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Unpreventable quakes Stupidsmart rooms Whatcha wearin’? Meet Anita Nassar See the stain?

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The Official Student Newspaper at the Lebanese American Universty

Year XIII, Vol. II, No. V Monday, May 23, 2011

Financial Aid Offices or Cafés? Are LAU Students’

By Zeina Shehayeb
LAU Tribune contributor
Getting Worse?
By Sahar Moukaddem
LAU Tribune staff

Photo by: Mohamad Yahia Hamade

“Read from page 15 till page 20 for Thursday,” the political
science instructor wrote with confidence on the board. Com-
plaints interrupted him. “Doctor, we have midterms,” some-
body said. The instructor turned angrily toward the culprit.
“When I was in college, I used to read 100 pages per day,” he
LAU professors, close your eyes and go back to your classroom
10 years ago. Is the student you see there different from the
one sitting in front of you now?
Seven out of 10 instructors interviewed at LAU said that
students have gotten worse in the last five to 10 years. They
charged that some students today suffer from serious lan-
guage problems, don’t read and are lazy and less motivated.
“Some of the students don’t care if they failed or dropped a
course,” Samira Shami, English instructor, said. “They come
A young woman, sitting lazi- Several financial aid stu- tigation, however, revealed to university just to get their university degree and all they
ly in the middle of the gray- dents we interviewed used that more than fifty percent care about are their cell phones and blackberrys”
ish office, looked at her friend the title “office boy” to re- of LAU’s offices only require Samar Mogharbel, a ceramics instructor, agreed with Shami.
across the room. Notebook in fer to the work they do. Still, students to photocopy mate- Mogharbel noticed that, after the new tuition system was es-
one hand and pen in anoth- some of the students we talk- rial, deliver envelopes across tablished, students became more willing to drop a course.
er, the young man was busy ed to complained about what campus and sort files. “We “They don’t care because, if they didn’t do well in a course, they
reviewing for an upcoming they called “the demanding usually have work to do but simply drop it” she said.
exam. “So do you think Bin type of work” they are asked sometimes we just sit at the Starting Fall 2010, LAU shifted from a credit-based tuition
Laden is dead?” She asked to do. office and wait for requests system to a term-based one. Undergraduate students taking
him. At this hour of the day, “I don’t come to work because from the supervisor,” Caro- more than 12 credits pay a fixed rate which covers the cost of
the scene seems quite banal. my uncle has connections line Feghaly, a communica- four three-credit classes.
But it is not. What makes it with the supervisor,” Mike, a tion arts junior, said. According to statistics provided by LAU, 2405 courses were
worthy of scrutiny is the fact business senior who declined According to public records, dropped in fall 2010, compared to 1895 in fall 2009.
that the two LAU students to give his real name, said. “I LAU’s financial aid bud- Some instructors believe that the attitude of students has
are “at work.” Coming from register my hours and I get get for the year 2010-2011, changed and that they are not as serious about their education
different departments, they paid for doing nothing.” He amounted to a maximum of and professional career.
became friends as they chat- added that during a typical 15,282,694 dollars. The co- “Students before used to carry backpacks full of books and
ted their way through the fi- working hour, he drinks Ne- lossal sum raises questions notebooks,” Ramzi Haraty, computer science associate profes-
nancial aid jobs they got at scafé with his friends out- about the way end-receivers sor, said. “Now I notice students coming without even a pen to
LAU. side the office door. earn their money. class.”
Based on need and budget Kamal, a business junior “I sit at the office and, when Haraty suggested that a variety of procedures must be tak-
availability, LAU’s finan- who also wished to remain I am asked to sort out files en at the admission, faculty and student level. “We have to
cial aid and scholarship of- anonymous, concurred. “I or deliver envelopes, I do so. do a better job recruiting faculty, we have to get more experi-
fice offer students a discount check Facebook at the of- But when I have no specific enced and tough faculty as far as academic standards are con-
of up to 1,000 dollars pro- fice when and if I go there,” tasks, I just sit around doing cerned,” Haraty explained.
vided that they work for 100 he said. “I usually register nothing,” an education stu- Many of the interviewed instructors related the problem to
hours per semester at one of but don’t show up or I might dent who refused to be iden- LAU’s admission standards. According to statistics provided
the university’s various of- even bring my friends to sit tified explained. on the LAU website, the acceptance rate for the school of ar-
fices. Many students, how- with me because I’m bored.” Some students confessed chitecture and design in fall 2010 was a staggering 80 percent,
ever, end up earning money The problem, of course, does that they don’t know what for the school of engineering 78 percent and for the school of
for doing nothing or for sim- not extend to all LAU’s offic- their supervisor’s job is. pharmacy 83 percent.
ple jobs such as photocopy- es. In many cases, students “There are no benefits be- According to a member of the faculty senate who refused to
ing papers, sorting files and work hard to earn the money hind this work except for be identified, professors at LAU have often proposed raising
delivering mail from one of- they are generously grant-
fice to another. ed by the university. Inves- Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9
2 Tribune May 23, 2011

Simply Zen II Exhibition until May 20th Student Honor Ceremony
By Farrah Berrou
LAU Tribune contributor By Eleena Korban
LAU Tribune staff
On the eighth floor of the Ri- abic and Persian literature and paint an image and it speaks
yad Nassar Library, “Simply chair of the humanities depart- to the imagination,” the artist

Photo by: Najib Korban

Zen II,” an exhibition featuring ment at LAU Beirut, and Lana added.
works by LAU English profes- Shehadeh, LAU cultural stud- Among the works displayed,
sor Zen Shweiry, was launched ies instructor. were two self-portraits repre-
on May 13. Behmardi admitted he was not senting solitude and self-de-

Photo by: Farrah Berrou

The 11th annual ceremony of the Student Honor So-
ciety celebrated the achievement of dozens of distin-
guished LAU students at the Irwin Auditorium on
May 17.
Parents, honor students, doctors and deans stood up
for the national anthem and LAU’s alma mater as the
At the opening ceremony, an expert in this type of art but pendence. ceremony began. Raed Mohsen, dean of student of af-
Shweiry elaborated on how he said he could feel the beauty be- Categorizing his style between fairs at LAU, gave a word of welcome. President Jo-
viewed himself as an artist still cause he works in verbal art figurative and naïve art, seph Jabra then expressed his pride in the students
in the experimental stages of and the works were “expand- Shweiry revealed he inher- and his appreciation for their parents.
his creative development. ing from word to image.” ited his interest in painting Jabra then distributed the Highest Averages Awards,
The exhibition included 16 of Although Shweiry holds an from his mother, who was which are monetary checks of 1,000 dollars. The high-
Shweiry’s original paintings, MA in English literature, he the artistic influence in his est average holders were Yara Mahmoud Khraibani at
15 of which were done in acryl- said he feels that “literature early life. the school of architecture and design, Hassan Nass-
ic and one in oil. All revolved is painting with words, while The exhibition, organized by er Abdallah at the school of arts and sciences and Aya
around “confused emotions of painting is with colors.” LAU’s humanities depart- Mohammad Dabbous at the school of business.
life and death.” “They complement each other. ment, will remain open ev- The deans of the schools distributed certificates and
Guests included Vahid Behm- You read a book and you visu- ery day from 5:30 till 8:30 pins to all students with a GPA higher than 3.5.
ardi, associate professor of Ar- alize language into images, you p.m. until May 20. The Rhoda Orm award was granted to Reham Dar-
wich, MIT major, and the Riyad Nassar Leadership
award went to Farah Chihadeh, an LAU business stu-
Student Film Festival dent.

