HMAS Warramunga deploys to Middle East

first_img October 9, 2017 View post tag: Op MANITOU Share this article Authorities Back to overview,Home naval-today Australian frigate deploys to Middle East View post tag: HMAS Warramunga Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Warramunga departed Fleet Base East at Garden Island, Sydney for nine months of maritime security operations in the Middle East.The frigate and her crew of 190 were farewelled by Australian defense minister, Senator Marise Payne, and the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett.Minister Payne said Warramunga would work as part of an international coalition, the Combined Maritime Forces, to interrupt the illegal drug trade that funds terrorism.Warramunga’s Commanding Officer, Commander Dugald Clelland, said the ship’s company were highly trained and motivated to carry out the tasks ahead.“The men and women who serve in Warramunga have worked very hard in preparing the ship for this long deployment,” Commander Clelland said.“This will be the ship’s third deployment to the Middle East and we carry forward a considerable legacy.Warramunga replaces HMAS Newcastle as Australia’s ship in the Middle East region, she is due to return in the coming weeks. View post tag: Royal Australian Navy Australian frigate deploys to Middle Eastlast_img read more

Easter goods help M&S’ food sales rise

first_imgMarks & Spencer (M&S) has revealed it had its “biggest ever” Easter week, as total UK food sales for the fourth quarter grew by 6.3%.The company revealed the news in its latest trading statement, for the 13 weeks to 30 March, highlighting a 2.6% growth in total UK sales, with group sales up 3.1% and overall like-for-like (LFL) UK sales up 0.6%.M&S said it had achieved more than three years of positive consecutive like-for-like sales growth within its food division, as food LFLs increased by 4% in Q4.Marc Bolland, chief executive, M&S, said:“We delivered an excellent result in food, with performance well ahead of the market, as customers continued to trust us for provenance and quality. We are increasingly seen as the destination shop for special occasions. Multi-channel sales growth accelerated and our international business also performed well during the quarter.”The Telegraph reported this morning (11 April) that M&S had sold more than 600,000 boxes of its mini Belgian chocolate hot cross buns this Easter.The firm added that it was pleased to be unaffected by the recent issues affecting the food industry, in light of the horsemeat scandal, and that it was “extremely proud” of its long-term relationships with farmers and suppliers, based on trust, provenance and market-leading quality at all times.M&S’ multi-channel growth also experienced growth during the fourth quarter, as a result of the increased participation in its click-and-collect offering called ‘Shop Your Way’, alongside an rise in web traffic. The company reported a more than 70% increase in mobile sales on last year, at a time when M&S has recently upgraded its mobile app.Discussing its outlook for the year, M&S said: “In January we said we expect the pressure on consumers’ disposable incomes to continue throughout 2013. As a result we were cautious about the outlook for the year ahead and this view remains unchanged. We continue to make good progress in transforming Marks & Spencer from a traditional UK retailer to an international multi-channel retailer.”On reporting M&S’ Q4 trading results, British Baker’s sister title M&C Report revealed the firm had opened its first standalone café at its London Paddington headquarters, accommodating 70 covers and serving made-to-order hot breakfast rolls, muffins, cakes and in-house baked pastries.last_img read more

Ivy League, Harvard announce unintentional secondary basketball violation

The Ivy League and Harvard University announced today that Harvard has declared an unintentional secondary violation in connection with conversations in the summer of 2007 between current assistant men’s basketball coach Kenny Blakeney and members of the Harvard coaching staff that occurred before Blakeney was employed by Harvard.“Secondary violations” are by National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) definition “inadvertent” and deemed to provide at most a “minimal advantage” to the institution. They are also routine for all Division I members, including Ivy League institutions; the NCAA processes more than 2,000 secondary violations annually. While Harvard and the Ivy League do not ordinarily release information related to secondary violations, they are doing so in this case in view of prior publicity in 2008, when the league released a statement that its inquiry into these matters found no violations of Ivy League or NCAA rules.This revised conclusion reflects conversations between Harvard and the NCAA subsequent to Harvard’s submission of the initial report to the Ivy League on this matter and its acceptance by the Ivy League Office. The NCAA staff agreed with the league’s and Harvard’s original conclusions that at the time of the conversations Blakeney had not been offered employment and did not have an employment agreement, and that any violation was “secondary.” However, under the NCAA’s interpretation of its rules, Blakeney’s conversations with the Harvard coaching staff during a time when he was independently observing prospective student — athletes required a finding of improper recruiting assistance to Harvard. After these discussions with the NCAA, Harvard elected to acknowledge a secondary violation and to self-impose recruiting limits for the 2010-11 academic year.During the Ivy League inquiry in 2008, current league Executive Director Robin Harris, while in her previous position with the Ice Miller law firm, represented a Harvard coach. Harris’ role in this case ended in September 2008, at the conclusion of the league’s initial review, before she applied for the executive director position.  She recused herself from any consideration of the NCAA matter and has not been involved in any manner in subsequent developments or decisions. read more

