To start off this semester of the Michigan Student Caucus, we'd like you carefully consider and discuss "provocations" posted here -- images, maps, quotes, videos, web pages meant to spark questions and raise issues relevant to students in Michigan.

As you examine the provocations, ask yourself questions like:

  • What is going on here?
  • What inferences can you make?
  • What might be misleading?
  • Who is involved?
  • What feelings does it invoke?
  • What perspectives (social, economic, legal, political, moral, artistic, psychological, historical, etc.) might provide insight?
  • What else do we need to know?
  • How is this item relevant (or how might it be relevant) to students in Michigan?

In addition to discussing provocations posted by others (at minimum be sure to join the discussion around at least five), please find and post your own provocation no later than Sunday, January 20.

CLARIFICATION: When we say "post your own provocation," we mean FIND an intriguing image, map, quote, etc. out in the world and post it in this area together with a citation. In contrast, later on you will be making a "media artifact" as a first step toward crafting your proposal, and for that you will need to CREATE your own piece of media.

Detroit Public Schools

Nick Davis's picture

The Detroit Public System is notoriously lagging behind. Five percent or fewer score proficient in literacy and mathematics in standardized testing. They have the lowest graduation rate in the country and are over $3.5 billion in debt. The schools are deteriorating and teachers are so unhappy that they are holding district wide sickouts to gain attention. One of the main ways the district is combating problems is by changing their curriculum and retraining their teachers. Will this be enough to bring the DPS out of its desperate situation? What else can/should be done?

The Mind Matters Mental Health Meeting Reflection

Jack Berkey's picture

The Mind Matters Mental Health Initiative at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business ultimately strives to enrich the mental health and general wellness of members of the Ross community. The panel included different ways to use the resources that the Ross School can offer during a need of need, stressing the importance that you are not alone in the problems you are facing and that there is always someone to lend a guiding hand. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act.

Greek Life Fall Rush

Nick Davis's picture

As of next year, at the University of Michigan, fall rush for Greek life will only be available for students who have completed at least 12 academic credits at the university. This is due to the dangers that many associate with Greek life. While there may be some risk associated with Greek life, there are also many benefits that are particularly important to fall semester freshmen – like finding a close group of friends right away. Is postponing Greek rush the right move for the University of Michigan and its students?

The Dangers of E-Cigarettes

Grace Vanden Bossche's picture

I recently found an article that detailedd the dangers of e-cigarettes in todays world. Many people openly smoke e-cigarettes because of them being percieved as less dangerous than traditional cigarettes, which in some cases is true. However, smoking e-cigarettes comes with its own set of dangers including a 29% increase in stroke risk and a 25% increase in risk for heart attacks. This article concerned me because of the many college students to openly, and excessively, smoke e-cigarettes.

I was just reading an...

Andrew Verdi's picture

I was just reading an article that headlined 1 out of every 5 university students are affected with anxiety or depression. This is a shockingly large number and in my opinion is unacceptable. I started researching how to combat this epidemic, and stumbled across a fairly interesting and unconventional solution. I began reading how psychedelic drugs can be used to treat a variety of health related issues, including depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD and addiction.

Coffee/Caffeine on Campus

Stevie Weingard's picture

I believe the topic of coffee and caffeine is extremely interesting and also very relevant to college students. I believe it has become almost a norm for college students to drink coffee to help start their day and keep them focused in class, considering 40% of all college students drink from 1 to 2 cups of coffee on the daily. However, I also think that many students choose to ignore how dependent their bodies and minds have become on caffeine. There are also some negative health effects that are never really recognized due to the constant single benefit coffee may have.

I believe the topic of...

Stevie Weingard's picture
I believe the topic of coffee and caffeine is extremely interesting and also very relevant to college students. I believe it has become almost a norm for college students to drink coffee to help start their day and keep them focused in class, considering 40% of all college students drink from 1 to 2 cups of coffee on the daily. However, I also think that many students choose to ignore how dependent their bodies and minds have become on caffeine. There are also some negative health effects that are never really recognized due to the constant single benefit coffee may have.

