H1N1 vaccine coming to MCCC
Middle College opens
Monroe County Community College
September 24, 2009
Vol. 53, Issue 2
Bill would allow guns on campuses Danny Shaw Staff
A recently introduced Senate bill could allow college students, staff and faculty in Michigan to carry a concealed weapon onto campuses and into classrooms. Senate Bill 747, proposed by Sen. Randy Richardville, R- Monroe, would eliminate Michigan college campuses and dormitories from the exemption list of premises where concealed weapons are not allowed. MCCC president, Dr. David Nixon, has taken an official stance against the bill. “It’s absurd; there is opposition to this everywhere,” said Nixon. “It is an issue of appropriateness of having guns on a safe and secure campus.” Richardville told The Agora the bill is intended to allow people to protect themselves with firearms in an area that has become a target of violence.
“It’s absurd; there is opposition to this everywhere. It is an issue of appropriateness of having guns on a safe and secure campus.”
Dr. David Nixon MCCC President
“Because these are zones where people cannot protect themselves under their Second Amendment constitutional right,
it paints targets on some of those people as easier prey than other places in the community, where people can protect themselves,” he said. According to Monroe County’s Web site, at least eight hours of instruction, including three hours in the firing range with an official state-certified trainer, is the required training to obtain a concealed weapons permit. “They can’t have a criminal background, and they have to go through the training, pass the tests, show themselves to be proficient to a certified trainer in at least a one-day, or in some cases, a multiple-day testing period,” Richardville said. Richardville said he thinks the eight hour course is plenty for someone to be qualified to carry a weapon in self-defense on a college campus. “Those who receive the training and are authorized to carry concealed weapons
should be allowed to protect themselves. One of the few places you cannot protect yourself is on college campuses,” he said. “We are just taking away the exemption that says you’re not allowed to.” MCCC student and army veteran, Jimmy Frye, Jr. agrees with Richardville’s proposed bill. “We are a country where it is your right to bear arms. I believe you should have that right to bear arms anywhere and everywhere,” Frye said. Cherilea Morton, adjunct professor of graphic design at MCCC, is an advocate of the Second Amendment, but feels it’s taken too far with the bill. “I think it’s wrong. Guns just don’t belong on a campus,” she said. “Are they for protection? Yes, but at a certain point leave that protection up to the people who are hired to do it.” Morton also thinks the ability to carry a firearm on campus would lead to issues
where students, and even professors, could access those firearms too easily in high stress situations. “It would be too easy for someone to get upset and pull that gun out of their bag, and then that’s it. That’s not the place for me to stand there and have a gun, no more than it is for my student to have a gun,” she said. MCCC student and Marine veteran Michael Crossman strongly disagrees with the bill. “Granting students the right to carry firearms on a college campus is absolutely insane,” Crossman said. “I am a Marine veteran of the Iraq war and can tell you that when you arm humans with weapons, it only breeds anxiety. It will lead them to react emotionally
Continued on page 2
Welding program opens job possibilities Nathan Hays Staff
MCCC has established a new welding program aimed at giving unemployed people the skills they need to find jobs. The program is financed by a $1.7 million Community-Based Job Training Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. To assist in overseeing the program, Larry Byrnes has been hired by MCCC as the grant coordinator. Byrnes has over thirty years of experience as a metallurgist, working for companies such as General Motors, Saturn and the Federal Mogul Corporation. With financial problems affecting many potential students, part of the grant is being used to provide tuition, lab fees and books for people who qualify for the two courses. The program’s goal is to give people a fresh set of skills to find employment. “As a recovery starts, welding skills will be in demand, and there is a structural situation that exists where a lot of the welders that are currently in the field working are approaching retirement age,” Byrnes said. Currently, jobs in welding are available to people who are willing to relocate, but with talk of a new Fermi plant more local jobs could be available in a few years. When the economy stabilizes, welding should be in much higher demand as well, creating more local jobs, Byrnes said. “The welding skill is a skill that will be picked up early in a recovery,” he said. There are two courses available, a be-
Agora photo by Nathan Hays
Grant Coordinator Larry Byrnes oversees the welding program.
INSIDE: Editorial...................2 Campus News.........3 Feature....................4
ginners and an advanced level course. Both are worth twelve credits each. The courses for the program run at an accelerated speed, lasting ten weeks each. They each meet five days a week, for five hours a day, totaling 250 hours. Normally, a course with the content of either of the new courses MCCC is offering would be 330-350 hours each. This accelerated speed is great for people who need to rapidly find employment. “It gets somebody what they need to be certified in a short amount of time,” Byrnes said. Both courses offer a certificate from the American Welding Society. The beginner’s course offers a QC10 certificate, while the advanced course offers a QC11 certificate. Both certificates are nationally recognized. A person can take one or both classes. If they need to find employment quickly, they have the option to take just the beginners course and go out and find a job. By taking the advanced course, too, however, they will emerge with a larger set of skills to work with. If a person already has experience in welding, they could just take the advanced course and gain the certificate, Byrnes said. Welding is a physical skill that can lead to exposure to the elements and various hazards, Byrnes said. Often, a place of employment will not be temperature or humidity controlled in the summer, and the welding torches produce a lot of local heat, he said. Welding equipment also can be noisy, and welders often are exposed to smoke. Welding is a good career path for people who enjoy physical, hands-on work, Byrnes said. “People who enjoy hands-on activities get a great deal of satisfaction about being able to see something come from raw material to finished product and get a sense of accomplishment from building something. It’s very satisfying,” he said. For a person to be a successful welder, they need to be able to think, Byrnes said. Math skills, especially trigonometry, also are important. And welders also need good reading skills, as well as the ability to locate information and read blueprints, he said. “The people who do well in welding have hands-on experience or hands-on talent, but they also have to have an understanding of a fair amount of math.” Brynes said. With the welding program starting many new opportunities are opening at MCCC.
Feature....................5 Campus News.........6 A & E..........................7 Sports......................8
Enriching the students across Southeast Michigan
Agora photo by Symone Thomas
MCCC set another record for enrollment this fall, and many of the students turned out for the Welcome Back barbque. The barbque was hosted by MCCC’s Student Government.
Enrollment hits 4,600 Brandy Werner Staff
MCCC has once again achieved record enrollment for the Fall 2009 semester. This was accomplished despite a record number of students cancelling for non-payment and the recent switch from credit hours to contact hours. “This is the first year that MCCC had over 4,600 for a final head count,” Paul Schmidt, MCCC registrar, said. The final headcount for Fall 2009 was 4,624 students, up 110 from last year. This year also set a record for having the highest number of people drop credits. “We cancelled more people (this year)
than we’ve ever had to cancel before,” Schmidt said. The number of students who cancelled for non-payment in Fall 2008 was 455. The number for Fall 2009 rose to 608. According to Schmidt, the reason for this increase could be that MCCC has no enrollment deposit, and students registered in April for classes that didn’t start until the end of August. The recent switch to billable contact hours hasn’t seemed to have adversely affected enrollment this semester either. “There was only one student who did not return to the Nursing Program this current fall semester and that was primarily because she was a LPN and had found
Enrollment and credit hours for 2005- 2009 Headcount Credit Hours Fall 2005 Fall 2006 Fall 2007 Fall 2008
4,193 4,368 4,433 4,514
37,136 37,527 38,123 39,224
(This is the count at “date of record” after the period of 100% withdrawal)
a full-time job,” said Dawn Wetmore, the dean of Health Sciences at MCCC. “Other than that, all students returned to the program despite the change in cost.” Wetmore will continue to monitor the number of students applying for the nursing programs over the next few semesters to determine whether numbers will fall. Any decline in student interest may be due, in part, to the economy, Wetmore added. Another department affected by the switch was the art department. According to Gary Wilson, associate professor of Art at MCCC, the switch did not affect the number of students enrolled in art classes this semester. “It didn’t, but it did,” Wilson said. “The older people who were taking art for fun had to drop their art classes, but, at least for now, other people took their place.” “Half of the students previously enrolled in art classes did not have to take them,” Wilson said. “Now they won’t come back.” The switch did not affect enrollment in science courses either. “I have not seen any change in enrollment,” Vinnie Maltese, dean of Sciences, Math, Humanities and Social Sciences of MCCC, said. “I also haven’t had any positive or negative feedback from students about the switch.”
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2 THE AGORA
September 24 , 2009
Views differ on Pell Grant I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today
Higher education isn’t an entitlement, it’s tough
As most know, Pell Grant checks aren’t being given out until the last week of October. For any student not receiving financial aid to attend MCCC, this poses no problem. To those who do receive financial aid like me, you are living in a world of hurt right now. MCCC made the decision not to allow students access to financial aid money until halfway through the semester (in previous years, we were allowed to pick up our Pell Grant checks on the first day of class). The reasoning was too many people were taking advantage of the government money by showing up on the first day of class to get their checks, but they don’t. I know of two individuals who did this, and I am strongly against it. But I have no control over how others live their lives. The new policy is having a detrimental affect on people like me and I’m suggesting another way to go about it.
Tuition paid in full? Check. Books and supplies-- such as pencils, notebooks, flash drives and calculators all also paid in full? Check. Some students still angry about their financial aid? Check? Semester after semester, year after year, a number of Federal Pell Grant recipients have their higher education paid in full, with funds to spare. Where do these extra funds go? Well, to the student in the form of a check. And semester after semester, year after year, there are belligerent, disrespectful and unthankful students angered at not receiving more. This semester the anger is directed at not only how much government aid (not necessarily money earned as much as money given) a student qualifying for Pell receives, but when they receive the left-overs. In the past, a Pell recipient
Dan Ford Staff
rely on the Pell Grant and the Strafford loan to support myself while attending MCCC. Sure, I could get a job (like most people), and work while going to school, but the federal money allows me the opportunity to focus solely on my education. Living strictly on this money doesn’t grant me a very luxurious lifestyle, and I’ve learned how to live very frugally (not only does MCCC teach us in the classroom, but it also teaches us in other as-
pects of our lives, especially money management). Regardless, because MCCC is withholding the money until halfway through the semester, I am being forced to beg, borrow, and steal to get by. Thankfully, I have a large network of supportive people who have my back in this education thing. They are there for me when MCCC’s new policy isn’t. Instead of making every student wait for their checks, how about applying the new policy to first time students? If you were to look at my track record, for example, you would see that I have been attending MCCC religiously for the past five semesters. What good is it to hold my check back when my record clearly states that I am unlikely to take the money and run? Don’t punish those of us who are abiding by the rules. A few spoiled apples do not make the whole barrel bad.