Photo courtesy of Mona Knio

By Mohamad Yahia Hamade
LAU Tribune staff

Perso, a film by Brahim The second movie, Layle, by sue of the Tribune. “It’s cool, we
Badran, won the first price dur- Mahmoud Rida, examined the read about exam theft and then
ing the student film festival life of a young man who remi- watch a movie about it here at
on the LAU Beirut campus on nisced about his life, stuck be- LAU,” he smiled.
May 18. The event at the Irwin tween childhood and adulthood. “Even American literature
Hall auditorium was organized Layle also generated many pos- seems to be present here,” Jaaf-
by Ramez Maluf’s public rela- itive remarks and comments ar said as he described the
tions class. from the audience. fourth movie. Upon the 8th
Perso’s plot revolves around a “I think I can relate to the lead,” Night, by Nour Bou Dagher,
troubled man who is haunted Rami, a computer science stu- was a film adaptation of Edgar
by the murder of his wife and dent, said. “I’m currently re- Allan Poe’s The Tell Tale Heart.
can’t distinguish dreams from viewing my life and everything Love’s Decoy, a drama by Tara
reality. that’s going on with me at Bassim, focused on a married
“This event accounts for 38 per- LAU.” couple who suffer from a dys-
cent of our class grade,” Chris- Al-Imtihan, or The Exami- functional relationship. An au- LAU’s communication arts documentary film maker
tine Saifi, a journalism student, nation, by Elie Rizk, revolved dience member made a snarky department and the Neth- living in Belgium, gave the
said. “We’re screening six films around two high school stu- remark about the movie being a erlands Institute for Aca- workshop on May 15 and
produced by LAU students who dents who attempt to steal their parody of the 21st century mar- demic Studies in Damascus 16.
took the broadcast class last math exam. The movie had a riages in general. organized a documentary Rombout produced about
year.” comical feel to it and elicited a Balloon, a movie by Pia Hadad, workshop during which a 16 documentaries between
Ten public relations students, few laughs from the audience. was the last movie screened. dozen radio/TV/film stu- 1985 and 2010, includ-
including Saifi, organized the Marwan Jaafar, an engineer- The drama revolved around the dents learned the art of ing Nord Express (1990),
event, which proved to be a suc- ing student at AUB, made a life of a young girl whose recent- writing and directing doc- Les passagers de l’Alsace
cess. The audience had to vote reference to the article about ly divorced parents leave her umentaries for optimum re- (2002) and Amsterdam via
for the best movie. exam theft in last week’s is- pining for her father. sult. Rob Rombout, a Dutch Amsterdam (2004).
May 23, 2011 Tribune 3

LAU’s Immortals Still Undefeated Tumor Suppressor
By Eleena Korban By Tala El Riz
LAU Tribune staff LAU Tribune staff

LAU’s Immortals imposed Noel Ghanem, assistant pro- vision of cells in the body.”

Photo by: Eleena Korban

themselves once again on fessor of biology at the Amer- But retinoblastoma in can-
Saturday May 14, as they ican University of Beirut, cer cells is mutated, and
took home the winning tro- discussed the function of ret- whenever retinoblastoma is
phy of the season. The team inoblastoma protein, PRb, mutated it’s not active any-
finished first in the rankings during embryonic and adult more. As a result, it doesn’t
with 13 wins and zero losses. neurogenesis on the after- tell the cells to stop dividing
The American University of noon of May 13 at Nicol Hall, and that’s one way –among
Beirut came in second. room 222 via video confer- many– we get cancerous
The players picked them- ence with both LAU campus- cells. Hence the cells divide
selves up after the five at- es, Beirut and Byblos.. uncontroolably and result
tempts they got to near in Retinoblastoma is a protein in tumors and other such a
on the try line, then they de- used in neurogenesis which forms of cancer.
fended their turf as the other went wild chanting for LAU so, Coach Safi claims that is the development of nerve “[Retinoblastoma], the tu-
team attempted their five of- while Khoury’s teammates this is only a mere shadow of tissues in embryos. Ghanem, mor suppressor, made me
fences. After setbacks, tack- passed him around on their what the Immortals are ca- also a neurologist, discussed discover in my research that
les, and two penalties, LAU shoulders. “It was amazing, pable of. in great length the develop- [it] not only regulates cell di-
managed to score three tries, I had no idea where it came “This was not the LAU Im- ment and differentiation of vision, but it also regulates
winning over AUB 16-8. from, I just did it,” Khoury mortals I know but when it this neuron. cell-differentiation and cell-
George Rahal scored the first said after the game. came down to crunch time “Historically, what is known migration,” Ghanem said.
try. Rudy Hachache, brother The kicker, Walid Yassin, they pulled it together,” he about this protein is that it’s All these factors allow the
of team captain Robin Hach- got two out of the three con- said. a tumor suppressor, so nat- production of the neededpro-
ache, scored the second try. versions, or kicks, in. After “Some of the AUB players urally what it does is inhibit tein to keep a healthy natu-
The third try by Allen Khoury every try that awards four may think that there were cells from dividing,” Mirvat ral balance.
was the turning point of the points, the team is allowed a some calls that were not in El Sibai, the LAU assistant Usually, differentiation and
game, according to Coach kick that would award them their particular favor, but we professor who organized the migration are two opposing
Raymond Safi. The ball was two additional points. pulled it off in the end.” event, said. “Retinoblasto- procedures.
kicked in the air past the LAU could not expect any As the boys gathered around ma is regularly expressed in Ghanem showed for the first
players and headed to AUB’s less of their Immortals. For to take the winning photo, in- our body and it regulates the time how this protein regu-
try line. Khoury dashed for two years now, they have stead of saying the tradition- divisions and prevents can- lates and differentiates cells
the ball and caught it before been undefeated with 32 al “cheese” they went with a cerous cells from spreading while also encouraging them
it hit the ground. He scored wins under their belts and unanimous message to the since cancer is basically the to reproduce more cancerous
an immediate try. The crowd absolutely no losses. Even losing team, “sorry, eh?” uncontrollable unnatural di- ones.

The Truth about Autism

By Lyn Abu Seraj
LAU Tribune contributor

Arwa Lynn Halawi, presi- They are often sensitive to mathematician, astronomer,
Photo by: Lyn Abu Seraj

dent of the Lebanese Autism stimuli, so they tend to cov- natural philosopher, alche-
Society (LAS) and Ahmad er their ears all the time and mist and theologian was also
Oueini, associate professor avoid maintaining eye con- autistic. Mozart, the pianist
at the department of educa- tact. They also have a ten- who wrote over 600 musicals,
tion at LAU, hosted a lecture dency to say inappropriate is a third famous case.
at the beginning of the month things at unexpected times. LAS’ mission is to support
to raise awareness about this “Autistic children are not re- the rights of individuals with
rare yet solemn disorder. tarded, they are talented. autism and to provide them
Autism, as defined by the tistic children (CCA-Fr, is on the increase. They have a way of looking and their families with sup-
Autism Society of Ameri- CCA-En), technical schools Many companies, like Alpha at things, it is like they are in port and services from early
ca (ASA), is a disability that (TSA), and early diagno- and the ABC department their own little world,” Ouei- childhood to adulthood. “We
typically appears during the sis and intervention center store, show their support by ni explained. “They are very try to raise awareness about
first three years of one’s life (CDIP). It has also published donating money. Every year, smart and can work out math this disorder and try our best
as a result of a neurological books to raise awareness a worldwide autism day problems and fix technical is- to give these children and
disorder which affects the about the disease. is organized on the second sues within minutes.” their families a better life,”
normal functioning of the “Autism is considered to be Sunday of February and , for Some of the most intelligent Halawi said.
brain. The disorder affects a rare thing, but, thank God, the third consecutive year, people in history were peo- LAS’ main goal is to provide-
the development of cortical people in Lebanon know in- LAS has participated by or- ple with autism. Albert Ein- children with autism with a
areas related to social inter- creasingly more about it,” ganizing a mass in St. John stein, the father of modern better life by enhancing their
action and communication Oueini explained. Today, Church. physics, is one example. Is- communication and interac-
skills. more than 400 families have Children with autism share sac Newton, who was known tions skills within the com-
LAS provides classes for au- joined LAS and the number specific characteristics. to be an English physicist, munity.
4 Tribune May 23, 2011

Engineering Schools Do Not Stress Seismic Building
By Diana Bachoura
LAU Tribune staff

