Issue 4, Fall 2015

Page 1 | @ncfcatalyst









A student newspaper of New College of Florida

Family weekend successful despite price increase



Sydey Kruljac/Catalyst






BY SYDNEY KRULJAC More than 200 registered students and their family members flooded New College for an array of activities lined up for Family Weekend. This year, the Center for Engagement and Opportunity (CEO) hosted the event, which took place Sept. 25-27. Due to an increase in activities, students witnessed a sharp increase in price for Family Weekend. What used to be a $32.00 fee for both a cruise and brunch turned into a $75.00 fee. “When we looked at the options of what people were doing over Family Weekend, we kind of thought, ‘We aren’t showing off campus to the best of

our ability,’” Director of Career Services Kimberly Franklin said. “So we looked at an option creating an all-in-one price for everything Friday, Saturday and Sunday.” The initial price tag for Family Weekend included all of the meals and event management. “For every parent, we included the cost of feeding their student so there wouldn’t be a separate price for students,” Franklin said. “When the second parent registered, we were using that money to offset the price of those students whose parents couldn’t come.” Because of the change in price in

comparison to last year, students began to voice their grievances stating it was too steep of a price. “We worked really quickly and responded by offering all kinds of other options,” Franklin said. “So now there’s a one-day option or a two-day option. [Family weekend] is really meant to celebrate New College, celebrate with your family or with your family here.” Despite price complaints, the events kicked off on Friday, Sept. 25 with a bash on the bay including live music from the New Catz and local artist Lisa Silvermore, bounce-houses and dinner provided by Metz and local

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Water shortage brings students’ residential rights issue to forefront BY GIULIA HEYWARD Second-year Stetson Cooper has taken 10 showers across six different residential buildings in less than two weeks. “People ask if I need showers a lot still,” Cooper said. “I’m comfortable being known as the person who asks for showers, it’s just a strange thing to be known as.” Cooper is a resident of the Intensive Quiet or “Y” Dorm which has been experiencing extensive periods without hot water since Orientation Week in August. Despite multiple work requests by residents, the hot water in Y has been sporadic for weeks. Behind the good-natured humor of some residents, there is a sense of frustration. An email sent to the student Forum by Y resident, second-year Eli Barrett, brought attention to the rights – or lack thereof – of on-campus students. “Once again my dorm is without hot water,” Barrett wrote. “It goes

without saying that is unacceptable. At this point, I’m beginning to suspect that the problem here lies not with the water heater, but with the administration’s inability to adequately address basic problems. A landlord cannot reasonably expect to maintain tenants while failing to provide rudimentary services.” Other students have also described their relationship with the school as a tenant-landlord situation, a label that administration does not agree with. “We were told by our old General Counsel that the relationship in the residence halls is not a landlordtenant relationship,” Dean of Student Affairs Tracy Murry said. “It’s more like a hotel, it’s more of a management.” Last year, Student Affairs had to remove an individual living in a residential hall who was no longer a student. “If you’re a student and you sign a housing agreement and then you are no longer a student, the housing contract becomes invalid,” Murry said.

“It doesn’t matter if you’ve signed a 12year lease or whatever because, in the contract, you’re not listed as a person, you are listed as a student.” Murry does not believe that this discrepancy should detract from the responsibility of the institution to provide students with adequate living conditions. “If you went to a hotel, and you paid for a room, and you went up to your room and there was something in the room that you thought made it unlivable, then the hotel should provide you with another room,” Murry said. The shortage of hot running water in Y is not the first instance of a housing issue. Other residential buildings are known to have a largely unchecked and improperly treated mold problem. A 2012 article in the Catalyst reported that the school failed to hire a special mold expert to examine the appearance of mold on campus. The article noted that maintenance staff were instructed to use Kiltz – a chemical

that only masks the growth of mold as opposed to removing it – and that the school failed to adequately address the excessive moisture problem in dorm rooms. Under the Terms, Conditions, Responsibilities section of the housing contract, it states: “New College of Florida may initiate a transfer of the Student’s assigned space or may initiate cancellation of this contract if it is deemed necessary in the best interests in order, health, safety, security, maximum residential utilization of facilities, disaster, or failure to make payment.” In section 83.201 of “The Florida Law Residential Landlord Tenant Act,” failure of the landlord to address functional issues of the residence “rendering the leased premises wholly untenable, the tenant may withhold rent after notice to the landlord.” Both regulations imply that there

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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst



NCPD Windmill’s Easing the strain: Ebola drug participates put on fast track ‘nightnight’ in National premieres Prescription Drug TakeBack

briefs by Dylan Pryor

Last week, the Windmill Theatre Company presented “nightnight,” a one-act production about three astronauts on a mission, written by Lucas Hnath and co-directed by third-year Logan Schulman and thesis student Michael Valdez. The play represents a departure from past performances – there is a greater emphasis on technical aspects of the performance space. Valdez refers to “nightnight” as a “love letter to the BBT.” “I think considering the Black Box at this point is four or five years old, we haven’t really come to realize its entire potential,” Schulman said. Over the summer, many technical additions were made to the Black Box space, including new lights, and newly installed base and subwoofers. “nightnight” signifies what Schulman calls a “technical rebirth.” “When students who have seen shows in the Black Box come to see “nightnight,” they’re going to say ‘I had no idea this space could do that,’” Valdez said. The production itself was prepared entirely over the course of 30 days, which included all the usual preparations, done over a significantly shorter amount of time. “So [Valdez] at the beginning of this process said this thing that has kind of been the motto throughout. He said ‘yeah, it’s a tank down the mountain production,’” Schulman said. “Normal productions are like a choo-choo train going from Seattle to New York,” Valdez explained. The production represented a stark contrast to his analogy, as the drastically shorter time frame required for many different tasks to be happening concurrently, such as securing the rights for the play, helping the actors understand their roles, creating the set and setting up the BBT for the technical challenge ahead of it. Future Windmill productions this semester will include several student-written pieces, such as McAlister Grant’s thesis production, “Little Nightmares,” on Oct. 31.

ZMAPP, an experimental drug administered to the first American treated for Ebola in the United States, has been given fast track status by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for further development. ZMAPP was first given to Dr. Kent Brantly, the medical missionary air-evacuated from Liberia at the height of the Ebola outbreak in 2014. The drug is currently being tested in Liberia, according to NBC. After LeafBio Inc., the company’s commercial arm, made the announcement, Mapp Biopharmaceutical posted a press release celebrating the fast track’s importance for their ultimate goal of FDA approval. “We have been consulting frequently with the FDA during the development of ZMapp and are grateful for their willingness to work with us to provide interactive review,” Dr. Larry Zeitlin, president of LeafBio and Mapp, said in a press release on the company website. “The formalization of this through Fast Track designation is an important milestone.” The ZMAPP drug was previously

classified as an orphan drug, which means that it was developed specifically to treat a rare medical condition. The drug is made using three labengineered immune system proteins called monoclonal antibodies which specifically target the Ebola strain. However, supply of ZMapp has also been limited since it takes six months to produce using proteins injected into tobacco plants. Doctors have said it is uncertain whether the drug was accountable for patients’ survival since it has yet to be given in the framework of a clinical trial, although LeafBio and Mapp CEO Dr. Kevin Whaley assured the public in the company’s press release that this would soon change as a result of the fast track. “We are hopeful that this step will accelerate access to ZMapp™ once safety and efficacy are demonstrated to FDA’s satisfaction in ongoing clinical trials,” Whaley said. Information for this article was taken from,,

Ahmed Mohamed’s quest for justice continues The arrest of 14-year-old Muslim student Ahmed Mohamed after his homemade clock was mistakenly believed to be a bomb was met with widespread national criticism. One week later, Mohamed’s story continues. His family has now hired a team of lawyers to seek justice for the controversial arrest. In the week since the arrest, the Mohamed family has unenrolled all three of their children from Irving schools in Texas due to wh at they see as religious persecution, and will begin homeschooling them, according to USA TODAY. The family has also received widespread national support, such as invitations from Facebook and various tech companies and even the White House. In addition, Irving police announced Wednesday that they had notified the family that the clock could be retrieved any weekday from police headquarters. Ahmed’s father intends to pick up the clock in the near future. However, the memory of the

“You know.” © 2015, the Catalyst. All rights reserved. The Catalyst is available online at,, @ncfcatalyst The Catalyst is an academic tutorial sponsored by Professor Maria Vesperi. It is developed in the New College Publications Lab using Adobe Photoshop and Adobe InDesign and printed at Sun Coast Press with funds provided by the New College Student Alliance.

incident has stayed with the family, and they have hired a legal counsel consisting of lawyers Thomas Bowers and Reggie London to investigate police treatment of Mohamed. Bowers is well known for representing former stripper Jana Weckerly in her sexual assault case against Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. “There’s a problem when you have a 14-year-old child arrested in school and basically humiliated in front of his classmates, his teachers, his friends, and basically the whole world,” Bower said, according to the Dallas Morning News. “He may be smiling on the outside, but he’s having some issues.” The lawyers plan to have a medical professional examine Mohamed while they investigate the school district and the city’s actions. “I just want justice for the boy,” London stated. Information for this article was taken from, dallasnews. com.

