16 dead after militants attack Grand Bassam beach resort

On Sunday, six armed militants killed fourteen civilians and two soldiers in an attack on Grand Bassam, an Ivory Coast beach resort popular among Westerners and located only 25 miles from the capital, Abidjan.   According to a witness, the attackers were “heavily armed and wearing balaclavas” and “fired at guests at L’Etoile du Sud, a large hotel which was […]

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World Health Organization declares Zika virus global health emergency

In May of last year, an outbreak of the Zika virus was discovered in Brazil.  Less than a year later, the virus has spread to over twenty countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, prompting the World Health Organization to declare it an international public health emergency in early February. An increasing body of evidence links the Zika virus, which […]

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Sweden’s experiment with the 6-hour work day

Happier staff.  Increased profits.  Lower turnover rate.  These are just a few of the reported benefits of the six-hour work day, adopted this year by employers across Sweden – from retirement homes to car centers and hospitals. This approach is not entirely new.  Thirteen years ago, Toyota service centers in the coastal city of Gothenburg cut shifts for their mechanics. […]

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U.N. crowdfunding app helps feed Syrian refugees

On Thursday, the United Nations World Food Programme released a new crowdfunding app in order to help feed Syrian children in Jordanian refugee camps. ShareTheMeal, available for iPhone and Android smartphones, encourages users to “share their meals” with these young refugees by donating as little as $0.50, enough to feed a child for one day.  Those who log in to […]

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Paris to ban traffic when pollution levels peak

Last week, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo rejoiced as France’s Ecology Minister Ségolène Royal agreed to institute cuts to traffic in Paris when pollution levels peak. Royal had previously called for the bans to be introduced after three consecutive days of high pollution levels, but later conceded that the bans, which will allocate alternate driving days for cars based on odd […]

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Helping Refugees from Syria and Iraq

On Monday afternoon, the Pi Sigma Alpha Political Science Honor Society held a lunchtime meeting on refugee issues.  The event featured Rami Al-Maqsadi, the former director of the Syrian Refugees Ministry with the international relief organization Samaritan’s Purse.  Al-Maqsadi spoke extensively about his first-hand experience working with refugees from Iraq and Syria, particularly emphasizing the challenges these displaced individuals face […]

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Sauna for the Soul

A Finnish proverb says, “If a sick person is not cured by tar, spirits [alcohol], or sauna, then they will die.” Sauna is the only Finnish word to have entered the international lexicon, and appropriately so: saunas are emblematic of Finnish culture.  The country boasts 3.3 million of them, a statistic made even more impressive when compared to Finland’s population […]

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