Serving the Muhlenberg College Community Since 1883
The Muhlenberg Weekly THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
VOLUME CXXXIX, ISSUE 13
On reliability and statistical research:
Muhlenberg Institute of Public Opinion By Ian Adler Asst. News Editor The C-level of the Trexler Library holds many secrets… If you’ve ever truly explored its corridors, chances are you’ve run into a room full of cubicles, telephones and computer screens. This is political science territory—otherwise known as the Polling Institute. According to their mission statement, “The Muhlenberg College Institute of Public Opinion is a state of the art public opinion research center that conducts scientific based survey research projects of public policy and political issues throughout the Lehigh Valley and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.” By conducting surveys through phone calls, collecting research data, and organizing and analyzing that data in a program called SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences), student employees are able to offer political predictions and statistics, along with the advising of the Polling Institute’s Manager, Dr. Christopher Borick. see
Polling| page 5
Ian Adler/The Muhlenberg Weekly
Students in the Polling Institute make survey calls during a shift on Tuesday evening. Many asked participants about their approval of the Trump administration’s recent actions on the Affordable Care Act.
Career Center space to undergo major renovations over the summer By Gregory Kantor Editor-in-Chief Muhlenberg students walking in the basement of Seegers Union may notice something strikingly different about the Career Center come Fall 2017. Last week, the Center unveiled plans for a significant expansion and renovation of its Career Library space. Upon completion, the new media suite will occupy a larger space than the current Library; it will extend outwards to the support beam in the middle of the hallway as well as have a higher ceiling inside.
Val Weisler addresses concerns on new Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, reflecting on the importance of public education both in the U.S. and worldwide. 2
The Vagina Monologues
Fear, anticipation and empowerment: Brooke Weber reports page 8
According to the initial architectural renderings provided by the Center, the space will be surrounded entirely by glass and will feature College graphics. Technology will also play a key role in the new media suite. The room will feature a projection screen, which will allow Skype sessions with alumni for certain classes, as well as a soundproof booth for virtual interviews and preparations. Currently, such sessions occur in various offices throughout the Center.
Career Center| page 5
Director of Campus Safety Chief Brian Fidati weighs in on continuing investigation of alleged student assault. 5
Master Choreographers features haunting and lyrical ballet as well as Dr. Seuss fever dreams. 7
Mules break nine personal records with seven all time top ten finishes at the Fastrack National Invite. 12
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY OP/ED THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
DeVos is Education Secretary: Big Dreams and Bigger What can we do next?
Wallets: on Free College Tuition In the last few weeks, the city of San Francisco became the first city to offer free college tuition to its residents, which we as a staff believe is a step in the right direction. We would like to praise the city for making college education more accessible to every individual inside the city lines, and not just those with big dreams and even bigger wallets. Because, let’s face it-- college is expensive, and anyone who’s reading this paper, be they parent or student, knows this all too well. With more jobs demanding college degrees and an insane amount of (typically unpaid) experience, a college degree is all but necessary in this changing world. That being said, necessities shouldn’t have to come with a back-breaking debt that forces students to start in this highly competitive world already behind. According to The Institute for College Access and Success, “Seven in ten seniors (68 percent) who graduated from public and nonprofit colleges in 2015 had student loan debt, with an average of $30,100 per borrower.” The website also mentioned that 71 percent of college students in PA graduate with student debt, and offered statistics on Muhlenberg as well. 57 percent of Muhlenberg students
graduate with debt, averaging about $30,527. The New York Times has reported that student dept accross the country totals more than a trillion dollars. Perhaps it’s no wonder why so many of our generation are moving back in with our parents after college. Lowering the costs of a secondary education also works as a cap to college tuition prices which have been rising, almost unchecked, at an astonishing rate. According to College Board, tuition for a four-year private nonprofit in the 1981-82 school year cost $3,617, a little over $10,000 in 2016 dollars. The same institution, according to the website, would cost nearly $33,000, today, more than triple the adjusted price. We also recognize that, as a private liberal arts college, Muhlenberg will never be able to offer students a tuition-free arrangement like the California state schools, although 95 percent of the students recieve some form of grant or scholarships from the school, which is another way to keep costs down. In other words, tuition has risen at an incredible rate, one which perhaps has more to do with supply and demand than simple inflation. In this market, free tuition is perhaps the best way to combat this otherwise unchecked system.
Gregory Kantor Editor-in-Chief
Chloe Gravereaux Asst. Managing Editor
EDITORS & STAFF Gregory Kantor, Editor-in-Chief Chloe Gravereaux, Asst. Managing Editor Melissa Reph, News Editor Ian Adler, Asst. News Editor Emily Davidson, Op/Ed Editor Brooke Weber, Co-Arts & Culture Editor Sara Gottlieb, Co-Arts & Culture Editor Kaitlin Errickson, Sports Editor Jack Pennington, Layout Editor Shayna Jast, Copy Editor Amanda Foote, Business Manager Ashley Amodeo, Marketing Manager Holden Walter-Warner, Editor Emeritus Sara Vigneri, Faculty Advisor Lynne Septon, Publisher, Images
By Val Weisler Op/Ed Writer My first grade teacher, Mrs. Shelling, was a young woman with short blonde hair and a smile that could calm down a classroom of 30 screaming six-year-olds. She would greet each of us at the doorway every morning and give us a hug goodbye every afternoon. Mrs. Shelling taught me to love learning. I’d ask her for extra homework and excitedly pull out worksheets and puzzles she gave me when I got home. She transformed Little Tor Elementary from a school into a sanctuary, and instilled a passion for education within me. In the later years, my relationship with education became a bit of a frenemy situation. In my first year of high school, I was bullied brutally because I was so shy, and it made me realize how many kids have feared school their whole lives, walking through the hallways with chills up their backs. I wanted to fix this. I started a makeshift website and called it The Validation Project. Four years later, we’re an international organization working with thousands of kids across the globe to solve social justice issues and work hard to make sure every child has a school that supports them enough for them to turn their dreams into realities. Through leading The Validation Project, I’ve been lucky enough to see schools across the country and the world. I watched a poetry slam in a New York City public school where a teenage mother shared how her 11th grade English class taught her what she has worth. I toured a KIPP public college-
preparatory school in Linden, Ohio, where the mortality rate for infants is the highest in the state, and yet this school has a 95 percent graduation rate. I watched a little girl read Torah for the first time in a Jewish private school in New York. I played soccer until sundown with schoolgirls in a village in Myanmar as one of them told me her dream of becoming a teacher. I read with refugee preschool students in Krakow, Poland and I talked about kindness with fifth graders right back at Little Tor Elementary. No matter what classroom or country, what state or student, education has the ability to give a child extreme power or extreme pain. When Betsy DeVos was confirmed as Education Secretary, the first thing I felt was fear. DeVos is dangerous; not only does she have no experience in public education, she has spent her career trying to undermine it. She advocates hard for private schools, where she grew up and where she sent her kids. I recognize that in some cases, a public school cannot provide the support a student needs. DeVos’ danger comes from her wholehearted support of the private side, doing her work from the perspective of someone who has not once learned or taught in public school. Someone who does not know what it is like to be in a public school cannot know the power it holds for so many, and the issues existing in many schools that a Secretary of Education should be knowledgeable enough to take the right course of action in fixing. On top of that, DeVos’ advocacy has been purely pen and paper: she is a checkbook lobbyist, never required to work
with people with whom she disagrees. As Secretary, DeVos will be expected to build, not tear down; build trust, build coalitions, all while surrounding herself with people from different classes, places and opinions. The truth is, we don’t know what DeVos will mean for public, private and charter education. One thing is for sure: DeVos did not accept Trump’s offer simply to sustain the status quo. The Education Department will move pretty rapidly to reform how our country educates its kids. Senators fear DeVos will not preserve the federal government’s role in funding low-income schools and guaranteeing access to education for children with disabilities. When I think about our country’s kids, I think about The Next: the next girl to graduate high school when everyone told her she couldn’t, the next immigrant student who deserves an ESL program that provides them with equal access to ‘The American Dream,’ the next child who does not identify as the gender they were assigned at birth and searches for support in their seventh grade classroom, the next kid in the Bronx who could invent the next Facebook if they had a teacher who believed in them and funding for a coding class, the next years of their lives that could make or break their belief in themselves, the next generation that deserves more than a secretary who only supports students that fit into her cookie-cutter mold. We cannot count on her. It is our responsibility now more than ever to stand up, speak up and keep resisting. What will you do next?
