Provost committee seeks ‘long-term impact’

December 9, 2015 9:41 AM


In the months-long search for Drake’s new provost, an internal search committee has narrowed a group of 76 applicants to its current pool of just three.

“We’ve had a rich experience across all the candidates,” said Venessa Macro, chief administration officer. “(We’re) very happy with the quality of the candidates.”

President Marty Martin opted for an internal search committee. This is the first time in over a decade that the university has used an internal committee to find a new provost. This is opposed to the usual private search firm, according to Macro.


‘We have nothing to lose but our chains’

November 18, 2015 8:00 AM


“It is our duty to fight for our freedom.

It is our duty to win.

We must love and support each other.

We have nothing to lose but our chains.”


The #DemDebate Recap: What you need to know

November 15, 2015 1:33 AM


Students file into the Student Senate watch party in Harvey Ingham hall to view Saturday's Democratic debate. The watch party was one of several throughout Des Moines. PHOTO BY YING CHYI GOOI | PHOTO EDITOR

Students file into the Student Senate watch party in Harvey Ingham hall to view Saturday’s Democratic debate. The watch party was one of several throughout Des Moines. PHOTO BY YING CHYI GOOI | PHOTO EDITOR

The terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday night were a somber backdrop to Saturday’s Democratic debate. But by the end of the night, the debate turned into politics as usual, as Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley grappled for position in the race for the Democratic nomination.

Candidates observed a moment of silence for Paris before questions opened up at the Democratic debate that took place at Drake University Saturday night. The first half hour focused heavily on foreign policy and national security in light of yesterday’s attacks before moving on to cover economic issues, immigration, and, yet again, Hillary’s emails.

Moderator John Dickerson of CBS began the debate by inviting the candidates to share their thoughts on the Paris attacks and introduce themselves. Sen. Sanders started it off by expressing shock at the events and condemning ISIS. He then launched into economics, denounced our financial system and said his campaign is one of “political revolution.” Sec. Clinton offered her prayers to France and wanted to bring the world together to root out “radical jihadism.” She expressed a desire to better coordinate efforts against terrorism. Gov. O’Malley also shared sentiments of prayer and called for collaboration between nations on this issue. He emphasized that this “new kind of threat” requires “new approaches.”

O’Malley and Clinton disagreed on how the U.S. should be involved in the fight against ISIS. Clinton said that the US will support those fighting ISIS and should provide leadership and intelligence. O’Malley contested her on her point that “this is not America’s fight,” saying that it is America’s fight but should not be solely ours. He again stressed the importance of collaboration.

Dickerson then turned to Sanders and asked if he still believed climate change was the biggest threat to national security, a comment made in a previous debate. Sanders concurred, saying that terrorism and environmental insecurity are intertwined. He then said that the US invasion of Iraq led to current instability, calling it one of the “worst foreign policy blunders” in recent history.

Clinton’s rebuttal in defense of her vote for the invasion implored a look at the historical context surrounding the events. She agreed that it was a mistake, however. O’Malley jumped in and said that he advocates a policy that would closely examine the repercussions of, for example, toppling a dictator.

O’Malley fielded further questions challenging his lack of foreign policy experience and Clinton faced questioning about her use of the term “radical jihadism,” which sparked a controversy over terminology in which candidates generally agreed that the term used wasn’t what was important to the issue at hand.

The conversation turned to refugees. All of the candidates agreed that we should be helping refugees, although there was some disagreement on specifics. Sanders kept his stance vague and called for reform in military spending. O’Malley went back and forth with Dickerson over exact numbers, of which he would not give a value. Clinton said that if we take a higher number of refugees, we should intensify screening procedures.

Hillary Clinton speaks at a campaign-sponsored watch party shortly after Saturday's debate. PHOTO BY YING CHYI GOOI | PHOTO EDITOR

Hillary Clinton speaks at a campaign-sponsored watch party shortly after Saturday’s debate. PHOTO BY YING CHYI GOOI | PHOTO EDITOR

Economic issues came up next. Clinton and Sanders both criticized the pharmaceutical industry. and supported lowering healthcare costs. Clinton advocated giving Medicare negotiating power in drug prices. Sanders placed a heavy focus on income inequality and pushed higher taxes for the wealthy, although he would not specify an amount.

O’Malley elucidated longest on immigration, garnering applause for calling Donald Trump an “immigrant-bashing carnival barker.” He backed opening up a path to citizenship for the undocumented to stop these immigrants from living in a “shadow economy.”

Candidates agreed that the minimum wage should be raised, but disagreed on how much. Sanders urged for $15/hour despite admitting that it might lead to some loss of jobs. Clinton took up the lowest amount of the three contenders and said $12/hour but flexible by city. O’Malley pointed out his past successes, as his home state of Maryland was the first to implement a minimum wage of $10.10.

The debated heated up when Clinton was questioned about her ties to Wall Street. Sanders called her answer “not good enough” and O’Malley said “I won’t be taking my orders from Wall Street.” Clinton took further heat when she referenced the 9/11 attacks while defending her Wall Street connections. Twitter immediately picked up on the statement and it became a flashpoint on social media.

