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THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017

A life worth taking risks for


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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR The Loquitur accepts letters to the editors. They should be less than 500 words, usually in response to a current issue on Cabrini College’s campus or community area and are printed as space permits. Name, phone number and address should be included with submissions for verification purposes. All letters to the editors must be e-mailed to loquitur@


The state of towns in Aleppo while Miray was living in Syria. BY MARISSA ROBERTO & EMILY JANNY Lifestyles Editor & Sports Editor A life living in Syria “We were living in the war. We experienced bombings. We experienced snipers.” Miray is 26-years-old. She was born and raised in Syria. Syria was her home, her country but now a war zone. The Syrian Civil War started in March 2011 when anti-government peaceful protests turned violent due to government forces fighting back. “We heard everyday of one of our neighbors, our relatives, who passed away from the bombings. The hardest part is when you hear about one of the neighbors or friends that got killed and to us you feel shocked and do not know how to react.” More than 400,000 Syrians have died during these six years and over six million Syrians are displaced and more than 13 million are in need of aid in the country. “When there was bombings by our house, we always thought that this was the last time for the bombings. That they will be no longer. This was the hope that we had. We believed it but it was not true.” Miray was worried. Worried for her life. Worried for her family and friends’ lives. “You reach the point of ‘do I have feelings anymore?’ It was confusing and very sad. You were thinking ‘when will my turn be or will i survive,’” she said. “In 2014, the war hit a new level where I realized that I can’t live there anymore, that I can’t stand living without access to food, water and electricity. What was threatening us is life instinct. Our hope was to go somewhere else.” She is not the only one who felt they needed to flee. It is estimated that 11 million Syrians fled their homes since the start of the war. “I did not expect that I would be living outside of Syria in my entire life. My life plan was to find a good job in Syria and stay with my friends and family.” Leaving their family behind “It wasn’t an exact moment when I decided that it was no longer safe for me and that I wanted to travel. It built up gradually. And every time I made the decision that I wanted to leave, I went back and I changed my mind.” She hesitated a lot. She contemplated if leaving was really worth it. If leaving her job as a school teacher was worth it. If leaving her family was worth it. “Every time there was a bombing near the house, that always changed my decision and pushed me toward the traveling,” she said. In 2014, Miray could not take living in Syria anymore. She could no longer deal with having limited access to food and water and living without electricity. After a lot of thinking, Miray turned to her family to try to find a way to leave. At the time, her brothers were living in Turkey working and asked them for help trying to find a job outside of Syria. “I asked my brother how I can travel outside of Syria. He connected me with someone who was a manager in Cardiff for a Turkish organization. I did my interview and I traveled to Turkey in November

2014.” Many Syrians who decide to leave their homes, escape to Turkey, Jordan or Lebanon, which border Syria. According to the UNHCR, there are approximately 3 million registered Syrian refugees living in Turkey. Miray enjoyed her job in Turkey. She was able to work with Syrian refugee children and gained a lot of experience working with children. But this was only for a short time. “After a while in Turkey, I started thinking of leaving the country because my job was temporary and not permanent and because I did not have my human rights in Turkey. I started asking my friends, family and everybody I knew how i can travel to a place I can stay for long term because I do not want to keep traveling.” Miray expressed her feelings to her family. They discussed numerous scenarios but only one was reoccurring. They found that the only way she could leave Turkey was through hiring and paying a smuggler to take her to Europe so she can bring normality back to her life. “We were able to find someone, a smuggler, through people and connections.” Her family was not comfortable with the idea of Miray going on this journey by herself. Miray’s mother, Micheline, felt that it was best that she went with her daughter and that they embark on this journey together. “I could have stayed in Turkey with my sons. We had a nice apartment, and we were in a good city with a nice lifestyle,” Micheline said. “I could not leave Miray to go by herself because I know that this was very risky and I needed to be there for her if anything happened or were to happen, it would happen to both of us and not just Miray. This my motherly instinct to protect my kids.” There was hesitation. They questioned if they picked the right man to trust to take them to Greece. If this even was the right decision to make to leave everything they know behind. “We went back and forth a millions time before we made this decision because we hesitated to trust this smuggler because he was dishonest. We were contemplating if I should stay in Turkey or go somewhere and take this risk. My mom and I were thinking together and decided to go with this guy.” The UNHCR found that approximately 158,456 refugees and migrants crossed the Mediterranean sea in 2015 and arrived in Greece. Miray and Micheline started to then prepare for their journey. Though they had their doubts, they continued to prepare. “I believed I was putting my life in jeopardy and I came to the conclusion that I will survive 50 percent if I took a 50 percent risk. I knew I might die but I took this risk.” Trusting a smuggler “He looked weird. He did not even smile. It was very dark, completely dark.” Miray and Micheline met their smuggler and began their journey to Greece. The smuggler told them before they left that they had to leave everything they packed behind and only bring their passports. “He was asking us before we left the apartment to not take anything with us, not even a bag or something. We went to the smuggler’s car and there were two others with us. We did ask him a couple

THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017



r: The journey of 2 Syrian refugees

of times ‘when do you think we will arrive to the island in Greece, an estimated time,’ or ‘how much time does it take for the boat to get there.’ He did not answer. He looked at us like ‘shut up.’ That was at 1 a.m.q.” In the dead of night, the smuggler drove them to an unknown destination. It was a long drive before they stopped. “He asked us to get out of the car and to walk down to the road and sit and not say anything. He yelled at us saying, ‘You guy are not allowed to talk. Just go down and sit.’ So we went down, sat and held each other’s hands.” Miray and Micheline have never been more scared. “It was the four us and we were thinking, ‘If he had the gun, he could have killed us and no one would have noticed because there was no phone service.’ We were so scared.” 30 minutes. 30 minutes of darkness. PHOTO SUBMITTED BY MIRAY 30 minutes of not having the right to talk. 30 minutes of sitting in silence, holding each other When Miray and Micheline arrived at the Red Cross, this is where they slept. and wondering if they will make it to the next day. “Other people started to come to the same area. We Miray and Micheline were the only women on the They arrived far from it. saw that two boats were coming from far away. After a boat. “He asked us to jump in. The water level was up to our half an hour, he showed up with a black plastic bag with The wind picked up. The water was rough. It was freez- necks. He was telling us that you guys should be strong four life safety jackets.” ing. They had no coats. enough and swim until you get to the beach.” Miray and Micheline hesitated. Miray’s brother had They had nothing to hold onto to stop them from The rocky water was freezing to swim through. already provided them with two new safety jackets that falling in. If they fell in, they had torn life jackets to try to Everyone on the boat had their phones and passports they planned to use. Even though they already had new keep them afloat. with them. They knew their possessions could not get ones, the smuggler did not let Miray and Micheline use The only option was to hold onto each other. wet. If they were to get wet, they would be useless. This them. They were petrified. would have meant that the journey across treacherous “He gave us bad quality ones. It was now just me, my Micheline had been wearing a scarf throughout the sea would have been pointless. mother and our passports.” journey. She took the scarf off her head and wrapped it All of the passengers dedicated one of their hands to around Miray and herself. The scarf prevented them from hold onto their passports and phones and the other hand Crossing the Sea seeing what was going on around them. to swim. Miray and Micheline watched as the boats headed “The scarf held us together as one person. It was very Their journey to land had begun. toward them. Miray looked at her mother in disbelief. The possible for one of us to fall down but thank god my mom boats approaching were not the boats they were promhad the scarf because she was able to hold us.” Lives in Danger ised. For an hour and a half the scarf was covering their “We arrived to the beach, to the land and walked two She turned to her mother and said,”I think we should faces. hours. We were so wet. Our clothes and our boots were turn back. This isn’t safe.” Micheline then took the scarf off because she realized so wet.” The boat that showed up was too small for them. It was they were in a safer part of the sea. Miray and Micheline had no change of clothes. not safe. It could hold up to four people safely. The boat “We were curious to see how much time was left for Had no food or water. they were promised was supposed to be one of better us to get to the island, so we took off the scarf to see what It was just them and the other passengers. Walking, quality. was going on around us.” following the instructions the smuggler gave them. They were lied to. They both started not to feel scared anymore. As their walk drew on, they heard strange noises. Dogs The smuggler was so mean to them. Once the scarf came off, the smuggler kept shouting barking and wolves howling were the most prominent. ”We should consider not going and heading back,” there was 30 minutes left of the boat ride. The smuggler They were becoming scared. Scared because there was no Miray had told her mother. then started listing a set of directions for everyone to sign of the Red Cross anywhere. Fear flooded Miray and Micheline’s bodies. follow. “After two hours, [we felt] he lied to us again because The smuggler gave them assigned seats. Miray and her “After 30 minutes, I will ask everyone to walk straight there was no Red Cross or anything. We walked an extra mother were assigned to sit on top of the boat. The rest of until you see the Red Cross. Just walk straight the whole two hours. In total, we walked for four hours and we were the passengers sat on the back of the boat. way.” very very wet and did not see anybody until we saw a “The top of the boat was more dangerous because Once the 30 minutes were up they arrived but they small cafe shop.” it was windier. We could have fallen but there was no were confused. They were so happy they found a place where they choice for us. He said,‘You guys sit here.’ We had to listen The smuggler told them they were to arrive on the could stop and ask for help. to him.” beach. They did not arrive any where near the beach. “We went in and asked for water because we were so thirsty. We asked for the toilet too because we needed to go to the bathroom. The people there gave us some water and wifi and then they kicked us out because we were so dirty and we did not speak their language.” Miray and Micheline realized that they were not welcomed there. They had no rights in Greece. No rights at all. They realized they needed to continue on to find the Red Cross. “We were able to find a police office by the cafe. We went there and introduced ourselves by saying we are refugees, we are Syrian. They asked us to present our passports while they took pictures of us and asked some questions. They then took us in a car, a car for livestock not for people, to the Red Cross.” The Red Cross is stationed all over the world in order to provide aid to the most vulnerable. In Greece, they are working to assist more than 60,000 Syrian refugees in camps. “The Red Cross gave us food baskets because we were so hungry and gave us water. They took us to a big room with plenty of beds and were saying that we could now rest and sleep here there. [They also said] that we should now stay there [because] we do not have the right to go until they assign us to move to the next step.” CONTINUE READING ONLINE


