The Minnesota Daily

All content by Alia Jeraj

Take personal time this summer

May 3, 2016

It’s May, and my internal clock  is counting down the seconds until summer. Though I know I’m unlikely to realize my dreams of lying on the beach all day, every day, I’m definitely...

Stop confusing ‘ethnic’ with ‘nonwhite’

May 2, 2016

A few weeks ago, as I was browsing through the racks of a secondhand clothing store, I noticed that among the typical sections in women’s clothing — sweaters, T-shirts, dresses — there...

Interns are learners, not drones

April 26, 2016

I’ve been extremely fortunate to find two incredible internships for myself this year. During an exit interview last semester, I thanked my supervisor for the opportunity, and she explained that...

Representation costs far more than $20

April 25, 2016

Last week, Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew announced that ex-slave and abolitionist Harriet Tubman will replace President Andrew Jackson as the face of the $20 bill. Jackson, however, will not be removed...

This spring, ask: to bee or not to bee?

April 18, 2016

It seems spring might finally have arrived in Minnesota. I woke up this morning to the sound of birds chirping, and I’ve traded in my boots for sandals. As many of us are emerging from our winter...

Commit to peer review sessions

April 12, 2016

Last week, I spent the last hour of one of my classes doing a “peer review workshop.” Weirdly, I love reviewing other people’s work, so theoretically, I should love peer review workshops....

Take a bite out of local art and culture

April 11, 2016

Last week, I visited the Minnesota Historical Society for the first time, during the launch of a literary anthology of essays composed by 16 Minnesotan writers. Five of these writers read selections from...

No wedding? That’s no problem

April 5, 2016

Between now and 2022, at least one person among my four cousins and I will be graduating from college or high school every year. We shared this discovery with our parents, who looked at us, eyes twinkling,...

Value stories equally, or face injustice

April 4, 2016

Last Wednesday Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced that his office will not bring charges against police officers Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze — the men responsible for the death...

Spend some time with the elderly

March 29, 2016

I recently spent some time visiting my relatives. Although they’re technically my aunt and uncle, they see themselves as my honorary grandparents, and they do actually have grandchildren who are...

Join a CSA to support local agriculture

March 28, 2016

Last week, when I went to buy groceries, I saw the first Minnesota-grown tomatoes of the season. Their appearance — along with the sun shining on me as I walked home — reminded me that it will...

Woman are more than sexuality

March 22, 2016

In case you missed it between all the various primaries, caucuses and debates, a jury just awarded Hulk Hogan $115 million in a lawsuit regarding a sex tape published by Gawker. Florida law allows juries...

‘Real life’ doesn’t start with a desk job

March 21, 2016

I’ve figured out my employment status for next year, which is super exciting for a soon-to-be graduate. Starting in September, I’ll be working as a full-time fellow with a prominent service...

Teachers should love teaching

March 8, 2016

We’ve all had a teacher we didn’t like. For me, the one who never managed to pronounce my name correctly comes to mind. But even worse were the teachers who didn’t seem to enjoy their...

Speak out against policing our language

March 7, 2016

I used to be chief of the grammar police. I inherited the title from my grandma, an English major, who passed it through my lawyer mother onto me.     I grew up with people who drilled the difference...

Kesha ruling devalues survivors

March 1, 2016

On Feb. 19, a Manhattan Supreme Court judge ruled against Kesha in a case that reveals much about our culture’s attitudes toward sexual assault.      In 2014, Kesha filed a complaint...

I speak for myself, not an entire culture

February 29, 2016

Last week, I made a new friend. We had just become “Facebook official” when we noticed the two of us shared a single mutual friend.     “How do two you know each other?”...

Leaders must pursue diversity

February 23, 2016

Last week, one of my professors made the profound statement, “Diversity is not about representation. Diversity is about power.” The simplicity and truth of her remark struck me.     Often...

Objectively, no one can ever be unbiased

February 22, 2016

With the Minnesota caucus approaching (it’s on March 1, so go out and get involved), many of my friends have taken up canvassing for their favorite candidates. Others have adamantly refused...

Classroom tech needs purpose

February 16, 2016

I  have a love-hate relationship with technology. Right now, I’m patiently waiting for my iPhone to die so I can return to a flip phone. While I wait, however, I’m fully enjoying my mobile...

