January 30, 2013

Page 1


Politics SGI 2013 Election The Torch sits down for a Q&A with the two Presidential candidates for this year’s Student Government, Inc. election, Lizzy Sheehan, left, and Mark Benavides. News Pg. 4

“Think Outside. . .”

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Managing Board XC

Michael Cunniff, Editor-in-Chief Nicole Valente, Managing Editor Jessica Lise, General Manager

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anthony o’reilly Entertainment Editor News Editor mitchell petit-frere marion gendron kristen farmer Co-Chief Copy Editor Photo Editor Sports Editor sarah yu jim baumbach diamond watts-walker Special thanks to Richard Co-Chief Copy Editor Advisor Art Director Rex Thomas for assisting in the design of the Torch kieran lynch

Features Editor

peter long

Features Cell Phone Zombies Is new technology sucking the life out of people?

Lifestyle Pg. 11

Music Long.Live.A$AP The Torch reviews A$AP Rocky’s newest album, Long. Live.A$AP. Torch Photo/adjani shah

Lifestyle Pg. 15

Sports Moving On Up The surging Johnnies take on DePaul today at Carnessecca looking for fifth win in a row.

Sports Pg. 18-19

Illustrator’s Corner

opinion pg. 6

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Natalie Munoz educates students during the Black History Month kick-off event in the DAC Org Lounge on Jan. 28.

Think Outside...


Torch March on Capitol Hill Briefs Students attend anti-abortion march in D.C. Abigail Titus Staff Writer More than 30 students travelled to the nation’s capital on Jan. 25 to participate in the anti-abortion demonstration known as the “March for Life.” The annual event has taken place in Washington D.C. ever since the Supreme Court decision on Roe v. Wade 40 years ago. The ruling legalized abortion in the U.S. The “March for Life” is the largest civil protest in the world with this year’s participants estimated to be numbered at around 400,000. The large turnout came in the aftermath of the 2012 election season in which anti-abortion Republicans suffered after Democrats made women’s rights issues a central campaign theme.

Of the 37 students who attended the day’s events, 15 were members of Students for Life, a Campus ministry student group that works, according to the group’s website, “to promote dignity and respect for all people at every stage of life.” James Finnegan, the graduate assistant for Students for Life, saw the march as an opportunity for students to “grasp both the magnitude and joy of the pro-life movement.” He hopes that participants “came away with renewed enthusiasm and hope for the pro-life cause.” Upon arrival, participants heard from various speakers including Rick Santorum, Republican presidential candidate in the 2012 election, and a video message from Speaker of the House, John Boehner (R-Ohio). The march on Capitol Hill and to the Supreme Court followed.

photo courtesy of cara weidinger

“At one point you could see thousands of people,” explained freshman Rosalie O’Brien, who described the experience as emotional and overwhelming for many who attended. The main goal of the “March for Life” is to overturn Roe v. Wade, but there are other objectives as well, O’Brien said. “I wanted to go because I think it is important to advocate that prolife extends to more issues than just abortion,” she said. “The biggest thing we can do is be advocates for life.” Nicholas Wentworth, the treasurer of Students for Life, agrees that “the march strongly protests the legalization of abortion” but that it also opposes “euthanasia, capital punishment, war, and abuses against the aged or terminally ill.” Wentworth said that it is abortion that can be viewed as “the civil and human rights issue of our time.” He believes the movement has seen success in recent years in this country. “St. John’s students have a responsibility to continue this tradition of affirming the rights of all people, regardless of race, religion, sex, sexuality, passport or age.”

Students for Life protested Roe v. Wade on the National Mall.

Students debate overseas Christopher Brito Assistant News Editor

Two University students argued their way through the World Universities Debate Championships (WUDC) in Berlin, Germany over the holiday break, continuing to foster their international presence and debating prowess. From Dec. 27 to Jan. 4, Alia’a Harun and Catarina Goncalves, members of the Debate Society, represented the University against more than 300 other universities in the “Olympics of Debate.” While the two students performed well, Monash University from Australia won its third straight WUDC title. Harun, an ecology major, described the experience as “stressful” but equally “enriching” because she says she loves the kick from it. “There’s so much of adrenaline rush from it that by the end if you do get the result or outcome of the argument you wanted,” she said. “It’s an exchange of ideas that’s so fruitful. There’s just a sense of accomplishment that you can’t find from anything else.” Josiah Peterson, a graduate assistant for the Debate Society, acted as a judge during the competition.

He said that the fruit of his time in Berlin was learning from former world champions taking part in the panel discussions. “If you’re not persuaded then don’t change your mind, argue for your point,” he said. “The chief end of it is justice. They should be able to explain and be able to sleep at night with whatever decision they made.” The Debate Society is no stranger to the international or national stage, competing in more than 15 tournaments throughout the academic year. They are also ranked second among the Northeast universities. They also participate in debate workshops overseas, most notably their Morocco Debate Exchange program, a partnership between Institute for Leadership and Communication Studies, Mohammad V University, and the University in Rabat, Morocco. Dr. Stephen Llano, Director of the Debate Society, said he was happy with the team’s performance abroad. He said that his team must learn to lose before they can win and be willing to mature from either result. “In the world where words work us over and where we work over the words to work other people over,” he said. “This is what the practice of debate

teaches to you in three rules: you have to depend on language; language is not to be trusted, and profit from it.”

Compiled by jarrod jenkins Assistant News Editor

Stand up for financial aid Students can stand up for financial aid in the annual Students Aid Advocacy Day at the New York state capitol building Feb 12th. The bus departs from Carnesecca Arena at 7 a.m and will return by 7 p.m. To register contact Assistant Vice President of Government Relations Brian Browne by Feb. 1 at Browneb@stjohns.edu or by phone at (718) 990-2762.

Art exhibit in Sun Yat Sen A talk with Viktor Deak, an accredited artist, will take place Jan. 31 at the Dr. M. T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery- Sun Yat Sen Hall during common hour. In addition, a solo exhibition of Deak’s artwork can be viewed up until March 2. Deak’s images have been featured in The American museum of Natural History NYC as well National Geographic TV, BBC Documentaries, The Discover magazine and the New York Times. For further information visit www.stjohnsedu/yehgallery.

Super Bowl viewing party The University will be hosting a gala in Taffner Field House to screenthis year’s Super bowl on a 30 foot screen. Food will be provided and students can participate in events such as T-shirt giveaways to receive prizes. Doors open 5:00 p.m. Sunday Feb 3.

photo courtesy of Steve Llano

Students at the Berlin Wall

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SGI Presidential Candidates 4

Lizzy Sheehan: current Secretary

Mark Benavides: Org. cmte. Chair

Christopher Brito Assistant News Editor

Anthony O’Reilly News Editor

Torch: Why do you want to run for Student Government, Inc President? Lizzy Sheehan: Before I came to St. John’s, I ran for student council in high school so I know how important that is. When I got my job in student engagement and got involved with student government for Relay for Life, I realized that’s really where you can be a vehicle to help all the other students. I was really enjoying the opportunities that were given to me and I really love St. John’s. I knew that was my chance to help every one else to enjoy it like I did. T: How will your experience with SGI influence your potential presidency? LS: I ran for the executive board position. I ran for sophomore senator and I ran for secretary. I absolutely love student government, so I’ve been in the executive board for the past two years. Having been part of SGI board for the past years, we sit with Fr. Harrington and he genuinely wants to know what the students concerns are. And so I think its really important to have people in student government

who are interested in student’s concerns and be willing able to bring it up to the administrators. T: What accomplish?





LS: I think one of the most important things is to build upon what’s already there. I’ve noticed from year to year things tend to get lost because students are coming into these positions and some of them may not have the same experience as others. They don’t know all the ropes. The goal is always to go two steps forward without any back. I just hope SGI can live up to expectations and responsibility as the voice for all the students and someone who will provide all the resources to the organizations under SGI. T: What do you want the student body to know about you or SGI? LS: Well I want the student body to know that SGI is here for them. We have the avenues and the ability to make their experience so much better. I’m a sincere person, I’ve always been extremely committed to SGI. I’m willing to go to the extra mile for SGI because it’s my job and my responsibility.

