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Scouting The Unknown ÂťPage 2

Pink Out For A Day ÂťPage 3



A Super Homecoming Tailgate!

Kean students, faculty and alumni enjoyed an afternoon of fun, food and games at this year's homecoming tailgate Marcus Van Diver


Staff Writer

ean students, faculty and alumni filled the Harwood Arena parking lots to full capacity during the homecoming tailgate Saturday, Oct. 7. Music from the acclaimed DJ Nix in The Mix, food and an abundance of fun was all available to the many people who attended the homecoming festival. With over 30 student organizations, fraternities, sororities and other funded groups at the university, attendees were treated to a morning of unforgettable experiences. There was something

for just about everyone in attendance. Food trucks that stretched throughout the entire length of both parking lots filled the stomachs of all who needed a snack during the festivities. Caricatures were drawn for students who wished to see their face in art. Children were entertained with multiple large bounce houses that were on both parking lots, as other carnival games were available for students and alumni to play. Additionally, the student organizations, sororities and fraternities competed to show the most creative table.


A Timeless Homecoming Concert!

Rappers Don Q, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie rock the Wilkins Theater Stage Kean's Homecoming Concert! Marcus Van Diver


Staff Writer


Not A Pep Talk, But A Pep Rally

Inside the homecoming pep rally 2017 Petruce Jean-Charles


Staff Writer

ean University students prepared for Homecoming 2017! With homecoming week came the pep rally, concert and tailgate from Thursday Oct. 5 to Saturday Oct. 7. The Pep Rally took place on Friday, Oct. 6 from 6 to 8 p.m with the doors opening at 5:30 p.m. The hosts Biasa Young, a junior studying public administration with a minor in marketing and Hana Sabree, a senior studying psychology and minoring in music and African studies came out and started the pep rally by thanking Graduate Part-Time Student Council's (GPSC) and Student Organization. GPSC consists of President Hailey Cruz, Vice President Robert Schiele, Treasurer Lisa Pinto and Secretary Yesse Pullo. Student Organization consists of President Damion Wilson, Vice President Francisco Reyes, Treasurer Tezhanae Jackson, Secretary Nina

Townsend, Assistant Secretary Irene Medina, Senior Class President Tahjane Whitsett and Junior Class President Joanne Pepino. The 2017 Homecoming Court consists of the King and the Queen and this year Kevin Macalos, a senior studying Accounting and Finance and Fatizenebu Oyibo, a senior studying Public Administration and Psychology were crowned. As the crowd anticipated who would be announced the homecoming king and queen, Dan Garrett, the football coach, came out to thank the crowd and the other coaches that help build Kean Athletics. Throughout the pep rally, the hosts displayed various videos of sports teams, and games were played to include the audience and build the excitement. Some of these games were:


Here To Save The Day: The Homecoming Hero and Heroine!

Flying high in the sky are superheroes Macalos and Oyibo

undreds of students filled Wilkins Theater Oct. 5, 2017, as well-known hip-hop artists A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie and Don Q headlined the venue for Kean University's annual homecoming concert. Sponsored by the Student Organization of Kean University and coordinated by the Programming for Unique and Lively Student Experience (P.U.L.S.E) Organization, the yearly concert saw another fantastic turnout from 8 to 11 p.m. as concertgoers packed the stage as soon as the music began. "For the time that it took for the concert to be sold out within four hours, I was highly impressed with that. With Kean, it made it bigger than what we expected," said Kevhorn Anderson, a member of the P.U.L.S.E Committee for Culture, Concerts and National Events and a junior majoring in information technology. The P.U.L.S.E committee is responsible for organizing major events, concerts, workshops, lectures and cultural performances, such as this year's homecoming concert. The organization is dedicated to promoting the building of community and involvement among the Kean student body, all at a low and affordable cost. Produced by students for students, this organization pays close attention to its student body. From background checks on artists to measuring their popularity, the Kean University's official Programming committee does more than just sign artists to performance contracts. They ensure that the Kean student body get treated to well-known artists at an affordable cost. Members of the concert audience arrived in assemblages and checked in their tickets to the awaiting ticket takers who directed them to their seats. A theater hall encased in blue and purple lighting with stage fog floating throughout the electric environment welcomed students to this year's installment of the Homecoming Kickoff. The show

was ready to begin. The concert officially kicked off at 8:30 p.m., as the renowned DJ Nix in the Mix introduced his own mix to the crowd as a warm up to the show. As he played popular songs for the audience, they danced and sang along accordingly. This mix carried on for a half an hour, as the theater increasingly filled with new people eager to see some of their favorite artists perform on the campus' official stage. As soon as it filled to capacity, DJ Nix in the Mix asked for all of the lights to be shut off inside of the venue, as rapper Don Q was about to make his entrance. Subsequently, the room burst into light and the students took out their phones and recorded this once-in-a-life-time experience on their respective Snapchat and Instagram accounts. Soon after, attendees erupted in cheer for the first artist of the night. Don Q performed his lengthy set for the crowd to enjoy a concert experience unlike any other.

Joanna Kristine Ninal


Staff Writer

inners for homecoming king and queen were announced during halftime of the football game between Kean University and William Paterson University. On Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017, everyone who attended the game found out that the two lucky winners were Kevin Macalos for homecoming king and Fatizenebu Oyibo for homecoming queen. Macalos and Oyibo are both seniors and had the opportunity to be crowned during their last year at Kean University. Fatizenebu Oyibo, senior public administration and psychology double major, applied to run for homecoming queen on a whim. She was looking for a way to make Muslims and black Muslim women more visible on campus. Some may wonder how she went about taking the title for homecoming queen if she applied on a whim.

Members of Kean University's Student Government

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Over 20 Graduate Foundation Scholarships and Graduate Assistant opportunities offer assistance in paying tuition campus occupation, meaning that the Graduate Assistant position will take care of all school expenses for those that apply.

The Cougar’s Byte is a leadership and service newsletter where you will find up-to-theminute information on all things related to student life at Kean University. A student news publication that features University events and student activities and accomplishments, The Cougar’s Byte strengthens the overall experience of students by immersing them in the complete college culture. By increasing awareness of all aspects of campus life, students can utilize everything Kean has to offer, while networking and paving the path for their academic and social development. Published every other Tuesday during the regular academic year, The Cougar’s Byte can be viewed both online, at, and in print, distributed biweekly to over 15 campus locations on the Union and Ocean campuses of Kean University. The Cougar’s Byte welcomes Letters to the Editor, calendar events, event news and information, articles, story ideas, artwork and digital photo submissions. To learn more about our publishing policy visit

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Assistantships are in full effect from the fall semester to the spring semester, an entire academic school year. For graduate students who wish to apply to these positions, an online application must be filled out in order to be considered for assignment. Applicants should fill out their online forms of intent no later than March 1. Those interested are eligible for the positions by being accepted into the degree-granting course of study of their choice, including master's, doctoral or professional diplomas. Also, having a cumulative undergraduate Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.25 or better is required. Graduate School on East Campus while experiencing an interpersonal classroom environment with a qualified staff of professors.