‘A Whisper to a Roar’ sparks discussion

first_imgWhat motivates people across the globe to risk their lives to fight for democracy? And why do authoritarian regimes survive despite the recent expansion of democracy around the world?With the film “A Whisper to a Roar” as a backdrop, panelists on Monday sought an answer to these elusive questions. The panel, which included the Egyptian Democratic Academy activist Esraa Abdel Fattah, the Slate Magazine journalist William Dobson, the film director Ben Moses, and Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) Professor Tarek Masoud, addressed a capacity crowd at the HKS screening of the documentary. The event, part of the center’s focus on the relationship between democratic governance and persistent urgent social challenges, launched the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation’s spring Democracy Seminar series.“A Whisper to a Roar” follows the struggles of pro-democracy activists and political leaders in five authoritarian countries — Egypt, Malaysia, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe — and is based on the work of Larry Diamond, a renowned democracy scholar and author of the 2008 book “The Spirit of Democracy: The Struggle to Build Free Societies Throughout the World.” (Diamond was also an Ash Center Democracy Seminar speaker in 2009.)Masoud, who was the panel’s moderator, served as a leading commentator on the film’s focus on the 2011 revolution in Egypt. During the post-film discussion he questioned the nature and durability of authoritarianism.“Even when you get rid of a dictator, why does authoritarianism still remain?” he asked, citing the countries the film profiled as examples of non-democracies with weak political rights and civil liberties despite the work of pro-democracy activists.Moses, the director, responded that “democracy is never over,” and that it can often be harder to maintain a democracy than to establish one — a point stressed by the film’s lack of a happy ending.“I am still optimistic, even with everything that has happened in our country,” said Egyptian Democratic Academy activist Esraa Abdel Fattah. “In Egypt, we are in the second wave of revolution and it is a healthy thing.”In the film, Abdel Fattah expressed her belief that positive change would eventually occur in Egypt, and she reiterated that sentiment during the HKS discussion. “I am still optimistic, even with everything that has happened in our country,” she said. “In Egypt, we are in the second wave of revolution and it is a healthy thing.” Abdel Fattah predicted that Egyptians will continue to protest until the country achieves genuine democracy, and urged hope for a better future rather than pessimism about the current state of government.The film also tracked the work of student protest groups in Venezuela led by Roberto Patiño against the policies and practices of President Hugo Chávez. Dobson, the Slate editor, praised the effectiveness of the protests, noting that, “The youth had higher approval ratings than the Catholic Church,” in part because they avoided political rhetoric and chose more creative messaging to reach a moderate constituency. Drawing on Venezuelans’ pride in their success in the Miss Universe contest, student activists used campaign posters of an aged beauty queen with a crown to compare Chávez’s rule to having a “Miss Venezuela for life.”“I think this movie comes as a reminder that freedom is priceless and you can’t quantify it. We need to fight for it every day,” said Halimatou Hima Moussa Dioula, a student at HKS who attended the Ash Center event.The film screening was co-sponsored by Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation and the Middle East Initiative of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. The Ash Center’s spring Democracy Seminar series continues on Feb. 13 with Nicholas Cull from the University of Southern California.last_img read more

