Cross Country

Empathy across neighborhood lines

My latest op-ed, “Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations,” appeared in the Chicago Weekly today. You can find the op-ed and add your comments here, and I’ve also pasted it below. Thanks, as always, for reading. —Love Thy Neighbor: In the wake of an attack on the Men’s Cross Country team, it’s time to rethink University-community relations

Becoming a teacher and a Michigan Wolverine

I’m excited to report that I have decided to enter the University of Michigan School of Education’s Secondary MAC (MA in Education with Secondary Certification) program in mid-June. The program is 12 months long and includes over 1,000 hours of classroom experience as a student teacher and substitute teacher, resulting in full certification. I look forward to finding unique ways to show my students the importance of learning and reading as well as the value of informed engagement with current events and politics.

Mark C. Taylor on 'reforming higher education'

Mark C. Taylor, contrarian philosopher and chair of Columbia University’s Department of Religion, caused a firestorm in the academic community with his op-ed, “End the University as We Know It,” in yesterday’s New York Times. The op-ed remains at the top of the NYT’s most-emailed list. There are few better places to have a debate about the philosophy of education than the University of Chicago, where the Core Curriculum and the school’s historical emphasis on liberal education and distaste for vocational education permeates everything.

UCXC: Midwest Regional Championships 2007

This was one of the best weekends of my life. It was my last team trip as a member of a collegiate cross-country squad, and memories were made. We traveled to beautiful, spacious Oshkosh, WI for the Midwest Regional meet. Shortly before the starting gun, huddling with the team, doing stride-outs, and giving high-fives, I realized that I was doing all of these things for the last time, and in a moment of clarity I understood how much cross-country has meant to me for the past 8 years.

UCXC: Parkside Invitational 2007

It was a beautiful fall day in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and I was reminded of why I love cross-country. The course at Wisconsin-Parkside is designed specifically for cross-country: it isn’t a golf course with a white line drawn through it. It has handmade signs marking each quarter-mile, it has hills and trails through woods, and the start is sounded with a cannon rather than a gun. From the starting line, runners look forward and see an enormous hill surrounded by trees, and above the hill, the cloud-filled Wisconsin sky.

UCXC: Loyola Invitational 2007

Not the best day for the UCXC men: we were hoping to place around seventh or eighth at the Loyola Invitational, the gold division of which is packed with DI and DII teams, but no one ran particularly well, and we wound up in thirteenth. In the final steps of the race, I was hit by the problem of overheating I occasionally get when I race - suddenly, all strength goes out of my limbs, moving a single step becomes a major effort, my body has begun to burn muscle instead of calories/fat, and I feel as though I might black out.

Personal update: Elmhurst Invitational 2007

The cross-country season got off to a great start for the UCXC men and women - the men placed our top 5 in the top 11 spots of the meet. What’s more, we did it by starting very conservatively and gradually moving up, a tactic that allowed us to run comfortably in a pack of 7-10 runners for the first 2 1⁄2 miles of the 4 mile race. I don’t remember the last time I enjoyed a race so much.