Columbia Daily Spectator

Columbia Daily Spectator News, sports, and entertainment coverage for the Morningside Heights community in New York City since 1877.

The Columbia Spectator, founded in 1877, delivers news and information daily to thousands of readers around Columbia, Morningside Heights, and West Harlem. We are the second-oldest college daily paper in the country and have been financially independent from the University since 1962. The newspaper is published five days a week during the academic year and our blog network, Spectrum, offers updates on news, arts, commentary, and photos from around campus and New York City. The organization is run by undergraduates from Barnard, Columbia College, General Studies, and SEAS, with a staff totaling over 200 students. Spectator has opportunities for a wide range of interests, including reporting, writing, editing, photography, design, multimedia, and finance. Along with the daily paper and blogs, Spectator Publishing Company Inc. includes The Eye, a weekly arts and features magazine; and the business division, which manages Spectator's financial standing. If you're interested in joining or have any general questions, please contact us at [email protected]. Follow us on Twitter @ColumbiaSpec

Although employees remain hopeful that Book Culture will reach its fundraising goals, students and local residents have ...
07/08/2019
“It feels like home”: a community reflects on Book Culture’s impact amid revelation of local chain’s financial struggles

Although employees remain hopeful that Book Culture will reach its fundraising goals, students and local residents have already been impacted by the possibility of having to say goodbye to a business that has called Morningside Heights home for over two decades.

The empty lots left in Morningside Heights when a beloved local business shuts its doors are shocking at first. As the months go by, while students and residents await the announcement of which national chain may fill the storefront gap, the emptiness becomes familiar. When Book Culture owner Chris....

121st St. predominantly consists of singles in apartment-style suites.
07/02/2019
Barnard adds new residence hall at 121st and Broadway

121st St. predominantly consists of singles in apartment-style suites.

121st St., which predominantly includes singles in apartment-style suites, will be priced at the same flat rate charged across campus of $10,826 per academic year or $5,413 per semester.

“We can’t continue to do nothing about Amazons and Walmarts and the huge mega-companies of the world and expect a fu...
07/01/2019
Book Culture owner says stores will close this summer without $500,000 in funding

“We can’t continue to do nothing about Amazons and Walmarts and the huge mega-companies of the world and expect a future where small businesses like Book Culture exist,” the owner said in an interview with the Spectator.

Book Culture, a beloved local bookstore chain and a reliable hub for Columbia students in need of textbooks, faces an imminent threat of closure unless it receives at least $500,000 in funding, owner Chris Doeblin announced in an open letter last week. The stores may close before the end of the summ...

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Columbia became the first university in the country to approve an gay student organization in 1967. B...
06/30/2019
Columbia Daily Spectator 5 May 1967 — Columbia Spectator

FROM THE ARCHIVES: Columbia became the first university in the country to approve an gay student organization in 1967. But for months after, the group faced pushback from administrators and faculty.

Columbia administrators denied them the right to send a newsletter introducing themselves to incoming freshmen.

The director of counseling services said the group's presence would be a danger to students, calling members "angry and militant."

The dean of the college expressed regret over its approval, noting that it "sure as hell won't help" donations.

Read our coverage in the archives below.

Unlike Hubbard, who served as chairman of President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisors in addition to his a...
06/27/2019
Bollinger names Costis Maglaras, business professor and data scientist, dean of Business School

Unlike Hubbard, who served as chairman of President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisors in addition to his academic roles before becoming Dean, Maglaras’ prior experience was primarily academic.

Costis Maglaras, professor in the Decision, Risk, and Operations division of the Business School, will succeed Glenn Hubbard as dean of Columbia Business School, University President Lee Bollinger announced in an email Thursday afternoon. The appointment comes at a pivotal moment for the Business Sc...

Along with his preeminence among colleagues and scholars, Brinkley found popularity among the students who took his clas...
06/17/2019
Alan Brinkley, leading scholar of American political history, dies at 70

Along with his preeminence among colleagues and scholars, Brinkley found popularity among the students who took his classes and read his history textbooks, inspiring Facebook groups such as the "Alan Brinkley Appreciation Society," "Alan Brinkley is Our Boyfriend," and "My Heart (and Life) Belong to Alan Brinkley.”

A specialist in the history of twentieth-century America, Brinkley joined Columbia’s faculty in 1991. He served as chair of the History Department from 2000 to 2003 and as University Provost from 2003 to 2009.

