaiting your repopulation. But waiting no more. Spring is finally coming/here, folks! I tested out the hill last Thursday afternoon and– though soggy– Foss and us have made it through that dastardly winter. Spring is here and so is a green Foss and I’m feeling nostalgic.

Foss Hill is THE institution around here.The most beloved. The most consistent. The actual center of student life. So, in celebration of Foss, here’s a post lauding favorite Foss Hill Times. AFTER THE JUMP.

Follow-up: Classism at Wesleyan

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Classism is complex, no doubt. Talking about money is supposedly tactless — hey oh last weekend’s This American Life — but Americans do it all the time. And even if we didn’t, a person’s wealth or, more accurately, assumed wealth, is presumed through many a factor — where they’re from, what (who) they wear, their skin tone, their manners, their speech, their prior education, the list goes on… Many Wesleyan students feel a discomfort when confronted with issues of class; this discomfort may be born from being privileged in one’s upbringing, feeling a lack of understanding of class issues, or being keenly aware of the difficulty of living on a relatively low income in the U.S — and this is certainly not an exhaustive list of sources of discomfort in discussing class. But however complex, uncomfortable, or delicate the conversation, it’s time everyone at Wesleyan recognizes and becomes sensitive to the fact that Wes is no haven from classism.

As an introduction to wealth inequality in America here’s a video. For thoughts on class at universities, check out this recent magazine article from Yale. Also, this excellent exhibition at Skidmore (and source of the photo above) titled “Classless Society” provides some great fodder for thinking about class.

At Wesleyan, the general concept of classism is usually articulated in relation to quests for social justice on campus. For example, a search of the Argives for “classism” will return Wespeaks and pieces such as this and this. Of course, during the last couple years, issues of classism have become more specific: the elimination of Wesleyan’s “need-blind” label, calls for alumni to halt their giving, and recent USLAC efforts and protests of the conditions under which university employees work (for more on this subject, read BZOD’s great three-part series, or check out this post about the Privilege & Policy forum on classism).

1002588_10151723365390509_1599490200_nOf course, experiences of class difference are not limited to these pretty well-publicized, institutional level efforts. With this in mind, the goal of this write-in was to give voice to some of the more every-day influences of class difference students experience. Many respondents felt the need to start at the beginning:

Guest Post: A Letter From Andre Pierce, Wesleyan Student and Cheshire Correctional Institution Prisoner

“Wesleyan Aids a Prisoner in Rehabilitation”

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Andre Pierce writes in to share his experience as a member of the Wesleyan community through the Center for Prison Education:

In 2009 Wesleyan University entered Cheshire Correctional Institution (C.C.I.) and began aiding in my rehabilitation. My enrollment in the Center for Prison Education (CPE) has first and foremost improved me as a student. My identity as a student is one in which I take pride. Unfortunately, I’m more than a student; I’m also a prisoner, one who’s on a reach for rehabilitation. I, however, prefer to not compartmentalize my identity as a college student and prisoner, but rather have them interact and feed off of each other. I use the tools acquired as a student to cross over and aid in my rehabilitation.

CPE was co-founded by former Wesleyan students Lexi Sturdy ’10 and Russell Perkins ’10. They brought CPE to prison grounds in 2009, allowing for prisoners at C.C.I. to earn college credits from courses on par with those offered on campus. I, along with 18 other prisoners, was accepted into the program after submitting two essays and undergoing an interview. My initial academic performance was mediocre at best resulting largely from a lack of focus and discipline as opposed to a lack of academic acumen. However, over the course of three years I gained a focus and discipline that allowed me to progress from an undisciplined mediocre student to one of great discipline and proficiency.

Escape From 200 Church, or “Occupy Clark Lounge”: Inside the Eviction

“If you think we’re crazy over the last few days, just keep in mind that we’ve kind of been homeless.”

As classes resume, as many (though far from all) campus houses light up with full power, and as we return to what President Roth calls  “the normal rhythms of our educational mission,” one group of increasingly manic refugees continues bearing the aftereffects of the storm, living on the boundaries of sanity and shelter in the Clark Lounge.

They are the residents of 200 Church—the lively group of freshmen forcefully evacuated from their house on Tuesday afternoon—and they’ve been occupying the dorm lounge ever since, sleeping on couches and floors, 10 or 15 to a room. “I used to think it was great that all of my friends are in 200 Church, living in my house,” one resident told me. “But now it’s a problem. Because I have nowhere else to go.”

BZOD and I stopped by Camp TwoHo last night during our late-night drive through campus to investigate where power has (and has not) been restored. It’s a surreal scene. Students are red-eyed, exhausted, trying to remain positive. Clothes, laptops, food wrappers, banana peels are strewn indiscriminately throughout the living space. Conversations descend into manic laughter. Bitterness pervades the room as the surrounding campus returns to normalcy. So this is what “alternative housing” looks like. When will these frosh get to go home?

Thai Night

Do you want to see some Muay Thai in action?
Would you like to eat Thai food and also learn how to make them?
Or do you just want to hang out and have a great time?
Then come join us at Thai Night this Saturday!

**All of our profits will go to the relief fund for the worst Thai flooding disaster in half a century.

Submit a Wespeak!

Abby Francis ’14 writes in, attaches highly questionable picture to sound out her message:

Submit a WesSpeak!
Got something to say? Say it in the Argus! FO’ FREE!
Rants, letters, notices, and all kinds of messages are welcome.
If you want to say it, why not ‘Speak it?

P.S. $100 to the first student to outnumber Martin Benjamin in WesSpeaks.
P.P.S. Just kidding

Do so on the Brand Spanking New Argus Website.

At this point, I would also like to chip in and say that writing a WesSpeak is one of the many pretty good ways to break through your personal bubble and get engaged with the slightly bigger bubble that is the Wesleyan Community. Of course, there is the definite tendency (especially on this campus) to think that it’s not all that much and it’s all so very stupid/pointless – after all, all you’re doing is conveying a message, not mobilizing the global proletariat – but IMHO, to embrace that kind of thinking is to shoot yourself in the leg before even getting out of bed. In other words, that’s stupid talk.

Something bothering you? Something you want to get out there? Want to walk this earth for the rest of your life knowing that at least one other person knows of the existence of a thought you’ve been having in your head all this time? Go, write a WesSpeak, and if you’re afraid of getting your name in print, you can send it to us here at Wesleying. (There are pros and cons to both mediums)

Aight, peace out bittchessss