International students are hit by bank charges of up to £1,000 when paying tuition fees, according to TransferWise, a financial services company. However Oxford students have met their claims with scepticism and surprise. TransferWise claim, “The average self-financing undergraduate, paying tuition fees at £9,000, unwittingly pays £335 in hidden bank charges… MBA students fees [sic] are hit the worst with hidden charges potentially running upwards of £1,000.” Co-founder of TransferWise, Taavet Hinrikus said, “Whatever the banks’ marketing materials say, they do not offer international money transfers for free. High street banks take around five per cent of the money transferred through the exchange rate – even when they claim ‘no fees’. “It’s outrageous that the banks are hoodwinking students like this – tuition fees are high enough. I’ve made it my mission to do to money transfer what Skype did to calls.” However, Oxford students reacted with scepticism and surprise to TransferWise’s claims. Liv Utvaer, a second-year lawyer at New College said, “I just assumed they charged me a bit, but never bothered to look into the exact amount. Five per cent sounds like a lot.” Chrissie Yoon, a first-year Bio-chemist at Oriel commented, “Five per cent in context of the amount I pay for tuition is a considerable amount, and it’s unreasonable that I had absolutely no idea about it.” However, a survey conducted by TransferWise found that “eighty five per cent of those who made an international transfer in the last year significantly underestimated or simply don’t know how much they were charged.” The effects of bank charges hit some hard: Izabela Karasinska-Stanley, an international student at New College, was upset that as a result of poor bank exchange rates, “I have resorted to stealing money off my parents and eating home-grown potatoes because I am so poor.”But some students have taken steps to avoid bank charges: Navjeev Singh, an Economics & Management student at St Peter’s, said, “It is quite a hefty fee. So I pay everything from my UK bank account and avoid using my Singapore bank account as much as possible. My allowance is given in pounds and kept in my UK account. Five per cent is really high.”
The Harvard Summer School Writing Program just launched a new film series on cinematic treatments of American journalism.The first of the free weekly offerings, on June 25, drew an audience of 50 to Hall A in the Science Center. “Page One: Inside The New York Times,” a 2010 documentary, offers a rare inside view of how news is gathered and tweaked and filtered at the famous Gray Lady.More importantly, the hourlong film looks at the single most pressing question for traditional media outlets today: Will they survive the slings and arrows of the new media age? Tweets, blogs, news-aggregating websites, and other information alternates are raining down on Fortress Newsroom nationwide, knocking profits awry, killing ad revenue, and picking off veteran staffers.At the Times, according to voices in the film, the answer is yes — it will change and grow and survive. It was the Times, for one, that pioneered a system of paying for online content. The paywall is slowly restoring lost profits, and with them the hope that traditional newsgathering and authoritative editing will survive.A working journalist will introduce each film in the series and lead a discussion afterward. For “Page One,” the commentator was Alex Jones, Nieman ’82. The former Times staffer, who was actually featured in the film, is now Harvard’s Laurence M. Lombard Lecturer in the Press and Public Policy and director of the Joan Shorenstein Center.A scene from “Page One: Inside The New York Times.” Photo courtesy of Magnolia PicturesThe voice in “Page One” that delivers the strongest message of survival and hope for news traditions is the Times media and culture columnist David Carr. The raspy-voiced former cocaine addict is the film’s unlikely oracle, often seen walking stoop-shouldered through the newsroom with a bottle of caffeinated soda on his way to grab a cigarette.Jones forewarned the audience to watch for Carr in three of the film’s strongest moments: his profane group interview with a new media group aspiring to be journalists, a panel on the fate of the Times, and — at the film’s end — a round of Carr’s barking, tough interviews about a big media company driven into the ground by owners who didn’t understand the news business. (“I think we should have a porn section,” the majority owner says in one film clip. “Don’t you think that would sell?”)Carr respects the collective portraits of a situation that Twitter and other new media can contribute. But at the same time he is a pen-and-paper guy who in the film confronted two new reporters busy reading texts. Carr threatened to fling the devices over a fence. Aware of digital pressures, he said at one point: “I would consider it unspeakable if The New York Times ended up a diminished place.”After the film, Jones answered questions about newsroom culture, with its surprises and long hours; he defended professional newsgathering; and, toward the end, drew a comparison between his former and current employers. “Harvard and the Times are practically blood brothers,” said Jones of institutional fame and the hubris that sometimes comes with it. “At the same time, they are what they are — institutions of great power.”As for the future, he added, many institutions might just melt away in the heat of the coming digital age, but “Harvard will be like The New York Times: the last iceberg.”Up next in the 6:30 p.m. film series (on July 2) is “The Paper,” a 1994 Ron Howard comedy about 24 hours at a fictional tabloid. It’s worth a watch just for Michael Keaton’s portrait of a caffeinated metro editor who finds his moral center — and gets into a pressroom fistfight to prove it. Introducing the film will be Laura Wides-Munoz, Hispanic affairs writer for the Associated Press.The series wraps up July 30 with “His Girl Friday,” a 1940 Howard Hawks newsroom comedy starring Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell. How do you spell “zany”? Grant, the editor, might help you out, but don’t believe anything else he says.