Marcus Van Diver


Staff Writer

These graduate scholarships vary in qualifications, but include various opportunities for alumni and students in financial need equally. Certain scholarships, such as the Alumni Association Annual Graduate Scholarship, are applicable for Kean alumni who have exhibited exemplary academic excellence. Other scholarships, such as the Clifford Bush Annual Scholarship, can be applied for by those in the communication science and educational service fields who need financial support.

very semester, new and incoming graduate students attend Kean University's coveted and highly-acclaimed Nathan Weiss Graduate College after completing their undergraduate degree at Kean University or any other four-year college or university. However, prices for graduate school can be quite lofty for these prospective attendees. Fortunately, the Graduate College features over 24 Graduate Foundation Scholarships for students to apply to, so they will be able to obtain the higher education they want at an affordable price. The graduate school offers a variety of different graduate degrees pertaining to every student's field of study. Over 20 graduate programs are offered at the school, including accounting, communications, criminal justice, history and English. Students can benefit from the vast choice of offered programs

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Applicants that get the position are expected to maintain a 3.0 GPA throughout the semesters that they are working. Graduate Assistants must also be registered for a minimum of nine credits each semester. For more information on how to apply for the Graduate Assistant position, visit the Nathan Weiss Graduate College website. The program is also applicable for current graduate students. For students who were not able to qualify for a graduate assistantship at the time they were accepted into the school, they can be considered for the program and can sign the online application if they meet the following conditions: ■■ They possess a GPA of 3.5 or higher ■■ They have completed a minimum of 15 credits at the Graduate level.

Additionally, prospective graduate students are allowed to apply for Graduate Assistant positions around the university. Known as the Graduate Assistantship Program, this opportunity requires service on campus and in turn, allows tuition for prospective graduate students to be at a cheaper and more affordable price.

Certainly, the costs of graduate school can be expensive, but with the alternatives that the graduate school provides, higher education can sound just a little more attainable to the prospective graduate student.

A select number of graduate students will have their tuition and fees waived by selecting this on-

Marcus Van Diver, junior communications, media major, is member of The Cougar's Byte staff

Scouting The Unknown with Ryan Sallans Learning the importance of gender expression, identity and sexual orientation Petruce Jean-Charles

acceptance of themselves and others no matter what the circumstance.

ean University tries to enlighten its students with events and discussions on campus. Whether it is a global phenomenon or not, Kean strives to teach its students. Ryan Sallans, a transgender speaker, consultant and author of the book Second Son, gave a presentation titled "Scouting the Unknown", Tuesday Oct. 10 from 2 to 4:15 p.m. at the Miron Student Center (MSC) Little Theatre.

"I was born and assigned a female but not intersex, and at the age of 25 I understood my gender identity, and I was allowed to use hormones and surgeries to align my body with my brain. When you look at sexual orientation, you can not convert people to being heterosexual who are apart of the LGBTQ community. That's called conversion therapy and that is highly unethical."


Staff Writer

"Education and information was controlled and limited for many people growing up. Now with the internet, we have instant access to the information, book, support groups, and other people's stories. So we are able to learn more beyond what education, institutions and home environments allowed when we were younger," Sallans said. "We have cultures in the world that recognize seven genders even five. We are simply catching up to expanding what's been repressed in our society."

Sallans has been a transgender speaker on over 60 colleges and universities for the past 12 years across the nation. "Scouting the Unknown" was a presentation and discussion about identity, gender expression and sexual orientation. Sallans used humor and story-telling to get his message across to the audience.

Sallans then showed a video of him before his transition getting his breasts removed and the effect and process that he, his family and his ex-girlfriend went through. His parents and sister were troubled and not very accepting with his transition. By him sharing his story, he was able to impact the audience by fixing their awareness of trans issues and issues as a whole in the LGBTQ community.

The event started with a thanks to Equality for All (EFA), Pride, Office for Counseling and Disability Services (OFDS) and Student Government. Sallans then came up to the front and addressed that the Little Theatre would be a safe space for all to ask questions and to speak about pressing issues. "I believe that sharing stories saves lives and allows people to open up their hearts, because when we talk about terminology that's all we see and we see another person in front of us and we hear their story we connect with them," Sallans explained. "I have two disclaimers when doing this. One is I am not the spokesperson for the transgender community. I am simply just sharing my story. The second disclaimer is if you have questions, feel free to ask," Sallans said. He then put up a slide explaining the difference between sex, gender, gender expression and sexual orientation. Sex is the anatomy and biological aspect of a person, gender is our psychological identification, gender expression is the communication of gender, and sexual orientation is the romantic and affectionate response we have to each other.

"This is called the continuum of sex and gender over the past couple of years and it breaks down the differences between sex, gender, gender identity/expression and sexual orientation. In our society we often interchange sex and gender as if they're the same. Gender has two tiers. One is gender identity, which is in our brain, which is psychological. And two, gender expression is the way we communicate," Sallans mentioned. "When pregnancy is relevant the first thing people ask is, 'Is it a boy or a girl?' We live in a binary society where we recognize male and female." Sallans spoke of his struggles of romance, self acceptance, family and outside relationships and the physical and emotional paths he experienced during his journey. His goal was to help the Kean community understand


This transition into awareness allowed the audience to be comfortable as they asked questions about sexuality and how to approach someone when they are unsure of their pronouns/sexuality. The crowd was open and EFA and Pride spoke and explained to the guests that there are outlets at Kean University. If anyone would like to contact Sallans or would like to know more about his journey and advice, they can contact him at or

Petruce Jean-Charles, sophomore majoring in Sociology and Writing with a minor in Social Media, is a member of The Cougar’s Byte staff



Pink Out For A Day: The 2017 Breast Cancer Awareness Kickoff! The Center for Leadership and Service kicked off Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their annual kickoff in the Miron Student Center Atrium Marcus Van Diver


Staff Writer

treams of pink filled the Miron Student Center (MSC) Atrium, as the fall semester saw the Breast Cancer Awareness Kickoff event take place on Monday, Oct. 2, 2017. From 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., students and other members of the Kean community played fun and interesting games while donating toward the fight against Breast Cancer in a four hour festival dedicated to raise awareness about the disease. Inside the atrium were tables blanketed with pink drapes and on these tables were multiple games for students to enjoy, informational cardboard displays about the most common cancer among women and other activities designed to honor those in the fight against breast cancer. Also at these tables were service specialists from Kean University's Center for Leadership and Service (CLS) to help those participating in the activities. With any donation of the players' choice, those walking inside and out of the Miron Student Center were given the opportunity to paint rocks into their favorite pink designs and try their luck at three challenging games set up by the service specialists. These donations would be beneficial as all proceeds would go directly to the American Cancer Society (ACS). At the entrance of the atrium, three volunteering service specialists sat at tables decorated with pink and white balloons. Specialists at this pink-draped table had the responsibilities of welcoming students to the event, signing up people for the upcoming Breast Cancer Awareness walk, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017 while also filling up a list of people who wish to order "Kean Blue Thinks Pink" apparel early. Emely Hernandez, a sophomore psychology major and service specialist, enjoyed the event and saw it as an opportunity to help for the greater good.

