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A Brief Look at the History of Goucher’s Land

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In 1885, Goucher College was founded in Northern Baltimore as the Women’s College of Baltimore. It then was renamed Goucher College in 1910 to honor the contributions of Dr. John Goucher and his wife Mary Fisher Goucher. As early as 1914, the college sought to move out of Baltimore, due to the fact that “the character of the immediate neighborhood of the College was then beginning to change so rapidly.” The college purchased 421 acres of land in Towson in 1921. When the students first ventured to the Towson campus, the school newspaper described it as a visit where students “rambled for miles through the meadows, cornfields and woods that in a very few years will have been metamorphosed into the Academic Quadrangle, the Lake, Faculty Row, and everything else that one’s fondest dreams may suggest.”
The move was a time of great hope and anticipation, leading to a campaign where alumnae each raised $421 to fund the building of the new campus.

Goucher women visit the new campus in 1920s. Photo credit: Goucher College Archives

The land that became Goucher was originally owned by the Ridgely family as part of Hampton Estate. The Hampton Estate was one of the largest slave plantations in Maryland, before it was given by the family to their relatives, the Chew Family. The land then became the Epsom farm, which was still worked by slaves. When the college bought the land in Towson from the Chew family, it was stipulated in the deed that “that no part of said land or premises shall ever be leased, sold, transferred to or occupied by any person of the African Race; this provision, however, not to apply or include occupancy of servants, or employees of the owners of the premises.” Even after the sale, members of the college upheld a close neighborly relationship with the then owner of Hampton Estate, Captain Ridgely.
The move from Baltimore to Towson began in 1921 but was not completed until 1954, due to financial difficulties and building supply shortages during World War II. The 1950s was also a period during which white-flight was happening across the United States and in Baltimore, as white residents of cities moved out of the city center and into the suburbs and more people of color moved into the cities. In 1937, the Residential Security Map of Baltimore had been created, which is now known as a redlining map, meant to prevent the sale of property to people especially people or color and the poor who lived in certain geographic areas, particularly those in the inner-city. In this map “desirable” mostly white neighborhoods were marked as green, while “undesirable” neighborhoods with high lending risk were marked red. Through this effort and through neighborhood covenants, people of color were excluded from living in certain neighborhoods and were refused housing loans and insurance. This map was created by a number of real estate brokers as well as with help from Ivan McDougal, Professor of Economics and Sociology at Goucher College.
In summation, the history of the campus is far more complicated than is regularly acknowledged. This information is all available from the Goucher archives, which can be found online at http://blogs.goucher.edu/digitallibrary/.
If you are interested in learning more about this history or simply discussing what you know about the history and how it affects the college today, please contact me (Sophia Hancock at sohan001@mail.goucher.edu)! I am currently conducting a research project on the history of the campus as a part of my Environmental Studies capstone project.

SOPHIA HANCOCK

Goucher Model U.N. Attends Harvard Conference

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Wake up! It’s 5:50 am and my alarm rings. My roommate just sleeps through it but I am on a mission. I shower, pack my suits and bowties, then head over to the Welsh kitchen. There I meet my team, my brothers and sisters in arms representing Mongolia at the Harvard Model United Nations conference. At Welsh, Alex, the club president, is making us crêpes with nutella, the breakfast of champions. We head off to the airport and fly to Boston.
After checking in at the hotel, a quick twenty-minute walk from the conference, we headed out to get burgers. While sitting with my fellow “Mongolian” delegates, we briefly discussed what was going to occur. This was the first time many of our team members’ participated in Model UN and even fewer of us had been to the Harvard conference before, so we had no idea what we were getting into. After realizing we had stayed in the burger joint too long, we ran a few blocks to get to the opening session on time.
We were struck by the sheer size of the conference. Close to three thousand students from over sixty countries were present. There we sat in the Grand Ballroom, ready to be awakened with a sense of passion, not for one’s country, but for humanity. People flew in from Venezuela, China, the Netherlands, Ghana, Peru, and many other countries. The previous US ambassador to Austria took the stage. She gave a rousing speech and a call to action to look beyond the dilemmas facing each individual nation, and to look at how we as a global community can work together to uplift us all. Then committee started.

