Spring 2020 - Issue 4

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New College of Florida's student-run newspaper







Students lobby and testify for independence Coronavirus BY ANNA LYNN WINFREY identified in Manatee County Photo courtesy of Wesley Beggs

Despite the lack of support from New College’s lobbyists, a small group of students traveled to Tallahassee on Tuesday, Feb. 25 to meet with legislators and testify at the House Appropriations Committee meeting against a bill that would merge the college, and Florida Polytechnic University, with the University of Florida. The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Randy Fine, was the only person that spoke in favor of House Bill (HB) 7087, which passed the committee on a near party-line vote. When the Catalyst went to print on Tuesday afternoon, the bill had not yet been heard on the House, but it is likely to pass and next be heard in the Senate. The bill’s prospects in the Senate are uncertain. Senate President Bill Galvano, a Republican from Bradenton, has said that he is open to hearing the bill. However, Sen. Joe Gruters, another Republican whose


(From left to right) Daria Paulis, Leonor Munoz, Sofia Lombardi, Jacob Wentz, Anna Lynn Winfrey and Ellie Young traveled to Tallahassee to testify at the meeting.

district includes New College, has publicly stated that he will oppose the merger bill. Gruters is also the chairman of the Florida Republican Party. Before the trip Until the evening of Feb. 10, HB 7087 was unknown to the public, university leaders and fellow legislators. The bill was first heard by the

House Education Committee on Feb. 12, where it passed 12-6. In the past three weeks, students have been organizing to preserve New College’s independence. Second-year and Vice President of New College Democrats Ellie Young hosted a phone banking session on continued on p. 5

Wrapping up Black History Month 2020 BY HAYLEY VANSTRUM

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From the Sur la Bay Festival to “Dances of the African Diaspora,” New College’s celebration of Black History Month (BHM) has been packed to the brim with outstanding performances, countless educational opportunities and impactful conversations surrounding Black history, culture and community. Established in 2015 by Professor of Sociology Queen Zabriskie and four of her most hardworking students— Donovan Brown, Paul Loristen, Nasib McIntosh and the late Ijeoma Uzoukwu—Black History Month at New College has always been about drawing attention to the many facets of the Black experience, on both a local and global level. “The month has been amazing,” Zabriskie emphasized. “The connections that have been able to happen have been great . . . and the people


Sergio Salinas/Catalyst

Thesis students Rosemary DeMarco and Cabrini Austin danced to the rhythm during Sur La Bay, Black History Month's annual bayfront concert.

who have come to the events have really been engaged and have been an important part of making that happen.” With increased funding this year from New College’s recently

6 Orient Express

awarded Mellon Grant, members of the Black History Month Committee (BHMC), led by Professor Zabriskie, were able to significantly broaden the continued on p. 10

9 Yellow Fever

On Sunday, Gov. Ron Desantis issued an executive order declaring a public health emergency and directing statewide response protocol for the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) after learning about what were then viewed as two “presumptively” positive cases in Florida. The governor, along with public health officials, held a news conference the following morning and revealed the individuals as residents of Hillsborough and Manatee County. The Florida Department of Health (FDOH) insisted both individuals were quickly isolated and will remain isolated until they are cleared by health authorities. “In accordance with this executive order, the State University System Board of Governors has directed all faculty, staff and students returning from travel to China, Iran, Italy, Japan or South Korea to self-quarantine for 14 days and not return to campus for 14 days after their return,” President Donal O’Shea wrote in an email Monday afternoon. As of Tuesday afternoon, there are no additional updates on how the college plans to address concerns. “College officials met with the Sarasota County Emergency Management team [Monday] morning and we will continue to be active participants in our response to this situation,” O’Shea wrote. A more comprehensive article will be published in next week’s issue of the Catalyst.

12 Sunday Social


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EQTAs haul and set equipment to make events successful The dazzling lights and speakers for Palm Court Party (PCP) and the booming microphone at the recent Save Our School rally are just two examples of the countless equipment set-ups executed by the Equipment Teacher Assistants (EQTAs). These TAs work to ensure that walls and many other student events have the proper electronic equipment. “At the beginning of February, we did a Black History Month event at College Hall and I was there for 16 hours setting up and managing the sounds,” thesis student Matthew Brickhouse said. An EQTA makes around $10.25 per hour hour, but their budget has been affected by broader cuts. A discretionary fund used to be available in case of emergencies, but it no longer exists so if something breaks not much can be done.

“We used to have four positions available, [and even more in the past], but recently [it’s been] cut down to three,” Brickhouse said. “I had to beg and plead for them to not cut the hourly pay to $8 an hour because they really wanted to do that and cut a position, but nobody would do the job for that amount it’s too much work.” Other EQTAs agree that this position requires a lot of responsibility. “People have this expectation that it’s not a difficult job but you have to stay up late at night, handle expensive equipment, interact with Photo courtesy of Hannah Korentur people and and make sure things are Brickhouse and Korentur find a spare moment to relax while working this past PCP. going according to plan and if things get messed up, which they do a lot, To be hired as an EQTA, previ- events that need sound or lightthen you have to be attentive and problem solve so there’s a lot going ous experience is preferred, but reli- ing, EQTA services can be obtained on,” thesis student Hannah Korentur ability and a willingness to learn are through NovoConnect. required. And for students hosting said.

Compost Tutorial TAs work to reduce waste on campus With goals to help reduce waste on campus, first-year Isabella Chandler and third-year (as well as Catalyst staff writer) Ky Miller are the TAs for the compost tutorial. Part of their weekly routine involves collecting food scraps. "[We also] teach students about how composting works as well as some science behind it," Chandler said. Compost is a mild, slow release, natural fertilizer that encourages

beneficial bacteria and fungi that break down organic matter to create nutrient-filled soil which improves plant growth. From the food scraps collected, the fertilizer is used for the campus gardens and food forest. It is a way to reduce chemical fertilizers and carbon footprints from landfills. Chandler grew up composting and joined the tutorial to be more involved on campus. "I grew up in main and lived on a family farm [where] I had done a

lot of composting with my grandfather, Chandler said. “When I moved out here I wanted to continue to do that and get more integrated with the community here," Chandler said. Anyone and everyone is welcomed. "We have eight to nine students that attend it weekly and everybody is just vibing,” Chandler said. “They are really ready to go out and learn new things and make a difference in their community."

The compost TA is funded through the Council of Green Affairs and is paid minimum wage. Chandler is starting a group called the The Sunrise Strike Movement aimed to fight against climate change. Students who are passionate about the environment and interested in joining the club can contact Chandler (Isabella.chander19@ncf.edu).

