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A L L E N D A L E & G R A N D R A P I DS , M I C H I G A N ST U D E N T- R U N P U B L I C A T I O N S // P R I N T · O N L I N E · M O B I L E // L A N T H O R N . C O M

T H U R S D A Y, F E B R U A RY 1 5 , 2 0 1 8 // VO L . 52 N O. 4 3


Student senate working on textbook grant for faculty BY SARAH HOLLIS SHOLLIS@LANTHORN.COM

while until the new administration made decisions on funding. “Given that, we’re quite excited and thankful to the people in Washington who helped with this. Bill Huizenga was helpful in guiding us through the bureaucracy, talking to the right people in the right offices and keeping them focused on this project.” The project will cost around $70 million, with more than 80 percent of the costs being covered by the recent federal grant. The Michigan

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, college tuition and fees in the U.S. have risen 63 percent since January 2006. Many factors have contributed to this increase, one of which is rising textbook prices. To help lower the cost of textbooks for students, the Grand Valley State University student senate is partnering with faculty to create a committee that would work to fund a stipend to encourage professors to use or create open textbook resources. “We put together a small working group; we’re going to be building the charge that we then propose to ECS (executive committee of the senate) through our representative, the student senate president,” said Eric-John Szczepaniak, chair of the student senate educational affairs committee. “Hopefully within the month we will have come up with a charge for whatever we want this committee structure should be and our recommendations of who should be on the committee.” Based on how this system works at other universities, the grant/stipend will most likely be available to professors at GVSU on three levels. “The specifics of the grant will be made in this university committee, but how it has worked at other universities is there are a few levels of what this grant entails,” Szczepaniak said. “The first level is paying faculty somewhere between 200 and 500 dollars just to review a textbook. That gets them acclimated to the idea of open educational resources, and they’ve actually helped that textbook get closer to being used in a classroom somewhere across the country. “The second level would be adopting one of these textbooks to use in your class. So, if we had this grant in place, it would literally pay the profes-



RAPID: A trio of buses lines up outside the Kirkhof Center on Tuesday, Feb. 13. The Laker Line initiative recently earned a substantial grant from the federal government, which will spark the start of construction as early as this spring. The project is expected to be completed in spring of 2020. GVL | HANNAH HILL

Laker Line gets federal funding New busing system to streamline transit between Allendale, Grand Rapids BY DEVIN DELY DDELY@LANTHORN.COM


evelopment is officially underway for a new transit system between Allendale and Grand Rapids. The Laker Line initiative received federal funding on Friday, Feb. 9. This latest project is meant to improve transportation between GVSU’s Allendale and Pew campuses. D. Scott Richardson, retiring acting vice president for finance and administration at GVSU, said this

project has been a long time coming. “This is a project that’s almost five years in the making,” he said. “In particular, it’s going to have an impact on students who need to get from this campus (Allendale) to the health sciences building. It’s going to streamline and shorten the run.” The new bus system will replace the 50 route, which currently connects the two campuses, and will run 16 buses, all larger than the ones being used now. The 50 seats about 40 passengers, while the new buses will seat 60 and have the capacity to

carry up to about 80 people. Despite the good news of the project receiving the funding it needs, many are still wondering why the approval took so long. According to Richardson, national politics may have played a role in the delay. “I think for one it’s a significant project,” he said. “But also, there’s lots of financial discussions that started happening with the new president and new administration on tax relief, government structure and funding programs for things like this. Everything slowed down for a


GV Formula Racing Team prepares for May competition BY DREW SCHERTZER DSCHERTZER@LANTHORN.COM

In 2014, a group of Grand Valley State University engineering students created the GVSU Formula Racing Team. What started as a small number of students with a vision is now flourishing into a robust machine. Nicholas Baine, faculty adviser for the club, has been there from the start. He believes the team will see much better results this year at the Formula Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) competition coming up in May. “Each year we have seen big improvements,” Baine said. “The first years we were in a position where we were scrambling just to pass inspections. Now we have the car designed a year in advance so that we are just making tweaks to improve our time.” Baine said the team initially had a tough time getting on its feet. The SAE rulebook is hundreds of pages long, so it took awhile to get accustomed to the rules and even longer to get fundraising. Now, Baine believes the team will be able to surpass half of the 120 competitors at the SAE competition in May. The team has gone from a handful of students to 30-something. Initially, it was comprised of just engineering students. Now, a plethora of students from different majors are coming together. However, Trevor Looman, assistant chief engineer, said there is still cause for concern. “The biggest challenge right

now is getting things reorganized,” Looman said. “Budgeting, materials to order for a new fuel system, and soft and hard dates must be met.” Looman explained the complex dynamic of the team: Some members work on the design of the car, while others work on marketing and on the business side of things. He said his job is to coordinate a group of about eight other students to make sure that everything is running on time for a new gas tank and radiator. Nigel Armstrong, chief engineer of the GVSU Formula Racing Team, is hopeful about the outcome of this year’s competition. He also believes the club has more to offer beyond racing. “With this club there are a lot of learning opportunities,” Armstrong said. “Everything is so hands-on and fast-paced, and (it) is the best way to learn engineering and business in the real world.” Armstrong hopes the team can bring in new sponsorships this year to expand the organization. He said that companies, even small businesses, will go to the events and often sponsor a team. Larger corporations, such as SpaceX and Ford, are also known to make appearances. This is crucial not only for sponsorships, but also for creating exposure to potential future jobs for participating students. Funding continues to be a problem for the team. Baine said other teams have budgets of more SEE RACING | A2

MASK OFF: A member of the GVSU Formula Racing Team works on Friday, Feb. 9. The Formula Racing Team is participating in the Society of Automotive Engineers competition at the Michigan International Speedway in May. GVL | SPENCER SCARBER



The submission window for Grand Valley State University’s Laker Effect Challenge is open until Friday, March 2. The competition invites students and faculty to submit pitches that will have an impact on the West Michigan community. A panel of judges will award up to $5,000 to the winning pitch, with another $500 being available to the best poster. Last semester, a team of students from the Kirkhof College of Nursing won first place and $3,000 for their submission, focused on breastfeeding in the AfricanAmerican community. A volunteer safety initiative and a children’s book bag project each earned $1,000. This semester, students will have until Friday, March 2, to submit their ideas. Online voting will take place from March 5 through March 14 at The seven projects with the most votes will make it to the final reception, which will take place Thursday, April 12, in the L.V. Eberhard Center on the Pew Campus.


On Tuesday, Feb. 13, Grand Valley State University announced that incoming first-year students beginning with the class of 2019 will be eligible for studyabroad scholarships. The initiative is a collaboration between the GVSU admissions office and the Padnos International Center. The goal of the program, dubbed “Lakers Go Abroad!” is to make studying abroad more accessible for GVSU students. First-year students who qualify will be able to receive $2,000 in scholarship funds to use over the course of their four-year college careers. Both the admissions office and PIC hope the scholarships will make GVSU more appealing to prospective students basing their college decisions off of studyabroad programs.


TRANSIT: The 50 bus waits at the Kirkhof Center on Tuesday, Feb. 13. WIth the new Laker Line, the 50 would be replaced with a bus system that connects GVSU’s Allendale and Pew campuses, as well as the Center for Health Sciences in Grand Rapids. GVL | HANNAH HILL



Department of Transportation will cover the remaining costs. Other new features of the bus system include traffic signal priority technology and newer, nicer bus stops, which will be elevated to the level of the buses and heated in the winter to prevent ice. Since GVSU’s population makes up more than

2.5 million passengers on the Rapid bus system annually, this new initiative will most likely have a bigger effect on GVSU students than anyone else. But in addition to helping out students at GVSU, the new Laker Line bus system will also have a community impact. “The Rapid is a sixcommunity consortium,” Richardson said. “It’s not just Grand Rapids; it’s other cities as well. I hope the im-

pact on this is greater than just Grand Valley. If there’s people that work at Spectrum and live along M-45, they should be able to take the bus to work now.” However, Richardson said that even though the funding has gone through, it will still be some time before the new system is officially completed and open to the public. “The honest answer is their construction schedule

isn’t set yet,” he said. “Now that it’s fully funded, they want to get busy. Whether they’ll have all the new bus stops constructed by fall, I kind of doubt it, and whether the new buses will start running before the project is done, we don’t know yet.” Construction on the project may begin as early as this spring, with completion being targeted for spring 2020.

Grand Valley State University’s online certificate for applied behavioral analysis was named one of the 40 best programs in the country by The rating and ranking methodology factors included faculty to student ratio, average graduate tuition rate and Board Certified Behavior Analyst certification pass rate. The full rankings can be found at www.