St. John’s celebrates start of Black History Month in DAC Adjani Shah Staff Writer Keeping the theme of “At the Crossroads of Freedom and Equality: The Emancipation Proclamation and the March on Washington,” in mind, the University kicked off the celebration of Black History Month on Jan. 28 in the DAC Org Lounge. Black History month is celebrated nationally from January 28 to February 22, recognizing the progress of civil rights and celebrating AfricanAmerican culture. Assistant Director of Multicultural Affairs Natalie Munoz said the events held throughout the month put emphasis on teaching the student body about the history of black culture. “I really feel Black History Month is an opportunity to learn from the past and reflect on what needs to be done now to continue the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.,” she said. African-American organizations took to the task of educating the student body during the kick-off, showing off various displays of different aspects of black history. “It’s a time where we can explore our history,” said student Dante Johnson echoing the opinion of other students at the event. The Diversity Peer Educators organization focused on the stereotypes that are associated with AfricanAmericans. In one exercise, students were able to write down on a large poster board some of these stereotypes,

how it makes them feel when they’re subjected to them and suggested some ways to defeat them. Events held throughout the month will continue with an emphasis on educating the student body, starting with a new event entitled “Freedom and Equality” being held today, Jan. 30, in DAC 416A at 7 p.m. The event looks at critical events in African-American history ranging from the emancipation proclamation to Dr. King’s famous march on the National Mall in the nation’s capital. The 50th anniversary of King’s march on Washington will be celebrated with the MLK Dinner on Feb. 7 at 7 p.m. in Marillac Terrace, sponsored by the Black History Month Committee. Keynote speakers include University professors Dr. Vincent LaVaughn Moss and Dr. Vance JoShaun Moss. The celebration culminates with the 23rd annual “Black and White Ball” on February 22 at 7 p.m. in the DAC Ballroom. The ball, according to Munoz, is held to recognize the students and University workers that made all of the events throughout the course of the month happen. “The students have worked really hard to put together a great month of programs which celebrate their culture, their contributions to society, and the challenges they still face,” Munoz said. For a list of events, students can visit stjohns.edu/BHM or scan the quick response codes found on flyers with their smart phones

Torch: Why do you want to run for Student Government, Inc President? Mark Benavides: There’s a lack of excitement in St. John’s University. You ask yourself or your friends, is this really the place I want to be? I think too many times people will say a held-back yeah, yeah I got a good scholarship. I think SGI should be the main body in which drives the excitement of the student body. The current administration has done a better job in excelling it but why I think it’s more important to invest in this excitement, in this buzz about St. John’s is because at the end of the day we’re all going to be better for it, our enjoyment of St. John’s will be better for it. T: How will your experience with SGI influence your potential presidency? MB: I think working in the organization’s committee is a great, great transitioning position should I win presidency. Because I’m dealing with organizations and what’s the first paragraph of like any Student

Government thing? “We are the parent organization of all organizations here on campus.” So I deal with organizations in a day-to-day basis. So I have a lot of experience in what makes an organization succeed and what doesn’t make it succeed. We have workshops, where we foster student leadership. I’ve been org chair for the past two, well two and half years. It’s really given me the opportunity to learn skills needed to run an organization in the right path. T: What accomplish?





MB: One of the main reasons why I want to run is really to empower the student organizations and really empower the student body. In the past we give them the tools but we don’t really see it through. Another thing we would like to see other than empowering organizations, is seeing what the real problem is with the student body. It’s like, “Why aren’t you excited?” I personally love St. John’s so much and I haven’t doubted my affection for St. John’s at all. I love this school. Not everyone feels the same way. We really need to start using our representatives.

Think Outside...

All photos courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Lilly Ledbetter Act Tuesday marked four years since the Lilly Ledbetter Act was signed into law and it seems little has changed for women seeking equal pay for equal work in America. The gender wage gap has proved to be an impending problem for America’s women and The Lilly Ledbetter Act signed by President Obama in 2009 has done little to eliminate pay discrimination.

John Kerry: Sec of State

The Senate voted late Tuesday afternoon swiftly confirming John Kerry as the new Secretary of State for the Obama Administration, according to ABC. There was little surprise the Senate approved Kerry as the new Secretary with an overwhelming vote of 94-3. Kerry was present during the vote and greeted with excitement. Kerry will replace former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who announced last year she would not serve a second term under the Obama Administration. Clinton and Obama recently did a schmaltzy interview with 60 minutes last week where the unanswered question whether Clinton will run for President in 2016 still looms. Clinton will serve her last day as Secretary on Feb 1st, according to ABC.

National All the news you may have missed:


Compiled by Shannon Luibrand Assistant Features Editor

Obama signs $50B Sandy aid bill

NYC Mayoral Race Billionaire Republican, John Catsimatidis, announced Tuesday he will run for mayor of New York City in 2013. Catsimatidis [left], CEO of Red Apple Group and father of two, has an estimated net worth of $3 billion, according to Forbes. Other candidates running for mayor include former MTA Chairman Joe Lhota, publisher Tom Allon , George McDonald, former Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion, Public Advocate Bill DeBlasio [above], Comptroller John Liu, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and former Comptroller Bill Thompson. NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is currently serving his third term in office and unable to seek reelection. The NYC mayoral election will take place in November this year.

Plane crashes in Hudson

A small plane carrying two people crashed into the Hudson River late Sunday afternoon, according to the New York Post. Christopher Smidt, 43, and pilot Deniece De Prieste, 39, both survived the crash after spending thirty minutes floating in the frigid river waters, according to ABC. In a press conference yesterday Smidt commended first responders and described the dramatic phone call he made to his wife before the plane crashed, “I said goodbye,” he told CBS news. After he spoke with his wife, Smidt dialed 911. Both Smidt and De Prieste have been released from a Bronx Hospital treated for hypothermia while the plane remains in the Hudson River.

It has been a busy three days for the Obama Administration and Congress with immigration reform and emergency aid for Sandy victims at the forefront. Last night, Obama signed the $50.5 billion in aid for victims of Superstorm Sandy, according to The Associated Press. Congress approved the reformed emergency funding package Monday night President Obama made a speech in Las Vegas yesterday urging Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform immediately, according to ABC news. “So if we’re truly committed to

strengthening our middle class and providing more ladders of opportunity to those who are willing to work hard to make it into the middle class,” Obama said. Bipartisanship has been nearly impossible to achieve over the last four years, Republicans seem on board and ready to discuss immigration reform with the President. Republican Senator John McCain assured ABC of this in an interview Sunday, “We can’t go on forever with 11 million people living in this country in the shadows in an illegal status,” he said.

Boy Scouts to consider policy change After spending months in the spotlight, Boy Scouts of America announced Monday they are considering lifting their ban on gay scouts and leaders, according to the New York Times. The banning of gay members is nothing new for the over one hundred year old organization, but it came into question last July when they reaffirmed that ban, according to the New York Times. After pressure from various Gay rights groups and a shift in thinking for most Americans, the Scouts are reviewing that same decision they reasserted just seven months ago. It is still unclear when the Boy Scouts of America will announce their final decision regarding the ban.

Editorial Board XC

MICHAEL E. CUNNIFF Editor-in-Chief

Illustrator’s Corner

NICOLE VALENTE Managing Editor JESSICA LISE General Manager ANTHONY O’REILLY News Editor


Grazie, Gracias, Merci St. John’s

It seems like it’s a rite of passage for St. John’s students to go on at least one long-winded rant per semester about how woefully inadequate the University is in one facet or another. Whether it’s the spotty WiFi, asinine dorm policies, a head-scratching schedule format or just the general sense of “what’s with that?” St. John’s has long been the subject of many a stressed-out student’s ire. Many of those criticisms are valid; some are not. But often, the University doesn’t get enough credit for the things it does do well. And one of the things it does better than perhaps any school in the country is its study abroad program. St. John’s offers study abroad programs ranging from seven days to full MBA programs at their Rome campus. The shorter trips are often paired with a class that runs through the semester, while mid-length programs (two or three weeks) run during intersession that qualify as a full class. Then there are the full semester programs that can take you to Rome, Paris and now, Seville, Spain for five or six weeks or for the full semester. For the brave, St. John’s offers full year programs at the Rome and Paris campuses and the opportunity to get your MBA in Rome in 18 months. But beyond the logistics of the various study abroad programs (and there are more offered) is the ease with which most students can get into them. Most require simply a passport, a short application and a deposit. Add to that the programs that are on offer in the most popular programs, like Discover the World Europe. Rather than skimping on electives and saving up credits to study abroad, St. John’s has made the very wise decision to make many core courses and general requirements available abroad. So instead of listening

to a philosophy professor drone on in St. John’s Hall, you can study metaphysics in the heart of Paris. All of this for little more than the cost of living expenses on campus here in Queens. The program fee may seem daunting at first, but when you consider the benefits it provides, it really isn’t much at all. The nearly $8000 Discover the World program fee covers housing and a meal plan that varies depending on where you are. None of this is news to most people reading this, we know. So why are we bringing it up? Well, we’re always quick to criticize St. John’s for things it doesn’t do well. But then when it does something close to perfectly, we take it for granted. Other students from across the country pay to study at St. John’s campuses in Rome, while we simply have to fiddle with our UIS to open the world up to us for barely more than our normal tuition plus room and board. We at the Torch sometimes roll our eyes at the University’s “Catholic, Vincentian and Metropolitan” mission, but the low barrier to entry of the study abroad programs really embodies what we believe the metropolitan part of the mission to be. In addition to having our eyes opened culturally by living in Queens, we also have unique opportunities to dive into the cultural lifestyles of the French, Romans and Spanish, among others. This isn’t just one crazy editor saying this either. Five members of the editorial board have seen the world in some capacity thanks to St. John’s. Some of us weren’t exactly thrilled with the idea of doing it at all before we went, but afterward, every one of us agrees that it was probably one of the best decisions of our lives. We urge anybody who hasn’t studied abroad to consider doing so, and anybody who has to give St. John’s a big “thanks!”


