In the Loop
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Happy Saturday!

Here are this week’s top stories and op-eds that you don’t want to miss.

1. The University’s decision to cancel a panel discussion regarding the rule of law in Turkey has sparked a national conversation among scholars regarding political pressure from the Turkish government and its potential to interfere with academic freedom at Columbia.

Panelists were informed of the cancellation on Monday night but were not provided an explanation by the provost’s office. A member of the Human Rights Foundation who called the panelists said that the composition of the panel did not meet the University’s “academic standards” and lacked a variety of Turkish voices.

But scholars raised concerns about the panel’s cancellation and the potential for foreign interference in academic freedom, particularly given communication between the Turkish government and the University—according to a statement released by PEN America, an organization that had sent a staff member to speak at the panel, Columbia was “approached by a representative of the Turkish government” protesting the event.

2. The University’s insurance rate has doubled from $12.2 million in the 2017 fiscal year to $23.7 million in the 2018 fiscal year, due in part to an influx of lawsuits filed against the University up to and during this time.

This increase in cost partially reflects the fact that the University’s insurance companies have perceived an increased risk in insuring the University. Columbia’s insurance, which it purchases through five private companies in addition to partial self-insurance, protects the University from financial consequences of loss caused by liabilities, including lawsuits and natural disasters.

Courtesy of Facebook

3. Bold, Beautiful, Black at Barnard brought a slew of arts events to campus. The second annual multi-day event featured an art exhibit focused on making black femme artists the center of the art canon, a talk by the CEO of EveryStylishGirl on building a business as a black entrepreneur, and a panel featuring alumnae of color on creating space for themselves in the art world.

4. Celebrating being bi at Barnard has helped columnist Liza Casella reflects on how her perception of sexuality has changed since coming to Barnard, and how she appreciates the community here on campus centered around accepting yourself.

Sam Wilcox

5. Last year, a petition circulated among students in Barnard’s English department with a call to diversify the curriculum in many of the classes. However, as Hana Rivers notes in this column, the department has been focused on hiring more professors of color, which doesn’t always translate to a decolonized curriculum. Rivers reconciles her desire to pursue creative writing with the often tenuous relationship she has with many of her English classes in this column.

6. Bacchanal is finally here! Despite the emotional rollercoaster we went through during the weeklong prank played by the Bacchanal Committee, we hope you’re excited to hear from student performer Oswald Fresh, openers Rina Sawayama and Tierra Whack, and headliner SOPHIE on Saturday. We anticipated that you’ll probably feel hungover after all the dartying, so we’ve put together eight hangover remedies that will hopefully ease those headaches.

File Photo
Students gather on Low Steps for Bacchanal, Columbia's annual spring concert.

7. With April already underway, the end of the school year is just around the corner. Before the fun and joy of summer kicks in, you’re probably scrambling to figure out your summer plans. If you’re worried about where to store your stuff over the summer, we’ve got you covered with these six storage spots. If you’re hoping to secure that dream internship, or stressing about your next big interview, we hope you prioritize your well-being and mental health before anything else and remember to make the most out of the remaining six weeks of the semester.

8. And finally, next week continues Columbia in-person housing selection for mixed groups of rising juniors and sophomores as well as all the remaining sophomore groups. If you haven’t already chosen your dorms for next year, you can stay updated via Shaft Live and check out what’s remaining after this week. Good luck!

This week’s Week in Review comes out Friday at 10 a.m. Happy Bacchanal, everyone!

Spectrum editor Grace Lin can be contacted at Follow Spectator on Twitter @ColumbiaSpec.

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