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Lieutenant Platz stresses importance of safety

Raw Edges promises to excite with choreography

Opinion: University status only a symbol

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February 1, 2012

Mercyhurst transitions to university By Stacy Skiavo Staff writer

After months of waiting, Mercyhurst College is now known as Mercyhurst University. On Wednesday, Jan. 25, President Tom Gamble, Ph.D., made the announcement of the university transition in the Herrmann Student Union Great Room to tell the campus of the news. The process has been ongoing for more than a year now to attain the approval for university status. “We were a university when the Pennsylvania Education Department secretary signed the letter and it was official on Monday, Jan. 23, 2012,” Dean of the Walker School of Business Monsignor David Rubino, Ph.D., said.

This new change is considered to have the biggest impact on Mercyhurst since the college went co-ed in 1969. Gamble unveiled the new logo at the announcement, which featured the traditional colors of blue, green, black and white. A new college shield and Mercyhurst cross are also featured in the logo, which symbolizes the founding Sisters of Mercy. The Carpe Diem motto and founding date are included as well. Much of the work involved in this process was already taken care of prior to the announcement. “All the steps took place before the announcement. Now is the time to start allowing for changes,” Rubino said. The next step will be making changes to administrative materials, signs, marketing materials and to the website.

“It’s a very slow process and so much needs to be done,” Rubino said. The change is hoped to clarify to international students that Mercyhurst University is not a high school. In international countries high school is often referred to as college. With the title of university, no confusion should occur. “The university status will bring us up a notch if we follow through. We’re still the same school, but we’re just on a different clientele for schools now,” Rubino said. As of now, the university transition is to be celebrated during events that are already scheduled. Something additional will happen at graduation to celebrate the first class graduating from Mercyhurst University. A university celebration will also take place at the alumni reunion, so former Mercyhurst students can take part in the change. There

will be an additional celebration during the 2012 fall term. Many question the changes the transition will have on the school as well as on the students. Becoming a university will have no effect on tuition as well as no correlation to the term changes. “The day-to-day lives of students and faculty will not be affected,” Rubino said. Changes will quickly occur, as Mercyhurst University will include three colleges. These are the College of Graduate Studies, the College of Baccalaureate Studies in Erie and the College of Associate Degrees in North East that will also have sites in Girard, Corry and at Booker T. Washington Center. “This is truly a historic moment and hopefully the end product will make us more visible internationally and nationally,” Rubino said.

Do you think becoming a university is a positive direction for Mercyhurst?


“I think it’s overwhelmingly positive. It’s good and it shows you that the college—university—is growing. It’s really reflective. This is my seventh year here and it’s amazing how much the college has grown, and this is a continuation of that.” —Associate Professor of History John Olszowka, Ph.D. “University is just a tag. The bottom line is that the university will be as good as the faculty, students and administration make it. It will only be as great as those of us interested in it. We need to dream big.” —Assistant Professor of Art Jodi Staniunas-Hopper

“This is a good idea all around. University quality programs are what we have been offering for some time now. Students will benefit from ... an enhanced diploma, the university benefits in recruiting power and prestige and our community benefits from the growth in graduate studies that this offers. As time passes, other factors will become noticeable as well. University status sets the stage for the next chapter in the ‘evolution’ of Mercyhurst that we know and love.” —Instructor of Geology Scott McKenzie “First, in some ways, it isn’t a big deal. It’s a name change that reflects what we already are. It is a really important change for our recruitment of foreign students. I also think that a lot of potential downside of being a university has been avoided—there won’t be graduate students teaching classes, which will maintain the faculty-student relationships. We avoided the downside and are gaining the upside. I really don’t see a downside to that.” —Professor of Political Science Randy S. Clemons, Ph.D. “My understanding is in the last five years we’ve been a university already in everything but the name. It’s unheard of for everything to go so quickly with the Pennsylvania Department of Education. What we want to protect is a small, liberal arts college. The way to do that is to become a university. We want North East and the graduate programs to grow, but we really want to protect the center—the liberal arts college. This is absolutely a good thing.” —Associate Professor of English Brian Reed, Ph.D.


“Now that Mercyhurst has university status, I think that it has created a happy medium between a university-styled education with an intimate college-styled social experience. Mercyhurst University will create more opportunities for its students to get involved in their major and in the community, but it will also keep its lower student-teacher ratio and friendly community atmosphere.” —Junior Carli Hatfield “I just think it’s a brilliant change—it’s difficult to explain the concept of ‘college’ to my family back home in Pakistan. Now that we’re a university, it’s easier for them and potential employers abroad to understand my resume.” —Freshman Zainab Javed “I think it’s a great opportunity for our school, and I think that it’s part of the stepping stones to make Mercyhurst an even better school.” —Sophomore Katie Jeffries “The university change brings an exciting, new atmosphere to the campus...but the real question is: when’s the university merchandise coming out?” —Junior Marchetta Genis “It’s nice to have a small, family-like community with a university status.” —Junior Tabatha Dessa “I think the school becoming a university is great. I think it’s definitely a step in the right direction. We already have so much potential, and now with university status, it just opens up so many more doors for the school and the students attending it.” —Freshman Brianna Carle


February 1, 2012

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University status prompts logo updates By Kelly Luoma Editor-in-chief

Now that Mercyhurst is a university, changes need to be made. These changes include updating letterhead, business cards and signage to say Mercyhurst University. Other necessary changes include updates to admissions materials, alumni and advancement materials, Police and Safety vehicles, maintenance vehicles, uniforms, fax cover sheets, the website and the Facebook page, according to Meghan Corbin, director of marketing and public relations. “There’s silly things you don’t even think about,” she said. “It gives you an idea of the expanse of this endeavor.” The letterhead and business cards are the biggest change in terms of affecting the entire campus, Corbin said. Corbin said faculty and staff are instructed to use their letterhead and share it with other departments so that the Mercyhurst College letterhead will not be wasted or thrown away. Then when it is used up, Mercyhurst University letterhead can be ordered. “Nothing with the name college on it should be reordered,” said

