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Volume 89, Issue X

Thursday, December 1, 2016





New Yorkers Discuss Legalization of Recreational Marijuana in Massachusetts



• New EPA Head Causes Local Concern...........Pg 5 • Campus Fraternities Discuss Albany Hazing....Pg 6 • Campus Hosts Diversity Inclusion Program...Pg 7 • SUNY New Paltz Hosts Future Summit.............Pg 7

Kristen Warfield EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Jack O’Brien




Melanie Zerah NEWS EDITOR


Sam Manzella


Melissa Kramer SPORTS EDITOR


Holly Lipka Jeannette LaPointe Matt Nash PHOTOGRAPHY EDITORS

Luke Benicase CARTOONIST


Michael Rosen Jackson Shrout Jess Napp Erica Ascher Briana Bonfiglio Anthony Orza Meg Tohill Rachael Purtell COPY EDITORS


Jackie Quaranto WEB CHIEF


Mario Prainito

DISTRIBUTION MANAGER _________________

Jake Berkowitz Matt Apuzzo Otto Kratky


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About The New Paltz Oracle


The New Paltz Oracle is the official student newspaper of SUNY New Paltz. Our circulation is 2,500. The New Paltz Oracle is sponsored by the Student Association and partially funded by the student activity fee. The New Paltz Oracle is located in the Student Union (SU) Room 417. Deadline for all submissions is 5 p.m. on Sundays in The New Paltz Oracle office and by email at oracle@hawkmail. All advertisements must be turned in by 5 p.m. on Fridays, unless otherwise specified by the business manager. Community announcements are published gratuitously, but are subject to restriction due to space limitations.There is no guarantee of publication. Contents of this paper cannot be reproduced without the written permission of the Editor-in-Chief. The New Paltz Oracle is published weekly throughout the fall and spring semesters on Thursdays. It is available in all residence halls and academic buildings, in the New Paltz community and online at For more information, call 845-257-3030. The fax line is 845-257-3031.

Volume 89 Issue X Index NEWS ------------------








Rachael Purtell Amanda Copkov



The New Paltz Oracle

Date: 11/30/16 Location: Bouton Hall Incident: Odor of marijuana emanating from location. Call unfounded. Date: 11/29/16 Location: Gage Hall Incident: Possible odor of marijuana. Call unfounded. SUNY New Paltz University Police Department Emergencies: 845-257-2222


Five-Day Forecast Thursday, December 1 Sunny High: 52 Low: 32

Friday, December 2 Partly Cloudy High: 49 Low: 33

Saturday, December 3 Partly Cloudy High: 44 Low: 28

Sunday, December 4 Sunny High: 44 Low: 28



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University Police Blotter




Disclaimer: This is only a partial listing. For all incidents, please visit the University Police Department.



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Monday, December 5 Rainy High: 43 Low: 27

The New Paltz Oracle



Massachusetts Legalizes Recreational Marijuana By Jack O’Brien

Managing Editor |

Recent ballot initiatives in several states have legalized the medicinal and recreational use of marijuana, intriguing many in New York about the state’s future. On Nov. 8, voters in Massachusetts approved of a ballot initiative to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, with 53 percent supporting the measure. The law has yet to take effect, but by 2018, the Bay State will join seven other states in legalizing marijuana for recreational use. Massachusetts is now the first state bordering New York to legalize marijuana for recreational use, prompting some to speculate if the Empire State might be next. Jack Closs, a fourth-year computer science major, is the president of the New Paltz Students for Sensible Drug Policy, (SSDP), an organization which advocated for legalization efforts in Massachusetts and several other states. Through phone-banking efforts in the weeks and months leading to the election, Closs said that SSDP spoke to voters in all of the states with ballot initiatives concerning

marijuana, including Massachusetts, Florida and California. Closs said that legalization efforts are happening slowly but steadily nationwide depending on the political culture of certain states. Though Closs acknowledged that New York State lacks a ballot initiative, which allows for citizens to petition for a public vote on a proposed statute or amendment, he said that the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) has aimed for statewide legalization in 2019. That would require lobbying state legislators and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, which Closs said would be a challenging task. “It could fail, but regardless it would be a big deal,” Closs said. “The legalization efforts look positive in the northeast, where we could see states like Vermont and New Hampshire potentially following after both Maine and Massachusetts. And then if New York legalized recreational use, it could affect many other states.” Closs said that part of persuading skeptical voters was to reinforce marijuana’s use as a medicine. Currently, New York has only legalized marijuana for medicinal use.

“It’s very important to remove the stigma surrounding marijuana, which has stemmed from the days of Reefer Madness, Closs said. “I think people have also started doing their own research and now view marijuana as a powerful medicine.” Closs admitted that the President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for Attorney General, Sen. Jeff Sessions, would be a “challenge” for legalization activists. In April, Sessions said, “This drug is dangerous, you cannot play with it, it is not funny, it’s not something to laugh about . . . and [it’s important] to send that message with clarity that good people don’t

smoke marijuana.” “[Sessions] is a huge hurdle but our goal is to bring more people into the conversation. It’s really inspiring for SSDP,” Closs said. In regards to whether or not people would cross the border to buy marijuana in Massachusetts and then return to New York, Closs said it is a possibility due to proximity. Meanwhile, Closs said that SSDP would continue to advocate for legalization efforts in New York State as well as addressing SUNY New Paltz’s two-strike marijuana policy on campus.


Hate Crimes and Protests Spike Nationwide By Rachael Purtell

Copy Editor |

The 2016 presidential election inspired strong opposing opinions and the result has elicited both powerful and violent responses. For many, Trump’s victory is something they simply refuse to accept; for others, it has turned fears of increased bigotry and hate crime into a reality. On Friday, Nov. 11 “Not My President” chants rang from coast to coast as tens of thousands filled the streets of at least 25 cities overnight with demonstrations outside of Trump’s properties. Although most of the protestors were peaceful, dozens were arrested, at least three police officers were wounded and about 40 fires were started in one California city. Conversely, the Southern Poverty Law Center counted 867 cases of “hateful harassment or intimidation” across the nation, according to CNN. Additionally, CNN is updating a page daily with such incidents called “Make America White Again:” Hate speech and crimes post-election. Five mosques in California have received letters calling Muslims “a vile and filthy people” and advocating genocide from a group calling themselves “Americans for a Better Way.” In Durham, North Carolina, someone spray paint-

ed the message, “Black lives don’t matter and neither does your votes” on a wall. On the other side of the country, playground equipment was vandalized with swastikas and the words “Go Trump” in Adam Yauch Park in Brooklyn, New York. These are just a few examples in the wave of hateful messages rippling across the country. Trump supporters are not the only ones perpetuating the violence; many have reported violence against them. A young Trump supporter was beaten by students during a protest in Rockville, Maryland. In Chicago, a man was struck by another vehicle and when he emerged to exchange insurance information he was attacked and onlookers yelled, “you voted Trump!” His car was also stolen and police are currently investigating. At Baylor University however, 300 students escorted a victim to her class. A week prior, a woman was shoved off the sidewalk by a man who told her, “No [racial epithet] on the sidewalk.” The students rallied behind her in order to make sure she felt safe leaving class. There has also been backlash on our own campus. Between peaceful gatherings such as the vigil held on Friday, Nov. 11 and the walkout for solidarity against Trump and the hate

graffiti found in the bathroom in Bouton Hall, it is clear that many students are compelled to respond to controversial political occurrences. New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) project coordinator Eric Wood believes the racial signage may have been as much of an inspiration for the rally as Trump’s actual election. “It seemed to be a couple of things, people were upset for the signage I saw, the fact that Trump was elected, but also from some racial signage that was found on campus and along with the racial signage was pro-Trump signage,” he said. “So I’m not sure if it’s Trump’s election that the protest was or that type of behavior with the signage.” NYPIRG has been around since 1973 and are now the state’s largest student-driven, nonpartisan, political advocacy group. NYPIRG aims to advocate, not only for students, but for the public in New York in general and peaceful protest is one their strongly used tactics. “I think it’s a great idea for students to express their concerns,” Wood said. “Otherwise some day they might not be able to, we don’t want our first amendment rights taken away.” Second-year theatre major Meghan Tobias participated in the rally and is satisfied with the

Thursday, December 1, 2016

message it sent. “I felt like it sent a message that even though he has won, he really hasn’t won until we’ve given up and we haven’t given up,” she said. However, political science department chair Jeff Miller believes the protests are too little, too late. “We have a president and barring some sort of miracle in recounts we’re going to have Trump as a president for at least four years,” he said. “I think the time for protesting that is over, not to say that you should be politically disengaged, but there are more effective ways of channeling that anxiety, anger or even hope if you’re on the Trump side of things, than going out and protesting.” Miller added that he would encourage students, and Americans in general, to go out and vote next time and to get involved with local elections. “A march through downtown New Paltz isn’t going to have too much of an effect on New Paltz politics,” he said. “Given limited time and limited resources, limited energy, you need to focus those things on where they’re going to have the most effect.”




The New Paltz Oracle

Proposed Building Sparks Controversy

COLOMBIA’S CONGRESS RATIFIES PEACE ACCORD WITH REBELS After five decades of war, more than four years of negotiations and two signing ceremonies, Colombia’s congress late Wednesday formally ratified a peace agreement allowing leftist rebels to enter politics. The 310-page revised accord was approved unanimously by the lower house, which voted a day after the Senate approved the same text 75-0 following a protest walkout by the opposition led by former President Alvaro Uribe. The accord introduces some 50 changes intended to assuage critics who led a campaign that saw Colombians narrowly reject the original accord in a referendum last month. PILOT TOLD COLOMBIA CONTROLLERS ‘NO FUEL’ BEFORE CRASH The pilot of the chartered plane carrying a Brazilian soccer team told air traffic controllers he had run out of fuel and desperately pleaded for permission to land before crashing into the Andes, according to a leaked recording of the final minutes of the doomed flight. In the sometimes chaotic exchange with the air traffic tower, the pilot of the British-built jet requests permission to land because of “fuel problems” without making a formal distress call. A female controller explained another plane that had been diverted with mechanical problems was already approaching the runway and had priority, instructing the pilot to wait seven minutes. CANADIAN POLICE FORCE THREATENS NICKLEBACKON DRUNK DIVERS A police department in Canada’s province of Prince Edward Island is threatening to impose “the Nickelback treatment” on anyone who drinks and drives. The Kensington Police Service shared a social media post over the weekend promising to force any drunk drivers it arrests to listen to the Canadian band while in the back seat of a cruiser. The band has been a huge commercial success, with multiple awards in Canada, but is also gleefully maligned by some detractors. Constable Robb Hartlen says on Facebook that if you are foolish enough to get behind a wheel while drinking, then a little Chad Kroeger and the boys is a perfect gift. Compiled from the AP Newswire

PHOTO COURTESY OF ZEROPLACE.COM Pictured above is a rendering of how the proposed Zero Place building would look.

By Amanda Copkov

Features Editor |

Zero Place, a proposed mixed-use, netzero energy usage building has faced scrutiny from neighbors in the Village of New Paltz. The building is to be located on the corner of Mulberry St. and North Chestnut St. within the Neighborhood Business Residential (NBR) zoning district of New Paltz. Residents of New Paltz, particularly those living or working in the historic district and surrounding streets such as Henry W. Dubois Drive, have raised concerns about this potential new project, Village Planning Board Chairman Michael Zierler said. The Zero Place project, according to Zierler, has been a topic of discussion at every Planning Board meeting since the application’s inception in early 2016, and is continuing along in the reviewing stages. Under State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR), the Planning Board must evaluate the project in terms of its environmental impact on the community, including its visual and architectural impact, its effects on waterways, its consistency with community character and its impacts on transporta-

tion, traffic and parking. “Our focus is on the size and scale of the building and its architectural style, all from previous zoning in the NBR,” Zierler said. Zero Place developer and founder David Shepler said that he is in the process of addressing and mitigating community concerns. Thus far, he has dropped the height of the building, redesigned the appearance so that it incorporates more design elements like that of those in the region and added more of a streetscape including more space for trees, benches and on-site foliage. “So far 100 community members have signed to support the project,” he said. “People want to see it as it is, but there are concerns regarding a building of this size [in the district].” Under NBR zoning laws, a building cannot be more than four stories or more than 50-feet high. After some review, Shepler adjusted the height of his proposed building to meet these laws. As a mixed-use building, Zero Place will consist of first-floor retail while the top three levels will be strictly residential with 24 one-bedroom apartments and 24 two-bedroom apartments.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Zieler said the goals of the NBR district are to create a new neighborhood built around mixed-use, which will encourage fewer automobile trips and create a streetscape that is on a human scale. “The NBR district is an area that has been designated as suitable for growth within the Village, providing new housing options and new commercial opportunities,” he said. He said the Planning Board is still waiting on more information about transportation, traffic, parking and visual, aesthetic and community character impacts of the project in relation to the Rail Trail and Historic Huguenot Street. The next village planning board vote for the Zero Place project is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 20, where they will finalize the scoping document to determine whether the project will have a negative or positive declaration within the community. This is the final stage of the SEQR process, and will determine whether Shepler must mitigate or eliminate other environmental impacts or concerns in the community before continuing onto site plan review.

The New Paltz Oracle


New EPA Head Raises Climate Change Concerns



Presidential Update What’s Next Under the Trump Adminstration?

PHOTO COURTESY OF WIKIPEDIA According to the International Buisness Times, Ebell has a lengthy record of arguing to get rid of enviromental regulations intended to protect wildlife.

