Articles by Lisa Zhu

05/04/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Time to pay it forward

The conventional formula for a senior goodbye piece (whether it takes the form of a DP column or a commencement speech) goes something like this: 1.) Nostalgically list several fond, quintessentially-Penn memories-"I remember getting wasted at Smokes/being pelted at Hey Day/pissing on Ben Franklin's statue ." 2.
04/23/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | A wish list for the city

I'm no Fresh Prince, but come May 18, I too will be saying goodbye to the city in whose shadow I've been living for the past 20 years. Since my parents to Philadelphia in the late 1980s, parts of the city have changed a great deal: The Comcast Center tower has nestled itself next to the Mellon Bank building and the Liberty Place skyscrapers.
04/16/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Betting on a bad idea

The most recent turn of events in the never-ending Philadelphia casino saga - a new location for the proposed Foxwoods casino - has the city going all in on the developer's demands. At a Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board meeting last week, Foxwoods revealed that they were now planning to move into the former Strawbridge & Clothier building at 8th & Market streets.
04/09/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Creative collaboration

Many Penn students (read: haters) tend to harbor a certain disregard for our peer institutions, as exemplified by basketball fans' over-enthusiastic trash-talking at basketball games and the obligatory groan-plus-rolling-of-the-eyes reaction whenever anyone mentions the word Princeton.
04/02/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Reforming school reform

For longtime Philly resident Tamara Ali, William Penn High School changed her life. A 2000 graduate of the North Philadelphia school, Ali participated in its communications and journalism program, which at the time was one of the best in the city. "I transferred to William Penn from Strawberry Mansion, which was in a bad neighborhood," she said.
03/26/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Get ready for a fight

In late January, Mayor Michael Nutter announced that the City was contemplating raising taxes in order to close the $1.4-billion budget deficit Philadelphia faces over the next five years. A week ago, he and his team officially unveiled a projected budget and five-year plan intended to close the gap and mitigate the effects of the recession.
02/26/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Banking on a good system

Last week, as I waited on the corner of N. 8th and Lehigh for the No. 47 SEPTA bus that would take me back to Center City, I was struck by the depressing, sporadic gaps of land every few houses. The entire street was pockmarked with vacant lots on which scrubby brown grass competed for space with broken glass, crushed beer cans and discarded candy wrappers.
02/19/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Treating mental side effects as well

A week after Penn's outbreak of meningitis, things seem to have finally calmed down. Social gatherings have resumed as usual, the collective paranoia over sharing drinks and food has diminished and the three patients are well on their road to recovery. With the incident almost behind us, now may be a good time to review some of the major takeaways from this latest health scare.
02/12/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Spreading a little good will

If you're a junior or senior currently scrambling for a job, you might as well pack up your bags right now and see what the economy looks like on Mars. But if you're an inmate in the Philadelphia Prison System scheduled for release in the next few months, you may actually be in luck.
02/05/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Better while separated

Recently, Georgia state Senator Seth Harp caused an uproar in the community of higher education by proposing that two of the state's historically black colleges be merged with predominantly white ones. Specifically, his resolution stipulates that Savannah State University and Albany State University (both historically black public schools) be merged with the predominantly white colleges, Armstrong Atlantic State University and Darton College, respectively.
01/29/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | A 'last' straw for ignorance

Last Saturday, I went down to the Wachovia Center to attend the extras casting call for M. Night Shyamalan's upcoming film, The Last Airbender. Based off a popular Nickelodeon cartoon series with a cult following, the movie depicts a fantasy world divided into four regions, each dominated by a particular element: Fire, Water, Earth and Air.
01/15/09 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Saving green by going green

As the U.S. economy continues to spiral downwards, it's become more and more clear that even our impenetrable "Penn bubble" can't keep out a national recession. In December, President Gutmann issued an update on the university's plans for coping with the financial crisis, assuring that Penn will not be "implementing broad-scale layoffs, hiring freezes or across-the-board budget reductions.
12/04/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | The benefits of the cost

Since last year, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped by almost 40 percent, while President Amy Gutmann's salary went up by that percentage. Gutmann's $1.1 million compensation trailed even higher figures paid to academic executives like Columbia's Lee Bollinger ($1.
11/20/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Taking on tenure

As 2008 slowly winds to a close, few Americans are optimistic about their year-end bonuses. But if you're a teacher in a Washington, D.C. public school, there may be good news. In the policy recently proposed by school district Chancellor Michelle Rhee, teachers could earn raises of up to $40,000 - in exchange for giving up tenure for a year.
11/13/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Philly's greener future

As part of the effort to reinvigorate America's economy and achieve energy independence, Obama proposes investing $150 billion over the next 10 years in alternative fuel technology. Obama claims this policy measure will create five million new "green-collar" jobs.
11/06/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | A little more R-E-S-P-E-C-T

'I'm lovin' it!" Almost everyone associates this catchphrase with McDonald's, but few Penn students would agree that it applies to the franchise's branch on 40th and Walnut streets. With customer service complaints like the ones described in The Daily Pennsylvanian last week, it's no wonder many local residents have rejoiced at the firings of several staff members.
10/30/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Getting past the blame game

Just last month, it seemed like you couldn't walk 10 feet without being asked if you were registered to vote by someone with a clipboard. I'm not talking about the student groups with tables and T-shirts on Locust Walk - I'm talking about the ACORN canvassers from the local community who blanketed the entire city.
10/23/08 5:00am

Lisa Zhu | Destroying democracy

With so much media attention focused on the upcoming presidential election, it's easy to forget that Congress is also turning over. That's just as well, since rampant gerrymandering has severely reduced the competitiveness of many congressional elections in Pennsylvania, leaving voters with few real choices or decision-making influence.
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