General Editor Managing Editor Copy Editor Online Editor Layout Editors Staff Writers & Photographers

Kaylie Stokes Pariesa Young Yadira Lopez Caitlyn Ralph Haley Jordan & Audrey Warne Bianca Benedí, Katelyn Grimmett, Giulia Heyward, Sydney Kruljac, Jasmine Respess, Ryan Paice, Dylan Pryor, Angela Duda

On Saturday, Sept. 26, the New College Campus Police participated in National Prescription Drug TakeBack Day, and encouraged members of Sarasota and Manatee County to anonymously drop off potentially dangerous, expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs for safe disposal. “What we set out to do is take back this medication and dispose of it in a safe manner,” Chief of Police Michael Kessie said. The NCPD started participating in the event in conjunction with many local agencies. When medication is brought in, they seal it up and give it to the Drug Enforcement Administration. The DEA sends officials to gather up the medicine, and they dispose of it in an environmentally friendly manner. “There’s no questions asked,” Kessie said. The NCPD has participated in the program biannually since 2011, and now also has an on-site prescription take-back container where community members can bring in prescription medicine at any time of the year. “Before we got this dropbox, if we got a call on the phone, we usually refer them to the sheriff’s department or the city police because they have had those boxes longer than us,” Kessie said. “But now what we do is they can bring it in, they drop it in there, and they’re good to go.” The box can be found in the lobby of the Campus Police Department and is clearly labeled with what can be put inside it. “Contrary to what I think some students really feel here, we are concerned about the students,” Kessie said. “If you take this job and you don’t care about the students then I don’t want you here. We really are concerned about the students, it’s why we work here.” Direct submissions, letters, announcements and inquiries to: The Catalyst 5800 Bay Shore Road Sarasota, Florida 34243 The Catalyst reserves the right to edit all submissions for grammar, space and style. No anonymous submissions will be accepted. Submissions must be received by 12:00 p.m. Friday for consideration in the next issue.



WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst


Alum Konnie Kruczek says goodbye to NCF BY DYLAN PRYOR New College alum and Community Engagement Coordinator Konnie Kruczek will say goodbye to New College after 15 years of dedicated work at the school. Kruczek accepted a position as assistant director at FSU College of Medicine’s Sarasota campus. As a New College student, Kruczek was an active member of the community. She notably took on the role of B Dorm resident advisor (RA) and sponsored Cultural Revolution PCP. Kruczek graduated from New College in 1995, and returned to the college five years later to run a partnership with the Boys & Girls club on campus: Keys to the Future. She went on to oversee many student activities, including the school’s first family weekend in 2003. She also oversaw the development of the VISTA volunteer program in 2006 and expanded the program to two positions in 2011. “I am most proud of developing our VISTA program and the focus I have been able to bring to serving atrisk youth in the community through our educational outreach programs,” Kruczek wrote in an email interview. “I am grateful to our community partners

Dylan Pryor/Catalyst

Kruczek took played an irreplaceable part in many campus activities, including Orientation Week.

for the countless hours that they share with our students.” In an email to the student body outlining Kruczek’s accomplishments, Dean of Students Tracy Murry weighed in on her contributions to campus. “She has always been willing to lend a hand whenever needed, and has always been a steering force for the

development of many initiatives in Student Affairs,” Murry commented. One such initiative was the annual New Student Orientation Week, which Kruczek has taken the lead in coordinating over the past two years. “She runs the place,” NCSA CoPresident Paige Pellaton said. “She is kind. She once let a few OL’s [orientation

leaders] come to her office and paint nails with her daughter. “No one can replace her,” Pellaton said. “Working with Konnie as an OL twice and as Orientation Coordinator this year, I can confidently say that Konnie is one of the funniest, kindest, most creative people I have ever had the pleasure to work with,” Orientation Coordinator Laura Arberman said. “She truly cares about this school and about all of the people in it. She has worked tirelessly to perfect the orientation program and to keep it going. Her influence on New College is incalculable.” Kruczek’s departure will be bittersweet. Although she is moving on to great opportunities, she also expressed a deep connection to New College. “Leaving is not easy,” Kruczek said. “I have raised my children on campus, and acted as a surrogate mother and big sister to countless students. I am very grateful to all of the opportunities given to me over the years…I will miss the intellect, creativity, passion and compassion of the students, faculty and staff.”

Campus buildings certified ‘haunted’ BY CAITLYN RALPH Representatives from Admissions, the Center for Engagement and Opportunity (CEO), and Ringling Museum of Art were greeted to spooky snacks, including ghost pretzels and Halloween-themed gummies, at the reveal for the recent campus investigation conducted by the Paranormal Society of Bradenton Florida (PSOBFL). After reviewing the entirety of the night’s recordings, PSOBFL declared both locations – College Hall and Caples – “haunted.” The initial investigation occurred on Tuesday, Aug. 25 from about 8:00 p.m. to early the next morning. A group of 10 participants was split in half and alternated between Caples and College Hall. Stemming from their own interest in old mansions and Ringling history, Admissions Coordinator Jodi Johnson and Internship Coordinator Andrea Knies invited PSOBFL to campus. The society works on donations, so the investigation was done for no cost. “I only got really scared on – oh, well, twice,” Knies said with laughter at the start of the paranormal reveal. “I was going to say only once, but it really was twice.” Even though PSOBFL initially reported a lack of findings in College Hall, a thorough review of the evidence proved otherwise. Residual and intelligent hauntings seem to occur in the building. Residual hauntings are classified as simply a recording of previous energy while intelligent hauntings have a consciousness and interact with the living. In the upstairs area of College Hall, a camera caught PSOBFL’s first clearly

delineated shadow ever on tape. The area was near where kids stayed during the Ringling era, and many suspected one of them might have caused the impressive piece of evidence. Near the concrete chair by the bay, the K2 meter, which detects electromagnetic field and supposedly a paranormal presence, activated. Charles’ cigar also made an appearance throughout the evening. “In Charles’ house, everybody had the smell of cigar pipe tobacco, constantly smelling it in different areas,” PSOBFL co-founder Liz Reed said at the reveal. An immense cold spot was felt between College Hall and Cook Hall. College Hall was Charles and Edith Ringling’s home. Their daughter, Hester, resided in Cook Hall. “It was like you walked into air conditioning,” Reed said about the cold spot. The music room, which was a gathering space in the Ringling-era, was particularly active, with shadows lurking in the northwest corner and potential music and talking in the background. Knies and PSOBFL cofounder Ron Reed kept seeing a light get blocked in that same corner of the music room. “By the organ, that [light blocking] kept happening” Reed said. “When we arrived today, I went over there and looked, and I really don’t see how anything could block that light. “And when I was viewing the evidence, I believed that round light to be the reflection of our night vision camera off the window,” Reed said. “It had to be something inside that blocked the light.” They counted something

Photo courtesy of Andrea Knies

The Paranormal Society of Bradenton Florida had a successful night when they investigated two buildings on campus: College Hall and Caples.

blocking that light more than 12 times. Two significant electronic voice recordings (EVP) surfaced from College Hall. One followed a question directed at Edith, which asked if it was hard to have a psychic child. The response was “no.” Similarly, Knies at one point inquired if a certain area was the servants’ quarters and received a swift “no” in reply. Unfortunately, recording equipment was only placed in College Hall; however, that didn’t stop Caples from producing its fair share of evidence. Shadows were prevalent, and at one point Knies felt as if someone was touching her arm. Reed is still working to clean up an EVP that appears to record three knocks in response to a question.