Food Forest TA strives to enhance community environmental sustainability The food forest, located on the Old Caples campus, currently has one TA: thesis student Steven Bressan. As the food forest TA, Bressan works six hours per week to upkeep the food forest and plan for its future growth. The food forest started in 2016 as a thesis project and a form of taking action in response to climate change. “The person who set up [the food forest] wrote his thesis about the process and took some scientific measurements of soil quality, so this

year for my thesis, I performed follow up measurements on the soil,” Bressan said. “When it was created they wanted to not only produce food for the community, but to also sequester carbon in the soil as a first stand against carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, like something we can actively do at New College to help mitigate this big global problem.” The food forest TA also assists the gardening tutorial whenever students need to work in that area. The forest is primarily made of tree fruit,

"My last boyfriend was a multimillionaire." © 2019 the Catalyst. All rights reserved. The Catalyst is available online at www.ncfcatalyst.com, facebook.com/NCFcatalyst instagram.com/NCFcatalyst twitter.com/ncfcatalyst The Catalyst is an academic tutorial sponsored by Professor Maria D. 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 Division of Social Sciences.

berry bushes, leafy greens and edible flowers, though gardening students continue to add more variety to the land. “We [recently] planted some seminole pumpkin seeds, which are native Florida pumpkins and they grow really well, and by the end of the semester they should be around,” Bressan mentioned. Bressan decided to become a food forest TA in Fall 2019 when he took a course about orchid management and production.

Editor in Chief Managing Editor Copy Editor Online Editor Social Media Editor Layout Editors Staff Writers & Photographers

Jacob Wentz Anna Lynn Winfrey Claire Newberg Sofia Lombardi Hayley Vanstrum Cait Matthews & Sergio Salinas Sophia Brown, John Cotter, Vianey Jaramillo, Chuck Leavengood, Izaya Garrett Miles Ky Miller, Willa Tinsley

“[As] a kid we had an orchid at my house but I wasn’t super into it,” Bressan said. “I liked eating the apples but I didn't really like working with the orchid, [however], after this orchid class I became really interested in it and in the spring took the gardening class and [gained] some direct exposure to the food forest.” This TA position is funded through the Council of Green Affairs and for the upcoming school year another food forest TA application will open. Direct submissions, letters, announcements and inquiries to: The Catalyst 5800 Bay Shore Road Sarasota, Florida 34243 catalyst@ncf.edu 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.


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Nine Novos present at Florida Conference of Historians BY SOPHIA BROWN On Feb. 28 and 29, nine New College students presented research papers at the 60th annual Florida Conference of Historians (FCH), hosted this year at Florida Gateway College (FGC) in Lake City, Fla. Organized by this year’s president, Sean McMahon, the FCH provides undergraduates, graduates and professionals with the opportunity to share their studies and develop a sense of collegiality among other historians. The Novos who attended this year’s conference are thesis student Margie Freeman, third-year Sarah Lane, thesis student Emily Lovett, thesis student Rose Mack, thesis student Lindsey McElroy, third-year Caroline Newberg, thesis student Diana Proenza, thesis student Emma Claire Todd and third-year and Catalyst Managing Editor Anna Lynn Winfrey. Each student’s paper covered a specific topic of their choice, ranging from 20th Century Women’s Studies to Representations and Responses in the Middle Ages. This year’s conference also includes a few undergraduate research panels made up entirely of New College students. One titled “The Legacies of Segregation: The Not-So-Sunny History of Sunshine State Cities,” featured papers by McElroy, Newberg and Winfrey. Another, “Studies in Music,” showcased Mack’s paper, “‘Please Hello,’ West

is Back: History and Pastiche in the Song ‘Please Hello’ from Stephen Sondheim’s Pacific Overtures.” In order to present at the FCH, students must submit a proposal and provide copies of their paper to the chairs and discussants of the panel for which they presented. Each presentation lasted 15 to 20 minutes, with two to three presentations for each panel. Presenters also had the chance to have their papers submitted to the FCH Annals to be published and redistributed at the next conference. All papers written by undergraduate students that were accepted for publication have the potential to win the J. Calvitt Clarke III award, granted to the best undergraduate paper presented at the annual meeting. Kana Hummel (‘12) is the most recent New College student to earn this award in the 2016 FCH. New College has a history of breaking new ground when it comes to the FCH. Last year’s conference featured 20 New College student presenters from New College–the most participants any institution has ever had–and the co-presidency of two New College Professors of History David Harvey and Brendan Goff. New College’s involvement can be traced back to 2008, when Harvey first attended. Not many professional history conferences welcome undergraduates as presenters, but FCH is unique for having panels dedicated specifically to undergraduate

research. Harvey saw this as an opportunity for New College students to showcase their work to a broader audience. He organized a panel for thesis students during the 2009 conference at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) in Fort Myers. This initial conference was a success, but New College participation dwindled in the following years. After opening the opportunity to any student who had written a paper for an upper-level history class in 2012 and making efforts to advertise to students alongside Goff, a “momentum of student interest” took hold. “After a while it sort of became self-sustaining because students that went to the conference had a good experience and they told other students, and some of them applied to go a second time,” Harvey said. “It’s great that they’re so self-motivated and are putting stuff together on their own.” This boost in participation came just in time for the 2013 FCH which took place on New College’s campus and marked the first year of Harvey’s presidency. According to him, the locations for each conference are decided years in advance and are supposed to alternate between north and south Florida. The president each year has the responsibility of sorting papers by subject into panels and recruiting faculty to be chairs or commentators

Photo courtesy of Emma Claire Todd

Thesis students Freeman, Lovett and Todd were excited for their final FCH.

on the panels. For underclassmen, participating in the FCH can be the gateway to sorting out their theses. Third-year Sarah Lane first heard of the FCH in the spring semester of their second year. The paper they presented this year is titled “Sacrifice and Strength: The Representation of Women in Italian Fascist Visual Propaganda.” continued on p. 10

Education Policy Committee works to create comprehensive emergency plans on campus BY IZAYA GARRETT MILES Hurricanes, epidemics, fires or radioactive waste alike would all hamper normal the class schedules. It is important to have contingency plans for the various and sundry hazards that could stop New College from functioning like normal. Emergency plans are what keeps a given situation from deteriorating any further. New College has no such plan. “Other schools have emergency plans,” Professor of Computer Science and Member of the Education Policy Committee (EPC) David Gillman said. “New College doesn’t.” An emergency plan is actually a compendium of different plans for a number of dangerous situations, ranging from power outages to hurricanes to explosions. They serve to provide guidelines on what to do in these high-stress scenarios, and coordinate these responses across students, faculty and staff. New College has relied on other colleges’ plans to conduct itself in stressful scenarios.