“Earthquakes don’t kill peo- can happen – especially 6.0 logical Survey, the last ma- anon’s engineering schools civil engineering student at
ple,” John Mutter, a seismol- and above – where there are jor earthquake, measuring is that we live in a country AUB, courses that are relat-
ogist and disaster expert at active faults.” M 5.0, hit South Lebanon in where daily needs, such as ed to earthquakes and seis-
Columbia University’s Earth The US Geological Survey 1956. It destroyed 6000 hous- electricity and proper high- mic activities are usually of-
Institute, says. “Bad build- defines fault lines as meeting es and 17,000 buildings and ways, are not being served. fered to graduate students.
ings kill them.” points where tectonic plates left 136 dead. Concern about surviving an Undergraduates were only
Haiti had some of the worst come into contact with one In 2005, a seismically sound earthquake that may or may permitted to enroll in such
buildings in the world. another and where the man- construction code was adopt- not happen is accordingly courses as of this year as
Safety codes are acknowl- tle is cracked. Fault lines cre- ed in Lebanon, based on Eu- far-fetched. technical electives.
edged there but, in a coun- ate earthquakes because the ropean and American stan- “In an ideal situation, you LAU civil engineering stu-
try ranked as the 10th most ground is in a constant state dards. The latter focus on should worry about these is- dents in their fourth year are
corrupt in the world, enforce- of motion. constructions “resisting” sues. But you cannot be ideal required to take three techni-
ment is negligent. When a Lebanon lies on three active seismic activity (Japanese when everything else is fall- cal electives from a list of 18.
7.0 magnitude earthquake fault lines at least. The big- standards, which are based ing apart,” Issa said. Technical electives that cov-
struck Port-Au-Prince in gest fault, known as the Ya- on “flexibility,” strive to have While the chairperson of er earthquake analysis in-
2010, around 220,000 people mouneh fault, extends along buildings sway with earth- LAU’s school of engineering clude Concrete Structures II
lost their lives. Mount Lebanon. The Sergha- quake movement). did not grant us an interview, and Risk and Natural Haz-
Yes, it may be a little extreme ya fault lies along the eastern These building codes are not Issa courteously explained ard Management. According
to compare but the state of af- range and the Mount Leb- strictly enforced. that seismic design at the to civil engineering students,
fairs may not be much better anon thrust, which is capa- According to Camille Issa, an school is briefly touched upon a new technical elective ti-
in Lebanon. ble of causing tsunamis that LAU civil engineering pro- but not scrutinized. tled Earthquake Analysis of
The National Council of Sci- spread across the coast. fessor who studies the effects Apparently, LAU civil engi- Structures is due to begin in
entific Research, the seismic Three notorious earth- of earthquakes on construc- neering students are exposed fall 2011.
network that monitors tec- quakes, reaching approxi- tions, building an average in brief to earthquake de- But, earthquake construc-
tonic activity here, records mately a magnitude of 7.5 on seismically sound structure sign during their final-year tion is not merely a job for
more than 100 earthquakes the Richter scale (Haiti was can cost up to 50 percent projects. “Generally, earth- engineers. As you create a
of low magnitude (M 2.0 or 7.0) hit Lebanon in the past. more than assumed. quakes are not a hot topic building, you need to have a
3.0) per month. In July 551 AD, a strong That being said, many build- in this region,” Issa said, “If team made of an architect,
According to Ata Elias, earth tremor trigged a tsunami ers in Lebanon find it finan- anyone is interested in learn- an engineer for structure,
scientist and geology profes- and destroyed Beirut. In May cially inconvenient (others ing more, technical electives and two others for electro
sor at the American Univer- 1202, along the Yamouneh are intentionally negligent) are available.” and mechanic.
sity of Beirut, there is no way fault, another earthquake to follow seismic building Nizar Sankary, a fourth year Engineering students study
of predicting when the next shook Damascus, Tripoli and codes. civil engineering student, structure, whereas architec-
strong earthquake will hap- Sidon. Finally, in November As a result, seismically poor confirmed Issa’s remarks. He ture students study the de-
pen. 1759, a third seism severely structures continue to rise, explained that earthquakes sign of the building.
“The small earthquakes that damaged Beirut and Damas- posing risks of severe dam- are touched upon in class, “Generally, our focus is on
we are talking about can hap- cus. age. but never in detail. design and space,” Ramzi
pen anywhere in Lebanon. Because of the quake of 551 But it is one thing to lack re- Likewise, the civil engineer- Najjar, a third-year architec-
More important regarding AD, Beirut did not regain its sources and finance and an- ing program at AUB has no ture student, said. “Study-
safety issues are the large- glory before the 19th centu- other to undermine educa- focus on seismic construc- ing earthquakes is consid-
magnitude ones of 5.0, 6.0 or ry. tion and training. tion. According to Moham-
above,” he explained. “These According to the US Geo- The general attitude in Leb- mad Al Hariri, a fourth year Continued on page 9

The LAU Stereotype

By Lama Al -Haqhaq
LAU Tribune staff

“LAU students are mostly than about how they perform conducted a study on cam- “LAU students are very di- have time for both.”
fake and materialistic, and I academically. pus, focusing on the number verse. They’re a mix of so It seems that, while many are
would never want to be part Scholars define stereotyp- of women wearing high heels. many different things, and quick to joke about and ste-
of their society,” Daniella De- ing as process of labelling During one hour, only 18 per- that’s really nice,” Fadi Had- reotype LAU students, they
bies, a student from Notre that involves categorization cent of students were found dad, a student from the do not have the same opinion
Dame University, said. and evaluation and where wearing such shoes, while American University of Bei- when asked seriously.
Her description fits into the the characteristics of a mi- the other 82 percent were in rut, said. “There are students that are
stereotype some have about nority within a group are ex- flats, sandals or sneakers. Others agreed. “I actually ad- snobby and there are those
LAU students; rich, snob- tended to the entire group. The stereotype was also con- mire them for their consis- that are laid back,” Aaliah
by and “plastic” individuals. Stereotypes are often false, firmed wrong among outsid- tency to have time to study Qaddah, a student from St
Like several others, Debies demeaning and present the ers who had friends at LAU. and party,” Shady Said, a Joseph University, said. “But
finds that LAU students are subject as an inferior “other.” Their opinion of our student student from Balamand Uni- it’s normal to have a mix of
notoriously known to care To test the accuracy of the body was indeed more bal- versity, said. “I mean it’s very these people because it’s like
more about how they look LAU stereotype, the Tribune anced. rare to find students who can that everywhere.”
May 23, 2011 Tribune 5

Dear Adviser, Can You Help?
By Diaa Aljurdy
LAU Tribune staff

They stand in a long line,

Photo courtesy of: Fatima Ghoul

Zahra Bou Melhem, a
some holding a paper in their 19-year-old pharmacy stu-
hands, some chatting, oth- dent, agreed. “I didn’t face
ers simply daydreaming. any problems during ad-
While one may think it may vising, my advisor gave me
describe a bus station, the courses according to my con-
scene actually takes place tract sheet,” she said.
at Nicol Hall’s second floor, A survey of 26 LAU students
during the advising period. revealed that 12 had an un-
Advising is a crucial process satisfactory advising ex-
for new students. Guided perience. The rest were ei-
by their contract sheet, stu- ther satisfied with or neutral
dents decide what courses about the process.
they should register for ev- Mona Shahine, an instruc-
ery semester, with their ad- tor at the humanities depart-
viser’s help and approval. ment and freshman adviser,
Contract sheets provide stu- said she has never registered
dents with the LAC, ma- students for a non-required
jor and elective courses they course. “If they insist on tak-
should take to graduate. Ev- ing a course that I don’t rec-
ery student has one or two I learned alone,” Nabahani on the reasons behind the pe- at the university. She said ommend, I double check by
advisers who stay with him said. “At the time, even our tition,” a source who refused that sessions for training ad- calling Randa Gharzeddine
or her until graduation. chair was new. She had been to be identified said. “It takes visers are being planned. at the registrar,” she added.
For some students at LAU, here for few years and was time to study these petitions Salem also recognized that At the guidance office, Zeina
advising is a problematic is- also self-trained in advising.” because some claims are not the student-adviser ratio at Trad and Dina Abdul Rah-
sue. “I was admitted as a Back then, a staff member at true.” LAU is low. “We are willing man help with the advising
sophomore, but during reg- the guidance office provided Nabahani cautioned that to hire more professional ad- of freshman students. “The
istration they made me shift help to advisers when need- students are sometimes to visers for every school,” she Freshman System and the
to freshman,” Nelly Awad, ed but she has long since re- blame for registration prob- said. “Our aim is to bring stu- SAT have changed,” Trad
an international affairs stu- tired. “She was like an en- lems. She gave the example dents online by putting more said. “Advisers are aware of
dent, said. “My adviser never cyclopedia for us. We do not of a pre-engineering student information about advising that but get lost sometimes.
had the answers as to what know now whom we should who came to the education on LAU’s website.” That’s why Dina helps them.”
courses I should take.” contact for advising ques- department, searching for Salem also said there are Trad added that advisers of-
Desperate, Awad consulted tions,” Nabahani said. her adviser. The student did plans to make contract ten contact them about spe-
the Ministry of Education, Today, LAU doesn’t seem to not have any idea who the sheets more detailed. The cific cases. “I’m also here to
where her high school cred- have a reference person or latter was. current versions provide help students who have aca-
its were transferred. She center for advisers. “The online advising system general guidelines such as demic problems,” she said.
ended up taking courses that Azzam Mourad, an assis- allows students to change or recommendations to take “The first step for solving ad-
weren’t counted and lost an tant professor at the depart- add courses after they get our three to nine social science vising problem is a proactive
entire semester because of ment of computer science approval,” Iman Osta, associ- LAC credits but do not spec- advising system which our
an advising mistake. and mathematics, said that ate professor of mathematics ify which courses fall under school is adapting,” Nashaat
An unhappy Awad noted he didn’t get any training for and computer and the chair such category. Mansour, a computer sci-
that the advising system is advising beyond the regis- of the education department, Information of this sort could ence professor and the as-
quite strict, with advisers as- trar office’s session on how to said. have served people like Jee- sistant dean at the school of
signed in alphabetical order use the registration comput- Some students do not check na Basma, LAU interior de- arts and sciences, said. “Stu-
according to students’ family er system. their webmail and remain sign student, who took a dents should be called during
names. “I had to see a specific Sahar Moukaddem, a jour- unaware of advising and reg- course she did not need. their first year by their advis-
adviser even if he was not on nalism senior, had to post- istration deadlines. “After I paid for the course, ers to check how they are cop-
campus,” Awad said. pone her graduation because The debate on whether stu- the registrar told me it is not ing with every aspect of their
Interviews with full-time of a mistake her adviser com- dents or advisers are to required for me to take it,” courses.”
faculty revealed that some mitted. blame will persist. In some she said. According to Mansour, an-
weren’t trained for advising. “Last fall, my adviser regis- cases, advisers commit mis- But some students reported other step is an indirect
They use personal judgment tered me for elective cours- takes as they help students no problems with advising. training program where new
and common sense to advise es only, and I couldn’t take a register their courses. In oth- They said they relied on their faculty shadow given men-
students. major course later because it ers, students act irresponsi- contract sheets and always tors at the department to get
Mona Nabahani, an associ- needs prerequisites,” she ex- bly and disregard their ad- followed their advisers’ rec- acquainted with the advising
ate professor of education plained. visers’ recommendation or ommendations. process.
and the director of LAU’s The registrar office regularly do not check with them in the Victor Khsheish, an 18-year- All in all, several projects
Teacher Training Institute, receives petitions where stu- first place. old management student, are underway to improve the
said that she learned about dents charge that they regis- Elise Salem, LAU’s vice pres- said that he hadn’t had any state of things. “After all, stu-
the advising process on her tered unrequired course. ident for student develop- problems with advising be- dents are justified in their
own. “Students’ petitions are sent ment and enrollment man- cause he learned all the rules concerns and LAU is serious
“They usually do mini orien- to every student’s depart- agement, acknowledged during the orientation peri- in making changes,” Salem
tations for new faculty, but ment, the decisions are based there is an advising problem od. said.
6 Tribune May 23, 2011