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 e-mail at: torcheic@gmail.com

Please include your full name, year, and college (or department). Letters have a limit of 500 words and may be edited for content, grammar, or space. Unverifiable or anonymous letters will not be published. All letters are subject to the approval of the Editorial Board of The TORCH.



Not quite March, but our time’s now KIERAN LYNCH Features Editor

There was a point last basketball season when I was sitting at Madison Square Garden and thought to myself something along the lines of, ‘this program is headed in the right direction, but I may have seen all the big moments I was destined to see as a freshman in 2010-11.’ Now, it looks like I may be wrong, very wrong. The men’s basketball team sits at 13-7 and 5-3 in conference and is looking straight down the barrel at a February stretch that could either leave them dancing in March or looking back at what could have been. Either way, it’s time for the students to get behind this team and make the Garden rock the way it was when Dwight Hardy scored a reverse layup with less than two seconds left to defeat a No. 4 ranked Pittsburgh team in front of more than 14,000 screaming New Yorkers. This team is a group of kids that believed enough in the potential of the program and the university that they were willing to commit to a team that had barely won a big game in the last decade. They said as a group that they wanted to bring the Johnnies back and wanted to be the ones to next be etched into St. John’s history.

We, as New York basketball fans, are a fickle group of people. We don’t get too excited over sub-par seasons. This isn’t Morgantown, W. Va. or Bloomington, Ind. or Spokane, Wash. People in this city have a multitude of things to do and spending a night watching a college team over a professional one doesn’t rank high on the list, especially when that team is struggling. The result of this is that our group of freshmen, who came here to win under the spotlight of this great city, had to deal with a three quarters empty Garden at a time when they were grappling with eligibility and transfer issues. Now, there is no excuse. These underclassmen are poised to do something special. Tonight, the Red Storm will take the floor against DePaul in the next step of this process. It’s not the most glamorous opponent, but it matters just as much as any other conference match-up. The one thing they deserve the most, not just tonight, but when they play Connecticut at home next week, is a packed student section that is

proud of the way they’ve come back from the adversity and the early missteps of non-conference play to be put in the national conversation when it matters. In the next month, the Johnnies will need to beat the teams that can be beat (DePaul, Connecticut, USF, Pittsburgh, at Providence and Marquette) as well as one or two of the games that people will say they can’t (at Georgetown, at Syracuse, at Louisville and at Notre Dame.) Those games that are among the “must-win” games? All of them are home games except for one. That means there’s no excuse not to be there. The days of getting 7,000 people to a home game at the World’s Most Famous Arena should be long behind us. Winning changes things around here. I know I keep referring back to 2011, but there’s a reason for that. When the tournament rolled around, everyone who was present on campus saw how awesome a school wrapped up in its basketball team can be. There were

The days of getting 7,000 people to a home game at the World’s Most Famous Arena should be long behind us.

the “We Are…St. John’s!” signs plastered on windows in every building (some of which can still be spotted to this day), ESPN radio doing a live show from the D’Angelo Center and pep rallies galore. I can assure you, it’s all much more exciting than students complaining about financial aid. But it all starts with you. Without the students caring, there’s no reason to do any of it. There’s no basketball team, there’s no coverage, there’s no St. John’s University. So get on the bandwagon and be a part of something special. Be a part of the only major college basketball program in New York City and the only team to call Madison Square Garden home. Go to the games and cheer on the players who play in a way that should make New York proud. Will them to March, to the tournament where anything can happen and I promise you, they’ll give you excitement, their best effort and who knows – maybe something to celebrate on the national stage.

Kieran Lynch is a junior journalism major who firmly believes “hashtag win and we’re in” #WINANDWEREIN He can be reached at torchfeatures@gmail.com.

Earnings worries take bite out of Apple Tech giant’s record iPad and iPhone sales don’t calm investors’ nerves QUINN ROCHFORD Business Columnist

Apple, Inc. is still doing well. Really well, in fact. Just not as well as expected. Late last week, Apple (AAPL) released its much-anticipated quarterly earnings report for the conclusion of 2012. Though the multinational corporation posted record revenues and profits, investors were left unequivocally disappointed in the results. For the three months that ended in December, Apple earned roughly $54.5 billion in revenue – up an astounding $18.5 billion from the corporation’s fiscal fourth quarter, which ended in September. Its average weekly revenue increased by $900 million from the same quarter in 2011. Apple sold 47.8 million iPhones and 22.9 million iPads during its most recent quarter, both records for the company’s two most popular products. The sale of Macs and iPods were both significantly down from a year ago. The company chose not to distinguish the sale statistics of its newly-unveiled iPad mini from that of the standard iPad, yet inventory backlogs seemed to suggest that the product was welcomed warmly by consumers with heavy demand. So why the frowns?

Apple’s profit level result was generally flat, despite the company selling 18 million more iPhones and iPads. Apple spent big to ensure the timely release of both the iPhone 5 and iPad Mini late in 2012. The flat earnings could mark the end of years of continuing growth that formed Apple into the most valuable U.S. corporation. But the deceleration wasn’t without a disclaimer. The company, headed by CEO Tim Cook, who officially took over for Steve Jobs in Aug. 2011, warned that the introduction of the two anticipated products would affect profits in a transitional manufacturing period. “Meeting expectations is not enough for Apple,” Colin Gillis of BGC Financial told the L.A. Times. “So that’s a little bit of a disappointment. International sales were a little weaker than people expected. So we’ll see how that shakes out.” According to the Wall Street Journal, the iPhone grew along with the market rate for similar competing products. Though the once-revolutionary smartphone made up for more than half of Apple’s total revenue last quarter, it seems that the corporation is losing its competitive advantage for the product. Previous periods in which Apple released new versions of the iPhone saw it grab a larger percentage of the market share. One product series that has given rise to competition is Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones and tablets. The Galaxy is

cheaper than the iPhone and has similar amenities, which could force Apple to make a response. The disappointing earnings report catalyzed a ten percent – nearly $47 billion – dip in share value last Wednesday, a day after Apple made its press release available. Despite the negativity, Cook firmly believes that Apple will be able to revitalize growth once it can meet manufacturing needs. “We’re thrilled with record revenue of over $54 billion and sales of over 75 million iOS devices in a single quarter,” Cook said in Apple’s official release. “We’re very confident in our product pipeline as we continue to focus on innovation and making the best products in the world.” Since the conception of the iPod in 2001, Apple has been making the best products in the world. The iPhone and iPad ultimately put the corporation on the top of the technological world. But can Apple maintain its power? What not long ago seemed like an indestructible moving train, gaining cargo by the day, could be losing steam. “Apple is one of the most prolific periods of innovation in its history,” Cook mentioned. “We continue to believe our fundamentals, our remarkable people, and our clear and focused strategy will serve us well in the coming months and years ahead.”

Apple’s CEO is confident in Apple’s future. What’s in its kitchen, however, may not be as appealing as what their Cook tells us. Quinn Rochford is a junior accounting major who greatly appreciated spending time on press row with old friend Michael E. Cunniff, Nicole’s boyfriend.

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Think Outside...



Everyone’s favorite


Our Choice Omelets A sampling of what we order when we pay Angela a visit at Monty’s: 1. Two fresh eggs, spinach, tomato and onion, with two slices of American cheese and a dash of crushed red pepper 2. One fresh egg, one egg white, spinach, ham, tomato and cheddar cheese 3. Egg whites, spinach, tomato and feta cheese 4. Two fresh eggs, ham, tomato, American cheese and cheddar cheese 5. Two eggs, ham, tomato, onions, peppers, mushrooms, olives, jalapeno peppers and cheddar cheese PHOTO COURTESY OF WILLIAM GIRON

Angela Kalloudis prepares a few of her St. John’s famous omelets for students at Montgoris Dining Hall.