Eckerd College’s plan was a particularly useful resource for New College. “They are similar to us, in that they’re right on the water and subject to flooding,” Gillman said. However, Eckerd, for its similar location, is not a perfect parallel to New College. It has 1800 students, nearly three times that of New College. During Aug. 2019, when hurricane Dorian led to NCF’s closure, problems arose from New College’s lack of a single plan. “Basically, what had happened was that different people were working under different assumptions,” Gillman said. “Some professors assumed that they could use reading days to make up for the lost days from the hurricane. And some professors and administrations assumed otherwise.” The EPC, which normally consists of six faculty members and three students, has been tasked with the creation of an emergency plan of New College’s own to avoid the mis-

communication and confusion that came before. As part of the process of drafting the plan, the EPC is holding public meetings with both students and faculty to determine the plan’s priorities. On Feb. 25, six students met with Gillman to voice their concerns for any emergency plan. Students at the meeting expressed that, whatever the plan was, it needed to be communicated well beforehand to the students—if students need to leave campus, they need the time to schedule their departures. Furthermore, since there is limited time to make up any class, it would be better to be able to receive a substitute during the emergency. Pre-recorded lectures were floated as a potential substitute, as the closest to an actual in-classroom experience that does not require a constant internet connection or schedule alignment like streaming. Concerns for out-of-state students were also voiced; their travel plans are often more complicated and harder to change than an in-state

student’s, so changes to class schedules would need to be broadcast well beforehand for them to adjust. Additionally, in situations where the emergency does not permit the time to communicate those disruptions, it was suggested that New College should help those students find temporary housing during the crisis. On March 5, the EPC will hold a similar meeting for faculty to address their concerns. The EPC hopes to have a full emergency plan available on New College’s website by the end of the semester. An emergency plan is critical to the healthy functioning of a college during an extreme situation; discord serves only to make a bad situation even worse. “The main thing we want is something that people know about in advance, so that people aren’t too surprised when the emergency actually happens,” Gillman said. “So that there isn’t too much chaos, and that people aren’t running around like ants.”


New toll roads face opposition from environmental groups and rural citizens BY KY MILLER In the face of fierce opposition from environmental groups and citizens in rural areas, Florida is planning a major expansion of its highways with a series of toll roads that would open new parts of the state to development. The Florida Legislature passed a bill last year to expand the Suncoast Parkway north to the Georgia border, extend the Florida Turnpike west and build a new toll road connecting Polk and Collier counties. Construction of the 330 miles of toll roads, termed the Multi-Use Corridors of Regional Economic Significance (M-CORES), could begin as soon as 2022 and is slated for completion no later than 2030. The roads are the idea of State Senate President Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, who proposed the development initiative after talking with business leaders about ways to spur growth in the state's less accessible rural areas. A public statement from the head of the Florida Department of Transportation Kevin J. Thibault says the department promises to protect the environment while planning for what Thibault calls the state’s “inevitable future growth.” Data from the U.S. Census Bureau indicated that Florida was the nation's second-fastest growing state in 2019, with an average of 640 people moving to the state every day. Governor Ron DeSantis has expressed that Florida's growth of more than 300,000 new residents each year demands infrastructure improvements. The Florida Sierra Club, an organization dedicated to the conservation of nature, has spearheaded a campaign against the project. The Club called the toll expansions “Roads to Ruin” and have released an informational publication by the same name. The organization’s director, Chris Costello, has said the roads would harm undeveloped areas and lead to urban sprawl. The “Roads to Ruin” publication proposes that “road building alone will immediately destroy more than 52,800 acres of undeveloped areas and promote unsustainable sprawl, destroying hundreds of thousands of additional acres.” The publication also cites concerns about air and water pollution as a result of increased


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traffic and runoff. "There is no way to create any one of the three corridors and not have a disastrous impact on Florida taxpayers, water quality, environmental protection and wildlife habitat, including the quality of life for rural Florida," Costello said. Some residents of these rural areas, such as Jefferson County in the panhandle, worry that small towns may be left behind as new toll roads bypass their communities or create an influx of new, unwanted growth. New roads are typically proposed by the state Department of Transportation, but these new toll roads were ordered by the state legislature — a top-down process that has left many people distrustful and suspicious. The roads have been backed by organizations such as the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Associated Industries of Florida, the Florida Ports Council and the Florida Trucking Association. Environmental Health Planner for the Florida Department of Health Ramón Quintero added a locally oriented perspective on the implications of toll road expansion for environmental justice in Sarasota and in the state more broadly. “This form of development is a national issue, but in Florida the main source of economic development is tourism as a result of this [development] model,” Quintero explained in reference to the motivations for widespread road expansion. “The subsidies are going to construction companies and it’s a subsidy for the fossil fuel industry, essentially, and for housing developers,” Quintero said. Quintero explained that throughout the state, demand for road repairs and true multi-modal transportation is highest in existing urban cores, not rural areas. The three toll roads would run through some of Florida’s least populated counties. “Go to any Florida city and you see that there’s so much room for infill development and to increase density,” Quintero said. “It goes against smart urbanism, mixed use, mixed income planning.” Thesis student Deric Harvey expressed concerns about the roads’ impact on the “precious habitat of endangered species,” such as the Florida panther, which Harvey said continued on p. 10


Giulia Heyward/Catalyst

The Activist Newsletter Throughout this week (3/4-3/11), activists have the opportunity to help clean up the bayou in Newtown, participate in a discussion on women’s suffrage, and support a variety of local, progressive films. Read on if you want to get involved in the community regarding climate change, feminism or racial minorities in the arts.

BY WILLA TINSLEY Thursday, Mar. 5 Black/Latinx Theatre: Where Can It Take Us? And Will You Embrace It? with Travis Ray @ 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. ACE Lounge This lecture and discussion with professional actor and Associate Managing Director of West Coast Black Theatre Troupe Travis Ray explicates the field of arts management, specifically in regards to live theatre, supporting and fostering artists of color and Sarasota-based theatre opportunities. This event is free and open to the public. Thursday, Mar. 5 The RHINO Project: Film Screening of Human | Nature @ 6:00 = 7:30 p.m. The Historic Asolo Theatre 5401 Bay Shore Rd, Sarasota, FL 34243 From New College’s Arts + Humanities Newsletter: “The RHINO Project is a multidisciplinary collaboration between students and faculty of New College of Florida, the Ringling College Film Department, the John and Mable Ringling Museum, and local Sarasota artists. Weaving together elements of dance, music, film, and costume, The RHINO Project explores humankind’s impact and exploitation of the natural world. Focusing on the poaching crisis of rhinos specifically, The RHINO Project provides a space for selfreflection, demonstrating the consequences of our violence as a species.” This event is free and open to the public. Saturday, Mar. 7 Whitaker Bayou Cleanup and Community Health Celebration @ 9:30 a.m. - 1:30 pm Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park, 2523 Cocoanut Ave, Sarasota, FL 34234 Help cleanup the bayou and Dr. MLK Park in the morning, then enjoy free lunch and activities in

the park, including the Newtown Farmer’s Market. Sponsored by the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program. This event is free and open to the public. Tuesday, Mar. 10 Suff ragist Salon: An Interactive Dialogue and Networking Opportunity for Women @ 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. 525 Kumquat Ct, Sarasota FL 34236 Join our very own Professor Queen Mecca Zabriskie and Meg Gilbert of Florida Studio Theatre for a feminist consciousness-raising party sponsored by Fogartyville Community Media and Arts Center and WSLR 96.5 Community Radio. From the sponsors: “an interactive evening of beverages, dancing, readings of text, and discussion as we reflect on the complex history of the Suffragist Movement and its impact on our contemporary community relationships. This event will provide a chance for us to meet other women in Sarasota who are working towards a common goal of transcending difference so we may stand shoulder to shoulder.” This event is free and open to the public. Wednesday, Mar. 11 Dirty Water Festival @ 12:00 - 9:30 p.m. Ringling College of Art and Design, Larry R. Thompson Academic Center, 2363 Bradenton Rd, Sarasota, FL 34234 This day long symposium of ecologically-minded films explores climate change’s causes, effects, and solutions. Films are followed by panel discussions between ecologists, environmental advocates, filmmakers, and the audience. Regional environmental organizations will also have representatives providing information on local environmental needs and volunteer opportunities. With a student discount this event costs $5 for 1 movie, $8 for 2 movies and $10 for a day pass.

