vol. cxlvi, no. 28
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Diddy, TV on the Radio to headline Spring Weekend U., nightclub By Emma Wohl Senior Staff Writer
A week and a day after hip-hop icon Sean “Diddy” Combs tweeted he would be coming to Brown as part of his upcoming tour, the Brown Concert Agency confirmed that Diddy-Dirty Money — a group featuring Combs as well as singers Dawn Richard and Kalenna Harper— and indie-electronic group TV on the Radio will be headlining this year’s Spring Weekend. TV on the Radio will play at the Friday, April 15 concert and Diddy-Dirty Money will perform Saturday, April 16. “Both of these acts are coming at a really exciting time in their careers,” said Abby Schreiber ’11, BCA’s booking chair. TV on the Radio is releasing its fourth album, “Nine Types of Light,” April 12th — three days before its Spring Weekend performance. The band has been on hiatus since 2009. Diddy-Dirty Money released its
address Feb. incident
first album, “Last Train to Paris,” Dec. 13. The album was Combs’ first since 2006. Brown is the only university on TV on the Radio’s tour. This is Diddy’s first-ever performance at a university as far as his agent knows, according to the BCA March 7 press release. There has been a space on the BCA website for students to suggest Spring Weekend acts since last semester. “That’s the first thing
By Joseph Rosales Senior Staff Writer
England. The institute is the only federally funded institute charged with studying the convergence of mathematics and computation. Research in that emerging field — which deals with whether, and how efficiently, problems can be solved on a model of computation — could lead to programs that model smart energy grids, social networks and climate change.
University administrators met with Colosseum nightclub owner Anthony Santurri last Thursday to address questions of student safety in response to the Feb. 23 incident involving two students at the club. Michael Quinn ’13 and Jonathan Smallwood ’12 were thrown by their necks out of the nightclub by Colosseum bouncers after being told to stop dancing on the stage, The Herald reported Feb. 24. Since then, both Santurri and Brown administrators said they hoped to discuss the altercation. “I actually think there was a desire from both sides to meet,” said Margaret Klawunn, vice president for campus life and student services. Administrators from the Department of Public Safety, the Office of Public Affairs and University Relations and the LGBTQ Resource Center met Santurri at the club, where they discussed student comfort and safety at the club. The invitation was extended to the center in response to allegations by the students that the bouncers’ actions were spurred by homophobia. “Regardless of the fact that the remarks made by the bouncers weren’t directly homophobic, as a gay male, I felt that being told that my actions are too feminine was homophobic,” Jonathan Smallwood ’12 wrote in an e-mail to The Herald.
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Courtesy of Brown Concert Agency
Hip-hop icon Sean “Diddy” Combs’ group Diddy-Dirty Money, top, and indie band TV on the Radio will headline the Spring Weekend concerts April 15 and 16.
Unions Hopes high at math institute’s debut clash with politicians By Katherine Long Staff Writer
A crowd of middle-aged Rhode Island public employees gathered Feb. 22 at the State House in a show of solidarity for the Wisconsin workers threatened by their governor’s proposal to strip collective bargaining rights from public sector workers.
Putting Rhode Island’s public schools to the test Second in a five-part series
By Ethan McCoy Assistant Sports Editor
Barely a week later, the Ocean State saw a second rally for organized labor. This time, more than 1,000 ralliers turned out to support government employees closer to home. The same day as the rally to support Wisconsin workers, Providence Mayor Angel Taveras’ decision to issue dismissal notices to all 1,926 Providence public school teachers sent shockwaves across the nation and focused the public labor spotlight directly on Rhode Island. The state’s teachers unions quickly organized in response — calling in President Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers union to join the March 2 protest.
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news..................2-3 CITY & State.....4-5 editorial..............6 Opinions...............7 SPORTS....................8
Zolnierczyk ’11 signs NHL deal with Flyers Harry Zolnierczyk ’11, men’s hockey captain and 2010-11 Ivy League Player of the Year, signed with the Philadelphia Flyers Monday, fulfilling what he said is a lifelong desire to play hockey at the professional level.
sports “It’s something you dream about your entire life, and now that it’s finally come true. It’s almost surreal,” Zolnierczyk said. Zolnierczyk’s agreement is a oneyear deal for the 2011-12 season. He is set to report immediately to Glens Falls, N.Y., where he will join the Flyers’ American Hockey League affiliate, the Adirondack Phantoms, on an amateur tryout agreement. At
Women’s lacrosse prevails in season’s first league match
the end of last season, former teammate Aaron Volpatti ’10 signed with the Vancouver Canucks and first reported to the Manitoba Moose, the Canucks’ AHL affiliate. This season, Volpatti has appeared in 15 National Hockey League games for Vancouver and has recorded his first career goal and assist. For Zolnierczyk, the thought of playing NHL hockey did not become a realistic goal until recently. After two quiet seasons, Zolnierczyk exploded onto the national scene in his junior year, putting up 33 points. He led the Bears in scoring with 16 goals and 31 points in 2010-11. “I think once some interest (from professional scouts) started, it started looking like there might actually be some real opportunities,” he said. continued on page 8
Jonathan Bateman / Herald
Harry Zolnierczyk ’11 signed a one year-contract with the Flyers Monday.
Teachers targeted as budgets are slashed opinions, 7
By AMY RASMUSSEn Senior Staff Writer
Though the state’s fiscal concerns overshadowed yesterday’s opening celebrations of the University’s $15.5 million Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics, government and University leaders looked ahead to the promises the institute holds for research and innovation.
“I’m excited about the opening of this institute because, as you might have heard last week, I have a little math problem of my own I need to solve. Maybe this place can help me out,” Mayor Angel Taveras said at the opening, referring to the city’s $110 million projected budget shortfall. The institute — entirely funded by a National Science Foundation grant — is the eighth of its kind in the nation and the first in New
t o d ay
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2 Campus News calendar Today
7 p.m. “Supergirls Speak Out,”
“Breaking the Silence: The Stigma of
Suicide,” MacMillan 115
“When Tolerance Is Not Enough,”
“The Risks and Rewards of Science
Communication,” Smith-Buonnano 106
menu SHARPE REFECTORY
VERNEy-WOOLLEY DINING HALL LUNCH
Italian Meatball Grinder, Carrots in Parsley Sauce, Linguini with Tomato and Basil, Mardi Gras Cupcakes
Hot Roast Beef on French Bread, Tomato Quiche, Steamed Vegetable Melange, Swiss Fudge Cookies
DINNER Carne Gizado, White and Wild Rice Pilaf, Artichoke and Red Pepper Frittata, Magic Bars
Chicken Pot Pie, Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash, Rice and Orzo Pilaf, Magic Bars
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Colosseum owner Spring apologizes for incident concert headliners confirmed continued from page 1
“(Santurri) was actually very understanding of our concerns,” Klawunn said. “He was very reassuring in terms of his interests for it to be a safe and inclusive environment.” Klawunn said they also discussed the University’s concerns about students going out on weeknights. “We reviewed some of the things that had been problems with the Wednesday nights at (the Fish Company) and some of the ways that we were concerned about a continuation of anything that might raise some of the similar problems,” she said. Santurri said he understood the University’s concerns but hopes the meeting will allow students to under-
continued from page 1 we look at,” said Serin Seckin ’11, BCA’s administrative chair. “This year, I guess, a lot of the bands that were top of the list were playing Coachella,” she added. The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in California is scheduled for the same weekend. BCA plans to announce the supporting acts next week, Schreiber said, adding that there will be a total of five to seven acts.
