For IT Summit, a focus on innovation

first_imgOpening the University’s seventh annual Harvard IT Summit at Sanders Theatre, Harvard’s chief information officer, Anne Margulies, put forth the goals of the event: “We’re here to build our IT community, to connect more closely to the University mission, and to learn from each other.”Thursday’s gathering, sponsored by Harvard’s CIO Council, brought together IT professionals, key partners, and faculty for a day of programming and concurrent sessions to explore technology innovations and best practices in higher education. This year, 1,400 attended.Karim R. Lakhani, professor of business administration at Harvard Business School and the afternoon keynote speaker, said in his remarks that it’s a brave new world for business, and IT professionals will be the ones to navigate to the increasingly broad horizon.“The whole economy is becoming digital in many ways,” said Lakhani, who, as the faculty co-founder of the Harvard Business School Digital Initiative, specializes in technology management and innovation. Lakhani opened by referencing the confusion and fear this sea change has wrought.“The executives we see have a lot of anxiety. Is Amazon going to take over? Is Google going to become the next Telco?” he asked. “We’re educating the executives at the Business School in how to cope with this change.”The change, he explained to the audience of Harvard’s IT professionals, is scary because it is structural. Rather than focusing on products and services, he said, the current digital economy is based on platforms and ecosystems. In other words, business now depends much less on what you make than on how many people you can invite to join you.Because this model is so different, Lakhani said, “most technological predictions are wrong.” He went on to describe the inaccurate forecast of cellphone usage created for AT&T in 1982. A straight-line prediction estimated a mere 900,000 users by 2000. (In reality, there were half a billion global users by then.) “This curtailed significant investment,” he noted.The result has been “major missed opportunities,” he said. For example, even an apparent market winner, Nokia, failed to see basic changes in the economy. Although Nokia’s phones were first with many technological advances, Lakhani pointed out, the company missed the growing importance of the platform.Ryan Frazier of HBS listens intently to Lakhani’s afternoon keynote address.Jon Chase/Harvard Staff Photographer“The architecture of the industry shifted to a two-part system,” he said. “What mattered was the core operating system and enabling lots of people to participate in your ecosystem, developing apps.” Touch screens and web connectivity didn’t help as developers flocked to more open platforms — and took consumers and market share with them.Google’s recent purchase of Nest home systems for a staggering $3 billion shows an increasing understanding of the importance of platforms. It is not that Google needs to be in the thermostat business, Lakhani explained, but that the interconnectivity of the Nest system offers the possibility of more horizontal business expansion. With customers who value connectivity and the data these systems provide, Google can expand. While the analog thermostat industry might be limited, the digital one is not. Perhaps, Lakhani noted, Nest will begin analyzing clients’ maintenance needs and take charge of scheduling them, or it will advise energy companies.“How are you creating value? How are you hatching value?” Lakhani asked. “Once we can aggregate data, we can rethink how to create value for our customers.”These lessons reach far beyond the business world. Lakhani recounted how, in his role as principal investigator at the Crowd Innovation Laboratory and NASA Tournament Laboratory, Harvard Institute for Quantitative Social Science, he helped utilize this horizontal thinking. The International Space Station, he explained, has an ongoing problem with part of its solar-energy system. The longerons — long, thin tubes that attach the solar panels to the station — are vulnerable to the extreme difference between sun and shade and so must be manipulated carefully to avoid damage. While NASA engineers had an imperfect solution, the NASA Tournament Laboratory created the ISS Longeron Challenge to help the ISS access more power. Offering a $30,000 prize — “decimal dust” in the NASA budget, as Lakhani put it — the contest garnered 2,000 code submissions from more than 450 entrants, including coders from Italy, China, and Belarus, who never would have been part of the original team.More than half of the entries, said Lakhani, bettered the internal NASA solution. Many implemented completely different methods. Some, for example, would extend the lifespans of the joints that move the solar panels. With additional examples, from a study of MOOCs to a Dutch group that is analyzing — and potentially recreating — the works of Rembrandt, Lakhani made his point.For Harvard and higher education more broadly, the digital transformation is “completely changing the skills we need in our faculty and our students, the tools we need, and the partnership with our IT organization — to even do humanities,” he said. “Our mission as educators is up for us to reimagine.”last_img read more