Omar Inca | The Cougar's Byte

Breast Cancer Kickoff displays featuring activities for all to participate in and support the cause their money to a good cause, but they gave students the leisure of taking the time out of their busy Monday schedules to put their efforts into playing exhilarating games that would help women and men across the country beat the illness. Gabriella Lapointe, a service specialist and junior majoring in special education, attributed the event's success not only to the interesting challenges, but the willingness of the Kean community in wanting to make a difference in the world around them. "This is my second year being a part of this event, and it is always good to know that our hard work in making this possible for the students paid off," said Lapointe. "The games are a fun way to get people involved and they are able to donate to a good cause."

"We have a lot of different projects that show women how to test themselves and we bring awareness by having interactive games for people to play," Hernandez said. "This year, we are having games where people play with money and that way we raise money [for the American Cancer Society]." The first of these money games, and a favorite to those who played it, was a coin-tossing game called "Dunking for Change". Students were tasked with pitching any coin of their choice into five cups glued onto a cardboard display. Winners who successfully threw the coins in the cup were rewarded with candy and pink bracelets. Similarly, a game next to it, called "Diving for Change", involved dropping pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters into a plastic cup inside of a water-filled fish bowl. Successful participants were equally compensated with pink prizes and different candies. The most popular of the games that experienced the largest turnout was a glass vase game that involved three vases and students had five chances to throw small white ping-pong balls inside of the glass jars for more sweet delicacies. Not only did the games inspire those playing them to donate

From students to alumni, the chance to have a hand in finding a cure for Breast Cancer while playing fun games throughout the afternoon attracted the many members of the Kean University family. An alumni of the school with a degree in communication, Keith Bell attested to the fact that this day was not only fun and creative, but informative as well. "I think this was a great event that was very intriguing. It pulled people's attention, made them want to donate and made people feel involved by participating," Bell said. "It is good to have activities where people donate, because it, in turn, makes it fun to donate." Information on what students can do during Breast Cancer Awareness month can be found on Cougar Link, as well as how to donate to the American Cancer Society and how to purchase the "Kean Blue Thinks Pink" apparel releasing later this month.

Marcus Van Diver, junior communications, media major, is member of The Cougar's Byte staff

Concert (continued from page 1) were also instrumental in orchestrating the night's festivities along with P.U.L.S.E committee. Nina Townsend, the executive secretary of Student Government and a senior majoring in education, spoke highly on her organization's efforts in producing the massive turnout. "We always love it when the student body is happy with Student Government and the work that we do. You really want to make sure that they have a good time within their college experience," Townsend said. "We really try to be here for [the students]. Some students may hear the term 'Student Organization' or 'Student Government' and may think that they work for some administration. That is not the case. We really want to hear feedback from the student body and we really want to know what they want to see on campus and we are here to change things for them,"

Townsend commented. While fans were up close and personal with the recording artist, Don Q was accepting of picking up students' phones and recording himself for their Snapchat or Instagram stories. Roars and cheers rang through the building when the artist performed his most popular tracks. After performing his set, fans of the popular genre were treated to another hip-hop mix, prevalent with students' favorite songs. Those in the crowd could not stop dancing and singing along word-for-word as it continued for about a half an hour. Then, the main event began. Popular artist "A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie" made his appearance midway through the show, and fans were ecstatic the exact moment he set foot on the Wilkins

Theater stage. With the artist performing various tracks such as "Drowning", "Timeless", and "Say A", students experienced an unforgettable night and made memories. The rapper performed for an hour and was even requested to perform one more song at the end of his set, which he willingly agreed to as an extra treat for his fan base within the theater. The Student Organization at Kean University, who opened and closed the show, played an integral part in picking the artists that performed during the beginning of Homecoming Weekend. Tezhanae Jackson, a senior majoring in marketing with a minor in communications and the treasurer of Student Organization, spoke on what it took to get the popular artists to perform at this year's homecoming. "The Student Organization really wanted to find who the students listened to the most and we thought,

A Leadership and Service Publication for the Kean University Student Community

who would everybody really enjoy? We just did a basic majority rule of who the students are catering to, especially for our incoming freshmen," Jackson said. "We have a lot of support from our students, so whatever we do, we know that we are going to get a big turnout." Certainly, Kean students and alumni were able to get their homecoming celebration started with a memorable concert enjoyed by all who went. For more information on the Student Organization and how events are planned for the future, visit their Official Cougar Link page.

Marcus Van Diver, junior communications, media major, is member of The Cougar's Byte staff





Tailgate (continued from page 1)

Rally (continued from page 1)

"We are just here to show school pride, enjoy homecoming, see all of our alumni come back, come together and have a good time," said Tahjane Whitsett, senior business administration major and senior class president.

Song Lyrics Competition: students had to finish the lyrics of songs like Bye Bye Bye by NSYNC, Let It Go by Frozen, Firework by Katy Perry, and Baby by Justin Bieber.

Since this year's theme centered around the idea of superheroes, all of the competing tables had superhero-themed table designs created to attract those who walked by them. Fraternities such as Tau Kappa Epsilon and Nu Delta Pi painted cardboard boxes of Batman and the Incredible Hulk designs, while other groups, such as sororities like Lambda Theta Alpha had an interactive Captain Underpants design where people could play a humorous game of throwing a roll of toilet paper into a bin. Certainly, a majority of the games played by the students walking to and from them gained a lot of participation and enjoyment.

Potato Sack Race: students hopped steadily trying to reach the end and back, the audience cheered and laughed along. Basketball Competition: there were two teams of two on each side of the court and the students raced and competed to see who could make the most amount of shots in 30 seconds. Then the winners competed to see who would be on top. Minute to Win It: each student had one minute to shake a ball out of a tissue box.

"I know, for a lot of people that come here for the first time, they are like, 'I did not expect this event to be like this.' Our homecoming is a lot more welcoming and a whole bunch of other people from other schools come here to enjoy it," said Keani Esparra, a member of the Latin sorority Lambda Theta Alpha and a senior majoring in public relations.

