Caltech’s rigorous academic environment is well-known, but to shed some new light on the actual daily grind of undergraduates.
Interhouse basketball just finished, and I would like to reflect on the season. Dabney showed up to a full 3 out of our 7 games and proudly lost all of them. Personally, I scored a whole one point for my team which is more than I ever could have imagined given basketball is my least favorite sport and I don’t actually know all the rules.
WHY JOIN US? Dive into a world where cunningness knows no bounds! The Caltech Prank Club is your ticket to a community of masterminds who transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. Our pranks are legendary, and our laughter is contagious. From harmless hijinks to mind-bending setups, we redefine the meaning of fun!
There has been a lot of buzz about the vague spectre of “admin” banning undergraduate house events, both during and outside Rotation this year. In continuing this discussion between tradition and inclusivity, the Tech interviewed Dr. Kevin Gilmartin, Vice President for Student Affairs, to get his perspective on the matter. Our conversation focused on two specific issues: Blacker Hovse’s Potato Cannon, and Ricketts Hovse’s Rotation Dinner Skits.
If you are a friend, an enemy, or even a vague acquaintance of mine, you have likely heard me tell you to write for the Tech. And yet my research has shown the vast majority of you have never written for the tech! What utter disgrace, frankly I’m disappointed. So in an effort to convince more of you to write for the tech I have written a very comprehensive guide about how to write for the tech.
Arriving at this institution from Denmark many tropes of the American, and indeed the Californian life seemed confirmed. Breakfasts of waffles, sweltering temperatures and affable attitudes. However, there’s one aspect that has struck me more than any other - the complete disregard for environmental concerns.
At Caltech, a distinctive biology course introduces a new way students approach the life sciences. “The Biomechanics of Organismal Design,” taught by Professor Michael H. Dickinson, merges the concrete principles of physics with the dynamic patterns of biology. This integration offers a new perspective to students, particularly appealing to those with interests in mechanical engineering. The course tackles intriguing questions like how penguins swim, why maple seeds spin to the ground, and the comparative strength of spider silk versus steel. While the course focuses on the organismal level, it also incorporates molecular, cellular, and tissue-level scales, painting a comprehensive picture of biological mechanics.
In the North and South House undergraduate residences, the walls are filled with colors and murals. The murals have been put up continuously over the years and represent a history of student life. In order to put up a mural, the design has to be approved by both the members of the house and by housing. Caltech Housing’s website states that their mural policy is in place to “support self-expression and also help foster an enjoyable and safe living environment for all house members.”
A group of graduate students and postdocs at Caltech have begun the process of unionizing. They have collected over 450 union cards, a supermajority of the grad students. While union cards are not a guarantee of a vote in a union election, they are a good predictor. The next step in the process is filing for a union election, where the graduate student body and the postdocs will vote on whether they want to unionize.
Following the C/GPU majority support rally at Caltech Hall, discussions about grad and postdoc unionization have become increasingly urgent. We are writing to endorse the movement to form a labor union for graduate students and postdocs at Caltech. Our research is diverse, spanning microbiology, environmental science, systems biology, quantum optics, and gravitational physics. Forming a union would empower us to negotiate better working conditions, which in turn will improve our ability to produce world-class research and teach world-class students. We can learn from our colleagues at institutions like University of California Los Angeles, University of Southern California, and MIT to build a strong union that supports all grads and postdocs—both by making concrete gains at the bargaining table and building a stronger community.
Let me start by saying, it’s not that deep. It’s just exhausting (as I’m sure you all are aware).
On October 1st, the day of move-in, an email was sent out by Emily Sanger, the Bechtel RLC (resident life coordinator). The email contained 63 temporary room codes, opening every frosh’s private room in Bechtel. These temporary room codes, while allegedly only lasting a few days, gave access to many student’s personal belongings. It’s unknown how many students these codes were sent to.
Tik Tak… Tik Tak, it is almost 1 PM.
After arriving at Caltech, one of the first things I noticed about the campus once I finally had time to wander around was that, from what I could tell, this place lacked a consistent architectural style. There’s a mix of Spanish-style architecture like Beckman Institute, more modern-looking buildings like Chen, and silly guys like the Beckman Hall (and also ugly ass ones like Downs-Lauritsen). This mixing of styles continues inside, with some buildings like Bridge keeping their old-fashioned style but Gates-Thomas deciding to modernize. That’s all neat and cool, but it goes a little further than what you see walking up and down the halls. The place I noticed these tiny details is a sacred place where you have time to yourself, a place free of distraction, a place of relief: the bathroom.
After over two decades ofcontinuous operation, Caltech Administration has banned the firing of the potato cannon as part of Blacker Hovse’s rotation events. Built in 2002 as part of a Ditch Day stack, firing it has been a Blacker Hovse tradition ever since. “The potato cannon was my favorite rotation event last year. I’m disappointed that this year’s frosh [weren’t] able to have the same experience as I did,” says Ethan Labelson (EE ‘26, Blacker/Dabney).
While houses throw a significant portion of the social events during the year, ASCIT throws events open to the entire student body every term. We’ve listed an overview of the events that we both host and help out with, often with our advisor, Tom Mannion, the Senior Director of Student Activities and Alumni Engagement.
Last Wednesday, September 27th 2023, the Caltech Grad Researchers and Postdocs United (CGPU) held a New Year, New Union rally to demonstrate that a supermajority of graduate students and postdocs at Caltech support forming a union.
Profile on Beth Larranaga
Last year, members of ASCIT, which is the entirety of all undergraduate students at Caltech, voted to raise dues from $33 per an academic term to $40 per an academic term by an overwhelming margin.
In 1988, Mobil Oil Field foreman Michele Judd stood on top of an oil platform in Paso Robles, California. She did not give much thought to the day ending or the stars coming out. To Judd, this simply signified that the workday was finishing and most of her workers would be heading home, leaving just a skeleton crew to work through the night. But years later, she remembers looking up into the darkening sky, wondering what it would be like working on projects high in space rather than working with materials deep in the earth.
SPECTRE library has long featured a life-sized mannequin of Anakin Skywalker. Short, remarkably detailed, and notoriously startling, Anakin is an iconic part of Caltech’s sci-fi library and well-known among South Hovse students.
The Caltech Turtle Club is happy to showcase the turtle-y terrific winning entries from our Spring 2023 Photo Contest!
Attention all fans of fresh produce! On June 1st, Caltech Dining Services (CDS) hosted their first ever Pop-Up Farmers Market in the Little Browne Dining Room!
Caltech Students: Please fill out the IHC’s feedback forms about Housing and Rotation before July 1st, 2023! thanks :) When the news broke that 271 students committed to Caltech for the Class of 2027, current students and faculty panicked. How would Caltech accommodate around 40 more freshmen than expected? Suddenly, the rules for upperclassmen picking rooms on campus were changing and students scrambled to update their plans. But why did so many students feel cheated, and is there really a housing crisis on campus?