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY Serving the Muhlenberg College Community Since 1883
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EDITORIAL POLICY: Any and all views expressed in The Muhlenberg Weekly are those solely of the writers and/or editors and do not reflect those of Muhlenberg College. Material appearing without a byline represents the majority opinion of the Editorial Board. The Muhlenberg Weekly views itself as an open forum for students to voice ONE-COPY RULE: Because of the high production costs, their opinions on all relevant topics. members of the College Community are permitted one copy per issue. OP/ED POLICY: Opinions expressed in the Op/Ed section of this paper are solely those of the The Muhlenberg Weekly is a member of author. Members of the College Com- the Associated Collegiate Press. munity are encouraged to submit Letters to the Editor on any topic of interest to Copyright 2017. All rights reserved.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY OP/ED THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
An even more liberal Where IS the beef: an investigative report arts education By Taylor Garrison Op/Ed Writer One of the biggest selling points of Muhlenberg is that it is a liberal arts college. As anyone who toured colleges before choosing to attend Muhlenberg knows, liberal arts colleges emphasize broadening general knowledge and developing general intelligence without a focus on a specific career; these principles manifest as general education courses. I am proposing to take it one step further than general education by encouraging you to take classes outside of your major(s)/minor(s) that do not meet any specific requirement.
You might find a passion you never know you had College is supposed to be the time to try new things, right? Then why not take a class that is not connected to your major? Fortunately, Muhlenberg has a lot of options for the adventurous student. A quick browse through the course catalog reveals the multitude of class options that do not require previous knowledge on the subject. From introductory courses to special topics, there are classes in nearly every discipline available to those who would just like to try something new. You might find a passion you never knew you had, which could develop into a double major or minor. At the very least, it will shake up your schedule! As much as you hopefully love your major, taking only a certain type of class can become monotonous. Adding a class with labs, lectures, or lots of inclass writing can add diversity to not only your schedule, but how you learn. Another plus of taking a class outside of your major is getting to meet new people. Your new best friend might be in that cal-
culus class you decided to add to your schedule. Not only will you meet new students, but you will also get to meet new professors. Professors are sources of knowledge and advice, and even if they don’t have a PhD in whatever your major is, it does not mean they will not be helpful to your overall college experience. Personally, one of my favorite professors at Muhlenberg teaches a class outside of my intended major and required classes. If I had never decided to take the class, I would never have had the chance to meet such a caring, intelligent person who let me come to her office hours to talk about world events while applying what we were learning in class. Perhaps the most important reason to take a class outside your major is to simply make your education even more liberal arts-y. By this, I mean you will become more broadly educated and develop a more nuanced point of view. Each major has its own ways of viewing writing and analyzing data, and it can be easy to assume that the way you already know is the best way of doing things. By taking a course outside your major, you are expanding your view on how to approach homework and papers. Perhaps even more importantly, you are expanding your worldview. Personally, I am guilty of viewing the world only through historical and political science contexts because of my intended majors, but taking courses in anthropology have helped developed my analyses to be more nuanced. When scheduling rolls around for Fall 2017, I highly suggest stepping out of your major, and possibly comfort zone, and taking a class for any of the reasons listed above. It has already enhanced my college experience, and hopefully will make your own time at Muhlenberg even better too!
By Will Wamser Op/Ed Writer January 10th 1984, a day that will live in infamy, for that is the day Wendy’s dared to ask: where is the beef ? This question took America by storm, yet somehow it has never been answered. Let us first look at the commercial that inspired this investigation: three old women bought a hamburger from The House of Buns: Home of the Big Bun and demanded to know “Where’s the beef ?” which is a simple question with no simple answer. I looked into those who worked on the commercial and was not pleased: William Welter led the marketing team at Wendy’s at the time and cannot be found, Cliff Freeman wrote the commercial and cannot be found, Dancer Fitzgerald Sample was the ad agency responsible for the commercial and went under not long after, and two of the three women in the commercial cannot be found. If you ask me, this smells of a conspiracy. What happened to these people? What did they know? The one person to remain relevant after the commercial was Clara Peller, the woman who actually said the famous line, so what made her special? Clara Peller became a celebrity and went on to do interviews and star in other commercials, so she may have been too big for Wendy’s to handle quietly. Wendy’s was still able to ensure she didn’t say anything they didn’t want her to. In an interview with Bryant Gumble on the Today Show in 1984, Joe Sedelmaier, the commercial’s director, kept a watchful eye on her. He would instruct her to do things like “say that again” and “look up at me” and she would listen, almost as if she was under his control. Denny Lynch, a higher-up at Wendy’s at the time, once said “Clara can find the beef only in one place, and that
is Wendy’s,” effectively taking her voice from her. So, despite being unable to do what they did to the others, Wendy’s still found a way to silence her. She obviously knows something, Wendy’s paid her $500,000 for the three commercials—which is a lot—and it is almost too obvious that her wage was so high because Wendy’s was paying her off. In later years, after leaving Wendy’s, Clara appeared on talk shows and in commercials and seemed to only be able to say rudimentary things such as “where’s the (blank)” and similar short sentences of no substance. I have no proof Wendy’s hurt Clara, making her unable to say anything about what happened behind the scenes of the commercial, but I sure as heck believe they did. Others who have looked into the whereabouts of the beef include a middle-aged man, who originally asked the question and whose existence has pretty much been erased, and DJ Coyote McCloud, who performed the 1984 hit song “Where’s the
You must ask, why did Wendy’s launch an attack on a fictional fast food chain and then silence everyone involved in the attack? Beef.” McCloud’s career ended within the next year. Coincidence? Impossible. This begs the question: what did Wendy’s do to these individuals? We may never know because Wendy’s did a fine job of covering their tracks. And I know what you’re thinking, “Why are you looking into Wendy’s and not this House of Buns the commercial was attacking? They seem like
the more obvious suspect.” It is because my research has found that the House of Buns is not a real place, it only exists within these Wendy’s commercials. You must ask, why did Wendy’s launch an attack on a fictional fast food chain and then silence everyone involved in the attack? I deduced that it was to get the public to focus on the House of Buns and not Wendy’s. They were diverting attention from themselves, and we fell for their evil plot. What is Wendy’s hiding? What secret is so big that they are willing to (allegedly) make so many people effectively disappear? This is only the tip, but I can tell that I’m at the precipice of something huge. I think they know I am onto them, every day this week there has been a van with the Wendy’s logo sitting outside of my room, and call me crazy all you want, but I know for a fact that Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s, has been following me for the past month. Also, I awoke the other day to find my bed full of Big Macs that seemed to be torn apart in a rage filled fury with a note that said “Love Big Red.” I fear for my life and the lives of my loved ones, but I must search on; the story is too important. Please do not let me end up like Clara Peller, with the ability to speak her own mind stolen from her, or like William Welter, a faceless name never to be heard of again. But whatever happens, no matter what, please make sure I do not end up like DJ Coyote McCloud, the thought alone terrifies me. So please contact me, work with me - maybe together we can take down Wendy’s. Dave Thomas can only silence so many people. Do it for Clara, do it for Cliff, do it for the middle-aged man, do it for Coyote, do it for me, do it for yourself. Quality may be their recipe, but justice is ours.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY NEWS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
Campus Safety Notes
Monday, February 6 Sick Student - 12:55 pm In Seegers Union, lower level, there was a report of a sick student. Muhlenberg College EMS responded and the student was transported to the hospital by a Campus Safety Officer. Vandalism - 6:02 pm On North 23rd Street, there was a report of a hit and run that caused damage to the side view mirror of a vehicle. There are no suspects at this time. Theft - 8:26 pm In Seegers Union, there was a report of a theft of a sign. There are no suspects at this time and the investigation will continue. Drug Possession - 11:22 pm In Prosser hall, first floor annex, there was a report of a smell of marijuana. No one was in the room, but several empty beer cans were found and disposed of by the Campus Safety Officer. Wednesday, February 8 Drug Possession - 10:49 pm In Benfer Hall, second floor, there was a report of possession of drug paraphernalia. Upon arrival, alcohol and fire safety violations were noted. The items were brought to the Campus Safety office and placed in an evidence locker. The students were referred to the Dean of Students office.