This was the first time many of our team members’ participated in Model UN and even fewer of us had been to the Harvard conference before, so we had no idea what we were getting into. Credit: Google Images

I walked into a room of seventy people and immediately began schmoozing to see who would be my potential allies and enemies. The topic, violience against LGBTQ indivuals, was chosen. From there, representatives from various nations began speaking about how their country has attempted to solve the problem. Everyone wrote frantic notes to see who would support their ideas in a resolution. Writing resolutions is the key because these pieces of paper mimic real UN resolutions which push national governments in certain directions. Resolutions most of the time do not convey any hard power but they essentially are used to pressure nations towards moving in specific directions.
Things really started to pick up as we discussed ideas about education programs, better policing, hotlines, as well as many others. The meetings spilled into breakfast coffee runs where we were all frantically arguing and writing, making sure that our nation’s interests were represented. After three full days of arguing and negotiating it all came down to a vote.
There were four groups of countries each writing their own resolution, and I was working on two seperate ones, thinking that the two would merge. Instead of the two obvious mergers they instead merged with another resolution that I had no previous connection to, and I then became the ally of the only two opposing resolutions on the floor. The resolutions also had exactly half the amount of votes, one less for them to pass, and only one could pass. Realizing the difficulty of my situation as the ally of both resolutions, I was able to extract concessions from both sides in an attempt to get the best deal for Mongolia. When we entered the voting procedure on the resolutions, to determine which one would pass and which fail, I decided that, in the best interest of the Mongolian people, we would vote against both resolutions. Things got crazy in the immediate aftermath of my destruction of the committee. It was a hard decision to betray my allies. I did openly lie to both sides about my support, just to make sure they would not try to win votes from others. The end result was three days of negotiations and deal making only to be torpedoed by me because the coalitions did not meet my demands.
These experiences can only be offered in Model UN. The politicking and deal making will excite any thrill seeker, not to mention the social aspects as well. There was a delegate dance, with international music, an international bazaar, and a casino night. Model UN is more than just pretending to be a diplomat from some random far flung nation, it’s an eye opening experience and a great chance to meet people one would normally never have the chance to meet. Meeting Venezuelans who were protesting against their corrupt president, meeting Chinese students and learning about their educational system — these opportunities are only offered at Model UN.
Goucher’s Model UN club is also planning on attending a local conference at Gettysburg College soon and we are open having to new and adventurous delegates.

DAVID KAHANA

Club Chat: Fashion Club

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Goucher has a reputation for being a creative place, and for this installment of Club Chat, I talked to Elisabeth Wagner, ‘18, a co-president of Goucher’s fashion club.

Fashion Club hopes to “give students the opportunity to express themselves creatively through the means of fashion.” Photo Credit: Google Images

Q: What is your Club’s general purpose?
A: [The purpose] is to give students the opportunity to express themselves creatively through the means of fashion. Whether that’s sewing, embroidering, silk-screen printing we wanted to be able to give the ability and freedom to any student that came to us with a creative idea that they wanted to execute. We just got a bunch of silk-screen printing stuff, we have embroidery stuff, we have a few sewing machines…

Q: How does your club work structurally? Do you have meetings? A: Are you more event based?
We are trying to figure out a weekly meeting time, we don’t have a set meeting time yet.

Q: What gave you the idea to start the club?
A: I felt like they didn’t have anything fashion-oriented at Goucher. That’s something I’m interested in, and something I want to work professionally in. It was actually my friend who came up with the idea, and we got on top of it, and got funding for it.

Q: What are your plans this coming semester?
A: We have a few ideas! We just thought of something, where we want to give students the opportunity to donate old denim: pants, jackets, shorts… and let us rework it. We haven’t totally fleshed out whether it’s going to be free of cost, or if it will be a couple of dollars that will go into funding ourselves.

I wanted to do a fashion zine, since Goucher doesn’t have that and I think it’s a good way to explore personal expression and style on campus, which is obviously something that’s very prevalent and loud and I think that a lot of people at Goucher are very expressive. I think it would be nice to give them a platform recognizing it.

Q: Why should people participate in your club out of all the other options out there?
A: It’s a low stress environment to express yourself, and have the means to create different pieces. It’s about giving people the freedom of expression, and the means to do it.

And that’s that for this installment of club chat! Interested in having your organization featured in the next issue of the Q? Email me at firut001@mail.goucher.edu for your chance to be in the next edition!

