A monk with one foot in the world

first_imgThis is one in a series of profiles showcasing some of Harvard’s stellar graduates.Tajay Bongsa has seen conflict firsthand.He experienced it growing up in an indigenous community in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh, he saw its consequences in Sri Lanka, and he heard it from the victims he visited in former war zones there while interning for an international relief organization.Those experiences have fueled his desire to better understand people, and to help people better understand each other.“Talking with those people and hearing their stories — you just want to do something more to help,” he said. “From Harvard Divinity School, some of the qualities I’ve learned are humility, openness to learning, and connecting with people in deeper ways. I think they are important in whatever we do.“Maybe we go into business, become a politician, but whatever it is that we do, if we really want to make an impact, we have to connect with people in deeper ways.”Bongsa, who will graduate from Harvard Divinity School (HDS) in May with a master’s degree in theological studies, wants to earn an M.B.A. next. His path ahead may at first sound a bit unlikely for a Buddhist monk with a Divinity School degree, but it makes sense when he offers his reasoning.While at HDS, Bongsa took advantage of the opportunity to enroll in courses at other Harvard Schools. He took CS50, as well as “Microeconomics of Competitiveness” at the Business School.“Here at HDS we tend to talk about social progress, social justice, and at the Business School it’s more about economic progress. I feel like we need to bring them together,” he said.When people hear of Bongsa’s direction of study, they tend to be skeptical.“There is a frustration about capitalism and big corporations. Even theology or the field of the study of religions face similar frustrations, such as the belief that religions are the problem in the world, without realizing the depths and breadths of religions.“There of course are organizations and businesses that are addressing social problems and there are efforts like the Religions and the Practice of the Peace (RPP) Initiative at HDS that are doing so much to foster sustainable peace. We need to look at things holistically and see that today’s problems are complex and that addressing them will require us to go beyond our comfort zones,” said Bongsa, a student assistant for the RPP Initiative.Bongsa wants to create one of those businesses that address social problems. He has a vision for a startup that will connect people, including scholars, educators, and activists, so they can together solve problems and share ideas and best practices for conflict transformation.“I realize how technology can be a powerful tool for social change,” he said. “One of the things we learn at HDS is how much we can give back to society. I feel that religion, in relation to entrepreneurship, is still an unexplored territory.”His interest in technology started years ago, but he wasn’t able to fulfill it until he came to the United States for the first time in 2014 as a student at HDS.“I looked for the opportunity here and I took hold of it,” he said. Bongsa helped launch a new student organization at HDS, the Tech & Social Entrepreneurship group. He also served as a student consultant for the FAS Academic Technology Group and as the communications chair for the HDS Student Association.Over the last two years, interacting with and learning from people who bring their own unique stories and backgrounds to Harvard has inspired Bongsa to reinvent himself.“I have been through a lot in Bangladesh. I come from an indigenous community … that has for decades been socioeconomically and politically marginalized because of the conflict. While I was living in Sri Lanka, we’d go on demonstrations to raise awareness about the violence in the Chittagong Hill Tracts,” he said.“I want to help people understand each other. The moment we close our hearts and the moment we stop learning, it becomes a problem, not just for us, but for other people as well.”last_img read more