By Meg Tohill

Copy Editor |

With the results of the recent presidential election, people all over have questioned the future of this country. More specifically, an overarching concern lies in the inability to predict the United State’s participation to combat climate change. Myron Ebell, renowned climate change contrarian, has been chosen as the head of President-elect Donald Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) transition, according to E&E Publishing. Ebell’s organization is financed in part by the coal industry, motivating his dismantling of the Clean Power Plan. The Clean Power Plan, as established by The New York Times, has been facilitated by President Barack Obama and the Obama administration and is a set of regulations set in order to reduce the amount of carbon emissions nationwide by closing a large number of coal-burning power plants. Ebell’s vow to take down the act would assure the security of his organization’s financial backing. Associate Professor of Political Science and International Relations Daniel Lipson voiced his concern regarding the outcome of the election due to the fact that Trump is a climate-change denier. “He has made comments suggesting climate change is a hoax promoted by China, any appointment made by him regarding the environment will be a hostile move towards climate change,” Lipson said. “During the election, climate change wasn’t a big issue

that was stressed but considering it is the number one civilization crisis, it should have been,” Lipson said. Lipson explains that although there is a budding group of dubious scientists producing bunk science, the legitimate scientific community is unified by knowing the basics of climate change. According to The Huffington Post, 97 percent of scientists agree that climate change is very real. This is followed by the observation that natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy and the Ellicot City floods are now taking place every other year rather than every few hundred years and sea levels continue to rise. Ebell currently directs the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute and has in the past accepted donations from companies such as Exxon Mobil and Murray Energy as established by The Huffington Post. Recently published by The New York Times was the reaction of Ebell himself to being portrayed as a “climate criminal.” While Ebell accepts the depiction with humor, stating that he’s gotten used to it over the years, Lipson argues that although he can’t say much about the character of Ebell, he would willingly point fingers at Exxon Mobil for heinous crimes against the environment. “The company hired their own experts to investigate the consequences of burning fossil fuels and even after being made aware that it would wreak havoc, they suppressed the evidence for their own gain,” Lipson explained. For individuals interested in getting in-

volved in opposing Ebell’s potential reversal of the environmental movement, Lipson encourages people to pressure Republican senators to peel off in the hope of the defecting Ebell’s leading of the transition. Lipson says, “it’s time to play defense and engage in far more aggressive tactics to take the senate and the house. The only silver lining I can see in the next two years within a unified government is the possible economic contraction which would ultimately lead to lower emissions.” Fourth year contract major in environmental studies Billie Golannotes that when people like Trump and Ebell are appointed to such positions they are given opportunity to grant their like minded friends equal power. “They see environmental progress as slowing down the economy so they believe in increasing coal and nuclear energy use,” Golan said. “They think the UN climate plans are scams because they feel it’s an attack on economy, but little do they know the economy they are trying to protect will be underwater before they have much needed revelations.” Golan, the president of Students for Sustainable Agriculture, an active member of the Environmental Task Force and Sustainability Committee and campus Farmers Market Manager, believes that the appointment of Ebell will make the fight toward prioritizing sustainable agriculture even more difficult. Lipson said he wants to remind people to not be discouraged regarding the newly appointed head of the EPA transition. “Although this is a dangerous setback, it is only temporary,” Lipson said.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

TRUMP’S CABINET: ‘DRAINING THE SWAMP’ OR DIVING RIGHT IN? Donald Trump promised to “drain the swamp” in the nation’s capital. Instead, he’s diving right in. So far, the president-elect is tapping people with deep ties to Washington and Wall Street as he fills out his Cabinet, turning to two power centers he vilified as greedy, corrupt and out of touch with Americans during his White House campaign. His choices have won praise from Republicans relieved by his more conventional choices, but could risk angering voters who rallied behind his calls for upending the political system. TRUMP SAYS HE’S LEAVING BUSINESSES TO AVOID CONFLICTS President-elect Donald Trump declared Wednesday he will leave his business empire behind to focus on his presidency. But the prospect that he could simply shift more control to three of his adult children looked too cozy to some business-ethics specialists who suggest the arrangement could bring unprecedented conflicts of interest into the Oval Office. CONFLICT RULES HARDLY THE SAME FOR PRESIDENT, OTHERS Rep. David McKinley has sold his West Virginia engineering and architecture firm, but it still bears his name and that earned the Republican congressman a rebuke from the House Ethics Committee. President-elect Donald Trump has built an international property management, real estate and branding business around his name. There appears to be no consequence for that. AS TRUMP CLAIMS TO HAVE SAVED CARRIER JOBS, DETAILS ARE HAZY In persuading Carrier to keep hundreds of jobs in Indiana, President-elect Donald Trump is claiming victory on behalf of factory workers whose positions were bound for Mexico. Compiled from the AP Newswire



The New Paltz Oracle

Sorority Members in Albany Face Hazing Charges By Rachael Purtell

Copy Editor |

went through it too,” Evans said. Arrested were Jessica Raynor, 21; Nicole Johnson, 21; Chinazo Ezekwem, 21; Tereyza Martin, 20; Katrina Bergvoy, 19; Heaven Guanco, 19; and Monica Vitagliano, all were arraigned in City Court on charges of first-degree hazing, a misdemeanor that carries up to a year in jail upon conviction. New Paltz Town Police Lieutenant Robert Lucchesi said that he is not aware of any recent cases involving hazing or anything like what is described above in regards to Greek life here at SUNY New Paltz. “We’ve had noise complaints with sororities, fraternities, sports teams…” he said. “We’ve had assaults and things like that and fights between different fraternities but nothing like what’s described in that article.” Lucchesi said that most recent assault case that he recalls occurred in the spring and is not aware of any that have occurred this semester thus far. Fourth-year biochemistry major and member of SUNY New Paltz sorority Pi Phi Delta Alexa Criollo said that her orga-

nization does not support hazing practices. “It defeats the purpose of the sisterhood that you’re joining and it sets a bad reputation for organizations that do stick to the purpose,” she said. “I personally don’t see the purpose for that and I know I can speak for my whole organization when I say we don’t see the purpose of doing that kind of evil and putting people through that much discomfort.” Psychology department chair Glenn Geher said that he does not believe any one of the girls from Albany would have committed these acts on their own and that humans that are part of a group become “deindividuated” and are more likely to engage in anti-social behaviors. “Research on the social psychology of evil [by scholars such as Phil Zimbardo] have shown that evil is not really a characteristic of certain individuals – rather, evil seems to be a feature of behavior that can be released in any one of us – the releasers come about via characteristics of situations,” he said. “And situations that downplay the identities of individuals are well-known for facilitating horrific behavior out of otherwise normal people.”

Criollo added that the purpose of pledging is to get to know your pledging sisters and the women you are entering sisterhood with as well as to educate about the history and philanthropy of the organization. “Initially you come around because you get along with the girls generally, but you should come out of the pledging process really knowing about our organization,” she said. Third-year digital media production major Benjamin Schoenfeld, Public Relations Chair for the Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity at SUNY New Paltz said that his organization does not haze and has a strict policy against it from their international headquarters. “Our rituals are used to teach our new members what the meaning of brotherhood and being a part of Alpha Epsilon Pi is about,” he said. “We want our new members to be proud of the letters they are wearing.” The Pi Alpha Nu Fraternity declined to be interviewed and the Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity and the Kappa Delta Phi Sorority did not respond to requests to be interviewed.

Seven students at the University of Albany have been charged with hazing sorority pledges. On Thursday, Nov. 10 the students were arrested after allegedly blindfolding recruits, making them eat mud and dousing them in a mixture of rotten eggs and milk and a liquid that smelled like urine. The organization in question was Alpha Omicron Pi, practicing at the University of Albany since 1897, according to their Facebook page. One of the pledges was sent to Albany Medical Center Hospital where she was treated and released after an allergic reaction in which she experienced a shortness of breath, redness to her face, chest burning and swelling to the eyes, according to the Albany Police Department. City police responded to a noise complaint at 468 Hamilton Street where they found four victims in the basement being subjected to what appeared to be initiation rituals for the sorority. Psychology lecturer at SUNY New Paltz Dr. Clifford Evans said that all groups are governed by social norms, and selective, exclusive organizations such as sororities are going to have rules for conduct based on who can and cannot be part of the group. He added that if a group prides itself on its selectiveness, then those norms will be even stricter and under those norms it may be acceptable to subject potential members to harsh or even abusive conditions. “This is even more likely when the current members of the group were themselves subjected to this treatment before they could be admitted — they had to go through it, so these new people have to go through it too,” he said. “A lot of hazing rituals are passed down from year to year as tradition.” Evans said that these behaviors are also reinforced by the phenomenon of conformity and unwillingness to go against a group in order to fit in and avoid being ostracized. Additionally, people tend to gage the severity of their actions based on the behavior of others around them and what is considered normal in the given group. “Part of how we judge the situations we find ourselves in is by how the other people in it are acting, and if everyone else PHOTO COURTESY OF WIKIPEDIA seems fine with it, it becomes easier for us to be fine with it, especially if we ourselves According to the University at Albany website, the college is home to 38 diverse fraternities and sororities and 600 students that make up their fraternity and sorority community.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

The New Paltz Oracle



Steven Jones Talks Diversity Strategy

By Jackson Shrout

Copy Editor |

On Wednesday, Nov. 30, SUNY New Paltz’s Office of Compliance and Campus Climate held a lecture hosted by organizational psychologist Dr. Steven Jones, Ph.D., CEO of Jones & Associates Consulting, on the strategic implementation of the school’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan. The lecture was held in Lecture Center room 100 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and focused on the manners in which unconscious bias can affect people’s behavior in the world. Unconscious biases, Jones argued, are unavoidable and, under certain conditions—what Jones referred to as the “S.T.U.F.F. of Biased Thinking”—manifest themselves on the surface. These conditions, the acronym for which stands for “Stress, Time Constraints, Uncertainty,

Fear, and Fatigue,” are more likely to cause below-the-surface bias to bubble up. “People think that just because we have elected an African-American president, for not one but two terms, we have moved beyond conscious bias, so much so that this whole field of unconscious bias emerged,” Jones said. “And now, this last election, if anyone was still wondering whether we’re in a post-racial society, I think that question is pretty clear.” Jones built his argument on a dichotomy of “cultural quicksand” versus “inclusive excellence.” Cultural quicksand is an environment marked by an aversion to conflict and a lack of proper feedback towards opposing viewpoints, whereas inclusive excellence hinges on collaboration and communication. “[Inclusive excellence] is the alternative to [cultural quicksand], and it’s really

about healthy dialogue, collaboration, clear expectations, increasing inclusive leadership skills, and [those are] some of the best practices that will create a campus culture where the DNI strategy can thrive and have the impact we desire,” Jones said. Jones also referenced the “dance floor and balcony” theory of leadership by Harvard University’s Dr. Ronald Heifetz. The dance floor, Heifetz posited, is where change is affected and problems are solved. The balcony is where the person in question looks down at the larger patterns of their life and gains perspective. Ultimately, however, one needs to return to the dance floor for any change to occur. Jones finished the lecture by discussing the four lanes through which people can discuss the presidential election: discussion of the political process, discussion of behaviors that demonstrate bigotry (and

how they might contribute to what Jones referred to as “isms”—racism, sexism, etc.), discussion of institutionalized oppression (the “isms” themselves), and discussion of proper institutionalized education, accountability and leadership. Above all, Jones stressed digging below the surface to understand alternate viewpoints, which he related to icebergs floating in the ocean. “About 90 percent [of the iceberg is] below [the water], 10 percent above,” Jones said. “If two icebergs are going to collide, which parts are going to hit first? So when we do this work, it’s going to be important that we not stay at the surface level when talking about understanding differences and similarities. It’s important to have conversations about understanding one another below the water lines.”

superintendent of the Poughkeepsie School District Dr. Nicolé Williams. Program director for special events and HVFS coordinator Lisa Sandick said that the event came to fruition through the vision of President Christian. Hoping this event becomes annual, she said it is a good way to showcase our campus and all of the incredible innovation that happens here as well as in our region. “The Hudson Valley is such a hub of so many different things,” she said. “There are so many innovators doing so many cool, amazing things. We’re not New York City, but we have a great future ahead of us because we have a lot of wonderful, talented people in this area.” Jonathan Butler, co-founder of Brooklyn’s famous Smorgasburg, attended the HVFS, as Smorgasburg Upstate recently launched in Kingston this past August. Smorgasburg is a “spin-off” of Brooklyn Flea, also co-founded by Butler. Smorgasburg Upstate “features some of the Hudson Valley and upstate region’s most exciting chefs, food purveyors, and craft brewers alongside a curated selection of handmade design, vintage clothing and antiques,” according to their website, and also showcases some of the Brooklyn location’s favorite vendors and hosts activities for families and children. “Our business is nothing without great local vendors,” he said. “We are 100 percent

dependent on a thriving creative class.” He said that in recent years, the Hudson Valley has really put itself on the map in terms of food, beer and cider, a growing industry throughout the region. This aided Butler in the expansion of his business and the creation of Smorgasburg Upstate. “We saw an opportunity to try to create a platform to aggregate a lot of this activity into one central location, where people could experience it all at once,” he said. Associate professor of marketing Russell Zwanka agreed with Butler, citing the blooming of the food and beverage industry in the region and its diversity. “There is so much energy around the Hudson Valley,” he said. “We have MakerBot technology, we have a couple new pharmaceutical companies moving in and then we have this massive amount of cider, jelly, wine

and craft beers, and all of it just seems to be working here.” He attended the HVFS and moderated a four-person panel during the “Jumping Hurdles: From Idea to Reality” segment of the event. The focus of the panel, according to Zwanka, was innovation, entrepreneurship, where and how to accumulate funds and how to take unique ideas and bring them to life. The Hudson Valley’s proximity to New York City gives the region an advantage, Zwanka said, as the metropolis gives us access to plenty of ideas, innovation and creativity. “Our proximity to New York City allows us to be on the cutting edge of everything trendy and innovative,” he said. “But we’re not in New York City, so we’re allowed to have some regional values that might be a little more grounded and down-to-earth.”

