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March 2011

What Do You Want To Know? By Brenda Marsh

And The Primary Focus Is?

Why do I have to register for classes so early when summer semester doesn’t start until June?

By Lori Frase On March 8, Jackson police arrested Tony D. Gill of Nimishillen Township and charged him with calling in the bomb threat on March 2. He is currently in jail awaiting trial on two felony counts, for inducing panic, and disruption of public service. Scott Gainer of Canton is also charged with a misdemeanor in the fourth degree for failing to report a crime. The men are not students at Stark State College and are believed to be only responsible for the March 2 threat. The police feel there are other ―copycat‖ callers who are still being investigated at this time.

You have a better chance of getting the classes you want at the times you want if you register early. Once the classes are full, they get closed out, as they have reached maximum enrollment. Also, regular attendance of classes is important, and you’re more likely to be able to attend regularly if they are at the time and day that you want. Is the Writing Center just for people who are having trouble with writing?

On March 17, Tony D. Gill waived his right to a preliminary hearing, and the judge ordered the case to go to the grand jury for review. He is currently in jail on a $500,000 bond. Scott Gainer pled not guilty and was released on a $250 bond. His next court date is April 5. All of that, however, is almost beside the point. Even if he had truly been responsible for all of the threats, it would be beside the point. The point is how these calls have disrupted our college experience, and how we - both as students and as a college – have dealt with those disruptions.

No, not at all. The Writing Center can be a big help to anyone. They have knowledgeable writing assistants who are happy to help you fine tune your writing. They can help you make a so-so paper a great paper. Just be sure to stop in or call and schedule an appointment. The Writing Center is located in G200a. The hours are Mon.-Thurs. 9 am-8 pm, Fri. 9 am-2 pm and Sat. 9 am-1 pm. You can also get online help at, Mon.-Thurs. 4 pm-8 pm.

The bomb threats, which recently terrorized the students of Stark State College, are being discussed throughout the campuses and the community. This interruption to our everyday lives as college students seems to be overshadowing the learning process of college classrooms. If the goal of the person or persons calling in these threats is to disrupt and interfere in the lives of strangers, then they have been successful in their terrorism. (Continued on next page)

In This Issue


Spotlight on Hoover


A Meeting with Wally Hoffer


The Facts about SB5


A Note from the Student Government




Severe Weather Reminders


At the forums conducted by the administration of Stark State College, attendance was extremely low for the number of students enrolled. A total number of around 80 students made their feelings known at the four scheduled forums.

“We are very committed to your safety” and “Safety is our primary focus”

In all the forums, the administration and faculty spoke of the security issue on the campus and satellite campuses. Chief Weldon, head of security at SSC, explained that every threat received prompts a full search of the College campus. Chief Weldon stated, ―Safety is our primary focus.‖ All security officers at SSC are currently or have been police officers, detectives, FBI agents, or police captains or chiefs. ―We are very committed to your safety,‖ Chief Weldon added. ―We are here for a reason—to get an education. There are a lot of behind-the-scenes activities and preventative measures going on that cannot be commented on, now or in the future … for the safety of the students and faculty.‖

Now that Security has had the chance to evaluate and discuss the policies and procedures of dealing with threats against SSC and its students, they are working with the authorities in the area to adapt and make the appropriate policies for our College in dealing with such threats and security issues, both now and in the future. ―No call will be ignored and every call will be evaluated on its own merits,‖ stated Chief Weldon. Jackson Township police are notified first of the threat, but it is ultimately at the discretion of the administration to determine the credibility of each threat to SSC. A complete search of the College will be carried out, and if the administration feels there is a reason to evacuate, the message will be sent out in all forms available to the students. The current methods of relating the message to everyone in the buildings include text messaging, emails, announcements on the loud speakers and security informing classrooms one at a time.

With the first four bomb threats an evacuation of the campus was ordered, and when everyone was out of the building law enforcement agencies conducted a complete and thorough search of the campus. It was after this search by authorities and bomb sniffing dogs that security declared an all clear and the campus reopened its doors for learning to resume.

It was stated during the forum that after meeting with Jackson police and the FBI, this method of dealing with threats is the standard policy of colleges and hospitals all over the country. Chief Weldon stated that with the first threat it took approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes to evacuate the building and parking lot. At the time of the second threat it only took 50 minutes to evacuate, which is a definite improvement. This faster evacuation was made possible by turning all points of access onto the campus into exits, and by having police officers and security personnel working the lights and directing traffic. As future threats continue to evolve, the methods SSC uses to meet those threats will evolve as well.