At one point, one of the investigators asked if there was enough dinner for the team in Caples’ dining room and got a reply of “no.” The K2 meter frequently activated in response to questions. This evidence and more was enough for PSOBFL to label both College Hall and Caples as “haunted” locations. The organization presented the College with two certificates now displayed in the Admissions Office. Liz and Ron Reed started PSOBFL about five years ago in response to their personal paranormal experiences. “The fact that there is something out there that is unexplained to others

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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst



HIV on the rise in Florida BY JASMINE RESPESS As of late this summer, the rate of reported cases of HIV in Florida has risen by 23 percent. Experts say cases have been increasing since 2012 due to lessened fear of dying from AIDS, inadequate safe-sex education and disease prevention, as well as an increase in the use of injected drugs such as heroin. “I think we’re a victim of our own success because treatment has been very successful in getting people back to health,” Michael Weinstein, president of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation told the Sun Sentinel. “A generation of people under 40 haven’t really lived with people dropping like flies around them.” Since July 2015, 35.8 for every 100,000 Floridians were infected with HIV. “African Americans are approximately 5 percent of the Sarasota population, but represent 30 percent of the HIV/AIDS caseload,” Dr. Lisa Merritt wrote in an email. Dr. Merritt is teaching Public Health Disparities and Gender Issues at New College this semester. A major aspect of the spike in HIV cases is due to an increase in the use of heroin. This is true in both Manatee County and Sarasota. “Overdoses have already increased exponentially over 2013 and 2014 figures. There were 339 total overdose calls in all of 2013, 700 in 2014, and 630 overdose calls through the end of

Graph courtesy of

African Americans are disproportionately affected by HIV. These diagnoses are from 46 states and five U.S. dependent areas June here. Just in June, five of those overdose calls were listed as dead on the scene,” the Bradenton Herald reported. At New College, HIV testing is provided for free through the Counseling and Wellness Center (CWC) throughout the year. Although the drugs for HIV and AIDS are becoming more efficient, recently a company named Turning Pharmaceuticals, run by hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli, made the drugs more expensive. In the past, patients would have to take handfuls

of pills, but now that number has been drastically reduced. The company bought the 62-year-old drug Daraprim (pyrimethamine), which according to the New York Times is a standard in care for HIV. The company rose the price from $13.50 to $750. Making the annual cost for treatment up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. This price increase was so disruptive that the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) sent Turning Pharmaceuticals a letter. IDSA explained that the medication was an integral part

of treating some cancers, HIV and other autoimmune diseases. “Please help us improve public health by immediately implementing a rational and fair pricing strategy for pyrimethamine that keeps treatment for a potentially fatal condition accessible to our patients,” the IDSA said in their letter to Turning Pharmaceuticals. Despite ever-advancing treatment for HIV, there are still many issues that lead to an increase in the cases. This, coupled with less economically accessible medicine, could prove disastrous.

Pope Francis rocks the boat in his first US visit BY BIANCA BENEDI Schools were closed, bus tickets reserved, and streets were barricaded in Philadelphia and New York in anticipation of the masses that would be spilling out on the streets for Pope Francis’ first visit to the United States in late September. His six-day trip, starting in Washington D.C. with a personal welcome from President Barack Obama and a White House reception, drew enormous attention and even bigger crowds. Wednesday, Sept. 23 The morning of his first full day was marked by his official White House reception, held on the South Lawn and attended by the President, who also held a personal meeting with the pontiff. At the reception, the pope gave a speech in which he affirmed the right to religious liberty, and praised Obama’s initiatives on addressing global climate change. “It seems clear to me ... that climate change is a problem which can no longer be left to a future generation,” Pope Francis said in his speech. Although this reception was private, Francis immediately followed it with an 11 a.m. tour around the ellipse and the National Mall, where thousands of people lined the streets for a chance to see the pope traveling in the iconic popemobile. His tour ended at St. Matthew’s Cathedral, where he

led midday prayers, gave a nod to the Jewish community’s celebration of Yom Kippur occurring that day, and spoke to the bishops present. At 4:15, as he celebrated Mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, the pope canonized Junipero Serra, a friar who held several missions in California to convert natives to Catholicism. Serra is the first person to be canonized on U.S. grounds. This particular event was met with protests from indigenous Latino communities, who argued that Serra stripped Natives of their religion and their culture. Nevertheless, the pope praised Serra, claiming instead that he advocated for Natives and spread his religious faith appropriately. Thursday, Sept. 24 Thursday’s most significant event came when Pope Francis delivered a speech to the United States Congress. Defying expectations of a discussion on abortion or same-sex marriage, Francis focused on immigration, racial injustice, poverty and the death penalty, focusing his speech on the rights of the marginalized and the oppressed. “We, the people of this continent, are not fearful of foreigners, because most of us were once foreigners,” Francis said. Francis is Argentinian, the first pope ever to come from Latin America. “We must resolve now to live as nobly and as justly as possible, as

we educated new generations not to turn their back on our ‘neighbors’ and everything around us.” This speech generated a lot of political discussion: John Boehner, Speaker of the House and devout Catholic, who was seen in tears during the Pope’s speech, stepped down from his position the next day. It was suggested that a private meeting with the Pope, and the completion of his 20-year goal to have a pontiff speak to Congress, led Boehner to make the decision to resign. Friday, Sept. 25 On Friday the Pope spoke to the assembly of the United Nations, where he once again advocated for attention to the impoverished, the rampant presence of human trafficking, and the urgency of addressing climate change. “We cannot permit ourselves to postpone ‘certain agendas’ for the future,” he said. “The future demands of us critical and global decisions in the face of worldwide conflicts which increase the number of the excluded and those in need.” Following a multi-religious service performed at the 9/11 memorial site, the pope visited Our Lady Queen of Angels school, a grade school located in East Harlem with an overwhelmingly Hispanic and Black population. After this the pope traveled via motorcade through Central Park, where more than 80,000 New Yorkers

crammed into the park in order to catch sight of the pontiff. At 6 p.m. that evening, Pope Francis delivered Mass in Madison Square Garden. Saturday, Sept. 26 On his first day in Philadelphia, the Pope delivered Mass once again, this time at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul. Following that, he visited Independence Mall, where 50,000 attendees watched him deliver a speech on religious freedom. In the speech he also addressed the extensive Hispanic community in the area. “Do not be discouraged by whatever challenges and hardships you face ... You should never be ashamed of your traditions. Do not forget the lessons you learned from your elders, which are something you can bring to enrich the life of this American land.” At 7:30 p.m. the Pope attended the Festival of Families, part of the World Meeting of Families Gathering, where a number of artists, including famous Italian singer Andrea Bocelli, performed for the event. The night ended with a Prayer Vigil. Sunday, Sept. 27 On the final day of the pontiff’s visit, Francis held a private meeting with five survivors of Catholic church sexual abuse, expressing solidarity and shame for the church’s inadequacy

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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst



Japanese prime minister ends pacifism put in place after World War II BY RYAN PAICE After almost 70 years of pacifism put in place by the constitution that was drafted by the occupying Unites States in 1947, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has pushed a bill through Japanese legislature that reinterprets Article 9 of Japan’s constitution to allow for limited warfare. Article 9 states that “land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained” and that Japan must “forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation.” The article was widely accepted by the Japanese people after the traumatic events of World War II – including the nuclear bombings at Hiroshima and Nagasaki – and pacifism has been the way of the nation ever since. Soon after the constitution was put in place, Japan faced pressure from the United States to de-arm entirely, but Japan maintained pacifism by creating the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, which are only maintained for the protection of the Japanese homeland. Despite sending noncombatant troops to aid U.S. occupation of Iraq after the fall of Saddam Hussein, Japan has successfully evaded combat since the end of World War II. However, with the reinterpretation of Article 9, Japan now has the allowance for “collective self-defense,” and could assist the U.S.

and other allies if those allies were attacked. While Abe might be celebrating his success in allowing Japan to become a more assertive nation in international affairs, the bill has been met with incredibly polarized reception in Japan. Massive protests have been held, and political opposition is determined to reverse the decision. However, supporters of the bill note that the East Asia region in which Japan is located is volatile and dangerous – with China and North Korea in very close vicinity. “I think that it is a lot of fearmongering that is going on,” fourthyear David Duffrin said. Having lived in Japan for a year as he studied abroad in his second year of college, Duffrin has extensive experience with Japan, and is strongly against the bill. “If you listen to Japanese news, it is all about how the Chinese have this army, and the Koreans have this, so they are trying to make it seem like they are going to be attacked at any moment so they need a standing army to protect themselves. “But the bill says that they can preemptively send soldiers to other countries, and that isn’t defending your country,” Duffrin said. “A big problem is that there is only a 30 percent turnout rate at the polls, so almost no one in Japan actually votes.” Fuko Tokitsu, a second-year student at New College, has lived

Photo courtesy of Fuko Tokitsu

View of the park outside of second-year student Fuko Tokitsu’s home in Japan.

in Japan all her life and is also in opposition of the bill’s reinterpretation of Article 9. “In my opinion, I don’t like the bill because we are under the constitution that doesn’t allow for war, and we have been safe with that,” Tokitsu said. “But America and a lot of other countries started wars and they have influenced my country [away from pacifism]. “We already have our own army in Japan, but it is really there just to help in case there is a tsunami or earthquake – it is really more of a homeland security,” Tokitsu continued. “But with the security bill, we have to make our army so it can fight other people.” Duffrin believes that the bill was just another way for Prime Minister Abe

to please the United States, calling Abe a “pawn of America” because he is so accommodating with the desires of the United States. For the United States, having Japan as an ally in East Asia is clearly beneficial due to the country’s location between both North Korea and China. One of Duffrin and Tokitsu’s main concerns was the possibility of the reinstatement of a draft in Japan in the future because of the movement away from true pacifism. “To help other countries in war we don’t want to have our friends and family drafted for war,” Tokitsu said.