Bill would allow guns on campuses rather than accordingly.” Nixon said the majority of colleges in the Michigan Community College Association have taken a stance against the bill. He also said he too is an advocate for second amendment rights, being a licensed concealed weapons carrier himself. “I feel proficient with a gun; I have a concealed weapons permit. I was also on the police reserves at one time, and bringing them on campuses is just a bad idea.” Richardville said he thinks the arguments against the bill are derived more from emotions than logic. “My only problem here is that a lot of people are using emotional arguments versus realistic
arguments,” he said. “All I’m trying to do is say when we talk about the Constitution, when we talk about the second amendment, we shouldn’t make exemptions. Because when we start doing that, the Constitution starts to loose importance.” Richardville was then asked if he were against all of the current exemptions. “I wouldn’t say I’m against all of the exemptions, no. I voted for them, that’s why they were in to begin with,” he said. He went on to explain that, over time he was shown information which helped change his mind. Richardville also said he is still against lifting exemptions for places like bars and stadiums. But when asked about lifting the exemption for licensed concealed
weapon carriers on high school grounds, the same opposition wasn’t found. “We are going to take it one step at a time. We are going to take a look and see what the universities and community colleges think here.” Richardville said, then explained it’s possible in the future for a revision. “At this time though, I am not interested in that piece of potential legislation.” Nixon explained that no matter the outcome of the senate bill, the ultimate decision is made by MCCC’s Board of Trustees. They could introduce a school policy that bans firearms from the property. “I definitely think the MCCC Board of Trustees would take it up and be opposed to it,” Nixon said.
Send your questions to ‘Ask Suzi’ Have you ever had feelings of loneliness, depression, insecurity, fear, anger, abandonment, frustration or confusion? Well, now you can get honest answers to life’s questions from The Agora’s newest feature, “Ask Suzi.” Your questions will be answered by an experienced person who has faced the same problems you are asking about – that’s me – or I’ll find someone who is highly skilled in the area of your concern to provide the answers. Your questions will be answered by professionals who
Correction: A story in the Aug. 27
edition of The Agora reported that
have expertise in the troubling situations life throws at us. This will be an advice column for those of us who have problems, and don’t have anyone to confide in. You can direct your questions anonymously, or by using any first name you wish. Please feel free to ask any question you have, and I will do my best to help find answers to life’s most difficult questions. E-mail your questions to “Ask Suzi” at sbanoski@ my.monroeccc.edu.
Thailand is a communist country. In fact, Thailand is a constitutional
could pick up their remaining balance on the first day of classes. Pell recipients, such as myself, would have to either purchase books early out-of-pocket, and essentially be reimbursed by Pell, or wait until the first day of classes to scrounge for used books. In a decision made by MCCC administrators, Pell checks will not begin to be mailed until midOctober. Herein is where some people’s
Remembering our nation’s heroes
Nicholas Wilson is a sophmore at MCCC majoring in Graphic Design/ Fine Arts.
Continued from page 1
anger begins. Education isn’t an entitlement. I’m sorry MCCC is tired of people qualifying for Pell, registering full-time, receiving a check on the first day, then dropping their courses. I’m sorry MCCC would like you to receive books on time and get supplies early. I’m sorry, most every other school conducts the same Pell process. I would say to enroll somewhere else, but oh wait, MCCC has one of the cheapest and most competitive credit hour rates in the state. And we all know you guys wouldn’t do that; it would result in even less money. So thank you MCCC, the federal government, and even the MCCC financial aid office, for the help and opportunity for me to further pursue higher education.
Many people forget there still are wars going on in places such as Iraq and Afghanistan. I myself tend to forget that there are people overseas risking their lives just so I can go about doing whatever I want. This war didn’t affect me emotionally until someone I knew was killed. One of my close friends died in Afghanistan just four weeks ago. PFC. Eric W. Hario died August 29 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, after he was shot in combat the previous day. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at Hunter Army Airfield in Savannah, Georgia. A 2008 Monroe High graduate, Hario was only 19 years old. He was so young, and I was so confident that I would see him when he got back. One of my close friends was killed fighting for this free country that we live in. I was so overwhelmed with sorrow and sadness, thinking about him and his family. I knew people were risking their lives and getting killed overseas, but I never thought I would know one of them. Following the funeral, as we made our way in the procession from the church to the cemetery, the community’s respect for the fallen soldier really surprised me. I was overwhelmed as I watched every car on the street come to a halt and every driver get out in respect. People came out of their homes and businesses. Children stood alongside the road waving American flags in honor of my friend. Women cried who didn’t even know him. Veterans stood by saluting him. Almost every person had their hand on their heart. I’ve never seen the community come together as one and be so patriotic. It had me in tears seeing how much the public cared. It was something I will never forget. Even though people don’t say it, or show it every day, it really is wonderful to be living in this country — all because of the brave men and women in the Armed Forces risking their lives overseas. Every single one of them are heroes and forever will be.
Jennifer Niswender Editor-in-Chief
It made me really appreciate the country I live in and the freedoms we have, which a lot of other people don’t have. I thank God for that. Let’s hope that all of our soldiers get home safe and soon. As for my friend, Eric, he is one of the bravest guys I have ever known. You are truly a hero and I’m honored to have had the opportunity to know you. Thank you for risking your life, serving and dieing for what you believed in.
R.I.P. Eric W. Hario 1989- 2009 “You will be missed and never forgotten.”
The Agora Staff Members Editor-in-Chief Jennifer Niswender Assistant Editor Andrew Hoppert Photographer Symone Thomas Designer Mary Rose Takacs Agora staff member Susan Banoski. monarchy. We apologize for the error.
Adviser Dan Shaw
Copy Editors Brandy Werner Asia Rapai Staff Alan McKee Susan Banoski Marcus Akers Danny Shaw Hillary Degner Daniel Ford Nathan Hays Ashley Hammer
Agora photo by Symone Thomas
Flags were flown at Half-Staff on September 9, in honor of PFC. Eric W. Hario.
Memories that friends of Eric submitted: “Eric Hario: a man, a braver man than I could ever hope to be, a true patriot. I can’t say enough about his service, commitment, and bravery. It was like yesterday in the weight room, on the field, or in the halls. A great team mate, friend, and an even better man. Thank you Eric Hario, the meaning of your service and sacrifice is beyond words or description. You will truly be missed. R.I.P my friend.” --Cj Zarecki “My most cherished memory of Eric would have to be the last day of school, right before we all set up the slip and slide. Eric begged Carducci to let us throw water balloons and he just kept saying no. So we all got on him about it. Finally we came to an agreement. Eric no doubt was probably the first one to the balloons. Just when we thought it was all over. As Carducci is walking away he whips it across the lot, just getting Carducci’s feet wet. To this day I still wish he would’ve soaked him.” –Ashley Rivera “I grew up with him all through school; I just can’t believe this happened to a friend of mine. You never think it will happen to someone you know. Eric you will be missed and God bless you for fighting for our freedom”. - Julia Niswender
The Agora Editorial Policy The Agora is published by the students of Monroe County Community College, 1555 S. Raisinville Rd., Monroe, MI, 48161. The editorial office is located in Room 202 of the Life Sciences Bldg., (734) 384-4186, email@example.com. Editorial policy: Unsigned editorials represent the majority opinion of The Agora staff. Signed columns represent the opinion of the writer. All letters to the editor must include a signature, address and phone number for verification purposes. The Agora reserves the right to edit for clarity, accuracy, length and libel.
The Agora is a student-managed newspaper that supports a free student press and is a member of the Michigan Community College Press Association, the Michigan Collegiate Press Association, the Michigan Press Association, College Media Advisers, Associated Collegiate Press and the Student Press Law Center. Story suggestions are welcome. Let us know what you’d like to see in The Agora - it’s your newspaper. Submissions of stories or photos also are welcome. E-mail them to agora@ monroeccc.edu or bring them to our office.
September 24, 2009
College smoking policy moves students to parking lots
Jennifer Niswender Editor-in-Chief
As of Aug. 1, smoking is prohibited on campus grounds and is only allowed in the parking lots. Many students tend to forget the new policy when they light up. If students are caught smoking on campus grounds, they will be given a friendly reminder that smoking is restricted to the parking lot areas only.
“The main thing is to get everyone informed of the new policy and students are also encouraged to help by reminding them also,” said Bill Myers, supervisor of Campus Security. Smoking is prohibited in all college buildings and is subject to all applicable laws, including federal and state “clean air” acts. MCCC trustees have implemented a smoking policy because it is
a public place. Students who are repeat offenders smoking in the prohibited areas will be directed to the dean of students or vice president. School officials are still trying to figure out what steps to follow with a repeat offender, because this policy is so new. “Its not a serious issue yet. We have had to give out a lot of reminders, but people have been
good about it,” said Randy Daniels, vice president of Student and Information Services. “Usually the beginning of each year I would get complaints about people walking through smoke to get to the door. With this new policy, I haven’t gotten any complaints.” Beginning Aug. 1, 2010, smoking will be prohibited on all college grounds.
Middle College opens on MCCC campus Asia Rapai
“I feel like I’m readying for my future. I think I’ll be happy with my career.”
