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Amanda Freund (center) with her sisters, who visited during her service in Zambia. Image provided.

This week marks 60 years since President John F. Kennedy launched the Peace Corps with a vision to foster cooperation and connections across cultures worldwide. Cornellians have played a major role in the organization’s success — from early work by founding staff member Richard Ottinger ’50 to the hundreds of Cornell alumni who’ve volunteered since its birth in 1961.

Amanda Freund ’06 and Janet Smith, M.S. ’19, took different paths to the Peace Corps, but can claim common ground in their experiences.

In 2010, Freund volunteered for a two-year position in Zambia, where she focused on food and agriculture — familiar terrain following her studies in CALS and her work on her family’s dairy farm in Connecticut. She discovered, however, that she still had a great deal to learn from the resource-strapped communities where she worked. By her second year, her focus had shifted from not only improving conditions but to spending more time understanding Zambian practices and approaches.


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Dadivank, a 9th-13th century monastery in Nagorno-Karabakh.

The incoming Biden administration must adopt a multi-pronged strategy to prevent the destruction of Armenian monuments.

By Lori Khatchadourian and Adam Smith

In late September, a brutal war broke out between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the mountainous enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh — adding another tragic chapter to one of the longest-running conflicts in the world. Cities and villages were routinely shelled, killing scores of civilians, until last month when a ceasefire agreement brought the fighting to a halt. A period of violent devastation is over. But as the parties strive to achieve an elusive, lasting peace, the region’s irreplaceable cultural monuments…


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The iconic A.D. White statue and Arts Quad, as seen in Minecraft. Image provided.

When the pandemic forced Cornell to temporarily suspend classes and move all instruction online in March 2020, many students returned home, leaving behind the familiar sights and sounds of campus: the McGraw Tower bell chimes, the sprawling Libe Slope, the serenity of Beebe Lake and other go-to spots for studying, socializing and dining.

While many students opted to return for in-person classes this fall, others continued with virtual learning — in many cases, miles away from campus. …


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An alumnus of the College of Engineering, Cohen is CEO & co-founder of 3DBio Therapeutics.

Dan Cohen ’05, MS ’07, Ph.D. ’10 is CEO & co-founder of 3DBio Therapeutics, a Cornell spinout company that creates living tissue implants for therapeutic applications. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, 3DBio was focused on developing reconstructive tissue for children with microtia, a rare pediatric disease that affects the formation of the outer ear, and for which its implant has received two important FDA designations.


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An alumnus of the College of Engineering and Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, Galvin founded Rheonix, Inc., in 2008.

Located just over four miles from Cornell’s Ithaca campus, biotechnology company Rheonix, Inc., specializes in rapid, automated and affordable molecular testing. Led by founder and CEO Dr. Greg Galvin, Rheonix has partnered with local medical services to bring same-day COVID-19 testing to Ithaca and Binghamton.

As the first cases of COVID-19 were diagnosed in Tompkins and nearby counties, Rheonix recognized the need for greater and faster testing capacity than was initially available. The company had recently finished an application to the Food and Drug Administration for its first clinical test, an assay for sexually transmitted infections. …


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Cornell’s Class of 2020 hails from every corner of the United States, as well as more than 50 countries spanning the globe. They’re musicians, scholars, athletes, artists, builders, designers, scientists, entrepreneurs and engaged citizens.

A diverse collection of undergraduates and graduate and professional students, as Cornellians they’ve explored courses far beyond their academic disciplines; pursued firsthand research in labs and in the field; given their time, energy and ideas to serve the public good; and enlivened and entertained campus with their artistic and athletic endeavors.

They’ll have a distinct place in Cornell history — a class undeterred by a global…


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Four Cornell alumni were among more than 50 doctors, nurses and other health care professionals from Cayuga Health in Ithaca who deployed to New York City in April to join the fight against COVID-19.

Four Cornell alumni from Cayuga Health in Ithaca joined their Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center counterparts in April to care for New Yorkers diagnosed with COVID-19. Cayuga Health’s chief medical officer, Dr. LouAnne Giangreco ’98, led a deployment of more than 50 doctors, nurses and other health care professionals that included Dr. Angela Arbach, MD ’14, and registered nurses Amy Galton ’98 and Heidi Tremaine, MS ’03. Dr. Martin Stallone ’98, Cayuga Health CEO, was instrumental in arranging the collaboration.


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Xiaofu Tu, 111 Inc.’s vice president of strategic sourcing, prepares supplies in Beijing for shipment. Led by Gang Yu, M.S. ’86, 111 Inc. procured supplies for to medical professionals at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City who are treating COVID-19 patients.

By Joe Wilensky

A determined group of Cornellians in and with connections to China has been helping to provide crucial equipment and supplies for medical professionals at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City and Cayuga Medical Center in Ithaca.

To date, the efforts of these Cornell alumni, parents and friends have helped source and deliver more than 19,600 N95 respirator masks, 94,000 surgical and face masks, 59,000 surgical gloves, 2,600 sets of coveralls and other supplies, with additional equipment still on the way.

On April 10, the Executive Committee of the Cornell Board of Trustees passed a resolution of…


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Keith Payne, right, a research technician in plant breeding and genetics, Isaiah Parker ’03, center, and Gabriel Lee, doctoral student in theoretical physics, prepare lunch at Loaves & Fishes. Parker is the organization’s chef and operations manager.

By Susan Lang ‘72

By March 13, it seemed clear that the COVID-19 pandemic would force Loaves & Fishes of Tompkins County to shut its doors to the public.

Thanks to careful planning, three days later the community kitchen had ramped up to continue its free meal service to the needy — now packaged to go.

Within a month, the number of meals provided had more than doubled, from 450 to almost 1,100 per week.

“We will serve meals from the front yard of our home at St. John’s Church [210 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca] for as long as necessary…


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An alumnus of the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, John Hui, MBA ’15, co-founded Twiage in 2015.

On a visit to China in late January, John Hui, MBA ’15, witnessed the rapid onset of the COVID-19 outbreak. The co-founder of Twiage, a health care IT company based in New York City, Hui began looking for technology solutions to mitigate the mounting public health crisis. Twiage’s mobile software allows emergency responders to transmit patient information to hospitals in real time, accelerating life-saving care. His team sought to enhance its pre-hospital triage system in order to help hospitals and emergency services to communicate better during the pandemic.

“This experience has shown how vulnerable our health care systems are. My…

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