Institute will explore math, computation continued from page 1
stand they are accepted at Colosseum. “I want to go back to the way it used to be before this incident happened,” Santurri said. “The relationship with Brown University is important to me.” Santurri said he is willing to apologize to Quinn and Smallwood in person if they choose to accept his apology. LGBTQ Resource Center Coordinator Kelly Garrett wrote in an e-mail to The Herald that she felt Santurri wants all students to have a positive experience at his club but thinks it is up to students to decide how to proceed. “Students will decide for themselves if they enjoy the club and want to continue to attend,” Garrett wrote.
At the event, the institute was lauded as “a national and international resource” by Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., a “bold idea” by President Ruth Simmons and a “milestone” by Jill Pipher, professor of mathematics and director of the institute. Other speakers included Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and Rep. James Langevin, D-R.I. “What happens here at ICERM will be noticed around the world,” Simmons said. “It will allow Brown to compete in the knowledge economy.” And despite drawn-out federal budget negotiations, during which legislators have proposed cutting the National Science Foundation’s operating budget, the assembled officials pledged their commitment to financing research initiatives. “Every dollar invested in research leads to dozens of dollars of economic growth,” Langevin, cochair of the Congressional Cybersecurity Caucus, said at the event. “We need the competitive edge that this research will support.” Both Reed and Whitehouse pointed to the institute as fulfilling President Obama’s goal to “out-innovate, out-educate and out-build” the rest of the world, which Obama presented in his Jan. 25 State of the Union address. “This institute speaks volumes about Brown, the potential here in Providence and Rhode Island,”
Reed said. “It’s pulling together the best minds in academia, government and the private sector.” Looking ahead
The institute will be governed by a board of trustees, an education advisory board and a scientific advisory board on which representatives from the institute’s corporate partners — Google, IBM and Microsoft — will serve. These corporations’ involvement in the institute’s creation heralds a future for the institute as an instrument of economic growth, Pipher said. The institute will also fund up to 40 researchers in residence, create K-12 outreach programs, employ nine full-time staff members, support up to 12 postdoctoral fellows and attract thousands of visitors to the city for international mathematics conferences, according to a March 7 University press release. There are already 10 conferences planned beginning Aug. 1, Pipher told The Herald. “We’re already booking hotel rooms for visiting scientists and mathematicians.” In keeping with the University’s vision of itself as an undergraduate-focused institution, a select number of seats at those conferences will be made available for undergraduates. The institute will also sponsor undergraduate research programs in the summer that pair students with mathematicians.
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The opening of the institute will also have an “indirect influence” on undergraduates, Pipher said. “The visibility of the math institute will attract events and people to Brown that will impact the University as a whole.” “I would argue that ICERM’s focus on the undergraduate is one of the reasons its application was successful,” Simmons told The Herald. The construction of the institute’s facilities on the top two floors of 121 South Main Street is slated for completion June 1, and all of its programs are expected to be fully functional in three years, Pipher said. The institute’s opening comes at a time of rapid expansion for the University. In the past year alone, the University has approved the creation of an engineering school, moved forward with its intent to found a school of public health and begun offering juniors the opportunity to complete an international master’s degree in five years. But Simmons denied that the institute is part of an explicit expansion program. “This institute was in the works for a very long time. … It came up from the faculty,” Simmons said. “It was not part of a deliberate effort to expand. Rather, it was an effort by faculty to increase the scope of their work.” In the summer of 2008, the NSF solicited grant proposals to fund a new mathematics institute. A team of five faculty members from the mathematics and computer science departments worked on the application, and Brown’s proposal was chosen last summer from a pool of 11 other applicants. The grant is renewable at the end of five years. “This means, of course, that we have to demonstrate the institute’s value every five years,” Pipher said. But she added that the oldest NSF institute — the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications at the University of Minnesota — was founded in 1982. “These institutes are not expected to have finite lifetimes,” she said.
Campus News 3
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Equipment U. to increase international student support fees burden student groups By David Chung Senior Staff Writer
By Sarah Foster Contributing Writer
Because Media Technology Services does not receive enough funding from the University to cover its costs, student groups and academic departments looking to host events are often charged fees for equipment and salary costs. Events tied to specific classes are not charged fees, so the money Media Services receives from non-academic events must compensate for those costs, said Stephanie Obodda, assistant manager for computer education and communication. But Computing and Information Services is proposing plans to “at least reduce these fees, if not eliminate them,” Obodda said. “We don’t have a concrete timeline on it because it is so dependent on University funding.” Media Services was incorporated into CIS last year as a “charge-back” organization because it has to cover its own operating costs, Obodda said. To put on events, student groups must go through the Scheduling Office, the Student Activities Office, Media Services and the Department of Facilities Management and pay the fees for use of Media Services equipment. Under its current structure, fees are charged on a three-tiered price structure based on the level of University involvement in the activity. Tier 1 pricing is for events specifically related to for-credit courses at the University. Events sponsored by a University-affiliated organization and attended primarily by Brown community members are given Tier 2 pricing, at 50 percent of Tier 3 charges. The only events that pay full price for Media Services are sponsored by organizations not affiliated with the University, or target an audience external to the University. Certain events put on by Category III student groups — who receive the highest levels of funding from the University — can use Media Services without a charge, and event costs are paid for through a special fund set aside by the SAO. Sarah Alexandra Levy ’12, codirector of the Israeli Film Festival of College Hill, said that Media Services fees were “a huge part” of the festival’s budget, adding that she wondered why Media Services was not funded by the University. While the fees themselves were not an inhibiting factor for the continuation of the Israeli Film Festival, Levy said, they are indicative of a larger problem for student groups wanting to plan events on campus. Coordinating the festival was “like a full-time job,” she said.
