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Faculty weighs in on proposed core curriculum changes

first_imgThe Core Curriculum Review Committee released its final report Aug. 31, after taking feedback on a draft report released last November. The proposed changes would reduce the number of required math and science courses and modify the requirements related to the arts, humanities and social sciences. According to the report, if the changes are accepted, they will be the most significant changes to the core curriculum in more than 40 years.Lindsey Meyers In order to take effect, the Academic Council and University President Fr. John Jenkins will have to approve the proposal.“The old requirement was two math, two science and now it’s one of each plus one more of either — so it indicates a bit of a decrease,” mathematics department chair Jeffrey Diller said. “No one likes to see their own area deemphasized. That said, there seems to be a ton of interest in math courses, requirements aside, these days. I don’t think we’re very worried about loss of enrollment or something in freshman course offerings. “Lots of people take calculus; I think econ, in particular, has been stressing taking calculus classes even more. The practical effect of it is, in truth, probably not that large for us.” Diller said he felt “neutral” toward the possible decrease in math classes and that his “concerns will be elsewhere,” specifically with students not being able to use AP credit to fill requirements.“So if you got a five on the Calculus BC exam that doesn’t automatically get you out of the University math requirement — you still need to take a math course, but it could be something down the road from calc I or II,” he said. “We’ll be very concerned that the advising matches that change. It’s a shame if people who took calc I and II in high school take it again because that’s just the simplest thing to do under the circumstances. We’ll be concerned to find courses where people actually see something new.”The report indicates that students would be required to take one class each in “quantitative reasoning” and “science and technology” and one additional course in either. Diller said the change in name could indicate an expansion in who can teach classes related to math. “In truth, even under the old system, it was possible for another department to propose a course that would fulfill the math requirement, but there never were any proposals,” he said. “Maybe that will change now for reasons that I can’t see. Even with the change in name, there was this opportunity before to have courses offered by people other than us.”The report also recommends requiring students to take a foundational philosophy course, but allowing a student to take a second course in philosophy or one in “Catholicism and the Disciplines” (CAD), a new category of courses that cover Catholic topics, but can be in any field.“When taught well, philosophy courses don’t just give students a body of information,” philosophy department chair Jeff Speaks said in an email. “They also teach students to form and defend their own views about the right answers to fundamental questions about the universe and themselves. “According to the recommendation, CAD courses must have this normative dimension as well. If they really do, then I think that the proposed changes will open up some interesting opportunities for Notre Dame students. If they don’t, then we will have taken a step in the wrong direction.”Diller said the proposed changes essentially come down to how much the University requires students to step out of their specific field of study.“Is it a good idea to make students take courses outside of their area of interest, or should we be like Brown [University], for instance, where there are basically no general requirements and people just take exactly what they want to take?” he said. “That’s somewhat above my paygrade, but I am sort of in favor in pushing people to try stuff outside of their specific area.”In addition to advising students to take appropriate math classes, Diller said he also has concerns about flexibility in course schedules.“This does make things somewhat more flexible for a lot of students, but not for science or engineering students,” he said. “It would be nice to see more flexibility for them. … I don’t see that the core curriculum has touched on this at all.”Tags: academics, Core Curriculum, core curriculum review committee, University Requirementslast_img read more

