University of Louisville’s plan for a safe return to campus this fall Monday, Jul 6 2020 

By Madelin Shelton–

On June 23, University of Louisville Provost Beth Boehm sent out the university’s “Pivot to Fall” plan that laid out the university’s strategy for welcoming students, faculty and staff back for the fall semester.

The plan–drafted under the direction of the Pivot to Fall Coordinating Committee, Safe Return to Work Committee, and Academic Scenario Planning Committee–was split into two major sections: “Return to Campus” and “Student, Faculty and Staff Safety.”

The “Return to Campus” section announced that fall semester classes for undergraduates will begin on Aug. 17 and Fall Break will remain on Oct. 5-6, as previously scheduled. Move-in for students living on campus will include multiple days with extended time periods to promote social distancing.

In-person classes will meet regularly until  Nov. 25. After this date, all in-person classes will transition to online-only until the end of final exams. Dorms will remain open to students needing a place to stay through or after Thanksgiving break.

Over 50% of classes will be offered in a hybrid model, part online and part in-person, to allow for a quick switch to online-only should this necessity arise.

The university also disclosed that the Fall 2020 and Spring 2020 commencement ceremonies will both be held in the upcoming December, as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the postponement of the Spring 2020 ceremonies.

The key actions for “Student, Faculty and Staff Safety” included several items. Among the most notable announcements, all students, faculty and staff will be required to wear masks and practice social distancing in public areas.

U of L is also making testing available to all members of the campus community and will conduct contact tracing to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Additionally, the university will increase hand sanitizer, cleaning and disinfecting throughout campus, among other preventative actions.

While the “Pivot to Fall” plan acts as a guide, the university administration acknowledges changes will likely still need to be made.

“We will continue to respond to the guidance of our public health officials and the governor of Kentucky, the latest science and research into COVID-19, advice from our colleagues at other universities and colleges, and input from our employees and students over the next to two months,” Boehm said.

File Graphic//The Louisville Cardinal

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6 Ways for Students to Decorate Your Home on a Tight Budget Friday, Jun 26 2020 

If you’re a student living in your own home or even in a rented apartment – you’re lucky. But even if you reside in a dorm room, that’s ok for a while. Whatever your situation is, you need your home to be nice and comfortable. However, many students end up living in messy uncozy apartments for months and years. We’ve put this article together to help students who might want to decorate your home on a tight budget. 

Photo of a coffee table with flowers
Photo by Eea Ikeda

Indeed, when you’re totally absorbed in your studies, there may be no extra time to spare. Whatever little free time students happen to have, they tend to spend on socializing and other not academic-related activities. Add a job to this already filled schedule, and the situation can become really dire.

Luckily, there are tricks to carve out some time for a busy student. For example, essay writing services like EssayPro.com can help with writing assignments. Also, it’s very important to learn time-management techniques. 

Decorate Your Home on a Tight Budget

As for the money, it’s not such a big problem. There are a lot of ways to give your home a fresh new touch or even seriously redecorate it without spending thousands of dollars. Read on, and you’ll find some of the most popular ones. 

1. Try a DIY Approach

The first advice is to do as much as you can on your own. What exactly the activity will depend on your skills. 

You can paint the walls, stick wallpaper, draw pictures, sew cushions, or even make furniture. All this will still require some money, but not nearly as much as when you hire professionals to do the job.

The only problem is, it may take quite some time to do such things. Don’t forget to ask friends and relatives to help you! 

2. Free Up Some Space

Before you start adding something new to your interiors, it’s a good idea to get rid of everything old and useless. Too many items, especially those that you don’t like or need, create unnecessary chaos. And this may have a negative impact on your productivity and well-being. 

Give away or sell those things that are still in good condition and throw out all the rest. 

3. Reposition Things 

The easiest way to give a new look to your apartment is to move big items such as furniture. It may be especially useful for small rooms and for premises where it’s not allowed to do any serious redecoration. 

