Note from the Director on COVID-19 Virus Preparation

Greetings,

I know you have all been hearing from many different campus partners about the University’s response to COVID-19, but I wanted to quickly let you know how the UHP is responding to the challenges raised by this virus.

For the time being, the UHP is open and operating as normal. Spring classes are meeting, and the townhouse is open for study hours. That said, this is obviously a fluid situation and the UHP will adhere to all University recommendations and directives as they arise. In particular, GW has suspended all non-essential, GW-affiliated international travel and is requiring community members traveling within certain countries to self-quarantine for 14 days before returning to campus. Unfortunately, these travel restrictions will impact the spring break and summer plans of some UHP community members. Advisors Brianna and Ben are available to help students navigate any last-minute changes that might affect a student’s four-year plan. In light of COVID-19, please consider your personal travel plans carefully for the upcoming spring break week. In the event that you become ill or are subject to quarantine, UHP faculty members are aware that flexibility will be required and are prepared to make appropriate individual accommodations. Communication is definitely the key here, so please be in email contact with your instructors directly if you are unable to attend class. Please do not attend class if you are not feeling well!

In the event that the University decides that it is prudent to cancel some (or all) face-to-face class meetings, the semester will continue using online resources. We ask students to be flexible and patient as there are bound to be some initial technical hiccups. Also, each faculty member will use different online tools and teaching methods, depending on the course content and format – so follow directions carefully and ask questions if you are uncertain about any course expectations. In the event of campus closures, Brianna and Ben will still be available for advising sessions, which will be held via WebEx.

Let me conclude by echoing the GW Student Association’s message of “stay informed, stay calm, and be kind.” Keep reading your emails carefully, keep washing your hands and keep looking out for one another. Further, the UHP will not tolerate any bullying, scapegoating or demonization connected to the COVID-19 virus. Bias and xenophobia have no place within our community of scholars, so please immediately report any acts of hate or bias that you have experienced or witnessed. If you have any questions, you can also reach out to me directly at bcobb@email.gwu.edu..

Bethany Cobb Kung
Director, University Honors Program
Associate Professor of Honors and Physics

Study Abroad in Greece, Summer 2020

Do you want to have class in a volcano crater this summer? Do you want to swim in the “crystal waters” of the Libyan Sea on the southern coast of Crete? Have you ever wanted to visit the Parthenon or the site of the ancient oracle at Delphi?

The UHP is offering a course this summer that will let you do all of these things while getting Arts and Humanities and WID credits towards graduation!

Please see the attached flyer for information about the information session this evening and the upcoming application deadline on March 6th. You can also start an application here.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security STEM Internship (Paid)

Are you a student looking for a professional opportunity to enhance your research interests and career goals in homeland security related areas? Do you want to learn from top scientists and subject matter experts in homeland security related areas? Do you want to network with your peers and members of the academic and scientific communities in business, industry, and government research facilities conducting research in DHS relevant areas? If you answered “Yes”, to the above questions, the HS-POWER program is for you!

The Alexander Hamilton Society Is Hiring a Program Assistant!

 Check out the following job opportunity passed along by UHP alum Eamonn Bellin!

The Alexander Hamilton Society (AHS) is seeking to hire a full-time Program Assistant to support career services for its students and alumni network.

AHS is a non-partisan, not-for-profit, national organization that seeks to identify, educate, and launch young men and women into foreign policy and national security careers imbued with the Hamiltonian perspective of strong and principled American leadership in global affairs. We have established student-run chapters at over 80 universities as well as professional chapters in NYC and Washington, D.C. Our alumni and affiliates have gone on to serve in the highest levels of government and industry. To learn more, please visit www.alexanderhamiltonsociety.org.

The Program Assistant will have an opportunity to influence the development of the organization, gain experience across a number of functions, and work with rising and established leaders in our network. Those committed to AHS’s mission, interested in our areas of focus, and who possess an entrepreneurial spirit will find working at AHS incredibly rewarding. An ideal candidate is a recent graduate, who is personable, professional, organized, and seeks a gateway into the Washington policy community. We offer competitive compensation commensurate with experience.

