Volume 94, Issue 6

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VOL 94 : 06 September 28th, 2016 torchonline.com

The independent student newspaper of St. John’s University

Sustainability at SJU DIRECTOR of Environmental and energy conservation talks energy efficiency ANGELICA ACEVEDO News Editor Embedding sustainable and energy efficient practices in St. John’s University has been an ongoing conversation for more than 35 years. With the New York Carbon Challenge set in motion by Mayor Bill de Blasio, the city has committed itself to becoming greener by “reducing citywide greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent below 2005 levels by 2050,” according to the NYC Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. The challenge has already included 17 of New York City’s leading universities, 11 of its largest hospital organizations, 12 global companies, 19 residential management firms and 19 hotels. All of these have already reduced 30

“In order to ‘green’ the campus, we need as many people involved as possible, So the more people who understand the present condition of carbon footprint, the more people we can get involved in reducing our carbon footprint and making it more sustainable.” -Thomas Goldsmith-

percent of their building-based emissions. According to Thomas Goldsmith, director of the university’s Environmental and Energy Conservation department, St. John’s is one of the 17 universities leading this challenge, thanks to all the initiatives taken throughout the past nine years when the University first signed the challenge. “In order to ‘green’ the campus, we need as many people involved as possible,” said Goldsmith. “So the more people who understand the present condition of carbon footprint, the more people we can get involved in reducing our carbon footprint and making it more sustainable.”

For instance, the Queens campus has received Tree Campus USA participation awards for the past four years for planting over 3,000 trees and meeting certain criteria that includes having a tree care committee, tree care program with funds and an Academic Service Learning Component. However, there are some who believe that the University isn’t living up to its full potential when it comes to applying sustainable practices on campus. As early as 1978, a former student, Bill Lauto, proposed that the school install solar panels in St. Augustine Hall to provide heating. The proposal was dismissed because the school didn’t see it as a good enough investment at the time. After meeting Lauto, Basilio G. Monteiro, an associate professor in the International Communication Department, is bringing back his idea to install these solar panels in St. Augustine, which is scheduled to undergo reoperations in 2017. Monteiro believes that it would be a step-forward for the University in terms of setting an example for the community and reaching energy independence. “The university is a very important citizen of the Queens community,” Monteiro said. “And as an important citizen, I think we have to provide leadership in terms of how we can contribute towards this problem that we have of climate change.” But, according to ​G​oldsmith, the installment of solar panels won’t occur any time soon because the University is primarily focusing on conserving energy and renovating infrastructures first. Sophomore and Earth Club President, Carissa Herb, became interested in Monteiro’s initiatives when a friend of hers introduced her to the topic last year. Continued on page 3


INSIDE THE ISSUE Peace week: Check out highlights from all of last week’s events Pages 8 & 9




Managing Board XCIV

Suzanne Ciechalski, Editor-in-Chief

Gina Palermo, Managing Editor Michael Ambrosino, General Manager


Troy Mauriello Co-Sports Editor Carmine Carcieri Co-Sports Editor Michael Ambrosino Entertainment Editor Erin Bola Social Media Coordinator

Angelica Acevedo News Editor Bryant Rodriguez Opinion Editor Steven Verdile Design Editor Gina Palermo Photo Editor Isabella Bruni Chief Copy Editor

Advertising (718)-9906756 Business 990-6756 Editorial Board 990-5652

Features 990-6444 News 990-6756 Opinion 990-6445 Sports 990-6445

Alyssa Dugan Social Media Coordinator

Reza Moreno Features Editor

jim baumbach


Staff and contributors Chyna Davis Arianna Pintado Breandan South Shabib Afzal Nayab Khan Katherine Acquavella Nick McCreven Dylan Hornik Derrell Bouknight Param Yonzon Kaylee Herndon

Keisha Raymond David Rosario Jon Manarang Kamila Pawelec Ariana Ortiz Angela Kellett Mia Strizzi Naomi Arnot Yenny Ng Alex Brewington Carlos Ortiz

Rebecca McFadden Raven Haynes Cammi Roberts Courtney Dixon Brittani Wright Elijah Angulo Michael Anthony Jackson Ray Benjamin Achilles Kailey Licata Rahul Lal

The Torch is the official student newspaper of St. John’s University. The Torch is written, edited, designed and produced by students of the University. All contents are the sole responsibility of the editors and the editorial board and do not necessarily represent the views of the administration, faculty or students of St. John’s University unless specifically stated.

To contact the Torch by mail:

The Torch, St. John’s University 8000 Utopia Parkway Queens, NY 11439

The Torch is typically published on Wednesdays and publishes approximately 20 issues throughout the academic year. Copies are distributed for free on campus and through mail subscriptions.




Sustainability initiatives in St. John’s

Conserving energy rather than installing solar panels is the primary goal for the University But, according to Goldsmith, the installment of solar panels won’t occur any time soon because the University is primarily focusing on conserving energy and renovating infrastructures first. Sophomore and Earth Club President, Carissa Herb, became interested in Monteiro’s initiatives when a friend of hers introduced her to the topic last year. After meeting with Monteiro and discussing the idea of solar panel installations, Herb did extensive research on carbon reduction, and even wrote an opinion piece for the Torch last year. “A lot of the repercussion of carbon emissions are irreversible so those that we can control, we might as well,” Herb said. “It just makes sense to do what’s better for the environment … We have to think long term.” She then met with Goldsmith to discuss the possibility of installing solar panels on St. Augustine, and says that he was very transparent with her about what the University has already done and will be doing in the future to increase sustainability on campus. Goldsmith provided Herb with information of some of these projects, which include: High Efficiency Chilled Water Plants, Lighting Projects and Domestic Water Reduction. Altogether, the University invested $25 million - $5 million of which were

grants - and have saved the school $2.1 million in energy. These projects were funded by the DASNY TELP, NYSERDA and ARRA, which are grant programs designed to help institutions invest in environmentally-friendly equipment. The school now has a payback period of nine and a half years for all these projects combined. Thanks to these energy efficiency projects, St. John’s has reduced 6,200 tons of carbon emissions, according to Goldsmith’s documents. With Goldsmith’s help, Herb concluded that the St. Augustine building isn’t the best way to go about installing solar panels. The repairs that will be made are cosmetic, so in order for the panels to work a reconstruction of the whole interior would have to take place, which wouldn’t be practical. Yet, Herb found that in 2013 Mr. Goldsmith proposed the installation of solar panels in Taffner Field House. According to Goldsmith, the project would propose two sets of solar panels that are photovoltaic and could provide lighting to the lacrosse field and Carnesecca Arena. Goldsmith informed Herb that the project would end up costing the school about $536,000 with a 16-year payback period, saving the school around $33,000 a year in the long run. But the project wasn’t picked up. Herb

thinks that this is due to the payback period that the school would take on. Goldsmith says that for the installation of solar panels to make sense, upgrading and renovating campus infrastructures and equipment in order to conserve energy has to come first. This way, by reducing the use of wasteful energy, the next step would be to ‘build green’ or install solar panels.

Continued from page one

“...The right thing to do, as well as what Pope Francis urges, is to reduce the culture of waste. And in reducing waste, we’re conserving.” - Thomas Goldsmith -

“In a university there are so many little resources, so many competing for those resources,” said Goldsmith. “A good example of that is if you take the Marillac classroom environment ... that’s old, outdated infrastructures and it’s very inefficient infrastructures, so it’s costing a lot of money to heat and cool the classrooms.” “We do energy conservation projects first, but we also incorporate energy ef-

ficiency into a master plan to improve the student experience on campus,” said Goldsmith. “A good example is when we do the Marillac classrooms, we’ll incorporate energy efficiency mechanical systems into the new classrooms in Marillac.” However, Herb argues that New York State offers grants that will take away $102,000 from the cost of the project as stated in the pricing reports of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. Therefore, Herb believes the project can produce payoffs, as it means that St. John’s is keeping with the NYC Carbon Challenge. “The installation of solar panels on campus would not only help us reduce our carbon footprint,” says Herb, “But allow us to be a leader for the rest of the bureau to make more environmentally friendly choices.” Despite this, Goldsmith brings up a counterargument. Although he doubts that there is a probability of installing solar panels in the roof of Taffner anytime soon, he believes that this won’t set back St. John’s role as a leader in sustainability. “If you look at the models for New York State, what they’re asking you to do is to reduce your consumption first before you buy into green power,” said Goldsmith. “So the right thing to do, as well as what Pope Francis urges, is to reduce the culture of waste. And in reducing waste, we’re conserving.”

