Category Archives: Interviews

Major climate conference to be hosted by UMD in 2016


On Saturday, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon announced Climate Action 2016, a global climate implementation summit to be held on May 5 and 6 at the University of Maryland and downtown Washington D.C.

Courtesy of the UN News Centre: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon announced Climate Action 2016.

According to UMD Right Now, Climate Action 2016 will focus on six key areas to “establish a sustained path towards global climate implementation.” These areas include:

  • City and sub-national implementation
  • Implementing resilience/adaptation
  • Energy
  • Climate-smart land use
  • Transport
  • Analysis and tools to support decision-making

This climate implementation summit will be structured as a follow-up of the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) that is wrapping up right now in Paris. Continue reading Major climate conference to be hosted by UMD in 2016

Trump May Transcend the Truth But He Doesn’t Transcend Stupidity (Opinion)


Presidential candidate Donald Trump has had a lot to say lately and a good chunk of it isn’t making any sense.

Trump recently stated if he is elected president, he wants mosques under surveillance in light of recent terrorist attacks by ISIS.

In an interview with MSNBC’s Morning Joe a few weeks ago, Trump stated: “You’re going to have to watch and study the mosques, because a lot of talk is going on in the mosques.”

In addition, Trump plans to force out Syrian refugees that have settled in the U.S., according to a speech he gave to voters during a campaign stop in New Hampshire. Continue reading Trump May Transcend the Truth But He Doesn’t Transcend Stupidity (Opinion)

How to stay safe while studying abroad


After the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, France where at least 128 civilians were killed, some students may wonder about safety concerns while studying abroad.

According to their website, the Education Abroad office at the University of Maryland has set as its mission the empowerment of UMD students with the knowledge, skills, and perspectives to become mindful and engaged global citizens. With this in mind, executive director of Education Abroad Dr. Moira Rogers has shared with PulseFeedz her list of precautionary tips to follow while studying abroad: Continue reading How to stay safe while studying abroad

Meta Cartel Aims To Start A Movement


It was once said that a good vacation is over when you begin to yearn for your work. In Jordan Greenwald’s case, he yearned for his work and then some.

Greenwald is the founder of a streetwear cultural company known as Meta Cartel. The company launched after Greenwald took keen interest to the street art he witnessed across Spain during a study abroad trip which he describes as a ‘visceral experience.’

“I was taken back by how something can be in a different country, completely out of context for someone like myself yet it really just permeates your soul,” Greenwald recalled. “It didn’t matter the culture or the language barriers, I was getting the message (of the art).”

When he came back to the United States, he decided to get a lawyer and start a business which would use art to convey messages. Greenwald is aiming to build a lifestyle brand with deep beliefs. He believes that by capturing the mind of a millennial aesthetically, he’ll be able to draw them into seeing the cultural point of view which Meta Cartel represents – progressivism.

“I want to put in that heavy and impactful message not because everyone will get it but because I feel like if we’re in a position to spread ideas and really operate like a brand and not just a company that wants to make money,” said Greenwald.

Meta Cartel’s belief in progressivism includes such positions as supporting the Black Lives Matter movement and combating institutionalized racism, gay rights and the legalization of marijuana. Greenwald doesn’t pretend to have the solution to some of these problems but says that through his brand, he wants to help keep the conversation going.

The triangle on the hat symbolizes higher thinking while the designs underneath the brim are 18th century Spanish illustrations discovered in history books, a hat tip to Greenwald’s original inspiration for starting his company.


After the hats are designed stateside, they’re sewn in a Vietnamese factory where Greenwald says the best quality hats are created.

Thousands of Vietnamese factory workers protested earlier this year and went on strike after a new law was passed barring employees who resign from collecting a lump-sum of health insurance money.

When asked about the worker’s rights issues in Vietnam and whether they affect his company, Greenwald says that to his knowledge there have been no complaints or worries. He has not been on the ground to visit but plans to do so in the future.

Maya Dawit worked for the Digman Center, where Meta Cartel’s headquarters are housed, as a video editor when she met Greenwald. Dawit has always been set on not working the typical 9 to 5 job and says that working with Meta Cartel is helping her achieve those goals.

“It’s really refreshing when you meet someone who is running a business but is running it in a way where you’re in an environment where you are comfortable,” Dawit said. “You don’t feel like you are working for a business you feel like you’re helping out a friend.”

The company has been able to channel the messages they’re trying to breakthrough to their audience through art work. Meta Cartel has commissioned artists from New York and other areas including the DMV in a quest to give creative forces a voice. Their most well known work so far is a Martin Luther King Jr. mural displayed on campus during Art Attack.

Greenwald advises incoming fans of his brand to “live an elevated lifestyle, be you but respect other people and try to have an open mind.”


Phi Beta Sigma Hosts Panel to Discuss Police Brutality


The Epsilon Psi Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity hosted a police conduct panel at Adele H. Stamp Student Union to discuss police brutality and how to stay safe on campus Oct. 12.