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Cuba releases 3,522 prisoners prior to papal visit BY KATELYN GRIMMETT Last week, Pope Francis embarked on two consecutive visits, arriving first in Cuba and then traveling to the United States. While both places widely welcomed the Pope’s presence, individuals in Cuba and the United States alike have noted a divergence between his discourses in both countries. In his speech to Congress, Pope Francis reported that he would not avoid any controversial issues, a statement which seems to contrast with his inattention to issues in Cuba, such as the weekly arrests of dissidents and the fact that, out of the 3,522 inmates released before the Pope’s arrival, no political prisoners were included. Among those political prisoners is artist Danilo Maldonado, commonly known as “El Sexto,” who is famous for his performance “Rebellion on the Farm” in which he painted Fidel and Raul Castro’s names onto pigs and released them in Central Park, Havana. Maldonado was actually to be released as a peaceful political prisoner but his release was canceled because the prison lost his papers. The Pope’s neglect to call out the constraints on political and personal freedoms in Cuba came as a disappointment to conservatives and liberals alike. Where he openly stressed the United States’ responsibility to pursue the common good, particularly addressing issues such as immigration

and climate change, his silence on human rights issues in Cuba came as a surprise. He did, however, openly call for Cuba to grant more religious freedom and highlighted the healing properties of peace and reconciliation, the former perhaps referring to the recently reestablished relationships between Cuba and the U.S. – a relationship very much facilitated by the Pope himself. “In their everyday rhetoric, the [Cuban] government claims that they do not have political prisoners because they are instead mercenaries paid by the U.S. government,” said Alejandro Benedí, a Cuban-American and father of thesis student and Catalyst staff writer Bianca Benedí. Benedi said that one possible reason for Cuba not releasing any political prisoners is the potential to use them as a negotiation card. Regardless of the reason, the government’s incarceration of political protestors has frustrated many Cubans and Cuban-Americans. The Pope’s silence on the matter of the political prisoners not receiving pardon was disappointing for many dissident groups and sharply contrasted with what he said en route to the United States: “Speaking clearly, life imprisonment is a hidden death penalty, it is like being there dying every day, without the hope of liberation.” Professor of Spanish Sonia Labrador-Rodriguez, whose research concerns Cuba in the 19th century,

used to visit Cuba every summer until the Florida law denying state funding for travel to Cuba passed in 2006. Labrador-Rodriguez commented on the release of prisoners prior to the Pope’s arrival, the third time such a mass release has occurred before a papal visit to Cuba. “Well, it gives the impression to the outside world that they are acknowledging the significance of the event of the Pope coming to Cuba from the point of view of a public relations image,” Labrador-Rodriguez said. “Some people call it a ‘cleaning of house’ in the sense that it doesn’t cost a lot to Cuba because what they are doing is also solving the problem of keeping a lot of people in jail,” she added. Indeed, Cuba’s prison population remains high at an estimated 60,000 to 70,000 out of the country’s population of 11 million. “I mean, you know, the U.S. is a country with the single largest incarcerated population so if the Pope said anything maybe it should have been here,” Professor of International Relations Nat Colletta said. “I don’t think he oversteps his boundary, he’s a moral leader not a politician.” Labrador-Rodriguez explained her own thoughts on why the Pope may have been so subtle in his address to Cuba. “Many people are discussing this in the media and I agree with the analysts who are saying that he had to be very careful with what he said because he doesn’t want to jeopardize the fragile

atmosphere of communication between the U.S. and Cuba,” she said. “There is hope that things will start getting resolved as a result of that dialogue and interaction between Cuba and the United States.” “The people in Cuba see the Pope as a bridge for a better future if U.S. and Cuban relationships materialize as expected,” Benedí said. “But in South Florida we [Cuban-Americans] are better informed, there has been too much forgiveness from the Pope and people feel as if ignored basically.” The Pope’s reluctance to mention issues of political freedom in Cuba still came to the dismay of many, if only because of recent circumstances. Last May, Cuba met a record-breaking month in political arrests after the number of such arrests rose 70 percent from February to March alone. The Cuban government’s treatment of the organization Damas de Blanco (Ladies in White) is particularly relentless. The women in this group are arrested every week during their Sunday after-mass marches calling for the release of their husbands, sons,] and fathers. Berta Soler, the leader of the Damas de Blanco, was quoted as saying, “What I would tell the Pope is that political violence against people who want to participate or exercise their liberty in public assemblies must stop.” The views of Soler were never

continued on p. 11

Voting 101

Absentee voting


As of 2015, the millennial generation accounts for one third of the electorate. With 40 percent of millennials identifying as nonwhite, this is the most diverse voting generation in history. For the past three decades, voters have been disproportionately of higher income, older or more partisan in their interests – and the result has been mounting income inequality, reduced emphasis on social issues, and increasingly conservative economic policies. Currently, 46 million young people aged 18-29 years old are eligible to vote. This huge advantage promises to impact the outcome of elections in the coming year.

graph courtesy of U.S. Census Bureau

Do you qualify Filling out your voter registration form to vote?

You can vote if you: 1. Are a United States citizen 2. Are a Florida resident (if you are an out-of state resident, see “Absentee Voting”) 3. Are 18 or over 4. Have not been convicted of a felony (unless your civil rights have been restored since your conviction) 5. Have not been “adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to voting in Florida or any other state.” 6. Are able to provide your current and valid Florida driver’s license number or Florida identification card number. If you do not have a Florida driver’s license number or a Florida identification card number then you must provide the last four digits of your Social Security Number. If you do not have any of these items, you must write “none” in the box or field. If you qualify to vote, follow the steps below!

If you qualify, register to vote using any of the following methods: 1. Request or pick-up a Florida Voter Registration Application from your County Supervisor of Elections office. (Sarasota County’s is Kathy Dent, the address for the Sarasota office is 101 S. Washington Blvd. Sarasota, FL 34236. The office is located on the first floor of the Terrace Building at the corner of US 301 (Washington Blvd) and Ringling Blvd. The office hours are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The phone number

1. Fill in the Voter Registration Application online or print the application and write your information in with a black ballpoint pen. 2. Print the application. 3. Verify that all of the information on your application is complete. The office where you register, your decision not to register, your Social Security Number, your Florida driver’s license number and your Florida identification card number will remain confidential and will be used only for voter registration purposes. Your signature can be viewed, but not copied. Other information becomes a public record. 4. Sign your application. The application requires an original signature because you are swearing or affirming to an oath. If the information on the application is not true, the applicant can be convicted of a felony of the third degree

and fined up to $5,000 and/or imprisoned for up to five years. 5. Mail the application to your county Supervisor of Elections (the one and only Kathy Dent). You may also opt to mail or hand deliver the application to any Supervisor of Elections’ office in the state, a driver’s license office, a voter registration agency including an armed forces recruitment office, public library, or the Division of Elections. 6. If your application is complete and you qualify as a voter, the Supervisor of Elections will mail you a voter information card as official notification that you are registered to vote. Generally, you must be registered for at least 29 days before you can vote in an election. Tuesday, March 15, 2016 is the presidential primary date for Florida (which puts the final registration date at February 25, 2016).

