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S pring 2010

Volume 4 No. 1

A publication of the Journalism III students at California University of Pennsylvania

Insiders’ Glimpse of Cal U C

Map Courtesy of California University of Pennsylvania

California University of Pennsylvania nestles along the Monongahela River.

aliforna University of Pennsylvania students perform at open mic nights, attend career networking events, win national sports titles, and even juggle flaming batons. In the Cal Corner, Journalism III students share information about some of the betterand lesser-known activities on campus.

Internships Provide Chances to Explore Possible Future Jobs By Alyssa Kruse

With the economy in its current recession, it is vital that a career-bound college graduate has a little something extra to get ahead of the competition when seeking employment. One cannot, however, rely on pure charisma alone. What employers want in a new hire is experience. At California University of Pennsylvania, preparing students for an eventual job search is a top priority. One way that Cal U prepares its students is through the promotion of internships. An internship is a for-credit experience that takes students out of the classroom and into the workforce. Students are given employment know-how by working alongside professionals in their chosen field and are given the opportunity to build their resumes. To assist students, Cal U provides a resource dedicated to finding, landing and successfully fulfilling an internship: The Internship Center. The Internship Center, in the Eberly Science and Technology Center, Room 230, is available to students who are interested in participating in See Internships: Page 12

Photo by Marc Stempka

Neither snow, rain, nor gloom of night stops CUTV.

Media Staff Sprint When It’s Deadline By Marc Stempka

A week can fly by quickly when deadlines are constantly looming and an editor knows that if the photographers, reporters and writers don’t come through, he or she will have to do the work one’s self. The California University of Pennsylvania student-run newspaper, the Cal Times, and the university’s live newscast, CUTV NewsCenter, run on weekly schedules. It takes a lot of coordination and See Deadline: Page 6

Inside Page 2: * Student

Groups, Activities * Devoted Faculty Page 3: * Parking Problems Page 4: * Vets Get Attention at Cal age 5: * International Students Welcomed Page 7: * WCAL Has Broad Appeal Page 9: * The Underground Cafe Page 10: * From Student to Professor Page 13: * Career Services Page 14: * Snowfall for the Books Page 14-15: * Tips Where to Eat Page 15: * Cal Sports Page 16: * Students Get AAA Services Page 19: * Cal Athletic Achievements Page 20: * When Dining Out Page 21: * Sycamore Eco-Cafe Page 22: * New Comprehensive Music Technology Major Page 23: * Versatile Theater Program Page 24 : * From Coal to Cal Page 25: * When God Calls Page 26: * Burning Man’s Cal Connection Page 27: * Making Merry From Mountains of Snow Page 28: * Relay for Life * Cal Corner Staff

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Movies, Clubs, Comedians Divert Students By Kathryn Fitzgerald

After attending classes day in and day out, many students need a break from what can be a stressing routine. At California University of Pennsylvania, hundreds of events are held each semester, thanks to the more than 100 clubs on campus. Cal students are never without entertainment, date opportunities, hang-out plans and just plain amusement from the Drag Show each fall and spring semester to the daily movie showings. “Each event is as diverse as possible,” said Tom Donovan, assistant director of student affairs and the adviser for the Student Activities Board and the Underground Cafe. “We want to give all the students something they might like to do.” Young Jeezy, as well as many local bands, including the Clarks, have headlined past concerts. Students can perform Thursday nights at the Underground, when it’s open mic night in the Student Union. The Underground hosts from eight to 10 bands a semester to fill the featured artist slot from 10 to 11 p.m. Past artists have included Todd Carrey, Me Against Myself, and Larry Bagby. Many times a movie comes to theaters and there is just no time to see it. Fear not, for there is a solution.

Photo by Kathryn Fitzgerald

Comedian Andrew Kennedy of Comedy Central brings chuckles to some Cal U students.

At 4 and 8 p.m.daily, the Vulcan Theatre plays a new movie. New films start Sundays. The Student Activities Board decides which movies to play. During Halloween, Christmas, and other holidays, the SAB holds special showings of past holiday favorites. SAB holds other events for students, such as ThinkFast!, a game of knowledge in which students answer a series of questions and the winner earns a cash prize. The board also has different

vendors come to Cal U during common hour so the students can make such things as street signs and bumper stickers. Starting in the Spring 2010 semester, SAB began hosting Funny Freaking Fridays once a month, during which comedians attempt to make stressed-out students laugh away the pressure. Past performers have included Andrew Kennedy from Comedy Central and Steve Hofstetter, the original columnist for See Clubs: Page 8

Faculty, Buildings, Hands-On Training Add Up to Cal U

“Our faculty are very dedicated to their students.” -- Madeline Smith

By Megan Miller

While driving through southwestern Pennsylvania, you may have noticed one of many brightly colored billboards advertising California University of Pennsylvania. Smiling faces peer at you, attempting to entice you to visit their institution. A slogan emblazons the banner: Building Character, Building Careers. But how exactly is one’s character and career built? College often has been equated to a rigorous training ground for a student’s future, and, as Cal U alumna Shannon Berg said, the journey that culminates in a walk across a stage and a handshake certainly builds careers.

Chair, English Department

Photo by Megan Miller

Cal U has welcomed students since 1852. Thousands have held successful careers.

“I had some great professors who really taught me a lot,” Berg said. “My education went so much further than just reading assignments and worksheets. I feel like I gained experiences that will help me outside the academic world.” It’s no wonder Cal U boasts that it builds character and careers. One doesn’t need to look far to find successful alumni in the surrounding communities who started their careers with the building blocks they gained at Cal. See Faculty: Page 10


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120 Reasons Why There’s Something to Do By Megan Macho

Photo by John Hoskinson

Theresa Bush juggles fire batons during a California home football game.

California University of Pennsylvania has many students with many different interests and hobbies. For the university, it is not always easy to meet everyone’s needs, but through organizations, after-school activities, and clubs, the campus provides many opportunities for students to pursue their interests and hobbies, according to representatives of Student Development and Services and the Student Association Inc. Vice President of the Offices of Student Development and Services and Social Equity Lenora Angelone said that events and opportunities are offered not only in Student Development, but also throughout the university. The Student Association works with the clubs and organizations and provides them with the funds to do the activities. “At this time, there are approximately 120 clubs and organizations,” said Nancy

Pinardi, executive director of SAI. “Ninety seven were allocated last year, with a budget of approximately $800,000,” she said. Students also can find clubs or organizations that may complement their hobbies or interests through offices providing services for wellness and athletics. Even with all of these clubs and organizations, there is always something that is not included, and that is why it is important for students to speak up. “If we do not offer what students are looking for, there are processes that a student can follow to create programs of interest through SAI,” Angelone said. The campus has done many things to improve how students become aware of the umiversity’s clubs and organizations. The e-mailed daily announcements sent to students are one of the most noticeable improvements, according to Angelone. “Though you may get tired of reading See Groups: Page 11

Campus Struggles to Find Ways to Cope With Parking By Chelsea Leber

Though seen as a heated topic among faculty and students alike, parking at California University of Pennsylvania should not be an issue to turn prospective students away from the campus. With the closure of the Hamer Lot, parking has drastically decreased. Although this may lead to frustration and mixed reviews, parking is accessible when one plans ahead.

at the top of Wood Street and at the Third Street entrance to campus. “I never panic when I see that the lots are full on campus,” Jennifer Staiman, 20, said. “[The Roadman Park lot] is a suitable alternative when the River Lot is full.” With the increasing number of students attending Cal each year, the need for more

parking continues. A new 660-space parking garage is in the works and is estimated to be finished by fall semester of 2010. An academic year pass for the garage may cost students and faculty $505. For students, parking in the River Lot or at Roadman Park may cost $336 for the academic year.

More on the Parking Crunch; Students’ AAA Membership: Page 16

“The River Lot contains enough spaces for many students,” said Craig Johnston, a university public safety officer. “The lot is conveniently located on campus and is being upgraded to better suit the students who use it,” he said. When the River Lot is filled to capacity, signs notify those arriving on campus that lots are now full and they should look for alternative parking. Signs are located

Photo by Chelsea Leber

The River Lot on campus has seen many improvements over the past year, including new call boxes, which assist students and faculty facing emergencies or vehicle problems.

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A Welcoming Place for Vets, Online Soldiers Cal U salutes those who serve their country. The Veterans Affairs Office is a ‘one-stop shop.’

Stories by Ryan Henson

California University of Pennsylvania has received acclaim for serving those who have served the country. For two years in a row, the university has been selected as one of the top “militaryfriendly” universities in the United States by Military Education magazine, according to a press release provided by the university. The schools were chosen by a panel of both military and civilian judges, and the selections were “based on each institution’s favorable policies toward our men and women in uniform,” the magazine states. “I have tremendous respect for those who have served our country or are preparing to do so,” said Angelo Armenti Jr., president of Cal U. “When these men and women are part of our university community, they serve as an asset to us all.” The 230 student veterans who choose to attend class on campus will find that a See Veterans: Page 17

Photo by Ryan Henson

Military students are part of the scene at Cal U. For two years, Military Education magazine has named the campus a “military-friendly” university. With 230 veterans on campus and more than 300 military participants worldwide in Cal U Global Online, the campus strives to help military personnel feel they have a home at Cal.

ROTC Students Go Above and Beyond the Call of Duty Three days a week, around 6 a.m., when most of the other students are asleep, cadets in California University of Pennsylvania’s Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps class assemble behind the Frich Biological Science building for physical training. On this particular day, the sky is dark, the air bitter, and the cadets jump up and down and blow on their hands for warmth. After some instructions from their superiors, they begin push-ups. After the pushups, the cadets run down Second Street. Cal U’s Army ROTC has 47 cadets and is the second largest program in the Three Rivers Battalion, which is based at the University of Pittsburgh and includes over 30 colleges throughout the area, said Lt. Col. Joe Alessi. He is the director of the battalion and a military science professor at Pitt. Cal U represents about 20 percent of the region’s

program, Alessi said. “A large part of this ( the large number of cadets) is due to how supportive they (the Cal U program) are, which is more so than a lot of programs,” Alessi said. “This isn’t my first assignment with cadet command in the Army ROTC. I taught out West at Washington University in St. Louis in the late ’90s. … The mentality we have at Cal U is a blessing.” The Army ROTC is a college elective, designed to teach students the skills to perform the duties of a military officer. Those who enroll in the course are often given scholarships, which are based on student performance. When students graduate, they are commissioned into the active Army, Army Reserve, or National Guard, according to Lt. Col Ron Bonoma, director of Cal U’s

See ROTC: Page 17

Photo by Ryan Henson

Lt. Col. Joe Alessi directs the Three Rivers Battalion, which includes Cal U’s ROTC. Alessi teaches at the University of Pittsburgh.

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Stories by Michael Billy

Photo by Michael Billy

Angela Tu, 23, is a business major and one of many international students at the university.