Corbin. “We’re trying to be cost conscious as well as environmentally conscious.” The university business cards and letterhead should arrive in March. Not all changes will occur this quickly. Mercyhurst signs that have the college logo on them need to be changed. The signs will not change all at one time, but a timeline for signage change has not yet been determined. The signage change will be the most significant cost of all the updates, which is why it will not take place all at once. Signs that have historical value will not change. “We want to keep it that way as a reminder of where we were,” Corbin said. As of now, the walls next to the gates that say Mercyhurst College will not change. The bookstore will launch its university clothing line in the spring, and this date will be announced ahead of time. “Most of the stuff we are planning on doing is costs that would already be incurred,” Corbin said. “Some of it is absolutely no cost, and some of it is a cost of time and some of it is a cost of tangible resources.” Besides the name and logo updates, Mercyhurst is not required

to make any changes to what it normally does. When the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) came for a site visit, they did not make any recommendations, Corbin said. “What university did was put the label on what we already are,” Corbin said. For example, Mercyhurst had eight graduate programs prior to becoming a university. The title of Mercyhurst University acknowledges that these programs are in existence, Corbin said. Corbin pointed out that the discussion to switch to semesters has nothing to do with becoming a university. The longer class times came about in order to comply with PDE standards. One goal that Mercyhurst University has is to keep admissions stable in the College of Baccalaureate Studies while continuing to grow and foster the College of Associate Studies and the College of Graduate Studies, Corbin said. Whether the growth will be in terms of population or number of programs has yet to be determined. Corbin explained this idea by quoting President Tom Gamble, Ph.D. “It’s not that we’re going to get bigger … but that we are also going to get better,” she said.

Zach Dorsch photo

Numerous changes need to be made now that Mercyhurst has become a university, including updates to signs.

Status improves international reputation

University will ‘help leverage, complement’ recruiting By Alicia Cagle Staff writer

The change to university status is expected to influence international student admissions. Mercyhurst already has a good international name; however, the changes are expected to amplify Mercyhurst’s reputation and attendance. “The attainment of university status will help leverage and complement our global recruiting efforts,” Director of International Admissions Eric Evans said. International Student Adviser Daniel Cabanillas explained that much of the improvement has to do with linguistics. Most of the world equates the word college with a high school and university with an institute of higher education. “This will ease our language barriers overseas,” Cabanillas said. The change will create less confusion and an easier process.

International students are expected to have an easier time pursuing employment and graduate degrees once they return home. “I suppose it leaves us with one less excuse when/if we’re still jobless upon graduation,” Ciarán Doherty, a senior from Ireland said. Christian Starry, a junior from Guatemala, agreed. “Mercyhurst will have a better international perception since the university status increases the prestige of the institution, making it easier to obtain better jobs,” he said. International student admissions expects this change to help sell Mercyhurst better to prospective students around the world. They hope to see an influx of applications for international students and increase some acceptance. Evans has already experienced this. “Mercyhurst has a very good name internationally, particularly in the countries where we actively recruit. The attainment of university status will help leverage and complement our global recruiting efforts. I also believe university status will be very helpful when the international students return home for

employment or pursue graduate studies. “I am currently recruiting in Central America and already have experienced some of the aforementioned,” he said. “University is what (international students) have at home,” said Doherty. “It’s what they seek, and it’s what employers want. So if they can get that here, they’re more likely to travel to Mercyhurst.” Dean Atkins, a graduate student from England, agreed. “Back home college is the equivalent to junior and senior year of high school. It’s nice to be able to say I’m at a university now. It has a certain stature to it. I think it will improve Mercyhurst’s reputation with international students,” he said. According to the admissions website, Mercyhurst has students from 46 countries and is ranked number 13 by U.S. News & World Report, Master’s Universities - North for international students. The Mercyhurst College Office of International Admissions and Services works to create a smooth transition process and encourages international students to apply.


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’Hurst dedicates day for heart awareness By Brady Greenawalt Staff writer

According to the American Heart Association, nearly 200,000 women die every year from heart attacks. That’s five times the amount of women that are killed by breast cancer annually. Every year the American Heart Association dedicates a day to spreading awareness of heart disease prevention and heart health in women called “Go Red for Women.” This year, on Friday, Feb. 3, Judy Smith, Ph.D., director of the Cohen Health Center, is planning to celebrate the day on campus. “Most people think that heart disease is more of a male thing,” said Smith, “but it’s the number one killer of women.” As part of the Go Red observance, the health center will offer free blood pressure screenings to all students and faculty on campus. “All of our nurses will be in to help provide blood pressure screen-

ings,” Smith said. Everyone who receives a free blood pressure screening during the event will receive a free raffle ticket for a chance to win the grand prize of a free Swedish massage from LECOM health center. In addition to the grand prize, many more items have been donated by local businesses and will be available to win. Chances to win these other items will be sold for a small fee. “It will be like a Chinese auction,” said Smith. Prizes include steak knives from CutCo, gift certificates to Teresa’s Deli and free pizza from Parkhurst. All of the proceeds from the event go to the Erie chapter of the American Heart Association. Although this event is focused toward making women more aware of heart disease, men are welcome to attend the event as well. “The blood pressure screenings don’t take very long,” said Smith. “Our main goal is to educate about heart disease, and we’re trying to make it fun.”

Criminal mischief/theft Sunday, Jan. 22

3807 Briggs Ave. College discipline

Harassment Saturday, Jan. 28

Baldwin Hall College discipline

Larceny/theft Saturday, Jan. 28

Ice Center College discipline

Possession of controlled substance Sunday, Jan. 29

Warde Hall College discipline

Jan. 22-29, 2012

Smith encourages everyone to take simple steps everyday toward improving their heart health. “Increase exercise and lower the sodium in your diet. Park your car a little further away, just simple things can go a long way,” said Smith. “Even as 20-year-olds there are benefits to being aware. It pays off … it’s never too early or never too late.” The Red event will be hosted at the Cohen Health Center from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3. It is open to everyone. For more information, contact Smith at extension 2037 or jsmith@