A Sweet Treat

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The Scoop on an Ice Cream Stall in Baltimore Where Six Alumae/i and Students Happen to Work

Rae Walker, ‘17, and Hannah Speigelman, ‘15, at the Little Baby’s Ice Cream Stall. Photo Credit: Sophia Hancock

The bustling upscale “food hall” R. House is home to a surprising subset of the Goucher community. Tucked into a corner of the marketplace, Little Baby’s Ice Cream sells handmade, small batch ice cream with unique flavors, like Earl Gray Sriracha. The slim, brightly lit stall also happens to be the workplace of six former and current Goucher students.
Perhaps you’ve seen the ad. Sitting in front of a black backdrop, a person who appears to be made of a thick white substance stares outward, wide-eyed. He reaches up, scoops at the top of his head with a large spoon, brings the spoon to his mouth, and licks it. A faint lullaby plays as a slow voiceover begins his hypnotic monologue by saying, “there’s good reason for my glistening skin.” The camera zooms out. At the end of the clip, a cheerful logo for Little Baby’s Ice Cream appears—a smiling ice cream cone holding a spoon and an ice cream scooper. While perhaps it is not the most immediately appetizing, the popular youtube ad certainly gets your attention.
My knowledge of this ad campaign, however, did not lessen my surprise when Goucher alum Rae Walker (’17) informed me, somewhat offhandedly, that in addition to teaching full-time and getting a Master’s degree in education, he also scooped ice cream at a place called Little Baby’s.
Little Baby’s Ice Cream (LBIC) was founded in Philadelphia in 2011 and has expanded over the years to offer catering services in Southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Baltimore, and Washington, DC., with stalls located in D.C. and at Baltimore’s R. House. The founders believed that that ice cream could “bring people together.” Classic. It gets a little weirder, however, in the next part of their mission statement, which states that they see ice cream as “a unique opportunity to subvert people’s expectations,” a goal which they achieve in their ads, flavors, and business model.
“Little Baby’s is known for its weirdness,” said Hannah Spiegelman, ’15, the current manager of the Baltimore branch. Spiegelman worked in ice cream shops during the summers. At Goucher, she studied history, with a minor in art history. After graduating, she was determined to go down a path that involved museum work. However, after working in Special Collections at Goucher, she realized that it wasn’t the right path for right for her. In December 2016, when she saw on Instagram that the Little Baby’s Ice Cream (LBIC) stall at R. House was hiring, she applied. Within a year, she would become the manager herself.
“I realized that food is my greater passion,” said Spiegelman. “When I graduated…I thought that whatever I decided to do now [immediately after graduation] would be my life, but the more I talk to people, I see people who’ve completely changed what it is they’re doing. It’s okay not to know. People say ‘you’ve had four years to figure it out,’ when actually, no, I’ve had four years to become a completely different person and now I need to take time to process it.”

LBIC has kooky initiatives like a Pay It Forward Board through which you might pay for ice cream for a cancer survivor or a single dad, or for someone to do ten push-ups in the shop. Their biggest competitor in the area is The Charmery, probably due to the fact that, in addition to selling small-batch high-quality ice cream, both the Charmery and LBIC cater to eccentric tastes, with flavors like the Charmery’s Old Bay Seasoning and LBIC’s Pizza flavor.
When the photographer and I arrived at Little Baby’s for the interview with Spiegelman, Walker, who was manning the stall, handed us samples of every flavor that they had in stock. Earl Gray Sriracha was unexpectedly delicious and had a nice kick to it. After the interview, we walked away with scoops of Lychee Lemonade, which was very lemony and similar to sorbet, and Chocolate Mint Cookie, which was like eating Girl Scout Thin Mints in ice-cream form. Both were vegan flavors but certainly did not taste “vegan.”
LBIC’s unusual offerings attracted Spiegelman. “I hate boring ice cream flavors,” she said.

During Spiegelman’s time at LBIC, the number of Goucher-affiliated employs has steadily increased. Many of them work at LBIC in addition to having other positions and/or applying for or saving money for graduate school.
For example, Yael Ben Chaim, ‘16, started at LBIC in April 2017, while she had an AmeriCorps position working at the Maryland Farmers Market Association at a nearby location. She appreciated the combination of the office-based AmeriCorps job and the customer-service. Currently she works at MOMs Organic Market and she plans to go to graduate school for social work within the next two years. Yael’s favorite flavor is Plain. “It is simple, sweet and easy to enjoy,” she says. “It also mixes well with any other flavor on the menu!”
Rae works at LBIC at night and on the weekends. During the week, he is a Special Education teacher in a Baltimore public school, and is getting his master’s in education through Teach for America. Rae is also a fan of LBIC’s plain ice cream, but will willingly try any of the more unusual options.
Emily Abramson, ‘18, self-described avid tea drinker, started at LBIC in July 2017. She’s currently at Goucher in her final year for a Masters in Management. She also works part-time as a graduate assistant for the Office of Community-Based Learning (CBL) and is an intern for AARP Maryland’s state office, working to coordinate a statewide food drive in April. Other than all of that, she’s a freelance artist.
Emily’s favorite LBIC flavor would either be “Pumpkin Curry for the sweet/savory combo [and] the currants and cream because it reminds me of picking currants from my backyard when I was a little kid” or the “Cherry Hibiscus because the strong bitter flavor of the hibiscus counters the sweetness of the candied cherries perfectly.”
After she was hired at LBIC, Abramson encouraged Sophie Anger, ‘17, who was still a student and was looking for a weekend job, to apply. Anger started in September, while she was student teaching second grade at Roland Park Elementary/Middle School. Her favorite flavor is Coffee Toffee, because “I just love coffee ice cream, but I also loved our seasonal crushed candy cane, and chocolate ginger.”
Goucher student David Hernandez, ‘18, also works at LBIC. A history major, he is currently working on an archeological dig on campus, called the Epsom Project. His favorite flavors are a tie between Cherry Hibiscus because he’s “never tasted anything like it,” and Vegan Thai Iced Tea, which is made with delicious coconut cream.
This little ice cream stall has turned into a mini-Goucher community outside of Goucher. They work hard together and enthuse about their coworkers’ positivity, passion, and inspiring desires to make positive change in the world.