Editors Editor- Ian Cain Assistant Editor – Christopher M. Usner Staff Writers Brenda Dembraski-Marsh Connie Luthi Lori Frase Advisors Elizabeth Modarelli Nicole Herrera Contact Us:


Meet Our Newest Addition The classes offered at the newly-renovated building are non-credit and are available to the general public as opportunities for advancement in an individual’s current job, for continuing education, or simply for enjoyment. There are classes for social workers, counselors, nursing home administrators, and healthcare providers. Foreign language, career development courses and courses to designed to help individuals upgrade their computer skills are also offered at this campus.

Lori Frase is a returning student at Stark State and is currently completing her second year of studies. She received her first associate’s degree in Business Management-Sales and Marketing in 1987. Lori is now majoring in Human and Social Service with the Gerontology option, hopes to graduate in May 2012, and wishes to obtain employment with a hospice to which she currently volunteers her time. She has been serving as the student government secretary for the last two years and is now a staff writer for Stark Voices. Lori lives in Hartville with her husband of 23 years and their three children, one of whom is currently attending SSC and another who will be starting in the fall. She is grateful to be able to express her passion for writing by contributing to Stark Voices.

New to Hoover is the STNA (State Tested Nurse Aide) program. Russ is optimistic that the program, offered for the first time last year, will become popular because there are many jobs for STNAs right now. Students can obtain the training and complete the testing all under the same roof.

Spotlight on Hoover By Connie Luthi

Russ also pointed out that the pharmaceutical technician program is very popular and fills up every time it’s offered.

Stark State’s new Hoover Campus is home to the Continuing Education Division and is located at 339 East Maple Street Suite 120 in North Canton, just five minutes from the main campus. This division, which was previously housed in the Advance Technology Center (ATC), has experienced moderate growth since moving.

The instructors at Hoover are professionals who live and work in the community. They take time out of their day to instruct a class, workshop, or seminar. The industrial maintenance teachers are retired or still working in the field and have a lot of valuable experience to pass on to students. (Continued on next page)

I sat down with Russ O’Neill, the Director of Continuing Education at Stark State Hoover Campus, to get a better picture of what was happening at the campus. Russ has been the Director of Continuing Education at Stark State since 2000 and in the field of education his whole life. He started out teaching high school English and religion at various catholic schools, later advanced into administration, and in 1994, he went to work at Wayne College in Orrville, now the University of Akron Wayne campus, where he was Director of Continuing Education.

The Main entrance of the Hoover Campus


Russ faces a challenge with his work here at Stark State that keeps him on his toes. That challenge is making a profit. This branch of the college, which is not funded by grants or loans, has to turn a profit. In the current economy, that can be tough, but Russ and his team are coming up with new ideas all the time. They design programs for companies and have ―custom built‖ classes, workshops, and seminars to fit the needs of local businesses. While the adult classes are located in the new Hoover building, the popular Kids College will stay located at the main campus in North Canton. Kids College offers students in grades 1-7 four weeks—from June 16 - July 7—packed with exciting classes for children. The classes range from outdoor activities such as camping and baseball, to many indoor activities, including learning to cope without electricity and still have fun (something many of us had to deal with this winter). A babysitting certification course, a poetry course, and many different art classes such as scrapbooking, stamping, collage making, and kite making are also offered to students. Children can take a class in comedy, learn the fundamentals of acting, or learn a second language. The weekly cost is very reasonable: $69 for morning or afternoon classes and $109 for all day. The hottest class offered for the younger generation is Camp Scrubs. This will be the first year for the program and Stark State College is collaborating with Aultman Hospital to give young women and men a firsthand look at what the men and women in white do on a daily basis to save lives in our community. With a limit of only thirty students, Russ believes this new class will fill up fast. The program introduces students in grades 6 – 9 to different jobs in the nursing and healthcare field and includes activities such as learning to take vitals and how to use a stethoscope and starting an IV. It also includes a CPR certification course.

The youth that take part in this program will also have a chance to assist and observe in surgery, gain knowledge about the Metro Life Flight, and experience what goes on in the ER. The cost is only $199. Learning and knowledge is the key to a superior life. Stark State helps to make learning fun and attainable. So if you or your child is interested in advancement, Stark State’s Hoover Campus is a wonderful place to start. For more information, call 330-966-5455 or visit

A Meeting with the Dean of Admissions Mr. Wally Hoffer By Brenda Dembraski-Marsh

Wally Hoffer at work in Admissions

If you want to know anything at all about the admissions process or department, just ask Wally Hoffer, Dean of Admissions. Only don’t call him Mr. Hoffer; he prefers Wally, which just shows you what kind of guy he really is. Wally has been at Stark State for more than 30 years and in education for more than 40. He taught for six years before becoming the Dean of Admissions. One of the things he loves the most is working with students. He finds it very rewarding to keep in touch with them. In fact, he also feels the need to keep in touch with the teachers, parents, and the community as a whole. He feels that to do his job properly, he needs to hear what people are saying. He endeavors to make the College’s name known in both the educational 4 community and the community at large.

