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INSIDE Of Ebony Embers recap

Volume 84, Issue 1




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Laundry prices rise By Jon Hoel Co-Managing Editor If you live on campus at MCLA, you have likely noticed the changes to the laundry facilities in your residence area. The laundry machines in Berkshire Towers, Flagg Townhouses and Hoosac Hall have all been updated, gutting the outdated units, replacing them with new ones, and upping the cost by 25 cents per load. What was once $1.50 has become $1.75. That might seem incremental, but bear in mind it is a roughly 20 percent increase on the price. Given the number of students who do their laundry at each facility in a given day, that (arguably) marginal increase becomes a modestly significant number pretty quickly. That said, why the increase? The laundry services, along with the residence areas in general, are provided for by the Massachusetts State College Building Authority, which collectively services MCLA along with eight other state schools, including Salem State and Fitchburg State. “Every seven years the contract with the MSCBA is renegotiated,” explains Diane Manning, the director of RPS. “In July [2016], we renewed their contract through 2023. The $1.50 price for laundry was the same since 2009.”



March participants took to the streets to protest Donald Trump and his stances on women's rights. Activists from across the state attended, in conjunction with marches nation-wide.

MCLA students join Boston Women’s March By Reagan Smith and Hannah Snell Staff Writers Originally a march planned for only 25,000 attendees, the Women’s March on Boston saw between 130,000 and 150,000 proud marchers. While the protest was aimed towards the fears and oppositions of women against President Trump, it brought together many sectional populations. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Boston Mayor Martin Walsh joined the march organizers on Saturday, Jan.

21 in motivating people of all backgrounds to walk together passionately and composedly. The march started with a gathering in Boston Commons and was intended to loop from Back Bay to Beacon Hill. “I think it’s important to march not just for your own struggles, but to support others who are clearly struggling as well,” a Socialist Alternative reporter, who goes by Jack, said. “Trump has barely even started, and already we have so much to protest.” Social communities such as Black Lives Matter (BLM), People of Color (PoC), LGBTQ+, the disabled, veterans, and supporters of indigenous people in Standing Rock Reservation showed immense representation and support for one another in Boston. Scattered signs acknowledging the threat of climate change could even be seen throughout the crowd. Organizers Kim Whittaker, Sonya

Khan, Shelley Yen-Ewert, and Zachary Steigerwald Schnall prepared a combination of speakers who enthusiastically vocalized the ideal American democracy. The high demand for human dignity, equal rights, and freedom from discrimination fueled marchers into the streets. “I feel like I’m a part of history,” MCLA sophomore Don’Jea Smith said before marching on Saturday. “It’s unfortunate that we have to keep protesting because the people before us worked so hard, but now we have to stand on their shoulders and keep protesting.” For some, marching is tradition. Bostonian Marcia Callahan, who has been rallying in Boston since the Vietnam War, had tears in her eyes when admiring the congested Boston Commons. “Today I march in solidarity with


NORTH ADAMS LOSES GRANT But music series will continue By Mitchell Chapman @mitchapman Editor-in-Chief Last December, North Adams was announced as one of 25 finalists in the running to receive a $25,000 grant to bring ten weeks of free music to Colegrove Park. North Adams did not make the cut. “We were disappointed not to receive a second year of funding for the Levitt AMP North Adams series, as it does take time to establish a series, and we were able to garner enough votes to land in 15th place out of the 25 finalists that the Levitt Foundation would consider for their grants,” Suzy Helme, City of North Adams Director of Community Events, said. “However, we are grateful for their generous support last year which brought ten free concerts to Colegrove Park from August to October and truly opened our community’s


MARCH, Page 4


Congressman John Lewis to be keynote speaker By Nick Tardive Senior News Editor

MCLA officially announced that Representative John Lewis, D-Georgia, would be the keynote speaker at the school’s 118th commencement on Tuesday, Jan. 17. The timing worked out well for the College. On Wednesday, Jan. 11, Lewis and Senator Corey Booker of New Jersey, testified

against Jeff Sessions. Sessions is President Trump’s nominee for Attorney General, and has turned out to be a highly controversial pick. “We knew well before we made the announcement,” said President Birge. “We chose to wait until there was a time when faculty and students were on campus together, so we could break the news to as many people as pos-

sible.” Birge explained that the search process for this May’s commencement began last spring. He and three members of the Board of Trustees made up the search committee. In their quest, the group decided that Lewis would be an ideal choice due to his wealth of experience as both a Civil Rights activist and Representative of Georgia’s

5th district. “We knew his record with Civil Rights,” said President Birge. “At the time the search began, the election was really getting started, and Civil Rights had become a big issue in the election.” Lewis has been described by many as a protege of Martin Luther King, Jr. himself. One of the original 13 “Freedom Riders” and one of the main organizers of the


LEWIS, Page 4 Rep. Lewis D-Georgia.


February 2, 2017


College Republicans establish club for unheard voices across campus, aim for inclusivity By Joseph Carew Co-Managing Editor With an air of awkwardness hanging over the room, a container of cookies was passed around the table. The cookies moved from conservative to liberal to libertarian, gathered late on a Thursday night. It seemed as though there was something to be said but no one wanted to say it. This was the first official meeting of the MCLA College Republicans club, a political club started by former MCLA student Tyler Spencer and current Chair of the club, Kaitlin Wright. “Well, I guess you could say we both felt pretty excluded at school in terms of political views,” said Wright. “We were kind of the outcasts when it came time to talk politics.” This didn’t prove to be too

much of an issue for her and her co-founder until this recent election and the effect it had on campus. “It never really was an issue until this past election cycle when students and faculty alike seemed to be putting themselves against us,” Wright said. “We just wanted a place we could take freely about our views with like-minded people.” But this club isn’t just for the conservatives on campus, as she pointed out. “I hope that we will be able to reach out and help a wide range of students and not just those with conservative beliefs; that we can help anyone who feels like their voice has been silenced on campus,” Wright said. As the cookies moved around the table, each person spoke about their political background and what made them want to join. A libertarian who felt political cor-

PHOTO COURTESY OF KAITLIN WRIGHT MCLA’s College Republicans pose for their first photo as a club. rectness was wholly incorrect “I really hope that this club spoke, followed by a liberal can help educate people on who was against alterations what the Republican Party to classic comics just to make stands for and I hope that it them more ethnically diverse. gets rid of the common mis-

conception on this campus that all republicans are racist, homophobic and sexist,” Wright said. “I hope that our members will take full advantage of the opportunities that this club will provide.” Although the club doesn’t have a budget for this year, the e-board hopes to be able to manage some events on campus. Accompanying Wright on the e-board is Executive Director Joe Bellas, Vice Chair John Kelly, Secretary Chris Carson, and Treasurer Robbie Gair. Meetings for this club are Thursdays at 9 p.m. in Bowman 217. Cookies are not guaranteed. Founded in 1854, the Republican Party affirms the Constitution’s fundamental principles of limited government, seperation of powers, individual liberty and the rule of law according to thier website

SGA: strategic planning, ARAMARK woes


By Nick Tardive @Nick_Tardive Senior News Editor

Brief from McClatchy Washington Bureau

SGA’s second meeting of the semester was dominated by student complaints regarding ARAMARK food and conversation with Gina Puc, co-chair of MCLA’s strategic planning committee. Puc kicked off the meeting by reviewing strategic planning meetings and intentions as of last semester, and how that took the committee to where it is now. A steering committee consisting of 18 members, both student and faculty, met to plan goals for the next five years. As Puc explained to the student representatives and people in the gallery, although MCLA is planning individual goals for itself as an institution, they are trying to remain within the guidelines of other Massachusetts state institutions. “While our own campus is doing strategic planning, it’s really aligned with other federally funded state institutions,” Puc said. In November, 60 people attended an open forum held by the strategic planning committee. Puc described this as a “great turnout” for an event held in the middle of the afternoon. Following Thanksgiving break, a survey was sent out. 59 faculty (42 full-time), 304 students, 76 staff and 150 alumni responded. By all accounts, the amount of respondents to the survey was much higher than expected. “We’re in a stage where we’re moving at a rapid pace,” Puc said. “Our hope is to have a draft in the hands of the Board [of Trustees] come May.”

On Feb. 8, Carlos Santiago, Commissioner of the Department of Higher Education, will be visiting the school. Puc and the strategic planning committee hopes to have a good enough draft of the five-year plan to send to the Department of Education come August. The strategic planning committee has come up with several goals they want to reach come 2021. A few of these goals include offering programs responsive to community and student needs, enhancing student sistence, completion and postcollege success, strengthening commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion and functioning effectively, collaboratively and creatively. Once Puc was finished with her presentation and officer reports were presented, freshman Julia Coughlin announced to SGA that she had found a maggot on her broccoli Saturday, Jan. 28. “This is not acceptable for ARAMARK, and I believe not typical for them,” said Executive Vice President Shannon Esposito. Esposito referred Coughlin, and all students with complaints regarding ARAMARK, to the Food Committee. The Food Committee meets at 3:30 p.m. every other Monday, starting Feb 6. Its meetings are open to the public. Class of 2020 representative Jacob Vitali, who had been the person to encourage Coughlin to bring her concern before SGA, has been an outspoken opponent of renewing the school’s food contract with

ARAMARK since the onset. “I think this is completely unacceptable,” Vitali said. “Food is the number one thing my constituents bring up to me as something that they want changed.” Esposito requested that Vitali send his displeased constituents her way, and reiterated that the Food Committee was set up specifically for issues such as the one Coughlin had brought in to SGA. President Tim Williams, in an effort to lighten the mood following Coughlin’s short testimonial to the student representatives, brought up another issue Vitali had presented to SGA last semester: the shuttle. Williams announced that the school had hired a part-time shuttle driver who would make trips Tuesday through Thursday.

