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Alex Chang for Spectator

Former University President George Rupp returned this fall to teach a seminar on Religion and International Development.

Happy first Friday of the year! Or, if you prefer, the 248th day of the year! Or, if you prefer, it’s Leo Tolstoy’s 186th birthday! The sun is shining, Low Plaza is bustling, and everyone who lives in EC is waking up really late because of last night’s 2 a.m. fire alarm. Here’s what you need for today.

On Campus:

Former University President George Rupp has returned to Morningside Heights as a professor of religion at Columbia. Following his tenure as president from 1993 to 2002, Rupp led an international humanitarian aid and development organization until last year. He will be teaching one class a semester. This semester’s seminar, open to both graduates and undergraduates, is called Religion and International Development.

Check out the Blue & White’s campus profile of Conrad Tao, CC ’15, a classical pianist who, in his own words is “very much a Gemini.”

The return of Fridays also means the return of contemplative cartoons from Spectator’s own Karl Daum. As always, Karl gets angsty real. In today’s cartoon, he comes to terms with the passing of the last summer of his youth. Ten points to anyone who can identify what song he’s singing in the car.

Outside the Bubble:

Ukraine has reached another ceasefire agreement with the pro-Russian forces it’s been battling for five months. More than 2,600 people have died since the fighting started in April. Neither the Ukrainian government nor the separatists, however, have backed down from their stated goals of holding Ukraine together and breaking away from Ukraine, respectively. A 10-day truce was previously negotiated back in June.

Fast food employees demonstrated across the country Thursday, demanding a raise in hourly wages to $15 an hour from chains like McDonald’s and Burger King. The “Fight for $15” campaign staged hundreds-strong protests in New York, Chicago, Milwaukee, and other U.S. cities, blocking traffic and often spurring arrests by police.

Thirty-three-year-old Roger Federer continues to demonstrate that he is the greatest tennis player to ever pick up a racquet, rallying back from two sets down and staving off two match points to defeat Gael Monfils in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open.

From the Twittersphere:

Around the Ivies:

At another Woodbridge Hall, not too far away, Yale students delivered a petition with over 1000 signatures demanding that university workers have the right to unionize. Sound familiar?

What’s happening today:

The activities fair is from noon to 4 p.m. on College Walk. You can come learn about over 100 student groups, including Spectator!

The Spectator is holding Open Houses today and tomorrow at 4 p.m. at the Spec office, between 111th and 112th streets and Broadway. Come over to meet our editors and get the dish on getting involved with Spec.

The Barnard Career Fair is taking place now until 3 p.m, in LeFrak Gymnasium. Whip out your résumé and head over to talk to employers including AOL, IBM, and the Whitney Museum.

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