Absentee voting (aka “mailin voting” and “by-mail voting”) is conducted by mail-in ballot before the day of the election. All states will mail a ballot to voters if certain conditions are met. The voter may return the ballot in person or by mail. Some states will let voters apply for an absentee ballot in person before the election and then vote the ballot that same day. Twenty-one states require voters to provide an excuse for voting by absentee ballot. Twenty-seven states and the District of Columbia offer no-excuse absentee voting. The entire list of states and the specific requirements for absentee voting that each state follows can be found on http://www.longdistancevoter. org. For students trying to vote from overseas, you may register through the Overseas Vote Foundation. The deadline for valid absentee ballots to be counted is no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day. Absentee ballots may be returned in person or by mail. If you plan to mail your ballot, be sure to mail early to avoid postal service delays, ballots post-marked on Election Day do not count. Information for this article was taken from, sarasotavotes. com,,,, census. gov,,,

Registering to vote is (941)-861-8600. If for whatever reason you have the desire to fax the Sarasota County Supervisor of Election’s office, the number is (941)-861-8609.) Complete, sign and mail the application to the office of your County Supervisor of Elections. 2. Fill in the online application form on the Division of Elections’ website (Florida’s is http://dos. Print, sign and mail the application to the office of your County Supervisor of Elections (Kathy Dent, hit her up). 3. Apply through any Florida

driver’s license office or tax collector’s office that issues driver’s licenses or Florida identification cards. 4. Apply through any “voter registration agency” (i.e., any government entity designated by the National Voter Registration Act or state law who must allow you to apply to register) at the same time you obtain new or renewing agency services or update your address for the continued receipt of such services. These agencies include any office that provides public assistance, any office that primarily serves

persons with disabilities, any military recruitment office, and any public library. 5. Obtain a Florida Voter Registration Application form from any entity authorized by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission to issue permits for fishing, hunting or trapping. Complete, sign and mail the application to your County Supervisor of Elections (see above)

Florida’s recognized political parties

Party Affiliation Florida is a closed primary state, which means that only voters who are registered members of political parties may vote for respective party candidates for an office in a primary election. However, there are times when all registered voters can vote in a primary election, regardless of which major or minor political party they are registered or even if they are registered without a specific party affiliation: 1. If all the candidates for an office have the same party affiliation and the winner of the primary election will not face any opposition in the general election (i.e. no write-in candidates have qualified), then all registered voters can vote for any of the candidates for that

office in the primary election. 2. If races for nonpartisan (i.e., free from party affiliation) judicial and school board offices, nonpartisan special districts or local referendum questions are on the primary election ballot, then all registered voters, including those without party affiliation are entitled to vote those races on the ballot. 3. At a general election, all registered voters receive the same ballot and may vote for any candidate or question on the ballot. If there are write-in candidates who have qualified for a particular office, a space will be left on the ballot where their name can be written.

Major Political Parties:

1. Florida Democratic Party (DEM) 2. Republican Party of Florida (REP) Minor Political Parties:

Party Affiliation in Sarasota County

data for this graph taken from and created by Kaylie Stokes/Catalyst

1. America’s Party of Florida (AIP) 2. Constitution Party of Florida (CPF) 3. Ecology Party of Florida (ECO) 4. Florida Socialist Workers Party (FSW) 5. Green Party of Florida (GRE) 6. Independence Party of Florida (IDP) 7. Independent Party of Florida (INT) 8. Justice Party of Florida (JPF) 9. Libertarian Party of Florida (LPF) 10. Party for Socialism and Liberation- Florida (PSL) 11. Peace & Freedom Party of Florida (PFP) 12. Reform Party (REF) 13. Tea Party of Florida (TPF)

Because of the rules and regulations regarding the twoparty system, you cannot vote in the presidential primaries unless you’re registered with the same party as your desired presidential nominee. (This is for all you third-party members “feeling the Bern,” you CANNOT vote for Bernie in the primaries unless you are a registered democrat. Seriously. But no worries, as soon as this election season is over feel free to swear your allegiance to the Peace & Freedom party via the longwinded explanation below.)

Updating voter registration information If you have already registered to vote in Florida, but need to change your name, address or party affiliation, update your signature, or apply for a replacement card: 1. Fill in the Voter Registration Application online. You can print the application and write your information in with a black ballpoint pen. Provide the information that you wish to change or update: Party Change You can change your party affiliation by any signed written notice such as a voter registration application. It must include your date of birth or voter registration number.

All party changes for a primary election must be made by the registration deadline, which is 29 days before the primary election (February 25, 2016 for Florida voters). For a general election, a party change can be made at any time. A list of all political parties recognized by the state of Florida is included below. Address Change If you move within a county after you have registered to vote, or move to a new county within Florida, please notify the Supervisor of Elections of the county of your new residence. You may make the change in person, by phone or other electronic means or by other signed, written notice. You must provide your date of

birth. Name Change If your name changes by marriage or other legal process, submit the change in a signed written notice such as a voter registration application. It must include your date of birth or voter registration number. Signature Update You must submit signature updates using the voter registration application. In order for the signature updates to be used for signature comparisons in canvassing absentee and provisional ballots, the update must be received before canvassing of absentee ballots begins. Canvassing may begin as early as 15 days before an election.

Card Replacement If you have lost your voter information card, you can request that a new card be sent to you by checking the appropriate box on the voter registration application. 2. Once you have made the necessary changes, print, sign, and mail the application to the county Supervisor of Elections. 3. If the change is made, the Supervisor of Elections will mail you an updated voter information card. Make sure all of the information on your card is correct. If you have any questions, call the county Supervisor of Elections at (941)861-8600.


WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst


Model United Nations finally established on campus after a year of organizing BY ANGELA DUDA A new addition to student clubs on campus, Model United Nations (NCFMUN) serves as an educational simulation and academic competition in which students learn about international diplomacy and relations within the United Nations. Even for students who are not interested in foreign and international policy, the club offers opportunities to learn communication, teamwork and leadership skills. The club’s secretary-general, second-year Lara Herzog, calls it “LARPing in business suits.” Though the club is currently in the middle of elections, second-years Briana Nieves and Rachael Hargrove are acting as under-secretary-general and secretary of administration respectively. Together, the three have worked diligently for more than a year to make NCFMUN a reality for this semester. “We wrote and passed pages upon pages of bylaws over the summer and created a functioning discourse for ourselves to begin to assimilate Model UN into New College culture,” Nieves said. “We

also had to create a club that didn’t seem sterile and felt comfortable and inclusive to students of all backgrounds and experiences.” Overall, their

w o r k has resulted in a success. More than 60 students expressed interest in the club at Club Fair, and at the first meeting approximately half

who signed up showed up. In NCFMUN, members are asked to designate their preferred country to represent and address the issues of that country in a mock UN setting. While most wanted to represent the United States and European countries instead of smaller, lesser-known ones, “You’d be surprised what a little country can do,” Herzog said. “There will be workshops focused on the basics [of the UN] and open to all of NCF, where guest speakers will come to talk about different topics,” she said. An entire workshop will be dedicated to Conference of the Parties (Cop 21), an upcoming environmental conference within the UN, on Oct. 11. All are encouraged to attend. The club also has plans for a ModelUN-themed vegan brunch at Four Winds on Oct. 24 for United Nations Day. “This is a great way to cultivate inclusiveness.

We plan on holding more events that get students who aren’t familiar with the club in the know,” Nieves said. The first official meeting occurred on Sept. 3, and the first workshop on Sept. 13, with both meetings and workshops happening every other week. Herzog stressed that being new to NCFMUN should not be a deterrent. Students are welcome to join at any time. NCFMUN will also welcome new students next semester, accommodating to those who wish to join later in the school year. While competitions are anticipated in the future Herzog said there will not be any this year. “There are not a lot [of Model UN teams] in the southeast. We want to make a good team so traveling expenses will be worth it.” But there is merit in participating non-competitively, Nieves said. “I feel as keepers of this world, and in specific the future, we should push humanity to become aware and present to each other – and why not in the form of formal discussion and diplomacy? Where other to begin than educating all in the processes that lead to communication and understanding between nations and states.”

Nurse Practitioner Michele Lipman joins CWC BY HALEY JORDAN When Michele Lipman is not baking something delicious or spending time with her golden retriever puppy, she is caring for and being “mom” to the students of New College. In August, the Counseling and Wellness Center (CWC) welcomed nurse practitioners Michele Lipman and Erin Comerford on staff. Last week Lipman sat down with the Catalyst as she gave her initial thoughts about working at New College as well as information about herself in the hopes that the community will know she is “there for whatever the student needs.” “We’re here, ready to see you, I like to be busy and we love to give information,” Lipman said. “I tell them ‘I don’t want you to be sick but even if you have a question just pop in.’ Don’t ever be embarrassed for what your question is or how you’re feeling, just let it all out because I have heard a lot in 15 years of doing this. It’s a really intimate relationship and it helps when I can hear what your concerns are and what your symptoms are. It’s a team effort.” Lipman grew up in East Greenwich, Rhode Island and later lived in Miami and California before coming to Sarasota. Lipman has a bachelor’s from Providence College in Rhode Island in health administration, and a second bachelor’s in nursing from Barry University in Miami, where she met her late husband, with whom she has two children, both now in college, one for engineering and the other for

image courtesy of Michele Lipman

New CWC nurse practitioner Michele Lipman with her dog Cannoli

medicine. Lipman lived in California while her husband finished his own medical training, and then moved to Sarasota in 1988, where she got her master’s in nursing from the University of Tampa in 2000 in order to become a nurse practitioner. It was in Sarasota that Lipman raised her children while going to school part time. “This came at a good time in my life,” Lipman commented on working at New College. “I had lost my husband, we were married for 29 years, and he passed away this year... and I thought, I love what I do, and I need a big change. I am kind of reinventing myself, and I thought a college atmosphere is a happy place and young kids for the most part are healthy, and I just needed that fresh

