Sandy Duncan Begins Performances in Finding Neverland on B’way

first_img View Comments Sandy Duncan Believe! Sandy Duncan, who starred as Peter Pan on Broadway in 1979, will take on the role of Madame du Maurier in Finding Neverland on February 12. The three-time Tony nominee replaces Carolee Carmello, who has departed the Audience Choice Award-winning new musical for Tuck Everlasting. Duncan will remain with the production through March 27.Along with Peter Pan, Duncan received Tony nods for The Boy Friend and Canterbury Tales; she has also been seen on Broadway in Chicago, My One And Only and Love Is a Time of Day. She received Emmy nods for Funny Face and Roots; other screen credits include The Hogan Family.The cast at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre also currently includes Tony Yazbeck, Laura Michelle Kelly, Kelsey Grammer and Teal Wicks.Directed by Diane Paulus and featuring a score by Gary Barlow and Eliot Kennedy and a book by James Graham, Finding Neverland follows the story of J.M. Barrie (Yazbeck) and his relationship with the family of widow Sylvia Llewelyn Davies (Kelly). Llewelyn Davies’ children eventually became Barrie’s inspiration to write Peter Pan. Related Showscenter_img Finding Neverland Show Closed This production ended its run on Aug. 21, 2016last_img read more

Colombian Authorities Shake Up the Drug Trade

first_imgBy Julieta Pelcastre/Diálogo June 19, 2017 Coincidencia por tratarse de una operación conjunta integrada por varias fuerzas armadas? Independientemente cuanta droga dejaron pasar y con cuanto dinero fueron sobornados. Ojo que esto requiere una investigación bastante minuciosa. Backed by Infantry Battalion No. 46 (the “Voltígeros del Ejército”), the Antinarcotics Police of Urabá and the Prosecutor General’s Technical Investigation Corps, troops from the Colombian Navy’s “Neptuno” 73 Anti-Trafficking Task Force seized 1,124 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride in Carepa, in the Gulf of Urabá region. During a May 5th inspection of cargo ship containers, the operating unit of the Navy and National Police found the drugs inside boxes of bananas bound for Belgium. According to the Colombian Navy, the joint operation prevented more than $67 million from falling into the hands of drug-trafficking groups. “This seizure is the result of the working strategy developed by the Colombian Armed Forces, the National Police, and the Attorney General to take on the transnational criminal organizations that use large vessels to take drugs to the biggest consumer markets located in North America, Africa, Asia, and Oceania,” Rear Admiral Juan Francisco Herrera Real, commander of the “Neptuno” 73 Anti-Trafficking Task Force, said to Diálogo. On April 22nd, local authorities also confiscated 400 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride from a container on another vessel. The drugs, valued at more than $13 million, were found on a ship headed for the port of Río Haina in the Dominican Republic. Almost 90 percent of international trade is transported by sea containers. A large number of containers navigating the world by sea is a major target for drug traffickers, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime website. Criminal groups change shipping strategies “Up until the previous year [2016], most drug shipments were sent via smaller, go-fast type vessels. What we have seen this year is that the dynamic has changed a lot,” Rear Adm. Herrera said. “Today the shipment of drugs through Colombian ports is increasing along the Caribbean coast of Colombia.” According to naval authorities, the shift in trafficker strategy was confirmed by the more than six metric tons of cocaine seized on April 2, 2017, in the Port of Barranquilla. This seizure of drugs hidden in metallic boxes inside a container headed for Europe is considered the biggest since 2008 when 10.5 metric tons of cocaine were going to be unloaded in this same port for later shipment to the Mexican port of Veracruz. “Drug trafficking is highly mutable; it adapts to circumstances and uses all of its ingenuity to transport and hide the drugs in its quest to evade security forces and the police,” Néstor Alfonso Rosanía, director of the Security and Peace Studies Center in Colombia, told Diálogo. “Maritime transport allows for moving a greater amount of cargo to criminal networks at a lower operational cost, and allows for quick profit-making,” he added. Strengthening the port system, a shared responsibility In order to prevent transnational criminal organizations from transporting drugs in containers owned by legitimate companies, Colombia has been applying the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS), since 2004. The ISPS initiative establishes an international framework to detect and evaluate possible maritime security threats and to take preventive measures to protect ships and port facilities from terrorism, drug trafficking, piracy, and other threats. “Although we have had achievements at the local and national levels, it is important to bolster our plan for protecting containers and port facilities to neutralize the outflow of drugs because, just as a container and a ship can be used to bring in drugs, explosives can likewise be brought in,” said Rear Adm. Herrera. In 2017, security forces and local authorities have also increased their communication with international port agencies in the European Union, Central America, and the United States in order to facilitate cooperation against criminal activity. They likewise have reinforced their efforts at the ports, addressing everything from how goods arrive to the identification of companies that could pose a risk. “Colombia, the largest coca leaf producer in the world, needs legal backing to go beyond port protection in order to stem the outflow of drugs via containers and commercial vessels. All those who use them to illicitly smuggle goods must be sanctioned,” Rosanía said. “This work is not just the responsibility of the security forces.” He added that port authorities also must be more committed and assume greater responsibility. “We cannot continue allowing ships to transport drugs. We are working to ensure that certain things that are classified as administrative penalties become crimes like we did with Law 1311,” stressed Rear Adm. Herrera. Law 1311, approved in 2009, penalizes the use, construction, transport, and trade of submersibles and semisubmersibles for illicit purposes, with penalties ranging from six to 12 years in prison. The legislation, which arose from the difficulty in penalizing the use of these marine vehicles, allows for the unambiguous identification of those who are implicated. “With a legal framework, operations against the use of containers and vessels to ship drugs out will benefit. It will not be easy; to move forward will require willpower on the part of a court with jurisdiction. For the moment, the Colombian Navy will continue its strategy in the fight against this illegal activity,” Rosanía concluded.last_img read more

