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theEAGLE SPECIAL EDITION

WONK? p. 3

13 PLACES to live off campus p.8 DANNY MITCHELL excels on the mat and in the classroom p.13 THEEAGLEONLINE.COM


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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INDEX

NEWS

3 The future of WONK 5 Living with mental illness at AU

the SCENE 8-9 Off-campus housing guide 11 Q&A with student novelist

12 SPORTS

12 ‘Pee Wee’ drives team to excellence 13 Wrestler succeeds on and off mat

14 OPINION

14 Staff editorial: We are not WONK 15 Best and worst of the Berks

theEAGLE

Delivering American University’s news and views since 1925.

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SCENE

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EDITOR

MENT EDITOR

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theEAGLE

NEWS

theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

Doubt cast on WONK campaign after students voice opposition by Simbi Ntahobari

U

Eagle Staff Writer

ndergraduate student opposition toward the WONK campaign may cause it to disappear in five years. The University will continue to fund the campaign until 2019 at least, but WONK’s future depends on public perception, according to Terry Flannery, vice president of communications. “The goal is to have a critical mass who support [WONK],” she said in an email. However, current data suggests the perception of WONK is still not reaching this goal. A 2013 survey evaluating the brand’s perception revealed slightly more positive feedback than negative, Flannery said. The results of this survey will be released at a Feb. 28 open forum. Although more alumni and graduate students responded positively to the campaign, undergraduates remain divided, Flannery said. “If we can increase internal pride, then we will be more likely to keep the campaign if the question arises in the future,” Flannery said. After 2013 “Wonk of the Year” Anderson Cooper could not describe WONK and AU alumnus Carter Gibson advocated to eliminate the brand in January, students approached Student Government to voice their concern, according to SG Secretary Rosemary Cipriano. “[Students] don’t like that AU gave them a label without their permission or hand in the process,” Cipriano said in a Jan. 16 statement.

Cipriano brought undergraduate students’ concerns regarding WONK to the University Marketing Advisory Council on Jan. 16. The council is comprised of members from various AU departments including faculty, the president’s office and two student representatives, one of which is Cipriano, Flannery said. The council plans to improve students’ perception of WONK by revisiting the campaign’s roots as “KNOW” backwards. Flannery said focusing on this definition may change students’ attitudes. The University has budgeted $1.47 million for the campaign over 20132014 and 2014-2015 academic school years, a $100,000 decrease from AU’s past advertising budget from the last two years, according to budget reports. However, the advertising budget is less than 1 percent of the university’s total budget, Flannery said. The budget past the 2014-2015 academic school year have not yet been determined. The history of WONK After WONK’s launch in August 2010, students said they felt disconnected from the campaign because it seemed exclusive to those interested in politics, according to a 2010 Eagle op-ed. In an attempt to be more inclusive, the University has since expanded WONK to include other areas of interest such as business WONK. The WONK brand was designed to increase AU’s awareness on the national stage and distinguish it from other D.C.

schools to increase enrollment, according to Flannery. But there is no way to measure if WONK directly affected enrollment or awareness, Flannery said. There has been a 10 percent increase in the number of incoming students choosing AU as their first choice college and a 55 percent increase in alumni engagement since 2010, Flannery said. Current data still cannot directly connect these increases to WONK. Flannery helped develop the “Fear the Turtle” campaign at University of Maryland in 2003, which initially was not successful. The campaign was meant to highlight UMD as a research university, but community members raised concerns the campaign was too focused on athletics, Flannery said. The college planned to eliminate the “Fear of the Turtle” campaign three years after its launch, but the UMD community protested and continues to use it today. From “Fear the Turtle,” Flannery said she learned it takes time for a college community to embrace a new campaign, she said. “They have to represent what is real about the institution and its people-the students, faculty, staff and alumni,” Flannery said in an email. “Both campaigns accurately illustrate the shared character of the students, faculty and staff.” Eagle Staff Writer Jared Angle contributed to this report. sntahobari@theeagleonline.com

STUDENT OPINIONS

I think we have a more natural, organic kind of school spirit that’s not bright and cheezy, and cookie cutter WONK kind of thing,” - Rebecca Silva, CAS freshman

I don’t know a single person who likes the WONK campaign and I’m pretty well connected on campus.” - Julia Bellotti, SIS senior

If we are going to make a big deal about the campaign, if we are going to make it seem really special, I think the university really has to identify with it. The students obviously have to identify with it and we have to be able to communicate that to other people, and we have to be able to be proud of it.” - Jess Anderson SOC sophomore

I just think it sounds horrible. Coming from a different school and hearing a whole bunch of students call themselves WONK, it’s not even aesthetically pleasing to the ear. I could be an Eagle before I am a WONK.” - Dele Amon, CAS senior

ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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Coming forward: Reported sex-related crimes rise Number of reported sex-related crimesSexual reached double digits during the past two academic years offenses on campus

by Samantha Hogan Eagle Staff Writer

Public Safety received seven reports of sex-related crimes during the fall 2013 semester, the second-highest reported number in the past 11 semesters. The highest number of reported sex-related crimes occurred during the fall 2012 semester at 10. Sex-related crimes are defined in this article as sex offenses, sex offenses with no known threat to the AU community, forcible fondlings, sexual misconduct/ assaults and forcible sex offenses as categorized in the AU Daily Crime Log by Public Safety. The increase in sex-related crimes is not indicative of more crimes committed on campus, said Daniel Rappaport, AU’s sexual assault prevention coordinator. “Based on Public Safety investigations, there is no ongoing threat to the community,” said Maralee Csellar, then associate director of media relations with University Communications, in a Nov. 6 email. Instead, the increase in sex-related crimes may be due to more people reporting the crime because of sexual assault prevention programs and increased awareness. “[Sexual assault] is a crime that is extraordinarily underreported,” Rappaport said. This rise comes less than a year after the number of reported forcible sex offenses quadrupled, according to AU’s Annual Security Report. The Annual Security Report is a mandatory publication released by universities receiving federal aid detailing the number of criminal offenses on campus, according to the U.S. Department of Education. According to the AU Daily Crime Log, there were seven sex-related crimes reported to Public Safety during the fall 2013 semester from Aug. 17 to Dec. 16, 2013, including: r four sex offenses, r two sex offenses with no known threat to the AU community and r one forcible fondling Since Jan. 9, there has been one reported

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2012-2013 2013-2014 MILVIA HERRERA | THE EAGLE