Whopper watermelon

first_imgBy Dan RahnUniversity of GeorgiaIndependence Day has always been big for Tyler Glover. And thisyear, the 103.5-pound watermelon he grew for the inaugural 4-HGiant Watermelon Growing Contest has made it even bigger.”He’ll be 12 on July Fourth,” said Tyler’s mom, Allison Glover ofCairo, Ga. “We had his birthday party (Thursday), so he’s alreadysaying he’s 12. But he was born on the Fourth of July.”Who better to win the first statewide 4-H watermelon contest thanan all-American boy born on the Fourth of July?”I couldn’t have orchestrated it that well,” said Jeff Buckley, aUniversity of Georgia 4-H program coordinator. 4-H is the UGACooperative Extension youth development program and has nearly200,000 members statewide.Buckley has run the Georgia 4-H Giant Pumpkin Growing Contestsince 1999 and recognized that the longstanding contest favored4-H’ers in north Georgia. “Pumpkins grow better in northGeorgia,” he said.Something for south Georgia”We wanted to come up with something that would give 4-H’ers insouth Georgia a better chance to compete,” Buckley said. “KenLewis (Southwest Extension District program developmentcoordinator) suggested a watermelon growing contest. KevinPhillips (UGA Extension coordinator in Wilcox County) puttogether some tips on growing melons.”Buckley said the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Associationand the Georgia Watermelon Association agreed to sponsor thecontest. And the first year’s participation was strong.Glover was the clear winner with his whopper, a Carolina Crosswatermelon, to claim the $100 first-place award. Harlee Powell ofCrisp County took the second-place $50 with a 70-pound CarolinaCross. And Clayton Smith, also of Crisp County, was third and won$25 with a 59-pound Cobb watermelon.The winners will be recognized during the Watermelon DaysFestival in Cordele, Ga., July 8. All of the participants willget T-shirts.The winnerGlover grew his prizewinning melon in his backyard garden with “alot of spraying for bugs and diseases, a lot of fertilizer and alot of cow manure,” he said. “My dad (Jeff) gave me some goodadvice. He grows good pumpkins every year.”He picked off some of the watermelons that he thought might bediseased. Thinning the melons allowed the vine to channel more ofits energy into the prizewinner, too. “He had a lot of funwatching that watermelon grow,” his mom said. “We all did.”A seventh-grade student at Shiver Elementary School in Cairo,Glover said winning the watermelon contest was “awesome. I justthought there are a lot of people in the state who could grow abigger one,” he said. “I didn’t think I would win it.”But he did. Makes for a happy Fourth of July story, doesn’t it?(Dan Rahn is a news editor with the University of GeorgiaCollege of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.)last_img read more

Aussie Open: Nadal ‘sad’ as tie-breaker woes end bid for 20th Slam title

first_imgRafael Nadal said he was “sad” to be out of the Australian Open Wednesday, depriving him of the chance to equal Roger Federer’s 20 Grand Slam titles, but credited “great opponent” Dominic Thiem after their four-set thriller.Advertisement The Spanish world number one was upset by the Austrian fifth seed in the quarter-finals, losing three tie-breakers as he went down 7-6 (7⁄3), 7-6 (7⁄4), 4-6, 7-6 (8⁄6) it a 4hrs 10mins marathon.Federer is still in the tournament and plays Novak Djokovic for a place in the final on Thursday as the ageless Swiss hunts for a 21st Slam crown to pull further away from his old rival.“Of course, I am sad. I lost an opportunity to be in the semi-finals of another Grand Slam,” said Nadal. “But I lost against a great opponent. And he deserved it, too. Well done for him.”Defeat for Rafael Nadal means he will have to wait for a 20th Grand Slam titleDefeat also means Nadal, 33, must wait another year to try to become the first man in the Open era – and only the third in history – to win all four Major titles twice, after Roy Emerson and Rod Laver.The Australian Open is his least successful Slam, having won just once in 2009, and he met his match in fellow baseliner Thiem.Nadal beat the Austrian in the last two French Open finals and had a 9-4 record in his favour.But Thiem, 26, rose to the occasion when it mattered with Nadal suggesting his younger legs helped.“I need a little bit more determination in some moments – true. It’s true that in some moments, conditions have been a little bit heavy,” he said.“I had two breaks with new balls. Then I felt more comfortable with the new balls. The ball became so heavy. He’s younger, he’s very quick. With these heavy balls, it’s difficult to produce sometimes winners.“He has a lot of power, so he’s able to produce these amazing shots from a very difficult position.” Read Also: Thiem floors Nadal, Zverev knocks out Wawrinka as youngsters gun into semisAsked if there was anything he would have done differently, Nadal replied: “Yes, win any tiebreak.”“But that’s how it works. Sometimes things are not going the way that you would like,” he added.“But he played with the right determination. He was putting one more ball in all the time in a difficult position for me. He’s playing with a lot of energy, aggressive, determination.”FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Loading… Promoted Content10 Stargazing Locations To ‘Connect With Nature’Who’s The Best Car Manufacturer Of All Time?Care To Try A Glow-In-The-Dark Doughnut?Couples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable WayBirds Enjoy Living In A Gallery Space Created For ThemWhat Is A Black Hole In Simple Terms?7 Facts About Black Holes That Will Blow Your MindOnly Those Who Live In 1980s Know What It IsThe Very Last Bitcoin Will Be Mined Around 2140. Read More8 Scenes That Prove TV Has Gone Too Far2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This YearCelebs Who Are Turning 50 This Yearlast_img read more

