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MAR | 2015 WWW.KUTOWER.COM

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THE TOWER THE INDEPENDENT VOICE OF KEAN UNIVERSITY

Think twice before being AppSent By Marco Rodriguez The temptation to skip class is one that every college student has faced at one point or another. While true, would you give in to it if you knew those close to you would find out? Thanks to “Big Brother”, parents now have the opportunity to track your attendance in class. Class120, an app created by Core Principal, tracks your location and notifies your parents and coaches when you skip class. The app, which had its official launch in January 2015, was first tested successfully in 21 universities across the country last year. It is currently only available for the iPhone and costs $17.99 a month or $199.99 for a whole year. While the software automatically maps out the college campus, it does require that students submit their class schedules for it to work properly. With this information already on the phone, the app can promptly notify a parent and/or coach when a student has failed to attend class. In an interview with NBC Nightly News, founder and CEO of Core Principle, Jeff Whorley, believes his app offers a simple solution to the growing concern about low graduation rates. “The single best thing to improve students’ success in college is simple: Go to class,” said Whorley. Of course, not everyone would agree with Whorley. Such is the case with Kean University junior, Chris Capaldo. “Just because someone goes to class does not mean they’re paying attention and doing their work,” Capaldo said. “I feel that this app is another way of being babysat which is not what college students need. If we can’t be trusted at this point of our lives, when will we be trusted?” Angela Morin, Capaldo’s mother, understands her

son’s point of view, but believes that apps like this should be handled on case by case basis as parents see it necessary. “As a parent, you learn the personalities and habits of your children throughout the years,” Morin said. “Some kids are responsible and don’t need to be involved with programs like this, but on the flip side, there are others who could greatly benefit from it. If it means helping my child to stay accountable, remain focused, and succeed in school, I would seriously consider it.” Critics of Class120, and apps like it, complain about privacy issues given that the app is constantly tracking student locations. In response to this, Whorley says that there is nothing to worry about, as the app only tracks students a small amount of time. “This is only monitoring where you are at a very small percent of the average 19-year-old college student’s time,” Whorley told NBC Nightly News. “Of their total year, it’s a little over 4 percent of their time that they’re in class, so it’s a very small amount of time. But it’s a critical amount of time.” Lisa Romanienko, an English professor at Kean University, while weary of privacy concerns, understands the financial reasons behind someone wanting a student to participate in the app. “In general, I believe that the rise in the surveillance state is highly dangerous and an undemocratic element of modernity,” Romanienko said. “However, when it comes to the commodification of higher education, people consider knowledge to be a service and commercial good like any other. Therefore, if parents and the state are subsidizing the high tuition, then it is predictable that the financiers continued on page 6

Kean students launch barbershop quartet

In college, it isn’t uncommon for musically-themed students to set up acts dedicated to their music of choice. Often their acts will be related to popular genres including rock, pop and others. Yet for four Kean students, their musical act would be outside of the traditional norm, something both new and classic. Since 2014, The Garden State Sound Quartet has been entertaining audiences with their renditions of classical songs. Following the tradition of such quartets, with their deep harmonic vocals, the four have made a niche all their own. With members, Michael Harris, Daniel Hutchinson, Nick Buonvilino,

Class120: The revolutionary new app that tracks whether or not you’re in class and notifies your parents/coaches.

“Best dorms in NJ?” Not so fast By Daris Mendez & Rebecca Panico

and Christopher Neuman, they wish to share their voices with the world. But in the same manner as all musical acts, the Quartet had to find its voice over time. “We started some male quartets, and other smaller assembles, here at the school,” Hutchinson said. “A friend of ours started a male choir, basically a bunch of guys who enjoy singing together. We did a couple of concerts as a sextet and a little quartet.” With the graduation of one of their members, the group was left in the predicament of looking for their next idea. After holding several auditions, the 3 remaining members found their newest member in the form of Nick Buonvilino.

Kean University proudly displayed “#1 ranking for ‘Best Dorm Rooms’ among New Jersey public universities by Niche.com” on their website’s homepage from mid-January to Feb. 11, but ranked number three overall on Niche.com’s list. Niche.com, previously and most commonly known as College Prowler actually named Ramapo College number one amongst New Jersey college dorms. Kean University’s spokeswoman, Susan Kayne, justified why Kean had been publicizing itself as number one. According to her, Kean takes the top slot for public institutional rankings, not private. “Niche ranks Kean’s dorms #3 in the state, inclusive of private and public colleges and universities,” Kayne explained in an e-mail. “Kean is the highest ranked public institution. We make it clear on the website homepage that Kean received the ‘#1 ranking for “Best Dorm Rooms” among NJ public universities’ by Niche.com.” Ramapo College, however, is a public institution and declares that on their website. Addressing this fact, Kayne explained that the statement “#1 ranking ‘Best Dorm Rooms’ among NJ public universities by Niche. com” is still correct because technically Ramapo is not a university Kean’s official Facebook and Twitter pages displayed its correct ranking on Jan. 16. Kayne acknowledge the confusion between the different websites and explained that University Relations will work harder to make their messaging clearer. “My team in University Relations is responsible for the website and social media content,” she explained. “We should have been consistent how we presented this information in all of our media vehicles… We will work harder to ensure consistent messaging.” On Feb. 11, the statement on Kean.edu was also changed to display the number #3 ranking as a result of inquiries from The Tower. And for the students who have firsthand experience living in Kean dorms, the perceptions of this ranking have been mixed. The Tower reported on the conditions of some of the dorm rooms last semester, including complaints about air conditioning and faulty elevators, and these students have expressed their dissatisfaction with Kean Dorms. Some students however believe that Kean dorms are decent but don’t understand the discrepancies with the ranking. “I think it’s great that Kean is ranked number three under NJ dorms,” said Natalie Sayantar who lived in the new Upperclassmen Residence Hall. “This means that they could get a lot of students to check out the campus. Kean’s campus is beautiful and with the dorms being ranked #3 that is a bigger plus.” Sayantar also explained her confusion with the statement of being

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Members of the Garden State Sound Quartet: Daniel Hutchinson, Michael Harris, Nick Buonvilino, and Christopher Neuman

By Bryan C. Kuriawa

Photo: Marco Rodriguez

Photo: Nicholas F. Buonvicino


2 THE TOWER

March, 2015

Author Series welcomes poet to Kean By Vera Boateng “The black cowboy hat with buffalo-nickel trim, the fine nose and mustache that sat under the wide brim.” This was a source of inspiration from an old fifties movie that inspired Josua Mehigan to write his poem, “Herd at the Men’s Mission.” Mehigan was featured in Kean University’s Author Series event on Jan. 18. He is a Levinson Prize recipient and author of two poetry books, “The Optimist” and “Accepting the Disaster.” He expresses his unique and profound ideas about life and the intensity of mental breakdowns. Mehigan is a native of Johnstown, a small town in upstate New York and works as a professor at the College of Staten Island. He says his poetry writing goes back to the age of 10 when he would write limericks. By the age of 14, Mehigan was attempting to write more serious poems that were metrical and rhymed. At the event, the book he discussed was his most recent, “Accepting the Disaster.” The book contained poems with simple narratives that make it easy for any reader to follow. The book also featured the poem, “Fire Safety” that was published in Poetry Magazine, a magazine geared towards information on poetry issues as well as featuring a new poet weekly. Mehigan’s poems have also appeared in many periodicals such as The New Republic, The New York Times, The New Yorker, and the Paris Review. In 2013, he received the Levinson Prize. In 2011 he received Poetry Magazine’s Editor’s Prize for best feature article of the year.