Small is beautiful vs the magic roundabout

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

Sperm containing virus raises small risk of COVID-19 spread via sex: Study

first_imgAllan Pacey, a professor of andrology at Britain’s Sheffield University, said the studies should not be seen as conclusive, since there were some technical difficulties in testing semen for viruses. He said the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in sperm did not show whether it is active and capable of causing infection.”However, we should not be surprised if the virus which causes COVID-19 is found in the semen of some men, since this has been shown with many other viruses such as Ebola and Zika,” he said.Sheena Lewis, a professor of reproductive medicine at Queen’s University Belfast, stressed that this was a “very small study” and said its findings were in keeping with other small studies showing low or no SARS-CoV-2 in tests of semen samples.”However, the long-term effects of SARS-CoV-2 on male reproduction are not yet known,” she said. Chinese researchers who tested sperm of men infected with COVID-19 found that a minority of them had the new coronavirus in their semen, opening up a small chance the disease could be transmitted sexually, scientists said on Thursday.A study by doctors at China’s Shangqiu Municipal Hospital of 38 men hospitalized with the disease found that six of them, or 16%, tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 in their semen.The researchers said that while the findings were preliminary and based on only a small number of infected men, more research is needed to see whether sexual transmission might play a role in the spreading COVID-19 pandemic. Topics :center_img “Further studies are required with respect to the detailed information about virus shedding, survival time and concentration in semen,” the team wrote in a study published in JAMA Network Open.”If it could be proved that SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted sexually … [that] might be a critical part of the prevention,” they said, “especially considering the fact that SARS-CoV-2 was detected in the semen of recovering patients.”Independent experts said the findings were interesting but should be viewed with caution and in the context of other small studies that have not found the new coronavirus in sperm.A previous small study of 12 COVID-19 patients in China in February and March found that all of them tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 in semen samples.last_img read more

US narrowing support to seven COVID-19 vaccine candidates, expects them to be free for many

first_imgThe Trump administration aims to narrow its financial support to about seven experimental coronavirus vaccines from the 14 it has been working with so far, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said on Tuesday.US government officials also said that they expect many Americans to get an approved vaccine to prevent COVID-19 at no charge once it begins distribution, potentially in January.“For any American who is vulnerable, who cannot afford the vaccines, and desires the vaccine, we will provide it for free,” a US government official said during a call with reporters, requesting anonymity. Topics : The Trump Administration previously announced it has put more than $2 billion behind three vaccines in development, one being tested by AstraZeneca Plc along with the University of Oxford, a Moderna Inc candidate and one from Johnson & Johnson. It has also given more than $30 million each to Merck & Co and Sanofi SA for their separate vaccine efforts.A government official said it was still deliberating which companies would ultimately be among those it will support, based on the success of closely watched trials and manufacturing capability.The New York Times reported earlier this month that the White House had selected five companies: Moderna, AstraZeneca, Pfizer Inc, J&J and Merck. center_img The official also said that based on conversations with commercial health insurers, it expects a vaccine to be covered with no out-of-pocket costs, similar to coverage policies insurers have put in place for COVID-19 related medical services.”We will be working with insurers,” the official said.The Trump Administration last month launched “Operation Warp Speed” – a joint HHS and Department of Defense program – to accelerate development of coronavirus vaccines, treatments and diagnostics.The effort has “maximized the possibility” of having a vaccine before year end, the government official said.last_img read more