Thursday, February 9 Drug Possession - 9:01 pm In the Prosser North Quad, there was a report of possession of marijuana. The individuals were identified, spoken to, and referred to the Dean of Students office. Friday, February 10 Alcohol Violation - 10:14 pm In South Hall, first floor, there was a report of an alcohol violation as an underage student was found with alcohol. The individuals were identified and spoken to, and the alcohol was disposed of by a Campus Safety Officer. Vandalism - 11:50 pm In Seegers Union, upper level, there was a report of vandalism to artwork. The investigation will continue. Saturday, February 11 Injured Student - 11:21 pm At the Lehigh Valley Hospital location on 17th and Chew Street there was a report of an injured student. The student was transported to the hospital by a Campus Safety Officer. Sunday, February 12 Alcohol Violation - 12:10 am On N. Leh Street there was a report of underage drinking. Muhlenberg College EMS and Allentown EMS responded and transported the student to the hospital. Allentown Police Department responded and cited the student with Underage Drinking.
Theft - 1:05 am In East Hall, First Floor, there was a report of a theft of money. An investigation will continue. Alcohol Violation - 1:15 am In East Hall, Second Floor, there was a report of an intoxicated student. Allentown EMS responded and transported the student to the hospital. Alcohol Violation - 2:48 am In Seegers Union, Upper Level, there was a report of underage drinking. Allentown EMS responded and transported the student to the hospital. Allentown Police Department responded and cited the student with Underage Drinking. Point of Information - 4:08 pm In Prosser Hall, Campus Safety Office, there was a point of information report. Injured Student - 5:08 pm In Walz Hall, First Floor, there was a report of an injured student. Muhlenberg College EMS responded and the student was transported to the hospital by a Campus Safety Officer. Suspicious Person - 11:05 pm On 2259 Turner Street, Building #1 Third Floor, there was a report of a suspicious person. The reporting party was spoken to and the area checked. No one could be located.
The Weekly Staff wishes everyone a safe and happy weekend!
Alleged student assault leads to pending investigation By Melissa Reph News Editor
Roughly three weeks ago an incident occurred on campus which went unknown to many students. Freshman Harrison Callahan reportedly pulled a knife on a fellow student and threatened her, saying, “If you tell anyone about this I will cut your heart and kill you.” All information regarding the incident was made public on Lehigh Valley Live after Callahan’s arraignment. The incident was not reported to The Weekly as part of the normal Campus Safety notes. According to Lehigh Valley Live, Callahan was in his room the night of Jan. 28 with another student. When the other student received a text message Callahan reportedly became agitated and aggressive, pulling out a knife and threatening to strangle a second student with whom he was involved in a disciplinary hearing. The student in the room with Callahan supposedly attempted to calm him. He then pointed the knife at her throat and threatened her life as well. The student’s friends came and removed her from Callahan’s room and on Jan. 30 both victims reported the incident to Campus Safety. Lehigh Valley Live reports that Callahan was arraigned on Feb. 8 on “charges of simple assault and two counts each of harassment and making terroristic threats.” He was released on bail. The Weekly spoke with Director of Campus Safety Brian Fidati in regards to the incident. Fidati said that he could not provide any further information as per the department’s policy on commenting about ongoing investigations. The incident was not shared with the larger campus community prior to the Lehigh Valley Live article. Fidati said that “the incident was discussed at an administrative level and it was determined that there was no outside threat to the community.” Fidati could not comment about Callahan’s potential involvement in any other Campus Safetyrelated incidents due to FERPA, a federal law that protects a student’s right to privacy. If students find themselves in a similar situation, Fidati urges communication with Campus Safety above all. “Immediately report the incident to Campus Safety directly, if possible, or to any campus security authority,” said Fidati. Campus safety authorities, or CSAs, include all employees of Muhlenberg College, with the exception of the clergy and counselors; examples of CSAs are RAs, professors, and other staff members. CSAs are required to report incidents or crimes to Campus Safety, similar to any mandatory reporter under Title IX. The College plans to issue more information on the role of CSAs within the next few weeks. Finally, Fidati offered clarification as to the College’s weapons policy, specifically regarding knives. The policy has less to do with the size of the knife as opposed to the intent of the knife, though swords are prohibited. Callahan was reported as having a roughly five inch long knife.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY NEWS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017 from
“Our biggest ongoing research project is our partnership with the University of Michigan on the National Surveys on Energy and the Environment,” said Dr. Borick. “Since this initiative was started in 2008, we have conducted over nearly 15,000 interviews of Americans regarding their views on climate change, renewable energy, and environmental policies.” The Polling Institute’s employee base is mostly comprised of students offering an excellent opportunity for anyone on campus, not just Political Science majors, to gain professional experience and contribute to nationally cited research results. Muhlenberg’s name may popup in more research data than one might think, with “numerous major media outlets including the BBC, New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian, CBS, NBC and ABC,” citing their data, according to Dr. Borick. “The Institute’s work has been used in dozens of scholarly journal articles, government reports and testimony in Washington DC and Harrisburg. On the local level, research conducted by the Institute has been used by governments, schools and nonprofits to help these organizations develop and implement policies.” “I’m a Political Science major and
what I focus on in a lot of my classes is the theory work like political intrigue and political ideologies. It was really cool for me to get into the empirical, scientific research rather than the ideas of what states should be,” said Michael Dziuba ‘17, who served as an intern at the Polling Institute last fall. “I’m not saying I prefer one over the other, but it was really cool for me to sort of round those out.” While the surveys deal with a diverse range of topics, such as the public’s opinion on the Affordable Care Act or even “mental health matters,” the Polling Institute’s main focus rests on that of public policies. “This spring, we are conducting our annual Pennsylvania Public Health Survey in conjunction with the Public Health Program at the college,” said Dr. Borick. “In this research, which is in its sixth year of operation, students in Public Health Policy courses along with the staff of the Institute field a survey on key health related issues facing Pennsylvanians.” By implementing a research strategy called “probability based polling,” the Polling Institute aims to provide anyone in the interview pool an even chance of being interviewed. This method ensures a wide range of participation as well as a higher probability of more accurate results. In light of the recent presidential election, many found the final result to be
Ian Adler/The Muhlenberg Weekly
surprising based on previously collected research data, with the Polling Institute’s predictions proving to be no exception. Despite their reputation as one of the top research institutes in the nation as well as “a solid record of accuracy in terms of [our] poll results mirroring actual election returns,” the Institute’s 2016 election prediction put Hillary Clinton in a four point lead over Donald Trump, while Trump actually won Pennsylvania by a narrow one percent. “In light of the election, not even just us, but the institute of polling as a predictive device, there’s been some doubt
cast on it and somewhat rightly so. As with anything, it’s obviously more complicated than it appears,” said Dziuba. “As we’ve seen, this election has been anything but common, which I think has a lot more to do with the accuracy of reporting rather than a fundamental flaw within the polling itself.” The Polling Institute’s contributions not only give Muhlenberg College a spot in the big-name papers and web sites– they add a depth to media that’s reliable, accurate, and useful information in the form of statistical data.