Hungry Hippo: contestants lay on their stomachs on scooters as their teammates held their legs to get the most amount of balls in their baskets.

The groups involved had a great time participating in the competition, but were passionate about making the best designs as the judges trotted through the tailgate grounds, searching for that one extraordinary creation from a group that would catch their attention. Throughout the competition, only three groups of tables were ranked as the best from the day.

Freestyle Battle: each contestants had 10 seconds to freestyle about Kean and the crowd applauded for the students.

For first place, the fraternity Nu Sigma Phi teamed up with sorority Delta Phi Epsilon to create a "Suicide Squad"-themed jail house, complete with references to the notable super-villain team in the Batman universe. In second place came the fraternity Nu Delta Pi and the sorority Theta Phi Alpha collaborated to create an all green representation of the Incredible Hulk, using cardboard boxes painted as red bricks and the green giant running through them. In third place came the sorority Omega Sigma Psi and fraternity Sigma Beta Tau, who worked together to make a larger-than-life Superman chair for students and kids.

Hula Hoop Contest: students started hula hooping and then were challenged to hula hoop with one leg.

Robert Riccio, a senior majoring in public relations and a member of Nu Delta Pi, expressed his opinions on how this competition inspired those partaking in it to get creative, not only to win, but to give back as well.

Students were then able to showcase their dancing skills in the crowd and with the dance cam recording their moves. The crowd was also able to root for the Kean spirit winners as they were handed their prizes for their cooperation.

"I think that this year's theme is awesome. Everyone can relate to superheroes. Kids are accustomed to seeing 'The Amazing Spiderman' and 'The Incredible Hulk' and 'The Avengers', so the kids are going to love seeing them. Just like superheroes, no one is perfect, but they have a quality that stands out. I think that kids can definitely relate to that," Riccio commented.

Lastly, the anticipation came to an end as the football team made its entrance into the arena chanting and jumping as the crowd screamed in excitement. Francisco Reyes Vice President and Nina Townsend Secretary of student Organization had a lot to discuss in terms of the importance of the pep rally.

As the event continued to unfold, several students were given the chance to sign up for a giveaway contest, where a Macbook Pro, a $500 Barnes and Noble gift card for use at the bookstore in the Green Lane Building (GLB), a reserved parking spot and free tuition for a semester. Students arrived in a large line to swipe their Cougar ID cards to not only check in to the event and get food and game tickets for the day, but also to enter their names into the raffle for the big prizes that were announced in the football game's halftime show.

Reyes: I believe it is important to have the homecoming pep rally because it's the perfect time to get everyone pumped up for the eventfilled weekend that is to come. Students are still pumped from the concert the night before so it's only right we have something to channel all that energy and have it roll over into the weekend.

Kean Expedition was in charge of the raffle contest. The organization, ran by members of University Relations, is specifically advertised for students to get involved on campus by way of interacting with the university via social media. They are responsible for major giveaways at events such as the homecoming tailgate and new freshman orientation every fall semester. Justine Henderson, a marketing communications specialist and advocate for the Kean Expedition program, helped sign in students to the campus-wide contest by spinning a wheel for students to win prizes.

Townsend: The homecoming pep rally is important because it introduces new students to cougar pride, welcomes back older students from the Summer, and reminds everyone that college isn't 100 percent stress! We know that college is also a place to have some fun. Reyes and Townsend understand that school spirit contribute to homecoming and the success of the Kean community and athletics.

"This is probably the biggest turnout that we have ever had, which is good. That is what we wanted to do. We always want to create a sense of community here at Kean," said Henderson. "For the Freshman, I hope this gives them Kean pride. I hope that it makes them want to be a part of the community here. And then, when they graduate here, they will feel inclined to come back and re-live homecoming again."

Reyes: School spirit contributes to giving homecoming and Kean a sense of culture. Having that pride of being a Cougar adds to the positive environment I'm sure Kean University loves having around.

As the homecoming tailgate came to a close, it became time for the football game to begin. At around 1 p.m., the Cougars kicked off their homecoming game against William Paterson University in a 60-minute gridiron battle. The Cougars got off to a fresh start, scoring five unanswered touchdowns in the first half in a 56-0 win. Starting Kean quarterback Charles App put up a 142-yard effort through the air, tacking on four touchdowns on the day. Defensive pressure would force the Pioneers' offense to turn the ball over six times in Kean's second shutout in the past eight years.

Townsend: School spirit contributes a sense of belonging; it keeps students excited about attending Kean University! They also understand that every year a pep rally is important and helps develop Kean University and Kean Athletics.

During the halftime show, the game's attendees found out who won the coveted title of homecoming king and queen. As the stadium anticipated this year's winners, all of this year's participants were escorted to the field's 50-yard line for the groundbreaking announcement. While running uncontested, Kevin Macalos was awarded the homecoming king's crown to thunderous applause and cheers from the school's supporters.

Reyes: In the three years that I have been here, I think it's really nice how each year the hosts have done a great job. They know how to keep the audience engaged, loud, and ready to have fun. They bring that energy a host should have to make sure an event goes well.

Soon after, the announcement for the homecoming queen was made between seniors Gina Elwassemmi, Dominique Hagan and Fatizenebu Oyibo, as they stood side by side, waiting for the ultimate decision. To a crowd of hundreds, Fatizenebu Oyibo was pronounced the 2017 Homecoming Queen. A member of the Muslim Student Association and a representative for the senior class student council, Oyibu found that winning the crown meant more than just a title.

Townsend: Each year, the pep rally only gets better! From hosts engaging with the audience to different types of competitions. A pep rally is about the students and for the students. Shelby Badette, a freshman studying business and Syrai Burgess, a freshman studying athletic training both had a lot to express about the pep rally.

"What else can I say? I'm really excited! I just wanted to say that all of the contestants were absolute number one candidates and were all amazing people," said the senior public administration and psychology double major. "This means that someone who is just like me can win this as well." Not only were the Homecoming king and queen announced, but the winners of the Kean Expedition raffle were announced to the crowd inside of Kean Alumni Stadium. The winners of each prize were announced, as well as the winner of free tuition. Katrina Jade, a Freshman, ended up taking the check for her rewards.

Badette: I heard about the pep rally from friends, Cougarlink and just around campus and I was excited to go. I expected there to be a lot of school spirit, dancing and giveaways.

Another homecoming weekend saw more creative table designs, interactive games and a huge amount of students and alumni attending the event. It is safe to say that the 2017 homecoming was, indeed, one for the books. More pictures and a slideshow of Saturday's afternoon can also be found on The Cougar's Byte homecoming webpage.

Burgess: I wanted to go because this would be my first pep rally and I wanted to see the dances and what Kean pep rallies are about.

