Newsletter for April 7

Social justice cafe opens; Fulbright scholar denied re-entry; new institute in Hyde Park

By Sophie Downes and Pete Grieve

Good morning. It’s second week.

Social justice + coffee: Sanctuary Cafe opened this week in University Church. The chef told us they wanted to “create a space that is geared to cater to minorities, women, people of color, LGBTQA, people on the peripheries, people who left the prison system, people who were once prostitutes, [and] people who were once homeless.”

Emanuel cites U of C research in response to Trump: Mayor Rahm Emanuel said this week that he intends to send a University of Chicago study to President Trump and his education secretary, Betsy DeVos. Trump criticized Chicago schools earlier in the week (“the numbers in Chicago are very rough”), but Emanuel says the study shows strides in graduation rates and college attendance levels.

Div School student stuck in Pakistan: Fulbright scholar Syed Zia Hussain Shah was prevented from boarding a flight back to Chicago after spending winter break in Pakistan. “I don’t blame Trump for this, I blame the system for this, because the system definitely got something wrong,” Shah said. The story was first picked up by BuzzFeed.



Alexia Bacigalupi writes in:

Last Friday night, the Logan Center presented “Yummy Yummy,” a showcase of works by B.A. students in the Department of Visual Art. From satellite imagery to nail-painting at the “KINDBOY Host Club,” they delivered an exhibit that was nothing short of “Exceptionally Delicious!”

The Grammy Award–winning, eight-voice ensemble “Roomful of Teeth” explored identity through various vocal traditions last Sunday. Inuit throat singing, Persian classical techniques, death metal, and more united to produce sounds that transcended cultures.

Fourth-year Sherlock Ziauddin mixes floral with leather, counting John Keats and Alex Turner among their fashion inspirations; fourth-year Anna Yuan explores fabrics from all over the world, matching her adventurous personality. Read about their eclectic styles in this week’s Manual of Style.



Sarah Zimmerman writes in:

Who’s to Say: Columnist Soulet Ali questions why President Zimmer said he would be “fine” with white nationalist Richard Spencer speaking at UChicago, but took a stand against the equally hateful posters hung around campus.

The Renter’s Dilemma: Given annual hikes in rent, columnist Jasmine Wu investigates whether if it’s really cheaper to move off campus or not.

A “Rightful” Response: Contributor Henry Saroyan takes issue with columnist Natalie Denby’s position on liberal campus discourse.



Meera Joshi’s colorful impressionist sketches revisit moments of beauty from her first days on campus, and the hopeful, romantic feelings that accompanied them.


Local boy makes good (hickory-smoked pork belly): An 11-year-old Hyde Park resident is a contestant on the Fox TV show “MasterChef Junior.” Evan told the Hyde Park Herald that he wants to be a cook or a chef when he grows up.

New institute: The Hyde Park Institute will put on lectures and events for the University community. It’s currently taking applications for a one-day seminar in May that will feature New York Times columnist David Brooks.

Better methods, better students: College admissions offices should use more predictive metrics than cumulative GPA and ACT composite score in order to admit students who will be more successful, Booth professor Devin G. Pope writes in The New York Times.


Podcasts galore: BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith was on campus this week, and he had David Axelrod on for the first edition of his new podcast, NewsFeed. They talked about how Axelrod dealt with “the original fake news story”—the claim that Barack Obama was Muslim. “We didn’t want to dignify the idea that if he were a Muslim, that that was somehow something to apologize for.” (Plus: Smith on The Axe Files)

  • ESPN researcher and UChicago alum Sarah Langs was on Buster Olney’s baseball podcast. Fast-forward to 46:00 to hear three numbers and why they matter in the debut of the “The Numbers Game,” a segment of the podcast. Bonus: Langs is a former Maroon sports editor.



In the South Side Weekly: The implications of chronic absenteeism at City Council committees, and the Trump era brings new urgency to activism at Southwest Side schools.

In The Gate: What the Trump administration should do about the North Korean nuclear threat.