Towson’s campus and community news source
January 28, 2020
Photo Illustration by Victoria Nicholson/ The Towerlight
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January 28, 2020
January 28, 2020
Editor-in-Chief Bailey Hendricks Senior Editor Tim Klapac
News Editor Keri Luise
#WORD ON THE WEB
What are you most nervous about for the first day back to campus?
Asst. News Editor Sophia Bates
Arts & Life Editor Meg Hudson Asst. Arts & Life Editor Grace Coughlan
@capn_frost Most nervous about having exceptional drip #firstimpressions
@brooke_foundas Making new friends in classes so I can form study groups!
@vays.interlude definitely the shuttles being on time! i don’t want to start off being late already.
@xnicole.gg Making friends in classes haha
Sports Editor Jordan Kendall Asst. Sports Editor Muhammad Waheed
Staff Writers Alex Best Ashley de Sampaio Ferraz John Hack Grace Hebron Lauren Heyl Suzanne Stuller Aaron Thomas
Who do you think will win the Super Bowl?
Brooks Warren Kayla Wellage Marcus Whitman
Photo Editor Brendan Felch Asst. Photo Editor Amanda Bosse
Staff Photographers Owen DiDonna Nikki Hewins Ryan Moriarty Karl Reimer Lacey Wall
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General Manager Mike Raymond
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Circulation Staff Jack Baker Anthony Capparuccini Scott Halerz Kirsten Tildon
8000 York Road University Union Room 309 Towson, MD 21252 (410) 704-5153 email@example.com thetowerlight.com The Towerlight print edition is published by students of Towson University on Tuesdays. The Towerlight is owned by nonprofit Baltimore Student Media Inc., BaltimoreStudentMedia.com. The Towerlight’s advertising deadlines are firm: Wednesday noon for space; Friday noon for art. Classifieds appear online and in print and are self-service at TheTowerlight.com/classifieds. We encourage letters to the editor and online feedback. Commentaries, letters to the editor, editorial cartoons and other editorials express the opinions of their authors and not necessarily the views of the newspaper. The Towerlight does not discriminate based on age, color, condition of handicap, marital status, national origin, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation. ©2019 by The Towerlight, 8000 York Rd, Towson, MD 21252. All rights reserved.
MEET THE GREEKS
In this workshop users will gain an understanding of the Blackboard environment and learn the basic features. Faculty, GA’s and TA’s are encouraged to attend.
Come out and meet all of our fraternities and sororites on campus!
Cook Library Room 404A, 11:00 a.m to 12:00 p.m
WVC Ballrooms, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
HOOP FEST/3 POINT SHOT CONTEST
EMPTY BOWLS WORKSHOPS
Come have some fun, it’s FREE to participate! Registration is on site.
Anyone regardless of their experience with ceramics is invited to join TU students and faculty in creating a bowl after a demonstration on hand-building.
WELCOME2TU ESCAPE ROOMS Join us at this W2TU Event- ESCAPE ROOMS on Thursday, January 30 from 7-10PM! Sign up for a space in advance. Check in will be on the 3rd floor of West Village Commons. Your options are School of Wizardry, Patient Zero, and Snow Globe.
An Intramural Sports Pass is not required.