Rae Walker, ‘17 scoops ice cream at Little Baby’s Ice Cream when he’s not working as a Special Education teacher at Dr Carter G Woodson Elementary Middle School. Credit: Sophia Hancock

Spiegelman’s job as a manager, however, is not without its difficulties.
“R. House oozes that white men built it,” said Spiegelman. At the time that Spiegelman started at the newly-opened Baltimore branch, LBIC was partnered with Blk//Sugar, a bakery owned by Krystal Mack, who was the only woman and only black person working as a manager at R. House.
“I love the people that work here,” said Spiegelman. “It’s just the people upstairs…When I go to meetings with them, I’m the youngest, I’m the only woman…Everyone else is a white male.” Spiegelman laughed, drawing connections between her awareness of her management situation and her experiences at Goucher. “You don’t realize everything you’ve learned until you’re put into a situation, and then you’re like oh, that was very Goucher of me.”
A Goucher education can be taken in many directions. In addition to reflecting on how Goucher had opened her to a certain way of thinking, Spiegelman also emphasized how proud she was of all of her co-workers. “When you hear about alums, you just hear about alums in law firms, but the majority of graduated students are working in food service or something like that…[they are] working five jobs…and it’s all valid and awesome,” said Spiegelman. “There’s a lot of pressure to get salary jobs right out of school, and it would be great to have a salary job right now but there’s nothing wrong with working just because you love it. People should be celebrated for making it in this crazy world.”

In addition to managing Little Baby’s, Spiegelman works part-time in Goucher’s Special Collections. And on the side, she makes her own ice cream, based on historical art, events, and people, etc.! (Follow her on Instagram: @asweethistory). Her favorite LBIC flavor is Maryland BBQ because “it is unexpectedly delicious” and she hopes to go to graduate school for food studies in the fall.

A Little Extra
As part of the interviews, I asked alums to write what they appreciated about their co-workers. They all had many lovely things to say. Emily Abramson’s comments were so sweet and individualized, however, that it was impossible to resist publishing them all.

From Emily, on her co-workers:
Hannah: A sweet boss and always someone that is there for me. Both of us have this unique quality in which it can take one of us upwards of half an hour to tell a story, so there’s never a quiet moment when we’re working together.
Yael: An angel, and one of the sweetest people in the world. She brings out the goofy side in me, and we’ve heard reports from other R House staff that they can sometimes hear us laughing from across the building.
Efehi: I love Efehi for many many reasons, one of which being that she’s the only one that can keep up with me when I’m dancing in the stall.
Rae: Rae and I always manage to make each other laugh so hard we wheeze when we work together.
David: David’s smile always charms the older gay men into giving us lots of tips, which I appreciate. He’s so so sweet, and incredibly understanding.
Sophie: Through thick and thin, Sophie is a dear friend and a great person to work with. We spend slow days at work experimenting with weird flavor combinations and laughing at ridiculous college stories.
Zac: An impeccable fashion sense and such a down to earth dude.

Spiegelman also happily made it clear in her interview that Goucher students who visit Little Baby’s (while she is the manager, at least) will receive a discount.

Abby Stein: Trans Activist and Former Rebbe Visits Goucher

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On February 20th, Goucher Hillel brought activist Abby Stein to come speak with the college community.

