“He ran on a platform of bringing waffle fries, ripe fruit and the nebulous ‘bike reform’ to campus. He pledged to change the worn metaphorical tires of Princeton’s student government, one potato at a time,” write Liz Robbins and Press Club member Spencer Parts in The New York Times.

The article, which will appear in print in the Friday issue of the Times, covers the headline grabbing, Yik Yak exploding campaign of Will Gansa ’17 that has taken Princeton’s campus by storm and raised issues of political apathy and gender inequality at Princeton.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/05/nyregion/politics-meeting-parody-at-princeton-in-student-election.html

UPDATE: Cheng wins with 64% of the vote. Check out another article  in NYT from the Press Club.

 

At 11:30 am Thursday morning, more than 200 students streamed out of their classes chanting “black lives matter” and “no justice, no peace.” They gathered on Frist North Lawn, where they joined faculty and staff in demanding an end to racialized state violence. The protests were a response to the grand jury’s decision to not indict the officers who killed Mike Brown and Eric Garner.

“Today we interrupt the daily routine of Princeton students, faculty and staff to draw attention to a national problem, a national disease, a plague that is American racism and racialized state violence,” senior Khallid Love said at the protest. Around him, several students held each other, crying.

Dressed in black with their hands raised, the protesters had a moment of silence in solidarity with demonstrations around the country. The protesters proceeded to conduct a 45 minute “die-in,” a form of non-violent demonstration in which participants lie down on the ground to simulate death.

Students’ bodies were sprawled all over Frist North Lawn, as well as the walkway and stairs leading into Frist Center. Many passerby, mostly students rushing to-and-from class, stopped to snap a picture and reflect on the scene. Several even joined in.

The protest was organized by student-activists who are part of a “Post-Ferguson at Princeton” movement and spread via social media.

Concluding the die-in, senior Joanna Anwanyu implored the crowd to “keep the conversation going, so we can dismantle racism.” A debrief discussion sponsored by the Carl Fields Center and Center for African American Studies was held after the protest. Earlier last week, shortly after the jury’s decision to not indict Darren Wilson, student demonstrators also marched down Prospect Avenue.

*This piece also appears in the Princeton Alumni Weekly blog.


You know what they say, time flies when…the University decides to cut your Winter Break down by a third.

According to the 2015-2016 Academic Calendar published on the Princeton website, in fall 2015 Winter Break will begin on December 18 and end on January 3, just 16 days later. This semester, as usual, Winter Break begins on December 12 and ends on January 4 (that’s 23 days).

Here at the Press Club offices we’re hard at work investigating the sudden disappearance of the third week of Winter Break. Initial findings suggest it’s a result of classes beginning a week later, on September 16.

This year, classes began on September 10.

Beginning next year, classes will start a week later.

Up to and including this year, Winter Break has been 3 weeks.

Next year, Winter Break will be two weeks. D;

 

Protesters hold up signs on Prospect Ave.

At least 200 Princeton University students protested on Prospect Avenue late last night after a St. Louis County grand jury brought no criminal charges against Darren Wilson, the white police officer who fatally shot unarmed black teenager Mike Brown in Ferguson, MO, a suburb of St. Louis.

The protest took place between 12:00 am and 1:15 am on Tuesday morning, a night when many students went to eating clubs for the night before Thanksgiving break. Many of the protesters originally planned to be partying at the street that night, before they were alerted to the protest.

Their signs included slogans like “Justice for Mike Brown,” “No Justice, No Peace,” and “Black Lives Matter.”

The protest was organized by a group of students concerned about the issue, many of whom are involved in groups such as Black Student Union, Black Leadership Coalition, and Students for Education Reform.

After discussing the events on a Facebook group chat with about 15 students, Destiny Crockett, sophomore of St. Louis, MO and President of Students for Education Reform, called for the group of students to meet at the Women’s Center to make posters and then hold the protest. They joined with another group, also organized over a Facebook group chat, which was also considering a protest. Once they had determined a time, Crockett sent the call out to listservs.