The number of reported sex-related crimes has risen since 2008. sex offense and one reported forcible sex offense for the spring 2014 semester. As of Feb. 10, there were a total of 9 sex-related crimes during the 2013-2014 academic year. National agenda sets spotlight on sexual assault on campuses The White House brought college rape and sexual assault to the national agenda with the release of a Jan. 22 memo citing “uneven and, in too many cases, inadequate” university compliance with federal rape and sexual assault reporting and services access. The White House will submit a list of recommendations to President Barack Obama by April 22 on how to reduce and handle sexual assault reports on campuses, according to a White House press release. One in four women will experience rape or attempted rape during college, Rappaport said, citing national statistics. AU falls within this national statistic, meaning there are potentially more survivors each semester than records

indicate, Rappaport said. Survivors at AU are not required to report the crime to Public Safety or any other on-campus office, Rappaport said. However, students can speak to a confidential victims advocate such as Rappaport without reporting the crime. Rappaport said he ultimately tries to give control back to the survivors. “We are not unique,” Rappaport said. “[W]hat makes AU different is what we do about it.” Sexual assaults underreported at AU The national average of rapes and attempted rapes on a female by an acquaintance is 80 percent, but rises to more than 90 percent on college campuses, Rappaport said. In the fall of 2012, there were almost 7,000 undergraduate students enrolled at AU and only 15 reported sex-related crimes. One reason why students may not report sex-related offenses is because of confusion about the definition of consent, Rappaport

said. The University defines consent multiple ways, which broadly state that: r individuals must be able to communicate effectively before each sexual encounter, r a free choice without force (real or perceived) must be made and r regardless of dress, physical appearance, intoxication or acceptance of a date invitation. “It’s a crime that there is so much lack of understanding, or misunderstanding, around what constitutes sexual violence,” Rappaport said. At least four of the seven sex-related crimes were reported to Public Safety through another on-campus office such as student housing, Csellar said. “This shows an active line of communication between Public Safety and other campus departments in reporting sex offenses that have occurred,” Csellar said. However, a direct line of communication between campus safety authorities and students may not be as strong. Public Safety released only one crime alert for a forcible fondling during the fall 2013 semester. There were no crime alerts released for the other six sex-related crimes during that time. “AU and every other university, we need to never settle,” Rappaport said. “We need to never say ‘This is good enough.’ We need to always be working to improve our resources.” Students can enroll in educational programs such as Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) Systems and Dating Violence. “We have student health, safety and wellness on the line,” Rappaport said. The data used in this article was obtained from the AU Public Safety Daily Crime Log from June 17, 2008 to Dec. 1, 2013. The crimes reported Dec. 1 - Dec. 16 and Jan. 9 - Feb. 10 were obtained from Public Safety’s online Daily Crime Log. Data does not include crimes reported during summer and winter breaks. shogan@theeagleonline.com

8 resources for sexual assault on campus

Public Safety escorts students and assists with filing cases with the Metropolitan Police Department. Counseling Center offers emergency, same-day, confidential counseling, support and referrals during weekday and business hours.

Office of the Dean of Students handles housing relocation, academic schedule changes, contact and filing cases with Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution Services, Academic Affairs or Human Resources.

Sexual Assault Prevention Coordinator gives support and guidance to survivors, family or friends affected by sexual assault.

Student Health Center provides follow-up medical Student Conduct and Conflict care for sexually transmitted Resolution Services provides disease testing and emergency support for violations of the contraception. Student Conduct Code.

Women’s Resource Center offers a safe space for students to get support and advice on issues that specifically affect women. The Wellness Center where Rappaport can help survivors determine if she or he wants to report his or her sex crime to a department on campus, and how to deal with the emotional trauma of sexual assault.


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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The invisible illness: Living with mental health issues at AU by Heather Mongilio

This article includes details about mental illness and may not be suitable for people in recovery.

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Eagle Staff Writer

very Thursday, Becca Goldstein wakes up at 7 a.m. and hops on the Metro with seven other AU students to volunteer at a preschool. On the surface, they are all average AU students with hectic days. But Goldstein’s days are different. Goldstein keeps a strict schedule. She wakes up at the same time every week, eats the same breakfast every day and plans her meals carefully. Her routine is rigid. It needs to be. Goldstein, 21, was diagnosed with depression at 17. A few months later, she was also diagnosed with a type of anorexia nervosa that consists of bingeing, purging and weight loss. The College of Arts and Sciences junior always makes toast with peanut butter and jelly for breakfast. She finishes class at 3:50 p.m. every day except Thursday. She eats late: lunch during her 2:35 p.m. class, then dinner and studying in the library. This strategy is part of her recovery. “Part of me’s like, ‘Oh my God, why can’t I get over it?’” she said. “And that’s been, I think, the hardest part in terms of my recovery is letting myself not get over it right away.” Goldstein hid her struggles during high school. Her friends would question her behavior, but she always denied having a problem. Then her mother noticed her symptoms and alerted Goldstein’s therapist. She had been lying to her therapist, too. “I just remember sitting on her couch and crying the entire hour with her,” Goldstein said. Goldstein has been in recovery for four and a half years, but it has been a slow process. Her disorders cannot be turned on and off like a light switch, she said. Not feeling normal is frustrating. “And that has been really tough,” she said. “I just want to be fine, and whatever normal is, I want to be that again.” Recovery means paying close attention to mealtimes. Having the same breakfast also helps; new foods make her start to count calories, she said. Goldstein notices her eating disorder more than her depression and said it is more disruptive to daily life. Depression, conversely, is sometimes indistinguishable from her naturally introverted nature. “Depression is funny because I don’t think of it as a problem,” Goldstein said. There will be days when the depression wins. Instead of getting out of bed, she’ll watch Netflix for hours. Weekends can be worse. When her depression flares up, she essentially shuts down, she said. “I can tell how I’m doing based on how [my pet rat’s] doing,” Goldstein said. “If he hasn’t been out of his cage in three days, then I’m like ‘Oh my God, I’m not having a

ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE

good few days.’” Overall, her depression is more manageable. When her anorexia symptoms emerge, she’ll cancel plans with friends, isolating herself and comparing her body to others who are recovering from eating disorders. These episodes make Goldstein more self-critical. “I feel really guilty and really mad about it because it’s like, well it’s been [about four] years of getting better,” she said. “‘Why can’t I just be better now?’” Symptoms fluctuate during her recovery, Goldstein said. She can feel normal for six months and then suddenly encounter a trigger, such as a friend discussing what

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Attending AU with a mental illness The No. 1 mental health concern for students at AU is anxiety, according to Traci Callandrillo, interim director of the AU Counseling Center. Diagnosed eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia are common, but isolated behaviors like fasting or purging are more frequent. Goldstein transferred from the University of Vermont last year and found AU’s environment to be more supportive, but imperfect. While the University encourages students to be busy with school, internships and extracurricular activities, this doesn’t work for everyone, Callandrillo said.

-Becca Goldstein, CAS junior

they ate or talking about weight, that causes her symptoms to reappear. She likes to exercise and runs frequently, but she stops when she starts counting calories. While she cares about her appearance, she also is concerned with letting control become an obsession. “And, yes I do care about those things, but it’s not because I am vain or I don’t care about anything else,” Goldstein said. “It’s because I need the control, and I need to control these things and I need to be good at these things.”