SHANNON LUIBRAND Assistant Features Editor

Walk into Montgoris Dining Hall on the campus of St. John’s any weekday and you are almost guaranteed to find a long line of hungry students waiting to fuel their brains and fill their stomachs with one of the dining hall’s famed omelets. These students do not only come to the dining hall for the delicious omelets; they also come for the friendly and modest chef that makes them, Angela Kalloudis. “Omelets are the best thing that they have here, period,” sophomore Anthony Schneider said. “Angela is a wonderful woman.” Angela, as she is known universally on campus, began working at St. John’s University 14 years ago and continues to be the most talked about and adored chef on campus. She serves her seemingly perfect omelets along with a welcoming smile and gracious hello, to hundreds of students each week. “She makes the best omelets I have

ever had,” sophomore Gabriella Guzman said. “I get an omelet two or three times a week. I love her.” There is no doubt that there is something special about Angela. Students and faculty members adore her and the superb omelets she makes. She attributes this to the fact that she cooks with love. “I love you guys. I cook with my heart,” she said in an interview with the Torch. “I cook all my love into the omelets.” Angela cooks up to five omelets at a time with every ingredient from green peppers to spinach. Although omelets are her forte, she is willing to accommodate students by making any style of egg they request, such as “sunny side up” or scrambled. “She genuinely cares about the people she serves,” senior Billy Morris said. “She actually cares and makes a great omelet.” Angela hasn’t always made the omelets at St. John’s. Her concoctions used to be a much more foreign affair. “I used to cook Chinese before, stir fry,” she said. “After they did not have that station anymore they asked me to do

the omelets.” During the summer when the omelet station is closed Angela makes sandwiches at the deli station. “Every time I come, I get an omelet from Angela,” junior Wilfred Curioso said. “They are very good.” Most students know Angela as the friendly omelet chef, but there is a lot more to her than just that. Angela said she grew up in Corinth, Greece, a city about 50 miles away from Athens. While still in Greece, at the young age of 10, she found a passion for cooking. “I really love to cook,” she said. “My mom is a good cook too.” In 1970, Angela said her entire family left Greece and moved to Queens. She lived in Astoria for a while, before settling into Douglaston. “I make dinner every night for my family,” she said. “Plus, I have my mom home and she helps me a lot.” Inspired by her mother, Angela continues to not only cook for a living, but for her own family as well. She is known for hosting holidays at her house where she cooks for crowds, sometimes, as large as 30 people. She never turns

anyone away and shows her love by filling the stomachs of those around her. “I have a lot of friends,” she said. “They love me and I love everybody.” Angela enjoys interacting with the students that come to her omelet station each day. She especially enjoys when they try to speak in her native language, Greek. “Sometimes they try to learn to say ‘Hi, Angela,’ in Greek or ‘Goodbye,’ she said. “Or ‘have a nice weekend,’ but that is long!” Her constant laughter and friendly attitude makes Angela one of the most approachable people on campus. Despite having three grown kids of her own, she considers all of the St. John’s students her children. “I have three kids of my own, “ she said. “But all of you are like my kids.” Many St. John’s residents who live far from home find comfort in Angela representing the matriarch of Montgoris Dining Hall. There is no doubt that she has created a home away from home at her omelet station and St. John’s students will never go hungry as long as she is cooking there.



Contributing Writer


Since the beginning of mankind, many have pondered at the thought of when the world would end? How would it happen? Meteorite? Global Warming? Zombies? It’s been 40 days since the last “Apocalypse” on December 21st, and I think it’s safe to say we could finally file the movie “2012” under the fiction genre at Blockbuster. From the days of Nostradamus to the scare of Y2K, mankind has come out better than ever. Or have they? The Zombie Apocalypse is upon us, but not the way we’ve heard about it. Not the way “Zombie land” or “The Walking Dead” have described it, but with technology. Since the technology boom in 2000 and the emergence of Apple and Droid, the zombies have been out lurking the ground we all share. Whether it’s checking a tweet, changing a Facebook picture, or texting a loved one, technology is turning mankind into zombies. Walking with their heads down and eyes focused on the screen, these zombies are growing in numbers. “When I’m here at St. John’s I’m trying to figure out where I’m going,” sophomore Sam Blakely told the Torch while walking down the steps of Marillac. “I don’t have my schedule memorized.” A Department of Transportation study showed that half of New York residents that were involved in a pedestrian-car accident were crossing the street while the traffic light was green and were unaware that the light had even changed. This type

of incident caused Mayor Bloomberg to stamp the word “Look!” at about 200 intersections in the five boroughs in hopes of preventing pedestrians from fatal injuries as they cross the street. “I tend not to bump into people,” said junior Audrey Prieto, who was walking to Dasilva. “I use my peripherals.” But it’s not just pedestrians that are showing these Zombiesk qualities. It’s motorists as well. Even though the use of electronics while operating a vehicle is illegal in the state of New York, there are many drivers that still choose to check up on their electronic friends at the next red light or while approaching a stop sign. Although most phones that are purchased have some sort of head set that makes it hands free, drivers still choose not to use them and are forced to hold the steering wheel with only one hand. The mutants are not just walking the streets but are also sitting in class next to you. Most students stroll into class with about ten minutes to spare before class begins and instead of socializing verbally with fellow classmates, the zombies take out their electronic devices and fiddle with them until the kryptonite known as a professor comes into the class room to settle the crowd of monsters. It’s not uncommon to also see two zombies sit together and dabble on their devices while sharing a meal together, just look in Montogris or Marillac during lunch time and you’ll see for yourself. The Zombies are upon us, they’ve always been, but now more than ever. It’s only a matter of time until the entire world is engulfed in this Apocalypse.

Coachella disappoints, Gov’s Ball approved PETER LONG

Entertainment Editor Out of all the music festivals held last year, the clear cut winner was the Coachella Valley Music Festival held in Indio, California. With Radiohead, the Black Keys, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, and even a casual appearance by Tupac Shakur, people from all over the country and the globe flocked to the desert in the California to see, quite possibly, without hyperbole, the greatest assemblage of musical talent ever. After the announcement of this year’s Coachella lineup this past Friday, fans seemed to be disappointed with what they saw on paper. Bands who have been relatively absent from the spotlight, French pop contingent Phoenix and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the latter group released their lackluster tenth album, I’m With You, in 2011, and bands who are over 15 years in their careers who are headlining U.S. festivals for the first time, Blur and The Stone Roses, are set to headline for two weekends in April. The latter two groups are possibly the two most controversial choices of the festival. Blur and The Stone Roses, both British groups, will be co-headlining the first days of the two weekends and many have already gone to Twitter to ask the question, “who are The Stone Roses?”

A Tumblr page has already been created under the same name that feature Tweets such as “I have no idea who the Stone Roses are” and “ummm maybe im not cool enough but who are the stone roses? #coachella.” However, many have found merit in the opening acts, such as alternative veterans Dinosaur Jr. and ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr and up-and-comers Alt-J and Danny Brown. Other notable acts include a reunited Postal Service, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Vampire Weekend, Modest Mouse and Wu-Tang Clan. Fans have already pointed out the superiority of a local festival’s lineup that hasn’t even announced their third headliner. The Governor’s Ball will be held on Randall’s Island from June 7-9 and will feature Kanye West and Kings of Leon as headliners. While the two festivals share similar acts, Governor’s Ball went the extra mile and picked up several breaking and established bands from multiple genres. Nas, whose hometown Queens’ neighborhood of Queensbridge is located 15 minutes away from the festival site, will a top secondary act alongside hip-hop phenom Kendrick Lamar . The PHOTO COURTESY OF CLEVELAND.COM Avett Brothers, The Lumineers, Yeasayer, Beirut, Grizzly Bear and Young the The Stone Roses were a controversial pick to headline at this year’s Coachella Fest. Giant will also be performing over the es for the three days on the Manhattan weekend sold out after only a couple course of the three days. General admission three-day Ferry, shuttles from Brooklyn or park- of hours, three-day general admission tickets for Governor’s Ball are on sale ing on the Island are sold separately. passes are $349. A GA pass with a car now for $220 with transportation pass- Compared to Coachella, whose first camping pass is $434.


Q&A: Internship explanations SARAH YU

Chief Copy Editor Dr. Michaelle Kyriakides, Director of Experiential Education and Denise Hopkins, Executive Director of Career Center sat down with the Torch to give some tips on how to go about finding and starting an internship in your field of study. Dr. Michelle Kyriakides, Director of Experiential Education Torch: Are unpaid, for-credit internships worth it and why? Dr. Michelle Kyriakides: Yes, absolutely. Any way you can get experience, it’s going to help build your resume and make you more marketable to an employer for when you graduate. In other industries, you may find a paid internship. I think the key is getting the experience, building your network and meeting as many people in the industry you want to go into, as possible, so that makes it easier for you once you graduate and are looking for full-time employment. T: Why is networking so important? How can we network? MK: Networking is the number one way, consistently people find jobs. It’s not what you know, it’s who you know. What you know is very important but who you know will help you get there. You can network with your faculty; you can network with any employers that are on campus, and when we have companies coming on campus for an information session, that’s a networking opportunity. It’s thinking outside the box of who do I know that might know somebody. LinkedIn is another source for networking. We also have an alumnimentor program that we host through the Career Center that we connect you with an alumnus. T: What are some tips for putting together/writing a resume? MK: Think of your resume as a one-

Where to find the Career Center Office Location St. Augustine Hall, 2nd Floor (Library Building) Tel (718) 990-6375 Hours Monday: 8 a.m. - 7 p.m. Tuesday: 8 a.m. - 7 p.m. Wednesday 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Thursday: 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Friday: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. Saturday: 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. careers@stjohns.edu

page advertisement so when you’re doing your homework, read some job descriptions for your dream job and once you do that, create a list and say, what are the skills that I need to make sure I market? Then look back at your resume and say, am I doing this or am I just talking about the job description for my parttime job? The number one skill any employer looks for is typically communication skills. T: Why is it important for students to not only maintain a good GPA but to also build their resume at the same time?

searching for internships or jobs?