Calls for Lederer to step down from her teaching post at the Law School first gained traction in 2013, but students and ...
06/13/2019
‘Central Park Five’ prosecutor Elizabeth Lederer resigns from Law School lecturer position, citing public response

Calls for Lederer to step down from her teaching post at the Law School first gained traction in 2013, but students and community members received no response from the University. This time, the protests, driven by a recent Netflix series and two black student groups, led to something different.

Calls for Lederer to resign from her post at the Law School first gained traction in 2013 when a political consultant who was not affiliated with the University or the case became aware of Lederer’s employment.

SENIOR COLUMN: This platform needs to be accessible and objective, and to serve as an open discursive realm to all who w...
05/31/2019
Fear is a palpable thing

SENIOR COLUMN: This platform needs to be accessible and objective, and to serve as an open discursive realm to all who wish to speak. I have had to defend Spec’s opinion section in many conversations, and in the end it always comes down to this: The school needs a newspaper, and someone has to do the job.

Back in my first year, when I was an associate editor for the opinion section, we ran an op-ed series (the Scope) on Columbia alumni, and I wrote to several professors who attended Columbia as undergraduates. Understandably, some of them never got back to me. Months later, after the Scope had alread...

Hungerford will be the second outside hire to serve in the role since its creation in 1982, the first being David Cohen,...
05/30/2019
Yale dean of humanities appointed head of Arts and Sciences

Hungerford will be the second outside hire to serve in the role since its creation in 1982, the first being David Cohen, previously dean of research at Northwestern, appointed in 1995.

Hungerford, currently divisional dean of humanities at Yale, has an academic background in 20th- and 21st-century American Literature.

SENIOR COLUMN: Members of Spec cannot be brilliant if they are not also loved, rested, fed, nurtured, happy. We can’t ...
05/30/2019
Communities of care

SENIOR COLUMN: Members of Spec cannot be brilliant if they are not also loved, rested, fed, nurtured, happy. We can’t offer this for everybody. But The Eye, and any community that demands this much of a student’s time, should be a community of care.

Sometime in my first-year spring, at the dying end of an all-nighter, my friend Maya Perry and I left Butler to get breakfast at Ferris. Sitting by the large windows, consumed by sleep and thinking about our as-yet-unfinished essays, we spotted, down below, an editor from The Eye walking home: She w...

By 16, Ulanova had graduated from high school. By 17, she was an international business liaison. By 20, she had founded ...
05/30/2019
Elizabeth Ulanova, GS ’19, Is Where Art Meets Technology Meets Axe Throwing

By 16, Ulanova had graduated from high school. By 17, she was an international business liaison. By 20, she had founded a tech startup. Ulanova reflects on her difficult and nontraditional path to and through Columbia, just days before her graduation.

“I’m a visual arts major, and I never did arts before I came here three years ago.” This is the first thing that Elizabeth Ulanova, GS ’19, tells me as we sit down to talk at a small table on the first floor of Dodge Hall (the arts building, not the gym, as Ulanova is quick to clarify over e...

As a Columbia tour guide, Parkhurst has led her fair share of celebrities, from movie stars to politicians, around campu...
05/29/2019
Tour Leader, Band Leader, Business Leader: Alex Parkhurst, CC ’19, Reflects

As a Columbia tour guide, Parkhurst has led her fair share of celebrities, from movie stars to politicians, around campus. But for her, it’s all about the students.

In her time working at the Visitor’s Center, Alex Parkhurst, CC ’19, has rubbed shoulders with director Steven Spielberg, White Chicks actor Marlon Wayans, and Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer. “You don’t know who’s gonna come through that door,” she tells me. But when she describes he...

During his tenure, Goldman made significant progress in strengthening the financial standing of the medical center, reve...
05/29/2019
Lee Goldman, Chief Executive of Columbia University Irving Medical Center, to step down from senior executive positions

During his tenure, Goldman made significant progress in strengthening the financial standing of the medical center, reversing financial deficits and garnering over $2.5 billion in donations to CUIMC.

After thirteen years of leading Columbia University Irving Medical Center, Lee Goldman will be stepping down from his positions as Chief Executive of CUIMC and Executive Vice President and Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine, University President Lee Bollinger announced in an email...