Women do not owe Clinton their loyalty

February 15, 2016

I am known in my family for being fairly outspoken about my opinions, especially those regarding gender inequalities. Over the past year, I’ve gotten quite a few calls from my relatives excitedly...

In all things, let’s strive to act responsibly

February 8, 2016

Last week in my biology lab — the last liberal education requirement standing between me and my diploma — I was part of what ended up being a fascinating interaction between two lab groups.      My...

Solitary confinement is torture

February 2, 2016

As many as 100,000 individuals are held in solitary confinement in United States federal, state and local jurisdictions.     Solitary confinement is a punishment so egregious that the United...

Classical music needs a modern twist

February 1, 2016

As a musician, last Tuesday was one of the most exciting days I’ve experienced in a while. I began my morning with a private lesson during which my teacher helped me practice a piece of music written...

At the butcher’s, grab some tofu

January 26, 2016

This past weekend, the very first vegan butcher shop in the country opened in Minneapolis. The shop will offer vegan alternatives to meat and cheese. I’m thrilled to hear the news.     I...

Can women wear clothes in the Met?

January 25, 2016

Last Thursday, the Guerilla Girls launched their “Twin Cities Takeover” with events at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Walker Art Museum and Minneapolis Institute of Art.     The...

Let’s grapple with religion and identities

January 21, 2016

Among my circle of close friends, I think I could count on one hand those who consider themselves practitioners of one faith or another. It’s common in our generation to identify as nonreligious.      More...

Instead of texting, write a letter

January 18, 2016

Coming back to school this semester was hard for me. I just got home from visiting a friend on the tropical island of Oahu, and the wind over the Washington Avenue Bridge this morning felt especially brutal.      However,...

Put away smartphones this week

December 16, 2015

I know of very few people these days who do not have their lives concentrated into a small screen they can carry around in their pockets.     However, I recently had a conversation with a friend...

Black Lives Matter: Full stop

December 14, 2015

Over the past few weeks, I have heard an unfortunate number of conversations that showcase passive, white Minnesotan liberalism at its finest. These have focused on the recent police shooting of Jamar...

Professors, assign your students a novel

December 9, 2015

In the academic world as we know it today, we rarely come across novels in classes that are not based in the study of literature. Though I’ve taken numerous writing-intensive classes, I didn’t...

Spread the holiday cheer to all

December 2, 2015

Yesterday, I heard a coworker in my office remark, “Snow, December — and just like that, the holiday season is here.” He’s not wrong. On my daily commute, I pass trees covered in...

Recruit me for my merit, not my name

October 21, 2015

Last April, I received an email from the National Name Exchange, a program that aims to inform minority students of graduate school opportunities. I had a brief flashback to my junior year of high school...

What’s in a name? Legacies of racism

October 13, 2015

Last month, the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board voted to add the most-accepted modern spelling of Lake Calhoun’s original name, Bda Maka Ska, to the lake’s signage.    Efforts...

Planned Parenthood can save a woman’s life

October 5, 2015

Since the release of highly-edited videos appearing to depict Planned Parenthood representatives participating in the illegal sale of fetal tissue, there has been uproar about the organization. A campaign...

‘No visible tattoos’ must adapt

October 1, 2015

I first stepped into a tattoo and piercing parlor at age 16. My mom accompanied me, as did a mix of apprehension and excitement about the needle that would be making a small hole in my left nostril. Since...

To preserve democracy, educate for democracy

September 28, 2015

In 1990, New York City Teacher of the Year Award recipient John Taylor Gatto said in his acceptance speech, “The truth is that schools don’t really teach anything except how to obey orders.”    In...

Fashion’s new trend: social commentary

September 23, 2015

More than 100,000 people from more than 30 countries congregated in New York City last week to experience the spring collections of about 250 fashion designers at the semi-annual New York Fashion Week....

Add some green to your decor

September 22, 2015

By the third week of term, University of Minnesota students are beginning to settle into their new classes, walking patterns and, for many people, new living spaces. The annual campus poster sale took...

The aftereffects of 9/11 persist to this day

September 15, 2015

Friday marked 14 years since two hijacked planes crashed into New York City’s World Trade Center, a tragedy whose effects shook the world.   I was seven years old on Sept. 11, 2001, and...

State Fair should reduce waste, compost

September 10, 2015

This year’s Great Minnesota Get-Together ended on Monday, leaving almost 1.8 million people across the state with lighter wallets, heavier stomachs and an already-brewing anticipation for next...