Goodbye tourists, hello residents

first_imgAs the Class of 2017 settled in at Harvard and began Freshman Week, students from 49 states and more than 60 nations were busy taking in the unfamiliar sights and sounds of the tightly packed, red-brick neighborhood that will be their home base for the next four years.Many new arrivals said they had visited friends and family in the Boston and Cambridge area before moving onto campus, so they thought they had a pretty good idea about what to expect. But being there as a Harvard freshman has changed everything.“It’s entirely different to see it as a student,” said Margaret Irving of New Brunswick, Canada, as she crossed the Yard with classmate Nick Ackert.“It’s a much more personal experience than looking at it as a tourist,” said Ackert, a New York City native who has been studying in Taipei, Taiwan, for the last four years. “It’s much more than just the campus — it’s the students.”“Going here, there’s this misperception of the typical Harvard student,” said Rajkumar Pammal, referring to the “preppy” Ivy stereotype. “There’s such diversity on this campus.”Pammal, from suburban Long Island, N.Y., noted that his three suitemates hail from Nepal, Florida, and North Dakota. The group recently bonded over the beanbag game “cornhole” on the grass near the Science Center. “That’s just the microcosm of how everything is here,” he said.Beyond the Yard, students said they were finding Harvard Square to be a nice blend of hip urbanity and suburban ease that felt interesting, but also safe and comfortable.Attending the pre-orientation program that began Aug. 20 gave some freshmen time to check out local shops and restaurants, meet other students, and ease their anxieties about starting a new life in a strange place.“I’m amazed at the number of people I’ve interacted with already,” said Rachel Stromberg of Tulsa, Okla.Laetitia Tiani Vessah, whose family is originally from Douala, Cameroon, spent her pre-orientation week in the First-Year Urban Program, a five-day session run by students to help introduce freshmen to the Cambridge and Boston community by engaging them in public-service projects.Tiani Vessah spent the week working as a volunteer at Fair Foods, a Boston nonprofit food rescue organization that delivers surplus groceries to low-income families for, at most, a nominal fee.“I really liked that because I got to know more about the city,” she said.For many incoming students, getting acclimated to the broad and unpredictable spectrum of New England weather is a concern, especially for those who have never had to dress for frigid temperatures.“In Oklahoma, we have ice storms, so I’m excited for snow,” said Stromberg. “I think they’ll deal with it better.”Udodiri Okwandu, who grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles, is determined not to get caught off guard by the inevitable cold. “I bought a bunch of coats, but I have to get more,” she said.Udodiri Okwandu, who grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles, is determined not to get caught off guard by the inevitable cold. “I bought a bunch of coats, but I have to get more,” she said.Said Belinda Zeng, a Cupertino, Calif., native: “I’m freaking out.” For Zeng, the transition as a first-year student has been a little overwhelming, especially since many of her friends are going to college back in California, though some are also at Boston University.“It’s been kind of daunting,” said Zeng about move-in day. “The first time I left my sister, it hit me: I’m at college now.”But Zeng said she’s feeling more at ease, thanks in part to the kindness of strangers. She traveled to Harvard and then lugged “tons of suitcases” for what seemed like “miles across campus” to her residence hall, only to be confronted with three flights of stairs. Out of nowhere, she said, a stranger appeared and offered to help carry her belongings up to her room.“That’s what I love about Harvard,” said Zeng. “There’s this sense of community.Everyone’s just there for each other.”last_img read more

Walk Georgia

first_imgMore than 100 of the state’s mayors, city council members and city officials donned their sneakers early Monday morning, June 23, at the Active Georgia Walk to highlight the importance of physical activity among Georgians. The event was sponsored by the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) along with University of Georgia Extension’s Walk Georgia, The Coca-Cola Company, Grady Healthcare and Local Government Risk Management Services, Inc., and was part of the annual GMA conference, held last weekend in Savannah. “Georgia’s city administrators are a key partner in promoting health and wellness statewide,” said Dr. Deborah Murray, associate dean for Extension and Outreach. “Their participation in the Georgia Municipal Association’s Active Georgia Walk shows their deep commitment to combating obesity in the state. Through implementation of Walk Georgia in their communities, as both a worksite wellness program and a community-wide initiative, it’s our hope that we can work together to make Georgians more physically active.” The three-mile Active Georgia Walk started on River Street and led city administrators in a loop along Bay and River streets. Area 4-H volunteers with Walk Georgia, along with volunteers from sponsoring agencies and organizations, also took part in the event by registering event participants and guiding them along the course. Walk Georgia, run jointly by UGA Extension and the UGA College of Family and Consumer Sciences, is a free, Web-based program that allows Georgians to track their physical activity. Because local Extension agents in Georgia’s counties administer Walk Georgia, the program reaches state residents at the most local level. Through a $1 million, three-year gift from The Coca-Cola Foundation, Walk Georgia aims to reach 100,000 Georgians and to decrease the number of physically inactive people in all of Georgia’s counties by 5 percent over the next few years. Walk Georgia will debut an updated version of its website this fall, complete with customizable profiles, goal-setting capabilities, personalized calendars and the ability to join groups. The website should open at beginning this September. If you’re interested in being part of this summer’s pilot phase of Walk Georgia, visit beginning July 1. For more information on Walk Georgia, visit or visit the program’s blog at For more information on the UGA Obesity Initiative, see read more

Environment Health Department makes another attempt to enforce the country’s Litter Act.

first_img Sharing is caring! Share LocalNews Environment Health Department makes another attempt to enforce the country’s Litter Act. by: – September 22, 2011 Share Tweetcenter_img 19 Views   no discussions Share Chief Environmental Officer, Mr. Anthony Scotland. Image via: GIS NewsDominica’s Environmental Health Department said it will once again seek to enforce the country’s Litter Act which has been on the books for many years. Chief Environmental Officer Anthony Scotland said efforts to enforce the Act have not met the expectation over the years.The Environmental Coordinating Unit has now embarked upon a sensitization and education drive in an effort to enforce the act.“From last week, we have been training all the officers under the Act. We had a session with about 60 people from National Pest, Solid Waste, all the clerks and the chairman of village councils. Every police officer, road superintendent can help authorize the Act. The Act goes authorization to at least nine people,” he said.Meantime bus drivers who do not provide bins on public transport have been identified as perpetrators of the Act.“The Act tells you that all public transport should have on board their bins. Also dumpers do not cover their aggregate when traversing the roads. We are not going to be going over and over with that. It’s time to act. Otherwise we will just be going around in circles’,” Scotland said.He said the minister can also appoint on his discretion who should be added to the list.Dominica Vibes Newslast_img read more