International students may receive increased University support in the coming years, following a number of recommendations by both students and administrators. The University has been re-evaluating the current support system this academic year to identify ways to help international students during their transitions to Brown. The current recommendations represent the combined efforts of Michael Lin ’14, Sam Yang ’14 and Lixian Wang ’14, all of whom are from China. Under the leadership of Chris Collins ’11, chair of the Undergraduate Council of Students Admissions and Student Services Committee, the three international first-years analyzed the support system currently available for international students and proposed a number of initiatives — designed to enhance the overall college experience — to University administrators last semester. It is unclear when these suggestions will be approved, but feedback has been positive thus far, Collins said. The recommendations were centered around three categories — the transition to college, time at Brown and life after graduation. Lin, Yang and Wang each tackled one of the areas. Easing the transition
Lin, who examined the adjustment of foreign students to the University, said he noticed the lack of sufficient support services even during the International Mentoring Program orientation held in late August. Though Lin said international orientation was helpful, he was not offered the same type of support to facilitate the transition as his friends from home received at other U.S. institutions. Lin proposed that the orientation program offer the kind of support available at other universities — for example, providing city tours and assisting students with setting up bank accounts and obtaining cell phones. He also suggested the University run airport shuttles for international students because it can be a hassle for students to find a ride after hours of traveling. The shuttles would run at designated times from T.F. Green Airport and Boston’s Logan International Airport so students could plan accordingly, Collins said. Cornell, Amherst College and the University of Virginia are among the schools that offer airport pickup services for international students. Because students need to adjust to the time zone and shop for necessary supplies, Lin said a longer orientation would be helpful. Under the current orientation structure, students are unable to fully engage themselves in activities because they are tired and have other things to get done before school starts, he said. Lin said support for the cultural and linguistic transition should also be enhanced. A number of international students, including Lin, participated in Excellence at
Brown, a pre-orientation academic preparation program, but found the program too challenging, he said. He supports the creation of a less intensive reading and writing program, which could introduce college-level literature and composition to students whose first language may not be English. But Lin and Collins said the transition process could start even before students arrive on campus. Inspired by the online summer tutorial of CHEM 0100: “Introductory Chemistry,” they proposed the creation of an online course that introduces students to various aspects of American culture, conversation and education. Continued immersion
Yang focused his efforts on the on-campus experience and proposed measures that would provide continuous support for international students. Building on the goals of Lin’s proposed tutorial and orientation program, Yang recommended the creation of a workshop in which five to seven international students would be paired with an upperclassman. The informal setting would allow students to practice common expressions and discuss issues relating to American culture and conversation. It would serve as “a family group that international students can interact with,” Yang said. Yang also advocated for the creation of a language exchange program through which international students and native English speakers interested in studying the international students’ languages could be paired. The program would not only benefit foreign students, but also students from English-speaking backgrounds, who could learn about other cultures and customs. Yang said the International Mentoring Program becomes less involved as the year progresses. He recommended that the program increase the number of mentors to foster individual attention. Alums around the world
While Lin and Yang considered their own experiences in formulating propositions, Wang depended primarily on feedback from upperclassmen to make suggestions regarding the job search process
and life after graduation for international students. He said his portion of the project addressed two focus points — integration of international students into the U.S. employment arena and University outreach to employment options abroad. The employment search process begins on campus for international students through the Career Development Center and the Office of International Student and Scholar Services. But the search process for international students can be complicated and daunting, Wang said. The international student and scholar services office deals mainly with legal issues, and the CDC provides general, rather than industryspecific, services. Following graduation, international students could serve as representatives of the University to attract potential applicants and help Brown students and alums find foreign employment. The University currently does not provide extensive support for students seeking employment in other countries, but if Brown maintains strong connections with alums abroad, it will become easier for students to identify foreign internship and employment options, Wang said. The language exchange program introduced by Yang could also ease the transition of students to foreign environments. Changes in the works
The University will provide international students with transportation from T.F. Green and Logan International airports starting this fall, said Margaret Klawunn, vice president for campus life and student services. Orientation will also be extended a day to introduce
students to the American education environment. Klawunn has expressed complete support for Lin’s proposals and declared immediate steps should be taken, he said. The progress of other initiatives is less certain, but “feedback was always positive,” Collins said. Klawunn said she hopes all proposals will move from the planning stage to implementation within a year. Though some proposed developments such as the airport shuttle may require additional funding, most projects will be student-run and will not result in increased University spending, Collins said. The idea for the international student project arose at the first UCS general body meeting of the academic year, attended by Klawunn and Dean of the College Katherine Bergeron. Collins said the two were interested in international student life, and their ideas clicked with Lin, Yang and Wang. Due to the University’s recent internationalization efforts and global outreach, there had already been a push for change among administrators, Klawunn said. But Lin, Yang and Wang brought concrete ideas to the table and propelled the project forward. Klawunn and Bergeron hosted a January retreat for international students to brainstorm additional ideas for shortterm and long-term projects. The project aims to eventually create a comprehensive office that manages international student affairs, Klawunn said. Peter Weber, dean of the Graduate School, is also working to introduce an orientation program for international graduate students, Klawunn said.