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Water wise plants

first_imgBy Faith PeppersUniversity of Georgia Georgia’s drought can be instructive when you’re picking plants for your landscape. If a plant is looking good now, it’s a winner.”There are some plants you just cannot kill, no matter how hard you try,” said University of Georgia horticulturist David Berle.”I dug up some day lilies, hostas and liriope from a bed one time and set them on the driveway to await the construction of a wall,” he said. “The stone for the wall took four weeks to arrive. And all that time, the plants set on the driveway with almost no water at all. They looked a little droopy, but we didn’t loose a single plant.”Plants with bulbs, corms or otherwise bulbous roots are amazingly tough and survive anything, he said.In his home landscape, Berle has seen that with no watering, these plants are looking good: Hydrangea macrophylla, Spirea japonica, Camellia sasanqua, Lagerstroemia x ‘Natchez,’ Iris ensata, Verbena bonariensis, Coreopsis ‘Moonbeam,’ Loropetalum chinensis and Vitex agnus-castus.He notes that they were well established before the drought. “Plants that have taken it pretty hard in my yard,” he said, “are Hydrangea quercifolia, pittosporums, Fothergilla ‘ Mt. Airy,’ Itea virginica, gardenia and, of course, the dogwoods.”All across north Georgia, homeowners report losing dogwoods. “I lost several older dogwoods this year,” Berle said. “They were already looking poorly over the past several years. But this year finished them off.”Signs of damaged dogwoods include dead limbs and decay. “I think this summer was just too much,” he said. “I like dogwoods, though, and fully intend to replant.””Start with some very small trees, 3- to 5-gallon size,” he said, “and plant as soon as they go dormant. There will be no transpiration and thus little drought stress on them. Smaller trees tend to adapt more quickly and require less water during their early years than larger specimen trees.”Some traditional rules for landscape care don’t apply this year. “Cut back all perennials now,” Berle said. “Normally I wait until just about the end of winter. But for those plants suffering already, I think cutting them back will at least hold the line on stress.”At this point, he said, plants can’t benefit much from being left intact. “Normally, I’d say leave the green as long as possible to let the plant send energy from photosynthesis to the roots,” he said. “But my guess is that little photosynthesis is going on, and plants are drying out and dying. I cut back lots of perennials as soon as it looked like water was going to be cut off. They look tidier, too.”Tim Smalley, a UGA horticulturist, usually saves transplanting for between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. “I always felt that it gave the plants time to better establish some roots before spring,” he said.Stepping up winter chores isn’t keeping him from planning to plant. “I still plan to plant some things this fall,” he said. “I’m using collected water, collecting water from the start of my shower to water these plants. I’ll water only until they lose their leaves in late fall, or until about Nov. 15 to first frost.”Water shortages have forced Georgians to think more seriously about conservation measures. Smalley says we should always think about conservation.”Many homeowners water their lawns more than once per week,” Smalley said. “A lawn or annual bed looks better with more frequent irrigation, but I don’t think that we have the water resources to sustain that use level. I water my plants for only one year after planting. And except for hydrangeas, I have had good success. I never water my lawn or established landscape.”last_img read more

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CUNA political ads, 100MM website take home awards

first_imgThere are a few new awards in CUNA’s trophy case, thanks to creative print and digital ads, as well as CUNA’s 100 million memberships website.CUNA won two awards from the American Association of Political Consultants, known as the “Pollies,” which recognize excellence in political communications.Both awards were from the 2014 election. The first, which took home the silver “Best Use of Membership Political Mail–Democrat,” was a campaign for Mark Udall, the former Colorado senator. The ad, done in conjunction with the Mountain West Credit Union Association (MWCUA), portrays Udall as a superhero fighting for credit union members.”He may not wear a cape, but Mark Udall is a hero when it comes to fighting for Credit Union members,” reads the ad, which was sent to MWCUA credit union members. continue reading » 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Congress returns this week: Flood insurance, government funding on agenda

first_imgCongress is back in full swing this week, and NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler details lawmakers’ to-do list in a new NAFCU Today video, including the need to address fiscal 2018 government funding, reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and raise the debt ceiling, all by month’s end.Thaler also mentions possible action soon by the Senate on a House-passed Congressional Review Act resolution to withdraw the CFPB’s recent arbitration rulemaking. In the coming weeks and months, Thaler says, Congress and the administration will also continue work on tax reform, regulatory relief, housing finance reform and data security.“All these issues and more will be addressed during next week’s Congressional Caucus,” says Thaler.Congress this week will also be holding hearings addressing economic growth and the financial regulatory regime. Hearings include: 9SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