U of M Policies for Winter Weather

Hope Kessler's picture

Recently there has been a lot of discussion on campus about whether or not the University should cancel classes when it is extremely cold outside. Over the next few days, temperates are expected to drop to record lows in the -30's. Experts are warning about the dangers of being outside in these temperates, including potential frostbite within 10 minutes - which has students wondering, would the University really make us walk all the way to the MLB in this weather?

Detroit Public Schools

Nick Davis's picture

The Detroit Public System is notoriously lagging behind. Five percent or fewer score proficient in literacy and mathematics in standardized testing. They have the lowest graduation rate in the country and are over $3.5 billion in debt. The schools are deteriorating and teachers are so unhappy that they are holding district wide sickouts to gain attention. One of the main ways the district is combating problems is by changing their curriculum and retraining their teachers. Will this be enough to bring the DPS out of its desperate situation? What else can/should be done?

The Mind Matters Mental Health Meeting Reflection

Jack Berkey's picture

The Mind Matters Mental Health Initiative at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business ultimately strives to enrich the mental health and general wellness of members of the Ross community. The panel included different ways to use the resources that the Ross School can offer during a need of need, stressing the importance that you are not alone in the problems you are facing and that there is always someone to lend a guiding hand. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act.

Greek Life Fall Rush

Nick Davis's picture

As of next year, at the University of Michigan, fall rush for Greek life will only be available for students who have completed at least 12 academic credits at the university. This is due to the dangers that many associate with Greek life. While there may be some risk associated with Greek life, there are also many benefits that are particularly important to fall semester freshmen – like finding a close group of friends right away. Is postponing Greek rush the right move for the University of Michigan and its students?

The Dangers of E-Cigarettes

Grace Vanden Bossche's picture

I recently found an article that detailedd the dangers of e-cigarettes in todays world. Many people openly smoke e-cigarettes because of them being percieved as less dangerous than traditional cigarettes, which in some cases is true. However, smoking e-cigarettes comes with its own set of dangers including a 29% increase in stroke risk and a 25% increase in risk for heart attacks. This article concerned me because of the many college students to openly, and excessively, smoke e-cigarettes.

I was just reading an...

Andrew Verdi's picture

I was just reading an article that headlined 1 out of every 5 university students are affected with anxiety or depression. This is a shockingly large number and in my opinion is unacceptable. I started researching how to combat this epidemic, and stumbled across a fairly interesting and unconventional solution. I began reading how psychedelic drugs can be used to treat a variety of health related issues, including depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD and addiction.

Coffee/Caffeine on Campus

Stevie Weingard's picture

I believe the topic of coffee and caffeine is extremely interesting and also very relevant to college students. I believe it has become almost a norm for college students to drink coffee to help start their day and keep them focused in class, considering 40% of all college students drink from 1 to 2 cups of coffee on the daily. However, I also think that many students choose to ignore how dependent their bodies and minds have become on caffeine. There are also some negative health effects that are never really recognized due to the constant single benefit coffee may have.

I believe the topic of...

Stevie Weingard's picture
I believe the topic of coffee and caffeine is extremely interesting and also very relevant to college students. I believe it has become almost a norm for college students to drink coffee to help start their day and keep them focused in class, considering 40% of all college students drink from 1 to 2 cups of coffee on the daily. However, I also think that many students choose to ignore how dependent their bodies and minds have become on caffeine. There are also some negative health effects that are never really recognized due to the constant single benefit coffee may have.

U of M Policies for Winter Weather

Hope Kessler's picture

Recently there has been a lot of discussion on campus about whether or not the University should cancel classes when it is extremely cold outside. Over the next few days, temperates are expected to drop to record lows in the -30's. Experts are warning about the dangers of being outside in these temperates, including potential frostbite within 10 minutes - which has students wondering, would the University really make us walk all the way to the MLB in this weather?

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