“It started out with three of us in the women’s center at 11:00 and by 11:45 there were twenty-five of us,” Crockett said.

The students left the Women’s Center at midnight, and organized on Frist’s North Lawn, to distribute posters and organize chants. By the time they left Frist, a total of roughly 100 students had joined, Crockett said.

At that point, the students marched on Prospect Avenue, back and forth four times. Princeton Police officers were present, and blocked traffic to make sure that the protest could continue.

Crockett said that as many as 300-400 students joined the protest at its peak. Other students estimated the figure at at least 200 students. Many of those students were headed to eating clubs before they joined, and when they joined the protest they were given posters.

“For the most part, it was people who were headed to eating clubs, and decided to not go to eating clubs and protest,” Crocket said.

At about 1:15 am, the protest ended with a four-and-a-half minute moment of silence for Mike Brown, an event which his family had called for, and a reference to the more than four hours that Brown lay in the street after his death.

Will Gansa, the sophomore USG presidential candidate, is currently exploding on Princeton’s Yik Yak.

Gansa’s campaign, which centers on the issues of unripe fruit and lack of waffle fries in the dining halls as well as a call for campus bike reform, has garnered a cult-like following among Princeton students. Gansa has poked fun at the USG and its powers by referring to it solely as “The Government Club” and has attracted many fans from his insistent refusal to speak to the Daily Princetonian.

By late Sunday night, only hours before USG election polls open, Gansa’s campaign was overtaking the popular mobile application Yik Yak, with dozens of anonymous users enthusiastically expressing their support for his maverick campaign.

Some of the best Yaks are featured below:

             

We’ve got smartphones, smart cars, smart locks, smart watches, and more than enough other smart things that promise to make human intellect obsolete. What’s next, smart…deodorant?

Oh, wait. It looks like our mechanical overlords-in-the-making will soon have access to your armpits, too, thanks to ClickStick, a Kickstarter project by Princeton grad students Carla Bahri and Gilad Arwatz. The crowdfunding campaign, which is less than $300 shy of its $55,000 goal with 9 days left, promises a stick of deodorant that applies the perfect amount of deo to your armpits at the touch of a button.

Image from ClickStick.

While smart deodorant might not be the next logical advancement in smart technology, we’ve got to admit the ClickStick seems pretty awesome. It’s actually a special holder for ClickStick’s deodorant pouches, with a button that releases an exact amount of gel deodorant each time. The idea is that, when you normally put on deodorant, you either put it on while your shirt is on, and get the shirt full of deodorant on the way to your armpit; or, you put it on while you’re getting dressed, but then you don’t know how much to put on or how long to wait for it to dry. The ClickStick puts an end to this daily struggle. The deodorant is trapped inside the container until you release it with the “magic activation button,” which you press once the stick is at your armpit. The button dispenses the same amount of deodorant each time, and you can change the amount (and order refills) using the companion mobile app (man, these guys thought of everything!).

Man, I did not wake up this morning thinking I’d explain the nitty-gritty of deodorant application. But for Carla Bahri and Gilad Arwatz, the co-creators and current Ph.D. candidates at Princeton in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, getting the ClickStick right has been a top priority since their work began on the project this past summer. It has special significance for each of them: Arwatz hopes the ClickStick will reduce the plastic waste that results from constantly buying and throwing out disposable deodorant sticks, and Bahri seeks to make everyday tasks like applying deodorant easier, since her father suffered from ALS and found these simple tasks difficult.

Keep an eye out for more coverage to come from The Ink, especially as the ClickStick reaches its goal of raising $55,000. In the meantime, you can check out the Kickstarter campaign here.

The Rhodes Trust announced today this year’s 32 American winners of the Rhodes Fellowship. Princeton had 3 winners — two seniors and one graduate — ranking only behind Yale in the number of awardees, which had 4.