Adam Monley to Replace Injured Earl Carpenter in Les Miz

first_img View Comments Les Miserables Related Shows Unfortunately Earl Carpenter is still recovering from a neck injury and will not be returning to Les Miserables so “that he can undergo a small procedure to ensure a full recovery.” Instead, Adam Monley is set to assume the role of Javert from December 22 through January 28, 2016; Tony nominee Will Swenson subbed for Carpenter at many performances since November 18. As previously reported, Hayden Tee will step into the role at Broadway’s Imperial Theatre from January 29.Monley is an original cast member of this production as the Bishop of Digne and ensemble member and has performed the role of Javert numerous times.The newly reimagined production of Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil’s tuner is directed by James Powell and School of Rock’s Laurence Connor. The current cast also includes Alfie Boe as Jean Valjean, Montego Glover as Fantine, Brennyn Lark as Eponine, Chris McCarrell as Marius, Alexandra Finke as Cosette, Wallace Smith as Enjolras and Gavin Lee and Rachel Izen as the Thenardiers.We all at wish Carpenter a speedy recovery. Show Closed This production ended its run on Sept. 4, 2016last_img read more

New dean of extension

first_imgBy Cat HolmesThe University of GeorgiaMel Garber was named associate dean for extension in the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences in an announcement released today. The appointment is effective July 1.Garber will serve as senior administrator for the UGA Cooperative Extension Service (CES), said Gale Buchanan, dean and director of the CAES. The extension service is the university’s largest public service and outreach program, serving the state with a team of county extension agents and state specialists.Currently the director of the Georgia Center for Urban Agriculture and a horticulture professor at UGA, Garber will succeed Bobby L. Tyson, who is retiring.He will coordinate extension programs with research and teaching units of the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, College of Family and Consumer Sciences and Daniel B. Warnell School of Forest Resources.Garber’s appointment was the result of an international search, said Ivery Clifton, CAES senior associate dean and chair of the search committee.”We had two excellent candidates to choose from within the college,” Buchanan said. “Dr. Garber’s leadership positions in university, industry and community settings and his extensive teaching, research and extension experience demonstrate his ability to best lead the Cooperative Extension Service.””I met with both candidates for the position of associate dean for the UGA Cooperative Extension,” said UGA provost Arnett Mace. “I support Dean Buchanan’s selection of Dr. Garber, given the breadth of his experience and expertise applicable to this vital position.”The CES delivers educational information from the university to Georgians on topics including agriculture, horticulture, the environment, food, nutrition and child development. Extension also coordinates the state’s 4-H program.Garber grew up on a dairy farm in Louisiana, where his family still grows soybeans, milo and sweet potatoes. He earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Louisiana Lafayette and a doctorate in horticulture from Cornell University.His industry experience includes 13 years, with both research and business management positions, at Weyerhaeuser, one of the world’s largest integrated forest-products companies.After a stint at Iowa State University, Garber’s teaching and research work at UGA has focused on horticultural crops and developing the Georgia Center for Urban Agriculture (GCUA). The GCUA serves the state’s urban agricultural industries and consumers.(Cat Holmes is a science writer with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