There are 38 high school freshmen at MCCC this fall beginning their studies in health care. Monroe County Middle College is here. It’s a bridge program for high school students interested in the health care field. “It’s really exciting to be in the non-normal school setting. It’s the greatest educational opportunity I’ve had,” a Middle College student from Triumph Charter Academy said. The Middle College will provide students a five-year program of high school classes, college classes, and experience in the health care field. Students will have an opportunity to earn a high school diploma and an Associate’s Degree within the five years. Plans for a middle college began in 2007, and its role was uncertain in the beginning. This caused employees of MCCC to question how partnering with a middle college could affect the college. The Monroe County Intermediate School District, Mercy Memorial Hospital and MCCC are partners with the Middle College. The college’s role is to rent office and classroom space to the Middle College, MCCC President David Nixon said. A contract has been signed with the Middle College that is similar to the college’s contract with Eastern Michigan University. “They are just renting space from us. Their contract says they can rent the space as it becomes available,” Nixon said. Middle College Dean of Students Sarah Richardville and
Former Homeschooled Middle College student
Principle Robert Krueger each have an office located on the second floor of the L Building at MCCC. Classrooms weren’t provided to the Middle College until MCCC courses were filled, after student registration. Empty classrooms were then rented to the Middle College. Richardville said there are plans to obtain more space if the number of students grows in the future. This includes renting rooms and offices from the ISD and using potential office space available at Mercy Memorial Hospital. The Middle College students will not be doing all their learning on MCCC’s campus. “They spend a lot of time at the hospital,” Nixon said. The high school students are on MCCC’s campus on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. On Mondays and Wednesdays the students go to Mercy Memorial Hospital for their classes. Currently, the Middle College students will not be taking any college classes. “They are going to just segway into the role of dual-enrollment,” Nixon said. He said that the Middle College students will dual-enroll like any other high school student.
Middle College Characteristics
• • • • • • •
Students had to apply and get accepted (about 50 students applied for this fall) There are one part-time and two full-time instructors Students have six classes every day There are 38 total students split into two groups of 19 students. Students have classes at MCCC and Mercy Memorial Hospital Middle College students can transfer to a regular high school if they change their minds (the classes will transfer as electives). Eleventh grade is expected to be the most critical year for making decisions about a student’s educational path. Students have the potential to earn a high school diploma, certifications and an associate’s degree, all free of tuition. Source: Middle College Dean of Students Sarah Richardville and Principal Robert Krueger
Agora photo by Symone Thomas
Eric Swank, Math and World Cultures teacher for the Middle College, holds a poster illustrated by students during class on Tuesday, Sept. 22.
MCCC Vice President of Instruction Grace Yackee said the college cannot deny any students duel enrollment as long as they meet MCCC’s criteria. The college could gain more dual-enrolling students because of the Middle College. “MCCC currently has approximately 420 dual-enrolled students,” Nixon said. When plans for a middle college began, there were few details. Faculty member and Professor of English Dr. William McCloskey was skeptical. “It was originally meant for students who had high potential but weren’t doing well in school, McCloskey said. “Students would have low academics and high achievements, which is an interesting statement to me.” President of the MCCC Faculty Association Mark Bergmooser said that the faculty had several concerns about how this could affect MCCC. “There was no clear communication on what it was going to be,” he said. “We didn’t know where it would stop. Does it change what our job is?” The faculty was concerned that MCCC’s involvement with a middle college could alter the college’s mission. “The faculty was united on this. We don’t agree on much, but we did agree on this,” Bergmooser said.
They took action in letting the administration know of their concerns. Bergmooser said the faculty doesn’t expect to get everything they want, but they want their concerns to be taken into consideration when decisions are made. “We spoke up and we feel we were listened to,” he said. Yackee said a Middle College Implementation Team was formed. Members of this team, besides Yackee, included Terry Telfer, Mark Bergmooser, Lori Bean, Khadija Ahmed, Pat Nedry, Mark Hall, Vinnie Maltese and Dawn Wetmore. “In implementing the project, I’ve done my best to keep in mind the faculty concerns,” Yackee said. “For example, faculty were concerned the middle college would take current space reserved for MCCC classes,” she said. “I made sure that no rooms were scheduled for the middle college until all MCCC room needs were met. Of course, we are also charging rent for the space.” She said that another concern was that MCCC counselors would advise high school and dual enrollment students. “That is not the case now, nor will it be with the Middle College. High school counselors advise in both cases,” Yackee said. Since plans began, the concept has changed and been molded
into the current Middle College. “They eventually narrowed it to health care,” McCloskey said. “I think our concerns have been listened to because the emphasis has been placed on dual-enrollment.” “I don’t think it would have ended that way if a group didn’t voice their concerns. I think we would’ve had a full-blown school here.” McCloskey said he still has concerns about the future of the Middle College. “I don’t have a problem with dual-enrollment, but I would have a problem if it expanded beyond dual-enrollment,” he said. “What’s it going to turn into?” He said having a middle college could alter MCCC’s mission, which he said has been providing
post-secondary education. “We don’t know if it will be successful or not,” McCloskey said. “This will open up a different world. It will be a cultural change.” President Nixon said that supporting the Middle College will strengthen MCCC’s mission by supporting education in the community and providing a path to higher education. “It fits our mission and our core values,” he said. MCCC students and employees might see a group of Middle College students eating lunch in the cafeteria or walking to their next class, but Middle College students will not attend college classes until they are of age to dual-enroll.
High School Representation
Students enrolled in the Middle College come from seven of the nine high school districts in Monroe County. The school districts will receive 10 percent of the funding from the state for their students, with the rest going to the Middle College. The Middle College students would have attended the following high schools: • Airport • Bedford • Dundee • Jefferson • Mason • Monroe • Summerfield Source: Middle College Dean of Students Sarah Richardville
Our Diverse College: From Romania To America
In 1995, the clear May afternoon was pleasant to the residents of Galati, Romania. A cool breeze could be felt coming off the Black Sea, which was only a 15-minute drive away. The sounds of children playing temporarily replaced the often-heard cracks and booms of gunshots. The soccer ball that 5-year-old Liviu Alecu and his older brother, Lawrence, were kicking back and forth was tattered and worn. The multi-story apartment complex, where their family of eight lived, stood behind them. Within seconds, the familiar sounds of gunshots rang out. Two rival gangs began to fight over territory. As bullets pierced the air in all directions, Lawrence covered Liviu’s head while they ran to get inside. A bullet ricocheted off the building, sending it through one of Lawrence’s hands, and coming to a halt in the top of Liviu’s skull. This was not the last time Liviu would be shot. “I just remember waking up in the hospital,” Liviu said. “My brother’s hand was all bandaged up and so was my head. The bullet cracked my skull, but I healed fine,” he said, moving his black hair to show the one-inch circular scar. Liviu, now a 20-year-old MCCC student, remembers his mother telling him about that day. “She said Lawrence was screaming. Blood was everywhere, part from me, part from him,” he said. “She saw one son on the floor bleeding from the head, and one son with a hole in his hand. She was
Photo by Ashley LeTourneau.
Liviu Alecu, 20, is now a student at MCCC.
terrified. We all knew we had to get out of that country.” A year-and-a-half later the Alecu family immigrated to America, settling in Detroit. “We had this image of America being this safe ha-
ven and beautiful country — a paradise,” he said. “Then we got to Detroit.” The sounds of gunshots and sirens felt too much like home to the Alecu family. The run-down city seemed no different than the country they were trying to escape. “Visually, it was worse than Romania,” Liviu said. “It was rough on us. It was supposed to be different. We were supposed to feel safe.” In 1998, after a year of living in Detroit, they received news that Liviu’s oldest brother, who had stayed behind in Romania, was killed in a freighter explosion on the Black Sea. It was a devastating blow to the family and to Liviu, who was only 7years-old at the time. “I remember he always bought us…” Liviu said then paused to wipe the tears from his eyes. “He always bought us a lot for birthdays and Christmas.” They moved back to Romania for the funeral and stayed for two more years. In 1999, Liviu and Lawrence were at the market in Suceava, a city in northern Romania. They were shopping for bread on the government allowance that was rationed to their family because of the poor economic conditions. “There was this homeless kid living in the sewers,” said Liviu. “He was mentally unstable and somehow got a handgun. He just went nuts and started shooting people in the marketplace. He shot two people and I started to run with Lawrence. I got hit in the back,” he said, lifting his shirt to expose the four-inch scar that lined his shoulder blade. “I went limp and fell forward. I remember feeling a hot sting,” he said.
The bullet shattered his shoulder blade and he required several reconstructive surgeries. In May of 2000, the Alecu family moved back to the States in an effort to leave Romania for good. One son was killed, another shot in the hand, and Liviu had been shot in the head and back. “I was 10 when we moved back to Detroit. I knew some English, but still had somewhat of an accent. After a few more years, the accent was gone and I stopped being the foreign kid,” he said with a shrug and a smile. The Alecu family moved to Belleville a few weeks after living in Detroit for the second time, and they still live there today. Liviu is not yet an American citizen, but he plans to become one soon. “In my heart, I will always be Romanian. But I do want to get a citizenship to get the assurance,” he said. The bond that the Alecu family has formed is almost beyond words for Liviu. “After everything we have been through as a family, we developed this strong unspoken bond. We all know what’s happened and how hard it was. We just look at each other and, without words, we just know,” he said again with tears in his eyes. Liviu works for Sunset Holdings coordinating promotional work and events for clubs and casinos. He is a full-time student at MCCC, majoring in business. “I’m happy with my family life and my life in general. I’m going to college, have a good job, and I am definitely humble,” he said.