Of Tablets and Laptops
By Zahi Sahli
LAU Tribune contributor

Photo by: Fatima Ghoul

The fact that 82 percent of tech Apple and develop their own tries, part of the global strength
geeks primarily use their tab- versions of the same device. of tablets is their relatively
lets at home underlines the sig- “The smart phone was very cheap cost.
nificance of this device as a rev- well-done technologically and “iPad 2 is sold for 800 dollars in
olutionary modern invention. user response about it was ex- Lebanon and for 500 dollars in
According to a March 2011 sur- tremely positive. Other man- the United States,” Itani said.
vey by Google’s AdMob, tablets ufactures have unsurprising- Buying an equally fine laptop
have entirely dominated the ly gone in the same direction,” would demand that a consumer
technological market since the Itani said. shells out more than 1,000 dol-
release of the Apple’s iPad. An immense commotion has lars.
This information comes to surrounded the release of the Although monetary value is a
prove that a company cannot second version of Apple’s iPad; vital detail for a potential cus-
rest on its laurels for long. the new-generation device has tomer of any modern gadget,
In an industry that runs on According to Itani, the creation The communication arts stu- racked up a record one million the prices of these devices are
quick spinning, companies are of tablets has originated from a dent’s opinion emphasizes unit sales during the first week- not the key motives for audi-
at risk of falling behind in the growing need in the technologi- Itani’s judgment about the dif- end, according to Reuters. ence purchasing preferences.
pecking order of corporations cal world to find a meeting point ference between tablets and Statistics indicate that Apple As previously highlighted, the
in wheels. between rising and old gadgets. laptops. continues to dictate the flow of crucial point remains the mode
Some have begun to question “Tablets have been invented to The iPad’s ingenious concep- new technological gadgets. in which a consumer would use
whether tablets will replace fill a gap between smart phones tion, however, which has tak- In the AdMob survey, 43 per- the gadget of his or her choice.
desktops and laptops as the and laptops after the huge glob- en the world by a storm, did not cent of respondents revealed For those seeking entertain-
new favorite gadget. al success of smart phones,” the come to existence without pre- that they spend more time ment through the massive in-
Digital strategy consultant technology expert said. liminary phases in the indus- with their tablets than they do flux of media output, iPads are
and LAU instructor Ayman LAU student Mona Hammoud try. with their laptops or desktops. ideal companions.
Itani believes, however, that assured that she would prefer a The innovative success of smart Meanwhile 77 percent of re- The laptop, however, is still far
tablets and laptops are two in- laptop over an iPad. phones, in particular, prompted spondents reported that their from becoming extinct.
comparable devices. As a journalist, Hammoud be- Apple to create the iPad, which desktop or laptop usage has de- It still provides the essential
While the former are mainly lieves that laptops are ideal was followed by a slightly mod- creased after buying a tablet. role of a classic input device
used by a receiving audience, tools for writing and editing. erated version, the iPad 2. Although prices for technology that many people in the me-
he explained, laptops remain “I cannot see myself writing an Other companies have pounced in Lebanon are fairly inflated dia industry and other busi-
the most popular input device. article on an iPad,” she said. at the chance to compete with in comparison with other coun- nesses still require.

From ‘Punch Card Readers’ to Smart Rooms

By Eleena Korban
LAU Tribune staff

Back in 1978, LAU students IT infrastructure and support, a PC. Level one classrooms ty minutes in the beginning of rooms. “Only around ten at-
had to take punch card read- explains the magnitude of this have in addition a sound sys- class trying to figure out how to tended those sessions,” Fakih
ers to the American University network. “We have over 300 ac- tem and the touch-screen Cres- work the equipment, and even- said. “Another issue is that we
of Beirut in the evening to use a cess points but imagine 40,000 ton Control System. Level tually end up calling someone have had three keyboards sto-
computer. Since then, our cam- students and alumni, 2,000 two adds a document camera to help us,” Julia Ataya, edu- len already because teachers
pus has come a long way. staff and faculty all putting that allows teachers to project cation major, complained. Ata- leave the podiums unlocked.
“Today, LAU is a leader in the pressure on the access points to handouts. Level three, the ul- ya’s frustration is shared by a More attention needs to be
use of IT in Lebanon,” Roy Ma- transition and migrate, not to timate, includes at least two significant number of students paid to the equipment.” Per-
jdalani, vice president of hu- mention the uprising of all the projectors and two screens, a who watch their professors haps with better organization
man resources and university wireless phones and laptops,” complete sound system with struggling with the technology and training, both students
services, said. “IT is interwo- he said. “It’s only normal that microphones, a VC and an in- at the beginning of class. and professors will learn to ful-
ven in the texture of the univer- the system would glitch to keep structor IP camera. Mohammad Fakih, a business ly take advantage of the invest-
sity.” up with the demand.” “The visual aspects of the class- student who works at the au- ments LAU has made for them.
In 1980, LAU acquired its first Today, LAU has 52 smart rooms are really important,” diovisual department, is one of When launching “The Legacy
set of Texas Instrument com- classrooms between Beirut Patricia Purdhomme, a biolo- the many young men that tend and the promise: LAU’s cam-
puters. Fifteen years later, it and Byblos, with 21 more to gy student, attested. “Seeing to professors when they give paign for excellence” in 2008,
launched the computer net- come. Not to mention six smart the images while the professor up. “We get around two calls ev- President Joseph Jabbra said
work. In 1996, email was set conference rooms. The proj- explains helps us remember. I ery hour,” he said. “Usually the that “investing in education is
up for all faculty and staff. The ect was financed by USAID, feel it makes all our lives easier.” problem is that they can’t fig- the best investment that any-
LAU website launched a year which offered 555,000 dollars A smart classroom is meant to ure out how to open the lectern, body can make in the future
later. In 2004, LAU became the through its ASHA grants pro- fully integrate technology into sometimes a cord would just be not only of this country but of
first university in the Middle gram. the learning process. Howev- unplugged.” this region.”
East to launch a comprehen- The classrooms come in four er, the said process seems to In April, the audiovisual crew If that is the case, then our re-
sive wireless network. levels. Level zero includes a be disrupted with all this new provided faculty with two train- gion’s future looks pretty good
Nicolas Majdalani, director of projector, electrical screen and technology. “We waste twen- ing sessions on smart class- so far.
May 23, 2011 Tribune 7


Royal Weddings: What’s with All the Fuss?
By Tala Osseiran
LAU Tribune staff

Most young girls dream of be- looking up to these people,”