Refugees travel the sea in crowded rubber boats praying that they survive the journey




THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017

‘I have one grasshopper but I will b A resilient country – Madagascar BY MOLLY SEAMAN & MARISSA ROBERTO Managing Editor & Lifestyles Editor “I do not know about all of you but 10 years ago, my image of Madagascar was the movie. I love that movie, it has great music. But then I got to know a lot about Madagascar through my work with CRS and with Josh [Country Representative for CRS in Madagascar]. It is a country with great richness but also a country with of great challenges too,” Maureen McCullough, regional director for Catholic Relief Services Northeast/Mid-Atlantic regional office. Recently, a humanitarian with a heart the size of Africa visited the Main Line. Josh Poole, the country representative for Catholic Relief Services in Madagascar, grew up in Ohio and was looking for an education of the heart all his own. “I knew I wanted to travel and experience overseas. As soon as I graduated from university, I joined the Peace Corps. You do not really choose where you want to go in the Peace Corps. I got the letter and it said ‘Kyrgyzstan.’ Probably like many of you, I had to get out the map and see where it was,” Poole said. “A few weeks before I was set to deploy, there was a civil war in Kyrgyzstan. So, we were unable to go. But they said, we have another group and they are about to go to Madagascar. Since you know French, you can go in that group. Like so many things in our lives, fate pushed me to Madagascar.” Madagascar is located off the southeast coast of Africa. Known as the “Big Red Island,” it is home to 24 million Malagasy people and roughly the size of Texas. Madagascar is the fourth largest island in the world. According to Poole, Madagascar is one of the poorest countries in the world that is not affected by conflict. Much of this is being directly caused by the effects of climate change on the island and severely damaging the very basic and vital resources that human beings and the Malagasy people need to survive.

Drought and Effects on Agriculture In recent years, Madagascar’s climate has changed rapidly. For years there has not been a decent rain, and severe droughts have taken place especially in the deep South where there are now desert-like conditions. “The rain patterns are shifting,” Poole said. “There have been cyclical droughts for many years. Previously you might have had two to three months of lean season as we would call it; now that lean season lasts all year round.” Now dried into small puddles, this river previously was one of the largest and most thriving in the south 15 years ago. “Now you see people trying to dig individual holes about two to four meters down so they can get a little bit of water. Enough to fill a jug or two.Then they walk 20 to 25 kilometers (12-15 miles) back to their village,” Poole said. Crops that used to grow in certain seasons do not grow any longer. The ground is dry. Crops do not grow. Food is scarce. The only thing that has been growing continuously in Madagascar is cactus. “They used to survive off of red cactus fruit,” Poole said. “However, now they have taken all of the cactus fruit. So all of the fruit is gone. There is nothing left now, so they have resorted to eating the cactus leaves.” “They pluck off the cactus and remove the prickers. Sometimes they cook it if they have water but other times they just eat the cactus raw,” Poole said. (Recently, New York Times reporter Nick Kristof featured the effects of climate change in a short video.) Poole explained that if CRS and other organizations were not in those areas providing food and resources, the Malagasy people would only have cactus to eat. “Even if you give them the seeds and they plant them they’re not going to grow. You need rain,” Poole said. “We had a few drip irrigation systems that we put in so that we could irrigate