Socialized as a man for the first twenty years of her life and born into a royal bloodline, Stein was trained as a rebbe for the Hasidic community shortly after her arranged marriage at age 19. She left the community in 2012, and came out as a transgender woman in 2015.
Photo Credit: Google Images

During her talk in the Hyman Forum, Stein told us about her life on the inside of the Hasidic community of Williamsburg, Brooklyn. (For some reference, think of Fiddler on the Roof.) She informed us how she was taught that “T.V. is the devil,” and that men and women should occupy entirely separate spheres of the Hasidic community.
Socialized as a man for the first twenty years of her life and born into a royal bloodline, Stein was trained as a rebbe for the Hasidic community shortly after her arranged marriage at age 19. She left the community in 2012, and came out as a transgender woman in 2015. She spent a significant part of her talk describing the schooling system within the Hasidic community, pointing out that only girls were taught any English growing up. While boys were expected to study the Talmud, requiring them to only need to know Hebrew and Yiddish, most girls worked in the larger Brooklyn area once married. Despite this, the secludedness of the community ensured that the prevailing languages spoken were Hebrew and Yiddish. Stein underscored this point when she said that after leaving the community it was as if she was an “immigrant to [her] own country,” despite having been born and raised in New York.
One of Stein’s slogans is “refusing to shut up.” A part of this includes educating people on Hasidism without bashing individuals within the community. I learned that being a rebbe is different from being a rabbi in that Stein remarked that rebbes are considered the “political, spiritual, and financial leader” of the community. She likened the community’s structure to that of a monarchy, and commented that “[gender] roles are set in stone.” That she herself was a rebbe within this incredibly insular community made this ethnographic approach more accessible to me. Instead of feeling the need to defend any aspect of Judaism, I could simply appreciate Stein’s critique of the tradition she was raised in.
An engaging speaker, Stein felt approachable. She sidestepped the subject of how to be a good ally, and instead challenged us as audience members to listen to her story without needing to make it about us instead. She spent an hour telling us the story of her life, and an hour after that answering questions from the audience about almost anything under the sun. Stein made it clear that she does not have all the answers to how we can build a more welcoming world on a large scale, but she does know that the self-made choice to come out is worth celebrating.
So, what? Why should we care? What if you aren’t queer, or Jewish, or both? Callie Hamm, ‘21, summed it up simply: “anybody from any background can get something out of it.”
Here are a few of the resources Stein highlighted in her talk:

  • Her website, http://thesecondtransition.blogspot.com/ includes her blog and a plethora of Jewish- and queer-centric resources
  • Watching YouTube videos of trans people talking about their identities
  • One of Us on Netflix
  • Follow her on Instagram @abbychavastein

In addition to bringing speakers to campus from time to time, Goucher Hillel hosts a free Shabbat dinner every Friday night, and all are welcome to attend. Want to know more about Abby Stein, Jewish life on campus, or are interested in being a part of a Jewish and Queer affinity space? Feel free to email me at nelev001@mail.goucher.edu.

 

NEVE LEVENSON

Freshmen Perspectives: Homesickness

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“As humans, we instinctively crave familiarity, security and some degree of a routine. All of this disappears when you are thrown into college: a completely new, unpredictable and ever-changing situation.” Photo Credit: semionbarbershop.com