COR talks strategic planning, textbook rentals

first_img“We’re really excited about this,” he said. “We’ve done a lot but we’re still not quite there yet.”  Crawford said his talk would be centered on developments the College of Science is making in order “to enhance and expand research and enterprise.” Crawford said one of the goals was to cultivate Catholic tradition in the field of science. This particular initiative will be centered on the three Catholic pillars of truth, service and the common good.  “We don’t want to see this program fail,” he said. “We don’t want you to feel violated when you buy books.” “A lot of universities like Michigan, Stanford and [the Massachusetts Institute of Technology] were fighting for this opportunity,” Crawford said. “This is the first accelerator the U.S. government has invested in since 1982 and Notre Dame is going to build it.” “We’re going to be launching a program called Compassionate Care, largely for our pre-med students,” he said. “This will have our students partner with hospice care on the local level, but we will also be participating on the international level with sending a few students to Africa to do work in those communities.” “The first goal we have is to enhance and expand undergraduate research in our core disciplines,” Crawford said.  “That way every year will be different and it will help to expand our international collaborations,” he said. “The rental idea came up on the national level,” Kirkpatrick said. “We did a pilot study in fall 2009 and we’re going to be implementing across the country next academic year.”The program will allow students to pay a fee to rent the book for a semester for a price that is up to 50 percent off the price of the new book.  “The biggest plus to this program is the upfront savings,” he said. “This program also provides the incentive for professor to make the books more affordable for students because they verbally commit to use the same book for four semesters.” Crawford said even with the individual proposals, the College will continue to be involved in continuous development. This includes creating a new institute within the College for 2011 focused on pure mathematics. The institute “will bring in the best math professors from all over the world for a semester.” Director of Retail Operations for the Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore Keith Kirkpatrick then took the floor to talk about a rental system for textbooks for the 2010-2011 academic school year. The plan features seven goals, most of which are centered around creating and providing more research opportunities for students within the College of Science. Kirkpatrick said he believes the price of textbooks is “out of control” and the rental program will help drive costs down. Crawford also said Notre Dame recently was awarded $3.5 million to build a new nuclear accelerator for the federal government. The Council of Representatives (COR) brought in two guest speakers at its meeting Tuesday to discuss the Strategic Plan initiative within the College of Science as well as the new service that will allow Notre Dame students to rent their textbooks. Dean Gregory Crawford from the College of Science discussed the strategic plan that is in the process of being implemented within the College. Crawford said he was there to see what the student leaders thought about the effort.“This is a really important step in having student input in academic decisions,” student body president Catherine Soler said. “This is about moving forward and forming good relationships.”last_img read more

Colleges discuss distribution of students

first_imgWith the March 4 deadline to declare a specific college approaching, students wandered up and down aisles of tables at Majors Night in South Dining Hall on Jan. 27. Along the way, they paused to inquire about specific majors in the five colleges that make up the University. Sam Gaglio, assistant dean of the Mendoza College of Business, said he was pleased by how students continued to explore academic opportunities. “Most didn’t have a predetermined track. That was what really demonstrated to me the opportunities of a Notre Dame education,” Gaglio said. Hugh Page, dean of the First Year of Studies, said enrollment numbers for each college are variables. “The first year at Notre Dame is a time of discernment and contemplative exploration,” Page said. “Enrollment numbers speak to the intellectual curiosity of our students and the unfolding of their journeys as they respond to the call of wisdom’s voice.” Page said he anticipates the College of Arts and Letters to enroll the most freshmen, followed closely by the Mendoza College of Business and the College of Science. Page said 28 percent of freshmen plan to enter the College of Arts and Letters, 26 percent the Mendoza College of Business, 18 percent the College of Engineering, 25 percent the College of Science and two percent the School of Architecture.Currently, Arts and Letters consists of 2,500 undergraduates. Mendoza has 1,780; Science 1,189; Engineering 950; and Architecture 250. Page said enrollment in engineering, science and business majors has increased, while the School of Architecture has seen consistent demand. Page said there is a deepening student interest in educational synergies involving coursework between other colleges and the College of Arts and Letters. “Contemporary issues such as sustainability, energy policy, global health, technology and values, ethics and business, peace studies and poverty studies require broad disciplinary exposure,” said Page. “That places students and faculty from all of these Colleges at what might be termed a ‘nexus of creativity,’ where the ideas and innovations that will shape the future are imagined.” Gaglio said students deciding which college to enter should consider their passions and what they wish to gain from their experiences. “To say one program will give you an advantage over another is an incorrect statement. What are you passionate about? Be excited, engaged and throw yourself into it,” he said. “Each is equally impressive and creates an advantage in your next endeavor.” John McGreevy, dean of the College of Arts and Letters, said a college should open significant intellectual and moral questions to students. “College is the perfect time to study and debate these great issues,” he said. “The ability to write, the ability to analyze data, and the ability to speak is of greatest use for any student after leaving Notre Dame.” For freshmen still deciding, Holly Martin, assistant dean of the First Year of Studies, said it is important to remember choosing a college or major is not the same as choosing a career. “The Career Center is happy to work with first-year students about possible career choices,” she said. “But it isn’t necessary to know what you would like to do as a future career when choosing your college or major.” Page said students change their minds often as coursework, conversations and intellectual exploration generate moments that lead to reevaluation. “A decision at or near the end of the first year at Notre Dame need not be seen as irreversible,” he said. It is crucial for students to follow their passions, Gaglio said. “You don’t ‘have’ to do anything except believe in what you study to be a success. The point is, the university education is your grounding, and then you specialize after that,” he said. “Continue your education. We learn our entire lives.”last_img read more Culturalist Challenge! Rank The Top 10 Show-Stopping Numbers of the Broadway Season

