All posts by Matthew Grattan

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Students want meaningful change to HSS curriculum and faculty

By Matthew Grattan (BSE ’19)

Photo by Julius Freyra (CE ’21), courtesy of Humans of Cooper Union

The third course of the mandatory humanities and social sciences core curriculum is entitled HSS-3: The Making of Modern Society. “Once I remembered that, it was ridiculous for me to say that modern society as it exists today only exists because of Europe,” said Mahmoud Khair-Eldin (CE ‘21) over the phone one night last week.

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Grossmann on HSS Protest: ‘We need a different structure’

By Brian Frost (EE ’19) and George Ho (BSE ’19)

According to Professor of History Atina Grossmann, she and Professor Ninad Pandit, a post-doctoral fellow in social science, “significantly changed” the HSS-3 curriculum to include readings with non-Western perspectives. The changes are ostensibly a reaction to the HSS petition in 2016, but it is unclear how these readings are incorporated into the classroom.

Separately, Professor Sam Keene, chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, emphasized that changing the HSS curricula is entirely up to the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences; the Task Force serves an advisory role only.

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HSS Discussed Curriculum with President Sparks in 2017; Acting Dean Buckley Responds to Protest

By Brian Frost (EE ‘19) and George Ho (BSE ‘19)

The Department of Humanities and Social Sciences talked about the purpose of its program in relation to the three schools
with President Sparks in 2017, according to Peter Buckley, Acting Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences. “It was not generally known by the students that the faculty had already requested a full program review from the president, which is going to be announced by the president shortly. [...] It dates back to 2017, when we went to the president to say ‘look, it’s about time the overall learning objectives of HSS were examined, and we’re willing to do it.’”

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What you need to know to be student trustee

By Matthew Grattan (BSE ’19)

A student trustee is a full voting member of The Cooper Union’s Board of Trustees. So, that means you’ll attend quarterly Board meetings, sit on committees, participate in discussions, and vote on important Board decisions. What’s the Board of Trustees? The Board oversees the long-term plans of the school—things like yearly finances, fundraising, or Cooper’s plan back to free tuition. “If you’re interest is in big picture strategy,” writes Board of Trustees Chair Rachel L. Warren in a letter to prospective student trustee candidates, “[…] then Board service might be for you.”

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ESC letter asks professors to “categorically avoid” suicide jokes

By Matthew Grattan (BSE ’19)

In a recent email to engineering faculty, The Engineering Student Council asked professors to “categorically avoid” jokes regarding suicide. According to the letter, students have come forward with reports that professors have suggested to students who performed poorly on assignments that they should kill themselves.

In a meeting on Jan. 22, ESC representatives voted 16-2 to approve the final wording of the letter, which was emailed to engineering professors on Feb. 24.

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