exposure, fresh air. Just so I could get back to who I am, find out who I am now that I have this next stage of life.” Lipman said she had known about New College for several years, having heard about it from a fellow nurse practitioner, but had not considered it until recently. “It was like all the stars aligned,” she said. Lipman then contacted Comerford. “We job share, and so she will cover me if I am gone for any amount of time, and same with her. We just needed that backup. It just works out nice, the clinic will always be staffed.” Lipman names herself lucky in that she only works at New College and uses her free time to visit her children and raise her puppy, Cannoli. “I had

the Italian heritage in me come out,” Lipman said. “And I thought Cannoli would be a great name, and she is a Cannoli... She’s six month old and she’s making me crazy!” Lipman laughed. “But she’s great. Ultimately I’d like her to be like a companion dog. I’d like to bring her into places for pet therapy when she’s older.” Lipman also does stained glass and loves to cook. “My passion is baking though, anything chocolate especially.” Lipman plans to stay in Sarasota. “I am lucky, I have a great support system, I have lots of friends in the area.” When asked how she likes working at New College so far, Lipman said that it has been very interesting and that she is really enjoying it. “I like the freshness of the beginning of what should be the most fun in your life, hearing the stories of the kids coming in, telling me what they are doing in class, it’s really a nice atmosphere.” One nurse practitioner will always be available Monday through Friday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., while the counselors are available all hours the center is open. Lipman usually works on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. “I think the main thing is, you need a mom,” Lipman said. “It’s like a mom atmosphere, and having kids in school I kind of have a feel for students. I mean, every one is so independent here, but sometimes you just have a question, you just need that mom interaction, an ‘it’s ok.’ It’s scary, if you wake up and you’re not feeling good, you don’t know what’s going on, just come in.”


WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst


Returning to the ‘Empire’: TV’s Biggest Hit Goes (Even) More Political


In her victory speech at last week’s Emmy Awards, Best Actress (Drama) champ Viola Davis made a powerful assertion. “The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity,” the “How to Get Away with Murder” star said. Davis’ statement encompassed a night of landmark victories for people of color; four of the 16 acting winners this year were black, while the Television Academy also nominated a record number of non-white performers. Television, like any form of media, has a long way to go in terms of representation. But the diversity on display at the Emmys ceremony this year was irrefutable. Years of reductively discussing “trends” and “breakthroughs” seemed to finally yield a tangible, meaningful outcome. Unlike the Oscars – in which for the 2015 awards, all 20 nominated actors were white – the Emmys, or perhaps television series in general, made actual strides. Davis’ race for Best Actress was a close one: she barely came out ahead of Taraji P. Henson, the breakout “Empire” actress and originator of the instantlyiconic Cookie Lyon. But Henson, who won the equivalent Critics’ Choice Television Award in June, was hardly bitter about her loss. She told Ellen DeGeneres the next day, “I think the

world needed to hear what [Davis] had to say last night.” The world is definitely hearing Henson out, though, on “Empire” – and more specifically, on what she and her cast members have to say about “opportunity.” The second season premiere of the primetime phenomenon – which aired Wednesday, Sept. 22 – attracted 16 million viewers, an extraordinary number considering today’s streaming and on-demand economy. And crucially, that massive audience isn’t merely tuning in for mindless network TV. Under the stewardship of Oscar nominee Lee Daniels – who is gay and black, and whose film work is notorious for its grimy authenticity – “Empire” confronts and conflates race, sexuality and class with bold excessiveness. The series, which features a majority nonwhite cast and is set in the music world, meshes “King Lear” with “Dynasty.” In the pilot episode, hip-hop mogul Lucious Lyon (Terrence Howard) learns he is dying, and is tasked with deciding which of his three sons are to inherit his record company and continue his legacy. Rather than decide in private, he apprises them of the competition – all while their infectiously quotable mother, Cookie (Henson), returns from her decades-long stint in prison. Let the soapy family hijinks ensue. The first season of “Empire” careens through plots with deranged

intensity, but the show’s themes remain potent. One son, Jamal (Jussie Smollett), emerges as the natural heir – but Lucious rejects his son at every turn, in bitter disapproval of the fact that he is gay. The eldest, Andre (Trai Bryers), meanwhile, contends with bipolar disorder, while Hakeem (Bryshere Grey), the youngest, struggles with a severe maternal complex. Given that “Empire” airs on a broadcast network, its decision to so voraciously delve into issues of mental illness and homophobia could be constituted a major risk. Fox, like ABC or CBS, is commercially dictated by advertising dollars and strict Standards and Practices. But rather than hold back, Daniels has embraced the challenge: he exposes the role of homophobia in the black community with piercing ugliness, and confronts the notion of class with surprising nuance. As it stands, “Empire” is the most popular show on the small-screen. Tens of millions of people watched Cookie – their nasty, vengeful but beloved hero – take off that mask right in their living rooms, likely tweeting with hashtag-OMG intensity in response. Here was the worldwide transmission of a sobering political message, told within an aesthetic of fun, over-the-top camp. Or, in other words, an opportunity seized, “Empire”-style.

Marvel’s ‘Secret Wars’ rage on BY DYLAN PRYOR “They were just men and women, and people need to believe in something more.” The most cliché view of superheroes as a universal solution in comics is clearly stated, and then just as clearly averted in the first few pages of Marvel’s “Secret Wars” crossover event. Jonathan Hickman’s current nine-issue epic chronicles the inevitable collision and destruction of the Marvel multiverse despite the most noble and brave actions by the superhuman cast of characters. The result is a characterfocused story that is not just about superheroes, but also a touching reminder of those heroes’ humanity. The event begins in the last moments before the mainstream Marvel universe and the Ultimate Marvel universe collide. The opening depicts the actions taken by an extensive cast of heroes and villains on what they are certain is their last day. In one particularly striking panel, SpiderMan makes one final effort to save the citizens of New York despite knowing the world is doomed. Meanwhile, a determined Mr. Fantastic leads the Fantastic Four to build a high-tech life raft for his team, as well as a few other specially chosen team members, as part of a contingency plan for after the destruction of the multiverse. However, when the Ultimate Universe’s version of Mr. Fantastic,

Maker, executes his plan to ensure he is the only survivor, the raft’s hull is breached and the team loses Mr. Fantastic’s team and his children. The result was yet another overwhelmingly human moment when he is confronted with the ultimate loss as he watches them fade into oblivion. Reed Richards stands out as his own character for arguably the first time since he was introduced in 1961, and if screenshots from that scene were shown instead of the most recent Fantastic Four movie, it may have gotten better reviews. The rest of the issues so far operate on an intriguing premise after the heroes exit the life raft as the sole survivors of their universe. It is revealed that Doctor Doom had gone to the supernatural forces of the Beyonders and managed to succeed in rebooting reality. Doom creates a patchwork universe out of the remains of the multiverse, where hundreds of different realities exist in harmony, and everyone who died before the collision appears to have been revived in many alternate forms. The stories of the other realities, such as a zombie wasteland and one where all heroes but a married Spider-Man are dead, are continued in many coexisting tie-in books. However, there is a catch. Doom has become undisputed God-Emperor of the new world, with the interesting twist that he is clearly doing it for reasons other than self-gain. In a surprising

role reversal, Doom is established as fighting for the fate of the human race in his own way, with his new patchwork reality as a radical method of keeping everyone safe. The rest of “Secret Wars” unfolds as the survivors of Mr. Fantastic’s life raft confront and attempt to overthrow Doom in order to try to restore the old universe. A battle of good intentions ensues and the novelty of the event then becomes the inability of the reader to tell who is right, if anyone, between the two forces. Unlike other comic storylines, there is no clear bad guy, only a world where people are trying to do their best where it is far too easy to do your worst. The juxtaposition of Mr. Fantastic and Doctor Doom as well-intentioned adversaries in “Secret Wars” is especially fascinating. Doom stands out as the proverbial Knight Templar, determined to fight for the future of the human race despite the costs. Reed struggles with his loss after the first issue and has adopted a worldview that there is nothing left to fight for except retaliation against those he feels responsible. The arcs of the two characters therefore represent a deeper internal battle of idealism vs. cynicism, which still manages to stay true to the characters’ roots. “Secret Wars” ultimately serves to revitalize the Marvel universe and makes its mark as a welcome testament to the humanity that exists in us all.