4 THE AGORA
September 24, 2009
MCCC takes precautions for H1N1 virus Hillary Degner Staff
A new H1N1 flu vaccine will be available soon, in anticipation of a possible outbreak of the virus this fall. When the virus was detected in the U.S. in April 2009, it was called “swine flu.” This was because tests showed that many of the genes were similar to the influenza viruses that occur in pigs (swine). More studies have shown that the new virus affecting humans since April is actually very different from the illness in pigs. Since this discovery, the virus has been called H1N1 Flu. Every year many people receive the seasonal flu vaccine, and when H1N1 was first detected researchers began developing a new vaccine for the virus. It is important to know that the seasonal flu vaccine will not protect against H1N1, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The vaccine is not available yet, but is expected to be ready by mid-October. Until recently, it was thought that two doses of the H1N1 vaccine would be required to be fully protected. On Sept. 11, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reported that
people involved in clinical trials responded well to only one dose of the vaccine. MCCC officials are up to date on the new vaccine and taking precautions to keep students and staff safe. There have been no confirmed cases of H1N1 at the college, and administrators are doing everything they can to keep it from spreading. One of the most significant precautions MCCC is taking is developing a Pandemic Preparedness Plan. Director of Human Resources Molly McCutchan took a draft of the plan to the college’s Health and Safety Committee on September 15. The draft is not fully approved by the committee, but there are four main objectives to it. First, is to protect the lives of the staff, students, faculty and visitors at MCCC. Second, is to effectively communicate with all of the involved parties throughout the duration of the pandemic. Next, is to provide for the continuation of as many college services as long as it is safe to do so. The final objective is to prevent the spread of infection through health and hygiene education. “The general purpose of the plan is to guide the college in preparing for and responding to an influenza pandemic outbreak,”
Tips from MCCC to prevent the spread of the H1N1 virus - Practice good hand hygiene - Practice respiratory etiquette - Know the signs and symptoms of the flu - Stay home if you have flu or flu-like illness for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever - Talk with your health care providers about whether you should be vaccinated for seasonal and H1N1 flus.
Agora photo by Jennifer Niswender
MCCC student washes her hands to help stop the spread of seasonal and H1N1 flu.
McCutchan said. In addition to the pandemic plan, Director of Marketing Joe Verkennes said the college is doing a number of things to inform students and staff of the seriousness of H1N1. He said the college communicates weekly with the Monroe County Health Department. There also is a link on MCCC’s home page to an H1N1 FAQ page, as well as links to important Web sites such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A letter was also sent to all staff and student email addresses with reminders to practice good hygiene. Verkennes stresses the importance of checking their email to all staff and students. That is where any new information regarding H1N1 will be sent. MCCC also will be encouraging staff and students to get the new vaccine for H1N1. On Wednesday, Sept. 16, three officials from the Monroe County
Health Department met with administrators from the college. Health Officer and Director Rebecca Head, along with Pandemic Flu Associates Carolyn Gardetto and Tatyana Ivanova, met with administrators to discuss having a mass vaccination clinic at MCCC. The immunizations will be held in the gymnasium and open to the public. They will most likely be held on Saturday, Nov. 7 or 14. MCCC is also planning to distribute the vaccine on a school day, open only to the students at the college. The cost of the vaccine will be free, but it has not been decided yet if there will be an administrative fee. Verkennes said the Monroe County Health Department expects the virus to be mild. They also expect to only give one dose of the vaccine per person. This is awaiting confirmation; the only people that would require two shots, is anyone under the age of nine who hasn’t had flu shots.
At the September 16 meeting, the officials told the administrators that out of the 158,000 people in Monroe County, 70,000 are in the group of people advised to receive the H1N1 vaccine. H1N1 is contagious and is spread from human to human. The H1N1 virus should not be confused with the seasonal flu. Even though many of the symptoms of H1N1 and seasonal flu are similar, the viruses are very different; these differences can be found at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site. An email sent out to all staff and students at MCCC explained that anyone showing symptoms of H1N1 should stay home, especially if a fever of 100 degrees is present. It is important to stay home for an additional 24 hours after the fever has gone awaythis is determined without the use of fever-reducing medications. Some students and faculty may decide to ignore their flu-like symptoms, attending school any-
way. This is strongly discouraged by the school; Verkennes said that if only a small group of students become infected, absences and make-up work will be handled through individual instructors, as they regularly are. “If something more largescale occurred, we would have to make different accommodations. We are in the process of working this out so that we would be prepared should it occur,” he said. Verkennes also pointed out that since the college does not have a medical center, students will need to report any H1N1 illnesses to the college personally. Students should not worry about missing classes, Verkennes said. He said he is sure that faculty will understand and work with students academically. “That’s what we are all about; the focus on the students,” he said. People 64 and older are most at risk for becoming infected with the seasonal flu. The major difference between seasonal flu and this new flu is that people 25 and younger are usually affected by H1N1. Besides the younger age group, pregnant women, infants 6-24 months, people who work in a health care or child care setting and people with serious medical conditions are also at a high risk of becoming infected with H1N1. These medical conditions include; asthma, diabetes, suppressed immune systems, heart disease, kidney disease and neurocognitive and neuromuscular disorders. MCCC student Nicole Bolster has had diabetes for most of her life, and is considering getting the new vaccine. “Honestly I feel pretty comfortable getting the vaccine, because I have diabetes. I’d rather be safe than sorry,” Bolster said.
Pet rescue resumes in area despite setbacks Hillary Degner Staff
Charmed Lives Pet Rescue, located in Carleton, MI is seeking volunteers to assist them in their effort to find homes for the many animals they help. The pet rescue was founded in 2004 by Gwen Giznsky, who is also the President. This rescue is unique, in that it is a family effort. Gwen’s sister Katrina and mother Marge help her run the pet rescue. Katrina is a full-time student, as well as the Vice President of Charmed Lives Pet Rescue. Each family member has a particular breed of dog they prefer to work with. Gwen handles the larger dog breeds, such as German Shepherds and Katrina likes the Australian Shepherds, Border Collies and Rottweilers. Marge fosters
Name: Marley Breed: Beagle Availability: Adopted
the smaller dogs at her home in Monroe, instead of in Carleton. All breeds of dogs are taken at Charmed Lives Pet Rescue, depending on a temperament evaluation. The Giznsky family also takes an interest in special needs dogs. However, the space they have available is limited for these cases. This space issue has not prevented the rescue of doing their job though. Just this year, they have cared for three dogs with parvovirus disease, two that are heartworm positive and three other senior dogs that will stay with them until the end of their lives due to illness and age. “The rescue was started because we felt there weren’t very good options out there for people who couldn’t keep their dogs,” said Katrina. As of December 2006 the rescue be-
came a 501c3 non-profit organization. “All donations and adoption fees go right back into the dogs. None of our officers take a salary from the organization,” said Gwen. The rescue has received kennel status from the Monroe County Animal Control, but becoming a state certified facility will be even better for the dogs. Outdoor kennels are where the dogs stay in the warm months, and they are brought indoors when the weather is cold. With the resources the rescue has, they have helped home over 300 dogs since becoming a non-profit organization. “We’ve been dog and cat owners ever since we can remember and wanted to provide second chances for other dogs,” Katrina said.
While Charmed Lives is doing everything possible to help dogs in need, being a non-profit organization is not easy. In November 2008 the rescue bought ten acres of land in Carleton, MI, hoping to become a state certified shelter. Since then, the family has experienced some setbacks. Gwen and Katrina both lost their jobs in February of 2009. Before the sisters lost their jobs, the plan was to build a kennel with indoor and outdoor runs, an evaluation room and a training room. Kennels are also needed for the quarantine of new dogs. Currently, these building plans are on hold, but the family hopes to expand their space in the future. Charmed Lives Pet Rescue is working to help dogs that are in need of a better home, and could use the help of volun-
teers, especially with the struggles they have had this year. The rescue can be reached at (734)242-4497 or visit their website at www. charmedlivespetrescue.petfinder.com. The rescue’s website has an area to submit information if anyone wishes to volunteer, adopt or make a donation. Also, there is a list of dogs available for adoption on the website. A short description about each dog is included, and sometimes a picture. Donations of money are welcome; the website also has a wish list of supplies that the rescue is in need of. The Giznsky family is looking for people who share their compassion for the dogs that are neglected, abused or abandoned to help their rescue in any way possible.
Name: Elle Mae
Breed: Belgian Shepherd Malinois, Labrador Retriever (mix)
Breed: Mountain Cur
Breed: Mountain Cur, American Bulldog (mix)
Breed: Golden Reriever
Breed: Jack Russell Terrier
Availability: Needs a home
Availability: Needs a home
Student Government Corner Next meeting will be Tuesday, September 29th at 12:30 p.m. in the Student Government Room which is located at the back of the Cellar in the Administration Bldg.
MCCC Cars, Coins, and Collectibles!
When: Sunday, September 27 - 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for auto show, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for antiques and craft shows. Where: Monroe County Community College How much: Admission free! Parking $3
All meetings are open to the public and all students are more than welcome to join! Interested in joining? Tom Ryder Student Activities Coordinator (734) 384-4201 firstname.lastname@example.org
September 24, 2009
MCCC gets new recycling program Brandy Werner Staff
You now have a place to put your recyclables. After a year of not having a recycling program, administrators at MCCC were able to start a campus-wide recycling program. Jamie Dean, Monroe County Solid Waste Program coordinator, helped with the start-up. The program allows all the recyclable material to be submitted in one large dumpster, rather than having to be separated by the custodial staff. “People don’t realize how difficult it is for a custodian to take out the trash, having to separate all the material,” Jim Blumberg, director of the Physical Plant at MCCC, said.
“This company takes all the recycling in just one trip with one dumpster. This has left us with almost no increase to us in labor.” Soon the recycling program will not be limited only to commercial and industrial waste. “We are going to start a compost pile this year,” Blumberg said. “We’ve been working with Kevin Thomas, the head of the culinary program, to start this.” The compost will be placed in a bin behind the dumpster and used to recycle food waste. Recycling bins are located in select places around campus, and they are available to everyone on campus. Recycling categories include: paper, plastic, glassware, aluminum and cardboard.