Western Carolina University Wins Top Adventure College Honors

first_imgIn March, we asked you, the loyal reader, to vote for a school of your choosing in our fourth annual Top Adventure College Tournament. Colleges and universities met in head-to-head match-ups in a 32-school bracket. The initial 32 colleges and universities were selected for their outdoor clubs and curricula, their commitment to outdoor and environmental initiatives, the quality of their outdoor athletes and programs, and their opportunities for adventure.Over 20,000 votes poured in—and school pride dominated our site for the duration of the contest. Each of the 32 schools in our bracket got lots of love, and for good reason: outdoor ed is thriving in the region. But one school in particular stood tall atop the heap when the feverish voting finally came to a halt.That school is Western Carolina University, a public college of about 10,000 students, tucked away in the mountains of western North Carolina.There are lots of things about WCU that make it an ideal school for the outdoor-minded student. It’s located close to renowned outdoors adventure havens like Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Pisgah and Nantahala National (1)Photo Courtesy of Mitch BeardenThese public lands afford WCU students quick and easy access to some of the best landscapes the southern Appalachians have to offer. But what really sets it apart from similar mountain schools are WCU’s outdoor resources, experience, and leadership.Josh Whitmore is the director of outdoor programs at WCU. A western North Carolina native, Whitmore has taught outdoor adventure skills in places like Montana and Patagonia. Now he heads up Base Camp Cullowhee, an outdoor program that has been flourishing at WCU since the mid 1980s.“We have a staff of three full-time employees and about 25 students who help us achieve our goals,” Whitmore said. “We organize trips and events in places like Colorado and Utah, but we focus heavily on our own backyard.”The trips that Base Camp Cullowhee organizes cater to all skill levels and range from whitewater kayaking in the area’s numerous mountain rivers to sky diving, rock climbing, hiking, and an annual Tuckasegee River clean up.“Over the years Base Camp Cullowhee has evolved from a small outdoor program within the recreation department to its own entity with over 9,000 participant experiences per year. In 2008 we completed a 2,100 square foot indoor rock climbing facility, and just a couple years ago we added a seven-mile multi-use trail system,” Whitmore said. “Our staff does a lot of great work, but the students are the ones that really run the show here.”One of those students is Mitch Bearden. He’s been a serious whitewater paddler for four years and says that WCU’s reputation as a top-notch outdoor school was one of the reasons he chose the university.Scades-2Photo Courtesy of Mitch Bearden“Over the years, we have really differentiated ourselves from other mountain schools,” Bearden said. “We are within striking distance of some of the best paddling in the Southeast and have quick access to some of the area’s best trails.”Bearden says his favorite place to kayak near campus is Upper Big Creek in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.“You just can’t beat the scenery and the solitude of Upper Big Creek,” he said. “It’s challenging, but I love it.”Bearden has worked as a kayak instructor at Camp Timberlake for Boys in Asheville, a retail guide at the Nantahala Outdoor Center in Bryson City, and is now a guide for Basecamp Cullowhee. He says winning the Blue Ridge Outdoors Top Adventure College Tournament for the second consecutive year is a major source of pride for the university and its students.“It really means a lot to everyone,” he said. “We strive to brand ourselves around the outdoor lifestyle, and this is just confirmation that we are doing a good job of that.”A Close SecondWhile WCU may have taken the cake in this year’s Top College Contest, a fiery opponent gave the school a serious run for its money.Montreat College is a tiny school with an enrollment of just over 1,000, but it’s situated near four wilderness areas, four North Carolina state parks, several rivers, and the 14-mile trail that ascends Mount Mitchell, the tallest peak east of the Mississippi River.Photo Courtesy Montreat CollegeAmid this backdrop, Montreat has developed one of the best outdoor programs in the country.“The outdoor program started in the mid-1970s at what was then a junior college known as Montreat-Anderson,” said Chair of the Outdoor Education Department Brad Daniel. “It began as a two year associates Degree in Outdoor Recreation and a 20-day Outward Bound-type wilderness expedition called Discovery. The first Discovery expedition went out in 1976. In 2016 we will celebrate our 40th year of wilderness programming, making it one of the longer college-sponsored extended wilderness programs in the United States.”Daniel says the primary purpose of Montreat’s Outdoor Education (OE) program is to prepare students to rise up to the everyday challenges of life while molding some of them for careers in the outdoors industry.Like Josh Whitmore of WCU, he sees the students as the primary engine behind the success of Montreat’s Outdoor Education.“Many students cite Discovery as one of the most important experiences in the program,” he said.Student participant Daniel Harmon says the program has helped him grow by making him step outside his comfort zone.“The OE program has helped me grow by forcing me to become the leader I knew I could be,” he said. “Through the leading of small groups, I’ve found that that I can not only handle leadership, but I can make a difference in the lives of those I lead.”Daniel’s OE classmate Kara Smith says that her involvement in the OE program sparked a desire to pursue a career in the outdoor industry.“I think the significant experience would of course have to be Discovery,” she said. “I had never experienced the outdoors like that, and it really affirmed my desire to be an outdoor professional and show others the beauty of the natural world.”Congratulations to Western Carolina University and Montreat, and look for an extended feature highlighting regional outdoor education in our August issue.last_img read more