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4 best bets for stocking up on Halloween candy this year

first_imgHalloween is almost here. No matter how old you are, it brings out the kid in all of us. The best thing about Halloween? Some might say dressing up, but I’d say it’s the candy.While most of us probably try to avoid candy most of the time, Halloween is the one time during the year that we can stop worrying about it and stuff our faces with enough sugar to hold us over until next October.While candy is delicious, it can also be expensive. If you need to stock up on enough of the good stuff to keep the kids in your neighborhood satisfied (and have a little extra for yourself) you should take advantage of these Amazon deals right now.Here are 4 of my favorites you can’t go wrong with…Huge Assorted Party Mix Box – 6.25 lbs, $35.99 – This giant box of candy is a great mix of all the best Halloween candies. This might be all you need to be the favorite house in the neighborhood. That is unless somebody is giving out full-sized Snickers, in which case I can’t help you.AirHeads – 90 count, $9.37 – AirHeads are basically just sugar sticks with a hint of flavor, but they’re chewy and delicious, so what else do you need?M&M’s Variety Mix – 150 pieces, $22.99 – You can’t go wrong with M&M’s. If you like chocolate, you like M&M’s. Except maybe Peanut M&M’s. I mean they’re good, they’re just not quite as good as Peanut Butter M&M’s. Tell me I’m wrong.Mini Chocolate Candy Variety Mix – 240 pieces, $14.50 – Candy bars are awesome. A 4-pound bag of mini candy bars is super awesome. Twix, Snickers, 3 Musketeers, Milky Way . . . what’s not to love? Hop on this deal while it’s available and enjoy seeing some wide-eyed Avengers on your front porch this Halloween. 33SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John Pettit John Pettit is the Managing Editor for CUInsight.com. John manages the content on the site, including current news, editorial, press releases, jobs and events. He keeps the credit union … Web: www.cuinsight.com Detailslast_img read more

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New $40M Nassau Police Academy Plan Linked to Cover-up Scandal