On the centennial of the first supreme court cases interpreting the first amendment, University President Lee Bollinger ...
05/29/2019
103rd Pulitzer awards ceremony features Columbia alum Harriet Ryan, surprise musical performance by Jennifer Hudson

On the centennial of the first supreme court cases interpreting the first amendment, University President Lee Bollinger presented the Pulitzer awards to reporters who were imprisoned for over 500 days for their work, covered the failure of law enforcement in light of gun violence, and captured the human toll of the war in Yemen.

The 103rd Annual Pulitzer Prizes— the highest national honors in journalism, literary achievement, and musical composition— were awarded by University President Lee Bollinger on Tuesday in Low Library. The awards have been administered by Columbia since they were created and endowed by Joseph Pu...

In three months, Fujii will be working with the Peace Corps in the Kingdom of Tonga. But before she embarks on a future ...
05/29/2019
Alani Sumako Fujii, BC ’19, Practices Public Service Through Self-Care

In three months, Fujii will be working with the Peace Corps in the Kingdom of Tonga. But before she embarks on a future in public service, she reminds us to take care of ourselves first.

This summer, Alani Sumako Fujii will be growing her own food at home in Maryland. Her decision, she explains, stems from a belief in “self-sustenance,” a key trait she’ll need before she starts working for the Peace Corps. In just a few months’ time, Fujii will be in the Kingdom of Tonga, in...

One week ago today, the class of 2019 officially graduated. Check out their stories and reflections captured in our Comm...
05/29/2019
Commencement 2019

One week ago today, the class of 2019 officially graduated. Check out their stories and reflections captured in our Commencement issue.

Aaron Smithson, CC ’19, wants you to think about the built environment like he thinks about it: full of potential.
05/29/2019
Aaron Smithson, CC ’19, Just Needs His Space

Aaron Smithson, CC ’19, wants you to think about the built environment like he thinks about it: full of potential.

Aaron Smithson, CC ’19, is heading to Columbus—but not the avenue. Columbus, Indiana, is a 47,000-person town that sits halfway between Indianapolis and Louisville, which might seem like an odd vacation destination. But for Smithson, who was raised on the Upper West Side, it’s actually a prett...

While navigating the art history and visual arts departments of Barnard and Columbia, Wallis and Klein found themselves ...
05/29/2019
Jacquelyn Klein, CC ’19, and Caroline Wallis, BC ’19, helped lay the bedrock of Columbia’s visual arts landscape

While navigating the art history and visual arts departments of Barnard and Columbia, Wallis and Klein found themselves longing for a space where visual artists could connect with one another. Founding a visual arts magazine was just the first step in forming a bond that grew closer through the development of their crafts.

Jacquelyn Klein, CC ’19, and Caroline Wallis, BC ’19, wanted to name the visual arts magazine they founded during their first year after something that undeniably captured the spirit of the campus. As it turned out, Columbia was built above a layer of schist rock that lines the majority of Manha...

SENIOR COLUMN: It eases my soul to see that, now when more people like myself come to Spectator, the Community-Zone is a...
05/28/2019
They don’t really care about us

SENIOR COLUMN: It eases my soul to see that, now when more people like myself come to Spectator, the Community-Zone is at least one place where they may find some of who they are and some of where they come from, wherever that may be.

In the summer before I started at Columbia, people kept telling me about how I would find myself in college. When I arrived at Spectator, however, I instead found that myself wasn’t there. I was the only Black person in my section, and I was one of the only people at that time who had dedicated th...

“What I have learned, you know, with the way that we’re taught to close-read and unpack things, I never really thoug...
05/28/2019
From the Backstreet Boys to Butler: Sondra Woodruff, GS ’19, gained new musical perspectives through Columbia

“What I have learned, you know, with the way that we’re taught to close-read and unpack things, I never really thought of doing that with music,” Woodruff said, highlighting how much her Columbia education has shaped how she approaches her craft.

Woodruff decided to pursue a degree so that she could work at record labels and ultimately give back to under-resourced communities.

Following a 37-year career that saw him bring home 14 Ivy League titles and 510 wins, men’s tennis head coach Bid Gosw...
05/28/2019
Bidding farewell: After 37 years and over 500 wins, a legendary men’s tennis coach retires

Following a 37-year career that saw him bring home 14 Ivy League titles and 510 wins, men’s tennis head coach Bid Goswami has retired from Columbia. This is the legacy he left behind.

