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Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019


Penn State remembers Robert Shoop NATE SHARIF

Senior Staff Writer

More than a dozen Penn State Beaver students and staff gathered at the Sperling Funeral Home in Wexford in May to say goodbye to a former student, Robert John Shoop. Shoop, born June 7, 1999, passed away suddenly on May 6. He is survived by his parents Kyle and Christine Shoop. “Robert was a jolly goofball,” said Benjamin Chen, a sophomore. Chen said he and Shoop had been friends since the third grade, and he could not believe the news that Shoop had passed away. Shoop, who had just completed his sophomore year, initially began his college career by pursuing a degree in engineering but later switched his major to economics. “Robert found the first semester to be a bit rough and wanted something new,” said his father, Kyle Shoop. When asked about the details surrounding Shoop’s passing, his parents declined to comment. Shoop, who lived in Harmony Hall, was actively involved in the fantasy and sci-fi club and fiction writing, said Jill Tress, the Learn-

Roar file photo

Robert Shoop, second from left, poses with other Penn State students in Amsterdam during the 2019 spring break trip to Europe.

ing Center and Disabilities Services coordinator. Additionally, Shoop was an avid lover of 12th century European history including Constantine and Constantinople. When Beaver announced that students would have the opportunity to visit Paris during spring break, Shoop jumped at the opportunity.

Chen said he and Shoop also had plans to travel together. “He was really happy when I told him I would take him to China,” said Chen. “Robert was excited to try new things.” Shoop’s personal love of history and analytics eventually led him to the economics major where he flourished. He was planning to attend the

University Park campus this fall as a junior. “Robert was becoming more confident,” said Kyle Shoop. “I believe he would have become a teacher of history or economics.” Laurie Barnes, an adjunct art instructor, said Shoop was primarily focused on his schoolwork and friends.

TEDx event attracts student speakers TAYLOR R. THOMPSON Staff Writer

Students will come together to create Penn State Beaver’s first TEDx event from 12 to 2 p.m. on Nov. 1 in the Student Union Building auditorium. Students with interests in speaking and production are forming teams to host the event for the Beaver campus. A TEDx event is a local gathering where TED-like talks are shared with the community. Sophomore Dmitri Gordienko and junior Joshua Graham, the organizers of TEDx PSU Beaver,

went through a two-to-three-month approval process to get this opportunity for the Beaver campus. Once they were approved, they started to get to work. The two held sign ups at Club Rush for those interested in speaking or getting involved. After that, the project was broken up into two teams. One for marketing and the other for logistics. The marketing team has been working on setting up social media accounts as well as creating posters to place around the Monaca area, while the logistics team searches for a speech coach, caterers, ushers and

facilitators. After the interested speakers signed up, the students had to go through a screening process, where they pitched their ideas to a panel of three faculty – instructors Kristin Oberg, Athena Pangikas-Miller and Daniel Pinchot – who provided feedback to aid them in their presentations. Senior Heather Makar was one of the aspiring speakers who made a pitch to the panel. “I want to light the fire of inspiration,” she told the faculty. The event will give students a chance to gain real-world expe-

rience to add to their resumes as they create something new for this campus while doing the things they love, Gordienko said. It will also be recorded and available for viewing online. “I want this event to show that TEDx PSU Beaver can become a substantial event that will continue even after I leave this campus,” Gordienko added. “I want to create this event as something that will be my legacy here.” Gordienko and Graham organized a similar program on smaller scale last spring, but it wasn’t an official TEDx event.

“Robert was very sweet… an incredibly thoughtful student,” said Barnes. Barnes said she was in disbelief when she received news of his passing. “I hadn’t thought it was possible, being so young in college. You get attached to your students,” said Barnes. Shoop, along with other students, collaborated with Barnes on a section of the art mural located on the lower level of the General Classroom Building. Junior Patrick Byers, a resident assistant in Harmony Hall, said he knew Shoop well. “Having Robert around would always guarantee a good time.” Byers recounted that both he and Shoop had at one time been a part of the Boy Scouts of America. “We were both a part of the same camp, just not at the same time,” said Byers. “Years later we would attend the same college together.” Byers said that Shoop was one of those people who just made others feel comfortable. Kyle Shoop agreed. “If I was having a bad day, I could look at Robert and he would bring me back to reality.”

POLICE BEAT On May 2, Antonio Young, a former student from San Pedro, Calif. was charged with criminal trespassing in Harmony Hall when police found him illegally in the building between 12 and 1 p.m. On Aug. 22, it was reported to the police that a hit and run was committed between 3 and 7:30 p.m. in the Harmony Hall parking lot. On Aug. 26, a hit and run that occurred between 3 and 4 p.m. in Lot B was reported to police. On Aug. 30, police started an investigation after a campus employee reported to the police that graffiti was found on the sidewalk in front of the General Classroom Building.

October 2019


Penn State Beaver Roar


IST professor faces criminal charges JESSE JAMERY

Senior Staff Writer

Richard Lomotey, assistant professor of Information Sciences and Technology, will face arraignment Nov. 6 in Pittsburgh on charges of false imprisonment, simple assault and harassment related to two May incidents that occurred while he was driving for Uber. In May Pittsburgh Police charged Lomotey with false imprisonment, harassment, simple assault and felony kidnapping. The kidnapping charges were dismissed at a Sept. 19 court appearance following a string of continuances. Charges of false imprisonment and harassment stem from an incident on May 11 where Lomotey is accused of holding two female passengers against their will while moonlighting as an Uber driver in Pittsburgh. According to the Pittsburgh PostGazette, Lomotey allegedly began driving away from the trip’s route on his Uber app after picking up the passengers and made several comments to them, including that he wanted to “get with them.” Lomotey then allegedly pulled his

Richard Lomotey car over, locked the doors and said “you’re not going anywhere.” The two women got out of the car and called 911. In an interview with WPXI-TV in May, Lomotey disputed these claims and said he pulled over to restart his frozen Uber app. He said he only talked to the passengers about what they are studying in school. “I don’t know which part of our conversation would lead me to say, ‘You are not going anywhere,’” Lomotey told WXPI After Lomotey’s television appearance, a third woman came for-

ward and accused him of holding her against her will in his car. The woman said this incident happened on the same night and along the same road, Frankstown Avenue, as the first incident, according to PostGazette reports. In the second incident, the woman said she went up to Lomotey in his car because of the Uber decal on his car’s window. Not an Uber user, the woman said she gave Lomotey a $10 bill for a ride. The woman said Lomotey made unwanted advances on her and that, after a scuffle in which he ripped her shirt and bra, she jumped out of his moving car, according to the PostGazette. In the second case, Lomotey is charged with unlawful restraint, reckless endangerment and simple assault. Lomotey’s attorney, Joseph Horowitz, said his client is not guilty of any of the charges and will be pleading that way at the Nov. 6 arraignment. “I have a lot of exculpatory evidence, including Richard’s Uber and Google driving records from the night,” Horowitz said.