Prime Minister of Kosovo visits Queens campus

Staff Writer

On Thursday night faculty and students throughout the St. John’s community had the opportunity to listen to Kosovo’s Prime Minister, Isa Mustafa, who addressed economic and political developments in the country following independence from Serbia in February of 2008. “I am very honored to be here to present at St. John’s University,” said Prime Minister Mustafa. The event was organized by the Department of Mass Communication and Dr. Basilio Monteiro, Chairperson of the Division of Mass Communication. Students appreciated getting the chance to listen to the Prime Minister through his translator, as he spoke Albanian. “Great to know that the University supports international progress,” says Wisdom Banogu, a St. John’s graduate student. “It was a great experience to hear from the Prime Minister of Kosovo,” says Alicia Guzman, a government and politics major. “And It was truly amazing to see so many students engaged in world politics.” Mustafa has been the Prime Minister of the Republic of Kosovo, Leader of the Democratic League since 2014 and served as Mayor of Prishtina for two terms. Skilled in economics, Mustafa leads the government and mentioned plans he hopes to implement for his country. He recently made changes to their fiscal policy to expand untaxed imports and decrease value added taxes on food and

public utilities. Kosovo is still dependent on the international community for financial and technical aid, as it cannot sustain itself without this aid. Initially after the Kosovo war from 1998 to 1999 between Albanians, Serbs


“Great to know that the University supports international progress.” - Wisdom Banogu -

and government of Yugoslavia, the country declared an emergency period. “We have had great support from the United States into these processes,” said Prime Minister Mustafa. They continue to have a good cooperation with neighboring countries Albania, Montenegro and Macedonia, while trying to normalize relations with other countries. Although there has been recent construction of power plants Kosovo is still in need of proper energy. That requires extreme funding. The Prime Minister mentions economic development, European and Euro-Atlantic integration, strengthening laws and the quality of health and education as the main challenges being faced by by the country. With Kosovo’s citizens being among the poorest of Europe as of

2014, a lot has to be done to change the circumstances. Unemployment is high - especially structural unemployment. There is negative trade balance, low growth rate and privatization. “We have a very young powerful population. One-fourth of population is in education process,” says Mustafa. According to Mustafa, the government is trying to grow 18,000 jobs, turning informal employment to formal employment. Even the education system in Kosovo is being reconstructed. They are still trying to include every member of the generation to have a quality education. Many languages are spoken in most universities, primary and secondary schools - such as Albanian, Serbian, Turkish, Croatian and Bosnian. There will always be a diversity amongst the government throughout Kosovo, according to Mustafa. There is a heavy Albanian population but the constitution makes sure other ethnicities are represented in the government with Serbian, Bosnian and Turkish ministers. The Prime Minister expressed how hard it was to take action based on their system to change laws. If two-thirds of parliament is in favor but not two-thirds of the people, they can’t change the law. If they do not have 14 of the votes in the community the voting can not change either. According to Kosovo’s administration, the government implements “a fair system.” Prime Minister Mustafa and his team provided background information on

Kosovo, and took time to answer a plethora of questions from students and faculty. St. John’s University was fortunate to directly hear the Prime Minister’s efforts abroad.


Prime Minister Mustafa visited St. John’s University on Thursday, Sept. 22 and talked about his country’s politics.




Students react to first round of presidential debates Features Editor

On Monday, Sept. 26th, the first 2016 Presidential Debate between Republican candidate, Donald Trump, and Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, was shown live inside the Sodona Coffee House inside the D’Angelo Center. About 50 students gathered inside to catch a glimpse of the buzzed about presidential debate, including the organizations YAF (Young Americans for Freedom) and College Democrats and Republicans. Shown on CNN live from Hofstra University, students kept piling in trying to find seats. Snacks were provided by Student Government. Two cut outs of the presidential candidates were brought by Professor Brian Browne, that many students were eager to take photos with. “Donald, I know you live in your own reality,” said Clinton. Many points were brought up that people were eager to hear about. Clinton talked about the environment such as solar panels. This then lead to the problem of the employment rate and bringing more jobs to the middle class. Trump then points out to Clinton’s last 30 years of our Secretary of State doing nothing, but now all of a sudden has a solution. “We have to do a much better

job at keeping our jobs,” he said. This then lead to Clinton bringing up her husband’s term, former president, Bill Clinton. She explained how she had much experience in bringing in jobs with the example of how manufacturing jobs went up in the 90s. With Trump interrupting Clinton with many “excuse me’s”, the debate got heavy at some points. Trump seemed to be keeping his mouth shut at most times, maybe with the help of advisors and writers. Clinton gave her quick two cents by promoting her book, coming to shelves this week. Andrew Klawiter said, “I’m here to better understand the platforms of each candidate, understand how each reacts under pressure, and honestly see how much Trump makes a fool of himself trying to sound like he has an education and understanding of the country and the political sector.” Students came to gather with friends to watch the debate for many reasons, but to really see our two presidential candidates under the pressure of questions regarding our countries biggest problems. “I’m watching the debate less about their policy, because it’s already been said, but how both candidates compose themselves,” said Maria Keasey. Many of these policies include, taxes, college debt, race, cyber security and gun

violence. Clinton’s answers on these topics were measured compared to Trump’s, whose answers often included snide and sarcastic comments directed at Clinton, such as how she basically told ISIS how she plans on fighting them. “You have no plan,” said Trump. Many government and politics majors were sitting down to watch, including Keasey, eager to hear Trump’s mistakes on the


“I’m watching the debate less about their policy, because it’s already been said, but how both candidates compose themselves.” - Maria Keasey -

policy of race and “homegrown violence.” After Clinton went on about race and gun violence, it was Trump’s two minute turn. When it was Trump’s turn to speak, many students already sounded aggravated in anticipation of his answer. Clinton replied to many of Trump’s

Presidential Face Off General Elections

Before Presidential Debate

43 41 Bloomberg

After Presidential Debate

46 43 LA Times/USC Tracking

rants, by saying how Trump’s plans would cause $5 billion in debt. Being democratic, Clinton can’t get away from bringing up taxes on the wealthy, “I think it’s time they pay their fair share.” Although most issues are already known between both candidates, it was time for the two to show their confidence and out win the other. Trump stumbled upon some of his words, while observes felt Clinton did not even say one mishap throughout the debate. “Know what else I prepared for? I prepared to be president,” said Clinton. “And I think that’s a good thing.” This quote brought a lot of claps from the audience, bringing together a group of individuals who are ready to vote Trump out. With recent tragedies from Tulsa and Charlotte, both candidates had what they had to say about gun violence. Clinton talked about restoring trust within the community, whereas Trump emphasizes on law and order multiple times. Of course the debate couldn’t end with just a little blaming, as Clinton called Trump a supporter of the invasion of Iraq. We can finish off with a few, “I want to make America great again” slogans. If you missed the debate, be sure to check out the highlights online at CNN.com.

Features 5


Get the ‘scoop’ on Eddie’s Sweet Shop ISABELLA BRUNI Chief Copy Editor

The art of the ice cream sundae and float has slowly lost touch with today’s generation and has been replaced by Dippin’ Dots and smoothies. Lactose deficiencies and vegan choices seem to be common lifestyles for many college students, but doesn’t divulging into a huge bowl of ice cream with whipped cream and hot fudge just sound amazing? Located at 105-29 Metropolitan Avenue in Forest Hills, Queens is a hidden gem that keeps the tradition of ice cream desserts called Eddie’s Sweet Shop, which is only a ten minute drive from campus. With a history dating all the way back to 1909, Eddie’s holds onto its classic charm with their original register, marble countertop and one of the first electric refrigerators from the 1960s. When you walk through the doors, there is a certain aura that makes it seem like you’ve travelled back in time where a sundae would cost under a dollar. Eddie’s is known for their homemade ice-cream that is rich in taste and has just the right amount of sweetness. Their prices are doable, ranging from five dollars to nine dollars for their various choices of sundaes, floats, shakes, freezes and banana splits, as well as simple ice cream scoops. The price ranges by scoop for sundaes, ice cream sodas, dishes and add on toppings. I ordered a sundae with coffee chip icecream, whipped cream and M&M’s that came to me served on a literal silver platter. My three friends and I went to Eddie’s and ordered an ice cream soda with coca-cola, an ice cream cone with coconut and raspberry sherbet, and a sundae with coconut and hot fudge. The portion sizes were not large, but they were filling and very satisfying.

