Founding Precept: Service

“The College, itself, the product of philanthropy, should find ways to contribute to its community… with services natural for it as an educational institution. Policies must be maintained that support these outcomes.” – Statement of Founding Precepts for Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering

Greetings from the SERV board! With the start of the new semester, we are encouraging you to use SERV (Support, Encourage, and Recognize Volunteerism) as a resource and make community service a part of your routine.

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Popping the Olin Bubble: February Edition

12/1 Rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo withdraw from the city of Goma, located on the country’s border with Rwanda.

12/4 More than 40,000 people move to shelters in the Philippines in preparation for Typhoon Bopha.

12/5 Australian radio DJ’s pose as Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles in order to get information from hospital workers about Kate Middleton who was being treated for severe morning sickness.

12/6 John McAfee is arrested in Guatemala and accused of entering the country illegally.

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Olin SWE is on a Mission

At the national SWE conference in Houston this year, 3 out of 10 finalists for best posters were from Olin. Earlier this school year, Olin SWE taught several girls in Newton’s Science Club for Girls about engineering.

These activities help Olin SWE fulfill the mission of the Society of Women Engineers: to “stimulate women to achieve full potential in careers as engineers and leaders, expand the image of the engineering profession as a positive force in improving the quality of life, and demonstrate the value of diversity.” This is done through professional development, outreach, and education. As anyone can be part of this mission, members are not required to be female.

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Invest Yourself in the Earth

Welcome to your first day on the job. Our clients are heavily invested in the performance of a vast endowment which you will be overseeing. This endowment is an enormously diversified portfolio with incomparably-complex instruments—we call it “Earth”. Said endowment comprises all of this world’s natural systems and actors, from the depths of its crust to the outer reaches of its atmosphere.

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A Puzzle by Midnight Math: February

midnightmathOn a circle are placed an equal number of “x”s and “o”s.

Starting with a value of zero, you chose a starting place on the circle and begin moving clockwise around the circle.

Every time you pass an “x”, you add 1 to your value, and every time you pass an “o” you subtract 1. Once you have returned to your starting location you stop.

Show that no matter how the “x”s and “o”s are placed (as long as there are an equal total number of each) there will always be a starting location such that your value is never less than zero.

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A Candid Conversation with Sally Phelps

A candid conversation with Sally Phelps about her mission on campus, how she spends her free time, and the challenges of working with Olin students.

I met with Sally Phelps in her office in the lower floor of the library. As always, her schedule was tight, but as always, she was happy to meet with me and speak for a full hour– a clearly prioritized hour of uninterrupted conversation, despite the ringing of phones and the dinging of incoming emails.

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An Island of Sustainability

Singapore is a country many of you have probably heard of, possibly as the current home of Eduardo Saverin, or for their authoritarian laws. However, the centralized authoritarian government has also taken many impressive steps towards turning Singapore into a sustainable city, steps that could only be taken because of the nature of the government.

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