The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College since 1873

Month: October 2016 Page 2 of 4

The Strange Bedfellows amp up the


Dan Peeples ’17 and Will Koller ’17 epitomize the character of the Strange Bedfellows. DAN PEEPLES/COURTESY PHOTO

Whether they are re in the basement of 280, the Little Room in Chase Hall or the Ronj, the Strange Bedfellows, Bates’ improvisation comedy group, have certainly created an entertaining reputation for themselves. While the group is small in numbers, they never fail to bring their A-game and use their size to their advantage in their performances. Among these impressive qualities, the Strange Bedfellows are going above and beyond their humor to expand the presence of comedy on campus.

For a while, the Strange Bedfellows were the only group on campus whose sole focus was stand-up comedy. However, Dan Peeples ’17 believes there is so much room for growth and expansion among the performing arts to incorporate more stand-up comedy. One project they are working is called the “Bates Weekend Update.” Mirroring Saturday Night Live’s famous skit “Weekend Update,” this project will highlight relevant issues in the Bates community in a more comedic fashion by doing student interviews, stand-up bits and written sketches. Peeples said, “We are playing around with the idea of filming it in front of a live audience, and hope to release our first episode later this semester. The goal is to give students a way to view performance in small, digestible, ten minute bits without having to commit one or two hours to a single show. It also would allow us to have a live performance once every one or two weeks, that also can be watched after the fact by anyone who missed the show.”

The Strange Bedfellows are currently planning on hosting two events: a stand-up comedy night and a comedy musical revue, co-sponsored by the Robinson Players. According to Peeples, the performers in the musical revue “will take a Billboard Top 40 song and, without changing the words, manipulate the context in any way they like. For example, Taylor Swift’s subdued love song ‘You Belong With Me’ can be turned into a monstrous retelling of a satanic demon dragging its culprit to hell.”

The stand-up comedy night will take place early next semester and will feature Peeples alongside fellow Bedfellow Will Koller ’17. Peeples said, “This offers Will and I the opportunity to test out longer jokes that are more narrative based, and to experiment more with the form of stand-up as a medium.”

What’s worth mentioning about the Strange Bedfellows is that they have accepted a single new member into their small group of comedians to bolster the upcoming comedy events. Joseph Alp ’18 “was a stand-out mostly due to his confidence on stage and his willingness to engage with the guiding principles of improv, including character creation, relationship building and the establishment of an objective and location of a scene,” according to Koller. “These qualities stood out in his performance at the Parents’ Weekend show, where, for example, he played the character of Moby Dick with unprecedented confidence.”

Dan Peeples ’17 agrees that the Back to Bates Weekend show was a great way to introduce Alp to the Bates community. “We thought the crowd of parents and students was the perfect environment to perform in, and were pleased with how relaxed we all felt on stage.” Strange Bedfellow alum John Goodman ’15 was also in the audience and got called back to the stage to perform in a game called “Returns Counter.” Along with Alp, Peeples and Koller, the other group members include Ian Erickson ’18 and Whitney Lees ’17.

This year is the first year the group’s membership will remain constant. As any club or organization experiences, students are transferring, going abroad or leaving the group; the membership is never steady. However, this year’s group of Strange Bedfellows is looking forward to their first taste of consistency. Koller said, “This is especially important for a comedy form such as improv where group dynamic and group-mind are such important aspects of performance. The more time we spend together as a group, the better we get.”

Peeples said, “It’s great being able to work with such a small and tight knit group. The chemistry is what is important to building a strong improv team, and we think we have all the tools to be the best we can be this year.”

Their goal is to solidify their chemistry and start performing at regular venues, both of which will boost the presence of comedy on campus and hopefully provide the student body with a variety of entertainment opportunities.


Will the real crunchy granolas please stand up?

They both drove bulbous, yellowy-orange VW buses, managed vegetarian/vegan restaurants earlier in their lives, attended the University of New Hampshire in the 90’s, and held tentative interests in entering the corporate world. Tentative only because they felt uneasy about giving up their Birkenstocks for cap-toed dress shoes. Upon meeting and discovering the serendipity of their unique mutual experiences and interests, Nat Pierce and Aaron Anker instantly knew that they needed to co-own an organic granola company called GrandyOats in Hiram, Maine. Okay, maybe they didn’t actually arrive at that oddly specific conclusion in their first encounter, but Nat and Aaron certainly didn’t write off their similar pasts and aspirations as a simple coincidence — they knew that something needed to come of this.