Responsibilities

  • Assist with AHS’s Office of Career Services
    • Build relationships with recruiters at key organizations and offices;
    • Develop and manage career resources;
    • Correspond with students on career-related support;
    • Facilitate mentorship and networking opportunities within the AHS network;
    • Collect and track student information and application status.
  • Assist in planning AHS’s National Programs
  • Assist with alumni programming
    • Track information on their career whereabouts;
    • Produce and send a monthly alumni newsletter. 

Qualifications

  • 0-2 years professional experience (including internships);
  • A commitment to AHS’s mission and principles and an interest in U.S. foreign policy and national security. Being an AHS alumnus is a plus;
  • Outstanding interpersonal and organizational skills, and a proactive personality;
  • Ability to manage a substantial number of projects and contacts at once;
  • Ability to present information concisely and effectively, both verbally and in writing;
  • Experience working with Microsoft Office, especially Excel and Powerpoint;

Application Instructions

To apply for this position, please upload your cover letter, resume, and a list of references here. We expect a number of qualified applicants and only those selected for an interview will be contacted further.

The Hunt for Lost Nazi Uranium Colloquium

Check out the following colloquium event passed along by Professor Kung!

Title: The Hunt for Lost Nazi Uranium

Abstract: 1944 saw the height of the Manhattan Project efforts which was distributed between Los Alamos, Oak Ridge, and Hanford. Since the Manhattan Project was spurred by the fear that Germany was building nuclear weapons, Allied anxiety continuously pondered the Nazi atomic progress. As Germany began to fall, Gen. Groves commissioned the military and scientific intelligence mission code-named Alsos. It was to be at the forefront of the defeat so as to immediately assess the German advancement towards an atomic bomb. Alsos uncovered what the Manhattan Project had feared: the Germans had a two-year lead on the American nuclear program and being the birth place of nuclear fission, the Germans began with an incredible sprint of discovery. But then they found, just as the Americans were getting their feet wet, the German program miraculously had slowed. In April 1945 in the sleepy village of Haigerloch, Alsos found the culmination of the German nuclear program: a failed reactor experiment, named B-VIII. It was on the scale of Enrico Fermi’s successful Chicago Pile 1. This incomplete nuclear reactor, built of 664 uranium cubes had come very close to criticality. What had happened? How did Germany miss the mark? The answer is straightforward: unlike the U.S. efforts, spearheaded by Groves’ singular defining military force, the German atomic program was not administered by a competent manager. Their adequate resources were distributed and not gathered, their superb intellect was competitive and not collaborative. The failure of their atomic program can be pinned to a critical mass of German confidence moderated by ego and arrogance. Had they more humility and collaboration, history would have taken a different path. Instead, their reactor was scattered to history. What happened to the German B-VIII reactor? The United States acquired it; however, the question remains: what did they do with it?

When? Thursday, Feb. 20, from 4-5 PM

Where? In Corcoran 101

Islam in India and Pakistan: A Historical Look into Interreligious Dialogue

Check out the following event passed along by Professor Aviv!

Please join us on Thursday, February 20 at 5pm in the Marvin Center, Room 307 for the 2020 Berz Lecture: “Islam in India and Pakistan: From the First Conquests to the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA)”

Speaker: Dr. Shankar Nair, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, University of Virginia

Abstract: As the still young Islamic empire spread into the lands of India, Muslims encountered, for perhaps the first time, a grand-scale religious civilization entirely unmentioned in the Qur’an or in the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad. With so little explicit guidance from their scriptural sources, how were Muslims to navigate this new land or make sense of the incredibly diverse Hindu populations of South Asia? Though one might have expected Muslims to reject Hindus outright as mere idolaters and unbelievers, the historical response was surprisingly nuanced and accommodating. As modern nationalist forces in the region threaten to overturn this legacy, this talk surveys the often forgotten history of Islam in South Asia, offering insights into how the region arrived at the crises it faces today.