Marcus Van Diver, junior communications, media major, is member of The Cougar's Byte staff


All photos by Lucas Hernandez, Omar Inca and Danielle Thomas | The Cougar's Byte

Petruce Jean-Charles, sophomore majoring in Sociology and Writing with a minor in Social Media, is a member of The Cougar’s Byte staff

A Leadership and Service Publication for the Kean University Student Community



An Autumn Lunch Under The Moon Wenzhou-Kean and Union Kean students reunite during this holiday Joanna Kristine Ninal Staff Writer


ednesday, Oct. 4 is the official day of the 2017 year for the MidAutumn Festival, a holiday that is celebrated widely in East Asia. Also known as the Moon Festival, people from different parts of Asia come together with their family and friends to celebrate this day of harvest. In order to integrate this traditional holiday with Kean University students, Wenzhou-Kean University Student Association (WKUSA) hosted a Mid-Autumn Festival luncheon at the Miron Student Center (MSC) room 228. The Mid-Autumn Festival or Moon Festival came to be when a hero named Hou Yi found out that his wife Chang'e drank an elixir of immortality and lived on the moon. The reason for this was because Yi excelled in archery and shot down nine of the 10 suns that brought disaster to the people. By leaving one sun, it provided light for the people. An immortal admired Yi and gave him an elixir which would cause him to go to heaven and become a god. Not wanting to leave his wife, he refused to drink the elixir. Yi gave Chang'e this elixir to keep, which Peng Meng, an apprentice of Yi, saw. Meng wanted to be like Yi, so he broke into his house while Yi was gone and demanded to take the elixir from Chang'e. Instead of handing over the elixir, she drank it and flew out the window, heading to the sky. Still wanting to be near her husband, she decided to live on the moon and watch over her husband. Once Hou Yi came back and found out what happened, he grieved so much that he started to offer sacrifices, fruits and cakes that Chang'e liked. After people learned of Hou Yi and Chang'e's story, they started to do the same and offered the fruits and cakes for peace and good luck. Last year, WKUSA celebrated their Mid-Autumn Festival in the MSC Atrium, but this year, they decided to make things more personal. Tickets were being distributed to those who wanted to attend, so there was a limited amount of seats available in the room. Therefore, plenty of Union Kean and Wenzhou-Kean University (WKU) students were quick in reserving their tickets to attend the luncheon. At 12:30 p.m., WKUSA Vice President Will Harrison and senior Asian studies major, initiated the event by greeting the guests. "The Mid-Autumn Festival is one of the most important traditional Chinese festivals where on the 15th of the eight-month [in the lunar calendar], Hou Yi and Chang'e reunite under a full bright moon. This festival is also known as the 'Festival of Reunion' where people get together with their families as well as a day of harvest for farmers who have finished gathering crops and fruits from orchids. I hope you all can feel this sense of reuniting among your friends here today," said Harrison. After the introduction of the executive board and welcoming remarks from Vice President for Student Affairs Janice Murray-Laury, all guests, faculty and staff were welcome to grab food. Tables of Asian cuisine filled the borders of the room. From duck to dumplings and soda to bubble tea, everyone enjoyed the food that was served. At the center of each table, there was either a pomelo, which is a type of Chinese grapefruit, or four mooncakes. Mooncakes are traditionally served during this day because the roundness of the cake symbolizes its completion and unity. By sharing round mooncakes with friends and family, the feeling of unity and completeness brings everyone happiness and peace.

The pomelo is one of the fruits that are eaten during the Moon Festival, as it is considered to be Chang'e's favorite fruit. It is common to eat it with mooncakes as this fruit is both sweet and sour. The roundness of the pomelo also makes it a lucky fruit by the Chinese. Interestingly, the Mandarin word for pomelo is yòuzi, and it is a homophone for a phrase that means "prayer for a son." Yibei Lin, a graduate accounting major, was one of the WKU students who attended the lunch to celebrate. "I think WKUSA did a good job putting this event together," said Lin. "I liked the food that was served for lunch, especially the beef. It was well-cooked." After everyone had their first plate of food, they were welcome to take seconds and thirds, as long as the food lasted. As everyone was eating, WKUSA presented a video on the story and history of the Mid-Autumn Festival. Those who were not aware of what or how the Mid-Autumn Festival came to be, the video explained how it all began. Once the video was done, Ken Lin, public relations of WKUSA, presented a game that questioned the room about the video they just watched. Since a lot of WKU and Asian Studies students and faculty knew the answers, the questions were more directed toward Union Kean students and faculty. Those who answered the questions correctly were able to give a WKUSA shirt to the other students.

Joanna Kristine Ninal | The Cougar's Byte

Wenzhou Kean students celebrate their Mid-Autumn Festival! p.m. For the month of October, their meetings will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017 and Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017. The lunch ended around 2:30 p.m. and students who had class before were able to pop in for a bit before all the food was gone. Students who had class in the middle of the lunch were able to enjoy a bit before heading out early.

The floor was then opened to Sue Gronewold, Ph.D., professor in the Asian Studies department. Along with Gronewold to represent the Asian Studies program, Xurong Kong, Ph.D., the associate professor and director of the Chinese and Asian Studies department, was there with flyers and course descriptions of the classes offered for those programs.

"The lunch was very well organized and had a great turn out," said Kong. "The best part of it was giving out t-shirts from Asian Studies to students from Wenzhou. This day was very important to us. We have hosted this event since 2006 and every time, the students and faculty members long for it so they can taste the culture."

"What a lot of students don't know, is that they can get a minor in Chinese studies, a major in Asian studies and a minor in Asian studies," said Gronewold. "Students can graduate with these degrees or minors in their pockets."

WKUSA, the Asian Studies department and the Student Organization would like to thank everyone who was able to make it to the lunch and make it another memorable mid-autumn for them.

Last but not least, WKUSA briefly talked about their future events and meeting information before closing up the lunch. They meet every other Tuesday in Center for Academic Success (CAS) 224 from 3:15 to 4:30

Joanna Kristine Ninal, junior English education major, is a member of The Cougar's Byte staff.

Jumpstart An Education

How Kean University emphasizes the importance of education child in America enters kindergarten prepared to succeed.

Petruce Jean-Charles


"We provide language, literacy and social-emotional programming for preschool children from under-resourced communities and promote quality early learning for all children. In low-income neighborhoods, children start kindergarten 60% behind their peers from more affluent communities. The Jumpstart program bridges that gap and features a curriculum that is designed to focus specifically on building the key skills that research shows are critical in supporting learning," explained Zuzock.

Staff Writer

ean University is well known for its emphasis on education and academic success. With that said, Kean University's Jumpstart works toward the day that every child in America is granted the opportunity to a successful kindergarten education.

What is Jumpstart?