Agora photo by Jennifer Niswender
HLC members to visit campus MCCC seeks ten-year accredidation Mary Rose Takacs Staff
A visit that could determine the college’s future begins next week. There have been nearly six years of preparation for the visit by MCCC faculty and staff. Members of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of North Central Association of Colleges and Schools will be deciding if MCCC will be reaccredited. This process occurs every ten years. Members will conduct meetings with MCCC staff, administration, faculty and students to analyze the college’s Accreditation Self-Study Report and observe how the various groups function and work together. Receiving a certification of continued accreditation by the HLC provides the college with credibility. Without this accreditation, several difficulties can arise. “Loss of federal financial aid, loss of transfer opportunities for students, and loss of respect from peer institutions all seriously impact students, employees and the community at large,” Grace Yackee, vice president of instruction, said. The preparation process began in 2003 when MCCC choose to use a PEAQ method of continuing accreditation, given by the HLC. In March of 2007, Yackee appointed the co-chairs of this Self-Study Report, Professor of Chemistry Dr. David Waggoner, and Sue Wetzel, director of institutional advancement and executive di-
The first criterion is “Mission and Integrity.” It requires the college to establish a clear mission and conduct its business with inegrity. Another requirement is the board, administration, faculty, staff and students all should be involved in the process. The second criterion is “Preparing for the Future,” which is being able to fulfill the college’s mission while improving the quality of education and answering future challenges and obstacles the college may face. “Student Learning and Effective Teaching” is criterion three. This involves making sure there is evidence of teacher efficiency and student learning. Criterion four is “Acquisition, Discovery, and Application of Knowledge.” In this category, the college must promote lifelong learning by encouraging students to build creativity and practice social responsibility. The final criterion is “Engagement and
Service.” This requires the college to listen to its internal and external communities and work to meet their needs. Each of these five criteria have three sub parts. Altogether, the report gives the HLC a full-circle picture of what the college has accomplished. From this, the HLC will determine whether MCCC has tended to the needs and adjustments required for reaccreditation. The HLC will also decide if there are points of concern or growth for the college to work on. During the three-day visit Sept. 28-30, the MCCC steering committee will direct the process of helping the HLC members break down each criterion. The 12 subcommittees within the steering committee will present the actual documentation of each criterion and explain MCCC’s involvement in detail. Only staff, faculty and administration members of these committees will attend
each of the scheduled sessions with the HLC team. In addition, there are open gatherings for students, faculty, and staff to meet with the HLC team. “There are opportunities for the different employee groups, faculty, support staff, maintenance, and administration to meet with the visitors,” Mark Bergmooser, president of the MCCC faculty association, said. These meetings are held on Monday and Tuesday. Students also will be given the chance to be involved in the accreditation process. An open meeting for all students is planned for 2:30 p.m. Monday in the LaZ-Boy Center. The faculty meeting with the HLC will be held on Tuesday at 12:30 p.m. and the staff meeting is at 1:30 p.m. on Monday. “It is essential that all groups from staff, to students, to alumni, to the larger community, are able to voice their opinion regarding college policy and practice,” Yackee said. About six weeks after the visit, the HLC team will send MCCC President David Nixon a full report on the Criteria and Core Components for accreditation. The report will list the criterion and components MCCC succeeded on and those which need further attention. The HLC team also will submit documentation regarding any necessary changes, and recommendations on how to accomplish the changes. President Nixon and the college administration will then look over and address any issues that were raised. He will have nine weeks to submit a report on how the college will correct any concerns. After this is submitted to the HLC, the final accreditation decision will be made.
technology for 24 hours! It’s not that important to talk to someone while I seem to be doing nothing, but I actually start to feel a little guilty. It seems like I am wasting my time. I am used to talking to my friends and family throughout the day and I worry about not letting them know what I am doing. As time drags on, I worry about letting my boyfriend know where I am. He will wonder why I haven’t talked to him yet this morning. I start to feel more anxious, which causes me to almost call my mother just to talk about how my day has been so far. I decide to stay committed to this experiment and to not touch my cell phone or even turn the radio on. Instead, as I wait in the car, I realize that it can actually be rewarding to enjoy the silence and do nothing. I sit and wait and then I start to observe the scene around me. A man is walking his dog. He walks aimlessly without watching where the dog follows on the leash. He even crosses the street without looking where the dog is behind him. Right across the street from the man walking the dog, I see a school bus pick up a young girl. Her dad walks her to the
bus and makes sure she gets on safely. These are two very different situations that I normally wouldn’t even notice. Instead I stay focused on the present and let my imagination take over. It makes me question these two men’s lives. Is the man with the dog always that apathetic? Is that his dog? I would never ignore my own dog like that. Then the man with the school bus – what is his life like? Does he stay home with his children all day, or does he just make sure he is home before his daughter goes to school? By just being observant of the world around me, I start to compare my life to the lives of these men. It made me question how many thoughts I ignore because of my reliance on technology. Some people say technology has expanded our communication with the world, but by getting a break from it, I realized that focusing on using my electronic media to keep up with the world had actually caused me to isolate myself from the life that was happening in front of me. By avoiding the use of technology and
completing this experiment, I gained a new perspective on the way we run our lives. Although these technologies may seem to help us communicate with others and keep up with news around the world, they still cause us to lose focus on the present and even lose ourselves. I don’t believe that electronic media is corrupting society. People should just try to understand that it does not have to rule their lives though. This experiment showed me what should be important. Sometimes it really is good to slow things down and stop worrying about keeping up with all of the services electronic media can provide. Life seems a little more interesting if we take the time to understand how important the simple things are, instead of how we manage our electronic media. Challenge yourself and see what it’s like to fast from technology for 24 hours. If you take more time to look up from the screen of your cell phone, mp3 player, computer, or TV, you might see a whole new way to communicate with the world around you – by actually participating in it.
Schedule for HLC Visit Monday, Sept. 28
1:30-2:30 p.m. Open meeting with support staff and maintenance employees La-Z-Boy Center, Rooms 257-258 1:30-2:30 p.m. Open meeting with administrative Staff La-Z-Boy Center, Room 259. 2:30-3:30 p.m. Open meeting with students, La-Z-Boy Center, 5:30-7 p.m. Dinner gathering with Board of Trustees for social interaction and general discussion Warrick Student Services/Administration Building, Cusine 1300
Tuesday, Sept. 29
12:30-1:30 p.m. Open meeting with faculty La-Z-Boy Center
Wednesday, Sept. 30
“It is essential that all groups from staff, to students, to alumni, to the larger Grace Yackee community, Vice President of Instruction are able to voice their opinion regarding college policy.”
10:30 a.m. Exit Session La-Z-Boy Center rector of the foundation at MCCC. With the co-chairs in place, the rest of the team was formed. “When all was said and done, there was a Self Study Steering Team of 33 employees and 10 subcommittees,” Yackee said. “Over 130 employees, alumni and trustees worked directly on the self study document.” Then the task began of analyzing the practices and processes of the institution, as they coincide with the five criteria of accreditation and federal requirements. With this knowledge, the process of drawing up the self study document was set in motion. The co-editors of the 313 page document were Professor of English Dr. John Holladay and Assistant Professor of English Lori Jo Couch. The Self-Study Report explains how MCCC has attained the five criteria of the HLC’s accreditation standards.
Take the virtual out of reality: participate in the present Waking up calmly instead of jumping up to the sound of my alarm was a good start to my day. By waking up naturally, I started the day with a slow and relaxed pace. Much of my day without technology was more relaxed and went slower than my days with it. This helped me to interact more with the little things that were going on around me. Fasting from technology for 24 hours is not an idea I would come up with on my own, but I wanted a good grade in the Interpersonal Communication class I took in the spring. This meant I needed to do my homework. Our teacher, Mark Bergmooser, gave us a project. He said that we couldn’t use electronic media for an entire day – no cell phones, iPods, computers, TV, or radio. How will I survive without technology? Well, I found that without the distractions of managing my electronic media all day, I really focused on the present. I got a chance to step back and appreciate the real events going on around me, instead of being sucked into the virtual world of technology.
Asia Rapai Copy Editor
One part of my day that stuck out involved helping my brother take a family car to a mechanic. Here’s what happened: We both drive to the mechanic’s so that if my brother needs to leave the car there, he can ride back with me to our house. I wait while he talks to the mechanic to see if he needs me to give him a ride. The weather is warm, so I open the windows and turn the car off. As I start to get bored, my first thought is to text or call someone. I always have my phone, and it can provide instant entertainment – but wait, I am fasting from
6 THE AGORA Campus News MCCC exploring sports
September 24, 2009 Sam Oetting, (red shirt), and the rest of the Volleyball Club pratice in the Health Education bulding by doing wall set drills. For more information on joining the club, contact its adviser, Ted Vassar.