Last month, Cyclone Enawo struck Madagascar’s coast. some fields. However, that is a small scale solution for a larger problem.” The Cyclone Last month, Cyclone Enawo struck Madagascar’s northeastern coast and displaced more than 10,000 people. This major storm received only a 30-second segment on CNN. “We were fortunate to have a large USAID-funded project in one of the affected areas and have been responding with immediate food assistance as well as WASH Kits [Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene], Protection Kits (for pregnant women, children and handicap) and Education Kits,” Poole said. After the storm hit, Poole and his team traveled around the island to meet with the villagers in order to discover their immediate needs. According to Poole, what he heard from the people was “thank you, CRS, for

distributing the [emergency] kits but what we need is a house. Our house is gone.” Poole then challenged the CRS team to change their approach a bit. “We now have an approach called B.B.B. or build back better,” Poole said. “As a team and an agency we pride ourselves in rolling up our sleeves and not saying ‘here, do this’ but ‘hey let’s do this together. How about you call some of your neighbors and we will create a little group and just do one at a time.’ Everybody helps each other. This type of support, people will never forget.” However, the cyclone not only destroyed the people’s shelters and homes, it also obliterated one of their main exports and crops, vanilla.


The deserts in Madagascar are drying up due to the cyclical droughts.

THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017



break it in half and give you half’:

Madagascar citizens have been forced to start eating cactus for sustenance. 80 percent of the world’s vanilla comes from Madagascar. More specifically, the area that was first hit by the cyclone produces 50 percent of the island’s crop. “If any of you are bakers, you know that vanilla extract is quite expensive. A tiny little bottle is about eight to 10 dollars. Now it is going to be a little bit more expensive. In four to five months when that crop is supposed to come due, there could be some international vanilla shortages,” Poole said. Lack of Food More than 50 percent of all households in Madagascar can be classified as food insecure, and 90 percent of the country’s population lives on less than $2 a day. “There is a white rock that has some calcium in it and when the folks get really really hungry they scrape off some of this white rock and make a white porridge out of it. It’s very chalky, it does not taste good and they do not really have any other options,” Poole said. “They really just eat it to feel full. It has a little calcium in it but other than that it’s not doing anything but filling them up.” According to Poole, the malnutrition in the country really hits to the “why” CRS is present in Madagascar. “We are there because we want to try and fill a need. We want to help bridge the gap in the lean season. Otherwise, these children are in jeopardy. There were kids dying in the past year from starvation,” Poole said. Culturally in Madagascar, malnutrition is defined as being very taboo. Understandably, parents and grandparents are ashamed if they have a child that dies from starvation. “If I went to the government office and said ‘how many children have died from starvation they would say zero,’” Poole said. “From our ties in the community, our ties to the church, our network of sisters [in Madagascar] that are amazing and doing some really great work we know informally that dozens of kids have passed. The families wait until the middle of the night and bury them then because they don’t want people to see.” To help fight malnutrition, Poole and his team work with the community and invite members to come together each day to cook food and distribute it to people in need. “Cooking in the house can be a burden,” Poole said. “You have to go out and get water and many of them have sold off their pots and pans, which is something that happens when they get desperate. They’re a little bit em-