Patrick Vieira denies interviewing for Arsenal job but admits he was ‘flattered’ by Gunners links

first_imgPatrick Vieira insists he’s focused on his job at Nice (Picture: Getty)Arsenal legend Patrick Vieira insists he had no contact with the Gunners over a return to the club as manager.Mikel Arteta was appointed on a three-and-a-half year deal last week and the club confirmed in their announcement that they had spoken to a number of candidates over the role.Vieira has long been tipped for a return to the Gunners, though he’s currently struggling with French side Nice, who are languishing in tenth in Ligue 1.Nevertheless, Vieira had been rumoured to have been one of the candidates that the club had spoken to but the former midfielder insists that was not the case.ADVERTISEMENT Advertisement Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterMonday 23 Dec 2019 9:32 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link1.6kShares Comment Arteta was hired on a three year deal last week (Picture: Getty)‘I do feel for Arsenal because I had nine fantastic seasons there and they’re going through difficult times,’ Vieira told Canal+.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘Was I contacted? No. It’s flattering (to be linked) but I know how lucky I am to be at Nice. I don’t have intention or desire to go elsewhere.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalArteta will take charge for the first time on Boxing Day when the Gunners take on Bournemouth on the south coast.The Spaniard was in the stands as Freddie Ljungberg took charge for the final time as interim boss when Arsenal drew 0-0 with Everton on Saturday.MORE: Jamie Redknapp: Mikel Arteta needs to sort behaviour issues of Arsenal duo Mesut Ozil & Granit Xhaka Patrick Vieira denies interviewing for Arsenal job but admits he was ‘flattered’ by Gunners linkslast_img read more

Australia’s answer to Marie Kondo gives a man’s view on tidying up

first_img First sell-off since Seebohm-Larkin split Marie Kondo is making waves with her Netflix series Tidying Up. IMAGE: Netflix “That’s the same reason you get organised and if being organised helps you live your life, emotionally, psychologically, socially and financially in a better way, then that’s the reason to get organised and that includes paying your bills regularly on time and living as an adult being responsible for the things you own, rather than being a slave to the things you own.” Peter Walsh was the first celebrity to host a Masterclass at World of Style by Porter Davis in Fortitude Valley. IMAGE: Mark Cranitch.While the world seems to be going crazy for Marie Kondo and the Japanese Art of Decluttering — Australia’s own organising expert provides a male’s perspective. With almost 20-years in the industry, including five seasons on The Oprah Winfrey Show, Peter Walsh spoke to The Courier-Mail off the back of his Master Class appearance at Porter Davis’s World of Style last week.Walsh said he’d seen it all, and perhaps the worst was a home in the United States, which took 80 people 10 weeks to declutter.“By the time we finished we found about 3500 pairs of shoes and nearly 4000 handbags,” he said.“When we were decluttering the clothes from the master bedroom, it was on the first floor … we opened some windows that looked out on to the front yard and threw some tarps down and started throwing the clothes from the master bedroom.“By the end of the day you could step out of the window on to the pile of clothes.“The stuff that came out of the house filled a 10,000 square foot (929sq m) warehouse that we did a huge yard sale from.”Walsh said it was scientifically proven that clutter was linked to the stress hormone cortisol.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus14 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market14 hours ago“It’s been discovered that in homes where there is a lot of clutter, women particularly exhibit high and continuing levels of cortisol,” he said. RELATED:center_img However, he said, there was he huge anecdotal evidence.“When we talk about clutter, we talk about being suffocated, we talk about feeling buried in the stuff, we say that we can’t breathe there is so much stuff.”He said the first thing to ask yourself before you start you decluttering journey was “what is the vision I have for my home”.“If you can define what you want from your home, the mood, the feeling, the activities, the shared spaces, if you can start there, then the second question is, do the things I own help me create that vision,” he said.“If you want to be more organic, live more organically, then you want to live simpler, live more honestly and live in a more pure way, live in a more harmonious way.MORE: Performing arts doyen sells house Past glories make a comeback >>FOLLOW EMILY BLACK ON FACEBOOK<< For more on space saving hacks, the benefits of downsizing and the importance of an organised home grab a copy of this Saturday’s HOME section in The Courier-Mail Real Estate liftout.last_img read more