On top of that, the shuttle will continue to run as it had before on Saturday through Monday, taking students downtown, to Wal-Mart and to the Berkshire Mall. The shuttle also takes trips to the Williams Inn in Williamstown on Fridays at 3:30 p.m., in case students have to catch the Peter Pan Bus. One of Vitali’s concerns, lack of updated schedule online, was rectified, as Williams explained. A quick Google search for the MCLA shuttle, or “The Great Shuttle Escape”, would net one a fully updated version of the schedule. Vitali, who was the sourch of a good portion of SGA’s deliberations Monday night, also brought up complaints of his own. He proclaimed to be fed up with being charged a $3 fee, and that most schools in the New England area do not charge their students similarly.

the Beacon Republicans against Trump

WASHINGTON - Republicans in Congress might be searching for ways to distance themselves from President Donald Trump’s immigration order without disavowing his tough talk on security, but conservative activists from South Carolina to Florida to Texas have no patience for such nuance. “This was not some surprise,” said Glenn McCall, the Republican national committeeman from South Carolina. “He campaigned on this. This is something, overwhelmingly, I would say, the folks in the state supported.” Indeed, the White House’s executive order, signed late Friday afternoon to restrict immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries for several months and to bar refugees for even longer, is exactly in line with what Trump promised.



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February 2, 2017



You might be seeing some unfamiliar faces around campus this semester following an 11 percent increase in transfer students compared to Spring ’16. The school boasts 63 new students on campus. 52 transfer students, two freshmen, and nine are re-entry students. College re-entry programs are focused on students who have “suspended their education,” often due to issues of mental health. Recently, there has been a trend in students attending a community college first to obtain their associate’s degree. Those students then continue to get their bachelor’s at another institution. Be-

cause of this new trend, MCLA is ramping up its recruitment for transfer students. “The school has a very generous transfer policy,” said Gina Puc from Admissions. It is a rare occurrence for the College to not accept credits from another institution. For example, if a student comes in with an applied science degree, like nursing, the College will do its best to classify the credits, often as an elective. According to Puc, most transfer students major in the four biggest departments here at MCLA: business, English/communications, psychology, or education. Traditional transfer students bring in around 52 credits, according to Puc’s estimation, mak-

ing them either a second semester sophomore or a junior. Freshmen, unless they have these credits, are not considered transfer students. “I’m not quite a typical transfer,” said Andrew Hall, a new MCLA student this semester. “Only 30 credits transferred over so I’m technically a freshman.” Hall, an arts management major, transferred here from The Community College of Vermont. He graduated high-school early to attend. “The transfer process was pretty smooth,” said Hall. “But it took a few appointments in order to make sure everything transferred.” Of the new students this semester, ten out of the 63 are a part of the College’s Adult Learners


The road ahead


Rep. Richard Neal adressed the challenges of a Trump presidency, which he embraces with open arms. He looks forward to the upcoming battle for the Affordable Care Act. By Mitchell Chapman @mitchapman Editor-in-Chief A few days before the inauguration of Donald Trump, Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., visited the MCLA community with insights as to how to tread into the Trump era. “We cannot sugar coat [this loss] by any means,” Neal said. “I do, however, think that it is premature to say that the Democratic Party is in bad shape.” During the recent election, Republicans took the Senate, the House and the presidency, as well as the majority of the governor’s races. Going into 2017, conservatives will have a majority presence in Congress, which throws the future of government-funded programs like Planned Parenthood and the Affordable Care Act into question. “We have voted in the House 50 times to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and every time it was vetoed by President Obama,” Neal said. “We can’t let them kick people out; that should be our goal.” Neal also thinks that Democrats should fight for universal access to health care, rather than a repeal. “We should guarantee getting into

the system,” he said. Neal expressed particular concern over the notion of alternative facts, citing members of the Tea Party who assert their opinions as facts. “Congress fared much better before these crusaders came along,” he said. Neal addressed how greatly divided the nation is towards the new president, citing the electoral college’s influence in the election. “72,000 voters decided this election,” he said. “[Hillary Clinton] had to win Pennsylvania, which she lost by less than one percent.” According to Neal, the candidate who displays a great sense of optimism wins elections. In the end, that wasn’t Hillary Clinton. “We can’t run on a message of: we’re not as bad as the other guys,” Neal said. “We can’t run on a negative message. One thing that I want to hear going forward is: Build a national party. The party I signed up for was a national party.” Throughout his talk, Neal referenced the past of the Democratic Party, taking time to discuss the election of John F. Kennedy and the excitement that was felt at the time. “[There was] this great sense of excitement about can-doism,” Neal said. “This was about idealism.” After the election loss, it became

clear that the Democratic party had to reconnect with its voter base, without sacrificing issues. “We need to reconnect with them,” Neal said. “It’s going to be long, it’s going to be tedious, but we have to do it.” Per issues, Neal explained what he calls the “big tent” theory. “There’s room for cultural issues, but also room for economic issues,” Neal said. “We don’t need to narrow our base, we need to expand its growth.” As for the Republican effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Neal looks forward to it. However, he stressed the need for it to be factbased, skeptical that Republicans will offer a sufficient replacement. “You have the President saying it’s going to be great,” Neal said. “Speaker of the House Paul Ryan saying ‘we’re not sure,’ and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell saying ‘maybe.’” In regards to Rep. John Lewis, D-Georgia, speaking at commencement later this year, who did not attend Trump’s inauguration, Neal expressed his approval. “I’m so happy John Lewis is coming here,” Neal said. “There are some people who are the real deal, and he is the real deal.”

program, called the Division of Graduate & Continuing Education (DGCE). The DGCE department helps older students, who often already have 40 or more credits, graduate. Many adult learners work fulltime while attending at least one class a semester. The College offers a program for non-traditional students to complete their bachelor’s degree. This bachelor’s degree completion program meets in the evenings as well as online in order for the students to be able to balance the demands that their life may hold. MCLA also offers classes at the Pittsfield Education Center located within the Conte Federal Building and at other locations around Pittsfield. The program

can help a student complete a bachelor’s degree in as fast as two years. Some students might even be able to receive credits for prior work and life experience. Spring semesters tend to be a down period for new students on campus. This past Fall, there were 130 new transfer students were enrolled. They averaged around a total of 50 credits per student, which is on track with Puc’s estimate of around 52 per transfer. Berkshire County Community College is MCLA’s “top sending school”. Other community colleges in Mass. and NY send students to MCLA at the highest frequency. Last Fall, 100 students were from Mass.

Awards in the Trumpian era Iranian director Asghar Farhadi. won an academy award in 2011, for his stunning film “Jodaí-e Nadér az Simín” or “A Separation”. This year, he is nominated for his new movie “The Jon Hoel Salesman”, but Fishin With will not be attending the Jon 89th Academy Awards, because of President Trump’s executive order which temporarily bars Iranians from the country. Farhadi likely could have gotten a special exception for the awards, but that’s not the point—he’s not coming. And at a time when the Academy is scrambling to reconcile their white-washed ceremony last year, where all twenty acting nominees were white, the call for diversity is dire, especially in Trump’s America. Skipping award ceremonies is nothing new in terms of political statements from artists. At the 1973 awards, Marlon Brando won Best Actor for his performance as Don Vito Corleone in “The Godfather”, but refused the award. Instead, he sent a Native American protester named Sacheen Littlefeather to read a statement about Native American abuse in the film industry. Famously, Jean-Paul Sartre refused the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1964—he called it representative of Westerncentricsm and that it was disgusting and misguided. He used the opportunity to highlight the then-controversial Venezuelan Revolutionists and criticizes the Swedish Academy for never bestowing honors upon Pablo Neruda, who would coincidentally become the Nobel Laureate in Literature 7 years later. But let’s focus back to the award shows. You’ve likely seen the clip circulating of David

Harbour and the ensemble cast of Netflix’s “Stranger Things” accepting the award at the Screen Actor’s Guild Awards. Harbour takes the opportunity to lambast both Trump and the recent punching-in-the-face of white supremacist Richard Spencer. You have to wonder though, isn’t the utilization of Hollywood neoliberal award shows for political agenda falling on deaf ears? It’s been argued that these sort of angry dogmatic acceptance speeches are exactly the sort of rhetoric needed to combat Trumpian politics, but if it’s only ever taking place in a leftist bubble like the Academy Awards, what good will it do? Publications as varying as credible news like The New York Times and USA Today, as well as partisan outlets like Breitbart and Huffington Post, all reported on Harbour’s rant. But if you go to Breitbart’s surprisingly not-horrendous report of the incident, a fifteen second glance at the comments will show you how pointlessly deaf the conversation is. The hope—as a film-viewer—is that the content itself speaks to the audience on a subtle and personal level. The films we see and the albums we hear in the next four years have a chance— albeit a small one—to challenge the views and outlooks of their audiences. I’m not talking about blatant propagandist stances like Dave Eggers and his “1000 Days, 1000 Songs Against Trump” playlist. While I enjoyed a lot of that content, I know there’s no point to it. What would be ideal to see in the next year or two would be an allegorical film or album— highlighting small but crucial issues of Trumpian political failings—and demonstrates this in a clear but infallible way. When that film comes out, I hope it sweeps the awards up like hurricane.