Below are their profiles, as announced by the Rhodes Trust:

Joseph W. Barrett, Port Washington, graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University
in June with a major in History and a minor in South Asian Studies. He won the highest
award for undergraduates, based on scholarship, character and leadership, as well as the prize
for the best thesis in American History. Joe is passionate about prison education and reform,
an issue he focused on as a freshman and that led him to establish a program on incarceration
issues at Princeton that he has expanded to other colleges. He has worked with the
Millennium Challenge Corporation in Lesotho, spent a year learning Hindu [sic] and Urdu and
working on literacy projects in Varanasi, India, and is passionate about social justice and
economic development. Joe plans to do the M.Phil. in Economic and Social History at
Oxford.

Rachel A. Skokowski, Palo Alto, is a senior at Princeton University majoring in French. She
has a deep commitment to making the arts more relevant and accessible in the modern world.
Elected to Phi Beta Kappa, she has a superb academic record across the humanities and a
commitment to forge strong connections between art museums and local communities,
especially to expose underprivileged children to museums and to the beauty of art. She has
curated or interned at the Morgan Library and Museum, the Princeton Art Museum and for
the Santa Fe Arts Commission, and is a Behrman Undergraduate Fellow. She is also a three
season (year-round) varsity cross country and varsity track athlete. Her career aspirations are
to push the boundaries of art curation. Rachel will do the European Enlightenment
Programme within the M.Phil. in Modern Languages at Oxford.

Sarah E. Yerima, Los Angeles, is a senior at Princeton University where she majors in Sociology. Much of her scholarly work relates to what she describes as the fallacy of post-racialism in the United States, and framed by her own and her family’s experiences, her grandparents’ in the rural south, and hers in an all-black neighborhood in Los Angeles and finally in the privilege of Princeton. Her senior thesis is on the evolution of colorblindness in American jurisprudence and the perpetuation of racial inequality. Sarah has an exceptional academic record across the social sciences at Princeton, has been active as a peer and residential college advisor and as a women’s mentor, and is a member of the Behrman Undergraduate Society of Fellows. She also studied in Brazil where she investigated racial prejudice in a different historical context.

Updated at 12:20 PM

At exactly 8 AM this morning, the old Wa shut its doors for the last time in over 40 years of business. Simultaneously, the new Wa opened up for the first day on the job.

At 7:50 AM at the new Wa on 152 Alexander Street, around 20 students, community members, and one high schooler waited patiently outside in the cold. Around 7 passersby tried to open the door before 8, only to find them locked. It’ll only be a few minutes, said store workers.

One high school student got there a tad bit earlier and discovered the glass doors locked. “I knew it opened today, but I thought it was already 8 o’clock,” said Auggie Precioa, an eighth grader at John Witherspoon Middle School.

Frustrated customers try to open the locked glass doors 2 minutes before opening.

Another frustrated customer tries to open the door 5 minutes before the opening.

Finally, at 8 AM the two double glass doors were opened by a pair of smiling employees and the first flood of customers passed through. The new Was already fully staffed even though the old Wa was open until just as they opened the new one.

The new Wa door officially opens its doors for the first time

The first set of customers comes through.

The receipt of the first purchase at the new Wa, which is now proudly hanging on the store’s bulletin board.

With double the floor space and all new equipment, the new Wa certainly feels more like a regular WaWa than the old one did. No more ads on the outside or crumbling white walls. Although, the old black, orange, and white stained glass window that hung over the old Wa was transported to welcome customers in the new location.

Coffee will be free for the next three days to celebrate the opening, said employees. To make sure opening day went smoothly, the Wa brought in employees from nearby WaWas.

Robert, who worked the register during the Wa’s first hour, is from the Hightstown store.

 

First customers get free coffee

Kyle Berlin, a freshman in Whitman, was one of the students who got up early and shivered in the cold to be one of the first Wa customers.  ”I kind of had this internal debate. Am I going to go to the old Wa at 8 when it closes or come to the new Wa at 8 when it opens?” he said.  ”It’s kind of a philosophical question.”