Photo via Facebook

ing consultant, noted. “It was
ing princesses and falling in Reem Sweidan, an LAU jour- said that Lady D was the main
love with prince charming. nalism student, said. “It all guest at the wedding.”
Unable to let go of the child- begins with the Disney mov- The ceremony during which
hood stories we grew, we ies we watched. The media Diana married Prince Charles
came to cherish royal wed- convinced us that royalty is on July 29, 1981 was called
dings, a glimpse into a world what we should dream of.” “the wedding of the century.”
most of us only know in fai- And the bigger and more ex- Around 3,500 people attend-
rytale books. Newlyweds travagant the wedding is, ed and 750 million followed
Prince William and Princess the better. “It’s more of a sta- on television. The gathering
Kate Middleton made their tus thing since people always of famous heads of the state,
way recently to Buckingham envy what they can’t have,” pop stars and royal dignitar-
palace, after a dazzling wed- Rola Nasr, a social psycholo- ies from around the globe also
ding ceremony that fascinat- gy, explained. “Many people makes royal weddings a me-
ed the world. Amid reports may to care about this occur- dia marathon. For most peo-
of unrest in Libya, Syria, Ye- rence because they are chan- be identified, confessed. “All they cover them extensively ple, however, such ceremonies
men and Bahrain, Al Jazeera neled into doing so by a force news station, all magazines to attract viewers and make are a warm diversion from the
stopped for some time to that plays on their psyche.” around the world are at the money. It’s all about the rat- gloomy bad news we get ev-
broadcast live this Cinderel- Watching royal weddings wedding. Why wouldn’t I want ings.” Prince William’s sta- ery day. “Maybe the folks af-
la story. We got a good look at boost our hopes of finding to be part of the two billion tus as the next king of Britain ter all just like hearing some
the prince’s blue Austin Mar- love and living “happily ever people watching? It’s a dream and the son of the late Di- good news at the end of the
tin, decorated with red, white after.” During the ceremony, when reality comes alive.” ana fueled people’s interests day, something positive they
and blue ribbons. The priest our dreams are played out “The media play on the myth and, accordingly, increased could actually all focus on,”
of Canterbury declared the by a beautiful princess and a we grow up with, the one of viewership. “The shadow and O. O., who also wished to re-
newlyweds “man and wife” handsome prince. “Let’s face a normal girl marrying into memories of the late Lady D main anonymous, said. “Can’t
in front of two billion people. it, we all like to have an ex- royalty,” Yasmine Dabbous, made the media fall into the we just take a little time off
“People are always under the cuse to enjoy watching some- assistant professor of me- trap of comparing both wed- from all the destruction and
influence of the media, which thing and to criticize it after- dia studies, explained. “They dings,” Mahmoud Tarabay, the sadness in our lives to cel-
tells us that we should be wards,” M. N., who refused to know such stories sell and a media instructor and train- ebrate love?”

Are You Really What You Wear?

By Maria Fellas
LAU Tribune staff

As she carried her notebooks pants that costs several hun- like to wear brand names on But the problem doesn’t lie in But it gets out of hand when
in one hand and her Lou- dred dollars. their foreheads find them- those who are fashionable or I see students or even par-
is Vuitton bag in another, “You become what you buy,” selves on the fringes. like to treat themselves with ents drain their credit cards
the young woman hurried- a consumer research study “To me, they are just trying expensive bags, clothes and to pay for trendy items,” said
ly crossed LAU’s upper gate. conducted in Ontario, Cana- not to conform. It’s not that accessories. It is more in the Amanda Geagea, manager of
Behind her DKNY sunglass- da, explains. they don’t like dressing up, opinion such people have of IKKS, where a simple pair of
es, she could see a group of fe- For those who obsess with because I know that for a girl those who don’t appreciate slippers can cost from 100 to
male students looking at her. fashion, clothes are a reflec- this is impossible,” Rawan, brand names. 400 dollars.
They seemed to admire her tion of what’s inside. a management student at Georgio Djukovic, a student Numerous studies confirm
new Diesel jeans. It does, in- So picture this. It’s the sec- LAU Byblos, said. at LAU Beirut believes that that the pressure of fashion
deed, fit perfectly, the young ond day of advising here at Psychologists suggest that “those who wear nothing but may lead to a distorted self-
woman thought. Quite hap- LAU Beirut. People stand in the obsession with fashion sweatpants, and do noth- concept, the feeling of be-
py about the outcome, she line, sweating and tired. Yet and expensive brands may ing but critique those wear- ing marginalized and a loss
rushed to class. J. AlHachem feels compelled have develop during child- ing brands” are just trying to of self-esteem, especially
Advertising scholar Judith to be super fashionable from hood. Young adult girls don’t make a statement. among the young. Some stu-
Williamson explains that head to toe. “I wake up at just happen to randomly like “You think they don’t spend dents resort to buying fake
brand names offer their own- 5:30 a.m. every day to get CK, D&G or Prada. time thinking about what to items to try to live up to the
er value and status beyond ready,” Al Hachem said. “My “These girls are used to wear- wear? They are too obsessed expectations of their
the attributes of the actual daily ritual includes make- ing expensive and luxuri- with not conforming that peers. Others try to resist.
product. up, hair and finding the per- ous brands. Their parents sometimes it’s more serious “It is so ridiculous that some
A jeans, in other words, is fect outfit.” dressed them that way as than those who wear brands,” bother themselves this much
merely an outfit that cov- When the dress becomes kids, and that’s what appeals he said. The pressure to be to please others. I would nev-
ers one’s lower body. But more important than the per- to them as adults,” Maral fashionable may lead to prob- er care about what others
when it’s jeans, it also signi- son wearing it, and dressing Boyadjian, a doctoral candi- lems, both psychological and think of what I’m wearing,”
fies that its proprietor is hip up becomes a way of life in- date in leadership skills and financial, among some peo- Anastasia K, a biology stu-
and, quite importantly, rich stead of a perk, some are left LAU psychology instructor, ple. “For those who can afford dent at LAU, said. “What
enough to afford a pair of behind. Students who don’t said. it, expensive wear is okay. matters is that I’m happy.”
8 Tribune May 23, 2011

Anita Nassar: Going Beyond the To Work or Not to
Line of Duty Work
By Caroline Hodroj By Lea Giusti
LAU Tribune staff LAU Tribune staff

national speakers. Subjects She wakes up at 7 a.m., goes in the U.S. hold jobs while in

Photo courtesy of Anita Nassar

covered recently include gen- to her first class at 8 and, by college. The newspaper spec-
der-based violence, citizen- 10 a.m., she is ready to go to ifies that, for a better aca-
ship, politics, media, human work. She then cleans the demic performance, students
rights and the law. bathroom, arranges the pil- must limit their workload to
Nassar has been involved for lows on the bed, and picks up 16 hours per week.
over ten years in projects un- the clothes on the floor. It’s Abdul Rahman Tabbara, a
dertaken by IWSAW to assist now finally 5 p.m. and she business student at LAU,
female prisoners in Lebanon. can go back home. Back at works full time at Beesline.
Her contribution has helped her room, Noura Bohsali, a When the shop first opened
improve the conditions of hospitality management stu- its doors near campus, Tab-
countless female convicts, dent at LAU, looks around bara had to work 12 hours
who end up in prison because for her books. per week.
of life’s harsh circumstances. “I try to merge my studies “I didn’t have a social life,”
“I don’t feel they are prison- and my work,” Bohsali said. Tabbara explains. “You
ers,” she said. “I trust them “My work doesn’t interfere should be able to make the
and they, in return, put their that much with my studies sacrifice and, instead of going
trust in me.” however, because I am well out every day, you only go out
Nassar has recently complet- organized.” once a week.”
ed the final draft of the Guide Students who hold part-time Nonetheless, Tabbara tru-
to Work in Women’s Prison jobs are surely under pres- ely believes it’s a great ex-
in Lebanon, soon to be pub- sure but gain a great work ex- perience that will help him
lished by IWSAW and UNF- perience before leaving LAU. later in life. A research proj-
PA. It includes practical in- Despite her heavy schedule, ect conducted at the Univer-
structions and tips to ensure Bohsali never faced prob- sity of North Carolina dem-
the success of projects under- lems related to academic per- onstrates that students who
taken in women’s prisons in formance. have worked during college
Lebanon; as well as a com- According to a study done at have “average earnings that
parative study about female a high school in Kentucky, are up to 26 percent higher
prisoners over ten years. working students gain more seven to 10 years later than
As part of her job at LAU, experience but “do not differ those who did not work dur-
Nassar also teaches early markedly from nonworking ing high school.”
Inside Shannon Hall, and income-generating project childhood education and chil- students in school experienc- But despite the advantag-
within the unassuming quar- in the midst of the Lebanese dren’s literature at the edu- es.” es, there are several prices
ters of the Institute for Wom- civil war. “The institute de- cation department. They’re still involved in all that have to be paid. When
en’s Studies in the Arab cided to reach out and help Nassar’s inspiration is her the regular outings, they just in class, Tabbara sometimes
World, IWSAW assistant di- displaced women. Some- mother. “Along the way, my have an extra load on the side thinks about work more than
rector Anita Farah Nassar times it was frightening,” mom Eleonore inspired me, that they deal with. the course material.
struggles to open an uncoop- she said. “The fear of being in my model. She was a pio- As a hospitality manage- Tabbara acknowledged that,
erative door. She laughs at an unsafe place and the pos- neer,” the IWSAW assistant ment student, Bohsali is re- when he faced problems at
her situation and samples sibility of getting killed were director said. “She was one quired to complete an intern- work, he also failed academ-
other keys. always there but, because of the first women to open a ship. She has to start at the ically but thankfully never
“What is the matter with this we believed that these wom- ‘boutique’ in Lebanon in the very bottom to slowly build had to drop a class.
door?” she asks with an im- en needed our help, we went early ‘60s, which was not herself up the profession- “I had to create time to
pressive lack of frustration. through with it.” common, nor possible, at the al ladder. “I’d rather work study,” he explained.
After twists and turns, one Nassar’s work at IWSAW is time. Unlike many women now than after graduation,” Tabbara said he would nev-
key clicks into place and Nas- rigorous and hard at times. of her generation, she was Bohsali said. “I want to be er stop work but admitted he
sar ushers me into her world. It includes training of train- persistent and pursued her able to attain a higher posi- needs a break.
Those who know Nassar and ers, raising awareness about dream to the end.” tion once I look for real a job.” As the manager of the shop
those who don’t can tell that gender-based violence and Although Nassar has earned With less time on her hands, at one point, Tabbara was in
she confronts obstacles with empowering young women. the right to be one of the re- Bohsali disagrees with the charge of HR and ironically
patience, perseverance, and “What we do at the insti- gion’s renowned women, she belief that working students found then that hiring stu-
dedication. tute is work on empowering is quite low profile and pre- fail academically. Despite dents wasn’t a great idea.
“I’m a strategist,” she said.“I women without leaving out fers to remain as such. her work load, she still finds “They wouldn’t take the job
push myself beyond the line or antagonizing men,” Nas- “I’m not a person seeking time to study. “When and if I seriously,” he said. “They
of duty. As you struggle to sar said. “We try to part- fame,” she said. “I’ve been can’t find time to study, then would complain of not having
reach your objective, you see ner with them as we defend asked to go on a lot of shows I will stop working,” she said. the time to devote to work be-
that there is always some- important issues related to but I always refuse. There’s “But for the time being, I try cause of their studies.”
thing new to learn.” women.” IWSAW organiz- no point in being celebrated, not to look at it as a difficult Some would talk too much on
Nassar remembers, for in- es awareness-raising cam- I just want to get the work task.” the phone while others would
stance, the year 1985, when paigns, lectures, workshops done as perfectly as possi- According to the Sunday pretend to go to school and
IWSAW had to deal with an and conferences with inter- ble.” Times, half of the students instead go to the beach.
May 23, 2011 Tribune 9