WVC Ballrooms, 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Burdick Hall, Gym 1, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
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January 28, 2020
Division among Democrats a concern TYRONE BARROZO Columnist
With the arrival of the new decade comes last year’s problems. One of those problems, that is the continuing division and conflict amongst Americans, unfortunately, does not seem that it will be disappearing anytime soon in 2020. As the Democratic National Committee continues to scramble to send their best lamb to slaughter for what will inevitably be another media storm that will spawn soundbites and memes a plenty, previous contenders for Old Glory’s crown have decided to chime in on some of the current candidates. Enter Hillary Clinton who, for some reason, was being interviewed by The Hollywood Reporter for an upcoming four-part documentary series about herself, commented on Senator Bernie Sanders. “Nobody likes him,” Clinton said. “He was in Congress for years. He had one senator support him… Nobody wants to work with him, he got nothing done. He was a career politician. It’s all just baloney, and I feel so bad that people got sucked into it.” Side note, for those who proudly still declare that they’re #StillWith-
Her, these criticisms are directed at a man who spent his university days as one of the leaders in the University of Chicago sit-ins at the height of the Civil Rights Movement and hasn’t compromised his passionate, albeit arguably radical, political views. And Clinton’s comments are simply even more hilarious when she tries to shoot at Sanders, who’s currently on the campaign trail, when everyone remembers that one of the biggest names in U.S. politics who should’ve easily won the hearts of the American people somehow manages to lose the electoral college vote to the celebrity extra from “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.” Now, what is the importance of highlighting this sort of infighting amongst the DNC? Why should everyone care that Clinton takes issue and seems somewhat bitter with Sanders as a person? Because it seems to raise an issue that I’ve noticed all the way back from the 2016 election: the culture of division amongst Democrats. In short, I believe that Donald Trump won the 2016 election not because he was the candidate with the most intelligence, the most integrity, or the most patience, but because of Americans’ bickering— specifically Americans who identify
themselves as proud liberals—and their unwillingness to render their political beliefs to a more calculated and moderate degree nor be willing to argue. And, by “argue," I don’t mean a social media shouting match or a Shapiro-esque fact duel for supremacy. Perhaps this is made a problem with the continual allowance of current news media, at their very worst, instigating unneeded conflict for viewership. Regardless, if America wants a new president in 2020 — which I highly doubt, but I can only hope — everyone must recognize a new definition of “argue” within this context. With Clinton’s recent venom, I will say that sort of rhetoric is plain stupid. By mentioning Sanders only to tear him down, not only seems unneeded but also does nothing for her overall professional image for the general public—excluding the vocal minority of zealots who parade for her just as hard as zealots on the right side of the political spectrum. Keeping an open mind, relaxing one’s anxieties for the world, and working with both allies and opponents will be the only way to remedy the aforementioned issue of division and, thus, help the nation finally take their first step towards recovery and maybe prove my doubts wrong.
Trans people need more positive representation JASPER GRISWOLD Columnist
Transgender representation in the media is very important. So often there are transphobic caricatures, or cis people playing transgender characters. There was a lot of controversy not too long ago about Scarlett Johansson being cast to play a trans man, though she later dropped out. South Park features an episode on trans athletes, including a “trans w o m a n ” that started identifying as trans “two w e e k s ago” and had a very deep voice. This all furthers the idea that trans people are just men in women’s clothes - or women in men’s clothes - wearing some makeup. But the Saved by the Bell re-
The Misadventures of Towson: He wasn’t ready
Comic by Nyasha Marufu/ The Towerlight
boot is doing it right. Josie Totah, a trans girl, was cast as the lead role for the reboot of the sitcom. She will play Lexi, who is the most popular girl at Bayside High. It’s important to note that this is a transgender actress playing a cisgender character, at least, it seems this way from early information. Transgender actors are often stuck playing transgender characters. But this is Hollywood admitting that trans women are women, and casting as such. This will give hope to many trans kids hoping to act. Josie came out as transgender in a Time magazine article entitled “My name is Josie T o t a h , and I’m ready to be free.” In that article, she states, “I realized over the past few years that hiding my true self is not healthy. I know now, more than ever, that I’m finally ready to take this step toward becoming myself. I’m ready to be free.” It’s important to note that her gender identity crystallized from another piece of transgender representation – the show “I Am Jazz,” which follows the life of another transgender girl named Jazz Jennings. When I was a kid, I didn’t have that. My transgender representation was trans beauty pageants, where trans women were paraded around and the point was to show how much they looked like cis women. And I remember in “Friends” when Chandler’s dad, was a laughingstock for wearing women’s clothes and being overtly feminine despite gasp - being a guy. All of that gave me a sense of hatred for myself and my identity differing from the gender I was given. As the media shares more positive transgender representation and people see kinder views of trans people, they may grow to understand the community more and it could decrease the hatred. And it could help more transgender kids understand their gender identities.
