HDS welcomes journalist and author E.J. Dionne for 2017–18 academic year

first_imgHarvard Divinity School (HDS) is pleased to announce that E.J. Dionne, the distinguished journalist and author, political commentator, and longtime op-ed columnist, will join the School for the 2017–18 academic year as a William H. Bloomberg Visiting Professor.This is a joint appointment with Harvard’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS) and the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) and made possible by the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost. Dionne will teach at HDS and in Social Studies at FAS, and be an affiliate at HKS.Commenting on the appointment, Dionne said: “The Divinity School has been dear to me from my time as an undergraduate, when I took Harvey Cox’s extraordinary course, ‘Eschatology and Politics’. It fed an interest—you might call it a passion—that has been with me all my life: Religion will always play a powerful role in shaping the public sphere, and for believers, faith will always be intimately connected to their way of engaging in politics. How do we understand this connection? What does it mean in a pluralistic society that values religious freedom and freedom of thought?”“I’m delighted that E.J. Dionne will join us to teach next year,” said HDS Dean David N. Hempton. “E.J.’s deep knowledge of public affairs, his long record of distinguished reporting and commentary, and his keen insight into the intersections of religion and public life make his a vital voice in our national dialogue.” Read Full Storylast_img read more

Stand Up to Cancer hosts dinner

first_imgCancer patient survivors, caretakers, students and families who have been affected by cancer celebrated the lives of local heroes at the third annual “Don’t Stop Believin’ Celebration of Life” dinner Saturday night, hosted by Saint Mary’s Stand Up to Cancer club.Christie Hutch, a junior at Saint Mary’s and president of the Stand Up to Cancer club said everyone present made a difference.“Everyone who comes really is a hero. Whether they have dealt with cancer personally or taken care of someone who has or whatever the case may be, I think it’s important to recognize these people,” Hutch said.To start off the evening, local 12-year-old rising star Justin McCormick sang “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey. The talented young singer has been on a variety of singing shows and is in the process of building his career, Hutch said.“He does a lot of things for the American Cancer Society and sings at the Relay for Life every year,” Hutch said, “His main song that he sings at all these competitions and things is ‘Don’t Stop Believin’’ and because that’s the name of our event, he asked if he could perform.”At the event, guests enjoyed an Italian buffet dinner catered by Sodexo and were given raffle tickets for a free auction that included baskets donated by families of club members and local businesses such as Edible Arrangements, Let’s Spoon and Flourish Boutique, Hutch said. She said the event was purely a celebration, not a fundraiser.“Every other event [the club] does is primarily a fundraiser. … We raise money for the national organization which is great because that goes purely towards cancer research, but this is the one thing we do that’s local and it’s to show our support as a community and as a college and as a club,” Hutch said.To raise awareness for the event, the club placed a press release in the South Bend Tribune and hung posters around campus and in local areas including Memorial Hospital, Hutch said. She said approximately 75 people attended the event.“Students joined the guests for dinner, and I think everyone learned something from talking to [the guests].  For me, it was their attitudes that affected me so profoundly,” Hutch said. “Each individual seemed to truly understand and embody the importance of living in the moment.“The families whom I sat with at dinner said that battling cancer really made them realize that you can’t sweat the small stuff. It was so inspiring for me and the other students to hear this from our guests.”Junior Bridget Condon said she was touched by cancer patient who spoke during dinner.“He spoke about his experience with cancer and how the Saint Mary’s nursing students always made his treatment days a little better,” Condon said, “It really spoke to what we, not just as a club, but as a college, are all about. Whether we realize it or not, each and every one of our little acts of service can make a huge difference in the lives of other people,” she said.Condon said she hopes the event made people aware of the immense local support available for those battling with cancer.“It was great to be able to treat these heroes to a worry free night of fun,” Condon said. “While we cannot do everything, we can certainly do some things to show our love and support in their battles.”Tags: Stand Up to Cancerlast_img read more