Regional Success Showcased at SUNY New Paltz By Amanda Copkov

Features Editor |

The Hudson Valley has been thriving in recent years, and its future is looking even brighter. That’s why on Friday, Nov. 18, SUNY New Paltz hosted its inaugural Hudson Valley Future Summit (HVFS) on campus, highlighting the region’s growing success in the arts, cuisine, engineering, agriculture, advanced manufacturing and education. According to the event page, “The Valley has become a model for the pursuit of new ideas and inventive projects amid a spirit of neighborly collaboration and beautiful natural surroundings.” The event introduced over 50 speakers living and working in the Hudson Valley, including Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley, New Yorker writer and cartoonist Liza Donnelly and actress Geraldine Hughes, among many others. The HVFS also featured several SUNY New Paltz alumni including educator at the Windows on the World Wine School Kevin Zraly ‘74, assistant director of the Hudson Valley Advanced Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz Katherine Wilson ‘14 and founder and creative director of MINE Luxury Nail Lacquer Veleta Vancza ‘00. Keynote speakers at the event included SUNY New Paltz President Donald P. Christian, author and entrepreneur Seth Godin and

Thursday, December 1, 2016



8 To the editor: I read with appreciation the Nov. 17 article, “Faculty Panel Discusses Haidt Lecture,” which provided an account of the panel and audience discussion (of Nov. 14) of the previous month’s lecture by Professor Jonathan Haidt. As a member of the panel, I must clarify my position. The article states that I “disagreed with Haidt’s assertion that there had to be a schism between” a university devoted to truth and one devoted to social justice. In fact, on the crucial issue of Haidt’s argument I do not disagree at all. In my opening remarks at the panel discussion — remarks intended to frame the issues as much as anything else — I suggested one way in which a university could be a truth university and a social justice university: this could occur when the university upholds a sharp distinction between social justice functions (e.g. scholarships, aid, inclusion) and the academic or intellectual criteria employed by the university in its classes, appointments and intellectual culture. However, as I also tried to point out, Professor Haidt’s crucial point is this: A university must decide whether its standard of intellectual achievement, whether in scholarship or in learning in the classroom, will be truth or some political goal such as social justice. With this I agree wholeheartedly. Against those who contend that Haidt set up some “false dichotomy” between truth and social justice I reiterate that his real focus is the criteria (and the conditions) for intel-

lectual achievement: As scholars, teachers and students are we to pursue learning and truth or are we to pursue politics? Of course, scholars, teachers, or students may, on their own time, entertain or pursue the ends of social justice, libertarianism, social democracy, conservatism, sustainability or any other project or goal. But in the assessment and sifting of evidence, in the determination of what ideas merit a hearing or what should be read and discussed, one must not let one’s political views set the standard. In fact, and as Haidt argued, a university should encourage and welcome intellectual diversity and not rest satisfied with a faculty or culture that embraces but one outlook, year in and year out. To the extent that a university, in its faculty and culture, upholds a uniformity of opinion and regards some legitimate political, social and religious views as benighted or worthy only of smug criticism or outright dismissal, then so is that university inhospitable to intellectual diversity and to genuine learning. And if one still thinks that “social justice and truth can work together,” then ask yourself this question: How does one know that social justice and truth can (or should) work together unless one has some criterion of truth that is distinct from social justice? Professor Eugene Heath SUNY New Paltz

To the editor: As the rays of the morning sun penetrated trees in my yard and those on its perimeter, the warmth of the sun began melting the thin layer of frost on the leaves deposited by a cool front that settled in during the late hours of the night. What was striking about the meltdown was the apparent manner in which the water fell from the trees, especially the one a few yards from the house adorn with a birdfeeder. The apparent manner was that of tear drops that resolutely and synchronically fell down among an assortment of birds as they fed, and whose clatter sounded like that of a morning wail, as for the loss of a loved one. Yes! The trees wept in my backyard. As the sun continued its ascent above the yard, the drops from the meltdown of morning dew grew more profusely as if the loss of a love one racked the heart so grievously that nothing else matter but to see, touch, converse, embrace and feel the warmth once again of the loss loved one. Yes! The trees wept in my backyard. As the drops increased as from a passing rain shower, and the mournful clatter of the birds reverberated from the feeder tree to the house, the ongoing ascent of the sun brighten and casted long shadows across the yard, as that of the many who died senseless deaths in the madness of violence humans perpetrate against themselves. Yes! The trees wept in my backyard. Yes, they wept in my backyard. They wept tears for little five-year-old Omran Daqneesh, pulled alive, but bloodied, from the ruins of a building in Aleppo, Syria. We saw the horror of that madness of violence in his little stalwart, scared face staring out at us if as to say “what have we Syrians done to deserve this?” Equally

The New Paltz Oracle as well, the even younger Alan Kurdi whose drown body washed ashore on a Turkish beach, his shadow from the backyard of my house cries out “We simply sought a safer, welcoming and caring place among out fellow humans...nothing else.” And if we look here at home in the US of A, again, among the shadows across my backyard, as the warmth of the sun began to dissipate the tear drops of the meltdown, was that of Amadou Diallo, Eric Garner, Alton B. Sterling, Philando Castile, just a few among the overwhelming many, including females. Yes! The trees wept in my backyard. They wept for me, you, those who commit such madness of violence, all of us. It is time to wipe away the tears, come together to begin a process of deconstruction of the roots of this madness, so that together we can build that “safer, caring and welcoming” place for our future leaders - among whom might have been little Alan Kurdi, but definitely those like Omran Daqneesh. Yes! The trees wept in my backyard. Professor Emeritus A. J. Williams-Myers SUNY New Paltz The views expressed in letters and student voices are solely those of the person who wrote and submitted it. They do not necessarily reflect those of The New Paltz Oracle, its staff members, the campus and university or the Town or Village of New Paltz.

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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Arts and crafts... Story on page 8B



The New Paltz Oracle



For many Americans, the June 2015 Supreme Court ruling that upheld fundamental right to marry for same-sex couples nationwide was the end of the fight for LGBTQIA+ rights. Unfortunately, members of the LGBTQIA+ community know that this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Transgender individuals, or people whose gender identity doesn’t align with the gender they were assigned at birth, often face particularly stringent examples of prejudice, discrimination and even outright violence. So far in 2016, at least 21 transgender people have been shot, stabbed or fatally injured in some way, according to the Human Rights Campaign’s website. That’s where the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) comes in. First conceptualized in 1998, TDOR aims to remember and honor the lives of transgender individuals who have lost their lives to hate-targeted violence or died by suicide throughout the course of a calendar year. On Sunday, Nov. 20, students from SUNY New Paltz’s TRANSaction club worked to bring a TDOR memorial ceremony to campus in SUB 62/63. The ceremony opened with a keynote speech by second-year sociology major and TRANSaction club president James Baptiste. A trans person himself, Baptiste related the importance and gravity of TDOR to his own process of coming out and staying true to himself. Baptiste’s speech transitioned into a candlelit vigil for the transgender people whose lives were lost in 2016. Dimming the lights, Baptiste and third-year Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies and sociology double major Raine Nel led the vigil, reading aloud the names of some transgender people whose lives were lost. Both club members then passed the torch to other campus community members, each of whom read more names of the deceased to the crowd. After the reading, Nel called for a moment of silence for those who had passed, ushering the candlelit space into an air of gravity and mourning. The opportunity for education wasn’t

lost on members of TRANSaction: second-year international relations major Catherine “Cat” Keefe-Harris prepared an informative PowerPoint presentation for attendees, which they played after a brief intermission. The slideshow featured powerful cartoons, artworks and prose by transgender artists and creators, which Keefe-Harris compiled with the audience in mind. Nel and Keefe-Harris also shared slam poems by themselves and some of their favorite LGBTQIA+ poets. According to Nel and Baptiste, the entire event took between four to six weeks to plan and execute. As the vice president of SUNY New Paltz’s chapter of TRANSaction, Nel spearheaded their plan to have a TDOR ceremony. “My main goal with this event was originally just to have it because I know we had one last year, and I knew the person who organized it probably wasn’t going to do it this year,” Nel said. “As time went on, I realized I really wanted people to get out of [the event] that we’re remembering our dead, which is really unfortunate and heartbreaking, but that there are so many other trans people out there who are alive and whose lives we should be celebrating.” TRANSaction’s TDOR memorial ceremony was the club’s main event for the Fall 2016 semester, Baptiste said. Campus community members can look forward to a series of panels and lectures about transgender issues co-sponsored by TRANSaction in the Spring 2017 semester. Baptiste hopes to schedule the event around Pride Week, an annual celebration of LGBTQIA+ pride across the country. “Everyone can look forward to that next April,” he said. In terms of advice for people who want to be allies to the transgender community, Nel offered their perspective. “‘Ally’ isn’t just any identity that people can put on and wear when they feel like it,” Nel explained. “Being an ally is really about action. If you’re going to call yourself an ally to the trans community, really try to show that in whatever way you can.”

#KeepTalking is a hashtag encouraging people to continue talking about transgender issues to bring them to the public eye.

PHOTOS BY JEANNETTE LAPOINTE Students write positive affirmations to spread love and hope to the transgender community. This display was featured in the Student Union Building.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

The New Paltz Oracle



A “Trich”-y Situation


It’s a life-altering condition, and it affects approximately one or two in every 50 people at some point in their lifetime. So why isn’t anybody talking about trichotillomania? SUNY New Paltz’s Media and Journalism Society screened “Trichster,” a documentary about trichotillomania and other body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs), on Tuesday, Nov. 15 in Lecture Center 102. Though the turnout was small, audience members were riveted by the diverse range of characters featured in the film, all of whom suffer from trichotillomania and manage the behavioral disorder in different ways. According to the Trichotillomania Learning Center (TLC), trichotillomania is a behavioral disorder in which trichsters, or people who suffer from trichotillomania, pull their hair out, resulting in

damage to the body. Though it usually appears in childhood or early adolescence, trichotillomania is often a chronic condition that may come and go throughout a trichster’s lifetime. There is no established cure for trichotillomania, although many trichsters use anti-anxiety medications or cognitive behavioral therapy to cope with the condition, TLC reported. Directed and produced by Jillian Corsie, “Trichster” follows the lives of seven different trichsters. The majority of the film focuses on the lives of three trichsters: Valerie Vanone, an abstract artist based out of New York City; Sophie Ehrman, a photography student at the School of Visual Arts in New York City; and Rebecca Brown, a British film student who runs a popular YouTube channel about her struggles with trichotillomania. Under Corsie’s skillful direction, viewers get a revealing glimpse into

what it’s like to struggle with a BFRB. Each of the three main narratives illuminate the day-to-day struggles of trichsters in different phases of their battles with trichotillomania. While Ehrman and Brown are very much involved in coping with and treating their BFRBs, Vanone is depicted in a sort of recovery phase, letting her hair repair itself and grow in after countless years of damage. Interspersed with poignant video clips from Brown’s YouTube vlogs filmed over the course of her adolescence, “Trichster” makes for an engaging and informative watch. According to cinematographer Katie Maul, who attended New Paltz’s screening of the documentary for a Q&A session, the filming and editing process was truly a labor of love: between all of the people featured in “Trichster,” the documentary took over two years to film and another year to edit, she said.

Fifth-year accounting major and film and video studies minor and fellow trichster Eddie Thomson was the driving force behind bringing “Trichster” to SUNY New Paltz. Originally, Thomson tried to have the campus’s REACT to FILM club screen the documentary, but he submitted his inquiry too late in the semester. Instead, he turned to the college’s Digital Media and Journalism Society, who were on board with Thomson’s plan. The endeavor was a highly personal one, he said, since few people know about trichotillomania despite its wide reach. “The film was the best way I could think of to raise awareness and introduce new people to trich,” Thomson said. “Now, it’s just a matter of figuring out a possible next step.” For more information about trichotillomania or other BFRBs, curious readers can visit​


By Briana Bonfiglio Copy Editor |

As of fall 2016, the Tutoring Center has transformed into the Center for Student Success (CSS), which provides students with in-person and online tutoring services, a writing studio, and more academic resources projected for the future. The Tutoring Center, which was a stable resource at the college for at least three decades, lost its federally-funded grant about a year and a half ago, according to Dante Cantu, director of CSS. While this was a significant loss, he said the college “took a negative and turned it into a positive” by creating a more centralized learning center. “We’re still in transition,” Cantu said. “I think students are going to love it.” According to their website, CSS “promotes student learning, academic engagement, and timely degree completion through the coordination of tutoring,

writing assistance, and holistic academic success programs.” The center currently offers peer tutoring, Writers’ Studio and STAR-NY Online Tutoring Service. For peer tutoring, trained undergraduate tutors help peers in specific courses. Additionally, the STAR-NY Online Tutoring Service is a web-based tutoring program, a team effort of 19 SUNY schools, which students can sign up for online. The Writers’ Studio pairs developing student writers with a writing consultant to plan out assignments and work toward improving writing skills. CSS’s new application process is one major change that aims to centralize each of these services and broaden the program’s reach. In the past, students were required to visit the center, located in the basement of the Old Main building, and fill out a written form to apply. Now, all students can complete the CSS application on to access these services. Cantu explained that moving from a “tutoring center” to a “success center” also means adopting a model that is more actively involved in reaching out to students. “No longer are we a learning center with only tutoring and writing support. We still have some of that, but we’re moving to a success model,” he said. “We’re really focusing on that first semester transition. That’s the transition that students need to make successfully.” Cantu began his work at SUNY New Paltz, and therefore working toward CSS’s mission, in January of 2016. In the past, he has built a similar program at Mount St. Mary College, and he has a very clear vision of where he wants New Paltz’s center to go. This includes tutor training, which is already underway, and academic coaching, which should be available by next semester and will be aimed toward first-year students.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

He stressed that CSS is not only beneficial to those who needs guidance or tutoring, but for undergraduate students to build leadership skills through tutoring. When Cantu trains tutors, he teaches them to listen to their peers, adapt to diverse learning styles, and practice inclusive learning. These are all critical thinking and leadership qualities that will serve students well when they enter the workforce, he said. The academic coaching program, projected to start in the spring, will aid freshman and transfers, as well as veteran and adult students, to form a plan of action for their time in college. While these are the groups that the program is primarily focused toward, all students are eligible. It will work with the individual to improve study habits, organization, time management, and ultimately, create a unique plan that works for each student’s overall success.



The New Paltz Oracle

Your December Destiny Horoscopes by Eric Francis Coppolino

ARIES (3/21 - 4/19) – Given the high-voltage planets in your sign, you may have wondered if you’re too intense for a normal social life. You would be wise to err on the side of asserting who you are rather than trying to hide or tone down. Jupiter is now boldly working its way through your relationship sign, Libra. That’s a way of saying that people will not only accept who you are, they will benefit and thrive on your energy and your wild streak. The coming year will be one of great meetings. Be real, look people in the eye and welcome them into your life.