Trump military plan is set in old ways

first_img“Generals prepare to fight the last war.” An old saying that reflects our proposed military budget for 2018 by a president who gladly pursues the “old days.” The administration has requested $686 billion for the Defense Department, an $80 billion, or 13 percent increase, from 2017. Let’s not forget that the United States spends more each year on defense that the next eight nations combined. The United States represented 36 percent of total world military spending in 2016 before this proposed 13 percent increase.The controversial F-35 fighter jet is a good example of our military thinking. Each jet costs about $100 million, one of the greatest boondoggles in military purchasing history. Projections say the F-35 project will cost $1.5 trillion over its decades-long life. Contrast this current style of military thinking with a modern-day opponent. That opponent might be sitting comfortably in a small room in front of a computer. He or she is termed a hacker, and the scope of damage the hacker can do to our country and military is vast.For instance, they might hack computer chips embedded in weapons systems so our service members mistakenly fire at each other rather than the enemy. Disabling propulsion systems on multi-billion-dollar aircraft carriers is another tactic. And, of course, there’s disabling civilian infrastructure such as the electrical grid, transportation and financial activities, not to mention the greatest threat of all to our democracy, compromising our election process.Comparing the money we spend on the “old way” to fight a war, contrasted with what a modern-day hacker must invest, is a deafening shout that our proposed defense budget is based on misplaced priorities and a denial of the future. But what else would one expect from a president who refuses to accept science and modern thinking? Don CooperAmsterdamMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationThree seniors who started as seventh-graders providing veteran experience for Amsterdam golfEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img read more

Female employee of DOWASCO involved in vehicular accident at Bioche

first_img 63 Views no discussions Share Sharing is caring! Share LocalNews Female employee of DOWASCO involved in vehicular accident at Bioche by: – September 19, 2011center_img Share Tweet Photo of vehicle at the scene of the accidentInformation reaching Dominica Vibes News indicates that a female employee at the Dominica Water and Sewerage Company (DOWASCO) was involved in a minor vehicular accident earlier this afternoon.According to an eye witness, Tamara Rodney who is a Laboratory Technician at DOWASCO, while driving the company’s vehicle in a northerly direction towards Portsmouth went down precipice.The report further indicates that just after clearing a corner in the vicinity of the Ponderosa restaurant approaching the village of Bioche, the vehicle went off the road and down a precipice.The vehicle landed in a rock shelf area about 2 feet from a 400 feet drop to the sea.Although it appeared that she sustained minor injuries and could walk away from the vehicle, she was transported to the Princess Margaret Hospital for evaluation. Efforts to contact the Human Resource Manager at DOWASCO for an update on the employee’s condition proved futile.Dominica Vibes Newslast_img read more

Sir Curtly debunks West Indies on the improve

first_imgST JOHN’S, Antigua, (CMC) — Pace legend Sir Curtly Ambrose has debunked recent assertions by West Indies Twenty20 captain Carlos Brathwaite and head coach Stuart Law, that the regional side is making progress despite losing the opening two games of the four-match series against Pakistan.West Indies surrendered the first game in Barbados last Sunday by six wickets and followed up with a three-run defeat in the second game last Thursday at Queen’s Park Oval, to fall 0-2 behind in the series.Following their last defeat, both Brathwaite and Law said the home side had improved, despite not getting the result but Sir Curtly said the Windies appeared to be deteriorating.“This is getting worst and worst and I’ve started believing that these guys don’t know or have the know how to win games,” Sir Curtly was quoted as saying.“Too many times they find themselves in a winning position and then for some strange or unknown reason it’s just like they lose their focus, they lose their train of thought and end up losing and it’s like they don’t have the knowhow to win anymore.”In both defeats, West Indies were undermined by 18-year-old leg-spinner Shadab Khan, who produced Man-of-the-Match efforts to inspire Pakistan.Shadab took three for seven on debut in the opening game to limit the Windies to a modest 111 and returned to take four 14 to once again hurt the hosts as they failed to chase down 133 in the second contest.All-rounder Jason Holder, the Test and one-day captain, said after the opening defeat that the Windies had not been familiar with Shadab but Sir Curtly said international cricket did not offer the luxury of time to get accustomed to opposing players.“So what are you going to do, wait for another two or three series to get accustomed to some players? It doesn’t work like that,” the former West Indies bowling coach contended.“I can understand you meet a guy for the first time and he caused some problems in that first game because you had never seen him before but by the time the second game comes around, you should have an idea of what he is capable of or what he can do.“You can’t be telling me you are going to wait until the end of the series or two series later to say you are going to work him out. It doesn’t work like that, you have to work him out right now.”West Indies beat Pakistan in the decisive third game of the series at Queen’s Park Oval on Saturday.last_img read more