After years of VW bus driving and seemingly random corporate endeavors, Aaron and Nat took their inner “earthy-crunchy-granola” to the next level. They bought over and completely reinvigorated a small granola company called GrandyOats in Hiram, Maine. Today, Nat and Aaron call each other the “REAL GRANOLAS,” with granola so tasty and organic that we at Bates College, a rather discerning institution culinarily speaking, call GrandyOats our official suppliers. For Nat and Aaron, “Business is more about having fun than it is about making money.” Along with a fun-loving attitude, they believe that running a successful business should nourish not only their own lives, but also the lives of other people, the planet, and our communities.

GrandyOats truly practices what they preach, as they are the first food supplier in New England to completely abandon the use of fossil fuels. Now that’s the type of business I am proud to say my school supports. Bates holds a longstanding relationship with GrandyOats, as well as many other sustainable and local food suppliers such as Belanger & Son’s Farms and Greenwood Orchard. In fact, while most schools struggle to spend even 20% of their dining budget on locally sourced foods, we at Bates spend 28-32% (depending on the time of year) of our dining budget on food from producers and farms in Maine.

In addition to supporting great businesses with sustainable practices, eating locally sourced food means eating fresher, tastier food that has traveled shorter distances to reach your plate. This benefits not only your discriminating palette, but also the environment and our efforts towards improving sustainability at Bates. Commons is continuing to improve its labeling practices, but for now, some local foods in Commons are marked as such, so look out for those labels and feel free to ask Commons staff about local foods if you are unsure. Here is a list of local foods that you can find in Commons (or at the Den):

GrandyOats Granola and Ancient Grains Hot Cereal

Oakhurst Dairy – milk, half & half, and other dairy products

Lepage Bakery – bread baked here in Lewiston

Borealis breads – locally produced, company owned by a Bates alum

Ground beef – 100% from local sources, natural sources including Cold Spring Ranch (owned by a Bates alum), Bubier’s Meats, and Maine Family Farms

Greenwood Orchards — apples and cider

Belanger & Sons — assorted produce

Italian Bakery — Den desserts, some breads

Sam’s Italian  Restaurant — some breads

Mailhot Sausage — breakfast sausage

Summit Springs water — bottled water of choice, recognized by MOFGA

Original Pizza — pizza dough

Gifford’s — ice cream

Maine Root and Cap’n Eli’s — assorted bottled sodas sold at the Den

Mock funeral procession

Whenever Annakay Wright’17 tells you they have something up their sleeve, but cannot disclose any information, you should probably prepare yourself for a statement to be made. On Friday, October 7th around 11:10 am the students participating in the student activism march met in the OIE, located in Chase Hall. The OIE is used as a “safe” space on campus for students who identify with minority identities.

The day felt hotter than normal because I kept thinking if any student or faculty member of color at Bates was shot would any parents, current student, alumni, or faculty care and protest the injustice? As we walked out Chase Hall, as a group of maybe 15, I was empowered. The white allies were passing out flyers while the black students and faculty members were marching. The flyers were a very important part of this march because last year when Annakay staged a “Die In” in Commons with some fellow students of color and white allies, some students who were not participating in on the “Die-In” took their opinions to YikYak. Students made racist slurs and questioned the purpose of the “Die-In” while doubting the injustices people of color encounter on a daily basis. Annakay had a mission to make this student activism piece so prepared that not even God herself could have questions about what is going on.

When we got to the front of Commons, I could see people in and outside of Commons looking at us, but did our peaceful march stop their conversations? Only a few. I guess I should be happy with a few conversations, but I am not. Everyday someone is dying due to police brutality and guess who it is? Take a second…I will let you think because obviously you are not up to date with the mistreatment of black people in America. This is our home just like everyone else. Fun Fact: Benjamin Bates was one of the main advocates for the creation of Bates College, but where did he receive his money to donate to the school? From black slaves who picked cotton for his textile mills. We have been an integral part in the formation of this country and school through blood, sweat, and tears, yet we cannot and do not get any recognition, but rather bits and pieces of our culture snatched from us.

As we begin to walk down alumni and past P’gill, I saw white students stop. Some record, smile, stare, but the worst of them all are the ones who zipped past on their bike, skateboard, or scooter, almost to say, “Sorry, but I do not care.” When we got to College Street to make a “U” turn and walk back down alumni, a white ally passed a flyer to a Bates worker who then responded, “White Lives Matter also.” When I saw who said I was hurt mostly because I say hello to this man every time I see him. Black Lives Matter does not mean White Lives do not matter, it just means that Black Lives should matter more right now because police officers follow procedure in terms of arresting a white person. But because some police officers are afraid of black bodies, the protocols go straight out the window and the bullet goes straight into the body of a black person making him another statistic and leaving a family distraught with no light at the end of the tunnel for race situations in America. To clear up another issue, black lives do not just mean African-Americans, but every shade of brown and black out there.