Wally Hoffer on straight answers: “It’s a trust thing”

The Facts about SB5 By Christopher M. Usner Ohio’s Senate Bill 5 (SB5) is an enormous document, and as such, it takes quite a while to read. In fact, the version passed by the Ohio Senate early in March is 9161 lines long.

Wally has been married for 40 years and he and his wife have two boys. Both sons have chosen to follow their father’s lead in trying to make a difference. One of his sons is an RN at Medina’s Cleveland Clinic and the other is a teacher in Painesville. In his spare time, he likes to work around the house, doing a little remodeling and sometimes just relaxing. He and his wife also enjoy vacationing.

And it says a lot. So what are the facts? Introduced in the Ohio State Senate on February 1, 2011 and sponsored by Republican Senator Shannon Jones, the bill proposes changes to laws regarding collective bargaining, compensation, layoff procedures, and negotiations for Ohio’s 350,000 public employees. The bill also includes language that could endanger benefits for domestic partners.

When asked about academic progress and success, Wally had the following suggestions: schedule your courses in the proper sequence, attend classes as scheduled, and, if you’re having difficulty, use the free tutoring services that are available to all students.

The bill passed the Ohio Senate by a vote of 17-16 on March 2, 2011, after a series of amendments that reinstated collective bargaining. However, these same amendments removed the right to strike for all public employees and move to define participating in a strike as a criminal act.

Also important is the need to register for classes early, since it’s the only way to get into the classes you need at the times you want.

Supporters say SB5 gives the government more flexibility, whereas many unions see it as an attack on the livelihoods of those they represent.

Wally emphasizes that everyone also needs to be aware of the state regulations regarding financial aid distribution. One of the things you need to understand is that by dropping classes, you may jeopardize your financial aid, along with your chances of getting into certain programs.

Opposition to the bill is huge, and protesters have lined the streets of Columbus in recent weeks, joined by representatives from the Ohio Education Association (OEA) and Ohio Association of Public School Employees (OAPSE).

New students need to work closely with an admissions advisor to plan their schedules and get specific program questions answered.

SB5 is currently being reviewed by the Ohio House, which plans to vote on the matter soon.

Wally’s door is always open and he’d like to build a rapport with you. He’ll always give you a straight answer because, as Wally says, ―It’s a trust thing.‖

What will the outcome be? Your guess is as good as any. Either way, it is an important issue that needs to be examined carefully as it affects a lot of Ohioans, including students and teachers here at Stark State. The Stark Voices staff plans to follow this issue closely and bring you an update next month.


Your Student Government Representatives are:

A Note from Your Student Government President

Wendy Grable – President

By Wendy Grable – President

Candy Finsley – Vice President

Did you know Stark State College has a Student Government? Do you know what a Student Government does? I wanted to take a minute to introduce the Student Government Representatives and explain what we do, why it’s important to you (the student body), how we can help you, and how you can help us.

Lori Frase – Secretary Jennifer Barrick – Treasurer

The Student Government represents the interests and opinions of the student body by helping students understand their responsibilities, rights, and privileges. This is important to the student body because we promote or initiate activities of general student interest. We represent students’ opinions, and we serve as liaison between the administration, faculty, staff, and students. We participate in shared governance and strategic planning of the College. We do all this by encouraging student representation on College committees and requesting all clubs have representation on InterClub Council and regularly attend their meetings.

Read our bios at

You can help us by getting involved in student activities. Let us know what types of activities you would like the College to have available. Give us your opinions on anything going on at the College. Let us know how we can help you. Your opinions are always welcome, and your input is crucial to getting things to change for the better at the College.

What Am I? By Christopher M. Usner Mary Smith guessed that the image pictured in last month’s issue was in fact part of a pencil sharpener and won a $25 gift certificate to the bookstore. Now, try your luck. Can you guess what the image pictured in the lower left corner is?

I look forward to speaking to more of the student body this semester and next. I also look forward to hearing your ideas and opinions. I will be writing a note from the President section in each issue of Stark Voices to keep the student body up to date on the happenings at the College.


Send your best guess to starkvoices@starkstate. edu for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to the bookstore.

