Monthly Archives: December 2008

Student files discrimination case against professor with SJB

By Sarah Abdel Rahman

A student at The American University in Cairo filed a case with the Student Judicial Board against a professor in the Performing and Visual Arts department accusing him of discriminating against her.

The student, Ingy Mahmoud, said the professor prevented her from taking the winter Art and Architecture course because she was “not physically fit.”

Mahmoud, an Art student, registered for the course and received approval from her parents to travel to Spain to complete the course requirements. She then had to get final approval from the course instructor.

“He said this trip needs physical fitness that I don’t think you have,” Mahmoud said. “I told him I can handle it, and then he said it doesn’t appear so, referring to my weight while staring at my body.”

“He said I would have to prove that I’m up to it [and] when I asked how, he responded, you can go run four laps and come back.I didn’t think that how I look was a criterion for learning. I feel so hurt,” Mahmoud added with tears in her eyes.

The Caravan contacted the course instructor, but he refused to comment.

“Because [the case] involves faculty, we have to contact the appropriate authorities first,” said Seif Abdel Dayem, SJB member. “Then, the normal procedure will take place, and the case will be carefully looked at.”

Stancil Campbell, chair of the PVA, explained there were no written rules that state a student has to be in a certain physical shape to register for a course. Campbell added that professors have to be respectful to students, no matter what they look like.  

According to Mahmoud, the course instructor asked to speak to her after she filed the case. “He said to me, neither the Caravan nor Ann Shafer [Art director] nor even the President will help you, because I have the power to add or drop you into the course.”


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Lebanese pop-stars to entertain at Saturday’s concert

By Safaa Ali

Lebanese pop-singer Ramy Ayash, D.J Carlos, and performer-singer Nicole Saba are going to entertain and sing in the Fall Concert, which will be held by the AUC Student Union this Saturday.

The S.U. organizes and end of semester concert as part of it’s mission statement. “But this year every body wants to celebrate moving to New Campus,” said Ahmed Saleh, the Chair Activities Committee. “So we wanted it big and sparkling.

The cost of the concert is being covered McDonalds, Commercial and Industrial Group, Port Ghalib resorts, Cherry Cars, and Housing and Development Bank. “We are offering 2,000 tickets for 60 L.E,” said Saleh, “they will be available ‘til the day of the concert.”

Saleh said they had not made any arrangements for commuting. However, he is hoping that the concert being on a Saturday rather than a Friday will mean attendees, who are both from within and outside AUC, will be able to take advantage of the university buses running.

AUC students, however, don’t think the timing for a concert is right. “It’s Eid and we have finals afterwards, I won’t have the time to go to a concert,” said Loujaina El Sayed, economics senior.

“The concert should be held after exams, so I can be relaxed enough to enjoy it,” said Nizar Khashaba, mass communications sophomore.

Mohamed Kamal, I.T coordinator in the S.U, said they had been organizing the event for two months. “We all work together as if it’s a one family business,” he added. “Of course we faced some problems regarding the license for the party, taxes and getting sponsors but we have managed through them all.”

The concert will take place at the AUC Portal. Tickets are available at the SU booth opposite the SSE building.

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Barack Obama brings a new era in US politics, AUC professor says

By Safaa Ali

With Barack Obama’s election a new era in American politics is about to unfold, but he may be just a one-term president, said Patrick Mason, assistant professor of history at The American University in Cairo.

The next four years will be a chance to forge a real peace process between nations, Mason told an audience at Moataz Al Alfy Hall, during his lecture on “Analyzing Obama’s election and its impact on the Middle East.” 

“We have to get the most out of this,” said Mason, who is also acting director of the American studies center.

The professor called the recent elections the most significant in the history of the United States. “Finally the dream of Dr. Luther King came true,” he said. “The election gave hope for a whole generation.”

Obama is being guided by five priorities as he enters the Oval Office, Mason said-fixing the U.S., economy, finding alternative energy resources, health care reform, tax reform and education.

Obama is influenced by two political legacies, the Clinton administration and the Kennedy administration.

“Obama wants to use diplomacy instead of cowboy policies used by Bush,” he said.

Mason said that Obama is concerned of the Middle Eastern issues as well as fighting terrorism. He intends to pursue negotiations with other nations including Iran and Syria, and adopting new techniques in fighting terrorism like in Afghanistan, for instance, building schools and cities rather than killing people.

Above all, the President elect is committed to withdraw U.S troops from Iraq within 16 months. “He does not want to be involved in a new war,” said Mason.

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To our loyal readers, a public service announcement

Dear Caravan readers,

If you picked up a copy of the Caravan this week, we hope you understood, it was all a joke. Following the tradition of all college newspapers, this was an end-of-the-semester parody issue.

Why? First, it was an exercise in satire, something that isn’t done much in this part of the world. Maybe if we learned to laugh at our problems more, they wouldn’t seem so insurmountable.

Secondly, it was commentary on some of the more ridiculous things we’ve observed this semester — pandemonium breaking out because of a fox on campus, the never-ending exodus of dorm students, the food situation on campus, and all the perceptions and rumors about AUC that never seem to die.

So, really, AUC isn’t moving back to Tahrir, dorm students will not have to beg, a certain spy agency won’t be operating on the old campus, djinns aren’t stealing stuff on campus, La-Z boy isn’t installing moving sidewalks on campus, Delicious Inc isn’t employing secret police … you get the picture.

Of course, if you were offended by the issue’s dark brand of humor, we apologize for hurting your feelings. Thanks for being such good sport, and such dedicated readers. It really is a pleasure to report about the things that matter to you, and we’re lucky to have you as readers. We’re all hoping for a better (happier) semester in the new year. Good luck on your exams!

The Staff.

P.S. ‘Bigfoot’ is a mythical creature said to roam the forests of North America. Please Google him to see the infamous picture we used. So no, a gorilla did not run wild on campus. No need to be scared.

P.P.S. A ‘label whore’ is not a prostitute. A label whore is someone “who only wears brand name clothes, with the name of the brand usually placed somewhere for all to see. A walking advertisement for a clothing store or brand.”

P.P.P. S. Stop trying to solve the crossword. Hint: Only two answers work. Down 1, 7.

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