Crimson Clips

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Four Part Series on Sexual Assault at Harvard: (The Christopher J. Georges Award for Excellence in Student Journalism & Society for Professional Journalists Region 1: First Place in In-Depth Reporting)

  • Part I: Victims Stay Silent on Sexual Assault  The Ad Board—the College’s primary disciplinary body—has heard only seven cases of sexual assault over the last five years, according to statistics provided by the College. “The vast majority of the students that I talk to do not [formally] go to anybody,” says Rankin, adding that 90 percent of sexual assault cases go unreported.
  • Part II: Despite Improvements, Issues Remain with Sexual Assault Procedures  The Administrative Board’s sexual assault policy is a series of paradoxes. While the Ad Board—the College’s primary disciplinary body—is not charged with upholding state law, its definition of sexual assault nearly mirrors state policy. Lawyers are not welcome in the process, except when they are hired by the College to collect evidence for cases. Administrators say the Ad Board’s primary mission is to help students learn from their mistakes, but the board can also dole out punishments as severe as required withdrawal or suggest the Faculty Council dismiss a student.
  • Part III: OSAPR Faces Sexual Assault on Campus  After seven years, OSAPR has established itself as a hub for issues surrounding sexual assault—whether by helping recent victims cope with their traumatic ordeals, educating the campus at large about sexual violence, or rallying men on campus to play a role in combatting these often overlooked issues. The two and a half-member office has, by most accounts, been an invaluable resource for undergraduates, though beginning next academic year it will face the challenge of expanding its services to the entire University without any additional staff or resources.
  • Part IV: Final Clubs: Safe Spaces to Party?  Sexual assault can happen anywhere. But, fairly or unfairly, when predatory sexual behavior at Harvard is discussed, the conversation often turns to the all-male final clubs, whose parties are known for their free-flowing alcohol and lack of administrative supervision.

Magazine Cover Stories

The Harvey Mansfield Story  Seated at Grafton Street Pub & Grill with a child-size glass of Guinness in hand, Professor Harvey Claflin Mansfield ’53, Harvard’s soft-spoken firebrand, has no intention of upturning the reputation he has earned during the nearly five decades he has spent teaching at his alma mater. Even today, within a month of his eightieth birthday, Mansfield still relishes the battles he has fought over the years. Facing off against feminists, liberals, the new left, any enforcer of the politically correct, easy graders, and fresh young minds, Mansfield hasn’t pulled any punches. He has been a vigorous opponent of the Ivory Tower’s conventional wisdom. He’s against race and gender-based affirmative action. He categorically opposes gender studies departments. He puts the Constitution on a pedestal. He thinks women, in general, should be expected to earn less than men. He wrote a book entitled “Manliness,” a defense of traditional gender roles. In 2008, he hosted “The Conference the Radcliffe Institute Didn’t Want to Host.” He’s an unyielding critic of grade inflation, earning the moniker Harvey “C-minus” Mansfield. He even opposed Harvard’s course evaluation tool.You could call him a polemic. But then you might be missing the point.

Accommodate to Learn  The deadline had come and gone, and Michael’s final expository writing paper remained unfinished. Despite his best efforts, he couldn’t bring a sense of organization to his sentences and paragraphs. The preceptor recommended that he turn in whatever he had or face a failing grade on the paper. “My teacher literally sent me an e-mail saying you should turn in your paper right now so you can pass the class,” says Michael, who requested his real name not be used for this article. Instead Michael ignored the warning and took another two days to work on the paper. But the preceptor’s warning stood, and he had to retake Expos. Now a junior, Michael has become an English concentrator who consistently gets A’s on his papers. “Asperger’s people just process the world a little differently,” Michael says, referring to his neurological disorder. “It never occurred to me that I could possibly fail that.”

Four Part Series on Academic Dishonesty at Harvard

  • Part I: Ad Board Grapples with Plagiarism  Thirty years ago, cheating required work. Students had to go to the stacks, pore over academic texts, and manually copy the information to plagiarize a paper. But with the advent of smart phones and easy access to the Internet, technology has blurred the lines of what constitutes blatant academic dishonesty as opposed to improper attribution, for example.
  • Part II: Forced Withdrawals Come Under Fire  Anna is not alone. Jeff, another Harvard student who spoke on the condition of anonymity, had failed two classes and was subsequently forced to withdraw in what he called a “very traumatic process.” Their stories provide a rare window into the often overlooked consequences of withdrawal from the College. Every year, an average of 70 Harvard students face a “requirement to withdraw”—the Ad Board’s most common response to cases of academic dishonesty and a relatively standard response to serious academic failures.
  • Part III: Administrators Discuss College Honor Code  Despite the uncertainty surrounding the form and details of a potential Harvard honor code, one thing remains certain: many College administrators are looking for a way to combat academic dishonesty at Harvard—which Harris recently called “a real problem”—and they hope that an honor code may be the solution.
  • Part IV: Ellison Takes Winding Path to College  Looking at Ellison now, sporting hip, rectangular glasses—picked out by his wife, who is finishing her education at the Extension School—and squirming excitedly in his chair in his University Hall office as he talks about his time spent doing research in Syria, one wouldn’t guess that the scholarly administrator once patrolled the streets as a police officer.

Notable News Stories

Suicide Note Found Online  The man who shot himself on the steps of Memorial Church Saturday morning had published online a 1,905-page document entitled “Suicide Note,” according to his mother.

Antonin G. Scalia
  Fifty years after graduating from Harvard Law School, “Nino” has reached the top of his profession. He has been a Faculty member at the University of Chicago, Assistant Attorney General of the Office of Legal Counsel, and has served on America’s highest court since 1986, where he has positioned himself as the intellectual leader of the conservative wing of the Supreme Court.

A Second First Year  Evelynn M. Hammonds started her tenure as the Dean of Harvard College last year dealing with a massive power outage on the first day freshmen arrived on campus—the beginning of a string of difficult and unpredictable circumstances that would shape her first year as dean.

A Silent Aftermath  On May 18, 2009, Justin Cosby, a Cambridge resident, was struck by a bullet in the chest after a drug deal gone wrong in the basement of Kirkland House. That such an incident could happen at Harvard shocked the campus and the nation, attracting widespread media attention and inducing short-lived student panic.

Anne Hathaway Gets Royal Treatment  As Anne J. Hathaway proceeded down Mass. Ave atop a fire engine red Bentley convertible, the fair-skinned actress did not seem to mind the chill of the falling snow as scantily clad, cross-dressing men from the Hasty Pudding Theatricals fawned over her.

Chaos Engulfs UC Election; Results Remain Unclear  Against all expectations and amid whispers of scandal, the Undergraduate Council’s Election Commission did not name a winner in the UC presidential elections Thursday night.

Hammonds Doubles Back on Ad Board Release  Last March, the Administrative Board Review Committee presented Dean of the College Evelynn M. Hammonds with a report suggesting potential changes to the Ad Board—Harvard College’s primary disciplinary body—and its policies.

Suspect Pleads Not Guilty in Harvard Shooting Case  MEDFORD, Mass.—Jabrai J. Copney, a 20-year-old New York resident, pled not guilty to charges of first-degree murder for a Monday shooting in Kirkland J-entryway that led to the death of 21-year-old Cambridge resident Justin Cosby early the next morning.

Justin Cosby, 21, Dies After Shooting in Kirkland House  Justin Cosby, a 2005 Cambridge Rindge and Latin graduate with no known ties to Harvard University, died Monday after being shot in the abdomen shortly before 5 p.m. in the basement of J-entryway of Kirkland House Monday.