As we walked down Alumni, the walkway began to flood with students happy to finish with class, but confused because a group of students and faculty are wearing all black for the most part humming, “Lift our voice” and carrying the posters of the parents of the black people who have been murdered from police brutality. More students begin to stop and stare as we march down, which meant more students began to zip past us like we were invisible.

When we finally got back to Commons and walked inside to the Fireplace lounge, it was honestly very loud because of parents, students, and faculty members. Did I feel like they could and should have quiet down to listen to what conversations were being had? Yes, and people did. Our group went from 12-15 to about 30 people in a matter of minutes and that was a great feeling. White students who took time out of their day to listen were definitely informed listening to the students and faculty of color share their experience. Annakay would agree that the discussion and march were successful, but hopefully people realized their parents have the opportunity to come to Parents Weekend and show their love while some parents of color will never get to go to a Parents Weekend and if those parents did have children, is America going to allow them to live full lives? I guess it’s in the bullet of a police officer’s gun.

Tuscan Bistro: Good food good mood

Back to Bates Weekend dinner experiences started without gusto: I was eating cold gluten-free, lactose-free pizza on a Friday night. I had missed dinner, and was eating the leftovers of my dear friend, Taryn Bedard ’18. The cold mystery pizza filled my stomach, but did nothing to please my taste buds.

To complete this onerous task, I travelled all the way to Freeport, ME. After visiting the outlet stores to get pants (I had only brought a solitary pair of jeans with me to school for unknown reasons), my mother and I walked into Tuscan Brick Oven Bistro, a warm and intimate restaurant with an hour wait to get in. Luckily, I had made a reservation a few weeks ago in anticipation of parents in Freeport looking for food.

Our waitress seats us at a gigantic table for two, and we instantly appreciated the privacy and calmness our spacious dining environment afforded. We started to take in our extended surroundings: cozy chairs, comfy couches to wait on (which were all full) and attractive patrons enjoying beautiful dishes.

We order. Burrata with pesto, red peppers, broccolini and toasted bread with cheese to start. I take the hand-rolled gnocchi with duck confit sauce, while my mother orders the golden beet salad.

While our food was being prepared, my mother and I sunk into conversation about my school life. Five classes, no sleep, the usual Bates College busy student story. Luckily, before we could get to the topic of grades, a mound of cheese draped over warm crunchy bread arrived before our surprised eyes. We cut into the burrata, and soft cheesy goodness slowly cascaded out. Scooping some pesto and burrata onto a piece of bread, we swiftly started talking about my mom’s rowing and evaded the grades conversation entirely. Phew.

After consuming the glorious burrata and pesto, our entrees were promptly delivered.

From across the room, I could smell the savory odor of the salty duck confit. As I bit into a broccoli head, I was surprised by the sauce trapped among the florets. I never knew broccoli could taste so good, until I tried the duck. A glorious blend of salt and cheese and crushed hazelnuts provided a complex flavor profile in the confit. The gnocchi provided an excellent vehicle for the sauce.

Glancing across the table, I noticed my mom’s golden beet salad had quickly disappeared- it was no longer “golden.” As she finished the remaining greens, I dove further into the gnocchi. Having already consumed the rest of the duck and vegetables, I used a scooping motion to get as much sauce on the gnocchi as possible.

However, I quickly realized I was running out of stomach space. In efforts to enjoy as much fancy food as possible, I gobbled up as much gnocchi and sauce as possible. Success.

Again looking up from my own plate, I noticed that my mother had finished her meal as well. We smiled. We breathed.

As the check arrived, we thanked our waitress and left the warm embrace of the restaurant for the cool but inviting sidewalk. Breathing in the air, I felt my food settle and I appreciated again the duck confit deliciousness in the form of a soft burp.


President Clayton Spencer addresses new initiatives, future of Bates

How is Bates’ approach in creating the Computational and Digital Studies Department different when compared to other schools’ program?


So let me explain how it’s the same and how it’s different. How it’s the same is that it will be a strong computer science major for someone looking for a strong computer science major. There will be a set of core course that you would find in any computer science major, algorithmic thinking, coding, etc. And we want to make sure that we’ve got a computer science degree you can hang your hat on. How it’s different is that unlike a lot of our peers who’ve had computer science longer, this isn’t a program bolted onto a math department. And we don’t have legacy professors who are trained in computer science—you know it’s been a very fast moving field—so we’re starting fresh. We’re in the process of, this year, recruiting the first faculty leader of computer science. That’ll be a senior tenured position. A search committee is formed. And that person will come in and then recruit the other two faculty positions that’ll make up the program. So how it is different is we’re very conscious that this computer science program is located in a liberal arts college, a liberal arts curriculum. One of the things you want to make sure is that even as you teach hardcore computer science, you’re also teaching an interpretive critical look at the role of technology in society. And that will be built into the core set of courses. We also will have two tracks as it’s now envisioned, and my guess is it will continue to evolve as the new leader comes in who knows more about computer science than any of the rest of us. But we envision two tracks. One, let’s call it just straight down the line computer science problems. The other is, how do you use the foundational courses in other kinds of analysis. In neuroscience? There are many computational problems and I know Jason Castro works a lot with that. In genetics, in epigenetics, in physics. We feel like given the scale of Bates, given the fact that faculty are so interconnected, that we’ve got the perfect situation to situate computer science both in societal issues and in intellectual issues in a way that puts us at the front of the pack because we have no drag on the system. We got three brand new lines. We’ve had fantastic advice putting this together. We looked at a bunch of other programs. So I think it’ll be very exciting.