Mehigan was also awarded a Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Some of his popular titles include, “Here”, “The Orange Bottle”, and “Herd at the Men’s Mission.” Most of the poems in his poetry book, “Accepting the Disaster,” were written about personal experiences that Mehigan had. “‘Herd at the Men’s Mission, refers to the Bowery Mission in Manhattan and a scene in the fifties movie, ‘On the Bowery’ that made me think,” he said. “It struck me, which doesn’t usually happen because writing poems takes me a long time to write. In the movie theatre I sat there and wrote half of it.” Mehigan shows his talent and interest in one of his narrative poems, “The Orange Bottle”, which talks about a male who doesn’t want to take his medicine Clozapine. This is used for treating Schizophrenia, a severe brain disorder. He displays the intensity of the disease in the male character and how it started to consume his life. This event was sponsored by the Nathan Weiss Graduate College and headed by Jeffrey Beck, Dean of the Nathan Weiss Graduate College at Kean. Beck explained that he met Mehigan through Brooklyn Poets, a poetry-reading workshop in New York. “I wanted Joshua to come to Kean because I thought about how I wanted to do a reading series as part of my classes that I teach at Kean, and have the students do research on living writers,” said Beck. Mehigan also gives readings of his poems at other schools and the New York City Poetry Festivals. The next location that Mehigan hopes to present at is Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts. The next featured author in Kean’s Spring 2015 Author

Photo: Vera Boateng

Joshua Mehigan, the featured poet at Kean University’s Spring 2015 Author Series.

Series is John Keene, a poet and award-winning novelist. The event will take place on Tuesday Mar. 24 at 4:30 p.m. at East Campus (EC) 203. To find more information about Mehigan and his poetry, visit www.joshuamehigan.net. The website features information about his books, poems, upcoming events and many of his publications.

Theft at Kean University alarms the campus community By Sade Cox

along with bright blue Converse style sneakers. He is an African American male, and believed to be in his fifties or sixties. The investigation of the professor’s stolen bank card traced the suspect using the card at a New Jersey Transit Military Park train station and a Popeye’s restaurant in Newark and a 7-Eleven in Elizabeth. Enlisting the assistance of the New Jersey Transit Police Department, Kean Police received a tip that the suspect uses the stolen credit cards at ticket machines to purchase a monthly train pass at an estimated cost of $72. He then sells these passes to passengers waiting on the track for a profit of approximately $50 cash. “A person may believe they are getting a good deal by purchasing passes from panhandlers for a cheaper price,” said Gorman. “Unfortunately, the ticket machine doesn’t require any pin to use a credit card.” The suspect will keep swapping the card until it is

Campus police are investigating two reported thefts in Hennings Hall and the Nancy Thompson Library that investigators believe are connected and which led to one University professor’s stolen credit card being used to purchase expensive monthly commuter train tickets. The Department of Public Safety and Police Investigations Bureau identified a suspect involved in the Jan. 29 incidents and believes the thefts are connected with similar incidents on and off the campus. There were two victims involved in the thefts, a female student and a professor. The victims’ identities are confidential. The female student was targeted in the library when the suspect attempted to grab her backpack, claiming he thought it was his cousin’s bag. The suspect was unable to steal anything in this incident. “We were able to pull surveillance video of the suspect from the campus library security camera of the suspect going through the student’s bag,” said Detective Michael Gorman, Bureau Supervisor at Kean Police’s Investigations Bureau. “However, we couldn’t get a good look at his face to make an identification.” The second target was a professor who left her purse unattended in her office in Hennings Hall where her wallet and credit cards were stolen. “She found out her wallet was stolen when her bank called and told her that her credit cards had been used at random places,” said Gorman. As shown in the photographs from surveillance videos, the suspect tends to carry a brown satchel and wears a hat, Photo of suspect at Military Park Train Station in Newark and 7-Eleven in Elizabeth, N.J.

Temperatures fluctuate at Kean— both outside and inside By Gabrielle Gale Prendatt-Carter There’s nothing easy--or cheap--when it comes keeping Kean students, staff and faculty warm these frigid winter days. Kean’s heating system has been in full-swing this semester as record breaking cold temperatures engulf New Jersey. With an annual utility bill of approximately $6 million, heating and cooling the campus is no small undertaking, officials said. The main boiler system does not supply steam to all the facilities on campus. The STEM building, East Campus, Green Lane Building, D’Angola/Harwood, Kean Hall and Hennings Hall all have their own, stand-alone systems. On exceedingly cold days, fuel oil is used instead of natural gas to run Kean’s boilers. As a result of a necessary call for curtailment by Elizabethtown Gas during cold weather, only one boiler at a time is used, impacting and limiting the steam capacity for the campus. That sometimes causes additional problems. This winter the Facilities and Campus Planning Department has received numerous complaints about uncomfortable room temperatures, both too hot and too cold. Temperature issues are addressed as soon as possible, according to Vice President of Facilities and Campus Planning, Phyllis Duke. Often times, a short-term solution such as a temporary chiller or heater will be provided until a

budget for the repair is set. “We work really hard at trying to make the environment as comfortable as possible,” explained University Relations spokeswoman, Susan Kayne. “If there are issues, you just need to let us know, and we’ll do our best to address them because we don’t want cold students and we don’t want overly heated hot students.” The University’s systems do not pinpoint every single room in the areas that are reported cold or hot, so complaints should be specific when reporting a classroom or lecture hall that is too hot or too cold. Dormitory issues should be reported to Residence Life’s maintenance department and not Operations or Facilities. The main line number to report temperature issues to Campus Planning is (908) 737-5000. Since class has been back in session for the Spring 2015 semester, Kean University has had two delayed openings, one early closing, and two class cancellations due to the snow and freezing cold. On Feb. 17 the school had a delayed opening because Union County reached a low of 13 degrees and had 0.10 inches of snow. In the event that Kean must shut off the heat on the entire campus to repair the problem, temporary heaters must be approved by Kean’s Fire Safety Coordinator. “So there’s contingency plans, but it all depends on the magnitude of the repair,” said Duke.

