Ace the current events test in your next class with Otterbein360’s “OtterBrief.” Stay tuned every Monday as we bring you the news you need to know. On campus, across the nation and around the world, the OtterBrief will keep you informed.

OtterBrief: September 14, 2015

In case you missed it:

US : 


- After months of denying any wrongdoing, Hillary Clinton apologized for her use of a private email server to carry out correspondence as Secretary of State. She says now that while she didn't break any rules by using two servers, in hindsight she wished she had both handled her emails and the ensuing scandal differently. This response comes out alongside recent polling data showing Clinton losing a significant amount of ground to Vice President Joe Biden, who has yet to declare his candidacy.

- Recent data released by the federal government on a data base called College Scorecard shows the growing income gap between students at various, sometimes very similar universities. The data highlights differences between colleges of similar levels of prestige, specialties, and debt incurred by students. It also includes data that accounts for gender, demonstrating which schools have larger or smaller income gaps 10 years after graduation between men and women.

Wildfires continue to rage across California after one of the worst droughts in the State's history, destroying hundreds of homes. Two particular fires that together span nearly 50,000 acres are being battled by over 1000 firefighters and have brought the governor of California to call a state of emergency for affected counties.



A new species of human ancestor, Homo Naledi, was found in what the team of discovering scientists said is a mass grave containing the bones of at least 15 individuals. The find is remarkable not simply for being a new species, but additionally because the manner in which the remains were found indicates a form of ritual treatment for the dead. This behavior in such an old specimen could help scientists learn a lot about the origins of such behaviors in contemporary humans.

- As the growing European Migrant Crisis continues, many countries in the European Union including Germany are resisting attempts by the EU interior ministers to impose strongly enforced quotas on a minimum number of refugees each country must accept. The opposition comes on many fronts, with Germany wanting to accept only as many migrants as they choose, countries like Italy and Greece already being well beyond capacity, and many eastern European countries like Austria claiming that the sheer number of refugees poses a threat their economies and cultures. 

- Recent satellite photos and other intelligence have led US officials to believe that Russia is moving forward with plans to construct an air base near the Syrian city of Latakia. Russia has been a key supporting ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, since the beginning of the middle-eastern country's civil war in 2011. Russian representatives say the equipment is intended to allow for more precise air strikes in the region, aimed at helping combat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), while some US officials remain skeptical and worry that Russian airstrikes could either hinder US attempts to fight ISIS or actually be aimed at removing President Assad's opposition. 

Coming up:


- Only a couple days after joking remarks that he would be open to run as Donald Trump's Vice President or visa-versa, Republican Presidential candidate Ben Carson criticized Trump's immigration policy. This is the first time either of the two have directly criticized the other, and if previous comments against Trump are an indicator, a counter attack is forthcoming. Trump currently leads polls as the GOP front runner, with Carson coming in newly at second.


With the Iran nuclear accord ratified by the US Congress, and set by the UN securities council to take effect starting Oct. 19, the US and it's allies must balance their relationship with Iranian leadership while enforcing the policies of the deal. On the one hand, Iranian militia are playing a key role in helping to combat ISIS fighters and small Taliban resurgencies across the Middle East, particularly in Afghanistan, and Iran adhering to the deal ensures that it is unable to produce weapons grade uranium for a minimum 15 years. On the other, it will be difficult without high levels of suspicion and scrutiny of Iran for the other countries party to the deal to ensure that no economic boon resulting from the lifted sanctions is directed toward helping groups Iran is known to support such as the Hezbollah and Hamas who fight against the Israeli governement, or toward helping support President al-Assad in Syria. 


- Davis annex has been remodeled as the new Sports and Health Sciences department building. It includes offices for the department's faculty, as well as computer labs, classrooms, and various physical therapy centers. 

- Prayers to the Divine Mercy will be offered to members of the Otterbein community of all faiths from Sept. 17th - Dec. 10th, Thursdays at 4pm. For more information, email Maria Polak at or Judy Guion-Utsler at with questions. Sponsored by the Otterbein Catholic Student Ministry.

- The parking lot west of the Campus Center will be closed Sept. 17-19 for the Festival of Sharing. This community service event sponsored by Chruch of the Master, aimed at easing the arrival of international refugees to Ohio, will take place from 8:30am - 12:30pm the morning of the 19th. Cars must be removed from the lot by 4pm on the 17th.

- Tomorrow, Sept. 15 at 6:30pm in the Campus Center lounge the Common Book committee is hosting a poverty simulation. 

In Other News:

-  Here's preview at some of the upcoming big titles to your favorite online streaming site.