TAURUS (4/20 - 5/20) – You possess your own connection to the cosmos and to spiritual wisdom. You don’t need anyone to tell you what’s true, what’s right or what is holy. Rather, all you need to do is listen to your internal voice and respect what you hear. This is a revolutionary act because it’s so rarely done, and because you may get information that contradicts conventional wisdom or your usual values. Yet there’s nothing conventional about who you are right now, and your role in life is not about meeting the expectations of others. If you need an authority figure, consider yourself it.

GEMINI (5/21 - 6/21) – State your expectations clearly, whether you’re speaking to relationship partners, business partners or the representative from your cellular provider. You are the one who must set the tone of all of your communications, and not for a moment allow yourself to be intimidated. When in doubt, stick to the facts and figures. This is your most important hedge against being swayed by the emotions, power or charisma of others. Keep your language simple and make sure that people understand what you mean, and that you understand what they say. The result of every discussion must be a clear agreement.

Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and Pixabay

CANCER (6/22 - 7/23) – Your relationship life has been heating up lately, and the pace of events has been increasing along with it. You would be wise to take things slowly for the next few weeks, and take a wait-and-see approach to decisions. Planetary conditions insist that you seek genuine mutual understanding, which might be a challenge if people seem to keep changing their minds in ways that influence you. However, if you read between the lines you will have a good idea of where people are coming from, and you can respond accordingly. Your long-practiced independence will be a useful tool.

LIBRA (9/23 - 10/22) – What some call luck is on your side now, though use it wisely. Your main advantage is how much you know, though that only has a genuine worth if you put it to conscious use. Another edge you have is stability. This comes in handy when you’re among the brilliant but erratic types. You might try on the feeling of being a tad larger than everyone and everything around you. Adjust your sense of scale and imagine you’re a foot taller than you are. That doesn’t make you better, it just enhances your perspective and levels out the game.

CAPRICORN (12/22 - 1/20) – You may need to assemble the truth in small bits rather than getting it as a fully assembled picture. This might require comparing information from different sources over a period of time, perhaps five or six weeks. As you do this, be as methodical and objective as you can be. Then you will have that moment when reality comes into focus. Tempted though you may be, don’t rush to conclusions. Your ultimate determination might be entirely different from what your initial response or reaction was. What you call intuition must be backed up by concrete and provable data.

LEO (7/24 - 8/23) – This will be a phenomenally productive month at work for you, if you know when to back off and let things work themselves out. You might encounter a diversity of traps that could lure you into wasting your time. The moment you feel like you’re not being productive, ask yourself whether the thing you’re doing actually needs to happen. Review your schedule daily. Be decisive about revising and simplifying your plans, and adjusting your goals. The world goes into a frenzy trying to get stuff done before the end of the year. Set clear priorities and stay off the proverbial treadmill.

SCORPIO (10/23 11/22) – Even if you don’t keep a diary, you might want to this month. Repeatedly, this year, you’ve been put in a position to review your past and to understand why things happened the way they did. You’ll see this is less a matter of opinion and more about analysis of known facts. What is more significant is why you respond the way that you do, something you seem committed to changing. It’s about time you had a handle on where you’re coming from and where you’re going. Committing your thoughts to paper, and reading them back, will make that a lot easier to track.

VIRGO (8/24 - 9/22) – You’re likely to be feeling more confident about money now that Jupiter has entered your house of wealth and resources. However, you would be wise to avoid firming up business plans or major commitments until the New Year. There’s too much shifting to have a clear sense of where people stand. You need time to read the fine print and have a handle on what is expected of you before making any promises, or decisions that you cannot reverse. Get the specifics and make sure people demonstrate that they can keep a promise before making any promises to them.

SAGITTARIUS (11/23 - 12/21) – People cannot read your mind; even a clairvoyant would have a hard time figuring out what you’re thinking. Therefore, come in a little closer to the people around you and tell them what’s percolating. Slow down and explain your viewpoint step by step, including how you got there. This is not on the usual Sagittarius menu of options, though your relationships will go more smoothly, and you will feel more confident, if you trust that people understand you. Listen long enough to get their opinion as well. There will be a few crucial moments you’ll be very glad you took the time to do this.

AQUARIUS (1/21 - 2/19) – It’s time to start thinking about your longer-term future. It’s as if you’ve had a lens in your mind replaced and can now see ahead more clearly. Yet this involves what you consider possible as much as anything else. Therefore, start from the position that nothing is impossible, and that anything gains potential as you visualize it. This is not about magic; visualizing is how discoveries are made, movies are created and bridges are built. You might be considering a long-distance move, or entering a whole new line of work. Let yourself dream. Love or a partnership may factor into this equation.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

PISCES (2/20 - 3/20) – You have excellent ideas and others have the means to make them real. This could result in a brilliant collaboration, and cultivating this will be worth your time and thought. Refine your presentation to something clear, beautiful and a bit idealistic. Show that you’re capable of managing your affairs, and that you make wise use of your resources. Treat everyone as a potential business partner, without saying a word about it to them at first. There are people who are more excited about your talent than you are. Pay careful attention and you’ll know them when you see them.



Roasty Toasty Mashed Potatoes! By Matt Apuzzo

One of the members of The Oracle shares their culinary chops with you. Bon appetit!

Now that the weather’s freezing the campus to the bone, everyone wants something to warm up with. Most people go for hot chocolate, but I prefer foods with some heft to them. These potatoes have flavor that’s strong and warm without being spicy, and cooking the garlic and horseradish first gets rid of some pungency. This is great for days when the wind’s been biting and freezing you on the way to class. Although this recipe uses animal broth and dairy, vegan equivalents work just as well. You’ll need: Three 1/2 lb. red potatoes, washed and diced with skin Two 14-oz. cans of chicken broth (or veg etable broth) One onion, diced 1/2 stick of butter (or margarine) Four oz. horseradish cheese, shredded (or four oz. vegan cheddar with a spoonful of prepared horseradish) Two spoonfuls of minced garlic Optional seasonings: salt, pepper, red pepper, parsley, oregano, paprika, cayenne pepper, chives, sour cream, and/or sriracha Directions: Place the potatoes and onions in a pot and add enough broth to cover them. Boil until most of the broth is gone, then remove from heat and scoop out the potatoes and onions. Add the butter or margarine, the horseradish cheese or substitute, and the garlic to the broth. Simmer until everything’s melted and creamy, stirring to prevent it from burning, then add the potatoes and onions. Stir to break up the potatoes and incorporate the creamy stuff until everything’s as smooth or thick as it needs to be. Season it before eating or storing.


The New Paltz Oracle


By Erica Ascher Copy Editor |

Don’t let go of the reins, keep your back straight and you might receive a blue ribbon. The SUNY New Paltz Equestrian Team is a competitive horse riding club consisting of 20 members that participates in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) and has been around for over 15 years. President of the SUNY New Paltz Equestrian Team Megan Flaherty, a fourth-year early childhood education major with a concentration in English, has been riding since she was three years old. She decided to keep up with horseback riding when she transferred to New Paltz in 2014 and heard there was a competitive team. “When I heard that New Paltz had a team, I decided this would be the best place for me,” Flaherty said. “I liked that I could ride and still do other things, like be in a sorority, but I also liked that the team was pretty competitive.” The team competes in IHSA competition in zone 2 region 3 against West Point, Drew University, Vassar College, Marist College, Stevens Institute of Technology, William Paterson University and Centenary College. However, it does not limit them to compete against other club teams and Divsion I, II and III schools.

In the fall, each college hosts a show at the stable where they ride. SUNY New Paltz utilizes Crosswinds Equestrian Center in LaGrangeville, New York. Each team brings some of their horses that will be given a number as well as the rider. A random audience member will correspond a horse to a rider to give everyone a fair chance. There are five different divisions based upon level and experience and about three to five team members can ride in each. The coach picks one person in each division to be the “point rider.” “The ‘point rider’ means that the points they score go towards our team score,” Flaherty said. “Everyone else competes for individual points and if they win a class they can block other teams’ point riders from getting points, which allows us to have a higher place above them. Even though only a few team members’ point value goes toward the team, it is a team effort that everyone is involved in.” There are numerous events that take place, such as open flat, open fences, advanced walk, trot and canter, beginner walk, trot and canter and walk trot. Captain of the Equestrian Team Erika D’Antona, a third-year business management major, believes the camaraderie of the team is what makes it special. “We had a lot of freshmen join the team and we’ve all meshed really well

with one another and have gotten really close in the few short months that we’ve spent together,” D’Antona said. At competitions, they are judged in the Hunter Seat Equitation division, which is based on the ability and the style of the rider, as opposed to judging the ability and looks of the horse, D’Antona explained. During their weekly meetings, D’Antona will go over how the team did at the last show and discuss improvements the coaches have seen. They also discuss gym hours and lessons that need to be made up, as each team member is required to clock in a certain amount of hours and lessons per week. They also nominate someone for rider of the week for doing exceptional work at a show or in lessons. After a horse show, the rider of the week is the recipient of the golden horseshoe, which is typically given out to a rider who rode well or pointed out of their division. D’Antona was the recipient of the golden horseshoe last year for her first place ribbon in the open fences class. The team has concluded a successful fall semester and will start up again at Crosswinds on Feb. 11. “Our team is very young but we have been progressing more and more at each competition,” Flaherty said. “Our last one was one of the best of the season.”

PHOTO COURTESY OF ERIKA D’ANTONA The SUNY New Paltz Equestrian Team competed at Centenary College on Nov. 18.

Thursday, December 1, 2016



The New Paltz Oracle

Grok ‘N Roll


By Jackson Shrout Copy Editor |

People can often find themselves too busy or distracted to consider what’s in the food they eat. For vegans, many snack foods are off limits: milk chocolate and honey are no-gos, and dairy and eggs don’t fly. It can make eating genuinely difficult for a college student without the time to cook a sitdown meal. This dilemma was, in part, what inspired GrokBites, a Hudson Valley healthy snack company started by Peter and Heidi Coates that specializes in vegan, gluten-free snack bars. They started making GrokBites in the summer of 2015 after coming up with the idea while in Wales earlier that year, according to their website. They originally created GrokBites just for themselves as a healthy alternative to all of the fatty and sugary snack foods on the market. The bars became very popular among their friends, however, and soon they began to see a demand for a healthier on-the-go food that anyone can eat. “We were doing this because many of our friends who are vegan said that they couldn’t get a good snack that they enjoyed, that was readymade, that they could go to the store and buy,” Heidi explained. “We saw a need for this. There was a hole in the market for that. We make it easier for people who are gluten-free or

vegans to pick something up that’s already made, that’s wholesome. Oftentimes, vegans will fall back on bread products, if they’re not glutenfree, because they can’t grab something on the go. If they are gluten-free, then they really have a challenge.” The name came from the 1961 science fiction novel “Stranger in a Strange Land,” in which Robert Heinlein uses the word “grok” to mean “to understand profoundly and intuitively.” True to that, GrokBites’ official slogan is “Deeper Understanding With Every Bite,” as Peter and Heidi both subscribe to the idea of understanding what we put into our bodies. “GrokBites are made from absolutely 100 percent natural ingredients,” Peter said. “There’s no artificial anything in them. There’s no added sugars or syrups. They’re made from nuts and fruit, mainly dried fruit. We source our products very carefully so there are no artificial additives or anything like that. We tried to make something that’s really healthy, and full of natural, nice things, but with a taste almost more like a confectionary than a health bar.” For Peter and Heidi Coates, the future of GrokBites looks bright, starting with a newer, better kitchen and some expanded business outside of the Hudson Valley, as Peter explained. “We are just moving up in the world. We are going to a better kitchen

just outside Woodstock, which will have the highest food quality and environmental certification. We are getting ready for next year, to start taking [GrokBites] out into what we hope will be bigger markets. We just got into the city in the last couple of months,

which is great. We have high hopes for continuing to expand down there.” GrokBites come in seven different flavors, with ingredients ranging from jalapeños to chocolate to nuts. For a partial list of locations carrying GrokBites, go to

PHOTO COURTESY OF PETER AND HEIDI COATES GrokBites come in seven different flavors including Nutty Expressor, Purple Rain, Ma Cha Cha, The Tropix, Verry Berry, Chocwork Orange and Jalapeno Surprise.

5,000 Eyes Saw This Ad. Your Ad Could’ve Been Here. Contact The Oracle For Advertising Opportunities. Thursday, December 1, 2016

The New Paltz Oracle 7B


Shakespeare in a Noodle Shop


Copy Editor |

It’s late afternoon on a Sunday, and you’re in a noodle shop devouring a big bowl of udon noodle soup while watching high school students in steam punk-esque eveningwear perform scenes from “Macbeth.” On Sunday, Nov. 27 at Gomen-Kudasai, this worship of the Bard took place. The Beacon High School Drama and Theater Arts organization, Beacon Players, collaborated with local nonprofit arts organization, Arts MidHudson, in a workshop of various soliloquies and sonnets. It was the second installment of a three part series, “Celebrating Shakespeare” at Gomen-Kudasai. The events being: Bard at the Bar (Nov. 20), Beacon Macbeth (Nov. 27) and King Lear (Dec. 3). Each program is a reaction to Judy Sigunick’s Shakespeare inspired series, “Masks,” hanging on the back wall of the restaurant. Sigunick said she is influenced by the idea that Shakespearean characters encompass different characteristics in one being. The sparse wording used by Shakespeare also lends his invented people open to interpretation. Therefore, most of the masks are almost collages fusing half black and white oval shaped faces and devilish creatures with stripy horns. “He combines all of the possibilities of life that could happen in one moment,” Sigunick said. “Lady Macbeth can be so many things wrapped up in one character and that is what inspired my work.” According to Arts Mid-Hudson volunteer and co-coordinator of the program, Gully Stanford, “Celebrating Shakespeare” is an extension of the art organization’s fall 2015 “Shakespeare in the Parking Lot.” The Poughkeepsie based event featured a month of happenings around an exhibition of Sigunick’s previous larger-scale ceramic Shakespearean busts. Stanford said that this past March, a 2016 version was discussed between Sigunick and Executive Director of Arts Mid-Hudson Linda Marston-Reid. Sigunick had the idea of displaying her masks at Gomen-Kudasai. From there Stanford invited Director of the Beacon Players Anthony Scarrone and his troupe af-

ter hearing that the group held a production of “Macbeth” this past October. “Shakespeare speaks to audiences of all ages and backgrounds,” Stanford said. The evening began with introductions from Stanford, Sigunick and Scarrone. They all thanked each other and owner of GomenKudasai Youko Yamamoto for generously donating her space. Then the students strutted in adorned in a lot of faux leather and black with faint heavy metal instrumental music playing in the background. Later it was revealed that high school senior Stefan Seward composed all of the music for their production of “Macbeth.” Highlights of the event included the opening where sophomore Alexander Ullian read a sonnet from an iPad and as he read senior Michael Bonanno, who played Macbeth, acted it out, miming the words and facial expressions. Ullian at one point recited the famous Sonnet 18, “Shall I Compare Thee to a Summer’s Day?” to junior Leah Siegel. In regards to why Scarrone selected various works of Shakespeare he said, “The goal was to show another side of Shakespeare, not in the format of full play but in the beautiful snippets that gave us a peak into the soul of William Shakespeare.” Another memorable moment consisted of Siegel performing Lady Macbeth’s monologue after she’d gone crazy. As she said, “Here’s the smell of the blood still. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand,” in a scarlet gown barefoot, looking blankly into the crowd, a noticeable hush fell over the space. Ullian, who acted as the Porter in “Macbeth” performed a short one-man play between himself and Macduff in the start of act two, scene three. In a funny Irish brogue he drunkenly flounced about and a family who happened to be in the restaurant for dinner laughed hysterically. “It does my heart good to see young children laughing at Shakespeare,” Scarrone said. Avid Shakespeare enthusiasts can check out the “Celebrating Shakespeare” final installment, “King Lear” this Saturday, Dec. 3 from 3-5 p.m. in Gomen-Kudasai.