Horowitz said that these records will disprove one accuser and show that the other two accusers’ allegations are exaggerated. Horowitz also said he has more evidence in this case to show that Lomotey is innocent than he has had in any case he has worked on before. When asked about the likelihood of Lomotey getting his job back at Penn State Beaver, Horowitz said the professor has not given it much thought as he is still dealing with the legal matters. Lomotey declined a request for an interview. On campus, students and faculty are still dealing with the shock and ramifications of the allegations. “Professor Lomotey is still employed but remains on leave,” Director of Campus Relations Kristen Doerschner said. “He was placed on leave after the initial incident and remains so.” When asked about Lomotey’s future with the campus, Doerschner said that it would be premature to speak about his long-term employment status. Doerschner also said that the Academic Affairs office has worked to

ensure all IST classes at Penn State Beaver are covered in Lomotey’s absence so no student’s education will be disrupted. Senior IST major Tyrell Eleam, who took a Lomotey-taught class, said he was shocked to hear the allegations. “I thought there was no way in the world he was getting arrested for something like that until I saw it on the news,” Eleam said. “He has a wife and a daughter. Why would he do something wild like that? There’s no need.” Junior IST major Celina Vedro, who took a class last spring taught by Lomotey, was not as stunned to hear of the allegations. “Whenever the story came out, my first reaction was ‘Oh, well, he was a little odd,’” Vedro said. “I believe that he probably made some weird comments … but then I also think they probably had a really hard time understanding him.” Lomotey grew up in Ghana. Vedro said Lomotey’s thick accent was often hard for her to understand when she was in his class. Vedro said she thinks this is all a big misunderstanding that arose from Lomotey’s personality and accent.

Clothing donated to students after family’s tragic loss GABBY FIFFICK

Senior Staff Writer

On Sept. 20 the Career Closet received one of the heftiest donations it has ever received. The surprising donation came from a community member who lost his son. “The clothing he donated was his son’s, who was a banker who passed away. He gave it to the university so that the students could use it,” said Brenda Schultz, personal and career counselor. “He came in with a truck load of clothing,” said Schultz. “When he said he was here, I grabbed anybody I could and loaded it in.” According to Schultz, the donation included some desirable and high-end items, including a designer Armani suit.

Schultz sent out a mass email informing the students about the abundant amount of free clothing. Junior Josh Hetzer took advantage of the great opportunity. “I got a full suit, a sports jacket, a tie, two polos shirts and one pair of dress shoes,” Hetzer said. Daniel Pinchot, director of enrollment, told Hetzer that the suit was worth around $500 new. “Getting the suit, and everything else I got, was very important. Also, getting a suit of that quality for free that fit me nicely meant a lot,” said Hetzer. “I wish more people took advantage of this opportunity. It’s a great thing for struggling college students to have an opportunity.”

Penn State Beaver photo

Ties are among the articles of clothing donated by a local family to Penn State Beaver students. The donation consisted of high-end items like suits, dress shirts and polos.


Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019


Dumpster fire damages SUB

Building repair, roofing and new pavilion lead campus construction projects GABBY FIFFICK

Senior Staff Writer

June 4, was a typical day for Director of Campus Relations Kristen Doerschner. “I was in Aldi’s grocery shopping for some of the basics and I got a call from Cathy Benscoter (marketing and web specialist) saying ‘Your office is on fire,’” Doerschner said. The fire started at roughly 5:30 p.m. that Tuesday in a dumpster located outside of the Student Union Building as a result of an ongoing roof replacement project. Director of Finance and Business Adam Rathbun said the campus does not know exactly what caused the fire, but it doesn’t matter since the roofing contractor accepted liability. A fire at any location is unwanted, but this may have been the best possible place and time as the building had renovations planned for the near future and it happened in summer. “In terms of the fire itself, we were very fortunate that it happened during the summer after hours with few people on campus. So, to that end,

The Roar/Gabby Fiffick

Left: Two construction workers prepare for new sidewalks and a patio. Above: Damage from a fire marks the outside of the Student Union Building. The Roar/Alivia Thomas

we did not have quite the situation we could have,” Doerschner said. “If it would have happened right now, it would be totally different, and no one had damage to their personal property.” The damage that was inflicted on

the Student Union Building by the fire is being repaired and should be completed shortly. “Considering the intensity of the fire, it contained itself outside. In the grand scheme of things, we kind of lucked out,” said Rathbun. “We’re

getting new windows and doors that are better insulated and sealed. Obviously, we didn’t want the fire but we lucked out with the damage.” The roof replacement to the Student Union Building is one of two projects that have been in the works

since 2016. “The two big ones were the roofing projects for the sub and library. Every time we had a rainstorm there were leaks. It damages computers and books,” Rathbun said. “You fix one hole another pops up.” Rathbun said contractors are now doing the trim work and putting in fall protection on the roofs. Those projects should end in October. Another project that students likely see on a daily basis is the work in front of the General Classroom and Laboratory Classroom buildings. “We have new sidewalks going in GCB and LCB,” Rathbun said. “That project had been in development for three years. This adds a new gathering space and we will be adding a pavilion. It adds another useable space to that end of the campus. Students are excited about the renovations happening on campus. Junior Sam Miller said, “I think it’s cool. I’m always in favor of places adding something new. It means more opportunities for faculty and students; I just hope the construction pays off.”