February 1, 2012 Senior Week 2012 Events Kickoff Party Monday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m. Student Union Great Room Bowling Night Tuesday, Feb. 7, at 9 p.m. Eastland Lanes Rate Your Pizza Wednesday, Feb. 8, at 6 p.m. Student Union Great Room Snag a Senior Date Auction Thursday, Feb. 9, at 9 p.m. Walker Recital Hall 100 Days Senior Dinner Friday, Feb. 10, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Egan Cafeteria 100 Days Party Friday, Feb. 10, at 10 p.m. Cornerstone Bar & Grill

February 1, 2012


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Poise, patience and persistence Weight loss made easy using Weight Watchers By Liz Zurasky Features Editor

Eating healthy and staying fit is difficult, especially during the holidays. I returned to school from winter break to find that I had gained close to ten pounds. Instead of eating those depressed feelings away, I decided it was time to make a drastic change in my lifestyle and improve my health. I have definitely been seeing results. Weight loss is an incredibly difficult journey for anyone. Whether you need to lose 20 pounds or 120, it is a long, drawn-out process that can take months to accomplish. This process demands patience not only in seeing results, but persistence to keep at it until you have finally reached your goal. That is why I have been following the “Three P’s” – poise, patience and persistence. Besides these three great actions, I have found many helpful things that are available to assist in losing and tracking weight loss. First, I began the Weight Watchers diet, a program developed to help fight the pounds by counting things like fat, carbohydrates, fiber and protein. If you sign up for this program, it is $50 for the first three months and then $15 a month after that – a relatively inexpensive plan. There are multiple iPhone apps for Weight Watchers that I use on a daily basis are free when you sign up for the program. One is the Weight Watchers Mobile App to track your daily eating habits, and the other is the Weight Watcher Scanner that scans bar codes at stores for nutritional information.

Sarah Hlusko photo

Eating right and exercising not only can improve your health, it can improve your mood and motivation as well. Both tell you how many “points” a particular food item is worth. The thing that I like the most about this program is that it lets me eat whatever I want. It just makes me extremely conscious of portion size. If Weight Watchers doesn’t sound appealing, there are many other roads to take when it comes to losing weight. Simply supplementing your diet with more fruits and veggies is definitely key when trying to achieve a goal weight. Most of these deli-

cious foods require more calories to burn off than what they actually consist of, making them filling, but not something that will cling to your hips. Becoming active not only helps you burn fat and stay trim, but gives you an awesome energy and mood boost to keep yourself mentally healthy during this process. I highly suggest the Nike Training app for the iPhone. This is like having your own personal trainer free of charge, and the exercises are easy enough that you can do them

in your apartment. It goes through workouts, whether it’s toning or cardio, has different levels of intensity and consists of videos that show you how to do each exercise. The best part is that you do all this to whatever playlist you select from your iTunes library. The athletic center also offers a variety of classes every day in which students can participate. They consist of anything from yoga to kickboxing and really get your heart pumping. To find a class that interests you, visit the Recreation Center’s website located on the portal. When I started trying to lose weight, I didn’t bombard myself with everything all at once. I began with the diet and slowly started implementing physical activity so I wouldn’t get burnt out. This has really worked well for me. So far I have lost a total of 11 pounds over the course of four weeks. The thing that I have noticed more than the weight loss is my sense of drive, concentration and attitude have increased drastically in the last month. Being healthy not only decreases your waistline, it makes you more focused and happier. If you’re looking for ways to improve your life, a healthy diet and exercise can really be an easy way to boost your mood and keep you motivated. There is no doubt that it has been working for me. Just remember to not get discouraged when you don’t see results right away. Practice the three P’s: poise, patience and persistence, and with enough time you will see many positive outcomes.

Student to produce charitable fashion show By Kayla Kelly Staff writer

Senior fashion merchandising student Jenn Daley has spent her senior year working on a fashion show. She will see her hard work come together when her show, “Worn This Way,” is presented on Wednesday, Feb. 8. Daley decided in November that she wanted to do something fun and exciting her senior year, so she chose to challenge herself by putting together a fashion show. All profits from the fashion show will

be donated to the “It Gets Better Project.” This is an organization that was created by Dan Savage and Terry Miller in September 2010. The organization started with a YouTube video they made to inspire hope in young people who are facing harassment and to raise awareness about bullying. They prepared this video in response to several students taking their own lives after being bullied in school. The organization focuses on the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender teen community. The goal is to tell these individuals that “yes, it does get better.”

The theme of Daley’s show is “feel good in your skin.” There are three different looks that will be highlighted throughout the night. The looks include Born in the USA/hippy, retro and punk rock grunge. Several stores at the Millcreek Mall donated clothing and accessories for Daley to use during the show. These stores include Macy’s, Buckle and Zumiez for most of the men’s clothing. For the women’s clothing, she received outfits from a Mercyhurst fashion department alumnus, Retrospect and Salvation Army. The 14 models that will be featured during the fashion show are some of Daley’s room-

mates and friends who were excited to participate in the event. Daley explained that the hardest part of choosing to organize a fashion show was the mass amount of stress that added to her workload during her senior year. When thinking about the challenging aspects of the event, she simply remembers this is all going to a really good cause. The fashion show is $3 for students and $5 for adults. All profits are going to a great cause, so come to Taylor Little Theatre at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 8, and enjoy the fashion show “Worn This Way.”


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DIY College style: Ravioli with pesto, squash and sage On her blog, A Grapefruit’s (many) Passions, senior Alaina Rydzewski writes about her foray into cooking, along with movie, book and music reviews. To check out her blog, visit This is an interesting recipe I found in Redbook magazine. Overall it took me about an hour to make, but it is because I didn’t have a potato peeler to peel the squash, and using a knife took twice as long. You will need ravioli, butternut squash (I chose a medium one and had plenty), 1/4 cup pesto sauce (I used basil pesto sauce I already had), 1/4 cup walnut pieces, 16 sage leaves and 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional).

To make: 1. Heat a large saucepan with water. When boiling, cook squash for about four to five minutes. 2. Drain squash with small strainer, and when water returns to a boil, cook ravioli according to package instructions. Drain and toss in pesto sauce. 3. Heat one tablespoon olive oil in skillet. Add squash and cook for five minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. 4. Add one tablespoon to same skillet and cook sage leaves for one minute. Dry on paper towels. 5. Add squash to raviolis and add walnuts, sage and cheese. This took me a bit longer than I think it should have, but only because of the lack of a potato peeler. I will also say that sage and squash are two unique tastes, but together they make sense. So if you were worried about trying this recipe because of the combination of tastes, don’t be. DIY College Style is a weekly column featuring two college students’ blogs on quick and easy tips about crafts and food.