‘We can’t afford a second wave’: Palace to check COVID data before…

first_imgOn Wednesday, the Inter-Agency Task Force conducted meeting to discuss the issue on lockdown restrictions.  MANILA – The decision to lower or retain lockdown classifications would depend on scientific data, Malacañang reiterated Wednesday. The rest of the country, meanwhile, was placed under a modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) – the lowest form of community quarantine enforced by the government. Roque said another factor that they are looking at is the doubling time of coronavirus disease 2019 together with critical care capacity. “We’re still looking for some kind of data that would indicate Metro Manila, if we give it more liberty so to speak under MGCQ, will not spark a second wave. We cannot afford a second wave that’s why we’re looking at data that if we completely loosen up or almost completely loosen up is that the cases will not spike,” Roque explained. The Philippines has 22,992 confirmed cases of COVID-19 including 1,017 death and 4,736 as of Tuesday.  (With ABS-CBN News/PN) The government employs a four-tier community quarantine ranging from the strictest ECQ to the most relaxed MGCQ. From June 1 to 15, Metro Manila, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Pangasinan, Albay, and Davao City were placed under general community quarantine (GCQ). “I’d like to stress that when we actually decide when to ease up further or retain the classification it’s all scientific data so we’re all eager to await the epidemiological report coming from the DOH (Department of Health),” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.last_img read more

Donna Sue Herbert, 84

first_imgDonna Sue Herbert, 84, Greensburg, passed away on Saturday, November 16, 2019 at her residence. Born, November 24, 1934 in Shelbyville, Indiana, she was the daughter of Harry W. and Roberta J. (Ewick) Miller.  Donna enjoyed gardening, cooking, bird watching, and spending time with her family.  She had worked at Keillor’s Restaurant, GC Murphy’s, and she retired from September Place.  She was a member of the St. Mary’s Catholic Church and the Eagles Auxiliary. She was married to Lotus Herbert on December 25, 1952 and he survives. She is also survived by three daughters, Debbie Herbert, Greensburg, Janet (Tom) Jones, Greensburg, Marian (Tony) Fisse, Greensburg; two sons, Lotus (Beth) Herbert, Jr., Batesville, David (Kathy) Herbert, Greensburg; one brother, Steven (Sandy) Miller, Greensburg; two sisters, Patricia (Bob) Logan, Greensburg, Roberta J. (Ron) Miller, Greensburg; 11 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; one brother, William Miller; three sisters, Anna Minary, Betty Zapfe, Mildred Evans; one granddaughter, Heather Fisse. Family and friends will gather at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday at the funeral home to pray the rosary.   Visitation will follow until 8:00 p.m. at the Porter-Oliger-Pearson Funeral Home in Greensburg.   The family will also receive friends from 10:00 a.m. until the funeral mass at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Greensburg with Rev. John Meyer officiating. Interment will be held in the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery in Greensburg.  Memorials may be made to the St. Mary’s Catholic Church Building Fund or to the American Heart Association.last_img read more

