Trayvon Martin continues to be a subject of intense interest for the academic elite. The Princeton University Orchestra and the University Concert Jazz Ensemble is set to debut “The Ballad for Trayvon Martin” today, NJ.com reports.
The goal of the music, according to its composer, noted jazz artist Anthony D.J. Branker, is to pay homage to victims of racial violence.
“I simply want to make a connection,” Branker said, “whether it’s on a level of social consciousness, or music and expression.”
Branker said his composition “speaks to all of us to continue to work together so that children of any race, ethnicity or religious affiliation never have to meet such a tragic end.”
“There were seven reported cases of street violence in New Haven this November that could be linked to the ‘knockout game,’ ” The Yale Daily News reported today, citing a Nov. 21 email from Yale Police Chief, Ronnell Higgins.
This alert follows a wave of “knockout” attacks around the country, in which assailants have targeted random individuals for assault.
The New Haven Police Department is also ”preparing to arrest one individual in response to the Church Street ‘knockout’ incident that occurred on Nov. 17,” the paper reports.
In response to the police department’s warning, a Yale spokesperson downplayed the attacks, claiming the email was meant to be precautionary. And New Haven Police cannot say for certain whether the wave of recent attacks is related to the “knockout game.”
Harvard University officials admitted this week that the most common grade students earn at the school is an A.
ABC News reports:
Dean of Undergraduate Education Jay M. Harris told the Harvard Crimson this week A is the most frequent grade and A- is the median grade. Harvard released the grades in response to a question by professor Harvey C. Mansfield, who has long disparaged “grade inflation.” The professor was quoted in the Crimson as saying the high grades are “indefensible” and represent “a failure on the part of this faculty and its leadership to maintain our academic standards.”
Harvard confirmed the report to ABC News today and said in a statement that the university is more focused on learning than grades.
“We believe that learning is the most important thing that happens in our classrooms and throughout our system of residential education,” the school said in a statement from spokesman Jeff Neal. “The faculty are focused on creating positive and lasting learning outcomes for our undergraduates. We watch and review trends in grading across Harvard College, but we are most interested in helping our students learn and learn well.”
ICYMI: The Harvard Crimson this week also published some advice to students on what to do if they are feeling dumb, which apparently is another problem at the Ivy League college.
“A string of brazen and violent crimes around the University of Minnesota has escalated campus fears, with students asking for more security and U officials taking the unusual step of asking the city to send additional police into the area,” the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports.
The crimes are happening about as often as they have for the past few years, but the nature and circumstances of some incidents, including a rape near a park and the armed robbery of a student inside a classroom building, have set the U community on edge. … Last week, a student-initiated online petition asking for a larger police presence drew more than 3,000 signatures. …
The U typically sees an uptick in violent crime every fall, but this year has also brought some vicious assaults. Two rapes, including one by a man who posed as a police officer, and numerous robberies in which a gun was shown have been among the high-profile crimes. …
Engineers from MIT have designed an amazing snap-on hybrid bicycle wheel that makes cycling up hills or over long distances much easier. And it’s powered entirely by the cyclist natural pedaling and braking.
Fox News reports:
The Copenhagen Wheel by the MIT spin-off is a self-contained module that turns an ordinary bicycle into a hybrid. The Wheel works like a Toyota Prius or Chevy Volt, generating juice during braking and turning on to boost a bike rider up steep hills.
“What it lets you do is not waste energy,” Assaf Biderman, founder of Superpedestrian, told FoxNews.com. “Usually when you brake, you waste it into heat. This gives it back to you so you can get a push.”
A slick-looking, 12-pound red disk that sits within the spokes of the bike’s back wheel, the Copenhagen Wheel was invented at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s SENSEable City Lab…
Take a look at the video demonstration below.