barrassed and ashamed if we give them dry food to say to say ‘I do not have a way to cook this.’ However, they’re very very happy to come and work with the sisters to get that hot meal each day.” Access to Education “Kids are having to walk 10, 12 and 15 kilometers (six to nine miles) to get to school,” Poole said. Education is available to many of the Malagasy children. But some find the long walks to be too difficult and that they feel they are unable to make the journey there. “There are not any water sources along the way so it is quite difficult for them. When they get to the school, there are no school meals present,” Poole said. Many children stay home and help their families in the fields or with other chores that may need to be completed that day. “As a parent, if you had to ask yourself ‘do I want my child to go work in the field today because we are hungry or am I going to send them to school?’ That is a tough decision especially if you are not confident if the quality of education is going to benefit you and your family and your children down the road,” Poole said. Money from the U.S. McGovern-Dole Food For Education Program is used to help feed children in desperate conditions around the world. “This is a program that helps feed school-aged children, helps us screen them for assistive devices like hearing aids, wheel chairs, glasses and it also helps us to make sure the kids are getting a quality education,” Poole said. “It is not enough anymore to give a kid a school lunch. That gets them in the chair. But what we really need to look at is when we get them in the chair, are they getting something that they are able to use? Are they learning how to read? Are they building up the skills that they are going to need?” Poole said. Wanting to strengthen the education system in Madagascar, CRS had recently applied for money from the McGovern-Dole Program. “That will help us to work with the ministry of education to help improve the skills of the teachers. If you are going to walk 15 kilometers to get to school, I hope that it is worth it,” Poole said. According to Poole, more than 50 percent of the population is under 25-years-old. The younger Malagasy people tend to flee the rural areas to the urban areas in searching for a way to make a living so they can have access to resources. “I was making a visit the other week to the capital and there was a neighborhood that was basically a garbage


dump. People are living there and have made structures inside of the garbage dump. I was really struck with that picture of poverty in an urban setting versus in a rural setting,” Poole said. Poole and CRS are looking into many different programs that deal with trying to keep the youth in their homes instead of traveling to the overcrowded urban areas. They are looking at many programs that deal with agriculture and schooling. “I really want to do some small projects in the urban settings now. Just with clean water and access to education and school materials. A small amount can really make a big difference,” Poole said. Faith and Hope If crops are not able to grow because of lack of rain, provisions are not able to be provided to the people because of cuts to the budget and children are eating cactus, what comes next? “Security is a priority as it should be. If we stop funding at the levels we are currently funding, it is going to destabilize not just Madagascar but many other regions. You have got uneducated populations that are desperate that do not have enough food that are going to be driven to do things to provide for their families. They have nothing to lose,” Poole said. In the short term cutting the budget might save a little bit of money but a few years down the road we are going to have some serious security issues. “What would you do to provide for our family?” Poole said. “I know that I would do anything for my children.” “Sustainability is something that is a key point for the donors. There is a point where you have to say ‘these food distributions are not sustainable’ but we need them right now to get them through this period.” According to Poole, some of the Malagasy people are not traditionally fisherman. However, due to their close proximity to the ocean many have learned to fish to provide food for their families as an alternative. “There is a Malagasy saying, ‘Valala iray ifanapahana.’ It means ‘I have one grasshopper but I will break it in half and give you half.’ That is the spirit of the Malagasy people. They may have nothing but whatever that nothing they have they are willing to share that,” Poole said. “You can see it their eyes. You can see in their face. They have hope.” MOLLY.P.SEAMEN@GMAIL.COM MARISSANROBERTO@GMAIL.COM



THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017

The harsh realities of suicide BY ANNA LAQUINTANO Lifestyles Editor Attention: If you or anyone you know is suicidal, please call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

On March 31, Netflix released a new series ‘13 Reasons Why.’ This series is based on the book by Jay Asher. The series tells a story of a girl, Hannah Baker, who has committed suicide. She leaves behind tapes of 13 reasons why she decided to end her life. Each side of the tape is one reason why. The tapes land in the hands of Clay Jenson, a friend of Hannah’s. As he goes through the tapes, he tries to understand why Hannah chose to end her life.The series also covers the topics of sexual assault and rape. Since the release of this Netflix series, the topic of suicide has been in the air. Many news sources as well as mental health organizations think that ‘13 Reasons Why’ could have a negative effect on those who watch. The National Association of School Psychologists reports, “”Research shows that exposure to another person’s suicide, or to graphic or sensationalized accounts of death, can be one of the many risk factors that youth struggling with mental health conditions cite as a reason they contemplate or attempt suicide,” According to the National Institute of Mental Health, suicide was the third leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 14 and the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 15 and 34. The survivor: Mackenzie Harris is one person who has been struggling since an early age. “Look what is happening in our world right now. Look at all of the discrimination, pain, hate, need for any ounce of empathy – it may be hard to find a place where there isn’t heartbreak,” Harris said. “Watching this as a someone who has had her fair share of traumatic childhood experiences, has chronic depression and a severe anxiety disorder, I was so appalled by the representation of the very struggle I went through,” she said. “All I can think of is how it affects all the people who have no support systems.” Watching ‘13 Reasons Why’ could be triggering to some people. “Hannah’s suffering is one story of bil-

