Monthly Archives: March 2017

Full issue: March 22, 2017

The Rensselaer Polytechnic March 22, 2017

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FIRST Robotics inspires interest in STEM

Thursday, March 16 to Saturday March 18, 36 teams of high school students, guided by mentors, teachers, and parents, competed in the FIRST STEAMWORKS New York Tech Valley Regional competition, held for the fourth year at the East Campus Athletic Village. Read more...

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Rensselaer needs bold, expansive changes

The Institute must continue to pursue new physical research infastructure and invest

Rensselaer was founded upon the principle of the application of science to the common purposes of life, and the prominence of modern scientific prospectus in education. In 1824, this was a radical, if not momentous,development. Prior to this, education had been largely concentrated to a few small, old, and rich liberal arts colleges in the Northeast, such as Harvard and Yale. The conventional departure from liberal arts to the creation of the first established science program, and later one of the first centers of experiential learning in engineering education, is what led to Rensselaer’s rise to prominence in the 19th century; it continues to lead our university through a momentous transformation as we continuously reevaluate our role as a source of research and ingenuity in industry, education, and the future of our species. Read more...

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Movie Review

Get Out

Jordan Peele, from the popular Key and Peele comedy duo, has been receiving a lot of attention for his newest film Get Out. Many good things have been said about the film, as well as Peele as a director, including remarks by Olly Richards in a recent review that described Peele as “one of the most exciting new directing voices we’ve seen in a while.” His directorial debut has been well-received by audiences and has done extremely well in the box office. Reviews of the movie range from “funny with a good plot,” to the much deeper with a comment by Observer film critic Mark Kermode, referring to it as a “chilling satire of liberal racism in the U.S.” It has received very positive reviews and ratings with an 8.3/10 on IMDb and 99 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. Read more...

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Men and women off to mediocre start

RPI men’s lacrosse started their season with a win against Keene State College at home and a loss to Ithaca College on the road. However, their first Liberty League game of the year came against the Rochester Institute of Technology Tigers. The teams played on March 10 at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse. The game was tight early on, as the Engineers took a 6–5 lead early in the second quarter thanks to two goals each by sophomore attackmen JT Kelly and CJ Kigar. But then RIT scored four consecutive goals and finished the game on a 9–3 run. The Tigers won 14–9. Kelly tallied four goals, while Kigar got three. Senior attackman Breanainn McNeally assisted on three goals, and both junior attackman Zach Lukas and junior midfielder Oliver Kaija scored their first goals of the season. Senior goalie David Gibbs arguably had his best game of the season thus far, saving 21 of 35 shots that came his way to help keep the game close. Read more...

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Rensselaer’s ties to slavery revealed

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is simultaneously one of the most prestigious modern institutions of higher learning and is the oldest technological research university in the English-speaking world. Yet many are unaware that the initial funding of the Institute was established through centuries of forced labor and slavery. Read more...

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Be informed for GM Week

Hello again, RPI! This weekend, the Executive Board played the Student Senate in our annual game of broomball. Our team played hard and gave it our all, but in a year of unexpected upsets, we suffered a 3-0 defeat. Shout-out to the Student Senate for a game well played. Thank you to RPI TV for filming our game—you can stream it on their website if you want to watch an exciting amateur sports event. Thank you to everyone at the Field House and Mueller Center for helping us coordinate the game space and rent our equipment, and to Nate James, chairperson of the Judicial Board, for being our referee for the afternoon. Most of all, thank you to my team for supporting each other, playing hard, and enjoying themselves during the game. Read more...

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More Life curates Drake’s talents

Drake’s newest album—or rather “playlist,”—titled More Life dropped on March 18, and by all metrics was worth the absurd wait it brought with it. The wait was longer than most people would have liked: first announced for late 2016, then pushed back to early 2017. Finally, a cryptic tweet teasing at a March 4 release date all served to get fan hopes up and create hype. When the album finally came out, I, along with a record-breaking amount of people, rushed to Spotify and Apple Music to stream it. 61.3 million people got to experience More Life together, and I’m pleased to report that it was an enjoyable experience. Read more...

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Spring break training

Engineers go 2-3 in preliminary set of games

Over spring break, Rensselaer’s baseball team traveled to Lake Myrtle, Florida for five spring training games. The team played against Becker College, Knox College, William Paterson University, and twice against Fitchburg State College, ending the week 2–3. Read more...

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E-Board discusses new ambulance, Chromebooks

Just before break, the Executive Board met with RPI Ambulance, Rules & Elections, and RPI Experimental Music and Media. RPI Ambulance came before the E-Board to discuss plans for replacing their ambulance, which is four years past its seven year recommend lifetime. The club’s current reserves are set up to purchase another Ford E350 ambulance van, however, Ford has discontinued the model. Ambulance is looking at purchasing either a Type I or Type III vehicle. Type I and III are similar in that they are both boxes mounted on a chassis, with Type I being a truck chassis and Type III a van chassis. Type II, which is what Ambulance currently operates, is a van fitted with the necessary equipment. Read more...