Students and artist collaborate on campus art installation KARL TRUSKOWSKI Senior Staff Writer

As a part of the university’s Campus Art Initiative, Penn State Beaver is working with artist John Peña to create an interactive project on campus. Beaver’s project will be located in the central part of campus and will feature metal stakes placed in the ground with colored discs that students, faculty and staff can place on top. Peña said the idea is to have the discs correspond with the mood of the campus. Peña said that the project’s main

Courtesy of John Peña

This depiction shows the interactive project by artist John Peña.

goal is to build a collaboration within the community. Assistant Teaching Professor Jim Hendrickson and the engineering

students have been working with Peña by using the CNC router to build the discs. Peña said that Hendrickson’s students are about halfway

through the building process. Statistics students helped Peña survey which colors should correspond with which mood. Peña said examples could be sad, complicated, stressed, happy, excited, etc. Art students are volunteering their time to help paint the discs. Peña said he hopes more students get involved. Director of Academic Affairs Carey McDougall said she hopes the project will give people in the community an opportunity to express their emotions. “It’s important to be able to articulate our emotions,” McDougall

said. McDougall said the campus has been through emotional periods recently, and the project can be an opportunity to highlight the importance of mental health. Peña said that he hopes the project can be an opportunity for students to take a pause and think about their emotions. “It is the unintended consequences that I get most excited about,” Peña said. “Even if they don’t engage with it, they’ll see it and think about how they’re feeling.” Peña said plans are to install the project by early November.

October 2019


Penn State Beaver Roar


Online resources benefit students SOPHIA KRAMER Senior Staff Writer

The Roar/Sophia Kramer

Tuition rates have flatlined for in-state students at Beaver. Out-of-state students at University Park pay the most and have experienced the biggest five-year increase.

Tuition freeze benefits Pa. students KRIS CAULDER Staff Writer

With tuition prices increasing throughout the country, Penn State’s Board of Trustees approved a budget in July that contained a tuition freeze for all in-state students. Penn State Beaver’s tuition now has been frozen for the fifth consecutive year, along with seven other commonwealth campuses. The tuition freeze comes from a sudden increase in the state funds that Penn State received this year. With this money, the university was able to allow a stay in the cost of tuition. As reported by the Centre Daily Times, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed a state budget that increased funding for Penn State by 2 percent, or $4.75 million, for a total of $335.2 million. Daniel Pinchot, director of enrollment, said he thinks this is a step forward. He explained that compared to the other state universities in Pennsylvania, the gap in

cost is beginning to close as more state schools are beginning to raise tuition to cover increasing operating costs. When it comes to the freeze’s ability to help increase enrollment, he stated, “While [the price of] education is still high, the name that Penn State gives to students is a return on investment. It matters a lot. It helps with gaining and keeping students.” Tuition increased 1.95 percent for out-of-state students, Pinchot said that increase is quite modest, but acknowledged that tuition is still a significant hardship for many out-of-state students. “For those who can’t afford us… we still may not be right for them,” he said. However, he explained that there are resources for incoming and interested students. “We’ve been able to grow our scholarships for the students who need it the most. For example, our open doors programs offer financial support that helps students complete their degree in four years.”

Adam Rathbun, director of finance and business, says that students shouldn’t expect much change from earlier years. “The tuition freeze doesn’t affect us directly,” said Rathbun. Only 15 percent of Penn State Beaver’s budget comes from tuition dollars. The other 85 percent comes from Penn State directly to cover operating cost. When interviewed, both Pinchot and Rathbun hinted that a good indication that tuition may be increasing is how much Pennsylvania allocates to Penn State. If state allocation increases or continues to cover costs, students could expect another freeze. Hunter Spisak, a senior, said he is both appreciative and worried. “It’s nice to have the freeze because you don’t have to worry about your cost going up as you enter your later college years.” “(But), they need to restructure [the budget] in order to help lower costs. This feels like a temporary fix for a long-term problem.”

College students often miss out on discounts or freebies simply because they never knew about them in the first place. There is a successful feeling that comes with saving money on any budget. Penn State Beaver students have no shortage of opportunities to save money. Penn State Beaver students usually hear about free resources or good discounts through their classmates, professors or online. Around campus, students have access to free newspapers such as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, USA Today and The New York Times. The only requirement is a student ID to unlock the newspaper distribution machines. Free software is another great benefit for students. They can download Adobe Creative Cloud and Microsoft Office software plus accompanying apps for both services by using their Penn State email. Additionally, the Penn State library system allows students free access to countless peer-reviewed journals and databases to reference. Lecturer Ashu Kumar promotes Linkedin Learning to his students. Linkedin Learning was previously called The website is a free resource to Penn State students offering extensive online courses with experienced instructors. Senior Jonah Sally said students could use skills learned on Linkedin Learning to build a website on Squarespace. Squarespace offers a 50 percent discount for college students for the first year of use. “You build websites,” Sally said. “The interface is very common sense. It’s not free, but highly discounted.” Sophomore Alec Keriotis said he likes using the streaming service Kanopy as an aid in his film-

The Roar/Sophia Kramer

Students can download useful apps like and Kanopy.

related class. Kanopy is comparable to Netflix, but it is free for students through Kanopy’s partnership with Penn State University Libraries. Associate Professor Robin Bower has used Kanopy as a teaching tool in the past. Another site students can use for free is Monday is a productivity and project management tool, which is highly useful in long-term group projects, clubs or individual projects of any kind. Different settings allow the user to visualize progress in multiple areas together in one place. Monday allows group work to be less of a guessing game. An additional resource, Student Universe, is a website that offers college students with discounts on airfare. This may be helpful to those travelling home for the holidays in the coming months. Beaver students can visit beaver. and scroll down to the technology resources section for more information about the software available to them and how to access it.


Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019



Gabby Fiffick



Tony Good

Jesse Jamery

Sophia Kramer

Matthew Palahunik

Nate Sharif

Matylda Zamudio

Karl Truskowski

ADVISERS Cathy Benscoter

Daniel Pinchot

Kristen Doershner

Regulations versus common sense

Vapers don’t need laws to apply common courtesy Vaping electronic cigarettes may seem “cool” or “fun.” But is getting addicted to nicotine cool or fun? According to the Centers for Disease Control, that’s what’s likely to happen to people who regularly use e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes typically contain nicotine, among other chemicals, which the CDC says can harm adolescent brain development in young people even into their mid-20s. Some people have turned to e-cigarettes as way of kicking the habit of smoking cigarettes, but doing so doesn’t address the core issue of nicotine addiction. Let’s be honest: there are certainly worse addictions to have. But just like people can become addicted to caffeine and coffee, if you vape, there is a pretty darn good chance you are already addicted to nicotine. What’s troubling is that more and more young people are vaping. Just like with cigarettes years ago, gov-

ernment leaders have now begun proposing their own fix to this socalled vaping epidemic. U.S lawmakers have introduced bills in Washington D.C. to limit the consumption of and usage of e-cigarettes among young people. It may be too soon, and a step too far. Do we really need the government to mandate what common sense already tells us we should do? Common sense tells us that if we don’t want teens vaping, then companies ought not to make the vape taste like candy with fancy flavors. Common sense tells us that if you do vape, be respectful to the people around you and aware of areas that forbid or limit your ability to vape. In other words, if you can’t smoke a cigarette somewhere, you shouldn’t vape, either. As a general rule of thumb, avoid vaping inside of buildings and within closed areas. Be mindful about who and what is around you.

Common sense tells us that if you have to hide your vape pen and sneak a hit, then it’s probably not appropriate to be vaping in the first place. Have basic etiquette: be polite and respect other people’s space, and don’t even think about vaping during class. Common sense also tells us that if your vape still contains nicotine, as well as other untested chemicals, then you can’t argue it’s a healthier alternative to smoking. It is still an addiction and you are still consuming nicotine. At the end of the day, college students are adults who can legally purchase and consume nicotine products, including vapes. If you choose to vape, know that the short-term satisfaction is not worth the gamble of the long-term health problems. Remember, neither smoking nor vaping makes one cool. Just show respect and be responsible. That’s just common sense.

Countless students part of Bertges’ legacy The success of sports figures is often measured by statistics. But for sports legends like BJ Bertges, it’s not the wins and losses that are the bedrock of her legacy. It’s the relationships that BJ has made over her eight-year tenure. BJ, the assistant athletic director and women’s volleyball coach, left her post last month to take an associate director position with the United States Collegiate Athletic Association.   

Over her eight-year tenure, BJ has touched the lives of hundreds of student athletes, from the students who played on her team to the student workers who staffed the gym to the countless others -athlete and non-athlete alike -- who found a comforting smile or a little inspiration from BJ. It only feels fitting that the person continuing on the women’s volleyball path that BJ paved was once a player on BJ’s court.

Penn State Beaver alumni and former assistant coach Jennifer Edwards has taken the reigns as interim head coach for the rest of the season. Edwards knows she has big shoes to fill. But we have all the confidence in the world that she’ll be successful. Only a person trained by the legend herself would be able to fill her shoes and hopefully drive the team to yet another Penn State University Athletic Conference playoff. 

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The content and opinions of this publication reside solely with the authors and not with the Pennsylvania State University or the Penn State Beaver Student Activity Fee Committee.


Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019


Skeleton joins biology class ALEXEY STERN

Senior Staff Writer

Penn State Beaver is the first campus to have received an accurate skeletal model of Lucy (Australopithecus), a 3-million-year-old fossil that has received international attention for offering revolutionary insight into human evolution. Cassandra Miller-Butterworth, associate professor of biology, received Lucy in early September through a grant from the Schreyer Institute and plans on using the skeleton in her spring evolution class, BIOL 427. Miller-Butterworth was elated when she received the news that she received the $7,100 Schreyer grant to purchase Lucy. “I was thrilled! I was surprised. I didn’t expect to get it because it was quite expensive,” Miller-Butterworth said. “It was an incredible opportunity to be able to buy Lucy and have her be available for students to use in the class. I was over the moon!” Miller-Butterworth said she believes having the skeleton in class will engage students and offer a better learning experience.

The Roar/Alexey Stern

Cassandra Miller-Butterworth, associate professor of biology, stands next to a skeletal model of “Lucy” (Australopithecus). Miller-Butterworth wants to use Lucy in her evolution class next semester.

“To actually have something physical that students can look at and measure rather than just looking at a photograph on a screen is really exciting,” Miller-Butterworth said. “For students to actually have something they can look at and touch with their own hands will help them

understand the size and shape of Lucy,” Miller-Butterworth said. “For me, the first time I saw Lucy, I didn’t realize how short she actually was. I knew she was tiny but when I actually put her right beside me, I truly understood and I don’t think you can get that from a photograph,

you know?” By having the Lucy skeleton available for students, Miller-Butterworth has ambitious plans for her future classes. “I plan on doing all of the activities we already do in class but I want to take it one step further. I hope

that students will find it engaging and interesting. I hope it will be a more interactive learning experience for students.” Miller-Butterworth said. “If it goes well with my upper-level classes, I also plan on using Lucy in my general classes. I think to actually see Lucy and to measure the fossil themselves will make a world of difference.” Siu-Len Navarro, a senior biology major, took Miller-Butterworth’s evolution class last year and said that she thinks Lucy will be a great addition to the class. “When I took the class, we were using various skulls to measure and compare, but having that tangible source to see how real archeologists do their work will be a great learning experience for the students,” she said. At the end of the day, Miller-Butterworth said that if Lucy impacts even one student, all of her effort would have been worth it. “If I only have one student who comes back years later and tells me how they remember when I brought out Lucy and that was when it all clicked for them, then it will all be worthwhile. All of the effort would have been worth it.”

Brodhead Bistro reinvents their menu J. CASH PCOLA Staff Writer

Cora Mankevich tries the Bistro’s new yogurt parfait bar.