January 28, 2020
The Division for Student Affairs offers the
The problems we all face through social media MIRANDA MOWREY Columnist @mirandamowrey
A couple of months ago, I reached out to my friend who lives in Indiana to say hello. I mentioned that she seemed like she was doing really well based solely off of what I saw on social media. "Actually, I am having the worst semester of my life," she responded. I would have never known. Her pictures showed her face bubbling over with happiness and her recent Facebook status announced that she landed the lead role in the school play. It didn't seem like the worst semester of her life to me. Growing up during the era of Instagram likes and Snapchat stories, this pressure we feel to be perfect and show off our "perfect" life to others can be so overwhelming. We are constantly being sold this image of other people who seem beautiful, successful, popular, and most of all, happy. And this leads us to think to ourselves: “Why am I not as beautiful, successful, popular, or happy as others? What is wrong with me?” When I asked a group of Towson University students whether social media made them feel better, worse, or neither better nor worse about themselves, none of the respondents marked social media as making them feel better about themselves. This isn’t a surprise and neither are the results of the 2017 survey by the Huffington Post, which revealed that 60% of the 28 to 73 year-old respondents reported that their use of social media negatively impacted their self esteem. Let's start by being brutally honest about the underlying intent of most social media. The purpose of posting an Instagram picture, Facebook status, or Snapchat story almost always is to communicate one message: “My life is so flipping amazing and I am incredibly happy. Did I mention life is all rainbows and uni-
corns and I never run into any problems, like, ever?” Now, tell me one person you know who genuinely believes this about his or her own life. I bet it's really hard to do. That is because no one has the life that social media portrays them as having. Social media is far from an accurate representation of anyone's reality. News flash: the high-quality, beautiful picture that Brittany just posted is in fact the 67th picture that her poor mother was forced to take of Brittany sipping a mimosa at her birthday brunch. Actually, Brittany's birthday brunch absolutely sucked, despite what the picture and the 703 likes beneath it imply. Her boyfriend never bothered to show up, the eggs she ordered were too runny and undercooked, not to mention she could barely even keep them down, as she was aggressively hungover from drinking the night before. Don't get me wrong - social media is a great way to stay connected with others and spread important messages quickly without any geographical limitations. And it is not a bad thing, either, to want to post a picture or status about your wins in life every once in a while. However, make a habit of reminding yourself that whatever you see on social media is not reality. When you look in the mirror at the acne you have to cover up before showing up for your double shift at work, and then go on Instagram to see that Chad and all of his tan, rich, good-looking friends are living it up in Miami for spring break, instead of throwing your phone down and letting it get to you, think about my friend from earlier. Social media is the most unreliable indicator for how well someone is doing in life. Stop comparing yourself to others and stop constantly checking who viewed your Snapchat story, and start looking up from your phone screen every once in a while. I promise that you will learn more about life and those around you through your own eyes than through the screen of your cracked iPhone 7.
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January 28, 2020
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January 28, 2020
Round One Entertainment opens The world reflects
There’s a new player in the game in Towson
on Kobe’s legacy TIM KLAPAC Senior Editor @pacofkla
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight Towson Town Center’s newest entertainment center, Round One, offers visitors bowling, karaoke, billards, endless arcade games, and food and drinks. The endless options allow for fun-filled experiences all just in one special venue.