]

Some students who come to AU with a pre-diagnosed mental health disorder can juggle a busy schedule while others are more vulnerable to relapses, she said. Goldstein holds herself more accountable at AU than she did at Vermont, but her recovery sometimes affects her schoolwork, she said. Students with mental health issues can receive academic accommodations like note takers and extended testing periods, according to the AU Counseling Center’s website. These accommodations are avail-

able through the Academic Support and Access Center, Callandrillo said. Goldstein said she chose not to seek out these services because she worries they may become a safety net. However, her symptoms do reappear during finals and midterms. Goldstein is a perfectionist — she needs to earn A’s or she feels she is failing. AU students also have trouble discussing mental illness, but it is widespread, Goldstein said. People refer to mental illness incorrectly without understanding the different diagnoses. Some may use “depressed” instead of saying sad or call something “schizo.” Anorexia has been called the “white girl” or privileged disorder, which also makes discussing it difficult, Goldstein said. “Why bother talking about a disorder that’s for the pretty blonde girls?” she said. Goldstein also found that people shy away from the nitty-gritty aspects of an eating disorder. People don’t want to talk about the gross aspects of these disorders. People do not want to talk about what Goldstein calls the “reality of eating disorders:” the calorie counting, mapping out the best bathrooms for purging or structuring life around the compulsions of a mental illness. “No one wants to talk about the reality because it’s not fun,” she said. hmongilio@theeagleonline.com


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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Friends, faculty remember Robert Pastor

by Alejandro Alvarez Eagle Staff Writer

In his office on a Wednesday afternoon, “He had this incredible community that Thomas Long, lecturer at the School of was very deep here at American University,” International Service, picks a book out Long said. “He really considered this to be of his shelf. He thumbs through its thick a second home.” pages, and stops somewhere near the Among those at AU that Pastor middle. considered his closest family was University “Make no little plans,” he begins to read, Chaplain Reverend Joseph Eldridge. Pastor “they have no magic to stir man’s blood…” and Eldridge met during Pastor’s work The book is titled “The North American with the Carter administration, and the Idea” and the passage is a description of two formed a rapport which they shared the book’s author, his former colleague and for the rest of Pastor’s life. close friend Dr. Robert Pastor. On a trip to Oxford a few years ago, Pastor, 66, a renowned specialist in Latin Pastor went to great lengths to visit a American studies and SIS professor, passed famous stained glass window of John away Jan. 8 after a four-year battle with Wesley, the founder of the Methodist cancer. Faculty and students gathered at a church, Eldridge said. memorial service Jan. 25 to honor Pastor’s “It was very meaningful to me,” he said. life and his far-reaching influence at AU. “John Wesley meant nothing to Bob Pastor, During his tenure at AU, Pastor but I meant something to Bob Pastor.” established the AU Study Abroad program, Pastor continued to teach classes until the the Center for North American Studies and fall semester of 2013 and spent his final Photo courtesy of Margaret Pastor the Center for Democracy and Election days walking AU’s campus and mentoring Pastor (middle) talks with partners during a trip to Nigeria. Management. He also served as AU’s vice students until the last possible moment. president of international affairs from very well known but never treated anyone stage colon cancer in 2010, Pastor made Pastor’s dedication to his work and friends 2002-2007, in which he helped strengthen as if he were the star or in a different class. a commitment to spend most of his time at AU never relented, despite his worsening AU’s ties with foreign institutions. He really built meaningful connections with his family. However, Pastor’s sense of illness, Long said. “As a vice president, he did a “He saw his relationships with lot to internationalize AU,” Long students as being that important,” said. “He built a lot of connections Long said, “and it was something “Make no little plans. They have no magic to stir man’s blood and between AU and other universities that kept him mentally engaged. probably … will not be realized. Make big plans … remembering that around the world that continue to And this is a man for whom being a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after be an important part of where the intellectually engaged with the we are gone will be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing university is going.” world was life.” insistency.” Long spoke of a man who found time to make personal connections - Daniel Burnham, Chicago architect, quoted on page 140 of “The aalvarez@theeagleonline.com in his workplace and never sacrificed North American Idea” by Dr. Robert Pastor modesty for stardom. “Here at SIS, it was really a more personal connection that he had to people,” with the professors around him.” family was considerably bigger than that of Long said. “He was sort of a star. He was After receiving a diagnosis of advanced the traditional sense.

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theEAGLE

theSCENE

theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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Go Bottomless

by Kendall Breitman

AUArgonaut may not have St N

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the most extensive menu in the city, but its brunch deal is hard to beat. While the H Street restaurant only serves up four exclusive brunch options – a breakfast platter, eggs Benedict, french toast and steak and eggs – Argonaut makes up for it with its $9 bottomless mimosas. The trek out to H Street can be long, but paying under $10 for all-you-can-drink champagne is definitely worth a trip to Northeast.

The Scene is serving up some fresh suggestions on cheap boozy brunches around the city.

Brunch is served 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

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orgetown , 32 05 K W .N St

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kbreitman@theeagleonline.com

Brunch is served 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

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Finding a cheap option for anything in Georgetown can seem nearly impossible at times. But tucked into the waterfront, Chadwick’s gives Georgetown brunchers the option to pay $22.95 for both an entree and unlimited champagne. With a menu that features all of the regular staples from breakfast burritos to eggs Benedict, there is an option for everyone. In a part of town where $23 can get you two drinks at most bars, it’s hard to say no to this deal.

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Brunch is served 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

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Bardeo is a reasonably priced suggestion for anyone looking to be adventurous first thing in the morning. The menu doesn’t feature your normal egg and bacon breakfast. Instead diners can find dishes like Mussels “Cassoulet,” sweet potato-apple soup and pan roasted arctic char. But the drink special is even more unusual for this city. For $27, Ardeo + Bardeo serves up bottomless mimosas, a choice of an entree and an appetizer. Brunch is served 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

, 3311 Conn Park e c tic nd u ela

Who says ordering a bottomless brunch means that you have to stick with the same drink all morning? Not Local 16. Customers can pay only $20 and receive not just an entree, but bottomless beverages. For the most indecisive of brunchers, the proof is in the picking. After going bottomless, Local 16 offers a range of drinks that you can switch between throughout your meal, including mimosas, bloody marys, bellinis, Pabst Blue Ribbon, Miller High Life, Tecate or coffee. Pair your drinks with a sausage, potato and egg breakfast pizza, and there is no better way to start your morning.

Brunch is served 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday.

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6 - U Street Cor

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ont Circle, 120 Dup 7 1 9t h

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House hosts one of the best brunch deals in the downtown area. For every $10 you spend, Irish Whiskey offers a complimentary dollar bottle of champagne. And while the restaurant’s brunch menu is moderately priced, a dollar bottle comes with almost every meal. The only catch: if you want to turn your champagne into a mimosa that will run you back $4.95. But don’t worry, Irish Whiskey serves their orange juice in carafes that should last the entire dollar bottle.

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However, the best kept secret to a capital meal is where to find an affordable breakfast without breaking the bank.

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rom its listing as one of Food and Wine Magazine’s best brunch cities to being the birthplace of popular breakfast review blog “Bitches Who Brunch,” D.C.’s love for the morning meal is undeniable.

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Eagle Staff Writer

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ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE


AMERICAN UNIVERSITY The Berkshire Apartments

(1 bedroom starts at $1,599) “With the Berks, you definitely pay for what you get. It is cheaper than most apartments close to campus, but definitely comes with a price.” -Selaina Petrou, SOC junior

The Greenbriar (Condominiums)

“Living in the Greenbriar is definitely the best of both worlds in my eyes. I have the opportunity to be far away enough that I can feel like I’m off campus, but I can easily get back within a 10 minute walk.” -Krystal Foster, SOC senior

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4200 Cathedral

Avalon at Foxhall

“It’s far enough off campus to be separate and feel like an adult.” - Brianna Spencer-Hurd, CAS junior

“The pool during the spring and summer months is fantastic. There is also a grill on the roof, so it’s great for any summer barbecue or cookout.” - Maddie Beard, SOC senior

(Condominiums)

(1 bedroom starts at $1,954)

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The Eagle Off-Campus Housing Guide by Scene Staff

It may seem a bit premature to start seeking the perfect apartment for next year. But with on-campus room selection beginning on Feb. 26, the time to talk housing is quickly approaching.