How has Purposeful Work evolved and grown in the past few years?


So I’m much more interested in students’ assessments. I can tell you we have, if you look at the kind of combination of purposeful work internships, the internships through the career development office, faculty research—people are either working with faculty on campus or off campus—and Harvard Center fellowships. We’ve got over 300 students doing funded summer work, which is fantastic progress. If you think about it, if you have 500 students doing funded summer work—funded either by the employer or by Bates—then that would mean you’re effectively giving every Bates student a crack at a funded opportunity. So we’re making significant progress in that direction. The core employer program in purposeful work has worked very well, where we’re now up to close to 70 core employers who are employers we have relationships with. Maybe we have a Bates grad on the inside who says, “I can’t guarantee that I can offer a Bates student an internship, but I will guarantee that I will work hard with you to get a Bates student into the competitive process, etc.” The other thing about the internship piece is it’s a summer cohort experience. So there are a lot of purposeful work interns. This last summer it was 119. But they’re online as an online community. Then the other piece is practitioner taught courses in Short Term. They’ve gotten rave reviews from students. I don’t want to vouch for them. I’ll just tell you the reviews have been great. Then there are purposeful work infusion into regular courses where circular ties to potential career options, purposeful work unplugged, which is where we bring in people. It feels like, to me, the program was extremely well thought through when set up by the faculty originally. There’s a working group, probably before you guys got here, the first year I was here, they sort of said what are the principles that we want to work with. I would say that almost all colleges have realized that to get their students launched on graduation, it’s really critical that they develop an experience. I don’t think many colleges have thought it through as fundamentally as we have and tied it to mission. The last thing I would say on the overall mission of purposeful work—I see it as the third leg of the equity promise. So we bring in students from a wide range of backgrounds. We do our best to support students for success and we’re making a series of strides there to improve that. And now we’re saying, but it’s not enough to say here’s your degree now good luck with the rest of your life. We’re doing that bridge to life and work after college. And for students particularly from families who don’t have strong professional networks, that is critically important. So, I also see it as deeply embedded in the equity mission of Bates.


Can you talk a little about Athletic Director Kevin McHugh retiring and what the hiring process might look like?


First of all, I have enormous respect for Kevin and what he’s accomplished. He will be finishing his tenth year this year. I think he strengthened our athletic program competitively. Obviously we had a national championship in rowing. We’ve had increasing success in a variety of sports, including post-season play. We have our highest standing ever in the Directors Cup, which is the Division III lineup overall. But much more important are Kevin’s personal qualities and the way his commit[s] to the educational mission of sports. Personally he is beloved by coaches. He knows student athletes. He’s at every game. If half of life is showing up, Kevin is that guy. And he is very well liked and respected by the faculty for his determination to try to situate athletics within the educational mission of Bates. So I think his contributions have been enormous and he gives us a strong platform upon which to build with the next athletic director. So about that: we’re currently in the process of putting together a search, which I expect we will hire an outside… We’ll have a committee that includes faculty, coaches, and, I hope, students and will figure out a careful selection process for people with the right kinds of representation and experience. Then I think we will hire a search firm. The first thing any search firm does is come up on campus and get a sense of the place. That’ll happen, I would say, within the next period of probably six weeks, where it will constitute the committee, hire a search firm, have them come and begin interviewing people. And it’ll be important to interview not only athletes, and staff and others in the athletic department, coaches, but also how other people see athletics, how the faculty see athletics, how’s the interface there. How does athletics interface with admissions, etc. So we will do that and I never put an end date on a search because you never stop the search until you find the right person. But the goal is to have the next athletics director identified before Kevin leaves so that it is a smooth transition.


What did we want to accomplish with the new dorm buildings at 55 and 65 Campus Ave? And how do we evaluate their success?