For students who have had the privilege of taking “Writing about Writing,” Elizabeth Wardle’s name is familiar. Chair of the Department of Writing and Rhetoric at the University of Central Florida, Dr. Wardle is an expert in the field of Writing Studies and is a co-author of the book Writing about Writing: A College Reader. Invited to speak at New College by the Writing Resource Center’s director Dr. Jennifer Wells and assistant director Allie Maass, Dr. Wardle discussed current issues concerning writing structures and pedagogies. Many students will remember the dreaded “five-paragraph essay” they needed to write in high school; the five-paragraph model is an example of the type of writing structures Dr. Wardle is trying to combat. The idea that writing can be standardized and have correct answers, like a test (think SAT or AP exams), is completely antithetical to its nature according to Dr. Wardle. Writing is a nuanced and complex field; it cannot be narrowed down and made objective. Unfortunately, the current way education is structured in the United States leads to not only students, but also educators, believing there is only one way to approach writing. Much like playing a sport or an instrument, writing needs extensive practice and coaching. However, in much of the country, once students take one writing class, their professors expect them to be expert writers, and when their expectations are not met, they blame the student. The lack of consistent writing instruction yields a feedback loop of students not being able to meet their professor’s expectations while also not learning how to become better writers. So, the question is, how can we change the overarching institutions that define what “good” writing is. Dr. Wardle proposes creating cultures of communication, whereby students and professors can discuss what it means to be a “good” writer. New College is already fostering a change in writing discourses and is a constant innovator when it comes to pedagogies. The small bubble we live in allows unique dialogue to take place not just among professors but also among students. Just remember, there is no one way to approach writing; there is no “right” answer, so experiment with writing, take advantage of being at New College and forget the fiveparagraph essay!



WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst


Wall previews BY GIULIA HEYWARD Friday, Oct.2-Them Again Wall’d Them Again Wall’d will take place in Palm Court and will be hosted by second-years Becca Caccavo, Sadé Holmes, Briana Nieves and Rory Sharp. Wall attendees can expect to get down to a myriad of music ranging from trap to throwback tunes. The suggested dress code involves glitter, wigs and bright colors. The Wall will also have candy, balloons, streamers and other decorations as well as the New College Experience movie projected on one of the walls. Saturday, Oct. 3-Slumber Party Wall Slumber Party Wall will take place in the Nook and will be hosted by thesis students Sara Sarmiento and Sophia Schultz. “Our parents are out of town and we’re ready to wild out unsupervised,” Sarmiento said. “People can expect bubbles and feathers and fuzzy pillows and probably Spice Girls.” The Wall will take on a tasteful 2002 vibe and will feature music from iconic artists such as Britney Spears and JoJo.

NCSA Updates BY CAITLYN RALPH On Saturday, Sept. 19, the NCSA held open interviews to fill the vacant Police Liaison position. Previously, only one student held the title; however, because of an increase in critical duties and expectations, two students now occupy the position. Thesis student Taylor “Bo” Buford and first-year Dominic Theofan were appointed by the interview committee and are awaiting approval by the next Towne Meeting, which will be held next Wednesday, Oct. 7 at 6:00 p.m. In the meantime, Buford spoke on some Police Liaison initiatives, including New College Police Department (NCPD) biographies on the Portal, funding for student-police programs, and best practices for officers when engaging with trans individuals. Thesis student and Natural Sciences Representative on the Council of Student Affairs (CSA) Paige Leary is currently working with the Center for Engagement and Opportunity (CEO) and the Pre-Med Club to get more pre-med resources on campus, along with a mentoring program as well. The project is still in the works and Leary will report back with more updates soon. The parts for the compost bike have been ordered. Third-year and Compost TA Olivia Mealor will be able to get the program up and running. Students will receive an email if they were interested in a bin, and there will most likely be a forum post about the program as well.

The chapter before independence BY BIANCA BENEDI Just over a decade ago, New College was caught in a limbo of uncertainty about its future. A separation from USF had been proposed and as far as anyone knew, everything was up in the air. Anxiety among the student body was immense, with questions about the school staying open or its capacity to run itself floating around. This anxiety is captured in Towne Meeting minutes from March 13, 2001, printed out from an MSN email account where the minutes were documented. Present from the Executive Committee of the time - today’s Executive Cabinet - but with titles unlisted were Molly Robinson, Andrew Hossack, Michelle Brown and Emily Mead. They presented the Towne Meeting with the news that New College had three options on the table: keeping the status quo, granting New College greater autonomy in the University of South Florida (USF) system, or a total separation from USF. “Plan three might present difficulties drawing in faculty because a lot of faculty are drawn in by

the USF name,” Robinson reported. No student or faculty input had been requested at the time, the Towne Meeting said, before beginning to take audience questions. One unidentified student asked, “How feasible is separation? Will the lights be on when I come back to visit New College?” An administrator identified as “Bassis,” who was present to answer students’ questions, responded to the student with “The situation is so complex that no one can really say at this point.” Other questions included what benefits the separation would bring, when a decision would be announced, whether or not the school would become a university, how they would obtain accreditation, whether the separation could impose new academic guidelines such as language requirements on the students, and why the legislature was interested in separating New College from USF. Bassis responded to student questions, but the responses all fell along the same lines: “I don’t know.”

The decision to separate took place almost entirely at the legislative level, according to Bassis who reported that they appeared to be “entirely uninterested in faculty opinion,” and could only guess at why legislators were interested in separating New College. “We don’t know for sure [why they made this move]. There was the feeling that a major research university tends to neglect its branch campuses - the ‘trickle down’ effect.” Anxiety about the survival of New College has been present since the school’s opening, when dorms were uncompleted, classrooms unprepared, and faculty left in droves. For a school that had only had a history of being threatened, the separation which nowadays is remembered as a successful attainment of independence that welcomed the school into the State University System and granted New College the status of the official Honors college of Florida - was a terrifying and murky prospect.

EVENTS: SEPT. 30-OCT. 7 On Campus Off Campus Wednesday, September 30 • 3:30-5:00 p.m. We Love You Konnie @ Ham • 7-8:30 p.m. Yoga @ Fitness Center Thursday, October 1 • 7:00 p.m. The Freshest Kids @HCL 8

Wednesday, September 30 • 8:00-9:30 a.m. Free Yoga @ Siesta Key Beach • 7:00 p.m. Team Trivia @ Growler’s Pu Thursday, October 1 • 5:00 p.m. Art after 5 @ Ringling Museum Friday, October 2 • 8:00-9:30 a.m. Free Yoga @ Siesta Key Beach

Friday, October 2 • 12:00 p.m. Feminist Fridays @ ACE Lounge • 3:00-4:30 p.m. Yoga @ Fitness Center • 8:00 p.m. Double Feature Picture Show @ HCL 7 • 10:30 p.m. Them Again Wall’d @ Palm Court

Saturday, October 3 • 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Dowtown Farmer’s Market • 8:00-9:30 a.m. Free Yoga @ Siesta Key Beach • 9:00 p.m. Live music @ Growler’s Pub

Saturday, October 3 • 2:00-3:30 p.m. Yoga @ Fitness Center • 8:00 p.m. Double Feature Picture Show @X Game Room • 10:30 p.m. Slumber Party Wall @ Nook

Monday, October 5 • 8:00-9:30 a.m. Free Yoga @ Siesta Key Beach • 9:00 p.m. Karaoke @ Growler’s Pub

Sunday, October 4 • 4:00-8:00 p.m. Free HIV testing @ NCSA office Tuesday, October 6 • 4:30 p.m. Yoga @ Fitness Center

Sunday, October 4 • 8:00 p.m. Game night @ Growler’s Pub

Tuesday, October 6 • 9:00 p.m. Open Mic @ Growler’s Pub

Want your event to be featured on our calendar? Email ncfcatalyst@ by the Friday prior to your event.


WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst



Student rights Pope Francis

Family weekend CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 vendors such as Four Winds and Mama G’s. “We wanted to make this a campus wide event,” Coordinator for Programming and Career Exploration Eric Wilkinson said. “So even if students family or parents weren’t coming, that they still felt like they could come and participate and listen to music, participate in the bounce-houses.” The Family Weekend fun did not end there. Early Saturday morning, a “Fun, Run, Walk” was held as well as a boot camp led by Campus Life Coordinator (CLC) Vanessa VanDyke in the fitness center. “We had a total of six people,” VanDyke said. “When I run my classes I consider the abilities of everyone in the class,” Van Dyke added. “To accommodate everyone I show them the exercise that we are doing and then I provide them with a harder and/or high impact version and easier and/or low impact version.” Following the morning fitness activities, a picnic lunch was offered at College Hall. Later in the afternoon, President O’Shea spoke along with a panel to the students and their families about how to make the most of their

time at New College. Tours were given throughout the day allowing family members a little more insight into the daily routines of their students. Pritzker Marine Biology Research Center and Heiser Natural Sciences Complex remained open for an inside glimpse of New College’s academic facilities and a couple of faculty members volunteered their Saturday to offer some mini-classes to family members. The Cá d’Zan also remained open and free all day to students and their families for a taste of Sarasota history. “My family and I went to the museum because it was free,” secondyear Annie Rosenblum said. “The first exhibit we went to was the circus exhibit and it was amazing. My family was really impressed and really enjoyed learning the history of the circus.” Saturday night was scheduled for “dinner on your own.” The CEO negotiated with four restaurants downtown to allow a free appetizer with a dinner, allowing time for some off campus exploring. The weekend long festivities concluded with a brunch on Sunday and a performance by New College’s a capella group Acapellago.