Idaho Terrace

(1 bedroom starts at $1,715) “I dislike being in a sea of apartment buildings because it isn’t very exciting. But it’s nice and quiet at night.” -Elise Polentes, SIS junior

But how can you tell if an apartment building is student-approved? The Scene talks housing in a guide complete with information you need to know, alongside the comments of AU upperclassmen on what you want to know.

Check out our full housing guide at TheEagleOnline.com


McLean Gardens (Condominiums)

“McLean has turned out to be a great place to live near campus. While not exactly student-friendly, the price, the size of the units, and the location have been great.” -Josh New, SOC and SPA senior

The Abby

(1 bedroom starts at $1,599) “I like the Abby because it’s conveniently located near a lot of major bus routes, and having Cactus Cantina across the street is a plus. They’re opening a Giant across the street in 2014. Overall I give it a 10 out of 10.” -Jacqueline Barbarito, CAS senior

Courtesy of RE/MAX

Ask a Realtor

by David Kahen-Kashi Eagle Staff Writer

Suzanna Woodhead, a certified realtor at RE/ MAX with a specialty in D.C. and Maryland real estate, offers some advice to students starting the apartment hunt.

(1 bedroom starts at $1,513) “The Elaine is really cheap for such a good location. I can get anywhere in D.C. with all of the buses around.” -Ben Nigh, SOC senior

What should someone look for in their first apartment? I think it’s different for everybody, but some people may want easy access to get to school by Metro or be within walking distance. Those are the things you should definitely decide before starting your search. Should you be specific or open-minded when deciding on location? I think it’s really good to narrow it down to where you want to look but be open to other places. If you know where you want to be to begin with, it generally makes things easier for you. Be open to other places. How can college students create an optimal buying profile? Generally the hardest thing to deal with when looking to rent or buy is credit. Your credit doesn’t have to be as good as it does to buy a house, but it needs to be pretty good to be able to rent. So it’s really important to work on your credit and make sure your rental and your credit history is updated and in good standing. If it’s not, you will want to take a little time to build that up.

WISCONSIN AVENUE NW

The Elaine Apartments

The Lencshire House (1 bedroom starts at $1,525)

“They have coffee and cookies in the lobby every morning, so that’s great. I have nothing bad to say about these apartments” -Arash Karimi, SIS junior

Cathedral Court

(1 bedroom starts at $1,699) “Probably the best thing about Cathedral was the way sound traveled...it didn’t.” -Max Tani, SOC senior

And as a student, one thing that is fairly common is no credit at all. It’s important to start building credit if you don’t have any and you’re just starting out. dkahen-kashi@theeagleonline.com

(1 bedroom starts at $1,820) “It’s a small building and the people are super friendly. Never a noise complaint or anything. It also has a pool which is really chill. The apartment building is cozy, but the only thing is it doesn’t have dishwashers.” -Tansha Vohra, Kogod and SIS senior

Alban Towers

(1 bedroom starts at $1,765) “The amenities are nice: gym, pool, business center, library, grand salon and dining room, and concierge. The roof is great too. I love to take a drink and a cigar up there and look at the skyline.” -Trevor Langan, SPA junior

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The Skyline Towers Apartments (1 bedroom starts at $1,550)

“It’s not a huge building and not many students live there, which is a nice change from the Berks.” -Lee Kathenes, CAS senior

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VEGETARIAN & VEGAN EATS

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egetarians and vegans, have no fear: D.C. won’t let you down. Here are five of the most accessible and affordable places to eat around the Metro area that will make your mouth water.

by Kara Avanceña Eagle Staff Writer

ShopHouse: Southeast Asian If you’re familiar with assembly-line style dining of Chipotle, then you’ll be comfortable here. ShopHouse offers a similar experience of customizing a bowl to fit your cravings and dietary needs. You’ll have the option to grab tofu with rice noodles, salad or rice, then add uniquely flavored toppings to the mix. Though the only vegan and vegetarian sauce available is the Tamarind Vinaigrette, it hardly matters – it’s a delectable mix of sweet and zesty that you won’t want to miss. Georgetown: 2805 M St. NW Bethesda: 4820 Bethesda Ave. Dupont Circle: 1516 Connecticut Ave. NW

Busboys and Poets: American

COURTESY OF SMOKE AND BARREL

COURTESY OF SHOPHOUSE

“chicken” wings in the country. Situated in the heart of Adams Morgan, Smoke and Barrel also offers an extensive list of whiskeys and exceptional draft beers for your consumption. If you decide to go, try to make a reservation online first. It’s only open for dinner throughout the week and brunch on the weekends.

As a café, restaurant, bookstore and cultural hub, Busboys and Poets is a quadruple threat. Breakfast includes two vegan egg-substituted selections with sides of vegan bacon and sausage if you’re willing and able to get there before 11 a.m. For lunch and dinner, gobble Adams Morgan: 2471 18th St. NW up anything from a cheesy vegan pepperoni calzone to a delicious mix of tofu, quinoa and roasted vegetables. Cap all of that with a vegan Pete’s New Haven Style Apizza cheesecake that you won’t believe isn’t made out of real cream cheese and you may just find that Your friends may insist on eating at you’ll be a regular at this place. Domino’s for the umpteenth time, but we’ve got you covered. Conveniently located in U Street: 2021 14th St. NW Friendship Heights, Pete’s Apizza has a Gallery Place: 1025 5th St. NW vegan pizza selection that is sure to satisfy, especially considering most pizza places Smoke and Barrel: Barbecue and Bar near AU don’t offer quality vegan options. Moreover, the owners and chefs are If you’re over 21 and looking for something a accommodating to your dietary needs, so little more high-end, Smoke and Barrel will fit just be sure to mention that you’re looking the bill. It’s a barbecue place for meat and non- for something vegan or vegetarian to meat eaters alike with some of the best vegan munch on. If that’s not enough to hook you,

Concerts by Jane Morice Eagle Staff Writer

1

Curren$y with Ty Dolla $ign and Db Bantino

When: Feb. 20 at 8 p.m. Where: Fillmore Silver Spring Tickets: $45.50-$65.50

Touring to support his October 2013 EP “The Stage,” New Orleans rapper Curren$y will hit the Fillmore stage with up-and-coming rapper Ty Dolla $ign.

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Kat Dahlia with Aaron Kemper and Kes

When: Feb. 23 at 8 p.m. Where: Howard Theatre Tickets: $15 in advance, $17.50 day of show Kat Dahila’s debut album “My Garden” will be released this spring, but her performance at Howard Theatre is sure to be a wonderful preview of what’s to come.