‘SLEEPLESS NIGHTS’ TAKING PLACE THIS WEEKEND Grand Valley State University’s Spotlight Productions is holding a “Sleepless Nights” event on Friday, Feb. 16, from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. Activities will be available to students in various rooms in the Kirkhof Center. The Grand River Room will house comedian Ryan O’Flanagan, and students can play trivia with DJ Mark Witz. The lounge will showcase a mini GVSU talent show and henna. The Kirkhof Center Big Screen Theater will be playing “Thor: Ragnarok,” and popcorn will be provided. Room 2263 will have crafts and a pong tournament. Free food and giveaways will be provided to students throughout the night, too. VOL . 52

NO. 4 3

Lan thorn EDITORIAL STAFF Editor-in-Chief EMILY DORAN Associate Editor JENNA FRACASSI


News Editor ARPAN LOBO




Laker Life Editor TY KONELL A&E Editor ANNE MARIE SMIT Image Editor

Campus Accounts Manager



Business Manager SHELBY CARTER

Digital Editor MATT READ

Asst. Business Manager ALEXIS LAMB


Distribution Manager MEGHAN FITZGERALD

PRICE DROP?: A student shops for textbooks in the GVSU Laker Store on Wednesday, Feb. 14. GVSU student senate is currently working on a proposal that would create a grant for faculty members, in turn reducing the cost of textbooks for students. GVL | SHEILA BABBITT



sor to swap over to an open educational textbook. The third level, in a lot of universities that have this program, would be paying them (faculty) a larger amount, a few thousand dollars, to create their own educational resource.” This system would not be

able to run without the grant/ stipend going to faculty members who participate in it. “The reason why it’s going to require some money behind it is because textbook companies can sometimes reach out to professors and incentivize them to use their product because obviously that generates funds for that textbook company,” Szczepaniak said. “The way to combat that is that we

have to make it more appealing and hope that professors will do the right thing by students and swap over to cheaper textbook/open textbook material.” There is still a long process that must be completed before this grant/stipend will go into effect at GVSU. “Once we get this university committee up and running, they’ll be the ones that, over the course of probably

the next year, are figuring out the specifics of where we can get funding for this grant, the levels of the grant and all sorts of logistics by looking at universities that have done it in the past,” Szczepaniak said. “So, a lot of the work will come out of that university committee, and then it goes back to the ECS, which will OK it. Then we can start the program.”


At the Lanthorn, we strive to bring you the most accurate news possible. If we make a mistake, we want to make it right. If you find any errors in fact in the Lanthorn, let us know by calling 616-331-2464 or by emailing The Grand Valley Lanthorn is published twice-weekly by Grand Valley State University students 62 times a year. One copy of this newspaper is available free of charge to any member of the GVSU community. For additional copies, at $1 each, please contact our business offices.

The Lanthorn is published on recycled paper and is printed with soy bean ink. This means that our newspaper is entirely compostable. Help us do our part to be kind to the environment by recycling or composting this newspaper after you enjoy reading it. POSTMASTER: Please send form 3579 to: Grand Valley Lanthorn 0051 Kirkhof Center Grand Valley State University Allendale, MI 49401

GV LANTHORN CORRECTION In the article “Student Senate Looks at Credit Structuring, Upcoming Elections,” published Monday, Feb. 12, we incorrectly published that Student Senate Week would be occurring the week of Monday, Feb. 12. Student Senate Week is actually occurring the week of Monday, Feb. 26. This error has been corrected in the online version of the story.

HARD AT WORK: Members of the GVSU Formula Racing Team work on Friday, Feb. 9. The Formula Racing Team was founded in 2014 and will compete in the Society of Automotive Engineers competition May 9 at the Michigan International Speedway. GVL | SPENCER SCARBER



than $100,000, whereas the GVSU team barely brushes the $10,000 to $15,000 mark. Regardless, Baine believes the

future is bright for the GVSU Formula Racing Team. Formula SAE Michigan, the SAE competition, will take place May 9 through May 12 at the Michigan International Speedway. One hundred twenty teams will

gather from all over to compete in many tests. Competitors will be tested on steering, acceleration and other physical components. However, teams will also be asked about their budgets and other financial matters

in front of a judge. In past years, GVSU’s team has been ranked toward the bottom of the pack. This year, however, the team is hoping to be placed in the middle to upper portion, Baine said.




GV alumnus opens business in downtown GR BY JENNA FRACASSI ASSOCIATE@LANTHORN.COM

Zakry O’Brien graduated from Grand Valley State University in April of 2017 with a dream of opening up his own business one day. Little did he know, that dream would become a reality in less than a year’s time. O’Brien, who double majored in business entrepreneurship and management information systems at GVSU and ran track and field, officially opened up his shop, Lake Effect Phone Repair, on Jan. 6, 2018. The downtown Grand Rapids shop focuses repairing, reusing, and recycling various electronic devices. “I’ve been doing this sort of business (working with technology) pretty much since high school, but obviously with going to school and everything like that, getting my degree was first priority for me really and obviously for my family, (too),” O’Brien said. Despite always knowing he wanted to go into business, O’Brien started out at GVSU in computer engineering. He explained, “My dad was a small business owner, and I always knew in my heart of hearts that I wanted to own my own business one day. … That’s why I switched my major after my second year at Grand Valley to business, and

that’s kind of when I got my start with entrepreneurship.” In addition to business, O’Brien has also always had an interest in the Great Lakes. Born and raised in Grand Haven, Michigan, he worked at a local surf shop and spent a lot of time on the water himself. This passion carried over into his business today, as part of the Lake Effect Phone Repair proceeds go toward supporting Michigan’s Great Lakes. “That’s always kind of been a thing I wanted to do with my business, too, to have that value proposition where there is something else,” he said. “… The Great Lakes have always been a thing that’s super influential to me growing up right by the water, surfing out in the lakes and doing all that kind of stuff, so I found a way that I could creatively be able to give back, and I thought that was a really cool opportunity.” Even more, Grand Rapids has a reputation for being a great place to open up a small business. A big part of this involves the support of the surrounding community; many people prefer to shop small businesses rather than chain corporations, giving shops like O’Brien’s an advantage in the city. “With Grand Rapids its kind of an upstart city, so everyone has that really smalltown vibe where they support local business,” O’Brien said.

“Everyone that comes through and talks to me are always excited about seeing a new shop, … and with Grand Rapids it’s the perfect size; it’s not a huge city, but it’s also not small so you get plenty of people.” Though many customers have been brought in as a result of word-of-mouth or the shop’s central location, many have also been driven into Lake Effect Phone Repair as a result of O’Brien’s presence online and on social media, where he does all the advertising himself. “That’s the fun thing about being a small business owner. … I have to be the jack of all trades,” he said. “I have to be able to do the advertising, do the accounting, do the sales. … I’m the head of the whole thing. … I’m everything from taking the pictures to writing the posts.” Success in life is not guaranteed, and O’Brien understood this when making the decision to open up Lake Effect Phone Repair. However, with the help of his family and friends and his own determination, he was able to successfully transition from GVSU graduate to business owner. “I just rolled the dice and went for it,” he said. “That’s really the biggest thing--just taking a leap.” For more information or to shop Lake Effect Phone Repair merchandise, you can visit the website or Facebook page.

SHOP: A storefront sign at Lake Effect Phone Repair on Tuesday, Feb. 13. Lake Effect Phone Repair opened for business on Jan. 6 and is owned by GVSU alumnus Zakry O’Brien. GVL | SARA CARTE


TOGETHER: Members of the GVSU chapter of the NAACP pose on Monday, Feb. 12. The chapter recently celebrated NAACP Founders Day, which honored the organization’s 109 years of civil rights service and advocacy. The GVSU chapter of the NAACP meets every other Monday from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center Thornapple Room. The organization’s information can be found on OrgSync. GVL | DYLAN MCINTYRE


Grand Valley State University’s student chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) recently celebrated the national organization’s 109 years of civil rights service and advocacy. The event took place in the Kirkhof Center Thornapple Room on Monday, Feb. 12. “I think that service and advocacy is something that

should be celebrated even more,” said Anya Ward, a member of the NAACP at GVSU. “Doing this kind of celebration honors the service and the work that has been done already by this organization in particular. A lot of students want to come (to) celebrations where there is food or dancing, but when it comes to doing service work and putting in time outside of something that directly affects them and gives them a positive boost, that’s something that needs to be valued

more on this campus.” At the event, organization members discussed the work the NAACP has been doing since it was founded in 1909 by activists and abolitionists fighting for equal rights. “We are a courageous generation of intelligent, militant and effective youth leaders creating a world for all people to thrive,” said Cheyanna Green-Molett, president of the NAACP at GVSU. The NAACP chapter at GVSU is focused on informing youth of problems affect-

ing communities of color; advancing the economic, social, educational and political status of people of color; facilitating harmonious corporation with other people; and developing effective youth leaders. The committee positions include women’s empowerment, community service, environmental justice, and health and wellness. Members encourage students to join for the group’s community service opportunities, support from faculty and staff, national resources and reputation, and fellowship.