lions who share something in common and the entire time while watching the show all I could feel is even more incredibly alone. I watched the show for my past self, to I guess prove that I was stronger and I am, but in one word I was saddened,” Harris said. “Everyone is different, especially in different cultures outside of the United States, and my story isn’t identical to anyone else’s story, but I felt that emptiness down my high school walls and I know the need to feel anything except emptiness,” Harris said. “I hope those who are currently triggered from this show do have the necessary safe spaces or have the national hotline for suicide saved on their phone.” “There are people not just in our nation but around our world that do not have the structures of an emotional support program at their school to talk about life, or caring parents to recognize signs, there are people who you would never even suspect a thing was wrong and the next day they could be gone. But no one wants to talk about that.” “I guess what I’m trying to say is that I really wanted this show to be bigger than it was,” she said. “I wanted to prove to myself that I could handle watching it and honestly it just made me more triggered and concerned for the people I love and know who have struggled with their own painful past.” The mourner: April Donahue is a nurse working in Boston, Mass. “A coworker of mine who I also went to nursing school with took her own life less than one month after moving to California. The job she had set up fell through but she


was staying with friends and appeared to be enjoying Cali (as evidenced by Facebook pics),” While telling the story of her co-worker’s death, she reflects upon her own experiences with mental health. “In my past as a much younger person, I struggled with depression to the point that I had suicidal thoughts. Luckily, I had the right amount of support in my life as an adolescent, even though no one was aware of how bad I was (because I was always the overachiever who was happy and ‘fine’) that it never escalated to a plan or attempt and as an adult I’ve been able to address the issues of my past and continue the healing process,” April said. “For my coworker, she presented as the always happy overachiever, but I didn’t see that in her as compensation for depression,” “As a group of nurses and Healthcare providers, I think we all had a hard time reconciling that we didn’t see our friend/ colleague in pain. And then of course, the idea that her move could have all been part of her plan, perhaps a reason to have a ‘goodbye’ party before she moved. But

then you realize, you can’t make sense of when or why she decided...and it’s doesn’t actually matter,” Donahue said. After losing a loved one, friend or colleague to suicide, there are many different emotions and behaviors you could be facing. Some include: the need to understand, guilt, responsibility, rejection, perceived abandonment, and anger. “I think it’s important to identify and discuss triggers to the extent the affected person is comfortable. Sharing stories and giving people non-judgmental space to listen or speak is vital,” “The more that can be done to reduce stigma around mental illness and focusing on the spectrum of mental health for all people within the community...realizing that some mental health issues produce some of the most mentally resilient and resourceful people...focus on both strengths and challenges...helps open the conversation.” CONTINUE READING ONLINE






Seniors fear they may be forced to live off campus because of housing crunch BY CECELIA HECKMAN & MARISSA ROBERTO Editor-In-Chief & Lifestyles Editor Recently announced changes to the housing process for Cabrini students have left many concerned about their chances of living on campus or if they will now have to relocate and find their own off-campus housing before the fall semester begins. This is the time when students are typically thinking, “Who will I live with? What residence hall should we choose? Who gets the single room? How will we rearrange the furniture?” But this year, those questions turned into confusion because of new housing changes that quite literally flipped the process upside-down. With changes to the selection process and a substantially growing student body, students are now instead working to figure out if they will still have the chance to live on campus next year and if they can afford the off-campus living situation if not. “It will be a continued problem because the class sizes are getting bigger, which isn’t the worst problem to have. But at the same time, as a small school there’s only so many places you can put these people so Cabrini has to do something about it,” Brandon Weaver, a junior marketing major, said. Students are angry and afraid In order to try to fit as many people as possible in the campus residence halls, the Resident Life department decided it was time for some changes in the housing selection process. “As we are progressing with our larger classes it is just time now to change our system,” Sue Kramer, director of Residence Life, said. One of the most debated thus far by the students was the flip in housing selection times. Traditionally housing was first chosen by the seniors, then juniors and then sophomores. However, that process is now being reversed. The first to choose will be the upcoming sophomores, then the juniors and so forth. With the thought that it may come to the point where some students could not be guaranteed housing for the following year, it was decided that this process would be the best way to fairly be sure the younger and newer students could definitely have a place on campus. “Philosophically, if we did run out of housing, seniors would be ready to move off campus,” Kramer said. “But our goal is to house everybody and it has always been to house everybody. But if we would run out of housing, seniors developmentally are ready to move off-campus over a sophomore at 19. So we reversed it, that is why.” Some students have not been happy with this decision, though many do see why it would have to come to this. “I understand why they would say that but at the same time I still think if I want to as a senior I should still have the option to live on campus, whereas I feel like it’s just they’re just nudging us off campus at this point,” Weaver said. Many students are even worried about the logistics of what they would have to do in the future if they were not able to get the housing on campus that they were hoping for. They fear that looking for alternative housing options off-campus are unrealistic at this point. “In other schools you see that there’s [more] options whereas we’re on the Main Line so it’s really not realistic to find housing over here so it’s a little harder,” Weaver said. Junior psychology major Emely Gutierrez left her home of California to come to school at Cabrini. Since day one, she was never worried about not having an option for housing. But now, she is worried that she may struggle. “I’ve never had to worry about this and suddenly I am going into my final year and I’m told two months before the school year is over that I’m not guaranteed housing,” Gutierrez said. “I know it’s common at a big school, but the students are told that from the beginning that they only have so many years of guaranteed housing. It’s definitely asking for some major flexibility from the upperclassmen and their families.” These nerves are not unwarranted, especially with the location of Cabrini’s campus in a wealthier area. According to Salary Expert, the cost of living in Radnor, Pa., is 16.4 percent higher than the national average. Main Line Student Rental, an apartment community located in the Wayne, Pa. area, works to provide off-campus, reasonably priced housing for students. Howev-