VINTON, Iowa (Aug. 30) – Winning a track championship was the goal Justin Kay set for himself at the start of the 2013 season.He accomplished that and much more. Kay won a division-best 16 weekly features, as well as titles at Davenport Speedway and Jackson County Speedway on the way to his career first national IMCA Late Model crown.“The national championship was always on our mind but our main goal this year was to get a track championship,” said Kay, who celebrated his 25th birthday just four days after the season ended. “We knew if we could do that at Davenport we’d be doing good in national points.” Kay earns a $5,500 share of the $21,300 point fund that will be paid to top 20 finishers in the final divisional point standings, which become official on Sept. 23.Runner-up for a third consecutive year, 1997 and 2002 national king Todd Cooney won a dozen times and earned track titles at the Iowa State Fairgrounds Speedway, Southern Iowa Speedway and Stuart Speedway. Completing the top five in points were Tyler Bruening, Ryan Griffith and Nick Marolf. Kay won a single feature in finishing 14th in the national Late Model points race last season. “Everything has just seemed to be rolling our way this year,” he said, sharing the credit with his crew. “I was not expecting to go from a year like last year to a year like this one.”His 30 weekly starts this season produced seven wins at Jackson County, six – including five straight – at Davenport, two at Dubuque Speedway and another at Benton County Speedway.Kay is also a three-time winner in the Deery Brothers Summer Series and second in the point standings with five events left on the 2013 tour schedule.National rookie of the year Randy Foote won one feature. He finished with 707 points, good for 21st nationally.Also winning track championships were Bruening at Independence Motor Speedway; Griffith at Hamilton County Speedway; Barry Sorenson at Shelby County Speedway; Todd Malmstrom at Quad City Speedway; Joel Callahan at Dubuque and at Farley Speedway; Andy Eckrich at West Liberty Raceway; Jason Hahne at Crawford County Speedway; and Dean Wagner at Benton County.Bonus points are determined by average car counts at each track scheduling at least eight events and are then pro-rated when seven or fewer races are held. Bonuses are given for a maximum of one Late Model track championship and the highest average is used when drivers win more than one local track crown. Kay received the maximum of 20 bonus points for his Davenport crown; Callahan got 19 for his Farley title and Cooney got 11 for his State Fairgrounds prize. He now owns a division career-best 23 track championships. Cooney also won his third straight and seventh career Allstar Performance Iowa state crown while Todd Malmstrom became a first-time champion in Illinois.The regular weekly season for IMCA Late Models ran from April 26 through Aug. 25. Point fund checks will be presented during the national awards banquet in Lincoln, Neb., in November. Top 20 IMCA Late Model national point standings – 1. Justin Kay, Wheatland, Iowa, 815; 2. Todd Cooney, Des Moines, Iowa, 802; 3. Tyler Bruening, Decorah, Iowa, 798; 4. Ryan Griffith, Webster City, Iowa, 772; 5. Nick Marolf, Moscow, Iowa, 766; 6. Darrel DeFrance, Marshalltown, Iowa, 762; 7. Joel Callahan, Dubuque, Iowa, 757; 8. Nate Beuseling, Silvis, Ill., 754; 9. Todd Malmstrom, Silvis, Ill., 749; 10. Rob Toland, Colona, Ill., 745; 11. Mike Zemo Jr., Davenport, Iowa, 743; 12. Allen Zeitner, Bellevue, Neb., 741; 13. Andy Eckrich, Oxford, Iowa, 735; 14. Jeff Aikey, Cedar Falls, Iowa, 732; 15. Luke Goedert, Guttenberg, Iowa, 727; 16. Curt Schroeder, Ames, Iowa, 725; 17. Spencer Diercks, Davenport, Iowa, 720; 18. Chad Cooney, Des Moines, Iowa, 719; 19. Matt Ryan, Davenport, Iowa, 718; 20. Jason Hahne, Webster City, Iowa, 715;