Jumpstart is a national early education organization that seeks to recruit and train college students into serving preschool children in lowincome neighborhoods. Education is an important tool for children to have but unfortunately most families in these neighborhoods can not afford to better their children's education.

able to continue touching the lives of many. Jumpstart is sponsored by American Eagle Outfitters, AmeriCorps, Pearson and Sodexo, which allow children the gift of education.

Jumpstart partners 3,500 college students and community volunteers with preschool children in low-income communities for a full school year helping children develop literacy and language skills for their future endeavors.

At Kean there are always opportunities to become involved in life changing activities. Jumpstart is now accepting applications for Corps Members for the fall semester.

During the 2009 to 2010 school year, Jumpstart served nearly 13,000 children nationwide, in partnership with more than 250 early learning centers and 62 universities and colleges throughout the country, one being Kean University which partnered with Jumpstart in the 2012 to 2013 academic year.

A Corps Member inspires young children to learn, serve, be a team player and build professional skills. All members receive training that will prepare them to educate their child by using Jumpstart's program of promoting a healthy and successful school and family experience.

Kean University has been able to influence hundreds of children around the local area with more than 9,000 hours of service. Through the success of it all, Kean was proud to have over 40 students participate in the Jumpstart program. Although dedication and time from the volunteers contributed to the education of the children without sponsors, Jumpstart would not be

What is a Corps Member?

Zuzock mentioned, "Here at Kean University, the Senior Site Manager, Gina Miseo and I [as Associate Site Manager] recruit and train a total of 80 college students to work with approximately 180 children in the Elizabeth community. These dedicated students go to the preschools twice a week for approximately two hours and teach the Jumpstart curriculum to their partnered children." Jumpstart wants to be a positive force that impacts the lives of preschool children and each week Corps members will be to read with them, play games and spend time with their children. When asked about their motto, Zuzock stated it as, "Together, we can help all children build the key language and literacy skills they need to take on the world."

Jumpstart Corps Members serve eight to ten hours per week in local early childhood centers or partner with small groups of children. Corps Members will also be involved in team planning meetings which are implemented to plan, reflect and communicate with their partner child's family in order to advise in strategies for extending learning.

If interested in joining the Jumpstart team please contact Jumpstart senior site manager Gina Miseo at or Michelle Zuzock the associate site manager at in the Miron Student Center in room 215.

Michelle Zuzock the associate site manager explained that Jumpstart is a national early education organization working towards the day every

Petruce Jean-Charles, sophomore majoring in Sociology and Writing with a minor in Social Media, is a member of The Cougar’s Byte staff




Hero (continued from page 1)

MIRON STUDENT CENTER able to have additional shirts on sale online in which all of the profits will go to aid the hurricane victims in Puerto Rico," Macalos said. "In addition to that, my group of friends who were leaders in different parts of Kean were able to help promote myself with the short campaign time I had before the elections."

"I had initially created a flyer and posted it on all my social media platforms. I then inquired if some of my friends would help me promote and tell their friends," Oyibo said. "The outpouring of supporters was amazing to me. I had also announced in my classes that I was running. On the two election days, I went around asking people if they would like to vote for me."

Before being crowned homecoming king, students could see Macalos as a general education mentor (GEM) in the School of General Studies at Kean University, serving a leader and role model to the underclassmen. Not only that, but he was also cocaptain for Relay for Life in 2016 at Kean. In addition, he is involved in multiple clubs and organizations at Kean University such as the Portuguese American Club at Kean, American Sign Language Club, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and Lambda Alpha Sigma Honor Society.

Before being homecoming queen, students could see Oyibo in the New Freshman Residence Hall as a resident assistant. Otherwise, students saw her working at the information desk in the Miron Student Center. Besides being a student worker, Oyibo is a representative for the senior class student council and an active member in the Muslim Student Association here on campus. The competition for homecoming queen was difficult for Oyibo because she knew the other women who ran for the title. "This [completion] was obviously hard, as well as friendly," said Oyibo. "[The other girls who were running and I] helped promote each other, as well as promoted ourselves. My good friend Asa Dugger, who was also running, actually did my make-up and helped calm my nerves on homecoming day." Oyibo was not expecting to win queen, but she was extremely surprised when she did. What she did not expect the most was the outpouring support from the crowd. For those who want to be homecoming queen next year, she advises, "There is not really any or best way [to win]. However, some key things I would suggest is to be yourself. Also, introduce yourself to people outside of your social circle [because] you not only gain votes, but you are able to get to know more people." As this is her last year at Kean University, Oyibo has

to make plans for the future. She plans on going to a graduate school that is distant from home so she can dorm. Although, she still wants to be in the States so she can travel back home when it is vacation time. Rutgers University, The University of California, Berkeley and Emory University are just a few places she has considered. At graduate school, Oyibo aims to get her master's degree in public administration and from there, she will get a doctorate's degree in urban planning. Although she plans on going to a different university for graduate school, Oyibo has made great memories at Kean. "My best memory here at Kean was actually before my freshman year had officially begun. The reason being is that if I hadn't been accepted [at Kean], I wouldn't have had the amazing experiences that I have now and wouldn't have known the support of some of the people I am honored to call friends," she said. Kevin Macalos, accounting major and finance minor, ran for homecoming king because he truly wanted to step outside his own comfort zone. "To be honest, in all of my years at Kean University, I would never have imagined that I would one day become homecoming king," he said. "I was always one of those students who highly focused on academics, and as senior year came, I realized how little to no time I had left as a college student. With that being said, I tried getting more involved on campus and with that ended up with me running for homecoming king."

Macalos was pretty upset when he saw that he was the only person on the ballot list during the election period. He even encouraged a couple of his close friends to run for homecoming king, but his friends did not want to run against him. At the end, Macalos felt relieved when he found out that he was the winner of homecoming king. "The reason why I stayed as a candidate was because I wanted to show people that no matter who you are at Kean, whether you are part-time, full-time, transfer student, whether you are someone who is barely involved on campus or you are someone who just focuses on academics, as long as you set your mind into something, you will achieve it," said Macalos. "I mean that from the bottom of my heart." After graduation, Macalos plans to go to graduate school. Between New Jersey Institute of Technology, Saint Peter's University and Marist College, he is unsure of his number one choice. No matter which school he ends up attending, he wants to get a master's in information system, become a certified public accountant and get his doctorate's degree. Even though he will not be attending Kean during his graduate years, he has made many memories at this school. "My best memory was definitely when I became a GEM at the School of General Studies. If it wasn't for the people and experience there, I wouldn't think that I would ever have had the motivation and courage to run for homecoming king. Being a GEM helped me opened up more to people, helped me decide on what to do career wised. I definitely wouldn't be the same person I was today if it wasn't for the people I work with," he said.