Survey planned about fee for athletics Asia Rapai Staff
Some students feel as if they are missing out on activities that a larger college or university might offer. “My sister and I could have gone away to play college ball but we decided to stay in Monroe for personal and financial reasons,” MCCC student and volleyball club member Amy Terrasi said. “I love it. I love the teachers, and I’ve learned so much, but I miss the sports.” Terrasi, her twin sister and two other MCCC students spoke to the Board of Trustees last April requesting support for the sports clubs at the college. Board members, as well as the Alumnus of the Year, donated a total of $4,000 to help with the sports clubs. The conditions were that the students who requested help would organize a survey to establish whether or not the student body is interested in paying for sports clubs. To help the sports clubs progress, the Trustee Sports Committee was established after that board meeting. “The committee is charged with building and improving club sports on campus and studying the feasibility of Varsity Intercollegiate Sports returning to the MCCC Campus,” Sports Committee Chairman Linda Lauer said. Lauer is the newest Trustee on the Board. Reinstating athletics was part of her campaign to become a board member. She said she appreciates the support that athletics has received from the other Board members. “Thanks is owed to Bill Bacarella, chairman of MCCC Board of Trustees, for appointing this committee and putting the resources of the college behind
Contact information Bowling Club
Club coach Rebecca Keegan: email@example.com
Club advisor Allan Thom: (734) 384-4266
Club adviser Ted Vassar: (734) 384-4159
this effort,” she said. The Trustee Sports Committee has discussed the best way to survey the students at MCCC. Vice President of Student and Information Services Randy Daniels said that the Board subcommittee decided to have a professional survey done. He added that because of his position, he was chosen to research professional surveying organizations. Through his research, Daniels found the Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE) organization. He said the survey would ask students appropriate and unbiased questions. “It’s a great survey. The results will be normed with students across the nation,” he said. “Hopefully we’ll get answers to our questions.” This survey will be used to determine more than just whether or not students are interested in paying for sports clubs. Lauer said it will focus on all different aspects of education and campus life. The CCSSE won’t start surveying students at the college until the winter semester. While details are still being worked out for the survey, others efforts have been made to support the clubs. The Sports Community Committee was formed. It currently has about 30 members, Lauer said. “So many people came forward. They were enthusiastic and wanted to help,” she said. “Some were former graduates who wanted to see athletics come back.” These committees, along with sports club members, are working together to try to get the sports clubs started again this fall. Daniels said that the club members have had a hard time organizing practice times because of students’ busy lives. “They’re doing other activities. They’re time poor,” he said. “One student’s schedule doesn’t necessarily match with other students’ schedules.” Although participating in the sports clubs adds to her busy schedule, student Amy Terrasi said any clubs, especially sports clubs are a good outlet for students. Terrasi attended the Student Government Welcome-Back-BBQ to promote the Volleyball club. Lauer was also there to meet students and answer any questions they might have. Lauer said that they have been trying to do an informal survey asking students
Agora photo by Andrew Hoppert
if they would be willing to pay 25 dollars a semester to build clubs at MCCC. “That would probably raise $100,000 a school year, which could certainly support sports clubs,” she said. Lauer added that students were asking about other sports clubs such as basketball and golf. “If any other students are interested in starting a new sports club they should contact Tom Ryder for information in how to establish their club,” she said. Interested students can call Student Activities Coordinator Tom Ryder at 734-384-4201 or e-mail him at tryder@ monroeccc.edu. Students interested in joining one of the current sanctioned sports clubs (volleyball, soccer, or bowling) should contact the club advisors. “I’d certainly love to see sports grow and be successful,” Daniels said. “I’d love to take some of the students to the Board meeting in October. and say we played at three different colleges and had fun doing it.”
“So many people came forward. They were enthusiastic and wanted to help. Some were former graduates who wanted to see athletics come back.”
Linda Lauer MCCC Board member at a candidate forum last fall.
Learning Bank to help prepare students for college Ashley Hammer Staff
The Learning Bank Network, a collaboration of educational institutions taking over an old Monroe Bank & Trust branch, launched Wednesday, Sept. 23, with its first orientation. The Learning Bank is an institution that will help members of the community who had struggled in high school or may be experiencing financial setbacks preventing them from enrolling in college. This new organization is geared toward those who want to achieve their GED, or just need help in updating their previous knowledge, preparing themselves to take
college courses. “We will know we are successful when people get their GED or have improved their knowledge level,” said Learning Bank Network Coordinator Vuncia Council. “We want in some way to allow them to increase their income or be able to get a job to support them or their families.” Located on East First Street, the Learning Bank, established in December 2008, was originally scheduled for a grand opening on Sept. 1. The orientation took place Wednesday at the Arthur Lesow Community Center (ALCC), near the location of the Learn-
ing Bank, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., open to anyone who wanted to attend. The next orientation is scheduled for Nov. 4. Due to setbacks in the remodeling the former MB&T branch building, classes will be held in the ALCC, to avoid any further delay. Unforeseen issues in acquiring the grant money prevented the Learning Bank from opening on schedule. Twenty-five students applied for classes at the Learning Bank. They will be instructed by Carol Nolian and Council. The size of the classes and the number of teachers or volunteers who will
be needed will grow as the program expands. The classes last a total of 12 weeks. If students wish to speed up the process ,the program can be finished in as little as six weeks. Thanks to the grants, the program is free, but certain financial requirements must be met. There is career counseling available for the students, compliments of Michigan Works and MCCC. Also, students will be able to meet with Monroe County Opportunity Program counselors, who come once a week to see what problems may occur that could hurt the students’ attendance or academic acheivement.
Fitness activities coordinator resigns Dan Ford Staff
MCCC Fitness Activities Coordinator Vladimir Vjatschslav resigned soon after the start of fall semester, apparently because of a dispute over a tattoo. Vjatschslav, who also has been an adjunct faculty member since 2007, was hired to run the college Fitness Center last January. When asked why he resigned four days into the semester, Vjatschslav declined to comment, saying he would rather “let sleeping dogs lie.” But sources who asked to not be indentified said Vjatschslav resigned after he was told to cover a tattoo on his forearm. College officials apparently knew about the tattoo of a naked woman when Vjatschslav
was hired, but said it was okay as long as he kept it covered while on campus. Vjatschslav said he doesn’t want to do anything that would reflect negatively on the college. “I enjoyed my time at the college, heck, I’m still a student there,” he said in an e-mail to The Agora. “For the most part the staff have been awesome, and I cannot fault the vast majority of them, they have helped and welcomed me, and show nothing but friendship and camaraderie.” Director of Human Resources Molly McCutchen said in an e-mail to The Agora that the vacant position has been posted both internally and externally in the Monroe Evening News and on the college Web site.
Vladimir Vjatschlav Former fitness activities coordinator
“For the most part the staff have been awesome, and I cannot fault the vast majority of them, they have helped and welcomed me...”
Problems could include issues like child care, finances and current employmen. The Learning Bank was made possible by a grant of $300,000 — part of the $2.5 million awarded to 10 regional partnerships from the No Worker Left Behind Fund for adult education. Other partners include MCCC, the Arthur Lesow Community Center, the Bedford and Mason school districts, SEMCA\Michigan Works, Monroe County ISD, City of Monroe, United Way, the Monroe County Library System, Monroe County Opportunities Program, the Salvation Army, City of Hope CDC and Monroe Bank & Trust.
September 24, 2009
Film festival visits MCCC Andrew Hoppert Assistant Editor
The Meyer Theatre held a small, yet captivated audience on Tuesday, Sept. 22, as the 47th Ann Arbor Film Festival Michigan tour made its stop in Monroe, treating students and other members of the community to seven of the best films that it had to offer. The audience settled into the seats of the theatre, Donald Harrison, Executive Director of the AAFF, introduced the show and each of the seven films with a small narrative detailing small interesting points. After Tim Spoehr, the Technical Director of the Meyer Theater, corrected the technical difficulties that marked the beginning of the show, the movies started to play. “It adds to the film festival experience,” Harrison said as the first film started rolling. The first film that flashed was “Dahlia,” a budget film made by Michal Langan. The film, produced with a budget of $99, used stop-photography, driving beats, and breathing to show the activities on a normal day in San Francisco. Second came “Studies in Transfalumination,” an experimental film made by renowned filmmaker Peter Rose. Harrison described the excitement that fills a festival when Peter Rose enters. He said that Rose talked of a new project. The film depicted Rose’s experimentation in different lighting techniques. Rose used modified projectors and flashlights to give the images he depicted a bold look without the use of special effects. The 12 minute “Utopia Part 3: The World’s Largest Shopping Mall” gave the audience a look into south China. A shopping complex two times the size of the
Mall of America was built, but four years after completion, sits empty. The film discusses why, and what is being done to get people to actually shop there. People sleeping on the job, narratives from workers, and shots of dark, empty shops which haven’t been bought by vendors give a deep look into how rough the mall is economically, but the entirety of the situation cannot be told in twelve minutes. “It’s hard to get the entire story into the film,” said Harrison. “Cattle Call” was a flurry of quick moving music and activity. In the after show discussion, some audience members went as far as to say that it moved too fast. Made by Mike Maryniuk and Matthew Rankin out of Winnipeg, the film raced animation, music, and a cattle auctioneer for four minutes of bright, fun frenzy. Every year, the AAFF receives thousands of entries involving painting or interpretive dance, Harrison said, many of which are rejected. Takeshi Kushida’s “Reincarnation,” however, was able to break its way onto to the screen and into the audience’s hearts, easily becoming the crowd favorite. Using ribbon and elaborate steps, Kushida’s work was able to depict the transformation from the cold of death to the warmth of life in a stunning fashion. Georges Schwizgebel’s “Retouches” took home Best Animated Film in the festival. Using intricate transition from scenes in nature to human life, the film filled five minutes with entertaining etchings and warm tones. The closing picture won Best Michigan Film, albeit the connotations brought mixed feelings.
Agora photo by Andrew Hoppert
An audience member animates his point during the discussion after the showing of seven films from the 47th Ann Arbor Film Festial in the Meyer Theater. Many audience members participated in the Q&A section.
Nicole Macdonald’s “A City To Yourself” describes how people are flooding out of Detroit and the landscape of the city is suffering. She feels that with the population dropping at such a steady rate, living in Detroit is like having the city to yourself. It is virtually empty. She also says that the city is an example for other cities, as though the curse that has befallen the Motor City.
“Utopia. Part 3”
Michal Langan 5 min. - Experimental
“A City To Yourself”
Michal Langan 5 min. - Experimental
Mike Maryniuk and Matthew Rankin 4 min. - Animation
Peter Rose 5.5 min. - Experinmental
Georges Schwizgebel 5.5 min. - Animation
tude from Harrison for the stop, and a plea for the Tour to return to Monroe next year. A succesful evening was made by, of course the filmmakers, but also by the audience participation in the discussion afterwards. The spirit of the Ann Arbor Film Festival was resinating from the Meyer Theater, making the evening a triumph for both MCCC and the AAFF.