February 1, 2012

Lt. Platz stresses safety By Alicia Cagle Staff writer

Typically students only get to know Police and Safety officers when they are getting busted at a party during the weekend. Officers in Police and Safety, however, are always there making sure the students at Mercyhurst are safe. Erie native Lt. Matthew Platz has worked in Police and Safety for eight and a half years, but this is not what he always expected he would be doing. “I spent a good portion of life not knowing what to do,” Platz said. In 2001, he graduated from Edinboro University with a degree in speech communication. He was working as a cook part time while he looked for work in radio or television. After answering an advertisement to become a part-time dispatcher, he joined the workforce at Mercyhurst University. When he began working at Mercyhurst, he decided he might as well take advantage of what there was to offer by getting his master’s degree in organizational leadership. Platz worked his way up through the ranks, with positions such as security officer, graduate assistant and corporal. He completed Act 120 certification and officially became a police officer. In 2010, Platz accepted the position as lieutenant. “I was already doing a good portion of the job,” said Platz. “The title now matches the responsibilities.” In more than eight years, Platz has witnessed some incredible incidents while on duty. “At one point I caught a streaker red-handed,” he said. He saw a streaker running down the road at the same time the dispatcher reported it. Platz explained that this is something they never usually catch people for, and if he had been off by a few minutes, they never would have caught the guy. The most rewarding part of the job for Platz is helping people, even if it’s by the smallest act. “I hope students feel safe with (Police and Safety’s) presence here,” he said. The worst part of the job for

Sarah Hlusko photo

Lt. Platz stresses that Police and Safety is here for safety and not to get students in trouble. Platz is not being well appreciated. “It’s frustrating,” said Platz. “We’re seen as just busting parties.” Platz stresses that he wants students to take safety precautions on campus. “If there is ever a time you feel unsafe, you can call for an escort,” Platz said.

Students should walk in pairs, stay in view of Police and Safety’s cameras and stay in well-lit areas. If there is anything a student needs to tell Police and Safety, they can feel free to and still remain anonymous. “We’re here for students,” Platz said.

February 1, 2012


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‘Earnest’ delights all who attend show By Marika Koch

Contributing writer When one thinks about late Victorian theatre the response, in these days, is not terribly enthusiastic. When imagining the Victorian Era, images very often come to mind of an extremely staunch social hierarchy and very little that can be called truly “funny.” That is, unless one is familiar with the theatrical offerings of Oscar Wilde. Last weekend, the Mercyhurst community was treated to a fantastic rendition of Wilde’s most famous play, “The Importance of Being Earnest,” acted out in the Taylor Little Theatre. The play centers around a period in the lives of two young men, Jack Worthing and Algernon Moncrief. Both seek to be married, but neither can manage to keep their identity perfectly suited to their desires, nor those of their future wives. It is a convoluted and fantastically absurd plot, as well as a triumph of the English language. Given that many of the jokes in the play are geared towards the audience of Wilde’s time, a time ripe with a different social conflict than we see today, one is, perhaps, surprised that the work was received as well as it was. This production had the crowd laughing all the way through, both because of the writing itself and the skill of the actors involved. The play opened with an interestingly anachronous piece of jazz on the piano and moved swiftly forward into the main conflict of the plot. Junior Matthew Tolbert and sophomore Mathew Anderson, who played Algernon and Jack, respectively, displayed magnificent ability to temper one another throughout the work. While one was enthusiastic, the other was perfectly

dismissive; while one was serious, the other was entirely frivolous. This is not mentioning the other members of the cast, however, all of whom were perfectly suited to their parts. The Lady Bracknell was arch and severe (though curiously played by a man), Cecily was sprightly to the point of being slightly mad and Gwendolyn was grandly composed. The cast was obviously tightly-knit, which certainly added to the audience’s experience. Anderson said, “My experience in the show was wonderful. I’ve had a constant sense of camaraderie and support from everyone involved.” The costumes and the use of the few props that are required in the production were both executed brilliantly, as was the choice of music for the production. Music was used both in the piano at the beginning and the use of “Poor, Wandering One” from Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Pirates of Penzance,” music which had been composed during the time of the play’s production and could, potentially, have been used in the part of the script that calls for a song. Reaction from the audience was particularly enthusiastic, as opening night ended with a long standing ovation and wonderful commentary from many of the viewers. “I loved it,” said junior Amanda Stafford, a student who was previously familiar with the play. “I thought that it was all really well done and especially liked all of the side jokes that were put in.” Even those who never thought they would care for this type of production were impressed. Sophomore Susan Hu said, “I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected. I’m definitely going to read the play now.” This dramatic performance was incredibly brilliant and showcased the great talent of Mercyhurst students as well as classical authors. One can only hope that there will be more productions of this kind in the future.

Contributed photo

“The Importance of Being Earnest” featured a tightly-knit cast of Mercyhurst students. photo

“Money Matters” will be shown in the PAC as part of the On Screen/ In Person series.

‘Money Matters’ tells a story of finding identity By Alejandra Zeron Staff writer

This week, the Maria J. Langer Film Series will feature “Money Matters” as part of its On Screen/ In Person series. “Money Matters” is an inspirational drama directed by Ryan Richmond. It chronicles the story of Pamela Matters, a single mother, and her 14-year-old daughter, Monique Matters, as they undergo doubt and insecurity in the journey to self-discovery. At the outset of her adolescence, Monique, referred to as “Money,” is struggling with the constraints of a dysfunctional household, a dilapidated neighborhood and a Catholic school where she feels like an outcast. The tension between Monique and Pamela intensifies as Pamela forces religion onto Monique, perhaps as a means of repenting for her own mistakes. Nevertheless, faith ultimately strengthens her. As turmoil and confusion continue to surround Monique, she begins to cope and express herself through poetry but keeps her writing to herself. It is only when she befriends a girl in her neighborhood who seems to understand her that Monique confides her troubles to another person. The film’s climax unravels when