reported stolen and declined. The suspect will then throw it away and keep using other cards. According to Gorman, police installed a pin hole, or a disguised camera, in the ticket machine at the train station. By doing this, the Kean Police department was able to track the credit card, the amount of money spent, time and location of the suspect. The camera caught a clear photo of the suspect, but police are still having trouble identifying the perpetrator. The image of the suspect from the pinhole camera was sent to every police department in the state of New Jersey. The Kean Police department reached out to students and faculty on Feb. 11 asking for students to be on the lookout for the offender. The Kean S.A.F.E. initiative and the town of Union has been assisting the Kean police department to report any suspicious activities. Since the incident there have not been any more reports of theft. Members of the University community who either lose, or have personal items stolen, should report the incident to campus police, authorities said. “The crime rates on campus are lower than ever before because more people are connected with CampusAlerts to report any suspicious activity on campus, according to Gorman. The suspect was last seen by train passengers in Rahway. Rahway police are assisting in investigation. If anyone has any information, contact the Public Safety Department at 908-737-4800. “There are 15,000 eyes in the Kean community to alert the police if they see him again,” Gorman said. Photo: Kean Police

Dorms

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ranked number one, explaining that number three is already a great spot. “They [Kean] are only two steps below,” said Sayantar. “I personally don’t think Ramapo’s dorms are nicer than ours.” Christopher Royster, a senior who lives in Rogers Hall also shares the same sentiment as Sayantar despite living in one of the older residence hall. “I think it’s great that we are ranked number three,” said Royster. “It shows that our dorms are kept in great shape.” Niche.com’s methodology page explained they used “more than 50 statistics sourced from various government and public data sets, Niche’s own proprietary data, and 11,857,508 opinionbased survey responses across 20 topics from 294,497 current students and recent alumni.” The website weighted 70% on these unique student opinions through reviews. These reviews were made by niche.com users. The remaining 30 percent is distributed among statistics from the U.S Department of Education including average housing cost, housing capacity, and student housing crime rates. According to Niche.com, 93 users completed the dorm survey for Kean, although it’s unclear if these users were Kean students. Niche.com’s registration process requires users to list what school they are enrolled in, but has no way of confirming if this is true. Niche.com failed to respond to The Tower’s inquiries regarding when the study was conducted or how many Kean students participated in the study. The credibility of the website was questioned by Helder Jacinto on Kean’s Facebook page since Niche.com listed Kean in Union City, and not Union. Union City is located in Hudson County, while Kean is located in Union County. “Let’s trust an article that gets the town that Kean is in wrong. If they don’t get the town right…the article lost all credibility,” commented Jacinto on Kean’s link to Niche.com’s study.


3 THE TOWER

March, 2015

Kean prepares for its 8th Annual Human Rights Conference By Annalise Knudson With the controversy surrounding the right to medical care within the U.S. Congress, Kean University’s upcoming Human Rights Conference will focus on how healthcare is a universal human right. The 8th Annual Human Rights Conference will be held on Mar. 13 at Wilkins Theatre. Hosted by Kean’s Human Rights Institute (HRI), the conference is free, open to the public, and lunch is provided. On-site registration for the conference begins at 8 a.m. and starts at 9 a.m. Organizers said it would focus on healthcare as a basic human right from a United States perspective and a global perspective. There will be two speakers who will be demonstrating and speaking about human rights issues. “Students will have the opportunity to hear first-hand from two of the leading thinkers of today on the issue of health care as a human right,” Director of the HRI, Elizabeth Turchi, said. Catherine Albisa, the co-founder and Executive Director of the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative (NESRI), will be speaking through a social and economic perspective, including health, education, and housing, particularly in the United States. Albisa is a constitutional and human rights lawyer and is a graduate from Columbia Law School. Pulitzer Prize winner Laurie Garrett will also be speaking at the conference from more of a global perspective and about the Ebola outbreak in Africa. She wrote two bestselling

books and won the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Journalism. She currently serves as the Senior Fellow for Global Health for the Council of Foreign Affairs in New York. “The conference will challenge us to look within ourselves, our own communities, and the world around us to find and implement solutions to health crisis and lack of access to care,” Turchi said. “Students will come away with information and an understanding of how our human right to health care is impacted by the decisions we make as individuals, as a collective society, and by our elected officials.” The first conference was held in 2008 and in May 2010, the Human Rights Institute officially opened its doors to the Kean community. The HRI was created to help promote awareness of human rights issues in the community and worldwide and to help create initiatives to problems to battle human rights abuses. “Together as a Kean community and overall community we will come together during this conference to identify discuss and address this timely topic that impacts each of us individually and collectively,” Turchi said. After walking through a gallery of artwork and traveling up to the second floor of the Nancy Thompson Library to the HRI, students will find quiet offices, art and artifacts on display behind glass cases. Student volunteers and the new director of the institute welcome those who enter with their lively and energetic approach. The director of the institute, Elizabeth Turchi, was appointed at the beginning of February after living in The Hague, The

Kean staffer fears outsourcing By Nicole Brown At seven every morning, Nubia Bolanos can be found in Hutchinson Hall rushing from room to room vacuuming, sweeping, scrubbing, collecting and disposing trash before faculty and students arrive, but this routine may not last much longer as the University considers outsourcing its maintenance staff. “I cry every day,” said Bolanos. “I never complain about my job.” On her lunch break, she agreed to divulge her personal life and how Kean University’s decision would affect her. As she stood in the hallway, three faculties greeted her and she responded with a smile and a wave of her hand. Immediately after, she chuckled and blurted, “my broken English.” She hopped on the elevator to the third floor where she introduced the interpreter for the interview, Janeth Ronquillo, assistance secretary for world languages. In 1980, the economy plummeted in Colombia and forced Bolanos to plot an escape route for a better life. Earlier that year, she traveled to the Bahamas with friends on vacation, but the island’s economic instability shocked her. This compelled Bolanos to construct a second plan, an illegal trip to the United States. Upon migrating to the U.S., Bolanos lived at a friend’s house where she worked two jobs making cosmetic containers and clothes hangers in factories. “Life as an illegal immigrant is hard,” she said. “I could not drive, I had to hide.” However, Bolanos experienced similar job uncertainty before. On September 11, 2001 the U.S. experienced one of the most tragic moments in history when two hijacked airplanes collided in the World Trade Center (Twin Towers) buildings. As a

result, the United Airlines in Newark, NJ decreased its staff through unemployment and Bolanos lost her job. “I was devastated,” said Bolanos. “I didn’t know what to do so I went to Union County College to learn English but I learned nothing.” Nine months after Bolanos lost her custodial position at United Airlines, Kean University employed her as a house keeper. But after 14 years of services she may have to contemplate unemployment again. “There are no jobs in the market,” said Bolanos. “I have to pay for rent and food.” The single mom’s deepest fears include her child’s education, paying her bills and surviving in a “stagnant” economy. Since Kean University waives its employees’ children tuition, she worries about her son’s higher education at Kean, primarily because her employment at the University depends on his enrollment. “I want my son to graduate,” she said. “If I lose my job he cannot graduate.” Bolanos’ “glowing personality” stuns Ronquillo who commended Bolanos for “maintaining her composure and carrying out her duties” despite the uncertainty of her job. Stephanie Hawkins, Office Manager for Middle and Secondary Education claimed that Bolanos “is a part of the family.” “She is attentive to the needs of staff in the department,” she said. “She does an excellent job, everyone loves her.” Outside of her job, Bolanos dances to salsa music and cooks all different kinds of food. She urged the University to reconsider their plan to outsource the maintenance workers. “The same way the University depends on us, the same way we depend on our jobs,” she said. Photo: Nicole Brown

Nubia Bolanos in her uniform at Kean University.

