Author: James Steinbauer

‘Seven Brief Lessons’ reignites love for science

As a culture, we have a tendency to separate science and language. We celebrate the value of a liberal arts education, and yet we funnel students into distinct math/science courses and English/arts courses, rarely bothering to combine the two disciplines. As a result, each individual tends to consider himself either a “numbers” person or a “words” person. I’m not immune to this phenomenon. In high school, I enjoyed all of my classes equally, but when I came to college and declared a creative writing major, I suddenly saw myself as only an English guy. Literature courses and writing workshops dominated my schedule, and I forgot how much chemistry and physics used to excite me. Which is partly why I was so exhilarated by “Seven Brief Lessons on Physics,” a book of essays on physics by Carlo Rovelli. An Italian theoretical physicist who was one of the founders of the loop quantum gravity theory, Rovelli is ostensibly a “numbers” guy, someone who has no business excelling as a writer. But I’ll be damned if Rovelli’s prose hasn’t reignited my love for science. The book consists of seven essays, each of which describes a scientific theory, such as general relativity or quantum mechanics. But don’t be turned away by the fancy terminology; Rovelli writes in a way that makes these advanced theories accessible to anyone. I don’t mean to say this...

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Miami students react to alcohol-related deaths

On Friday, Jan. 20, three days before Spring semester classes started, Erica Buschick was found dead in her dorm room. Miami University President Crawford has acknowledged the presence of alcohol in this tragedy. Along with this immense loss for the Miami community, it was reported that more than a dozen Miami students were hospitalized after drinking on the evening of Thursday, Feb. 9. It was agreed upon in 2016 during the recruitment for Greek life that a “dry period” be instigated. However, this “dry period” seems to have created a rampage of drinking for the students participating in fraternity and sorority recruitment.  As a freshman at Miami University, these incidents can be very overwhelming. But these tragedies do not affect only one person in this community, no matter how well someone knew those involved. Over the course of this week, I asked several Miami students how Buschick’s death, and the hospitalization of the Greek life students, has affected their views on drinking and partying in college. (I’ve kept the students’ names classified, giving them aliases to protect their identities.) “It’s easy to get caught up in the fun of things but I think as college students we either forget, or choose to forget, how dangerous alcohol really is,” says Casey, a freshman at Miami University who participated in sorority recruitment. This sentiment was shared with Lauren, another freshman who...

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Gratitude for holding students accountable: The battle against bingeing is worth fighting

TO THE EDITOR: This may come off as an odd and somewhat surprising claim, but I am one of the girls mentioned in Editor-in-Chief James Steinbauer’s most recent column. My housemate and I were the ones to have the conversation with our friend (let’s call him Matt, for the sake of his privacy), in Kofenya this past weekend. First off, I wanted to applaud you on your bold call to our fellow classmates in a culture that believes it thrives off of an alcohol-focused culture. I would argue that it is not as much thriving as it is barely making it through. Your article is quickly being spread across social media, leading to an even larger impact. It is an issue which needs even greater awareness brought to it. Bringing it close to home makes a difference. I also wanted to shed light on the conversation you overheard on Saturday. Yes, Matt did in fact say that he wanted to try drinking an entire bottle of whiskey, but you should find comfort in a few things. First, my housemate and I were appalled by his suggestion and were unwilling to let him go until he knew the real danger of it. I am glad you were able to use our situation to create a story for the article, but please know that neither of us saw it as a joking matter whatsoever. I am strongly against alcohol use and struggle to watch...

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ASG establishes Student Success Fund

Going to college is expensive. The high cost is not only due to tuition and other official billed items, but also to the unofficial costs of living in Oxford — restaurants, club dues, bar covers. In light of this, Miami’s ASG recently unveiled a unique scholarship. Instead of paying for students’ books, the Student Success Fund pays for their club soccer dues. Instead of paying for classes, it pays for their pizza. “A lot of scholarships cover tuition and housing and meals,” Secretary of Communications and Media Relations Amy Berg said, “but a lot of [other] things add to...

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Moscow Times journalists talk media with MU students

Students and faculty gathered in the center of Harrison  room 204, focused on two screens projecting a Skype session with Miami University alumnus and Moscow Times journalist, Matt Bodner, and his colleague, Alexey Kovalev, on Friday, Feb. 10. Bodner arranged the cross-continental chat with his former professor, interim director of the Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies, Stephen Norris. Before the lecture, Norris sent attendees a few stories recently written by Kovalev. “One [article] in particular from The Guardian has gotten a lot of press lately about how covering Putin for years helps [Kovalev] or other journalists cover...

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