Lady’s Slipper Orchids

first_imgThe lady’s slipper orchid looks to all the world like it would gobble up an unsuspecting pollinator. The pouch, called a “labellum,” is simply nature’s method of starting a pollination program. The pollinator does fly into the pouch and, most likely, finds little work in escaping, all the while either picking up pollen or making a deposit. This wonder of nature occurs in lady’s slipper orchids, and they will prove to be an enjoyable spectacle.Lady’s slipper orchids are found in five genera.Cypripedium, which are terrestrial, have the ability to transform a garden into one of rare beauty. They are cold-hardy, and 11 species are native to the United States. One, the showy lady’s slipper, is even the state flower of Minnesota.The Mexipedium, Selenipedium, Phragmipedium and Paphiopedilum genera are all tropical in nature. It is the latter that I am touting here, as it is considered to be among the easiest orchids to grow for the novice home gardener. They are so loved that it is believed that there are now 13,000-plus hybrids of this genus alone.Despite the fact that the Deep South Orchid Society maintains the Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens’ orchid house and it is mere steps from my office, it was the Savannah Orchid Show that caused me to be forever mesmerized by the lady’s slipper orchids. The one that first caught my eye was ‘Raisin Jack’ No. 5 x No. 7.I’ll be honest. The names, especially the hybrids, are a little mind-boggling and confusing, to say the least. Their beauty, coupled with what seems to be an unending array of colors, shapes and textures, is not. This is an addicting group of plants for a potential collector.A walk through our orchid house reveals orchids with varying sizes of pseudobulbs, which act as a water storage reservoir. The Paphiopedilum lady’s slipper orchid has no such device, meaning they need watering more frequently. Those grown in bark need water more often than those grown in moss. Leaching of nutrients is bound to occur, so feeding with about a one-quarter-strength, water-soluble balanced fertilizer is recommended weekly.There is no place like an orchid show to get the whole family involved in one of America’s great pastimes. I assure you that your children and grandchildren will be enthralled as they learn about lady’s slipper orchids and the way pollinators fly into the pouch. A look at the American Orchid Society calendar of events will help you locate a nearby show.All Georgia gardeners are invited to the 31st annual Savannah Orchid Show from Friday, April 28, to Sunday, April 30, at the Coastal Botanical Gardens. There will be vendors from several states that will not only be selling the best orchids, but supplies as well. I was stunned to see so many people carrying out bags, sacks, boxes and orchids last year.Not only will you have a chance to see the beauty of the blooms up close, but you can learn the techniques of growing them and even get assistance repotting your own orchid. Although I have only been raving about lady’s slipper orchids, I assure you that there will be more species on display than you ever knew existed.last_img read more

Darién Gap under the Microscope

first_imgBy Roberto López Dubois / Diálogo January 27, 2017 A sentinel is keeping watch inside the immense Darién jungle. Flanked by two mountain ranges, the jungle is a swatch of land on the border between Colombia and Panama, a narrow, 266-linear-kilometer gorge that forms a wall between north and south of the American continent. These mountains are covered by a thick coat of vegetation, with massive, hundred-year-old trees. It is an inhospitable place, far from everything, which was used initially by the 57th Front of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) as their principal rest area. Years later, it was also used for trafficking drugs to North American countries. Panama now controls its entire territory and prohibits the activities of groups operating illegally, Commissioner Cristian Hayer, director of Panama’s Border Service (SENAFRONT, per its Spanish acronym) told Diálogo. Early operations During the last decade of the 20th century and the first decade of the 21st century, media accounts citing government sources told of almost 20 attacks on Panamanian towns by groups of illegal migrants – from kidnappings to homicides. An undetermined number of incursions into Panamanian territory also were recorded. At the time, the Panamanian government’s initial reaction was to create a specialized group within the National Police to handle security at the borders. The units arrived in the area and immediately were put in charge of safeguarding the population. SENAFRONT was created in 2008 as a component of Panama’s Public Force. The border service is under the Ministry of Security, and has its own director and budget. In the beginning Today Panama has a presence throughout the area, and both guerrilla activity and that of other groups operating illegally in the region are under control. The commissioner attributes the success to the way the institution is set up: there is one group in charge of security in the towns, one group of special forces, and a third group made up of mobile companies operating along jungle paths. “In eight years we have managed, with everyone’s work, to take the FARC out of Darién, where they had campsites established on Panamanian territory. We managed to clean Darién up,” Hayer stated. These operations helped Colombia neutralize leaders of the FARC’s 57th Front on the Colombian side and “made it possible to lower their members’ morale. In the end, the 57th [Front] was reduced to an insignificant version of itself,” the commissioner emphasized. On the other hand, Hayer said that SENAFRONT was able to set up two advanced bilateral posts with troops from Panama and Colombia to bring security to both sides of the border. Plans are in place to install two more posts. Progress within the towns The operations resulted in SENAFRONT achieving community acceptance for the Public Force and allowing the various state entities to safely travel to those towns. Today, local residents can go about their day peacefully and with confidence. SENAFRONT relies on the Eastern Brigade’s five battalions. Troop strength is estimated at 4,224 distributed along 26 percent of the territory of the Republic of Panama. Citizen security “Implementing the citizen security programs in rural areas was a challenge, but we did it with the efforts and work of the institution’s units, in which every man and woman, uniformed personnel, or civilian contributed their small part,” said Eduardo Araúz, deputy commissioner for SENAFRONT. Every action was based on different strategies, he said. “We started out with a strategy of total mobility, then a strategy of consolidation until we came to what we have today, a strategy of comprehensive security for human development,” Araúz said. Director Hayer explained that once the area is secured and development programs for different institutions implemented, achieving self-management is necessary for local citizens to integrate into development tasks for their own community. Deputy Commissioner Araúz agreed. He confirmed that the entire set of actions was achieved with citizen participation, in direct coordination with the traditional authorities of the indigenous people who live in the area. This created an atmosphere of security and trust, he explained. Confidence of the population “Little by little, we gained the population’s trust through direct communication, with information operations, humanitarian aid, and the support of information against the threats that could present themselves,” Araúz said. He also added that prevention activities are carried out in every area of operations. “We are not going to let up on organized or common crime, and we will provide security both for our citizens and foreign nationals.” The leaders of SENAFRONT promise that the new alliance with the community, the patrols, and their units’ high morale will allow them to face new threats that have emerged since FARC was demobilized. Jungle warfare is difficult because the terrain is inhospitable, and there are huge dangers that represent enormous challenges. But the area is extremely significant for security in the narrow gorge that connects North and South America.last_img read more