MK: I think going for the internships is key, early on, but being optimistic. Let’s face it, if you’re going in on a job interview and you’re happy to be there and you’re smiling and you’re optimistic and you’re confident, you’re going to come across as a much stronger candidate than someone who goes in thinking, well I’m not going to get this anyway. It’s all in how you present yourself. That confidence in knowing that things are getting better, you’re well-prepared coming from St. John’s.

MK: The 4.0 student is going to be T: For students who are still trying to attractive to many declare their desired employers however, major, what are some if they have a 4.0 and factors they need to haven’t done anyconsider? What are thing else, they’re some resources? going to come upon a challenge where MK: We talk they don’t have anyabout really four thing to put on their things that you should resume. An emconsider when makployer is looking for ing any career decithe development of sion. V.I.P.S (Values, all of those types of Interests, Personalskills so it’d be great ity, Skills) All four of if you had a 4.0 and those things need to three internships, be together for you but most employers to be really satisfied do look for a cerwith your career. All tain minimal GPA, of our Career advi-Dr. Michaelle which varies by insors are trained at dustry, but typically giving what we call Kyriakides, Director of we recommend that career assessments. Experiential Education if you have above a They’ll ask you ques3.0, that you include tions and ask you to that in your resume. rank how you feel about each answer and from there, you’ll be given a list of T: Why is it important to have close potential careers and the Career Advisor relationships with your major-related can then walk you through finding addiprofessors and/or the Program Director tional resources that you can learn more of your field? about that career path.

Any way that you can get experience, it’s going to help build your resume and make you more marketable to an employer for when you graduate.

MK: Many of them are connected to the industry. Once they also get to know you, they will have an idea of what you’re passionate about and what the right types of opportunities are for you. When it comes across their desk or comes across our desk, yes we’ll post it for everybody, but if we know this is what you’re passionate about, we’ll post it on CareerLink, but we may reach out to you and say, I think this was a great opportunity. We talk a lot about branding and knowing what your brand is, knowing what you’re passionate about, where you want to go. T: What are some mistakes that students make when going into an interview for a position and how can they avoid doing that? MK: Number one, is not doing their research and not preparing. You really need to know something about the organization, reread the job description before you go to the interview and have stories prepared that show that you have the skills the employer is looking for. Also, dressing the part, knowing what’s appropriate for your industry. Going in dressed in a suit, dressing a little bit above what you would wear on a typical day. Having questions prepared for the interview is also good. T: Despite the unemployment rate and economy, what kind of mentality should students have when going into

T: What is some advice or suggestions you have for students regarding internships and careers? MK: Use the resources that are available. I think most students don’t realize that yes, the Career services are free to you but that’s because you’ve already paid your student fees and tuition, but really, the University is putting a significant amount of resources here at your fingertips and the backgrounds that the advisors have are incredible. We’re growing. The institution is funding us to expand. We’re going to be hiring new career advisors over the next semester. We’re also building out our employer relations team to increase the number of opportunities for our students across the University and within the next couple of weeks, we will be moving to Chiang Ching Kuo Hall which is between Marillac and Sen Memorial Hall so keep your eyes open for a grand opening Denise Hopkins, Executive Director of the Career Center Torch: What can students do if they’re having a bad experience with their for-credit or paid internship? DH: If it’s an internship for credit and you’re having a bad experience, you need to immediately let whatever faculty member is overseeing that internship, you need to have a conversation. They

might be doing something that’s illegal or unethical and St. John’s will intervene in that case because we don’t want our students in any kind of situation that is exploitive in any way or unfair to them so that would be my first recommendation. If you’re doing an internship that’s not for credit, come and see us. Come to Career services if you think that if you’re having a particularly tough time or if you think whatnot, come and see us and we’ll provide guidance and support and help you manage that. T: Why is it crucial to maintain professionalism in our social media networking sites? DH: Your reputation, you are forming as a student is the same as you would as an entry level professional or mid-career, and if you are tweeting or blogging out there in the sphere or complaining or being inappropriate about your experience, that will come back to get you or harm you in most cases because future employers don’t want to hire people who are going to diss them. T: Will employers ever look for a student’s personal Facebook, Twitter or blog? DH: Although it’s frowned upon, employers do look for you. They’re not supposed to, but they will Google you, they will try to find you. You want whatever is out there to reflect positively on you as a prospective employee so you need to be very careful.


T&S return from four year break KORI WILLIAMS Staff Writer

TEGAN & SARA Heartthrob


It has been about four years since the release of their last album, but in that time, Tegan and Sara have been busy. From appearing on television shows, other artists’ albums and more, the twin sisters found time to record, promote and release their latest work Heartthrob. Heartthrob holds true to its title. Song titles that insinuate love, such as “How Come You Don’t Want Me” and “I Was a Fool” are splattered throughout the back cover and the content of the songs don’t stray too far from the subject either. Lyrics from the album’s first single “Closer” ooze sexual references: “All I’m dreaming lately is how to get you underneath me / Here comes the heat before we meet a little bit closer” On their records, the duo has always liked to experiment with different sounds. Their first album, Under Feet Like Ours, compares to an earthy, indie record whereas Heartthrob takes on the latest trend of synthetic, synthesized beats. However, Tegan and Sara have made successfully made the transition and avoid sounding like a copycat. The overall direction of Heartthrob is upbeat and poppy. But some songs, such as “I Couldn’t Be Your Friend” and “I Was a Fool,” are timid tunes of betrayal that are simplistic and stark compared to the other tracks “Love They Say” is one of the more uplifting songs on the album. It’s a very romantic mellow song that makes a complete 180 degree shift from the lyrical subject on other songs. The song is meant to preface others on Heartthrob by talking about how good relationships are at the beginning. It’s also a statement that one can still find love despite having negative relationships in the past. This album is the perfect balance of depressing lyrics and an upbeat pace. At first glance, Heartthrob may sound like the perfect companion to your post-breakup blues, but be forewarned — you might end up worse than before.

Find warmth in the cold SHARON TONG Staff Writer

February is already here and it is just starting to feel like winter. More snow is bound to hit the East Coast and you may have to store those flats you’ve graciously worn through the cold for layers of socks under those boots you’ve barely worn this season. Don’t fear the cold; here are some ways to stay warm—layers excluded. Let’s face it, knitted gloves are not warm. Sure, they’re thick, but underneath those gloves your hands are freezing and it feels like I don’t have any at all. When it comes to having gloves on, the point is to not have your hands in your pockets or even layering gloves. Instead, your hands should be free in the air as if it’s the summer. Remember those Old Navy fleece gloves from your childhood? If they were warm back then, they’re still warm today. Fleece has a strong wind resistance because it’s partly made of polyester, which is durable during the cold. Wool gloves will also give you the ultimate warmth and comfort, but if you’re always attached to your phone, have no worries, touch screen gloves exist! Most of us are probably already over puffer coats and take them as old-fashioned. Peacoats may be suitable for less bone-chilling weather, but look no further, there are plenty of wool-blended coats that are almost wind-resistant. Make sure to carefully choose one that zips (or buttons) all the way up as the neck area is one of the sen-


Wool gloves might not be friendly for texting, but they can keep anyone warm.

sitive places to get hit with the cold breeze (that is, if you don’t like scarves). Another annoying winter asset, and we’ve all been there, is when our thighs get icy cold. If you’re tall, or short, you can keep your legs warm by getting a lengthy coat that covers the upper half of your legs. Also, be sure to buy a coat with a hood, it is more essential than you think. Shoes are the silhouettes of our outfits; this is probably one of the main reasons why some women own hundreds of pairs of shoes. You don’t have to buy a pair of those furry, gigantic boots you’d hate to be seen

with when your solution is socks. Cashmere socks are heavenly for the feet and those fuzzy socks you hate is also another great option for snuggling your feet, no matter how thin your shoes are. Legwarmers (believe it or not) are not only for show; they’re vital for those of us who don’t wear boots or want to have that extra warmth and has its benefits of keeping your muscles warm for better movement. The next time you decide on layering, whether it’s leggings, hosiery, socks or shirts, think about what you’re buying to avoid strained outfits!

TWISB: Ross, Brown v. Ocean Rick Ross in the middle of a drive-by on his birthday, crashes Rolls Royce On the morning of his birthday, Rick Ross was caught in a drive-by shooting just 20 minutes away from his hometown, according to The Huffington Post. Witnesses said there were over 12 shots that sounded like they had come from a high-powered rifle. Ross was on the busy Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. when an unidentified gunman in a different vehicle began to shoot at Ross’ 2011 Rolls Royce. The driver of the vehicle turned the corner and crashed into an apartment building. Ross, his fashion designer “girlfriend” Shateria Moragne-el and the driver were not injured. Ross is set to release his new album, Mastermind, later in 2013. He had just recently exclusively recorded a new track for the Quentin Tarantino film Django Unchained.