Biology Isn’t Bigotry: Christians, Lesbians, and Radical Feminists Unite to Fight Gender Ideology

first_imgPublic Discourse 6 March 2017Family First Comment: Well said by this mother…. “What worries me most is that schools across the country are quashing debate, abandoning academic excellence, and reducing themselves to pawns in a political movement whose claims are highly questionable, unscientific, and harmful to children. Public schools have a duty to serve all children, but a school cannot serve children and a totalitarian ideology all at once…..”….The belief that one’s internal sense of self determines maleness or femaleness and that subjective feelings take precedence over an objective physical reality constitutes a severing of mind from body. Our sex is who we are: it can’t be amputated from our body like a limb. But the true believers in gender ideology are hard at work, pulling in converts to this gnostic worldview that shuns the material that we humans are made of: the body. You can be assured that an ideology like this will, to use Pope Francis’s words, lead to the “annihilation of man” in our culture, in the law, and in the lives of those who fall prey to the tenets of this weaponized “civil rights” movement.What worries me most is that schools across the country are quashing debate, abandoning academic excellence, and reducing themselves to pawns in a political movement whose claims are highly questionable, unscientific, and harmful to children. Public schools have a duty to serve all children, but a school cannot serve children and a totalitarian ideology all at once…..Sacrificing Truth, Science, and Children’s Well-BeingSo, what can we expect to see if we sit back and allow gender identity to trump biological sex in school policies?First, schools will teach children to accept an ideology that is predicated on the lie that biological sex plays second fiddle to a self-proclaimed, subjective gender identity, and that the sex of one’s body is mutable or even irrelevant. This isn’t just an idea that you can tuck away in a unit study or an anti-bullying presentation. It will inevitably find its way into every aspect of a school and make a deep impression on the developing minds of children. For example, girls, under the regressive mandates of anti-bullying and gender inclusion policies, would have to agree to call boys in their locker room “girls,” effectively losing their rights to free speech and to privacy from males. And science—particularly biology—would die a quick death at the hands of a concept that necessarily eradicates observable facts about human sexuality. Gender ideology in the curriculum is a lie enshrined as truth.Second, institutionalizing gender ideology will require that schools ignore the evidence that it causes real harm to children. You can’t extol the virtues of gender ideology and question its soundness at the same time. By celebrating transgenderism as a valid identity, schools are promoting a body-mind disconnect that may very well bring on the gender dysphoric state they were attempting to prevent. And when the widely accepted “affirmative” medical treatments of gender dysphoria in children are both poorly studied and glaringly injurious, we have nothing to celebrate.We’re building a school-to-gender-clinic pipeline that will feed this new pediatric specialty with young patients. There are now more than thirty gender clinics specializing in youth across the United States, and the young patients who are under their care are often given bone-destroying puberty blockers at eleven, potentially sterilized with cross-sex hormones at sixteen, and permanently mutilated by plastic surgery soon after that.Make no mistake, schools that endorse and celebrate transgenderism as valid are endorsing child abuse. It’s Time to Speak UpSo, my fellow parents, I ask you:Will we allow our young and vulnerable children to be fed a false anthropology rather than teaching them to speak the truth boldly?Will we consent to our children’s sterilization rather than patiently guiding them toward an appreciation of their bodies?Will we treat our children’s mental health issues with double mastectomies rather than demand that doctors provide a true remedy?As a woman, mother, and member of Hands Across the Aisle, I answer with a resolute NO to each and every one of these questions.READ MORE: up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

