university of wisconsin madison

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University of Wisconsin-Madison is now offering a course on “The Problem of Whiteness” and Republican legislators are LOSING IT

Say it with us: White fragility. To many, the course might seem like an interesting — and constructive — exercise, especially given the rise of the alt-right movement and the post-election racial tensions. It’s being offered at a university where the overwhelming majority of the student population identifies as white and only 2% of the students are Black.

nytimes.com
The Purpose of Sleep: To forget, Scientists say  sleep may help the brain prune back unneeded synapses.
By Carl Zimmer

A PET scan of a brain during normal sleep.

by Carl Zimmer

Over the years, scientists have come up with a lot of ideas about why we sleep.

Some have argued that it’s a way to save energy. Others have suggested that slumber provides an opportunity to clear away the brain’s cellular waste. Still others have proposed that sleep simply forces animals to lie still, letting them hide from predators.

A pair of papers published on Thursday in the journal Science offer evidence for another notion: We sleep to forget some of the things we learn each day.

In order to learn, we have to grow connections, or synapses, between the neurons in our brains. These connections enable neurons to send signals to one another quickly and efficiently. We store new memories in these networks.

In 2003, Giulio Tononi and Chiara Cirelli, biologists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, proposed that synapses grew so exuberantly during the day that our brain circuits got “noisy.” When we sleep, the scientists argued, our brains pare back the connections to lift the signal over the noise.

In the years since, Dr. Tononi and Dr. Cirelli, along with other researchers, have found a great deal of indirect evidence to support the so-called synaptic homeostasis hypothesis.

(excerpt - click the link for the complete article) 

anonymous asked:

Does anybody know if the University of Wisconsin (Madison) accommodates for non-binary or pre-transition trans people in any way? I'm still in the closet for the most part, except to my mom and sister (parents are divorced & I have a transphobic brother). Also, I plan on rowing in college, which means I'll probably have to keep pretending to be a girl for the next 4 years...right? Does anyone have any general advice for college and/or college athletes? Sorry this is so all over the place!!

Emery says:

UW Madison has a preferred name space, which is not visible to your parents as far as I know. If you talk to profs individually about your name, they will definitely respect it, and you can put it on Scantron tests, assignments, etc. as long as you include your legal last name and/or ID number so they can connect the document with you. Also, the UW has a gender inclusive housing program in Tripp Hall; it’s called Open House. You have to apply for housing relatively early if you’re interested in the dorms along the lakeshore (which Tripp is one of) and it does have limited space, so apply early!! And the UW's LGBT Campus Center has some marvelous people in it who would be more than happy to talk with you about any concerns you’re having on campus, whether gender-related or not. Also they have a weekly support group called Gender Explorers for trans/questioning folks which I think is inclusive of nonbinary people. Other than those systematic, school-based supports, you’re in Madison, which has a lot of resources in it, so just go looking! One place I know is Briarpatch Youth Services of Southern Wisconsin, which has a weekly LGBTQ+ teen support group (serves you until you’re 20), as well as free and anonymous counseling and a 24-hour crisis line. Beyond those things, meet good people, make good friends. Good people will respect you. 

As far as general college stuff, it depends on what you need from your college experience and what your particular school offers. But overall, if you’re someone who uses neutral bathrooms, devote yourself to finding those as soon as you move in. Look for gender inclusive/neutral housing options if they exist. Join your school’s LGBTQ+ club, but be prepared that it might not be trans-inclusive. You get to choose who you come out to/who knows what name/who uses what pronouns. It’s okay not to be out. It’s okay to be super duper out. It’s okay to be somewhere in the middle. Find people you trust to come out to. Having someone who knows what’s up is really nice. It’s up to you if you come out to your roommate, but personally, mine has been pretty good about it. 

I don’t have a lot of athlete advice, so I’m going to ask our followers and my fellow mods for some input here, but I wanted to address the UW Madison portion of the ask because I know a lot about that school. But if you want to row on the women’s team (I have no clue if they’d let a DFAB person try out for the men’s team tbh) but would like changing room accommodations, I’m sure you could talk to the coach or someone and if they’re supportive, they might let you use a gender neutral (or a men’s) bathroom to change in. Good luck! And followers? Any more athlete advice?

Sooooo I’m definitely positive that this flash of Kevin’s girlfriend’s school is Bascom Hill at UW-Madison. Because I walk up that hill like every other day and that is without a doubt my college campus. IN SUPERNATURAL. I mean, I know you guys love Wisconsin but usually the Wisconsin episodes are filmed in Vancouver, so it’s quite flattering to show the ACTUAL Wisconsin, even though you’re pretending it’s somewhere in Michigan.

(I mean, come on, you can see the UW flags and everything. I don’t think Michigan school would have a huge red and white W everywhere.)

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Vintage photos of college dorms over the past 110 years.

A century ago, students still slept in single beds, hung family photos on their walls, and chilled with friends in their dorm rooms.