A Tip About Investigative Journalism

Don’t be the person who wrote this: http://cornellsun.com/node/29053

Someone should call Fox News and tell them to hire the author of the above article because she has the two qualities Fox News requires: misquoting quotes and reporting false facts. Fox News is Faux News for a reason, and the Editor of the Cornell Daily Sun Eclipse section who wrote this article falls right in line.

First: If you’re going to investigate the tours given to prospective freshmen who visit Cornell, do exactly that. Investigate tours! (Emphasis on the plural) Don’t be lazy and go on one. Go on three. Find out what all of us are saying.

Second: If you truly are lazy and decide to go on one tour, pick a tour with a trained tour guide at the helm. Don’t be this author and choose a tour where two trainees are trying to learn the ropes of a 75 minute speech interrupted by inquiring parents while navigating the hills of Cornell by walking backwards.

Third: If you’re like this author and choose a tour with tour guides in-training and hear a misspoken fact, for instance, “Cornell’s AEM program was recently ranked fourth in the nation by US Weekly,” when you know the right publication was Business Week, have enough integrity to also report that the senior tour guide helping out these trainees corrected what was said and made sure the guests knew it was Business Week who ranked the AEM program 4th.

Fourth: Be smart. After all you do go to Cornell. Realize saying Cornell was one of the first Ivies to admit women is equivalent to Cornell was the first Ivy to admit women. IF YOU’RE THE FIRST THEN YOU’RE ALSO ONE OF THE FIRST. What this author did is like saying a square isn’t a rectangle.

Fifth: Don’t make fun of a tour guide in training because they’re saying “um” or “like”. Cut them some slack. This is one of their first times ever giving a tour. Everyone would be nervous in front of a group of 30 parents and high school students even before you realize you need to know the ins and outs of the College of Arts and Sciences even though you attend the College of Engineering. Even Barack Obama would say “um” or “like” while navigating the waters of what to say about Architecture, Art, and Planning for the first time.

Sixth: Don’t write how much of a godsend you are as this author explained how everyone loved coming up to her to get the “real” scoop of Cornell from a “real” student. What are we? Fake students?

Seventh: If you’re an editor, you have a higher responsibility for journalistic integrity than a regular reporter regardless of if you’re writing for the New York Times or some high school paper.

Eighth: You’re contributing to a college newspaper. You’re not Chris Hanson scouring the streets of America for child predators. You’re walking on a tour given by the same students who take the same classes as you. There’s no need to trash them with false accusations. They’re your peers!

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Have you no sense of decency Mam? Have you none of it left?

Back from Break

Spring break officially ends tonight. As a student who stayed in Ithaca I can see all my classmates trekking back to campus with their tans, depressed expressions, and the realizations that there’s homework due tomorrow. The feeling going into break was exuberant. The week without classes aside, just looking at Cornell sports made the cold-hearted excited. Hockey had made it to the second round against Harvard in their conference (ECACHL) tournament; men’s basketball was travelling to Anaheim to take on Stanford (founded by a former Cornellian) as the Ivy League champ seeded 14. Cornell women’s basketball was prepping to play UConn as a 16 seed. This would be the first time in Ivy League history that a men’s and a women’s team from the same school made it to the tournament.

The bad vibe of the beginning of the end of spring break spread across the country, however. This past Thursday the men’s team lost to Stanford by 24 – a large margin, but anyone who was watching the game could tell that there was no questioning the effort, even when down by 30 they were hustling after every loose ball, rebound, blocked shot, etc. – and the men’s hockey team fell in defeat to Harvard 3-1. The women’s bball team is currently down by 28 to UConn with 30 seconds left in the first half.

The end result might not have been the greatest, but like spring break, it was fun while it lasted.

Just for the record, like a true fan, I picked a Cornell upset over Stanford.

A Few Thoughts

Cornell Men’s Hockey advanced to the ECACHL Conference Semi-finals in Albany, NY after beating Dartmouth and Union. Winning the tournament means a birth to the NCAA Tournament and a chance to make it to the Frozen Four.

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Today is selection Sunday, which means tonight is the moment of truth to discover who and where Cornell will play in the first round. Someone say upset!!??

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It’s spring break, yet I’m in Ithaca for the week to work as a tour guide. It’s almost like a ghost town. There’s no one here…except for us tour guides. It’s kind of peaceful in a way too. Oh man, I almost became existential there. I think I’ll stop.

Learning a New Game

This past weekend I was fortunate enough to learn the game of squash from a friend. Before, I always thought of the sport as a country club game. But after playing, that preconception has been squashed…no pun intended. I didn’t know it was so demanding before learning how to play. It’s sort of like tennis shrunk down into a room the size of your bedroom with high walls and the scoring system of volleyball, except games go to nine. You’re always moving, and because of the lack of bounce in the rubber ball you bend down quite often. Diving on the floor or running into walls is pretty common (although that may be because I’m still relatively inexperienced at playing the game).

It’s an exciting game to play and, hopefully, learning the deeper nuances of the game will make it even more stimulating.

We Goin to the Ship, Woo!

Cornell is going to the Big Dance after beating Harvard 86-53 and clinching the Ivy League title with two games left in the season! A 20-5 overall record and a 12-0 Ivy conference record with two games remaining has ESPN projecting that this University could be ranked as high as #12 in the NCAA tournament.

We even got a vote to be in the AP top 25.

For the first time in 20 years, the third time in Ivy League history a team other than Princeton or Penn has won the Ivy title. Cornell did it last in 1988 and it was Cornell again in the mid 1950’s, which means Cornell, Princeton, and Penn are the only Ivy schools to win the conference title.

But to go undefeated…that’s a different story. (This statement was made knocking on wood, given that there are still two games left.)

Win or lose we’re still going to the dance, and if it’s in Syracuse you can bet the house that there’s going to be a huge Cornell contingent, myself included.

Hail all hail Cornell!!!