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Young the Giant with Cayucas

When: Feb. 23. Doors open at 8 p.m. Where: Fillmore Silver Spring Tickets: $29.50 On the scale of pop to rock, Young the Giant solidly falls somewhere in the middle, giving it

they offer a 20 percent discount for students, faculty and staff who come in and show their ID any time past 8 p.m. Friendship Heights: 4940 Wisconsin Ave. NW Columbia Heights: 1400 Irving St. NW

Sticky Fingers Sweets and Eats: Desserts In an effort to save the best for last, here is the place of any vegan’s dreams. Sticky Fingers is one of the few places where a vegan can look at the menu and eat, well, anything. Whether you stop by for breakfast, lunch or dinner, Sticky Fingers will certainly have something to meet your craving. As non-vegan as it sounds, Sticky Fingers allows you to enjoy a cheesy delight while downing a shake and picking out the dessert of your dreams. Sound impossible? See this vegan heaven for yourself. Columbia Heights: 1370 Park Rd. NW

a wide appeal. Check out its latest singles “It’s About Time” and “Crystallized” for an idea of what’s to come at their show at the Fillmore.

ZACKARY G. MEJIAS | THE EAGLE

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Brett Dennen makes music you can fall asleep to -- in the best way possible. Dennen’s show will primarily feature work from his newest album “Smoke and Mirrors,” but old stand-bys like “Ain’t No Reason” are sure to be heard.

Mayer Hawthorne has been in the music business for nearly 10 years now. His first two studio releases have an old-school vibe, reminiscent of the ‘50s and ‘60s. His latest album, 2013’s “Where Does This Door Go,” is a shift from the style that made him famous, yet his artistic merit remains.

When: Feb. 26. Doors open at 7 p.m. Where: 9:30 Club Tickets: $22

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St. Vincent

When: March 2. Doors open at 7 p.m. Where: 9:30 Club Tickets: $30 St. Vincent’s hotly anticipated fourth studio album, a self-titled release on sale Feb. 25, has already created enough buzz to sell out one night at the 9:30 Club on March 1. Adding a second night (which has yet to sell out at print time) gives more of her fans the opportunity to hear St. Vincent’s melodic voice matched with her multi-instrumental stylings.

COURTESY OF PETE’S APIZZA

thescene@theeagleonline.com

in the Capital Brett Dennen with Foy Vance

COURTESY OF STICKY FINGERS

Mayer Hawthorne with Quadron

When: March 3. Doors open at 7 p.m. Where: 9:30 Club Tickets: $25

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Miniature Tigers with Bear Hands, Total Slacker

When: March 4. Doors open at 8 p.m. Where: DC9 Tickets: $12 in advance, $15 day of

Miniature Tigers’ poppy beats and dark lyrics combine perfectly in sonic irony. With a fourth studio album on the way, the quartet may take some tips from supporting fun. on their tour last year.

8

Ex Hex with Foul Swoops

When: March 5. Doors open at 8 p.m. Where: Black Cat Tickets: $10 in advance, $12 day of Ex Hex, a trio of ladies with a louder, harder, and more sultry musical style, has played in D.C. before -- last time at the 9:30 Club. But its backstage show at Black Cat will provide the ideal intimate atmosphere for its sound to reverberate.

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Juicy J with Travi$ Scott

When: March 6. Doors open at 7 p.m. Where: Howard Theatre Tickets: $32.50 - $75 In the past year, Juicy J has dominated pop culture’s radar with club hit “Bandz a Make Her Dance.” The Howard Theatre will be home to D.C.’s leg of the Never Sober Tour, where Juicy J is guaranteed to serve up some ratchet hits. Opener Travi$ Scott is sure to do the same. jmorice@theeagleonline.com


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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QA &

Non-Smithsonian museums worth checking out by Mark Lieberman Eagle Staff Writer

with AU senior and novelist

The Smithsonians may be free, but D.C. has much more to offer. Here are five other museums worth your time:

Kaylee McHugh

1. Hillwood Museum What: Escape from the hustle and bustle of city life for an afternoon of beauty and tranquility at these lush gardens. Exhibits: Passion of the Empress: Catherine the Great’s Art Patronage Cost: Free with suggested donation Recommended If You Like: National Botanical Gardens EMMA KNIGHT | PHOTO COLLECTIVE

by Kendall Breitman

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Eagle Staff Writer

wamped down with the demands of a college schedule, most students could not even think about writing a full-length novel. Not College of Arts and Sciences senior Kaylee McHugh. The AU senior turned her idea into a reality and published her first novel “Nightcrawlers” on Jan. 10. A book two years in the making, “Nightcrawlers” leads readers into a divided world. An outbreak of skin cancer has led fair-skinned people to relocate below ground into slums and those with darker complexions to thrive above ground. With cover art by CAS senior Josh Mahan, “Nightcrawlers” presents a captivating and unforeseen dystopian society that challenges its readers to question race, poverty and acceptance. The Eagle sat down with McHugh to discusses her book and how she managed the demands of being a fulltime student and published author.

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Eagle: How in the world did you find time to write a book as a student?

Kaylee McHugh: Thinking back on it, I really don’t know. I’ve been working on the book for two years. Two winters ago, I was home and I was bored and didn’t have much to do, but I had the idea in

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my head since high school. I’d written maybe two chapters over the semester, but then things got really busy and I just didn’t have time. So when I got home over break I just sat down and that’s when I decided that writing a book was what I was going to do to pass the time. E: So after writing for two years, how did you go from just an idea to actually publishing a novel? KM: I think the most important thing that I had to tell myself all of the time was that “I don’t care if it takes me five years, I don’t care if it takes me 10 years, I don’t care if it takes me a month, as long as I’m enjoying writing it.” Even if no one likes it, this way it’s worth it to write the story. But then once I showed it to a bunch of family members and friends I was blown away by what they thought. When you have something in your head its just an idea and you don’t know if the idea is any good, but apparently they liked it. So after that I found a website that allows you to self-publish

E: The entire elaborate plot and setting of “Nightcrawlers” is a really different than anything I’ve read. How did you think of the idea? KM: Well, I’m glad you think that. I’m actually doing my senior thesis on dystopias and this story follows some very common dystopian themes. I think living in D.C. also has a lot to do with it, especially since we are such a racially segregated city. I think its really jarring, but I think it’s also something that people don’t really think about because they don’t really want to think about it. So then I started thinking about all these different stereotypes that we have about all of the different races and just how silly they are and how cool it would be if I could just flip those stereotypes. Not just about different races, but about different jobs and classes. I did that for other people but mostly to allow myself to think a little bit more about what all these words really mean. E: Was it hard for you to write something from

E: So how does this book fit into your plans for the future? KM: I don’t know, I kind of just did it because I wanted to. It’s really hard to make a living as an author but I think if anything I want to work at a publishing house. I just really enjoyed writing it, like there was no part of the process that I ever sat down and was like ‘Oh, I don’t want to do this today.’ But I’m hoping that I find more time to write a second one too.

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I didn’t want to base anything off of what we know. -Kaylee McHugh, CAS senior and asked a friend who does graphic design. After that I learned how to format, edited a lot and then I had a book.

KM: Yeah, and that was what I was most worried about. What I want people to understand is that I’m not writing about black culture and I’m not writing about white culture. Especially since it’s a book that is supposed to be set so far in the future and culture is such a fluid concept. I didn’t want to base anything off of what we know. But one thing that, unfortunately, has stayed so true for centuries is the economic conditions of different races. So I wanted to switch the economic and political conditions but I didn’t want to do much with culture, because it is such a personal and individual thing. I don’t think its something that I would have been able to accurately represent.

so much about race relations from the standpoint of your main character Micah, who is described as darkerskinned?