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Nassau County officials announced Wednesday plans to build a new $40 million police academy at Nassau Community College four years after affiliates of the nonprofit group helping fund its construction were linked to a burglary cover-up.The Center for Training and Intelligence, as the planned facility is called, would replace the current academy in the retrofitted, half-century-old Hawthorne Elementary School in Massapequa Park that the department rents for $700,000 annually. Officials said they’ll pay for the project with a combination of $10 million in taxpayer funding, $25 million in asset forfeiture funds—money seized from suspects during investigations—and $5 million donated by the nonprofit Nassau County Police Department Foundation. Three ex-Nassau police commanders were convicted of quashing burglary charges for the son of a donor to that nonprofit, including one ex-cop who appealed.“Instead of putting capital improvements in a leased space that would be very hard to retrofit, to take advantage of today’s technologies, we’re moving ahead,” Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano told reporters during a press conference while flanked by legislators, police brass and members of the nonprofit.The 120,000-square foot facility planned for East Garden City would be the first of its kind for the department’s 80-year history and is slated to debut in two years. It would train new recruits as well as current members in addition to housing the department’s intelligence unit and contain mock “tactical villages,” where police can conduct simulated drug raids and hostage situations. It would be a big step up from the academy as it stands now, police said.“Our current facility, as built and designed, was a grammar school, not a police academy,” said Acting Nassau Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter, who noted that the building is ill-equipped for its current function. “There are significant differences.”Asked if Nassau—which County Comptroller George Maragos projected is facing a $52-million deficit next year—can afford to spend millions on the new venture, Mangano said the academy was worth the investment.“You really can’t measure it from the dollars of the building,” Mangano said. “It’s what goes on in that building, that’s our investment—that training, that national exposure, that intelligence-led policing model.“We are very, very mindful of the deficiencies here in our county,” he added. “We strive for efficiency…we do not sacrifice quality of life…we do not sacrifice the investment in our police department.”Nassau Police Benevolent Association President James Carver told the Press he’s “in favor of a more modernized facility that will assist in training our police officers, both the recruits that are coming on the job, and providing training for active members.” But, he’d also like to see the county update some of its antiquated precincts, and hire additional officers, given recent retirements, he said. “Building a police academy without hiring makes no sense,” he said.The county needs to cut through plenty of red tape before shovel hits dirt, which could happen as early as this fall, officials said. The county submitted a Request for Proposal seeking contractors to build the facility earlier this month with a deadline of Feb. 18. And federal authorities must provide written approval for the county to use asset forfeiture dollars on the project.A rendering of the planned Nassau Police Academy’s “tactical village,” where officers can simulate mock drug raids or hostage situations.“We are very confident that we’ll receive that approval,” Krumpter said, adding that the department could get the go ahead in the next couple of months.The NCPD Foundation was founded in 2008 by former Nassau police commissioner Lawrence Mulvey specifically to raise money to build the new police academy. In statements made at a June 2010 Long Island Real Estate Group event, Mulvey told attendees that the nonprofit hoped to raise $25 million in two years to build a future police academy, then estimated to cost $48 million for a 75,000-square foot facility, according to the New York Real Estate Journal. The foundation ultimately raised one fifth of that goal.Eric Blumencranz, chairman of the NCPD Foundation, said Mulvey, who retired in 2011, “deserves substantial credit” for his contribution in having the foundation’s dream of a new academy realized. As for the donation, Blumencranz said: “I don’t think we ever committed to $25 million in fundraising, but we committed to raising significant amount of funds.” The $25 million figure likely included a combination of fundraising and asset forfeiture dollars, he said.“The fundraising for this project isn’t over, it’s still in the beginning stages,” Blumencranz explained, adding that he has commitments from several donors who first wanted to see shovels on the ground. Additional donations could come from naming certain academy buildings after donors, he said.The foundation came under scrutiny in 2012 when three Nassau police commanders were charged with quashing the investigation of a 2009 burglary committed by then-police-intern Zachary Parker, of Merrick, who’s father, Gary, donated to and volunteered for the nonprofit.Former Second Deputy Nassau Police Commissioner William Flanagan, convicted of conspiring to cover up a burglary, faced a press swarm after his arrest in March 2012. (Photo by Rashed Mian/Long Island Press)The charges stemmed from a Press expose into the foundation and the covered-up burglary. All three commanders left the department following their arrest and the burglar was convicted after prosecutors picked up the case. Then-Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice cleared the police foundation of wrongdoing, although Gary Parker was named in court as an un-indicted co-conspirator. He resigned from the group.In February 2013, a jury convicted William Flanagan, an ex-deputy Nassau County police commissioner, of conspiracy and official misconduct, but he was acquitted of receiving reward for official misconduct. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail, but execution of that sentence was stayed pending the outcome of his appeal.John Hunter, the former deputy chief patrol, and ex-Det. Sgt. Alan Sharpe later pleaded guilty to misconduct. They were sentenced to probation and community service.Since the scandal, the foundation has donated funds to help authorities identify residents with cognitive disorders who go missing, donated police equipment and contributed reward money in high-profile cases, such as the recent homicide of a gas station attendant in Jericho.The scandal was not of concern this week when officials thanked each other for bringing the academy project to fruition. The foundation and the department are now hoping to put it all behind them and finally break ground on their original plan.“It’s a very exciting time in the department,” Krumpter said, speaking about the academy. “It’s a long time coming.”—With Timothy Bolgerlast_img read more