He went to the old Wa first, which “was kind of sad,” and then he came to the new Wa which is “glossy, new, and industrial, which is also kind of sad,” he sad. Even if it’s sad, he was happy to be a part of Princeton history.

Kyle Berlin, a freshman in Whitman, checks out at the new Wa

The grand opening ceremony of the new store took place at 10 AM, 2 hours after the opening of the store.  Based off the attendees, it’s clear that everyone — Princeton and WaWa alike — take the Wa very seriously. Chris Gheysens, CEO of WaWa Inc., welcomed everyone to the new store and commented that the store’s bathroom was “beautiful,” while Mayor Liz Lempert appreciated that the store sold kale and quinoa salad.

A state assemblyman, the director of community and regional affairs for the University, employees of the store, members of the Princeton Fire and Police departments, and students in the Student Volunteer Council all partook in the ceremony.

The CEO of WaWa speaks at the opening ceremony, with Violette Ireland, the store manager, on his left and Wally on his right

The trophies given to the Princeton police and fire departments after a hoagie-making contest

 

And of course, WaWa’s mascot, Wally the Goose, was jumping and dancing the whole time.

 

Oh, and this is Wally’s butt.

 

 

Now that the new Wa is officially in business, it seems it’s time for the old Wa to start the deconstruction process which will eventually lead to its demolition. As UPC reporters headed back to campus at 9 AM, the old Wa sign was already being taken down.

A worker taking screws out of the old Wa sign an hour after it closed.

Andrew Sondern

The new Princeton Station was inaugurated this morning with pouring rain and its first train: the 4:51 am Dinky from Princeton Junction. Princeton University’s Office of Communications was on hand to record the train’s arrival, posted below on Vine:

The new station, which was inaugurated with a catered breakfast, features a modern waiting room complete with a wayfinding device (pictured below in the gallery) tucked into the corner. The attached Wawa will open on November 21 without any service interruption. The opening marks the first major milestone in the construction of Princeton University’s Arts and Transit Neighborhood, which will also provide dedicated facilities for the University’s Lewis Center of the Arts. The neighborhood is expected to be complete in 2017.

Take a look at this gallery of early morning photos of the station before checking out the new Dinky yourself:

 

You can also check out UPC’s coverage of the opening and what led up to it on WHYY Newsworks here.

Last Thursday, the University Press Club was honored to host former Executive Editor of The New York Times, Jill Abramson, on campus to give a lecture titled “In Defense of Leaks: Why a Free Press Matters More in the Age of Terror,” in which she discussed the role of government leaks in American history, and her own experience in senior management roles at the Times throughout her career.

The talk was the Press Club’s annual Louis R. Rukeyser ’54 Memorial Lecture, a series that brings prominent journalists to speak on campus every year in the memory of the economic and financial journalist, Princeton graduate, and former Press Club member, Louis Rukeyser.

For those of you who missed the talk on Thursday, check out what Abramson had to say here.

Alec Payne ’16 was dizzy by the time he arrived at his first music lesson of the academic year. It was hot and humid, and he had climbed 137 narrow, spiraling steps to the top of Cleveland Tower at the Graduate College. Awaiting him was Princeton’s 36.5-ton carillon: As Payne’s teacher, University carillonneur Lisa Lonie, has said, the carillon is a “public” instrument, and its music — or false notes — resound a mile away. 

Read more about the University’s impressive carillon here: http://paw.princeton.edu/issues/2014/10/08/pages/1426/index.xml

Steve Rosenfield, a California-based photographer, has visited over a dozen universities for the What I Be Project, a photography exhibit where students write fears and anxieties on their skin. In addition to two trips to Princeton, he’s visited schools like Duke, Columbia, and Washington University in St. Louis.

To learn more, check out the latest from the Press Club here.