Aisthesis: A Publication Opportunity for Honors Students

Dear Honors Students,

University of Minnesota Duluth’s Honors Program is currently seeking academic and creative submissions for the 2020 issue of Aisthesis, our undergraduate honors journal. As an interdisciplinary publication, we welcome academic work, including honors capstone projects, literature reviews, and research articles from all fields of research. Creative submissions of nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and visual art (including but not limited to painting, sculpture, short film, multimedia, and photography) are also encouraged. If you are hoping to build your resume, share your work, and publish as an undergraduate, this is the perfect opportunity for you!

The submission deadline is March 20, 2020. Guidelines can be found at https://pubs.lib.umn.edu/index.php/aisthesis/submissionguidelines.

Please email questions to honorsaisthesis@d.umn.edu and follow the Aisthesis Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/HonorsAisthesis/) for updates. We look forward to reading your work in the coming months.

Sincerely,
The Aisthesis Editorial Board

Paid RA position for Prof. Christov

I am looking for a research assistant to assist me in a research project on the idea of self-determination. The remuneration for this position is up to $1,500 and available immediately.

In asking “How did the self-determination of a people and nation building come to be seen as virtually synonymous?”, the project seeks to map out the political, legal, and historical literature on the subject. The RA job is to research articles, books, and historical data on the development of self-determination from the 18th century to the present.

All interviews will be conducted this Wednesday, Feb 5. Email Prof. Christov (christov@gwu.edu) if interested.

Published at 19, ft. Chris Zuniga

Join me for a Book Talk I am hosting on January 28th, 2020 in the basement of Gelman at 6:00 PM. There, I will talk about my journey in getting published and what it really is to sit down and write and know that your work will become part of the public discourse. The event doubles as a University Academic Workshop. While I will be speaking on the industry and how to navigate it, I will delve into the structure, teachings, purpose, and content of my book. How I Became a Traitor will publish in April 2020.

There will be time for Q&A. Ask questions about anything. I’ll answer.

If you’re looking to learn more about the book and my journey, follow me on Instagram (@AtChrisZuniga) and read the section below.

Enjoy your day. Thank you.

_______________________

Story of My Book

My name is Chris Zuniga, and I am the author of How I Became a Traitor. I wrote this book because I have had enough of the social isolation I and others experience for the “discrepancy” between our genetics and our ideas. The biggest obstacle in rebuilding our political and social arena in modern-America is the very social isolation I speak of. I believe the cause of it to be the same people who claim to understand the struggles of others and champion their causes as allies. Sympathy is not empathy. At the sight of my people’s brown skin, we are greatly “valued” by social advocates because we “matter and deserve a seat at the table”. But when we disagree, we are “traitors” and simply “not woke enough.”

Conservatism is not Republicanism, but the recent conflation of the two things has damaged our country. By conflating personal and social values to objective policy prescriptions that do not necessarily correspond with them, we force ourselves into a corner with our faces toward the wall. There’s no way we can begin to sympathize with something we corner ourselves into never understanding. At its core, my book is about the obvious truth no longer commonly practiced: politics is beyond appearance.

My hope is that, in reading this book, you will understand that conservative principles reach far below the surface of everyday liberal-conservative politics. I hope to instill in you the same passion and excitement that I have for understanding society’s facade of understanding the marginalized for its own social and political gain. Ultimately, I want you to see this book as a tool to help you gain special insight into the experiences of everyday people like me, who are assumed by outsiders to have specific ideas, characteristics, and experiences simply because of the way we look. More importantly, this book will help you grow closer to who you are as an individual and more confident in your control of the life you choose to lead.

How I Became a Traitor is a non-fiction book that speaks to everyone interested in the intersection between politics, values, and identity.

 

 

The Book – How I Became a Traitor

The book is written in 3 Parts….

Part 1: The Betrayal — Through stories like that of Antonia Okafor, Ashleen Menchaca-Bagnulo, and my own in the context of my family’s journey across the Southern Border, readers will understand identity politics beyond its definition, as well as how its adoption tears our social fabric.

Part 2: The Battle — Through stories of institutional and social suppression and outright racism, readers will learn how identity politics labels everyday minorities as either “tokens” or “traitors.”