er, their costs can range anywhere from $525 to $4500 per month depending on the apartment type. Similarly, Cabrini’s website offers suggestions for local off-campus housing options that also start off with pricing around $500 a month. “When the day comes to pick housing, if I don’t have a place [to live], I don’t really know what I’m going to do. I’ll have to look for a place, find the means financially, all while working, keeping up with classes and keeping all my roommates’ needs in mind as well,” Gutierrez said. Cabrini’s enrollment is still growing Over the last few years, Cabrini’s enrollment has been continually increasing, unlike many other similar local schools. While this is a positive for the school as a whole, it also leads to necessary changes based on the greater need for space for all of these larger classes. Each year, the department of Residence Life reevaluates where the campus is at in terms of fitting the students into the residence halls, then run the information by Dr. George Stroud, the assistant vice president of student life/ dean of students. “We evaluate what we are doing, where we are going, how many beds we are going to allocate for each class and for each building,” Kramer said. “Our goal is always to house as many students as possible.” This past school year, 61.5 percent of undergraduate students live on campus. This is around the typical yearly amount who live on campus, which according to Cabrini’s website tends to be around 60 percent. This past year, the incoming freshman class for Cabrini was far larger than recent classes. Currently their body of 446 students accounts for 30 percent of the entire under-

graduate population. Next year, if the incoming class is exactly the same as it is currently, there will be 1,638 total undergraduate students on campus. With this growing student body in mind, only a small increase in the incoming class could create an overflow of the number of students who want to live on campus versus the number of beds that are available. For example, if just two percent more of the current undergraduate students decided to live on campus rather than commute, there would not be enough beds within campus housing for every person. If Cabrini had accepted roughly 200 more students for this current 2016-2017 school year, and the typical 61.5 percent wished to live on campus, the same problem would occur. Realistically, the odds of this happening in the upcoming years are not too far out of reach. Bob Reese, the vice president of Enrollment Management, confirmed that the incoming class size is expected to be just as large as last year, though of course there are many variables that could still come into play to affect this. Factor in also that Cabrini just held its largest Accepted Student Day in recent history, and this year hired a new admissions counselor solely dedicated to recruiting transfer students, there is a reasonable chance that enrollment will be not only matching but increasing when compared to this past year’s incoming class. CONTINUE READING ONLINE CECELIAHECKMAN@GMAIL.COM MARISSANROBERTO@GMAIL.COM



THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2017


Dunbar was always very engaging with his students.