Antiquing offers environmentally friendly holiday shopping

first_imgMad Hatter owner Joanne Scott says holiday season antiques can be a unique gift. As recycling and reducing waste is being encouraged across the planet, antique shops are cashing in on an environmentally friendly ways to shop. “Mad Hatter” has been selling antiques along Clinton Street in Binghamton for more than 42 years. Mad Hatter is open Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. It’s often called “Antique Row,” known for the different antique shops selling local Binghamton history over the years. BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — This holiday season you can give the gift of something old, instead of new. “We sell anything anything from antelope heads, moose heads right down to Sheraton chest and you know whats really popular right now? Anything that’s really odd and we do have a lot of odd,” said Scott. last_img

Visiting restrictions eased for NY assisted living facilities

first_imgHowever, the state says these guidelines don’t apply to nursing homes specifically; they still require 28 days without cases before visitors are allowed. “We’ve seen a lot of depression in older people, a lot of isolation, and we’re really afraid, come the winter, it’s going to get worse again, so we were excited to see some facilities are going to be able to open their doors and let family members in again,” said Lisa Schule, director of the Broome County Office for Aging. Experts told 12 News in-person visitation is crucial for the mental health of elderly residents who feel isolated. The New York State Department of Health just released new guidelines for visitation policies in these facilities. From mid-March when the pandemic hit until early July, no visitors were allowed at any longterm care facilities in the state. Beginning July 10, visitors were allowed only outdoors if the facility went 28 days without any new cases of the coronavirus. Now, that waiting period has been cut in half to 14 days. (WBNG) — If you have loved ones in assisted living facilities, you may be able to visit them sooner than you thought.last_img read more