Opinions, Opinions, Opinions…

Complacency Fills the Air By Christopher M. Usner Bob Dylan once said, ―The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind.‖ Shortly after, revolution filled the air, and a generation’s voice was heard.

What Ticks Me Off? By Connie Luthi

Sadly this statement doesn’t describe our generation or the masses here at Stark State. Recently, the College asked us as a student body to turn out in person to ask questions and voice our opinions concerning recent campus-wide events, in an effort to enact change.

What ticks me off the most is when I am trying to work at school in a computer lab and someone has the volume turned up on their computer with some kind music playing or they’re talking loudly. I love to talk and I love to listen to music, but there is a time and place for everything. School computer labs are not the place for talking or listening to music or playing loud games. And if students must play music on the computer, please put on head phones! I am not the only one that thinks this is annoying. If such a person would only take a moment to look around them, they would probably see someone frowning because they are having trouble concentrating while trying to study or write a paper. Please be kind and courteous to those really studying in study areas.

We failed. Only 80 some students showed up at the open forums hosted by the College’s administration in an attempt to gather data, opinions, and ideas. However, the SSC Facebook page is filled with questions, concerns, and complaints. Anyone can make a witty comment online, folks! But, as former U.S. Secretary of Education, Shirley Hufsteddler, said, ―You don’t make progress by standing on the sidelines, whimpering and complaining. You make progress by implementing ideas.‖

Also, talking while walking through the computer labs is very disturbing when students are trying to study or write a paper. Staff and students alike are guilty on this account. This week, I was sitting at the computer trying to read what I had just written, when two students walking through the lab started talking loudly to a student sitting near me. After a few minutes, they continued through the computer lab, talking to each other while dancing (cute and funny but distracting). As I turned my head to watch them exit the hallway, I noticed that every head in the computer lab was turned, also watching. Distracting? Yes!

These forums were our opportunity to shape the ideas that will later be implemented. As a student body, we have a right to answers, and in many cases, a responsibility to ask questions. The College’s academic setting even allows us to be critical. However, we must go about posing these questions and presenting this criticism in a constructive and respectful manner so that we may be a part of the solution and not simply another problem.

These forums were our opportunity to do just that. Trying to work at home can be distracting and Sadly, though, many of us took these opportunities that is why many students spend time at school for granted and allowed our voices to be silenced. on the computers. Please, muzzle yourself as you are walking through these QUIET study areas because they cannot be …everyone has one. What about you? considered study areas when no one can study. Have an opinion, comment or concern? Send them 7

to Because ultimately, this isn’t our paper; it’s your paper. The Stark Voices

A Ghost Story

Severe Weather Reminders

By Christopher M. Usner The homeless, the unemployed, the underemployed, the struggling—they’re everywhere and they surround us in everything we do. Like the ghosts of the departed, we often see these individuals and look right through them, never giving them a second thought. Yet they exist, and that is undeniable. In fact, this class is so vast in number that finding an unoccupied corner at any major intersection in Akron is nearly impossible. As a result, the corners of our intersections have experienced exponential market growth, doubling, tripling, and some even quadrupling, in value. Meanwhile the value of our homes and other real estate continues to falter. However that’s not the point. The point is these individuals are people. Each and every one of them is someone’s father or mother, brother or sister, uncle or aunt, son or daughter. Sure, there are individuals out there running scams, too lazy to work, too lazy to try a little harder, too drunk or high to get a job, and too dumb to know that most people see right through them. But for those who would listen, most of these individuals are sincere and have stories to tell, stories that Hollywood would kill for, stories of love and lust, of war and heartbreak, of triumph and defeat, of gods and greatness. These stories can be heartwarming or heartbreaking. They can bring one to tears or make one jump up and cheer. They can even make one scared.

Staying aware of Stark State procedures and shelter locations is the best possible way to ensure your safety in the event of a tornado or other weather related incident. Watches and Warnings: A Tornado Watch means there is a chance of dangerous weather with damaging winds. A Tornado Warning means a tornado has been sighted and you should go at once to a designated shelter area.

In the event of a warning for our area, the Campus Security Office will begin to notify the campus community in the following ways:    

SSC Alert text messaging system P.A. announcements College e-mail system Officers on foot throughout the campus

Upcoming Events Women’s Perspective in the Armed Forces: March 30th from noon - 1 p.m. in room S204/205 Earth Week: April 22nd – May 5th Spring Fling: May 5th 11am – 3pm

So when was the last time you heard a good ghost story? 8

Early registration for returning students begins: March 29th

Stark Voices March 2011 Edition  

Stark Voices is the Stark State College student newspaper.

Stark Voices March 2011 Edition  

Stark Voices is the Stark State College student newspaper.