have a use for the space,” said Smolko. “I think the big goal with this space and the Career Center is to increase the level of services that benefit students but also to make it inviting.” To that end, these renovations reflect a larger goal for both Dowd and Smolko within their roles at the Center: to increase opportunities for students to utilize available career services whenever they feel comfortable, while recognizing that students are often too intimidated to even visit the office. After Before “I think the big stigma for any student coming in is that we’re going to tell you that you’ve been doing it wrong your entire life,” said Smolko. “Learning to build bridges with us can open so many opportunities. The more we know students and what they’re interested in, the more help and services we can offer.” Likewise, Dowd hopes that the new media suite will reiterate the concept that the Center as a whole (Left) Ian Adler/The Muhlenberg Weekly is a “non-judgmental” place. Photos on the left show the current state of the Seegers ground floor. After renovations, students should expect to “We’re trying to be an overall see a similar space to that of the photos on the right. inviting space because the Career proposal, and by the beginning of the fall semester, it Center can be intimidating for students,” said Dowd. from Career Center was submitted. On Dec. 22, at the College’s annual “The space will pique interest as students see what page 1 holiday party, the Center was notified that the Trust goes on inside.” The project began in February 2016, just as current had approved the grant. Dowd gives significant credit Currently, the plans are for construction to begin Executive Director Tom Dowd arrived at the College. to McGlinn, adding that without his assistance, this at the conclusion of the spring semester, with an Initiated by Bill McGlinn, the College’s Director of project “may not have been possible.” estimated completion date sometime before classes Corporate, Foundations and Government Relations, Ryan Smolko, the Associate Director of Student resume in the fall. Overall, similar to other services the renovations will be funded through a $100,000 grant Engagement and Employment, believes that the larger throughout Seegers Union, the Center looks forward to from the George I. Alden Trust in Massachusetts. The space combined with new technology will increase incorporating the new space into their student-driven Alden Trust is a non-profit organization which focuses flexibility and opportunities for students to utilize the goals. on capital spending grants at small, independent space. For one, the media suite will be available through “We want to equip students with the tools to get institutes of higher education in New England, as well swipe access after the Center is closed. careers that they’re passionate about,” said Smolko. as Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey. “The goal is to make it a more student-accessible “The space is really to benefit our students and that’s Over the summer, McGlinn began writing the grant facility, in addition to other faculty or staff who may why this process was launched.”
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY NEWS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
This Week in Muhlenberg College History: The 1992 “Plan-In” By Karl Schultz News Writer
“This Week in Muhlenberg College History” will bring to light past events, individuals, and forgotten aspects of Muhlenberg history that have been buried within the College’s 169 years of existence. As many of us know, Muhlenberg held a “Teach-In” on Feb. 3, which consisted of informal lectures on an array of subjects that are newly important in the beginnings of the Trump administration. The event was a success, and one that many people expressed should return periodically throughout the next four years and beyond. This return is very likely, because on Feb. 3, 1993, thenPresident Arthur Taylor held a “PlanIn” on campus. Though this event was geared towards College-specific problems, the Plan-In would be a hot topic in The Weekly for the next couple years, returning to campus periodically. The Plan-In was announced in the Jan. 29, 1993 issue of The Weekly, with the entire page dedicated to “The Muhlenberg Campus Plan-In.” The article describes the intentions of the Plan-in, writing, “the Plan-In will consist primarily of a variety of different discussion groups in which members of the Muhlenberg community will be given the opportunity to contribute suggestions.” Taylor hoped, the article continues, that the Plan-In would “generate new ideas for improving Muhlenberg College.” Though similar to the recent Teach-In with its intention to allow students and faculty to come together and reflect, the Plan-In was different in multiple ways. The biggest of
which was its length; instead of short, half hour lectures throughout an afternoon, the Plan-In lasted a whole day. Taylor cancelled all classes, seemingly giving students, faculty, and staff no reason not to attend. Of course, the other biggest difference was its leader: President Taylor. Taylor, a businessman by trade, modeled the Plan-In off of old Japanese business techniques in hopes to foster a more cohesive sense of community. The Plan-In was just his first step in a thirty day period of inward collegiate reflection and improvement. The rather sudden arrival of such a serious improvement plan caught many off guard, including the former Editorin-Chief of The Weekly, Stephanie Bahniuk. In an editorial after the PlanIn was announced, Bahniuk states that when the Public Relations department approached her and asked her to cover the Plan-In, she “was clueless as to what exactly it was,” but after looking into it, wrote “I can’t begin to express how important I think it is for everyone to get involved on Feb. 3.” The whole event kicked off bright and early with a continental breakfast at 8:45 a.m. followed by the President’s Message. During his address, Taylor really hit home the importance of this Plan-In, stating, “We will begin a deadly serious process to find a powerful concept for Muhlenberg which will make us truly distinctive among colleges. Everyone is a participant in the process.” Following his remarks, students were welcomed to attend the three, 60-90 minute sessions spanning 10:00 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. Altogether, the day-long event hosted 32 sessions, divided into four main categories: Student Focus, Teaching, Globalization, and Financial Photo Courtesy of The Muhlenberg Weekly
Photo Courtesy of The Muhlenberg Weekly
Resources. These sessions spanned topics ranging from “In search of Muhlenberg’s optimal size,” to “The Greeks—Crisis or opportunity?” These sessions would each have a faculty/staff leader, a “resource person,” who was an expert in that field, and a recorder who would write down every and any suggestion, “regardless of how general, specific, or drastic the suggestion was.” Most of the campus believed the Plan-In to be a resounding success. Taylor himself believed the event would “go down as an historic day in the life of this College.” All however, were not so impressed. Managing Editor Scott Wolfson wrote an article titled “Where Were The Guys?” in which he calls out the male athletes on campus after only four cumulatively showed up to the PlanIn. Wolfson wrote that “it was disgraceful and discouraging to see such poor attendance by male athletes—varsity and recreational… I am beginning to get the impression that male athletes are more comfortable with the perks and privileges that they know they receive.” Wolfson believes that this lack of representation was entirely counterproductive to the purpose of the Plan-In, and this was the athletes one shot to freely air either their grievances or suggestions and be met with actual change. Summing up his anger and frustration with the athletes, he finished his article writing, “you guys left myself and particular athletic staff in an uncomfortable situation during
the Plan-In; and now you’re going to be forced to play with the score in the other team’s favor.” With mostly positive feelings after the Plan-In, it was now up to the administration to not only read through all of the notes taken during the sessions, but also finally act. It wasn’t until March that Weekly headlines began talking about the information gained in the PlanIn. With such a wealth of information and opinion finally collected, Taylor wasted no time in improving Muhlenberg. In the following months there were votes made on attendance policies, environmental actions, and Muhlenberg traditions, just to name a few. Going off of the success of the February ‘93 Plan-In, an aptly named Plan-In II was scheduled for Sept. 18, 1995. Given the success of the first Plan-In along with the second, Muhlenberg not only corrected its troublesome course, but also cemented the role of student opinion in college decisions moving forward. Though the recent teach-in was held for reasons outside of Muhlenberg, the reasoning still stands: the opinions of students should be valued. If in your following years as a college student you become discontent with the directions the College takes, remember that the current and future success of the college falls not on the administration, but on the collective voice of students, faculty, and staff; coming together to make sure their voices are heard.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY ARTS & CULTURE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
Arts & Culture “The essence of all art is to have pleasure in giving pleasure.” - Mikhail Baryshnikov
Master Choreographers By Sara Gottlieb Arts & Culture Editor There’s nothing quite like an evening of culture and beauty, especially when it comes to seeing a live show. Of course, a ticket for the ballet or the opera at Lincoln Center in New York will set you back quite a bit. Fortunately, if you’re a student at Muhlenberg College, you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to see high-quality, passionate performances. Master Choreographers, which took place Feb. 9-11 in the Empie Theater in the Center for the Arts, was a truly magical, transcendent experience. There were seven acts in total, each one more stunning and thought-provoking than the last. Utilizing many different styles of dance, from ballet to modern to tap, talented members of the Muhlenberg College Theatre and Dance department spent months rehearsing and preparing for this illustrious performance. The show brought to mind the Disney animated films Fantasia (1940) and Fantasia 2000 (2000), which took animated stories and set them to timeless pieces of classical music. The choreographers and dancers each managed to tell stories without the need for spoken dialogue, encompassing those universal thoughts and feelings for which mere words have never been able to describe. Four numbers were featured in the first act of the show. The recital began with a ballet piece entitled “Without Words,” choreographed by American ballet legend Trinette Singleton and set to operatic selections from Giacomo Puccini and Giuseppe Verdi. The dancers were clad in burgundy dresses that floated around them like flowing wine. The sequence was haunting and lyrical, telling a romantic story of love and friendship. The dancers moved as a cohesive unit, working off one another and performing breathtaking feats of strength attainable only after years of practice and training. Following “Without Words” was New York-native choreographer Orion Duckstein’s “When We Fly,” split into six sections that worked with excerpts from “L’estro Armonico, Op. 3” by Antonio Vivaldi and “Laetatus Sum” by Claudio Monteverdi. This was a modern dance piece that was earthy and harmonious, each of the dancers dressed in simple beige tu-