As you, a first-year, enter your first spring semester of college after a month-and-a-half long winter break, a familiar wave of discomfort and longing for home may wash over you. This unease and anxiety can be summed up in one word: homesickness. In a paper co-written by Chris Thurber and Edward Walton, published in the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, homesickness is defined as “distress and functional impairment caused by an actual or anticipated separation from home and attachment objects such as parents.” Even though homesickness stems from being away from home, it isn’t always directly about missing your house or the physical aspects of home. Josh Klapow, a clinical psychologist and associate professor at the University of Alabama’s School of Public Health explains, ”You’re not literally just missing your house. You’re missing what’s normal, what is routine, the larger sense of social space, because those are the things that help us survive.” When moving to a new environment, one can easily get overwhelmed because quite suddenly, nothing is familiar anymore. As humans, we instinctively crave familiarity, security and some degree of a routine. All of this disappears when you are thrown into college: a completely new, unpredictable and ever-changing situation. Homesickness is more of a spectrum and something that comes in waves. Homesickness is not black and white. Every individual experiences it to a different degree, at different times, and in different ways. The following quotes are from several first-year students at Goucher regarding homesickness during their first semesters of college:
“In the beginning of the first semester there was so much going on I wasn’t really able to focus my energy on missing home, and it was all so surreal I think my brain didn’t really believe that this was my new home. I would say it took until [the] end of September or October for me to get really homesick, and it was pretty bad.” -Emma Needham (’21)
“During the first few days, I was excited rather than homesick. There was a lot to get used to. But then as we progressed into October, I felt really homesick. I began counting the days until I could go back home and I felt isolated from everything I have known. I thought of home everyday and tried to find anything that could connect me back to home.” -Dina Diani (’21)
“About halfway through the beginning of the first semester I got pretty homesick. I was just missing the familiarity and the comfort of home and I was missing a lot of the good food that I ate back home. I miss my family, but I think just like the comfort and easiness of living back at home was getting to me because everything was so new and to some degree difficult and hard for me.” -Ramona Kamb (’21)
“I think I felt especially off because break was so long-I had gotten so comfortable at home back into my old routines and habits that it felt actually kind of sad to come back here. I was excited to see my friends and all but I for sure was missing home last week.” -Emma Needham (’21)
“Because of the first semester acting as kind of a trial for me, this semester is bringing a lot of new excitement with different classes and a more rigorous schedule so I’m not as homesick as before. But I have my moments where I miss the mountains and my family and my boyfriend.” – Tiana Ozolins (’21)
“Things feel much more normal and natural this semester.” -Esther Gordon (’21)
“I mean, the second semester only just started but I know I was homesick more first semester because again everything was so new and I really wasn’t adjusted to this new chapter of my life in college living. Now that I am more comfortable around my peers and that I know people it’s gotten a lot easier and I definitely feel less homesick.” -Ramona Lamb (’21)
Evidently, everyone has had a different experience. Even though current freshmen are now more accustomed to the college lifestyle, having lived it for a whole semester, returning from the long winter break can bring back feelings of homesickness, and this is normal. The goal here is to provide freshmen with different personal accounts from their peers, so they can hopefully to find aspects that may resonate with them, and ultimately know that they are not alone on this journey.

Club Chat – Economic Education Club

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Naked economics by Charles Wheelan. Photo Credit: Google Images

Even at a small school like Goucher, there can be dozens of clubs active at any given time. Every semester, organizations are created and disbanded in the blink of an eye. How is someone supposed to keep track of it all?
I’m here to help! Club Chat is an issue by issue profile of an active club on campus. From long established to newcomers, Club Chat will give you an in-depth glimpse into an organization so you can figure out if it’s the right fit for you.
This week we will look at Economic Education club, formed this semester. I spoke with club President Surbhi (‘19) for more details.

Q: What is your Club’s general purpose?
A: We go to Goucher, and it’s very politically liberal. And there are a lot of things brought up in economic classes that aren’t brought up in the liberal community. It’s little things, like, what is bitcoin? Or talking about the new tax law–what is good about it? What is bad about it? Trade treaties–are they good? Are they bad? What I want to do is start a conversation and have an educated seminar; this is why they [tax laws, trade treaties] might be hated, but they aren’t the worst things in the world. There is a middle ground, and a lot of the things you enjoy are because of these capitalist things that you might not realize.

Q: How does your club work structurally? Do you have meetings? Are you more event based?
A: More of an event based club. I attended a conference with the Foundation for Economic Education while I was interning for the Charles Koch Foundation and it was very good! I did the entrepreneurial track, and we learned so much about how to do your taxes, how to have a passive income…
We learned a lot of these things that I wished was talked about more by Goucher students. I have contacts through this organization for people who can come talk. We’ll sort of do a weekly meeting, where we will have a webinar where someone can talk to us online. We’ll also have actual events, and sometime at the end of the semester we would like to have a debate.

Q: What gave you the idea to start the club?
A: Basically I just wanted to do a few events, like talking about bitcoin. I’ve had bitcoin since it was like ten dollars, I’ve made about two to three thousand dollars on it, and I have a lot of bitcoin left: I paid tuition with what I gained from bitcoin. That’s what I wanted to do. There are options that you might not know about: investment banking, which checking account or banking account is best for you…

Q: Why should people participate in your club out of all the other options out there?
A: For their own development. All of these things that I’ve learned in classes in seminars I thought were very valuable things. Basic financial empowerment, knowing what’s happening with tax laws and economics outside of the college can be so helpful when you’re going out into the job market. These are things that might not necessarily be taught at the college, but they can be helpful when deciding what job to get or how to progress in their jobs.

Q: Anything else people should know?
A: This is not a propaganda club—free market or otherwise. A lot of things we’ll talk about are things like why is Planned Parenthood good economically, or why immigration is good economically. I’m definitely going to have a speaker come in to talk about how amazing immigration is. Those are liberal issues – so it’s not a partisan club like “you love free markets or you don’t show up”. These are things in economics and they aren’t black and white—so let’s explore it. It’s purely educational, there’s no motive to turn people to capitalists or republicans.