Photo: Northeastern University

Catherine Albisa will be speaking from a social and economic perspective in the U.S.

Netherlands for three years working as an International Human Rights Attorney. Her experience with working within the United Nations is sure to educate and promote the HRI. She worked as the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and for the United Nations as the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Her friendliness to the students could convince anyone that she had been working as the director for years. Her volunteers are Lina Caswell, a graduate student who is bilingual in English and Spanish, and Cyril Yemofio, a junior soccer player who is bilingual in French and English. They each have their own interests in human rights and hope to become better engaged with the United Nations and to focus on immigrant population as an issue. Turchi

emphasized the hard work and dedication that her volunteers put into the HRI and their interest in becoming human rights activists. “My two volunteers have a lot of energy and really want to volunteer,” she enthused. “They have a lot of great ideas. We are hoping for a new art gallery and exhibits that focus on Latin and South America.” Students can get more involved by joining the HRI’s Book Club hosted by author and Anne Evans Estabrook Human Rights Senior Fellow John Prendergast which meets on the last Tuesday of every month. Students can also visit the HRI Gallery located on the first floor of the library. To register and find more information about the HRI, students can visit their website: www.kean.edu/humanrightsconference

Maintenance staffers to be fired due to outsourcing By Nicole Brown The New Jersey Civil Service Commission approved Kean University’s request to outsource Kean’s housekeepers, groundskeepers and automotive mechanics, a move expected to put the future of more than 100 University employees in potential jeopardy. Vice President of University Relations Susan Kayne said the University outsourced custodial services at the Liberty Hall Museum and East Campus for the past four years. In 2013 the University carried out a comprehensive evaluation on Kean’s maintenance staffers and decided to improve service quality elsewhere, she said. She claimed the decision would save the University millions. “Successful transition and a resulting review of the requests for proposals by outsource vendors in September 2014 found that the University could also expect to reduce payroll by $2.2 million per year,” said Kayne. Gerald Newsome, Vice President of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, the union representing Kean’s maintenance staff, said Kean’s decision to outsource its maintenance staff does not reflect cost savings. Newsome said the local union cannot agree to the administration’s request to alter their salaries to facilitate cost savings because the maintenance staff does not have the power to negotiate the kinds of compromise the University wants.

Quartet

“The University knows that the State has a certain salary range for its workers,” said Newsome. James Castiglione, President of the Kean Federation of Teachers, the union representing full- time faculty and professional staff, said the KFT is concerned about the University’s proposal to outsource maintenance workers. “Faculty and staff have developed relationships and confidence with the maintenance staff,” stated Castiglione. “These workers have undergone background checks and they are committed to the university.” Additionally, Castiglione emphasized that the maintenance union is not the only union within the Kean community that the administration targets. He explained that the number of full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty has declined from about 400 to less than 300 over 10 years. While Kean’s maintenance workers are anxiously awaiting the fate of their jobs, many echoed sentiments of disappointment in the University’s decision. Many wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, but one grounds worker who committed over 15 years to the University now worries about the livelihood of his family. Kayne stated that the University’s Board of Trustees reviewed the recommendation to outsource in December 2014 and a decision will be made this spring. The Board of Trustees voted for outsourcing on March 2, 2015. For more information, visit kutower.com.

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“They contacted me and asked if I wanted to be in a quartet with them, and I was actually thrilled about it because I wanted to do a quartet for some time,” Buonvilino said. After gathering together all of their members, the group had to come to the question of what would be their new name. Following such ideas as “Rolling Tones,”” Keynotes,” and most controversially, “Cereal, no milk,” they finally decided upon their current name. In the summer of 2014, the newly formed quartet had their first performance during a church mass, performing a popular piece entitled “O Love that wilt not let me go.” Performing at various churches and other private events, the Quartet found the experiences to be quite enjoyable. During these performances, they find that they have been warmly received by many of the older generation. “It appeals more to that generation and some of the younger generation as well,” Buonvilino said. “It’s really interesting to see how happy these people are when they hear us sing, it’s a very great feeling.” Referring to how audiences react, Hutchinson stated many saw their music as an old friend upon listening to it. It was also surprising to audiences that college-age

individuals would be interested in singing this type of music. Despite many of the audiences being of an older generation, the Quartet feel they can appeal to a younger demographic. “People can still appreciate good music, especially how good it sounds, when you get four guys who can click together that well and that closely,” Harris said. Referring to the recent popularity of “Pitch Perfect” and “The Sing-Off,” they mentioned this can bring back A cappella music into the mainstream. In the same sense, they mention that even some modern songs can be transformed into such pieces for their own performances. However, the members state that this style will always endure and appeal endlessly to any generation. Yet, they would always consider the possibility of doing a CD release if the opportunity was presented. “It would be nice to handout some of what we do in a recorded fashion,” Buonvilino said. “We just have to find a place to record, and we do have some places in mind, we would just have to get in contact with them.” At present, The Garden State Sound Quartet is currently looking into a summer tour, or as they jokingly put it, as far as they were willing to drive. Considering their previous success, it will surely be a tour that will delight and entertain audiences of all generations.


March, 2015

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

4 THE TOWER

Kean Stage’s rocks the house with production of Peter Pan By Bhriana Smith Our palms were aching from the velocity in which we clapped them together as the red curtains closed. The cast and crew of Kean Stage delivered a spectacular, Broadwayworthy production of Sir J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, taking the audience on a journey to Neverland. The influence of the steampunk lifestyle added a different but refreshing aspect to the classic musical. The set designer, Nick Benacerraf, undeniably captured all elements of Peter Pan without taking a single thing away from the play. The big clock on the stage –surrounded by numerous gears and goggles hinted to the one imperative theme in Barrie’s original play: time. Austin Brecht, who played the role of Peter Pan, did a remarkable job capturing the innocence and elegance of the infamous boy who never wanted to grow up, his impeccable ability to capture all the childish innocence aided in the audience’s journey to Neverland. Perhaps one of the more touching segments in the show is when Tinker Bell, played by Hanna Rose Bergen, dies in an attempt to save Peter Pan. Director Holly Logue, added an aspect that was utterly unexpected. In order to revive poor Tinker Bell, Peter Pan asked the crowd for applause. The theater, which was initially quiet from shock in Tinker Bell’s passing, erupted with applause. People young and old were elated when Tinker Bell –now revived –sprung into the air, fairy dust exploding around her. The audience had become her salvation. The Indians, Lost Boys, and Pirates also made the audience’s journey to Neverland worthwhile. Whether it was a funny line from one of the Lost Boys, the silliness of one of the pirates, or the fun unpredictability of the Indians, kept the audience anticipating what the actors would do next. The older Darling children, actor Jack Tomy playing John Darling and Emily Conklin playing Wendy Darling, worked wonderfully together. Their absolutely adorable younger counterpart, played by both Lucas Toll Luchsinger and Joshua Hunt, definitely won over the hearts of the audience. Even if you tried, it is impossible to forget the beautifully terrifying Captain Hook, played by Mark Zebro Jr. Zebro, who also played Mr. Darling. With elegance that would leave the even the most sophisticated people