4 City & State
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Teacher terminations spur labor rallies continued from page 1 The past 25 years have seen the American labor movement suffer a “slow, agonizing death,” according to Scott Molloy, University of Rhode Island professor of labor and industrial relations. Recent events have incited unions across the nation to “rise up and fight to the death,” he said. The Providence decision was “particularly galling for most people because it came from a Democratic Hispanic mayor who originally seemed to have sympathies for people like the teachers,” Molloy said. Jay Goodman PhD’66, Wheaton College professor of political science and the author of “Democrats and Labor in Rhode Island, 1952-1962,” said the current outlook for organized labor is unclear. The recent flare-ups could be anything from “a blip” to the threshold of a “whole new type of politics,” he said. “We don’t really know yet if this is an earthquake or something temporary.” Given its Democratic leaning, Rhode Island would be the “last place to respond to a natural trend like that,” Goodman said. ‘Back-door Wisconsin’
Recent events have reenergized the American labor movement in a way that was — until several weeks ago — inconceivable, Molloy said. “It’s brought public employees and education to the forefront,” said Lawrence Purtill, president of the National Education Association of Rhode Island. The renewed attention
offers an opportunity for organized labor, he said. “If you take advantage and do something positive about it, then it will be a good thing.” According to a nationwide February poll conducted by the New York Times, a plurality of Americans — 30 percent — have a positive view of organized labor, while 25 percent view unions negatively. The survey also found 60 percent oppose weakening collective bargaining rights, and 56 percent are against cutting the benefits of public employees to reduce budget deficits. “I think it’s the best thing that ever happened to labor in a long time, because instead of the usual Halloween costumes and subterfuge, this stuff is right up front,” Molloy said. “You either fight — and fight to the end to maintain what you’ve been enjoying for a long time — or else it’s all over.” Steve Smith, president of the Providence Teachers Union, has spoken out vociferously against the firings. He referred to the Providence situation as a “back-door Wisconsin” at a Feb. 22 Providence School Board meeting. But Rhode Island is not quite Wisconsin, Purtill said. “I think Wisconsin is pure politics,” he said. “I don’t believe that’s true here. I’d like to continue to believe the mayor made a mistake, and now the question is, politically, how do you resolve it?” Negotiate or terminate
Whether Taveras, barely two months into his first term in office,
has irreparably damaged his relationship with labor is — for the moment — unclear. “The entire spectrum of organized labor in Rhode Island was represented at the rally the other day,” Robert Walsh ’83, executive director of the statewide NEA chapter, wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. “If this situation remains unresolved, then the damage will probably be permanent.” Teachers from across the state — alongside members of Local 1033 of the Laborers International Union of North America and members of state firefighters unions — gathered in support of Providence teachers on the steps of City Hall last week. Some members of the Providence Teachers Union wore prisoner numbers to signify they were among the teachers who had been terminated. Others took up the booming chant that set the tone of the rally — “negotiate, not terminate!” Taveras attended a private meeting with Weingarten, the national teachers union president, following the event, Taveras spokesman David Ortiz wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. Purtill was one of numerous leaders to speak at both rallies. Sporting a red Wisconsin jacket in a show of solidarity, he said his message to Taveras — “Don’t let this be a Wisconsin” — was clear. A former history teacher and president of the state’s NEA chapter for the past 12 years, Purtill is no stranger to rallies. He characterized
Amy Rasmussen / Herald
The termination of teacher contracts has increased calls for negotiations.
them as emotionally charged events that have come to represent the labor movement in the past century. “Union leadership, whether in other states or here, are still adhering to the script of their well-worn playbook, which says, ‘Resort to loud rallies and accusations of elected officials trying to break unions when the call for concessions gets too aggressive,’” Rhode Island Statewide Coalition spokeswoman Donna Perry wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. The coalition advocates for taxpayer and business interests. Perry added that accusations of a “Republican conspiracy” to bust unions fall flat given that Taveras is the Democratic mayor of left-leaning Providence. While he understands the need to fight for union rights, Purtill said he wishes rallies did not have to happen, adding that they distract from the teachers unions’ true focus — the students. “We can’t just ignore education,” he said. “We’ve got to figure this out, to make it work.”
Working the system
Rhode Island is one of 14 states that require teachers to be laid off solely based on seniority. Due to provisions in existing teachers union contracts, the newest teachers are always the first to go when a district cuts jobs. Currently, only three states require performance to be the most important factor in layoff decisions. Taveras’ decision to fire teachers instead of laying them off means he will have greater leeway to eliminate the positions of senior teachers, who command larger salaries. The mass firings might be a statement saying, “Let’s get rid of the old timers, not necessarily because they’re bad, but because they cost more,” Molloy said. While a first-year teacher makes approximately $35,000 a year, a teacher with 25 or 30 years on the job can cost the district more than $70,000, Purtill said. One uncertainty is whether Providence teachers will “work-tocontinued on page 5
City & State 5
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Bill would give students dollars to stay in Rhode Island By Inni Youh Contributing Writer
State Rep. Chris Blazejewski, D-Providence and East Providence, joined the Brown Democrats last Tuesday to present his plan to counter the “brain drain” that has troubled the state for years. The bill, called Opportunity RI, offers financial incentives both for students to stay in Rhode Island after graduation and for businesses to hire them. The bill would provide graduates of Rhode Island colleges or universities a tax credit of up to $8,400 for their student loan payments if they
remain in the state to work. Opportunity RI also offers tax credits to companies that volunteer to pay down the student loans of the graduates they employ. Blazejewski submitted the bill in the state’s House of Representatives last Tuesday with almost 30 signatures from legislators on both sides of the aisle and said he also hopes to get a Senate co-sponsor soon. Opportunity RI is modeled on a nearly identical 2007 bill — called Opportunity Maine — that passed with bipartisan support in Maine’s state legislature. The progressive Democrat said he
hopes the bill will remove financial barriers to higher education. “But the critical piece of this legislation is to keep people in Rhode Island,” he said. Blazejewski — a Harvard graduate who said he also suffered the burden of student loans — said the legislation will work to end a vicious cycle in which companies are reluctant to move to Rhode Island due to a perceived lack of college-educated workers and students leave Rhode Island after graduation because they cannot find work. “Graduate school is no longer a definite option,” said Shawn Patterson ’12, a member of the Brown
Democrats. Patterson said the bill has made him consider working for Rhode Island state government or a law firm after graduation. “Brain drain is an important issue that can be addressed through smart policy,” Blazejewski said. While the legislation will initially cost the state as students learn of the program and apply, he said the project will ultimately finance itself through additional income tax receipts from college graduates that remain in the state. “There might be cost increases, but the idea is that you are staying and paying income tax that you would otherwise not be paying,” he
said. Opportunity RI is different from other legislation because students at Rhode Island colleges and universities are its main proponents, Blazejewski said. The Brown Democrats are already advocating for the bill. Katerina Wright ’11, president of the Brown Democrats, said they will work in committees to develop media strategies and lobbying opportunities and reach out to other student groups. “I think it is an excellent idea,” said Peter Simon ’13. “Rhode Island needs to take advantage of the fact that Brown is located in this state.”