The ice-cream itself was so much better than any ice cream brand from a box, but the real special factor from Eddie’s is the atmosphere. I could almost imagine girls in poodle skirts sharing milkshakes and greaser and jocks hanging out. If you ever want to venture off campus to just get away for a bit, then go for a quick dessert at Eddie’s Sweet Shop.


Eddie’s Sweet Shop is a Forest Hills favorite for ice cream lovers.

Sustainability is the next big fashion fad you need ALEXIA DOLAMAKIAN Contributing Writer If you are any bit concerned with where your cotton is grown, or #whomadeyourclothes, you may already be familiar with the idea of sustainability. You may even be a tree-hugger who shuns people for using an excessive amount of napkins when cleaning up a spill, or refuses to do work on paper when there is an online alternative. Perhaps you are not this person, and you are scared to continue reading. Do continue reading, this is not a hippie-dippie guilt trip to become vegan and recycle all of your clothes only to start a new life in the woods. The concept of only taking what you absolutely need from the Earth has been left in the dust. This could be due to the fact that marketing and advertising have developed into conniving- though affective- influences aimed at consumers and

their human need for comfort. The average self wants comfort: cheap, quick, convenient. Que fast fashion. Of course the farmer in India lives to grow cotton with killer pesticides and the designer just has to use engineered unnatural textiles. How else would you be able to walk right into your favorite store and pick-up those $20 high-rise jean culottes, or the next graphic tee to be worn once or not all? You do not even have to pay the poisoned man who picked the cotton, or the tired, frail woman who assembled the garment. It is really so simple and efficient. What does all this “comfort” mean, for real though? And why does it ironically leave a sad pit in the heart? The truth is, comfort is good and naturally sought out; the consumption habits you have developed...not so much. The world of fashion, designers and resources provided all can be combined ethically to provide you with the same amount of contentment, if not more.

In fact, many lines at this year’s NYFW were created with the intention of making innovative and genuine pieces by thoughtfully sourcing materials and not harming the environment. Unfortunately, the average consumer does not look to the runway to decide their next purchase. That leaves a majority of the population blindly following trends and purchasing what is put in their face by advertising and marketing. You can still wake up from this controlling and sleep-consuming state. Though the options are scarce when it comes to the conscious clothing retailers in America, it does not mean that convenient purchases die with eco fashion. There are tons of online retailers that support the sustainable, socially conscious movement--just do your research. Europe is already in the swing of the ethical and mad cool designs--and this extends into much more than just their clothing. It is a lifestyle unacquainted with most of America.

Wholefoods even sells organic cotton, fair trade apparel. It is important that cotton be organic to reduce the impact of chemicals on the earth and on farmers. Do not forget that your precious skin, which is the largest organ of your body, faces the consequences of those harmful chemicals too. Aside from the fast fashion vs. slow fashion revolution, your best option is to just reduce consumption. Make smarter choices and choose sparingly. If you do not need it and can muster up the willpower to deny worldly attraction, by all, means walk away from the deceiving comfort of your next purchase. If you truly would adore and appreciate the item, get it and wear it until the clock strikes twelve, then take it to your nearest clothing and textile recycling drop-off. The self must seek truth in order to find comfort. Once you understand the truth that one can be happy without excess consumption, you will find comfort.

6 Features


Six reasons why fall is every girl’s favorite season

BRITTANI WRIGHT Contributing Writer

Summertime in New York City has finally come to an end, and Sept. 22 commenced the beautiful season of autumn. With “End of Summer” sales blowing out as of your top retailer stores, and pumpkin spice taking over all your go-to drink at Starbucks, a cascade of colorful leaves all over the city will soon have us all in the fall spirit. As the temperature lowers from the blazing 90s to a cooler 70s, it’s finally time to put our bralettes, shorts and sandals away and grab our scarves, trench coats and UGG boots. Fall is every fashionista’s favorite season and here are six reasons why. Layering As the trees become more and more bare and the temperatures finally start settling down, it’s officially that time of year to start layering. For those of us that can pull off a nice color block, layering is a

great way to blend different color schemes to pull off the perfect fall look. Also, for the days it’s extra chilly in the morning and gets hot by noon, layering is a foolproof way to keep cool. Fall Colors May it’s the colors you find throughout nature or the colors in your closet, the maroons, browns, mustard yellows, and olive greens make everything about fall even more enjoyable. ‘Tis the season for sooty cosmetics such as Hang-Up and Fresh Moroccan lipsticks from MAC or Partner In Crime and Bahama Mama nail lacquers from Essie. The warm colors of the leaves are pure bliss, so why not match, it’s fly. Halloween If there’s one thing Mean Girls taught us. Halloween is that one holiday where ladies can take their fashion sense and creativity to the next level. Cold Weather Sweater Weather is finally upon us and it couldn’t have came sooner. The hot summer New York days have finally came to an

end, and as much as we loved the past few months filled with Vitamin D, we’re ready for our cool fall days. As fashionista’s start pulling turtlenecks and UGGs out of their closets, we bid farewell to ‘Summer ’16’. Boots If you haven’t invested in a nice pair of fall boots yet, what could you possibly be waiting for? With Instagram retailers such as SimmiShoes and PublicDesire serving all your footwear aesthetics, it’s not hard to find the perfect pair of boots for you personal style. Whether you’re a thigh high kind of woman or you like to keep it simple with a pair of black ankle booties, it’s time to strut your stuff. Straight Hair With humid, summer days out of the way, ladies can say goodbye to kinky, wavy and curly hairstyles and finally whip out those flat irons to bring straight hair back. Not only is the long hair look aesthetically pleasing, it also keeps your ears warm from the cold, for those of us that hate uncomfortable earmuffs.


Woman spotted during February’s fashion week.

Photoshoot ready workshop New fall trends to try this year VACHON OSBY Special to the Torch

REZA MORENO Features Editor

Working with fellow creative people is always the best source of inspiration and learning for any artist to advance their own crafts and take their artistry to the next level. This past week, the Red House accomplished our second workshop titled “Photoshoot Ready” where we met interested creative people along with Red House members, at the very top of the parking garage behind DAC, to collaborate on a series of photoshoots. It was the perfect opportunity for our members to become more comfortable with collaborating in a group setting, and to shamelessly get some new headshots and social media content out of the way. Our main goal for the workshop was to accomplish our executive board photoshoot while engaging with each of our members to get the creative juices flowing. Instead of establishing a theme for the shoot, we based our aesthetic on a black, grey and white color scheme. It was the first day of fall, as well as one of the sunniest days of the week, so we all received the opportunity to play around with new outfits and styles. Everyone came out looking as a fashion club should, ready to conquer, “Photoshoot Ready.” We will continue to have workshops and engaging events, such as our successful second workshop which was a slight upset from our first, Denim DIY. The Red House hopes to continue our mission to inspire and connect the entire St. John’s community through consistent, creative collaborations and beautiful artistic movements.