“I think it’s important for students to do this activist work because out in the real world, you’re not in a bubble,” GreenMolett said. “You’re going to be surrounded by people (who) are different from you, and you’re going to be faced with injustices and discrimination. Being a part of an organization that focuses on serving and advocating for people (who) are affected by this will give you exposure to (those) issues and how to deal with those issues effectively so you’re not blind (or) being a bystander to issues that are always occurring around our world, especially in current times.” On campus, the organization can be seen advocating for students of color in classrooms and dorms, as well as educating students on issues affecting students of color. The members also help facilitate voter registration and volunteer opportunities. “I joined after I got back from studying abroad in Japan,” said Dai’jah Todd, a member of the NAACP at GVSU. “I felt a longing to come back, do some advocacy work and help people become more aware of my culture because that’s what I was doing in Japan. They were getting things done and I wanted to be a part of that.” The GVSU chapter of the NAACP has hosted several events on campus, including a presentation on gentrifica-

tion in the neighborhoods of Detroit, Chicago, Brooklyn and Flint; a lecture on feminism and how it intersects with African-American issues; and a discussion of the importance of Native American headdresses. “I think because (the events we host) are usually LIB-approved, (it’s) drawing on a different crowd,” said Maria Hamming, a financial officer for the NAACP at GVSU. “(That) is always the nicest part, to see people show up to some of these events that maybe you wouldn’t necessarily expect. We try to always have our events be very open and try to have a conversation so everyone feels welcome to share their opinions. But I think what’s always nice to see is that people can just walk away with a different stand point, a different viewpoint. “We’re not saying you have to agree or disagree, but you’re just getting an opportunity to hear other people talk about something that’s affecting them and a chance to see it (in) a different way.” The NAACP meets from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Kirkof Center Thornapple Room every other Monday night. More information can be found on the organization’s social media platforms—including Twitter, Instagram and Facebook—or by emailing gv.naacpmem@




On thoughts and prayers


arjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, was the site of a deadly mass shooting on Wednesday, Feb. 14. At the time of writing, at least 17 were dead and there were multiple others wounded. Parkland was the 18th school shooting of 2018. Having just met the halfway point of February, the number is staggering. It means that in 2018, there has been a school shooting every 2.5 days. “The shooter was not a current student,” Sheriff Scott Israel said on Twitter. “It’s catastrophic. There really are

no words.” The prevalence of gun violence in schools is something that needs to be addressed by U.S. legislators. However, their responses to the much-too-frequent instances of mass shootings in any location all sound the same. Florida Gov. Rick Scott tweeted his thoughts and prayers. President Donald Trump did, too. And First Lady Melania Trump offered hers as well. Obviously, in the moment, thoughts and prayers are heartfelt considerations given to grieving families. There really isn’t anything you could say to a mother/father/sister/

brother who just lost their loved one for no reason that would make things right. But mass shootings in schools aren’t a new phenomenon. Since the Newtown tragedy in December 2012, there have been more than 200 school shootings. Legislators have the ability to respond to these tragedies with actual policy, such as making firearms less accessible to those who can’t meet certain standards. Instead, mass shootings tend to lead to making firearms even more accessible. In an October 2017 article from The Atlantic (following the Las Vegas shooting,

in which 58 were killed and more than 800 were injured), the author writes that “the five years since a gunman killed 26 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, have seen one of the most intense bursts of gun legislation in U.S. history—almost all of it intended to ensure that more guns can be carried into more places.” After Newtown, more than two dozen states relaxed gun restrictions, making it easier to carry concealed firearms into places like bars, schools and churches. A common argument made after mass shootings involves placing more

Legislators’ predictable responses to Parkland shooting aren’t enough guns in the hands of people for safety purposes, but that theory doesn’t hold true. In a 37-year study conducted by researchers at Stanford University, data revealed that states that decreased carrying restrictions saw a 13 to 15 percent increase in violent crimes. The weapon used by the shooter in Parkland was an AR-15, a high-powered assault rifle based off a weapon formerly used in the military. The AR-15 was also used in the Las Vegas shooting, the San Bernardino shooting, the Aurora shooting, the Newtown shooting and the Sutherland Springs shooting. Placing more bul-

lets—even if they are meant to stop a mass shooter—would only cause even more confusion and potentially lead to more loss of life. By offering thoughts and prayers in place of actual legislation, lawmakers tend to appear insensitive and tone deaf. A substantial amount of research has been done, and there are common attributes of many of these mass shootings. Seeing the different headlines for the different shootings brings up a painful question: How much blood has to be spilled for legislators to bring more than thoughts and prayers to the table?

Why the 2018 Winter Olympics are significant for LGBT athletes



The fanfare surrounding the Olympics is nothing new. Every two years, either the summer or winter games provide a perfect setting for the world to come together. Perhaps more importantly, the Olympics allow people from different races, religions and identities to truly connect. The focus of each Olympic cycle is always different, but this year, the winter games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, are highlighting something particularly important: LGBT athletes. In the U.S., this spotlight might seem like old news because many people believe

that LGBT people already have rights, but that’s not necessarily the case. Yes, the LGBT community has come a long way, but that doesn’t mean they have it the same as “straight” people do. Not by a long shot. It is nearly impossible to know how many people in the world are actually LGBT. According to The Guardian, even in 2018 there are many countries—including Russia, Iraq, Egypt and Iran—that make it virtually impossible to identify as anything other than straight. There are also many people who might believe they fall on the non-binary scale but are unwilling to identify as such for various reasons. Even with those deterrents, Gallup News found that 4.1 percent of the U.S. population identified itself as LGBT. This self-identified population is not huge by any means, but it still leaves room to wonder how there have been so few openly LGBT Olympic athletes. As far as records go, the Smithsonian credits the first openly gay athlete as John Curry, an English figure skater in the 1976 Olympics. But still, that’s a tenuous claim because

Curry was not actually an “out” gay man when he performed. Rather, he was outed soon after he won the gold medal. In fact, there is an array of athletes who have come out after their time in the games, whether by choice or by force. It’s likely that some athletes dating back to the time of the ancient Greeks were actually LGBT during competition and either never came out or only did so after they were done competing. Of course, while our modern society is arguably comparatively accepting, there still are disproportionately few “out” athletes. It begs the question, why do people feel so compelled to hide the way they identify? Unfortunately, it is not that hard to answer that question. People are judgmental. People are set in their ways. People are cruel. When Curry was outed, people began to question his masculinity and his virility in a way they had not done prior to the reveal of his sexual identity. A similar effect has occurred for women who have identified as lesbian. For example, tennis

star Billie Jean King lost all of her endorsements when she came out. Noting this, it isn’t surprising that a decade ago at the Beijing Summer Olympics, only 0.001 percent of the athletes who competed were openly gay. Fortunately, in the 2018 games, we’re seeing that trend begin to change little by little with a record number of 14 openly out athletes. Already, Adam Rippon has made U.S. history by being the first openly gay man to medal in the Winter Olympics. Rippon is not alone, though: Canadian skater Eric Radford is now the first openly gay Winter Olympics champion, winning gold with his partner, Meagan Duhamel. With this trend toward openness, Pyeongchang is making a new and better type of history. LGBT athletes have likely been competing in the Olympics since the games’ inception, and it is crucial to keep this positive momentum going. There is no reason for these athletes to hide their sexuality, nor does the way they identify take away from their incredible skill.


The Dumbledore problem


Editor-in-Chief Associate editor News editor Sports editor Laker Life editor A&E editor

WHAT IS A LANTHORN? Lant • horn, n. [Old English] A lanthorn is a lantern that was used in mid-to-late 16th-century Europe. It was constructed of leather and a single lens made from a thin

piece of ox or steer horn. It was used for illumination and as a beacon. The Grand Valley Lanthorn slogan is “Give light, and the people will find their own way.”