Part 3: Our Truce — An exclusive conversation with writer and political commentator Steven V. Roberts will contrast today’s political arena with the recent past, demonstrating how a two-minute change in mindset is enough to restore political unity, promote social progress for all, and treat the country of its politics-by-appearance.

 

 

What I Need & What You’ll Get

This book will be published with New Degree Press. I set up the pre-order tiers to help cover the costs for publishing my book. Money raised will go towards the following:

  • The Editor I will work with to revise and publish my manuscript in April 2020
  • The Cover Design of my Book — the mockups you see currently are a placeholder!
  • The Layout Design for the interior of my book (Physical Copy, Ebook Formats)
  • The Copyediting for My Book — to help polish the grammar and spelling prior to publication
  • The Launch & Promotion Efforts for my book — when I ultimately publish this Spring

When I pre-sell 100 copies of my book, I will publish. When I pre-sell 150 copies of my book, I will also publish an audiobook. When I pre-sell 200 copies of my book, I will publish a hardcover edition. When I pre-sell 250, I will publish a translated version in Spanish.

I am also offering some exclusive rewards for people who pre-order my book now. When I publish, you will receive the following :

  • A personally signed copy of my book
  • A personal thank you note for pre-ordering my book
  • Your Name will appear in a Special, Acknowledgements Section of my book (“with Special Thanks to”)
  • Early access to the Introduction of my Book.
  • The opportunity to help give me feedback and be involved in selecting my cover
  • I will do a book topic/workshop seminar where I will share experience the experiences of writing my book
  • An Invitation to my Launch Party

 

 

About the Author

Chris Zuniga is an Honors student at The George Washington University, studying Political Communication and Sociology.

Born into an undocumented and poor family in inner city Passaic, Chris experienced crime, poverty, a struggling school system, and hopelessness. Yet, his ideology isn’t what you expect it to be. Having always been put on the spot for his in-the-minority beliefs, Chris learned to manipulate negative attention to his benefit at a young age. He owes this skill to those who try to isolate and discredit him, as he says they “cluelessly promote my success by giving me a platform. They make things like this book a reality”.

In 2017, Chris’s outspokenness earned him national press and an invitation to the Rose Garden for a formal address by the President of the United States. Chris wants a career supporting Black and Latino youth in navigating “toxic, but particularly toxic ‘liberal’ spaces” through imparting what he has learned in his journey from the fourth Most Miserable City in the United States (Business Insider) and into the pinnacle area of elitism, Foggy Bottom/Georgetown in Washington DC.

Chris speaks publicly at a variety of events and aspires to gain a platform where he can make social commentary that he believes will change mindsets, outlooks, and lives. In his free time, he dedicates himself to just that, having previously spoken at Universities, State Board meetings, Boards of Education, Tedx Conferences, and soon, his readers and podcast listeners.

For more information, you can connect with Chris via email at AtChrisZuniga@gmail.com, on Instagram @AtChrisZuniga, and on LinkedIn.

 

 

Risks & Challenges

The biggest challenge with publishing a book is delivering the finished book to the backer, specifically my mailing of the book to you. I have eliminated this risk by building into the campaign the mailing and shipping costs of your signed copies to you within each pre-order tier.

The risk of delivering the pre-sale copies of my book is contingent on the publisher we use. I will be working closely with New Degree Press to make sure we get the earliest possible ship date of the signed book copy to you. We will keep all pre-sale backers up-to-date as my book hits each key milestone and publishes. You will know when the copies of my book you pre-ordered are expected to ship.

 

 

Other Ways You Can Help

Some people just can’t contribute, but that doesn’t mean they can’t help:

  • Please Share my Pre-sale Campaign on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn with your friends, family and network. Please use #IAmATraitor and tag me as well as my publisher, New Degree Press, so we can help amplify your efforts.
  • You can easily share my Pre-Sale Campaign Page via Indiegogo at the top of the page
  • Please share my book with five friends, family members, or co-workers who you think would enjoy it. Please do this as a text message or direct message on social media.

Thank you so much for all your love and support!

Thanks again,
Chris Zuniga

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