Ocean and Brown battle in West Hollywood parking lot, fued continues, suit expected

When will Chris Brown stop hitting people? According to MTV, Frank Ocean is looking to press charges against Breezy for allegedly jumping him in the parking lot of a West Hollywood recording studio. Dueling sources have told news outlets that Ocean either wouldn’t let Brown into a parking space or let him leave the lot. Some believe that Brown started the scrap because of his well publicized temper, but the cause of the brawl is still unclear. Earlier this summer, the two artists had a Twitter war where Brown allegedly made fun of Ocean’s orientation. Ocean is coming off the most successful year of his young career. He recived high critical appraise and “best album of the year” tags for his debut album, Channel Orange.

Tyler, The Creator and Miley Cyrus collaborate on new track Miley Cyrus and Tyler, the Creator have spent some quality time in the studio, and no, they’re not dating. The two artists are collaborating on a new song for Cyrus’ upcoming album. If there’s anyway to make matters interesting, the song was written by Mary J. Blige. According to Pitchfork, the pop artist will be releasing her new album later this year. Cyrus has remained in the tabloids despite not working on a new project for a couple of years. She is currently working on the follow-up to 2010’s Can’t Be Tamed. Tyler, The Creator has yet to release his own follow-up to his highly successful and controversial second LP, Goblin. Compiled by Destiny DeJesus, Assistant Entertainment Editor


Gun and media scrutiny renewed DYLAN NUNEZ Staff Writer

Whenever there is a mass shooting, the media has always been scrutinized whether the focus is on song lyrics, news coverage, movies or video games. After the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, the issue is again in the spotlight and St. John’s students are once again involved in the debate. After the shooting at Columbine, “Doom”, a first-person shooter video game was heavily criticized. The shooting in Aurora, Colorado last year at the premiere of the latest Batman movie was speculated to be inspired by a scene out of the comic book, “Batman: The Dark Knight Rises.” Wayne LaPierre, CEO of the National Rifle Association (NRA), continued to criticize the media and, “vicious violent video games,” after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary. It’s a debate that affects everyone, regardless of whether the correlation between violence in the media and violence in real life exists. Among the student body at St. John’s, there doesn’t really seem to be a question of the correlation between the two, but rather how their relationship with other people affects each other. “I don’t think people should blame the media,” said junior Tessa Thazhathukunnel. “Correlation doesn’t equal causation.” “Yes, there is a correlation,” freshman Eli Labayen countered. “Media desensitizes viewers to violence through daily TV shows, cartoons and action video games. Some become inspired or attempt to copycat what they see on TV ,

mistaking it for what it is, just a show.” Following Sandy Hook, director Quentin Tarantino refused to answer questions about justifying his holiday movie, “Django Unchained” in an interview, believing it isn’t the artist’s job to

justify his product and that it’s simply entertainment. Junior, Matt Heron, believes that artists shouldn’t have to justify their work, Stating that, they are simply doing their job and making a product.

“But they should explain why they’re so sick in the head,” Tazhathukunnel said in similar fashion. “Who came up with ‘Human Centipede’?” However, such media is often part of everyone’s everyday life. In one form or another, by the time one has reached college, they’ve almost certainly seen someone die through some form of entertainment media. Which brings the next questions, where does the debate head next,and how will the relationship continue to evolve in the future? Since Sandy Hook, the gun control debate has reignited and media is being examined more than ever. Vice President Joe Biden pondered the issue of violence in entertainment during his time creating the gun reform laws being fought for today. In Oklahoma, Rep. Diane Franklin proposed a tax on video games of a teen or mature rating to fund mental health programs. California also faced a battle over a law dealing with the banning of violent video games to minors in 2011, which was eventually struck down in the U.S. Supreme court. “I think real world violence affects the media more than vice versa,” said Heron. “ People in public commit those crimes and media imitates those crimes. One good argument is that media is like peanut butter, some people can eat it, others have adverse reactions.”

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First-person shooter games have become a topic of debate due to gun violence.

First Listen: ‘Long Live A$AP’ AYANNA LONG Saff Writer


Long Live A$AP


With the blink of an eye, the fearless MC A$AP Rocky went from being a denizen of the underground rap subculture in Harlem, to fame and fortune greeting him at every turn in 2011. The 24-year old French braided and gold plated New York native, whose real name is Rakim Mayers (named after one half of the legendary New York hip-hop duo Eric B. & Rakim) garnered fame by developing his own lingo, style and sound that was displayed on his previous effort, Live Love A$AP. Subsequently, it was this record that catapulted him into the spotlight. Once anxious Rocky fans got their hands on the album his following numbers began to break barriers,

making him a rap phenom amongst a new diverse audience. Fast forward three years later, and A$AP Rocky claims he’s riding on what actually might just be a never-ending wave of success and stardom on his latest album, Long Live A$AP. Screwy beats over his gritty, explicit rhymes compliment each other to produce a sound reminiscent UGK and Bone Thugs’ N Harmony. This blend gave listeners a project that explores a medley of different styles. Such as the rapper’s unexpected collaboration with dub step king Skrillex on the track “Wild For The Night” proves to be an amazing fusion that marries a dance beat and a signature brash Rocky tune. A$AP doesn’t stop there with his all-star collaborations. He teams up with nearly every hip-hop torch holder in the spotlight at the moment to produce what might be best described as the pulse of this entire project. Kendrick Lamar, Yelawolf, Danny Brown, Joey Bada$$, Action Bronson and Big K.R.I.T. together on the track entitled “1 Train” that honors the dynamic Wu-Tang Clan. Although Rocky has developed a consistent style, this album offers an enhanced and matured sound that is totally different from the Love Live A$AP mix-tape. Keeping with his signa-


A$AP Rocky has continued his string of recent success with his excellent new LP.

ture themes of his opulent lifestyle and provocation, Rocky also includes personal childhood anecdotes on tracks such as “Suddenly” that gives the audience a glimpse of who he is, something that was non-existent on his previous release. Even on tracks that have become mainstays on radio airwaves, such as

“F***ing Problem”, the album’s first single, appeases the mainstream market while still retaining that A$AP Rocky touch of individuality. Although he came into the limelight overnight, Long Live A$AP is definitely his unforgettable project that indicates he’ll be sticking around a little longer than that.

Homer shines at home meet Olympian proves his worth as NCAA Championships near STEPHEN ZITOLO

Staff Writer The St. Johns University Invitational took place on Jan. 26, as the Red Storm invited some of the top fencing teams in the nation to compete at Carnesecca Arena. The Red Storm men took second place while the women finished in fourth against the likes of Penn State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Harvard and Columbia. “I was honestly a little disappointed with our performance,” said St. John’s fencing coach Yury Gelman. “I felt that we were better than we showed today.” Gelman has high expectations for his team, and anticipates finishing right at the top come NCAA Tournament time. “We shouldn’t finish any lower than third place,” Gelman said. All of the teams competing in the annual meet have combined to win every single national championship since the NCAA introduced fencing to college athletics in 1990. The athletes compet-

ing are made up of an impressive nine Olympians. Daryl Homer, one of the afformentioned Olympians was one of the fencers that competed for the Johnnies this past weekend. Throughout the day, Homer proved why he made the trek to London last summer, as he battled against some of the best fencers in the sport. However, despite his success, Homer still found time to critique himself. “I felt I could have done better,” Homer said. “I lost three bouts and if I was more concentrated during those bouts, I could have won them. But overall, I felt I had a good day.” Homer faced opponents like Columbia University’s Geoffrey Loss in his first match of the day and put him away with a 5-3 victory. When Homer faced off against Ewan Douglas of the defending national champion Ohio State Buckeyes, he recorded a 5-0 victory. When Homer found himself down in his final match again the Nittany Lions, he decided to show off his quick feet as well as his ability to fight back when behind, coming back in the match to beat


Carnesecca Arena hosted the annual St. John’s Invitational.

Adrian Bak 5-3. Homer’s opponent when the Red Storm took on Notre Dame was John Hallsten. Hallsten competed hard but the challenge of a battle- tested Homer was too much for as the Bronx native won 5-2. In his final match, Homer faced Harvard’s Alexander Ryjik, and in his typical style he quickly and aggressively at-

tacked, beating Ryjik 5-2. In a phone interview with the Torch, Homer expressed his feelings towards the NCAA Tournament. “I feel that we are good enough team to be in contention in the NCAA Tournament,” he said. “If we stay concentrated and continue to work hard, I don’t see a reason why we wouldn’t have a successful NCAA Tournament run.”

