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Olivia DrakeMay 16, 20226min
Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow Elena Brennan '24 is as equally passionate about her American studies major as she is of helping fellow underrepresented and first-generation low-income (FGLI) students succeed. As chair of the Wesleyan Student Assembly's Equity and Inclusion Committee (EIC), she coordinated First Cardinals, an FGLI mentorship program that fosters connections between 40 first-years with juniors, and seniors. As a member of the BIPOC Mental Health Collective, she spurred a collaboration with the EIC, Wesleyan Student Assembly and Resource Center to host an event that addresses systemic issues on campus for marginalized students. And, in reaction to a post…

Editorial StaffNovember 16, 20212min
(By Madi Mehta '24) The crowd of students, nestled on the Exley patio, buzzed in anticipation to awaiting the start of the Dramathon, a performance of student-created 10-minute plays based on the prompt “the unknown persists.” The event, which took place on Nov. 7, is similar to MonoLogOn, which was performed last year on Zoom due to the pandemic. Dramathon began when the music faded and the audience watched intently as the first set was built: a couple of chairs, a spattering of empty food containers, and assorted plastic bags. As the actors entered and positioned themselves, Exley disappeared and…

Rachel Wachman '24November 1, 20214min
Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences Raquel Bryant and Assistant Professor of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Teresita Padilla-Benavides are two women in STEM whose work has recently been highlighted in national science journals. Bryant, who will join the Wesleyan faculty in July 2022, co-wrote a paper titled “Microfossil and geochemical records reveal high-productivity paleoenvironments in the Cretaceous Western Interior Seaway during Oceanic Anoxic Event 2” that will be in the December volume of Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. Her work has also been featured as a Research Highlight in Nature Reviews Earth and Environment. Padilla-Benavides recently co-wrote an article titled “The…

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Olivia DrakeSeptember 29, 20216min
A team of researchers at Wesleyan has discovered new strains of bacteria—located on the University's campus—that may have the ability to break down microplastics and aid in the world's ongoing plastic waste crisis. Microplastics, which measure less than .20 of an inch, enter the ecosystem— and our bodies— largely through the abrasion of larger plastic pieces dumped into the environment. According to a study published in the Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, the average person consumes at least 50,000 particles of microplastic a year and inhales a similar quantity. "Plastic is typically classified as a non-biodegradable substance. However, some…

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Olivia DrakeAugust 24, 20213min
At first glance, a viewer sees a single image of pink-tinted cubes, resembling a bacteria culture from high school biology. But upon closer examination, the viewer begins to see a series of other shapes—triangles to hexahedrons to tetahexahedraons (cubes with four-sided pyramids on each face). "If you stare at this image for a while, you can see that it's actually a series of five images in the top row, and five images on the bottom row, and each of these images show us nanoparticles that are made of gold and copper," said Brian Northrop, professor of chemistry. "It's intriguing, captivating,…

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Olivia DrakeMay 17, 20213min
This month, the Office of Student Affairs presented the 2021 student prizes. The recipients and awards include: George H. Acheson and Grass Foundation Prize in Neuroscience Established in 1992 by a gift from the Grass Foundation, this prize is awarded to an outstanding undergraduate in the Neuroscience and Behavior Program who demonstrates excellence in the program and who also shows promise for future contributions in the field of neuroscience. Kian Caplan 2021 Ana Finnerty-Haggerty 2021 Andrew Northrop 2021 Fitzroy "Pablo" Wickham 2021 Alumni Prize in the History of Art Established by Wesleyan alumni and awarded to a senior who has…

Rachel Wachman '24May 14, 20212min
This month, five students were recognized with the First-Year Seminar Writing Prize for essays they wrote in their first-year seminars throughout 2020. A total of 137 first-year students submitted to the contest this year. Each winner will receive a $100 prize, and each honorable mention will receive a $50 prize. These students will have their work published online along with an audio recording of them reading their essays aloud. The First-Year Seminar Writing Prize celebrates the work of first-year writers at Wesleyan. The three winners are: Nathan Foote ’24, for “Anti-Gospel,” written for Anne Greene’s Place, Character, and Design. Gissel…

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Olivia DrakeApril 15, 20214min
As part of a class assignment for the spring 2021 course Topics in Journalism: The Art and Craft of Journalistic Nonfiction, students were tasked with writing short essays on the continuing battle for normalcy while attending college during the COVID-19 pandemic. The class is taught by Daniel de Visé '89, Koeppel Journalism Fellow. After graduating from Wesleyan and Northwestern University, de Visé spent 23 years working in newspapers. He shared a 2001 team Pulitzer Prize and garnered more than two dozen other national and regional journalism awards. He's also the author of three books. Journalistic nonfiction, de Visé, explained, uses…

Editorial StaffApril 15, 202110min
The following essay was written by Kiran Kling '24 (pictured above far left) as an assignment for the Spring 2021 semester course Topics in Journalism: The Art and Craft of Journalistic Nonfiction.   The Zoom was exactly on schedule. The gallery view was full, five minutes early. Coach Reilly ran a tight ship, and all 15 Wesleyan University basketball players, together but apart on this Wednesday night, knew the rules. “Good to see you all tonight,” Reilly begins. “Everybody give updates, freshman first this time.”  Every Wednesday at 7 p.m., the nine players who chose to come to campus for the…

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Olivia DrakeNovember 3, 20203min
By Annie Roach '22 and Olivia Drake MALS '08 After the whirlwind of 2020, Wesleyan students—many of them first-time voters—were particularly eager to exercise their right to vote in the presidential election. While several students cast absentee ballots in their home states weeks ahead of time, others voted in person on Nov. 3. Marangela James '24 decided to vote in person in Connecticut, here on campus at Beckham Hall. She registered at Wesleyan earlier this semester, when some students had set up a voter registration table in front of Usdan. “It was a little bit hard navigating how to vote…

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Olivia DrakeOctober 26, 20203min
Philosophers in the ancient world, in both the East and the West, typically viewed the practice of philosophy as an activity aimed at changing one's orientation to the world and, thus, how one lives one's life. Some of these thinkers developed views that still appear to have contemporary relevance, but many of them also held beliefs that we recognize today as not only outdated but also deeply misguided. Given these blind spots in their thinking, should ancient philosophy be "canceled"? That was the question up for consideration in a midterm debate held on Oct. 22 as part of PHIL 210:…