GVL OPINION POLICY The goal of the Grand Valley Lanthorn’s opinion page is to act as a forum for public discussion, comment and criticism in the Grand Valley State University community. Student and columnist opinions published here do not necessarily reflect those of the paper as an entity. The Lanthorn strives to be a safe vehicle for community discussion. With this in mind, the Lanthorn will not publish or entertain any forms of hate speech, but neither will it discriminate against any other views, opinions or beliefs. The content, information and views expressed are not approved by—nor do they necessarily represent those of—the university or its Board of Trustees, officers, faculty or staff.

Letters to the editor should include the author’s full name, relevant title and a headshot, along with a valid email address and phone number for confirming the identity of the author. Letters should be approximately 500-650 words in length, and they are not edited by the Lanthorn staff except to fix technical errors or to clarify. Reader submissions on the opinion page appear as space permits. To make a submission, email or drop your submission off in person at:




As the shrinking group of people who are still deeply invested in “Harry Potter” probably already knows, there’s a new movie written by J.K. Rowling coming out this November called “The Crimes of Grindelwald.” Despite being named for an entirely

different character, the film will apparently be giving a lot of focus to everyone’s favorite absentminded headmaster, exploring “how Dumbledore becomes Dumbledore.” It’s not a particularly surprising development—the “Fantastic Beasts” series is a pretty explicit attempt to cash in on the fading popularity of “Harry Potter” before it stops being profitable to do so, and putting new emphasis on a legacy character as prominent in the books as Dumbledore isn’t making Warner Bros.’ intentions any less obvious. (Or any less appealing. I’m still definitely watching it when it comes out.) As is common practice when hyping a movie into a future blockbuster, interviews with the cast and crew have offered tantalizing details about the film’s characters

and plot. The most recent and most infamous of these is director David Yates’ statement that despite focusing heavily on Dumbledore’s relationship with the titular character, “The Crimes of Grindelwald” will not explicitly address Dumbledore’s sexuality, which Rowling had revealed after the series ended in a Carnegie Hall speech all the way back in 2007. Remembering the reaction of some conservative Christians to “Harry Potter” even without any canonically gay characters, I can understand why Rowling sat on this aspect of Dumbledore’s character until the last books had already sold. As a kid, I had friends who weren’t allowed to read the series because their parents thought it promoted practicing witchcraft. I imagine plenty more might have

placed similar prohibitions if Rowling had given Harry an unambiguously gay mentor. Though Yates and Rowling have both teased that Dumbledore’s sexuality might be explored in later installments of what will apparently be a five-film series, many fans are still annoyed (if not surprised) by the current avoidance of the subject. Citing LGBT erasure and just general wishy-washiness on the part of the film’s creators, there’s a convincing argument that keeping Dumbledore’s sexuality subtext was less of a creative decision and more just pandering to conservative audiences (and countries overseas that still regularly ban movies from theaters for having gay content). LOG ON TO: FOR THE FULL ARTICLE




Would you ever consider running for student senate?

Do you think the 50 bus line needs to be updated?

Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.

Yes No


25% 75%


- Henry Ford




“Yes, they don’t have enough buses on the weekends.”

“Yes, but I don’t know if they could make it better.”

YEAR: Junior MAJOR: Exercise science HOMETOWN: Chicago, Michigan

YEAR: Senior MAJOR: Finance HOMETOWN: Commerce, Michigan



“I really don’t ride the bus, but it seems fine.”

“I did not. I thought it was fine.”

YEAR: Junior MAJOR: Psychology HOMETOWN: Holland, Michigan

YEAR: Junior MAJOR: Marketing HOMETOWN: Grand Rapids, Michigan




Campus for Consent to host lecture on domestic violence BY ANNIE GIFFELS NEWS@LANTHORN.COM

Grand Valley State University’s Campus for Consent is bringing Sarah Omicioli, a prevention and education specialist from Safe Haven Ministries in Grand Rapids, to campus to discuss domestic violence, consent, bystander intervention and stalking. Omicioli will give her presentation Tuesday, Feb. 20, at 7 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center, Room 2204. Safe Haven Ministries is committed to helping women and children who have experienced or are experiencing domestic abuse. The service offers resources such as a 24/7 hotline, emergency shelters and support groups. As a member of the prevention education team at Safe Haven Ministries, Omicioli works mainly in primary prevention and preventative care. Her duties also include putting on educational presentations in an array of different places, with schools and businesses being high on the list. “Our curriculum goes as early as the middle school level,” she said. “We’re trying to teach children what a healthy relationship looks like.” At GVSU, however, the presentation will be focused mainly on consent and domestic violence. Hosted by the Campus for Consent student organization, the event is expected to last an hour with the chance for attendees to ask questions and interact with

Omicioli after her lecture. “In a nutshell, Safe Haven Ministries will be training the crowd on things like sexual and dating violence,” said Madison Brooks, Campus for Consent financial officer. As the financial officer, Brooks was in charge of figuring out the budget and locking in funds for this event. Campus for Consent, formerly known as Eyes Wide Open and started in 2001, is a peer-education organization at GVSU whose mission is to rid college campuses of sexual assault. On campus, this group of sexual assault and consent peer educators put on educational presentations, host yearly events like Take Back the Night and Rock Against Rape, and offer multiple resources for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. “We’ve always been about peer education,” Brooks said. “That involves presenting to classes in departments like liberal studies and gender studies. ... We inform the campus on what consent is and what active bystanders are. We’re all students.” Safe Haven Ministries shares similar goals about consent and advocates for campuses free of sexual assault as well. “For me, it’s interesting how teaching consent is still so necessary for young adults,” Omicioli said. “‘No means no’ is something we learned in kindergarten, but it’s still something that people struggle with.”

KNOWING THE RULES: GVPD Acting Director Brandon DeHaan speaks at an event focused on Title IX reporting on Tuesday, Feb. 6. On Tuesday, Feb. 20, Sarah Omicioli of Safe Haven Ministries will be speaking at GVSU on consent and domestic violence. GVL | EMILY FRYE

Along with consent, Omicioli feels strongly about bystander intervention and wants to give her listeners the tools they need to be able to intervene in certain situations. “We strive to teach people how to recognize and respond

to abuse,” she added. Omicioli also works alongside schools and businesses to create policies on sexual abuse, and she leads presentations on different topics regarding these issues. “Consent is an especially important topic for teenag-

ers and college students,” she said. “Whether you’re at a party or in a serious relationship, women must be able to recognize sexual assault and know what to do if they witness it or are victims to it.” Though this is not the first

time GVSU has worked with Safe Haven Ministries, Omicioli is looking forward to putting on her presentation. “You’re never too old to learn about consent and sexual assault,” she said. “Education on these issues never stops.”


TENSION: Daryl Davis, right, was the star of ‘Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race & America,’ a documentary based on his experiences talking to members of racial hate groups. Davis will be speaking at GVSU on Tuesday, Feb. 20, at 1 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center Grand River Room on how he aims to relieve racial tensions in the U.S. The event is both LIB 100- and 201-approved. COURTESY | C-VILLE.COM


When one thinks of hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), they often don’t think about being courteous.


Grand Valley State University’s Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) will host “Accidental Courtesy,” a lecture from Daryl Davis about relieving racial tensions, Tuesday, Feb. 20, from 1 p.m. to

2:30 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center Grand River Room. Davis will discuss his experiences encountering leaders of the KKK to demonstrate the importance of building relationships in a society that is gradually becoming more diverse. Davis is the star and author of the documentary “Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race & America” directed by Matthew Ornstein, which was released on Netflix in 2016. This social and cultural documentary follows the story of Davis, an African-American musician with the goal of changing racist mindsets. In the documentary, Davis meets and befriends some members of the KKK, hoping to broaden their points of view toward the black community. Eventually, he manages to talk to some of the members and make them reconsider their beliefs. There are members

who end up leaving the Klan and turn to support Davis by giving him their white robes, the renowned uniform of the extremist movement. Davis keeps their robes and hoods to build a collection of stories and people to hopefully build a museum of the Klan. “It’s about how he interacts with members of the KKK and his experience working with people who don’t agree with who he stands for as a person,” said Britney Underwood, a graduate assistant in the OMA. “Students will learn his journey and the reason as to why he started to do this. The most important component here is that he’s able to interact with these members and make them denounce their membership to the KKK after befriending him.” Underwood and members of the OMA hope that bringing Davis to GVSU will serve as an opportunity for students to gain a new perspective. “This gives students an

Documentary star to lecture on relieving racial tensions outlet to explore a different avenue of having a conversation with people who may or may not agree with them,” she said. “That’s the reason why we decided to bring Davis to the campus. I’d personally like students to take away the different perspective that Daryl offers. “In this time of social media and racial discrimination, it’s very easy to walk away from this. From the outside looking in, it may look like he’s trying to get to the ‘other side,’ but what he truly offers is another perspective to tackling racial discrimination in a way that many may not see.” Davis’ method could serve as a new way of approaching difficulties for those who attend. “If he’s able to talk to members of a hate group against other races such as the KKK, here (at) GVSU we hope that people may learn how to talk with people with whom they disagree,” Underwood said. In an op-ed for The Wash-

ington Post, Davis authored his perspectives on being able to overcome racial tensions. “How can anybody hate me when you don’t even know me?” he wrote. Davis poses this question as a way to make people open their minds to conversation. He strongly believes that conversation can relieve tension. His aim is not to convert people and change their points of view as “hateful, violent racists.” All he asks for is a conversation for understanding. “I’ve seen firsthand that when two enemies are talking, they are not fighting,” he wrote. “They may be yelling and beating their fists on the table, but at least they are talking. Violence happens only when talking has stopped.” Davis’ documentary, which won several film festival awards in 2016, will be screened in the OMA office (Kirkhof Center, Room 1240) on Friday, Feb. 16, at noon. His lecture is LIB 100and 201-approved.