envious and wickedness that kept small children awake throughout the night, Zebro captured every component of Captain Hook. From the costume down to persona, he was one of the most wicked villains to grace Kean Stage. The only thing more frightening than Captain Hook was the crocodile that frightened Captain Hook. Played by Taylor Woods, a high school senior at the UCVTS Academy for Performing Arts, the crocodile, ingeniously designed, frightened all of the children in the theatre. Whenever the ticking, which signaled the arrival of the crocodile, the children in the audience gasp, or exclaimed “uh oh!” It was quite a comical sight. Logue had nothing but good things to say about the cast of the production. “This is an extraordinary cast. There’s something very magical about the way they all work together,” said Logue. “They’re sweet, they’re dedicated, and really, really hard working.” From the special effects, to the orchestra who never missed a beat, to the lighting that illuminated the faces of all the crewmembers, every component of this musical was magical.

Kean Tower Launches Online Video Section By Anthony N. Muccigrossi To add more multimedia to journalism at Kean University, The Tower has launched its new online video section. This section, which is in its first semester of production, will feature a variety of segments related to events on and off the campus. First in the series of online video segments is “Fifty Shades of Kean,” which went public during the last week of February. The segment included Editor-In-Chief of The Tower, Bryan Kuriawa and Phil Giannino, of WKNJ-FM, asking students questions regarding the film “Fifty Shades of Grey.” “Fifty Shades of Kean” uncovered how Kean students feel about the film. Students, many of whom are excited to go see “Fifty Shades of Grey,” responded in positive manner. However, students also expressed their concern for the film, citing the promotion of abusive relationships. Of the students interviewed, a majority have not seen the film. “Fifty Shades of Grey,” is about Christian Grey, CEO of Grey Enterprises, who has a passion for erotic acts, such as bondage (BDSM). The film focuses on the erotic relationship between Mr. Grey and Anastasia

Photo: Bhriana Smith

Peter Pan (left) and Captain Hook (right) standoff in a battle to save Wendy (middle).

Steele. To watch the full video segment of “Fifty Shades of Kean,” you can visit kutower.com and click on the video section tab. The Tower, which publishes four print newspaper issues per semester, will continue to include a variety of video segments at the time each newspaper is published. If you have an idea for future video segments, send an email to: thetower@kean.edu

Phil Giannino, of WKNJ-FM

Photo: Phil Giannino

One of the most wicked villains Kean stage has seen

Photo: Bhriana Smith

Mark Zebro plays Captain Hook in Kean Stage’s Peter Pan.

By Bhriana Smith The dynamic of villainy in fictional narratives is fascinating. Villains are becoming popular in their own right, especially the villain in Kean Stage’s Peter Pan production, Captain Hook. Even if you’re not a fan of Peter Pan, you can’t help but be amazed by Mark Zebro Jr.’s portrayal of Captain Hook. Zebro, a senior who’s a theater major with a minor in communications, captured all of the pride, malevolence, arrogance and wickedness that make Captain Hook fearfully fascinating. His acting is comparable to that of Dustin Hoffman’s portrayal in the Steven Spielberg’s film Hook. Interestingly enough, Hoffman’s portrayal aided Zebro while he was rehearsing for the role. While the audience was captivated by Zebro’s confidence on stage, Zebro said that he wasn’t always that way. “I was never a very social kid growing up. I’m not sure what even led me to audition for my first high school show,” stated Zebro. “But there’s this moment—as soon as you step on that stage, something just takes over you.” As most actors in theater, Zebro played another character during this production, the father of Wendy, John and Michael – Mr. Darling, who is introduced in the play as an antagonist. Upon the return of his children from Neverland, his role reverses and he becomes a protagonist. When asked where he could see himself 10 years from now, Zebro expressed that he hoped to be acting, specifically voice acting. “Voice actors are less justified in the media. I think they’re fantastic,” said Zebro. As for which actor he aspires to be like, he responded, “Robin Williams”. “Robin Williams –I’ve found him to be a role model to me. He comes from almost the same place that I do,” stated Zebro. “It was a probably a little less than a week before I got casted when Robin Williams’ passed. I went back and watched a couple of his films back to back, like Hook. In the last scene there’s a great line in which Williams says ‘To live would be an awfully big adventure,’ rewording J.M. Barrie’s original line in which Peter says ‘to die would be an awfully big adventure.’ It’s so powerful. He definitely left his legacy on this world.” Zebro is especially fond of Williams’ role of The Genie from Disney’s Aladdin. While Zebro’s idol is that of a tragic hero, his ability to capture the elements of a villain was astonishing. “I’m just playing a role that so iconic, and so well known by audiences around the world. It’s just amazing,” he said. Captain Hook may have been the greatest villain that Neverland has ever known, but the greatest villain Kean Stage has ever known is, Mark Zebro Jr.


5 THE TOWER

March, 2015

music Father John Misty is in love and ‘Bored In The USA.’ By Adilene Rodriguez Few artists are able to transition from genre to genre organically and still make their music sound good; it takes a talented artist to make that shift. It takes an even more talented artist to do that in a single album. Josh Tillman, ex-drummer of the folk band Fleet Foxes, released his second studio album under his persona of Father John Misty on Feb 10. The album, I Love You, Honeybear, is filled with songs of different genre variations and interesting instrumental arrangements. Father John Misty transcends his strong folk roots and creates a coalition of musical madness, driven from influences of genres

that include baroque rock, soul, and jazzfusion. He even has an electronic number, “True Affection,” that sticks out like a sore thumb, but nevertheless serves as a testament to Father John Misty’s genius. Accompanying the fusion of noises, are Tillman’s poetic, sometimes bizarre, and comical lyrics. The variation of lyrical content is what helps make this album more remarkable. In the song, “The Night Josh Tillman Came To Our Apartment,” he showcases his writing abilities to come up with a song so enchanting, you overlook that it’s about a one-night stand. This song, along with other songs like “Nothing Good Ever Happens At The Goddamn Thirsty Crow,” is were Tillman’s story-telling talents are impeccable.

Then you have the song like “Bored In The USA” which he first performed on the “Late Show With David Letterman” in November of last year, where news of the album was first announced. His performance of the song, which was backed by a string orchestra, drew laughter from the crowd as he sang about the useless education he received and asked “President Jesus” to save him, a reaction very few, if any, of Letterman’s musical guest get. Whether you’re listening to the mariachi horn-filled, “Chateau Lobby #4 (in C for Two Virgins)” or Father John Misty’s gospel of love, “When You’re Smiling and Astride Me,” this album is sure to be pleasing to an array of music fans, regardless of genre preference.

Cover of “I love You, Honeybear.”