The leaves are slowly undressing from the trees as they fall to the ground--but not fast enough. The first day of fall was last week, yet it still seems that summer is holding its grip until the last minute. It’s hard to transition your wardrobe from summer to fall, but possible. Here is how you can dress with these top fashion fall trends when it’s humid during the day, but chilly at night. You can never go wrong with layers. Cardigans, button-ups, sweatshirts, blazers and scarves. Stay away from full-on summer outfits and keep reading for more on how to find your perfect fall look that will break necks on your way to class. One perfect thing about living on the East Coast is the ability to see autumn in the air. You see the leaves change color to beautiful shades of orange, red and dark green and you see pumpkins everywhere. You feel the cold air slowly seep in, sweaters are your main go-to. The runways this year for fall 2016 collections had a lot of print and sparkle on their outerwear. Sweaters such as Valentino’s printed sweater and Maison Margiela’s striped ribbed wool turtleneck ruled the runway. There are different sweaters for all body types. For those with curves, a tight knit v-neck is best with a white blouse button up underneath for a preppy look. If you have legs for days, then a slouchy sweater is cute paired with some ankle booties and a nice statement jewelry piece. As for long sleeve shirts and blouses, leave the boringness at home and take home a statement flared sleeve such as the Fenty Puma by Rihanna. Don’t forget to get romantic with a nice tapestry inspired outerwear paired over deconstructed jeans. A nice pair of sneakers works well for class, and boots are


The Red House members posing for the camera.

great for a night out in the city. If this is your first fall in New York City, don’t take outerwear lightly. You will need it for those brisk nights. Stay away from solid black and get creative with some romantic hues like magenta for example. As for accessories, a newsboy cap is the perfect hat to keep those bad hair days tamed. Or to add a little bit more to your fall outfit. But the main trend you want to keep in mind all autumn long, is the velvet texture. Velvet pants, velvet blazer and even a velvet dress. Keep away from a black velvet dress and try something bolder, such as a purple velvet wrap dress. Another cool trend to keep your eye out is the 90s sweatpants. This style was back on the runways this past year. DKNY and Opening Ceremony brought back the logo sweatpants that are way more comfortable than a suit mini skirt that also hit the racks this year. But more importantly, this autumn make your own fashion trends by combining your favorite timeless pieces and a few newer ones for your very own chic wardrobe.


Kendall Jenner in over the knee high boots.

Entertainment 7


Review: “Goat” is electrifying Andrew Neel’s realistic, captivating film will haunt you for days REZA MORENO Features Editor “I feel like I’m a p----.”

he portrays a misfit who experiences a life-changing experience. His brother Brett, played by Nick Jonas, guides him through this tough experience. Brett pressures Brad to join

go through for the sake of “brotherhood” when pledging an all American college lifestyle. The crazy scenes shows just how much these men, not only in this an-

“Maybe you should just quit.” “I can’t quit.” “Why not.”.... “Goat” depicts the dark side of Greek life. Whether people would like to admit it or not, most colleges have stories about hazing; stories of shirtless “overly masculine” boys being rowdy, drinking way too many beers. Director Andrew Neel tells the true story of two brothers and a traumatizing event that brings them together. The film brings you in and makes you feel a sense of belonging at first with the peer pressure of fitting in. The introduction of the film starts off with a prolonged scene of shirtless men screaming and yelling for a solid two minutes or so before jumping to the scene that changes Brad’s life. This introduction is the foreshadowing of what’s to come. The protagonist, Brad, played by Ben Schnetzer, was the buzzed about new actor at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Schnetzer was also a minor character in a similar plot with a lot of British accents in 2014’s “The Riot Club.” In “Goat,”


Actor Ben Schnetzer in official still image from “Goat,” co-starring Nick Jonas and James Franco

him and his “brothers” of Phi Sigma Mu during Brett’s freshman year. However, Brett and the fraternity’s plan to help his brother backfires. As the drama continues and speeds up, the horrifying truth of “hell week” and its consequences come into play. Many of the sinister scenes of hazing may be hard to watch at times, but shines a dark light on what thousands of men

ti-hazing memoir written by Brad Land, but all over campuses across the country have to do. They go through these psychological events not caring about the damage being done. Watch Jonas in a never before seen way, as he too also struggles with his own guilt being the protective older brother, while remaining loyal to his fraternity. With a lot of twists and turns and a

The last couple of years have been seemingly interesting for Jared Leto. After the release of Warner Bros. pictures’ distributed production, “Suicide Squad,” Leto has signed up to play the role of artist Andy Warhol in a biopic - titled “Warhol.” Along with that, Leto has also signed to co-produce this feature. Warhol was an iconic artist; highly celebrated for his paintings like “32 Campbell Soup Cans” and “Marilyn Diptych.” He passed away in 1987 at the age of 56. While the movie has just been slated, production houses and Leto’s fans are very hopeful, if not excited, to see the methodical actor step into the shoes of the artist. Chris Anzilotti, a junior at St. John’s said, “I think that Jared Leto can and will do a great job portraying Andy Warhol.” He believes that the actor’s past performances are an indication of this. “Leto’s performances in films such as ‘Dallas Buyer’s Club’ and ‘Suicide Squad’ show his ability to commit to a character and a role,” he said. “ Hopefully this will shed some light on the life of Andy Warhol to a new generation.” While “Suicide Squad” as a movie opened up to

mixed reviews, Leto’s performance as an actor was highly appreciated. According to an article published on Rolling Stones’ website, the movie’s story source will be Warhol’s biography – “Warhol: The Biography,” written by Victor Bockris. Bockris has also written biographies for many other famous people, such as Mohammed Ali and Lou Reed. What is interesting is that the author has already penned another book on Warhol, titled “The Life and Death of Andy Warhol.” Although the news of a biopic on Warhol spread like wildfire, no other information in regard to the production of the project has been released. The studio’s plan on releasing a timeline about the film and production details as soon as a further star cast is set solid and Leto’s dates are available for filming. The “Dallas Buyer’s Club” actor is currently busy filming for the currently untitled sequel of the 1982 hit, “Blade Runner.” Along with Leto, “The Wolf of Wall Street” writer Terence Winter will join the party by being a writer as well a co-producer of the movie. Whether or not the film will go down in history is something that time will tell, but we are surely excited to see Warhol come back to life on the big screen.

big plot twist in the end, you will be grabbing onto your seat and cringing from the gross and sadistic hazing events given. Many of these include being slapped around and treated like “goats.” With the tradition across many other campuses, Neel gives a darker parallel universe to “Animal House,” the 1978 comedy film. These men are taken in and treated inhumane and worthless with no integrity to quit until things are taken too far. The scenes are short and to the point, with very little dialect when it comes to the hazing scenes which makes more of an impact on the audience. Catch a cameo from James Franco, producer of the film, who plays a father and alumni who can’t seem to get away from the contagious life of Phi Sigma Mu. This unnecessary scene might be Neel’s only regret of the film. But other than that, Neel does an excellent job pulling fear, hopelessness and a brother together in this must-see movie that you can now rent on iTunes. “If you quit what else is there. You know you’re just another guy that couldn’t hack it. Then everywhere you go everyone is going to know that.” “It’s just the way it is.” “I’m having sex for the first time in my life, Brad I’m not stupid. Where the fraternity goes, everything goes with it.” “Don’t give up man”

Jared Leto set to play Andy Warhol ABHISHEK JOSHI Staff Writer

PEACE WEEK 2016 Reporting by REZA MORENO, ARIANA ORTIZ AND LORAINA LONDON CALDERON Features Editor, Staff Writer and Contributing Writer

“The Peace Concert and Peace Week were personal projects of mine. This was the first time Catholic Relief Service tried to put on a huge concert, not to mention all of the other events in collaboration with different orgs. It was a success because we were out in front of DAC spreading respect and peace. I look forward to spreading more word about Peace Day and next year’s festivities!” Alexia Dolomakian P.R. CRS.

Torch Photo/ Amanda Negretti


The 1st Annual Peace week was created in recognition of international day of peace and in previous years nothing was done. The vigil was an event held at the end of the week to finish off the week with some good vibes and encompass what CRS was trying to achieve. The vigil began with an activity of writing what you wish for in this world in correlation to peace on a streamer and it was tied with the others and tied on the Peace Pole

behind the church. The Peace Pole has words like peace, love, hope etc. embossed on it, making the wishes for peace significant. Michaela Jensen, vice-president of Spectrum, our LGBT organization on campus, placed a rock with a Chinese symbol at the base of the post. “Peace is important to me because…people needlessly dying is not something that should ever be an issue,” Jensen said. The Earth club also contributed by planting lavender because of its calming and welcoming nature.