Interested in having your organization featured in the next issue of the Q? Email me at firut001@mail.goucher.edu for your chance to be in the next edition of club chat.

From CDO to CEO: The CDO Rebrands

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The CDO changes its name to the Career Education Office (CEO). Photo Credit: CDO Goucher on youtube.com

We all know that room at the end of that hallway in Van Meter. The one that has lights around the door and doughnuts on Fridays. It’s the Career Development Office, a.k.a. the CDO. However, on January 29, 2018, during the first-year group advising meetings, it was announced that the CDO would soon become the CEO.
Now, let’s backtrack a bit to when this plan was initially being discussed. At the end of last semester, the CDO was having focus groups with students ranging from those who have visited them to those who have not. The goal of these focus groups was to talk about what the student body thought of the CDO and what changes they hoped could be made. During these meetings, pizza was distributed, ideas were thrown out, and the general feeling was that the student body did not quite know what the CDO did. To be more precise, it seemed that students were scared of the CDO because it represented “the real world” after graduation. To students, the CDO seemed like a place to go after a resume had been drafted, a cover letter written, and an interview lined up.
So here’s a small snippet of what the CDO actually does. The CDO is a place to go for help writing a resume or cover letter. It has a closet for when one is unsure of what is worn typically for an interview, or for a formal or semi-formal event. It is an inviting place that offers discussions with alumni/ae both on Tuesday afternoons over tea, and on Friday mornings over doughnuts and coffee. Alums give advice ranging from when to go to Human Resources to when to quit a job.
In the spirit of innovation, the CDO has taken student advice and has decided to incorporate its services more into the experience both in and out of the classroom. Starting next year and with the class of 2022, the CDO will become the Career Education Office, or, CEO, the same acronym as Chief Executive Officer, although unintentionally .
What does this mean for Goucher? Well, for one thing, it means another wacky acronym that Admissions Ambassadors can throw around. But for future students, this means classes will incorporate goal-setting with regards to career plans within the curriculum and that hopefully, every student will have a resume by the end of their first year. However, for students graduating in 2021 or before, this means that the CDO (or CEO) will start to become a place that resembles less a door at the end of the hallway that should be avoided at all costs, and more of a friendly helping hand along the way to the next stage of one’s life, beyond the hallowed halls of educational institutions.

Title IX Talkbacks: Sex and Gender While Abroad

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Photo Credit: Google Images

Recently Goucher’s Title IX office hosted an event called Title IX Talkbacks: Sex and Gender While Abroad. This event provided a space for students who have been abroad or were about to go abroad, to discuss their experiences with sex and gender. The goal of this event was to provide a student centered space where students could discuss their experiences, unpack their struggles, and provide feedback for the Goucher study abroad office. This feedback was given anonymously to the Goucher Title IX office and the Office of International Studies (OIS). Olivia Siegel, a senior and peer educator at the Title IX Office who helped organize this event, said the event was inspired by seeing an issue in the way Goucher addresses sex and gender while abroad and wanting to raise awareness about it: “The Title IX Peer Educators do genuinely care about supporting students and improving the resources we have on campus to address student need. Part of this program was just seeing a need and using the resources we have at hand to address it.”

Photo Credit: Google Images

Siegel spoke about how OIS does not prepare students for processing and addressing sex and gender while abroad. During pre departure orientation students receive general information from several different Goucher departments. At these pre departure sessions, Lucia Perfetti-Clark, the Goucher Title IX Coordinator, explains what resources and support are available while abroad. The Goucher Title IX office can advocate for students in several ways while they are abroad, in the same way Title IX can advocate for students while they are at Goucher. If needed, Title IX can advocate for students if they need to switch host families, request mental health assistance, or for academic accommodations. “Basically Lucia will try to advocate for your needs to the necessary party, but it doesn’t guarantee the host country will cooperate!” Siegel said.

This also means that the OIS doesn’t warn you about going to an area with higher amounts of sexual violence or street harassment. This can leave students without the resources to process their experiences, and can lead to some harmful assumptions about the culture of the host country. “When I witnessed or experienced street harassment and sexism, my first instinct wasn’t to call the Goucher Title IX Office. None of what I experienced at the pre-departure orientation could have prepared me mentally or emotionally for the gender-related issues my friends experienced,” said Siegel.