CATALYST Tallahassee

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 Feb. 11 and thesis student Alex Barbat, along with others, organized a rally on ACE Plaza on Feb. 20, which was covered by local news outlets. First-year Sofia Lombardi, along Young, worked to organize a bus to the House Appropriations Committee on Feb. 25. Approximately 100 students signed up at the rally. Lombardi is also a Catalyst staff writer and an intern on Rep. Margaret Good’s congressional campaign against Vern Buchanan. Lombardi coordinated with Good’s legislative staff at the capitol and Interim Dean of Student Affairs Randy Harrell, who declined to comment for this article, to acquire funding from the New College Foundation and coordinate logistics. The trip would have cost approximately $2,800. MaryAnne Young, the executive director of the Foundation, said that the money was sourced from a small budget of unrestricted funds for unexpected needs. But the day after the rally, Lombardi found out that the funding for the trip had been revoked. “In consultation with our lobbyists, the senior administration made the decision to cancel the student bus trip once it became apparent that the House Appropriations Committee was not going to be a receptive audience,” Director of Communications and Marketing Ann Comer-Woods said. Other public universities in Florida have their own lobbyists on staff. Since New College is so small, it outsources legislative influencing to a firm, Capital City Consulting. Nick Iarossi and Chris Schoonover are two lobbyists working on HB 7087. When asked why the larger bus was cancelled, Iarossi and Schoonover both said that larger groups are less effective than meeting with individual legislators. “I never think it’s a good idea to flood a legislative committee room with a bunch of people,” Iarossi explained via email. “It tends to be a waste of time and money because not all of them can testify and it cuts the testimony of each individual short.” Although funding for the larger group was cut, Lombardi and Young collaborated with alumna Wesley Beggs (‘10) to raise funding for a smaller group to go. On Monday, Feb. 24, the day before the committee, Lombardi said that she got a phone call from Schoonover. “The phone call was very brief, but he strongly warned me against going to testify,” Lombardi said. “He told me that it would be a ‘shit show’ if we went and testified. I explained that I respected his professional opinion, but we were still going to go up and testify.”

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“I do not recall saying what Miss Lombardi alleges,” Schoonover said in response to Lombardi’s allegation. “We gave our recommendation based on our experience for the reasons I outlined and told them we understood their decision to testify if they still chose to do so.” Iarossi, the other lobbyist from Capital City Consulting, said, “I did not tell anyone whether they should or should not testify.” Lombardi said Schoonover’s phone call was slightly unsettling, but she still knew she wanted to go. “I wasn't going to throw away a whole trip I had organized,” Lombardi said, “and I knew that it was the right thing to do because every stage of this is critical.” Lombardi filed a verbal complaint with Harrell about the phone call with Schoonover on Feb. 28. During the trip Five students, along with Professor of Computer Science Matthew Lepinski and alumna Wesley Beggs (‘10), left Sarasota before the sun rose on Feb. 25. Before the House Appropriations Committee convened at 3:30 p.m., students met with Reps. Carlos Guillermo Smith and Evan Jenne, both Democrats on the committee, who gave advice about testifying and discussed why they would be voting against the bill. “Focus on what the stakes are and how bad the process is and how awesome New College is,” Smith said. “It needs to remain an independent institution.” He also encouraged students to use social media to share the day’s events. “One of the problems we have in Tallahassee is we're not in the spotlight, like people in Congress are,” Smith said. “Put it out [on social media] because that might be the only way some folks back home see what terrible things are happening here in Tallahassee in this committee today.” Rep. Evan Jenne also said he did not support the bill and had prepared many questions for Fine. “I would consider New College to be on par with any Ivy League school in the nation,” Jenne said. “To me, that's something that you have to protect.” The House Appropriations Committee was scheduled to last from 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. but was extended in half-hour increments to 8:00 p.m.The merger bill was the second-to-last item on the agenda and was not discussed until after 6:30. Before the public testimony period, Fine fielded questions from other representatives. “Do we have the right as a state

to tell [students] where they have to go?” Rep. Barbara Watson, a Miami Democrat, asked. Fine replied that because the legislature created the schools, they have the authority to merge them. “Both of these universities became universities because of decisions that this legislature made,” Fine said, even though New College was founded as a private institution in 1960. “They didn't just happen on their own. Some stork didn't fly over the state, drop the basket, and the university was created. We did it. We're the only ones who can. So we're the only ones who can create them and were the only ones who can merge them. That is our job.” Rep. Smith asked how the merger would affect current students and which school would be written on the diploma. Fine replied that if a student graduated before the merger was finalized, their diploma would say the existing school. But after the merger is completed, “their degree would probably say the University of Florida on it.” When Rep. Jenne asked about how many net positions would be cut and buildings shared, Fine said that it would be up to UF. “One of the things that we do here at the legislature is we make these broad decisions,” Fine said. “We allow the universities then to operate themselves. Under this bill, once it is transferred to the University of Florida, the University of Florida will make those decisions. We're not going to tell them what to do as a result of the merger.” Jenne also asked, “Has the University of Florida or any other university, organization or government entity given you an analysis of the potential cost savings with this?” “No,” Fine replied. A total of ten people testified, including four New College students, two New College alums, one Florida Poly student, the president of Florida Poly and two representatives from the United Faculty of Florida. Sixteen people waived in opposition. Second-year Daria Paulis, who is also a Resident Advisor (RA), argued that because so many New College students live on campus, administrative costs are higher and would likely not decrease with a merger. Young testified about her research experience with faculty and emphasized that the merger would save only 0.048% of the State University System budget. Catalyst Editor-in-Chief Jacob Wentz, who is also a Fulbright semifinalist and first generation college

“I would consider New College to be on par with any Ivy League school in the nation," Rep. Jenne said. "To me, that's something you have to protect."