So let’s start with the end question. In my experience, students vote with their feet. We will have housing lotteries. If nobody’s choosing those dorms, they’re not working. If people are choosing those dorms, they are working. But we have a lot of other kinds of information. We have the whole res life staff and program. The different housing options on campus… I like to think of it as a system of housing options—you can live in a small house. You can live in a traditional dorm. You can now block into Smith. Different people have different tastes. In some houses, the living room is never used. In some dorms the common room is never used. In other places, it’s just naturally, organically used and there’s a great social space and great feeling gets going. Sometime it varies year to year. So we’ll see. I think of it as very existential and organic, how a building comes to life. And I wouldn’t want to presume. So my fervent hope is that this year beauty and respectfulness of those buildings… let me tell you a little bit about how it came to pass. We hired architects who spent a lot of time interviewing people all over Bates, I think students, faculty, staff, then there was a big committee. They took a million pictures. They looked at rooflines. They looked at brick. They looked at the color of the windows. And they wanted to design buildings that were contemporary but that reflect the vernacular of the campus. So you’ll see the roofs are hipped. The brick was made in Auburn in a particular size that matches, I think, the Chase brick. There’s lots of touches that are a new Bates for a new era, respectfully knitted into existing Bates with its history, values, and sense of community. The particular approach we took rather than just look at these as two buildings, we did an analysis of all the rooms on campus and said do we need more doubles? Nobody likes triples. Do we need more doubles? Do we need more singles? And I think the word came back that we actually need more singles, so that the upperclass students could get single rooms. And I distinguish the architecture of dorms from the sociology of dorms. So you can put four singles together and let isolated people lottery into them. Or you can put four singles side by side in one of the new dorms and let people block into them as a group of four. And I think they’re experimenting with both the sociology and the architecture all over campus. And finally I would say on social spaces, theres been a lot of suggestion that when Smith was chalk full, overloaded, a lot of sense that there weren’t informal spaces for students to gather, just hang out, play games, watch TV, study, talk, work on a project. So you’ll see that those buildings have a lot of that space built in. And also, the post-and-print and bookstore. The theory there was to enliven the street life there and create a much more attractive space, but also, the whole campus goes to post-and-print, and the whole campus goes to the bookstore. So it’s also a way of drawing more students in to feeling comfortable using those spaces. We’ll see if that happens, or if it feels very proprietary to the dorms. But that was the theory.


What will he fate of Chase Hall be?


It is up for grabs. So we have a couple of questions. What is the best use of the now vacated space? What is the long-term future of Chase? And then, how do you think about casual social space in the campus as a system, right? So the institutional planning report says we at least ought to consider enlivening Chase as a real campus center. And that could be done in the same way the Den and the OIE have been done, which is to go into the space, make it cool, but you’re not doing some hugely expensive renovation. So you could go into that vacated bookstore space and say okay what’s the next thing that goes in here? Should it be student facing, to keep loading more life and more student facing functions into Chase? I think that’s the impulse. If we move towards a comprehensive fundraising campaign, there’ll be a lot of competition for resources, so we have to make sure there’s plenty of money for financial aid, plenty of money raised for endowment, some money raised for facilities. So there’s been some talk, so do we want to renovate Chase and make a fancy student center? Well that might compete with a science building. So this is all really to be sorted out. And I think it’s to be sorted out very much in a dialogue with students, as has been the case with the campus culture working group. So to me it’s like a fun… I mean, people go in and they’re like, “Oh, I know what I’d do with that space.” I think it’s going to be a fun and very collective, collaborative process to figure that all out.


Asked about timeline for Chase Hall


I’m not aware of a firm timeline yet. I think we just sort of got through the move. I think we’d rather do it right than fast, but it probably needs to be right and fairly expeditiously so that we’re not leaving space …


How does Bates address parents pressure to avoid or question the liberal arts with regard to its ability to prepare students for a competitive job market upon graduation?


I think, so, personally, that the liberal arts have never been better aligned with the needs of the world. Technology is replacing repetitive jobs, jobs that don’t require creativity, flexibility, commonsense, rigorous analysis, etc. And so, the skills we’re teaching… Technology is moving up the job ladder. And the jobs that require what the liberal arts quintessentially teaches are the jobs that are the most secure. And I think people are seeing that. And you’re starting to see more and more the press write about that. So I think we have to do a very good job of delivering output what we say we do. We really do need to offer rigorous education that understands how to work across differences in ideas and human beings. And that’s something that a residential liberal arts college does best. So I would say, the liberal arts has never had higher value than it does now. We can’t rest on that. I think we then have to say, well how do we make sure the world understands that? You can’t just keep explaining it. I think purposeful work is one example. How do you actually embrace the notion that we’re preparing our students for the world of work, as well as life, as well as social contribution. Well we do that by kind of putting a pin in it and doing it really well. So the other thing I would say is it used to be that if you were at Bates versus a big research university, let’s say, Harvard, Harvard had Widener Library to do your thesis, we had our little library. Maybe you could do interlibrary loan, wait three weeks and get the materials that you need. But now there’s broad, almost universal access to content. So we are in the best position the liberal arts have ever been in. We’ve lost the disadvantage we had relative to larger universities. But we still have the advantage we’ve always had, which is you’re working with tenured faculty members on your thesis, and the R1 people are in huge classes, probably not getting to do a thesis or working with a graduate student. So I consider this the golden age of the liberal arts.