Pamela discovers she has contracted HIV. As her health rapidly deteriorates, she is inevitably forced to reveal the truth about her past and Monique’s father, whom Monique has never met. Upon learning of her mother’s long-held secrets and illness, Monique struggles to grasp a genuine sense of identity. It now seems that she must reconcile the relationships and circumstances surrounding her to understand the meaning of her existence. Launched in 2011 by the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, On Screen/In Person is a program that brings new independent films and their filmmakers to communities across the mid-Atlantic region. Organizations interested in serving as host sites must be selected through a competitive application process. As a selected host site for this year’s touring groups, the Mary D’ Angelo Performing Arts Center (PAC) has the opportunity to participate in film selection and receive films for screening along with the opportunity to host the filmmakers. Activities are conducted with the visiting filmmakers to provide greater context and appreciation for their work. “Money Matters” will be shown on Wednesday, Feb. 1, in the PAC at 2:15 and 7:15 p.m. Tickets are free for students with a Mercyhurst ID.

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February 1, 2012

Raw Edges promises to excite with a mix of choreography By Emma Rishel Staff writer

The Mercyhurst Dance Department will present its popular Raw Edges performance this coming weekend, Feb. 3-5. This is one of the more popular dance department performances at Mercyhurst University and in the Erie community. This unique showcase of performances involves up-andcoming student choreographers presenting fresh and original works. There are six pieces being presented by students this year, plus two other pieces from alumni. The most exciting part about this showcase is the chance for choreographers to see their hard work come to life. The opportunity for a student choreographer to see his or her work performed in front of a community audience is extremely rare, and a great way to show what Mercyhurst is capable of. The entire process is helpful for the student choreographers to see what it is like to work with dancers and have time constraints on getting their pieces finished. It is also a mind-opening experience since the choreographers usually collaborate with another art related field. Junior Anastasia Welsh commissioned Mercyhurst music alumna Kayla Nash to compose the music for her piece, while junior Tess Sinke worked with Robert Von Thaden, Ph.D., and Greg Baker of Campus Ministry to get recordings of people saying lines from different prayers. Some of the themes in this year’s performance include the renewal of spring, power within an individual, the concept of time and the life of a college student. Junior Jessica Stachlerodt choreographed a ballet piece, which was a bit of a stretch for her since her comfort zone is more of the modern or jazz genre. The bright and flowing costumes, combined with the faster movements and bright music really portray her idea of spring coming at the end of a long winter. Senior Eden Mishler’s piece is about the emotions of a typical college student. She creatively portrayed each emotion using a mime to symbolize how difficult it is to vocalize emotions.

Jill Barrile photo

Junior Olivia Boyd danced in last year’s Raw Edges.

“The inspiration came from a combination of things. I have always wanted to choreograph a literal ballet about emotions,” said Mishler. “It is a light-hearted comedy that is performed to French music and lyrics.” Tess Sinke, who is choreographing for the first time for Raw Edges, and is also performing, said of the experience, “It was a positive experience to work with my peers. As a choreographer I liked it because they can see me as their equal so they aren’t afraid to really let go or ask questions. “It makes for a more collaborative process, and we are able to work together to find out what works best.” Melissa Sheffield’s choreography promises to captivate audience members with a relatable and dominant piece that follows the journey of 12 dancers searching for power within themselves. Senior Kelly Clymer’s piece, “Hands of Time,” is a modern piece representing Clymer’s creative understanding of the passing of time. Welsh’s piece is unique in that it is a large ensemble work set to music composed specifically for her. It is Welsh’s tribute to the famous and much revered choreographer George Balanchine. The dance is about clean, simple lines and energetic movements with a hint of Welsh’s own flavor. Junior Ashley Cook, who is a dancer in Welsh’s piece, says of the entire Raw Edges experience, “It’s fun to work with your peers in a large scale production. “It’s a good experience for both the dancers and choreographers because we are all learning and getting one step closer to our ultimate goal, whether that be a professional dancer or a major choreographer.” The Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center sees around 170 productions a year to date and, even then, Raw Edges is one of the most anticipated visual arts showcases to grace this venue. This will be the first of the annual dance series to be performed under our university status, and just like that historic change, this should be an equally exciting addition to the Raw Edges concert. Show your support to our outstanding dance department and their production of Raw Edges this weekend. Shows will be performed Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the PAC.

Want to help make a movie? To be a part of this year’s communication department film project, come to an informational meeting in Hirt 118 Thursday, Feb. 2, at 8:15 p.m. For more information, email Brady Greenawalt at bgreen97@lakers. or Joe Chiodo at


February 1, 2012

September 3,Page 20089

The views expressed in the opinion section of The Merciad do not necessarily reflect the views of Mercyhurst University, the staff of The Merciad or the Catholic Church. Responses on any subject are always welcomed and can be emailed to

Ron Paul hardly the revolutionary figure he purports to be By Zainab Javed

Contributing writer I personally think it’s cute to see those Ron Paul “Revolution” bumper stickers all over campus. I love to see our edgy, youthful members of society rallying around the man who wants to “fix” Washington and more importantly, decriminalize marijuana. Isn’t he so wonderfully progressive? Wrong. Single-issue voting aside, let’s look at the problem of Ron Paul. He may end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, but we’ll see the rise of a domestic war front as our good friend takes on economic stability, checks on corporations and both the Civil Rights and Women’s Rights Movements. We’re looking at a man with a 0 percent rating from the Women Employed organization, 0 percent from Citizens for Tax Justice, 38 percent from Human Rights Campaign, 8 percent from Environment America, and an F from the National Education Association. Let’s begin with his inflexible economic policy. Austerity, designated 2010’s Word of the Year by Merriam-Webster, would result in $1 trillion worth of cuts if President Paul were in charge. Paul may spend his Saturday nights reading economic textbooks, but he could potentially be the cause for economic turmoil. Huffington Post writer Matt Bruening believes that “cutting $1 trillion would push GDP downward by more than 6.5 percent without even counting any multiplier effects.” Even the European Union’s leaders have recently admitted that austerity is not enough. The New York Times reported European leaders “have come to realize that austerity measures, like those being put in countries