Financial Aid Offices or Are LAU Students’ Getting Worse?
Cafés? Continued from page 1

admission standards during motivated,” she complained. this issue and has already
Continued from page 1 meetings but no direct ac- Some believe that education made progress. “Two years
tions were taken. is not getting worse but is and a half ago, it was open
Not only are LAU students rather changing to meet the admissions,” she said. “You

Photo by: M. Y. Hamade

getting worse, the whole needs of an evolving world. could apply two weeks before
country is,” Nadim Mohsen, “This is the law of nature,” the start of university and
cultural studies instructor at Vahid Behmardi, chairper- the standards were not very
LAU, said. son of the humanities depart- clear.”
making friends,” Farah Mtaweh, junior social work student “All the negativism of the ment, said. Since fall 2009, new stan-
who helps at one of the auxiliary offices, said. war appeared now, cultur- Behmardi believes that the dards have been implement-
Despite the obvious problem, many financial aid students re- ally, socially and politically, majority of teachers are used ed. Students are now asked
fused to speak, even anonymously, fearing that they would and nothing happened to re- to the old concept of reading. to apply for the SAT test
lose their position and the money they get every semester. verse the downfall that was “Students now do read, but along with the EEE exam.
“What if investigations were done to reveal our identity?” One induced by the civil war,” he not in the classical way,” he In addition, LAU phased out
student asked. “Who would give us our financial aid back?” added. “I can feel that stu- explained. “Holding an iPad the AA program, which gave
To qualify for financial aid, students must have a course load dents cannot grasp the is- is like holding a whole library students without a Lebanese
of at least 12 credits and a minimum 2.0 GPA. LAU’s Beirut sues when we do a discussion by your hand.” baccalaureate the possibility
campus includes 62 offices and 131 supervisors with 850 to 900 or an opinion gathering, as if The interviewed faculty of- to enroll. “We are not happy
financial aid students spread across the various units. they are living in a different fered many solutions, includ- that the quality of students
The number of students assigned to work at offices depends on world. I don’t blame them be- ing a better equipped staff, a in the classroom, reported by
the budget of the department, the type of work required, con- cause they are part of this so- stricter attendance and grad- our faculty, is in many cases
fidentiality and the space provided to accommodate the stu- ciety that is falling down.” ing systems, organizing de- not up to bar. We agree that
dents. It may vary from three up to 23 students per office – Today’s students don’t need bates and seminars that help this is not acceptable,” Salem
sometimes more. to spend overnights in the li- students improve on a cul- said.
“We send an email to supervisors at the beginning of every brary searching for informa- tural and academic level. “We want to raise the stan-
term asking for any modifications required,” Samir Obeid, in- tion, they can just pull out All interviewees proposed to dards slowly and, at the
structor and director of the financial aid and scholarships of- their laptops, iPads or smart- raise the standards for ad- same time, there has to be
fice, said. Obeid noted that the jobs assigned to financial aid phones to Google the infor- mission to LAU. Professors more rigor and accountabili-
students are mainly “office work” although some might help mation they need, whenever believed that this procedure ty in the classroom”
instructors in their research or at the lab or the gym. they need it. would definitely ensure bet- Surprisingly enough, some
Rola Rizk, an academic assistant for fine arts and foundation, “Too much information is not ter qualified students. students agreed that LAU
said that she has ten assistants but “I don’t see them all.” She necessarily good informa- “I agree 100 percent that has to raise admission stan-
added that they work to make her happy although they some- tion” Hiba Mekdashi, media raising the standards will dards. “People believe that
times nag and give the work she assigns to them to other assis- and design instructor, said. help in making LAU a bet- anyone can be accepted at
tants. “I don’t mind it since the requests are done at the end,” Mekdashi believes that stu- ter university,” Elise Salem, LAU and this is giving us a
Rizk said. dents now lack eagerness vice president for student de- bad reputation,” Neam Kat-
The Tribune did its own investigation, observing several de- and passion for their work. velopment and enrollment erji, a communication arts
partmental, administrative and faculty offices where finan- “Their attention span is management, said. She con- student, said. “We don’t want
cial aid students were employed. In addition to the minority short, they easily get bored. firmed that the administra- to be called the lazy universi-
who did indeed work, most were busy with unrelated matters. They are less inspired and tion is working seriously on ty anymore.”
Students sent messages on their BlackBerries, ate snacks or
drank juice or Nescafé. Many were busy studying or prepar-
ing for an upcoming presentation. Several chatted with fel-
low financial aid assistants about their personal lives or about Engineering Schools Be sure to follow the
random issues such as fashion, jewelry, perfumes and restau-
rants. Do Not Stress Seismic Tribune online!

Obeid, who acknowledged the problem, recommended that su-
pervisors audit the work of financial aid assistants and train
them where needed. “Distribution of work should be done over
the day,” he added. “Supervisors should optimize scheduling Continued from page 4
because it is a big responsibility they assume.”
Kamal, who has rotated in many offices around campus, said
that some of his supervisors gave him actual work but some ered to be a purely technical plan according only to struc-
also asked him for petty tasks such as bringing them lunch. solution; it does not affect the ture, not design.”
“I am not satisfied when our recommendations are not ap- space you live in, so we don’t Najjar stressed that more and visit our website on
plied,” Obeid acknowledged. “I am not happy in general be- really study seismic design.” should be done to teach seis-
cause some offices make use of the students and some offices As Maroun Daccache, chair- mic design but claimed that
don’t. This needs better cooperation.” person of the LAU school of it’s not viewed as a priority. Send us your feedback and
In the final analysis, however, Obeid rightly noted that, de- architecture, put it, “the ar- As Issa himself put it, “at comments to
spite its faults, the current system brought financial relief too chitect is the director of the the end of the day, the prob-
many families. “One of the benefits of the program is that stu- orchestra. ability of a civil strife break-
dents assist their parents in subsidizing the tuition,” he said. The engineer makes calcula- ing out in Lebanon is greater
“Ten dollars per hour… A price not given in many other jobs.” tions and adjustments to the than that of an earthquake.”
Adviser: Editors-in-Chief: Staff:
The Team:
Yasmine Dabbous Mohamad Yahia Hamade Lama Al-Haqhaq, Diaa Al Jurdy, Diana Bachoura, Tala El Riz, Maria Fellas, Lea Giusti, Ivana Hindi, Eleena Korban,
Caroline Hodroj Sahar Moukaddem, Nour Monajjed, Tala Osseiran, Reem Swaidan
10 Tribune May 23, 2011