By Sandi Miller

Editor’s note: The following article was published in the first volume of the current Beacon run, dated Nov. 6, 1979. The history of past newspapers here at North Adams State College (NASC) is vast, rich and in a way, very confusing. The first college newspaper on record has been found by Historical Librarian Ann Terryberry was an issue of The Beacon in November of 1933. The next issue of The Beacon is one that was included in the 1934 yearbook entitled “The Taconian.” There were six issues of the original Beacon. The progress of this magazine is vague. Newspaper coverage at NASC went adrift until 1939 with the appearance of The Axis. This lapse of

news coverage was not explained. Newspapers in the 40’s were also scarce but this may be due to the onslaught of World War II. From 1947 to 1949, there was a santy paper entitled Taconic Columns. This volume was described in the 1951 yearbook as the “Show Sheet” of the college, which was at the time called North Adams Normal School. The next entry in the line of newspapers was a volume entitled the Alter-Natus in the 1950’s. The AlterNatus continued, or so it thought, to highlight the happenings of NASC until the emergence of The Student Voice in 1962. This paper is a strange coincidence due to the fact that the Worcester State College paper is now called The New Student Voice. From this time on, the history of the Seed grows, continually confusing. From April 9, 1965 through

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While the increase is marginal per-spin, its overarching costs do affect students significantly. “I mean I get it most people have issues with them but it just irks me,” said sophomore Paige Hudson, a Townhouse resident, “I’m a broke college student working two jobs and trying to pay for my car and that extra 25cents adds up, you know? I probably shouldn’t be this annoyed but here we are.” While some students were pleased at the improved equipment, and others disgruntled, the vast majority of those interviewed seemed nonplussed. “It’s 25 cents more. Since they’re new machines, it’s whatever.” Remarked sophomore Dawn Adams. If you are a college student at Hampshire College in Amherst Mass., and you go to do your laundry there, you will find the laundry facilities available free of charge. When first reading this, the assumption is—of course Hampshire College provides free laundry, it’s one of the most expensive schools in the country. But there’s more to a free laundry model than privilege. “A few years back students had to walk to the campus center to load up their student ID to pay for their laundry,” Manning said. “Students hated that. Two years ago we introduced Change Point, the students actually helped choose the model.” The Change Point Laundry Service is the current laundry system we are all familiar with. It is Mac-Gray, a commercial laundry system service from Waltham Mass., who have been around since 1927. If at this point, you are still thinking a 25 cent increase per load is not a big deal, you might be interested to know that Mac-Gray was acquired by CSC ServiceWorks Inc. a Plainview, NY firm in Oct. 2013 for $524 million dollars. The cost of your individual laundry wash and dry at MCLA is not just because of the new machines though. The price increase covers heightened repair costs, as well as maintenance and the increased salaries of repair workers. As for free laundry? There’s no such thing, really. “When we introduced Change Point we looked at a free laundry system,” Manning said. “The problem is somehow the laundry still has to be paid for, the cost would just go into rent increases, everyone pays. Not all the students who live on campus do laundry on campus—some students go home to do laundry.” The new price of $1.75 will be consistent through 2023. Another contracted student-service, ARAMARK, who provides cafeteria services for MCLA, is also up for renewal this year.

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eyes to a public space that has been dormant for decades.” Though Levitt Pavilions, the organization which manages the grants, awarded 15 concert series grants for 2017, North Adams was rejected despite being the 15th most-voted for proposal. After the 25 finalists were selected, Levitt Pavilions underwent a review process in which organization members reviewed each proposal and selected the winners based off feasibility of implantation, projected impact and


A surviving issue of the original 1933-34 Beacon. . over after one issue of The Seed had been published in September of 1975. The Nu-Wae was short-lived, and it died in December 1975. The Seed made another comeback. It seems as if The Seed was undefeatable in the past. We at The

Beacon hope this is not the case. Afterward: In the fall of 1979, The Seed would be renamed to The Beacon, ressurecting the 1934 newspaper of the same name, and would be printed under that name for 37 years and counting.

MARCH: Resisting a Trump presidency



May 17, 1968, the nascot ruled here at NASC. In December 1968, The Seed appeared. Journalism was at its height and the paper really began to take its shape. However, in November of 1972, some dissatisfaction with the name arose and it was changed to The Missing Link. This paper was no more than a ditto sheet whose aim was to “rekindle communication among students.” The paper went on to explain, “the other two attempts failed due to a lack of… a lack of what we are not sure.” In September of 1973, The Seed returned. This volume of The Seed was graphically and pictorially illustrated. The headlines of these issues boasted such upcoming events as the building of the Campus Center. In 1975, dissatisfaction arose once again and the Nu-Wae took

my sisters,” she said. The mission statement on the Women’s March website included the intent to unite in Boston and march in harmony with all minority groups, while remaining peaceful and nonpartisan. The protest went smoothly, according to Boston Police Commissioner William Evans. Boston Police made no arrests, and Evans found it refreshing to see so many people stand up for what they believe in. “Social media plays such a huge part in this,” Stacie Stewart of the North Andover Democratic Town Committee said. “We can create safe spaces to collaborate and organize online, it helps movements stay active.”

She added, “When people know the need to come out and show support, historical things like this happen.” However, the efforts of this cause are far from over. As President Trump continues to anger the American people, social movements and marches like this are expected to prevail, according to organizations such as the Socialist Alternative and USA Today. “We’re in one of the blueest, most liberal states and this is still an uphill battle,” Lucius Michel of the North Andover Democratic Town Committee said. “I think we really need to work local to make our voices heard.” The population outcome across the nation was spon-


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now infamous march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge - remembered now as “Bloody Sunday”. Lewis went on to hold political office, and has currently served 28 years across 14 terms as a representative Student reaction to the announcement has been overwhelmingly positive. This could be a good move for the College, as students have been reserved, in the past, in accepting the administration’s response to the concerns of marginalized groups on campus regarding the 2016 elections and subsequent election of Donald Trump to be President of the United States. “I thought it was awesome,” said Senior Victoria Fernandez. “I knew he’d been getting a lot of press lately because of his

community support. The North Adams proposal likely suffered in the latter two areas. The Berkshire Cultural Resource Center (BCRC) proposal admitted that many residents did not recognize the proposed performance space, Colegrove Park, as a park. “The 2017 applicant pool was the most competitive yet and a number of factors were weighed in determining the 2017 Levitt AMP winners, including the merits of the proposal, community engagement as seen through online public voting and project partners, as well as other cultural offerings available to the community throughout the year,” Vanessa


The Women's March took over the city. taneous, according to Jack. Protesters and marchers face months more work to keep the Department of Commerce (DOC) from “rolling over”, and win the fight

opposition to Trump but I was excited that we would have a speaker that was African American and who has made historical achievements.” Fernandez admitted that, sometimes, it feels the college’s responses to marginalized groups on campus feels disingenuous - that it’s more about “saving face” than it is actually to make an impact on students. “I think the administration’s ears are open, though,” explained Fernandez. “For me, personally, it hasn’t felt like a publicity stunt. We’ve had other wellknown leaders, such as Andrew Young, come in the past. So it’s not entirely new. I can see others feeling that way, but I think it’s a great first step.” Student Representative Adazae Shepherd-Edwards praised President Birge and his administration for bringing up concerns of marginalized groups on

Silberman, Levitt Senior Director of Communications & Strategic Initiatives, said. “Of the 15 2017 Levitt AMP winners, eight are returning grantees. Among the additional factors taken into consideration for returning grantees were 2016 Levitt AMP attendance, overall community engagement and support, as well as the general execution of the concert series.” The 2017 North Adams Levitt Amp proposal lacked consistently compared to the prior year. 2016’s proposal was within the top ten for votes, whereas 2017’s opened up 15 days after 2016’s concert series ran. However, in absence of a con-

against the Trump Administration. “I hope that [the march] gets young people more involved in grassroots movements,” Callahan said.

campus. However, she pointed out that a commencement ceremony isn’t quite an all-inclusive College event. By that point in the semester, few students remain at school - and a majority of the ones that do are soon-to-be graduates. “Anything’s a step,” Shepherd-Edwards said, “but there’s a difference between putting a talking piece in place, and actually talking.” Commencement is set for May 13 in the Amsler Campus Center Gymnasium. Lewis will be receiving his honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from MCLA alongside David E. Phelps, president and CEO of Berkshire Health Systems. Alumna Anne W. Crowley, veteran of both public and private sector jobs, will receive her Doctor of Humane Letters.

cert series, the performance space built specifically for the Levitt Amp will see plenty of use. “We were encouraged by the energy and participation that the Levitt AMP North Adams series brought out in the community and are confident we can build on that momentum through our own programming for the park,” Helme said. “The city is collaborating with our community partners to define the programming provided in Colegrove Park this year. MCLA’s BCRC is definitely a collaborator in that process. We still expect to offer live concerts in the park over the summer, as well as fitness classes and community

events and movie nights. We are committed to making Colegrove Park the backyard of our downtown.” Jennifer Crowell, director of the BCRC, confirmed these claims. “The city and BCRC are still planning on holding a concert series this summer and are in the midst of figuring our what that may look like,” Crowell said. “The concerts would take place at Colegrove Park, but the dates are still being considered as there a is a lot going on in North Adams this summer with the Opening of MoCA’s extended campus, Solid Sounds and much more.” The new concert series is still in the early stages of planning.