Nostalgia sparks fascinating comparison KIERAN LYNCH

Features Editor Exactly two years ago, the 11 seniors of the 2010-11 St. John’s men’s basketball team upset the then No. 3 Duke in grand fashion and sparked off a meteoric rise to the finish line in March that resulted in a trip to the NCAA tournament and captivated a city. This year, the cast is very different. Instead of a group of hardened upperclassmen, the Red Storm are comprised almost entirely of freshmen and sophomores. Those sophomores, in particular, saw the rise that St. John’s experienced in the early months of 2011 while they were committed and prospective recruits for the program. Now, they themselves are 13-7 and 5-3 in conference and in a position to become the next chapter in the reclamation project. “They were winning when I was getting recruited by St. John’s and I wanted to be just like that,” sophomore Amir Garrett said. “We’re doing it so far right now, we’re a spitting image of how they were as of right now.” Following the Red Storm’s defeat of Duke, the team went on a tear going undefeated in the month of February in conference play and winning their last nine of 11 games before the Big East tournament. Now, these players are in a position to replicate more than just the team’s performance in late January, but it will require being consistent. “I think we can if we keep working

hard, playing our game and taking it one game at a time,” Garrett said. “As of right now, we’ve been winning and they were winning back then at least right now.” When the sophomores came to St. John’s following head coach Steve Lavin’s first year successes, they made up a highly touted recruiting class with just as high expectations. Things didn’t go completely according to plan as three players dealt with eligibility issues and the team played with a six-man rotation. “[Lavin] recruited a lot of highly ranked players and top classes,” sophomore Phil Greene said. “Last year it was hard losing all those games and how we lost it. This year we just wanted to make up for it.” Because of their experiences with adversity a year ago, Lavin doesn’t see an issue with keeping the team grounded despite being in the midst of a four-game winning streak that will go on the line against DePaul tonight. “Those groups [that have had success in the past], I think you concern yourself with complacency and overlooking an opponent or feeling too good about themselves,” Lavin said. “This group because they were beat down, very similar to that first team I inherited from Norm, they were a group that had no degree of success and the concern was how fragile that group was.” Lavin continued to draw comparisons between the two teams, suggesting that because of the lack of success, they understand how precious any place in the standings can be and how easily it can


JaKarr Sampson has played a major role for the Red Storm this season.

be lost. The biggest task becomes the need to build the confidence to continue to win. “The psyche that first year was different than this group because this is a very young team,” Lavin said. “That was an older team, but it’s still the same element of groups that have had no success. How do you teach teams to win, bring them a long at the necessary rate in terms of maturation and also build that confidence that you need to win games at this

level.” For now, the Red Storm is focused on playing one game at a time and maintaining their position near the top of a tough conference. Garrett knows that’s a tall task in itself. “Just as easy as we’re at the top we can be at the bottom,” he said. “Teams are losing, teams are winning, you don’t know how it’s going to go. Hopefully, we can maintain how we are right now and keep winning.”


Cardinals outlast Johnnies

Despite McKenith record, Red Storm fall to Louisville KYLE FITZGERALD

Staff Writer The St. John’s women’s basketball team suffered their third consecutive loss following a 57-54 defeat to Louisville Sunday afternoon. LOUISVILLE




In a game that saw 13 lead changes, the Red Storm struggled with their its free throws, shooting 7 for 15 from the line. Senior Shenneika Smith, alongside Freshman guard Aliyyah Handford, set the pace for the Johnnies early in the first half, as they each put up a pair of baskets and gave the Johnnies a four point lead – the biggest they would have – early in the game. The Cardinals (16-4, 4-2) quickly got out of that hole following a media timeout and exchanged jump shots with the Red Storm throughout most of the half. Turnovers and fouls proved costly for St. John’s later in the half, where Louisville drew a five point lead with two minutes to go. The Johnnies pulled within two points heading into the half, courtesy of Handford’s layup with a minute left, assisted by McKennith. The second half was hardly less dramatic than the first, as the two Big East

rivals exchanged points each time they carried the ball up the court. Smith and Handford did most of the heavy lifting for the Red Storm, scoring 23 points and 16 points, respectively. Louisville allowed St. John’s to get back into the game with less than a minute left when Smith was fouled by Sara Hammond. Smith cut the lead down to three after draining both of her shots from the line. It seemed Louisville would be able to hold off the storm for 40 more seconds, but a missed jumper led to a defensive rebound by Smith, which gave St. John’s an opportunity to tie the game up. Smith missed the initial three-pointer and Louisville got the rebound, but was stolen by Handford, who gave the ball to McKennith. The senior guard failed to convert and the Red Storm suffered yet another heartbreaking defeat, their fifth loss this season by three points or less. Despite the defeat, the Red Storm (9-9, 3-3) saw Nadirah McKenith become the St. John’s all-time leader in assists. Heading into the game, McKenith needed seven assists to break the record of 530. She ended the game with eight assists, bringing her career total to 532. St. John’s looks to get back into the winning column when they host travel to Providence on Jan. 30. Be sure to stay up to date with St. John’s athletics by following @TorchSports on Twitter!


Nadirah McKenith broke the St. John’s record for assists against Louisville.

WBB looking to end slump

Shenneika Smith, Nadirah McKenith and co. look to jump over .500 ANTHONY PARELLI

Assistant Sports Editor


Shenneika Smith will look to lead the Johnnies to a strong finish this year.

The St. John’s women desperately need to find a formula for victory as they take on Providence tonight. The reigning Sweet 16 participants have now fallen to 9-9, putting the Red Storm’s chances of making it to the NCAA Tournament to play on their home court at Carnesecca Arena in serious doubt. The last two contests have ended in heartbreak for the Red Storm. On Jan 23., then-No. 22 Syracuse pulled out a 60-57 win after Orange freshman Brittney Sykes stole a St. John’s inbound pass and hit a half-court runner as time expired. Four days later, St. John’s battled then-No. 13 Louisville to the very end but fell, 60-57 after senior stars Shenneika Smith and Nadirah McKenith both missed three-point tries on the team’s final possession. It seems that everything that went right Johnnies just a year ago is going

wrong now. In his first year at the helm, St. John’s head coach Joe Tartamella has had to deal with the loss of senior shooting guard Eugeneia McPherson to an ACL tear in addition to the burden of having to replace the departed Da’Shena Stevens, one of the best players in program history. With their backs to the wall, the Johnnies will be bent on breaking their losing streak and building some kind of momentum in order to make sure the season that once had such high hopes doesn’t turn into a something much less. But while the season certainly isn’t over for the Johnnies, it is a good time to bask in the final months of Shenneika Smith and Nadirah McKenith in their final months in a Red Storm jersey – despite the team’s struggles this season – while at the same time keeping an eye on the future. In that regard, freshman Aliyyah Handford has stepped in and made an immediate impact, starting 12 games in the absence of McPherson and scoring 8.6 points per game, a bright spot in what has been a star-crossed season.


High-flying Red Storm look to Lavin and co. keen to avoid letdown in Carnesecca clash with DePaul MATTHEW WOLFSON Assistant Sports Editor


Sir’Dominic Pointer celebrates after nailing a three-pointer vs Seton Hall.

The St. John’s men’s basketball team is on a roll, defeating their last four Big East opponents, and looking to make it five against DePaul at Canesecca Arena tonight. St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin wants his team to be proud of their fourgame winning streak, but noted the importance of not letting their confidence turn into cockiness. “I think because of all the smackdowns and beat-downs we had last year and with our struggles this year, this team understands that it’s a tightrope in this league,” Lavin said. The Johnnies (13-7, 5-3) beat the Blue Demons (10-9, 1-5) 71-62, a ninepoint margin that was as close as three in the closing minutes of the game. “One thing that I think is fresh in our minds is the run they made to close it to three,” he said. “And we were fortunate to make some stops and some free throws, and to come away with a victory.” Sir’Dominic Pointer has been crucial over the past two weeks, and has served in every role the team has needed him to. In the last four games, Pointer has shot 65 percent from the field, with 41 points, 24 rebounds, 11 assists and nine steals, while also acting as the team’s leader in transition on both sides of the

ball. “When Dom is in the game, good things happen for St. John’s. When Dom’s out of the game, we struggle,” Lavin said. In college basketball it’s important for a player to be well-rounded, and for Dom Pointer, versatility is everything. “He’s kind of like Costco,” Lavin joked. “Whatever you need, aisle 6, 7, 8, under one roof. He can do everything.” Despite DePaul’s poor 1-5 conference record, Lavin stressed that his team can’t get complacent. “Going into that game, we talked about their speed and their quickness and their athleticism is comparable to anyone in our conference,” Lavin said. “They’re as athletic as any team we face this year.” Chris Obekpa told the media that a win would not come easy. “We went to their house and disgraced them — we won,” Obekpa said. “We cannot just sit back and say ‘it’s a home game, we beat them once, it’ll happen again.’” DePaul’s athleticism was apparant during last Saturday’s game and Lavin knows his team is going to have to work hard if they want to come out on top. “I think overall because of their athletic ability, and because they close the game so strongly against us, our team is aware that we’re going to have our hands full,” he said.