Thursday, December 1, 2016



Arts & Entertainment

The New Paltz Oracle

Community Unites for Unison Art Center’s Craft Fair

By Brandon Doerrer

Staff Writer |

The New Paltz community came together this past weekend for the 26th Annual Craft, Art and Design Fair hosted by the Unison Arts Center. The fair, held on Saturday, Nov. 26 and Sunday, Nov. 27, featured 41 different vendors looking to exhibit and sell their unique crafts. This year’s fair quickly appeared en route to setting the record for highest attendance in its history, according to former director Stuart Bigley. “It was the biggest one day we’ve ever had, I think somewhere between 700-900 people showed up,” Bigley said. “Typically, Sunday is less attended than Saturday, and I think this is a little bit less attended than Saturday was, but it’s been solid. I think that when we add everything up in the end, we’ll probably have more people than we’ve ever had.” This came as a pleasant surprise to both Bigley and vendors, as a change in date and location created worry that attendance would drop. This year marked the fair’s first appearance at SUNY New Paltz. In previous years, the event has been held a week later at New Paltz Middle School or Lenape Elementary School. However, plans for construction in the New Paltz Central School District created uncertainty as to whether or not these locations would be available. Local artisan and vendor Leonie Lacouette also expressed these concerns. “I was a little worried people wouldn’t find us because we moved, but they found us,” she said. Lacouette, also known as “Leonie the clockmaker,” has been making clocks for over 30 years. She graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a degree in ceramics in 1983 and started crafting clocks after. However, despite the decades she has put into her work, Lacouette said she has not been to many craft fairs. Unison’s craft fair is an exception, as she recalls attending and participating for roughly the past 10 years. She spoke about a sense of a tightly-knit community as one of the reasons she keeps coming back. “It’s so nice to have your friends and neighbors come in and see what you do,” she said. “It’s like a mutual admiration

society. And you make new friends all the time.” A friendly atmosphere could be felt throughout the fair. For some, like craftsman and first time vendor Paul Hartmann, this atmosphere was the most enjoyable part of the event. “I just enjoy watching the people come through and talking to them,” he said. “I was talking all day yesterday. This is just fun to do.” Hartmann has been building and selling guitars since 2006. If he has a guitar in his hand, he can’t help but play it. Despite this being the first year with his own booth, Hartmann is no stranger to Unison’s craft fairs. His wife has been a vendor for many years, and he assisted with putting up and taking down her booth, as well as providing ambient music with his guitar. Having his own booth provided Hartmann with a different experience, he said. “I had a couple of people sit down yesterday that were really good players,” Hartmann added. “It was really nice to hear them.” For some new vendors like Joan Ensminger, the friendly interactions she had were essential in solidifying her place in the community. “Everyone here pretty much lives in neighboring communities, so I think it feels very collegial. I’m more of a newer person, but people here are lovely and help each other,” she said. Ensminger has been working with kiln-formed glass for roughly the past six years. She considers herself new to the complicated craft, but is often told it doesn’t show. This year marked her second time at the fair. “I think this is a nicer environment,” she said, comparing this year’s event to last year’s rendition. “I would be happy if they did this again.” The idea that SUNY New Paltz provided a more appropriate space for the fair than in years past seemed to be fairly unanimous among experienced vendors. According to Bigley, Unison also seemed to agree with this idea. “As far as I’m concerned, this is a much nicer space,” Bigley said. “If they’ll have us back next year and if we can afford it, I think we would like to come back.”

Thursday, December 1, 2016


The New Paltz Oracle

Arts & Entertainment


local Muralist on Wheels


Features Editor |

By age 8, Hudson Valley-based artist Eugene Stetz had already been through all 50 states. As a traveling muralist, he has celebrated the dead in Mexico City, painting colorful sugar skulls and skeletons. He has painted murals in towns as far east as Kingston, New York and as west as Oakland, California with so many others in between. But before he was a successful artist, he was a graphic design student at the State University of New York at Oswego, where he was arrested for graffiting. After being locked up for a week, the now-27-year-old began making Craigslist ads that read, “Artist will paint murals, just pay for the paints and the travel expenses,” and he would create his artwork free of charge. Fifty murals later, Stetz had finally felt that he’d developed his own style and started to feel comfortable charging for his services. Having grown up in a nomadic family, Stetz was used to the idea of traveling around for awhile with no real sense of stopping. For the past three years, Stetz has been driving cross country with his mobile art gallery, showing off his artwork on the streets and painting murals in towns across the United States as well as across international lines. Now settled down in High Falls, New York, Stetz finished up his 2016 tour in New Paltz on Saturday, Nov. 19. Stetz said that come Feb. 4, 2017, he will start his tour right back up again, taking off from the south in New Orleans for Mardi Gras. “We’re going to shoot down all the way along the south,” he said. “Hitting Austin, going through Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona, all the way up to Cali and staying there until it

gets warm again here [in New York].” Stetz said Oakland, California is usually his last stop. But this time, he wants to try hitting Eugene, Oregon before heading toward home for summer jobs lined up back on the east coast. He has enough murals lined up over the next five years to go coast to coast, snowbirding the whole way around, planning for pieces in Saugerties and Kingston, New York; Vermont; Maine; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and back down toward Florida and Savannah, Georgia. During Stetz’s three years of cross-country travel, he said he’s accumulated about 70 walls filled up with his imaginative artwork, including on the corners of Main St. and North Chestnut St. in New Paltz. Last summer, Stetz co-painted the psychedelic mural of the Shawangunk Ridge located across from Bacchus Restaurant, Brewery & Billiards with fellow Hudson Valley-based artist Sam Van Kleeck. In total, Stetz said this mural took the two of them 19 days and 265 hours to complete. The most recent mural Stetz completed is located on the exterior of Rondout Valley High School, where he graduated from. The mural shows a boy riding a gander, the school’s team mascot, through a sunset storm with his imagination exploding out of his head. Having been invited to the school’s community share day, Stetz had the chance to speak to middle school-aged students and had them draw up ideas for the mural, eight of which he chose to include in the finished piece. “I had a teacher tell me that art wasn’t a career for me, so this mural was a little jab at that,” Stetz said. “I thought, ‘I have the only public piece of artwork here and it’s 30-feet tall.’”


Thursday, December 1, 2016


Arts & Entertainment

The New Paltz Oracle

My Top 10: Live Music Shows By Briana Bonfiglio

Copy Editor |

Music has always been a staple in my life, so seeing my favorite bands perform live is extremely cathartic and fun as hell. While there are still so many great touring musicians that are unchecked on my must-see list, there are also quite a few that I have been lucky enough to enjoy alongside a crowd of equally-enthusiastic fans. These are the 10 bands whose rock shows have impressed me the most. 10. Taking Back Sunday If I had one word to describe a Taking Back Sunday show, it would be nostalgic. These Long Island-bred emo rockers mix throwbacks and new tunes in their sets to create an emotional connection with fans. Whether it was at Warped 2012 or their 2015 headliner, lead singer Adam Lazarra let loose with old favorites like “MakeDamnSure,” “Cute Without the E,” and “Number Five with a Bullet,” and being in the crowd for those is a blast. This makes it all the more meaningful when the band pulls back on a more serious note with newer songs like “Better Homes and Gardens.” 9. The Fray No one can deny their love for classic Fray hits like “You Found Me” and

“How To Save a Life,” and the band delivers these with a sense of pride and unity. They seem to bring a whole stadium together through music in an overall heart-warming experience. When I saw them in 2012, they energized a packed Nikon Jones Beach Theater, one of my favorite venues closest to my hometown. 8. Weezer This band hits audiences with lighthearted fun, beach balls included. They have so many popular jams that they had to compose a five-song medley, including songs like “Hashpipe” and “Keep Fishin,” on their 2016 summer tour with Panic! At the Disco. It’s downright impossible to not sing along. 7. Four Year Strong These guys are wild, bearded beasts on stage, but do not be intimidated. They’re just looking for everyone to have a good time. The energy between all four members resonates as they pound through songs like “Go Down in History” and “Gravity” and send stage divers flying into the crowd. 6. Panic! at the Disco A shirtless Brendon Urie does backflips and belts “Bohemian Rhapsody.” What more could you ask for? 5. Motion City Soundtrack I am biased, as this is my favorite

band of all-time. They recently completed their “So Long, Farewell” tour, commencing a 19-year career. They are true fathers in the pop-punk world and will be missed. All I can say is that their shows reflected who they were as a band: not just talented, but dedicated as all get-out. During their last show at Irving Plaza, lead singer and guitarist Justin Pierre stumbled through “Antonia,” a song none of us really remember all the lyrics to but love anyway, all because a fan requested it earlier during their acoustic session. 4. Brand New On the flip side, Brand New is a band I only began listening to recently (a real loss, I know). Their headlining performance this past fall blew me away, even if I wasn’t familiar with much of the set. The dynamic nature of their songs, many off their 10-year-old album “The Devil and God are Raging Inside Me,” made for really powerful moments, intensified by some awesome stage-lighting. 3. Reel Big Fish I swear no one knows how to have a blast onstage like Reel Big Fish does. Even in the hot air of a Warped Tour date in mid-July, this ska-punk band stayed hyped, spinning in circles while keeping perfect tune of their saxophones, trum-

pets and trombones. Lead singer Aaron Barrett cracked jokes and the band had the crowd dancing for their hits “All I Want is More” and “Sell Out.” 2. Blink-182 Whether it was with Tom Delonge or Matt Skiiba, you better believe Blink brought it. In summer 2011, they shredded through the classics, with Delonge and Mark Hoppus bantering between songs. In 2016, nothing felt different despite the line-up change, aside from a slew of new songs from their newest album “California” that gave their punkrock show more of a stadium-vibe. One thing is for certain: Travis Barker always amazes and is a drummer you need to see live to believe his talent. 1. Fun. I have still yet to see a band who has played a more passionate show than Fun. in July 2013. Opening with “Some Nights: Intro,” closing with “Stars,” and playing most of their two-album collection in between, the band didn’t miss a beat--every song was its own performance. Lead singer Nate Ruess melded his wide-ranging vocal chops with energized synth that screamed, well, pure fun. So here is my plea: return to us, Fun. We need you back and I need to take all my friends to your next gig.

A Symphony at Studley


Staff Writer |

Playing before a full house at the college’s Julien J. Studley Theatre, the SUNY New Paltz Symphonic Band performed this past Tuesday, Nov. 15. Associate professor Dr. Joel Evans directed the performance, which was part of a series of concerts to come in the following month, he said. As a director, Evans gave off a carefree vibe to his audience. He explained how much power and choice he gives to the students in his band. Evans was proud of his performers, he said. “They could play without me if they wanted to!” he laughed.

Evans plans his shows a semester ahead of time, he said. His set lists are a mix of what he and his students want to play. For this performance, guests heard numbers by composers James Barnes, Michael Kamen, Ralph Vaughn Williams and Robert W. Smith. The wind band featured around 9-10 sections of different instruments, creating a magnificent wall of sound. While it was mostly full of students, the band did enlist the help of music department community members and Ulster County music educators. One prominent guest performer was Professor Vic Izzo from SUNY Ulster. Izzo played the trombone throughout the entire show and proceeded to take the helm of

conducting from Evans for James Barnes’ intimate piece “Poetic Intermezzo.” “Alvamar Overture,” another number from Barnes, proved to be a highlight of the evening. With a powerful performance from the whole band and a strident tempo, this song threw the concert into full effect. The band performed the last half of the song again at the end of the show, giving the concert and the experience a solid bookend. Concert goer Jack Wilson, a choir singer, loved the performance. His favorite piece was “Suite from Band of Brothers” by the late Michael Kamen. “I came in support of my friends in the band, but also for my love of music,” he

Thursday, December 1, 2016

said. Evans’ personal favorite from the set? The professor loves Ralph Vaughn Williams’ “Folk Song Suite,” a number that covers themes like coming-of-age and the beauty of England, he said. Evans already has next semester planned for the symphonic band, he said. The Department of Music and the School of Fine and Performing Arts will host more concerts in coming the month, including a Student Jazz Ensemble with concerts at Studley on Nov. 28-30. For more information about upcoming shows and music department events, music lovers can check out music.