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Torch Photo/ Amanda Negretti

Torch Photo/ Christopher Eguizabal

Torch Photo/ shelby Warren


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Peace Concert

Peace week statement




Safe spaces at St. John’s “No”

SHABIB AFZAL Contributing Writer

In April of last year, feminist scholar Christina Hoff Sommers spoke at Oberlin College in Ohio. According to the Oberlin Review, her views were considered dangerous, so dangerous that a trigger warning was issued, warning students of how traumatizing her views may be to them. These views included questioning the wage gap and the idea that our society embraces rape culture, as well as criticizing the current state of feminism today. A room nearby was used as a safe space to comfort any students who may have suffered through having their narratives challenged. In her interview with comedian, Joe Rogan, she stated that 30 people and a dog retreated to this safe space, relieving the ever so stressful experience for these students of having their ideas challenged. Safe space is a term used to describe any area that is free from any sort of harassment or hate speech. This concept in itself is a threat to the freedom of speech. It goes against the principles of liberalism and freedom, principles that we should embrace and be proud of. The most important aspect of higher education is the preparation it can give to one for their occupation. There are going to be ideas heard in one’s job that they may not agree with or find repulsive. Is any employer going to think that they should be creating safe spaces to accommodate those who may be offended at the viewpoints others may give on certain topics? No. It does not make any sense for a company to do such a thing, as it is costly and inefficient. Regardless of that, the world is not a safe space. It is actually a very cruel space. Higher education should expose students to the fact that the world is not there to

Should we have places set aside for students? hold your hand and guide you. Safe spaces end up doing the opposite. They don’t enforce this reality, but rather reject it. There are going to be ideas heard that are not comforting and may even seem offensive to some. On many college campuses, students may be able to comfort themselves by going to one of these safe spaces, but those who have become reliant on safe spaces will be ill-prepared for the reality which faces them. I’m proud to say that St. John’s University has not succumbed to the creation of safe spaces. Our University has upheld the basic liberty of the freedom of speech, a freedom which those who embrace safe

Disclaimer: Safe space is a loose term. Therefore prayer rooms, RA offices, the counseling center, advisers, etc., can possibly be “safe spaces.”

spaces take advantage of, as there are many places around the world who do not share this same luxury. Safe spaces play onto the politics of victimhood, making it seem as if anyone who shares views that may not be standard on a college campus are the oppressors simply because of their expression of said views. More importantly, they reject the harsh reality that we all live in. They infantilize fully grown adults, treating them as if they are as emotionally developed as children. If this university falls victim to this current trend, then there will be more people emerging out of college not only riddled with debt, but not mentally prepared to face reality.


Flames of the Torch

As Americans we are lucky enough to have the privilege and freedom to speak our minds. The freedom of speech is essential to democracy and our ability to change the status quo. As college students, it’s especially important for us to have our voices heard. It may be a cliche - but we are the future. Civil debate is paramount to the future of the United States, and we at the Torch believe that all students should engage in it. Educating yourself and being vocal about issues that you care about is vital - for your personal development, and your community’s. Many people choose to not engage in these types of conversations, as they assume that their opinion is meaningless; but that couldn’t be further from

the truth. Here at St. John’s, there are multiple ways to get educated outside of the classroom, and several platforms for us to discuss and voice our thoughts on a wide variety of issues. With the upcoming election, it is more important than ever to get up to speed on current events, and to develop an opinion. As the next generation to lead the nation, it’s important that we do not become complacent and leave politics to our parents and grandparents. We have huge untapped power to change our country for the better. Whether you’re a Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump supporter, somewhere in between, or if you dislike both candidates, we hope Monday night’s debate truly made you think. Following the debate, Americans nationwide opined

about who did great, who didn’t, or why both candidates are wrong/right for the count. We hope you thought about it too. And most importantly, we hope you took a step back and reflected on the kind of country you want to live in. Yesterday was Voter Registration Day. If you can vote, do it. Your vote matters despite what you may believe. Plus, you don’t just vote for president of the United States - you vote at every level of government. Become familiar with politicians and policies that affect your community and state. At St. John’s, you have the opportunity to meet our local candidates on Oct. 24. The Torch will be there, and we hope you are too! Never forget that change begins with you. And as college students, we have the power to affect so much more than what happens on campus.


RASHEEDA CAMPBELL Contributing Writer The year is 2016, yet there continues to be cases of students being harassed because of their religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, race/ethnicity and so on and so forth. Even though St. John’s is known to be diverse, there are still situations where students are experiencing racism and gender inequality. Ty Watkins, 21, is a senior who has experienced situations where she has been called the N-word on campus. Watkins also stated that “I have gotten slurs and looks” because of her race. This is just one example why safe spaces on campus are an absolute must. Safe spaces are anti-bully zones that are made to protect students and can help fight against prejudice, racism and hatred. They will allow students to be able to comfortably express who they are and to be able to talk about certain prejudices they may have experienced without the fear of being judged or feeling unwelcomed. Even though nowadays you would think that people are finally tolerant of others who may be just a tad different from them, the sad truth is that the world we live in isn’t filled with just love and peace as we would hope. There is still an abundance of people who are quick to judge someone because of how they express themselves or to call someone names because of their sexuality. All students deserve to be able to be on campus and receive a good education without feeling uncomfortable or being harassed, no matter what. Until people change their views, safe spaces are there to help students who may need it. There could never be too many safe spaces. In fact, according to fellow students, St. John’s currently does not have any known safe spaces. Every university - including ours - needs them. Once safe spaces are finally on our campus, students and faculty should consistently be made aware of them. Having safe spaces and being aware of them lets us know that St. John’s students are cared for and should always feel free to express who they are.

EDITORIAL POLICY Editorials are the opinions of the Editorial Board of the TORCH. Columns are the opinions of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of the TORCH. Opinions expressed in editorials, columns, letters or cartoons are not necessarily those of the student body, faculty or administrations of St. John’s University.

TO CONTRIBUTE Mail letters to: The TORCH, St. John’s University 8000 Utopia Parkway, Jamaica, NY 11439 Submit letters via email to: torcheic@gmail.com

12 Opinion


Advice from Policing in America needs change Mama Raven’s desk BEATRIZ DA COSTA Contributing Writer


Q: “Dear Mama Raven, my roommate always has her boyfriend over. I don’t want to go to the RA and escalate things, but I’ve already told her the situation makes me uncomfortable, but she hasn’t changed her behavior. What do I do?” A: A classic boyfriend dilemma. Well, I think there are a few things that you could do in this situation. You said that you don’t want to go to your RA about this, so you have to talk to your roommate about her boyfriend being over again. Sit her down and tell her exactly why having her boyfriend over makes you uncomfortable. If there’s a real reason, like him flirting with you when she leaves the room or him blatantly disrespecting you, then I’m sure with those reasons your roommate would understand. If it’s a matter of you not wanting a boy in the room, then that’s something else. She paid to live in that room with you. You knew that you would have a roommate. Half of that room is hers to do whatever she wants with it with whomever she wants. You’re in college now; you have to learn how to cooperate with other people especially since you’re living with them. If she wants to continue to have her boyfriend over, then the two of you could discuss having specific times that he is allowed to come over. Maybe he would only come over on nights that you go out, every other weekend, when you’re in class, etc. If that doesn’t work, then maybe inviting your friends over could ease the situation or you could leave the room. Don’t leave you room all day if that’s not what you want, but maybe step into a lounge or go out and let your roommate know when you’ll be back so she’ll know when her boyfriend should leave. That is certainly limiting the both of you, but it’s a way to resolve the problem between the two of you without getting the RA involved. If the RA did get involved then that might not be a bad thing. When the two of you first moved in you signed a roommate agreement, if your roommate agreed that you guys wouldn’t have guests, then the RA could enforce that. That could lead to either one of you possibly being switched out of the room if necessary, but that could be better in the long run. Obviously it’s your choice on what to do next, but I wish you luck in whatever you choose to do. Good luck, Mama Raven

“That looks like a bad dude.” These were words used to describe Terence Crutcher in his final seconds before death. In fact, those words were the determining factor of whether or not the father of four would be unreasonably murdered, or allowed to live. Unfortunately, it was not the latter. People often say that history repeats itself, and in the last five years that statement seems to have rung true. Maybe it is because I am 18 now and I pay attention to the news, or maybe it is because the situation is getting so bad that it is impossible to contain it any longer. Regardless, America has a problem with police brutality and unfortunately, the cause of it appears to be stemming from the ones who are supposed to protect us, not kill us without probable cause. Not all cops are bad. As a matter of fact, I firmly believe that there are more good, respectable cops than not. However, it is getting harder and harder every day to walk past a cop and not wonder, “Will my name be the next Twitter hashtag?” or even worse, “will this be the last day I see my brother or father?” If an unarmed man can be murdered just for looking like a bad guy, who is to say that I can’t? After all, how can we determine who looks like a “bad guy?” Is it by the way they dress? By the way they talk? In 2016, it seems like it is by the color of your skin, the darker the better. Eric Garner. Alton Sterling. Kendra Jones. Sandra Bland. Michael Brown.