Teacher firings to test Chafee’s union support continued from page 4 rule.” It is against the law in Rhode Island for public school employees to participate in strikes. Instead, teachers sometimes refuse to perform any service not specifically listed in their contract. In that case, teachers refuse to perform many of the voluntary services that families take for granted — after-school help, field trips and parent-teacher conferences — until the union is able to negotiate with the district. In recent years, teachers in Johnston and the Exeter-West Greenwich Regional School District have used the tactic during impasses in contract negotiations. Though Purtill said most officials are hoping for a quick resolution, it is impossible to predict the exact tactics unions will take if the clash with Taveras continues to drag on. “No teacher likes it — nobody likes it,” he said of work-to-rule. In Rhode Island, it has only occurred when “there’s been no alternative to solving negotiations.” Chafee’s silence
Some have suggested Gov. Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14 — elected with strong support from the state’s largest teachers unions — may fall short on his promise to be a tough negotiator with public labor. Historically, unions have held a great deal of sway in Rhode Island politics. Unions have “basically controlled the state legislature for many decades, which is how their benefits and retirement packages, among the best in the nation, were green-lighted by statutes passed by the General Assembly over the years,” Perry wrote to The Herald. Chafee has largely remained silent on the evolving Providence education crisis. “The governor has complete confidence in Mayor Taveras’ ability to handle the situation,” said Chafee spokesman Mike Trainor. “I’m a little surprised he hasn’t said anything about it yet,” Purtill said. “He came right out in Central Falls.” As a candidate for governor during mass firings in the struggling district last February, Chafee was quick to provide suggestions for mediation. “I can’t just sit on the sidelines and watch labor unrest get sparked,” he told the Providence Journal Feb. 23, 2010. According to Purtill, unions have always had a good relationship with
Chafee. “If he has to make any changes, he’ll do it in a fair manner and with the people it involves,” he said. Teachers unions view Chafee as an “honest broker” whose tone differs from that of his Republican predecessor, Walsh wrote, noting that the less labor-friendly former Gov. Donald Carcieri ’65 was the product of the “Old Curriculum” at the University. “Labor will not get everything it wants from Gov. Chafee, but it will be invited into the conversation, which is a welcome change,” he wrote. Victor Profughi, Rhode Island College professor emeritus of political science and director of the polling firm Quest Research, said he is inclined to believe that Chafee’s personal sympathies are likely to lie with those who supported him — the teachers. Still, the governor “has certainly shown a strong degree of courage in the past,” he said, citing then-Republican Chafee’s decision to campaign for President Obama in 2008. “There’s some history that he can and has stood on his own two feet and has been willing to do what he believed needed to be done.”
Island’s unfunded pension liability — the gap between the state’s obligations to its pensioners and the funds it has set aside for that purpose. The state pension plan covers roughly 50,000 state employees and local teachers. During his campaign, Chafee proposed a hybrid plan — modeled on the one currently used by the federal government — that would increase employee contributions to the badly
underfunded system, said Ashley Denault MPP’07, policy analyst for the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council. But 401(k) retirement plans most benefit workers who make upwards of $100,000 dollars, according to Purtill. Generally speaking, he said, that does not include teachers. Gina Raimondo, Rhode Island general treasurer, recently projected
comics BB & Z | Cole Pruitt, Andrew Seiden, Valerie Hsiung and Dan Ricker
Cloud Buddies! | David Emanuel
When the Providence School Board voted 4-3 in support of Taveras’ decision to terminate the city’s teachers Feb. 24, those in favor saw it as a means to close the school district’s gaping $40 million budget deficit. But a drawn-out battle with the unions may only add to the economic distress, Purtill said. In a Feb. 26 interview with Politico, Chafee said, “You don’t want to get into a war you can’t win” about the standoff with labor in Wisconsin. Chafee pointed to the detrimental economic impact a teachers strike dealt to Warwick when he was the city’s mayor from 1993-99. Politicians could find themselves “in the courtrooms for weeks, months or years fighting this,” Molloy said, which could potentially cost millions. “It’s not going to be pretty,” he said. Smith has filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the Rhode Island Labor Relations board and publicly said he plans to contest each of the 1,926 terminations. Education and finance officials alike await details of the state budget, set to be released today. According to Trainor, the governor will lay out a definitive plan for bridging Rhode
that the state pension plan’s unfunded liability could be as much as $10 billion. If the liability is truly that high, Chafee may not be able to keep his promise not to touch benefits for senior employees, including veteran teachers, Profughi said. “No one might have the luxury of being able to follow through on the promises that are out there right now,” he said.
Dr. Bear | Mat Becker
Dot Comic | Eshan Mitra and Brendan Hainline
6 Editorial & Letter Editorial
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
b y a l e x y u ly
Leaving the paper trail behind The University’s decision to phase out the paper Course Announcement Bulletin inspired a sophomore to print his own hard-copy course listing and sell it for $10. But don’t bother seeking out this black-market version of the course catalog, because we are not talking about a reaction to last week’s announcement about changes to the distribution of the printed CAB. The then-sophomore in question was a member of the class of 2009, and his homemade bulletin was emblematic of general resistance to Brown’s transition to an online course registration system four years ago. In fact, in response to a flurry of complaints from students and advisers, the Office of the Registrar began printing the paper bulletin again for the 2008-09 school year. At that time, students voiced concerns over the difficulty of using Banner, especially for underclassmen. As a sort of compromise, when the registrar’s office reinstated the course catalog, they whittled it down to 180 pages, eliminating details about labs and sections that could be found in the online system. Now that the CAB has once again been given the boot, supporters of both sides of the issue still put forth the same arguments. Paper’s proponents say that in an online system, it is less likely students will stumble upon courses they were not already looking for. Advocates of the digital system point out that most students prefer to look up courses online, making a printed course catalog a waste of paper and University dollars. But overall, the University’s announcement last week failed to meet the same level of resistance from the undergraduate community that a similar decision provoked in 2007. We appreciate the University’s dedication to minimizing waste and its mindfulness in continuing to distribute the CAB to advisers and department officials instead of eliminating it completely. But we encourage the University to reconsider its decision to no longer distribute a printed bulletin to incoming students. Despite recent improvements, Banner can still be considered an especially confusing system to navigate for students looking up courses at Brown for the first time. The only thing a first-year might find more frustrating is scrolling through a PDF version of the course catalog on the registrar’s website. We also urge the University, as it invests resources and staff in developing electronic tools to replace their paper analogues, to streamline its existing online systems and make them more comprehensive and easy to use. Students now declare their concentrations online through the Advising Sidekick, but information about concentrations, their requirements and alumni careers is housed in several separate places — the Dean of the College’s Focal Point page, the Office of the Registrar’s website and individual department websites. Furthermore, while the shopping cart feature on Banner was inspired by the independently run Mocha course site, Banner has yet to supply textbook pricing information as Mocha does. The course catalog, in its printed form, contained concentration information in addition to course descriptions, a useful feature that was left out of its online incarnation. Today’s students are perhaps more receptive to the University’s forays into the digital sphere. Still, we are waiting to see the University’s efforts online move beyond poor facsimiles of the paper tools that once were all we knew. Editorials are written by The Herald’s editorial page board. Send comments to email@example.com.