The New Paltz Oracle

Arts & Entertainment


The Weeknd’s “Starboy”


Copy Editor |

One of the biggest enemies of musical brevity is the bottom line. Financially, an 18-track follow-up to Abel Tesfaye’s 2015 album “Beauty Behind the Madness” makes sense; money was spent on recording these tracks, and, whether or not it makes sense artistically, Republic Records wants to recoup as much of that money as possible. So, here we are with nearly 70 minutes of new material — all recorded in the first 10 months of 2016 — more than half of which feel like an attempt by the label to throw whatever was recorded at the wall to see what stuck. “Starboy” spends far too much time hedging its bets, and for every inspired piece of hazy dance pop there are two songs that ring hollow and read like pure filler. If “Beauty Behind the Madness” prowls in gloomy aphrodisia, “Starboy”

commutes that bedroom intimacy for a more propulsive sound, at least in its first half. Daft Punk slathers backing vocals in shiny chrome for the song’s title track on an instrumental that — sans the fullness and breadth of Daft Punk’s collaborations with Pharrell (“Get Lucky” or “Gust of Wind,” take your pick) — meets Tesfaye’s style halfway for an extremely catchy piece of electro-R&B. Tesfaye hastens the pace on “False Alarm,” wailing on the kinetic hook amidst sliding retro synths, a breakneck drum beat, and electric guitar. It’s no less jet black than his usual tales of sex, drugs, and R&B, but it pulsates with an unprecedented stamina. “Reminder” has all the trappings of a Future tribute: paper-thin hi-hats, moody “sing-song” rhymes, and a druggy motif at the core of the instrumental. Being that this is The Weeknd, Tesfaye’s take on the Atlanta rap crooner’s dreary musical aesthetic is unmistakably softer, and his self-

assuredness demands that lines like “Got that Hannibal, Silence of the Lambo” are graded on an extremely generous curve. For the first eight tracks, minus the stodgy and lifeless “Secrets,” Tesfaye shines inhabiting various musical skins. Unfortunately, following the lush Lana Del Rey collaboration “Stargirl Interlude” is a dearth of any proper musical inspiration. Kendrick Lamar’s verse notwithstanding, little about “Sidewalks” comes across as genuine; that Tesfaye came of age surrounded by tragedy and crime is no secret, but it becomes difficult to swallow his hideously-autotuned proclamations that “Sidewalks saved [his] life” given that his Weeknd persona is less “hardened street survivor” and more “smoldering sex genie.” And since apparently one very solid trap music commendation wasn’t enough, Future appears on two tracks, “Six Feet Under” and “All I Know,” both of which are superfluous in

the face of “Reminder.” In fact, almost every song on the latter half of “Starboy” has an air of redundancy, the exceptions being the sparkly soul-inspired “Die For You” and “I Feel It Coming,” in which Daft Punk wears their post-disco adulation (à la 2013’s “Random Access Memories”) on their sleeves. “Starboy” isn’t an outright failure. Somewhere in its confines is a terrific 10-track album, but there’s a rushed, uninspired one occupying the rest of the record that suggests how little Tesfaye and his producers could actually afford to cut. “Starboy” lacks the coherence and unity of “Beauty Behind the Madness,” and Tesfaye’s newfound sense of panache only encompasses a small amount of the album. Everything else is just bloat, devoid of personality and charm and decidedly less sexy than previous Weeknd projects. It’s still sexy. Just less.

An Evening of Jazzy Vocals


Staff Writer |

Itching for a spin on jazz classics? Take a cue from two of SUNY New Paltz’s vocal jazz groups — the 220 and 115 ensembles, named for their rehearsal rooms and directed by adjunct professor Teri Roiger — who performed at the Studley Theatre on Monday, Nov. 28. The first in a three-part series of student jazz concerts, the concert presented a well-rounded selection of the genre’s classics, many of which were reinterpreted in the style of other artists. The 220 ensemble took the stage first with “Twisted,” carried from start to finish by the steady vocals of Talia Cifali, Caitlin Connelly and Blake Kimmel. The song, originally a Wardell Gray tenor saxophone solo, was rewritten in vocalese by Annie Ross while preserving its brisk melodic motion.

Next in the set was “Moanin,” which brought a slower, bluesier sound with more harmonious vocals punctuated by the ensemble’s instrumentalists. Midway through the piece, the vocals took a backseat as Julia Giroux on vibes and Dylan Jones on guitar played tennis with a detailed, yet chilled-out solo. “Afro Blue” followed, treating the Studley Theatre’s audience to an unusual rhythm composed by Mongo Santamaría, lyrics by Oscar Brown, Jr. and popularized by John Coltrane. The 220 ended their performance with Miles Davis’ “Four,” featuring every member of the ensemble. In addition to including high-speed scat singing from Cifali, Connelly and Kimmel, and presenting some demanding solos from Giroux and Jones, “Four” showcased a back-and-forth solo similar to “Moanin,” contrasting smooth electric bass from

Jennifer Russo with Alec Goldstein’s rowdy drums. After a brief intermission, the 115 ensemble performed, opening with Duke Pearson’s “Jeannine.” The piece featured harmonious scat singing from Gabby Frometa, Brianna Hackshaw, Rose Stoller and Meghan Tobias, in addition to an extended piano solo from Matt Carvin. The 115 continued with Thelonious Monk’s “Round Midnight,” a jazz standard that conjured the atmosphere of a city café on a rainy day before getting a bit more pep in its step. The piece featured an extended, expressive guitar solo from Tamara Sastow. The night’s penultimate performance was a blues collage composed of John Coltrane’s “Mr. P.C.” and “Equinox,” Dizzy Gillespie’s “Birks’ Works” and John Carisi’s “Israel.” With plenty of

Thursday, December 1, 2016

variation to go around, every part got a chance to step into the spotlight, including Francis Mejia on bass and Wesley Henry on drums, who poured gusto into a call-and-response. Last in the concert was Jimmy McHugh and Dorothy Fields’ “On The Sunny Side of the Street,” featuring each of the ensemble once more. “It’s a lot of work, putting together a concert like that. People tend to look at musicians as dime-a-dozen like anyone can sing, but there’s a lot of practice and thought that goes into it,” said the 220 ensemble’s Blake Kimmel, a fourth-year music major concentrating in recording and electronic music. “While there are solos, it’s not a solo effort; it’s about how what you’re doing meshes with what everyone else is doing. I’m really thankful that my group communicated so well, and we came out sounding even better than I thought.”



The New Paltz Oracle


HIGHLIGHTS Campus Bookstore Our December 2-day sale will be December 7th and 8th. Buy more, save more!

Thursday 1st SLAM POETRY Parker Theatre After Dark

Valid 12/7/16 - 12/8/16 in-store and online on apparel and gift categories only. Exclusions apply. •

Ugly sweaters are 25% off 11/28-12/6

Avoid the lines and return rented textbooks as soon as you are done with them


Active Tapingo Locations

Friday 2nd Trivia Dinner Hasbrouck

20% off 1 item 25% off 2 items 30% off 3+ items

Introducing Truth Café Element 93

Ridgeview Now Available, Starbucks @ Parker

text your feedback to: 82257 message: keyword + your feedback keywords: HUNGRYHAWKS ELEMENT93 TELLSUB

We Proudly Serve Starbucks @ SUB Tokyo Sushi SUB Connection Salad Toss

Pomodoro’s Pizza Pomodoro’s Pasta Nester’s Grill

Wednesday 14th Bodacious Burgers 4:30 - 7:30pm ELEMENT 93 Thursday 15th National Cupcake Day

Saturday 3rd 4 Cheese Creamy Mac and Cheese Nesters

Friday 16th Good Luck on Finals Extended Hours Truth Cafe

Tuesday 6th Breakfast all day The Roost

Saturday 17th Celebrate the holidays with gifts drom Starbucks

Wednesday 7th Chef Celebration

Sunday 18th Pomodoro’s Pizza Pizza & Wings SUB

Thursday 8th Soft Cream Ice Cream Bar Friday 9th Hasbrouck Trivia @ Dinner

Monday 19th Grab Coffee Late Night Starbucks

Did you know? Dining Dollars carry over to the spring semester!

Tuesday 20th Movie Night Hasbrouck

RED EYE Finals are taking off! Get Red Eye Specials all month at Starbucks!

Wednesday 21st New York City Street Food Hasbrouck

Tuesday 13th Holiday Treats Table SUB

Thursday 22nd Last Day of Finals YAAY

Winter Break Happy Holidays! Thursday, December 1, 2016



The New Paltz Oracle

Puff, Puff Passed!

President-elect Donald Trump’s surprising victory in the 2016 presidential race has dominated popular media, but many new pieces of legislation were also voted into place at the state level on Tuesday, Nov. 8. One such piece of legislation was Massachusetts’s Marijuana Legalization Initiative, or Question 4 on the back of Massachusetts voters’ 2016 ballots, which was approved by voters across the state. The initiative will permit residents of the state over the age of 21 to use, grow and purchase marijuana in a regulated manner not dissimilar to alcohol consumption and acquisition. Voters in California and Nevada also approved similar pieces of legislation in the November 2016 election cycle. Now, the percentage of Americans living in states where marijuana is legal has skyrocketed from 5 percent to 20 percent, The New York Times reported. What will Massachusetts’s legalization of recreational marijuana use, coming from another predominantly “blue” northeastern state, mean for New Yorkers? The jury is still out. Various news outlets claim that the push for legal marijuana could echo outward through the rest of the nation. One thing is for certain, though: Massachusetts’ vote in favor of legal marijuana usage, from Scientific American hypothesized with its pitfalls. The drug has long been in tandem with California and Nevada’s that marijuana could be employed to speculated to negatively impact reprodecisions, reflects a shift in the nation’s combat prescription opioid addictions ductive health and cognitive function. Perhaps most scarily, some casual mariattitude toward a drug that was once across the country. Recreational marijuana usage has juana users in states where it is not legal highly vilified by authorities. A Pew Research study from Febru- clear benefits, too: according to data to consume recreationally have turned ary of 2015 highlighted a stark age di- by, Colorado’s legaliza- to questionable legal substitutes like vide that exists on this issue. Previous tion of recreational marijuana, which salvia, which pose their own significant generations are split along party lines, went into place in January 2014, gar- health risks. That’s where legalized marijuana with only Democrats supporting legal- nered the state over $40 million in tax ization efforts. However, Millennials, revenue over the course of a calendar for recreational usage provides a benefisuch as those that write for The Oracle, year. The policy also resulted in dra- cial solution. Highly regulated producshow predominant support for marijua- matic decreases in arrests for marijuana tion and distribution of marijuana, the possession, cultivation and distribution, likes of which are found in states that na legalization on both sides of aisle. We at The New Paltz Oracle be- leaving more money in the pockets of have legalized the substance beyond lieve that recreational and medicinal taxpayers and less to be wasted by the medicinal usage, help control the qualuse of marijuana should be legalized Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). The ity of the substance, creating a safer and in New York. Recent research suggests Washington Post reported last year that, potentially more enjoyable experience that marijuana use can be beneficial for as part of the DEA’s $14 million mari- for casual users. The American College treating a variety of health concerns: juana eradication program, the agency of Emergency Physicians argues that, an August 2016 study from Time In- spent $20,000 in New Hampshire to because drug dealers care little about ternational found that marijuana was eradicate a grand total of 27 marijuana purity or whether or not a customer is a successful treatment for veterans ex- plants as well as $73,000 in Utah, which of proper age, a formal, regulated marperiencing post-traumatic stress disor- led to the seizure of exactly zero plants. ket is actually safer than the prohibitive Of course, marijuana usage comes alternative. der. Likewise, a September 2016 article

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Cartoon by Luke Benicase In an era where the stigma of marijuana, which originated during the misguided and destructive War on Drugs, is being cast off state-by-state, it would ultimately benefit New York to embrace legalized recreational marijuana. Economically, it would fill the state’s coffers and allow for better funding of public institutions and infrastructure; socially, it would, in part, address the overincarceration problem facing the nation; and ideologically, it would reinforce the importance of personal freedom and the bodily autonomy infringed upon by New York’s current prohibitive marijuana policy. Editorials represent the views of the majority of the editorial board. Columns, op-eds and letters, excluding editorials, are solely those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the views of The New Paltz Oracle, its staff members, the campus and university or the Town or Village of New Paltz.



Out of the 335 days in the year that have passed so far, I have only been at my home on Long Island a calculated 27 days. Between studying abroad this past spring and living in New Paltz over the summer, this makes sense. But ultimately, this means that of all the days that have already gone by during 2016, I’ve only been home on Long Island a whopping 8 percent (yes, I really did the math). Upon driving back for Thanksgiving break last Tuesday with my friend Jess, I felt a little anxious to finally be going home again after three months. I kind of forgot what it felt like. And aside from being happy to see my friends and family again and also being able to relax for the first time in awhile, I remembered my love-hate relationship with this strange island I call home. So I’ve compiled a list. Top 5 things I hate about Long Island: 1. The traffic. If you’ve ever driven to or on Long Island, you understand how bad it usually is. Between the Long Island Expressway (LIE) and the Southern State Parkway, driving on the Island can be a nightmare, especially when you’re sharing it with around 7.6 million other people. Because of all the congestion we face on the roadways, drivers tend to get aggressive, causing accidents and wors-


“Awareness is the greatest agent for change.” - Eckhart Tolle According to Arthur Levine, author of “Generation on a Tightrope: A Portrait of Today’s College Student,” a staggering 68 percent of college students are not politically active or engaged. Although I do not consider myself particularly politically savvy by any means, I am confident that I am not part of this statistic, at least not anymore. Many of my friends did not vote in this year’s presidential election, but that did not stop them from participating in protests and rallies and posting pictures and hashtags on social media when they were not happy with the results. Some couldn’t even be bothered to watch the three presidential debates. Going further, many of my peers lack any sort of awareness regarding local or congressional elections. Do you know what number congressional district this is? Do you know who John Faso is?



Bohemian Rhapsody

ening the already-bad traffic jams. 2. Seeing people from high school no matter where you go. Despite its small size, Long Island is surprisingly overpopulated. When I was home this weekend, I saw at least 10 random people from high school, whether at the library, the bar, the supermarket or the drugstore. I saw some people I enjoyed catching up with and others I awkwardly smiled at and walked away from, or really just tried to avoid. So, it’s a mixed bag. 3. You have to drive everywhere. Living on Long Island is certainly not like living in good ol’ New Paltz. You can’t walk into town in 15 minutes. Driving is more or less a necessity, especially if you want to go out at night. You pretty much have to rely on a designated driver, an Uber or a taxi to get you to and from your desired bar of choice, and that can get pretty aggravating. And the money spent on rides definitely adds up. 4. There are way too many shopping malls and shopping centers. Having at least one 7-11 in every town can be convenient, but there should definitely be more places on the Island like the David Weld Sanctuary, the Avalon Park & Preserve and the Bayard Cutting Arboretum. We can do without another Chipotle or LUSH being built.