Harrison shoots off pesky Pirates Johnnies’ star bails team out after blowing lead for 4th straight win

MICHAEL E. CUNNIFF Editor-In-Chief With 2:45 left in the game, and St. John’s clinging to a two-point lead, Seton Hall leading scorer Fuquan Edwin lined up a wide-open three-pointer from just in front of his team’s bench to complete a 16-point comeback. ST. JOHN’S




The shot bounced off the rim, however, and 20 seconds later, St. John’s star guard D’Angelo Harrison did what Edwin could not, burying a jumper to push the lead back to four and give the Red Storm the breathing space they needed to hold off the Pirates in their 71-67 win on Sunday. Harrison, the Big East’s second-leading scorer, finished with 24 points — including 10 in the last four minutes — as the Johnnies (13-7, 5-3) moved into a tie with No. 13 Louisville for third place in the Big East.

“That’s just our captain stepping up,” freshman forward JaKarr Sampson said of Harrison’s late-game heroics. “The leader of our team, stepping up, doing what he does best — scoring the ball. We’re blessed to have him in that situation.”

There would have been no need for Harrison to step up, however, had St. John’s managed to avoid what’s proven to be its Achilles heel this season — blowing big leads. The Johnnies appeared to be in cruise control after weathering an early hot-


The St. John’s men’s basketball team huddles up during a timeout.

shooting run from Seton Hall (13-7, 2-5). The Pirates took a 29-21 lead after 10 minutes helped in part by a 12-of-17 start from the field and the inside play of center Eugene Teague (22 points, 9-of14 shooting). St. John’s responded to that with perhaps their best stretch of the season, outscoring the Pirates 30-6 over a 13-minute stretch to open up a 51-35 lead. But just as they did against Notre Dame, DePaul and Rutgers, St. John’s let Seton Hall back into the game. The team missed 8-of-9 shots at one point as the Pirates chipped away, closing the gap to as little as one with 4:22 left – a run that wore at the young Johnnies’ psyche. “Our kids looked despondent,” Lavin said. “It was though we had just lost the game, or we were down 25, or down 26 to Georgetown.” They weren’t down 25 or playing Georgetown, and just as they did against Notre Dame, Rutgers and DePaul, they pulled it out in the end. “When Seton Hall went on a run and cut it to one, we went on a run of our own,” Lavin said. “That trend is emerging — finding a way to get the stops, make free throws and salt a victory away.”

Torch Sports

make strong statement Cast


Young Johnnies evoking memories of 2011

Is it just me, or is it starting to feel like 2011? I’m probably getting ahead of myself, but that’s how I feel whenever I watch the men’s basketball team play. D’Angelo Harrison stars as Dwight Hardy in Rise of the Red Storm II: The Lavining, while JaKarr Sampson has nailed down the Justin Brownlee role to perfection, albeit while adding his own flavor to the power forward position. Phil Greene evokes memories of the steady hand of Malik Boothe, while Sir’Dominic Pointer is rapidly evolving into the do-everything swingman that D.J. Kennedy was in his senior year at St. John’s. Steve Lavin reprises his role as the Air Force 1-rocking wordsmith, inspiring his charges in halftime speeches and bamboozling journalists at postgame press conferences. It’s still too soon to see whether this edition of the men’s basketball team can reach the heights its predecessors did two years ago, but the parallels are starting to emerge. Go-to scorer who can be deadly from

three and raises his game in crunchtime? Check (Hardy/Harrison). Trusty sidekick who can play on the wing or down low, and excels in either role? They’ve got that (Brownlee/Sampson). Rocky start to the season, with shocking losses to small-conference opponents? All to familiar to both teams (2010-11: at Fordham, 2012-2013: home to UNC-Asheville). Embarrassing blowout at home to inconference rivals? Those memories are depressingly familiar (2010-11: 76-59 loss to Syracuse, 2012-13: 67-51 beatdown at the hands of Georgetown). Statement win against Notre Dame? Book it (2010-11 72-54: 2012-13: 6763). I could go on, but the point remains — this St. John’s team is capable of emulating that magical season, and has done so far. And the players know it, too. “They were winning when I was getting recruited by St. John’s and I wanted to be just like that,” Amir Garrett told reporters at yesterday’s pregame press conference. “We’re doing it so far right now, we’re a spitting image of how they were as of right now.” Not everything is the same, of course. St. John’s was one of the most veteranladen teams in the country two years ago. Now, Lavin likes to call them the youngest team in school history (conveniently forgetting last year’s “Fresh Five”). The

youth has reared its ugly head at times — the Red Storm have a habit of letting teams hang around after jumping out to big leads, as they did against Seton Hall — reminding everyone just how valuable experience can be for a power conference team. The Johnnies have much more talent, and much less experience than their 2011 counterparts, which means that they’re never going to be identical. How is the rest of the season going to play out? It’s tough to say, but tonight’s game against DePaul will be a good barometer. Yes, the Blue Demons have been the laughingstock of the Big East for as long as anybody can remember, but that’s the point. This is a game that St. John’s is supposed to win big, and must win if the team has hopes of being seriously considered as one of the Big East’s big boys. It’s easy for the Johnnies to get up for a game against a team in the Top 25, or a team that waxed them by 30 last year. It’s a bigger testament of the team’s maturity and mindset if they can treat DePaul with the same seriousness as they did with Notre Dame and Cincinnati. Win big, and it’ll send a message that the Red Storm, despite their prodigious youth, mean business. Let hapless DePaul hang around, or worse, score a huge upset, and we’ll know that this team isn’t ready for prime time quite yet. The shades of 2011 are palpable. Let’s see if they have staying power.

ESPN announces deal with STJ JOHNATHAN CORBETT Staff Writer MITCHELL PETIT-FRERE Sports Editor ESPN and St. John’s have announced a new 60-game contract that will air games produced by students for all athletic teams on a variety of platforms on ESPN3. The deal makes St. John’s the sixth school in the nation that has teamed with the network on this type of arrangement. The other schools include North Carolina State, North Carolina, Georgia Tech, Florida State and Clemson. Of the six schools, St. John’s will have the most broadcasted games this season. “In the coming years, we hope to have as many as 110 of these games that will be produced on campus, in part by our students, and aired on a national platform,” said St. John’s Senior Associate Athletics Director of Communications Mark Fratto. For now, Fratto’s focus is “for as many home games to be aired in as many sports as possible.”

The agreement means that student-produced athletic events on STJ-TV will be aired on ESPN3 without the network having to bring in its own crew. ESPN3 is available to more than 83 million households, including 15 million in the New York City area, according to Fratto, and can be watched on computers, tablets, smartphones and televisions and Xbox Live. One of the most prominent aspects about the deal, according to Fratto, is that it presents an entirely new learning experience for students in the communications department. A practicum course offered at St. John’s requires students to attend a once-a-week class taught by Susan Weber, the Associate Professor and Director of the Television and Film Department, and complete 125 hours of work with the St. John’s Athletic Communications Department. “[The initiative] is a great opportunity for students to work with professionals in live television and webcasting,” Weber said. Weber believes that the experience that

students garner from working with the high-tech equipment will greatly help them with their future endeavors, as webcasting swiftly gains more prominence in the communications industry. “Webcasting is becoming the new television,” Weber said. “Television will eventually become obsolete.” To prove her assertions that the program will increase a student’s prospect of landing a job, Weber recounted how two former practicum

students were recently hired by The New York Times. “I received an email from The New York Times looking for graduates with tri-casting experience,” Weber said. “I sent them four names and two of them were hired.” Weber also believes that the knowledge and skill-set being shed upon the students within the program has not only aided their job searches, but it has also served the University.

Leavin’ their Mark Track takes first at NYU Invite Maurice Harkless, a St. John’s alum and current member of the Orlando Magic, visited campus yesterday and took in a men’s basketball practice after speaking with members of the media. The 6’8” shooting forward found himself in Queens thanks to a New York road trip that saw him score a career-high 16 points on Monday night against the Brooklyn Nets. When Harkless left for the NBA and was drafted 15 overall by the Philadelphia 76ers, Red Storm fans were left wondering what could have been in the program’s future if he had stayed another year on campus. “You always look back and think ‘what if I had come back or waited another year,” but I think I made the right decision,” he said. “I’m in a good position right now.” When asked about his replacement, freshman JaKarr Sampson, Harkless talked positively of the second leading scorer on the team and candidate for the Big East Rookie of Year, which is an award Harkless won a year ago. “He definitely has the tools to play on the next level,” he said. “He just needs to keep working and developing.” He stopped short of speculating on how soon the freshman would hold off on heading to the NBA. Harkless will play again in the New York, as the Magic take on the Knicks on his former home court.

Blowin’ in the Wind

They’ve won four straight and guys keep playing better. The best days for them are yet to come.”

-Moe Harkless

Headin’ this Way Red Storm home games

Men’s Basketball: January 30


9 p.m.

February 6


7 p.m.

February 20


7 p.m.

Women’s Basketball:


All of Chris Obekpa’s blocks will now be on ESPN3.

February 2


3 p.m.

February 9


1 p.m.

February 17


5 p.m.





The fencing team hosted its annual St. John’s Invitational at Carnesecca Arena.

The women’s basketball team lost a tough game to Louisville.

Pg. 16

Pg. 17

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