student, cautioned the committee that a merger might compromise New College’s competitive Fulbright success rate and core academic program. Finally, Lombardi, who is from the Washington, D.C. metro area, talked about why she chose to come to New College to study public policy. “New College was the only school in Florida that I applied to and I didn't come here to end up going to the lesser version of a bigger school,” Lombardi told the committee. After the testimony ended, the committee transitioned into debate. No representatives spoke out in favor of the bill. Rep. Ben Diamond, a Democrat who represents St. Petersburg, emphasized that there is more to higher education issues than money. “As we've heard from some of the people who drove all the way to Tallahassee to have this opportunity to speak for 20 or 30 seconds, there's more to these issues in higher education,” Diamond said. “There's more to the evaluation than just the cost analysis. And I think if we're going to be talking about making major changes in our state university system, we need to be doing it in a way where we are at least providing all those that will be impacted with more meaningful opportunities to provide input.” Other representatives, including Good, Smith and Jenne, made their cases for why the bill should not be voted for. However, the bill passed the committee mostly along party lines, with only one Republican voting in opposition. After the trip Many news outlets, including the Sarasota Herald Tribune, Orlando Sentinel and the Tampa Bay Times published news stories about the bill’s progression through the Florida House within a couple hours of the bill’s passing. President Donal O’Shea said that he appreciated the “tremendous commitment” of the people who travelled to Tallahassee in an email sent to the campus community that evening. The legislative session is scheduled to end on March 13. In the last 10 days of the session, legislators are required to only give a 24-hour notice before a bill is heard on the floor or in a committee. Lombardi said that she is on “high alert” for the next couple days, but as of Tuesday afternoon, nothing had changed. The future of the bill—and Florida’s two smallest public schools— remains uncertain. “Anything can happen in this building,” Jenne said, citing previous examples of eleventh-hour changes, “and usually it's not great.” This story is developing rapidly. Check twitter.com/ncfcatalyst for the latest updates.


The Asolo Repertory Theater’s recent production of the iconic Agatha Christie mystery novel “Murder on the Orient Express” recieved an outstanding critical response, with one critic from Broadway World calling it “Glamourous. Enthralling from beginning to end.” The set features a true-to-life replica of the Orient Express that rotates, resulting from the hard work of the Asolo’s production team. The show opened on Jan. 8 and the Asolo has since added showtimes to extend the show into mid March to accomodate for the influx of ticket sales. “Just after midnight, the exotic Orient Express is hurtling down the tracks – to a murder!” the Asolo’s official website states. “An American tycoon lies dead in his compartment, his door locked from the inside. With a train full of suspects and an alibi for each one, it’s the perfect mystery for the dapper detective Hercule Poirot, n’est-ce pas?” The set of the production is made up of cool colors and bright lights, matching the exact tone expected of a murder mystery. Productions and Operations Director of the Asolo Vic Meyrich spoke of the complicated production process of such a performance. “Theater is collaborative,” Mey-

rich said. “At the Asolo, Michael Donald Edwards is the Producing Artistic Director. Michael will, in concert with other people, pick a season and we'll just take one play from the season. He'll then create an artistic team, starting with the director, and then in consultation with the director, they'll pick the teams that design the show and that [consists of] sets, props, costumes, lighting and sound projection.” Every production the Asolo puts on goes through multiple reviews in the planning process in order to ensure that the design elements will be successful. “Each one of the crafts that I just mentioned does a technical drawing,” Meyrich said. “We'll take a look at what they've done—we call those preliminary drawings—and we review them for budget and practicality. A lot of times people draw things that, in this universe, can't exist, because two things can't be in the same place at the same time.” Once Meyrich’s team sends back practical edits to the production’s artistic team for final revisions. Those final revisions mark the beginning of the production. From there, the show is built at the Asolo Rep Robert and Beverly Koski Production Center, which is about four miles north of the theater on Tamiami Trail. Plans are in the works to create a bigger

production site that is closer to the Asolo. “When we build a new production center, costumes and costume storage will be over there, which means that if an actor has a few minutes out of rehearsal, they can go and have a fitting and come back. Right now they drive across town.” Currently 77 years old, Meyrich has been in the theatrical production industry as a professional for 51 years. Before that, he took part in school productions behind the scenes. “I was the kid in elementary school that did all the audio-visual and theater work,” Meyrich said. “I woke up one day and said, ‘You know, I'm doing the same thing that I did seventh grade.’ It never changed.” Meyrich is not alone in this. Many of the production crew members have been in the industry for decades. “It's a very unusual group of people here,” Meyrich said. “Many of the people out in the shop have been here [for a while] and there's another guy who was a junior in Sarasota high in 1969 who's still working here.” The Asolo’s production of Murder on the Orient Express was one of the more complicated productions that the theater has endeavored to put on. “The difficulty with Murder on

the Orient Express was we have basically three railroad cars that are in the show,” Meyrich explained. “So the challenge was how first to make the railroad cars appear. Do they shuttle back and forth? Do they spin? That and how to make it all fit in a theater with two other shows [was the most difficult part]. It was probably one of the longest and hardest productions that took the most drawings and had the most failures to work out that I think we've been involved in for a long time.” Associate Production Manager Mike Rogers spoke of the notoriety of the Christie original and the infamous Orient Express. “I think there was [a bit of pressure because the story is so notorious],” Rodgers said. “A lot of that fell on the paint department to try and recreate [the Orient Express with historical accuracy].” “For instance, we took the symbols of the actual train, the lettering style, the crest that's on the train,” Meyrich added. The work seems to have paid off with the vast success of the production. Tickets are selling fast, so those who would like to see the play should contact the box office at the Asolo. Information for this article was gathered from asolorep.org. The Box Office can be reached at (800) 361-8388.

All photos courtesy of Paul Tate DePoo III

Members of the artistic department painted the replica of the train to include an accurate depiction of the train's crest.

Actor James Devita played Belgian Detective Hercule Poirot who was played by Kenneth Branagh in the 2017 film.

The original Orient Express had a transcontinental route connecting Paris, France and Instanbul, Turkey.



WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020 www.ncfcatalyst.com | @ncfcatalyst


TikTok: the trendsetter of a SONGS YOU new generation SHOULD HEAR BY SERGIO SALINAS In 2020, the kids of Generation Z, or as they jokingly refer to themselves, “Zoomers,” have found new ways to create trends that cross multiple aspects of modern culture, such as music, fashion and dance. Social media platforms have allowed for much more exposure to different audiences across the globe while also creating a rapidly changing cycle of trends. One of the main platforms in the automation of trends is TikTok, the video-sharing social media app. TikTok’s format of fifteen-second or minute-long videos has allowed for users to create a variety of content, anywhere from comedy skits to simply showing off the outfit of the day. TikTok has seen exceptional growth over the past two years and now stands as a staple of modern culture among young people, dictating trends and creating new celebrities. While social media fame is often looked down upon in question, TikTok ‘fame’ is very distinct in comparison. The most followed person on instagram is world renowned soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo with 335 million followers, on Twitter is former President Barack Obama with 113 million followers, but on TikTok the most followed person isn’t a president or a famous athlete, but seventeen year old Loren Gray from Pottstown, Pennsylvania. Gray is particularly known for making videos of her dancing to popular songs and creating “POVs”, which stands for point of view and includes the viewer by creating a scenario that includes the viewer in the video. Gray first gained popularity in 2015 on the video-sharing app Musical.ly that was later bought by Chinese internet technology company ByteDance and rebranded as TikTok. While Gray gained popularity on TikTok, her main passion remains her singing career. Gray signed a record deal in March 2018 with Virgin Records and released her first single “My Story” in August. Since then Gray has released five singles, including a collaboration with Los Angeles based DJ duo, Lost Kings, that has received 39 million streams on spotify. While there are no TikTok “stars” on-campus, first-year Aniston Hoffman, also known as egodeath9000 on TikTok, has gone viral in the past for her impressions and comedic videos. “I really just make the stupidest videos ever,” Hoffman said. “My friends and I will come up with really dumb ideas and just have fun with it. I do it just for entertainment and the