like Greece and Italy, risk stoking a recession and plunging fragile economies into a downward spiral.” Why run toward something that the rest of the world has tried and erred on? Paul also wants to isolate the government from business to the point of demolishing all government created regulations. Paul’s crusade against the Environmental Protection Agency, Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the federal minimum wage can be dangerous to lower to middle class families who will be most affected by it. OSHA’s mission is to make companies provide a safe working space for its employees, including requiring protective clothing in bio-hazardous waste zones. That sounds reasonable, right? Not for Ron Paul. He’s introduced legislation on more than one occasion to repeal workforce protection acts (including H.R.736 and H.R.2720). The companies enjoying unlimited freedoms and limited regulation may reap the benefits of the free market, but it is our lower classes who will inevitably suffer from his time in office. Economy aside, the topping on this revolutionary cake is the man’s racism. He not only voted against the creation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a federal holiday, but referred to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as a “massive violation of the rights of private property and contract.” That’s right, folks, he would have voted against the Civil Rights Act because it infringed upon the rights of corporations because it no longer allows them to refuse minorities or women employment because of their race or gender. Is his active stance against the Civil Rights Act of 1964 not good enough for you?

Well then, let’s take a look at the infamous Ron Paul newsletters. In the 1990s, a series of inflammatory and severely racist newsletters were released by his office. They included priceless jewels such as “if you have ever been robbed by a black teen-aged male, you know how unbelievably fleetfooted they can be” (1992) and even attacking the gay community by saying “I miss the closet. Homosexuals, not to speak of the rest of society, were far better off when social pressure forced them to hide their activities.” For anyone interested in further researching the validity of these newsletters, I suggest they take a look at The New Republic’s collection of quotes and links to PDFs of the articles. These statements are racially charged and in my view, disgusting. Even though Ron Paul may not have personally written the newsletters, he certainly did proofread and sign his name on to them. His former secretary and supporter, Renae Hathway, claims that he always proofread the newsletters. “It was his newsletter, and it was under his name, so he always got to see the final product. . . . He would proof it,’’ Hathway said to The Washington Post. These newsletters may have been published over a decade ago, but it happened and one cannot take such actions back. Look, I’m not saying the other candidates (including President Barack Obama, the Democratic candidate) are without flaws, but don’t fool yourself into thinking Paul is the progressive out of the lot of them. If you truly believe in Ron Paul’s values, that’s great. Vote for Ron Paul. However, if marijuana is the only reason you’re voting for him, check his record first.

Respect due to president By Caitlin Handerhan

Opinion editor Although I would consider myself a liberal, I am not excited about the Obama 2012 campaign. While I support the president, his moderate stances and lack of vigor in the last four years have left me slightly disappointed. That being said, I still find the behavior of Gov. Jan Brewer on an Arizona tarmac last week to be despicable. The now iconic image of her angrily pointing a finger in the face of the president has been quickly picked up by the press; regardless of the issue at hand, her actions were out of line when greeting the leader of the free world.

However disrespectful Brewer’s actions were, she has received less criticism than others. For example, in 2003 the Dixie Chicks were crucified for their critical comments about George W. Bush during a concert. Lead singer Natalie Maines was ridiculed, criticized and received death threats for her negative comments about the president. Regardless of party affiliation, respect is due to the president of the United States. I am not advocating for censorship, as those voicing criticism of our leaders deserve to be taken seriously. Yet we seem to criticize critical citizens like Natalie Maines and find ways to justify the obnoxious behavior of characters like Jan Brewer. I may not be Obama’s biggest fan, but I still feel respect is due to the president, regardless of party.

If you don’t want it printed . . . don’t let it happen. Editors Kelly Luoma Alaina Rydzewski Liz Zurasky Caitlin Handerhan Spencer Hunt Alex Stacey Chrissy Mihalic Kaitlin Badger Jill Barrile Ethan Johns Max Rivera Bill Welch Positions editormerciad Editor-in-Chief newsmerciad News Editor featuremerciad Features Editor opinionmerciad Opinion Editor sportsmerciad Sports Editor A&E Editor entertainmentmerciad copymerciad Copy Editor photomerciad Graphics photomerciad Photo Editor ejohns89 Web Editor admerciad Ad Manager wwelch Adviser

The Merciad is the official student-produced newspaper of Mercyhurst University. It is published throughout the school year, with the exception of finals weeks. Our office is in Hirt, Room 120B. Our telephone number is (814) 824-2376. The Merciad welcomes letters to the editor. All letters must be signed and names will be included with the letters. Although we will not edit the letters for content, we reserve the right to trim letters to fit. Letters are due Mondays. by noon and may not be more than 300 words. Submit letters to box PH 485 or via email at

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February 1, 2012 September 3, 2008

The views expressed in the opinion section of The Merciad do not necessarily reflect the views of Mercyhurst University, the staff of The Merciad or the Catholic Church. Responses on any subject are always welcomed and can be emailed to

University status only a symbol By Larae Tymochko Staff writer

While no one seems to be upset by Mercyhurst’s recent upgrade to university status, some students are less than impressed with the new logo for Mercyhurst University.

Despite much debate and discussion, students are still conflicted about athletes registering before the majority of the student body. With seniors being locked out of classes already, the discussion seems to be far from resolved.

adult students alike. At some point in the future, the installment of doctoral programs may emerge, and before you know it, Mercyhurst will be the home of Ph.D. candidates. The name does umbrella all three branches of the Mercyhurst network that stem from the main campus here on the hill, to the associate programs at North East and the graduate studies that are offered. The name change takes effect immediately, so feel free to change your résumés and your current school on Facebook. Now that we are a private university, it may be time that our name gain recognition and start to give Harvard and Princeton a run for

their money. As for right now, the institution will be marshaled with name changes, sign changes, logo changes, business card changes and thus begins an endless list. I was hoping for a bookstore sale of Mercyhurst College items, but all things Mercyhurst College will be vintage now, making them collector items. I personally am indifferent toward the name change. It doesn’t have a positive or negative impact on me, and it seems that it is more of a political standing in the realm of academia than anything else. But if it carries the weight to further my application across the desks of graduate schools, then here is a hip, hip hooray for Mercyhurst University.