McHugh’s novel, “Nightcrawlers,” can be found on Amazon, Kindle, Kobo and at nightcrawlersthenovel.com. kbreitman@theeagleonline.com

2. Corcoran Gallery of Art What: Quite simply, the Corcoran is “dedicated to art” for the purposes of expression and education. Upcoming Exhibits: Face in the Crowd (personal stories culminating in a film starring Elizabeth Banks); Loop (collaboration between media artist Jennifer Steinkamp and electronic composer Jimmy Johnson) Cost: $8 with student discount RIYL: National Gallery of Art 3. Marian Koshland Science Museum What: Learn about solving modern problems using scientific knowledge at this immersive experience. Exhibits: Earth Lab: Degrees of Change, Life Lab, Wonders of Science Cost: $4 with student discount RIYL: Museum of Natural History 4. National Building Museum What: Architecture nerds and casual observers alike will marvel at this museum’s array of engineering feats. Exhibits: LA Constructs the Future, The Landscape Architecture Legacy of Dan Kiley Cost: $5 with student discount RIYL: Critiquing museum exteriors before looking at the exhibits 5. National Museum of the U.S. Navy What: Relive our nation’s complex military history and tour the destroyer “U.S.S. Barry.” Exhibits: Navy Submarines, Polar Exploration, Spanish-American War Cost: Free RIYL: Museum of American History mlieberman@theeagleonline.com

@TheEagleOnline


theEAGLE

SPORTS

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FEBRUARY 17, 2014

After redshirt, ‘Pee Wee’ assists Eagles to top of Patriot League

Junior guard Darius Gardner has brought his own underdog story to an Eagle team writing a comeback story of its own

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by Kara Avanceña Eagle Staff Writer

he rise of junior Darius Gardner seems to appear out of nowhere, similar to the Eagles’ 10-0 start to Patriot League play. Gardner stands at a modest height of 5’9”, making him the

ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE

shortest player listed on AU’s roster. He leads a team that was projected to place secondto-last in the Patriot League. When 2014 rolled around, the picture for AU flipped entirely. In the first month of the season, AU blazed through its conference, including a dominating performance over the anticipated first-place finisher Boston University. The team’s success even attracted national attention, receiving one vote in the Jan. 27 AP Top 25. At the helm of AU’s success is Gardner, who is playing his first season at AU since transferring from Stephen F. Austin State University in 2012. As of Feb. 11, Gardner leads the Patriot League with more than 37 minutes played per game. Gardner leads the Eagles in assists and averages over 11 points a game. Gardner is regarded as a leader, a motivator and a playmaker on the court. By watching his game, teammates and fans alike see that Gardner hustles after the ball even when his efforts won’t necessarily show up on a stats sheet. “He’s just always trying to make a play when he’s on the court no matter where he is,” AU head coach Mike Brennan said. “He brings a great effort and a great mindset on a daily basis.” In spite of AU’s and his personal success this season, Gardner still competes and talks about his play with the intensity and urgency of someone who leads a struggling team. He takes compliments about the team’s achievements with a grain of salt and usually adds a comment about the team’s room for continued growth. “We haven’t done anything successful yet,” Gardner said. “We have a couple of games that we’ve won so far, but there are still things we can work on.” While Gardner’s outlook on the team and the season is reasonably cautious, Gardner has an underlying constant determination to defy expectations wherever he goes. The youngest of three boys, Gardner’s family influenced him to play basketball from a young age. “My dad gave me a little basketball and I started to play when I was 4 years old,” Gardner said. “Seriously, I started when I was 6. Watching [my brothers] play basketball before I got really involved with it made me want to start playing basketball just like them.” In middle school, Gardner joined a basketball team led by older players who

ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE

quickly targeted him to pick on. They branded him ‘Pee Wee’ because he was younger than the rest of the players, and the nickname has stuck with him ever since. “I loved it then and I love it now,” Gardner said. By the time high school rolled around, Gardner was well aware of the challenges that he faced as a young man growing up in Houston and as a basketball player of his stature. “He always played with a chip on his shoulder because of his size,” Jack Yates High School assistant coach Jawann McClellan said in an interview with the Eagle. McClellan, who knew Gardner prior to Jack Yates, noted that Gardner is “always on the court thinking he has something to prove.” “You couldn’t tell him that he couldn’t [play] no matter his height and weight,” McClellan said. “He used basketball, like I always taught him, to get him where he wants to.” Gardner’s doggedness was a powerful tool that he harnessed as a leader of his high school team. “He was like a second coach out there on the floor,” McClellan said. “He got every player to play hard. He was a very vocal leader on the court and off the court.” Gardner pushed himself as a basketball player and was duly recognized in his time at Jack Yates as a four-time all-state, all-district and all-city honoree. He led his team to two state championships and one national championship. However, when Gardner began his college career at SFA, his role on the team altered dramatically. After averaging nearly 20 points and nine assists a game at Jack Yates, Gardner’s numbers dropped to five points and three assists a game. It wasn’t long before Gardner knew it was time for a change. “It was my second year there and it just wasn’t the right fit for me, so I didn’t want to sit there and waste two more years,” Gardner said. “[The coach and I] came to the decision that it was best for me to transfer schools.” Gardner’s search led him to AU where the former coaching staff recruited him. Gardner transferred to AU, but he was required to sit his first season out per NCAA rules. “It was my first year actually being able to sit out of basketball since I was six years old, so it was very tough watching basketball without being able to play and help my team out,” Gardner said.

Though challenging, Gardner found value in the experience of being benched for a year. “It made me look at the game differently,” Gardner said. “It made me look at how important each minute, each second, of the game can be, and how important each possession is.” When Gardner was finally eligible to play, another setback came along in the form of coaching changes. Then head coach Jeff Jones left AU for Old Dominion University and was replaced by then Georgetown assistant coach Brennan. “It was a big difference trying to learn from the new coach and having a new coach come in, but I’ve embraced it and I love Coach so far,” Gardner said of Brennan. Brennan’s arrival necessitated an adjustment period for every player. The team as a whole learned to work under the “Princeton Offense,” a basketball strategy that emphasizes the constant movement of all the players on the court for better passing and shooting. In addition, Gardner worked to change his shot with the help of Brennan, AU Assistant Coach Scott Greenman, and Pete Carril, developer of the Princeton Offense and Brennan’s head coach when he attended Princeton University. “He increased my skills and had me change my shot,” Gardner said of working with Carril. “That’s still a work [in] progress, but since then, he’s been giving me confidence and encouragement.” With all of the changes the team undergoes in its journey to the NCAA tournament, Gardner still emphasizes other aspects of the game, especially bonding as a team and having fun on the floor. “For me, the main thing is that at the end of the season, if we don’t win the championship, we can look back and say that we did a lot of positive things,” Gardner said. Nonetheless, with the success of the Eagles this season, Gardner admits that he can see the team win the Patriot League championship come March. What may have seemed impossible to critics in August is a challenge and a hope-filled promise to him. “Underdogs are definitely fulfilling once you accomplish things that people don’t expect you to accomplish,” Gardner said. And for Gardner, a perennial underdog, fulfillment has been a long time coming. sports@theeagleonline.com