fact that I’ve come to the point where I don’t really care. I’m just trying to make myself laugh with my friends and see if other people find the same shit funny.” Hoffman’s most viewed TikTok stands at almost 125,000 views with 14,000 likes. The video features Hoffman displaying her makeup routine using Glossier products with the song “Slide” by Calvin Harris as the audio. However, Hoffman is not worried about her fame, as she looks to focus on her studies and remain grounded in the face of the alluring prospect of social media fame. “The only benefits will just be having clout, but that’s not really that important.” Hoffman said. While social media fame is certainly alluring, the instability of a constantly changing platform can cause struggles for individuals looking to please a diverse audience. Gaining followers by participating in a popular trend can be exciting, but if the views and likes start to drop it can affect one’s mentality over the content they’re producing in a negative way. “A lot of people can be mean in the comments,” Hoffman said. “I’ve had a lot of hate comments and negative attention, but it really doesn’t matter. It doesn’t really affect me.” This mentality is not just limited to TikTok. Creators on other platforms like Twitter, Instagram and YouTube face similar problems. Another problem that comes with fame is imposter syndrome, the idea that one’s own fame is not deserved or legitimately obtained. One way to relax from the stresses of social media is to simply step back from the screen and take a breather. “Taking breaks definitely helps distance your mind from it, so that it doesn’t have that much of an effect over you as it would if you’re super invested in it,” Hoffman said. “I take breaks often, even if they’re small. Sometimes I take month long breaks, sometimes just for the day, or a week.” TikTok has also spread the use of slang words like e-boy and e-girl, which stand for internet boy or girl that usually includes an alternative style. The rise of e-boys and girls has seen the digital world of TikTok leak into the real world, as more viewers are exposed to different styles and decide to expand their own tastes. “Basically the stereotype of it is dangly earrings with dyed hair, fangs, nose piercings, listening to continued on p. 11


“Like a Prayer” Celebrate 2020’s extra day and by Madonna the inevitable passage of time with the Catalyst’s leap year playlist, “I was here for multiple eras of featuring decade-defining songs selected by New College students of walls,” Jeb Lund (‘97) stated when questioned about the music that years past. reminded him most of his time at New College. “The tedious goth “Purple Haze” walls, the brief swing revival, the by Jimi Hendrix endless 80s nostalgia, and of course, “I was there when the first Jimi the 2000s era Outcast style hip-hop, Hendrix album came out,” Bruce and only one song ruled them all— Allen (‘66) reminisced. “It happened ’Like a Prayer.’” Madonna’s highly during the college career of ‘66-’70, successful pop rock hit, released in that’s when all the good stuff came 1989 as the lead single off her album out.” “Purple Haze” is undoubtedly of the same name, dominated both part of that good stuff Allen spoke so the charts and New College party highly of as a deliberately distorted culture in the late 90s, becoming hard rock track off Hendrix’s debut almost inescapable according to Are You Experienced? album. The fellow alum, Valerie Mojeiko (‘00). song, which features the guitarist’s “One of my friends made a wall, and iconic Hendrix chord, showcases since ‘Like a Prayer’ was so popular, Hendrix’s breakthrough musical he just put it on over and over again,” style and cements his spot as the Mojeiko recalled. “Every ten songs Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s “greatest it was ‘Like a Prayer,’ but then as it instrumentalist in the history of got later in the night, every third rock and roll.” “Purple haze all in my song was ‘Like a Prayer,’ then every brain, lately things they don't seem second song, then it was just ‘Like a the same,” Hendrix sings, bringing Prayer’ on repeat.” While the spirit the listener deep down into his of Madonna may not move today’s listeners to such extreme lengths, dream-like, psychedelic world. “Like a Prayer” remains a bop, even 20 years down the line. “Paint It Black” by the Rolling Stones “Gold Lion” by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs According to David Goldman “Gold Lion's gonna tell me (‘71), the loud and rebellious music of the Rolling Stones was where the light is,” lead vocalist unbeatable on campus in the early Karen O sings emphatically on 70s, regardless of social setting. the Yeah Yeah Yeahs “Gold Lion,” a “I was at a party and they put on song that evokes memories of both this really nice classical music,” uncertainty and comfort for alum Goldman explained. “Then, this Sherise Gamble (‘08). “Any time that one guy, he stood up and he said I was frustrated or overwhelmed, I something to the effect of, ‘Hey, would ride my bike down to the bay how about the Stones man?’ All of and I would just ride around and a sudden they turned off Beethoven listen to it” Gamble said. “It just and started playing the Rolling reminds me of being confused and Stones. And then that was the end trying to figure it out.” Show Your of the Beethoven Party, it didn’t go Bones, the 2006 album this track over as well as we thought it might.” introduces, is youthfully nostalgic “Paint It Black,” an influential track overall. “Gold Lion,” however, off the group’s 1966 Aftermath stands out as an indie rock staple, album, embodies a powerful goth acting as the perfect coming-of-age spirit that resonates to this day, soundtrack for the stressed out New proving that while the sound of the College student of both the early Stones is highly reflective of the 2000s and today. musical era the group rose to fame within, having a pitch-black heart Check out the Spotify playlist for this column at https://spoti.fi/2Vpx2hs. is timeless.



WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020 www.ncfcatalyst.com | @ncfcatalyst


"Politics of Yellow Fever in Alexander Hamilton's America" epidemiology exhibit opens in library BY CHUCK LEAVENGOOD Over this past ISP, a group of dedicated students investigated the 1793 Yellow Fever epidemic in Philadelphia from an epidemiological, social and political perspective. Professor of Medical Humanities Tabea Cornel and Professor of Epidemiology Kristopher Fennie led the ISP with hopes to emphasize the importance of medical literature and history when trying to understand modern epidemics. The work will be presented to the public along with the traveling exhibit by the National Library of Medicine (NLM) of the National Institutes of Health titled Politics of Yellow Fever in Alexander Hamilton's America. The poster exhibit will be available in the Jane Bancroft Library from March 2 to April 11. There will also be an opening reception on March 9 in the library and a creative writing competition about the exhibit open to students. Although the national exhibition includes only six posters, students will provide interactive events to educate the public about those whose contributions and aid during the epidemic were omitted from most historic accounts.

Chuck Leavengood/Catalyst The exhibit, created in a group ISP, opened in the library on Monday, March 2.