Scan the interior magazines, thematic Instagram accounts, and Pinterest pins for some good ideas. Then, place the furniture accordingly to make your home more comfortable and better looking. 

4. Add Life With Plants 

Photo of some cute plants
Photo by Daniel Öberg

Plants are great for making any apartment look cozy and welcoming, and they won’t cost you a fortune. Even if you are completely broke, you can afford some small plants. The task will be to simply grow them.

You can even begin with the very seeds or take cuttings from your friends’ plants. Whatever you opt for, remember that nature is in question, and it needs time and care. So, you can only have as much as you can care for. 

5. Put Some Accents 

Accurately placed accents can completely transform the look of your apartment. Choose big objects like paintings, posters, place rags, or throw large cushions. 

You can buy paintings at flea markets, art college students’ exhibitions, or even paint them yourself. Posters can be printed on a home printer, rags, and cushions – found in giveaway groups on social media.

Use your imagination and look for unique, attention-drawing items wherever possible – and you will be generously rewarded. 

6. Scout for Valuable Second-Hand Things 

If you’re looking for design pieces to decorate your home on a tight budget, going second-hand is super smart. After all the previous steps, you will probably not need to buy anything at all. But if you will – opt for second-hand items. 

Chances are, you’ll get much better things for the price when you buy them used. These items will probably even last longer due to their proven quality.

You can scout for good bargains in second-hand stores, flea markets, and even auction houses. Another great way to look for such items is via using social media channels and specialized websites. 

Final Words

The place one lives in must be cozy, stylish, and comfortable so that you could feel good there. But students often overlook the necessity to take proper care of their apartments. They make excuses like having not enough time, or money, or both, to concentrate on redecoration. 

Still, it’s quite possible to make your home look and feel better even on a tight student’s budget – some time can always be spared. In the article above you’ve already found some ways to redecorate your place without spending much. Try them out – and you’ll feel the difference! 

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Students are a light to follow in the pursuit for racial and social justice Friday, Jun 5 2020 

By Brandon Cooper–

As University of Louisville administration addresses the racial and social justice issues making headlines, it is critical that they do not forget their greatest resource: students. The administration should focus energy on giving the power to mend injustices to those already in the streets protesting for such.

Student Government Association President Sabrina Collins said “the path forward has to come from students.”

“Our generation has the solutions, it is now up to U of L and universities across the nation to really listen,” Collins said.

As the university moves forward, they must base their actions off of those that are organized, focused and led by students. U of L professor Jason Gainous spoke passionately about the need to emphasize students during conversations relating to racial and social justice issues.

“Our students are the future of our community,” Gainous said. He has attended local protests with his 14-year-old daughter – who was pepper-sprayed and shot at with rubber bullets by police. He said he has seen first-hand the kind of passion and energy young people have and has faith in their ability to lead us through this pursuit for equality.

As a professor of digital politics, Gainous encourages students to continue using social media and other online platforms to organize, seek assistance and share their stories.

Gainous described university actions as a ‘balancing act’ – given the university’s extensive community ties that could be hindered by abrupt action that is not given extensive thought and planning.

At the onset of protests in Louisville over a week ago, actions and voices were faint from the U of L’s administration.

In recent days, Dr. Bendapudi has joined other administrators from the community to speak out against racial injustices. In addition to the administration’s recent statements and public appearances in the community, U of L Health has just announced a nursing scholarship fund in honor of Breonna Taylor. Though both great starting points, real action, policies and innovation must be implemented to enhance equality at the University of Louisville.

Bendapudi’s commitment to a student-centered ‘revolution’ starting right here at U of L is very apparent in her rather consistent communication with university stakeholders. The intricacies of university actions concerning social justice issues further highlight the need for extraordinary student engagement and leadership. When the future leaders of our community and nation speak, it is the responsibility of those currently in such positions to listen and act.