Junior tells story of living with chronic pain By Emily Gabert @emilygabert Features Editor Shannon Esposito held up two of her hands, with each finger symbolizing a spoon. She dropped a finger and explained how each spoon represents a part of her daily life. Between both hands, ten fingers represented all the energy levels that Esposito goes through daily. Esposito is one of millions who suffers from Fibromyalgia, a disorder in whic the affected has chronic pain throughout their entire body. Many people who have fibromyalgia have chronic fatigue that accompanies the constant pain. “[The spoon theory] is a good way to explain to people who don’t know what fibromyalgia or what chronic is like,” Esposito explained. “So, for every activity you do, you take away a spoon. A simple activity such as standing up in the shower for fifteen minutes, that’s one spoon of energy I’ve already lost, and I haven’t even had breakfast yet.” Esposito estimated that by about 9 a.m. she has used five spoons worth of energy. Sometimes she has to borrow spoons worth of energy from another day to help her get through the rest of her daily activities. The second hand she held up represents another day’s worth of energy. Although pain and fatigue rest within her body, Esposito does not let that stop her. She is currently a junior who has immersed herself in a plethora of activities on campus such as the Student Government Association (SGA), the Student Activity Council (SAC), and leading Admissions tours for perspective students. Outside of extra curriculars, Esposito has three minors: marketing, business, and leader-

If I wasn’t so positive about it, I don’t think I would be able to deal with it as much. There’s days where I don’t want to get out of bed, because I wake up every morning with some sort of pain in my body, and it continues throughout the day…you’ve got to get out of bed. Shannon Esposito, Junior

ship, while also pursuing a career in public relations. Her end goal is to do corporate event planning. “I was 16 when I was diagnosed. It was a week after my 16th birthday,” Esposito recalled. “I went to a pediatric rheumatologist. I went for a completely different reason, when I was little I had really bad back pain that I had put on the back-burner. Nobody could figure out what it was, and when I went to the rheumatologist she ran some tests on me, and we finally figured out what the root of my pain was.” Esposito was much younger than most people who are diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Most are in their twenties or thirties when they get diagnosed. The rheumatologist advised Esposito to do research online about the condition. She found herself straying away from about other peoples’ words, as many found the condition to be an anchor, while Esposito decided to use fibromyalgia as a guide to help push herself forward. Fibromyalgia has pressure points throughout a person’s body such as the shoulders, neck, back, and even the knees. Esposito explained that although her back and neck are the most sensitive, pain continues to

persist outside of those areas. Esposito believes everyone who has fibromyalgia has different symptoms and for many, they can describe their pain in different ways. For her, she can either describe her pain as having a hefty, sodden blanket laying across her body. Or she can feel it as though somebody is taking a knife, stabbing it into her body, and slowly pulling it out. “It was my personal choice from day one, that I never wanted to become dependent on something. I never wanted to be waiting for my next dose or living toward something,” Esposito said. “Going from my freshman year to my sophomore year [at MCLA] over the summer, I felt as though I couldn’t handle it anymore. It was too painful and I could not see myself going on with it anymore.” Esposito recalled going to the doctor and crying because of just how hard it can be to have widespread pain covering every inch of her body. She was prescribed a sleep medication that helped take some of the pain away, but also helped her sleep much better, because it is nearly impossible for her to be perfectly comfortable at night. “If I wasn’t so positive about it,”


Esposito is the coordinating vice president of SGA and is a member of SAC. She was a part of the successful "Be More" campaign led by SGA President Tim Williams. Esposito said, “I don’t think I would be able to deal with it as much. But I’m not 100 percent positive about it all the time. There’s days where I don’t want to get out of bed, because I wake up every morning with

some sort of pain in my body, and it continues throughout the day…but you’ve got to get out of bed.” With her story, Esposito hopes to inspire others with lifelong conditions, that it is possible to succeed.


Small Business Revolution Visits North Adams

By Ron Leja Deputy Features and A&E Editor North Adams has recently been selected as a potential candidate for the Small Business Revolution On Main Street. The series is hosted by small-business advocates, Deluxe, a company that prides itself on becoming the go-to experts on marketing small businesses and financial institutions. Once a small business venture itself, Deluxe celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2015. As a result, Deluxe created the Small Business Revolution, giving them the chance to help promote the stories of small businesses across the country through various forms of media. Last year, Deluxe decided to take the initiative one step further with the Small Business Revolution On Main Street series. “I am extremely delighted to have Deluxe select the city as one of eight finalists for their Small Business Revolution,” Mayor Alcombright said. “Deluxe is a leader in innovative business planning, marketing, and strategies that would certainly help some of our small businesses to continue to flourish in the city. This is a great opportunity, not only to help local small business, but also to

get the word out to the world that North Adams is a great little city.” Through the Main Street series, Deluxe visits several small towns and cities in search of inspiration. They find that inspiration through the hopes and dreams of the small business owners that help to promote a sense of charm and character through the towns in which they reside. At the end of each season, one lucky town is chosen as the winner of a $500,000 revitalization prize. What began as a list of 14,000 nominations has since been dwindled down to eight, and North Adams made the cut. Getting the word out is really what the Small Business Revolution is all about. Small businesses have been proven to be a major driving force in the US economy, where they generate almost 50 percent of America’s gross domestic product, as stated by the U.S. Small Business Administration. The truth of the matter is that all big businesses began as small businesses, and major small business founders such as the late Steve Jobs of Apple and Sam Walton of Wal-Mart all grew their companies from the ground up. Small businesses are critical not only to our economy, but to our vitality,” Alcombright explained. “They provide many disparate services, employment, investment opportuni-

ties, pay taxes and generally add to the overall livability here in North Adams. Nationally, we are seeing that small businesses account for so much of our growth and our opportunity, and we have a great small business community right here in the city.” Should North Adams be selected as the winner of the 2017 Main Street series, the $500,000 makeover will be delivered through a two-phase process. $250,000 will be given through in-kind services offered through Deluxe for any small business that happens to be selected as part of their Main Street web series. Services will range from website and logo development, printed products and social media campaigns. The remaining amount will be put towards physical and aesthetic improvements to businesses and the community in general, determined by mutual agreements between Deluxe, business owners and community leaders. Several town leaders have voiced a desire to fully embrace the growing fine arts scene that MASS MoCA has brought to the area. Suzy Helme, Director of Community Events, would like to see a stronger connection between MASS MoCA and the downtown area. “A major goal for the coming summer is a concerted effort to connect the energy and foot traf-


A $500,000 award will be given to the winner to help local businesses. fic generated by MASS MoCA’s expansion with what is going on in the rest of the city,” Helme said. “Through co-marketing and plans to create a more vibrant environment in the downtown, we hope to hold visitors attention and reward them for exploring beyond the walls of the museum.

The city is collaborating with MASS MoCA, MCLA’s BCRC and other key groups working on those plans.” Five finalists will be announced on Feb. 9. Those wishing to follow the series as it unfolds can do so at www.


Church Street Center was quickly filling up while faculty, students, and community members sat and awaited the moving and powerful tribute to the Harlem Renaissance last Thursday. Shortly after seven, core ensemble members Ju Young Lee, Hugh Hinton, and Michael Parola took their places in front of their respective instruments. Lee played the cello, Hinton was on piano, and Parola worked the percussion station. “Of Ebony Embers” was beginning. The house lights were kept on, making the setting seem more fitting when actor Dracyn Blount took the stage as painter Aaron Douglas, who was planning a memorial dinner party in honor of the deaths of novelist Wallace Thurman and Rudolph Fisher. Inviting fellow Renaissance artists such as Claude McKay, Countee Cullen, and Langston Hughes, Blount was able to capture each of their personas, telling the audience after the show that he tried to be “true to them, respecting them, and making them proud. Hoping that this [show] would be something they’d like to see themselves.” Senior Bryanna Bradley, who had helped with publicizing the event, had been excited for the performance since it was announced. “I think they picked this just

because of this time period that we’re living in and this climate that we’re living in,” she said. “Certain voices are being shut out and the celebration of voices… This is an American story, the Harlem Renaissance is an American story... I think to show the African American experience through music and poetry is showcasing the beauty of the American experience in its essence. I think that’s what and why this was picked.” Consisting of five scenes, each telling the point of view of the four different characters and explaining why Douglas’s guest never show, the ensemble played in the background as Blount portrayed the artist through poetry. During scene four, where Blount played Cullen in a scene taking place outside of the Salem Methodist Baptist Church, Cullen was a livelier, more entertaining character, and went into the depths of an African-American artist in the Harlem Renaissance. “An artist must be free to choose what he does, certainly, but he must also never be afraid to do what he must choose,” said Blount at one point, a quote from The Nation in 1926. While describing the process of the show, which was written in 1997 and first performed in 1998, the members explained to the audience afterwards that although the poems don’t fit with the artist that Blount is portraying, they work together perfectly, because they still tell