Those are just a few names of the precious, black lives lost at the hands of the police. Brown’s death, after years of quiet chatter regarding these events, initiated a national protest that started in Ferguson, back in 2014, and has now landed in Charlotte, N.C. Although Crutcher was killed in Tulsa, where protests are also taking place, the protests in Charlotte have garnered mass media attention. Perhaps it is because the governor has called the National Guard and has declared a state of emergency in the city. Maybe it is because the people are fed up.

Police brutality has got to be put to an end. For once, instead of the victims’ families speaking up, or political figures, or entertainment personalities, it is time for police officers all around America to speak up. It is time for the “good” cops to come out and say that what is going on is blatantly wrong, it is time for police reform, it is time for change. Without change, Americans might just find themselves back in the oppressive 1960s instead of the “unprejudiced” 2000s.

Sustainable living for the future WANDY ORTIZ Staff Writer

The United Nation’s International Day of Peace, which was held on Sept. 21, “provides an opportunity for all humanity to come together, in spirit and in action, to forward the ideals of and conditions,” according to their website. Practicing environmental sustainability is one idea that many tend to consider towards the beginning of autumn as leaves begin to change and apple picking season begins. It leads to homegrown and homemade goods far better than what we find in supermarkets. Sure, the girl who admittedly does just about as much as reusing plastic water bottles, shuts the lights off when she’s not in the room. However, these are just some small efforts regarding sustainable living. It makes a considerable difference in our environment and consumer culture. Sustainability is defined as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs,” according to UCLA’s sustainability website. Part of what sustainability does is use the environmental and technological resources we already have in a way that is less abusive and wasteful to our global ecosystem and destructive of our current and future quality of life. Sustainability is using “just enough” instead of “too much.” Looking at how “just enough” of whatever goods we have can be versatile means they can be applied for different purposes

to conserve time, money and energy. Being conscious about small things like where we buy our clothes and how much water, electricity, synthetic dyes and work hours are used in that production. We can better judge and support more localized, repurposed and organic consumerism. Getting on board with sustainability, although it is becoming “trendier” and more mainstream, doesn’t make it any less valuable to society. If anything, pop culture is doing us all a favor by hinting that there are better ways to attain the same things we need or want on a daily basis. Knowing the who, why, when, where and how of what we consume and use will make us more insightful and compassionate individuals towards ourselves, the land we live on, the tools and faraway lands that act as resources for our needs. Maybe going into the month of October, consider changing one small everyday thing that you do to something more sustainable. Try to keep track of how much time, money and resources it saves you and then think of how that one action, multiplied by millions of people, can lead to greater global peace in more ways than just environmentally.


Peace pole and garden at St. Thomas More Church during Peace Week.


True meaning of being global DOUGLAS CANTELMO Special to the Torch

The first time I arrived in 2006 at St. John’s University’s Rome campus I was an anxious, stuttering undergraduate whose most exotic journey so far was a family minivan trip to Minnesota. Nothing against the Land of 10,000 Lakes, but it was a tame adventure compared to being launched into a city with centuries of impassioned history and a personality to match. Over the course of those ensuing weeks I got lost down ancient cobbled lanes, struggled with my poor imitation of Italian and did my best throughout my first time abroad to become immersed in a city that seemed to swallow and spit out tourists by the busload. Fast-forward to today and I’ve been back to that same Rome campus numerous times as a student, a graduate research and a professor. I’ve been blessed to not only look upon its famous ancient wonders but also revel in its quiet beating heart away from the tourist lines and souvenir stalls. It’s a city in which I’ve found lasting friendship and a personality that continues to challenge me to find truth in travel. There is not a day that goes by that I do not draw upon the experiences I’ve had abroad and appreciate how much I’ve been transformed from that nervous undergraduate to a more fully realized human being. St. John’s University has changed as well. Not too long ago, the only location St. John’s University was known for was New York City. Yet, just last year, the university celebrated 30 years of study abroad programs, 20 years in Rome and 10 years in Paris. As a member of this community I know first-hand how valuable our international brand can be. It’s not just slogans we place on pamphlets but a testament to how transformative international education can be. Countless friends, colleagues and former students are living testaments to this power.

Yet, for all our University has accomplished abroad, we as students and faculty must not rest easy on the pillars of Catholic, Vincentian and Metropolitan (as important as those are to our identity) without expanding upon our Global purpose (a pillar that was added to the university’s mission statement in 2015). Building upon the foundation of our international campuses is a key competitive advantage we possess as a university. It provides our students with unique opportunities not found at many other academic institutions. Our campuses in Paris and Rome are year-around operations centrally located in the most desirable parts of those cities and staffed by both administrators and faculty that have poured their passion into those locations over the years. So what can you do to expand this mission? If you’re a student, don’t listen to the voices that say because of your major or background you can’t experience an international education. Talk to alums from every walk of life that have been to our campuses abroad and have experienced what a life-defining journey it was. Talk to fellow students who can speak to how their time away from New York City gave them confidence they never knew they had and a prospective that will stay with them for the rest of their lives. If you’re a professor, regardless of your department, see ways in which our Global mission might recast the courses you teach. Find ways to utilize the amazing resources St. John’s University

“Our kids”

“Our kids” FR. PATRICK GRIFFIN, C.M. Special to the Torch


provides on our international campuses. If you’ve already taken advantage of these resources and led courses abroad, awesome. Now, revamp that syllabus and find new ways to engage students with on-the-ground projects and innovative approaches to make these global cities your own personal classroom. We have made impressive strides in the last 30 years in building an international university. Yet, we cannot merely admire what we’ve created without finding new ways of engaging the world. I hope to see you in Rome, Paris or wherever this Global purpose takes you. Douglas Cantelmo is a Discover New York and Global Passport Professor. Are you a professor, administrator, or any other member of the University and would like to write about your experiences? Send us an email at torchopinion@gmail.com

Johnny U


Opinion 13

by Alex Brewington

by L.A. Bonté

For the second time this month, I have felt compelled to write something for the Torch which highlights an author who has spoken on our campus. Previously, I spoke of Wes Moore’s book “The Other Wes Moore” and the way in which the author emphasized the word “other” in the title. Now, I would like to offer some thoughts spurred by Robert Putnam’s book, “Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis.” Dr. Putnam, a political scientist and Malkin Professor of Public Policy at Harvard University, came to our campus as the first of the speakers for Founder’s Week (Sept. 20-27). He drew more than 260 members of our community to a well-received lecture. Founder’s Week intends to celebrate St. Vincent de Paul whose spirit rests at the heart of our University. This year, the theme for our remembrance is “Vincentian Education: Illuminating minds, creating opportunities, serving the world.” Two hundred years ago, in 1816, 13 Vincentians came to the United States to begin their ministry. Even in those earliest years, the effort aimed at the education of the marginalized and immigrant populations. This emphasis gave rise to St. John’s University in 1870. Inviting Dr. Putnam, a renowned educator, fit well within the theme for our Founder’s Week in this year. Interestingly, Dr. Putnam, like Mr. Moore, also emphasized a term in his title. He focused upon a word which others might not immediately identify with the heart of the text without reading it. He drew attention to the word “our.” Our speaker recounted how in an earlier era, people used the word “our” more frequently and more feelingly as they associated themselves with a particular place and group. Thus, it was “our” neighborhood, “our” school, “our” street and “our” kids. The children of a given area were considered the responsibility of the entire community. People were willing to pay the additional taxes which might provide a public swimming pool or modernize a building at the school. Such things were done for “our” kids even by those who had no children of school age. In the modern era, a lesser sense of obligation seems to permeate many communities and their inhabitants. The emphasis might fall more sharply upon my family and the benefits which we derive from expenditures. One can find many reasons for this “turning inward,” but the result is more personal and less public, more individual and less communal. When this begins to apply to the educational environment, the results weaken the process of teaching and learning together. As I hear the way in which this story could be told at St. John’s, I feel the way in which St. Vincent would react. His emphasis was always around providing for those who could not easily provide for themselves. He did this by seeking and receiving the support of all those whom he knew. He believed firmly in collaboration and mutual support. With Vincent (and Dr. Putnam), we can speak about “our” university, “our” education, and “our” fellow students.