5. Getting anywhere above Manhattan seems to be an arduous task. Getting through Long Island itself is hard enough, especially living as east as I do in Bohemia, or exit 59 on the LIE if that gives you more of a visual. But then you have to get through either Manhattan and the Cross Bronx or the Cross Island Expressway, which all usually have lots of traffic because every Long Islander is trying to get the hell out of this congested place we all seem to call home. Sometimes we all just need to get away from the 118 miles of madness. Top 5 things I love about Long Island: 1. There are a lot of picturesque towns to walk around in and explore. I grew up on the South Shore, home to many a town with plenty of shops, restaurants, boutiques and short walks to the pier. To name a few, there’s Sayville, Patchogue, Bayshore, and on the North Shore, there are towns like St. James, East Northport and Port Jefferson. There are plenty others in Nassau County, like Rockville Centre and Oyster Bay, but I’m more of a Suffolk kinda girl. 2. Both Montauk and New York City are easily accessible. I can drive to Montauk in less than two hours. I can also hop on the Ronkonkoma train to Penn Station and get there in about an hour and

Election Aftershock

It appears many college students jump on bandwagons for certain candidates like Zephyr Teachout or Bernie Sanders without much knowledge of their specific policies or ideals. How many students participate in politics simply because it’s trendy? I don’t know the answer to that, but I fear that it is more than we would like to admit. Here is what I will admit: until very recently I would have considered myself to be a part of that 68 percent. Digging deeper, I realize that I probably would not have even the limited knowledge that I do without this newspaper. My staff demands at least a basic political inclination and awareness in order to participate in editorial discussions as the pieces we publish in our opinion section are meant to represent the views of everyone on staff. Namely my managing editor, Jack O’Brien, is incredibly knowledgeable about politics and I am grateful for the opportunities that I have had to listen to his views. I respect his knowledge and analysis very much and my conversations with

him have very much influenced me to educate myself about the world of politics nationally, internationally and directly around me. But don’t tell him I said that. My section editor Melanie Zerah and fellow copy editor Jackson Shrout have also played a part in my increased interest in politics. Mel requires this knowledge in order for me to work with and for her to the best of my ability and I have developed a friendship with Jackson in which we can have these intelligent conversations. Many of my fellow Oracle members are equally intelligent and part of such conversations, the ones highlighted are simply those who have had the greatest impact on me and I thank you all for the influence you have had. The 2016 presidential election elicited some of the most extreme emotional responses that I have seen in response to any major political event in my lifetime. Opinions aside, it has most definitely evoked powerful emotions in me. I accept responsibility for my part in the decision we have made as a country. Although I was

Thursday, December 1, 2016

The New Paltz Oracle

20 minutes. Both highly concentrated tourist spots, it’s nice to know I don’t have to go out of my way to go in either direction. 3. Some of the best pizza and bagels on Earth. This is no contest, and I think it goes without say. Bagels and pizza even up here in the Hudson Valley can’t compare with the doughy goodness of what we’ve got back home. If you ever find yourself in Bohemia, stop into Saviano’s (my personal favorite), or if you find yourself in Lake Ronkonkoma, be sure to order yourself a slice of cold cheese pizza from Little Vinny’s. 4. THE BEACH. This also goes without say. My summers would not be the same had I not grown up on Long Island. There’s Robert Moses, Smithspoint and most importantly the Hampton beaches like Cupsogue. It might be the French Riviera or the Mediterranean, but it’s certainly something that’s hard for me to live without. 5. It seems like everything is a maximum of 20 minutes away. This makes doing pretty much anything very easy. I can go to the movies, go out to eat, go to the park, the mall, what-have-you and it is all somehow within a 20-minute radius. Call it what you will, I call it a miracle.

Amanda is a fourth-year digital media programming & management major whose Long Island accent has faded since living in New Paltz. For this, she is thankful.

decently educated about the two candidates, I will admit that a lot of that was due to underlying pressure I created in my mind as a result of working with such intelligent individuals. Sure, I developed my own views and opinions and I watched all three of the presidential debates. Albeit a lot of my opinions were formed from the information that was put in front of my face, not information that I was willing to seek out on my own accord. The results of this election shocked me and opened my eyes to where we really are as an American people. Throughout the course of this election, I rode on the coattails of my staff members and what became a little above basic awareness; I heard things, but I wasn’t really listening. Well, I’m listening now. Rachael is a second-year double major in communications and psychology with a minor in computer science. She hopes to also slide a poli-sci course in her already insane schedule.

The New Paltz Oracle




The New Paltz Oracle



Hawks third-year guard Dylan Balducci played a season-high 27 minutes during the team’s 64-63 nonconference win against Springfield College on Nov. 29.

By Anthony Mitthauer-Orza

Copy Editor |

Men’s basketball fourth-year cocaptain Andrew Seniuk’s jumper with two seconds left on the clock gave the Hawks a 64-63 win over Springfield College on Tuesday, Nov. 29 and their first win of the season. After an 0-4 start to the season, the Wantagh, New York native’s shot gave the Hawks a much-needed momentum boost heading into their upcoming State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) games. “Tuesday night’s win was good because we can show that we can grow from it,” Hawks head coach Mike Rejniak said. “This team is continuing to evolve and I think they’re understanding the amount of hard work and preparation that goes in day in and day out. That’s a characteristic of a young team so I think they’ve been growing, learning and being very coachable.” Following a pair of free throws by the Pride that tied the contest at 60-60, Seniuk answered with a layup of his

own to give New Paltz a 62-60 lead with 2:44 on the clock. Springfield countered with a 3-pointer with 1:42 remaining to put the Hawks down 63-62. After Seniuk hit the go-ahead shot with two seconds left, Springfield attempted a desperation shot at the buzzer but third-year guard Dylan Balducci swatted it away as New Paltz hung on for their first taste of victory this season. Seniuk led the Hawks offense with 19 points behind 7-of-13 shooting and finished defensively with five steals to help seal the win in “The Birthplace of Basketball.” The win overall was special for Rejniak because it was an important win against his alma mater, as he learned how to coach at Springfield College, where he graduated from in 2004. The Hawks have performed well offensively over the course of their four games, averaging 66.2 points per game along 37.8 rebounds as well. However, the defense is what the team needs to win those games. In their season-opening game against Vassar, the Hawks failed to win

the game after keeping the game within two points with 40 seconds remaining. They were also unable to maintain their lead with 1:37 remaining against D’Youville College on Saturday, Nov. 19. New Paltz has been allowing 77.4 points per game because of turnovers and being outrebounded by their opponents. Rejniak noted that if the team can keep the ball in motion and stay solid defensively, the team can get more wins. “We have to continue to play solid defense,” he said. “It has to be there night in and night out, whether the offense is there or not. We have to play like a team because when the ball is moving well, we are very good. When we try to be like LeBron [James] or [Michael] Jordan, that is not our style. We also have to rebound and I think we can put up a brand of basketball that is tough for SUNYAC teams to play against.” New Paltz will begin conference play this weekend, as they will go up against SUNY Geneseo and The College at Brockport on Friday, Dec. 2 and Saturday, Dec. 3.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Geneseo is fifth in the conference in points-per-game with 84, and also features a fourth-year guard in John Decker who has averaged 29.3 points-per-game so far this year. Brockport has been strong defensively, holding their opponents to 71 points-per-game which is third in the conference. “Geneseo and Brockport are two very different teams,” Rejniak said. “Geneseo is more run-and-gun because they have good scorers and Brockport is more in your face kind of team. The biggest thing with these back-to-back games is that you need amnesia. Whatever happened the day before you have to clean out of your head and be ready for what’s ahead.”

Upcoming Games

• Friday, Dec. 2 @ SUNY Geneseo At 5:30 p.m. • Saturday, Dec. 3 @ The College at Brockport at 2 p.m. •Tuesday, Dec. 6 Vs. SUNY Cortland At The Hawk Center, 5:30 p.m. (home opener)



The New Paltz Oracle

Kit Small Notches 1,000th Point By Melissa Kramer

At one point in time, Kit Small never thought she would be playing college basketball—now, the Slingerlands, New York native is one of only four in Hawks women’s basketball history to achieve the milestone of 1,000 career points. W i t h 7:30 remaining in the second quarter against No. 7-ranked University of Roche s ter in front of a rowdy crowd of 600, the Hawks fourth-year co-captain retrieved a pass from fellow fourth-year Courtney Irby inside in the high post, faced up with one dribble and went to the right side, laying in the historic bucket during the second quarter on the night of Nov. 18. With the routine layup, Small joins the elite trio of Robin Shields, Jasmine Sanchez and Alex McCullough as the exclusive members of Hawks past to reach the achievement. She is now included in the 97 State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) women’s basketball players to ever reach the prestigious number. Following the game, Small received congratulatory messages from all over, including a text from

McCullough, the most recent Hawk to achieve the feat in 2013 that read, “welcome to the club.” “It really is an honor, especially looking at the other people who have earned that,” Small said. “Being one of those few people and looking at the other people who have also earned 1,000 points in their career is really an honor to be in the same group as them.” Small said that with only needing five points entering the contest, the plateau she was about to reach was easy to keep track of in the first few minutes of the game. “I really didn’t want to think about it at all because I didn’t want it to be a distraction or in my head, so as soon as I got it done I thought ‘great, it’s over with’ and I just wanted to go win the game,” she said. “I didn’t even want to think about it. It definitely stunk that it didn’t come with a win against the University of Rochester because it would have made it that much more awesome to beat the No. 7 Div. III team in the country and get that milestone all in the same game.” After the game, Seward commended his guard. For the Hawks, Small has become a leader for the younger players, just as those before her had done. Last year, she was a crucial part of the team’s SUNYAC Championship winning squad and individually took home ALL-SUNYAC First-Team honors, only a pair of the multiple accolades Small has earned during her illustrious Hawks career. “She’s amazing,” Seward said. “It’s hard to put into words what she means to the team because she means

so much, pretty much everything. As a player, she does so many different things. Obviously she scores but she leads, communicates, defends and rebounds.” For only beginning basketball in the fifth grade, and being limited to nearly three minutes playing for her first Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) game, because of her defense-first mindset, Small has grown into the Hawks’ top scorer, leading the team in points per game since her freshman year. From day one, Seward and the coaching staff asked Small to step up and be more aggressive looking to score. Ironically, for the player who only reached double digits once in her high school career, Small now ranks third all-time in career points throughout Hawks women’s basketball history. She trails Shields by 82 points for sole possession of first place. “You know that she’s going to do what’s in the best interest of the team and she wants to win and have the team be successful more than anything else,” Seward said. “It’s just a really comforting and reassuring feeling to have that kind of player.” Just like she does on a regular basis, Small will leave her mark on the Hawks women’s basketball program with a goal for the first-years to grow and in years to come, be able to continue on the success that she has made an impact on over the last four years. After helping the Hawks to advance to the NCAA Tournament last season and losing 93-75 to Rowan University in the first round, Small said making it to the Final Four is a definite goal, and added that the eight first-years on this year’s roster will have the experience of games under their belts by the time they would make it to the biggest stage. “I don’t see any reason why we wouldn’t be able to do that,” she said. “Once we make it there, it’s two more

Kit Small is 82 points away from being the No. 1 scorer in Hawks women’s basketball history. PHOTO COURTESY OF NEW PALTZ SPORTS INFORMATION

Thursday, December 1, 2016

TEAMMATE TALK ”Kit lets her passion for basketball drive us to success. She is a consistent hard worker and is not okay with the little mistakes she makes nor her teammates. She is the perfect person to get things done during crunch time.”

- Courtney Irby,

Co-captain games, why can’t we just win the whole thing?” Next for Small will be a celebration of her milestone. With a ceremony originally scheduled for the team’s home opener against Hartwick on Nov. 22, the honoree herself requested for it to be rescheduled to their next game at the Hawk Center on Dec. 6, so her family, who has attended every game but three in Small’s collegiate career could all be in attendance for the special day. A player such as Small does not come along often for coaches, sometimes every five or six years, if they are lucky, Seward said. “With me being a head coach for 11 years now, I’ve only had a couple of them and it’s pretty special when you have that,” he said. “It may be a cliché, but we’re going to just enjoy every day and really have fun being around that kind of player because they don’t come along very often.”

The New Paltz Oracle


Field Hockey Midfielder Scores Rookie of the Year Honors



Steven Woessner SPORT: Volleyball YEAR: Fourth MAJOR: Accounting HOMETOWN: Massapequa Park, NY

H OW DID YOU FIRST START PLAYING VOLLEYBALL? I first started playing volleyball in eighth grade when my basketball coach made the team try out for volleyball and I instantly fell in love with the sport and haven’t looked back since. OUTSIDE OF PLAYING VOLLEYBALL, WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO?


Hawks first-year midfielder Sophia Urrutia became the second player in program history to receive the SUNYAC Rookie of the Year award.