The Roar/Emily Bonzo

Attention Brodhead Bistro diners: your favorite items may no longer be offered. The Bistro has retooled its madeto-order system to remove some items, such as mushrooms and onion rings, citing a requirement from University Park to make all kiosks have the same menu and to streamline the process. Options such as wraps in place of a bun and special sauces also can’t be ordered via the kiosk. According to Kelly Marcello, manager of Housing and Food Services, an unknown benefit of these new

limitations is the increase of sales within other areas of the Bistro. If a student can’t find what they are looking for on the kiosk, they’re likely to see the other options the Bistro offers, including healthier choices. Staples within the kiosk system have also improved. The 4-ounce frozen patty once found in the Penn State burger has now been replaced with a 5-ounce, fresh-beef patty. The quality of the French fries at the Bistro has also improved, according to both students and Marcello. However, prices have increased for kiosk items. A once $5 hamburgercombo meal has jumped to $8.50. A meal consisting of a large drink and

an order of chicken tenders will set you back $7. Food entrees are now on a threeweek rotation, with special dinners intermittently. Some entrees have been removed, and some new entrees have been introduced, such as quinoa bowls and shawarma. At the end of every semester, the rotational menus are assessed by number of sales. In some cases, items that have been away for more than a year will make a comeback, and according to Marcello, sell more than ever. When it comes to items that students want to come back, it’s only a matter of time, she said.

October 2019


Penn State Beaver Roar


Campus activities bring students together

The Roar/Kyara Parrish

The Roar/Sam Miller

Top left: Officer April Martin talks with Tyera Yates during Coffee with a Cop Oct. 2. Top right: Cameron Cedeno concentrates on his tomato toss Oct. 4 while a crowd watches in the pavilion behind Harmony Hall.

The Roar/Kyara Parrish

Bottom left: Angelina Wang admires some of Jose Galvez’s sample photos before his presentation. The Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer showed some of his work during a presentation Sept. 18. Bottom right: Cora Mankevich and Emily Bonzo share a conversation while attending the Coffee with a Cop event on Oct. 2. The Roar/Anthony Pappas

October 2019


New faculty say they feel at home at Beaver campus ALEX D’ITRI

New staff love being back in the swing of college life ALEX D’ITRI

Senior Staff Writer

Senior Staff Writer

Small classes, friendly faces, beautiful views and good food are some of the draws to teaching at Penn State Beaver, according to its four newest faculty members. Autumn Sabo, Jodi Gill, Linda Coleman and Stephen Kanicki have all become full-time members of the faculty this fall. Despite having come from different places and teaching in different fields, they all have one thing in common: they all say they love this little campus. Autumn Sabo, assistant professor of biology, said she has been working in plant conservation for more than eight years. She said that she saw teaching here as a good opportunity to share her interest in plant conservation to more people as well as conduct research on the topic. She said she grew up in a rural part of Pennsylvania and spent most of her free time outside enjoying nature. “If one student leaves my class with an interest or better understanding of conservation, I will consider that a success,” Sabo said. Jodi Gill, an instructor in administration of justice, has taught parttime at Penn State Beaver since the spring 2018 semester, but this is her first semester teaching full time. She is filling the position left vacant by LaVarr McBride, who left Beaver shortly before the start of this fall semester to take a similar job at Penn State Fayette. Gill also said she likes being at such a small campus because she can get to know all of her students. “It’s nice to have more time to be on campus,” said Gill. Linda Coleman, assistant teaching professor of communications, also said she loves Beaver campus. She started teaching here this semester to fill in for Associate Professor of Communications Juliette





Storr, who is on a year-long sabbatical. Coleman said that her daughter moved to the area, and when she came to visit, she fell in love with all it has to offer. From Garrison Days in Beaver to the Brodhead Bistro on campus, Coleman said she could see herself staying. Coleman said she just felt that there were “good vibes here.” Stephen Kanicki, the new instructor in IST, is less concerned with the natural beauty of the campus, but said he still feels at home here at Beaver. He said he has taught some small classes, some as small as two people, and he feels very comfortable with small class sizes. Kanicki said that he hopes to bring unique projects to his classes, like working on miniature computers that can be used for unique purposes. Kanicki is filling an IST teaching position that has been vacant for almost two years. He said he wants to see more of the area and would like to take his first trip to Pittsburgh soon to take in the sights and sounds of the city. Kanicki is also an author of the soon-to-be-released “The Seven Experiments,” a science fiction/horror novel.

Penn State Beaver Roar

Despite graduating years ago, college life hasn’t ended yet for Penn State Beaver’s new staff members. Romina Holder, Brittany Hudspeth and Frankie Checchio started as full-time staff this fall. Holder, the campus’ new student activities and residence life coordinator, said she felt this position was right for her because she has a passion for working with students. She is involved in the campus’ inclusivity initiative, which she said is important to her because she has benefited from similar programs throughout her education. “I have just always liked the college setting, seeing people grow and change,” Holder said. Holder lives in Harmony Hall with her husband, Jay, who enrolled as a student this fall. She said that she finds herself enjoying being involved in all of the campus’ activities. One of the first things she did upon arriving at the campus this summer was her “inspiration board” where students shared the things that drive them.



Brittany Hudspeth, a student personal counselor, has been in the field of human services for 15 years and said she is happy to be here at Beaver campus. She, too, said she feels very comfortable in an academic setting. She said that she likes everything about working in the Student Activities Suite. Hudspeth said she hopes she will be able to help students with all manner of issues including stress, depression, addiction and homesickness, all of which students can discuss with her confidentially. Students can schedule an appointment to meet with her in the Student Affairs and Engagement office in the Student Union Building. Hudspeth said she will be holding mindfulness skill-building ses-


sions every Wednesday at common hour. S he s a id s he hopes these group exercises will help students with their stress manageChecchio ment skills without the stigma that comes with seeking help with mental health. The new Reference and Instruction Librarian Frankie Checchio said he has always felt comfortable working in libraries and has worked in the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and the campus library at Robert Morris University. “Helping students is what makes me want to come to work in the morning,” Checchio said. He started in May and has enjoyed getting to know students on campus and being able to show them all of the resources available to them. Checchio said that a majority of the students he has worked with have been student athletes, which is especially meaningful to him as a former student athlete.

Recycle this Roar! Newspapers, office paper, catalogs, and magazines can all be recycled in one of the paper recycling bins on campus.


Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019


Students doubt vaping epidemic MATTHEW PALAHUNIK Senior Staff Writer

Senior Brian Brocato says he knows plenty of people who vape. “I would say 65 to 70 percent of my peers smoke or vape. I honestly don’t know if vaping is an epidemic,” Brocato said. “Epidemic is too harsh of a word.” Many in Washington disagree as U.S. lawmakers have introduced bills to put new limits on vaping. Some school districts have begun suing the manufacturers of electronic cigarettes, claiming they’re targeting their products to its students. Brocato said he has noticed parents are buying their kids e-cigarettes and freshmen in high school have JUULs, the most popular e-cigarette on the market. “That’s pretty young to be smoking an electronic cigarette,” Brocato added. In late September, JUUL announced it was suspending all

advertising amid growing concerns about youth vaping and health concerns about vape-related lung illnesses. According to AdWeek, the company spent $104 million advertising its products in the first half of 2019. One thing that makes vaping attractive to youth is the many flavors that JUUL and other manufacturers offer. Senior Tyrell Eleam personally does not vape but has noticed an increase in vaping, especially among youth. “Vaping Companies probably targeted the youth. No one wants regular vape, but once you put in crazy flavors, of course kids will get it,” Eleam said. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the health concerns related to vaping are significant. More than 1,000 cases of lung injury associated with e-cigarette use have been reported to the CDC as of Oct. 1 from 48 states and one U.S. territory. Of those, 18 deaths have

been confirmed, though most had a history of using THC-containing vape products. THC is the primary chemical found in marijuana. The CDC has issued a recommendation that people refrain from vaping, especially products containing THC. Stephanie Petroski, assistant teaching professor of biology, said she believes the CDC’s actions were “appropriate.” “A study was done five years ago and it showed there has been a significant increase in the amount of adolescents, specifically middle school students, who have tried vaping,” said Petroski. Petroski said vaping is a relatively new option and people – especially youth – are likely just not to be aware of the long-term health effects associated with it. “I can tell you when you are heating nicotine and vaporizing it and you are inhaling it; it may not

have as many chemicals as cigarette smoke, but you are still exposing your airways and lungs to irritation,” Petroski said. “Because it is not strictly regulated, there are chemicals in some of these flavorings that we aren’t sure of quite yet,” Petroski added. Sophomore Alexis DiPonio said she vapes because she it’s better than cigarettes. “I have a lot of friends who feel like they need it as soon as they wake up and throughout the day because of the nicotine addiction,” she said. “I think it’s not great, but neither are cigarettes or alcohol.” Junior Stefan Romaniuk vapes occasionally for the buzz. At least half of Romaniuk’s friends vape and most show signs of nicotine addiction. “Nicotine addiction isn’t new. Vaping is just an easier way to do it,” said Romaniuk. Junior Joshua Misiuda said he has recently gone cold turkey with vapes

and his addiction to nicotine. “I was addicted to nicotine and preferred vaping because it tasted better and was easy.” “I believe it is an issue among youth, especially minors,” said Misiuda. He said appropriate measures are being taken by the state and federal governments enforcing restrictions on vaping. “I want to say a quarter of my friends vape and they absolutely show qualities of addiction,” said Misiuda. Paula Carlin is an employee of Housing of Food Services who opposes vaping. “These kids think it’s cool to vape,” she said. “Vape companies targeted children with their advertisements, flashy bottle designs and flavorings.” “As a parent, I’m concerned about it. It is literally killing people,” said Carlin.

PERSON IN THE BISTRO What should be done in response to the growing trend of vaping, especially among young teens?

“I feel it should be banned all together. It is definitely a problem. If you are inhaling anything like that into your lungs, that will lead to health issues as many cases have proven.” Matthew Lewis Sophomore

“Making it completely illegal makes no sense because cigarettes are worse and people are trying to get off cigarettes, and they are using vaping as a route that could be better.” Kyara Parish Sophomore

“I definitely think more investigation needs to be done on it to see what is causing the problem, especially the illnesses and death of many people. If it is something that is causing these deaths and illnesses, it should be banned.”

Jessica Brighton-Mutz Freshman

“I personally think vaping is an ongoing epidemic, and I feel like vaping shouldn’t be done. I feel like the companies that are making vaping products should really focus on what the children are doing.” Brian Weibel Freshman

“I think people should take certain measures like raising the restriction age to 21, but I don’t think it necessarily will do much since so many underage people have access to vapes.” Abigail Rullo Sophomore

October 2019


Penn State Beaver Roar

Cafe serves fresh atmosphere with delicious kolaches KRISTINA F. HOGUE Staff Writer

In a cafe on the main street of Beaver, one can enjoy a selection of sweet or savory kolache options, pastries, coffee or specials in a quiet atmosphere. Cafe Kolache, located just 10 minutes from campus at 402 Third St., is just that: a relaxing meeting place. The owner, Kristi DeMaiolo Harper, said her main sticking point for location was to put her business somewhere that did not have a busy atmosphere like Cranberry or Robinson townships. “My heart and my passion, what I wanted this business to be, was a gathering place within a community,” Harper said. “To me, it’s more about serving awesome food and beverages with very good customer service, but it’s also about creating the environment and gathering place. Our mission is to serve God through serving the community.” Another reason Harper said she chose Beaver for her cafe is because she grew up in Beaver County and wanted her business to be close to home. The cafe makes its dough from scratch. Kolache bakers must start on the process of making the pastries at 3:30 a.m. to be ready for the cafe’s 6

Cafe Kolache displays sweet and savory pastries with fresh baked biscottis and kolaches.

a.m. opening. Cafe Kolache is open until 5 p.m. on weekdays, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, and they are closed on Sundays. Kolache is a Czech pastry that is very popular in Texas, as popular as bagels or doughnuts are here.