Dracyn Blount, a member of the Actor's Equity Association, playing the part of Aaron Douglas in "Of Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance." the story they wish to share. Blount’s portrayal of Hughes was one that really caught the audience’s attention towards the end of the show. Hughes, while visiting his father’s grave in Panteon, Mexico, yelled, “Father, you never, ever believed in me!” During Blount’s performance, his voice was enchanting, keeping the audience hooked on his every world, and he was totally invested in his roles, staying true to his research. When he changed character in the back,

MASS Moca’s annual free day is this saturday

By Chris Riemer A & E Editor

If you haven’t yet realized, let me break the news: North Adams is not the most happening place. Especially for those under the drinking age, there’s not much to do besides watching movies, hiking, and trolling Goodwill for possibly-cursed knickknacks. Our city’s saving grace is its burgeoning art scene, at the center of which lies MASS MoCA; a massive contemporary art museum and the focus of 99 percent of the city’s tourism advertising budget. For MCLA students, admission is free—but for other members of the College community, and for most residents of the Berkshires, it’s $18. If that seems little steep, don’t despair! The museum’s annual Free Day is this Saturday, and as usual, in addition to the museum tours, it will feature a slew of performances and events—with an emphasis this time on the art of dance. Hope Ginsburg, the artist behind the funny and enigmatic Land Dive Team - Bay of Fundy exhibit/ film on the 1st floor, is hosting a conversation and guided meditation at noon, and again at 4:00 p.m. The Berkshire Dance Theatre and dysFUNKcrew are performing in the 2nd floor gallery at 2:45 and 3:30, respectively, followed at 5:30 by the Williams College Step Team, who will perform within


MoCA, as seen in the late evening. Nick Cave’s Until exhibit and offer a (presumably dance-themed) workshop. Finally, at 8:00, head to the Hunter Center for a concert by Steven Bernstein’s Universal Melody Brass Band. This one will cost you ($10 for students, $16 advance, $22 day-of), but the guy’s got three Grammys, so it ends up being pretty reasonable. If you’re an MCLA student and the Free Day events are not appealing to you, it’s still worth stopping by some other time—with the unfortunate but inevitable conclusion of Alex Da Corte’s brilliant Free Roses exhibit comes openings

by artists such as Tanja Hollander (Feb. 18), Elizabeth King (March 4), and Steffani Jemison (March 18). This is old news, but it’s worth mentioning the approaching reveal of Building 6, the museum’s expansion, which will make it the largest museum of contemporary art in the United States this May. The expansion will feature exhibitions by legendary artists like Jenny Holzer and James Turrell—otherwise known as the guy Drake plagiarized in his “Hotline Bling” video. Exciting stuff is on the horizon.

the ensemble playing music in between, and walking back onto the stage, his persona changed within seconds, going from Douglas to McKay, Cullen to Hughes, and ending with Douglas one last time. The show ended up to be around an hour and a half long, and Blount’s memorization of all the lines, and the countless rehearsals that must have been attended, seemed to pay off. Not once did he break character or stumble on a line,

keeping the audience hypnotized by his words. At some points, the ensemble would play certain songs that went in line with Blount’s acting, whether it was the hit of a cymbal as Blount almost tripped as Cullen, or a cello solo while Hughes spoke to his father’s grave. The final scene of the show took place with Douglas one last time. He bid farewell to the audience as the ensemble played softly in the background.

“Hidden Figures,” A Movie Toward Freedom By Emma Monahan A & E Writer Since the fall, a certain movie has been seen all over social media, starring household names such as Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monáe. Simply going on Facebook would show the trailer for “Hidden Figures,” with the caption, “I can’t wait to see this movie!” Directed by Theodore Melfi, and based on the book by Margot Lee Shetterly entitled “Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race,” the film couldn’t have come at a better time. After being released on Dec. 25, 2016, it has made over $72 million in the box office, and numbers don’t lie. Telling the true story of African-American NASA employees Katherine Johnson (Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Monáe), working their way up through segregation in the ‘60s, these women were a part of the team who sent astronaut John

Glenn into orbit. The movie mainly focused on Johnson, who worked closely with Al Harrison, played by Kevin Costner, who was the head of the Space Task Group, and Paul Stafford, played by Jim Parsons. The leading ladies in the film came against discrimination because of their race and gender, something that is unfortunately still happening in our country today. Many of the actors in the film were in roles that viewers have never seen them in. Henson is known for her role as Cookie in the FOX drama Empire, and Parsons for his role as Shelden Cooper in CBS’ The Big Bang Theory. A different role from his comedy sitcom, Parsons told NBC’s Today Show that he had a difficult time excepting his role, Paul Stafford being someone who wasn’t so accepting of Katherine’s new position in the Space Task Group. Monáe’s acting career took off in 2016, her most known profession being music, with popular songs such as “Tightrope” and a guest feature on Fun.’s “We Are Young”



February 2, 2017

nintendo is switching up their console game


By Ron Leja Deputy Features and A&E Editor When it comes to the video game industry, there are few companies with as rich of a history as Nintendo. The Japanese toy company is world-renowned not only for breathing new life into the once failing home console market, but for offering a slew of characters and franchises that are considered some of the most loved by gamers old and new. However, despite Nintendo’s many successes, sales for their last two home consoles were low in comparison to their competitors. Nintendo’s Wii U sold a mere 13 million units worldwide, making it the least-successful console in Nintendo’s history. Despite the company revenue being down, they are far from being out. Nintendo recently held a live event in order to showcase their latest home console project, the Nintendo Switch, on Jan. 12. The event was streamed across four continents and helped introduce fans and potential consumers to the system’s capabilities, reveal a few specs, and preview several launch titles. Nintendo is no stranger to innovation, having explored the possibilities of both augmented reality and motion-based controls on previous platforms. This time, Nintendo hopes to bridge the gap between home and portable gaming by offering a system capable of both. Unlike other consoles, the Switch is two systems in one. It is comprised of a docking station, the console itself, and a Joy-Con controller that can be broken down into two separate controllers for co-op play, labeled left and right. While playing from home, the console can be placed in the

FIGURES From Page 6

from 2012. Kirsten Dunst, most known for her role in Bring It On, played Vivian Michael in the film, one of the supervisors that worked with Dorothy. Although the overall theme of the film was gender and racial equality, the bits of humor throughout made it all more enjoyable. Monáe’s character Mary brought humor that the audience was looking for. Her spunky attitude and confidence for getting what she wanted was inspiring, thus resulting her as NASA’s first African-American female engineer. Spencer’s character Dorothy fought tooth and nail throughout the film to gain the title of supervisor in her department in the West Area on NASA, eventually becoming NASA’s first African-American supervisor. As for Henson’s character, Katherine, an extremely gifted mathematician, she worked as Harrison’s “computer,” walking into a room full of white men.


docking station and connected to a home television set using an HDMI cord Nintendo provides. Should the user want to take their game elsewhere, it is as simple as removing the console from the dock and attaching both the left and right Joy-Con controllers to the system, turning it into a handheld system. Nintendo has taken portable gaming even further with the Switch by allowing for co-op play on one handheld device, something that has never been done before. The Switch is equipped with a kickstand, allowing users to place the screen on any flat surface. Both the left and right Joy-Con controllers can then be removed, allowing friends to play alongside one another anytime and anywhere. As if that were not enough, users can also connect up to eight wireless systems at once for multi-player fun. Ian Sullivan, an avid gamer and long-time Nintendo fan, expressed his enthusiasm for the Switch in regards to its portability. “There is something special about handing a controller to a friend at lunch and playing Mario Kart,” he said. “Even more so, it’s cool that you can go to a party or some kind of gathering and have an easily accessible way for people to play.” The Switch also provides a more

Katherine worked with the launch for Alan Shepard, who was the first American in space, and after the new IBM machine came into the office, which would calculate equations much faster than a person, Katherine was still needed for Glenn’s trip into space, where he personally asked for her approval of coordinates of takeoff and landing, according to NASA’s online biography oh Katherine. Throughout the film, you see the three ladies gaining more and more confidence, especially when they’re surrounded with racial discrimination. During the continuation of Katherine having to rush half a mile just to go to the bathroom because there was no colored ones in the new building she worked at, the audience couldn’t help but chuckle. When Katherine was confronted about her 40 minute bathroom break, she tells the truth to Harrison, which then turns into a scene where Henson shows the viewers the pain of an AfricanAmerican women in the ‘60s: “There are no colored bath-

sophisticated take on motion-based controls. Each controller is fitted with both accelerometer and gyro sensor technology, which allows for independent left and right motion control that is sure to feel much more fluent and realistic than those offered by the Nintendo Wii. Each controller also contains a motion IR camera which can sense the shape, motion, and distance of objects in front of it, as well as a new, impressive take on rumble technology. During Nintendo’s live event, General Development Producer Yoshiaki Koizumi explained that the rumble feature found in each controller is capable of conveying weight distribution. They can simulate, for example, the feeling of ice cubes being shaken in a glass, or an empty bottle gaining weight as it fills with water. “The controllers are another point that gets me excited,” Sullivan said. “The technology this time around allows Nintendo to embrace innovation while not forcing it like the Wii did. It’s a smart direction for a controller.” Consumers have since shown a widespread interest in the Switch, the result of which has left many major retailers sold out of pre-ordered systems only a few days after the announcement. The switch is expected to hit store shelves March 3.

rooms in this building, or any building outside the West Campus, which is half a mile away. Did you know that?... And simple necklace pearls. Well, I don’t own pearls. Lord knows you don’t pay the colored enough to afford pearls! And I work like a dog day and night, living on coffee from a pot none of you want to touch!” (Quote obtained from imdb. com). This film was something that America needed. Our country is in a state of division, where both men and women are afraid to be who they truly are, and are standing up for their rights against our government. Hidden Figures shows three women of color who strive to be at the top, to see the “colored restroom” sign be knocked down by Harrison, and work hard for their children to have better lives. Viewers should keep in the back of their minds that this is based on a true story and it’s movies like this that will wake people up, show the reality of the world, and encourage us to fight for what we believe in.


