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What are you doing over spring break?

Roberta Brooks has no plans. “I have to be here working,” she said. Carmen Lazo explained, “We don’t get to take school days off; we get to take days off in the summer.” Residents of the Infinite Corridor take note: you can still get bagels and coffee in the Building 4 Coffee shop next week.

Melissa Edoh ’02 and Charles Boatin ’01 are both travelling over the break. “I’ll be leaving Friday to go to London for a couple of days, then Paris and Amsterdam for a couple of days each,” Edoh said. Boatin might go to D.C. and New York to see friends. But before and after break, they and other students from MIT Africans are working to raise $10,000 for AIDS organizations in Africa. One group, SOS Kinderdor, finds homes for children orphaned by the epidemic, while the African Aids Initiative uses education to break the taboos surrounding AIDS in African society.

Like many other students, Angela Wang ‘01 and Justin Lin ‘01 are heading home over break, to California and Florida respectively.

Ali Tabaei G will be celebrating Persian New Year over the break, which takes place on March 26. “The main tradition [in Iran] is seeing relations to say Happy New Year. In Iran I would take a trip to visit my grandparents; we have Spring Break at the same time over there,” he said.

Thomas F. Tartaron, lecturer in the department of materials science and engineering and part of the Center for Materials Research in Archaeology and Ethnology, explained that people in the center were taking advantage of spring break for their field work. Professor Dorothy Hosler and one of her students are in Mexico gathering morning glory plants, which the Mayans used to make rubber balls. “I’m not going away over spring break, but in the summer ... I’m working on a project around the ancient city of Corinth.” His specialty is landscape archaeology, which looks at the relationship between human activity and the natural environment.

MIT Sloan first years Kerry James and Melody Rollins will be going on a 10-day trip to Beijing, Shangai and Hong Kong as part of a Sloan Management trip. They will visit both U.S. and domestic companies as well as tourist sites. “We’re seeing a lot of Internet companies; maybe 50 percent of the companies we’re visiting,” said Melody.

The cost to Sloan students is offset by company sponsorships. Before leaving for China, the two are busy with the Minority Business Club’s dean’s committee on minority faculty and student recruitment. The committee is conducting a survey of minority faculty and Ph.D candidates from across academia. “[Sloan] may not be putting forward the right image to minority candidates -- even before they apply,” said Rollins.