ARIESYou finally encounter the past, learn from it and move forward in a positive and productive manner. There is anxiety for a short while due to delay and disruption at work. New ideas and attitudes are evolving to improve the quality of your life and relationships. Lucky number 3. Colour blue. TAURUSYou redecorate or rearrange the home to induce comfort and ambiance. You deal with pending chores and get the family together for a meal. Relationships are steady and nurturing. You are centered within and experience inner silence and a relaxed state of being. Lucky number 7. Colour green. GEMINIGoodwill and friendship enhance your social standing. With mastery in your craft you integrate resources and forces to achieve professional goals and targets. You communicate well and give good counsel. You express love and share warm feelings with a loved one. Lucky number 14. Colour blue. CANCERYou play the role of consultant or advisor, sharing your knowledge and experience. You are loving and caring in established personal relationships and can expect loyalty and support today. You gain trust and respect by making mature and balanced decisions. Lucky number 6. Colour blue. LEOYou are full of vigor and ready to take on a busy new day! You put the finishing touches to a project and look forward to new opportunities. You feel satisfied in a personal relationship as promises are fulfilled. All seems to be right with the world today! Lucky number 4. Colour sea greens. VIRGODon’t take on more than you can handle today. You are in a dilemma with choices and decisions to be made. The body, mind and spirit are in harmonious rhythm even though you are moving in different dimensions and aspects. Inner centering helps you gain perspective. Lucky number 3. Colour red. advertisementLIBRAYou are intuitive and bright when making professional alignments. Planet Mercury blesses you on the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual levels of communication. You need to be aware of superficial connections as choices and decisions have to be taken. Lucky number 6. Colour pastels. SCORPIOStay firm with decisions rather than keep vacillating and making unstable efforts to achieve goals. Thinking positively brings back your confidence. Avoid double-faced attitudes. When your head and heart pull you in opposite directions, listen to your heart. Lucky number 7. Colour gray. SAGITTARIUSYou are perceptive and observant in personal and professional relationships and express emotions in subtle terms. You are individualistic and not ready to make compromises. Be aware and conscious to reach the truth of your heart to see life as it really is. Lucky number 6. Colour blue. CAPRICORNYou look at your priorities before moving into creative professional opportunities. Ego stands should be avoided as they only bring trouble and conflict. Love and romance add spice to an action packed day. Attitudes, priorities and values are transformed. Lucky number 16. Colour orange. AQUARIUSYou are creative and aesthetic with an ability to transform people and situations around you. Personal relationships need to be handled with tender, loving care. Remain balanced and centered within, go around blocks and people and do what you want. Lucky number 8. Colour ocean blues. PISCESYou draw The Ace of Wands which takes you to your inner centre or source of energy. You indulge in busy schedules and competitive sport today. You aim for the highest at this time and do not make compromises. A professional opportunity promises name and gain. Lucky number 1. Colour orange.