Photo: Sub Pop/Josh Tillman

Even though it’s still early on in the year, I Love You, Honeybear is already one of the best albums of the year and you can expect it to be on many of best albums lists at the end of 2015. Key Tracks: “When You’re Smiling and Astride,” “Strange Encounter,” “Holy Shit”

Fashion ‘Yeezy’ Season Arrives in Unconventional Fashion By Yayona Bangura

Alexander Wang, Rihanna, P. Diddy, Jay-Z, Beyoncé and Anna Wintour; the most talked about front-row guests in all of this Spring’s New York fashion week, attended Kanye West’s and Adidas Originals collaboration show, Yeezy Season 1. On Feb. 12, along with the release of his Yeezy Boost sneaker, West’s highly anticipated show was a welcoming back of all kinds. Being his second fashion collection since his first in 2011 and since parting ways with Nike to join Adidas, many hoped that he would showcase a line similar to the clothes he has been known to style his wife, Kim Kardashian, in. Especially since his 2011 Spring/ Summer Ready-to-Wear line was harshly criticized by fashion’s elite. To some enthusiasts’ pleasant surprise or dismay, it was anything but that. West had one of the most racially diverse high-fashion runways. Ranging from household models like Grace Bol, to street culture connoisseurs Ian Connor and Luka Sabbat. The line-up

Final lineup of models at the end of ‘Yeezy Season 1’ show

even included sister-in-law Kylie Jenner who graced the spotlight. In their most natural states, with little-to-no makeup or accessories, the models marched up the runway in lines of four in what seemed to be soft military-style apparel. With looks that included hefty yet chic jackets, backpacks and clothes in neutral tones

Photo: Yayona Bangura

of gray, beige, green, chocolate and occasional splashes of blood-orange and pink. The remaining female models were clad in nude sheer stockings from head to toe, along with one or two of West’s pieces; appearing almost naked to the eye. At the end of the show, West debuted

his new song “Wolves,” featuring artists Vic Mensa and Sia, from his yet to be released album as he walked out between the models, the crowd cheering as he bowed. Almost immediately after, Internet critic comparisons ranged from “highend versions of American Apparel pieces,” to “clothes that looked to have been worn in ‘The Matrix’ movie.” Some simply dismissed the line as overhyped and unworthy; others loved it but were confused by the presentation. A closer analysis makes things clearer. Where most designers choose to dress an entire model in their pieces, West did the exact opposite. By separating his pieces from the models creating a nude illusion, West made it so that the pieces themselves would stand out rather than the outfit construction, which is a clever move on his part. With all the harsh criticism West has received about his work ethic, fashion line, music, and just about anything else he engrosses himself in, this can be said; Yeezus Season 1 broke boundaries in an innovative way and was a show that, whether appreciated or hated, won’t be forgotten anytime soon.

Movies The best-selling phenomenon becomes a hit film By Anthony N. Muccigrossi

“Fifty Shades of Grey” played on the big screen the week of Valentine’s Day, and probably led to many interesting (and in some cases, likely awkward) dinner conversations. The novel, which was composed of adult-related content, adapted to the screen as a more visual method to experience the true essence of the story. In the book and film you are introduced to Christian Grey, a rich executive with the looks of prince charming. The young Anastasia Steele, playing the sweet, innocent college student, is bound to become Mr. Grey’s next subject of Bondage. Mr. Grey has the entire world in his hands, including his own private helicopter, which he pilots himself. The plot begins when Ms. Steele is asked by her ill friend to interview Christian Grey, the CEO of Grey Enterprises. From the very first moment the two meet, it is clear there was a sense of physical attraction.

As the film progresses, Mr. Grey and Ms. Steele find themselves crossing paths. Mr. Grey is convinced Ms. Steele is the one for him. However, Ms. Steele doesn’t yet know of Mr. Grey’s erotic sexual desires. At first, you would believe the two were seeking an actual relationship, not just a relationship of Bondage. M r . Grey, on the other hand, is clearly not a man looking for his lifetime romance, being that he has had over 10 sub missives and continues to try and seduce Ms. Steele. Clearly, Ms. Steele is the one looking to make Mr. Grey more than a friend. Mr. Grey, a man who has done this many of times, says he doesn’t do romance. Shot from many angles, with dramatic close-up shots, Cinematography played a crucial part in bringing the erotic acts to the screen. The overall concept of the film has viewers and others responding both in positive and negative manners. It appears people feel the film didn’t ac-

curately portray a BDSM relationship. It did, in fact, showcase an abusive relationship, as some from society put it. Although “Fifty Shades of Grey” is a film, it isn’t required to portray real or factual pieces. With all films, whether a documentary or a creation of purely fiction, criticism will always exist among cinephiles and the average viewer. I, myself, found the film to be something I haven’t seen before. To be entirely honest, I didn’t love nor hate the film. I thought the film presented something new to cinema, a film that exposed another side to the average purely sexual relationship, commonly known as “Friends With Benefits.” Based on the ending, viewers can see “Fifty Shades of Grey” continuing with a sequel, which is likely to be based on the second book “Fifty Shades Darker.” Many unanswered questions will leave the “Fifty Shades of Grey” lovers on a journey into the minds of Mr. Grey and Ms. Steele.

Fifty Shades of Grey Film Poster

Photo: Imdb.com


6 THE TOWER

THE TOWER

OP-ED March, 2015

Department of Communication

How involved should parents be in a college student’s education? By Kristen DeMatos College is a time of immense growth for many students. For those who dorm, they are given a new freedom to be their own boss. Even commuter students gain freedom. If you don’t feel like driving to class one day, it’s up to you whether or not you choose Netflix over your history lecture. Want to go to sleep at 3 am? Go for it! Want to leave class 20 minutes early? Sure, go ahead! Don’t feel like doing that final project? It’s all up to you! At least it’s supposed to be, right? When you enter college, you are taking a giant step towards adulthood. In the future, your parents aren’t going to be able to call your boss and explain why your work was poorly done or why you showed up late 4 days in a row. That’s a reality that both students and parents have to come to terms with. It’s in a parent’s nature to want to care for their children, but as we age we need to grow. Regardless of their intention, I feel that parents should not be involved with schooling beyond positive encouragement. It’s normal to ask questions and know what’s going on but it needs to be up to the student whether or not they go to class and do well. With smart phones and apps, such as Class120, which was discussed on the front page of this issue, it’s really easy for parents to keep tabs on their college kids and see how they’re doing and if they’re attending classes. I feel the problem with that is that is has the potential to hinder the student from growing. People need to be given freedom in order to grow, and if a parent is always watching over their kid’s shoulder, that’s never going to happen. Some parents feel that even though their child is legally an adult, they still have a huge say in what their kid does. In some cases it’s true, but when it comes to school, what’s normal? Speaking with some professors at Kean I learned that over the years, many have been emailed, called, or personally approached by a student’s parents who are unhappy with their child’s grades. The reality is that the university looks at the student as an adult, so regardless of how the parent feels, they really don’t have a say. I could understand why parents would be upset

