I’ve been seeing a lot of strong emotions surrounding identity politics, particularly on queer-related topics, like sex, gender, and sexuality. I’ve seen a lot of limited perspective on gender and sexual variation. Perhaps I get so much of this because of the people I’m around, or the fact that I put on The Laramie Project, but regardless, I think a little bit of queer theory is in order. Because the easiest way to explain the philosophical is to ground it in the personal, I’m going to start with my own identity.
Welcome back, from Frankly Speaking—Olin’s unofficial, unaffiliated, student-run newspaper!
Olin is a school of rebirth. Clubs, events, and traditions all live and die with each new year. Clubs you’ve never heard of were big a few years ago and events you’d never think of will be held next year. The impermanence is freeing, but also requires that each year play an active part in Olin culture.
This summer, we worked with Facilities to improve sustainability and stewardship at Olin. Our overarching goal was for Olin’s monetary, environmental, and proprietary resources to be managed and maintained more responsibly. We realized that we could work on many sustainability and stewardship efforts, but they would founder if we did not achieve community-wide involvement. Thus, our true goal was to not only begin sustainable projects, but also to make it easy for everyone to get involved.
Matt Colyer has been in startups for his entire working career. That’s five years now; he graduated Olin class of ’07, and immediately started his own business. That particular startup didn’t pan out, but he’s remained a staunch startup developer ever since. He has recently launched a new company, Easel, cofounded with Ben Ogle.
Matt and Ben rolled into Yerba Buena gardens, downtown San Francisco, on bicycles. Over a chess table in the shade, Matt and Ben told me about Easel and what it’s like to live and breathe startups. Matt explained his love for working through ever-changing problems and learning on the fly.
Once upon a time, one of Olin’s goals was to expand from a student body of 300 to a student body of 600. This was eventually dismissed, but Olin has not stopped growing in other ways—to the point where we are almost running out of space!
The Franklin W. Olin Players (FWOP)—Olin’s resident theater group—will put on two shows this fall.
One, a collection of one-act plays, will be staged during family weekend. The other, which will take place October 11–13, is Joss Whedon’s cult internet musical Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. An aspiring supervillain video-blogs about his attempted heists and (lack of a) love life. In the course of an attempted theft, he accidentally introduces his crush Penny to his nemesis (the entirely unsympathetic hero Captain Hammer). It’s the motivation he needs to ramp up his villainy, with disastrous consequences.
Fellow Oliners, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that the student body is collectively rich. The bad news is we’re not as rich as we used to be. Let me explain. Every year the Student Activities Fee is collected from the pockets of our student body and thrown into a big ol’ pot. Typically, the SAF amounts to about $60k, but at the beginning of last year this pot held nearly $100k because money was rolling over year to year. We were very successful in spending all of it (and more) so this year we will start with around $55k. But don’t fret! I think we can make the $55k go a long way.