They are mainly a breakfast food and for breakfast they serve fruit-filled kolaches, kolaches filled with breakfast foods like bacon, eggs and sausage and kolaches filled with cream cheese. Cafe Kolache also makes lunch varieties stuffed with ham and cheese, pepperoni and cheese, chick-

The Roar/ Nate Sharif

en fajita and jalepeño, spinach and feta and the Kolache of the day. Students can enjoy the cafe’s selection of baked goods and beverages along with the calm atmosphere. Freshman Joseph Sestito said his favorite thing to order is the bacon kolache because “it’s an almost but-

tery roll with a ton of savory bacon pieces that’s very soft and very warm.” Sophomore Caitlin Downes said she appreciates Cafe Kolache’s food and atmosphere. “Their kolaches are so good, the people are nice and there’s (free) WiFi.” Each kolache has a different process, but they all have two things in common: it’s a labor-intensive process, and “They’re made with love,” Harper said. Harper wasn’t always a baker; she began her professional career as a banker. After Harper graduated from Penn State with a major in German and a minor in Business, she moved to Texas to pursue a career in international business. Harper then began working for a British banking company. She had never dreamt of owning her own cafe, but after the company’s biggest client went bankrupt and 9/11 happened, she decided she needed to move back home with her family. Harper contacted a kolache business in Texas and, while she was looking for a location for her shop, she learned how to make kolaches. She said she never thought about owning her own shop, but added, “The thing that just kept resurfacing was kolaches.”

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Penn State Beaver Roar October 2019


Campus bids BJ Bertges farewell MATYLDA ZAMUDIO Senior Staff Writer

After eight years, Barbara Jean Bertges’ tenure as assistant athletic director and women’s volleyball coach has come to an end. Bertges has accepted a position at the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) as the associate director of championships and development. She began work Sept. 24.  Athletic Director Andy Kirschner said he felt mixed emotions about Bertges’ departure. “(I was) very excited for BJ (because) it was a tremendous opportunity she has been given,” he said. “At the same time, (I was) very sad for the Penn State Beaver community. We lost a really good one there,” Kirschner added. Kirshner said as an assistant administrator, Bertges’ work ethic alone will be missed. “She was my righthand (woman) and did a lot for the department.” “I’m going to miss a lot of the things she worked on including marketing initiatives with Justin (Vorbach, associate director of enrollment

BJ Bertges strategizes with her team Sept. 7.

management).” Bertges said the thing she will miss the most about the campus is the people. “The Student Affairs staff is a unique group because everybody offers such a different skill-set in terms of what we’re able to provide for our students,” she said. “It’s been really fun working with that group and being able to help students develop.” Bertges added that she’ll also miss the students. “That’s the reason that

The Roar/Matylda Zamudio

everyone here has a job.” Sophomore Ramiya  White said while it was heartbreaking and emotional when the team received the news, she’s thankful for how much Bertges helped her grow as a person. “With the game (of volleyball), she made me want to push harder and unlock a talent to see what else I could do,” White said. “I’m grateful to have known her. She’s like my second mom.” Sophomore Maria Slater said after the players got over the sad-

ness, everybody was appreciative and happy for her new venture. “This is an opportunity you can’t miss,” Slater said. “We’re very proud of her.” Sophomore Heaven Bowman said getting to see Bertges again serves as motivation for the team to earn a spot in the USCAA National Tournament. “We want to go see BJ, that’s literally our thing,” Bowman said. “We go to nationals, we see BJ.” During Bertges’ eight seasons as head coach, she accrued a 102-98 record. She helped the team qualify for six Penn State University Athletic Conference playoff appearances and finished as runners up in the 2018 PSUAC championship match. Bertges also coached two USCAA All-Americans, 20 PSUAC All-Conference players and 38 PSUAC Academic All-Conference award winners. Jennifer Edwards replaced Bertges as the new interim coach for the rest of the season. A search for a permanent coach will began at that time. Edwards said she was honored to take the position.

“Having played volleyball all four years at Penn State Beaver, I have a special passion and place in my heart for it,” she said. Edwards said she was nervous about filling the shoes of an eightyear head coach, but Bertges helped her transition into the role. “I was able to observe the way she worked with the girls, even in oneon-one meetings,” she said. “It can be intimidating walking into a practice or game with 16 girls looking to you for guidance, support and motivation.” “But, working with BJ helped give me an idea of how to execute certain things and carry myself with confidence.” Bertges said she looks forward to seeing what the rest of the season holds for the team. “Making the conference championships last year with a young team, evening going into this year, and seeing that group return and embracing the new freshmen class and transfers, their potential is through  the roof,” Bertges said. “I’m excited to see what they do,” she added.

Women’s soccer team falls short of playoff berth SPENCER MYERS Staff Writer

The Penn State Beaver Lady Lions soccer team, with a 2-3 conference record and 3-5 overall, most likely won’t make it to the Penn State University Athletic Conference playoffs this fall. The team got off to a semi-rocky start to the season losing its first three games. The team won just three out of the eight games played so far. New Coach Rand Warsaw said he sees potential in his new team. Beaver showed some prowess with an 8-0 win at Penn State Lehigh Valley Sept. 22 and a 3-2 win at home over Penn State Schuylkill Oct. 5. In the win over Schuylkill, fresh-

The Roar/Matylda Zamudio

Stephanie Sosa-Bravo kicks the ball away from a Schuylkill player Oct. 5.

man Veronica Andujar scored an early goal, and followed with a second 20-minutes into the game. Sophomore Stephanie Sosa-Bravo scored the third goal before the end

of the first half. The two also led the scoring in the decisive win over Lehigh Valley earlier in the season. Andujar scored 4 goals, Sosa-Bravo scored 3 and fresh-

man Rachel Gaiser scored 1. However, conference losses against Penn State Scranton 1-0 Sept. 21, Penn State Hazelton 7-0 Sept. 28, and Penn State Mont Alto 5-0 Oct. 7 are giving the team a run for its money. Warsaw took over the team at the start of the 2019 season and hopes to build the team up and prepare for seasons to come. Originally from Michigan, Warsaw lives in Pittsburgh and says he has a great passion for coaching soccer. When he’s not on the field, you can find him teaching math on campus. Warsaw said he is facing some challenges with the team so far. Out of the 19 women on the team, 16 are

freshmen. Most of these players have never played on a team together. However, he said they have great synergy working together and high team spirit. “I view this year as a building year,” Warsaw said. He would like the team to improve both individually and as a whole. Warsaw plans to bring on five to 10 new recruits next year. He has already started the recruitment process and hopes to bring in some high-skill players for the next season. Andy Kirschner, Penn State Beaver’s athletics director, said he hopes to have Warsaw around for years to come. He hopes his skills and background help stabilize the program and help the team grow.