AppSent

Photo: Creative Commons

about this, though, especially if they’re the ones paying or helping to pay for the tuition. They just want to make sure that their money isn’t being wasted. My problem is that I think the frustration and concern is being misdirected. If your kid doesn’t show up to class, why should their professor give them a good grade? The professor can’t make the student come to class, and as much as they’d like to believe it, the parent can’t either. With my parents, they’ve always let me do my own thing and learn from any mistakes. If I want to stay up till 4 AM and play Trivia Crack even though I have class early in the morning, that’s my decision to make and I’m the one who has to deal with the sleepiness. When I don’t feel well, I don’t ask my mom if I can stay home from school, like I did when I was younger. I simply let her know that I’m skipping class that day. I feel that even that may seem unnecessary to other college kids. I think my parents have always given me a lot of freedom, but in my case, that makes me want to have them be more involved. One of my friends once told me that her parents had no idea what classes she was taking or what days she was at school, whereas I make a color-coded schedule for my parents at the beginning of every semester. As involved as my parents are, however, I don’t think they’d ever get directly involved with my schooling unless it concerned graduation. At the end of the day it’s the student getting the degree, so it’s up to them whether or not they’re willing to put in the effort and time to earn it.

Kean University Center for Academic Success 1000 Morris Avenue Union, NJ 07083 Telephone: (908) 737-0460; Fax: (908) 737-0465 Email: thetower@kean.edu; www.keantower.com

The Tower is an independent, laboratory newspaper of Kean University’s journalism option in the communication major program. It is published monthly through the regular academic year and supported by advertising and the Department of Communication. The Tower is not responsible for claims made by its advertisers. The Tower is a public forum and is free from censorship and advance approval of content by the university administration. The Tower staff is responsible for its content.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: BRYAN C. KURIAWA MANAGING EDITOR: KRISTEN DEMATOS NEWS EDITOR: REBECCA PANICO FEATURES EDITOR: ANNALISE KNUDSON ARTS & ENT. EDITOR: ADILENE RODRIGUEZ SPORTS EDITOR: MAK OJUTIKU ONLINE EDITORS: ANTHONY MUCCIGROSSI YAYONA BANGURA

STAFF JAMIE ALICEA PHIL ANTHONY TIMOTHY AWOJOBI VERA BOATENG NICOLE BROWN SADE COX ALYSSA DAVIS

KRZYSZTOF KUCZA DARIS MENDEZ RYAN NORTON MARCO RODRIGUEZ CELESTE SIMMONS BHRIANA SMITH

(Continued from page 1) OPINION PIECES AND LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

of this service would demand an optimum return on their investments.” Student athletes are also discontent about new apps like Class120 being introduced into universities. Ronald Dunn, a volleyball player at Kean University, has his doubts on the actual benefits of the app. “Personally I would not like to have an app like this implemented on my team,” said Dunn. “I think at the end of the day, it doesn’t harbor a healthy trusting team relationship, which is necessary. A better alternative would be to have coaches personally stopping into classrooms to make sure that their players are attending.” Similar to Dunn, Kean softball player, Tonianne DeMatteo believes that trust plays a major role when deciding whether to

implement Class120. “I wouldn’t be opposed to having an app like this because I am one of those people who never miss class,” Dematteo said. “However, I do think it’s a little over the top and I think the coach should trust that their players are going to class.” While the app is most widely used by individuals, Core Principles does offer it to universities at large to help them increase student attendance. According to research conducted by Core Principle, students are skipping close to 25% of their classes over a four year period. So the next time you’re warm and cozy in bed, the sound you might wake up to is not an alarm, but a phone call from mom and dad asking why you didn’t go to class.

The Tower welcomes guest columns and letters to the editor from any source. Such material should be submitted to thetower@kean.edu or left at The Tower’s offices. To verify sources of written material, submissions must include the writer’s name and contact information. Students should include their class (sophomore, graduate, etc.) and major. Faculty and staff should include campus title or position. On request, names may be withheld from publication if The Tower staff determines there is a legitimate reason to do so, but no anonymous letters will be accepted for publication. The Tower reserves the right to edit, and refuse publication of any submission.

DISPLAY AND CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING Deadline for space reservations for display advertising is two weeks before the publication date. Ads submitted after that may be used on a space-available basis. All ads are run-of-the-paper unless an extra fee is collected for a paid position. Deadline for art work and copy is one week before the publication date. Classified advertising can be submitted up to the Thursday before publication as long as the payment is made at the same time. Call (908) 737-0461 or email thetower@kean.edu for a rate card.

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SPORTS

7 THE TOWER

March, 2015

Kean’s baseball team ready to play ball and win it all

Photo: Kean Athletics

Kean University’s baseball team

By Angel Ospina

“ The atmosphere of being around the team and competing on an every day basis is what I’m most excited for.”

Experience is the teacher of all things, and the upperclassmen student-athletes of Kean’s baseball team are ready to put that experience to the test, as they believe the skies are the limit for this upcoming season. “My goals are the team goals which are wining the NJAC, the NJAC Tournament, winning the regionals and getting that championship,” said senior, James Lyczkowski. With the season quickly approaching, the studentathletes are determined to provide whatever leadership skills are necessary in order to accomplish their long list of goals. The seniors of the team are looking to provide a mentorship role to the team’s underclassmen. “When a younger player doesn’t do what he is supposed to do, I just go up to him and try explaining what he did wrong and teach him how to do it the proper way,” said Lyczkowski. Lyczkowski is a catcher who is battling two herniated disks in his back, but the injury will not stop him from trying to lead on and off the field. Senior Charles Theilmann is going into his final season with the Cougars with a team first mentality. He and the other seniors are preparing to lead the team to their first NCAA Division III National Championship title since 2007.

“This season I personally don’t have any personal goals because once we get to that point where we compete for the championship and get the ring all of the personal awards will come with it,” said Theilmann. The Cougars are coming off a season where they went 35-14. “I’m just gonna have to lead by example and answer any questions they have because the game is really fast when you first get here,” said Theilmann. Theilmann is a right-handed pitcher from Piscataway, New Jersey who is determined to make his final year on the team, a year to remember. “All we want is to be at the top after the last game,” stated Theilmann. Junior Ryan Kelly didn’t mention any accolades, but instead just looks forward to playing baseball and being around his teammates for the entire season. “ The atmosphere of being around the team and competing on an every day basis is what I’m most excited for,” said Kelly excitedly. On Feb 28, the team opened their season with a 3-1 home win over Eastern Connecticut State University. Sophomore Emilo Calderon pitched for eight innings, giving up only one hit. Thielmann recorded the save with two strikeouts.

Kean University Softball Recap

The softball team celebrating their 2014 NCAA DIII Union Regional Championship win.