A recent announcement letter from UChiago explicitly eliminated safe spaces. How do we at Bates balance intellectual discourse and open exchange of ideas with some sort of sensitivity towards topics such as racial micro aggressions, cultural appropriation, sexual assault triggers, etc.?


So I’m very familiar with the Chicago letter which I thought was tone-deaf. There were two very interesting things that followed on. There was an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal by the President of University of Chicago, which was better nuanced but then there was a letter by a group of faculty from Chicago who wrote back … they wrote their version of what the letter should have said. And there’s also a recent grad from the University of Chicago who wrote a blog and he said this. He said, yes the University of Chicago is about free speech, any college or university should be. But guess what? I couldn’t have gotten through University of Chicago if I hadn’t had the benefit of the multicultural center, where I could go, unwind, talk honestly with my friends, etc. But he said, it wasn’t as though ideas weren’t debated. All ideas were debated. Ideas are challenged, but my humanity is not. So I think it’s a false dichotomy, and I think the discourse is freer, more open and richer, if you’re also in a sensitive way taking account of the diverse backgrounds, viewpoints, etc., and some of that needs to happen in places where you have the freedom to explore. So I think it’s a false dichotomy. I like to think of it not as free speech versus limits on free speech, but free speech and utter respect for the humanity of every one of our students and every member of our community. If you keep both of those principles in mind, I think you can navigate through in a way that serves both parts, both parts more fully.

Spencer discusses new introductions to Bates.

Students on campus this fall may have taken notice to a plethora of new professors here on campus across multiple departments. These professors are part of the Creating Consortium Connections Program, also known as the C3 Program, which includes a postdoctoral fellowship program that places professors at various campuses across the country for a period of two years. The C3 program has both an undergraduate and postdoctoral fellowship program, both of which aim to increase diversity in faculty on campuses and provide underrepresented students exposure in the world of career academia.

According to the C3 website, “the C3 Postdoctoral Fellowship program takes a central place in this effort by providing C3-Mellon postdoctoral fellows with an immersive experience in a liberal arts environment, allowing fellows to build their teaching portfolios, advance their scholarship and get ready for a tenure track position while benefiting from a supportive mentoring and cohort program.”

Currently there are three C3 postdoctoral fellows on campus: Nina Hagel of Politics, Ian Shin of History, and Rohan Sud of Philosophy. These three professors will remain on campus for the next two years as they begin the process of teaching courses in their respective departments, while also working to promote diversity among the faculty here on campus.

Recently, Bates was awarded the Mellon Diversity and Faculty Renewal grant, a five-year grant of $1 million that will work to install a four-part strategy to promote candidates from underrepresented groups on the tenure track for professorship at Bates.

While the C3 program works to place faculty from underrepresented groups on campus, it also strives to provide students from underrepresented groups a chance to field their interest in entering into academia after Bates. Several students are chosen each year to participate in the C3 Undergraduate Fellowship Program, which allows students the chance to partake in graduate-level studies at University of California Berkeley, and Columbia University.

The C3 Undergraduate Fellowship Program is meant to allow students, primarily in the humanities, to garner an idea of how research and graduate-level academia are conducted so that they may decide whether or not a career in academia is of pertinent interest.

Jose Luis Herrera ‘17, who participated in the C3 Undergraduate Fellowship Program at Columbia, revealed that his experience in the C3 Undergraduate Fellowship Program allowed him to understand more closely the environment in which graduate level research is conducted.

“In looking back on my experience at Columbia this summer, I feel as though I was provided with an inside look into how top-tier research is conducted at a renowned institute such as Columbia. As I am thinking of pursuing a career in academia after I graduate from Bates, it was important for me to have this experience as an undergraduate. This program is an exceptional opportunity for students from underrepresented groups to gain unprecedented exposure in careers in academia”, says Herrera.

