May 20, 2011

The Biggest Stories Spring '11

Although many of you are already home, the semester officially ends in two days. Here is our biannual look back at the biggest stories of the semester.

10. Death of Haveagood. 
In March, we broke the story that former ACDC cashier Kathryn "Haveagood" Porter passed away. Sadly, only seniors will remember her legendary antics.

9. Shootings in Poughkeepsie. 
In February, Don Marsala told students to avoid going downtown. News soon broke that a man had shot and killed his wife and a police officer before turning the gun on himself. The Poughkeepsie Journal continued to provide updates as the city mourned the death of the officer. Months later, another fatal shooting downtown broke the peace.

8. Colorado mayor lies about her Vassar education.
In a scandal that broke over Spring break, Boulder, Colorado mayor Susan Osborne lied about graduating from Vassar when she really transferred out her sophomore year. AAVC and College Relations came to her defense, a move the original whistleblower disagreed with.
 
7. Students react to world events (Egypt, Japan, Osama).
Three major world events this semester penetrated the Vassar bubble. Vassar had no students studying abroad in Egypt during the protests or Japan during the earthquake and tsunami, but we learned of personal accounts from alumni. One alumnus used social media to post about the situation in Egypt, while the AAVC created a message board for alumni in Japan to connect. Months later, when news of Osama bin Laden's death broke, Vassar students took to Facebook and Twitter with their reactions.

6. Vassar announces $105 million science building.
Now is a good time to be coming to Vassar if you're interested in the sciences. In an interview, Cappy said she wants her legacy to be improving the sciences. Further, the school announced a $150 million science building to go up by 2016.

5. Main House President resigns, students question elections policy.
When Sienna Brown '13 resigned as Main House president-elect, students questioned her original commitment and also the policy that VSA Council should decide on her replacement. In the end, the VSA upheld its policy and appointed Jeremy Garza '14 to the position.

4. Professor takes issue with tenure committee.
In another big story that broke towards the end of the semester, professor Kiese Laymon felt that FASC unfairly asked him to provide personal information and even questioned his graduate school degree.

3. Events, cakes, Founder's Day commemorate the sesquicentennial.
Beginning in January, everyone had the big 150 on their minds. Vassar began its sesquicentennial celebrations with a website re-design, banners around campus, events like Sexycentennial, Vassar Voices, and the Cakebration, and a hold bunch of takes on the famous Matthew Vassar portrait (here, here, here). Even Founder's Day embraced the "Vintage Vassar" theme as a way to look back.

2. VSA tries to implement major structural changes.
In February, we first leaked news that the VSA Council was planning major structural changes. Weeks later, the changes came to a vote in council, followed by a student referendum and an unsuccessful appeal. Ultimately, things are the same now as they were before, although it got everyone talking about student government.

1. Former employee arrested for embezzling $1.98 million from Vassar.
It was the biggest story that brought Vassar outside the bubble and put us under public scrutiny. Police arrested former project manager Arthur Fisher for embezzling $1.98 million from the college between 2005 and 2010. Cappy has tried to be transparent about the issue in her emails, although news media all over the world have found out more, including Fisher's bizarre obsession with law enforcement and stash of illegal firearms.

2 comments:

Mia said...

Great post! Will definitely come back to this later. True that this is the last we may see of MadsVassar?

phuket holidays said...

Three of the news from last spring have made it to stories of the year. I wonder what will be the stories for spring 2012.