October 2019


Penn State Beaver Roar


Lady Lions battle for playoffs MATYLDA ZAMUDIO Senior Staff Writer

With the season full of ups and downs, the Penn State Beaver Lady Lions volleyball team is tied for third in the Penn State University Conference Athletic Conference (PSUAC) tournament. Beaver sits at a 6-3 record in the PSUAC Western conference and is 15-6 overall for the season. After going 1-2 in their first three games, the Lady Lions quickly turned their season around by forging a five-game winning streak. The streak included a rematch of last year’s PSUAC semi-final match against Penn State DuBois on Sept. 11, where they swept the rivals in their first conference game of the season, 3-0. Sophomore Maria Slater said beating DuBois was crucial for the team to climb up the PSUAC Western conference rankings. “The DuBois game was really important because, if you think about it, last year we had to beat DuBois at their house and that was crazy,” Slater said. “We didn’t know

The Roar/Matylda Zamudio

Amanda Mike, No. 2, scores a kill against Penn State Shenango Oct. 7.

if we were going to win. Everybody was nervous, but we won.” “So, the fact that we beat them at the beginning of this year really put a statement out on our team and in the conference,” Slater added. “It really helped us move up rank-wise.” Sophomore Ramiya White said she knew the game would be tough since DuBois felt they had something prove after last season’s loss. “We knew they wanted revenge

for losing to us in the semifinals, so that was more motivation to beat them,” White said. The teams were neck-in-neck for most of the opening set, but Beaver made a late 10-4 run with the help of back-to-back kills from White and took a 25-19 win in the first. Beaver played a closer contest in the second but pulled away with a 25-21 set-win. In the third set, DuBois took an early 4-0 run, but

Beaver tied it up at 5-5. The Lady Lions then forced a 5-1 run of their own midway through the set to take a 17-12 lead and went on to win the third by a final score of 25-19. But following their winning streak, the Lady Lions picked up three conference losses over the next four games against Penn State Mont Alto on Sept. 15, Penn State Greater Allegheny on Sept. 21 and raining PSUAC champions Penn State Fayette on Sept. 24. Coach Jennifer Edwards said the 3-0 loss to Fayette was the team’s toughest this season. Fayette outscored Beaver 25-14 in the first set and 25-19 in the final two sets. “I think our toughest loss thus far was against Penn State Fayette (at) home,” Edwards said. “We really had an opportunity to take them down, but we beat ourselves.” “We weren’t playing our ‘A’ game and self-destructed due to lack of communication on the court and getting in our own heads.” But Beaver has put the season back on track after sweeping four PSUAC Eastern conference teams

during the second annual PSUAC Crossover Weekend event at University Park. The weekend started with wins against Penn State Schuylkill and Penn State York on Sept. 28, followed by wins against Penn State Hazleton and Penn State Brandywine on Sept. 29. Sophomore Heaven Bowman said the 4-0 finish built up the team’s confidence heading into the final lap of the regular season. “It definitely boosted us,” Bowman said. “It wasn’t what we were used to because we don’t have a lot of experience playing that side (of the conference), but it definitely showed us, going in as a team and playing as a team, we’re unbeatable.” The final conference bouts are ‘must-wins’ for Beaver, White said. “Our biggest focus right now is to beat Fayette (Oct. 22).” After defeating Penn State Shenango Oct. 7 and Penn State Mont Alto Oct. 9, Beaver shares third place with Mont Alto. The Lady Lions will be on the road in their next game against the University of Cincinnati Clermont College at 2 p.m. Oct. 12.

Men’s soccer heads straight for postseason

KEON BUTLER Staff Writer

Penn State Beaver’s men’s soccer team is in third place in the Penn State University Athletic Conference with its 5-0 conference record, 8-3 overall. The team is virtually assured a spot in the PSUAC playoffs. With recent wins against Penn State Hazleton 11-0 Sept. 28, Penn State Greater Allegheny 6-0 Oct. 1 and Penn State Mont Alto 3-0 Oct. 7, the men’s soccer team is in fourth place in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association Conference. After facing tough losses against Berkley College of New Jersey, John-

son & Wales University of North Carolina and Point Park University in the beginning of the season, the team is now on an eight-game winning streak. The team has a large roster with 25 players, including 10 freshmen. Coach Jim Van Kirk said the team struggled early, but he likes where his team stands as of now and where the team is headed. Captain Williams Cruz, a sophomore, agrees. “It feels good after starting off rough, but now that we found our momentum, we want to continue that,” Cruz said. Van Kirk said he was pleased that his team had a hard-fought game

The Roar/Matylda Zamudio

Danylo Yakymov races for the ball against Penn State Mont Alto Oct. 7.

against Johnson & Wales despite them being a top-ranked school that made it to the USCAA nationals last year. Although there have been some

tough losses, Van Kirk said he believes that they do not depict the performance of the team, and the team is solid from here on out. “I hope for us to improve our field

confidence,” senior captain Darrion Gilmore said. “I have high expectations for this team.” In its most recent 3-0 win against Mont Alto at home Oct. 7, freshman Mishael Garcia scored the first goal, followed by back-to-back goals from sophomore Danylo Yakymov and senior John Kazmierczyk near the end of the first half. Yakymov scored three goals in the 6-0 win at Greater Allegheny Oct. 1, along with a goal each from Garcia, sophomore Tyler Van Kirk and freshman Jake Ross. The team expects to continue its wins as they take on Valley Forge College Oct. 11 and Penn State Brandywine Oct. 12.

Profile for Penn State Beaver

October 2019 Roar  

October 2019 issue of The Roar, Penn State Beaver's student newspaper. Stories include a peek at the new skeletons on campus; a memorial to...

October 2019 Roar  

October 2019 issue of The Roar, Penn State Beaver's student newspaper. Stories include a peek at the new skeletons on campus; a memorial to...