The Grand Valley State University Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) is set to host an event centered on the history of African-American soul food on Friday, Feb. 16, from noon to 1 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center lobby. The history of African-American soul food dates back to times of slavery, and “Taste of Soul” will go into depth about this history and the resilience of African-American slaves. For more information, contact the OMA at 616-331-2177.

LGBTQ RETREAT SCHEDULED FOR FRIDAY, FEB. 16 The Grand Rapids Pride Center will be hosting a service retreat for LGBTQ students starting at 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 16, and ending at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 17. The purpose of the retreat is to foster growth, learning and service alongside Grand Rapids LGBTQ advocates. A local church will be providing the overnight accommodations, and there will be carpooling available from GVSU’s campus. The cost for attendance is $10, but it is free if an attendee brings a guest. For more information or to apply, contact Wesley Fellowship Interim Director Nancy Jansich at wesleygv@


For interested students, staff and faculty, Grand Valley State University will be hosting a discussion event about henna on Tuesday, Feb. 20, from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. in North Living Center C. The discussion, titled “Henna: Appreciation or Appropriation?” will go into depth about cultural appropriation versus cultural appreciation with a specific focus on henna design, which originated in the Hindu culture. For more information, contact Melaura Rice at or Nia Bashir-Benton at bashirbn@


The Grand Valley State University Department of Modern Languages and Literatures (MLL) will be hosting its Language Festival from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Holton-Hooker Learning and Living Center on Wednesday, Feb. 21. The goal of the event is to teach GVSU students the benefits of learning another language and will offer information about study-abroad opportunities, as well as advising, student groups and career benefits. Food will be provided, and the event is free to attend. For more information, contact the MLL office at 616331-3203.

From the track to med school GV student athlete finds success in sports, the classroom BY TY KONELL LAKERLIFE@LANTHORN.COM

For students at Grand Valley State University, the struggle of balancing classes, a social life and sleep is a daily reality. For pre-medical senior Grace Peterson, this has never been more true. A full course load, medical school applications, interviews, and track and field have kept her schedule full, but she is finding a way to make it work during her final semester at GVSU. Peterson was recruited to GVSU track and field as a freshman and said she was initially doing work with research before figuring out she wanted to go down the path of the sciences and aim for medical school. Now, four years later, Peterson is sitting with acceptances to two different medical schools, is waiting on a final word from three others, and holds the GVSU record for the track and field pentathlon indoor event. Referring to her numerous academic and athletic successes, Peterson cites a strong support system as a source of her triumphs. “I had a lot of really amazing support from the people here (at GVSU), like JoAnn Litton,” Peterson said. “She’s one of the pre-med advisers, and she was super helpful throughout the entire thing. And I was able to get letters of recommendation from professors because I have a lot of really good relationships here.” Although Peterson is excited to start the next phase of her academic career, she admitted that the medical

school application process was grueling and intense. “It was a really stressful process throughout the summer just because there’s a lot of schools that you end up having to apply to,” Peterson said. “They recommend that you apply to between 10 to 15 schools, which I think is an insane number. I ended up doing 12, which was a lot but not too many I don’t think.” Despite the long waiting time that comes with applications to medical, graduate and law schools, Peterson has already heard back from two schools and interviewed with three others. “I actually ended up getting my first interview pretty early,” she said. “I received an invitation back in August and interviewed at Oakland University of William Beaumont in September, and then was accepted in October. So, I at least did have something pretty early on, but I’m honestly still waiting to hear back from a couple schools right now.” People who know Peterson personally think she is wellsuited for the medical school experience and believe she will thrive in her studies. “Knowing Grace and her work ethic, I think medical school will be a place where she continues to thrive and succeed,” said Jessica Gustad, Peterson’s teammate and close friend. “It will be a world of new opportunities and challenges, and it will be a great fit for her.” Aside from her studies, Peterson has also excelled in sports. Before she started doing the pentathlon, which she later

SPORTY: Grace Peterson, center, poses above with her teammates after a GVSU track and field event. COURTESY | GRACE PETERSON

set a record for, she was recruited for the high jump and was convinced she would not be a stand-out contributor. “When I was recruited as a freshman, I came here on the track and field team; I knew in my head that I wasn’t going to be the biggest contributor because I thought I was coming in for high jump and there were so many other good high jumpers already here,” she said. That same year, she learned new events in order to participate in both the pentathlon and heptathlon, and she formed a new community of friends because of her dedication to the sport. “Being in this sport has opened me up to a completely different set of people that I don’t know if I would have been

friends with otherwise,” Peterson said. “I think that’s amazing that I can be a part of all of these different groups, and it not only pushes me to succeed but opens me up to new experiences and people.” As she reminisced on her time at GVSU, Peterson offered a piece of advice for first-year students and incoming freshmen. “You can find your niche anywhere here,” Peterson said. “You will find something that is yours while you’re here because there’s so much. It’s such a big community, but there so many small communities within it. You’ll be able to find something that you love and drives you. You just have to take the time to find it.”


GV students participate in national idea pitch competition BY TASMAN MATTOX TMATTOX@LANTHORN.COM

For students with ideas they hope might improve the world, there are many competitions that can help along the way. Currently, four Grand Valley State University students are in the running to win $30,000 to develop these ideas.

The Outdoor Weber Idea Pitch Competition, held by Weber State University in Utah, encouraged college students to submit their most innovative outdoor product ideas. After a round of online voting that ends Thursday, Feb. 15, 25 students will proceed to a panel of judges. After that, the final 10 will get the chance to travel to Og-

den, Utah, for the final round of competition. Currently third in the standings is Katarina Samardzija, an active GVSU student athlete and entrepreneur. After she and some of her friends had items stolen while working out at the gym, Samardzija created the “Wrist Locker,” a band that can carry keys, ID and more.

PROMOTIONAL: The Outdoor Weber Idea Pitch Competition, promotional flyer above, allots the winner $30,000 to make their winning idea a reality. COURTESY | WEBER STATE UNIVERSITY’S FACEBOOK PAGE

“People started asking where they could get one, and there was a positive snowball effect,” Samardzija said. “I use it more for non-fitness things even: going out with friends, concerts, tailgates. It’s a whole convenience factor. And if you’re kayaking, hiking, anything outdoors, you need to have identification in case of an emergency.” Each student involved has a unique idea they hope to showcase. “Orindi was originally founded by the random thought of, ‘It’s miserable to be in the cold.’ I thought we could make a set of nose plugs that prevent your nose from running,” said Jordan Vanderham, a GVSU student whose product is a cold endurance mask that helps people breathe more comfortably in chilly environments. “The Outdoor Weber competition is a sports-based competition, so we are pitching Orindi as an opportunity for anyone to adventure outdoors. It was just a silly little

idea, but then you research and you find a problem that needs to be solved.” The prize money the competition offers could help the competitors’ products reach a whole new level. “Basically, I would use the money towards a combination of further product design and engineering, and then getting a full working prototype that looks good,” said Zachary Skogheim, another GVSU student competing. His product, Trail Tracker, is a headset that would track bikes on trails in order to prevent collisions. “I have a prototype that works completely, but I want one that is what we would produce,” he said. Having people to look to for guidance has been integral in the development of many students’ products. “Without the assistance of my mentors and recommendations for these competitions, I would not be where I am,” Samardzija said. “The people working

in the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation have been a great help to my business. Even recommending these competitions alone is so kind; I’ve even had them review applications and get a second opinion.” Skogheim had a mentor who really pushed him to achieve his goals, too. “I also got connected with a mentor who completely changed my life,” he said. “Once I met him, it was like everything changed. It was crazy actually.” Vanderham also expressed his appreciation for his partner in Orindi. “I partnered with a guy over at Kendall (named) Jared,” he said. “It’s super fun to work with a person and not just alone.” Each student hopes their hard work will pay off with the chance to improve their company. “After bugging so many people for votes, I need to make it worthwhile, you know?” Samardzija said. “I have everyone and their mother going to vote.”