Clinton called for universal background checks and tougher restrictions on sellers during the gun control segment. Sanders blamed losing a past election on his anti-assault weapon stance. O’Malley accused Clinton of inconsistency, saying she’s been on “three sides” of the gun control debate.

The candidates also discussed racial inequality and education briefly towards the end of the two-hour segment, but any time spent on these issues was likely edged out by the heavy focus on foreign policy.

And yes, Clinton agreed that she’s tired of talking about the emails.

VIDEO: Democratic debate recap

November 14, 2015 11:32 PM

Political columnist John Wingert recaps the big moments from Saturday’s Democratic debate at Drake University.

Live Blog: Democratic debate at Drake University

3:10 PM

Follow along with Times-Delphic editors and reporters as Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley take the stage in Sheslow Auditorium for the second Democratic debate of the election cycle.

The debate will begin at 8 p.m. CT and will be broadcast on CBS. Viewers are encouraged to tweet their reactions using the hashtag #DemDebate.

Drake ranks among Ivy Leagues on Economist list

November 11, 2015 10:00 AM


The Economist recently published its investigation comparing institutions’ alumni earnings and ranked Drake in 17th place among several notable universities.

This was the Economist’s first college ranking and their approach differed from several other college ranking publishers because they chose to measure the value of a university by the outcome.

With any ranking that is released about Drake’s educational value against other schools, students continue to wonder whether or not their degree will have more merit upon graduating.

“Going into Drake as an undecided major, I feel comfortable knowing that whatever job I choose to pursue, I will be making money in that field,” first year Madeline Cramer said.

Having never ranked colleges before, the news organization wanted the focus of their evaluation to be a more in depth look at the value of an education when it comes to being successful and having a well-paid job.

“The Economist’s first-ever college rankings are based on a simple, if debatable, premise: the economic value of a university is equal to the gap between how much money its students subsequently earn, and how much they might have made had they studied elsewhere,” they said, along with the rankings they released.

Students find it important to know how their investment in a particular university will benefit them in the future.

The ranking gives perspective to students about what they’re working towards.

“This is a great thing for Drake students to know that all the hard work put into your education pays off in the end, which is what you hoped for in the first place,” sophomore Kori Ponder said.

Drake’s ranking not only influences students, it also creates a name for Drake nationwide as a school that puts a high value on the outcome of an education.

“That information offers the potential to disentangle student merit from university contributions, and thus to determine which colleges deliver the greatest return and why,” the Economist said.

With another ranking that positively reflects the work being done here, Drake continues to receive national attention for its impact on students.

“I think (the ranking) adds more merit to our degrees because a Drake student is a very unique kind of student. We’re dedicated, passionate and ambitious,” Ponder said.

Senate safety forum fails to discuss overall goal

8:00 AM


Student Senate hosted a public safety forum intended to spark discussion around Public Safety and Des Moines Police policy.

However, the conversation focused almost solely on Drake students becoming more involved in the culture around the community, and breaking down the ‘mental walls’ surrounding campus. This surprised some of the 50 students and community members in attendance of the event Friday.

SENIOR KERSTIN DONAT voiced her concerns at the public safety forum held Friday. Senate, alongside other community organizations, sponsored the event. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

SENIOR KERSTIN DONAT voiced her concerns at the public safety forum held Friday. Senate, alongside other community organizations, sponsored the event. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

Diversity Interest Senator Thalia Anguiano said that although the forum didn’t go as expected, the end result was positive.

“I was a little thrown off at the fact that public safety wasn’t touched on as much as I was expecting,” Anguiano said. “But the fact that we talked about how we want to better our relationship with the Des Moines community was super good.”

Student Body President Kevin Maisto shared Anguiano’s expectation of the event.

“I thought there was going to be more of a focus from students about how to keep the neighborhood a little bit more safe, but I think everyone there understood that a positive community could then lead to a safer community,” Maisto said.

Community Outreach Senator Daniel Creese, who helped organize the forum, echoed this sentiment.

“Once the conversation shifted towards this mental wall or ‘bubble’ that students feel confined to on campus, the spotlight and dialogue shifted more towards the students, faculty and the community members,” Creese said.

One student chimed in to the conversation, saying that “we have this wall in our heads” around campus.

Wayne Ford, a 1974 graduate of Drake and founder of community organization, Urban Dreams, was present at the event.

Ford reminded attendees of a movement about a decade ago, one that proposed building walls up around Drake’s campus.

“This wall today is a mental wall. It’s worse than that physical wall,” Ford said.

Wayne Ford, a 1974 graduate of Drake University speaks at the forum Friday. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

Wayne Ford, a 1974 graduate of Drake University speaks at the forum Friday. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

Asking for tangible results of the forum, Ford added, “We don’t want to leave without having a timeline with solutions.” Community Advisory Board president Jamie Willer gave numerous suggestions for outreach including opening up 34th Street to hold a block party, and pledged CAB’s willingness to collaborate with neighborhood organizations.