Cal’s Friendly Staff, Small Size Appealed to World Traveler A Taiwan native, Angela Tu spent many years in South America. Now she’s made campus friends. Many people are content with never leaving their home country. It is a frightening thought for them to leave family, friends, and culture behind to experience life somewhere foreign. This, however, is not the case for Angela Tu, 23, an international student at California University of Pennsylvania, who has visited 10 countries around the world. Tu was born in Taiwan, but she moved to South America when she was 2. “I lived in Chile, Argentina, and Panama,” she said. “So I basically grew up in South America.” Tu also has visited Venezuela, Brazil, Peru, Guatemala, and the Dominican Republic. “Although Angela comes from a country that is on the other side of the planet from us, she comes from a family who is wellSee Traveler: Page 18

Students come from all around the world to study at California University of Pennsylvania, adding to the diversity of the student body. Cal is the temporary home of 49 international students who have traveled here to further their academic careers, said International Student Adviser John Watkins. Many of the students, who come from 24 countries, attend Cal with the aid of scholarship programs. Roughly 87 percent of international students receive partial or full scholarships “based on talent and/or financial need as granted by President [Angelo] Armenti,” Watkins said. International student athletes, however, might end up benefiting most from these scholarships. “A majority of these scholarships are granted to athletes, mirroring the fact that

our international student population has a greater proportion of athletes,” Watkins said. Even though many international students are athletes, the university “has not committed to the significant expense of recruiting internationally,” he said. International students with scholarships are required to maintain standards in academics and involvement in the campus community, Watkins said. They must also work 10 hours per week on campus toward their scholarship, keeping them involved in student life. International students also gain membership to the International Club, which sponsors events on campus and in the surrounding cities. Students from the United States are also encouraged to join the club so they can exchange cultural perspectives with the international students, the club’s Web site says.

When Kayla Klimasko, a California University of Pennsylvania sophomore, was 8, she set a goal that she would work at for the next 10 years. While she was growing up in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, Klimasko, 20, wanted to use her soccer skills to gain a scholarship to a university in the United States. “It was a very long process,” she said. “When I was young, I told my mom that I wanted to get a soccer scholarship to the States, so I guess the process started when I was 8 years old.” Even before high school, Klimasko, a public relations major, was competing seriously for the attention of scouts who worked for universities in the United States. “I traveled to the States with my club soccer team,” she said. “We did what are

called showcase tournaments … where teams come from all over to play against each other while university coaches watch. During this time, Klimasko’s mother played an integral part in helping her daughter hone her soccer skills. “Some people don’t realize what it actually takes to be a soccer mom,” Klimasko said. “For about 10 years, my mother would rush home from work in order to get me off to soccer in time. “Add that to the cost for uniforms, shin pads, club fees, traveling fees and it really adds up.” By the time she was a freshman in high school, Klimasko was, unlike many of her peers, researching universities in the U.S. She was looking for one with both a soccer program and the major she was See Soccer Player: Page 18

Canadian Soccer Player Scouted Schools to Find the Perfect Match

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DEADLINE: Headaches, Then... a Finished Product

Photo by Marc Stempka

Cal Times staff members spend Tuesdays and Wednesdays editing and laying out the paper.

Students Gain Big-Time Experience With Small-School Campus Media By Marc Stempka

California University of Pennsylvania isn’t the largest university by any means. Students wanting to get involved with campus media, however, can take full advantage of big-school opportunities on a small-school level. Cal U’s Student Association Inc. owns the campus newspaper, radio and television stations. WCAL-FM, the radio station; CUTV, the television station; and the Cal Times newspaper offer students the chance to dive in headfirst and get handson experience starting as freshmen. Assistant Dean of Student Services/ Media J.R. Wheeler oversees the three media. Wheeler said the most important aspect of the three media is being able to get involved and touch equipment freshman year. That’s something Wheeler said doesn’t usually happen at larger schools. “The opportunities for students here are outstanding,” Wheeler said. “There are two reasons to get involved in any of our stations. One is to do it for fun. The other side is we have some students who are truly interested in a career in media.” The Cal Times publishes 3,000 copies of the paper each week and serves the campus and California Borough. WCAL-FM, also known as Power 92, has a 40-mile broadcast radius reaching four counties, and provides original student-produced music shows. CUTV reaches 100,000 homes on cable in southwestern Penn-

sylvania and another 800,000 homes in four states through Comcast On-Demand, Wheeler said. Cal U students have the chance to receive training with all three media and then work their way through the ranks to higher positions, such as newspaper editor, radio show hosts, or television anchors. Jeff Helsel is director of publications for the Cal Times and news director for CUTV. He has seen wide-eyed freshmen work hard for campus media while at Cal and then get jobs in their career paths. “We give students the tools, equipment and the opportunities to practice and make mistakes with us before entering the professional field,” Helsel said. Radio station show hosts have won awards for their on-air programs and CUTV has won awards for its newscasts and sports programming. “We are offering students a great educational opportunity,” Wheeler said. “No matter what their major is, students can come down here and get involved right away, and everyone brings something different to our organizations.” All three media outlets are located on the second floor of the Natali Student Union, down the hall from the campus bookstore. “It’s great to see so many students interested in what we do, and how many students want to use what we can provide them to make themselves better students,” Helsel said.

Continued from Page 1 cooperation to put these news operations in motion, and the graduate assistants for both media take on a lot of responsibility to get the job done. Cal Times graduate assistant Jared Bundy, 23, is editor-in-chief and is studying for a master’s degree in business administration. CUTV graduate assistant Joshua Eachus, 23, is the executive producer of NewsCenter and studying for a master’s degree in sports management. Bundy and Eachus are responsible for organizing their respective news staffs and keeping the newsrooms running throughout the week. Those tasks require a high level of dedication from other students to produce articles or news packages, and sometimes students fail to do their jobs. When students don’t come through, it creates more work and headaches for the two leaders. “The most challenging part is when something goes wrong with one of the writers, like if they turn in something you weren’t expecting or if [they] don’t turn in something at all,” Bundy said. Eachus feels the same, especially when reporters and photographers aren’t communicating with him as deadline nears. “Since a lot of what we do is individual segments, we need to always be talking,” Eachus said. “When it’s Thursday morning and I don’t know where video is or where the package is, I think I have a lot more work to do.” The Cal Times is released every Friday afternoon during a semester. The planning for a Friday paper begins the Tuesday of the previous week. Tuesday is when the staff meet to pitch stories and receive assignments. Bundy said Monday is generally for assembling stories and beginning the 12-page layout. Tuesday and Wednesday are for editing and placing the stories. Thursday, the paper goes to the printer in Pittsburgh, and it is distributed on campus and in California Borough on Friday.

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By Tom Buckley and Alix Kunkle

Throughout the past decade, as music styles and genres changed, so, too, did radio stations. But one local station has adapted to the changing styles without sacrificing quality. California University of Pennsylvania’s radio station, WCAL-FM, started in the mid-to-late 1960s, when a group of students started the “Vulcan Amateur Radio Club.” The group would meet and talk about radio. By the fall of 1972, the university received a letter of acceptance from the FCC to become a licensed educationally run radio station under the name WVCS (the Voice of Cal State). In 2005, after a 30year wait, WVCS finally got the chance to change its name to WCAL.

Photo by Alix Kunkle

WCAL-FM, has seen its music genres branch from a small few, such as mainstream rock and alternative music, to a diverse collection of musical variety, from oldies and classic rock to top-40, hip-hop, and independent labels, in a matter of a few years. According to Luke Hixon, 22, the station manager of WCAL, the variety has been one of the things that has helped the station thrive. “It’s all these different formats that make this station so enticing to listen to,” Hixon said. “One minute you might be listening to the Beatles or the Monkees, and the next minute, there’s a country show coming on. A lot of people like listening because they get to hear some things they don’t hear anywhere else.” He said it’s only been recently that the station started broadening its format. “We’ve never stopped anyone from playing what they want here,” Hixon said. “In fact, we’ve always encouraged it, but a lot of people didn’t start taking advantage of that until recently. It was kind of

Radio Station Launches Students Into Fulltime Positions: Page 8 like once a few people started doing it, then it branched out more and more,” he said. One of the first fluctuations in genres came in 2006, when two students, Michael Daugherty and Mike Shoemaker, each had a metal show on Sunday evenings, a theme that has continued today, though both have since graduated from Cal U. Soon after, two more metal shows appeared. In 2008, Lawrence Murray created one of the first hip-hop-oriented shows, and in 2009, a country and a top-40 show each reached the airwaves by December. By February of 2010, another country and top-40 show appeared, and a political talk show also debuted. J.R. Wheeler, assistant dean of student media services, believes that the best part of WCAL is the freedom that students receive when they are on-air. “That’s the beauty of college radio,” Wheeler said. Wheeler first became involved with the radio station in 1976 as an undergraduate student at Cal U. He remained involved as he pursued his master’s degree, which

Photo by Alix Kunkle

The WCAL library has a wide variety of music, sound effects and other audio material. The station went on the air in the mid-’60s.

Photo by Alix Kunkle

This board reflects the broad range of personalities who provide WCAL’s programming to its far-flung audience.

“I’ve always loved working with students.”

-- J.R. Wheeler Assistant Dean of Student Media Services

he earned in 1984. In 1986, the university hired Wheeler to step in as the activities director for students, and he hasn’t looked back since. The main reason for doing what he does is the students. “I’ve always loved working with students,” Wheeler said. According to one DJ, despite the amount of shows in each genre, there is never any true competition among shows. Photo by Tom Buckley J.R. Wheeler “When I started in the fall [of 2009], I was the only rap show on the board,” said Rich Boyles, a senior who hosts Kickin’ It Old $kool, which features hip hop and rap songs pre-2005. “Now there are three in a matter of four months,” Boyles said. “But it’s not like we’re trying to outdo each other. Everyone supports each other’s shows, and we help out their shows whenever we can. It’s never one person being better than anyone else,” he said.

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Photo by Tom Buckley

Junior Robert Anderson says WCAL has a diverse mix of students representing many majors.

WCAL Gives Students a Head Start By Alix Kunkle

and Tom Buckley

Many university departments boast about the internships or jobs their students land. For WCAL, things are no different. The station has seen many of its DJs (many of whom study radio and television) receive opportunities after college. Students are starting out in jobs and internships in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, and New York. Cal’s alumni include Jim Lokay, who is KDKA’s traffic reporter, Thea Kalcevic, who earned an internship on the “David Letterman Show” and is still there, and Tom Grimm, also known as “Grimm” on 105.9 “The X” in Pittsburgh. Shane Tonkavitch, 25, who graduated from California University in 2009, worked for a Froggy Radio affiliate in Brownsville for three years and said that it was his experience working at WCAL that helped him get an internship and later a job at Froggy Radio. “I don’t want to say I was confident I would get the internship when I applied for it, but I knew I had a good chance,” Tonkavitch said. “Knowing people who have gotten internships and jobs from the station [WCAL] helped my cause; if they could do it, so could I.” Tonkavich says that what he learned with Froggy Radio only built on what he learned with WCAL. “If I hadn’t known the stuff I did from Cal,” says Tonkavitch, “... I wouldn’t have understood a single thing at Froggy. It all starts from the ground up.” Other DJs, such as Jeremy Benson, 23, who graduated in the fall semester of

2009, found internships in larger markets; in Benson’s case, at 105.9 WXDX, a rock station, in Pittsburgh. Benson, who interned at the station during the summer of 2009, said those who have found success outside of the station help WCAL. “All the people who go out and get the internships always seem to come back and find a way to improve the station for those in the future,” Benson said. “It’s not to say that the station is bad. I’d say it’s one of the best college stations in the region. But everyone always seem to see different things that work elsewhere and they bring them back and implement them here.” As Tonkavitch sees it, “They only teach you so much in the classroom. ... But you have to go out and take the next step. Without that step, you’re on the same level as anyone else with a college education. A lot of employers in this business will tell you that it’s not as much about the grades [as] it is the actual experience you have. It shows you really know what you’re doing and that you’ve applied the stuff outside of the classroom.” For current student Rich Boyles, who launched a rap show, “I did it because no one else did a rap show. .... I put a lot of time into this,” he said, noting that he makes sure he keeps his show clean. “It’s like a slalom, but you’ve got to stay in between the flags.” Communication studies student Robert Anderson said he wants the station to be “taken more seriously. “Most radio stations are positioned on campus in food courts,” he said. “We aren’t.”