Anthony Taylor, a senior communications major, said he wants to see U of L become much more proactive about social justice going forward, rather than consistently reactive. Taylor believes that U of L has the resources to be on the frontlines of prominent social justice issues that directly impact our communities.

Hanah Jo Thurmond, a recent U of L graduate and attendee of local Black Lives Matter protests, said that the university should reinforce and expand the platforms for people of color to speak out on campus.

How will we, as a Cardinal family, respond to the impacts of these long-endured inequalities?

A critical step moving forward for the university is the implementation of required courses about white privilege and racial diversity for both students and faculty. Such courses could easily be added to the Cardinal Core requirements or implemented as curriculum in the Cardinal Orientation program. For employees, such courses should be added to the current employee orientation practices for all staff and faculty.

We should acknowledge the progress we’ve made thus far while continuing to call for action to implement the changes needed for racial equality and social justice.

U of L’s strength as a research and higher education institute lies in our diversity. With a spotlight on our students, U of L can be a national leader for higher education institutes to follow when addressing issues of inequality.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Survey: U of L students concerned about potential return to campus next fall Thursday, May 28 2020 

By Joseph Garcia —

Earlier this month, University of Louisville President Neeli Bendapudi announced the university plans to return to in-person classes for the fall semester. But one Student Government Association survey is finding that more than half of the 214 responses received in the first two days of its launch are concerned with the potential return.

SGA posted a three question survey to its Twitter on May 16, allowing students to voice their concerns about a potential return. SGA’s Top 4 also posted the survey to their personal social media pages. The questions included in the survey were:

  1. What are your concerns about the fall semester?
  2. What resources do you need to be successful in the fall?
  3. Anything else you want us to know?

A response to any one of the questions would be considered a completed survey.

“Many of the responses expressed concerns about having to make an emergency, mid-semester transition in the fall (similar to the one we did in the spring),” SGA told the Cardinal. “A lot of the feedback expressed concerns about safety, social distancing on campus and safe access to University services.”

The student government cautioned that the survey was conducted over social media and is not a representative sample of the student body.

In an email sent May 18, Academic Vice President Ben Barberie provided College of Business professors with “a few notable early trends from the first question.”

54.39% of the responses included some concern about the safety of a return to campus. 19.30% showed concern about plans relating to online classes. 14.91% included some concern about money or expenses related to an in-person fall semester.

“University faculty, staff, administrators and students have been hard at work behind the scenes deliberating many different potential scenarios that could arise this fall,” SGA said. “Throughout the process, SGA has been careful to make sure student concerns are heard and that any approach to this fall is rooted in equity for all students.”

SGA’s survey is ongoing and will remain open throughout the coming weeks.

“We appreciate [student’s] feedback regarding finances, safety, academics, and extracurricular activities. SGA will continue to share these hopes and concerns with the University administration as we advocate for innovative solutions to a wide variety of student concerns,” SGA said.

Graphic by Alexis Simon // The Louisville Cardinal

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Miracle Monocle perseveres and publishes its 14th issue amid pandemic Tuesday, Apr 28 2020 

By Zoe Watkins–

In the need of new reading material during quarantine? The English department’s award-winning online literary journal “Miracle Monocle,” has just released its 14th issue after overcoming many setbacks.

“Miracle Monocle” publishes twice a year and brings together a wide array of literary work and visual art pieces. These are then handpicked by a student editorial staff led by faculty editor, Dr. Sarah Strickley.

Since there are over 500 submissions every issue, Strickley said that there is a selection process to pick what goes in the journal. During this process, the staff reads and responds to each individual submission.

“The pieces that gain the most positive attention in our submission management system process go to a second round of consideration. We then narrow down the picks from there. We also solicit pieces from writers and artists whose work we admire but those pieces represent only a fraction of our contributors overall,” Strickley said.

The latest 14th issue was a challenging one to publish. Strickley said that the COVID-19 pandemic caused many logistical challenges. For example, their weekly in-person meetings now took place over Zoom and communication among staff took place online using Outlook’s Teams function.