Double meanings cause double trouble By Jaslyne Halter Staff writer

So many words in modern society are used as a double entendre, derogatory insult or a generally offensive term. What happens when we as a society find ourselves catching ourselves before we speak, and the public becomes up in arms about the words an individual says? A recent case of this double entendre controversy took place in the town of Draper, Utah. Corner Canyon High School was in the process of choosing a


Mercyhurst University!

What’s in a name? Well, it’s a change and addition of a few letters from college to university, but how much more is it than that? From my understanding, the official switch from college to university for the Mercyhurst community is nothing more than a status symbol, more important to international students than students from the states. The translation of “college” for international students is the equivalent of “high school” or “prep school” when they graduate from a college instead of a uni-

versity. In their case, it does carry more weight for job opportunities and other future prospects when they return home with a diploma in hand. Considering that Mercyhurst is a private, Catholic university, even though our students still receive financial endowments from the state, we aren’t funded by the state as an institution. And it doesn’t necessarily mean then that we will accrue more financial measures. However, for the faculty it makes grant writing easier and has a positive advantage for them to see dollar signs to fund their research. One of the most significant revolutions as a university is the expansion of our graduate programs for not only traditional students but for

new mascot. Students were given the option to vote for the Corner Canyon Cougars, Falcons, Raptors or Diamondbacks. The results showed students voted to be the Cougars. A school used a democratic vote and selected the cougar: a large, endangered cat found in North and South America. Simple enough, right? Wrong. Parents decided that this was inappropriate because obviously when choosing their mascot, many students were thinking about the older women that have relations with younger men. I understand the overall concept of avoiding certain words because

Era of cheap oil over by Jerry Johnson Staff writer

they are offending, but I think that common sense needs to be used. Now, as strongly as I feel about my opinion, I have to say that there are in fact, two different Supreme Court cases that potentially disregard my opinion. The first one, the 1969 decision of Tinker v. Des Moines, upheld the right for students to express themselves when their words are non-disruptive and could not be seen as connected with the school. That being said, the second falls under the decision of Bethel School District v. Fraser (1983), in which a student gave a speech that was composed entirely of sexual innuendos

and double entendres. The school made the decision to suspend the student, and after the student sued, the circuit court ruled in his favor. However, the Supreme Court ruled, in a 7-2 vote, in favor of the school district. I do realize that these Supreme Court cases aren’t necessarily fully related to the case of the cougar mascot; however, it just goes to show that double entendres should be used with caution. Even so, in the case of Corner Canyon High School, I think the school district acted immaturely by refraining from using a cougar as its mascot.

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February 1, 2012

Wrestling team earns first win as a university By Colin Farabaugh Contributing writer

The Mercyhurst wrestling team celebrated becoming a university by knocking off their cross-town rivals, the Gannon Knights, at the Mercyhurst Athletic Center (MAC) on Jan 26. The victory was the first win for a Mercyhurst team as a university. The Lakers were able to build off of momentum created by AllAmerican Jordan Shields at 157 pounds, who majored Sean Floor of Gannon 9-0. After dropping two of the next three matches, the Lakers had to rely on their upperweights to close out the match. They didn’t disappoint. “Our upper-weights (174 pounds to heavyweight) have been the key lately. At the beginning of the year they were struggling, but freshmen at our lower weights like Kody (Young, 133 pounds) and Lando (Jeremy Landowski, 141 pounds) have stepped up in key situations,” redshirt senior Eric Fulmer said. The Lakers failed to get off to

Jill Barrile photo

Freshman Jeremy Landowski controls Scott Bulzan of Gannon. Landowski won a major decision with a score of 10-2. The win improved Landowski’s record to 13-9. the start they wanted and were forced to make up ground. After a close win at 125 pounds by sophomore Ryan Bohince, the Lakers dropped two of the next three matches. “It’s always tough when your team doesn’t get out to the start you hoped for. But we know that

we have a solid line-up, and when one group is down, another group always seems to step up,” sophomore Nick Hannan said. Over the past few years, the Lakers have struggled against the Golden Knights, having not beaten them since the 2008-09 season. “They have had our number

the past few years, but we knew that this year would be different,” Fulmer said. After a win at 184 pounds, the Golden Knights had cut the Lakers’ lead to 14-13, but wins at 197 pounds and heavyweight would clinch a win for the Lakers. Sophomore Michael Pollard won his match over Zach

Zelcs 7-4 and graduate student Fred Hale was able to pin Charles Lear at 2:35 in the first period. “It’s nice to have two national qualifiers closing out your line-up. We know that we can always rely on Michael and Freddy when the match is close,” Hannan said. The win propelled the Lakers to a weekend sweep at West Liberty University, and it appears that the win against Gannon has given the Lakers some momentum as they head into the final month of the season. “Big wins against rivals always get you pumped up. Even though we didn’t put forth our best effort, a win is still a win, and it is important to stay positive. The wrestling season is a grind, and we know that we are going to have our ups and downs,” Hannan said. After going 3-0 last week, the Lakers moved to 12-4 on the season. The Lakers return to action Feb. 3 and 4 at the MAC. On Friday they will take on No. 12 Ashland Eagles at 7 p.m., and on Saturday they will meet Shippensburg at 1 p.m.

Men’s basketball continues on hot streak By Lindsey Burke Staff writer

When a team hits the middle of its schedule, the hope is that it is in top form as it enters the stretch run for playoffs. But going 3-4 right before conference play can be troubling. The Mercyhurst men’s basketball team has turned it around and at the perfect time. The trend started with two victories by a total of three points over Slippery Rock and Gannon. The Lakers followed the close wins with a trouncing of Indiana (Pa.) by a score of 71-47. The team currently sits in second place in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) behind IUP. The team has won six out of its last seven games, including five straight. The most recent wins have

come over Edinboro, 76-62, and California (Pa.), 82-78, in overtime. This streak has improved the Lakers‘ overall record to 13-5 and 11-3 in the PSAC. Head Coach Gary Manchel believes defense has been the key to success. “Our defense has been keeping us in games and propelling this win streak,” Manchel said. Senior Bill Weaver feels the finetuning of skills on the court has been successful for the Lakers. “We’ve been playing with intensity for a full 40-minute game, and we’ve been working on turning our weaknesses into our strengths,” Weaver said. Sophomore Matt Lee is leading the team in scoring with 16.4 per game. Lee scored a career-high 29 points against Edinboro. After missing 12 games, forward Luis Leao made his return in the overtime game against Cal.