Following a 37-year career that saw him bring home 14 Ivy League titles and 510 wins, men’s tennis head coach Bid Goswami has retired. He will be succeeded by Howard Endelman, former associate head coach and a member of Goswami's first recruiting class.

Not many students manage to star in the Varsity Show all four years, but Rachel Greenfeld, BC ’19, has been there thro...
05/27/2019
Varsity Show celebrity Rachel Greenfeld, BC ’19, from start to finish

Not many students manage to star in the Varsity Show all four years, but Rachel Greenfeld, BC ’19, has been there through the good, the bad, and the XMAS!.

“With energy, pizzazz, and candid hilarity, the unexpected jolts and quirky visages of Greenfeld captivated from start to finish.” This excerpt is taken from Spectator’s review for XMAS!13, one of the many shows that Rachel Greenfeld, BC ’19, stole. During this show in particular, and unbekn...

SENIOR COLUMN: Joining Spec introduced me to passionate and creative people, brought me to so many different parts of st...
05/27/2019
A crash course

SENIOR COLUMN: Joining Spec introduced me to passionate and creative people, brought me to so many different parts of student life, and pushed me out of my comfort zone. I never thought I’d be standing on a recycling bin on the 5th floor of Lerner Hall during Glass House Rocks to get the perfect shot of dancers spinning on the ramps over the heads of the crowd.

When it’s you, a camera, and the subject of a portrait, it can be a surprisingly vulnerable situation for all parties. At Spec I was repeatedly put into new and, at first, uncomfortable situations—the student I am taking a photo of is nervous about being on camera, I’m nervous about getting th...

SENIOR COLUMN: When I was a young staffer, with absolutely no journalism experience, my editor pushed me to look beyond ...
05/27/2019
Why I wrote

SENIOR COLUMN: When I was a young staffer, with absolutely no journalism experience, my editor pushed me to look beyond the obvious for stories. I looked beyond the box score, putting my own spin on that cliché to produce stories that actually brought me joy.

The one question everybody asks is “Why?” Why volunteer 50 to 60 unpaid hours a week for three out of four years of your college career? Why sacrifice sleep, GPA, mental health, social life, sanity? Why suffer constant crippling anxiety and persistent self-doubt? The night my official tenure as ...

Shaquan Nelson, SEAS ’19, was inspired to create his own clothing label after listening to a Chief Keef album one summ...
05/26/2019
Shaquan Nelson, SEAS ’19, on creating his own clothing label and how a turtle can climb a fence

Shaquan Nelson, SEAS ’19, was inspired to create his own clothing label after listening to a Chief Keef album one summer. What followed was a journey involving a myriad of helping hands who ultimately allowed him to stitch together his label, Strange Fruit Conglomerate.

Shaquan Nelson, SEAS ’19, takes a long pause when asked to describe his clothing label in one sentence. After turning the question over in his mind for a couple of moments, his face lights up and he says. “If you see a turtle on a fence, don’t ask how it got there.” Nelson explains that the ...

“In the system itself, the cards are all stacked against the victim, against the patient. The physician has clout, has...
05/26/2019
A Columbia doctor sexually abused patients for decades: Why didn’t anyone stop him?

“In the system itself, the cards are all stacked against the victim, against the patient. The physician has clout, has status, and for anything to happen it typically will take dozens of accusations,” one health care expert tells The Eye.

More than two dozen women have accused Robert Hadden of sexually abusing them while he was their physician at Columbia hospitals. Now, Columbia faces an unfolding lawsuit over whether it could have stopped Hadden sooner. As health experts point to shortcomings at Columbia and across the health care....

SENIOR COLUMN: High off the likes and positive DMs I was getting after sharing a piece I wrote on Facebook, I asked my f...
05/26/2019
Self-care according to a Spec mom

SENIOR COLUMN: High off the likes and positive DMs I was getting after sharing a piece I wrote on Facebook, I asked my friend how I could keep the good times going. They recommended I apply to be a Spec opinion columnist, which I did. Though writing kept me rolling in sweet, sweet serotonin for a time, I needed a bigger fix, which led me to join Spec and eventually become an opinion deputy. By junior spring, I had become exactly what I despised: a journalism junkie.

I really resisted joining Spec. After being burnt out by my high school newspaper, I sought out entirely new extracurriculars here. I joined the Atheist and Agnostic Students Society for a hot sec. I played rugby for a hot sec. I performed with the flute choir for a hot sec. I even rushed a sorority...

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