Takeshi Kushida 5 min. - Experimental
“Studies in Transfalumination”
This film easily took up the majority of the post show discussion, with much of the commentary in disagreement of the message that the film relayed. Many felt as though the basic message of Detroit’s despondency was true, however the idea that it couldn’t be fixed or that this might befall other cities was a touch farfetched. The evening concluded with grati-
Sam Green and Carrie Lozanao 12.5 min. - Documentary
Hideous and Perfect
Hank Williams III
Backspacer Pearl Jam
Andrew Hoppert Assistant Editor
The latest addition to the Angelspit discography, Hideous and Perfect brings a new sound to the playing field. Angelspit is an industrial/EBM band from Sydney, Australia. The band often consists of ZooG and DestroyX, two artists that often combine cyberpunk, horror and medical imagery. While Hideous and Perfect feels very familiar, it is a departure from the sound many Angelspit fans are used to. Change is good though, and Hideous and Perfect proves it. The album often mimics past releases from Angelspit, which makes it feel like an extension of their older releases. KMFDM is an industrial band that formed in 1984 and has since inspired many bands. The influence of KMFDM can be seen on Hideous and Perfect. The album has more prominent use of male lyrics that previous works of Angelspit. The song As It Is in Heaven shows an even more drastic change from the standard Angelspit sound-with a very mellow, slow beat to it, with very dark lyrics that seem to rebel against the rest of the song. The lyrics in Hideous and Perfect tend to focus around money and greed, with song names like Cold Hard Cash and Making Money. One song even brings up the greed of corporations with lawsuits over college students breaching copyrights over the internet. While the album still has the rebellious tone that previous Angelspit albums have, Hideous and Perfect goes further on showing a message. While the music is great, the packaging to Hideous and Perfect alone is worth the price of admission. The great photography shows the artistic side of the band, including ZooG and DestroyX in medically inspired cyberpunk-esque outfits.
The heavy pounding bass line that makes Chevelle the band it is within the heavy rock world is obviously present in the band’s fifth studio album Sci-fi Crimes. However, it isn’t an album that is a necessity to a collection as Wonder What’s Next (2002) was. The generic Chevelle sound is recurrent within most songs, giving a good portion of the album a boring, rolling drone, but there are some tracks that give the album life. Jars, the first released single from the album, is getting great radio airplay, which is much deserved because it has a unique riff that captivates listeners from the getgo. The interesting thing about song is the Pete Loeffler, guitarist and lead-singer, as well as the oldest of the brothers, was able to keep the low, deep tone, while throwing in the e-string bridge string to make the song fun. The way the song was written, as well as the other good tracks of the album, takes what made the band famous, but adds the little guitar riffs and licks that are able to revive what alternative metal means. The deep bass line still gives the metal aspect of the band’s work, and the drumming gives the album a slow, rolling pace. The guitar, however, is what makes this album hit and miss. Mexican Sun, for example, has a good, deep riff with a great chorus to keep a good flow. Then we move to the first song, Sleep Apnea, which was, plainly, boring. The same sound over and over left nothing to latch on to. There are some great licks, but the bulk of the album was a chore to listen to. Although Chevelle has a good template to work with in Sci-fi Crimes, the band can do better.
Shelton Hank Williams, or Hank the third, prince of one of country music’s ruling houses, has kept the family tradition alive by defying tradition yet again. Assjack, the punk/metal side project band for the otherwise semi-traditional country musician, attests to the very real and possibly life-threatening punk habit that he has had since an early age. The group usually fills out the second half of live shows featuring Hank’s other ensemble, the country-revival music troupe Hank III. Gone are the scratchy, crowd noise laden offerings of yore, when any Assjack material was bootleg quality. Instead we hear well-mastered and executed tracks, running the gamut from non-ironic warnings against cocaine addiction, to pure silliness, to very aggressive and confrontational nu-metal. Heavily influenced by blast-beat metal, old school punk, alternative rock, and bass driven melodies,Assjack will surprise with swelling crescendos and enough tempo changes to satisfy even the most easily distracted. Fans of 80’s punk and speed metal will definitely appreciate the ferocity with which the group attacks the album. Most songs are under four minutes. With stanzas on most every song easily breaking the 16 measure mark, rest assured that the reason for such short tracks is a time tested punk tactic-cut the fat. Just a warning to country fans out therethis is not like Hank’s country music. But if you feel that Kenny Chesney just isn’t sufficient for exorcising ones inner turmoil, you might give Assjack a try. This is a labor of love, not a side project for a quick buck. Expect the real deal.
Brand New has always put out a new sound that blows listeners away with every track. Daisy keeps you on your toes through every minute. The thoughtprovoking sounds and lyrics didn’t fail the band’s loyal fan base, retaining the signature sound, while tossing in some new elements to make the album one of the best of the year. The album opens with Vices, a perfect example of the aforementioned genius behind this album. Starting with a scratchy ballad of a woman singing, the band breaks out in a heavier tone than we’re used to, with screaming. Yes, screaming, but it’s done well. It isn’t an overly recurring element in the album, but the idea is intriguing. The album is heavier than the normal stuff that we are used to, but it is done so perfectly. It is heart-wrenching. It is the beautiful tragic style that we have come to know and love. It wouldn’t be a stretch to call this their best work, but it’s dangerous to say anything tops The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me. The only track on the album that I can honestly say I have a problem with is Be Gone. A minute and a half of choppy vocals and confusing licks are frustrating, more because one can’t help but wonder why it’d even appear on the album. Daisy is an alternative gem and is easily one of the best albums of the year. The band comes to Detroit on October 2, but tickets sold out within three minutes of availability, so congratulations to all of those who were quick on the draw or won them. All of the rest of us are just going to have to enjoy this great work that night at home.
Pearl Jam has hit a little bit of a dry spell. Oh, let’s face it: they will never be as strong-willed and empowered as when they were the gods of grunge in Seattle. Eddie Vedder is still doing his thing with side projects, but after World Wide Suicide, nothing really happened. Backspacer, the band’s ninth studio release, is the end to a drought that we never thought we’d pull out of, but it’s not a resolution in the way we’d have hoped. Pearl Jam has reinvented as a softer version of itself 18 years ago, but they still hold the qualities (and Eddie Vedder’s signature sound) to be an alternative super-power. Backspacer is a feel good album in its early stages, with a strange happy undertone that drives songs like the popular single The Fixer, Gonna See My Friend, and Supersonic. The album’s peppy drumbeat and bass tones are a change from the powerful ballads we’re used to from Ten. That is the sound the band is going to rely on from this point. There’s energy in the music, but the anger and anguish in the vocals and driving guitar is replaced with a more joyfully driven style. The album shows the dexterity that the band keeps. They are like Led Zeppelin in the way that they are able to switch from a peppy electric song, to a somber acoustic ballad, to a slow thinker. It is unbelievable how they are able to master each of the endeavors that they take, and have been able to collect such an eclectic following over the years. The album artwork and the special features that come with the purchase of said CD are very cool as well. The artwork encaptures the band’s ever chagning style. The special features include special wallpaper downloads, as well as band news and concert exclusives.
September 24, 2009
Tae Kwon Do improves focus New volleyball coach needed
Alan McKee Staff
While discussions of handguns permitted on Michigan College campuses for protection are raising some eyebrows, MCCC currently offers Tae Kwon Do as an art of self-defense. Whether you’re into losing weight, adding strength, gaining self-confidence or maybe you just need a physical education credit, Tae Kwon Do can provide personal satisfaction. Tae Kwon Do students could gain better physical health and the ability to improve focus. The martial arts classes are instructed by Mark Bergmooser who has been employed at MCCC for 11 years. “I’m still sort of an older school martial arts practitioner and instructor,” Bergmooser said. He will soon be celebrating his 25th year of involvement with Tae Kwon Do. Tae Kwon Do classes are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m., Meeting on Tuesday and Thursday each week. With about 30 members already, there are still interested newcomers signing up to learn this form of self-defense. Many programs individualize members into age or level groups. Bergmooser said that the youngest student is five years old. “I don’t take anybody younger,” he said. Bergmooser said he thinks Mr. Hogberg is the oldest student, at 71 years old.
Alan McKee Staff
Agora photo by Symone Thomas
Mark Gladieux spars against Matthew Hogberg during one of the martial arts classes.
Eleven year old Matthew Hogberg, who has cerebral palsy, began taking Tae Kwon Do at MCCC two years ago. “Defending is more important than attacking,” Matthew said. Prior to instruction, small groups participated in various activities, practicing moves or doing exercises such as push-ups on the knuckles. To start off the session, all students are arranged in specific or-
der: belt color and age. A black belt is of highest rank with varying degrees. Enrollees are automatically designated as white belts, despite levels of age, strength, or experience in other defenses. Advancement levels are depicted by color of belts with yellow being the first step up followed by orange, blue, blue with white stripe, green, and so on up to black belt.
Advancing to higher levels generally involves an eligibility process that occurs approximately every three months. Tae Kwon Do in the past has been a participating sport of the World Olympics. The sport most likely will be excluded in the future. In the meantime, several fighting championships have surfaced in recent years that incorporate an aggressive approach in using martial arts.