Representatives from Public Safety and DMPD were also present and took notes on key points students and community members made, but did not contribute to the dialogue. This was, due in part, to the fact that the conversation had skipped over the safety aspect of the discussion almost entirely.

With the issue of outreach into the community surrounding campus discussed, there is still much to address in regards to students’ safety.

“I think it was a really great first step, but I think we really need to emphasize that this was indeed a first step,” Maisto said. “We need to take what was talked about and discussed, and the concerns that were brought up, and even some of the potential solutions and use that as ground to better the relationship between the Drake community and the neighborhood.”

Maisto wants to continue discussing Public Safety as dialogue continues.

“I think that sometimes we might need to take a step back and focus on the public safety that we’re in right now and making it a safe community for everyone,” Maisto said.

According to Student Senate, there will be a follow-up to this forum during Thursday’s Senate meeting at the fishbowl in Cowles Library at 9 p.m.

Overall, Maisto was pleased by the attendees’ engagement in the roundtable-like discussion.

“I was really excited by the participation, not just from the senators that were there, but also the other students as well as the community members who showed up,” Maisto said.

Another roundtable is planned by CAB for November 17 at 9 p.m., with a location not yet determined, further discussing the barriers between the community and Drake students.

Drake Dreamers encourage political engagement

November 4, 2015 10:00 AM


Undocumented students known as “Dreamers” are advocating for their right to vote as the next election season nears.

Drake alum Hector Salamanca, Drake senior Kenia Calderon and immigration advocate Erica Johnson spoke on October 27 about this issue and what they’re doing for the cause.


Iowa Republicans hold ‘Growth and Opportunity Party’

8:00 AM


Ten presidential candidates going head-to-head for the Republican nomination rendezvoused at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines Saturday. The candidates hoped to win the hearts, minds and votes of Iowa GOP caucus-goers.

REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE Marco Rubio speaks to a crowd of two thousand at the Growth and Opportunity Party event at the state fairgrounds. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE Marco Rubio speaks to a crowd of two thousand at the Growth and Opportunity Party event at the state fairgrounds. PHOTO BY JAKE BULLINGTON | DIGITAL EDITOR

The Republican Party of Iowa held the first Growth and Opportunity Party, allowing candidates to distinguish themselves to the early voting state — a critical step in winning the Republican nomination.


Peter Neufeld leads 35th Bucksbaum Lecture

October 29, 2015 1:17 PM


On Tuesday, hundreds of students and community members filed into the Knapp Center for the 35th lecture of the Bucksbaum Distinguished Lecture Series

Peter Neufeld, the founder of the Innocence Project, delivered the lecture. Neufeld and his colleagues founded the legal clinic as a means of exonerating wrongfully convicted people.

PETER NEUFELD leads his lecture on the injustice of the criminal justice system Tuesday. PHOTO BY SAM FATHALLAH | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

PETER NEUFELD leads his lecture on the injustice of the criminal justice system Tuesday. PHOTO BY SAM FATHALLAH | STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER

Neufeld began his speech with the story of the murder of a women in Washington, and the wrongful conviction of Donald Gates for the crime. Gates was sentenced to life in prison, but was exonerated thanks to DNA evidence and the work of the Innocence Project.

Gates is an example of the 333 people who have been exonerated through the success of this project. Neufeld said these exonerations only make up a small percentage of wrongful convictions in America.

“We believe that these 333 people are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg,” Neufeld said. “The reason we think this is because in most cases there is no biological evidence to be tested for DNA.”

Neufeld spent the rest of his lecture outlining the three major causes for wrongful convictions, and the ways he and his colleagues hope to fix these systemic injustices.

The most major of these causes, Neufeld said, involves the misapplication of forensic science during court proceedings.

“So many people who testify about forensic science, because it is beyond the knowledge base of most people, can say whatever they want or whatever they feel about the significance of the evidence,” Neufeld said. “The people who would normally check that are lawyers who are scientifically illiterate.”

Neil Hamilton, chair of the Martin Bucksbaum Distinguished Lecture Series and a professor of law himself, said that Neufeld offered students a level of academic value that can’t be achieved in the classroom.

While students were gratified by Neufeld and the work of the Innocence Project, Neufeld derives gratification from his own work.

“There is nothing more personally satisfying than taking someone who was wrongly convicted by the hand and walking them out of prison and into daylight,” Neufeld said over the phone, “I want to do a lot to make sure they can live a more healthy and normal life.”

Full coverage of the Bucksbaum Lecture will be in next week’s print edition.

‘Coffee with Jeb Jr.’ allows son to promote father

October 28, 2015 10:00 AM


Jeb Bush Jr., son of Republican Presidential candidate Jeb Bush Sr., visited Olmsted Coffee shop last Friday for the event “Coffee with Jeb Jr.!”

The event is part of a tour for his father’s campaign. The campaign included visits to Iowa State University and University of Iowa before finishing up at Drake.