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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Elite wrestler dominates on mat and in classroom terial and loved the professor,” he said. Once he finishes graduate school in May, Mitchell hopes to get his Ph.D On the mat, wrestling senior Daniel in finance or economics. But before Mitchell is one of the best athletes in becoming an adjunct professor, he the nation. But he’s also one of the top hopes to get some real world experience. students at AU with a 3.95 GPA. “I have never gotten a B,” Mitchell said about his final grades, dating Pinning excellence in the classroom is one of the more active and his straight-A streak back to middle Mitchell vocal participants in class, frequentschool. ly bringing up salient during America’s No. 13 197-pound wres- class discussion, Kogod points professor Saltler brought home the Elite 89 award ly Fowler said. in 2012, which recognizes the athlete “He spoke when he had something with the highest GPA in the respec- to say, and when he did, it always tive sport. contributed to the class,” Fowler said. “I think it (academics) ties in with “When you’re a professor, you apprethe sport of wrestling,” Mitchell ciate that.” said about his drive academically. Mitchell now works as a teaching “It comes down to self-discipline in assistant in Kogod, tutoring students all aspects of your life and wrestling enrolled in introductory level finance more than any sport teaches that.” This season Mitchell stands second courses. “Actually, he does not simply help on the team with 19 wins and leading them, he challenges students to re- ics if I were at [school in] Oklahoma with seven falls. ally understand the material beyond or Iowa,” Mitchell said, suggesting it solving a numerical exercise,” finance would be harder to balance at a tradiBalancing grades and pins For Mitchell, academics have always professor Valentina Bruno said in tional wrestling powerhouse. For the Colorado native, academbeen a priority, and sometimes by his an email. “I always hear good things ic success has always been presown accord, more so than his wres- about his tutoring from students.” ent throughout his career. Not only tling. “I’d love to go to school to be a student, not a student-athlete,” Mitchell said. Mitchell completed his bachelor’s in business administration with a focus in finance at AU two years ago. He is Danny Mitchell, Kogod senior currently enrolled in AU’s graduate finance program at the Kogod School of Business. However, his athletic Despite his busy schedule, Mitchell did Mitchell win a state title in high standing is listed as a senior. he doesn’t feel any pressure to ad- school, but he was also valedictorian. Mitchell originally enrolled in AU said his academic workload for wres- A team of success with intent to study Arabic and inter- just tling. In fact, he credits AU’s environ- Mitchell is not the first Eagle wrestler national studies. “I got waitlisted for the Arabic class ment for helping him achieve balance to achieve high academic success. At “I don’t know how well I could least one AU wrestler has been placed and as life would have it, I took an intro finance course, and loved the ma- have balanced athletics and academ- on the NWCA All-Academic team ev-

by Eric Saltzman Eagle Staff Writer

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I’d love to go to school to be a student, not a student-athlete.

Life after Soccer:

A reflection on her four years as a student-athlete

Erin Ryan describes her experiences on the Women’s soccer team

TheEagleOnline.com

]

COURTESY OF AU ATHLETICS

ery year since the 2004-2005 season. In addition, wrestling head coach Teague Moore estimates his current squad of AU wrestlers will have an average GPA of 3.30, which is well above the NCAA-mandated 2.50 GPA. Mitchell and Moore credit the team’s strong academic performance to a competition among each class to obtain the highest GPA. For all the success that Mitchell has found in academics, his record on the mat is equally impressive. “He’s the type of athlete you don’t have to try to encourage to train or workout,” Moore said. Regardless of his future, Mitchell said he plans to enjoy his final wrestling season at AU. “I need to make sure I enjoy it and really live these last two months,” he said. esaltzman@theeagleonline.com


theEAGLE

OPINION

14 STAFF EDITORIAL

FEBRUARY 17, 2014

We are not WONK: it’s time for a new marketing campaign Despite a nationally televised embarrassment and waves of student criticism, University Marketing Advisory Council has shown little sign of turning its back on the WONK campaign. The Eagle believes now is the time to put an end to WONK and start a new marketing strategy that students universally support. The WONK campaign is not a byproduct of negligence, which many students are quick to assume. In 2008, the University Marketing Advisory Council

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effort after successfully pioneering the “Fear the Turtle” campaign for the University of Maryland. The marketing world sees WONK as something to emulate, as evidenced by the numerous awards hanging in Flannery’s office. However, students and alumni have criticized the campaign repeatedly since its introduction in 2010. This newspaper has published at least 25 anti-WONK op/ eds since its inception. Criticism reached a tipping point after Anderson Cooper’s

We are college students, not 10 categories.

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hired the firm SimpsonScarborough to conduct two years of research on the subject in order to “improve awareness, perceptions, and pride among target audiences,” The Eagle previously reported. Their analysis included thousands of surveys taken by AU students, faculty, alumni, parents and prospective students. Teresa Flannery, AU’s vice president for communication, lead the the council’s

New Year’s Eve blunder and AU alumnus Carter Gibson wrote a viral op-ed for InTheCapital. Regardless of vocal criticism, Flannery and the UMAC have refused to put the brakes on WONK, citing survey data that show a majority of students and alumni believe the campaign ads have a positive influence on the University’s image. However, the full survey data were not

by Connor H. O’Brien Eagle Columnist I was sitting on a bench behind Roper Hall watching the traffic sail by. I raised a match to my corncob pipe and lit my tobacco, exhaling a long, thick puff of smoke. That bench was in one of AU’s three temporary smoking areas, all of which are now gone because of a plan to join over 4,000 other colleges to become a smoke-free campus. Prior to six months ago, my smoking experience was pretty much nonexistent (I had taken a puff or two of my father’s cigar once). My middle school’s antismoking campaigns worked for me, so I grew up with no desire to smoke (though I did disagree with them when they said it didn’t look cool, the evidence being Steve McQueen). But on Aug. 9, I checked my e-mail to find a message from President Neil Kerwin announcing the ban of on-campus smoking that would take effect on Aug. 15, 2013. The only exception to this would be three temporary smoking areas, which would all close down in December. Obviously this was an awful time to take up smoking. So I took up smoking. With all of the smokers congregating in three areas, I knew it would be easy to meet and chat with interesting people from all walks of life. For better or worse (my lungs say “worse”) I was excited to try something new. Less than a month later, I asked my

roommate, a casual smoker, to teach me how to smoke. He took me out to the smoking spot by the Kogod School of Business, I took my first real puff on that cool summer night. Soon after I bought a pipe and began asking people for their opinion of the smoking ban. The responses that I got from smokers were mostly negative in terms of the smoking ban. “It’s stupid,” “I hate it” and “It’s bull****,” were among the most common responses. “To hell with it!” one professor told me as he puffed away on a cigarette. Even nonsmokers were against the ban. “If the school is going to charge us $60,000 a year to come here, students who want to smoke should be able to smoke on campus,” said junior Atrina Mehdipour, a nonsmoker. And many agreed smoking “areas” were a fair compromise, including nonsmokers. It allowed smokers to smoke without bothering nonsmokers, and it concentrated all of the litter in three small areas. I heard support for the smoking areas so often, in fact, that I created my own survey, which was posted on various AU Facebook pages and was taken by both undergraduate and graduate students. Students were given three polling options: 1: Completely against the smoke-free policy 2: Middle ground: support the implementation of permanent smoking “areas” 3: Completely support the smoke-free policy The survey reflected the opinions of nonsmokers and smokers collected over months of conversations. Out of 100 people, 59 respondents voted for option two while only 29 voted for option three

released to The Eagle. That majority, however, is only 40 percent of undergraduates and 42 percent of alumni. Roughly 60 percent of undergraduates and alumni do not believe the campaign represents AU in a positive manner. Flannery’s response is understandable. This campaign is relatively young and extremely expensive. If survey data don’t show a clear trend of student disapproval, scrapping the campaign and starting from scratch is a significant risk. But relying too heavily on survey data would be a drastic mistake. The real problem with WONK, which surveys do not begin to delve into, is that it attempts to summarize a remarkably diverse student body into one word. Sure, there may be “Policy WONK,” “Green WONK” and “Gender and Sexuality WONK” but these titles are sweeping, misleading generalizations. They paint AU students as one-dimensional and ignore the artistic, socially dynamic qualities that we see on this campus every day. The Eagle’s editorial board unanimously agreed UMAC should ditch the word WONK. Students have engrained a negative context into the word, which is not surprising considering how unpleasant it sounds.