Don’t Pretend You Don’t See The Stain
Caroline Hodroj
LAU Tribune staff

“You know what I real- tended, it will result in a vol- tially the worst thing you’ll necessarily harsh and prone too saturated with false pre-
ly think? I think you’re an canic eruption of raw terror probably accept from an indi- to lashing out inexcusably. tenses and every white lie
egotistical phone call ad- that will leave whomever is vidual. They show that your Much like a ticking bomb that comes out of your mouth
dict, cigarette smoking un- listening in a sorry state of friend has been essentially that ticks louder with every weighs down your tongue
der estimator, who’s an over- magnified shock. And that’s dishonest and insecure about white lie. till you feel poisoned with
indulgent skinny stick of your cross to bear for not do- your reaction and that he or If you keep it in, your cyn- your own cowardly atrocity.
woman, who chews gum too ing anything about it soon- she feels unsafe with you. icism will eat at you till you The worst part is that you’re
loudly and has bad ideas, er and having made this the Or worse. Maybe too lazy to risk saying things that put equally to blame.
bad breath, bad teeth, bad only time you’ve ever been phrase the truth in a tactful Simon Cowell to shame. You probably thought you
grades, bad boyfriends, bad honest. and diplomatic way. “She had it coming!” Some were doing someone a favor
hair and truly and utterly In my opinion, honesty and Let’s rewind to that first in- will argue. by not expressing how you
bad habits,” she might have communication are pil- stant you encountered some- While that might be true be- feel.
said. lars of any healthy relation- thing that you disapproved cause she suffered from a You probably tapped your-
If some girls were to hear ship that is based on mutu- of. What did you do? chronic condition of emotion- self on the back for being so
this from their best friends, al trust, understanding, and If you confronted whatev- al unintelligence, the reality patient and self controlled. If
they’d have died due to sheer life-long support. White lies er bothered you, then you’ve is that you could have done that’s the case then good for
undiluted horror. are interesting in the sense saved yourself from an in- something about it sooner you, but the reality is that I
But that’s the nature of de- that they’re exactly what ner anger that manifests and rather than wait for that mo- don’t believe you and that’s
layed honesty. If left unat- you want to hear but essen- festers and makes you un- ment where your brain feels my honest opinion.

Like Father... No Son Yes, I am a Journalism Student

Tala El Riz Selim Njeim
LAU Tribune staff LAU Tribune contributor

What do you think of the say- phoric about the sheep-herd I am always asked: “What different field or not finding related to what a person
ing; “like father like son?” that surrounded him. are you majoring in?” A sim- a proper job. When asked to chooses to be. Stephen King,
Conducting a research on Coming from a patriarchal ple question that requires an give his opinion, Maallem A., the famous novelist, was an
great male figures like Picas- society where males rule, I even simpler answer: “Jour- a fifty-nine-year-old farmer excellent student who gradu-
so, Isaac Newton and Ein- ask fathers, “how much do nalism.” What always shocks living next to my house said, ated from high school and got
stein, we see that these suc- your sons carry your name, me is the flabbergasted look “All the students, should ma- a scholarship to attend the
cessful people accomplished or are even qualified repre- I see on people’s faces when I jor in something useful like University of Maine. Acad-
great things in their lives sentatives of your names?” tell them. Usually, what hap- engineering or medicine. emy Award winner Natalie
but didn’t have a son to carry And I keep on wondering and pens next is the “burst out.” Journalism is not a major, Portman attended Harvard.
their legacy. looking at him trying to de- People ask, amazed: “You, is it?” I was shocked when I What I think should be done
As I witnessed him, sit- fine how much “he” is certi- Selim? Jour... Journalism? heard those words. I didn’t to eradicate the prejudices
ting there like a lion inside fied to use his father’s name But why?” know that there were people that people stick to is the dis-
the cave where he ruled, I when in reality he’s nothing This is the stereotypical who still thought that way. semination of a new culture
couldn’t help but notice the like him. opinion that some people This is more than just an regarding this issue.
authority he had on others. We all heard people saying, in Lebanon have about cer- opinion, this is strong bias. This can be done through TV
He passed by them with his “You’re just like your dad,” tain majors, and what a lot of This is a conflict between shows, conferences, adver-
head held high and his chest or “if he was here he would’ve graduating high school stu- generations which shows tisements and some work-
wide open. They foolishly been proud of you.” dents suffer from. that prospective or current shops for people to know that
kneeled down to him, blind- Reality check: You are noth- As a student who used to students aren’t always on the every major is the pillar on
ed by his father’s clothes ing like your dad; wearing rank first in his class, I was same page as older contem- which the other stands. If
lingering shaggily on him, the black suit doesn’t make expected to turn into a med- poraries. you’re an engineer or a con-
thinking that they actually you similar to him, neither ical doctor, an engineer or an Sarah-Joe, a sixteen year- tractor, wouldn’t it be inter-
fit. Does his carrying his fa- does your behavior. You’re architect. Many people think old, is still in high school and esting to get people to write
ther’s name oblige us to re- not even close or up to the that someone who is con- thinking about majoring in about your company in news-
spect him? achievements that he accom- fused, or doesn’t know what Human Resources. papers and magazines?
He has the walk of a lion and plished. to do with his life (aka, major- “Well, I am not generalizing, Finally, as a person who has
the manners of a conceited Nothing of what you are des- less), would eventually find but I think that there’s a big had many setbacks when it
one for that matter. His com- perately trying to achieve him/herself in majors like number of people that are not came to choosing the “right”
mands were satisfied with will ever make your dad journalism, psychology, po- well educated; they are very major, I tell all students and
the glimpse of an eye, his proud. Carrying that name litical science, and the like. old fashioned and do not have whoever might care to lis-
voice was heard, and his eyes only empowers you to hold a The important question here accurate information about ten: If you want to be suc-
glowed sharp like thunder. I title with empty content. is: Is there a difference be- all academic majors, espe- cessful, you need to be happy,
felt like a 10-year-old again So why don’t you give us a tween those majors and oth- cially the new ones or the and if you want to be happy
watching The Lion King. break and leave your father ers? ones they consider as ‘inferi- you need to fit in the envi-
Being an outsider myself, I alone and start working on For some people, a student or,’” she said. “Many say ‘ha- ronment that your major cre-
saw this incident as a Holly- proving something out of working to get a bachelor’s ram’ to me when I tell them ates. Thus, with all my heart,
wood shot, but this time the your own name instead. Like degree in psychology, for in- I’d like to work in Human Re- and with full self-confidence,
acting was real. He’s confi- your father, there is no one, stance, is wasting his time sources later.” I declare that YES… I am a
dent about himself and eu- not even you. and will end up working in a Being brilliant at school isn’t journalism student.
May 23, 2011 Tribune 11

Domestic workers: A Violation of Human Rights
By Ivana Hindi
LAU Tribune staff

Naccache main road, 8 a.m.. A flow of workers from Nepal holder’s approach, they say, ultimately providing nothing domestic workers who keep
People driving down to Bei- has now replaced the stream is often provoking and belit- more than misery. “Some do- causing trouble at my house,”
rut on a typical weekday saw of workers agencies brought tling. mestic workers seem to come the woman added.
the body of a young domes- from many far-eastern coun- “Lebanese authorities, for- to Lebanon with the inten- Interviewed from her hos-
tic worker, swinging from a tries. eign embassies, employment tion to escape and find vari- pital bed, Kamala Nagari is
household balcony. Exposed Caly is a domestic worker agencies and employers need ous other jobs in the country, a Nepalese national who in-
to the stiff cadaver, hang- from Nepal. She looks weak to ask themselves what is ones that do not require stay- jured herself on February 20,
ing lifeless, early risers me- and is scared to deviate from driving these women to kill ing in a household,” Nahas 2008 while trying to escape a
chanically headed to their her robotic job. Her poor lin- themselves or risk their lives pointed out. horrifying situation. “I was
jobs. The deceased work- locked in for two days, and
er had opted for an obvi-