Senior civil and environmental engineering major Kye Hodge, the fraternity president, contacted panelists as well as moderated the discussion, which also included audience questions and commentary.

Panelists included Magistrate Judge Charles Bernard Day, Major Kenneth Calvert and University of Maryland student activist and sociology major Colin Byrd.

Courtesy LinkedIn: Charles Bernard Day serves as a US Magistrate Judge. He is an alumnus of the University of Maryland and a former member of Phi Beta Sigma.
Courtesy of LinkedIn: Charles Bernard Day serves as a US Magistrate Judge. He is an alumnus of the University of Maryland and a former member of Phi Beta Sigma.
Courtesy LinkedIn
Courtesy of LinkedIn: Major Kenneth Calvert serves as Assistant Chief of Police at University of Maryland Police Department.
Courtesy BMore news: Colin Byrd is a student activist at UMD.
Courtesy of BMore news: Colin Byrd is a student activist at UMD.

Day, Calvert and Byrd discussed citizens’ rights, laws about filming arrest, the act of taking phones into police custody for evidence and how officers handle recently heightened sensitivity towards police brutality given its now racially-charged reputation.

Continue reading Phi Beta Sigma Hosts Panel to Discuss Police Brutality

One year later, UMD’s Big Ten move reaps more than athletic benefits


The University of Maryland’s move to the Big Ten athletic conference after 61 years in the Atlantic Coast Conference brought about more money for the school, but it also included more academic opportunities for students in the forms of research and resources.

By joining the Big Ten, UMD also joined the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, a partnership of universities in the athletic conference that “collaborate on research projects, offer educational opportunities for students , and share resources in areas such as purchasing and buying libraries,” according to the university website.

Continue reading One year later, UMD’s Big Ten move reaps more than athletic benefits

Planned Parenthood: The drama continues


Over the last couple of months, there has been much controversy surrounding government funding of Planned Parenthood, a nonprofit organization that does research into and gives advice on contraception, family planning and reproductive problems.

About three months ago, a small group of anti-abortion activists called the Center for Medical Progress, began releasing videos. Republicans and conservatives say those videos show that Planned Parenthood was illegally selling fetal tissue for profit and violating other federal prohibitions, such as federal law at 42 U.S. Code 289g-2, which strongly prohibits the sale or purchase of aborted fetal tissue, according to the Cornell University Law School.

Specifically, the law states, “It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly acquire, receive, or otherwise transfer any human fetal tissue for valuable consideration if the transfer affects interstate commerce.”

Continue reading Planned Parenthood: The drama continues

Half the Sky UMD raises awareness on campus


In September of 2008, husband-wife team Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn published a book about economic empowerment, education, forced prostitution, gender-based violence, maternal mortality, and sex trafficking. Since then, they have produced a documentary to accompany it, as well as a sequel novel and documentary.

Kristof and WuDunn’s mission to change minds and spread their message inspired the launch of a new group on campus in the spring of 2014 known as Half the Sky Movement. A group of graduate students along with the help of the Director of Public Health Initiatives, Elisabeth Maring, decided that they wanted to bring Half the Sky to College Park because they desired to spread awareness on the wide variety of topics that this book covers according to Molly Crothers, former president of Half the Sky UMD.

The club has since organized events and hosted screenings of documentaries Half the Sky and its sequel, A Path Appears. Each screening was followed by a discussion and presentations from organizations on campus and in DC to talk about some of their events and goals.

Courtesy Half the Sky Movement
One of the club’s main initiatives is the following: “When you give a girl an education, her life and everyone’s lives around her are changed for the better. Here are a few examples of the benefits: The woman will have fewer children later in life, and the family will have another income to help provide enough food and nutrition for their family.”

The current executive board includes Mahrukh Malik and Raye Weigel as co-presidents, Jacquie Neminski as vice-president, Nicole Grap as secretary, and Carly Brody as treasurer; all of whom have been involved with the organization since its founding.

“I’ve been involved since the first interest meeting with Dr. Maring.  In one of my Global Public Health Scholars’ classes, which was also taught by Dr. Maring, we were reading ‘Half the Sky,’” said Crothers. “The book and video clips really impacted how I looked at the world and the world’s issues so I wanted to become more involved with the Half the Sky movement.” Continue reading Half the Sky UMD raises awareness on campus

Does UMD #StandWithAhmed?


Fourteen-year-old Ahmed Mohamed entered one of his classes in a Texas high school last week with a homemade clock that was created from a pencil case. Instead of being praised for his handiwork, Mohamed was arrested because his teacher mistook the clock for a bomb.


This story spread rapidly on social media, due to allegations of prejudice. Many people were outraged at the belief that Mohamed was profiled because he is Muslim.

On Twitter, the hashtags #IStandWithAhmed and #NotABomb trended with pictures of watches and clocks. There was sharp criticism on racial, ethnic and religious profiling.

Continue reading Does UMD #StandWithAhmed?