Native faith believers in North Sulawesi celebrate freedom of religion

first_img“I feel that it is getting easier for us to work on administrative arrangements, specifically regarding the inclusion of local faiths on our identity cards, after the Constitutional Court’s ruling,” he told The Jakarta Post on Tuesday.The Constitutional Court ruled three years ago in favor of native-faith followers in a judicial review of the 2013 Civil Administration Law. The court said articles in the law requiring adherents of indigenous faiths to leave the religion columns of in their ID cards blank were discriminatory.For Sual, the freedom to show his identity in the civil registry is pivotal. He was the first one among the Malesung believers to make the arrangement with the civil registry authorities regarding his faith.“Another eight people have gotten their [updated] family cards. They are now in the process of revising their ID cards,” he said. A Constitutional Court ruling in 2017 ordering the government to recognize indigenous native faiths and put them in the religious column on identity cards has been celebrated by many traditional religion believers, including those of the Malesung faith of North Sulawesi.Malesung is an old native faith from the land of Minahasa in the province. It is estimated it still has thousands of believers who practice its rituals and prayers.Sual, a Malesung believer who did not wish to reveal his first name, said his native faith had been recognized by the government as its name had been listed on his family card. Soon, the religion column in his identity card would be filled with the words: “Faith in the Almighty God.” Sual said everyone practicing traditional Minahasa rituals could be seen as Malesung faith followers. Some had openly acknowledged their beliefs, while others chose to keep stating their religion as it was previously regulated by the government on their ID cards.Malesung rituals symbolize a way to establish a relationship with the Creator, who is known by several names, such as Empung Wailan Wangko, Empung Kasuruan Wangko and Opo Wana Natas.The rituals are often done in open spaces. “This way, we can hear the signs of nature more clearly. They can’t be done in buildings as we grew out of an agricultural culture,” Sual said.The Creator figure in Malesung belief is represented by Muku’, who are messengers sent to interact with believers. Sual explained that some Muku’ are ancestors who are le’os (good), while others are lewo’ (bad).They serve as intermediaries to give direction and advice to Malesung believers.Sual further explained the concept of God in the Malesung religion consisted of three parts: Manalinga (the one who hears), Manembo (the one who sees) and Renga-Renga’an (the one who loves and punishes).Malesung believers, he said, often experienced rejection, especially by followers of other religions. However, Sual said Malesung believers responded by only focusing on conveying their love to the Creator.Denny Pinontoan, a theology professor at the Tomohon Indonesia Christian University in North Sulawesi, said the inclusion of native faiths in civil registry documents such as family and ID cards was in line with the Constitution, as it was parallel with the principle of religious freedom.He said he appreciated the Minahasa people who wanted to revive the Malesung faith or pass it down to the younger generations.“This ancestral belief existed long before the government established the six officials religions; therefore, [Malesung] is not a new religion,” Denny said.The professor, who once wrote a dissertation on the traditional multicultural Minahasa society, said the government’s recognition of ancient beliefs had shown the diversity in Minahasa and more generally in North Sulawesi.“There’s a belief in Sangihe called Masade or Old Islam. There is also the Musi native belief in Talaud.”These might surprise many people as the general public often think that Christianity had been practiced in Minahasa for a long time, Denny said.“Christianity had been embraced since the late 19th century when it was brought by European missionaries. However, it did not completely replace native beliefs such as Malesung, as people still practice its rituals and important elements until now,” said Denny. (aly)Topics :last_img read more

Arsene Wenger claims Bayern Munich ‘manipulated’ Serge Gnabry into leaving Arsenal

first_imgArsene Wenger claims Bayern Munich ‘manipulated’ Serge Gnabry into leaving Arsenal Gnabry couldn’t get a look in while on loan at West Brom before leaving Arsenal (Picture: Getty)‘Can he maintain the quality of performances that he showed the other night?’On that incredible result for Bayern at Spurs, he added: ‘Bayern had just won 3-0 at Paderborn, you wouldn’t expect them to come and put seven goals away at Tottenham. I think it was one of those nights where everything goes for you and everything against Tottenham.’Should Arsenal have kept Serge Gnabry?No0%Yes0%Share your resultsShare your resultsTweet your resultsMore: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal The German winger showed his class in Bayern’s demolition of Spurs (Picture: Getty)Arsene Wenger has defended the decision to let Serge Gnabry leave Arsenal and believes Bayern Munich played a hand in his desire to seek a move away back in 2016.Gnabry – who scored four times against Tottenham in the Champions League – only had a year left on his contract when he swapped the Emirates for Werder Bremen, having made just 10 Premier League appearances for the Gunners as well as enduring a torrid loan spell at West Brom.Wenger insists he was a huge believer in Gnabry’s talent and wanted to keep him, but says Bayern played the long game to lure him away. Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 9 Oct 2019 5:13 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link255Shares Advertisementcenter_img Gnabry was utterly ruthless as he netted four times against Tottenham (Picture: Getty)‘We tried to extend his contract for a very long time and I think that Bayern manipulated behind the scenes, that if he went to Bremen he would join Bayern after,’ Wenger told beIN Sports.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘He was always a very talented boy who lacked confidence in some stages, but we always thought we had a player who could achieve a lot.‘He came back from a very bad experience on loan at West Brom where his confidence was destroyed. I tried to rebuild him because I believed in him.’More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityArsenal’s decision to let Gnabry leave was criticised in the wake of his four-goal haul in Bayern’s 7-2 demolition of Spurs, though Wenger says he now needs to maintain those levels.The Frenchman continued: ‘A top-level career is consistency, if you look at the players that dominate our sport it’s the ones that show huge consistency and that’s what is at stake. Advertisement Commentlast_img read more