Photo Courtesty of

The Gateway Clipper cruises past Pittsburgh.

CLUBS: From Trips to Drag Shows, Cal U Offers Events for All Continued from Page 2 Cal U offers a number of annual and biannual events, including a biannual drag show. The Rainbow Alliance’s Drag Show hosts “ladies” from Vice Versas in Morgantown and other drag kings and queens in the area to come and show what they’ve got. Slowly gaining popularity and acceptance, the show has won a huge following since it started, said Bobby Salivanti, president of Rainbow Alliance. Many other clubs hold raffles for Penguins and Steelers tickets, lotteries, and theme baskets. Fundraisers are also held through concerts, competitions, and food sales. Not all events are held on campus. Many times, the Student Association, Inc., along with some clubs, will host trips to Carnegie Museum, Kennywood, Seven Springs, and the Gateway Clipper. From the first day of classes till the endof-semester Reading Day, there is rarely nothing to do at California University of Pennsylvania.


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Performers Go ‘Underground’ for a Little Renown

“We started it to give kids a different option from going out and drinking or having sex.”

By Kathryn Fitzgerald

Music has always been a common ground on which to meet new people. From rock, to rap, to indie, people have never had a problem agreeing, arguing, and laughing over the latest new song. The Underground, an open mic café, brings students together every Thursday from 9 p.m. to midnight. “We started it to give kids a different option from going out and drinking or having sex,” said Alex Fronczek, former president of the Underground. “If we stopped one more kid from going to the hospital or gave one more student an opportunity to get their name out there, then we’ve done our job.” Featured performers have an hour-long set from 10 to 11 p.m., which is filled by different bands, artists, and sometimes comedians whom students have requested to come to Cal U. Past performers have been Todd Carey, Me Against Myself, and Larry Bagby, who was the bassist in the movie, “Walk

-- Alex Fronczek Past Underground President

Photo by Kathryn Fitzgerald

At the Underground Café, known entertainers, as well as students, take the mic.

The Line.” Students can also be a featured performer if they contact the Underground and request a spot. Often, students have per-

formed on their own or with their bands. It’s one way to advertise before a battle of the bands or before a big concert. Many students publicize their band by using the Underground as a springboard to the rest of the campus, Fronczek said. Students can perform a 15-minute set of covers or their own songs. Students commonly perform new songs there to test them out on a crowd before taking them to a show. With mostly musicians and music lovers as part of the audience, constructive criticism is easy to find for those who hope to get better. The Underground serves as a great way to relax with friends, meet new people, and maybe spend a money-free night with your significant other.

Students Plan Events, From Films to Gingerbread-House Contests By Kathryn Fitzgerald

It’s not just California University of Pennsylvania that makes the movies, comedians, and other events possible on campus. Students are the backbone for a lot of event planning, most organized by the Student Activities Board. The SAB is the organization with the largest number of events held on campus each year. Comprised of many different types of students, the board schedules events during common hour and after classes. The SAB also helps pick the movies that play daily in the Vulcan Theatre. Each semester, the SAB meets and decides on what movies to play in the theater, based on what popular movies are coming out on DVD each week. Past movies have included “Twilight,” “The Hangover,” and “X-Men Origins.” SAB also hosts a comedian once a month to come and perform in the Vulcan Theatre. Comedians from Comedy Central and have already ap-

“Andrew Kennedy came through on the Friday before the big snowstorm in February.”

-- Tom Donovan Assistant Director, Student Activities

peared to make Cal U students laugh their troubles away. Not even a massive snowstorm has stopped them from coming. “Andrew Kennedy came through on the Friday before the big snowstorm in February,” said Tom Donovan, assistant director of student activities. Holidays are special times for SAB. For such festive times as Halloween, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day, SAB holds a wide range of events to help students get into the holiday season. Gingerbread-house contests, live music, and special movie showings are just a few events held to celebrate the holidays. The SAB meets every Thursday at 4 p.m. in Room 206/207 of the Natali Student Center for those who would like to get involved and help plan the events.

Photo by Kathryn Fitzgerald

The Student Activities Board sponsors a range of activities, including sign-making.

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Former Cal Student Now Stands in Front of Classroom By Megan Miller

Computer engineers, nurses, businessmen and women. The list of successful Cal U graduates contains many names. And a few of those alumni have returned to their alma mater, not as graduate students, but as professors. Anthony “Todd” Carlisle is a journalism professor at California University of Pennsylvania and one of several who know what it’s like to be on the other end of the spectrum at Cal. When searching for a college, most students search through school after school until they find a college that suits their personalities.  It’s a process that many prospective freshman go through. But not Carlisle. He said that Cal U picked him. “Because of finances, or the lack thereof, I didn’t think that I would be able to attend college after high school,” Carlisle said. “I was planning on going into the Army.”

Photo by Margo Wilson

Instructor Anthony “Todd” Carlisle is a Cal U graduate and a journalism professor. He was a reporter at the Tribune-Review and other newspapers before coming to Cal.

But thanks to the help of a guidance counselor, Carlisle won a minority academic scholarship that secured his spot at California University of Pennsylvania. And thanks to that guidance counselor and the academic scholarship she helped him to score, the future suddenly seemed quite a bit brighter.

“That scholarship gave me the life I have today,” Carlisle said. In addition to his education, Carlisle also found something a little extra. “I met my wife, Amy, here,” Carlisle said. “Cal U is just the gift that keeps on giving.” Carlisle is proud that his daughter is getting her education at Cal U. Now, Carlisle is giving back to the institution that has given him so much. “Teaching at my alma mater allows me to make the same personal connections with my students that I benefited from as a young scholar,” Carlisle said. “I hope to inspire and guide my students in the same way that I was inspired and guided when I attended Cal.” Journalism students laugh and recall a memory when speaking of how much Carlisle has taught them.  “ I’m proud, blessed, and happy to be employed here,” Carlisle said. “However, I’m most proud to be an alumnus of Cal.”

FACULTY: Professors Are ‘Energetic and Eager to Teach’ Continued From Page 2 For more than 150 years, Cal U has been known for its educational excellence and for its commitment to providing its students with the best educational opportunities available. In the past five years, Cal U has updated its residence halls from dank, dormitorystyle rooms to new, state-of-the-art, suitestyle housing. “Cal has a beautiful campus,” said student Jenna McClosky. “And with the construction, Cal is building to a better future!” Cal U also has many up-to-the-minute technological classrooms that aid students in attaining the best education possible, as well as enthusiastic faculty members, keen on education. “Our faculty members are very dedicated to their students,” said English Department Chairwoman Madeline Smith.  Smith said that unlike many large universities, the faculty at Cal U are not pulled out of the classroom to conduct research. Professors, not graduate students, teach undergraduates at Cal, unlike at some larger schools.

Photo by Margo Wilson

Madeline Smith is chairwoman of the English Department.

California’s English department boasts faculty who are, in Smith’s words, “energetic and eager to teach.” “Fifteen years ago, you would see many professors nearing the end of their

careers, but in the English department, we have so many fresh new faces who are bringing new life to our program,” Smith said. But what good is all that time spent studying if a student doesn’t have any real-world experience? A great way for students to gain handson experience is through internships. Cal U students have held internships at many successful organizations, including Hershey Entertainment, “The Late Show With David Letterman,” The Pittsburgh Zoo, and the Pittsburgh Steelers.  According to Assistant Director of Alumni Relations Leslie Freenor, there are many Cal U alumni working in southwestern Pennsylvania. Washington County District Attorney Steve Toprani, Class of 2000, and Washington County Commissioner Larry Maggi, class of 1979, are Cal U alumni. KDKA reporter Jim Lokay graduated in 2002. Whether you want to be a journalist, a teacher, a computer software engineer, or an artist, Cal U has the educational tools to help you build a brighter future.


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Dancing, Twirling for One’s Major or One’s Passion

By Megan Macho

Many of the students at California University of Pennsylvania have interests and hobbies outside of campus. Some students, though, apply their interests and hobbies at school in their major or minor, a club, or organization. One student who uses her interest in dance at school is Tara Fronczek, 32, a freshman at Cal U. She is studying to be a PTA, or physical therapist assistant. For Fronczek, getting a degree as a PTA will be a good way to earn another living and help with her interest, dancing. Fronczek started dancing when she was 3 and decided she wanted to dance professionally at 16. At 20, she had her first professional job. “I have spent my life in the dance field,” Fronczek said. “At 30, I started to think of a second career that would be helpful financially, as well as fulfilling.” As a dance teacher, Fronczek will be able to take what she learns from getting her degree and apply it to her students. As far as her degree goes, Fronczek feels she has a slight advantage over other students. “My dance knowledge definitely gives me an advantage over other PTA students,” Fronczek said. “I also have the advantage because of my experience with teaching physical exercise, which is a large part of being a PTA.” Fronczek feels that choosing a career that

Photo by John Hoskinson

Theresa Bush, a Pennsylvania Miss Majorette, twirls batons during a 2009-’10 Cal football game.

in some ways uses her interest, dancing, will benefit her and her students. “Both fields are physical and are intended to be good for the human body,” Fronczek said. “Dance doesn’t always end up that way. Unfortunately, most dance instructors do not get the educational opportunities I have had and will continue to have,” she said. Theresa Bush, 21, is a junior English secondary education major. Her major and her after-school activity as a feature

twirler don’t necessarily go together. Bush began twirling when she was in kindergarten and has won such titles as Miss Majorette of Pennsylvania and International Parade Majorette. Twirling is a big part of her life and she could not see her college career without it. Bush tried out for her feature twirling positions her freshman year and continues to try out each year. “I have made some of my closest friends through twirling here,” Bush said.

publish or broadcast information and promote events at the university. Joining a club or organization that may complement a hobby or interest can make the college experience more enjoyable. “They are often called learning communities,” Angelone said. “Many students, especially those in media services and the women’s center, do exactly this.” Many of the faculty members find ways for the students to put the two together because there is no better way to learn than in an area where you can apply theories and principles to practice in a collaborative classroom, Angelone said.

Lenora Angelone is vice president of student development and services.