Ty segall releases second self-titled album By Chris Riemer A & E Editor The state of grunge is a little unclear in the year 2017. The genre, which flourished in the early- and mid-’90s but seemed to die out at some point in the 2000s, is experiencing some kind of a weird renaissance nowadays. The sonic flavors of grunge have arisen recently in unexpected ways, from the droning sludginess of Preoccupations (formerly Viet Cong) to the resurgence of drawling and/or yelping vocal delivery in songs by artists as varied as Violent Soho, Cloud Nothings and Car Seat Headrest. Even country luminary Sturgill Simpson released an incredibly weird disco-flavored cover of Nirvana’s “In Bloom” on his Grammy-nominated album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth. Of course, there are those artists who never gave up on grunge—Northampton locals Dinosaur Jr. come to mind—but it’s rare to find an artist who has stayed true to the same genre throughout their career, while also constantly augmenting their sonic palette as new sounds come and go. On Ty Segall’s new, self-titled album, there’s the constant sensation of reaching into the past. On the surface, there’s the fact that his first album, released in 2008, was also called Ty Segall; but the song structures and guitar effects on this more recent record give the impression that it could’ve come out any time in the last 35 years. Past reviewers have accused Segall’s albums of a lack of consistency between songs, but the contrast on this album is refreshing: there are heavy, squalling tracks like “Break A Guitar;” the opener, and “Thank You Mr. K.” There are relaxed, ‘60s-flavored jams like “Take Care (To Comb Your Hair),” strummed ballads like “Orange Color Queen” and “Talkin’” (which both gave me serious Elliott Smith vibes), and the standout track for me, “Warm Hands (Freedom Returned);” 10 minutes of nimble, shifty progressive rock with a heavy metal edge. Speaking of heavy metal, Segall even channels a little Black Sabbath on “The Only One,” which has one of the most technical guitar performances on the album. All of which is to say, Segall must think of himself as some sort of genre chameleon, and he makes a fair case for himself on this record. For old fans expecting the return of 2008 Segall, this new effort might be a little disappointing: there’s none of the vocal distortion effects that made his debut sound so original, very little frenzied shrieking, and most devastatingly, the production has improved to the point that it no longer sounds as if each song is being played to you through a paper towel roll from one of those $20 portable Bluetooth speakers. However, the rich variation of genres and sounds, and a more experienced and controlled vocal performance, make for an album with a far wider audience than much of his earlier work. Though only 29 years old, Segall has already amassed a serious back catalog of diverse and strikingly fresh-sounding grunge albums. If this is who’s holding the torch now, be assured it’s in good hands.


Women's Basketball falls in OT

By Joseph Carew Co-Managing Editor

The Women’s Basketball team came within inches of edging the Bridgewater State Bears on Jan. 25, but fell short 64 to 63 in overtime. Despite outscoring the opposition 20 to 10 in the fourth quarter, a Trailblazer last-minute foul lead to Bridgewater State’s Nicole Bostick going two for three and securing the win. The three-point line proved to be the Achilles heel for the Blazers, not just with the late foul, but throughout the contest. Bridgewater netted 11 threes to our 5 and sank a higher percentage of their shots from there compared to MCLA (34.4 percent to 27.8 percent, respectively). With this decision, MCLA moves to 7-10 on the season and 2-4 in the MASCAC, while Bridgewater rises to 9-10, 4-2 in those respective categories. The atmosphere grew in intensity as the Blazers staged a comeback from the third into the final quarter. Down 33 to 45, the Blazers went on to score 12 points unanswered to tie the contest at 45. The game descended into trench warfare as the fourth quarter edged onward. The Bears would score and the Blazers would match them. Neither team gained more than a two point lead the entire time. With the Men’s Basketball teams of both schools joining the crowd, the entire gym seemed to become more and more invested in the game. Down by two, MCLA


Senior Courtney McLaughlin looking to drive against her opponent in a game earlier in the year restarted play with 13.3 seconds left remaining on the clock. With the hopes of the school on her shoulders, Ashley Clawson tore through the Bridgewater defense and willed the ball into the net to knot the game at 55 with just 7.1 seconds left. A strong defensive show by the Blazers forced the game into overtime. The crowd moved uneasily in their seats as the buzzer went off to bring play back to the court once more. The first minute and

a half looked similar to a chess game--each team trying the defense of the other, looking for some weak point to exploit. MCLA found the edge first and earned a three point lead. This hard fought edge was lost with the sinking of a three by Bridgewater. Tied once more the crowd became anxious and loud. It seemed as though the Bears could only either foul a Blazer or sink a three, and the score slowly edged higher with MCLA free-throws and

Cross’ 38 points not enough to hold off Bridgewater State By Joseph Carew Co-Managing Editor

Keiland Cross exploded for 38 points but MCLA’s Men’s Basketball team’s woes continued as the team fell short in their game against the Bridgewater State Bears 81-62 on Jan. 25. This loss extends their winless streak to eight, their worst one of the season. The Trailblazers were strong in the first half and were within just five points of the Bears, 37-32 but were unable to match the Bears in the second half. With the victory, Bridgewater improves to 11-8 on the season and hold a 4-2 record within the MASCAC while MCLA falls to 2-15 and 0-6 for those respective categories. The first half started with a flurry of action in which MCLA, mainly due to the efforts of Cross, kept the Bears from taking a significant lead. With a defensive structure akin to two men up pressuring the ball, one man in the middle of the court and two near their own bucket, the Bears couldn’t seem to hold against Cross’s aggressive drives and three pointers. Switching to a more aggressive two-twoone style proved too much for the Blazers and a double digit lead developed and was never erased. The Bears had three players above ten points in the game; Michael Soares with 19, Rocky DeAndrade with 15, and Joseph

Bridgewater three-pointers. The Blazers had a tenuous lead 6362 with 10.6 remaining in overtime but a late foul stunned the whole crowd and the Bears went a perfect two for two on the free-throw line. With 4.4 seconds left the MCLA women’s basketball team rushed up the side to try for one last desperate attempt, but all for not. Senior Courtney McLaughlin went off for a career high 27 points, ten of which came from the free throw line in this heartbreaking

blazers Mauled by the Pride By Brady Gerow Sports Editor


Junior Keiland Cross goes up for a lay-up in the 81-62 loss Carty with 12 and managed to out-rebound the Blazers 38 to 25. Cross lead the team in points (38), three pointers (5), rebounds (8) and steals (3) in this monumental effort. This marks Cross’s highest point total in a game for the Blazers. Joe Wiggins seven point night ends a ten game streak in which he had at least ten points but moves him to within three of 500 career points in two years with the Blazers.

loss. She proved to be nearly flawless when Bridgewater fouled her making 90 percent of her shots from the free-throw line. With this one in the books, McLaughlin has 68 points in her last four games. Senior Kayla Hotaling returned to the court after missing the previous game and led the team in rebounds (13) and managed 19 points in her 36 minutes of playing time. Hotaling has 57 points in her last four dating back to the victory over Salem State on Jan. 11.

After outscoring the MCLA Women’s Basketball team 41-22 in the second half, the visiting Springfield College Pride was able to complete the comeback for a 67-55 victory in the Amsler Campus Center Gym on Saturday, Jan. 21. Going into the third quarter of play, the Blazers held a 33-26 lead over the Pride, but after being outscored 22-10 in the quarter, the Pride was back in the game. The Pride pulled the game back to even at 39 points a piece with 4:10 left in the third quarter. From there on out, the Pride never looked back and took over the game. Junior Heather King, who led all scorers with 16 points, scored 10 of her 16 points in the final quarter of play, having led to the Pride’s comfortable lead. Sophomore Gracie Restituyo and senior Molly McCausland each added ten points in the Pride’s victory. King also added nine rebounds, while seniors Danielle Racette and Lexi Windwer each had five assists in the win. All of these efforts put together led to the Pride’s double digit lead for most of the fourth quarter, which allowed them to play the rest of the game with little to no pressure. The Blazers had a different story in the second half of play. After having shot a

solid 48 percent from the field in the first half, the Blazers were unable to repeat their production. The Blazers shot a low 32 percent from the field in the second half of play. The Blazers were paced in scoring by senior Ashley Clawson and sophomore Karina Mattera who each ended with 11 points. Senior Courtney McLaughlin also added ten points in the team’s loss. Unlike the Pride, most of the Blazers’ production in the game came from the first half of play. Clawson scored nine of her 11 points in the game in the very first quarter, having struggled to become a factor on the offensive end for the remainder of play. Mattera was a bit of a different story, having scored eight of her 11 points in the last quarter in an attempt to bring the Blazers back. Mattera’s effort was just too late for the Blazers, as the hole was too deep to climb out of. Fatigue seemed to be a slight issue for the Blazers as well, as three of the starting five players played over 30 minutes. One starter for the Pride played over 30 minutes in the game. This seemed to give the Pride a bit of an upper hand in terms of energy. MCLA, now 7-10, will next face off against Westfield State in an away game on Wednesday, Feb. 1. Springfield, now 13-5, will travel to Smith College for a game that day, as well.