Both the C3 Postdoctoral Fellowship Program and the C3 Undergraduate Fellowship Program work to increase opportunities for underrepresented groups in academia. Current Bates students who are interested in pursuing a career in academia may find that the C3 Program allows them to gain exposure from leading institutions around the country. In addition, the C3 program will continue to host professors on campus in order to increase diversity among faculty here at Bates. For more information on the C3 programs, please refer to


Bates College WITH parents

The weekend was full of activities with Homecoming and parents visiting MAX HUANG/THE BATES STUDENT

The weekend was full of activities with Homecoming and parents visiting


Back to Bates, the second annual fusion of Homecoming and Parents Weekend into one mighty event was met with smashing success. Over the weekend, hundreds of Bates alumni and families gathered on the Bates campus to celebrate in unison the academic, athletic, and artistic hallmarks of this distinctive institution. The weekend kicked off with the biggest a cappella concert of the year that included a goosebump-inducing version of Adele’s Hello, sung by the ever-talented Maddie Mclean 17’.

As Nico Bardin ‘17 expressed, “I would pay good money to see our a capella groups perform.” However, as with almost every event of the weekend, including Brewfest with unlimited beer and hard cider, the weekend was free of personal expenses. Perhaps more exciting for Bates students than the arrival of parents is the annual arrival of the mini cartons of fresh pressed apple-cider and the plentiful sampling of maple cookies.

With more than 60% of Bates students’ involvement in athletics, the weekend was full of red and black-donned families and alumni, celebrating various athletic team successes or, in the case of some, still celebrating in the wake of failure. Parents and students bonded over generational gaps and overlaps at the Tailgate and cheered loudly as Bates Football resoundingly defeated Williams 27-19. The victory marks the fifth time in the last six years the Bobcats (1-2) have defeated the Ephs (0-3) on the gridiron. While football took the center stage, based on locality, other Bates athletic teams dominated in their own respective fields and courts, with women’s volleyball sweeping two NESCAC matches in a row over Trinity, and a win for both Field Hockey and women’s soccer.

In conjunction with athletic affairs, alumni and families also roistered around Bates academics. From a networking event at the Bates Career Development Center, to the ever-popular summer research poster session, to a Ladd planetarium demonstration, Bates academics and student’s personal engagement with purposeful work in and out of the classroom was recognized and celebrated.

Many parents who hadn’t seen campus before, and perhaps begrudging younger siblings starting the college process early, were also acquainted with the Bates academic buildings and classes, while attending one of the various campus tours offered throughout the weekend.

Music also played a key role in the weekend, starting with the house-packed a capella concert Friday night to the small acoustic gathering at The Ronj. Although brewfest ended earlier in the day, the tent remained intact and as the sun set, it swiftly filled with small children, parents, alumni and Bates students alike indulging their sweet teeth with a sampling of autumn desserts. As various Bates bands bellowed their songs into the brisk fall air, parents, alums and students danced together. When the dessert supply slowly dwindled down and the excitement of the day settled into sleepiness, parents and older alums headed to their hotels to rest and Batesies and young alumni rallied for an evening of “networking” and celebration.

The rain on Sunday afternoon signaled the end of the weekend, gently pushing parents and alumni to head home after attending a few of the final events. While the decision to conjoin parents weekend and homecoming into one event last October initially raised the eyebrows of some, it is quickly gaining appreciation by students, alums and parents alike. As the saying goes: the more the merrier.

Breaking: Trump is Sexist

Trump’s latest sexist comments are nothing new, and the response to them has not been, either. On Friday, The Washington Post released footage of Donald Trump bragging about the license his fame gives him to assault women and a deluge of responses from high-profile politicians and celebrities sprung forward– ‘I cannot support Trump’s comments because I have a daughter/wife/sister/mother/etc.’ This isn’t the first time that Trump has objectified women, nor is it the first time there have been allegations of assault against him.  But not only do we need to accept the fact that Trump is sexist, we need to change the rhetoric of ‘protecting’ women from Trump. His ‘locker-room’ comments are not new phenomena in his political campaign– people need to stop acting like they are just realizing Trump is a violent person, and jumping to the aid of their closest female relative.

John McCain, Kelly Ayotte, Carly Fiorina, John Kasich, Condoleezza Rice, and many more Republicans publicly announced they were withdrawing their support over the weekend, but where were these announcements when it was revealed Trump had been accused of raping his ex-wife, or raping a 13-year-old girl?  Why were we not protecting our sisters and daughters then?  Why were we not vilifying him as a country when he allowed Howard Stern to refer to his daughter as a “piece of ass?”  Or when he said “what did these geniuses expect when they put men and women together,” regarding rape in the military? What about the countless times female employees of Trump have come forward, claiming harassment and unwanted attention?

Trump’s comments in the recently released conversation with Billy Bush are despicable, yes, but no one should claim they are shocking.  We can add these statements to a practically endless list of awful, violent things Trump has said, but do not act like they are the sole reason you fear for the women you love.  We should not condemn Trump for his vicious statements simply because we love certain women, but because women are humans and no human should be treated the way Trump treats the women he encounters. Women are not scared of Donald Trump, we are scared of the attitude he perpetuates. What he claims is ‘locker-room’ banter is not just talk– it is part of the set of behaviours he and many other men take part in.