nics while the backdrop behind them shifted in color depending upon the tone of the music. Some of the movements were almost comedic in their laissez-faire tone, which got laughs from the audience. At one point, the dancers ran across the stage high-fiving each other (tricking the audience into thinking the dance was over). The piece was captivating and demonstrated the dancers’ physical stamina and strength. Heidi Cruz-Austin, a Pennsylvania Ballet veteran, choreographed the next piece, “Clouds: The Mind on the (Re)Wind,” set to music by Ezio Bosso. This ballet number demonstrated an overall sense of urgency and stress; while the moves were frantic and intense, the dancers were still quite graceful. It was notable that this was the first number wherein the dancers were not wearing identical costumes, but were dressed instead in similar styles with slightly different colors. Muhlenberg Assistant Dance Professor Randall Anthony Smith was responsible for the final number in the first act: an upbeat, funky piece called “Fabric of…” The piece was divided into two parts, set to the songs “Where’s Vicky? (Quantic Mix)” and “Bababatteur (Quantic Mix).” The dancers, clad in similar sky blue shirts and intense fuchsia eyeshadow, owned the stage; they were energetic, passionate, and sassy. The audience was vocal in their admiration, which the performers encouraged. They invoked every part of their bodies, moving their hips and (literally) letting their hair down. The dance created a carefree, club-like atmosphere. The second act opened with a rather dark, heavy piece. “Radical Severance” was choreographed by world-renowned dancer Cristina Perera, and seemed to demonstrate the harsh reality of unhealthy relationships that stem from heavy reliance on another person. Michael Koran’s “Posledni” and Steve Shehan’s “Versecret” underscored the performance, which was the only number to use props. The black-clad dancers used gray wooden boxes to stand upon and illustrate power struggles among each other. The intense darkness of this number was quickly overcome by a shocking, colorful piece called “Jazz Hannah and the Dilemma of the Disappearing Digits” by another
Muhlenberg Assistant Dance Professor, Jeffrey Peterson. The number was set to excerpts from the score of the 1988 comedy Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and featured technicolor costumes and wacky hairstyles. The silly story was about Jazz Hannah, one of the dancers who was causing havoc by determining how many fingers each of the other dancers possessed— until they finally declared their independence and rejoiced at having ten fingers total. The best way I could describe this fun, kooky number? A Dr. Seuss fever dream. The night ended with “Escapades” by Canadian-born tap dancer and choreographer Shelley Oliver. This high-energy tap finale was the only piece that featured live jazz music onstage, a song called “The Cat” by Lalo Schifrin and Rick Ward. A small area in the center of the stage was set aside for the tap dancers with the band playing upstage. Their quick feet and upbeat attitudes made the number the cherry on top of a fantastic evening. Students in the audience enjoyed the show a great deal. “It’s a stunning performance, excellent choreographing…you can feel the energy behind each dancer,” said Dan Cohen ’17. “Muhlenberg College, once again, showcases its talent,” added Kayla Staub ’17. “The dance department never ceases to amaze me.” Alumna Edward Bavaria ’16 came to see his girlfriend, Olivia Wood ’17, perform in the show in Jeffrey and Orion’s numbers, and was mightily impressed. “That piece by Jeffrey was crazy…it felt like a mixture of [being] high and going down the rabbit hole with Alice in Wonderland…[Seeing the show as an alumna] is not that much different from when I was a student here—I mean, I have to pay a bit more and my pocketbook is a little bit slim, but other than that, there’s nothing different. I enjoy it just as much; I think I can enjoy it a little bit more because I have an outside perspective.” Wood was very proud of her performance. “[The experience] has been joyful,” she said after the show. “It’s been an eye-opening experience that’s brought me a lot of joy and I feel like I’ve grown as a dancer as a result. I want people to feel happy, [like] it was worth buying a ticket.” The performance was a big hit, and I cannot wait to see what else the dance department has in store for us!
Photo Courtesy of Matthew Wright
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY ARTS & CULTURE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
Taboo turned theatre: The Vagina Monologues By Brooke Weber Arts & Culture Editor The audience is tense. They’re sitting on the edge of their seats, nervously glancing around the room as if to size up their fellow spectators, imagining how they’ll behave in a matter of minutes when the lights go down and the show inevitably begins. After all, the crowd is about to sail into what is likely uncharted territory for the majority of the students, parents, and friends populating the Red Doors, maybe even a majority of the world: Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues. This annual production is inspired by V-Day, a campaign supported by Muhlenberg that, according to The Vagina Monologues program, marks “a global activist movement to end violence against women.” All proceeds from the show, which amounted to over a thousand dollars this year, are donated to Turning Point of Lehigh Valley, a local Allentown women’s shelter—but the impact of The Vagina Monologues (hereafter referred to as TVM) is by no means exclusive to the power of monetary donations. Artistic director Emily Hoolihan ’17, who has become increasingly involved with TVM throughout her four years at Muhlenberg, personally feels the positive effects of the play within her own life, as the two have become irrevocably intertwined. “[TVM] holds a special place in my heart because I’ve watched the show grow over the years with new actors coming in and graduating actors leaving,” Hoolihan said. “Additionally, TVM has helped me grow into the person I am today—a confident, more educated woman! Because of this show, I’m always caring for and loving my woman-self.” It’s not only the seasoned veterans who have gained a new perspective since their time in the show—Mallory Lewis ’20, who brought to life “The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy,” experienced a similar sense of growth. “TVM is something that I’ve wanted to do for a while. There was a time in my life where I felt very ashamed and powerless being a woman. My older sister saw me feeling down and told me to read TVM. I remember feeling empowered for the first time in a long time,” said Lewis. “It really is such an empowering
Photo Courtesy of Haris Bhatti
thing to see and hear! As women we don’t talk about what it MEANS to be women often. We don’t acknowledge the patriarchy unless it’s behind our screens. This is a public setting where we can feel connected, strong, and united.” Perhaps this is why being an audience member of TVM is such an interesting experience—while the performers have some idea of what to expect (though they had never seen each other’s pieces performed until opening night!), spectators might be caught off guard by the outright acknowledgement of so many issues that are usually shoved behind closed doors. Emily Hamme ’20, who introduced “Because He Liked to Look At It” and was featured in “Six Year Old Girl,” believes it is this sense of shame that perpetuates our collective unwillingness to bring up certain aspects of our reality. “It’s important to include real discussions about vaginas and women’s rights because the lack of talking about them makes it a taboo topic and then the cycle of animosity toward women just continues,” Hamme said. “I thought that the monologue about the women from Bosnia and Kosovo was very powerful. It was a
depiction of sexual assault that was intense and gave an insight into the atrocities that survivors of rape and war-torn countries experience.” Though TVM certainly doesn’t shy away from the hard-hitting issues surrounding vaginas, the show isn’t without a lighter side, as exemplified by Hoolihan’s favorite monologue, the curse-happy, relatable rant that is “My Angry Vagina,” performed this year by Armida Flores ’19. “I think every individual with a vagina understands this one,” said Hoolihan. “Seriously. No one likes tampons, OB-GYN appointments, and thong underwear can be the worst! I think individuals with vaginas SHOULD be angry. For a long time, the vagina has been a sign of weakness, but I think this piece and all the others show that we are NOT weak! We are empowered and ready to stand up for our rights as human beings!” This is, after all, the locus of TVM: the idea that people with vaginas, a body part that has so long been stigmatized and ignored and ordered into hiding, could possibly raise their voices to echo the millions of people before and reflect the millions of people after them, bringing power and oppression together in a collective, poignant song is radical. It’s radical, and it’s important. It might make some squirm in their seats, might encourage some to look away—and that’s okay. Hoolihan, Lewis, and Hamme all stated, to some degree, that the show is meant to spark questions and ignite thoughts about why we may feel uncomfortable at certain points. Perhaps that spark is a necessary shock to action, a perfectly timed electrical jolt that works its way up our spines and out through our fingertips, bringing us to life in ways we’ve never thought of before. For a few hours, we lived in a world where vaginas were talked about without a smokescreen of taboo and distractingly nervous giggles—a world where they were seen for what they are and what they could be. That world isn’t yet our world, and maybe it never will be, but we’ll never know until we take the first step. Perhaps, for someone sitting in the audience in the Red Doors on Friday or Saturday, looking around at the rest of the crowd with a mixture of fear and anticipation, The Vagina Monologues was that step—the first of many.