Liverpool go eight points clear with 3-1 victory over Man City

first_imgBy Simon EvansLIVERPOOL, England (Reuters) – Liverpool opened up an eight-point lead at the top of the Premier League with an emphatic and hugely impressive 3-1 win over defending champions Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday.The victory, sealed with goals from Fabinho, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane, leaves unbeaten Liverpool on 34 points from 12 games, eight ahead of Leicester City and Chelsea, and nine in front of Pep Guardiola’s fourth-placed City.While talk of decisive results in November, with 26 games of the campaign remaining, is premature, the manner of Liverpool’s win over a team which has dominated the league for the past two seasons was certainly a declaration of intent.Anfield exploded when Liverpool grabbed a sixth-minute lead with a thundering drive from Brazilian Fabinho, who pounced on a poor clearance from Ilkay Gundogan and blasted past Claudio Bravo from over 20 metres out.Yet City felt the stunning effort should have been ruled out — and a penalty awarded to them — as prior to the break that led to the goal Liverpool defender Trent Alexander-Arnold appeared to handle the ball inside the box but the VAR review went against the visitors.It was the latest VAR controversy in the Premier League and is certain to spark more debate, but while the opening goal set the tone, Liverpool’s dominance was soon evident all across the field.City pushed forward in response and Raheem Sterling missed a close-range header, but Liverpool struck again in the 13th minute when Andy Robertson crossed from the left and Salah nodded the bouncing ball past Bravo to make it 2-0.Juergen Klopp’s European champions, without a domestic league title since 1990, now had a firm grip on the game and caused constant trouble for City’s shaky defence with their powerful surges forward.Liverpool were on top physically and their pressing stopped City from establishing their usual possession game but still they managed to carve out some openings.Sergio Aguero, who had a disappointing game, forced Liverpool keeper Alisson Becker into action in the 25th minute and then the Argentine should have done better three minutes before the break when he shot wide after being fed by Kevin De Bruyne.Guardiola needed to adjust something at the break to find a foothold in the game but City’s third defeat of the season, after losses to Norwich City and Wolverhampton Wanderers, was assured when Liverpool made it 3-0 six minutes after the interval.Jordan Henderson superbly worked space on the right flank and whipped in a cross which Mane dived to head home at the back post.Bernardo Silva pulled a goal back for City in the 78th minute, drilling home a low cross from Angelino and the visitors enjoyed some late pressure but it was too late for a comeback from the champions.City have not won at Anfield in the league since May, 2003 — their only win at Liverpool in 38 years.last_img read more