NATHAN KAY Contributing Writer KERI LUISE News Editor @keri_luise
After months of planning, Round One Entertainment, a bowling alley and arcade, opened a new location at Towson Town Center early last month featuring bowling lanes, karaoke, billiards, arcade machines and a full restaurant and bar. “I think that Towson Town Center was a good location for an FEC (Family Entertainment Center) like Round One,” said arcade enthusiast Spencer Franklin, 28, a visitor at the new venue. “They’ll definitely draw a large crowd and if they can play their cards right, they’ll keep one.” Depending on which way you are entering the facility, different sounds can be heard from the crack of pool balls, the hum of guests eating, and bowling balls striking pins a few feet away. On the other side, visitors are greeted with flashing lights, thumping music, and more arcade games than guests might ever know what to do with. “My favorite thing [about Round
One] is that it’s just everything all in one,” said general manager Mike McGrath. “You don’t need to go anywhere else to find something to do.” Round One, the Japanese-owned arcade chain, has had a slow but steady spread across the United States, comparable to the wave of Dave and Buster’s locations that have been established around the Baltimore area. Round One employs concession-style food offerings and a variety of arcade selections. Round One offers a wide range of game options including many niche arcade titles – mostly by virtue of being Japanese-owned. Baltimore resident and arcade enthusiast, Dakota Heinle, 27, has recently frequented Round One and enjoys “rhythm games” as well as the bowling and other puzzle games offered. Heinle has collected the plush cats won through crane game prizes. “[I really like] introducing friends and co-workers to games they haven’t heard before,” Heinle said. Franklin doesn’t have a particular game to target for tickets at the new entertainment venue, but rather takes a chance with the multitude of game options. “Some [games] depend on luck, others rely on skill, so take your shot - maybe you’ll get lucky,”
Franklin said. The location is open from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily, including major holidays. The venue features 14 bowling lanes and six billiards tables, along with two private karaoke rooms and over 250 arcade machines. There also is a prize shop to spend earned tickets. “We have families in here during the day, it’s a good place for kids to come out, especially in high school, just come out have somewhere to be,” McGrath said. “When the bar opens, I think we’re going to have an even bigger contribution just for where college kids can go and have some fun and everything like that.” To cap it all off, Round One has a combined restaurant and bar right by its main entrance. The menu features traditional bar food including pizza deals, wing platters and burgers. The venue’s bar is currently waiting on their liquor license to be approved. According to McGrath, the new venue will also be offering all-inclusive parties for groups of 10 or more starting in late February or early March. “It will be unlimited on the game play, the bowling and the karaoke rooms,” McGrath said. “And it’s unlimited food, so pretty much it’s all-inclusive, it’s one price, and then for two or three hours you have access to the full facility.”
Five-time NBA Champion and pop culture icon Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash in California on Sunday morning. Bryant was one of nine people killed in the crash, including his 13-year-old daughter Gianna. “It just had me shook I wanted to freeze,” junior Dysean Battle said. “I was at work and I didn’t believe it at first. I didn’t know how to react to be honest.” The helicopter took off from John Wayne Airport in Orange County at 9:08 a.m. and crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California around 9:47 a.m. According to CNN, the helicopter was operating under SVFR, Special Visual Flight Rules, which happens when visibility is an issue for aircrafts. The fog had been such an issue that the Los Angeles Police Department and county sheriff’s departments had grounded their helicopters. When the news broke, athletes and other pop culture icons took to social media to share their memories of Bryant and offer condolences and prayers for his family. Kobe was a legend on the court and just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act,” former president Barack Obama tweeted. “To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us as parents. Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on an unthinkable day.” Bryant as an 18-time All Star during his career, which was spent
entirely with the Los Angeles Lakers, who traded for Bryant during the 1996 NBA Draft. Bryant retired third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. Lakers forward LeBron James, who passed Bryant for third place the day before Bryant’s death, was the subject of Bryant’s final tweet. “Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother #33644,” Bryant tweeted. The crash is currently under investigation and results are not expected for weeks. Fans gathered outside of Staples Center, where Bryant won five championships for the Lakers, to honor him. Staples Center was also the home of the 62nd Grammy Awards Sunday night. During the awards, various artists took the stage and offered words of comfort as well as praising Bryant for his hard work and success. “Tonight is for Kobe,” said Lizzo before referencing a lyric from her song “Cuz I Love You.” The Towson men’s basketball program released a statement from head coach Pat Skerry. “It’s tragic and surreal,” Skerry said. “He was an athlete that inspired an entire generation of basketball players. To me his competitive spirit, warrior mentality and drive to perfection is what made him an all-time elite performer.” Bryant is expected to be a first-ballot member of the NBA Hall of Fame when he becomes eligible in 2020. “It means a lot because he meant so much to not only the league, but the game of basketball,” Battle said. “You can really see his impact in the younger generations.”