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letter to the editor Criticism of conference based on false dichotomy To the Editor: As the organizer of the upcoming conference “Israelis and Palestinians: Working Together for a Better Future,” I am compelled to correct some errors in a column (“Shalom-Salaam: dialogue as distraction or dialogue as action?” March 7). The conference I have organized and Brown-RISD Hillel’s Israeli-Palestinian Peace Week are separate projects that were developed independently of each other. While I have expressed my support for the Hillel project, the student organizers of that project should be the ones to respond to the criticism of it by the author. In addition, the Watson Institute for International Studies is only one of several co-sponsors of the conference. A complete list of the co-sponsors may be found at the web link for the conference. In general, the author argues that those, like myself, who seek to expose the Brown campus to cooperative ventures between Palestinians and Israelis — which is
what the conference is all about — are trying to cover up the suffering of Palestinians under Israeli occupation. Nothing could be further from the truth. I invite the author and members of the Brown community to attend the conference and hear what these Israeli and Palestinian partners actually do together. I can guarantee you that every one of the speakers at the conference is as outraged about the issues the author raises as is the author. Indeed, it is because of their opposition to the suffering experienced on both sides of the conflict that the speakers at the conference bravely challenge the status quo by finding ways to work together for the mutual benefit of both peoples. The author’s argument is based on a false dichotomy between protest against injustice and the search for peace. Both paths are necessary if there is ever to be a final resolution of this conflict. David Jacobson Professor of Judaic Studies
quote of the day
“I want to go back to the way it was
before this incident happened.
— Anthony Santurri, owner of Colosseum See nightclub on page 1.
Correction A photograph in yesterday’s Herald accompanying an article about women’s basketball (“Bruno sweeps final weekend, finishes fourth in Ivy League,” March 7) should have been attributed to Sam Rubinroit. The Herald regrets the error. C O R R E C T I O N S P olicy The Brown Daily Herald is committed to providing the Brown University community with the most accurate information possible. Corrections may be submitted up to seven calendar days after publication. C ommentary P O L I C Y The editorial is the majority opinion of the editorial page board of The Brown Daily Herald. The editorial viewpoint does not necessarily reflect the views of The Brown Daily Herald, Inc. Columns, letters and comics reflect the opinions of their authors only. L etters to the E ditor P olicy Send letters to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include a telephone number with all letters. The Herald reserves the right to edit all letters for length and clarity and cannot assure the publication of any letter. Please limit letters to 250 words. Under special circumstances writers may request anonymity, but no letter will be printed if the author’s identity is unknown to the editors. Announcements of events will not be printed. advertising P olicy The Brown Daily Herald, Inc. reserves the right to accept or decline any advertisement at its discretion.
The Brown Daily Herald Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Truthiness Tuesdays david sheffield Opinions Columnist Chelsea Waite ’11 provides a varied array of claims about how religion is benign and beneficial (“Truth Tuesdays,” March 2). According to her column, it is not the tenets of religions that are problematic — it is their corrupted lust for power and thirst for domination. Apparently, if it were not for those corrupting influences, they would all happily coexist, each providing some wisdom and truth. To round everything out, she even provides the postmodern gambit that everyone just views the world in a different way, never mind whether that view corresponds with reality. The focus of the column, a project in religious literacy, is a wonderful idea in principle. But it needs to be based on reality and show the good and bad doctrines, not a whitewashed caricature. Waite claims that Christianity is based on “love” and Islam is based on “devotion and mercy.” Perhaps it is just the infidel in me who will be cast into a pit of fire to suffer eternal torture for not worshipping some guy, but the whole love claim seems a bit hollow. The concept of Christianity being based on love does make a little more
sense in light of the sheep–shepherd idea. A shepherd might love his sheep very dearly, but that does not stop the shepherd from having some tasty mutton now and then. To be honest, I still do not see much love. Some of the evils of Christianity are due to “drives for power, for wealth and for domination.” The perennial sex abuse by Catholic clerics has certainly been aided by the church’s attempts to cover up the abuse to save face. Politicians have been all too
Sex Power God. This leads to Waite’s claim that religious people deserve respect. Like with every other person, respect is something to be earned by one’s actions. While standing up for your beliefs rather than quivering in some dark corner will make me respect you more, that is by no means a guarantee. Few people in America stand up for their religion more than the members of the Westboro Baptist Church. This is the
Maybe the Vatican will supply “Deus cinaedos odit” signs at the next anti-same-sex marriage rally down the hill. happy throughout history to use religious divisions along with ethnic ones to consolidate power. But it is hard to argue that things like homophobia in Christianity are caused by corrupting factors alone — the same is true for most other religions. The Bible makes it quite clear that homosexual behavior is a sin and a capital offense. Before the Christianity-is-love crowd says that this is just the backwards Old Testament, Paul makes it quite clear that lusting for people of the same sex is verboten — see Romans 1:26– 32. Apparently, God does not approve of
church that pickets soldiers’ funerals and other events with their “God hates (slurs)” and “Thank God for Sept. 11” signs. I might respect their right to freedom of religion and freedom of speech — they recently won a Supreme Court case protecting their right to picket funerals — but I do not respect them as people. Yes, I do give them credit for being more consistent than most other religions — their signs are pretty good summaries on the Biblical God’s opinion of queer people. Their actual message cancels out any respect I give them for above-average
consistency. Even if I despise them, I also have a soft spot for their church. With so many other anti-queer groups trying to hide their animus, I find the Westboro Baptist Church’s overt bigotry to be refreshing. Maybe the Vatican will supply “Deus cinaedos odit” signs at the next anti-same-sex marriage rally down the hill. It is a good thing to promote religious literacy. I find it sad that in a recent study, only a few religions have as religiously literate a population as the nonreligious. But it does not surprise me, considering the lack of literacy among many believers about their respective religions. Not to keep picking on the Catholics, but every time one tells me that the immaculate conception was God getting it on with Mary, I secretly wish there were a hell — they would go to the same level as everyone else that propagates common errors. But a worthwhile project would need to provide an accurate portrayal of the aspects of each religion. That not only includes focusing on sects that have abandoned many of the most egregious dogmas, but on those that relish those unappealing aspects as well. David Sheffield ’11 is a mathematical physics concentrator. The Inquisition can contact him at email@example.com.