Assistant coach Hegland guides Syracuse runners to success

first_img Published on February 6, 2014 at 12:38 am From a small town to a well-known city. From a Division II school to the big stage. From running to coaching. In only eight years, Syracuse track and field assistant coach Dave Hegland has quickly become an integral part of a nationally contending program.Hegland has helped develop conference champions, All-Americans and even a national champion. However, the young and humble 32-year-old coach doesn’t need the spotlight, nor does he want it.Hegland refuses to take credit for his runners’ success. Rather, he denounces any notion of a major influence on their performances.“The main thing is to just have great athletes,” Hegland said. “I just try to get out of their way and not screw them up.”Although Hegland may not like acknowledging his own coaching brilliance, his runners can’t give him enough praise. Those sprinters and hurdlers will take to the track again this weekend, some at the New Balance Collegiate Invitational in New York City and others at the Valentine Invitational at Boston University.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“He can still find the little problems you’ll still be having and tweak your technique a little bit more,” said senior hurdler Donald Pollitt. “He gets down to just the finer detail, your form. And just those little things I think, separate him from a lot of other coaches.”Senior sprinter Jaquan Holland has worked with Hegland for more than two years now after transferring from Union College. Holland believes there isn’t even a comparison between Hegland and the previous coaches he’s had. “What makes him different from other coaches is when he’s looking for different methods and trying to learn different things,” Holland said. “He looks at basketball coaches, football coaches, soccer coaches.“He takes different methods from them and then will apply it to track.”Growing up in Jamestown, N.D., Hegland was able to learn the importance of studying and preparing from his mother, who was a teacher, and his father, a teacher and a high school track and field head coach.“I was surrounded by a lot of good educators when I was young,” Hegland said. “I think that was a pretty lucky thing for me.”Hegland took his father’s advice and ran track in high school, and eventually in college at South Dakota State University. Hegland earned Division II All-America accolades twice and still holds the school record in the 60- and 110-meter hurdles.Pollitt believes Hegland’s experience as a collegiate hurdler helps the young coach with his development of his runners. Last year, Pollitt received All-America accolades and was named Male Track & Field Athlete of the Year at the 2013 ‘Cuse Awards.“He’s not like a lot of coaches just because of what he can bring to the table,” Pollitt said.Hegland, however, would disagree with his runner’s statement.“These guys are at a much higher level than I was ever at,” Hegland said. “After a certain point you’re really learning from them.”Current SU runners aren’t the only ones praising Hegland. Even those who have left still rave over the job he’s done.Former SU sprinter and hurdler Jarret Eaton was an All-American, broke multiple school records and became Syracuse’s lone track and field national champion under Hegland’s guidance. Eaton is currently training for the 60-meter hurdles in the 2016 Summer Olympics. Eaton credits Hegland for the success he has had both during and after his time running at Syracuse.“Coach Dave directly impacted me as a runner and has helped develop me into the hurdler I am today,” Eaton wrote in an email. “The maturity I have, knowledge of the hurdles, knowledge of nutrition and sleep, my technique and patience have all been the result of being under Coach Dave.”Hegland has mentored a total of 13 student-athletes to individual conference championships, six sprinter-hurdlers to NCAA championships, has seen multiple runners break countless school records and coached Eaton to a national championship.Track and field head coach Chris Fox, who has worked with Hegland for more than seven years now, described him simply. “One of the best sprints and hurdles coaches in the country.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

New initiative to promote wellness among students

first_imgOn Sept. 30, USC unveiled a new interdisciplinary initiative, Mindful USC, to promote the mental and physical health of USC community members.Dean of Religious Life Varun Soni, who co-created the initiative, has helped develop an interdisciplinary approach to mindfulness that is unique to USC’s program.“We feel like our initiative is more comprehensive than most of the initiatives of other universities because it has a focus on three areas: research, teaching and practice,” Soni said.The new initiative will feature mindfulness courses, practice groups, research opportunities, faculty workshops, media resources, public programs and special events. The first event will take place on Oct. 22 at 6:30 p.m., and will include a presentation by Chade-Meng Tan, Google’s chief happiness officer, whose official title is the Jolly Good Fellow. He is also the author of Search Inside Yourself, a modern manual for mindfulness.The free, 5-week workshops will be hosted by the Center for Excellence in Teaching on both the University Park Campus and Health Sciences Campus. They will be open to students, faculty and staff and will focus primarily on how to develop personal mindfulness practices.“[The workshops] are really focused on developing mindfulness practices, self-compassion, and we’re really oriented around the ideas of stress reduction, workplace happiness and innovative and creative learning,” Soni said.Mindful USC’s Steering Committee is co-chaired by Professor Allen Weiss and Soni. The committee also includes leaders from the Center for Excellence in Teaching, Center for Work and Family Life, Institute for Integrative Health, Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics, Engemann Health Center, Office of Talent Management and the Office of Religious Life. Faculty members from six academic schools are also represented. The Steering Committee is also partnering with Undergraduate and Graduate Student Governments to make the program as effective for students as possible.USG president Andrew Menard views the issue of mental health a critical one on campus.“It’s important for [students] to make sure not only that they’re doing well in school, but that they’re mentally well and mentally healthy because ultimately what’s going to impact their performance is how healthy they are,” he said.Menard also acknowledged his own struggles with stress management, which has helped shaped his passion toward providing a better learning environment for students at USC.“There have been times when I’ve been stressed out, or my friends have been stressed out, and ultimately I think that it’s been a hindrance to our productivity,” Menard said. “I think the sooner that students take a step back and recognize the importance of being mentally well and having this mindful outlook, students are just going to enjoy their lives more.”Soni hopes to expand the program to have a greater impact on the USC community as a whole.“The goal really is to start something and see who’s really excited about this. What we really want to do is create a buzz around mindfulness, and hopefully people from different domains and disciplines within the university will come and say they want to be a part of this,” he said.Students can get more information about the program and sign up for classes on the initiative’s website, read more