A Q&A with ICPM’s Keith Ambachtsheer and Rob Bauer

first_imgQ: What is the core task of your institute?A:  Developing a sustainable pension, as well as pension institutions that are able to deliver this.Q: Why are you quitting now?A: I have been working here 10 years – that’s a nice round number. And taking care of a proper succession is part of good management. I will remain involved as emeritus director in the background. I have a transitional role by co-organising discussions for the institute, and I will also remain editor of our scientific magazine.However, I aim to spend my surplus time with clients of my advice bureau KPA Advisory. And I also want to get engaged in politics. I am already involved in establishing a pensions system for the province of Ontario, and I’d like to devote more time to this.Q: Are you pleased with your successor?A: Rob is a natural successor. From the beginning, he has been involved in ICPM, initially with ABP, where has was director of research at the time, and later with Maastricht University. For Toronto University, it is special that somebody who is not connected to the faculty is to become director. Rob knows the European pensions sector well, and we will make him even more familiar with research results from the US and Australia.Q [to Rob Bauer]: Did your appointment as director of ICPM come as a surprise?A: Not really. Since the founding of the institute in 2004, I have been involved as a board member. In recent years, ICPM has been contemplating what would happen when Keith stepped down. Last year, I was asked whether I was interested to succeed him.Apart from that, in 2004, I was still working for ABP, as head of the research department for strategic investment policy. Nowadays, I am working three days a week at Maastricht University as professor of finance, focusing on institutional investments. And sometimes I do jobs for pension funds.Q: What are, in your opinion, the biggest achievements for the institute and your predecessor?A: Keith Ambachtsheer’s vision on pensions is clearly reflected within the ICPM. It could be best summarised as “integrated thinking” – considering all relevant parts within a pension fund as a single, integrated unit, whether it is about investments, liabilities or governance.I also think that ICPM’s international approach is a big strength. Board members of pension funds tend to focus on local subjects, and consultations with other board members chiefly happen within the local context. But sparring with colleagues from other countries often delivers surprising and interesting insights.Q: What can we expect to see from your directorship at ICPM?A: I don’t think it would be appropriate to go into this now. In the coming months, we will look at what is working well and what might be improved. For this, I will have a dialogue with our research partners. However, pension funds, scientists and bodies such as the OECD have told me they appreciate that they can have consultations within our panels without commercial parties. I can imagine we will extend this service in the coming years. Ten years since the start of the Rotman International Centre for Pension Management (ICPM) of Toronto University, there has been a change of guard. Maarten van Wijk and Sameer van Alfen interview its founder Keith Ambachtsheer, who is standing down as its director, and his successor, Rob Bauer [pictured] of Maastricht University.Q [to Keith Ambachtsheer]: You have founded ICPM. Are you proud of what you have achieved over the past 10 years?A: Certainly, the research institute is unique. We have created close ties between the academic world and the professionals through all sorts of pensions organisations participating in our institute. I spotted this model, with close contact between academics and providers, for the first time in the Netherlands in the 1990s. In my opinion, it was very special that, at the time, Jean Frijns was both director of the civil service scheme ABP and professor at Amsterdam’s Free University.I wanted similar connections in Canada. I think, as an institute, we are unique. In the Netherlands, there is Netspar, but that is predominantly for the Dutch market. We operate internationally, with 38 participants from 12 countries. However, they include many Dutch organisations, such as APG and PGGM, the asset managers of ABP and PFZW, respectively, as well as regulator De Nederlandsche Bank.last_img read more

Dyna-Mac forms alliance with JEDCO and Meridian

first_imgSingapore’s provider of engineering, fabrication, and construction for oil & gas industry Dyna-Mac has entered into a strategic alliance with Joint Efficient Developments Consultancy (JEDCO) and Meridian Marine Industries.Dyna-Mac said on Tuesday it had entered into the tripartite collaboration through its subsidiary Dyna-Mac Engineering Services.The company added that the collaboration between the three companies would allow and promote a wider pursuit of cross-border cooperation and solutions to support growth opportunities for projects in the onshore and offshore energy, marine and infrastructure industry sectors in Singapore and Canada.Dyna-Mac will provide the use of its Singapore yard facilities and skilled resources to support fabrication and construction works outsourced from Canada. In particular, Dyna-Mac will capitalize on its climate-controlled facility in Pandan Crescent for the fabrication of stainless-steel duplex/super duplex piping and other exotic/special materials.JEDCO will provide a short-term strategy to introduce an efficient execution model to Canadian customers, with joint efforts in the provision of shop drawings, procurement services, fabrication, assembly, and precommissioning of packages for the onshore and offshore energy, marine and infrastructure industry sectors.Meridian will act as the principal lead on all customer engagements in Canada on potential projects and during new opportunity developments through to compilation and submittal of the final proposal to Canadian customers.Meridian will also act as the overall local representative in West Coast Canada, and together with JEDCO, liaise with Canadian customers on pre- and post-proposal submittal matters.Dyna-Mac said that the tripartite collaboration was not expected to have any impact on the company’s earnings, earnings per share, and net tangible assets for the year ending December 31, 2018.last_img read more