Looking forward to Listen to Me By Kayla Kristofco Arts & Culture Writer
The Muhlenberg Theatre Association is starting the spring semester off with the first of three Mainstage plays, Listen to Me. Listen to Me is a deeply poetic and significant reflection on the true meaning behind life, written by Gertrude Stein and directed by Professor James Peck. The characters of this play deal with both serious and more light-hearted emotions, and try above all else to hold onto their hope. This play will portray Sweet William (Xavier Pacheco ‘19) and Lillian (Felice Amsellem ‘17), as well as the rest of the characters, as they struggle to philosophize their situation in a very rhythmically beautiful way. Peck explained more on Stein’s style and what her play is about, stating, “Stein is…an untraditional writer for the theatre. [Her plays] don’t have a clear plot or even discrete characters. On the page, they look more like long prose poems than plays. But they are tremendously theatrical and very moving, and Listen to Me is one of my favorites. It has been a great joy for me to remember how fulfilling it is to arrive at a way to approach a particular moment, and to see how passionate the writing can be when it’s enacted. And it’s been great both to be able to share that with students, and also to learn from them about the range and scope of the material.” It is important to realize when watching Listen to Me
that the plot is nonlinear, and the text can be difficult to understand. Overall, however, watching the play is meant to be an enlightening, albeit challenging, experience for the audience. “I hope audiences will come with an open mind and give themselves over to the experience,” said Peck. “The evening won’t provide what most people are used to from the theatre—a clear story. But in place of that, it does offer a gorgeous text that addresses some of the most urgent social and ecological issues of our time. So people should know that although Listen to Me doesn’t have a single straightforward meaning, it does issue many invitations for them to make meaning. I hope they’ll take the ride.” Listen to Me stars Pacheco as Sweet William and Amsellem as Lillian. When asked about what it was like to work on this play, Amsellem commented, “This has been one of the most complicated, intense, and incredibly meaningful and fulfilling theatrical experiences I’ve ever been a part of.” “Jim [Peck] is such an incredibly brilliant man, and our cast is so talented and hardworking…I’m so grateful I’ve gotten to have the opportunity to work with such fantastic artists,” said Amsellem. “Creating the piece has been much more collaborative than I could have imagined--which is one of the many things that makes this show so unique and special. The process has taken a lot of patience and work, but every second has been worth it. I am so incredibly proud of all of the
work we have put into this show, and could not be more thankful to be a part of this phenomenal company.” The show also features Julie Amento ‘17, Rachel Brudner ‘19, Avery Brunkus ‘17, Peter Callahan 17, Rebecca Canziani ‘17, Gab Fischetti ‘18, Sean Fowley ‘17, Emily Hoolihan ‘17, Max Keane ‘17, Jenna Lowry ‘17, Ally Merrill ‘17, Jessica Orelus ‘19 and Nate Rosario ‘19. Audiences are encouraged to keep an open mind, and to remember that Stein’s work is both complex and beautiful. Pacheco has some advice for audience members when coming to see Listen to Me: “When coming into this play: Feel. Feel. Feel. Be sensitive. The experience of this play is wholly up to you, the audience. Listen with not just your ears, but your heart and soul. There are so many layers to the play, and it can be difficult to try and decipher all of the meanings through just the words. This is normal for [Stein’s] writings, and we have all been stumped by her at some point or another. Her words can be completely transcending, or impossibly complex. Just know that as long as you’re willing, attentive, and sensitive, you’re doing it right.” Because of all of the hard work that has been put into this performance, this play is surely worth the support of fellow students. If you are interested in seeing Listen to Me, it will be performed in the Studio Theatre on Feb. 22, 23, and 24 at 8 p.m., on Feb. 25 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., and on Feb. 26 at 2 p.m.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY ARTS & CULTURE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
A capella weekly spotlight: The Chaimonics By Hannah Turner Arts & Culture Writer As part of our A Cappella Fest series, our featured group of the week is the Chaimonics! The Chais are Muhlenberg’s Jewish A Cappella group. This doesn’t mean, however, that you have to be Jewish to be a member. Currently, less than half of the Chaimonics are Jewish. For those who are, however, singing traditional Hebrew songs mixed with new pop and alternative pieces is a great way to stay connected to their faith. Vice President Josh Young ‘19 spoke on being Jewish and a member of the Chaimonics. “It is really nice to get to sing those songs, because I’m not that religious and it’s a very easy and accessible way to connect with my Judaism.” The Chais’ music can be described as “mostly current pop and alternative music, with a sprinkling of Jewish songs to round it out.” Founded in 2004, this fun and bubbly group has been singing on campus for nearly thirteen years. Assistant Music Director, Sarah Jae Leiber ‘19, says that the best part of the group is “getting to make something with your friends! I think that music, like everything else worth doing, is best when it is collaborative.” The group is made up of people who are very different but unite around a common goal, making music that they love and are passionate about. Some of their pop selections include “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat (soloists Aran Clemmons ‘17 and Rachel Brudner ‘19), “Show Me What I’m Looking
For” by Carolina Liar (soloist Jennie Silber ‘19), and “Ain’t Got Far to Go” by Jess Glynne (soloist Geneses Bello ‘17). Their repertoire also includes traditional Hebrew songs like “Hava Nagila” (soloist Young), and “Salaam” (soloist Ali Ruchman ‘19). These songs are a great way to connect Jewish members to their faith through music, but also to provide our campus (which has a high percentage of Jewish students) with an opportunity to hear Hebrew music that has been reimagined and features prominently in a group’s repertoire. For new members, being in the Chaimonics has changed their Muhlenberg experience greatly. Silber, who got into the group this past fall, expressed how important this group was in maintaining her music hobby. “Being in the Chaimonics has given me an outlet to continue singing alongside a group of people who have such a great appreciation for music. It was hard transitioning from being in all of the musicals in high school and having a tight knit choir family to college, where I knew I might not be able to continue my passion for singing and performing. I really love a cappella and love singing with such an amazing group of people three times a week.” On a social scale, the Chaimonics have a great bond and get along extremely well. Young mentions how integral a part they played in his ability to feel at home on campus. “It’s made [my time at Muhlenberg] a lot more fun because I get to sing and hang out with a really great group of people. It gives me something to look forward to every week and
Photo Courtesy of Demetra Demetriades
it’s given me a sort of family on campus that will always be there.” This support system is common in all of the a cappella groups and even across the a cappella community as a whole. What sets the Chais apart, however, is how different they are from each other. Silber speaks on how that plays into their music. “We’re all very different but still understand each other and get along really well. As a whole, the members of the Chaimonics are welcoming, open minded, and passionate about what we do. We all have a lot of ambition and are part of multiple groups around campus. We put a lot of hard work and time into creating the best sound possible while also having fun and joking around from time to time.”
