Category Archives: Student Life

Tatiana Lathion: Uncertianty/New Beginnings

Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

 

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Photography and Text by Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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Uncertainty/New Beginnings

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This spring break has been unlike any I have experienced in the past. It was full of uncertainty and memories that I will not easily forget. The images that I have selected for this travel project display these moments sequentially.

In the beginning of my spring break I was on a lacrosse trip with my team to Virginia Beach. Little did I know, but this would be the last trip I was to have with these women. Due to the on going Covid-19 pandemic, our coach canceled all outings. However, we were able to enjoy a couple sunny beach days while we were all together.

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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In these images, you can see the decline in emotions as we found out our games had been canceled and this was to be our last time together, as we were being sent home to complete the rest of the semester to our designated places of origin.

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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I ended the series with two images. The first, the light of the sunset as it entered the house we were staying in on our last night in Virginia Beach. The second is an image of the sunset as it entered into the hallway of my apartment as I left for the airport. It is in this hallway that connected my room to my roommate’s, as has been the meeting place for our weekly laughs and story times. It is here that I leave the laughs, tears, and memories from these past two semesters. Saying goodbye is never easy especially as this image signifies the end of my on campus college experience. 

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

I arrived back to my hometown of Ponte Vedra, FL, that Monday with tears in my eyes as my new reality began to hit me. And as the sadness subsided, I went to visit my friend, Brookie. She has been my dearest confidant since I first moved to Florida in the second grade and as we had both been sent home from college, we took this sad moment to celebrate our accomplishments.

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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While our college experience has taken a sharp turn, it has gifted us with an opportunity to see each other again and allowed us the chance to acknowledge our accomplishments thus far as we enter into this new phase in our lives.

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

The next image is the road home. The journey back home has been hard, but it is always nice to back where it all started. This road has been there for me since I first moved here when I was 7, to when I first started to learn how to drive to now. The last image depicts my new study space, or what my mom likes to call our porch. This is one of her pride and joys of our house and her sanctuary of greenery. In these days, I have adopted it as my own quiet space to catch up on work. My favorite aspect of this area is the old trunk my mom has converted into a shelf for her plants. Its old exterior is contrasted by the new growth that is placed upon it. While my travel plans, might not have necessarily gone as planned, I think it has opened up an opportunity for self-growth and reflection in these uncertain times.

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Photo: Tatiana Lathion, Copyright 2020

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About The Author: Tatiana Lathion is a senior enrolled at Haverford College majoring Political Science and Government. To access additional articles by Tatiana Lathion, click here: https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/the-man_the-basement/

 

Also posted in Affiliates, Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Environment, Friends of TWS, Haverford College, History, lifestyle, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Travel, Women

Athena Intanate: One Day at a Time

Photo: Athena Intanate

 

 

Photography and Text by Athena Intanate, Copyright 2020

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One Day at a Time

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Too often when we think of travel, we reminisce of far-flung, exotic places, worthy of bragging about and pulling up photos of at the next family gathering. Having come from a country where people normally vacation in, I’ve gotten used to the exoticisation of holidays, and while find joy in them, don’t hold them to as much significance. The role of Instagram and Facebook, and the pursuit of the perfect ‘insta-worthy’ shot has manufactured this ceaseless image of what a ‘perfect’ vacation looks like, and sometimes it just couldn’t be further from the truth.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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We seem to forget that sometimes holidays are nestled between the quiet moments. They’re nestled in between the seats of your friend’s car, when you’re driving down tree-lined roads to Future’s bass-heavy music; they’re folded into the tentative mumble of half-formed plans; they’re wrapped in the traipses through touristy sites, even though you’re with locals. Lately it seems as though it’s been harder and harder to enjoy the little things – nothing ever seems grandiose or spectacular enough to participate in, let alone share.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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This weekend trip to DC and Maryland was anything but exotic; we drove down to Bethesda, a small suburb just outside of DC, on Friday and I was back on campus by Sunday afternoon. And yet, it was perhaps one of the most contentful trips I’ve taken in a very long time. My heart came back incredibly full, as did my camera roll. The weather’s growing tentatively warmer, and even when the wind requires zipped-up jackets and hoodies to be reluctantly pulled on, there exists an ecstatic happiness within the sunlight. We couldn’t do much within less than 36 hours, so we did the best that we could, spending the sun-swept day in each other’s company, driving between houses, and making new friends over plastic bags of Trader Joe’s peanut-filled pretzel bites.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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Sometimes, we just need to take things one day at a time. The best moments are inlaid in the quietest ones, just waiting for our hands to reach out and grab them by their ubiquitous centres. Urgency can be the killer of joy, and travel wasn’t made for it. It was made for us to fully absorb and comprehend all that is going on around us, and for us to learn from and appreciate what we see.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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This weekend trip to DC brought me back that sense of wholly contentful peace, and I am so glad that I got to share it with some of my best friends before we descended into the current climate of chaos.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

Declan and Andrew, it was a pleasure meeting you.

Solomon, Maya and Charlie, I’m so thankful I have you in my life.