The staff also had to change dates for some future publications such as “Monster, which is the next installment in the print anthology series. It has been postponed until the fall semester.

Despite all of this, the staff still managed to put together a full issue, which Strickley described as truly beautiful.

“I’m very proud of the fact that we came in on deadline and I’m awed by the fact that four students wrote reviews of new books for Issue 14. Truly exceptional work,” she said.

Amy Dotson, a graduating senior with an English major and Creative Writing minor, served as an associate editor. Dotson said publishing the issue during a pandemic was strange. She said that the process of editing and coding pieces were the same, but there could not be a launch event for the issue.

However, Dotson explained that everyone worked hard on their own time to meet the deadline and gave praise to the work Strickley and assistant editor Adam Yeich put into the journal.

“It’s because of their tireless efforts that the journal is what it is. It’s a labor of love. And we all love it. So, we made it happen. Hopefully, this issue is a little ray of light for many in an otherwise dark time,” Dotson said.

She said her favorite part of making the issue was reading through all the submissions.

“People can send in some strange things, so going through submissions can be like winding a jack-in-the-box,” Dotson explained. “But that’s kind of what I love–how every time you open a new submission, you’re hoping it’s going to be the next incredible piece of work. And sometimes it is!”

Ashley Bittner, one of the two graduate editors for the “Miracle Monocle,” said going through the submissions was his favorite part as well, as they provided insight into a world that he has not seen or experienced yet.

“Papers come in from around the world, all writers with something to stay, and reading over it is very cosmopolitan,” Bittner said.

He said that his favorite pieces currently are Kendyl Harmeling’s “An Unbecoming End” and Emily Beck Cogburn’s “Crossing the River.”

Now with issue 14 released, Strickley described the end of this editorial cycle as bittersweet.

“I’m always excited to send a new issue into the world, but that also means that I’m graduating a staff, which is a real loss on both a personal and professional level. This time around that contradiction was even more pronounced for me,” she said.

Strickley said that they could have eased production or stopped altogether, but they persevered through it all.  She said that this semester had a moving outcome, however unusual and fraught it was.

“I want to thank my staff for renewing my faith in the project of the journal. It’s about bringing people together to celebrate art, right? In a time when we can’t occupy the same literal space, it’s more important than ever to come together in the realm of ideas. And that’s exactly what we’ve done,” Strickley said.

If you would like to check out the latest issue, go to http://louisville.edu/miraclemonocle.

File graphic// The Louisville Cardinal

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Go off the beaten path and take a trip to these uncommon spots at UofL Sunday, Apr 26 2020 

By Maria Dinh —

There common places on campus that most students like to hang out such as Ekstrom Library, the Student Activities Center and the Belknap Academic Building. Here are some uncommon spots on campus to check out when out for a walk.

Texas Roadhouse Study Lounge – College of Business

Located in the basement of the College of Business, there is a study room that is furnished just like a Texas Roadhouse restaurant. No, this room does not serve bread rolls, but inside has a vending machine with a hot water dispenser so you can make some instant coffee and tea while studying. This lounge isn’t a place for socializing and the noise level is under a whisper.

Dwight Anderson Memorial Music Library – School of Music

To the right of the main doors in the School of Music is a small library full of beautiful indoor plants and an antique piano. Freshman Katherine Boyce has her own favorite quirk about the music library.

She said, “Probably the people, if that counts. People there tend to have more fun and be a bit noisier than in the other libraries. It’s hard to go a single hour without hearing someone there burst into song or start making some sort of music. It makes the atmosphere livelier and more fun than a lot of other places.”

School of Music Stairs – School of Music

In the daytime, these steps look like ordinary steps. On campus at night, color changing lights shine on the steps. The colorful lights are a good opportunity for taking photos to post on Instagram.