While a cappella is fun most of the time, there is a sizable amount of work that has to go into making songs perfect and performable. Leiber expressed how the group handles these moments of uncertainty. “The hardest thing I think is when it stops being fun, like we get too caught up on one measure and get frustrated with each other instead of realizing that in the long run it’s literally college a cappella and 20 years from now we’re not gonna remember a screwy measure 43.” Overall, the Chaimonics are a friendly group with a crazy amount of talent and ambition that they put into each and every piece they perform. Make sure you catch their performance as well as the other groups on April 1!
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THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY SPORTS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2017
Men’s tennis expects a successful 2017 season Bruce Levine begins his first year as head coach By Josh Lederman Sports Writer With just one senior on the roster and a new head coach, it may sound like this will be a year of major adjustments to most. However, the Muhlenberg men’s tennis team has high expectations and hopes to be amongst the top of the Centennial Conference standings. “The expectations for the team this year are definitely high,” said David Woods ‘17. “Although we lost a number of starters from last year’s team, our top two players have returned, and we have a number of talented freshmen who will
be in the starting lineup and contributing to this team. With the leadership of our new coach, Bruce Levine, we expect to make big strides from where we left off last season.” Woods brings great experience to the Mules both on and off the court. He has been a starter since his freshman season and was number one in the singles line-up and number two in the doubles line-up. Woods knows that the team’s lack of experience is a challenge, but as the only senior on the squad he understands that it is his job to set an example for the rest of the team and show them how to play competitively at the collegiate level. “As the lone senior on the team, I think that the best thing that I can do is just be patient with the younger guys as they get adjusted to the college game, and try my best to give them as much wisdom as I can from my experiences from past
Mickey Schindler Courtesy of Muhlenberg Athletics from
whelming positivity is a crucial factor that the rest of the team has thrived off of all season. Hunter scored just two points, but regardless of his performance on the court, it was one of his most unforgettable games he has ever partaken in as a Mule. “It was a memorable senior night,” said Hunter. “Although we didn’t get the outcome we wanted it was great to go to battle one last time at the Mecca. It was also a special game for me to have my whole family together up here for the first time.” The final senior and captain on the team, Brandon LaRose, was also upset with his play in the loss, but just like Hunter, he was radiant about the experience of being honored as a senior. “I definitely didn’t have my greatest game but it was still great to be out on the court with all of my friends and family there to support my last game in Memorial Hall,” said LaRose. “A surreal and proud moment to round off my career in that gym. I’ve put countless hours of work in up and down that court so seeing it come to a close and being able to look back at my body of work over these last four years was a great moment.” Senior day has become one of the most highly anticipated games on the calendar every season for each Muhlenberg athletics team, but obviously play-
ers can only have one senior day in their career. However, the coaching staff has a different perspective, since they return year after year without any graduation date looming. For head coach Scott McClary, who has held that position since 2009, this day has always been an extremely emotional one. Following the game, McClary was filled with pride. “Watching the three seniors go through senior day brought a lot of emotions for me,” said MClary. “First, you realize just how fast time flies by, as I remember all three of their arrivals to Muhlenberg. Mostly, I am just so proud to have been their coach and feel so fortunate to have had the privilege to spend so much time with them over the past four years. They have each grown so much and I am so extremely proud of them.” As for the game itself, McClary was able to look past the disappointing final score and find the good in the situation. Of course no team enjoys losing, especially against a conference rival, but one thing McClary has taught his players during his time at Muhlenberg is that there is always something to be learned from whatever gets thrown in one’s way. “We are all disappointed in the outcome of Saturday’s game,” said McClary after the game, “but every experience in our lives provides opportunity. This is an opportunity for us to grow and learn just how hard you need to compete every second you have on the floor.” After hearing
seasons,” said Woods. “Aside from technical advice, I hope that showing up to practice every day and giving it my all during matches will show the rest of the team that if everyone commits, there is no reason why we shouldn’t perform well.” The Mules’ other top returner is Mickey Schindler ‘18, who, like Woods, played in the number one singles slot last year as well as in the number one doubles spot this year. He has been a strong force in Centennial Conference play and has a winning record through his first two collegiate seasons racking up 36 total wins. The remainder of the returners for the Mules are Nicholas Oliveti ‘19, Steven Shoemaker ‘19, and Jon Yandle ‘19, along with Matthew Maycock ‘18. Oliveti and Shoemaker have the most tournament experience out of the group of returners. The newcomers for the Mules are transfer Andrew Kotch ‘19, Alex Dagilis ‘20 and Andrew Natko ‘20. With high expectations, the Mules are looking to make the Centennial Conference playoffs for the first time in over a decade, and they are looking to improve over the course of the season. Woods describes that the team is hungry to win, but also willing to have a great time on the court. “This season, the team is most looking forward to improving on our games and improving in the win column, while having a good time,” said Woods. “Our number one goal is to make the Centennial Conference Playoffs, some-
thing that Muhlenberg has not done in over a decade. This will be very difficult to do in a very talented conference, but with hard work we know that this is a real possibility.” Just like the women’s squad, the Mules toughest Centennial Conference foe will be the Johns Hopkins Blue Jays. The Blue Jays have won the past nine Centennial Conference Championships. Swarthmore, Haverford, and Franklin & Marshall are also tough conference opponents, as they make the Centennial Conference playoffs on a consistent basis. “The team bonded a good amount during the off-season and during the season as well,” said Woods. “It is a team of only ten guys, and we are all very close and get along very well, which makes for a great atmosphere. This camaraderie definitely is a big plus going into the season.” Especially for a young squad, the close atmosphere will come in handy during the season, especially when facing their tough Centennial Conference opponents. Although the lack of experience is the Mules’ biggest obstacle, the return of the top two players from last year’s squad is huge. With improvements, hard work, and high expectations from the rest of the team, the Mules should not be counted out from reaching the playoffs. This will be an enjoyable team to watch this year, and first year head coach Bruce Levine should have the team heading in the right direction this year.
Kaitlin Errickson/The Muhlenberg Weekly
The team celebrates their fellow seniors, Jon Schreer (left), John Hunter (middle), and Brandon LaRose (right).
similar sentiments echoed by the three team captains, it is easy to understand why this team has developed such good chemistry over the last few seasons, especially the current one. The final game of the season on the Mules home court does not signify the end of their season just yet. They have one remaining game at McDaniel, the opposing team’s venue. Even though the team’s playoff chances are not looking good, as they sit sixth in the Centennial
Conference standings, McClary will use the last games as an opportunity to continue to learn and grow as a cohesive unit. “Our expectations for the final two games [Ursinus and McDaniel],” said McClary, “will remain as they have been for every single game this season: prepare to the very best of our ability, compete to win the game, and appreciate how lucky we are to represent Muhlenberg in a college basketball game!”