Sigma Pi to give back with fundraising, random acts of kindness BY TAYLOR CROWLEY TCROWLEY@LANTHORN.COM

Diversity on a college campus can make or break a student’s experience at a university. Recognizing this, the Grand Valley State University Sigma Pi fraternity Theta Rho chapter (Sigma Pi) has big plans to show what diversity means to them by giving back to the GVSU community. Starting in April, the fraternity men will participate in what they call “random acts of kindness.” During the week of April 9 through April 13, the men will actively participate in giving and caring for somebody completely random. For a Sigma Pi brother, a random act could mean buying a coffee and giving it to a bus driver or an international student just to make them smile. A photo of the act will be taken and posted

to the fraternity’s social media to show off the brothers’ appreciation for the people they surprised with random acts of kindness. According to Ahmad Stewart, active member of Sigma Pi and the altruistic campus experience chairman, 80 percent of the chapter (which now has 76 members) participated in the initiative last year. Stewart expressed his intention to give back specifically to the international students at GVSU, whom he believes are often “overlooked.” His goal is to make GVSU feel like a home away from home for them. Stewart also hopes to recognize The Cultural Diversity Club at GVSU. His ideas include potentially hosting a dinner that celebrates a specific culture and donating the money that is raised to the club. As far as actually donat-

ing money to international students, Sigma Pi is hosting an event in the month of April called “Pie a Sigma Pi” where GVSU students will donate money to throw a plate of whipped cream in the face of fraternity brother. Last year, this event did not have the turnout Stewart had hoped for, and he plans to spread the word more to the community to make this year different. He is looking to spread the word about all of the upcoming events and connect with anyone who is willing to help. Another event that Sigma Pi annually hosts is called “Stuff the Bus.” The entire chapter participates in this event, which involves the brothers running a food drive using a bus or truck. LOG ON TO: FOR THE FULL ARTICLE

IN MEMORY: The brothers of Sigma Pi pose in front of the blue bridge in Grand Rapids on Nov. 5, 2016, after a 22-kilometer walk to honor fallen soldiers lost to suicide. COURTESY | SIGMA PI’S FACEBOOK PAGE




The Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) announced Tuesday, Feb. 13, that the Grand Valley State women’s 4x400meter relay team and the men’s distance medley relay team were awarded the GLIAC Track Athlete of the Week awards following the seventh weekend of the 2017-18 indoor track and field season. In the the women’s competition, the 4x400-meter relay team was awarded the Women’s GLIAC Track Athlete of the Week honors after they hit an NCAA automatic time and set a new indoor school record of 3:42.38, as they had the best Division II time during the meet. The relay team broke the old record of 3:42.50, which was set by Chant’e Roberts, Rachael Walters, Angela Ritter and Jessica O’Connell last year. The relay team now holds the fastest time in the GLIAC and in Division II. The men’s DMR team earned the Men’s GLIAC Track Athlete of the Week recognition after they hit an automatic time of 9:46.76 in the DMR race en route to a first-place finish during the GVSU Big Meet on Saturday, Feb. 10. The relay team’s time was also a GVSU indoor school record and a Kelly Family Sports Center record as well.The Lakers’ time is now the fastest time in the GLIAC and the second fastest in Division II. The indoor season doesn’t stop for the GVSU track and field teams, as they will next compete in the GVSU Tune-Up event at the Kelly Family Sports Center on Friday, Feb. 16, kicking off events at 2:45 p.m.


Staging an upset GV women’s basketball looks to end Ashland’s 61-game win streak at home BY BRADY MCATAMNEY ASSISTANTSPORTS@LANTHORN.COM



For the second time this season, sophomore Cassidy Boensch was named the GLIAC North Division Player of the Week for her performances during the GVSU women’s basketball team’s victories over Wayne State and Davenport. The announcement was released from the league office Monday, Feb. 12. Boensch nearly recorded her second double-double of the season after scoring 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting while pulling down a game-high nine rebounds to go along with her three assists and two blocks in just 16 minutes during the Lakers’ 71-41 victory over Wayne State on Thursday, Feb. 8. The center then recorded a huge 17-point, nine-rebound, two-steal performance two days later against the Davenport Panthers in a lowscoring 56-47 defensive victory Saturday, Feb. 10. Boensch is now shooting 60 percent on the season, which is the second-highest mark in the GLIAC. In addition, the Au Gres, Michigan, native is averaging 9.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per game while leading the team— in a wide margin—with 38 blocks, which is the tied for the fourth most in the conference, all while averaging just over 17 minutes per game. The Lakers will be back in action later this week with matchups against No. 1 Ashland and Tiffin. The Lakers will host the top-ranked Eagles on Thursday, Feb. 15, at 8 p.m. before a 3 p.m. matchup with Tiffin on Saturday, Feb. 17. Saturday’s game against the Dragons will act as Senior Day for the 2017-18 season as it is the last scheduled regularseason home contest.

VARSITY SCHEDULE MEN’S BASKETBALL Thursday 6 p.m. vs. Ashland Saturday 1 p.m. vs. Tiffin WOMEN’S BASKETBALL Thursday 8 p.m. vs. Ashland Saturday 3 p.m. vs. Tiffin

FLY LIKE AN EAGLE: GVSU senior Korynn Hincka finishes a layup above two Wayne State defenders in the Lakers’ 71-41 victory Thursday, Feb. 8, at the DeltaPlex Arena. GVL | EMILY FRYE

ome might consider it a blessing. Others may see it as a curse. For the Grand Valley State women’s basketball team, it’s an opportunity. On Thursday, Feb. 15, the undefeated and reigning National Champions, the Ashland Eagles (24-0, 16-0 GLIAC), will soar into Allendale riding their historic 61-game winning streak—a count that includes several victories over the Lakers. “I think they’re excited for the challenge,” said GVSU head coach Mike Williams. “I think they have so much respect for Ashland, which I think is a good thing for how hard they play and how well they’re coached. I think they’re just excited to play, and I think from a coaching standpoint, we’ve got to keep that going.” The Eagles possess the best scoring offense in the NCAA with 102.9 points per game, more than 3 points higher than the next highest team. With a victory over the top-ranked team, the Lakers would almost certainly find themselves back in the national rankings and gain some serious traction regionally. “We beat a good team like that and it might have an impact in the regional rankings,” Williams said. “It gives you obviously a belief; our players believe we’re good enough to beat this team. It gives you a belief that if you get a chance to play them again in the tournament that you can beat them.” As far as the players are

concerned, the game that most teams in the country would find nearly unwinnable is no more out of reach than any other matchup GVSU has had this year, even though they lost by 16 to the Eagles in early January. With confidence and belief in themselves and each other, the Lakers are buying into what Williams and associate head coach Phil Sayers are preaching. “Just as long as we go in and we do all the little things right, stay disciplined on what the coaches want us to do on the offensive end and defensive end, I think we can go into it pretty confident, but, at the same time, just be ready to know that it’s going to be a battle,” said center Korynn Hincka. “They press the whole game, so we just have to stay focused on breaking that press and small things like getting the two feet; not making one-handed, crazy passes; and making sure that we actually see a pass before we pass it, see that it’s there. “And then on the defensive end, just staying disciplined and knowing that we have to get back a conversion if we turn the ball over and just all the small little things that need to be done right.” Williams noted that there are “about 15” keys to victory for the Lakers that they have broken down into three key categories: make good decisions with the basketball, stay in front of your player while not allowing them to start moving downhill and own the paint. SEE W. BALL | A8


FINAL STRETCH: GVSU shooting guard Hunter Hale protects the ball while looking for an open man during the Lakers’ narrow loss to the Wayne State Warriors Thursday, Feb. 8, at the DeltaPlex Arena. With the Lakers in seventh place in the GLIAC, GVSU has to finish strong to make the GLIAC Tournament. GVL | EMILY FRYE

Preview: GV men’s basketball to play last regularseason home games against Ashland, Tiffin BY LOUIS RICARD LRICARD@LANTHORN.COM