first_imgThe staff is crazy for Culturalist, the website that lets you choose and create your own top 10 lists. Every week, we’re challenging you with a new Broadway-themed topic to rank.With the highly anticipated reveal of the 2016 Tony nominations, the results of the Choice Awards and a Magic Mike update (starring Channing Tatum holding puppies), this week has been quite the show-stopper for Great White Way buzz. Awards season has officially kicked into high gear, and the spirited debates, prediction pools and guesses about what delightful shenanigans Tony host James Corden will have up his sleeve on June 12 are keeping theater fans talking. But what about the big splashy Broadway musical numbers that made us speechless this season? Editorial Assistant Lindsey Sullivan kicked off this week’s challenge with her top 10! Now it’s your turn to push da buttons and tell us your picks!STEP 1—SELECT: Visit Culturalist to see all of your options. Highlight your 10 favorites and then click “rearrange list” (or, if you have nothing to rearrange, go right ahead and hit “publish”).STEP 2—RANK & PUBLISH: Reorder your 10 choices by dragging them into the correct spot on your list. Click the “publish” button.Once your list is published, you can see the overall rankings of everyone on the aggregate list.Pick your favorites, then tune in for the results next week on! View Commentslast_img read more

Three storm-damaged bridges reopen along Route 12A

first_imgThe Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) today opened three storm-damaged bridges along Route 12A that will provide area residents better access to both Route 100 and Interstate 89. A short segment of Route 12A in Roxbury just north of Carrie Howe Road still remains closed as both a culvert and a bridge still need to be replaced, but the three newly opened bridges allow Roxbury residents to travel north to Northfield as well as south to Randolph along Route 12A. ‘In all three locations, we were able to repair and reopen bridges that were damaged by Tropical Storm Irene,’ said VTrans Secretary Brian Searles. ‘These repairs allow residents of not only Roxbury, but also Granville and Braintree to have access to Interstate 89, which will return their travel ability to close to normal.’ Two of the three newly opened bridges are located along the northern segment of Route 12A ‘ one is in Northfield, the other is in Roxbury ‘ while the third bridge is located along the southern segment of Route 12A in Braintree. The newly opened bridges north of Roxbury Village also reestablish access to the Warren Mountain Road, a town highway that provides area residents with a connection to Route 100. The remaining closed segment of Route 12A just north of Carrie Howe Road will remain closed into the fall as neither the culvert nor the bridge can be repaired. VTrans plans to replace the culvert with a short bridge, and must also replace the damaged bridge with a new one. Work to design and engineer these structures is already underway.  Construction activity will begin later this fall. For up-to-date information on storm-related openings and closings, people can call the Irene recovery call center at 1-800-VERMONT or go to the Agency’s homepage at www.aot.state.vt.uswhere(link is external) they can sign up for alerts pushed to their mobile phone. You can also follow VTrans’ recovery efforts on both Facebook and Twitter.last_img read more

Thaler cites merchant push-back, calls for Durbin amendment grassroots action

first_img continue reading » 14SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler on Thursday called on NAFCU members to contact their lawmakers and seek support for repealing the Dodd-Frank Act’s Durbin amendment through passage of the Financial CHOICE Act.“The House Financial Services Committee is expected to mark up the legislation as early as next Tuesday,” Thaler wrote in a message to association members. “It may see action on the House floor before the end of May. The merchants have launched a grassroots campaign to try to strike this provision from the bill.“NAFCU is asking each credit union to make as many contacts as possible from your executives, staff, volunteers or members in the next few days to the representatives of the districts where your credit union has a presence,” Thaler continued. “Now is the time for credit unions to take action and counter the merchants’ message and urge support for the Durbin amendment repeal.”last_img read more

Headlines and perspective: Facebook cryptocurrency

first_img continue reading » Facebook is planning to launch a cryptocurrency, run by the nonprofit Switzerland-based Libra Association in 2020, backed by some of tech’s biggest names. The focus is on financial inclusion for all.How it WorksThe Libra Association – an independent not-for-profit organization created by Facebook and based in Geneva – mints the currency and distributes it through authorized sellers.A consumer downloads a digital wallet from Calibra, then purchases Libra from an authorized seller’s site.With Libra, the user can make an online purchase, such as a subscription to Spotify, one of the corporate partners of the currency.Spotify then exchanges the Libra for dollars via a reseller, who then sells the currency back to the Libra Association. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more