Dean's Duo overwhelms MCLA By Brady Gerow Sports Editor

The Dean College Men’s Basketball team defeated the MCLA Trailblazers 87-69 in the Amsler Campus Center Gym on Saturday, Jan. 21 behind a combined 48 points from freshman Naquwan Solomon and sophomore Dayvon Russell. Solomon and Russell led the way in Dean’s second half surge that eventually led to their victory by the end of regulation. The Blazers kept the game close up until there was 13:40 left to play when they led 51-50. “As a team, we know what we are better than what is put on paper,” MCLA junior Joe Wiggins said. “We know what we are capable of.” Russell and Solomon took over from there, having recorded an 8-0 run between just the two of them, that was extended to an 11-0 run by the team that put the Bulldogs up 61-51 in a hurry. Solomon led all scorers with

25 points in the contest, as well as having completed the doubledouble with 11 rebounds. Just behind him was Russell who recorded 23 points along with four assists and three steals. The game remained in the Bulldogs’ control for the rest of regulation, as the Blazers were only able to bring the lead down to eight for the remainder of play, before the Bulldogs finished the game with their biggest lead at 18. Jaquan James also added ten points on 44 percent shooting off the bench for the Bulldogs. The first half of play was a very different story for both teams, although the Bulldogs did come out of the half with a two point lead. The Blazers played the first half with much more intensity, as well as keeping pace with the Bulldogs. MCLA shot an impressive 50 percent from the floor in the first half as well as 45.5 percent from beyond the arc. “What we need to do is focus on our game and put 40 minutes

February 2, 2017



MCLA Men’s Basketball MCLA (54), Worcester St. (80) Keiland Cross (MCLA) 12 Pts, 7 Reb, 4 Ast, 3 Stl, 1 Blk

Aaron Anniballi (Worcester) 15 Pts, 3 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Blk

MCLA Women’s Basketball PHOTO FROM MCLA ATHLETICS WEBSITE together,” Wiggins said, “which we know we are capable of.” The Blazers’ starters also outscoring the Bulldogs starters by four points as a unit. The Blazers were perfect from the freethrow line while the Bulldogs shot a low 60 percent. The only blemishes on the behalf for the Blazers was that they committed nine turnovers while also having been out-rebounded 21-16. MCLA was paced in scoring

by sophomore Collin Parrott, who scored a career high 17 points in the contest. Junior Joe Murray also added 14 points as well as 14 rebounds to complete the double-double of his own. MCLA, now 2-15, will next face off against Westfield State in a MASCAC game on the road on Wednesday, Feb 1. Dean, now 11-9, will travel to Fischer College for a game on Thursday, Feb 2.

Addressing public opinions about Tom Brady With Super Bowl 51 between Brady was a “system” QB, he the Atlanta Falcons and New still deserves all the credit England Patriots in less than he has received. How many a week, I thought it would be “system” QBs in the NFL a good time to address one of have as many accolades, and the greatest football players to Super Bowl rings, as Brady has ever hang ‘em up. That man, Andrew accumulated? none other than Tom Brady, “All of Tom Brady’s Baillargeon accomplishments have has been a highly publicized The Call figure in the NFL ever since asterisks next to them, he’s a he entered the league in the cheater” year 2000, but this publication Boy do I LOVE debating of Brady over the last few years has this with people. As everyone hit record levels. It’s come to the point probably knows, the Patriots have where, nowadays, he is either loved or come under fire over the years for hated; there is no in between. However, a lot of different things. Some of some scrutiny Brady has received isn’t them are for instances as small and particularly fair or accurate. Likewise, meaningless as a fire alarm going some of the praise Brady has received off in the visiting team’s hotel on has been incorrectly attributed, and I the day of a game. Some of them are plan to go over that in this article. much more large scaled, such as the “Tom Brady is a system QB, Bill infamous DeflateGate and Spygate, to Belichick is the mastermind of the other moments in NFL history such team” as the equally infamous Tuck rule. The reason why this is inaccurate However, these are silly reasons to is simple. The reason why it is a weak discredit Brady, simply because A). argument against Brady is a bit more He didn’t actually “cheat” in Tuck complex. As for the fallacy, Brady has rule, he benefitted off of a rule that only ever played football in the pros had existed for about 8 years in the with Bill Belichick as New England’s NFL, which is kind of why rules exist. Head Coach. While the team has seen B). Spygate not only doesn’t involve a few different offensive coordinators Brady in any way whatsoever, it and offensively based coaches over wasn’t even a major violation to begin that time, the system in which the with. Taping NFL team’s practices team has run has remained mostly is something that has been, and still the same. The reason why Brady isn’t is, going on around the league for a “system” quarterback is simple; his a long time. The reason why the tangibles are just amazing. Brady has Patriots got in trouble for doing amazing field vision, he’s a golden this is because they simply filmed a armed pocket passer, Brady has great practice from an unlawful angle, a decision making skills, complemented mostly insignificant violation that did by his speedy release, which is great not dramatically benefit the Patriots at to facilitate an offense with and is all. C). DeflateGate is a bloated mess great for upping the tempo with a no the NFL made that they completely huddle offense the Patriots frequently messed up. The Ted Wells investigation employ. Even if this wasn’t the case, is not only invalid, but even if it was this is a weak argument to make valid, Brady and the Patriots were in general, simply because even if punished much harder than they

should have been by league rule. Tampering with football equipment in the NFL gets a punishment of a small fine to the organization. For allegedly “being aware” of a few footballs being deflated, Tom Brady was suspended for 4 games in the 2016 season, the Patriots were stripped of a 1st round draft pick and fined 1 million dollars. “Tom Brady deserves to be the GOAT because he has four rings” Yes, this is a great argument to make, but it is not the best one. Rings are a team accomplishment, the pinnacle of pro sports. It is definitely worth noting that Brady would have the most rings out of any QB in NFL history with a win over Atlanta, but this alone does not make him the greatest to ever play the game. Brady’s career as a whole does that, and I advise you to check out some of the other amazing things he’s done to stake a claim to be the best there ever was to play. “Brady plays in weak competition and gets a free ride to the playoffs” This is the NFL. Every team is a professional organization. This is a pitiful argument to make, considering the Dolphins, Bills, and Jets have had 17 years to figure out Brady, and the only year out of that time someone else won the division was in 2008, when Brady conveniently missed the entire season due to a torn ACL. Andrew Baillargeon is the host of The Call, a weekly program broadcasted by WJJW. Tune in on Sundays from 7-10 PM. Listeners can also tune in via 91.1 WJJW or our website, http://www.mcla. edu/Student_Life/studentmedia/wjjw/.

Want a guest column? Contact Mitchell Chapman on Office 365.

MCLA (51), Worcester St. (55) Kayla Hotaling (MCLA) 14 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl

Kaitlyn Berkel (Worcester) 16 Pts, 7 Reb, 1 Stl

NFL Pro Bowl NFC(13), AFC(20) Andy Dalton (AFC) 10-12. 100 yds, 0 TD

Doug Baldwin (NFC) 3 Rec, 67 yds, 1 TD

NCAA Men’s Basketball #1 Villanova (61), #12 Virginia (59) Mikal Bridges (Villa) 15 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Ast, 2 Stl, 2 Blk

Ty Jerome (Virginia) 15 Pts, 1 Reb, 1 Stl

NCAA Men’s Basketball

#21 Duke (84 ), #20 Notre Dame (74)

Grayson Allen (Duke)

21 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Bk, 3 TO

V.J. Beachem (ND) 20 Pts, 3 Reb, 2 Stl, 2 Blk

NBA Celtics (113), Pistons (109) Isaiah Thomas (Bos) 41 Pts, 8 Ast, 2 Stl

Andre Drummond (Det) 28 Pts, 22 Reb, 3 Ast



What are you excited for this semester?

I’m stoked to go to Washington DC as part of my internship. Jade Tarris, Senior

I’m excited for my Irish in America class. I’m looking forward to learning more about my personal heritage. Sean Kelleher, Senior

I’m definitely looking forward to my Public Relations class. I’m also interested in taking Sports Writing. Merle Darling, Junior


Executive order does more harm than good With the inauguration of President Donald Trump came a wave of executive orders, not the least controversial of which was labeled: Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States. Wrongly called a “Muslim Ban” (90 percent of the world’s Muslims are unaffected by it), this executive order prevents nationals from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, and Yemen from entering the country. Though the legality of this move has been put into question, the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel have approved the executive order “with respect to form and legality,” according to the New York Times. Stripped down, this executive order utilizes the power granted to the President by section 212(f ) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S. Code § 1182. It essentially allows the President to “suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.” In essence the controversy boils down to whether or not it will indeed protect the United States better than the status quo. With the Iranian government barring American travel into their country in retaliation and with a mostly negative reaction to this order by other world leaders it would appear it has had the opposite effect.