GROUPS: Pursuing One’s Interests to Grow and Learn Continued From Page 3 them,” Angelone said, “I think you will find that if a student takes a few minutes to explore these announcements, there is much offered at Cal U.” Along with the announcements that are sent out every day, there is the new Cal U Web page. The new Web page is focused on the student and makes it easier to find the information that he or she needs. The new electronic billboards on the front of Manderino Library and Steele Hall also provide information about campus events. The campus media including the Cal Times, WCAL radio, and CUTV, may

Photo From Cal U’s President’s Perspective, Spring 2009

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Student Urges State Board to Keep Funding Internships By Alyssa Kruse

Andrew Pirring traveled to Washington, D.C., with a clear picture of what he wanted for his future. The problem for Pirring, of Frederick, Md., was that although he was planning to do an internship, he didn’t have one when he arrived. He was working through the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars and was fairly confident he’d find a post. Nevertheless, he turned down an offer that didn’t seem like a good fit. Then, only 20 minutes after rejecting that position, Pirring, a dual operational meteorology and political science major, received a phone call from Earth Aid Enterprises that eventually would lead him to speak before the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Board of Governors. Earth Aid Enterprises is a Washington, D.C.,-based organization that is dedicated to energy-and-water-use education. “I was the only intern with environmental experience,” Pirring said. Pirring obtained his internship with help from California University of Pennsylvania’s Internship Center through the Washington Center, an organization that places students from around the world with internship positions in Washington, D.C. Because of his exceptional performance

Photo by Alyssa Kruse

Student Ambassadors for the Internship Center await students attending an Internship Fair.

during his internship with Earth Aid, Pirring was invited to speak before the PASSHE Board of Governors and the presidents of the 14 Pennsylvania stateowned universities comprising PASSHE. “I let them know that the scholarship and the money that’s put forth towards internships are really doing some good,” Pirring

said. “Presenting to the Board of Governors was definitely a great experience.” Despite job offers, Pirring is currently concentrating on applying to graduate school. “I’d like to earn my Ph.D. and teach, but then again, I’d also like to run for office someday,” he said.

INTERNSHIPS: Providing an Edge Over Job Market Competitors Continued From Page 1 an internship and even those who are merely considering it. Internship Center Director Karen Primm recognizes the advantages of internships and how they can influence the future of students. “When students do an internship, it gives them the opportunity to sort of test-drive their future,” Primm said. “It provides them the chance to realize their potential in the workplace of their chosen field, or it lets students know if they need to reconsider their course of study,” she said. Primm, who has been a part of the Cal U community for 22 years, guides students to find an internship and to gain the most valuable experiences from it. Primm, along with the rest of the Internship Center staff, works alongside business and company employers to ensure the internship experience is beneficial for

everyone, including students, employers and Cal U. “Everything we do here is for the students,” Primm said. “We want to help students reach their full potential after college by helping to provide them with work experience during their education.” Graduate Assistant Jeremy Abel has been helping students at the Internship Center since September of 2009. Abel, a psychology student, is interning with Gateway Alcohol and Drug Rehab. “By working at the Internship Center, I see how important it is to gain work experience through an internship,” Abel said. In addition to the staff, another resource available through the Internship Center is the online InternLink system. InternLink allows employers to post internships or job openings online for students to search for and view. Students benefit by creating a profile and

having full access to an array of internship openings. The Internship Center staff is available to aid students in registering for InternLink and to make sure students extract the most from the Web site as possible. The mission of the Internship Center is demonstrated by several students’ success stories after the students were hired by their internship site. Former Cal U student Kyle Lux is now employed by the Pittsburgh Penguins after interning with the team while at Cal. After interning with Whirl Magazine during her last semester at Cal, former student Stephanie Flowers is now working for the publishing company. It is instances like these that remind Primm why she does her job at the Internship Center. “In case you haven’t noticed,” Primm said, “I love it here!”


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Career Services Offers 4-Step Plan to Compete in Work World

By Colette Dell

As a prospective student looks at a college, it is helpful to know that the college the person ultimately chooses will be supportive of their successes and will aid in their professional development. Career Services at California University of Pennsylvania believes in assisting its students with their professional development. “It’s a service everyone should use,” said Rhonda Gifford, Director of Career Services. Career Services staff help students build resumés and provide job-shadowing opportunities, as well as create mock interviews for them to attend. Career Services also hosts events such as job fairs and mock networking/etiquette dinners. These services are only a portion of opportunities Career Services provides and are part of what Cal calls the Cal U Career Advantage Program. “This really is the framework for what we do,” Gifford said of the services offered for the Career Advantage Program. This career program is set up in four steps. Each step focuses on benefits for students in a particular year of school.

However, students can feel free to participate in many of the activities and services, regardless of when. Jon Spradley, who graduated in Fall 2009, studied communication studies and acting. He attended three networking/etiquette dinners while at Cal. He attended just one dinner in the year it was recommended. Spradley is just one case proving it does not matter when students choose to take advantage of a certain service.

Career Services is ready to aid in the professional development of the students during their time at Cal, as well as before and after their college careers. The office helps students decide what area of study they want to focus on, as well as helps with post-college goals, such as finding

Mock Networking/Etiquette Dinner Serves Recipe for Meeting Employers By Colette Dell

Cal U’s Career Services hosted a Mock Networking Reception and Etiquette Dinner on Feb. 17, in the Natali Student Center that included speakers and networking with employers. Many of the employers who came to speak with the students were Cal U alumni. Their main purpose was to help give the students networking experience. Students had a chance to meet with companies, such as Clear Channel Radio and Verland. First, the employers walked from table to table to speak to the students, and then the students went from table to table to meet the employers. By 6 p.m., it was time to eat like a professional. Meaghan Clister, coordinator of cooperative education in Career Services,

guided students through the dinner, giving them tips on which piece of silverware to use at what time and other etiquette tips. “It’s beneficial so students are familiar with etiquette basics,” Clister said. The event wasn’t only a learning experience for students, but it was also fun for them. “I enjoyed it,” said Stephanie Stotka, a junior studying accounting. “I think the networking was very helpful.” She also mentioned that she was fond of the dinner and that there was “good food” served. Alumni Career Counselor Bridgett Nobili said she thought the event was effective and more Cal U alumni employers showed up than ever before. “It’s not whom you know, it’s who knows you,” Nobili said.

Photo by Colette Dell

Associate Career Services Director Gene Sutton meets with student Rachel Monaghan.

a job. “It’s a four-step development process that we hope students will follow during their time here at Cal U,” Gifford said. “And really, it’s a framework that people can follow throughout their lifetimes.” Spradley, even though he has now graduated, still consults Career Services for tips during his job search. “They helped me with my resumé,” Spradley said. “It’s important for Career Services to be there, and important for students to go there, as well,” he said. Any person who spends freshman year at Cal U is automatically enrolled in the Career Advantage Program when the person takes First Year Seminar. This means students get e-mails that keep them informed about what Career Services has to offer. But if a student transfers to Cal when he or she is in sophomore year or beyond, this student doesn’t automatically get enrolled in the Career Advantage Program. Thus, Cal has other ways of advertising Career Services. “We have a corner in the Cal Times every week. We have our Facebook page. … We just try to be creative,” Gifford said. Peer mentors and resident hall assistants are trained to spread the latest Career Services news, as well. “Most likely, when students are facing graduation and the time to begin applying for jobs, students may start to panic and not know what to do — that’s when they should go to Career Services,” Spradley said. “It’s important for Career Services to be there and important for students to go there as well,” he said.

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Vulcan Sports

By Alex Vucelich

Photo by Allison Helman

Cal U shut down for a week when more than 20 inches of snow blanketed the region.

Wintry Holiday Tested Patience of Displaced ‘Snow Refugees’ By Allison Helman

School cancellations, sled riding, and snowball fights — but Vulcan Blizzard 2010 wasn’t all fun and games. During and after the February snowstorm at California University, many students faced power outages and hazardous roads. Six of the 10 buildings at Vulcan Village lost power, leaving a couple hundred students without heat and dozens without a place to go.

More on Vulcan Blizzard 2010:

Page 27

Vulcan Assistant Community Manager Steven J. Weiss sent a notice to the affected residents in university apartments, telling them about the emergency and givng them the option of travel to the Natali Student Union to use as a safe haven. Many students took advantage of the emergency transportation services, but some adventurous students trekked to town their own way. Jessica Wilson, a junior psychology major at Cal, and her roommates hiked toward town before a passing truck driver picked them up.. Jared Ealy, a graduate business major, and his roommates also took advantage of the accommodations at the Student Union. Ealy and fellow “snow refugees” occupied themselves with television and Facebook. “Not many people actually stayed in the Union. Those of us who did passed the time the best we could,” Ealy said. Several residents camped out in their apartments with candles during the first night without power. By Monday, the situation at Vulcan Village worsened as thermostats plunged

below their lowest settings. Weiss sent out a second announcement stating the water had been drained from the buildings and all remaining students were to leave by that evening. The announcement also stated the power would remain off for an undetermined amount of time. Many students were far from patient and becoming angrier with every passing hour that they could not return. Power was restored late Monday afternoon to the relief of everyone. Residents returned slowly over the next week to deal with spoiled food, laundry, and dirty dishes, something not uncommon to college students.

For the past 15 years at California University of Pennsylvania, there have been some significant sports moments. With 18 varsity sports teams, the school is represemted equally through the men and women athletes.

More Stories on Cal Athletics:

Page 19

Cal produced back-to-back National Championship softball teams in 1997 and 1998. Cal was founded in 1852 and previously had teams with regional success, but little success in the Nationals. Tom Pucci has been the athletic director at Cal since 1991 and has seen the evolution of Cal sports from regional to national recognition. “It’s definitely been a transformation,” Pucci said. “The softball team winning it all in ’97 and ’98 was the most significant since it was the first, and because Coach Bertagnolli showed

Die for the Fries or Do t By Chelsea Funk

During the weekends, one of the most popular places to go in California is Spuds on Wood Street. Spuds is a restaurant mainly known for its varieties of potatoes, wings, and other favorites. On the weekdays, the restaurant is quiet, with only a few customers enjoying their fries, but on the weekends, the restaurant is packed with excited college students coming from parties and other activities.

Join the Crowd at Lagerheads:

Page 20 The Sycamore Cafe Is Cal’s New Eco Eatery: Page 21

Photo by Allison Helman

Some students decided to make the best of a tough situation when Cal U closed for a week.