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY SPORTS THURSDAY, FEBRUARY , 2017
Track and field break records at Ocean Breeze Complex By Matt Riebesell Sports Writer Select members of the Muhlenberg men’s and women’s track teams were invited to the Fastrack National Invite. Overall, the day was a huge success for the invitees from ‘Berg at the Ocean Breeze Athletic Complex, located in Staten Island, N.Y. Ten Mules, four women and six men, contributed to the big day filled with leaderboard finishes and broken records. “The Ocean Breeze invitational has always been a competitive meet as it brings the best out of everyone,” said sprinter Anthony Ware ‘18. Friday’s meet featured a school record nine personal records, seven all-time top ten finishes, and six qualifications for the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) meet. These fantastic results would be impressive at any meet, but the Fastrack National Invite has many Division I athletes participating as well. Ware says that this helps the team push themselves for meets down the road. “The Ocean Breeze meet being pretty much an entire DI meet allowed us to run against high level athletes, more than preparing us to perform well in conferences,” said Ware. Head track coach Brad Hackett was also proud of the team’s overall performance. “I have been here for 18 years and this was one of the most impressive total group performances in my tenure here at Muhlenberg,” said Hackett about the day as a whole. The coach points to Jaryd Flank ‘17 and Jamie Pacilio ‘18, as “the performers that stand out to me the most from this past weekend.” Flank broke the school record in the mile, shedding close to ten seconds from his lifetime best in the indoor event. “Remarkable,” was the word Hackett used to describe one of his team’s leaders. On the women’s side Pacilio’s performance saw an impressive improvement. She clocked
Courtesy of Muhlenberg Athletics
Anthony Calantoni competes at the Fastrack National Invite.
in at 10:03 in the 3000m, which is a 23 second decrease from what she ran at the 2016 Fastrack. Other Mules who put up impressive results were Ware, Andrew and Partrick Bell ‘17, Anthony Calantoni ‘18, Corey Mullins ’19, Emily Davidson ‘18, Shana Joseph ’18 and Santina Zouras ‘20. Ware finished fifth in the 60m from a field of 36 runners, many of whom were Division I sprinters. His best time was 6.98 in his first meet since break due to nagging injury. In the 800m there were only three runners from Division III, and all were from Muhlenberg. Calantoni finished 15th and also claimed the fourth best 800m time in program history. The other two
Mules in the race were the Bell twins, who finished .11 seconds apart. Both 2:00.59 and 2:00.70 were personal bests for Andrew and Patrick Bell, respectively. Another Mule breaking into a top ten list for best times in Muhlenberg history is Mullins. Mullins now holds the eighth fastest time in program history for the mile. On the women’s side, Davidson and Joseph both were already on Muhlenberg top ten performance lists, but both improved their position by one spot once the Ocean Breeze was all wrapped up. Davidson climbed from fifth to fourth in the mile. Joseph, running in the 200m, went from sixth to fifth. Another Mule
also cracked the top ten for the first time ever in the mile. Zouras now sits at ninth on that list. This is promising for Zouras, who is only a freshman and still has some time to keep climbing the rankings. To Ware, all of this success makes sense. “The team was very prepared because at this point in the season everyone knows the opportunities are dwindling when it comes to improving rankings in the conference or nation,” he said. Ware also acknowledges that there are some on the track team who are battling recurring injuries, which makes him more proud of how he and his teammates “still went out and performed to the best of our ability.” Moving forward, the men’s and women’s track and field team have some big dates coming up as the winter indoor season comes to a close. The team should keep this meet in mind, as it showed what the Mules team can do when they are at their best. “This meet allows everyone to keep the momentum going into the next two weeks, which include one more meet and then conferences,” said Ware. Hackett also has set some goals for his squad in the last few weeks of the indoor season. The first is to give opportunities for as many as possible to qualify for the Centennial Conference Championships, as the last regular season meet is the last chance for those who have not qualified so far. Next, Hackett wants to see the team peak for the championships on Feb. 25 and 26 at Ursinus. Finally, Hackett believes that some individuals on the team have an opportunity to compete in the NCAA Championship. “We need to do everything we can to give those people the best chance we can to get them there,” he said. The Fastrack National Invite was a great day for Muhlenberg’s track and field team, and the strong performances could be just what the team was looking for.
Women’s lacrosse returns with a strong lineup By Jordy Bonvini Sports Writer After ending on a high note last season, the Muhlenberg women’s lacrosse team is ready to defend their championship title this upcoming season. Not only was it the first time the Mules entered the ECAC tournament in school history, but they also won it all after three competitive games to capture the title postseason. With high energy and concentration, the team is working hard in the preseason to prepare for their first collected team effort against Stevens Institute of Technology this upcoming Saturday. For the past three years the Mules have faced the Stevens Tech Ducks in the preseason in order to test themselves for the official season. They always have a competitive game against their conference rivals. After graduating six seniors last season and with thirteen new players joining, the Mules are working hard and
getting used to playing with one another on the field. Nevertheless, the Mules still have nine starters returning, as well as three noteworthy captains to help lead them to success. The team is led by three senior captains: Kelsey Nagle ‘17, Nora Fisher ‘17 and Sara Allison ‘17. Returning starting goalie Allison leads the defense along with two other returning defenders, Allison April ‘17 and Alli Murnick ‘17. Joining Allison, April and Murnick is Caroline Dolan ’19, who received an All-Centennial honorable mention after an outstanding freshman season. Dolan lead the team with 36 ground balls and 14 caused turnovers. The defenders all individually have a great work ethic; they band together and work as a unit in order to hold teams to a minimum amount of goals. Last season the Mules’ defense allowed 166 only goals against them, while the attack was able to surpass that, scoring 255 goals and averaging about 11 goals a game. The attack this year will be led by
four returning starters, Kelsey Nagle ‘17, Nora Fisher ‘17, Steph D’Ascoli ‘17 and Jordy Bonvini ‘18 (the author of this article). The midfield will also contribute to the attack with two returning players, Amanda Tullo ’19 and Eliza Clark ‘18. The various athletes provide the attack with many strengths. Whether it’s on the move or a quick stick, the attack will be ready for any defense that comes their way. The Mules have big shoes to fill this year after having a record-breaking team last season. As seniors and captains of the team, it must be an exciting time for Allison, Nagle and Fisher, as they will take a leadership role to help the team have another successful season. “I think everyone is really excited for this season,” said Allison. “We have a lot of talent and depth to offer this year. We have been focusing on working as a cohesive unit and encouraging everyone to reach their full potential.” “After our play-day at Dickinson in the
fall, we’ve all been getting really excited about the potential that our team has for this season,” said Allison. “Our play-day solidified how successful our team can really be; with the attack having most returning players, we all have trust in each other to get the job done and everyone has an equal role. I really think we have one of the strongest attacks in the conference, so it’ll be really fun to see what happens throughout the season. In terms of our defense and midfielders, we have a good amount of returning players and some freshman that are going to make a huge impact on the team this year. I’m really excited to go into my final season playing lacrosse with these girls on my team. They make it all worth it for me.” The Mules begin their season in a non-conference matchup against Messiah College in an away game in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. Their first Centennial Conference game is not until Mar. 25 against Bryn Mawr at the Scotty Wood Stadium.
THE MUHLENBERG WEEKLY
Men’s tennis preview pg. 10
Track and field dominates pg. 11
Thursday, February 16, 2017
Seniors take spotlight despite 46-64 loss vs. Centennial Conference foe Gettysburg College By Alex Horowitz Sports Writer A four month long collegiate basketball season has its fair share of peaks and valleys. For the Muhlenberg men’s basketball team, one of their finer moments came on Saturday afternoon at Memorial Hall, despite a rather lopsided loss to Gettysburg College. Saturday’s contest marked the Mules’ final home game of the season, which meant that the pregame festivities were held to honor the team’s three graduating seniors: Jon Schreer ‘17, John Hunter ‘17 and Brandon LaRose ‘17. Schreer (left, #3), who was the leading scorer with 14 points in the 46-64 loss, entered the game with a optimistic mindset. “We’re just taking it game by game,” said Schreer. “We know we’re in a tough spot with two games out, but we’re still in contention and we’re not going to give in. The seniors are ready for this game and looking forward to it. Every day we come prepared to practice, ready to work hard. We have to focus on us and make sure we dictate the game to our favor.” As team captain, Schreer’s oversee
Basketball | page 10
Kaitlin Errickson/The Muhlenberg Weekly
The President’s Strategic Planning Group cordially invites you to attend the
Spring Community Planning Event Thursday, February 23 5:00 - 8:00 p.m. Seegers Union Great Room Dinner will be served
Check your email for an invitation with RSVP!