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EMPAC hosts RPI Players

Anxious theater attendees clustered in the lower lobby of the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, awaiting entry to the RPI Players’ performance of Our Town. The excited crowd was led into EMPAC Studio 1, where they were seated nearly beneath a screen that wound about the performance space in a near-complete circle. There was no stage, and the props were limited to a series of gray boxes and a few ladders kept in the back. Read more...

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National champions

Five Rensselaer student athletes were invited to compete at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III Indoor Track and Field Championship Meet held on Friday, March 10, and Saturday, March 11, in Naperville, Illinois. Read more...

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EMPAC curators visit Senate

Grand Marshal Paul Ilori ’17 opened the Student Senate meeting with committee reports. Those began with Facilities and Services Chairperson Austin Miller ’17 who followed up with a meeting with Director of Public Safety Jerry Matthews. Miller is working to get Public Safety on social media and is currently looking at benchmarking for other schools in order to determine the most effective use of integrating public safety with social media. Miller noted that Matthews was greatly receptive of the proposal and Miller also plans to meet shortly with the director for strategic communications to confirm the viability of the plan. Read more...

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PSS: Spot Dessert Bar

Click on any photo to enlarge it:

All photos: Sidney Kochman/The Polytechnic

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Full issue: March 8, 2017

The Rensselaer Polytechnic March 8, 2017

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Sophomores fear housing shortage

On Wednesday, March 1, students applying for on-campus housing through the Office of Student Living and Learning discovered that all sophomore housing was filled for the Fall 2017 semester. Students were informed following the closing of all open positions that “Rising sophomore students who cannot select a room via the StarRez Housing Portal will be automatically placed on a waitlist. Rising sophomore students are guaranteed housing and every student will be placed in Institute housing by the end of the spring 2017 academic semester.” Students who have applied for on-campus housing are currently unable to view room selection information following submitting their application. Read more...

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Photography combines art, technology, adventure

All benefits of taking photos: improved photo editing capabilities, connections with people, community exposure

Photography gets me involved in events all over campus and the world. In fact, the reason I first got involved with The Poly is photography. I started out by taking photos of events around campus, like hockey, football, and Student Government meetings. Photography got me to go to the campus Holi celebration, where I foolishly attempted to remain unscathed by color (that didn’t last long). Last spring, I talked to many students, alumni, and faculty about why they were there and what they hoped to change at RPI, while I photographed the Spring Town Protest. Read more...

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Genericon draws crowds for 30th anniversary

Cosplay, art sellers, and panels galore decorated RPI during its annual anime convention

This past weekend, Genericon XXX was held across campus—walking into Darrin Communications Center on Saturday afternoon, I received quite the shock. Genericon is an anime, science fiction, and gaming convention hosted by volunteers from the Rensselaer Science Fiction and Anime club, in collaboration with the Rensselaer Union. It runs for 48 hours, with the majority of the events being held in the DCC. Now, the XXX doesn’t mean what you think it does—there were 18+ events, but the name comes from the fact that this is the thirtieth year that Genericon has been held. As a first-time convention-goer, walking into the DCC Great Hall was quite a culture shock. I stood there for a few minutes trying to digest it all, and I was lucky enough that I ran into familiar faces not too long after. There were all sorts of events and showings you’d expect from a convention, including merchandise, panels, and 24-hour showings, but my review will largely focus on one overarching thing that ties together the experience of being at a convention: cosplay. Read more...

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Championship within sight

Club racquetball has established itself as a force over the years

The weekend of February 24–25, the RPI Racquetball Team traveled to Warren, New Jersey for the 2017 Eastern Collegiate Racquetball Conference Regionals Championship. This marked the last racquetball tournament before Nationals. Read more...

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New starter budgets for student clubs pass

Assistant Vice President and Dean of Students Travis Apgar joined the Executive Board for the start of their meeting last Thursday. Apgar was there to answer questions from the E-Board in light of the resignation of Dr. Frank E. Ross III. As requested by President Shirley Ann Jackson, Apgar told the Board that he would be taking on some of the responsibilities of the vice president for student life while Rensselaer searches for a replacement. Ines Roman ’17 asked about the status of the vacant director of the Rensselaer Union position. Apgar said that the school is working with William Spelman Executive Search to fill the position. There are currently candidates the school sees as good fits, and Apgar said he would follow up with President of the Union Chip Kirchner ’17 to coordinate on-campus interviews involving students. Read more...

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