Siegel spoke about her experiences with processing street harassment in Santiago, Chile. “I found that a lot of our conversations about the topic were fairly superficial—either we were told by our in-country program advisors that this was normal and cultural (which is true), or we turned our nose up at how “machismo” (chauvinist) Chilean culture is. Often we were told this was part of Chilean culture, and came to the conclusion that this was ‘bad’ or ‘backwards.’” However, Siegel did not find that this was a helpful way of processing, nor did it help her examine her own assumptions. “I found neither of these conversations were productive or helped us process and question these cultural differences head-on, or examine our own misogyny and issues related to sexism in the U.S., and how we viewed these issues through an ethnocentric lens.”

Siegel hopes that this event will promote awareness and bring change to the way OIS helps prepare students studying abroad. “Goucher can better promote and identify students who have gone abroad and are invested in these issues, and create a more formal way to contact and seek support/mentorship from these people through OIS from students about to embark.” Siegel believes that students should be given the tools to help them process their experiences, so that study abroad can be a learning experience and so that they do not label something that they may not understand, as she was tempted to do in Chile.

When Siegel has brought up the possibility of warning students who are studying abroad in areas that have higher rates of sexual violence and gender based issues to OIS, she has been told that they do not want to scare students who are about to embark. Siegel responded with frustration, “I’m only going to say that the obvious answer to this challenge, which I shouldn’t even have to mention, is that studying abroad is not supposed to be easy. Goucher should encourage students to go into this experience with an open heart and mind.”

Famous Ojibway Songwriter Speaks to Goucher

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Jody Gaskin fills the Hyman Forum with captivating melodies. Photo Credit: Olivia Baud

On November 16th and 17th, Goucher welcomed world-renown indigenous songwriter, Jody Gaskin. Adam Geller, ’18, who is known for his flute playing and drum circles on campus, applied for a social justice grant a couple of weeks before the event. Having gotten to know Gaskin by traveling the Powwow trail selling tea, he knew that he would be the perfect guest artist to familiarize Goucher students with native music and history.

On the night of the 16th, Gaskin performed a Native American rock concert in Merrick. He began with some storytelling followed by a couple of songs about his tribe and native history, and ended the evening with a hoop dance, using hoops to make shapes representing different animals. “I’ve been singin’ on a drum since I was in diapers,” he said in an informal interview, “and I’ve been dancing since I could walk.” Inspired by his mom, who was a “big rocker” and listened to a lot of Motown, Gaskin began playing the guitar at 14 and began writing songs off-the-batt. At 15, his mom bought him his first, acoustic guitar. Today, Gaskin has won numerous awards for his work as well as performed to a variety of audiences around the world.

For Gaskin, songwriting is about “telling a story, not just meaningless stories.” He explained that social justice songs were big in the 80’s but not so much today. On the 17th, during his roundtable discussion, he demonstrated just what good storytelling was about. “1,000 to 15,000 years, ago, a young boy was given a vision to leave,” he began. He recounted the origin story of his people, the Ojibway (often misnamed the Chippewa), explaining how their migration throughout the continent was at first shaped by the foresight of a boy given a prophecy by megis shells rising out of the water. The boy warned his people of a threat coming from the East and spoke of “a place where food grows on the water”: the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior, where wild-rice grew in abundance. This area eventually became the capital of the Ojibway nation. Gaskin then interwove the origin story with a historical overview of Indian-White relations, explaining how colonists like Samuel D. Champlain “sent soldiers [to the Great Lakes region] to break s**t.” In 1763, a group of frontiersmen in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the Paxton Boys, shot Indians on-sight and hacked them to death in what became known as the Conestoga Massacre. “There’s a historic trauma that comes with that,” Gaskin said.

Native Americans’ feelings of anger and frustration are exacerbated by the fact that the US government continues to pose a threat to their existence and ways of life. “Life in the res sucked, sucked, still to this day!” Gaskin said. “They’ve got a bottomless bag of dope and a bottomless bag of booze.” Despite numerous instances of benevolence on the part of native peoples towards whites, their contributions to the US via military service, economic participation, etc., and a number of treaties signed with the US government, natives to this day must fight for basic rights. The events at Standing Rock are just one example. While officially recognized native groups retain reservation rights, mineral rights must be bought separately. Any oil or mineral company can drill beneath their lands unless they purchase those rights. What’s more, the US government has driven deep divides between groups through an uneven allocation of funds according to blood-ties. While some nations, like the Seminoles (who own every Hard Rock Cafe around the world) have been incredibly successful, others are struggling to make ends meet.

Gaskin’s event took place shortly before Thanksgiving, a holiday that tends to perpetuate a false narrative of Indian-White relations. His performance on the 16th, followed by his roundtable discussion on the 17th were a reminder that, while spending time with family is important, it is equally important maintain awareness about the persisting discrimination towards the Native American peoples. Just as easily as a story can be told, a story can be unwritten.

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