In Case You Missed It

Brown Bites: Feb. 20-26, 2016

Director of Audience Development
Friday, February 26, 2016

Alumni interview gone wrong

A YouTube video in which high school senior Matt Sarafa claims that his Brown alumni interviewer used racist and homophobic language during his interview has gone viral. Sarafa said that during his alumni interview in Southern California, the alum told him Brown was “not very accepting of your kind,” implying that Brown students would discriminate against him because he is gay. Sarafa said that Leora Johnson ’01, assistant director of alumni interviewing and admission, told him in a phone call that the alum had admitted to using homophobic and racist language but that there wasn’t enough evidence to remove him as an interviewer. Sarafa withdrew his application to the Class of 2020 following his experience.

Going to court

Brown made headlines recently after a former member of the Class of 2017 alleged he was discriminated against due to his gender during a sexual assault case in fall 2014. Judge William Smith ruled that the hearings regarding the charges that Brown violated the student’s due process rights and discriminated against him because of his gender have the legal standards to proceed, as do the claims of negligence and Brown acting under deliberate indifference to gender discrimination under Title IX.

This one time at band camp

The Brown Band took center stage this week, making students around campus wish they had stuck with the clarinet in the sixth grade. The band, established in 1924, has a core group of around 50 dedicated members who come cheer at every single football, basketball and hockey game. Never played an instrument? No problem: You don’t even need an instrument to join. According to Sidney Karesh ’16, trombone player and former band president, “The president of the band two years ago started playing no instrument. She learned the cymbals and became the most dedicated member of the band.” We may not be musical, but we do think we’d look pretty great standing next to those big white tubas wearing a “Harvard Sucks!!!” button. We’ll be in touch.

BEAR hug

Students and professors alike gathered during the long weekend to celebrate Brown Employee Appreciation and Recognition Day Monday, where President Paxson gave awards to 12 individuals and three teams. The Excellence Award Selection Committee reviewed 126 nominations and gave out awards for excellence in the categories of citizenship, diversity, efficiency, innovation, leadership, rising star and service. Some of the winners included Sidalia Piriquito, a custodian in the math and Judaic studies departments, Director of Biomedical Communications Kris Cambra and Director of Leadership Programs in the School of Professional Studies Kisa Takesue ’88. According to Cambra, “At a school, obviously students and faculty are going to be most important — that’s the ambition. But in the background are all these staff members who make everything work. … It’s just nice to know that Brown recognizes that and knows that there is a huge component of staff that makes it successful as well.”

To stay up-to-date, subscribe to our daily newsletter.

Comments are closed.

Comments are closed. If you have corrections to submit, you can email The Herald at