In just their third year, the Volleyball Club here at MCCC is breaking barriers. For the first time since the 1970s, competitive sports will once more exist. Amy Terassi, a nursing student here at MCCC, has taken the reins as president of the MCCC Volleyball Club which began in 2007 under the guidance of Amy’s twin sister Elizabeth. With the help of Randy Daniels, the girls have already scheduled a match with Delta College of Michigan. “We would like to reinstate athletics.” Amy said. “Our goal right now is to get more competitive, and start playing other college club teams.” Lack of leadership has slowed the club’s progress from the start. Many of the girls athletes leave high school sports accustomed a stricter regimen highlighted by a having coaches. The volleyball club is, according to Terassi, is “a chance for students to play again.” Flyers have been posted around the campus, while the club attempts to organize practices. Amy firmly stated “In order to start in organizing more games we need the interest and we need girls to start showing up for organized practices.” Practices are tentatively scheduled on Monday and Thursday each week at 8 PM and 5 PM respectively. These practices are
pertinent if the club is to incorporate more college matchups. The club team has also scheduled 3 tournaments this fall and winter, with the first beginning here at the Gerald Welch Health Education in the gymnasium. The tournament will start at 9 AM. The word is getting around about the MCCC Volleyball Club via MCCC Broadcasting Club and Dream 97-5, as well as the Monroe Evening News. The team could use some support. Terassi wants to reach out and say, “Hey! Come out and watch us! Come support us!” The club president adds, “We have a lot of people getting hyped up about it. I think it’ll really draw the community if they know that we have competitive play going on.” College competitions should bring more interest to the sport as it develops. The Club is considering charging a two to five dollar entrance fee, and according to Amy it will help with funds they need down the road. “If the enthusiasm stays high and people help out to keep it organized, the club will be will be successful,” she concludes. “We have a lot of great athletes in the Monroe County area who go here. And being able to participate in such a program will be beneficial to students and the college. I think that reinstating athletics is going to draw people in even more.”
Top three teams to watch in Big Ten Andrew Hoppert Assistant Editor
Rich Rodriguez took his year to get the team situated (although it cost him the worst season in Michigan football history), but this is the year that the Wolverines will take the Big Ten yet again as the dark horse of the conference. Tate Forcier will make his freshman miscues at quarterback, as do all freshmen, but he will make up for it with the insight in the pocket that he showed in the Notre Dame win. What will help him lead the Wolverine offense to victory will be learning how to read opposing defenses’ coverage gaps. Once he is able to pick the holes apart, he will be in the perfect position with a great line to protect him. The Michigan/Michigan State game will be a good game, but the Wolverines won’t have too
much trouble. Games to watch: The Iowa game will be a great game. Iowa will be a surprise to the Wolverines, and a close match-up will give Michigan a true defensive test. Michigan wins it 24-17, despite being on the road. Penn State will be Forcier’s toughest test this season. Joe Paterno’s ever-tough defense hasn’t failed yet this season, and will be the team to beat in the Big Ten. You can’t count out the Wolverine’s offensive line and stout running game. The Penn State offense lost some key players last season, and the Wolverine defense, once it tightens up its coverage game, will be able to handle the Nittany Lions. Michigan wins 14-10. Obviously, with Jim Tressel leading his Buckeye’s into Ann Arbor, the city will be on fire. What has been consistently the game of the year for the Wolverines won’t be their roughest match-up this season, not to say that it won’t be a fantastic game. Terrell Pryor is used to a spread offense, and will be astounded, even this late in the year, by the Wolverine defense. Wolverines close out an undefeated season 24-21.
Andrew Hoppert Assistant Editor
Penn State will run the first half of the season as the toughest team in the Big Ten, but will eventually fall short by one or two games. Joe Paterno’s boys from University Park easily have the best defense in the Big Ten, as they do perennially. The key for the Nittany Lions outside of keeping the defense strong is being able to utilize the running game, with junior Evan Royster leading the way behind senior quarterback Daryll Clark. Clark has a young receiving corps, and Paterno will need to rely heavily on the run. The offensive line has to step up to give Clark’s receivers time, and set up good blocks for Royster. The Penn State offense is shaky. Penn State will easily handle
Eastern Illinois, Minnesota, and Northwestern. Penn State will have a borderline game against Iowa, but the home field advantage will help them eke out a win against the Hawkeyes. Games to watch: The Nittany Lions have the unfortunate luck to have to travel to Ann Arbor to take on Rich Rodriguez’s Wolverines. The defense will hold tight, but the offense won’t be able to score on Michigan’s defense either. This is a low scoring contest, seeing which team is able to break the line first. Penn State will fall 10-14, with all of the scores coming in the second half. Then will come one of the most anticipated match-ups of the year in the Big Ten with the Buckeye’s strolling into University Park. Jim Tressel’s Buckeyes will suffocate in the secondary, and the running game will have nowhere to go. The Nittany Lions will take it 2410. The closing game will take Navy and Blue into East Lansing for a final showdown against the Spartans. This will be a surprisingly fun game to watch, but Penn State will eventually take control and win 17-10.
Andrew Hoppert Assistant Editor
Ohio State losing to USC in the early stages of the season set the tempo for the rest of the season. Jim Tressel’s squad will do well this season, but will round out the top three in the Big Ten with losses to Michigan and Penn State. Terrelle Pryor is going to be make-or-break for the Buckeye’s offense. The mobile quarterback has started the season with 613 yards passing and four touchdowns. He also leads the team in rushing with 176 yards. Although he was able to throw against Toledo, he won’t be as productive in the pocket against Big Ten foes. Tressel is going to have to step up the other pieces of the running attack if the offense hopes to make a statement this season.
Ohio State has a nice schedule for the midsection of the season, with a slew of winnable games against Illinois, Indiana, Purdue and Minnesota. Wisconsin may be a test, but the real toughies won’t come until the last three games of the season. Games to watch: Penn State will be the first time, aside from USC of course, to show the Buckeyes a really tough defensive stand. Joe Paterno’s Nittany Lions will easily handle Pryor, and win 24-10 at home. After a rough road game, the Bucks will head back to the Horseshoe to take on Iowa. The Hawkeyes will play a very tough game, and will give the Buckeyes a run for their money. Pryor will be able to perform this game, and will throw for 200+ yards, giving the Buckeyes an edge in this offensive shoot-out. Ohio State will take it 28-24. Then the bus takes Tressel’s boys to Ann Arbor to face the Wolverines. The offense will get some breaks, but will still struggle against Rodriguez’s tight defense. Michigan will take a victory in the Big House 24-21, closing Ohio State’s regular season at (9-3).
Will a new roster hinder Detroit’s season? Mary Rose Takacs Staff
Friday October 5th marks the beginning of the Detroit Red Wings quest for a promising season. There have been many changes among the Red Wings roster for the coming season. Over the summer, Detroit’s starting line-up lost several of its players, from last season. After loosing the Stanley Cup championship last season, this may have affected some of the players decisions to leave hockeytown. Marian Hossa packed his bags and left the Red Wings locker room, even after being Detroit’s leading scorer with 40 goals and 31 assists in 73 games last season. “Most people in Detroit knew he was going to leave if the Wings didn’t win the cup, and some were doubtful he would be back even if we did claim Stanley this year,” Casey Cheap, MCCC student, said. He signed a 12 year, $62.8 million contract with the Chicago Blackhawks, one of Detroit’s leading rivalries. Following Hossa was Thomas Kopecky, he also signed with Chicago, to a two year contract of $1.2 million. After four years of playing center for the Wings, Jiri Hudler, left to play in the Russian Kontinental Hockey League with the Dynamo Moscow’s, a Russian team. Hudler signed a two-year $10 million contract, with the Dynamo Moscow’s. If he was to return to the NHL he would be held to his twoyear, $5.75 million contract with the Wings. Ty Conklin also left Motown this summer, due to the Red Wings salary cap. He added 25 wins and only 11 losses to his career, after playing as back up goalie to Chris Osgood last season. “He was more than just a good back-up goal tender,” Cheap said. “Conklin’s save percentage was higher than Osgood’s and his goals against were lower during the regular season last year.”
Due to Conklin’s departure, Jimmy Howard will be the new full time back-up goalie for Chris Osgood this season. He was signed in 2003 with the Red Wings but has played only handful of NHL games. “I can’t say whether or not Howard is ready, but I know the stats are against him,” Cheap, said. With Conklin, Hossa, Kopecky, Hudler, and Mikael Samuelsson exiting the Red Wings locker room, Todd Bertuzzi, a player with much controversy among Wings fans has been resigned. “I don’t like at all him,” Kyle Elkins, MCCC student said. “I don’t think he’s Red Wings material.” Tad Cousino, owner of the Frog Leg Inn resturant and cafe at MCCC has a differing opinion. “Typically you need somebody to mix it up, help draw penalities, and keep those on the ice honest who aren’t so honest,” Cousino, said. Among the 13 years Betuzzi has played for the NHL he has scored 255 goals, assisted to 369 goals within a total of 859 career games. His
previous average last season with the Calgary Flames was 44 points within 66 games. He signed to a one year, 1.5 million dollar contract with the Wings. Having played for the team in 2006, he is no stranger to the Wings roster and method to playing the game. Providing some concern among the Wings, is Anreas Lilja. He suffered a head injury last season after a fight with Predators defenseman Shea Weber. Severe headaches have been the main cause of apprehension, which have affected him through out his off time. MRI tests have been done to look for any brain injury. So far, nothing of serious concern has been found, but the time frame for his return to the game is still under question. In the midst of these changes, long time veterans of the team’s starting line-up have not skipped a beat in preparing for this coming season. “The core is still there. We just lost a few defectors,” Cheap said. Chris Osgood will continue to tend the Wings net. “As long as he looks as sharp as he did in the playoffs earlier this year, he’ll be a force to reckon with,” Cheap, said. Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterburg remian Assistants. Last season, Datsuk totaled 97 points within 81 games, and Zetterburg contributed 73 points in 77 games. “They’re both world-class players in the prime of their career,” Cheap, said. The player some fans might argue is the one to hold the team together will continue as captian of the Detroit Red Wings. Nicklas Lidstrom will be starting his third straight season of leading the Red Wings. With these core players in place, the confidence of a promising season remains among Wings fans. “So the Wings division is not necessarily a lock like it was in past years, but I still think they’re the favorite to win, and still one of the top three teams in the Western Conference,” Cheap said.