Some game situations can be controlled or anticipated. In other cases, there is no point in trying to be the smartest one on the court or to draw the best play. It’s about who wants it more. Grand Valley State men’s basketball will have to have that mindset on Thursday, Feb. 15, against Ashland and again Saturday, Feb. 17, against Tiffin. GVSU recently got out of a three-game losing streak that

forced head coach Ric Wesley to make some changes. “I thought in our Wayne State game the energy was a little down,” Wesley said. “I changed the lineup for the Davenport game in a way to maybe get everybody’s attention a little bit more.” Not only did he get the attention of his players, but Wesley saw them bring that intensity and passion they had been lacking in the past, something Zach West illustrated by putting up a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds. “Getting a lineup a little bit of

a shake and making guys wake up like, ‘Oh, I’m not performing like I should or as well as I have been,’ gave everyone a wake-up call that we really need to turn it up,” West said. “I think that everybody took it upon themselves to step up. We have a really good individual play, which brought our team play to another level. That’s what initiated it and what gave us that edge.” This week is different, as GVSU needs to win if they want to advance to the conference tournament. Sitting at 12-12 on the season, the Lakers need to bring

everything they’ve got against GLIAC standout Wendell Davis and his teammates of Ashland. Davis is one of the best players in the conference, averaging 21.1 points a game, over six rebounds and a little over three assists per contest. Wesley knows the key to the game is limiting Davis’ dominance on the court, and it will be no easy task. “Early in his career, he was more of a Draymond Green type of player, big guy who played SEE M. BALL | A8



READY FOR WAR: GVSU senior All-American wrestler Harun Bogdanic prepares to pin his opponent to win the bout during the Lakers’ victory over Davenport Unversity Sunday, Feb. 11, at the Davenport campus. With this being Bogdanic’s final season, he has taken on a new role as the team’s vocal leader, preparing his teammates and the wrestling program for a successful Nationals run. COURTESY | GVSU CLUB SPORTS

‘Unfinished business’ GV wrestling All-American Harun Bogdanic leads team to Nationals run


As this wrestling season is coming to an end, the Grand Valley State club wrestling team is starting to hit its stride at the perfect time. In their final dual meet of the season this past weekend, GVSU came back from being down 15-0 to beat Davenport University 19-18. Victories from Brady Bischer and Brendan DeVries helped fuel the epic comeback, which was completed by senior wrestler Harun Bogdanic. He scored three takedowns, a set of 4 near-fall

points, an escape and an advantage time point to record a major decision victory, giving 4 more total points to GVSU and securing the victory for the Lakers. This is not the first time the wrestling team has looked to Bogdanic to take the lead, as he is seen as the vocal leader during practice, helping his teammates whenever he can. “He’s a pretty vocal guy; he works pretty hard, and he certainly leads by example in a lot of ways,” said coach Rick Bolhuis. “A lot of guys around him really respond to his hard work and energy. He does a great

(Bogdanic) is a pretty vocal guy; he works pretty hard, and he certainly leads by example in a lot of ways. A lot of guys around him really respond to his hard work and energy. RICK BOLHUIS GVSU HEAD WRESTLING COACH

job getting our guys going, and I love that about him.” Bogdanic is a talented wrestler, and he has the hardware to prove it. He is a two-time returning AllAmerican, and he is looking to make a third appearance. Bogdanic and his team have been doing well as this regular season comes to a close. He is not the only returning All-American on the squad, as GVSU’s roster also features Brendan Hazelton, a two-time All-American at 125 pounds, and Nick Reddy, an All-American last year at 133 pounds. “I definitely think we have overachieved this year,” Bogdanic said. “We were nervous going into this season after losing some talented wrestlers who graduated last year, but I thought our guys have really stepped up.” Bogdanic was the 2016 GLC Conference champ at the 235-pound weight class and was runner-up in the conference in 2017. Despite all these accolades, coach Bolhuis still sees a fire in Bogdanic’s eyes that isn’t going out any time soon.

“He’s a great wrestler, and he lost in the finals last year to an opponent he had previously beaten, so he was so close to being a repeat champion,” Bolhuis said. “He’s been on the podium, and he’s been on teams that have won trophies, but I think if you asked him, he’d say he has some unfinished business to take care of.” Bogdanic agreed, as he has been training hard to take back the title he thinks is rightfully his. After dealing with some injury issues early in the year, he feels like he is hitting his stride at the perfect time. “I suffered a high-ankle sprain in the beginning of the year, so adding that on to not wrestling for three or four months was a rough way to start,” Bogdanic said. “But based on the way my past 10 matches have gone, since I got my ankle taken care of, I feel like I’ve been doing really well.” Bogdanic got into wrestling much later than most guys, having never wrestled competitively until his junior year of high school.

He has lots of experience in both judo and wrestling, however, including starting his college career at Davenport University before transferring to GVSU. “Wrestling at DU wasn’t the best place for me, so I reached out to coach Bolhuis here at GVSU,” Bogdanic said. “He was more than happy to have me join the team, so I transferred here, not just to wrestle, but also because GV has a great supply tool management program, which is my major.” With all the success Bogdanic has seen here in his career, it might be justified for him to let the success go to his head. But he is a fairly humble athlete, as evidenced by his favorite wrestling moment here at GVSU being centered around another teammate. “My first year here at GVSU, we upset a really good team in the quarterfinal, and one of my buddies on the team ended up winning the match to secure our win, and our entire bench erupted,” Bogdanic said. “Even though we ended up losing in the finals of that

tourney, I loved that experience because it improved us as wrestlers and brought our team closer together.” In all the matches he has wrestled here in Allendale, Bogdanic has managed to learn a lesson that many men will never learn: patience. “You can’t rush anything,” Bogdanic said. “When it comes to school or the wrestling room, you really got to put your mind on the grind and work hard.” As the regular season of wrestling comes to a close, the Lakers prepare to finetune their skills and get prepared for Nationals. The Lakers will host Nationals this year on Saturday, Feb. 24, at 9 a.m., and Bogdanic and his team are excited and ready to kick some tail. “I think we’re more than ready, especially after our team win over Davenport when we had four people out; our backups stepped up, and we really showed off our depth,” Bogdanic said. “We’ve been working really hard, and I can’t wait to go full throttle at Nationals.”


there was a lot dumped on their shoulders. “You lost six solid senior leaders, and to see the job they did keeping this team together and keeping them believing how good we can be and getting our team to come work as hard as they do every day has been impressive.” For Hincka, the feeling borders on unbelievable heading into what is sure to be an emotional afternoon. “It’s crazy that, like, it’s here,” Hincka said. “You go freshman year, like, ‘Oh man, four years, that’s a long time,’ and then you get to senior night and it’s almost unbelievable that you’ve gotten to this point. I might cry. “Parm and I came in as freshmen and we roomed together. I was a little scared of her at first, but we’ve just become best friends. She’s my best friend. The chemistry that we have on the court and off the court. That’s all I can say is we’re best friends.” Tipoff against Ashland is scheduled for 8 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 15, while the Tiffin game is set for 3 p.m. in the Fieldhouse Arena.


SQUAD: GVSU women’s basketball players Jenn DeBoer (4), Cassidy Boensch (31) and Natalie Koenig (right) all huddle together during a deadball in the Lakers’ 71-41 victory over Wayne State Thursday, Feb. 8, at the DeltaPlex Arena for ‘Downtown Thursday.’ GVL | EMILY FRYE



around the basket,” Wesley said. “As a senior, he looks more like a point guard. He handles the ball a ton. He really improved his 3-point shot.” With this kind of versatility, GVSU will have to be sharp defensively, something they’ve been strug-

gling with this season. In their last game against Ashland, GVSU lost 80-89 in a close contest. The Lakers did not lose because of a poor effort offensively but because of their struggles on the other end of the court. “We just couldn’t get defensive stops, and that’s one of our big issues this year is getting defensive stop,” West said. “Bring-

ing our defensive intensity like we did at Davenport I think is a big thing in these next two games. It will give us that slight advantage as long as we take care of what we need to on the offensive end and shoot the ball.” Although Ashland will give GVSU all kind of trouble, Tiffin is no joke, either. Their record might not show it, but Tiffin has

had close games with most of the top teams in the conference, including a hardfought battle against GVSU. According to West, Tiffin is a team that is not afraid to get dirty to get the win, and GVSU will have to match that intensity on both ends of the floor if they want to come out victorious. Intensity is the key word for this week. The Lakers will be at

While the opportunity to end the Ashland streak is certainly the biggest game for the Lakers this week, it’s not the only major event taking place. On Saturday, Feb. 17, GVSU will host the Tiffin Dragons (8-16, 4-12 GLIAC) and celebrate Senior Day. While this year’s class is only two players—Hincka and forward Taylor Parmley—compared to last year’s six, it is apparent that the pair of post-dominant bigs have enough heart and character for an entire team. “They’re two unbelievably special people, and I think two things about them,” Williams said. “Both of them had to endure season-ending injuries which, and how they bounced back, to me, is really impressive. Just to stay the course and to battle back from an injury, it’s almost like they didn’t even get hurt. Number two, I think to provide the leadership they did having only two people in that senior class,

home for both games, enabling them to rest and be in optimal form to get two wins in a row and seize the chance to enter the GLIAC Tournament. For Wesley, there is no question that his team has the talent to make it. The question is how badly do they want it? “It comes down to toughness and competitiveness,” Wesley said. “You have to compete at a high level.