P.J. party at Camp Randall, Stocco not invited

first_imgRAY PFEIFFER/Herald PhotoA sloppy game offensively? Sure. A defensive gem? Absolutely. Another ugly win for Wisconsin? You bet.Whatever the case, the Badgers took care of business in ensuring another 3-0 record coming into the Big Ten season with a 14-0 home victory over the San Diego State Aztecs Saturday.This marks the third consecutive season in which UW has opened with a trio of non-conference victories, but just like the first two wins of 2006, it wasn’t easy and it didn’t look pretty. The Badgers and Aztecs headed to the locker room at halftime in a 0-0 deadlock — Wisconsin’s last scoreless first half came against Illinois Nov. 25, 1995, (incidentally, that game was the last tie in NCAA history, ending 3-3).But the UW offense came alive after the break, using a 53-yard touchdown run by P.J. Hill and a Paul Hubbard score to gain the victory. The Wisconsin defense took care of the rest, surrendering just 115 total yards in Bret Bielema’s first shutout as head coach.”[It’s] not every week [that] our offense is going to put up a big number of points, they just had an off day today,” linebacker Mark Zalewski said. “Every game we come into it as a defense just saying we want to win this game ourselves. Any help from the offense is great, but we have the mentality, we want to win the game, and I think today was one of those games that we did a lot ourselves to really win this game.”Zalewski led the Badgers with eight tackles and was responsible for two of UW’s five sacks at the expense of SDSU’s backup-turned-starter Darren Mougey.Both of Zalewski’s sacks came on third downs, where San Diego State never found a rhythm — or any success after the first quarter. After converting their first two attempts, the Aztecs failed to move the chains on any of their next 14 tries.UW was disappointed with allowing Western Illinois to go 8-of-16 on the make-or-break play last week, but the Badgers were thrilled with their success in keeping Aztec punter Michael Hughes busy all game long with 12 punts on the day.”It’s all about starting fast, building our confidence up early, then we get flying and we get going, we get the third down stops and get off the field,” linebacker Jonathan Casillas said. “We handle our business on first and second down and we get to have fun on third down.”After the first quarter, the Aztec running game went backward, running the ball 16 times for a loss of 14 yards. Their longest run of the game came on a direct snap in fourth-down punt formation, a 12-yard gain.”That’s our first goal as a defense, shut down the run,” senior safety Joe Stellmacher said. “If you can shut down the run, make them one-dimensional, that’s huge for a defense. Our front seven did a tremendous job controlling the line of scrimmage.”And when the Aztecs were rendered one-dimensional, Mougey simply didn’t do enough in the passing game to make any dents in the Badger defense. Mougey completed 15-of-27 passes for 102 yards.”We thought that at any moment we were going to break a play and get that big momentum swing that we needed. That play just never happened,” San Diego State coach Chuck Long said. “Hats off to Wisconsin. They were very solid defensively throughout the game. They were very consistent, not giving us the opportunity to break that big play.”Hill reached the century mark shortly into the second half for the third straight time in his young career, and with an offensive power outage was quiet until doing so … that is, until he broke the game open with his 53-yard scamper down the SDSU sideline.True to form, Hill had to work for yards in breaking a couple of tackles on the run. But for the first time this season, Hill was still on his feet when he found the open field — his previous long run was 32 yards, earlier against the Aztecs — and capitalized on the opportunity with his fifth score of the year.”There were two guys on me, and I got out of that, I saw open daylight, so I had to put on the speed to get as much yardage as I could,” said Hill, who finished with a career-best 184 yards on 26 carries.Badgers’ quarterback, John Stocco, had a mediocre day on the stat sheet, going 12-of-23 with 85 yards. The day was salvaged for Stocco when he hit Hubbard in the end zone for a 6-yard score, the first touchdown of the season for a UW receiver.”I’ve got to play better,” Stocco said. “I think there’s a few throws that I missed that I normally don’t, and that’s something that can’t happen. Every now and then you’re going to miss a throw, but it just happened too many times today.””As time goes on, I see things happening with a little more consistency as well as the way they’re catching the football,” Bielema said of the passing game. “There were two drops in the first half that I was very adamant about on the sidelines that they needed to be able to make those catches and execute it. So it’s baby steps, but we’re making them.”With the non-conference schedule out of the way, the Badgers have a “big fish to fry” on Saturday, as cornerback Jack Ikegwuonu put it. No. 6 Michigan is coming off a 47-21 drubbing of then-No. 2 Notre Dame, and is looking strong coming into the showdown at the Big House.”One of the things that we’ve talked about all along is to get through the non-conference schedule to this point undefeated and make a big game out of Michigan,” Bielema said.Now the Badgers have their wish.last_img read more

Extra Innings: Do you also want more football?