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Photo: Athena Intanate

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About the Author: Athena Intanate is a freshman enrolled at Haverford College, Class of 2023. To access additional articles by Athena Intanate, click herehttps://tonyward.com/love/

Also posted in Affiliates, Blog, Current Events, Documentary, Environment, Friends of TWS, Haverford College, lifestyle, Photography, Popular Culture, Travel, Women

Athena Intanate: Love is a Lamp-Lit Room

Photo: Atena Intanate, Copyright 2020

 

Photography and Text by Athena Intanate, Copyright 2020

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Love is a Lamp-Lit Room

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I never particularly liked my dorm room until I started putting up my photographs in it. Its yellowed cinder block walls are sticky with age, and the carpeted floor is in dire need of a deep clean. My bed’s propped next to the wall with a gaping one foot gap, unable to be bridged because of an oddly situated pillar jutting out from the corner. But just like any new place, I needed more than to simply occupy that irregularly cuboidal space. I needed to make it mine, in order to make it a place I desired to be. 

Bedrooms are very private spaces, where we are allowed to feel all our emotions in their completeness. We sleep there, we dream there, but we cry, think, and laugh there too. University has been daunting and breathtaking to experience all at the same time, and if my bedroom was a person it has been the one that has comforted me most. There is sadness and despair, that is undeniable, but they are sutured in such close proximity to happiness and love that the fluidity that exists between each individual emotion amalgamates them. This is why I had one protagonist situated in one room – to represent the ever-changing nature of how we feel. ‘Love is a Lamp-Lit Room’ is, if anything, a self-portrait of how I navigate this turbulence. 

There exists a certain shard of despair in needing to get up and go to work at 5am five times a week, as I do. I fumble in the dimness, struggling to tie the laces of my shoes.

After eight hours of shifts on top of four hours of class, sometimes I am rendered exhausted, emotionally drained. All I want to do is curl up and bask in silence. 

Is the selfie a mark of vanity? Or is it a sign of self-love?

Happiness can be found in people, but also the things that I loved doing in the past. Reading has become conflated with homework, but can it bring happiness too? 

These were all thoughts that swirled around in my head as I attempted to reconstruct my own narrative into 35 frames. 

But at the end of the day my room is loved, as am I. I am enfolded in softness – the yellow glow from my bed-side lamp reminds me so.

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Portrait of Athena Intanate by Cindy Ji, Copyright 2020

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About the Author: Athena Intanate is a freshman enrolled at Haverford College, Class of 2023.

Also posted in Art, Blog, Environment, Friends of TWS, Haverford College, Health Care, lifestyle, Photography, Popular Culture, Portraiture, Women

Dr. Michael Zapor: Covid-19

Novel Coronavirus Covid 19

Text by Dr. Michael Zapor, Copyright 2020

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COVID-19

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Being an infectious diseases physician, research microbiologist, and former deputy commander of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (which is in the business of identifying, researching, and mitigating infectious disease threats), I thought I’d make a few comments about Coronavirus Disease-2019.
 
Firstly, we’ve known about coronaviruses since the 1960s. Named for the crown-like arrangement of glycoproteins on their capsid, the coronaviruses comprise a family within the order Nidovirales and consist of four genera: alpha, beta, gamma, and delta. Coronaviruses are common in birds and mammals (with the greatest diversity in bats), and human infections are caused by two alpha- (i.e. HCoV-229E and HCoV-NL63) and several beta- (e.g. HCoV-OC43 and HCoV-HKU1) species. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS) are also beta-coronaviruses. Coronaviruses are ubiquitous and along with rhinoviruses, parainfluenza, metapneumovirus, and respiratory syncytial virus, cause most community-acquired upper respiratory tract infections (i.e. the common cold). As with other respiratory viruses, coronaviruses occasionally cause more severe illness. Individuals at the extremes of age (i.e. infants and the elderly), as well as those with comorbid pulmonary disease (e.g. chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), or immune compromising conditions (e.g. hematopoietic stem cell transplant or HIV infection) are at increased risk. Certain coronavirus species (e.g. HCoV-OC43, SARS-CoV, and MERS-CoV) also are associated with more severe infection. Except for SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, there has not been much interest in producing coronavirus vaccines. This derives from the fact that most coronaviruses: 1) cause mild, self-limiting illness; 2) are difficult to replicate in tissue culture; 3) display antigenic variation (That is to say that the surface proteins against which protective antibodies would be made change); and 4) Vaccine trials with at least one animal coronavirus demonstrated a worse outcome upon challenge with the virus (a problem similarly posed by dengue virus). Although some medicines, including antivirals and chloroquine, have demonstrated potent in vitro antiviral activity against tested coronaviruses (i.e. SARS-CoV, HCoV-229E, and HCoV-OC43), there are no clinical trials assessing efficacy and treatment is supportive. As with other respiratory viruses (such as rhinoviruses), coronaviruses are transmitted by respiratory aerosol, and the mainstay of prevention is handwashing, respiratory hygiene (i.e. covering the cough or sneeze), and disinfection of fomites (i.e. inanimate objects which can become contaminated).
 
