Screen Shot 2015-04-23 at 7.19.00 PM

Does money talk in the Brown admissions office?

A Gawker exposé published Tuesday quoted leaked emails with offers of preferential admissions treatment from Brown administrators, including President Christina Paxson, for the children of potential donors. The story has drawn rapid response from both administrators, who claim the messages were cherry-picked and taken out of context, and student protesters from the #MoneyTalksAtBrown movement, who argue that they further validate the group’s concerns about undue financial influence on university policy.

Brown firmly stated that all admissions decisions are based on merit alone. Last night at the State of Brown, President Christina Paxson denounced the validity of the Gawker article for selectively quoting emails.

“The real purpose of that letter is to let people set their expectations about the level of influence they can have,” she said.

Cass Cliatt, the Vice President of Communications, added, “It’s tempting to seek connections where none exist. At no time is there communication between advancement and admissions.”

In so many words, the university firmly denies that financial donations have ever had any clout in the admissions office–except “maybe 100 years ago,” according to Cliatt.

Cliatt also took the opportunity to address what she called “discrepancies” in the article. The differences arose, Cliatt claims, because the article does not include all the correspondence that is accessible on WikiLeaks. The first problem was that the framing of the emails made it seem as though the donation and the early decision admittance were around the same time, she said. According to Cliatt, the discussion regarding the scholarship fund started in April 2012, and the concluding payment was made in February 2014, 10 months before the student’s Early Decision notification.

Cliatt also addressed an email in the Gawker article that was originally sent from Paxson to the Brown Corporation in September of 2014. According to Cliatt, the part that reads, “Also, please tell us if you learn of a prospective applicant who may need ‘special handling’ for campus visits or communications,” does not imply that the University gives special treatment to visitors of high status.

Instead, it is given to about 800 students per year who are from “any family we think could benefit from additional attention for their tour and/or meeting with a faculty, and the category includes a variety of reasons for this ‘handling': having served in volunteer or leadership positions at Brown, being a family member of an alum, having made extraordinary contributions to Brown, being a celebrity or dignitary, or any reason that might disrupt a public tour,” Cliatt wrote in an email.

Continue Reading


WTDTW-adoch

(Pre-Frosh) What to do this week: ADOCH 2015

Admitted students from the Class of 2019 will descend on College Hill this week, from Tuesday, April 21 to Thursday, April 23 for ADOCH 2015. If you are one of them, here’s what you should do this week:

3Tuesday, April 21

Event: Brown Welcomes the Class of 2019
Time: 7:00 p.m. – 7:45 p.m.
Location: Main Green Tent

President Christina Paxson and Dean of Admission James Miller ’73 welcome members of the Class of 2019 to College Hill.

Event: Speed Friending
Time: 11:00 p.m. – 12:30 a.m.
Location: Alumnae Hall

Like speed dating, but platonic (?). Meet other students visiting for ADOCH and current Brown students.

Event: Arch Sings
Time: 11:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.
Location: Wayland Arch and Morris-Champlin Arch

#socollege. Enjoy performances by Brown’s a cappella groups. The IGCAC (Intergalactic Community of A Cappella) performs in group Arch Sings during fall orientation and ADOCH in the spring.

Continue Reading


Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 12.57.04 PM

An inside look into sophomore dorms

The housing lottery is, besides SPG and Spring Weekend, the most infamous event at Brown. And the housing lottery is the most terrifying for the poor, bewildered freshman. Not to worry–we’ve got you covered. Below, you’ll find a 360-degree view of one room in each sophomore dorm (Not pictured: Grad Center D and a few rooms on Vartan Gregorian Quad). To make the housing lottery feel a little less like warfare and a little more like online shopping!

Barbour
Barbour is a bit far from the center of campus, but is in close proximity to East Side Mini Mart, Louis, Bagel Gourmet, and Wickenden Street. Basically if you like brunch, Barbour is the place for you. While it’s bunker-esque facade (and interior, actually) lacks charm, it’s a great place for those of you hoping for a suite with a private kitchen and bathroom. However, do be warned that not all Barbour rooms are suites with the aforementioned amenities.

Caswell


Caswell is one of the older dorms, but it doesn’t show. The dorm is centrally located on Ruth Simmons quad, mere minutes away from the Ratty, the Main Green, and the SciLi. The rooms are fairly spacious and the windows are large, meaning there is a lot of natural light. The one downside to living in Caswell is that there is no elevator, making moving in a hassle.

Continue Reading


11013248_827524190660244_7717241450306017429_n

Art School(ed): Tech union strike tomorrow, some RISD classes held off-site

Tomorrow, the Rhode Island School of Design technicians will go on strike after months of contract negotiations with the school’s administration.

The RISD technicians serve as an invaluable resource for the school: these men and women teach courses and maintain the studios and shops throughout campus. As they go on strike, most of the facilities on campus will be deemed unsafe and consequently shut down, including kilns, wood shops, metal shops, glass blowing furnaces, darkrooms, and cages where students check out various equipment like tripods, cameras and recording devices.

The RISD Technician Union has outlined its contractual requests on their website. In short, the techs would like a restoration of retirement contributions (which were cut significantly in 2009 due to the economic recession), annual wage increases similar to those of RISD faculty members, and external tuition remission (a reimbursement of employees’ children’s higher education tuition costs if their child attends a school other than RISD). Additionally, the techs object to a raise in their healthcare premiums. To read the union’s request in full, click here.

In an e-mail to the school’s student body, RISD’s chief operating officer Jean Eddy and interim provost Pradeep Sharma wrote:

Continue Reading


A photo essay of tonight’s vigil

Tonight, a vigil was held for the passing of graduate student Hyoun Ju Sohn. Candles were lit in remembrance of him, and students wrote down hopes on pieces of paper and placed them into a fire.
IMG_1818 IMG_1830 Continue Reading
indeo

Resources and support for mental well-being

In light of the incident on campus today, we want to ensure that the following resources are easily accessible to the community. If anyone is seeking support, here is a list of relevant resources on and off campus.

Psych Services: (401) 863-3476

This is the number for CAPS and can be used to schedule appointments Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can also show up to J. Walter Wilson 516. Additionally, the number has an option for emergencies accessible at all times.

University’s Offices of Chaplains and Religious Life: (401) 863-2344. They can also be found in J. Walter Wilson 410.

National Suicide Hotline: (800) 273-8255

Crisis text line: crisistextline.org.

Project LETS anonymous crisis chat: www.letserasethestigma.com.

On-campus support: 

  • Project LETS will be gathering on the first floor of Sarah Doyle Women’s Center at 26 Benevolent St., starting at 2 p.m. Tea and art therapy will be offered along with psychological support.
  • Representatives from Psych Services and Student Life are in CIT 477.

Update: representatives from Psych Services are no longer in CIT 477.