Though the ban is temporary (with parts lasting between 90 and 120 days) it seems to be more of an escalation of a conflict between the West and the Middle East than a maneuver to better protect the citizens of the United States. Escalating tensions with Iran is far from a positive just as escalating tensions with any foreign nation warrants note. The language in the order also leaves it open for expansion, a move that could occur in the next few months if the administration deems it necessary. The threat posed by the listed countries doesn’t seem to outweigh the negative reaction by other world powers. The listed countries do contain groups that pose a legitimate threat to the United States, namely the presence of ISIL in Iraq and Syria and unsteady rebel groups in Yemen and Libya, but there are other countries that are equally threatening left off the list. Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and numerous other countries also contain legitimate threats to this country. The Trump Administration took this list from Congress and the Obama Administration when they had to review the Visa Waiver Program and categorize countries as posing national security risks. So the list doesn’t make much sense, especially con-

sidering that in the US, there hasn’t been a single American killed by a terrorist from one of the seven countries in the period from 1975 to 2015 according to The order itself invokes the attacks on 9/11, but ignores the fact that the 19 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, or Egypt. None of these countries are listed in the ban according to A wider ban would make more sense from a threat standpoint but would only increase the negative global response to this maneuver. Though the ban is temporary (with parts lasting between 90 and 120 days) it seems to be more of an escalation of a conflict between the West and the Middle East than a maneuver to better protect the citizens of the United States. The best protection the United States is the image it represents, and any move that is seen as antiimmigrant or an overreach of executive power can only do harm to it.

Ban Steve Bannon, the scoundrel white nationalist Controversial former Breitbart-chair appointed to national security council We’ve all spent the to Trump’s businesses. past few days reeling According to Rudy from President Trump’s Giuliani, corpse-inillegal, un-American training and once a executive order regardcandidate for Attorney ing immigrants and General, President green card holders from Nick Tardive Trump contacted him. several, predominantly Trump wanted to know I Hate This how to do his Muslim Muslim countries. This also includes the ban “legally.” blocking of all refugees entering I’ll stop you right there, Mr. the country from Syria. President, because you can’t. There are quite a few things And this country responded wrong with it. Such as, no terin kind. Protests popped up at rorist attacks have been carried airports all over the country. out in the United States by peo- Journalists, elected representaple from any of the countries. tives, lawyers, military vets and These seven countries are: Iran, civilians alike all leapt at the Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, chance to make a difference. It Libya and Yemen. Whereas, was a truly wonderful, Americountries around these seven, can thing that happened. such as Saudi Arabia, AzerbaiHowever, fear the Steve Banjan, Egypt and Turkey, have non. He was the first hire by the both acknowledged terrorists Trump admin, given a made-up who carried out attacks on U.S title so he wouldn’t have to be soil and have had business ties vetted and approved.

Bannon is one of two guys writing President Trump’s executive orders. Bannon wrote the one I’ve been talking about until this point. And now he, a fake journalist, proven white nationalist/ supremacist/Nazi, and former Breitbart CEO, is rocking the same amount of official foreign policy influence as the Secretaries of State and Defense. President Trump, in a memo, reorganized the National Security Council - pushing Bannon to the top, giving him a regular seat on the principals committee. With the same stroke of his pen, the President also announced that the director of national intelligence and the Joint Chiefs of Staff would only sit in on the principals committee when their “expertise” is

viewed as necessary. Steve Bannon sat in on President Trump’s recent call with America’s new StepDaddy Vlad Putin as the two discussed how to fight ISIS. Because if there’s one thing that America needs, it’s the guy whispering “America First” into Trump’s ear drafting executive orders on how to screw over helpless refugees while also bringing a more destructive military presence to the Middle East. In what I assume was Bannon’s idea, President Trump has also begun to roll back on drone favor of ground raids. Recently, in Yemen, one US soldier was killed and three were wounded in such a raid. Although the US government refused to address reports of civilian casualties in the raid, The Intercept’s Jeremy

Scahill reported that at least nine civilians were killed - six women and three children. The Washington Post reported that it was possibly “more than a dozen” civilians. Steve Bannon and President Trump want to keep all the Muslims in the Middle East, while also planning to amp up military operations in those same countries. Because they don’t care about radicalizing innocents. They already think all Muslims are Radicals anyway. This is what we get when a “politician” dare utter the nonsensical and misleading phrase “Radical Islamic Terror”. There are a lot of aspects about this presidency that we should be fighting. Steve Bannon and his faux-populist white nationalism should be near the top of the list.

January 29, 2017


Your guide to the new Beacon design 2017 is a brand new year with a brand new president, brand new Beacon staff, and a brand new look for The Beacon. This year, The Beacon seeks to join the modern age, with redesigns of the website and the newspaper. Informed by professional newspapers both in the area and on the national scale, like “USA Today” and “The Berkshire Eagle,” The Beacon seeks to present its news content in a professional manner through a multitude of designs and modules meant to enhance reader experience. When the staff of The Seed student newspaper renamed this publication to The Beacon in 1979, there was a great notion of hope for the future, if you will, a desire to be a beacon of hope shining its light on the College community like the Beacon Tower on Mt. Greylock from which all subsequent Beacon venues and publications get their namesakes from. It was a new start, with the intentions of sweeping the chaos and madness of the ‘70s aside, pressing the reset button for the paper. In the same way, the 2017 Beacon staff wants to leave 2016 behind, but in a way that acknowledges the past. These past few years have been that of political turmoil and great division among the country, division and turmoil this campus has certainly felt the impacts of. 2017 and beyond will not be easy, but it is because of this it is important that the current and future staffs have the tools to face these challenges, for without a functional press, it will be an enormous task to delineate what is fact and what is fiction. Going into 2017, The Beacon is brighter, bolder, and smarter, and it is my hope that the new design reflects that. Remember, this is your college newspaper. This is your campus. This is your city. Right from the start. Mitchell Chapman, Editor-in-Chief, Spring 2017

What’s new:


Section Headers introduce sections


The Beacon is published Thursdays during the academic year and is distributed to the MCLA community. The Beacon is funded by the Student Government Association, the English/Communications department and ad revenue. Single copies are free and additional copies can be purchased at 50 cents each. If you wish to purchase additional copies, please contact a member of staff.

CONTACT INFO News desk number: 413-662-5535 Business number: 413-662-5204 Email: Website: Office: Mark Hopkins Hall, room 111


The Beacon Nameplate was brought into 2017

New lead font New secondary font

New subhead font Taglines

Letters: The Beacon welcomes Letters to the Editor and columns on issues of interest to the campus. Deadlines are 11:59 p.m. Sunday. Strive for 500 words or less. Editorial: Unsigned editorials that appear in these pages reflect the views of The Beacon. Signed columns and commentary pieces reflect the views of their writers. Contribution: The Beacon accepts stories, photos and opinion pieces. Submit to

Byline @twitter Position

Nick Tardive I Hate This

New Fonts and Modules give the paper an identity

Advertising: The Beacon reserves the right to not publish any advertisement it deems libelous, false or in bad taste.

EBOARD Editor-in-Chief Mitchell Chapman

Co-Managing Editors


Sports Editor

Senior News Editor

BWN Producers

BWN Producer Sam Kniskern gets ready for this week's edition of Beacon Web News, a weekly show that broadcasts to select campus televisions, and to https://www. This week's stories include the Women's March and Design Lab. PHOTO COURTESY OF PETER GENTILE

Features Editor Emily Gabert

Deputy A & E and Features Editor Ron Leja

It’s show time!

Chris Riemer

Jon Hoel Joseph Carew

Nick Tardive

The Website Got a Facelift What was old is new again

A & E Editor

Copy Chief Lauren Levite

Brady Gerow

Dan Wohler Sam Kniskern

Design Editor Adam Sams

Photo Editor

Domonique Ackley

Web Editor and Business Manager Zack Benjamin


New Beacon, New Year Ever want to write for your student newspaper? You can! We are currently looking for: Staff writers (News I required) Freelance writers Guest Columnists Photographers Cartoonists Beacon Web News Personalities Beacon Web News Tech People Contact Mitchell Chapman on Office 365 for details

Photographer Trammel Griffith

Copy Editors

Staff Writers

Nick Webb

Reagan Smith

Aryel Brosnan

Emma Monahan

Gianna Vigliatura

Lily Schaub

Hannah Snell

Gianna Vilgliatura Hannah Snell

ADVISERS Shawn McIntosh

Jenifer Augur

Dracyn Blount (left) reflects on the trials and tribulations of being a poet while cellist Ju Young Lee (right) plays a haunting melody in this scene of “Of Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance.”

Musical Magic at MCLA

One of three talented musicians making up the core ensemble of the Chamber Music Theater Group, Michael Parola’s percussion work helped to set the tone for their rendition of “Of Ebony Embers: Vignettes of the Harlem Renaissance.”

Ju Young Lee was one of three musicians providing a Noir-esque melody throughout the show.

Ron Leja Photos By Domonique Ackley Former MCLA student Izzy Heltai invited the audience to participate in his set creating a sense of community within his set.

Sophomore Luke O’Brien performed original music from his EP and recent album “The Warmth of the Glow.”

Williams College student Chris McLaughlin sang songs from his album “January” on Tuesday night in Sullivan Lounge with a sweet tone.

Spring 17 Issue 1  
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