Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

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  • TUA update

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    Student government to host spring elections this week

  • Tulane University removed Tonya Hansel as director of the doctor of social work program. Hansel remains a tenured professor.

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    Director of Tulane doctor of social work program removed

  • The New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University is scheduled for Mar. 14-16.

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    Book Fest schedule features Stacey Abrams, Jake Tapper

  • Students, faculty and alumni gathered on the academic quad on Friday to start digging the new NPHC plots, marking a new beginning for Black greek organizations.

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    ‘A huge step forward’: Plots earn Divine Nine recognition on campus

  • Over the span of five days, monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery worked together in the meticulous creation of a sand mandala on the fifth floor of the Howard-Tilton Memorial Library. On Saturday morning, it was wiped away with several swipes of a paintbrush.

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    Peek into Tibetan Buddhism, from Howard-Tilton Memorial Library

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    Paul Hall opens new doors for Science and Engineering department

  • Its a bird, its a plane, its Green Wave Man

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    Meet Green Wave Man: Tulane’s only superfan

  • Lisa P. Jackson, Apple executive and the first Black administrator of the EPA, came to Tulane to speak about her career path.

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    Apple executive Lisa Jackson speaks on career journey

  • The pop icon has come under scrutiny for her consistent attendance at Kansas City Chiefs games this season

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    Do NFL fans really hate Taylor Swift or do they hate women?

  • OPINION | Tenure: The last defense of professors’ constitutional rights 

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    OPINION | Tenure: The last defense of professors’ constitutional rights 

  • Heres how you should spend your college summer.

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    What can I do with my first college summer?

  • Club spotlight: Tulane Sports Business Conference

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    Club spotlight: Tulane Sports Business Conference

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    Dua Lipa turns back clock on ‘Training Season’

  • Pottery on display in the Newcomb Art Museum.

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    Newcomb Pottery shines light on Tulane’s history

  • OPINION | Could NOLA be more than four years of fun?

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    OPINION | Could NOLA be more than four years of fun?

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Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

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OPINION | Tulane’s idealized New Orleans

Courtesy of Tulane University Admissions Blog – Jeff Schiffman

Tulane University has strategically marketed itself as a product of New Orleans, supposedly offering students an unmatched cultural experience. As a result, students choose Tulane for New Orleans, as much as they do for its education. 

“Growing up in a small coastal town in the Northeast, I came to New Orleans seeking change and even excited for the culture shock,” sophomore Jennah Al-Hachem said. 

Eighty-seven percent of Tulane’s student body comes from out-of-state, with 47% of those students hailing from the Northeast and 12% from the West Coast. More so than at other schools, students make an effort to integrate Tulane into their identity, but does Tulane’s portrayal of New Orleans authentically capture the city’s essence and rich heritage?

Its biggest annual event is Mardi Gras, yet most Tulane students engage in the commercialized version of the historic holiday. Students flock to St. Charles Avenue and attend as many parades as physically possible without delving into the historical background of each krewe. They equally anticipate “Tequila Sunrise,” the longstanding practice of celebrating through the night before Mardi Gras. Unfortunately, the celebration stops at sunrise for all but the few dedicated students who make it to the morning’s Krewe of Zulu parade.

While Mardi Gras spirit dominates during the holiday itself, its influence permeates campus culture all year. Tulane’s resurgent football program, in particular, incites much of the same excitement as Mardi Gras. In a city that was ranked No. 8 in “Best Cities for Football Fans,” it would be fitting for Tulane fans to match the fervor of New Orleans Saints fans. Oftentimes, however, game days resemble the commercial feel of Mardi Gras festivities, as flamboyant outfits, parties and alcohol are among the most popular ways to prepare for games. For many individuals, football becomes a social spectacle, rather than the lifestyle it is across the rest of New Orleans.

Tulane further attempts to promote New Orleans culture through cuisine. At The Malkin Sacks Commons, Creole options are offered every Monday, as well as other scattered days. But Philippe Soileau, a student who grew up in Eunice, Louisiana, said “While those options are somewhat authentic to the New Orleans food scene, they often try to pass dishes as Cajun, when in reality, they are Creole.” This is yet another case of Tulane attempting to showcase its Louisiana ties without presenting a truly accurate representation of its culture.

While certain aspects of campus life lack comprehensive cultural authenticity, Tulane has included an appreciation for the rich history of New Orleans within its education, offering a broad range of highly-acclaimed courses related to the city and region. Professor Randy Sparks teaches two intensive history courses about southern culture: “The Old South” and “The New South.” Professor Rien Fertel instructs another course on the 300-plus year history of New Orleans. Additional courses cover various topics, including New Orleans music, its architecture, environment and, of course, food.

Tulane puts forth a romantic version of New Orleans that students instantly welcome. If students can continue to revel in the adventure that is Tulane, while also taking the time to fully understand the complexities of the unique city they live in, their experience will be far more valuable. That may just involve taking a small step out of their comfort zone or perhaps going a step further and incorporating those learned experiences into their identity. Regardless, students should be constantly willing to embrace this extraordinary place we call home.

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