Heather Dymkoski 21, a junior at Cal U, knows Spuds very well. “It’s definitely an experience that every one should get to see, especially on the weekends,” Dymkoski said. Spuds, which originated in Kutztown, has over 25 varieties of fries and uses over 1,500 pounds of special frying potatoes per week at


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Program Produces National Champions

everyone else how to do the best with what they had,” he said. President Angelo Armenti Jr. has encouraged the success of the sports programs since his arrival on campus in 1992. He agreed with Pucci’s statement that Cal’s initial moment of athletic greatness came with the softball team. “It was the most amazing thing; it was damn near perfection,” Armenti said. Armenti attends a majority of the sporting events because he said he thinks his presence has an impact on the performance of the athletes. Armenti said he relates to the athletes because of his love for sports. Photo by Alex Vucelich After the football team lost in the National A billboard along Highway 88 pays tribute to Cal U’s title-winning varsity sports teams. Semifnals this past year, Armenti was in the lock- Armenti said he sees more National a great reminder to every person in the er room and said a few words to the disheartened Championships in Cal’s future for a number university that the pursuit of perfection players and coaches. He said the experience the of different teams and hopes the teams’ suc- is a worthwhile cause,” Armenti said. team was going through, having been to the semis cesses encourage not only the athletes, but “And even though perfection is not atfor the third time in as many years, was tough but the entire student body. tainable by humans, it’s something we thanked the team for the inspiration it provided to “The role that I see for athletics is that it’s can all strive for.” the university.

he Wing Thing at Spuds the California store alone. Loaded fries and cheese fries are the most common fries to get at Spuds and many people seem to like them, according to Donna Wadsworth, an employee at Spuds. Not only does Spuds specialize in fries, but the restaurant also is popular for wings and sandwiches. Spuds has over a dozen types of wing sauces and the most popular is the Spicy Garlic Parmesan. With Spuds being such a college food hangout place, it’s only normal that the restaurant would have an eating contest. THE BEAST consists of a three-pound burger that the person must finish, including all of the condiments. The champion gets his or her picture on the Spuds Hallway of Fame. The winner also receives a framed picture, a shirt or hat, and a gift card. With more than 75 people attempting to eat THE BEAST, only three have truly completed it See Spuds: Page 20

Pastries in the Morning, Sandwiches at Lunch, Make Taylor & Byrnes a Haven for the Hungry By Stephanie Belback

California University of Pennsylvania is a great place to grab a cup of java and relax or get homework done. Three cafés in the union offer great eats, as well. The chaotic hallways are filling with hungry students as the afternoon at Taylor & Byrnes begins. It’s the main herding grounds for growling stomachs. Long lines start to form as the customers decide what will satisfy their cravings. Taylor & Byrnes is a small café nestled in the second floor of the Natali Student Center. Patty Kent, food service worker, keeps busy stocking produce as students begin to file in. She busily prepares the café for lunch. Taylor & Byrnes has plenty to offer. Its mornings are full of a variety of pastries, including doughnuts, bagels, muffins and cinnamon rolls. You can also get your

Photo by Stephanie Belback

Taylor & Byrnes offers an array of breakfast and lunch items for hungry students.

caffeine fix by ordering the Carmel Macchiato, the preferred student drink. According to Kent, the café prides itself on its fresh food. Lunch is the biggest seller at the café. The café offers a variety of sandwiches and wraps. “Everything’s cold cut – nothings heated,” Kent said. This creates a fast-paced environment, allowing students to get in See Taylor & Byrnes: Page 21

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Rise Early, Take the Bus to Avoid Parking Hassles By Charlene Cooper and Chelsea Leber

Parking at California University does not have to be a burdensome task. The lot outside Eberly has a section available for students to park, and there is parking along the streets lining the main sidewalk on campus. “I try to get to campus as early as possible when I want to park in the Eberly lot,” Keith Boyd, 20, said. “Unless you get to school at eight in the morning, there just is no place to park,” said Jessica Kunz, a sophomore history major. “I have been late to class many times because I have to drive around looking for a place to park.” While many students live on campus or nearby and walk to class, there are even more who commute. In order to relieve some of the parking tension, Cal encourages students to ride the bus. A valid Cal Card will allow a student to travel on any

Mid Mon Valley Transit Authority bus. Students who live in the Mon Valley can be picked up at any bus stop and travel to Cal at no charge, according to www., the bus company’s Web site. “Always give yourself some leeway,” said Jeremy Miller, 21, a Donora commuter. He has been commuting for two years and finds it most beneficial when he leaves plenty of time in advance. Which day classes fall is another issue to consider. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday classes falling between 9 a.m. and noon are when campus lots fill quickly, so prepare to leave accordingly. Be careful to follow guidelines and rules when parking, in order to avoid parking violations and tickets. Joseph Walters, a California Borough police officer, said. “Violations for parking range from $50 upward to $175. ...[A]lways be aware of the cost or amount of time given when parking in particular areas,” he said. “Just know your surroundings within the borough, and you will be easily able to avoid fines and violations,” Walters said.

changing are covered, as well as battery starting. Towing is available with certain limitations. For the first three miles, towing is free, and it’s $3.50 for each additional mile, Wigle said. Students may not be aware that they have a membership. According to Wigle, there were only 267 Cal U-related service calls placed to AAA in the fall 2010 semester.

Even though many students don’t know about this benefit, some do. According to Ken Reischeck, a tow driver for Scotty’s in Belle Vernon, the company answered about 85 calls from Cal students during the week of the February snowstorm. Many called about dead car batteries. The phone number for AAA can be found on the back of a Cal Card.

Photo by Chelsea Leber

When campus lots fill, students and staff may take the Roadman Park bus.

Cal U Students Have Unique Partnership with AAA By Charlene Cooper

One of the many benefits offered to California University of Pennsylvania students who have a valid Cal Card is an AAA membership. Many students, like Jessica Kunz, 27, a sophomore history major, don’t realize some of the fringe benefits of attending Cal. “I had no idea that I had an AAA membership through school,” Kunz said. “It would have come in handy so many times, had I known.” Recently Kunz hit a pothole with her car and ended up paying $57 for the towing bill. “If I had known about the membership, then I could have saved a lot of money,” Kunz said. The AAA student membership offered isn’t as inclusive as a regular membership, but it does come in handy for small things that could cost a fortune otherwise, according to Terry Wigle, assistant dean for student services. Flat repair, fuel delivery, lockout services, minor mechanical issues, and tire-

Photo by Charlene Cooper

In emergencies, AAA can provide Cal students with assistance to get them back on the road.


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VETERANS: Cal Named ‘Friendly’ to U.S. Military

Photo by Ryan Henson

Early morning exercise is designed to prepare ROTC cadets to be future leaders.

ROTC: Discipline, Leadership Skills Help Cadets Thrive in Real World Continued From Page 4 ROTC curriculum, said the class teaches cadets to be future leaders and that earlymorning physical training is just one of the methods to do so. The students also have classroom instruction and once a week have “leadership lab,” where concepts learned in the classroom are applied in the real world.

“They push you in the right direction ...”

-- Robyn Weidner ROTC Cadet

“It (ROTC) has made me a better leader, but it also has helped me put things into perspective,” said Robyn Weidner, who is completing a dual major in athletic training, and wellness and fitness. “They push you in the right direction, so when you leave here and go active Army, you are prepared.” Bonoma explained that the class teaches Army principles and, although upperclassmen must make a commitment to enlist, anyone is welcome to become a cadet for the freshman and sophomore years. During these first two years, the program

Photo by Ryan Henson

Lt. Col. Ron Bonoma directs Cal’s Army ROTC program, which has 47 cadets.

focuses mainly on the Army values of loyalty, duty and service – ideals that Bonoma said are beneficial to everyone. “Whether they stay in the military or not, we’ve taught them life lessons, how to stand up and speak in front of their peers, how to time-manage and how to be organized,” Bonoma said. “They understand the discipline and leadership that is necessary for them to be successful in any job that they do.”

Continued From Page 4 number of services are provided to them through the Veterans Affairs office, said Lt. Col. Robert Prah, director of Veterans Affairs for the university. The office helps students complete benefit paperwork for the post-911 G.I. Bill, acts as a connection to campus offices and outside organizations, provides counseling services on academic and personal matters, keeps students on track with their academics, and helps them put things in order when they are called to duty. “We try to be what I consider a one-stop shop here on campus,” Prah said. The Veterans Affairs Office is also the home of the Veterans Club, which holds social functions such as an upcoming field trip to Washington, D.C., and the annual Veterans Day Photo by Ryan Henson Luncheon. In 1983, Robert Prah the club established the Col. Arthur L. Bakewell scholarship, offering three $1,000 awards each year. “It’s a good way to meet new people,” said Veteran Club President Verna Mineard, a graduate student seeking a master’s degree in law and public policy. For those in the military who are not on campus, Cal U’s Global Online program enrolls “well over 300” military users worldwide through A recent study by SR Education Group, an “educational resource provider,” found Cal U to have the second-best online education program in the country, the California University Journal reported. Prah said he believes Global Online’s success is because soldiers in places like Iraq and Afghanistan can log in when it’s convenient for them. “The accessibility with the time-zone differences is great. It’s working out for them,” Prah said.

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TRAVELER: Family Liked the Respect Cal Staff Paid Them

Photo by Michael Billy

Kayla Klimasko, left, with teammates Jodi McDonald, Kristen Orrett, and Darija Davidson.

SOCCER PLAYER: Coach’s Plan Convinced ‘City Girl’ to Try Small-Town University Continued From Page 5 interested in. By 10th grade, she was also attending soccer camps in the United States, and in 11th grade, she was receiving offers from various universities -- including Slippery Rock, Towson, and Ball State. She committed to Cal U as a senior in high school. “The thing that mostly sold me was the soccer coach’s plan for the next season,” Klimasko said. “It was his first year so my class was going to be the first class that he recruited. He had a huge vision of how to turn Cal’s women’s soccer program around, and he wanted me to be a big part of it.” Coach Al Alvine said that Klimasko’s recruiting class was unique because he was building a new team from scratch. “We needed a lot of players, but, more important, we needed players who would be able to come in as freshmen and contribute right away at the collegiate level,” Alvine said. “[Klimasko] has been both an allconference and an all-region player for us in her first two years at Cal. That is very rare and is a testament to her ability as a player and as a person.” Though Klimasko can seem shy in person, her aggressiveness shows when she plays, “My initial impression was that Kayla was intimidating on the soccer field,” teammate

Kayla Jachimowski said. “But she was pretty quiet off the field.” Cal’s closeness to Pittsburgh was also a plus for Klimasko, who describes herself as a “city girl” because her home is in the sixth largest city in Canada. Though Klimasko enjoys California and Pittsburgh, her heart is with Canada. “Kayla, being Canadian, is in a unique position relative to students from the other countries,” International Student Advisor John Watkins said. “Canadians are very much American and have little difficulty adapting, but at the same time have their own perspectives akin to their homeland. National pride is certainly one such perspective. Ask Kayla whom she roots for in Olympic softball and you’ll agree.” Klimasko is glad she came here. “It was a process that took up a lot of my teenage years, but in the end, it has all been worth it,” she said. “Getting a soccer scholarship to the States has always been my dream, and it’s very rewarding to have achieved that.” Klimasko hopes to be married “with a couple of kids” someday. She wants a career where she can be happy and successful. She may not play soccer professionally but may coach or play recreationally.