“It shows so concretely how socioeconomic status matters during an epidemic,” Cornel said. “How public health can become a measure of politics.” In 1793, it was unknown that Yellow Fever was a flavivirus that was transmitted through mosquitoes. The virus earned the name Yellow Fever because the pathogenesis occurred in the liver and caused jaundice, the yellowing of the skin and eyes. Cities with harbors were more likely to be sites for outbreaks because still water is a perfect breeding ground for mosquito larvae. The

panicked public tried to find the source of the unknown virus and were quick to accuse immigrants and the lower class of port cities. Literature from the ISP suggested that the plantation owners fleeing Haiti during the Haition Revolution (1791 to 1804) may have brought the mosquitoes to Philadelphia and Charleston. By December 1793, the weather was too cold for the mosquitoes to survive and the epidemic ended. Jane Markowitz (‘79), who works as a traveling exhibitions coordinator with the NLM, contacted

Cornel about applying for New College to be a location for the traveling exhibition. The ISP group came up with ideas about how to spread the word about the National Library of Medicine to bolster their application. One of the many interactive events offered will be a tutorial on how to navigate PubMed, a database of references and abstracts on life sciences and biomedical topics. Students also raised awareness of the free lesson plans for the local community created by NLM. They reached out to local high schools and historical organizations such as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASLAH). This partnership aligned well with the readings students did during the ISP, which placed importance on the racism that shapes both the historic and modern public health disparities. Hodge was tasked with researching the sociocultural responses to the epidemics. Her findings chronicled the Founding Fathers and most of the Mayor’s Council of Philadelphia abandoning the city during continued on p. 11

Reader submission: "True Stories" by Cannzana Stockwil


CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 scope of the month’s programming. In total, New College’s Black History Month contained 17 distinct events and brought in 9 outside speakers and performers, including NYCbased renowned director Bocafloja. While Bocafloja led two on-campus events, a dialogue on racialized masculinities and a screening and discussion of his film, Bravado Magenta, the BHMC felt it was equally important to bring the influential artist to younger members of the Sarasota community. “We took him to Booker High School to show his film to first year Visual and Performing Arts students,” Zabriskie said. “The students asked amazing questions . . . he was even impressed by the analysis that the high school students had after viewing the film. It's been amazing to be able to engage with students in the community and their teachers who are doing amazing work already.”

History conference

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3 After preparing and presenting this paper at the FCH, they aim to continue to explore this topic in their thesis. Lane plans to participate again next year and construct their own panel. They recommend the experience for the opportunity to develop presentation skills and for the low-risk, highrewards system of applying.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020 www.ncfcatalyst.com | @ncfcatalyst



In addition to the talks and performances put on by non-local artists and academics, this year’s Black History Month was made complete by the work of several dedicated New College professors, including Drs. Hugo Viera-Vargas, Ilaria Giglioli, Nicholas Clarkson, Amy Reid and Wendy Sutherland. Events such as Professor Reid’s “Lost and Found: The Puzzles of Translating African Fiction” talk, Professor Viera-Vargas’ Afro-Cuban percussion workshop and Professor Sutherland’s Afro. Deutschland film screening provided event-goers with an interdisciplinary understanding of Black history and experience. “Faculty members have been involved in really exciting ways and this year and have really contributed to and enhanced what we've been able to do,” Zabriskie said. “When we have these [varied] dialogues, we can uncover both similarities and differences. We can really begin to challenge some of those silences we have met [throughout our lives] and the ways in which those silences have been a part of the reproduction of

problematic power maintenance.” Students on the BHMC, such as second year Becca Hadwen and thesis student Cabrini Austin, also took a leading role in this year’s BHM event planning. Both Hadwen and Cabrini cited this year’s open mic night with Matthew “Cuban” Hernandez, which Hadwen organized and emceed, as one of Black History Month’s most notable successes. “Having Cuban Hernandez share his work was really healing in many ways, and I love that people felt encouraged to share their art,” Cabrini stated. “I enjoy the opportunity to educate my peers on blackness. We're in control of our own narratives which rarely ever happens. This month allows me to showcase something beyond our systemic oppression—black art and performance is so expansive and I love being able to share that.” To Hadwen, Austin and other student committee members, Black History Month on campus is all about creating respectful and productive spaces that encourage members of the New College community

to learn and grow together. “I think [Black History Month] creates spaces for students of color that are usually hard to find on campus” Hadwen explained. “It lets students of color, especially black students, know that the faculty, staff, students and administrators that work on these events not only see them, but are specifically choosing to center their stories and stories about people who look like them.” While the BHMC is appreciative of every student, faculty and staff member who helped organize this year’s programming, Professor Zabriskie would like to personally thank her colleagues Professor Viera-Vargas and Professor Sutherland, Dannielle McCalla and Jada McNeill from the Student Activities and Campus Engagement (SA[u]CE) team and the members of New College’s Black Student Union for the work they all put in to make this month a successful reality.

“I was like, ‘This will be fun. This will be something good to put on a resume,’” said Lane. “I knew that a lot of undergraduates got accepted to the FCH, so I thought ‘Why not?’” Current thesis students also have the opportunity to benefit from the conference. Todd, for example, is a returning participant who presented last year in a panel alongside Freeman. This year’s paper is the first chapter from her thesis, titled “Nationalist Representations of King Henry IV and Pope Gregory VII in German Drama and Art.” Todd finds the FCH beneficial as a thesis student for the oppor-

tunity to practice public speaking before her baccalaureate exam. She says that presenting in the FCH also appeals to graduate schools because of how uncommon undergraduate participation is at most conferences. More than anything, she stresses that future New College students with interest in the FCH should just go for it. “It’s a lot of fun but it’s not that much work if you’re just presenting a paper that you wrote for class,” said Todd. For any future participants, Lane, Todd and Harvey have a few words of wisdom: do not miss out on

the unique opportunities the FCH provides undergraduate students. “It’s a great experience and a chance for students to learn more about the professionalization [and] how academics present their research to a broader community,” Harvey said. “It speaks very well of our program because faculty from other institutions are always impressed by the quality of our student presentations.”

Information for this article was gathered from ncf.edu/black-historymonth.

Information for this article was gathered from floridaconferenceofhistorians.org. For more information visit the FCH website.

Toll road expansion

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 4 could become extinct due to the disruption of its ability to traverse the little land that the species has left. According to the Florida Sierra Club, the roads would permanently sever connectivity within the Florida Wildlife Corridor and open remaining natural and agricultural areas on which the Florida panther relies to breed and hunt. Three task forces—one for each road—have until October 2020 to issue recommendations to the governor and legislature. Information for this article was gathered from wusfnews.wusf.usf.edu, npr.org, fcvoters.org, and baynews9. com. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons



WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020 www.ncfcatalyst.com | @ncfcatalyst


Yellow Fever

the streets and nursing these people mostly for free. They got covered up when the epidemic ended.” CONTINUED FROM PAGE 9 Hodge mentioned that in teaching the stories that have been the epidemic, as they were wealthy left out, one can start to rectify the and could afford to leave. With most injustice done to those that were alof the government bodies gone from most forgotten. Fennie commented the then capital of the United States, that public health students and probureaucratic infrastructure fell fessionals can use the past as a way through and the hospitals were over- to understand current, persisting crowded with sick and dying people. inequalities and critically examin“The only people who were work- ing the things they might be doing ing were the African-American nurs- wrong now. es who were supported by Benjamin Information about the exhibit, Rush saying, ‘You guys are immune local events and links to the free to this,’—he was wrong,” Hodge exlesson plans are available plained. “They were going out into

