By the time Val’s Iron Chef competition rolls around for the fifth time next year, a new team of cooks will be crowned champions. Obvious as that may seem, it has been anything but a guarantee for the competition’s first four years — the same team, albeit with some slightly different members, has won each year it’s been held.

Senior Music and English major, Christopher Spaide was recently awarded the Keasbey Scholarship, an award that will allow him to study for two years at the University of Oxford.

On Monday, April 18, 2011, peta2, the youth division of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), hosted a debate at Stirn Auditorium with the Debate Society. The debate revolved around the question, “Is eating meat ethical?”

Arguing for the unethical nature of eating meat were PETA’s Vice-President Bruce Friedrich and the Debate Society’s co-president Justin Patrick ’12. Arguing that it is ethical were Jane Kessner ’14 and co-president Lilia Kilburn ’12.

Last Thursday, the College’s newest student group, the EDU, held its inaugural event. Aspiring teachers and those interested in education and education reform gathered in the Morris Pratt ballroom to hear a spoken word performance by poet Carlos Andrès Gòmez and to take part in a discussion about education facilitated by Professor Hilary Moss.

Over the past three weeks, the College has been experiencing several thefts, particularly in unlocked rooms. Everything from wallets, coats and backpacks to cell phones, keys and iPads have been reported. Most notably, there have been five reports of stolen laptop computers.

The laptop thefts all occurred in either common areas or unlocked rooms. Campus Police released a statement informing the College community about these thefts and encouraging them to protect their belongings.

The College boasts on the front page of its website that the average financial aid package provided to students is over $37,000. Fully half of the student body benefits from financial aid, and the College’s commitment to its no-loans policy means that students need not worry about being haunted by the cost of an excellent education. Operating on a need-blind philosophy, even during times of economic difficulty, the College’s commitment to financial aid has been a direct investment in a more socioeconomically diverse campus community.

On Aug. 26, students received an email notifying them of a change in fire safety regulations that would affect several popular social spaces on campus. Dean of Students Allen Hart wrote in the email that, following a directive from the Fire Chief for the town of Amherst, “spaces which hold 100 or more people cannot be used unless they have a sprinkler system.” Based on regulations issued by the State Fire Marshal, the decision means that events and parties can no longer be held in the basements of Crossett, Davis and Stone Dormitories.

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