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Space and grandeur on offer in Sunnybank Hills

first_imgThe outdoor area at 64 The Avenue, Sunnybank Hills.Outside, there is sandstone paving, a built-in barbecue area and an outdoor kitchen on the covered patio. The property has two water features and the landscaping is by an award-winning landscape architect.The home is walking distance to nearby parks.Mrs Angus said the home was in a lovely, quiet neighbourhood. The property is being marketed by Eric Li and Fiona Tan of Ray White Sunnybank Hills. The kitchen at 64 The Avenue, Sunnybank Hills.The grand two-storey home has double front doors that open directly to the foyer and the statement staircase. There are formal living and dining rooms at the front of the home and an open-plan living, dining and kitchen area opening out to both the courtyard and the covered patio.More from newsCrowd expected as mega estate goes under the hammer7 Aug 2020Hard work, resourcefulness and $17k bring old Ipswich home back to life20 Apr 2020The updated kitchen has stone benchtops, two island benches, an integrated fridge, two dishwashers and bevelled mirrored cupboard doors. The open-plan living area at 64 The Avenue, Sunnybank Hills.There is also a media room with a bar on the ground floor, along with a laundry, bathroom and bedroom with built-in robe.Upstairs, the master suite has two walk-in robes and a marble ensuite with bath, dual basins and bevelled mirrored drawers.The three other bedrooms have built-in robes and there is a family bathroom.center_img The home at 64 The Avenue, Sunnybank Hills.THIS architect-designed home is on 918sq m block with beautifully landscaped gardens and plenty of street appeal. Owners Katreena and Peter Angus built the home at 64 The Avenue, Sunnybank Hills and recently updated and painted the property inside and out.“It’s a Mediterranean-inspired home and it has that resort feel about it,” Mrs Angus said.“The home was designed for entertaining with wide corridors, high ceilings and very spacious interiors. You could easily fit 150 people in the backyard for entertaining.” last_img read more

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Danish roundup: Investors sue Morgan Stanley, Carnegie over OW Bunker

first_imgDenmark’s biggest pension fund is among 24 Danish institutional investors that have decided to sue banks Morgan Stanley and Carnegie in relation to the collapse of Danish shipping fuel company OW Bunker.ATP has filed the lawsuit as part of a consortium including units of PFA Pension, PenSam, Lærernes Pension and PensionDanmark. Other pension funds involved in the consortium are AP Pension, Unipension and Sampension.The funds are suing the two issuing banks for IPO prospectus liability.The Danish institutional investors lost DKK767m (€103m) after investing on in shares in the company “on the basis of a prospectus which was insufficient in material aspects”, ATP said. Tomas Krüger Andersen, ATP’s head of legal for investments, said: “The consortium has decided to extend the group of defendants to include the issuing banks Morgan Stanley and Carnegie.”This decision was based on new information in extensive exhibits from the bankruptcy estate, which the investors were only given access to this spring, he said.“We believe that the banks knew about OW Bunker’s speculative activities and that the banks contributed to misleading investors,” he said, adding that, against this background, ATP believed the banks may be liable to pay damages.Lawyers Bruun & Hjejle are representing the investors in the proceedings.In June 2015, the investors said they were suing OW Bunker itself. In April 2016, ATP said it had not decided whether to expand the suit.The action is pending before the Danish Eastern High Court.LD awards alternative credit mandateIn other news, Danish pension fund LD is expanding its allocation to alternatives through a DKK1.1bn alternative credit mandate to be run by US asset management firm Apollo.LD said its alternative investment allocation, which is now less than 5% of its overall assets, would increase substantially with the new mandate.Claus Buchwald Christjansen, LD’s CIO, said: “We have been talking to the American manager for a long time and chose them because they were simply the best suited, and at the same time enormously innovative in their ability to be able to manage liquidity and hedging of alternative credit investments.”LD said its demands regarding alternative credit investments were different from those of most other pension funds in Denmark. Firstly, the investments had to have a high level of cashflow, and secondly, the investment time horizon was significantly shorter than that normally seen in the sector.LD said it had designed a hedging portfolio with Apollo that would protect the investments against losses in the case of negative developments in financial markets.“In spite of that, we expect a relatively high return on these investments,” said Buchwald Christjansen.LD has total assets of around DKK43bn at the moment but this is expected to shrink to DKK25bn by 2024. It is a non-contributory pension fund based on a one-off sum transferred by the government in 1980. Half of its members have now passed the age of 60, when they can withdraw their assets.last_img read more