Vint-age Eto’o starts Blues rout

first_img Press Association Samuel Eto’o came of age and substitute Demba Ba scored twice as Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea beat Tottenham 4-0 to move seven points clear at the top of the Barclays Premier League. Cameroon striker Eto’o, whose age was questioned recently in unguarded comments made by Mourinho, celebrates his 33rd birthday on Monday and stood crooked at the corner flag, as if using it as an old man’s stick, following his goal. Demba Ba, another much-derided Chelsea striker, then scored twice in his late cameo after replacing Eto’o. Three minutes later the Cameroon striker was found by Andre Schurrle and played the ball on to Hazard, who rounded Hugo Lloris but fired into the side-netting with the goal empty. It was a glorious opportunity and a surprising miss for a player enjoying a scintillating season. Tottenham had chances, too. Nabil Bentaleb found himself through on goal in the left channel following Emmanuel Adebayor’s header down, but the Algerian midfielder snatched at his shot, with his team-mates queuing up. Greater conviction, one way or the other, would likely have seen Spurs take the lead. Petr Cech had to be alert when Gary Cahill’s clearance went only as far as Sandro, whose volley was well saved. Spurs were having the better of the action, but Chelsea lurked menacingly for their chance. A loose Bentaleb pass presented Eto’o with the ball, but the striker was forced wide by a combination of the midfielder and Kaboul and shot into the side-netting. Oscar replaced Lampard at the interval and Chelsea’s reshuffled midfield left Vertonghen in space, but his attempted lob never troubled Cech. Kaboul headed straight at Cech from Gylfi Sigurdsson’s corner and Schurrle twice had tame efforts at the other end before pressurising Vertonghen into a blind panic. The Belgian slipped and, from the ground, returned the ball hopefully and centrally before watching on helplessly as Eto’o nipped in to find the bottom corner. Moments later it was two when Hazard’s cross behind the Spurs defence found Eto’o and Kaboul was adjudged to have tripped the striker, who tumbled to the turf. Referee Michael Oliver pointed to the spot, then reached for his pocket to dismiss Kaboul. Hazard sent Lloris the wrong way to give Chelsea a two-goal advantage with 30 minutes remaining. The Belgium forward tried to tee up Eto’o in the 75th minute, but the pass was short and the striker was then replaced by Ba. Oscar snatched at a shot when played in by fellow substitute Willian before Ba benefited from more hapless Spurs defending. Sandro, who dropped into centre-back following Kaboul’s departure, was unable to deal with Oscar’s cross and Ba tucked in. Another followed when Lloris’ clearance kick looped into the air and Walker inexplicably headed backwards towards the goalkeeper. Ba intercepted the ball before passing into an empty net. The victory extended Mourinho’s unbeaten Premier League home record to 75 games and took Chelsea seven points clear of Arsenal and Liverpool and nine ahead of Manchester City, the Portuguese’s title favourites. Eto’o was a late inclusion after Fernando Torres withdrew following the warm-up and broke the deadlock after being gifted the ball by a hapless Jan Vertonghen before he was fouled by Younes Kaboul for a spot-kick four minutes later which appeared soft. The France defender was shown a straight red card for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity and Eden Hazard sent Hugo Lloris the wrong way with Chelsea’s second goal in five minutes before Ba’s late double added to Spurs’ humiliation. Tottenham travelled across London with the Premier League’s best away record, but now have successive defeats on the road following the losses at Norwich and Chelsea, where they were unable to convert their first-half pressure into clear chances. Spurs, whose wait for a first win at Stamford Bridge since February 1990 goes on, are now four points behind fourth-placed City and five ahead of Manchester United and Everton, who have games in hand. Mourinho does not consider the table to be accurate as the opposing teams are still to play the same number of games as his side, but he must be pleased to have points in the bank with nine games remaining. Clearly fearing the worst, a “gobsmacked” Gary Lineker, who scored in Spurs’ most recent win at Chelsea 24 years ago, questioned whether the visiting “players (had) taken a lucky dip for their positions” as Kyle Walker was fielded in midfield in a side showing five changes. Chelsea had made one change following the win at Fulham – Frank Lampard replacing Oscar – but Torres’ late blow brought in Eto’o, who was caught narrowly offside in the opening minute. last_img read more

