There are many Columbia and Barnard students for whom the idea of the typical Columbia/Barnard student is alienating. Trust-fund babies with more money than they know what to do with, whose families have attended Columbia for generations, and who don’t have to think about paying bills. The real picture of the student body is, of course, much more nuanced and includes students who are the first among their families to attend university. Those are the students whose stories Tracey Wang tells us in this week’s outstanding lead story. From the financial pressures at home and at school, to the generational gap that exists between first-generation college students and their parents, to the feelings of shame and alienation that many first-generation students feel at Columbia, Tracey shines a light on a group of Columbia students who are too often forgotten about.
Another prominent theme of our second issue is fashion—with lead-story editor Adil Habib explaining the ways in which Fashion Week now operates as a marketing scheme, and writer Zack Etheart reflecting on his experience at Paris Fashion Week. I spoke to writer and activist Janet Mock about everything from Beyoncé, to creating liberating spaces for herself and others, and turning up in New York. We’re also debuting a new semi-regular series called Ladybits, satirizing sex columns for women (think Cosmopolitan, circa 2009). This week’s installment is all about self-love. You go, girlfriend!
Enjoy the issue, as always.