Tim Klapac/ The Towerlight Students around campus wore Lakers gear to honor Kobe Bryant who was one of nine people killed in a helicopter crash Sunday morning in California.
January 28, 2020
New Vice President of Student Affairs hired
Vernon Hurte joins Towson to invest in student success MARCUS WHITMAN Staff Writer
Vernon J. Hurte will start at TU as the newest vice president of Student Affairs on Feb. 17. Hurte, chosen for his new position after a nationwide search, has had more than 18 years of experience in higher education. Before Towson, Hurte served as the associate vice president of student affairs and dean of students at Iowa State University since 2017. Towson organized a search committee through to find the perfect candidate for this position. One search committee member was Towson’s assistant vice president for students affairs, Kelly Hover. According to Hoover, out of all the candidates for this position, Hurte was the top choice as he met what she and other search committee members were looking for in the candidates. “I was looking for someone who was going to be able to step into the University and really have a strategic plan going forward for the division that meshes well with strategic plans and initiatives, and priorities that the president has set for the University,” Hoover said. “I was also looking for someone who I would be able to learn from, [who would] be a mentor to me. And somebody who was going to be able to have good rapport with the students.”
Hurte explained that one reason why he wanted to be a part of the Towson University community was that he had a deep respect for the history and leadership of the intuition that has impacted the state of Maryland and the rest of the nation. “Simply put, the opportunity to be a part of the exciting work happening at TU, both on- and off-campus, and to lead such a dynamic and passionate team in the Division of Student Affairs makes me excited about the opportunities we have ahead to continue to enhance the TU experience for our students,” Hurte said. According to Hurte, during his campus interview, TU students “really energized me and increased my excitement.” “During my open forum with students, I was so impressed with the level of engagement and the insightful dialogue we had together,” Hurte said. “I left that room thinking, ‘Wow, these students are really invested in their success and the success of the entire TU community, and really want to partner with the University.’ It’s all-around exciting!” Towson senior Edmund Savage is looking forward to Hurte to “provide strategies to combat some of the concerns students have, which include safety on campus, reporting hate bias incidents, and mental health.” “Students lead the charge in creating change on campus, but we’re
Courtesy of Towson University
Coming from being the associate vice president for student affairs and dean of students at Iowa State University, with more than 33,000 students, Hurte has more than 18 years of experience in higher education. able to generate more of an impact when we have support from professional staff. I’m hoping Hurte will be able to create some change to benefit our community by supporting our students.” According to Towson University President Kim Schatzel, the new staff addition is an exciting opportunity for campus because of how important the role is for TU. Since
Marcus Whitman/ The Towerlight
The new vice president of student affairs will report to the University’s Provost, Melanie Perreault, rather than President Schatzel. It had been about 15 years since the university last conducted a search for this role.