Who needs teachers anyway? BY Chris Norris-LeBlanc Opinions Columnist Nationwide, educators in public schools are facing an unprecedented attack on their salaries, collective bargaining rights and in many cases, their jobs. Behind the euphemisms of “flexibility” and “working together to balance the budget” lay much more sinister motives — power-grabbing, unionbusting and an effort on the part of the Republican party to build up public servants as straw men for the economic crisis. The most repugnant cases have thus far occurred in Wisconsin, New Jersey and our own state. In Wisconsin, Gov. Scott Walker laid out a fiscal plan that would force government workers to increase the amount of money they pay into their pensions by nearly 5 percent and increase how much they pay towards their health care by 6 percent. Although these euphemized pay cuts would surely aggravate the economic stress that all of middle-class America is already feeling, in a move towards compromise, the leaders of Wisconsin unions agreed to these measures. The only request from the unions was to retain collective bargaining rights and to continue to receive cost-ofliving wage increases. The unions’ offer was flatly rejected. In New Jersey, we see a similar story. Gov. Chris Christie, notorious for his anti-union rhetoric, has gone after teachers with particular zeal. His proposed reforms could cost many New Jersey teachers at least $12,000 a year, effectively cutting their salary by 20 to 28 percent. Bear in mind, this is coming from a man whose net worth
was estimated at $3.8 million in 2007. Finally we make it up north to Providence where, in jaw-dropping fashion, policymakers issued termination notices to every teacher in the city. In the name of flexibility, 1,926 people were thrown under the bus by the city to which many of them have given 15, 20 or even 30 years of their lives. Repeated assurances from Superintendent Tom Brady and Mayor Angel Taveras that not everyone will lose their jobs are little consolation for the nearly 2,000
leges, completely erasing the decades of their lives given to the city. Termination also serves as a black mark on a teachers’ records, making it extremely hard for them to be hired again in another city. As it states explicitly in teachers’ contracts that some sort of misconduct or inadequacy is required for termination, future employers have no choice but to assume the worst. As a final slap in the face, many teachers at the recent meeting with the Providence Board of Education brought up dur-
The glaringly obvious conclusion is that this attack is not really about balancing budgets, but rather a move from the top down to consolidate power and break apart workers unions.
people now facing the prospect of unemployment in an economic climate where every cent counts. In trying to understand what is at stake for these teachers, it is important to define the difference between a “termination” and a “layoff.” While a layoff implies that there is either no position available or that there is no money in the budget to pay a worker’s salary, it allows for future employment if circumstances change. Moreover, a layoff allows teachers to be rehired based on seniority, a privilege specifically written into their union contract. On the other hand, termination completely removes teachers from the education system. If they want to reapply for a job in the Providence school system, they will have to do so without seniority privi-
ing public comment that they found out about their termination on the 10 p.m. news, their frightened children sitting beside them. This behavior on the part of the policy makers in Rhode Island is nothing short of audacious, dehumanizing and disgusting. In all three states, although the circumstances and demands are different, there is a common theme. Rather than enter into a level-footed discussion about balancing budgets, policy makers have gone over the top and launched a full-fledged attack on teachers and other government workers. The glaringly obvious conclusion is that this attack is not really about balancing budgets, but rather a move from the top down to consolidate power and break apart workers unions. Even more nefarious is the
ideological war being raised against public servants, propping up and crucifying them in the media as greedy leeches trying to extort money from the helpless, debt-ridden government. This ideological warfare is a doubleedged sword. It turns middle class workers against each other, and in doing so takes bloated administrative salaries and tax cuts for the rich out of the spotlight. Nearly 10,000 Rhode Island state employees make $30,000 to $60,000 a year, while 620 make $100,000 or more. After looking at a list of some of the higher-end salaries, it is not a surprise to learn that the overwhelming majority are given to mayors, treasurers and other high-level government employees. This is truly and completely revolting. Rhode Island, New Jersey and Wisconsin’s millionaires and highly paid politicians are sitting atop their stacks of money, sneakily passing the burden along to the struggling middle class, all the while inciting arguments and scapegoating teachers to make completely sure their tightly guarded pockets remain full to the brim. While they are doing this, they are using the economic hysteria to their advantage and attempting to break apart state workers unions to consolidate the power into their own hands. If they think they are fooling anyone with their euphemisms and “our backs are against the wall” arguments, they are sincerely mistaken. I stand in solidarity with our city’s teachers and hope that Brown students, regardless of their economic background, will make a concerted effort to do the same. Chris Norris-LeBlanc ’13 is from Rhode Island. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Daily Herald Sports Tuesday the Brown
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Bears silence Lions in Ivy opener By Sam Wickham Contributing Writer
After falling to Boston University last Tuesday, the women’s lacrosse team got back on track with a win Saturday against Columbia, defeating the Lions 14-6 at the Berylson Family Fields. Goals from eight different Brown players led the team to victory in its first Ivy League match of the season. Lindsay Minges ’13 and Alexa Caldwell ’11 got the Bears (2-1, 1-0 Ivy League) off to a good start, each scoring within the first three minutes of play to put Brown up 2-0. The Lions clawed back with a goal two minutes later, but a four-goal streak from four different Brown players — including Erin Roos ’14, whose tally was the first of her Brown career — pushed Bruno’s lead to 6-1. Columbia’s Olivia Mann broke the Brown scoring streak 12 minutes in, cutting Bruno’s lead to four. Kaela McGilloway ’12, who leads the team in scoring with 14 goals this season, responded with her second goal just a minute later and added a third with nine minutes to play in the half to push Brown’s lead to 8-2. The half ended with a flurry of scoring, with Columbia striking at the 27-minute mark and Bruno adding two more from Julia Keller ’12 and Nancy Baker ’12 to bring the score to 10-3 going into the halftime pause. The Bears again added to their lead six minutes into the second half. Minges and Caldwell scored within 20 seconds of each other, and a goal from Bre Hudgins ’14 a minute later extended the Brown lead to a commanding 13-3. Mann again scored for Columbia with 20 minutes to go in the game, proving herself to be the Lions’ main
track and field
Bruno competes at championships By James Blum Sports Staff Writer
Jesse Schwimmer / Herald
Kaela McGilloway ’12 scored seven goals in Saturday’s win against Columbia.
source of offense in the match. Hudgins added her second three minutes later. Two late goals from the Lions were not enough to mount a comeback, and Brown came away with the 14-6 victory. “We like to approach each opponent as if they’re the most important game of the season,” said tri-captain Tori Conway ’11. “But Ivy League games are special … obviously we wanted to come out with the win.” “I think our ability to play our own brand of lacrosse and play at our tempo was one of the most important lessons that we can put towards the rest of the season,” Head Coach Keely McDonald ’00 said. Vital to the Bears’ success this year has been the play of McGilloway, who was named Ivy League co-offensive player of the week. McGilloway leads the team with 14 points this season, seven of which
came in Saturday’s game. “Our attacking unit is very strong in general,” Conway said. “Kaela does a really good job helping to lead the attack, not only with controlling the tempo of the attack but also by scoring goals and assisting.” “I think Kaela did a nice job running the entire offense … but for one person to make that kind of impact, we need the entire group to be on the same page and to be successful,” McDonald said. “We really feel like each goal that is scored is the effort of all seven people on attack.” McGilloway and the rest of the Bears hope to maintain momentum going into their match at Quinnipiac University Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. “Out-of-league games are just as important as Ivy games, and we want to come away with a major win,” Conway said.