Professional frats plan for future

first_imgThough many Greek organizations emphasize brotherhood, sisterhood, service and scholarship, the pre-professional fraternities that make up the Professional Fraternity Council have a central focus on the professional development of their members.PFC governs the four pre-professional fraternities that exist under the council: Alpha Epsilon Delta, the pre-med fraternity; Alpha Kappa Psi, the business fraternity; Phi Alpha Delta, the pre-law fraternity; and Sigma Phi Delta, the engineering fraternity. But USC is known to have additional professional fraternities that are not within PFC, with focuses including leadership, architecture, cinema and accounting.One of the two business fraternities on campus, Alpha Kappa Psi demonstrates how chapter requirements vary from fraternity to fraternity.Unlike its counterpart Delta Sigma Pi, which is known for only accepting accounting, business, economic or international relations (global business) majors, AKP accepts students of all academic backgrounds and focuses on more general skills, no matter the member’s desired career path.“Our program provides students with the soft skills of business not learned in class, for example, how to write a resume or how to do a cover letter,” said AKP President Sam Loke. “During the pledge program, you are exposed to different kinds of workshops — public speaking, how to do a case competition, debate. We offer very concrete, hands-on activities and events. [New members] don’t just learn the theory of it — they also have to execute it.”Though the application and recruitment process for professional fraternities varies from chapter to chapter, it’s typical for the fraternities to require an application and an interview.Alpha Kappa Psi’s process includes an additional weeklong rush process that includes meeting with the chapter as well as attending a professional workshop, an alumni panel about the pledging process and benefits of active membership and a social event. Rush is completed with an interview and potentially the offering of a bid.Professional fraternities look for a variety of characteristics in their potential new members.“What I look for is someone who is very eager to learn,” Loke said. “The chapter wants pledges who are looking for a sense of brotherhood, someone who comes in on day one and at the end of the process has gone through personal and professional development. We do emphasize personal development a lot, a lot of self-reflection — working on a team and then reflecting on your role and how you can better yourself when you work in another team.”Phi Alpha Delta, the pre-law fraternity, is another participating member of PFC that welcomes students of all majors and grade levels. Though the organization’s focus is professional, members also attend football games together and host social events. Students do not have to be positive they want a career in law to be a part of the fraternity, and many use this group as an opportunity to learn more about the field.PAD has guest speakers who range from test prep company representatives advising on how to prepare for the LSAT to current law students and professors discussing life during law school to lawyers from different fields who give examples of the many areas of law.“We always try to have one speaker a semester come in and talk about other options similar to law but not necessarily law,” said junior Jordan Gary, secretary of PAD. “As we like to say, PAD is kind of a place to figure out if law school is right for you. I’m really interested in sports law, and PAD definitely helped me figure that out.”Gary said she was inspired by a talk given by an entertainment lawyer who discussed how one of his colleagues worked for the Dodgers during their owner transfer.“This made me realize that was an avenue available to me,” Gary said.Engineering fraternity membership requirements are different — Sigma Phi Delta only accepts undergraduate Viterbi School of Engineering students.Junior Ashtyn Chen, former SPD secretary, said many of their activities involve networking with alumni so it is critical that members are actually interested in working in that field.“A bunch of our alumni are at Boeing, Tesla, Intel, you name it — all of them come back and tell us about opportunities,” said Chen. “This semester, we have a friend who works at Microsoft, and he came down and set up all the Hackathons down in Long Beach, and we basically [brought] Microsoft Hackathon down here.”Though many of the engineering firms are not immediately located in Los Angeles, the alumni connection brings them back to home base.“A lot of alumni still come by because Boeing is down in Long Beach, Chevron is down in [El] Segundo,” Chen said. “A lot of companies are in this area. The house sponsors bowling events and going to Six Flags — trying to integrate the young people with the alumni. The connection base is very good.”In addition to helping students get a foot in the door job-wise, professional fraternities offer a system of support for its members outside of the classroom or the office.“Everyone who rushes Alpha Kappa Psi has a different reason,” Loke said. “It could be wanting to gain a brotherhood or sense of family, or network the opportunities because our alumni is pretty strong within the L.A. region, in terms of investment banking, consulting, marketing and so on and so forth. It really depends on the individual and what they want to get out of it.”Though he joined as a freshman after realizing that few of his friends held the same academic interests he did, Chen said the fraternity has become much more than a group of students who share professional goals.“It’s very rare for me to find people in my major, so I came out for a barbeque during rush week,” Chen said. “I met a lot of the brothers here, and they all seemed chill. It feels more like a family than this club that meets every week to fulfill an agenda. We actually care about the success of each one of us.”As with any large organization, professional fraternities are not immune to misconceptions — one of which, Gary said, is that there’s no difference between them and the other Greek organizations.“They have that stigma that all they do is party. I personally don’t think that’s all that [IFC] fraternities are — I think they do a lot more for the USC community — so that’s a bad stigma to get, but I think we get caught up in it when it definitely does not apply to us.”One aspect of the IFC fraternities and Panhellenic sororities Gary admires is their strong sense of community.“I’d like to see [professional fraternities] come together as a group more,” Gary said. “I think that we could do philanthropies — maybe not necessarily go out to the soccer field and play soccer drunk every Friday — but I think we could definitely make it fun and group-oriented. I think all of the professional fraternities, even though they each have their different focuses, all serve the same general purpose for their members.”last_img read more