14 Sports


Red Storm drops Big East openers over weekend DERRELL BOUKNIGHT Staff Writer

The St. John’s volleyball team began Big East play with consecutive four-set losses to Xavier and Butler. Friday night’s game against the Musketeers was the Johnnies’ first match at Carnesecca Arena in nearly three weeks. They went 4-4 over their past eight matches, which included trips to the San Francisco Challenge and the West Point Invitational. Xavier, who won the match 3-1 (2225, 16-25, 25-22, 23-25), handed St. John’s their first home loss of the season. “We were up and down a bit,” head coach Joanne Persico said. “We needed to keep intensity throughout the match. But, we’re still growing.” Going into the match, St. John’s ranked in the top 15 in the country in blocks per set, averaging 2.92. On Friday, the team registered a season-high 17.5 blocks while also forcing Xavier (7-7, 1-0 Big East) to 32 errors and a .150 attacking percentage. However, the Red Storm were not able to get a rhythm going offensively, finishing with a season-low attacking percentage of .102. For the second time in three matches, standout redshirt junior Danisha Moss tallied 10 total blocks, including a

career-high six solo blocks. Junior, Julia Cast, a Preseason All-Big East selection, led St. John’s with 12 kills and recorded six blocks. Lexie Lobdell and Amanda Sanabia each posted nine digs, along with eight from Delaney D’Amore and a near double-double from Margherita Bianchin, with nine kills and eight digs. After the Johnnies began the first set on a 12-4 run, Xavier responded on a 16-6 run of their own to take a 20-18 lead, taking the set 25-22. The Musketeers took the second set 25-16 without any trouble, but the Johnnies avoided losing in straight sets with a 25-22 advantage in the third. A comeback effort in the fourth set fell short for the Johnnies, who fell 2523. Xavier senior Abbey Bessler recorded five of her match-high 19 digs in the final set, along with 10 kills en route to a double-double. Saturday night’s match against Butler again went to four sets, with the Bulldogs (25-22, 23-25, 21-25, 24-26) handing St. John’s consecutive losses for the first time this season. For the 12th time this season, the Red Storm recorded double-digit blocks, amassing 14.5 over the course of the match. The Johnnies also forced Butler into 24 errors and tallied 62 digs. However, St. John’s managed only a .191 hitting

percentage, compared to Butler’s .229. Freshman, Gaia Triballi led St. John’s (10-6, 1-2 Big East) with a team-high 16 kills and 10 digs, giving her four double-doubles on the season. Moss added a career-high 11 kills and a team-high nine blocks, giving her 95 on the season. Upon winning the first set 25-22 after battling through nine ties, St. John’s began the second set on a 4-0 run. Butler (12-6, 1-1 Big East) eventually regrouped and took a 13-12 lead. The Johnnies went back and forth with the Bulldogs, who scored the final three points of the set after taking a timeout down 23-22 to even the match. Butler won the third set 25-21, leading to a dramatic final set that saw St. John’s tie it at 24 before Butler scored the final two points to win the match 3-1. Despite the loss, Coach Presico praised her team for fighting back and coming close to forcing a fifth set. “I like the way we fight, we’re fighting and fighting,” she said. “They’re close matches, they can go either way, but we want to be in control. We want to be in the driver’s seat more.” The Red Storm returns to action on Saturday with another home Big East matchup against Seton Hall. That will begin a stretch of three straight conference home games for St. John’s as they’ll face Marquette and DePaul next week.


Margherita Bianchin had nine kills vs. Xavier.

SJU tennis back in action at Princeton Women’s soccer tops Seton Hall KAYLEE HERNDON Staff Writer

The St. John’s men’s tennis team opened up their 2016 season with notable singles and doubles performances at the Ivy-Plus Invitational, hosted by Princeton University over this past weekend. “Overall we had a good weekend against a lot of high-level competition. I feel our results were good and showed we can compete with top teams from around the country,” Assistant Coach Cory Hubbard said in a press release. Sophomores, Dusan Vukicevic and Luka Sucevic, were victorious in the Dillon draw. The doubles win was the highlight of the weekend for the Red Storm. “The highlight was Luka and Dusan winning the doubles tournament. They grew up playing together so they have really good chemistry,” Hubbard said. “They were down big in the first round and in the final, but once they played with more energy and emotion they were on a different level. They won two matches in tiebreakers, and showed they can handle the pressure. It is always a big deal to win an event so we are very proud of them.” Vukicevic and Sucevic won their first match against Princeton’s Vives/Kaiser doubles pair, 8-7. They went on to defeat Haworth/Arocho of Brown, 8-5, before being victorious, 8-7, in the finals against Yale’s Doehler/ Wang. Roberto Livi and Daniel Skripnik also played in the Dillon Draw, winning their first doubles match against Penn’s Shatalin/Pompan, 8-4. Skripnik, Sucevic and Andrei Crapcenco all had undefeated performances in the back draws of singles; St. John’s won a combined nine matches in singles play. The trio of Skripnik, Sucevic and Crapcenco went a combined 7-4 in their draws. “In singles play, we were able to get a lot of tough matches and each guy was able to pick up some wins and confidence. [Roberto Livi] played a great match and lost in three sets to the top player in the region, and a guy who has been in the top-30 nationally. It shows he has the talent level and is close to a big breakthrough,” Hubbard said. “All the other guys had solid performances and beat quality opponents. These events to start the

season are more about developing the players than wins, so we got to see areas we need to improve individually to get to the next level.” Skripnik split his first two matches in the Cordish Draw before defeating Dmitry Shatalin (Penn), 6-3, 6-1, and Josh Yablon (Princeton), 6-4, 6-2, in the back draw. Sucevic rallied in the back draw play of the Lenz Draw after his initial two losses against Fedor Andrienko (Yale) and Aws Larribi (Penn State). Crapcenco won both his matches in the consolation bracket of the Penn Singles number one draw en route to a consolation finals victory. The Red Storm’s next appearance will be at the ITA All-American Championships on October 1, in Tulsa, Okla. Following that, they will return to Princeton on October 7 for the Farnsworth Invitational.


Daniel Skripnik had three of SJU’s nine singles match victories.


The St. John’s women’s soccer team kicked off Big East play with a 1-0 win over Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey this Saturday. After nearly 70 minutes of scoreless play, sophomore, Anna Maria Baldursdottir scored after a foul was called on Seton Hall in the box. Baldursdottir sent her shot just past goaltender, Anna MacLean, inside the right post for the game-winning goal. The Red Storm earned the penalty kick after sophomore, Samie Scaffidi, was taken down in the box during the struggle for a loose ball. Baldursdottir stepped to the spot and found the back of the net for her second goal of the season. Facing a tough road crowd of 764 people in South Orange, the Red Storm did not let the factor of being on the road affect their play. Overall, St. John’s outshot Seton Hall 18-4 and put five shots on goal, while the Pirates managed two. Senior goalie Diana Poulin continued her dominant play in net for the Red Storm. The shutout was Poulin’s seventh of the season, which ranks in the top-five in Division I and is two shy of her career-high set in 2014. Poulin’s goals-against average dropped to 0.28 and with the two saves, her save percentage climbed to .900. Head coach Ian Stone praised his team’s first half play, as the Red Storm outshot Seton Hall 6-1 in a relatively quiet opening 45 minutes. “I was really happy with the way we came out in the first half and possessed the ball,” said Stone. “We made some tactical changes in the second half, which allowed us to create more opportunities. Any win on the road in the Big East is a good one.” With the win on the road, St. John’s improved their record to 6-1-3 on the season. The Red Storm’s only loss came on Sept. 11 when they fell to Portland in their second game of the Nike Portland Invitational. The Johnnies return to action on Thursday for their Big East home opener at Belson Stadium when they’ll face a tough opponent in the 8-2-1 Butler Bulldogs.

