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Good morning. It’s fifth week.
 
Barack Obama was on campus yesterday for his first post-presidency public appearance. At the Logan Center, he moderated a panel discussion with young people on civic engagement.

Media coverage of the event focused on one thing he didn’t talk about: the current President.

Max Freedman, a member of College Republicans and the Student Government parliamentarian, represented the University of Chicago on the panel.

  • Obama: “Since you’ve been active in College Republicans, two questions around that: Number one, do you feel as if on college campuses sometimes you’re not heard as much as you’d like to be? … But also have you found ways in which you can connect and have a conversation with the College Democrat? …”
  • Freedman: “Yesterday, NBC ran an article about this on their website. It didn’t say who we were, it just said the composition [of the panel] was one Republican and the rest were Democrats or progressives, and I had maybe three people send me the article and say, ‘Is it you?’ ...”

CNN’s Chris Cillizza writes: “Barack Obama returns to remind us how radically different he is from Donald Trump.”

  • “Obama asked questions here and there to prompt answers from the (nervous) panelists and occasionally would interject his own views, particularly about how the silo-ing of media consumption had created a culture where no one really listens to each other anymore. But, generally speaking, Obama wasn't actually talking all that much. … It was a professor holding a discussion group with students.” 

Institute of Politics students who attended the event were interviewed by ABC News’s Alex Perez.
 
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Zimmer: The Maroon sat down with the president of the University last week. Here are some highlights:

  • Zimmer expressed concern over the substantial cuts to science in Trump’s proposed budget: “It is certainly the case that if that budget were implemented it would have a very significant negative effect on science research in the country, and it would have a significant negative impact on every major research university, including us.... If that budget were enacted, it would be a concern.”
  • He held the line on controversial speakers, reiterating that campus groups should be able to invite whoever they want to speak and that the University is committed to facilitating these events.
  • The University is planning more development on the south end of campus, which could include a new residence hall.
  • As president, Zimmer has been spending a lot of time on:
    • fledgling academic programs (like molecular engineering and neuroscience), developments in computer science, and arts programs;
    • fundraising to increase campus accessibility;
    • improving relations with the South Side and Chicago communities, and building global relationships;
    • and the hospital.

College Council: The chair of the undergraduate SG body says Zimmer has agreed to a meeting with the council to discuss the University’s stance on speech issues.

Local election: Third-year Mary McNicholas was elected to the school board of her Chicago suburb.

Saturday dinner: In May, for no additional cost, students on a meal plan will be able to use a meal swipe in Hutch on Saturday nights when the dining halls are closed. Dining will consider implementing this for the entirety of next year. 
 
Budget: Student Government passed a budget for next year, which eliminates the Uncommon Fund and the New York Times Readership program.
 
Shooting: A man was shot and killed near the Garfield Green Line stop on Sunday.
 
New study: Chicago’s seven-cent tax on disposable bags is working, according to a survey conducted by the University’s Energy & Environment Lab.
 
CTA: Upgrades are coming to the Cottage Grove Green Line station, Mayor Emanuel announced yesterday.
 
Debate: The Student Government candidates’ debate will be held Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Ida Noyes Cloister Club.
 
March: Chicago marched for science this weekend. Check out our photo essay here.
 
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IN VIEWPOINTS
Cole Martin writes in:
 
In light of Student Government's proposal to eliminate the Uncommon Fund, columnist Brian Dong contends that the Uncommon Fund fosters much-needed campus creativity and deserves continued funding. "The Uncommon Fund operates on a low-cost and sustainable scale; it is a worthy investment that does not merit being cut."

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IN ARTS
Rebecca Julie and Alexia Bacigalupi write in:
 
The second installment of our student artist feature explores two painters’ fascinations with racial identity, politics, and “The Little Red Riding Hood.”
 
Where are you sitting now? It might just be on a $1,500 chair. Check out the University’s extensive collection of designer seats in The Maroon’s “Feachair.”
 
The 33rd Annual Chicago Latin Film Festival openings explored hope, family, and tragedy. Our coverage of the festival will continue through May 4.
 
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IN SPORTS
Cavell Means writes in:
 
NHL: The Maroon issues a post-mortem for the Blackhawks' playoff hopes.
 
Men’s Tennis: The team took home a shiny bronze in third place at the UAA championships.
 
Track and Field: The Maroons showed out at the outdoor championships, with the women coming in second and the men coming in fourth.