Thus, we encourage UMAC to adopt a new marketing campaign that students identify with. WONK did capture the fact that AU students are hard working and dedicated to their field, but it did so with fake, idealistic characters. We are college students, not professionals who fit neatly into 10 categories. We suggest a campaign that emphasizes each individual school’s tangible strengths. This would not only interest prospective students and give current students something to be proud of. We also suggest separate marketing campaigns for undergraduates and alumni, which is a strategy that has worked for Georgetown University. University Communications will host a town hall on Feb. 28 that will aim to address student grievances with WONK. Students need to take advantage of this opportunity to voice their opinion on WONK and tell the University what they want. We are one of the most politically active schools in the world. Our student body spans all 50 states and more than 130 nations. Show University Communications we are more than a just suit on the side of a bus. -E

Survey shows support for AU smoking areas Opinions On Smoke-Free Policy

12%

29%

completely against policy smoking areas are OK completely for smoking policy

Out of 100 surveyed students, the majority voted to reinstate designated smoking areas on campus. and 12 for option one. This shows a clear student approval for a compromise that keeps the smoking areas permanent. I had previously been told by University administration that survey data showed clear student support for a smoke-free campus. A poll created by the Student Government last fall asked students whether or not the ban was important, but failed to ask students whether or not they actually supported the initiative. The survey also failed to ask students about the temporary smoking spots. I offered to present my own data to Dean of Students Robert Hradsky and the Student Government. Hradsky agreed to meet with me and after reviewing the survey data, said it was too late in the game for any real change to be made. However, we jokingly discussed the sugar-related chaos that might engulf the school due to all of the smokers being given lollipops by AU’s “Tobacco-Free Ambassadors,” who have been confronting rule-break-

59%

ing smokers. When I told the Student Government about my survey, they initially sounded interested in hearing the results and discussing the implications. But upon learning that I was writing this column, they have ended all communication with me despite numerous attempts on my part to contact them. Now that the smoking spots are closed, I have given up smoking. I only started in the first place to understand students’ opinions on the smoking ban. But in these last few months of smoking, I have made friends by talking to all sorts of interesting people I would have never met otherwise. I’m not advocating smoking— it can still kill you—but what I’ve learned from all of this is that people should be able to make these types of decisions on their own, and the school should respect that freedom. Connor H. O’Brien is a sophomore in the School of International Service.


theEAGLE FEBRUARY 17, 2014

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15

best and worst reasons to live in the Berks Is independent living worth debt and cockroaches?

by Shelby Ostergaard Eagle Columnist

ALEJANDRO ALVAREZ | THE EAGLE

Best

It’s not tobacco-free

The Berkshire Apartments are not smoke-free or really anything-free. There is plenty of room for all sorts of “recreational activities” that RAs hate.

Free furniture

Wander the Berks halls at any time of the year and you’ll find a plethora of random objects anywhere from toasters to spare furniture abandoned by former residents.

Cleaning skills

Nothing will teach you the basic concept of cleaning faster than renting your very own Berks apartment. Here, you run the risk of being eaten by your own roaches.

Door service

Unlike at the dorms, delivery men bring your food straight to your apartment. No more having to put on a bra, find your shoes and awkwardly leave the tip upstairs.

Babies

At the Berks, babies and old people are close enough to remind you they exist, but far enough that you rarely have to keep the noise down.

1 2 3 4 5

Apartment lockage

Worst

Between Netflix and GrubHub, your apartment building has everything you need. Unfortunately, sometimes you realize you haven’t actually left in two days.

The ‘ick’ factor

Really, this couldn’t be higher. AU students have been horrified to find roaches, mold and mildew. And that’s just in the kitchen sink. Enter bathrooms with caution.

Rent

The number will bring the same sense of dread and horror you felt when you looked at your tuition bill for the first time.

Lost delivery men Your delivery man will call you at least once, baffled by the West/Central/East system. Get ready for conversations of: “Hello? What do you mean that you are in W?”

No more store

The Berks store is no more. Rumors abound as to its return, but as of right now, R.I.P. Berks store. You are sorely missed.

Cheap housing hard to come by on and off campus by Devin Mitchell Eagle Columnist

W

ith the cost of tuition and school fees around $50,000, it’s no secret that AU is an expensive university. In 2011, Business Insider ranked AU the second costliest university in the aid. For many students this is the source of at least some anxiety during their time here. A common way AU students reduce these higher education costs is by moving off campus after freshman year. Sharing a relatively small room in McDowell Hall costs nearly $9,500 per year or $1,100 per month. You pay a premium to be able roll out of bed 10 Moving off campus is a big deal, but rent prices at the Berkshire, Greenbriar

and Avalon apartment complexes diminish that deal. Two-bedroom apartments at the Berks start at $3,000 per month and the Avalon prices are even higher. Even with four people splitting those costs, they don’t offer that much respite for families already shouldering the burden of paying tuition. The larger issue here is the housing crisis in D.C. Behind San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York City and Bosmetro area in the country, according to the National Association of Realtors. Housing costs in the area have grown 69 percent while median income has risen just 44 percent. A staggering 50 percent researchers as “housing cost burdened,” meaning a household spends 30 percent or more of income on rent. That number is 83 percent for those with incomes below $50,000. Most students are somewhat protected

from these trends, primarily because

But high costs of living have practical consequences for everyone. Unaffordable housing discourages students from remaining around campus outside of the academic year, or from remaining nearby after they graduate. There’s been a lot of discussion about the lack of school spirit at AU, much of it revolving around athletics. But doesn’t the lack of affordable housing also factor in, exacerbating the already when most students aren’t from around the area to begin with? AU administrators should explore the feasibility of freezing or reducing room and board costs for students during the academic year and throughout the summer. This would at least demonstrate that the school takes this problem seriously. More broadly, all members of the campus community should support

efforts to build more affordable, below market-rate housing units. Students grow more slowly. To be fair, this problem is not unique to D.C. It affects most large urban areas and relates to broader, structural societal issues. Easy, all-encompassing answers are elusive. But the crisis isn’t going away, and students are hurting because of it. Devin Mitchell is a sophomore in the School of Public Affairs.


theEAGLE SPECIAL EDITION

WONK? p. 3

13 PLACES to live off campus p.8 DANNY MITCHELL excels on the mat and in the classroom p.13 THEEAGLEONLINE.COM

Print Issue 2/19  

The print issue of The Eagle from 19 February 2014

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