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Bates in Brief Students: Romina Istratii’s Watson, unkempt rooms, what students want

Cultivating Female Farmers

Romina Istratii ’12 of Athens, Greece, will use a prestigious Watson Fellowship to investigate the intersection of gender and food insecurity in sub-Saharan Africa.

Romina Istratii ’12, photographed by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College.

Women far outnumber men as farm workers in many African countries, yet gender bias and male dominance of economic and social institutions limits opportunities for female farmers.

“This situation contributes to persistent food insecurity,” Istratii writes in her Watson proposal.
At the same time, women’s voices are absent from existing research into gender bias in sub-Saharan farming practices, a void Istratii hopes to address.

“The literature shows that women are crucial to food stability, but it fails to project what women think and how they see their role as forces of security and economic growth.”

Each Watson recipient receives $25,000 to pursue their year-long project.


Student Quote

“You’re gorgeous, smart and sexy. More and more like me every day.” — Umar Khan ’13 to Asia Night co-host Amna Ilyas ’13


February break is when Jim Guzelian tries to inspect the college’s 965 student rooms, whether they need it (like here) or not. Photograph by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College.

Clean up your room!

February break is when Jim Guzelian tries to get around to all of the college’s 965 student rooms.

Guzelian is part of the college’s Environmental, Health and Safety program, and twice a year he and Ray Potter inspect every residential room, mandated by the state Fire Marshal’s Office.

They look for the usual prohibited stuff, everything from ceiling tapestries and Christmas decorations wrapped around sprinkler pipes to hot plates, microwaves, George Foreman grills, crock-pots and deep-fat fryers.

But the No. 1 problem they encounter is more mundane.

“Clutter!” Guzelian says — not just messy rooms but hoarder-style junk.
And, perhaps like at home, the offending students get a note asking them to clean up.


What do Batesies want?

(Source: 2011 Senior Survey)

What qualities in a career do you deem “essential” or “very important”?

Interesting daily work — 93%

Intellectual challenge — 87.5%

Stable, secure future — 84.5%

What qualities in a career do you deem “not important”?

Limited working hours — 31%

Social recognition or status — 26.5%

High income potential — 9.5%


Inside Africa Fashion Show

Joshua Ajamu ‘14 of Breinigsville, Pa., models an agbada, a traditional West African suit, at the Inside Africa fashion show in February 2012 Photograph by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College.


Student Facts

Bates has as many students from Malaysia as from Missouri (4).

Bates debate ranked ninth in the world in 20I2.

Favorite Bates desserts: chocolate cookies, almond cookies and vegan brownies.

By 1979, about half of Bates students used computers.

The Mustachio Bashio party in February concludes the wacky mustache season at Bates.


Book It

Students who buy books online before the semester begins arrive at the bookstore to find their purchases ready for them in an ecofriendly bag. Photograph by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College.




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