Photo via Creative Commons

they [the employers] did not
ous bright yellow suit that give me food and water,” she
shined through the rays of explained. “Then after two
the early sun, as though her days, I wanted to run away.
intentions where to highlight The apartment was on the
a disturbing violation of hu- fifth floor. I tried to go down
man rights. using cable wires running
According to Human Rights along the wall of building.
Watch, domestic workers in The cable broke, and I do not
Lebanon die at a rate of more remember what happened
than one per week. The seri- afterwards.”
ousness of the situation gave An official at the Philippine
rise to numerous debates on embassy also recounted the
the subject, including a doc- story of a domestic work-
umentary feature film, Maid er from Manilla who was ac-
in Lebanon, and a human cused of stealing jewelry and
rights film festival at the Me- accordingly beaten up by
tropolis Empire Sofil Cin- her employer and locked in-
ema where discrimination side the house. She commit-
against foreign helpers was ted suicide. “When employ-
tackled. During the last few ers lock someone up inside a
weeks, posters calling for the home, they are committing a
rights of domestic workers in crime and the police should
Lebanon were posted in and treat it as such,” Houry said.
around Hamra. Danielle Ayoub, a 50-year-
Human right activist Ray old housewife, makes sure
Jreidiny revealed the re- her domestic workers are
sults of a survey done in 2005 treated fairly. “I hear a lot
and 2006, covering over 600 of whining from my friends
domestic workers in Leba- during gatherings. All they
non. The findings are outra- do is tell stories about their
geous, with 65 percent of do- domestic workers who have
mestic workers operating for escaped and left them with
11 hours or more per day and all the tasks to do by them-
42 percent for over 13 hours. selves,” she said. “I believe
Around 34 percent have no that no domestic worker
regular time off and 33 per- would feel the urge to escape
cent had to pay a large part or commit suicide or cause
of their salary to an agency any form of trouble if treated
in Lebanon and to another in justly.”
their home country. Around guistic skills and minimal in- trying to escape from tall But, regardless of wheth- Issa Hindi, a 19-year-old uni-
52 percent of domestic work- dependence do not allow her buildings,” Nadim Houry, a er this is true or not, unac- versity student, witnessed
ers in Lebanon are screamed to leave the household she senior researcher at Human ceptable violations of human the Naccache suicide, was
at, and most importantly, 99 works at, even for a breath Rights Watch, said.But the rights still abound. Among deeply bothered by the dis-
percent have their passports of fresh air. Caly muttered a blame, in some cases, is not them is ideological, demean- turbing sight. “I took the
withheld during their stay few shy words in English. “I solely on Lebanese house- ing discrimination. Many phone and called my friend as
here. help my family with money hold owners. Nicole Nahas, Lebanese look at domestic a first reflex. I was shocked to
Due to the incalculable crim- from here,” she said. a 48-year-old housewife, be- workers as dim and unintel- see someone hanging, it was
inal and unlawful incidents Human rights agencies lieves that, in few cases, “ma- ligent individuals. One wom- terrible,” he said.
domestic workers in Leba- charge that basic rights are fias” in Lebanon try to influ- an Tribune talked to explicit- Hindi vainly tried to search
non reported over the years, confiscated from domestic ence workers and talk them ly said that her helper from for a blurry picture he had
Ethiopia, Sri Lanka and the workers in Lebanon and cite into acts of rebellion. They Nepal is “dumb enough” to taken through his mobile
Philippines have placed a numerous reports of cruel vi- encourage them to escape, stay quiet and calm. “I am phone. “It felt like a horror
stiff ban on travel to Beirut. olence. The Lebanese house- promising more money, but fed up with headaches and movie,” he added.
May 23, 2011 Tribune 12

Weight Mania Tripoli’s
By Reem Swaidan Half Inter-
LAU Tribune staff

Photo via Creative Commons

By Nour Monajjed
LAU Tribune staff

Thousands of people gath-

ered on May 8 in Tripoli for
the half international mar-
athon, by far the biggest
sports event in the north this
Organized by Ma’an
Loubnan, the Tripoli Youth
Forum and YASA, the mar-
athon included a combina-
tion of three races: Two 21K
She begins to take off her Tahtah, a 22-year-old stu- only one diet, and that is eat- er socioeconomic status is races, one for wheelchairs
shoes. She looks at her wrists dent, said. Tahtah has been ing small portions of every- correlated with higher adop- and one for people 17 years
and takes her watch off to suffering from obesity since thing.” tion of unhealthy nutrition- or older, two 5K races, one
make sure it doesn’t add a she was 8 years old. She has “I have put my body through al habits (fast food, energy- for people 12 years and older
gram or two. Her whole body tried all kinds of diets but a lot,” Khouloud Shammas, a dense snacks, sweets, etc.) and one for fun where fami-
shivers as she looks at her nothing seemed to work. 33-year-old mother of three, and lower consumption of lies could just stroll along the
slim figure. She slowly lifts “What hurts me the most is admitted. Shammas has suf- traditional healthy Mediter- course and, finally, a 2K race
one foot and then the other. that it wouldn’t have mat- fered from bulimia and an- ranean food (cereals, vegeta- for children under 12 years of
With her eyes closed, she si- tered this much to society if orexia for the last 10 years. bles and fruits). These find- age.
lently prays. I was a man,” she sadly ex- Her house is filled with mag- ings are consistent with the “We’re working on raising
Rania Mroue, a 38-year-old plained. azines and pictures of mod- general tendency in devel- awareness about the impor-
mother of three, has an anx- A cross-sectional study of els. “I was never overweight oping countries, in contrast tance of sports and its ef-
iety attack every time she adolescents in private Leba- but I became obsessed with with first-world nations. fect on our youth,” the mara-
stands on the scale to weigh nese schools suggested that my weight after having my “Some people who have an thon’s website said.
herself. “I was never like this overweight and obesity prev- first child,” she explained. unhealthy obsession with The Al-Ma’arad area was hot
when I was younger, it’s be- alence among girls decreases Shammas believes that the their weight, may never be and crowded.
come a sickness I live with with age (P < 10). pressure around her and the satisfied no matter how low Ka’ak stands were placed
now,” Mroue confessed. “You can never be too thin,” comparison she makes with the scale seems to register,” spaciously along with booths
Calculations show that, for a Pretzel Crisps advertise- television figures pushed her psychologist Rouaa Arbid ex- and kiosks by the various
her height, Mroue has a less- ment reads. to seek extreme thinness. plained. Arbid believes that sponsors.
than-average weight. Unfor- Youngsters are exposed to “The moment I woke up in such people need to undergo They offered water, food, in-
tunately, it’s the paranoia of slogans glorifying thinness the hospital with my hus- a form of therapy in order to formation about the mara-
gaining a few kilos that keeps every day. An overwhelm- band and children around me understand the positive as- thon and guidance for those
her uneasy. “Media and soci- ing number of studies reveal looking worried, I woke up pects of having a healthy in- who needed assistance.
ety gave us a certain image of that such ads push young to reality,” she said. “I final- stead of a “bikini body.” Several pre-race activities
how we should look like and men and women toward an- ly stopped pressuring myself “If men and women begin were also organized to raise
we’re all tormented by that orexia and bulimia. “When and just stayed healthy, I’m to understand this theory awareness about following
image,” Mroue explained. I ask my patients why they happier than ever now.” from a young age, this obses- driving rules.
A 2003 study conducted in a want to be thinner, most of Radwan Kaddouh is a sion will rarely occur,” Ar- The motto of the event was,
rural community in Lebanon them reply; ‘because I want 15-year-old boy who suffers bid said. She thinks that par- after all, “Drive Slowly So We
revealed that 30.2 percent to look like a model,’” nutri- from major obesity. Kad- ents should always be careful Can Run Together.”
of women are obese. Anoth- tionist Joyce Daher said. douh’s parents are no longer about the lifestyle of their Organizers offered plenty of
er cross-sectional survey of Daher explained that peo- concerned about how their children. “Parents these days entertainment until around
2,104 children (3 to 19-year- ple come to her for the wrong child looks. reward their children with 3 p.m.
old) and adults showed that reasons. Very few, indeed, They worry about their son’s fast food instead of a book to Artists, local and national,
obesity and obesity risk seek more balanced diets for life, which is now in danger. read,” she explained. sang songs, DJ’s played Ara-
levels are higher, overall, health reasons. “They only Kaddouh is no longer able to Mroue still struggles with bic and English beats and the
among boys than girls (22.5 care about how they look,” walk, sleep or go to school due facing the scale. It’s been crowd was flustered under
versus 16.1 percent risk and she said. to his obesity. His parents be- five years but she still expe- the heat of Tripoli’s sun dur-
7.5 versus 3.2 percent obesi- Daher explained the impor- lieve that their son’s state re- riences anxiety attacks be- ing the day.
ty, respectively). tance of proper nutrient in- lates to fast food and lack of fore weighing herself. “It’s The races attracted numer-
This finding was associated take for a longer and health- exercise. Living in fear, they difficult because I’m sup- ous NGO’s, corporations and
with lack of exercise among ier life. “What my patients also blame themselves for posed to be a role model to my institutions such as Spin-
children. don’t understand is the dan- not being attentive enough children. How can I be a role neys, Boom Boom Ener-
“I can’t walk without think- ger they put their bodies before the problem escalated. model when I fear a two-dig- gy Drink, BankMed, Liban
ing that people are looking at through with all those crazy A 2003 study in rural Leba- it number on a scale?” Mroue Post, Al Ameen Roasteries
me and laughing,” Tamara diets,” Daher said. “There is non demonstrated that high- asked. and much more.