The men and women of the track team wrapped up their indoor seasons this past weekend, with a small group of athletes competing at the Eastern College Athletic Conference/Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletes of America Indoor Track and Field Championships in Boston. Brown only sent a small portion of the team that met the meet’s qualifying times. Despite the stiff competition at the championships, Bruno still managed to have a good showing. “We had a lot of really good performances,” said Michelle Eisenreich, director of men’s and women’s track and field. “Overall, people raced very well.” The men were led by Christian Escareno ’11, who placed fifth in the 5,000-meter run with a time of 14 minutes, 14.62 seconds. “I think I ran well,” wrote Escareno in an e-mail to The Herald. “This week, at the IC4As, I randomly laid down a pretty fast time. I feel happy and grateful for the training the new coach, Tim Springfield, has given the team.” “Christian is running very well as evidenced by his performance at IC4As, so he’s definitely capable to run with the very best,” Eisenreich said. “It has to do with him staying smart with his training and working with the coaches. He’s going to be a top runner at regionals and hopefully make nationals.” John Spooney ’14 also posted a strong finish, finishing seventh in the 200-meter dash in 21.49 seconds. Dan Lowry ’12 earned a sixth-place
finish in the preliminaries of the one-mile run, and Kevin Cooper ’13 finished the 1,000-meter run in eighth place. The women were well represented by Hannah Wallace ’13 in the pole vault. She cleared 11 feet, 7.75 inches to earn ninth place overall. Gabriela Baiter ’11.5 finished sixth in the triple jump, and Sam Adelberg ’11 finished first in her preliminary round of the 800-meter run. With the indoor season behind the track teams, the squads are beginning to train in earnest for the outdoor track season. “The training philosophy stays the same, but we start a new training cycle because your body adapts,” Eisenreich said. “Where they start now this week will be determined by how many times they cycle during the year.” The first meet of the outdoor season is the Husky Spring Open, hosted by Northeastern University March 19. Until then, the teams will focus on helping individuals train in a way that will benefit them the most later on in the season. “Very different athletes train for very different types of competition,” Eisenreich said. “So to nail it down and say there’s one specific thing that people need to be working on, you can’t do that for track and field.” Since Escareno was injured during last year’s outdoor season, he said he considers anything he can accomplish this season a success. “I feel unexpectedly healthy and fast,” Escareno wrote. “Coach Springfield has me running a good amount of mileage and, well, I think I will have a pretty good last season as a collegiate runner.”
M. hockey captain Women’s softball kicks off season signs deal with NHL w. softball
continued from page 1 The Flyers were not the only team courting Zolnierczyk — NHL scouts from a number of teams attended Brown home games this season. “I think he plays a style and a game that’s going to translate well to the next level,” said Head Coach Brendan Whittet ’94 in a March 4 Herald article. “He’s an absolute effortless skater and a powerful kid in terms of his ability to get up and down the ice.” Zolnierczyk said with the help of his advisers and his family, he ultimately determined that Philadelphia presented the best opportunity to pursue his career. “The teams that wanted to be involved made an offer,” Zolnierczyk said. “And then we went back and
forth and discussed who was offering what and considering the best opportunity that we felt was available to me with each team. Once we narrowed it down to a few teams, I think it was just a gut feeling. It just felt right. … I talked it over with my mother and my agents there, and we felt Philly just had a good feeling.” Though he will leave school midway through his final semester, Zolnierczyk will still be able to earn his degree in economics and plans on walking with his classmates at Commencement in May. “It won’t affect (graduating) at all,” he said. “I’m still in good academic standing, and I’m ready to graduate, so I’ll definitely be back when it’s time to walk back through those gates and join everyone else for graduation.”
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By Alex Mittman Sports Staff Writer
The women’s softball team began its 2011 season this weekend, traveling to Hampton, Va., for the Lady Pirates Classic, where they faced Hampton, Marist, Rutgers and Central Connecticut State University. The women emerged with a 1-2-1 record, beating Hampton in their season opener 3-2, then falling 9-2 to Marist and 15-3 to Rutgers before tying CCSU 2-2. Though the Bears struggled, players said they are optimistic about the team’s prospects. “We definitely have one of the best teams that this school has seen in a long time,” said Kate Strobel ’12. “We’re just a solid team offensively, infield and outfield.” “Our team goals are to always improve with every season, which I think we have the past two years,” Strobel added. In 2009, the team posted a 12-26 record, and last season, the Bears were nearly even at 20-22. Bruno has a large first-year class
— eight out of 18 roster members are in the class of 2014 — and upperclassmen are confident the rookies will quickly become effective members of the team. “All eight of them are big athletes who are going to make huge contributions to the roster,” Strobel said. Kristie Chin ’11, the lone senior on the roster and a second team All-Ivy selection last season, said the veteran players have worked to acclimate their new teammates to college softball. “The upperclassmen have done a great job to help the freshmen become more familiar,” Chin said. “Upperclassmen take extra time for extra hitting lessons and grounders.” The practice seemed to have paid off for the newcomers at the Lady Pirates Classic. Infielder Jen Kries ’14, batting leadoff in her college debut, scored the team’s first run, coasting in from scoring position after Stephanie Thompson’s ’13 RBI double. The Bears added another run in the opening frame and held a 3-0 lead
going into the seventh inning. Chin, who had only yielded four hits in the first six innings, held on in the seventh to grab a complete-game 3-2 win. Kries rounded the bases again in the CCSU game, singling up the middle and then running home on Kristi Munoz’s ’14 hit. Maegan Sloggett ’14 and Kristen Watterlond ’14 scored the team’s two runs against Marist, and Kries and Munoz both crossed home in the Rutgers game. The Bears next play Friday through Sunday at the UMBC Dawg Pound Invitational in Baltimore, Md. Though the team is already looking towards the slate of Ivy games in April — Strobel said the “first goal is winning Ivies for sure” — the young squad must first gain vital experience from nonconference games. “We look at every game in itself, not necessarily working up to the Ivies or anything else,” Chin said. — With additional reporting by Tony Bakshi