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Salina Speedway readies for Friday night battle

first_imgBy Larry Lowrey Jr.SALINA, Kan. – Weather has wreaked havoc on most local tracks this week. Salina Speedway is no different than any other track in Kansas. All week long, heavy rains have fallen on area tracks forcing them to work a little harder on getting prepped for this week’s event. Rain not only causes problems with the surface itself, but it also keeps workers from being able to do their jobs getting the track into racing shape.Don’t fear Salina Speedway fans, promoter Tommy Hendrickson and his crew have been at it all week long getting ready for the Friday, June 13 races. Between showers, crews have been working on a host of issues and seem to have them ready to roll when the track opens up this evening. On the lineup card this week at Salina Speedway fans will be seeing the BSB Manufacturing NeSmith Chevrolet Weekly Racing Series Late Models, Belleville Motor Sports IMCA Modifieds, M&H Motors IMCA Northern SportMods, AutoHouse Towing Mod Lites and the Budweiser IMCA Hobby Stocks. Joe Cleveland, last year’s Modified champion, is catching fire at the moment. An impressive win last week puts him as the odds on favorite heading into this week. The Modified division is one of the most competitive divisions not only at Salina Speedway but all across the nation.Brian Knoell has been quiet after winning two features, Corey Lagroon has yet to crack into the win column and there are several other drivers that are ready to win. Will this be the week of another new feature winner or will we see another repeat winner?It’s been a few weeks since we have seen the Northern SportMods on the track. This division is chomping at the bit waiting to get back out and show the fans of Salina Speedway just why they are exciting to watch. Austin Carter has thrown a few wins together along with some top five’s and this has landed him at the front of the pack in the points.It’s still early in the season and fans know that drivers like Tyler Frye, Nate Ginest, Clay Money and a slew of others are going to be making a run at Carter before it’s all said and done. The race to the end of the season will be interesting to see since this division has so many different competitors.If you like wheel-to-wheel and door-to-door action, the Hobby Stock class has you covered. This division has been a pleasant surprise in 2014. Several drivers have put on great displays of driving, several different feature winners have been seen and this class is only promising to get better. Mike Traskowsky is the early season point leader, but the top 5 cars in the point standings are separated by a meager 12 points. The program gets underway with hot laps at 7:15 p.m. and heat races shortly after that.Adult admission is $10, with kids 15 and under free with a paid adult. All seniors 55 and up are half price with ID. All active and retired military are free with appropriate ID as well. Pit passes are $25.last_img read more

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Four Syracuse players invited to NFL Combine

first_imgQuarterback Ryan Nassib, wide receiver Alec Lemon, safety Shamarko Thomas and tackle Justin Pugh all have been invited to the NFL Combine. The combine begins Feb. 20 and runs through Feb. 26.Nassib and Pugh are both projected as mid-round picks with the chance to move into the first couple of rounds, while Thomas and Lemon are viewed as late-round prospects.Nassib threw for 3,749 yards and 26 touchdowns to go along with just 10 interceptions, while also guiding Syracuse to its second Pinstripe Bowl victory in three seasons. The quarterback was named an All-American by Pro Football Weekly, who chooses its All-Americans based on who projects as the best professional player.Lemon has been Nassib’s favorite target over the three year’s Nassib spent as the starting quarterback. He became just third player in SU history with a 1,000-yard receiving season and set the Orange all-time record with 199 career catches.Thomas led Syracuse with 84 tackles last season. He also added a sack and two interceptions.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textPugh missed the first four games of the season with a shoulder injury and the Orange slumped to a 1-4 start. After his return, SU won seven of its last eight games and running back Jerome Smith finished the season with more than 1,000 yards after a slow start. Pugh blocked for a 1,000-yard rusher – Antwon Bailey and Delone Carter being the others – in each of his three seasons with Syracuse. Comments Published on February 7, 2013 at 2:27 pm Contact David: [email protected] | @DBWilson2 Related Stories Syracuse offensive lineman Justin Pugh declares for NFL Draftcenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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