To get word out that he was running for homecoming king, he printed out shirts that promoted him to other students.

Once again, congratulations to the homecoming king and queen of 2017!

"Because these shirts were such high in demand, I was able to pair up with a nonprofit organization to be

Joanna Kristine Ninal, junior English education major, is a member of The Cougar's Byte staff.

MSC INFO DESK P: 908-737-5222 Monday - Thursday:...........8 a.m. - 12 a.m. Friday: ............................8 a.m. - 10 p.m. Saturday: ........................10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Sunday: .........................10 a.m. - 8 p.m. MSC GAME ROOM Monday - Thursday:.........10 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday: ............................10 a.m. - 9 p.m. Saturday: ........................10 a.m. - 7 p.m. Sunday: ..........................10 a.m. - 7 p.m. MSC COMPUTER LAB Monday - Thursday: .......9 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday: ............................. 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. Saturday: ........................10 a.m. - 7 p.m. Sunday: ..........................10 a.m. - 7 p.m.


Food Court Mon.- Wednesday: .....7:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. Thursday: ....................7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Friday: ......................... 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Jersey Mike's Monday - Friday: .......... 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Smashburger Monday-Thursday: ...... 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. Friday: ......................... 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Auntie Anne's Monday - Thursday:.......11 a.m. - 8 p.m. Friday:.............................11 a.m. - 4 p.m. Cougar's Den Monday-Thursday: .... 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday: ......................... 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sunday:..................... 1 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. Outakes Market Monday - Thursday: .... 9 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday: ........................... 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. Saturday: ..................... 12 p.m. - 6 p.m. Sunday:.......................... 1 p.m. - 6 p.m.


Residence Dining Hall Monday - Thursday:..7:30 a.m. - 11 p.m. Friday:.....................7:30 a.m. - 9:30 p.m. Saturday: .................. 8:30 a.m. - 9 p.m. Sunday:...................... 10 a.m. - 10 p.m.


Starbucks Kiosk, 3rd Floor Monday - Thursday: ...7:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Kiosk, 1st Floor Monday - Friday: ......... 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

A New Addition To Kean Transportation How the shuttle bus app can benefit students

Monday - Friday: 7 a.m. - 9 p.m.

Petruce Jean-Charles


Staff Writer

1st Floor - North Avenue Academic Building

any students can benefit from knowing when exactly the shuttle bus will arrive and which stops the drivers are currently at. Kean University created the NextBus app to help keep students informed on shuttle schedules. The shuttle bus is a great option of transportation for students at Kean University. The shuttle bus travels to local food markets, department stores, train stations and different areas around campus. There are many pick-up and dropoff areas around the campus such as Whiteman Hall, Wilkins Theatre, Liberty Hall Campus, East Campus Parking Lot A, East campus Parking Lot B and C, Hennings Hall, Kean Hall Parking Lot and Green Lane Academic Building (GLAB). The hours for the Shuttle Bus are as followed:

Monday - Thursday: 8 a.m. - 10 p.m. Friday - Saturday: 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sunday: 1 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Nancy Thompson

Library 1st Floor

■ Monday Through Friday: 7:15 a.m. to 10:45 p.m. ■ Saturday: 7:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. The shuttle bus app is similar to New Jersey Transit in the sense that students are able to track where the bus is at and how much time they will have in order to make it to their stop on time. Students can get to and from class, meetings and events on time by using the shuttle bus app which features: ■ Shuttle stops ■ Shuttle route map ■ Real-time arrival and departure information ■ In order to use the Kean Shuttle App students must: ■ Download the NextBus App

■ Once the app is downloaded click on the Transit tab ■ In Authority select Kean University ■ In Route select KEAN Route ■ In Direction students can choose their destination such as East Campus or Kean Hall Parking Lot ■ In Stop students can choose the shuttle stop they would like to be picked up at ■ Lastly, click the green arrow to access the map and minute by minute pickup information If students have any questions they can visit

Monday - Thursday: .......... 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. Friday: ............................... 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday: ........................... 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sunday: ........................... 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Monday - Thursday: .......... 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. Friday: ............................... 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday: ........................... 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


MIRON STUDENT CENTER, 1ST FLOOR Monday - Thursday: ........ 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Friday: ............................. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Petruce Jean-Charles, sophomore majoring in Sociology and Writing with a minor in Social Media, is a member of The Cougar’s Byte staff

A Leadership and Service Publication for the Kean University Student Community

/KeanUniversityBookstore /KeanBookstore



The Battle Continues: Week Two Of The Involvement Games Commences!

With team Jumpstart in the lead, nine other teams go for the gold in the conclusion of this two-week event Marcus Van Diver


Staff Writer

fter an exhilarating first week of action, the Involvement Games have become compelling events to watch. From student organizations such as Men of Excellence and the African Student Association, to some of the campus's fraternities and sororities, such as Tau Kappa Epsilon and Nu Theta Chi, the past week saw each organization compete in various challenges and activities to gain points toward the grand prize of $500 to their respective organizations. Team Jumpstart, who accumulated 78 points last week, took the outright lead in the competition shortly after their victory during "Ultimate Dodgeball", Wednesday, Sept. 20. The fraternity Tau Kappa Epsilon, with 73 points, is slightly behind them in second place. Their victories in "Minute to Win It" during the evening of Monday, Sept. 18, contributed to their place in the standings. Behind them was the fraternity Nu Sigma Phi with 68 points. Their place in the standings came in part due to their decisive win in the "Just Shazam It" game on Tuesday, Sept.19. The other competitors have placed in this distinct order: Nu Theta Chi, Gamma Psi Epsilon, the African Student Association, the Threads organization, Omega Sigma Psi, Men of Excellence and The Anime Society. The first event of the second week, known as the "Social Scavenger Hunt", began on the afternoon of Monday, Sept. 25. This was not a oneday competition, as the hunt lasted until the final day of competition on Thursday, Sept. 28. This challenge involved student groups being tasked with deciphering clues that pointed them to different spots across the Kean campus. Teams took pictures of their groups in the designated areas and posted them on their Instagram pages with the hashtag #InvolvementGames to get the points necessary for victory. Places such as the Wilkins Theater Ticket Booth, the game room inside of the Miron Student Center and the statue of Kean's mascot would have to be showcased on each organization's Instagram page with the given hashtag. Throughout the three day competition of taking the most pictures around campus, the Fraternity Tau Kappa Epsilon would be victorious, leading all groups with a total of 47 points. On Tuesday, Sept. 26, the Involvement Games featured another fun and challenging task. "Pac Mania", a computerized version of the popular video game, took place inside of the Involvement Center in room 309 of the Miron Student Center. Individuals from all teams simply played a version of the game on laptops from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., and the student group with the highest score would be rewarded with a multitude of