“He’s rusty; it will take some games to get Luis back into the swing of things,” said Manchel. “He’s one of the best players in the league and we play well when he is on the floor.” Weaver agrees. “Luis brings aggressiveness, intensity, leadership and is a weapon on both ends of the floor. He is another weapon to our arsenal,” Weaver said. Weaver’s three-point play in the final minutes against Cal propelled the Lakers to a victory. Weaver scored 18 points while Lee chipped in 21. With the second round of PSAC West play beginning shortly, the Lakers will have to remain defensive-minded. “Our ability to scout other teams and exploit their respective weaknesses has gained us a competitive advantage in many contests,” Manchel said.

Weaver believes the team’s offensive weapons will set the team apart in the PSAC. “We have scoring depth, and everyone on our team has an important role,” Weaver said. Manchel noted Weaver for being consistent throughout the year at both ends of the floor. Also, transfers Steve Coleman and Terrance Ingram have provided a recent spark off the bench, a role that had been previously filled by freshman Callan Dailey, who is out with a broken bone. Andrew Rickard, with 12.6 points per game, and Jamal Turner, who leads the team in assists with 88 on the year, have been consistent contributors all season. The Lakers return to action Wednesday, Feb. 1, vs. Lock Haven. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. in the Mercyhurst Athletic Center.

Jill Barrile photo

Steve Coleman defends against Kutztown’s Devon McBride. Coleman has played well since transferring from Div. I Ohio University.


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February 1, 2012

Jones overcomes injuries to lead women’s hockey By Spencer Hunt Sports editor

In athletics, there are a number of ways to describe a tough player. They can be either mentally or physically tough. Tough can describe someone who fought through an injury and played hard despite being hurt. Playing injured is something women’s hockey player Jess Jones has had to deal with a lot over the last two seasons. Jones, a senior from Picton, Ontario, has played with her ACL torn in both of her knees. She has been the epitome of tough. She first tore her ACL during the Frozen Four her sophomore year, but she didn’t miss a game. “I just wanted to play, and I still felt I could do my job on the ice,” Jones said. She rehabbed her injury over the summer to get back for her junior season. But in January, she tore her other ACL. Overall, Jones only missed six games despite the severity of her knee injuries. The injuries are the main reason why last season was a

rough year for Jones. Jones began her college career by being named to the College Hockey America (CHA) All-Rookie team and All-Tournament team. She was fourth on the team in goals scored and contributed 34 points overall. She followed up with an outstanding sophomore season. She improved on both her goals and assists totals, scoring a point in 26 of the 36 she played. To this point in her career, she hadn’t missed a game. After finishing her sophomore season with her first injury, Jones took a step back her junior year. Playing in 29 games, Jones posted 26 points in what was a forgettable junior season. “Mentally it was really tough. You think you can do so much more than you actually can,” Jones said. This season, Jones was named an assistant captain and has not missed a game. She has been a steady leader for the No. 5 Lakers. Currently, she is tied for 13th in the nation in points with 38 and averages 1.58 points a game. “This season is going really well, I’ve been getting a lot of opportunities on the ice,” Jones said.

After going through the injuries, Jones did find some positives from her junior year. “The whole experience taught me to play smarter, because I couldn’t do certain things that I used to,” Jones said. Jones and line-mate Kelley Steadman have provided a steady dose of offense for the Lakers this season. “This season is huge for me because I’ve overcome a lot,” Jones said. “I proved to myself that I can play at a high level.” With Jones back at full speed, the Lakers are in position to earn yet another NCAA tournament berth. “We always have high hopes for this team, and this year isn’t any different,” Jones said. “We all work hard and we’ve had our ups and downs, but we will get through it.” Jones and the Lakers will return to the ice Friday, Feb. 3, for a homeand-home series against conference-foe Niagara. Saturday, Feb. 4, will be the 2012 National Girls and Women in Sports Day, with girls grades K12 receiving free admission to the game. There will be pregame festivities starting at 6 p.m. and the game will start at 7 p.m.

Mercyhurst celebrates women in sports By Lindsey Burke Staff writer

At the women’s hockey game on Saturday, Feb. 4, against Niagara, Mercyhurst University will celebrate the 2012 National Girls and Women in Sports Day. Bethany Brun and Lauren Packer-Webster pioneered the event at Mercyhurst. Brun is a Mercyhurst graduate and a former rower who continues to work on campus in the Service Learning Department, and PackerWebster is the associate athletic director. This inaugural celebration on campus will bring recognition to the achievements of girls and women in athletics. Additionally, it will promote college exposure to girls in the community who would

otherwise never visit Mercyhurst or any other college or university in the area. “My hope is by introducing these girls to the role models like our Mercyhurst athletes, one or more young ladies might be inspired to pursue a college education through athletics,” Brun said. More than 100 girls are anticipated to attend. Any girls in grades K-12 will receive free admission to the game. Advertisements and other promotional materials have been sent throughout the Erie School District. The Girl Scouts of Northwest Pa. and other local youth sports programs are expected to attend. Brun attributes the initial idea to a similar event she attended in her youth at the University of Dayton. “I attended the event with my

Girl Scout troop and tried out a number of sports, including rowing on an erg in a 100-meter piece,” said Brun. “I then participated in a rowing camp, rowed through high school and received a scholarship to Mercyhurst. One hundred meters was all it took to change my life.” Events will include postermaking, interaction with female student-athletes, free food, getting photographed in a Laker jersey, promotions and give-aways during the game, and one girl will get to perform the ceremonial puck drop at the beginning of the game. The game is set for 7 p.m. in the Mercyhurst Ice Center. If you would like to register a female child or have any questions, log on to and click on the special events tab or call (814) 824-3101 for more information.

Jill Barrile photo

Senior Jess Jones is having her best statistical season, despite playing on two repaired ACLs.

The Merciad, Feb. 1, 2012  

Digital version of The Merciad, Feb. 1, 2012