It is one month until the election.  Republicans cannot wash their hands of Trump now because he went ‘too far’ in statements recorded over a decade ago.  Trump  said myriad reprehensible comments regarding women, immigrants, the disabled, and other marginalized groups before anyone even knew about this video.  If you accepted Trump as your candidate before the video was released on Friday, you have to accept him now.  Nothing has changed– no line Trump hadn’t already catapulted himself over was crossed this weekend.  Can we please stop acting like we are shocked that Trump is sexist and dangerous?

Field Hockey wins two games, stays in contention

The team came into Wednesday night’s game against Endicott with a three game losing streak, and a 1-5 conference record. Although this game meant nothing for NESCAC standings or playoffs, the result was paramount to the team’s morale for the remainder of the season.

Perhaps this was the biggest game of the season, and Bates certainly came out ready to play, which is not something they have done in every game this season. Just 5 minutes into the game, Samantha Reiss ‘18 found leading scorer Jesse Moriarity ‘19 who put the ball in the net to give Bates a 1-0. The Garnet and White outshot the Gulls 13-0 for the rest of the first half. Yes, you read that correctly.

The Bobcats went into halftime with just a 1-0 lead, but a monumental psychological advantage. Sometimes, the mental edge is all you need to win a game. Indeed, almost immediately after the start of the second half, Alexandra Leahy ‘20 put her team up 2-0 with a slap shot. Minutes later, Sydney Beres ‘18 scored a goal to give the garnet and white a resounding 3 goal lead.

Looking up at the scoreboard, Endicott players looked demoralized, as they had been unable to even get a shot off, let alone score a goal. However, in the 55th minute the Gulls scored on what would be their only shot attempt of the night.

Adah Lindquist ‘19 responded later with a goal, and the game ended with a 4-1 Bates victory.

Coming off the dominating win on Wednesday, the Bobcats were confident and ready to take on Connecticut College, a team they hadn’t beaten since 2013. This game had added importance as the season draws closer and closer to the NESCAC playoffs.

The teams battled hard to a standstill as the score stayed at 0-0 through all 70 minutes of regulation. In field hockey, the overtime period is played with just seven players on each side, opposed to the usual 11-11 play.

Goalie, Adelea Durand ‘19 proved to be huge making three clutch saves in the period. But it was Lauren Foster ‘18 who gained all the glory on Saturday. The junior scored her first career goal in dramatic fashion off an assist from Taylor Lough ‘19. Eight minutes into overtime, Foster, seemingly unfazed by the pressure of the moment, ripped a shot to give her team the victory.

Looking ahead, field hockey will visit Babson next Wednesday for another non-conference matchup. And if they beat Colby on October 26 they will have strong chance of making the NESCAC playoffs.

“I have confidence in our team.” Coach Danielle Ryder said in an email. ” Mental consistency along with their determination will make it an exciting two and a half weeks of fighting for a postseason bid.”


The good and bad of Colin Kaepernick and us as a nation

Unless you have been under a rock for the past month, you have probably heard about Colin Kaepernick protesting during the national anthem. There has been so much news and commentating on the subject that I wanted to wait and let everything marinate in my head before delivering my own thoughts.

After hearing the news on Terence Crutcher, and watching the difficult video, I felt even more compelled to speak on Colin and how we as a nation have reacted to his protest. As a black man growing up during this social turmoil, I personally understand why Colin is protesting the way he is. But I also believe the way he has gone about it is wrong.

The reason I say this is because his message has been blinded by the idea that he is disrespecting our military. In a way, his protest has backfired. People who do not understand his message are not looking at the substance of his protest, but are instead looking at the action itself. Until we can get those who have not had the historical experience with police that people of color have had to at least understand the meaning of Colin’s protest, we cannot truly get the conversation started.

A little while back I wrote an article on athletes as activists and where the line should be drawn. As I said in that article, I would like to see more athletes be more vocal about issues, but I do not expect them to be active. I love the news and attention that Colin has garnered, especially because many of his peers around the league have shown their support and protested in similar ways. His actions have not only spread to other players in the NFL, but also across other sports. For example, United States Women’s National Team soccer player Megan Rapinoe has shown her support for Colin by kneeling during the anthem before her games.

Since the summer, more players have slowly come out to voice their opinions on social issues. Whether or not that is because they see their peers standing up or the social unrest has hit a breaking point for them, we are seeing more athletes utilize their platform for something that is bigger than any sport. This growing activism in sports is getting the conversation started and this is only the beginning.


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