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LARRY PARNASS
Melissa Chenok sits before a laptop with two characters in her planned iPhone game app, Kim Kardashian and "Harry Potter" character Draco Malfoy.

Hack@Smith takes on gender imbalance in software field; teams tackle weekend of computing projects

Saturday, March 28, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A little after noon Saturday, Smith College senior Melissa Chenok pulled a photo up on her laptop, that of sinister “Harry Potter” character Draco Malfoy. Then she fetched another: celebrity Kim Kardashian, sporting blond tresses. The resemblance? Striking, actually. But the pressing question for Chenok was this: Could these two familiar faces be phone app gold? Chenok was …

Training drill for emergencies could draw 275

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

AMHERST — If an emergency shelter needs to be activated for Hampshire County residents during a major storm, those in charge of overseeing the site need to be prepared to safely and orderly accommodate people and their pets. This ability to ensure families have a safe place to stay is a primary objective of a six-hour emergency exercise hosted by the University of …

Activist Angela Davis to speak at UMass about social justice

Monday, March 23, 2015

AMHERST — Angela Davis, an internationally known civil and women’s rights activist and scholar, will speak at the University of Massachusetts Amherst on Monday about social justice. Her talk, titled “Sustaining Social Justice Movements and Intersectional Struggles,” is scheduled from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Fine Arts Center in the UMass Campus Center. Davis spoke at Smith College for its Black Student …

Cost of controlling Blarney Blowout calculated at $500,000 by University of Massachusetts Amherst

Monday, March 9, 2015

AMHERST — What does it cost to keep 22,000 students under control? On the weekend of Blarney Blowout, the University of Massachusetts Amherst managed it for about $500,000. Of that total, $305,000 went to pay artists Juicy J, …

UMass concert featuring Kesha better than Blarney rioting, say students

Saturday, March 7, 2015

AMHERST — The cheers of 6,000 University of Massachusetts students watching Kesha perform Saturday at the Mullins Center were the loudest expression of an opinion held by many: The Blarney alternative was a good one. “I had a …

Strong police presence, other efforts keep lid on Blarney Blowout 2015, prompting students to bemoan loss of Blarney

Saturday, March 7, 2015

AMHERST — It worked. Months of preparation, a call out to police from about a dozen departments and a concert with world-class artists helped University of Massachusetts Amherst officials to keep a lid on Blarney Blowout. By 5 …

Amherst College professor addresses challenges faced by ex-prisoners seeking to lead productive lives

Saturday, March 7, 2015

GREENFIELD — A prisoner’s punishment does not end with his release. “People’s opportunities are fundamentally impaired by their involvement in the criminal justice system,” said Kristin Bumiller, a professor of political science at Amherst College. Bumiller is also an “inside-out” instructor at the Hampshire County House of Correction …

Some UMass students plan post-Blarney Blowout cleanup Sunday

Friday, March 6, 2015

AMHERST — As thousands of University of Massachusetts Amherst students geared up to take to the streets and celebrate Blarney Blowout, a handful of students prepared to clean up after them. Cody Potasky, a sports management major and …

Social media fuel Blarney-style gatherings in hard-to-predict ways

Thursday, March 5, 2015

AMHERST — Last year, social media platforms such as Twitter and Instagram led Blarney Blowout revelers from one epic bash to another, leaving destruction and empty beer cans in their wake. Social media have changed the way the masses gather. Real-time tweets let wandering revelers unite under common …

Wellesley College to admit transgender students

Thursday, March 5, 2015

WELLESLEY (AP) — Wellesley College is joining a growing list of women’s colleges that accept transgender students. President H. Kim Bottomly and trustees’ chairwoman Laura Daignault Gates said in a letter Wednesday that “Wellesley will consider for admission any applicant who lives as a woman and consistently identifies …

UMass students, officials have different ideas about successful Blarney Blowout

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

AMHERST — Some plan to attend. Some plan to steer clear. But few if any University of Massachusetts Amherst students doubt this year’s Blarney Blowout will be the raucous event it’s known as despite the unpopular university policies …

Juicy J, Kesha and Ludacris will appear at free concert for UMass students Saturday

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

AMHERST — An on-campus concert aimed at keeping University of Massachusetts Amherst students off the town streets during this year’s Blarney Blowout on Saturday will feature three big names and about two dozen banned items. The artists will be Juicy J, Kesha and Ludacris, according to a statement …

Bacteria, the good kind: UMass researcher thinks salmonella could be player in cancer battle

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

AMHERST — Some day, cancer patients may owe their survival to creatures now considered harmful and even lethal in their own right — salmonella bacteria. In the mind of Neil S. Forbes, a chemical engineering professor at the …