All Yellow Fever events will take place in the Jane Bancroft Cook Library. Opening Reception - March 9 6:30 - 8 PM Yellow Fever on the Silver Screen - March 26 Films start at 7:30 PM ​ Yellow Fever Tea Time - April 7 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM Game Night - April 7 Starts at 7:30 PM PubMed Tutorial - April 9 Starts at 11 AM


CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8 100 gecs—that kind of music,” Hoffman explained. “A lot of people call me an e-girl just because I have bangs and shit and I thrift my clothes, but it’s just how I dress.” Hoffman, who studies music, hopes to one day use her platform as a way to share her own music. TikTok has changed the music landscape, allowing lesser known artists to get discovered by posting their songs as audios. One such song, “Lottery” by American rapper, K CAMP, gained popularity for its combination with the “Renegade” choreography, created by 14-year-old Jalaiah Harmon. “[TikTok] affects the way people listen to music, or how music gets around since so many people are on TikTok and the more you’re listening to these songs they become really popular,” Hoffman said. “I’m waiting to put out some new stuff, so I can better represent myself.” TikTok has even become bu-

reaucratic, as the World Health Organization recently joined the app to spread information on how to avoid contracting the coronavirus. While the use of social media to spread important information is not new, TikTok remains different from the other platforms as a primarily short videosharing service. With almost no competitors, TikTok will continue to grow as consumers all over the world continue to consume the abundant content that is available at their fingertips. The continual growth will only see the creation of new trends and fads among young people. The start of a new decade will see many from Generation Z enter their early- to mid-20s. They will be able to see the trends that will define a new generation of young people and much like their predecessors, zoomers will question the ever-changing culture of youth. Information from this article was gathered from marketingcharts.com, businessinsider.com, and oberlo.com

Been there, done that

A column answering real questions based on personal experiences

SUBMITTED BY SYDNEY ROSENTHAL I’m in a long distance relationship (LDR), and we're going on a couple months. Whenever we talk, she always wants to hear about my day and how I'm doing and I want to hear about her. Thing is, I've been going first for a while now, and she's a really good listener, to the point that I just end up going on long tangents and then one of us needs to go before we get to talking about her. It's not a bad problem to have, but I want to hear about her more! How do I get her to talk more about herself without resorting to "no you?" Sincerely, LDR Hi LDR, I originally wrote my response to this query last semester, before I started a long distance relationship. For me, the most frustrating thing about being in a LDR is not being able to live life with my partner. I want to be able to have coffee in the morning with him while telling him about my dreams and playing with my cat. In my past LDRs, I would skype my partner every chance I could, even while I was doing homework. Now my partner and I try to talk nightly, but with our schedules and time differences, that isn’t always possible. I personally think it’s daunting to recount my whole day to my partner and we usually only tell each other highlights: things that made us laugh, people who made us angry, things we’re stressed about. These anecdotes are usually over within ten minutes. I care if my boyfriend went to the bar with his friends or had a good day at work but just recounting events makes me feel excluded and it doesn’t help me to learn about him. My partner and I also usually text and send each other memes throughout the day so I usually know what he’s been up to. We both care a lot about the news and what’s happening in the world so sometimes we’ll talk about that. Or if one of us has just read a new book or has seen a movie we’ll talk about our perspective on it. I advise you to try to find a common interest you both can discuss, instead of just focusing on the daily monotony. Do you know your partner’s family? You can also always ask how they’re doing. Personally, I have been trying to use the distance as a way to get to know my partner deeply. In-person it’s easy to avoid difficult conversations. There are always distractions and physical touch can also get in the way. If you plan on a future with your partner it’s important to know their life goals and passions. Sadly, most of us, myself included, aren’t currently living our dreams and are instead just working towards them. Have a question? Sumbit it to tinyurl.com/BTDT2019


WEDNESDAY, MARCH 4, 2020 www.ncfcatalyst.com | @ncfcatalyst




AT THE FIRST SUNDAY SOCIAL All photos Willa Tinsley/Catalyst

Greene was excited at the turnout for his event and hopes there will be no need for advertisement to get novos out and about.

Students gathered with their friends to sunbathe, while others made sure to keep up with their studies by finishing up classwork under the sun.

Second-year students Saeed Elhajoui and Jamie Christos share a pleasant afternoon under the sun.

BY WILLA TINSLEY On Sunday, Feb. 23, students gathered in “Rural America,” the greens around the softball field, for a wholesome day of fun, sun and family-friendly recreation. “I have a vision for this Sunday afternoon at around 1 pm,” secondyear Eliot Greene wrote on the forum the Wednesday prior. “Tons of people chilling in Rural America. Everyone can put towels, blankets, and chairs down. We can all bring speakers and mingle. Let’s take advantage of a sunny day and create some good vibes. Everyone is welcome so let’s have a great time.” The thread was bumped more times than a friend group walking horizontally across the overpass, so Greene and his second-year associate Dominic Grijalva set to work making promotional material in the form of flyers beseeching the reader to “make new friends,” “Bring: a smile” in Comic Sans and getting the word out by asking Hamilton Center employees to tell students about the event. Their hard work paid off as Sunday Social drew a crowd of at least 35 students, far more than most events the RAs and SA[u]CE office attempt to lure students to with free food and giant speakers playing Rhianna outside Hamilton Center. “I’m super pumped about everyone coming out and enjoying the sunshine together, especially on a weekend where we’re celebrating alums and just the New College community in general,” third-year Megan Ballard gushed, still sudsy from her trip down the Slip ‘N Slide. It was truly a momentous weekend. Armed with only a brand-new kickball and his suntanned Salt Life charm, Greene accomplished some-

thing one would think only a full SWAT team, or possibly a pop-up Panic! at the Disco concert might be capable of: getting New College students to go outside. The revelers may have appeared a little disoriented initially, squinting like pale newborn moles in the non-fluorescent light of day, but soon relaxed in their colony of colorful blankets only a marginally awkward distance away from each other. There was volleyball, football, the aforementioned Slip ‘N Slide, guitars aplenty, plus one mandolin courtesy of second-year Saeed Elhajoui, who also brought delicious lentils to share and Go, a Chinese abstract strategy board game. A variety of speakers played absolutely anything from The Strokes to radio Reggaeton, true to Greene’s vision—just good vibes all around. “I feel like I know people here, but I don’t really hang out with people here, so I think it’s a really cool thing to bring people together who have no connection to each other, just to hang out in a field and enjoy a sunny day together,” Greene said on a break from his volleyball game. “I always complain that nothing happens on campus, so this is being the change I wanna see. Eventually, I want it to become an unspoken thing—like on nice sunny days, we’ll just come and hang out.” While many lament the extinction of New College traditions, Greene rolled up the sleeves of his pineapple-print button down and set to work creating new ones. He might think the New College community is deficient in both good vibes and vitamin D, but Greene knows he is the man for the job. He has already planned another weekend social for the Saturday post-PCP.

Both football and volleyball were enjoyed by Sunday Social-goers.

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