The coronavirus now in the news emerged in late 2019 as a novel variant out of Wuhan, a city in the Hubei Province of China—hence, its earlier designation 2019-NCoV (i.e. 2019 Novel Coronavirus). Since it is no longer novel and is genetically and clinically like SARS, 2019-NCoV was re-designated SARS-CoV-2. SARS-CoV-2 has subsequently spread to other countries including South Korea, Italy, Iran, and Japan. Most cases have been among people who had either traveled from China or who had been exposed to someone known to be infected with SARS-CoV-2. However, several cases in the United States were recently diagnosed among people with no obvious risk factors, suggesting that community transmission is occurring. The incubation period for SARS-CoV-2 appears to average 3-6 days. Because viral DNA has been isolated from respiratory secretions of exposed asymptomatic individuals, it is believed that not everyone who is exposed will become ill. The extent to which these individuals transmit SARS-CoV-2 to others is not yet known. Epidemiological studies of the Wuhan outbreak suggest that most infected individuals will have mild disease (81%), and only a minority will develop pneumonia (14%) or pneumonia with respiratory failure, shock, or multiorgan dysfunction (5%).The overall estimated case fatality rate (CFR) appears to be ~2.3%, making it less deadly than some influenza strains and far less deadly than MERS. Moreover, the CFR was lower outside of Wuhan (0.7%) and as with other coronaviruses, risk factors for severe or critical disease include extremes of age, comorbid illness, and immune compromising conditions.
SARS-CoV-2 RNA detection is by means of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification, using an assay that is currently only available (in the U.S.) at the Centers for Disease Control and CDC-qualified labs. However, there is a push to make the assay more available (e.g. to state health labs). Currently, the treatment of individuals infected with SARS-CoV-2 is supportive, but antiviral drugs including nucleotide analogues and protease inhibitors are being studied. As with other coronaviruses, the mainstay of prevention is handwashing, respiratory hygiene, and disinfection of fomites. Several labs, both in the U.S. and in Israel, are pursuing a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, buoyed by the stability of at least some of the spike glycoproteins as well as sequence homology with several other human and poultry coronaviruses. It is also possible that as more and more people become exposed to SARS-CoV-2 and develop protective antibodies, transmission between susceptible individuals will decline (the “herd effect”).
 
Although the emergence of a novel pathogen is never a trifling matter, it is important for people to have a realistic understanding of the disease caused by it without succumbing to hysteria. To date, SARS-CoV-2 has shown itself to be a respiratory viral pathogen most commonly causing mild, self-limiting illness, with more severe disease limited to certain susceptible populations (in contrast, say, to the 1918 H1N1 influenza virus which disproportionately killed healthy younger people). Moreover, researchers are making progress in developing vaccines and therapeutics. I certainly don’t mean to trivialize SARS-CoV-2. However, I’ve seen far more lethal viral pathogens such as HIV, rabies, Ebola, and other viral hemorrhagic fever viruses; and unless something changes with the virus, I am only moderately alarmed by SARS-CoV-2.
On a positive note, the anti-vaxxers suddenly seem awfully quiet on social media…
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Dr.Michael Zapor

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About The Author: Dr. Michael Zapor is the Chief of Medical Services at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in West Virginia.
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Disclaimer:
1) Dr. Zapor did not write this essay in any official capacity.
2) Because the COVID situation is developing rapidly, some things included in the essay (e.g. case fatality rates) are a bit outdated.
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Joy Bao: Habitat

Photography by Joy Bao, Copyright 2020

 

Photography and Text by Joy Bao, Copyright 2020

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HABITAT

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noun

  the natural home or environment of an animal, plant, or other organism.

  informal: a person’s usual or preferred surroundings.

The dictionary told me these are the definitions of “habitat.”

I found the word surprisingly fitting for the photo shoot, as the location itself is never quite the habitat for anybody. The room is located in my friend’s home, who also modeled for the project. It is not her or the other girl’s habitat, because it is the “animal room;” however, this room is also not a habitat for an animal, as it is man-made and not “natural,” and the shorthair cat is a type of domestic animal.

What we express emotionally, most of the time, largely depends on the environment around us. With a seemingly natural yet slightly off daily-life setting, I hope to achieve a gradation not only of human emotions, but also artificiality in terms of the project itself. Having the two models making relatively obvious and dramatic facial expressions while standing beside a cat tree that is clearly not designed for human use, the upper part of the photos shows the self-awareness of a deliberate art project. But as if the true loving and caring nature inside the model have precipitated, the bottom half shows the model looking at the cat, and the whole setting becomes more “habitat-like” as it cannot be more suitable for the emotion and atmosphere. While the cat tree is the main prop in this project, I still wanted to emphasize the homely and domestic setting by using only natural light coming from the windows. Through a series of contrast and paradoxical settings, I hope to draw attention to our emotional state with material surroundings, and, ultimately, the question of where exactly can be our habitat?

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Portrait of Joy Bao by Huiping Tina Zhong, Copyright 2020

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About The Author: Joy Bao is a senior enrolled at Bryn Mawr College. Class of 2020

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