Sometimes these games are so closely matched, you just throw the scouting reports out the window. It’s just whatever team wants it the most will end up on top.” GVSU will face Ashland on Thursday, Feb. 15, at 6 p.m. and will go against Tiffin on Saturday, Feb. 17, at 1 p.m. Both games will be at the GVSU Fieldhouse Arena.




KEEPING LAKER NATION STRONG: Minutes before the halftime break during the GVSU football Senior Day contest against Tiffin University, this message appeared on the Lubbers Stadium video board to urge fans to stick around for the second half of competition on Nov. 11, 2017. Attendance and participation have been major points of emphasis for GVSU Athletics this entire academic year. GVL | EMILY FRYE

Column: Why don’t GV students have more school spirit?


I grew up a Michigan State fan, and I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t. Sorry, Michigan fans, but you’re just not my type. My fandom was so irrational that I used to get bullied in the third grade because I was the only Spartan in a pack of Wolverine fans. When there was a snowball fight in recess, it was a guarantee that those tosses would be thrown at me a little bit harder when I wore my green and white winter beanie. However, it didn’t bother me at all. In actuality, I loved every second of it. I could take the hate because I knew I was going to be a future Spartan. Did I want to go there for the true love of education and the really expensive piece of paper, otherwise known as a diploma? Hell no. I wanted to be front row for every football and basketball game—with green paint all over my face— cheering for an MSU victory. There was nothing more that I wanted than to be a part of the “Izzone” and say I was proud to be a Spartan during a deep March Madness run. So when I was applying to colleges, MSU was the only one I had ever thought to apply to. But just to be sure, my mother told me to apply to Grand Valley State as a backup plan. Long story short, I didn’t get accepted into MSU. For some of you, this story might be a lot like your own.Thankfully, I’ve realized that GVSU is and has been the perfect place for me to mature and grow into the person I am today. But as a senior, just two months away from walking

across the graduation stage, I’m left reflecting on one aspect that GVSU has seemingly lacked since I came here in 2014: a sense of school spirit within our student body. Whether you agree or not, attending a sporting event may be the best portrayal of school spirit on a college campus. Where else are you going to experience a mass group of people— comprised of multiple races, genders, political affiliations, etc.—putting aside their differences to come together for one common goal? During my time as sports editor of the Lanthorn, I’ve attended at least one game from nearly every varsity program GVSU offers. And each time I’ve been blown away by how talented our student athletes really are. I’ve seen GVSU soccer’s Gabriella Mencotti score 30 goals in one season en route to another deep playoff run, volleyball’s Staci Brower deliver spikes so vicious they made my jaw drop and football quarterback Bart Williams complete pass after pass to wide receivers Brandon Bean and Urston Smith. But what has been a major issue for GVSU Athletics has been the lack of engagement/spirit from “Laker Nation.” Although it’s not fair to compare our school’s spirit to other popular Division I programs, it is fair to compare ourselves to competing schools around us. While our major rival may be Ferris State, the brutal truth is that they have a much more devoted student body to support their athletic programs. The problem is not that there’s a shortage of things to cheer about, as GVSU is arguably one of the best athletic schools in Division II. It’s almost a guarantee that every varsity team will make the postseason and that a few teams will even make a run for a National Championship. But the problem for GVSU Athletics and marketing staff has been understanding the reasoning for the lack of student support of our sporting events. During the football team’s final home game against Tiffin,

a message appeared on the Lubbers Stadium scoreboard—the largest in all of Division II—which read, “Don’t be a fair weather fan. Stay and cheer until the game is over!” Most recently, the GVSU men’s and women’s basketball teams held three basketball “Downtown Thursday” games at the DeltaPlex Arena this season, but the venture has been deemed more disappointing than successful due to the amount of empty seats and lack of fan engagement. The game was even considered a “road game” to some players and faculty. With only two months left until I graduate from GVSU, I have one more goal to accomplish. That goal is to bring more students together to cheer on our Laker athletic programs. I know we have students itching to do the same things students at MSU do at games. Because one day—nobody knows exactly how long it will take—this school will compete in Division I. We need more Laker super fans. We need more screaming from people who aren’t the pep band. But most importantly, there just need to be more people there at the games. The thing is, I don’t want to fully blame the students for this. Just like myself, most students probably didn’t grow up as die-hard Laker fans, compared to MSU and Michigan. With so many students living off campus—either in Allendale or downtown Grand Rapids—or having various jobs, it makes sense that the seats aren’t filled every night. There are many other factors to this dilemma. Whether it’s due to the lack of promotion from GVSU Athletics, poor administrative support of athletic facilities or the fact that we’re not a Division I school, there are many reasons why I’ve seen our school spirit be so low. Here’s where I open it up to you guys. If you have an idea or suggestion for how to improve our school spirit, email us at sports@ or tweet us at @GVLSports.



HITTING HIS MARK: GVSU track and field freshman Justin Scavarda spins around the circle and prepares to launch the shot put in the air during the Lakers’ GVSU Lints Alumni Meet at the Kelly Family Sports Center on Saturday, Jan. 27. Scavarda has caught some attention recently after being nominated for the HERO Sports HERO of the Week after his performance at the Bob Eubanks Open. COURTESY | AL STEIBLE

GV track and field freshman Justin Scavarda dominating to start off the indoor season BY D’ANGELO STARKS DSTARKS@LANTHORN.COM

As a state champion in discus and indoor state champion in shot put as a senior (among other accolades), and having never lost a single meet he competed in his senior year, Grand Valley State redshirt freshman thrower Justin Scavarda certainly didn’t have to worry about losing in high school. Luckily, that trend has continued for him in his first full track season at GVSU. Scavarda has had a very

strong indoor season so far. He was nominated for the HERO Sports HERO of the Week honor after finishing with strong performances at the Bob Eubanks Open in early January. Scavarda finished top two in shot put and weight throw, and those scores led to him being ranked second in the GLIAC in the shot put and eighth in the GLIAC in weight throw. As soon as he came on campus for a visit, Scavarda knew GVSU was the right place for him. “I just felt like I belonged,” Scavarda said. “I went to

other visits and it just felt like you’re a number, but here it was like I mattered and people actually care about how you end up. Coach Denard really thinks that way. He cares about throwing, but he is also always there to talk to whenever you need him.” Scavarda is a person who enjoys getting better every single day more than anything. He loves going to practice with his teammates and building those relationships while also improving and getting ready for future meets. Scavarda had only

been dead set on grinding in the weight room and during practice, so his teammates told him he should add more time to help form bonds with his team, and that has led to him enjoying practices with the team more than anything else. After being so dominant in high school, it would be easy for him to become complacent and try to coast by on former achievements. He realized that college is far different than high school in terms of skills of throwers. “The competition goes

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through the roof—it’s unbelievably different,” Scavarda said. “In high school, I was one of three kids in the state who could throw 60 feet my senior (year). Coming here, if you can throw 60 feet, it’s no big deal. The shot is four pounds heavier than it is in high school, so your distance goes way down and you have to build that back up.” The raised level of competition hasn’t stopped Scavarda from having high expectations for himself moving forward in the season, however.

“My goal is at minimum to take top three at GLIACs, and then I want to be an All-American at Nationals,” he said. “Obviously, if it came down to it, the ultimate goal would be to be National champion and GLIAC champion. Then, in (indoor), start strong, hit my marks to qualify for nationals and try to do the same thing at outdoor.” Scavarda and the rest of the track and field team will be back in action on Friday, Feb. 16, in the GVSU Tune-Up.

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Issue 43, February 15th, 2018 - Grand Valley Lanthorn  

Issue 43, February 15th, 2018 - Grand Valley Lanthorn

Issue 43, February 15th, 2018 - Grand Valley Lanthorn  

Issue 43, February 15th, 2018 - Grand Valley Lanthorn