first_imgLastly, replays can only be initiated by challenges from coaches. I really don’t know how I feel about this. On the one hand, it will prevent replays that are seemingly unimportant from stopping the game. On the other hand, if a team scores a game-winning touchdown and the opposing coach is out of challenges, there is no way to retroactively correct the call. To further shorten the games, the AAF has tweaked its system for commercials, the play clock and replays. Gameplay Many football fans, myself included, need more football, especially after Sunday’s lackluster Super Bowl. Look no further. Tomorrow, the Alliance of American Football kicks off its inaugural season. With eight teams divided between two conferences, the AAF brings professional football to seven cities without NFL teams of their own. “[The 4th and 12 play] is going to be a really exciting play,” Head of Football Operations J.K. McKay said. “We did it a couple of times in our preseason games, and it allowed a couple teams to make some pretty good comebacks at the end of the game.” The alterations to the gameplay and rules of the game are the most intriguing aspect of this new league or any new league for that matter. A new form of football needs to separate itself from existing leagues. Perhaps the AAF will see the inaugural season of the next powerhouse football league. I’m surely willing to give it a chance. Both the NFL and the AAF have four 15-minute quarters, but the AAF looks to cut down game time by cutting out TV timeouts. The average NFL game lasts 180 minutes, while the AAF is aiming for an average of 150 minutes. To make up for this revenue loss, the AAF will pursue higher commercial prices and product placement in game. Moreover, the play clock has been decreased to 35 seconds from the NFL’s 40. Instead of allowing everyone on the field to get CTE on a single play, the opposing team will inherit the ball on its own 25-yard line. The scoring team will have an onside kick equivalent. If a team wants to attempt to maintain possession of the ball, it will start on their own 28-yard line and will have to convert a 12-yard play on one down. According to McKay, the AAF saw no reason to try and keep a kickoff in the game. The NFL’s rules are some of the most scrutinized aspects of the League. The AAF looks to change that, while maintaining the core aspects of the game. After touchdowns, there will be no extra point; you have to go for two. As such, kickers are almost rendered useless, as there are no kickoffs either. Somewhere, Skip Bayless is grinning from ear to ear. Wipe off that smile, Skip Nation — field goals will still be a part of the game. Timing The AAF is committed to keeping the start-to-end time of its football games consistent. This overtime format will not only allow for that, but it also grants both teams a chance to score. Sam Arslanian is a sophomore writing about sports. His column, “Extra Innings,” runs Fridays. “The NFL has changed their kickoff rules to the point where 75 percent of kickoffs are touchbacks,” McKay said. “We thought, why not just get it out. It is a health and safety concern. The onside kick is even worse than the kickoff.” These changes are desperately needed. Amateur football enrollment is declining every year because parents know they are essentially signing their kids’ death certificates. The first week of the 14-week season kicks off Saturday with two games, followed by another pair on Sunday. The AAF separates itself from the NFL and other startup leagues in that there is a lot to be hopeful for, not to mention that it is run by an elite staff, that includes the likes of Charlie Ebersol, executive producer of NFL Characters Unite; former USC and Steelers safety Troy Polamalu; former Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward and five-time Pro-Bowler Jared Allen, among others. The other main change is to the way overtime works. While I would have opted for a college football-style overtime, the AAF strikes a middle ground. Each team will get a chance to score from 10 yards out. If the score is still tied after both attempts, the game will end in a tie. However,  the overtime rules will be identical to the NFL’s in the playoffs. Thank God. As a die-hard sports fan, I don’t mind watching more football, but that’s not what the NFL is. It’s waiting. While this 30-minute difference may seem small, it makes football games infinitely easier to digest. last_img read more

Warner to know fate on July 31

first_imgFormer FIFA Vice-President Jack Warner will know his fate on July 31 Former CONCACAF president Austin ‘Jack’ Warner will know his fate on July 31 when a Trinidadian judge rules on the legality of an extradition request by the United States.High Court Judge James Aboud set the date after listening to submissions from attorneys representing Warner and the Office of the Attorney General at Port-of-Spain High Court on May 12.Warner is wanted in the US to face charges of racketeering and bribery relating to his tenure as vice-president of FIFA, soccer’s governing body.In the claim filed by his attorneys, Warner questions the procedure adopted by the Office of the Attorney General in signing off on the US’s request for his extradition in May, 2015.He was one of 14 people indicted by a US court for racketeering and bribery. Former CONCACAF president, Jeffrey Webb of the Cayman Islands, who is under house arrest in the US, was also indicted.He pleaded guilty to racketeering conspiracy, three counts of wire fraud conspiracy and three counts of money laundering conspiracy.Warner files US$40 million counter suit against CONCACAFlast_img read more

World No. 1 Naomi Osaka adds American coach Jermaine Jenkins to team

first_imgJenkins, a hitting partner of Venus Williams in the past, recently was appointed as the United States Tennis Association’s women’s national coach.”Had a great dinner with the team,” Osaka posted on Twitter. “[I am] also taking this moment to thank Jermaine for joining us and coming on board.”Had a great dinner with the team also taking this moment to thank Jermaine for joining us and coming on board lol pic.twitter.com/OBpl5R7L2j— NaomiOsaka大坂なおみ (@Naomi_Osaka_) February 28, 2019Osaka, the reigning U.S. and Australian Open champion, has been without a full-time coach since her split this month with Sascha Bajin. Japan Tennis Association trainer Masashi Yoshikawa assisted in her disappointing Dubai Tennis Championships. World No. 1 Naomi Osaka has added Jermaine Jenkins to her team, she announced Thursday.Osaka didn’t confirm Jenkins’ role other than to say the American has linked up with the two-time Grand Slam champion. last_img read more