AIT finishes stairway
The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) yesterday announced that a new stairway on land adjacent to the new office compound site in Neihu (內湖) was complete and open for use by its neighbors and the public. The AIT proposed building and paying for the construction of the stairway and received approval from the Taipei City Department of Education to do so, it said in a press release, adding that it has installed lighting for evening use on the stairs, as well as railings and barriers to enhance public safety.
Taiwanese to head AUMS
A National Taiwan University physics professor was on Sunday elected president of the Asia Union of Magnetics Societies (AUMS), becoming the first Chinese-speaking academic to chair the organization. The school said College of Science dean Chang Ching-ray (張慶瑞) was named AUMS president at a board meeting held in Ningbo, China. Chang will also attend the next International Conference of the AUMS in Nara, Japan, from Oct. 2 through Oct. 5 next year, the university said. The AUMS, established in January 2009 in Japan to promote the development of magnetics knowledge and research in the Asia-Pacific region, is composed of the Magnetics Society of Japan, the Taiwan Association of Magnetic Technology, the Korean Magnetics Society and the Chinese Society of Magnetic Materials and Applications.
UMAP head visits Tainan
University Mobility in Asia and the Pacific (UMAP) -secretary-general Lin Wen-tong (林文通) briefed National Cheng Kung University president Hwung Hwung-hweng (黃煌煇) on the outlook of his organization on Friday during a courtesy visit to Greater Tainan. Lin, who led a 28-member delegation on the visit, said Taiwan took over the position of the International Secretariat at the University Mobility in Asia and the Pacific beginning this year. “One of our goals is to maintain and renew the UMAP International Web site. Through this Web site, members of UMAP can learn about other participating schools and students can learn about the universities of their interests, especially in regard to credit transfer,” he said.
Language a concern: poll
Nearly half of the nation’s university students worry they will have trouble communicating with Chinese students because of language differences, a survey found recently. Tamkang University admitted 78 Chinese students from 26 cities in China this semester and the university conducted the survey to learn about Taiwanese students’ impressions of their Chinese counterparts, as well as the latter’s experiences of living in Taiwan. Forty-five percent of Taiwanese respondents said they felt the linguistic differences would make communications difficult, and some of their Chinese counterparts felt the same way. One Chinese student from Fujian Province said language differences sometimes caused him problems in class, forcing him to think about the term “random access memory” whenever he heard it. Though there were concerns about the ability to communicate, the survey found that 62 percent of Taiwanese respondents described their Chinese counterparts as active participants. Eighteen percent of the Taiwanese students said the Chinese students got up early and lined up to wait for the library to open.
FOSSIL CLUES: The bushfires resulted from a positive Indian Ocean dipole event, when the region east of the ocean becomes drier, professor Shen Chuan-chou said The bushfires that swept through Australia last year were connected to a phenomenon known as the Indian Ocean dipole (IOD), which is expected to become more frequent due to climate change, a geologist studying coral fossils said yesterday. National Taiwan University Department of Geosciences professor Shen Chuan-chou (沈川洲) since 2001 has been working with Australian and US researchers to study climate systems in the Indian Ocean. Led by Australian National University Research School of Earth Sciences professor Nerilie Abram, the team published a paper on IOD in the journal Nature on March 9. The bushfires resulted from a positive IOD event, when the
Senior judges yesterday met to discuss the constitutionality of a law that makes adultery a criminal offense, before being ordered by Judicial Yuan President Hsu Tzong-li (許宗力) to set a date for a constitutional interpretation within the next month. The judges met to discuss Article 239 of the Criminal Code on offenses against marriage and family, after 18 judges had called for a constitutional interpretation of the issue. Taipei District Court Judge Lin Meng-huang (林孟皇) said that while he had previously tried adultery cases and never questioned the law, his feelings changed when trying a case last year involving baseball star Wang
Instead of hating the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), help change it, KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) said, as he urged young people to join efforts to reform the party. As the nation marked Youth Day on Sunday, Chiang said in a Facebook post that he wanted to remind people that “the KMT used to be very young.” Now, when people think of the KMT, they equate it with older people, he wrote. “Even if [the KMT] is a 100-year-old party, it must maintain a young mentality, and understand what young people want and what they want the KMT to do,” Chiang wrote.
A survey has found that 37.3 percent of transgender people in the nation have experienced gender-related discrimination or bullying in the workplace, the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights said yesterday. The alliance’s survey showed that 55.41 percent of transgender people said that they had been afraid to use a public restroom, 18.53 percent had been harassed or attacked in public, while 15.83 percent had been afraid to ask a police officer or other professional for help. The survey, conducted from March 14 to Wednesday last week, was based on 518 valid responses from transgender people aged 14 to 78, the