By Jaime Alicea III The Kean University softball team is looking to continue off their red hot season last year where they posted a 35-13 record. Last season saw the Cougars reach the championship game and win the tournaments winners bracket. The team has shown that they are a force to be reckoned with, as they outscored their last season opponents 225-111. The team finished the season last year ranked 17th in the country, but will begin the 2015 season ranked 15th in the nation. Senior picher/infielder Courtney Yard also looks to continue as the rocket ace for the Cougars after winning 23 games and most notably pitching the first perfect game in the program’s 42 year history on April 1st of last year against New Jersey City University. The Cougars

were among the final 16 teams to make it to Super Regional NCAA Tournament last year. Head coach Margie Acker joined the prestigious 300 win club last season after her Cougars routed Desales University 5-2 in a milestone victory. Coach Acker is entering her 16th season in 2015 with expectations sky high, as her team posted the softball programs best record in almost three decades. After finishing last season 75th out of 400 sponsored schools, the Cougars look to continue their progress, moving forward with nine new faces to the team. The future looks bright for this talented softball team, but its up to them to push forward to reach their ultimate goal and be champions! The action kicks off with softball set to begin March 6th as Ackers’ Cougars face off against Frostberg State University at Virginia Beach.

Photo: Kean Athletics

The future looks bright for this talented softball team, but its up to them to push forward to reach their ultimate goal and be Champions!


SPORTS

8 THE TOWER

March, 2015

Photo: Kean Athletics

Kean University’s women’s lacrosse team

Women’s lacrosse team looking to take 2015 by storm By Ryan Norton On March 4, the women’s lacrosse team of Kean University will begin their season by visiting the Manhattanville College Valiants in Purchase, NY. This season marks the third under head coach Jordan Trautman. In her first season as head coach in 2013, Trautman and her Cougars found great success, tallying an impressive 13-6 record, marking the first winning season for the women’s lacrosse team since 2008. The 2014 season got off to a great start, beginning with a perfect 4-0 record, before finishing the season at 9-9. Despite the .500 record, the Cougars dominated the statistics, outscoring their opponents 210190 for the season, averaging 11.67 goals per game to their opponents 10.56 goals per game, and averaging nearly six shots more a game than the opposition. Since the end of the 2014 season, the team has gone under significant changes, as more than half of the team is not returning for this season. Only nine members of last years campaign are returning in 2015. Eleven freshmen join the team for this season.

“In all the most positive ways, this will be a season of surprises.”

Despite a team that is mostly comprised of first year players, Coach Trautman is confident they will adapt and conform quickly to the system of play. “The freshman are my first recruiting class, so it’s fun for me,” Trautman said. “It’s the kids I worked through the recruiting process with, and I brought in, and made sure they are ready to be Kean Cougars. This season will be full of surprises because we have so many new faces.” Coach Trautman comes from an extensive lacrosse background herself, having played for four years at Georgetown University. There, she was a team captain, and had All-American Honors. Most recently, she tried out this past summer for the U.S Women’s National Team, and made it all the way to the final round of the tryouts. While the team is going into this season with almost a completely new and unknown identity, Trautman believes this season will be one filled with good and fun surprises. “We have an incredible group of kids, who are hard working, dedicated and driven,” Trautman said. “We have a lot of talent on our team. Although our roster is relatively small, we are very deep in terms of players. This is the deepest our roster has been for as long as I’ve been here.” The Cougars will play six home games this season, the first being on March 7 against Arcadia University. Other home games include: March 21 vs. Widener University, March 26 vs. The Sage Colleges, April 7 vs. Montclair, April 18 vs. Rutgers-Camden, and April 25 vs. The College of New Jersey.

Women’s basketball season comes to a close By Alyssa Davis In the final game of the Women’s Basketball season, the Cougars fell to New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) rival, The College of New Jersey, to finish the season with a 12-13 record. Kean started the 2014-2015 season strong scoring a season-high, 90-points and securing a 49-point win against Simmons College in their first contest. In their next five games, the Cougars went 3-2; besting two NJAC teams, New Jersey City University and Ramapo College, along the way. Throughout Dec. and Jan. the Cougars secured eight wins and fell in defeat in six contests. In 10 of those 14 games, the women went toe-to-toe with NJAC rivals. They managed to secure wins in five of those games. The team ended up posting a 7-11 record in the conference. The last games of the season proved to be difficult, as Kean lost all five by seven points or more.

Photo: Kean Athletic website

2014-2015 Women’s basketball team

One of the nine players who will return next season is center Najha Treadwell, a 6ft., freshman starter who scored a season-high 24-points in the last game

of the season. Treadwell lead the team in points-per-game scoring an average of 16. She also had 15 assists, 27 steals, 49 blocks, 9.5 rebounds and a total of 400

points on the season. Treadwell is looking to improve on her play for the next season. “I am looking forward to perfecting my skills and being more aggressive,” said Treadwell. The team will be without seniors Shanice Jones, Shay Collins and AnnaRose Pierre in 2015-2016, all of whom were guards. Jones scored 83 points on the season with 37 assists. She had a total of 48 rebounds – 34 defensive and 14 offensive. Pierre had a strong season with 217 points and 25 assists. She had 124 rebounds in total, 76 defensive and 48 offensive, with an average of five per game. Collins, who had 83 points on the season, 37 assists and 48 rebounds, 34 defensive and 14 offensive, believes that the team has potential for next season: “The team has good players, even with three seniors leaving,” Collins said. “It all depends on their leader and how they jell together as a team.”

Men’s Volleyball earns number one ranking By Krzysztof Kucza After getting it’s best ranking and best seed at the NCAA tournament in school history just a year, the Men’s Volleyball team continues its stellar play. For the first time in program history, the Kean men’s volleyball program has claimed the top spot in the current American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division III Top 15 Poll. The Cougars, under Coach Charlie Ginex, are an impressive 16-0 (only undefeated team left in the nation) and have their best start ever in only its fifth year as a varsity program here at Kean University. In Kean’s first own, “Clash At Kean”, the Cougars dethroned then #1 Juanita (25-20, 22-25, 2725, 12-25, 17-15) and back-to-back NCAA champions #3 Springfield (25-19, 25-13, 30-28). “It just seems like this year, we get it.” stated Senior Setter Ron Dunn when asked . “Our chemistry is stronger than ever and the competition in practice forces us all to be better.”

Chemistry is something that the Men’s Volleyball team have been brewing for the past four year. Five seniors lead the Cougars this year and four have been playing aside on another since their freshman year. “Playing together since freshman year has built more than a friendship,” explained Senior Opposite Hitter Ed Jedziniak. “The chemistry between us is at an all time high because we know one another’s strength and weaknesses so we know how to push each other and pick each other up.” Coach Charlie Ginex also recognizes the importance of having this core of seniors on this year’s roster: “We have five seniors on this team and a lot of very good leadership qualities among those gentlemen,” expressed Ginex. “We have four seniors that have been playing together for four years in this program and their leadership and experience has really shown this year.” In just his second season as Head Coach, Ginex is a stunning 39-8 and feels like he can improve on this spectacular record:

Kean players celebrate after a point

Photo: Kean Athletics

“We are only about one third of the way through the season. Right now we are feeling good about where we are. There are a lot of very good teams in this country and we are only one of them. We know there is a lot of work to be done but we feel that with commitment and constant growth we can evolve and get to where we want to be by NCAA tournament time.”

The Tower March 2015  
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