points. Through the day, only four of the 10 organizations participated in this computerized game. Surprisingly, the Anime Club and the sorority Nu Theta Chi finished tied their rankings, each with 20 points. Lastly, the "Deal or No Deal" challenge took place on the last day of competition on Wednesday, Sept. 27. Based on the popular television game show, student groups played a guessing game of what monetary amounts would be under a beige envelope, as these correct guesses would translate into point totals for their respective organization's point totals. From noon to around 9:45 p.m, three groups would receive place their final points into their overall count, in hopes of winning the first-ever Involvement Games. At the end of the last contest, the Anime Club would win Deal or No Deal with a sum of 45 points. Team Jumpstart and Nu Sigma Phi would earn second and third places with totals of 22 and 15 points. On the morning of Monday, Oct. 2, each group was notified by email or by a phone call from Involvement Specialist, Luis Nieves, about their final positioning in this year's competition. At the end of two weeks, the fraternity Tau Kappa Epsilon became victorious among all of the groups with 151 total points, as they walk away with the grand prize of $500 to their organization. Team Jumpstart would come in second place with 138 points and earn $250 and Nu Sigma Phi would earn the pizza party for

Lucas Hernandez | The Cougar's Byte

Members from different student groups competed for prizes and bragging rights

their organization in the future. As the great two-week competition came to a close, the student groups who participated and placed not only won prizes for themselves, but further fermented how important it is to get involved in making a mark on the campus. The 10 groups hope to compete in next year's Involvement Games and get another shot at winning the $500 prize. For more information on how students can get involved, visit the Involvement Center's official Cougar Link page. They are located in the Miron Student Center on the third floor in room 303. Also, those interested in starting a group can contact the Involvement Specialist Luis Nieves at his email of Students can call the Involvement Center at the number of 908-737-5270. Marcus Van Diver, junior communications, media major, is member of The Cougar's Byte staff

YouTuber With World Class Education Ruby is a rising YouTube star and a Kean University Student Mary Linen


"I bought my camera this summer. I [also] bought studio lights from Amazon and everything was super cheap," Ruby said.

Staff Writer

n campus, she is known as Ruby, former Kean University basketball player, African Student Association member and Science, Technology and Mathematics (STEM) program student. However, if one were to look her up on YouTube, they would be transported into the world of Lavish Ruby, a self-started YouTube vlogger.

When Ruby first started her channel, she wanted to keep her new hobby under-wraps. She explained that at this particular time, having a YouTube channel was not a "cool" thing to do. "I didn't want my friends to judge me for putting myself on the internet," she explained.

Ruby is a 19-year-old junior in the STEM program, majoring in bio-medicine. With this major, she hopes to go to medical school and become an orthopedic doctor. Once that is accomplished, she would like to be the main doctor for a sports team, whether it be for high school, college or professional. Ruby stated, "I'm hoping for a basketball team, but just a sports team in general. I'm not going to be picky regarding [any specific sports team]." When asked about the inspiration for her career goals, Ruby stated, "I want it to be known that Ruby worked hard to become an orthopedic doctor, even though it is a male specialized field." According to the Penn Medicine website, less than five percent of the 20,000 active orthopedic surgeons are female. During her freshmen and sophomore years of college, one could have seen Ruby in her Kean basketball uniform, scoring points for the Cougars. In her 2015 to 2016 school year, Ruby set a new Kean University record with 117 blocks, leading the team with 215 rebounds, and scored over 100 points. When asked about basketball, Ruby finds it to be one of her favorite things to do. Unfortunately, Ruby's basketball career was cut short due to an injury to her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which ultimately resulted in her retiring from Kean basketball.

Ruby realized that she could not keep the secret of Lavish Ruby hidden after she posted a video about moving into her dorm for her sophomore year of college. The video now has over 100 thousand views on YouTube and is now one of her most popular videos. After this, it was not uncommon for someone to recognize her as Lavish Ruby. Ruby now has over 20,000 subscribers on her channel. With basketball on hold, Ruby was able to devote more time to her YouTube vlogging. Ruby started her YouTube channel the second semester of her freshmen year of college. She received the inspiration to start from watching college life bloggers on YouTube when she was an incoming freshman. However, she saw that many of these bloggers would only show the party side of college, while Ruby was more interested in finding out the rigorous requirements of a STEM Program student. Ruby stated, "I decided to make my [YouTube] channel, to show people a different aspect of college. As a bio-medicine major, I couldn't find anybody that was in my major that was trying to go a pre-med route." She started making her vlogs with her iPhone 5s and natural light from her dorm window. She researched on YouTube different ways to film her videos. Once she started receiving compensation from Google AdSense, a service that pays users to have ads on their channels or websites, she decided to start investing more in her brand.

Ruby gives all credit to her organization skills to her bullet journal, which holds all of her tasks, schedules, expenses, budgets and even inspirational quotes for herself. She has scheduled times for everything and anything that could come up in her life. From class, recording for YouTube, editing time and to replying to emails, Ruby writes it all down for every day and every month. "If I lost this [bullet journal] everything would be over," she jokingly said.

■■ Studying Life Hacks

When asked about her YouTube fame, Ruby denied all claims of being famous. She knows the difference between having over 20 thousand subscribers and having over one million subscribers like Jenna Marbles. Ruby is more than willing to work toward a million subscribers by being consistent and believing in herself.

■■ Money Mondays (a series of ways to make money)

Ruby reaches an age range of 16 to 24-year-old women and men with her blog.

Ruby is a college lifestyle and beauty blogger, which gives her a platform to address a variety of different topics. These topics include: ■■ Organization Tips

■■ Hair videos ■■ Clothing Hauls Ruby mentioned that her series on Money Mondays has become very popular and the latest video has reached over 100,000 views. She stated that it is really important for her subscribers and those interested in making money to watch these videos. Ruby is also paid by sponsors to test their hair products and post the results on her blog. She does the same for many fashion companies. In addition to her repertoire of life hacks, Ruby also does a segment on business starting. She uses her own experiences from her accessory business to give advice to entrepreneurs.


Not just anyone could juggle the life of a STEM program, full-time student and YouTube blogger's schedule. That is why Ruby finds it so important for her life to be on a schedule. She also believes this is why she has so many subscribers because they want to see how someone with so much on their plate can do so many things.

Whether students subscribe or watch her blog posts or not, she had this advice to give to everyone, “Set a goal for yourself. You’re only in college once. Take advantage of the opportunities that you have here. Set goals for yourself. Have the best life and work toward the best life that you can have.” It is without a doubt that Ruby is making her Kean family proud one vlog post at a time.

Mary Linen, sophomore communication major with a concentration in media and film, is a member of The Cougar's Byte Staff

Kean University - The Cougar's Byte - October 17, 2017