Sports 15




C.J. Nitkowski

From Major League star to Media Sensation

Former St. John’s baseball pitching star C.J. Nitkowski has been proudly representing his school for nearly two decades. After 17 years in professional baseball, both in the major leagues and overseas, Nitkowski has now gracefully moved on to a career in sports media. However, before finding himself in the spotlight, Nitkowski began his journey through Queens entirely by chance. As a lefty who struggled with his velocity out of high school, the Suffern, NY native decided to travel south to Florida Atlantic University after not receiving many collegiate offers. After one forgettable season at FAU, Nitkowski decided it was time to return to the Northeast. Nitkowski had Big East rival, Providence, in his sights in the spring of 1992, but a trip to see the Friars play St. John’s in the Big East Tournament resulted in a change of heart. “In the process of transferring, I was actually looking at Providence, I had some conversations with them,” Nitkowski, 43, said in a phone interview with The Torch two weeks ago. “They just happened to be playing St. John’s, and the catcher from St. John’s was a guy...who I played with at Don Bosco. He was a senior when I was a freshman. I just happened to bump into him.” After some conversations with then-St. John’s pitching coach, Eddie Lamar, Nitkowski ended up garnering and accepting an offer from the Johnnies. “They ended up making me an offer, and I ended up going to St. John’s instead of Providence,” he said. “St. John’s came on the strongest and offered me the best opportunity.” That decision proved to benefit not only Nitkowski’s baseball career, but his life beyond sports. Along with meeting with his wife and learning some valuable lessons, the lefty made strides on the diamond. Coming to St. John’s, Nitkowski was

hitting up to 83-84 miles per hour with his fastball. But by the time he left Queens, his improvements caught the eyes of many major league scouts. “When I got to St. John’s and I started working with these guys, who were pushing each other, not only during the season but also in the offseason, I started seeing my velocity start to jump up,” he said. “In our first spring trip, we went out to California. I was told by a scout that I had hit 90 miles per hour, and that was the first time that I’ve ever heard that in my life. That was my sophomore year and by the time my junior year came around, I was topping out at 94 [miles per hour]. A lot of that had to do with the guys that I was with and how hard I was working.” Following his time with the Red Storm, Nitkowski was selected ninth overall in the 1994 Major League Baseball Draft by the Cincinnati Reds. Despite the high expectations, Nitkowski didn’t seem to be phased. “That did not bring on any extra pressure for me, if anything it helped me relax a little bit more. Because as a high round draft pick you’re always going to get more opportunities than the other guys.” Nitkowski played less than a year in the minor leagues before making his big league debut in June 1995. Within months, he was shipped to the Detroit Tigers, which began his journeyman status for the rest of his career. “A lot of guys, their first year of baseball, they’re playing A-ball somewhere, they’re pretty much staying there the whole year,” the pitcher said. “Maybe they’ll see a promotion or a change from A-ball to Double A or another A-ball affiliate over the course of their full year of baseball. For me, it was two organizations and four different cities.” As a lefty reliever, Nitkowski was always bouncing from team-to-team throughout his 11 year MLB career. He played for nine different teams, including his hometown New York Mets and New York Yankees. “In 2001, to get traded over to the Mets, just for that last month, it was a strange month, obviously, September 2001,” he

said. “I was a member of the Mets during 9/11 and everything else, and it was interesting to say the least. Obviously I wish the situation never happened, but I was glad I was there to be a part of the organization and to be in New York at the time.” “Three years later in 2004, I got called up, so I was 31-years-old when I got called up to the Yankees. It was so exciting to know that all those times I sat there and pretended that I was a Yankee in my backyard as a kid, then that even at 31 this was a really special moment knowing that I was going to have an opportunity to put on Yankee pinstripes.” Nitkowski finished off his pitching career with six years overseas in Japan, Korea and the Dominican Republic. He threw his last pitch in January 2013 and began his new media career with MLB.com months later. His interest in sports media is not new, it manifested itself throughout his playing days. He was the first player to have a website in 1990 and received encouragement from respected industry professionals, such as Peter Gammons and Keith Olbermann. Now a few years removed from entry into the business, Nitkowski has built a reputation as a jack of all trades in baseball media. He broadcasts nationally televised games and hosts a studio show for FOX Sports 1, is an analyst for CBS Sports, hosts a radio show on MLB Network Radio and writes for FOXSports.com. “There’s different opportunities and that’s why I do so many different things writing, radio and tv and different things within TV,” he said. “You never know which one is going to go away.” Nitkowski has also been offered the opportunity to work with Hall of Fame caliber players like Frank Thomas, Pete Rose and Raul Ibanez. “Those are legit contemporaries,” he said. “I competed against those guys (Thomas and Ibanez). Both have hit home runs off me. These are guys I’ve faced. “But having guys around, especially Hall of Fame level players, it makes it fun. I really enjoy the work.”

With both his success on the field and now in the media, Nitkowski offered up advice to both St. John’s student-athletes and students who are looking to break into the business.


“You got to grind, you got to hustle. And I think that’s a New York thing. Most people in that part of the country get it. That’s a St. John’s thing.” - C.J. Nitkowski -

“I will tell you this: Don’t be afraid to hustle. You have to do it,” Nitkowski said. “I mean obviously if you don’t have the playing career to fall back on or name recognition, you got to work your tail off. “You have to refuse the no’s when they happen. It’s going to happen. You can’t get discouraged. If you’re serious about what you want to do, don’t be denied. Don’t let people deny you of your dream or your passion, regardless of where you are.” Nitkowski noted how his relentless attitude comes mostly from his New York days and his time at St. John’s. “I just continued to work at it. I’m not afraid to work. You cannot be afraid to work. You got to grind, you got to hustle. And I think that’s a New York thing. Most people in that part of the country get it. That’s a St. John’s thing. You’re not going sit back and be lazy. You’re going to get after it. You do what you got to do. I worked my tail off and I enjoy doing it.” Even though Nitkowski enjoys his current jobs, he would be open to taking a broadcasting position with one team if the opportunity presents itself in the future. “You know know what’s going to be out there for you, but I love my current job and the idea of just settling in with one team at some point down the road is appealing as well.”

SPORTS September 28, 2016 | VOLUME 94, ISSUE 06 |



Dribble for the Cure CARMINE CARCIERI Co-Sports Editor

For the second straight year, St. John’s men’s and women’s basketball programs raised $100,000 for the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation by hosting the sixth annual Dribble for the Cure fundraiser on Saturday morning. This year, the Johnnies raised a record breaking $105,000, increasing the total money raised since 2011 to $500,000. Dr. Mitchell Cairo’s research has been greatly impacted by the success of this event. His work has helped raise survival rates in some childhood cancers from 20 percent to more than 60 percent. “It’s already had a major impact,” Dr. Cairo told The Torch. “The work that we’re doing is generating new therapies for patients who have failed their underlying

disease and also developing new therapies for patients who are now having less side effects and less long term complications. “It’s all because of the money that we raised for Dribble for the Cure at St. John’s.” Between the funds that St. John’s and UCLA have earned over the years, Dribble for the Cure has raised over $1,000,000. “From when we first started the first year, it was hard to know whether it would be a sustaining event,” Dr. Cairo said. “Really both coaches, Steve Lavin and Chris Mullin, are critical because of their personal support and interest in sustaining and growing this event.” Both the men’s and women’s basketball programs contributed in the Dribble for the Cure as part of University Service Day. Participants in the event had the opportunity to dribble a basketball around

campus with the players from the two programs. “It’s a wonderful feeling,” junior guard Aaliyah Lewis said. “The people involved can see how special this St. John’s family is and how much everyone wants to support them. Everyone is happy to be a part of this cause.” “Today is about getting the chance to give back to the community,” sophomore center Yankuba Sima said. “As a team it makes us closer, but it’s not all about basketball. It’s important to give back to other people.” Before the dribbling officially began, Mullin addressed the crowd, along with the executives of the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation, Jeri Wilson and Dr. Cairo. The second year head coach spoke about his biggest influences and how important giving back to the community is.

“Two of my biggest influences in life, Mr. (John W.) Kaiser and Coach (Lou) Carnesecca, are here and the biggest thing I was taught on and off the court was to give back,” Mullin said during his pre-event speech. “Off the court, that’s what St. John’s is all about: taking care of your brother. On the court, I tell my guys that and I was taught by Coach Carnesecca that a good player can do for himself but a great player does for other people. And that’s what we’re all here to do today.” Both teams will on the floor for the first time on Oct. 14 for Red Storm TipOff. Mullin’s unit opens the season on Nov. 11 against Bethune Cookman at Carnesecca Arena. Joe Tartamella’s team will begin the 2016-17 on the road against William & Mary on Nov. 13.