Schneider Hall Art Gallery – Schneider Hall

The Speed Art Museum isn’t the only gallery on campus. The Schneider Hall Art Gallery features student artwork from the Hite Art Institute. This is a small exhibit to go and escape. Everyone is welcome to view the art and doors open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Hite Art Institute Fountains – Schneider Hall

The perfect spot to be at on campus when the weather is nice is the fountain at Schneider Hall. This place is perfect to sit back and relax between classes or chat with a friend. 

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal

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Make this year’s dorm a home away from home Sunday, Apr 26 2020 

By Delaney Hildreth–

As the new semester comes closer, students who will be living on-campus for the year will start planning what they’ll take with them to their dorms in August. Campus Housing has a list of recommended items on their website, but to help newcomers to dorm living, here are some additional things that will make any dorm more inviting and functional.

  One of the most important aspects to prepare for is how much space in the dorm there is to work with, which only gets more complicated when adding a roommate to the mix.

“Dorm rooms don’t typically offer a lot of space, so you have to get creative to make room for all of your belongings,” BusinessInsider.com aptly said. The site offers solutions like plastic drawers to go under beds and over-the-door pocket organizers to maximize storage potential.

They also point out, “You don’t get much space in dorm rooms, so any multi-purpose items are great for capitalizing on what you actually do have.” They recommend items like desk lamps that include USB outlets or laundry hampers that have pockets for laundry supplies.

There are a lot of items that get left behind or overlooked in the hustle of moving in, but these are often the most crucial in dorm living.

Incoming sophomore Dayna Thomas experienced this when moving in last year. “I didn’t have a mattress topper for my bed at first. After a few weeks of sleeping on the dorm provided mattress, I quickly realized why everyone else had mattress toppers and then went and got one for myself,” Thomas said.

Things like trash cans, paper towels, power strips, and dishes are items typically taken for granted, but nonetheless important, especially in a dorm setting where students will spend a lot of their time.

Thomas also said, “One of the most critical things to keep in your dorm is snacks. When everything else on campus is closer and you just need something to get you by, having some snacks on hand in your dorm is a life saver!”

Finally, bring cozy, homey items like rugs, extra pillows, and wall decorations. Dorms are only equipped with the bare necessities, but transforming the room with a few decorative items are sure to turn any dorm into a cozy living space for the year.

These items, while not as functional as the other things mentioned here, are what will make dorm life much more comfortable and satisfactory to take the edge off living in a new location by making it feel more like home.

File photo//The Louisville Cardinal

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Heads up incoming freshman, here’s some advice to survive college Sunday, Apr 26 2020 

By Blake Wedding —

As orientation draws near, The Cardinal has decided to put together a list for incoming students comprised of helpful hints and suggestions on how to survive and prosper in college.

Attend any and all events 

The first tip that some incoming students may forget the importance of is to take advantage of any and all university events specifically catered to incoming students. These events will not only help students de-stress and get their minds off of studying for a while, but they are also excellent opportunities to meet people, make friends and find groups of like-minded people on campus.

Go to class

This is more of an obvious tip, but it cannot be understated: go to class. There are plenty of upperclassmen and older students at the University of Louisville who have been incredibly successful in their classes over the years because they understand this idea. While it is perfectly okay to miss classes for understandable reasons, one thing to avoid is the pitfall of making a habit out of missing classes.

Make an effort to participate in class as much as possible

One of the biggest issues many students face is that they fail to understand the importance in actively participating in class. Students should try to ask as many questions as possible and to interact with their professors both inside and out of class. This means that by being a more active and engaged student, professors and instructors will notice your initiative and discipline. This is one of the best steps you can take in making your learning in college more positive and fulfilling.

Study 

While it goes without saying that studying is imperative to prospering in college, another equally important thing to keep in mind is to find a proper place to study. A proper study space is all about finding a place where students can decompress, relax and focus foremost on what requires their attention. The library is a great place for many people at U of L to study, but some people tend to prefer local coffee shops around Louisville. It is all about personal preference at the end of the day. 