The love for deceased Cabrini professor still felt one year after his sudden death BY CAITLYN HUEBNER Web Editor Every person who was fortunate enough to have an interaction with Dunbar can agree his passion and motivation made him a unique gem among the Cabrini community. “I can say that he brought such an energy and enthusiasm to the class that really just set the tone for the semester,” Harrison said. “He just had a way that captured [the energy] that was so unique and it really could be multiplied and felt among all the students. That’s something that really truly will be missed here in the science department.” Harrison and Dunbar spent a lot of time together through a grant received from HHMI. Harrison shared her memory from the first time she and Dunbar traveled to Maryland, the headquarters for HHMI. They decided to take the Amtrak train, seeing as both were not overly confident in directions. They both thought they had planned well enough because they knew they would have to get off the train and go directly to a meeting. However, they did not plan as well as they thought. “We thought we knew which stop we wanted to get off on and we misjudged it,” Harrison said. “We got off too early, but Dr. Dunbar is like, ‘We can just walk,’ and I go, ‘Okay!’ We thought it was just a matter of a few blocks. Here, it was like two miles.” Harrison went on saying the two continued walking in DC traffic, wearing suits and high heels, for Harrison, carrying all of their suitcases. Harrison remembers Dunbar grabbing all of her bags so she would not have to struggle as much. “I can remember many times that we were traveling to a conference or to some type of HHMI-related activity and we would get lost,” Harrison said. “One time we almost ran out of gas because [Dunbar] misjudged how empty he could go with his gas tank.” Terlecki and Dunbar had spent a lot of time together through their work with Crabby Creek, interdisciplinary community-based research, SEPCHE conferences and the Special Olympics. “He was like a big kid,” Terlecki said. “He had a big heart and was super smart, but super sensitive. He was so funny and so motivated. He really, to use his terminology, would love to get students jazzed up about things.” Dunbar was not only motivated to help those students in the science department. According to Harrison, he was extremely passionate about getting everyone involved on campus. “He would sometimes take on students in other disci-

plines. Not all the time, but sometimes if the project was appropriate enough,” Harrison said. “He would try to teach students in other disciplines about science or bring in another discipline to science. He wanted to get as many people involved as he could.” While Gingerich did not work as closely with Dunbar as either Harrison or Terlecki, he still was close with Dunbar. “David was in incredible colleague and good friend,” Gingerich said. “What I will always remember about him, though, is how much his students loved and appreciated him because they knew how committed he was to their success and their learning.” Memorialized The decision to create a memorial for Dunbar was an extremely simple task. “We wanted to honor Dr. Dunbar with a memorial, so we started with his passions,” Brian Eury, chief of staff and vice-president of external relations, said. “His students, science and the environment were some of the attributes that stood out among many.” One of the hardest decisions, when it came to this memorial, was deciding on the location. “We wanted to find a location and create a space that honored his commitment to the outdoors and to a sustainable environment,” Gingerish said. “We initially thought that we might create that space down the hill by Emmaus House, but when we realized that we could create the space in front of the Iadarola building, we felt it would be most appropriate to have it in front of the science building where everyone can see it more often and spend time there.” Harrison particularly enjoys the location for the memorial. Seeing as Dunbar was an avid fisherman, he loved

being able to escape from the daily stress life often threw at him. Fishing for him, according to Harrison, was his therapeutic escape. She sees this memorial benefiting students in a similar way that fishing benefited Dunbar. “It’s a nice place to sit and reflect and to just have a little bit of calm in an otherwise maybe busy and hectic day. I think David would like that,” Harrison said. She added that this memorial will be a constant reminder of the time they spent together. “I walk across the atrium here [in Iadarola] all the time, multiple times on a daily basis,” Harrison said. “I can look and see it and think about him and the thoughtfulness that was put into choosing a location and actually the design as well.” Eury has been managing the construction site of this memorial. After deciding the location for the memorial, the next step was to decide the aesthetic of the design. “We felt reusing or repurposing existing areas would be in alignment,” Eury said. “We felt the area outside of Iadarola was ideal.” Gingerich further added to this statement. “The best part of it is that Dr. Dunbar’s former lab looks directly onto that spot.” Local landscape architect Maria Baird, who has previously worked with Cabrini, is the creator of the design. Eury shared that Baird toyed with the best inspiration for this memorial. According to Eury, Baird continued returning to Fibonacci, a mathematician whose work is often associated with natural forms, and Karl Blossfeld, a photographer from the 1800s. CONTINUE READING ONLINE CAITLYN.HUEBNER0820@GMAIL.COM

A memorial site for Dr. Dunbar will be located outside of the Iadarola Center.


May 11, 2017 issue 09 Loquitur  

2016-17 issue 09 Loquitur Cabrini University student newspaper, Radnor, PA 19087 May 11, 2017