is exciting to me,” Ron Reed said in PSOBFL’s Tampa Bay Area Ghost Hunting pamphlet. The society uses a digital camera, digital voice recorder, video camera, electromagnetic field (EMF) detector, voice box, laser grid and walkie-talkies for their investigations. They also suggest bringing a friend. PSOBFL have traveled all around the Tampa Bay area plus locations outside of the state, including Bethel Cemetery in Tennessee, Whaley House in California and downtown New Orleans in Louisiana. The society is particularly curious about the area around campus because the Powel Crosley Estate, College and Cook Hall, Ca’d’Zan and Caples are designated as a historic corridor. PSOBFL have investigated Crosley and found a good amount of evidence. At the reveal, there were talks of a follow-up investigation occurring in early December. There are no plans in place currently, but the Reeds suspect that Dec. 2, 3 and 4 will be particularly active because those are the dates of Charles Ringling’s death, Charles Ringling’s birthday, and John Ringling’s death respectively. PSOBFL are also eager to receive permission for an investigation at Cook Hall. If anyone is interested in helping with PSOBFL’s annual Halloween ghost walk by being a costumed character on the route, contact the author. Volunteers will receive a free ghost walk in return. Information for this article was gathered from

With the reinterpretation of Article 9, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has led Japan away from the pacifism that has maintained peace in the country for almost seven centuries. On a global scale, the United States and other allies of Japan are satisfied with their reinterpretation, but for many Japanese, the policy change is frightening. “It sounds dangerous,” Tokitsu said. “And I don’t like it, and I am sure that a lot of people [in Japan] don’t like it either.”

Cuba CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5 communicated to the Pope. Pope Francis said, “I like to meet with all people. I consider that all people are children of God and the law. And secondly, a relationship with another person always enriches.” “Let be honest, it’s very difficult to visit a country and criticize them in their home,” Benedí said. “That would obviously create issues and it is his goal to unite people, not stir the pot. One thing people didn’t like though was the Pope’s visit to Castro’s house. They say there was no need. Why visit the person responsible for the persecution of so many? People have not forgotten what Fidel Castro represents.” Information for this article was taken from, and



should be a dialogue between resident and owner of the residence. “I emailed him [Associate Dean for Student Affairs Mark Stier] before without forwarding it to the Forum or anybody else,” Barrett said. “ And each time, he was like ‘Oh, that’s bad. It’s gonna be fixed.’ And then it was fixed for a while, and then it broke. I was kind of fed up with his responses that were just kind of like polite nothings and he didn’t really take any initiative at all to tell us what was going on, he would tell us when the hot water was back, and he would email us occasionally when it was out and that’s about it. It was just sort of pent-up frustration, not even necessarily with the water being out, but with the fact that it didn’t seem like he felt any obligation to tell us what was going on at all.” Stier was reached for an interview but declined to comment, stating that the associate director of facilities, Alan Dawson, had knowledge on the specifics of the situation in Y dorm. “I honestly don’t really think it’s the responsibility of the maintenance crew to be telling us what’s going on,” Barrett continued. “I think it’s Mark [Stier’s] responsibility as our landlord. If we lived in an apartment, we wouldn’t expect the handyman to be telling us what was going on with our building, we would expect the landlord to do it.” Whether or not residents of Y will receive compensation for the weeks without hot water is unclear. Currently, the school is consulting with an outside party to see whether there are grounds for monetary compensation for students. “The state of Florida requires us to charge,“ Murry said. “We can’t let people live here for free, you have to pay the amount that is advertised. So, we’re kind of looking into it to see if we can give back a discount, or give money back, to see if it’s a violation of state law. And, if it’s a violation of state law, we’re trying to see what else we can do.” The water heater in Y dorm, which stopped functioning, caused the shortage of hot water. Each water heater costs $9,000 and an additional $3,000 for installation. According to Dawson and the director of facilities and construction, Alan Burr, the replacement water heater was installed on Sept. 2, 2015. Additionally, a spare water heater resides in Physical Plant, in anticipation of a water shortage in a different residential building. According to Dawson, water heaters do not have a long shelf life. He and Burr anticipate that, within a year, all of the other water heaters in the other letter dorms will fail. “Right now we’re just wondering when is W [dorm], for example, gonna go?” Burr said.

in protecting victims. “I remain overwhelmed with shame that men entrusted with the tender care of children violated these little ones and caused grievous harm. I am profoundly sorry. God weeps.” Although the visit, unlisted on his itinerary, received an emotional response, advocates against sexual abuse in the church announced afterwards that they considered his apologies hollow and repetitive, demanding evidence of real action to address the abuse and punish those responsible for perpetuating it and covering it up. He later traveled to the CurranFromhold Correctional Facility. In his visit he addressed inmates with a speech referencing the Catholic tradition of washing feet to advocate for prison reformation. The tradition of feetwashing, the pope said, came from an era in which it was customary to greet any and all visitors into your home by washing their feet, which would be dusty and sore from their journey. The shared experience of empathy that led to hosts washing their visitors’ feet served, according to the Pope, as a message of humbleness and acceptance, which he extended to the inmates. “We know in faith that Jesus seeks us out. He wants to heal our wounds, to soothe our feet which hurt from traveling alone,” he said. “He doesn’t ask us where we have been, he doesn’t question us what about we have done. ... It is painful when we see prison systems which are not concerned to care for wounds, to soothe pain, to offer new possibilities.” That afternoon the pope spoke at the closing of the World Meeting of Families gathering and then to the workers, volunteers and benefactors of the event afterwards, speaking about the need for tolerance and hope, before boarding a plane to return to Rome that evening. By the end of his trip the pope had drawn millions to see him. The next question is whether the politics of the Catholic Church will follow through and press for real change. Information for this article taken from,, nytimes. com,, and

Submit to the Catalyst! Send your opinion pieces, complaints, letters and more to ncfcatalyst@ by Sunday to be published in the following week’s issue.


WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 | @ncfcatalyst


4th Annual Suncoast Spearfishing Challenge at Marina Jack

BY HALEY JORDAN Enthusiastic crowds cheered and gathered at the edge of the railing at the Blue Sunshine Patio Bar & Grill trying to get a closer look at the five to 55 pound catches of those participating in the 4th annual Suncoast Spearfishing Challenge at Marina Jack. Marina Jack, located on the bay front in downtown Sarasota, hosted this year’s spearfishing tournament from Sept. 25-26. Contestants could scuba dive or free dive for 12 hours to find their prize. The winners, based on a weight for points system, were announced on Sept. 27, with a Junior Division prize also awarded to contestants under 18 years old. Competitors were permitted to catch one to three fish per allowed species based on category, with the exception of lionfish, for which there was no maximum as the challenge donated all unwanted lionfish for research. Divers received five points per fish weighed and one extra point per pound of each fish, with the exception of lionfish and lobster, which do not count towards the total but are evaluated in a separate category. There is an entrance fee for all competitors with the exception of active military, fire, EMS and law enforcement personnel, but those just looking to watch and participate in

the tournament’s raffle are admitted for free. “Every year a new charity is benefited, this year it is Operation Second Chance,” volunteer Kristy Lomelo said. “All the money stays local, it’s kind of like a grassroots project.” Lomelo spent the day selling raffle tickets for Operation Second Chance, which serves Americans wounded in combat. After much anticipation, trophies and prizes were awarded to first place contestants in each category. The overall 2014 winners were Douglas Strott in first place; Jen Young, first place for female competitors; Matthew Bruecker, in first place for free divers; and Charlie Shaffer in first place for junior divers. Tournament records for 2015 and previous years can be found at the Suncoast Spearfishing Challenge website, where one can see the names of participants holding the records for largest grouper, snapper, hogfish, sheepshead, pelagic, cobia and lobster in the challenge’s history. Chris Johnson boasts the heaviest with a pelagic weighing in at 58.90 pounds in 2013. “It’s more about camaraderie,” scuba diver and 2015 participant Ross Sonnen said. “My team can’t compete with these big bad boats, some divers get down to 200 feet, but it’s still the time of your life, and anyone who gave it a shot would be addicted.”

(top) Volunteer Kristy Lomelo sells raffel tickets to support Operation Second Chance (middle left) Competitor Ross Sonnen says the challenge is more about camaraderie than competition. (middle right) Volunteers total points based on number of and weight of fish caught. (bottom) Marina Jack in downtown Sarasota. all photos Haley Jordan/Catalyst

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