Make sure to prioritize sleep

Many people have made the mistake of losing sleep in favor of socializing or studying more than their mind and body can take. It might be easy to find yourself losing sleep, but it is something that their body and mind require in order to truly prosper in your classes. 

Graphic by// The Louisville Cardinal

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Don’t forget to pack the essentials while traversing campus Saturday, Apr 25 2020 

By Grace Welsh–

Whether commuting or walking from a dorm, backpacks are a fundamental part of students’ daily lives. When spending a day on campus, it’s important to be prepared and keep your bag stocked full of essentials.

To some students, keeping a handy snack on deck is the key to a happy day. Freshman Jordan Reed says, “I always keep a pack of gushers in my backpack in case I get hungry during the day. Gushers are my favorite snack.”

Sophomore Madhav Gampala brings a Cliff bar in his backpack everywhere he goes. “Cliff bars are the perfect snack. They fill you up and give you energy. They don’t take up too much space either,” he says.

Keeping a reusable water bottle on you is an easy way to make sure you’re staying hydrated and saving the planet.

“There are water fountains nearly everywhere on campus and I take pride in being from a city like Louisville with such safe/drinkable water,” says junior Maggie Walters. “Plus you save money and help the environment out. It’s a win-win!”

Other students emphasize the importance of technology. Freshman Peter Hubbart always carries a charger. “I always keep my charger with me because I sometimes forget to charge my laptop the night before and I tend to stay on campus for a while at a time,” Hubbart says. 

Sophomore Alexis Bischoff and freshman Abby Savage can’t leave in the morning without grabbing their headphones. “The days I forget my headphones really stink,” Bischoff says.

“I feel like I can’t think straight when I can’t listen to music,” Savage agrees. “Walking around campus without my headphones feels weird.”

Freshman Victoria Hassel has a more practical view on what’s essential to her school day.

“I always need to make sure I have at least one pencil,” Hassel says. “The first day of classes I somehow forgot one. Think about how embarrassing it is to ask the person beside you to borrow a pencil on syllabus day.”

Similarly, freshman Ignatius Wirasakti makes sure to keep his binder, lined papers, and a campus map. “I keep the map just in case there’s a specific place I need to go to that I’m unfamiliar with,” he says. 

Freshman Marc Ramsignh also uses his backpack to hold practical items like his calendar book. “It helps me keep me organized so I don’t miss any important meetings or deadlines,” Ramsignh said. 

Graphic photo// The Louisville Cardinal

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Juniors reflect on what they would say to their freshman selves Saturday, Apr 25 2020 

By Aaliyah Bryant —

It is that time of the year where the semester is close to ending. Of course, we did not expect to wrap up the semester off campus with online classes due to the coronavirus.

However, students and staff are staying strong and persevering. Although we have our concerns, quarantine is giving students a chance to slow down and reflect.

One of the things for juniors and seniors to think about is advice to their freshman selves. University of Louisville juniors, Biology major Alex Mindrup and English major Becca Smith, decided to share their advice.

Mindrup said, most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask for help. He said, “Even if you are a fantastic student, we all need help from time to time.” He said to use the tutoring and student services that U of L has to offer, said that this will help make you a more confident student and relieve stress.

Secondly, it is ok to go home and leave campus regularly.

He said, “Don’t feel pressured to stay on campus all the time. College is a marathon, not a sprint and we all need time to rest and charge.”

Last but not least, get to know your professors. “Whether it is shaking their hand on the first day of class or emailing them after the semester is over, they are dedicated to helping us,” he said. 

As Mindrup continues his studies this fall, he will take his advice and wisdom with him.

Smith took a more emotional approach on her advice.

She would tell her freshman self, “Your failures are not the sum of who you are, but they are a part of who you will become and the choices you’re going to make.”

Smith said that she wishes that she would have known that sooner, but she would not have become the person she is today because of it. 

This advice could apply to everyone whether they are about to start their freshman year.

Graphic by//The Louisville Cardinal

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