Continued From Page 5 traveled,” International Student Adviser John Watkins said. “Her ability to adapt to different cultures was likely learned some time ago.” Tu speaks Mandarin, Spanish, and English. She enjoys experiencing new cultures and meeting new people from around the globe. “I have traveled to many different countries, and each of them has its own unique culture and something that makes that place special,” Tu said. “Chile is a great country to live in. The fruits are magnificent; the people humble and very polite,” she said. Tu, a senior business major with a concentration in marketing, said she enjoys South America, but its major drawback is having no winter, one of her favorite seasons. Though she considered universities in Virginia, Connecticut, and Texas, she decided on Cal U after visiting the campus and meeting with the dean. “[The admissions office and the dean] treated me and my family with respect,” she said. “They showed us all around campus and were very helpful.” The friendliness of the faculty and staff whom she met, along with the small size of the campus, were contributing factors in Tu’s decision to come to Cal U. Tu has enjoyed her time in the United States, though she was nervous when she first arrived. “I was very intimidated coming to a new country and scared that I had no one,” she said. “Once in a while, I get nostalgic and miss home and my old friends.” But students and faculty at Cal U were more than willing to help her get accustomed to her new environment. “I’ve met great friends here, and they help me out in anyway possible,” she said. “So now I’m not scared anymore.” After graduating, Tu hopes to work for a company like Sony, Bayer, or Nintendo.


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Vulcans Forge Ahead on Field, Court Cal U’s Football Team Hit the Playoffs First in ‘07, and the Future Beckons Stories by Alex Vucelich

In the last decade, the football program at California University of Pennsylvania has gone through different stages of evolution under head coach John Luckhardt. When he arrived in 2002, the Vulcans were the stepchildren of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference, the favorite opponents for homecomings, a for-sure win against. Indiana University of Pennsylvania used to have promotions that if the Indians, as IUP used to be known, could beat the Vulcans by 40, it would be “Hot Dog Day,” with free hot dogs with proof of campus identification. “The end of the ‘04 season was tragic,” Luckhardt said. Bringing a season that had started out with such high hopes to a bitter end, Cal lost that game to Shippensburg 40-7, also with a 6-5 record.

Luckhardt was used to dealing with scrap programs, turning around the Washington and Jefferson Presidents in the ‘90s. Luckhardt found out early in coaching that surrounding one’s self with the best, even when it’s controversial, is a key part of winning. While he was at Purdue University as a young assistant under Kenneth “Jack” Mollenkipf, Mollenkipf told him, “John, if you’re scared to have talented people around you, then you’ll never succeed.” Luckhardt said Cal’s motto is, “No guarantees. Just great opportunities.”According to Luckhardt, “Nobody can guarantee that anybody’s program is going to be exceptional, but the opportunity is here, if you work hard enough and create those situations.” In 2007, the Vulcans reached another stage in their evolution. They’d become the Cinderella team who’d earned the respect of one of the toughest conferences in the nation, not only earning home field advantage throughout, but making the playoffs for the first time in school history. The Vulcans appeared in the first of three consecutive trips to the National Semifi-

Photo by Allison Helman

Cal’s Vulcan hammers an IUP snowman.

nals, losing to eventual national champ Valdosta State (Ga.) 28-24. In 2008, the Vulcans again played the role of host to the next in line, when Minnesota-Duluth came to California and handed the Vulcans a 45-7 whipping.

Women’s Basketball Team of ‘04 Netted Championship Players ‘on a mission’ to make a name for selves and their alma mater

In 2004, The California University of Pennsylvania Women’s Basketball team beat opposing teams by an average of 28 points, on its way to its first-ever national championship. “It was the most dominating Division II women’s basketball team I’ve ever seen in person,” said Annie Malkowiak. Malkowiak played for the Vulcans in the early ‘90s and came on as an assistant coach in 2000. She said there was a certain quality in the 2004 team that is hard to duplicate in other teams. “That National Championship team was on a mission. It was just one of those things where they had the right chemistry, never got tired of studying game tapes,

plus (coach) Darcie had the right system to play them in,” Malkowiak said. University President Angelo Armenti Jr. said his favorite moment in Lady Vulcan basketball history was from the final minute of the 2004 National Championship game. The Vulcans were down by 1 and had just inbounded the ball to their best player, Sarah McKinney. Armenti said he remembers reading in the paper how the Drury College coach, whose team Cal was about to play, said that if his team was going to lose, it wasn’t going to be because of McKinney. The coach didn’t know how right he was going to be. “Sarah dribbled the ball up and as soon as she crossed half court, they doubled her. She passed it to Megan Stark, the point guard, and she stepped back and nailed a 3 to put us up. We never let up the lead after that,” Armenti said, smiling at his own nostalgia.

Photo by Alex Vucelich

This sculpture marks the Lady Vulcans’ 2004 triumph in Division II playoffs.

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Spring 2010

At Lagerheads By Chelsea Funk

Coal Center isn’t a drive-through town, but Lagerheads restaurant and bar makes it a destination for many people. With its casual atmosphere, this seatyourself, friendly dining spot helps people feel they belong there. Pictures of historical California line the walls and ESPN quietly plays on both flat screens with games or Sportscenter on most of the time. Walking into the restaurant, one can either walk left to the bar or to the right toward the restaurant. Owner Mark Koehler explains that the restaurant is set up so people at the bar don’t bother people eating. The bathrooms also are set up on the bar side. “I chose to make it that way so that the people at the bar did not have to walk through the dining room to get to the bathroom; it’s just easier that way,” Koehler said. Koehler bought the restaurant in 1999, and he said it was quite different then. The building formally was a Lithuanian Hall, a post office, even a speakeasy and a candy store at the same time. Koehler and his wife, Joy, made a lot of changes to make it look the way it does. The reason they chose this location was

Photos by Chelsea Funk

Lagerhead’s menu board features the specials for the week, along with the specials offered during sports games.

because it was affordable and had good growth potential, thanks to the university. Originally, Lagerheads specialized in microbrews, but that market started to decline, Koehler said. The microbrews had a lot to do with the name, “Lagerheads,” and his wife also inspired the name. “My wife always said, ‘If you work with your wife, you’re always going to butt Lagerheads,’” and so the name came to be,” Koehler said. Popular foods include wings and burgers. The restaurant is more popular on the weekends. Customers vary from young kids to older adults, but mostly the restaurant is filled with the college scene. Cal U students Kylie Hepler, 21, and Lauren Hoover, 21, enjoy the atmosphere

Lagerheads in Coal Center has served as a Lithuanian Hall, post office, and a speakeasy and candy store at the same time.

and food. “I love going there; I eat there all the time. The food is great. The BCB melt is my favorite,” Hepler said. For Hoover, “Their barbeque sauce is the best and I love that it’s close to campus and the prices are reasonable.” Koehler said he chose this place because of the students. “I thought it would be fun to be a part of the college scene. It’s fun to be around the kids since it’s a younger atmosphere,” he said. If you’re in the mood for a wide range of food choices and a welcoming atmosphere then head on over to Lagerheads.

SPUDS: Burgers, Bacon, Fries, Oh, My, and Don’t Forget the BEAST

Photo by Chelsea Funk

Spuds on Wood Street has 25 kinds of fries.

Continued From Page 14 in California, Wadsworth says. Spuds delivers every day and deliveries are more popular on the weekend. Wadsworth said she enjoys her work, especially during the busy weekends. “The environment is easy-going and real. I enjoy working with the other employees and the customers,” Wadworth says. “It’s nice when the store is real packed because it’s more entertaining and the time goes by fast,” she says says. After working a 5 p.m. until 4 a.m. shift, Wadsworth has a lot of memories of the crazy atmosphere that the weekend brings. When it’s late and you’re traveling


11 a.m. – Midnight, Monday through Wednesday; 11 a.m. – 3 a.m., Thursday through Saturday; 11 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sundays. * Delivery available all day until an hour before closing time.


227 Wood St, California, PA 15419.


(724) 938-7800.

through town on a weekend, stop in at Spuds and enjoy the fries and atmosphere of this special place to eat.


Spring 2010

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New Cafe Brings Eco-Awarness to Cal

By Stephanie Belback

The warm smell of fresh coffee fills the air, as the morning begins for the Sycamore Café. The ambiance is relaxed and friendly, an inviting place. Melinda Gibson, chief manager of the Sycamore Café, quietly prepares for customers. Gibson has been working at the Sycamore Café since October, after remodeling occurred. The café, which originated as the Herron 1 Café, closed for a couple semesters to receive a facelift and a new name, reopening as the Sycamore Café. “The reason it’s Sycamore is because there’s a Sycamore tree outside,” Gibson said. Rising high above the building the tree, a beautiful Pennsylvania native, creates a picturesque view. Along with the décor, the menu was also transformed. “We got a whole new menu,” Gibson said. “Our salads are cut fresh every day.” The food is “made-to-order, like a restaurant style,” she said. Student Maria Lopez, 19, is a regular at the Sycamore. She enjoys the eggs and bacon sandwiches. Sycamore Café is an eco-friendly café, from its 100 percent recyclable napkins to its reusable flatware. “…They (administration) want the whole campus to go green;

Photo by Stephanie Belback

Matthew, left, and Grant Krinock share a last name and lunch at the Sycamore Cafe.

TAYLOR & BYRNES: A Focus on Freshness

they want it to start here because a lot of faculty and staff come here,” Gibson said. The café has new food containers. The “Clam Shell” is an eco-friendly, portable, reusable box. It costs $5, but every time you bring the container in to get food, you receive a 10 percent discount off your purchase. There’s no need clean it. Just bring your used Clam shell back on your next visit and the Sycamore Café will give you a clean container to use. “Eventually, they want the eco Clam Shells to be used everywhere,” Gibson said. “…They (administration) just wanted to start it somewhere, so they started it

Continued from Page 15 and out quickly. The food is also healthful. “(We have) turkey sandwiches … wraps,” Kent said. “It’s not a lot of calories.” Taylor & Byrnes not only provides healthful food for the students but it also provides employment. The café hires students on a part-time basis. The café will work around the student’s schedule. “We have a student from the time we open to the time we close,” Kent said. It’s a good place for students because the café has “good music and good food,” Kent said. Next door is Flatz, a convenience store.

Bonnie McGary makes coffee at the cafe.

Photo by Stephanie Belback

here.” During the spring semester, Gibson plans to have an outside barbeque. She hopes the aroma will bring in customers. “So whenever people are walking through campus, they can smell it, come in here, eat, go outside. …You know, grab a burger or whatever.” Every Tuesday, the café will be partnering with Professional Golf Management students, a group of Cal U students who are getting their Sports Management degree. They will run the café as a restaurant to earn credit hours for their internship and to help learn how to be managers. Gibson is hoping this will draw in the community so the cafe can be recognized as a restaurant, as well as bring in students and staff. The Sycamore staff will accept reservations for dinner, served on Tuesdays between 6 to 7:30 p.m. The café also will hold catered events after hours. These can be club events and meetings. The Sycamore has a catering director on staff that can help out with events alongside Gibson. The Sycamore Café is a relaxing place for customers to work on their laptops, while enjoying free WiFi. It’s a place to escape the chaos of the college life. “It’s a nice, quiet place to study and meet people,” Gibson said.