By Michael Rosen

Copy Editor |

Sometimes an event that seems like a stroke of misfortune can turn out to be a blessing in disguise. For first-year field hockey midfielder Sophia Urrutia, this turned out to be the case when she tore the labrum in her hip. “I got injured playing soccer in middle school and I just picked up field hockey as another sport to play,” Urrutia said. “I ended up being a lot better at it than I anticipated; by eighth grade I was on varsity for my school.” Urrutia’s early success has carried over to present day, as it was announced on Nov. 9 by the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) office that she was named the conference Rookie of the Year as well as being listed as a member of the AllSUNYAC Second Team. This comes despite the fact that Urrutia, who was recruited as a forward, played the whole season as a midfielder, a position she had never played before. “[Sophia] came to New Paltz as a forward, and as the season began we realized that due to injuries we needed someone to step into the right mid position,” Hawks head coach Shanna Vitale said. “We thought it would only be temporary, but [Sophia] started at the right mid position all of our games and played every single minute. She ended up exceeding our expectations. “For a freshman to come into a program

and make such an impact immediately is a very difficult thing to do. [Sophia] really took on a role that she wasn’t familiar with, embraced it and created positive change on the field. She did a tremendous job this season helping us with our victories and becoming a better team.” This season Urrutia led the Hawks with seven assists, which was tied for fifth in the SUNYAC. She also notched two goals, including the game-winning goal in her collegiate debut against St. Lawrence University on Sept. 3. She became the second player in program history to ever receive the SUNYAC Rookie of the Year award, the other being Kaitlin Ruggiero who earned the award as a defender in 2004. Aside from having to adjust to a new position, Urrutia has also had to overcome other adversity on the field. She noted her stature as an obstacle she has had to face during her playing career. “The most difficult part is that field hockey is one of those sports that requires you to use every part of your body,” she said. “It’s a very physically strenuous sport and I’m very small. So having to overcome my size was a big thing because I’ll play girls that are physically stronger than me and a lot bigger than me.” Urrutia cited her teammates from past and present as her inspiration to continue with the sport despite the challenges she has had to

face. “I had a couple of older girls who were on varsity when I was younger that really inspired me to keep playing and work through adversity,” she said. “I would say that the upperclassmen both on my team at New Paltz and my team in high school really helped me and inspired me to continue.” Having three years left with the field hockey program at New Paltz, Urrutia may very likely one day serve as inspiration for some of her future teammates. She has already set goals for what she expects from herself and her team the rest of her time at New Paltz. “I want to keep our program on the map,” she said. “We’ve had very successful past seasons, whereas this season was a little bit different. As a SUNY school that’s Div. III we keep up with some of the best private schools in the country. To just keep that reputation and continue to be successful is what I want.” Her head coach has plenty of faith that Urrutia can help the team accomplish that goal. “I would say [Sophia] is an old soul, she’s wise beyond her years,” Vitale said. “She is not afraid to speak her mind, which from a freshman standpoint is difficult to do. She is also very engaging, on the field and off the field and is always trying to figure out ways to get better. She is someone that always wants to learn and isn’t satisfied with where she is. She really has been a blessing to have in this program.”

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Outside of volleyball I play the drums, surf a little bit during the summer and I’ve been getting into photography, too. Also I play some more volleyball. I can’t get enough of it. WHO ARE YOUR BIGGEST ROLE MODELS? My biggest role models are easily my parents. They’re the most supportive and strong people I’ve ever known. I can only hope to grow up and be like them. ARE YOU A FAN OF ANY PROFESSIONAL TEAMS? As far as pro volleyball, I’ve been rooting for Padova in Italy recently. They have a couple of guys from the USA and it’s always fun to root for them. Outside of pro volleyball I’m a New York Islanders fan all the way. DO YOU HAVE ANY SPORTS-RELATED SUPERSTITIONS? Nothing too intense. Just listening to music to get amped up. Making sure I get a good meal in before the match, and of course staying loose with the team and joking around. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SPORTS MEMORY? Winning the National Championship last season.



ATHLETE OF THE WEEK? Contact Michael Rosen at



The New Paltz Oracle

Women’s Basketball Prepares for Conference Play

By Melissa Kramer

Sports Editor |

The women’s basketball team now has a record of 3-2 after their last four nonconference games. First, the Hawks played in the Chuck Resler Tournament hosted by the University of Rochester on Friday, Nov. 18 and Saturday, Nov. 19. In the first of two nonconference games, the Hawks fell to the host Yellow Jackets, who are ranked No. 7 in Div. III and played in the Elite 8 last season, 88-76. Despite the loss, Hawks head coach Jamie Seward said playing in front of an exuberant Rochester crowd of 600 is only going to help the team in the longrun. “Overall, when you look at all of that, the idea of playing that kind of team in that kind of hostile environment in their gym, realizing that we can not only compete, but we can play really well against that kind of team and having to give up a big lead and overcoming the deficit and tie the game a couple of times, I think it shows a lot,” Seward said. “But we need to figure out how to win those kind of games and there’s still a long ways to go and a lot of things that we need to figure out before we get to that point. We’re certainly a long ways away still.” During the game, fourth-year cocaptain Kit Small became the fourth Hawks women’s basketball player ever to reach the 1,000 point milestone and is currently third all-time in total points with 1,053. Small finished with 16 points for the evening. Hawks first-year guard Marion Dietz recorded a career-high 20 points in a team-high 37 minutes of playing time. Hawks fourth-year guard and forward Morgan Roessler grabbed a team-high eight rebounds. The Hawks entered halftime with a 40-30 lead, but the Yellow Jackets took their first lead of the game with 1:09 remaining in the third quarter. With 6:37 left in the fourth quarter, fourth-year cocaptain Courtney Irby knocked down a pair of free throws to tie the game at 61 apiece. A 3-pointer by Yellow Jackets first-year guard Lauren Foley would

give her team the lead for good. After a quick turnaround the following day, the Hawks defeated the University of Mount Union 56-44. Even after trailing 29-16 at halftime, the Hawks were able to knot the game at 35 with under three minutes left to play in the third quarter. The Hawks pulled ahead for the first time late in the third quarter and for good after a 3-pointer from Dietz with 9:19 remaining in the final quarter. With contributions from Small’s 17 second-half points, they never looked back. Small was named to the All-Tournament team after the conclusion of the game. For the first time this season, the Hawks played in front of their home crowd at the Hawk Center in a 69-67 nonconference win in the final minute against Hartwick College on Tuesday, Nov. 22. With Hartwick leading 5146 heading into the fourth quarter, the Hawks were able to make a comeback. Hawks second-year guard Lindsay Bettke and Dietz each converted a 3-pointer to cut the Hawks’ deficit to one (65-64). Hartwick extended their lead to three on a layup, but Dietz knocked down another 3-pointer to tie the game at 67-all with 1:05 remaining in the contest. With seven seconds remaining, Small was fouled and sent to the freethrow line with the chance to put the Hawks on top. After converting both free-throws and taking the lead 69-67, Hartwick earned one last possession. As the clock expired, Hartwick was able to attempt a layup and after an offensive rebound, a 3-pointer to win the game, but to no avail. Hawks fourth-year co-captain Courtney Irby said opening up the home season was thrilling and bittersweet for fellow fourth-years Small, Roessler and herself. “This is our last year playing here so we know that we are giving everything that we have,” Irby said. “Our team has our backs 100 percent so whatever we say goes and it is good that we are all on the same page. We are all in to win it and nothing is going to stop us!” Seward said in the final minutes, the Hawks finally decided to play with some urgency, and needed to make three


Hawks first-year guard Marion Dietz registered a career-high 20 points in an 88-76 loss against the University of Rochester on Nov. 18.

straight 3-pointers in order to make that urgency matter. “The odds are not in your favor when you leave it up to that kind of thing, to have to make three straight shots at the end of the game,” Seward said. “We know we have to play better and the team knows that and now it’s just going about the day-to-day process of trying to make that happen.” Even with a victory under their belts, Small said the team did not perform as well as they wanted to, and that they would have liked to win by a larger margin than the scoreboard showed. “We let it come down to luck in the end,” Small said. “If we didn’t hit those 3-pointers, then we wouldn’t have won the game. We can’t really let it come down to that. Luckily we pulled out the win, but we definitely want to start performing stronger in all of our games because we know that we can.” On Tuesday, Nov. 29, the Hawks started a three-game road trip as they fell to New York University by a score of 70-60. This was their final noncon-

Thursday, December 1, 2016

ference contest before starting State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) play against SUNY Geneseo on Friday, Dec. 2—the team who the Hawks defeated to win the SUNYAC Championship last season. After taking on the Knights, the Hawks will close out their road trip and face The College at Brockport in a conference matchup the following day at 4 p.m. Seward said that the team is practicing defending with urgency play after play and a lack of communication for upcoming matchups. “We’re waiting until we fall behind or until there is an actual urgency and you can’t allow that to happen,” Seward said. “You have to understand that every play is extremely important and every play has to be played with that kind of urgency or else when you get to that urgent situation it’s going to be too late eventually. That’s what we’re talking about and working on, and hopefully we’ll see some fruits of our labor over the next couple of weeks.”


The New Paltz Oracle

Orange And


Not all social movements are fought in court or on the streets. Sometimes those battles can take place on a field or in an arena. Throughout history, sports has shown that it can go above and beyond a competition between teams or individual athletes and whether or not they win or lose. We’ve seen athletes such as Muhammad Ali, Jackie Robinson and Billie Jean King not only succeed in competitive sporting events, but also face social adversity and change the way some of society may have viewed people similar to them. Robinson, for example, endured waves of racial slurs being yelled at him by fans, managers and fellow players. Opposing players also tried to physically harm Robinson on the field, and through all of it he agreed to remain quiet and do nothing but take it. Today we are primed for another athlete of their caliber given all of the social unrest that has taken place the past few years, and all of the conflict that has risen from the recent presidential election. There are many barriers that have yet to be fully broken in society, and sports can lead the way to that change. Along with Ali, fellow boxing legend Mike Tyson identifies as Muslim and in the NBA, the likes of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Shaquille O’Neal also follow the religion. We have also been witness to soccer star Zinedine Zidane and


Breaking Barriers two-time Grand Slam champion Marat Safin. Recently, NFL Pro Bowlers such as Aqib Talib of the Denver Broncos and Muhammad Wilkerson of the New York Jets have started to appear in the NFL. However, there is still a lot of room for Muslim athletes to make an impact in the sports world. There have only been a handful of Muslim NHL players, including current forward Nazem Kadri of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the first overall pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft Nail Yakupov. There has been but one Muslim player throughout MLB’s history; Sam Khalifa played three seasons for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1980s. There are still plenty of American professional sports leagues that have yet to be witness to a transcending Muslim player, and in a time when many Muslim citizens are wrongly feared a few Muslim superstars could be very beneficial for our country. We have also yet to see a superstar LGBTQIA+ athlete in American professional sports. Michael Sam came close as he was drafted by the then-St. Louis Rams in the 2014 NFL Draft. Caitlyn Jenner won the 1976 Olympics decathlon title nearly 40 years before her transition. There have been LGBTQIA+ athletes who have played in American professional sports, but none were open about their sexuality or gender identity until their retirement. No question that an LGBTQIA+ athlete who is open about their sexuality and/or gender identity would face a lot of adversity.

There were questions regarding Sam’s presence in a locker room and how his teammates would feel changing in front of a gay player. A superstar LGBTQIA+ athlete would certainly help dispel any negative opinions of the presence of LGBTQIA+ members in sports, and perhaps in society in general. There have also yet to be any women playing in major American professional sports leagues such as MLB, the NFL, the NHL and the NBA. There are separate sports leagues that give female athletes a chance to shine, such as the WNBA. But women have proved that they are more than capable of playing alongside men in professional sports. The previously mentioned Billie Jean King defeated Bobby Riggs in a “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match in 1973, one of the most famous tennis matches of all time. Manon Rhéaume appeared as a goalkeeper for the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning in preseason exhibition games in 1992 and 1993. Seventeen-year-old Jackie Mitchell struck out Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig, arguably the two greatest hitters of all time, in an exhibition game in 1931. Slowly, the gender line in professional American sports is beginning to blur. Kathryn Smith was hired by the Buffalo Bills as their special teams quality control coach prior to this season, the first full-time female coach in NFL history. Justine Siegal served as the Oakland Athletics’ guest instructor for their

Instructional League Club in 2015, making her the first female coach in MLB history. She has also attended spring training alongside many MLB teams, including the New York Mets. The first full-time female NBA assistant is Becky Hammon, who has been with the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA since the 2014-15 season. There have been controversies in the sports world regarding equal treatment of women, such as the question as to why the United States men’s national soccer team gets paid significantly more than the United States women’s national soccer team despite the women having much more success than the men. A female athlete consistently playing alongside male athletes in a popular American sports league is long overdue. Society and sports have come a long way over time. The concept of an African American playing in professional sports used to be viewed with so much scrutiny, and now it’s no stranger than a white athlete playing professional sports. But there are still many barriers that have yet to be broken, and I firmly believe that one day they will. I hope to see more Muslim superstars as well as many LGBTQIA+ and women athletes succeed in professional American sports leagues. There is a lot of work to be done, but we are progressing more and more as a society and there is going to be a day when we will see people of all backgrounds competing against each other in all sports.

Rugby Finishes Fourth in Regional Tournament By Jack O’Brien

Managing Editor |

The historic, undefeated season has finally came to an end for New Paltz Rugby Football Club (NPRFC). In the Region 1 semifinals of the National Small College Rugby Organization (NSCRO) playoffs on Saturday, Nov. 19, NPRFC fell to the University of Maine-Orono by a score of 89-7. Fourth-year fly half Tim Stanson scored the Hawks’ lone try. The University of Maine-Orono finished last season with a national ranking of 30th place. Ankle injuries plagued the Hawks early on, with both fourth-year inside center Kevin Menyhart and third-year scrum-half Peter Randazzo being forced to leave the game. Stanson said

that while the team felt “bummed and disappointed with the results,” they remained resilient and fought back from injuries. “Our team continued to show fight after losing two very key players,” Stanson said. “Some of us cried after the first game, but we definitely had a more relaxed attitude entering the second game.” On Sunday, Nov. 20, the Hawks lost to SUNY Plattsburgh by a score of 46-31. With the loss, the Hawks finished the season in fourth place in the NSCRO playoffs. Though the fall season is over, Stanson said that the team would be participating in rugby sevens tournaments throughout the spring. NPRFC head coach James Fryer ‘16 praised the team’s overall ef-

fort during the season, remarking that it was the first time since 2011 that NPRFC traveled out of state on a “school-funded, overnight trip.” Fryer said that the toughest part will be defending their championship title against their divisional competition, including their cross-Hudson rivals Vassar College. “We stepped out of our little, Tri-state pond into the big waters of NSCRO rugby,” Fryer said. “The season ended exactly how I pictured it, finally losing to a fantastic rugby club. We suffered injuries, had to play with a very different lineup, but I’d say we played our system well and stayed competitive over the weekend. We had a blast all together, that’s what it’s all about.”

Thursday, December 1, 2016


New Paltz Rugby Football Club (NPRFC) in a scrum.



Kit Small Becomes Fourth to 1,000 Points PAGE 12

Sophia Urrutia Named SUNYAC Rookie of the Year PAGE 13





Volume 89, Issue 10  
Volume 89, Issue 10