On the BEAT: What’s happening around campus and the region

St. Paul

First baby gorilla born at Como Park Zoo in 55 years

On Wednesday morning, Como Park Zoo of St. Paul announced the birth of a baby gorilla. The gorilla is the first born in the 55 years that the zoo has been caring for gorillas. Zoo officials announced last month that two of their gorillas, Dara and Alice, were pregnant. The new baby, who has not yet been given a name, weighed four pounds at birth and, according to a statement from the zoo, appears to be “healthy, strong, and bonding with Alice.” Because it is so important for mother and baby to bond, Alice and her son are currently off-exhibit. “Gorillas are very family oriented,” said Jo Kelly, Senior Zookeeper. “Mom will let other family members see the baby and they will take their cues from mom as to how close they can be.”

Center for Religious and Spiritual Life / Department of Multicultural Life

“Complicating Faith” follow-up today

On Friday, Nov. 21, in the Gender and Sexuality Resource Center, there will be a follow-up conversation to the Soup and Substance event “Complicating Faith,” which covered issues of faith, sexuality and sexual violence on Tuesday the 18. This conversation will be a partnership of the Center for Religious and Spiritual Life and the Lealtad-Suzuki Center. All are welcome.

Twin Cities

Susan Haigh, Metropolitan Council chairwoman, resigns

Susan Haigh, the Chairwoman of the Metropolitan Council, announced her resignation on Wednesday. Haigh worked both as Chair of the Metropolitan Council and the head of Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity, and said the burden of both jobs had grown too difficult. The Metropolitan Council is the regional government that oversees the seven-county metropolitan region and is in charge of planning and infrastructure for the region. Council members are appointed by the Governor. Haigh is a Macalester graduate.

St. Paul

St. Paul brings in philosopher to consult on snow removal

After receiving criticism for handling snowy roads poorly in the past few years, the City of St. Paul finally turned to Dave MacCallum. MacCallum, who is the executive director of Civil Consulting Minnesota, has PhDs in philosophy and computer science and is a former Carleton College professor and dean. Now, however, his non-profit organization will be working to upgrade St. Paul’s snow plan by suggesting small initial changes. “[St. Paul] has a good, solid snow plan,” MacCallum said. “And so the review of the snow plan is one where we’re looking at exactly those things — what are the new ideas we can try out and what in the snow plan can be tweaked.” Part of the new program will involve monitoring social media to identify areas in the city that need particular attention and plans to get 90 percent of major streets plowed within 20 hours after snowfall.

Macalester College Student Government

AAC explores test optional, sustainability worker approved

The Legislative Body approved the sustainability officer work study position. The student worker, hopefully hired by the start of next semester, will work to make sure MCSG is maintaining Macalester’s institutional value of sustainability with the events and operations it funds. The Academic Affairs Committee presented on the benefits of Macalester becoming a Test Optional school. Thirteen of Mac’s 40 peer institutions are test optional. It was also discussed that MCSG could pass a resolution supporting the Test Optional model to make a statement of what the student body thinks about the topic.

Two community chest events were approved by the SSRC. One is to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the gas explosion in Bhopal, India. There will be a screening of a film and panel discussion on December 2. The second event is an off-campus art show to celebrate student art, it will be on December 6.

Health and Wellness Center

Health and Wellness Center closed over Thanksgiving

The Health and Wellness Center will be closed during Thanksgiving Break, November 26 to 28, with regular hours resuming on Monday, Dec. 1. No services will be provided during Thanksgiving Break. Anyone in need of services should refer to the emergency/after hours section of the Health and Wellness Center’s website.

Campus Activities and Operations

Reduced hours over Thanksgiving Break

CAO hours will be reduced over Thanksgiving Break.

The hours of operation are as follows:

Wednesday, Nov. 26: 7 a.m.-9 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 27: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Friday, Nov. 28: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 29: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 30: Regular hours resume

Department of Multicultural Life

Hip Hop for Hope this evening in Kagin

Macalester is collaborating with local dance groups and other ACTC institutions for a “Hip Hop for Hope” event in Kagin tonight. The event begins at 8 p.m. in the Hill Ballroom, and will feature dance groups, spoken word, slam poetry and hip hop. Part of Hunger and Homelessness Month, the event will raise money for St. Stephen’s Human Services. The event is co-sponsored by the Department of Multicultural Life, Program Board, Habitat for Humanity and the Civic Engagement Center.