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Music Department Debuts New Major Spotlighting Art, Tech, Enterprise Stories by Rochelle Gillen

A new major is coming to the music department of California University of Pennsylvania: Comprehensive Music Technology. “The day after the music minor was approved, Dr. Michael [former choir director, retired] and I were sitting around and said, ‘Well, we got us a minor. What now?” said Max Gonano, chairman of the music department. That day, plans for getting some sort of music major at Cal U were put into motion. The first step was to figure out what sort of music major should be offered, whether it be concentrated on performance, theory, or otherwise. “The last thing this country needs is another music conservatory,” Gonano said. “Let’s find a niche not a lot of other people have,” he said. With over 20 music conservatories in the country already, finding a different niche appealed to the music department faculty. They created the Comprehensive Music Technology major, described as a heavyduty music degree with a technology component added in. “The major is expected to draw much effort out of its students and turns a person into an artist-techy-entrepreneur,” Gonano said.

Only 20 students will be selected each year to be added to the program, so eventually there will be 80 majors at all times. The music department faculty selects students based on auditions. The first group of students auditioned in the Spring 2010 semester. “We have been very pleased with the caliber of students who have auditioned,” Gonano said. “The audition consists of three parts: play, talk, take theory test,” he continued. The students perform a piece of their choosing, are interviewed by a faculty member, and take a music theory placement test. Expert musicians are being brought in for private instructions, and a new professor, Marty Sharer, has been added to the music department full time. The most anticipated and “fun” aspect of the major will be “playing with all the technology toys,” said Yugo Ikach, Cal

Marty Sharer is the newest addition to the music department at California University of Pennsylvania. He became a faculty member at Cal U last year. According to Max Gonano, chairman of the music department, Sharer’s presence is imperative because of new additions to the curriculum. “He will eventually be the band director. Honestly, the band director is old,” said current band director Gonano. “I don’t want to walk out the door and leave them in the dark,” Gonano said.

Sharer’s musical history started in fifth grade with piano lessons. He switched in sixth grade to be a percussionist in his school’s band. Today, his first instrument choice still is percussion. He has two years of experience with the Chicago Civic Orchestra and six with the Owensboro, Ky., Orchestra. Sharer’s first job was at Warren East High School, followed by Campbellsville University, both in Kentucky. Most recently, he taught at South Medford High School in Oregon.

Photo by Rochelle Gillen

The music lab will be supplemented by other high-tech equipment as the music department unveils its Comprehensive Music Technology major.

U’s choir director, who’s also a professor in the music department. Ikach helped develop the curriculum, direction, and “the breadth” of the major. While learning about the technology may be fun, it will also be challenging. Sharer described using the hardware and software as what he anticipates to be the most difficult. New classes concentrating on performance, theory and different aspects of music will be made available. There will be new computers hooked up to Yamaha electronic pianos; there is still more software to be added. “Musicians play,” Gonano said. “You are in the sandbox. That’s fun. You have to work like hell to get into the sandbox, but musicians play,” he said. In 10 years, the faculty’s biggest wish is for the program to be accredited. They want 80 students at all times and for graduates to find the careers they want.

High School Band Director, Orchestra Percussionist, Now Professor

Photo by Rochelle Gillen

Marty Sharer says, “I really like it [here]. I like the potential of what [we’re] to become.”


Spring 2010

Theater Offers Experiences for Many Talents

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Stories by Ashley Grese

California University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Theatre and Dance offers many opportunities for its students, providing a strong background about the stage and behind-the-scenes practices, as well as giving freshmen opportunities that many universities do not. At the beginning of each school year, the department holds auditions for freshmen for the “First Year Show,” which is for freshmen and transfer students -- those in their first year at Cal. Any freshman can audition, whether or not a theater major or minor. Theater director and Professor Michele Pagen said the “First Year Show” gives freshmen the opportunity to show everyone what they can do. “We hope that it serves two purposes: on a more specific level, how theater is done at Cal. In general, to get the first-year students attached to one another as a group,” she said. The “First Year Show” is the first show performed at Cal each year. Every fall semester runs the same way, with The “First Year Show” first, the “One Acts” next, and “A Christmas Carol: The Musical” closing the semester. There are three versions of spring semester performances so students can get a different experience, Pagen said. The spring semester features a small show in the Blaney Theatre, sometimes a musical and sometimes not, a Dance Concert every other year, and either a big musical or a play at the end of the year. Steele Hall, which was remodeled and reopened in 2007, houses the theater department and two separate theaters. The Blaney “Black Box” Theatre seats 149 people and the Mainstage Theatre seats more than 600. Since the renovation of Steele Hall, new equipment is continually being introduced, Pagen said. “For the next several years, it’s going to seem like Christmas over and over again because we keep getting new things,” she said.

Photo by Ashley Grese

Cast members rehearse “All That Jazz,” for the spring musical, “And the World Goes ‘Round.”

One type of new equipment the depart ment has received is lighting that compares to professional theaters, Pagen said. “We can compete with what the Benedum can do light-wise and sometimes do more than they can because of our lighting stuff,” she said. Along with new equipment, two courses are being added to the program next year that Pagen said the department has needed. The courses, Stage Management and Media Performance, will be beneficial to both theater students and non-theater students, Pagen said. Stage Management will

be useful for sports management students to learn how to manage events and Media Performance will combine various majors to produce media performance events. “The English students can write the material; the art students can create the scenery and the sculptures and the wearable art; the lighting design kids will work on lighting design; and the music technology kids can work on sound,” Pagen said. Incoming freshmen not only have the opportunity to be part of the “First Year Show” and other productions at Cal U, but they also have a new facility with advanced technology and equipment.

California University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Theatre and Dance presented “And The World Goes ’Round” as this semester’s debut musical. The show is a musical revue of songs by the Broadway songwriting team John Kander and Fred Ebb, who wrote many musicals, including “Cabaret” and “Chicago.” Director Michele Pagen said the department adapted the musical from a cast of five to a cast of seven -- now four girls and three boys. Interviewed before the performances, Pagen described the short timeframe to rehearse -- approximately five weeks -- as “impossible.” “There’s one number where the whole cast has to roller skate, so we’ve been going skating,” Pagen said. “I mean it’s a huge show. Huge. Full-out dance num-

bers, full-out musical-theater-craziness dance numbers to slow ballads where people are just pretty much sitting there. So, it’s crazy.” Cast member Zak Thomas, 18, of York, is a freshman who’d never performed at Cal previously. When he had more time during Spring 2010 semester, he found, “Once you get into a show, Cal U theater pretty much owns you,” Thomas said. Pagen said the song, “The World Goes ‘Round,’ keeps coming back in the show because that’s, in essence, what the show is about. ... That no matter what happens, the world keeps going ‘round. You fall in love, you fall out of love; you have money, you lose money; things are going well, things are going badly; but the world keeps going ‘round.”

‘World Goes ‘Round’ on Cal U Stage

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Spring 2010

Coal, Steel, and Students at the Bend of the Mon River Stories by Dan John

California University of Pennsylvania is located in the Mon Valley along the Monongahela River. The town of California is 45 minutes south of Pittsburgh with a population of roughly 5,200. According to, California was founded in 1848 and named after the California Gold Rush that was going on about the same time. Three years later, the university was founded with the same name. According to the university’s Web site, the school was founded in 1852 when the local community put together money and donations to develop an academy for kindergarten through college-level courses. In 1864, the academy purchased 10 acres of land around the borough of California to expand. The original 10 acres of land are now part of the current university. In 1865, the academy received a charter to become a “normal school.” In 1874, the school was named “Southwestern Normal School,” and in 1914, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania bought the school and renamed it “California

Photo by Dan John

Cal U formerly was California State College.

State Normal School.” The school was then used by the commonwealth as a twoyear institute for the training of elementary school teachers. In 1928, the school adopted a four-year curriculum and was renamed the “California State Teacher’s College.” As years went by, the college adopted more programs into its curriculum besides teaching degrees, and in 1959, the school was renamed “California State College.” The college started to offer more and more degree programs, including English

Fire God Vulcan Is Big Man on Campus; Hardworking Patron of Steelworkers

A 20-foot-tall man who has a hammer in his hand stands outside Herron Hall, but he isn’t Ironman. This man made of bronze is Vulcan, the mascot for California University of Pennsylvania, who also is the ancient Roman god of the forge. The mascot was named after the Roman god of the forge, fire and volcanoes. Vulcan was the husband of the goddess of love, Venus, in Roman mythology. Vulcan was the deity who forged armor, weapons, and swords for the god of war, Mars. Vulcan is a god-like version of a “Steeler” or steel worker. The school named its sports team mascot after this god to pay homage to the local area’s history, which was dominated by the steel industry. According to this pro football team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, is named “Steelers” to pay homage to steel workers and other people working in the local area’s steel industry, who also can be

called “Steelers.” It is apparent when analyzing the scenery around California Borough that the steel industry played a major role here. Tracks on both sides of the river were, and are, there for trains to transport coal and coke to steel mills further down the river. The neighboring borough is even named Coal Center. Cal’s Vulcans sports teams are part of NCAA Division II in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference. School sports include, among others, football, softball, volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer, basketball, tennis, golf, and baseball. The image of Vulcan appears on the uniforms, facilities and clothing of the school’s sports teams. Sean McGowan, 22, of Canonsburg, is a junior at Cal who has lived in western Pennsylvania all his life. McGowan has been a lifetime Pittsburgh Steelers fan.

and the sciences. The school started to offer graduate programs, as well. In 1983, the college became one of the now 14 colleges in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) and was renamed the name it holds today, California University of Pennsylvania. Seventy-four-year-old Prudence Petrucci is a life-long resident of California and a member of California Historical Society. “I was born in a house on Park Street, where the dorms are right now. Park Street used to connect all of the way to Third Street, but as the university got bigger and bigger, they started to take more and more homes, which caused some tension with the town’s people,” Petrucci said. The coal, coke and steel industry had a major impact on the area. Even to this day the neighboring borough, Coal Center, (the area where Lagerheads is located) is obviously named after an area where there is coal. There were many mines around the area and even some on the area of today’s campus. This industry even inspired the university to name its mascot Vulcan, the god of fire, metal, and the forge.

Photo by Dan John

At twilight, the Cal U Vulcan guards campus.

“I think that Vulcan is a lot like a Steeler. In fact, he (Vulcan) was the god of steelworking,” McGowan said. “He seems to represent the same thing as the Pittsburgh Steelers do, hardworking, hard-nose, tougher-than-steel attitude.” Miles Sieminski, 24, of Freeport, said, he thinks the fire god Vulcan “couldn’t have been more of a perfect fit to describe the attitude of the people in western Pennsylvania.”


Spring 2010

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California Churches Offer Nourishment for the Spirit Stories by David Evans

An interesting thing about the borough of California is that much of the land is taken up by California University of Pennsylvania. What might catch your eye on the way to campus are the church establishments you pass. The town of California had a fairly ordinary start. “A History of Washington County, Pennsylvania,” written by Earle R. Forrest, available online ( htm), includes an article that narrates the town’s history. In May 1848, several men purchased roughly 300 acres of land. They named the town “California” because it was laid out the same year gold was found in the state of California. At first, the rural town made up of small homes was known for its boat building. Then, boat building was replaced by the railroad industry. Though there were few churches in its early days, religion has been present in California as early as the 1850s, according to Forrest. Fast-forward to present-day California. It would seem to some as though all of the corners and side-streets are lined with churches. California’s official Web site lists 14 churches that hold services. Perhaps the most fascinating of the churches in town is the Crossroads Community Church. It has held services for 3½ years at Coffee Connections, 246 Third St. A branch of the Assembly of God denomination, the church sees a weekly turnout between 35 and 40 people, according to the Rev. Greg

McKim. Led by McKim, Coffee Connections usually has anywhere from five to 10 people inside at any given time, both customers and passersby, and is a cozy place to discuss religion, as well as politics, education, the economy – you name it. It isn’t just a conveniently located coffee shop with hospitable hosts; it’s an unconventional church where the people aren’t preaching at you from every corner of the room. The church, as well as the coffee shop, is a nonprofit organization. The church also participates in food drives. “We want to practice what we preach,” McKim said. “Our doctrine is still orthodox, but presented in a very unorthodox way.” McKim describes the church as “mis-

sion-oriented.” Originally, McKim was a missionary. However, after more than 30 years in the ministry, he and his wife were asked to plan a new church for the Assembly of God. Unsure of how to accomplish such a feat, yet unable to ignore such a strong calling, the McKims started Crossroads Community. The reasoning for Crossroads Community Church to continue holding services at Coffee Connections is simple enough, according to McKim: “We felt [Coffee Connections] crossed cultural lines in a good way. People come in for a cup of coffee and, if inclined, a bit of fellowship.” McKim adds: “The primary purpose of Coffee Connections is to provide a place to meet and to develop friendships. I am confident we’ve accomplished that.”

Upon entering the small town of California, it would seem to some as though there’s a church on every corner and side street. It’s easy to get the impression that California is a religious town; however, this is not necessarily the case. For some, religion just doesn’t offer the comforts that it used to. Science gives different explanations than those found at church. Many have argued that in a faithversus-fact world, fact is more secure. “I’d say most people don’t go to church because of their school and work sched-

ules,” suggests Megan Miller, a junior journalism major at California University of Pennsylvania. “People are working five to six days a week, and Sunday is their only day off.” Many students, both in high school and college, are also attempting to work part-time shifts. Students who choose to participate in extracurricular activities, such as sports, music or student council, are even more pressed for time. Other reasons for decline in church turnouts could be that people don’t agree with

all the rules of their church, or they don’t want to pay the church dues. However, for some, church still offers hope and comfort. Brad Trump, 21, a senior secondary education major and Methodist, said, “I’m not religious in the conventional sense. ... I draw a line. I don’t believe crooked people can get into heaven just because they went to church on Sunday.” He added, “Modern lifestyles have changed. Going to church is not being instilled in the youth as something important anymore.”

Above: Coffee Connections, 246 Third St., is next door to Dairy Queen. Photo by David Evans At Left: California Baptist Church, 432 Second St., is a familiar sight to students. Photo courtesty of

Some Students Question Faith; Others Embrace It

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Spring 2010

Principled Society Born in Desert; Cal Fosters Bloom Stories by Andrew Carl

The desert can be a sad and lonely place. However, for several California University of Pennsylvania students, the desert is a place they’ve once or twice called “home.” A Principled Society is a Cal U club made up of students who hope to emulate, within the California community, the tenets of the Burning Man Festival. The Burning Man Festival is a weeklong event in the Black Rock Desert near Reno, Nev. During that week, festival attendees, also referred to as citizens, build what grows to be the second-most populated city in Nevada. Black Rock City rises from the blank canvas of the desert, thrives for a week, and then returns the desert to its blank, natural state. “It wasn’t really the setting of Burning Man that attracted me to the event,” Philip Woodburn, 25, of Avella said. “It was the way of life out there.” Black Rock City citizens follow what they refer to as the 10 Principles as the tenets for the event. A Principled Society adapted these principles as a way of life. To the group, the 10 Principles are more than just a basic set of moral guidelines. They are a means of surviving in harsh conditions, such as the desert and, as these students are showing, a way of living, no matter what the conditions are. The 10 principles of Burning Man are: radical inclusion, radical self-reliance, radical self-expression, decommodification, gifting, communal effort, civic responsibility, participation, immediacy, and leaving no trace. “Many of the principles go hand-in-hand with each other,” club president Maggie Chappel, 23, of Canonsburg said. “They all have an overall tone of encouraging the members of society to first start with themselves and make sure they are taking care of themselves and expressing themselves and then taking that and including the rest of the society ....,” she said.

One of the camps at the 2009 Burning Man event in Black Rock City, Nev.

Photo by Andrew Carl

Burning Man Ignites Students’ Passion Not only is California University of Pennsylvania literally breaking ground on campus during construction, it is also metaphorically breaking ground in the realm of student activities. In September, members of the Cal U club, A Principled Society, attended the Burning Man Festival in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada. This is the first time any school sponsored a trip to the event. “It’s really inspiring to see that our school is willing to give us opportunities for unique learning situations,” club member Phil Woodburn, 25, of Avella said. “Sure, we can learn a lot in the classroom, but as Burning Man, everything you’ve ever learned is really put to the test.” The students worked alongside Monster. com founder and CEO Jeff Taylor to build and maintain one of the largest theme camps at the event. The club aided some of the world’s best sound technicians and stage designers to set up the equipment to be used by internationally recognized DJs. Other members of the club, especially the art majors, were invited to produce paintings and sketches to display in camp. “It was incredible to work around people who know their trade so well,” said club president Maggie Chappel, 23, of Canonsburg. “I couldn’t help but learn something new every second of every day.”

Not only did the students live with and work alongside some big movers and shakers, but they also attended workshops and discussions. Some workshops included a discussion with journalist Daniel Pinchbeck, author of “Breaking Open the Head: A Psychedelic Journey Into the Heart of Contemporary Shamanism” and “2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl,” and Alexander Shulgin, a chemist who discovered more than 230 chemical compounds. “Seeing Shulgin speak was probably the highlight of my week,” Woodburn said. “He was one of my greatest influences who sparked my interest in chemistry, and here I was, standing not 50 feet from the man,” Woodburn said. Although the event is filled with famous and fortunate faces, it seems something other than celebrities attracted the Cal U club. The club has dedicated itself to upholding the principles of Burning Man in communities outside of the event. “What was really interesting was seeing how people treat each other out there,” said Cal U senior Joe Mruk, 21. “It’s a gifting economy. Nobody is looking for profit. Everyone wants to lift up everyone else, give them something, and make them smile,” he said.


Spring 2010

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For Some, Campus a Playground During ‘Snow Daze’ By Allison Helman

When winter comes and the snow falls, California University of Pennsylvania students come out to play. During Vulcan Blizzard 2010 in February, Cal students woke up to almost two feet of snow covering campus. Though some students stayed inside away from the cold and wet, many students ventured outside to have some fun. Everything from snowmen to igloos started popping up all over campus. Some Cal comedians created a frowning snowman covered in fake blood under the Vulcan statue’s hammer. (See photo on Page 19.) Another group of students built an igloo in the quad between Residence Hall B and the Natali Student Center. The students used everything from baking pans to buckets to build the igloo. The igloo was big enough to fit all seven students who built it inside its walls. The hill behind Residence Hall E was quickly turned into a snowboarding ramp, complete with two small jumps. Two students took turns snowboarding down the hill, doing little jumps and tricks on the way down. After the snowboarders left, a group of sled riders took over the hill. Instead of using sleds, the students used crushed cardboard boxes. The makeshift sleds did the trick as the students slid down the hill with relative ease. The observation decks in the Booker Towers were open. Some students took advantage of the opportunity and snapped shots of the snow-covered campus. “It was the first time I had ever seen the towers open,” said Samantha Glass, a junior psychology major at Cal. Glass and her friends took pictures of Manderino Library, the Ascent of Humanity statue, and Eberly Hall, as well as of many students exploring and playing in the fresh powder. Some students trudged through the snow while others took more interesting modes of transportation. One student was snowboarding down Hickory Street between Johnson Hall and Azorsky Hall. “Hey, you should put that picture in the Cal Times!” the snowboarder said as she noticed a passerby snapping a photo of

Photos by Allison Helman

California University of Pennsylvania turned into a picture postcard when snow closed school.

her. (See photo on Page 14.) Two other students rode a snowmobile through the center of campus. One student drove the vehicle as his friend, wearing skate skis, was pulled along behind. The student being pulled wiped out but quickly hopped up and tried again. The second try was much more successful as the two students raced past the Booker Towers and into town, whooping and hollering with amusement.

Life inside an igloo can get a little crowded.

28 C alorner

Spring 2010

Students Take Walk in Park to Combat Cancer By Hillary Carlo

Cal U invited members of the Pittsburgh area to its annual Relay for Life, held April 10 and 11 from 3 p.m. to 9 a.m. at Rotary Park in California Borough. The event included the traditional opening and closing ceremonies, as well as the memorial luminary ceremony. This year’s theme was “Superheroes.” “The superheroes theme is about fighting cancer,” said Lindsay Lytwak, president of the Cal Chapter of Colleges Against Cancer. “The superheroes represent the people who help to eliminate cancer, such as researchers or caregivers. And, of course, the survivors are considered heroes, too,” she said. According to Lytwak, Colleges Against Cancer, which has been in existence at Cal for three years, is a branch of the American Cancer Society and contributes to fundraising for research. The club is the sponsor of the Relay for Life at Cal. “The Relay is one of the biggest ways for the American Cancer Society to fund-

raise,” Lytwak said. Lytwak added that club members were hoping to raise more money this year and top last year’s $26,000. The Relay committee also hoped to get more participation from students and faculty. In hopes of drawing more attention to the event, the timing was adjusted to better suit participants. “We took a survey of teams that participated in last year’s Relay for Life,” Lytwak said. “Half the teams said they wanted it to be 12 hours, and half the teams said they wanted 24 hours. So we just decided on in between and made it 18 hours.” Another change this year was the significant outreach to local “superheroes” to encourage them to participate. “We [were] recruiting survivors this year by reaching out to community members through the American Cancer Society,” said Jennifer Kessel, chair of the Relay for Life and former fundraising chair. She said the group wrote an article for The Towers, the Cal alumni newsletter,

Photo by Jessica Zombek, Courtesy of the Cal Times

Cal U students walk for Relay for Life.

to try to recruit alumni survivors. Group members also contacted survivors from last year by sending Christmas Cards, and save-the-date cards for the April Relay. Kessel said the group’s goal was to raise $30,000. The group earned just under $20,000 from the event, according to the Cal Times.

The Cal Corner Staff Top Row, From Left: Ryan Henson, Mark Stempka, Alyssa Kruse, Ashley Grese. At Right, From Left: Alix Kunkle, Alex Vucelich, Chelsea Funk. From Left: Allison Helman, Charlene Cooper, Megan Miller, Hillary Carlo, Megan Macho.

Missing From Pictures: Stephanie Belback, Kathryn Fitzgerald, Chelsea Leber.

From Left: Michael Billy, Colette Dell, Dan John, Andy Carl, Tom Buckley, Rochelle Gillen, David Evans.

Below: Adviser Margo Wilson; Student Asistant (working hard behind computer) Todd Bosch.

Cal Corner 2010  

A publication of the Journalism III students at California University of Pennsylvania

Cal Corner 2010  

A publication of the Journalism III students at California University of Pennsylvania