Deb Moriarty previously was TU’s vice president for student affairs for 15 years, it had been well over a decade since the campus conducted a search for the role. “[This time] really provided the opportunity for us to think about the position,” Schatzel said. “And [we] really had an opportunity for us to be able to identify the qualities and characteristics of the new leader in that area as well as the priorities we want to place in that area for the new leader to advance.” According to Schatzel, the search committee for this position was “probably one of the biggest ones that we’ve had. It had students on it, it had faculty on it, it had administrators on it, it had staff on it,” she said. “So, it kind of speaks to the fact that we had a lot of interest in the position.” “Part of me worries about how Hurte will be able to adjust to a new role and campus halfway through the academic year, but I’m hopeful that he’s excited to work with the students, faculty, and staff apart from TU,” Savage said. Hurte, as the new vice president of Student Affairs will now report to the Provost, Dr. Melanie Perreault, according to Schatzel. Previously, the vice president
of Student Affairs reported to Schatzel. Schatzel indicated this will allow academic affairs and student affairs to better be able to work together. Hurte also explained that he had an “awesome college experience” and much of that related to the mentorship he received from the “dedicated student affairs professionals I was fortunate to have around me.” “When I experienced challenges, as all college students do, it was those same people who helped me stay forward-focused and feel supported along the way,” he said. “That experience inspired my desire to become a student affairs professional and invest in student success the way my mentors did then, and in many cases, still do today.” Hurte said he is ready to be a leader in the Student Affairs department at Towson. “In some ways, I think I always wanted to be a vice president of Student Affairs,” Hurte said. “Having been a part of the senior leadership teams for two nationally-respected student affairs divisions, I certainly feel wellequipped to lead our outstanding division at TU.”
January 28, 2020
Jan. 20: A theft of personal property from a locked office in Smith Hall was reported. Jan. 19: A non-affiliate violated a no trespass order and was arrested at Cook Library. Jan. 13: TUPD and Baltimore County Police are investigating a rape at Tower C. Jan. 13: A campus security authority referred four students to Student Conduct for underage possession of alcohol in Tower C. Jan. 10: A campus security authority reported four people had been in an altercation in Parking Lot 23. All parties had left the area before police arrival. Jan. 10: Jewelry was reported taken from a unsecured locker at SECU Arena. Jan. 10: An incident was stalking was reported to TUPD at SECU Arena. Jan. 6: An incident of stalking was reported to TUPD at Towson Center. Dec. 22: A commuter student was referred to OSCCE for theft at York Road and Newell Ave. Dec. 19: A campus security authority referred nine students to Student Conduct for underage possession of alcohol at Clara Barton House. Dec. 18: TUPD is investigating a CDS violation in a dorm room at Newell Hall. Dec. 12: A resident student reported an assault and theft of a mobile phone and property at Millennium Hall Parking Lot. When the device was tracked and recovered several fraudulent transactions were discovered to have occurred. Dec. 12: A roommate dispute resulted in a physical altercation at Harriet Tubman House. Dec. 10: A commuter student reported being assaulted while in a bathroom stall in the Liberal Arts Building. Dec. 10: A sign was found damaged at University Union. Dec. 8: An unattended coin purse with money was taken by a known person at Tower A. The Towerlight’s “Police Blotter” is a representative sample of crimes occurring on and off campus. The blotter is not intended to be all inclusive. For a list of local crime reports, visit www.towson.edu/police or https://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/PoliceNews/ iWatch?from=7&to=9.
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12 January 28, 2020
Towson’s Best Best Burger: Five Guys
Best Mexican food: On the Border
On the Border, located at 121 E. Joppa Road, is a hot spot for Towson University students. This relatively inexpensive Tex-Mex cuisine is the perfect place for a casual date night, or for dinner with a large group of friends. Their long party tables are very accommodating for Greek life and/or sports teams. They also offer extensive happy hour times, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weeknights, and 9 p.m. to close on weekends. One popular drink choice is their happy hour $4 “Grande House Margarita,” while a popular food choice is their $3 tacos. On the Border is also a popular pre-game location for students looking to grab a quick bite to eat in a fun atmosphere before venturing over to one of Towson’s bars. While the restaurant can get pretty crazy over the weekends, it serves as a good family restaurant throughout the week and at lunch time.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
On the Border, located at Towson Town Center, is popular for its long happy hour times and cheap appetizers.
Best Chinese food: Towson Best “Towson Best” is once again, “Towson’s Best.” This Chinese and Japanese Restaurant is located at 527 York Rd. and challenges competing restaurants in the area with its health-conscious approach. “Towson Best” promises no GMOs ever, and insists on only using high quality ingredients. One of the best options offered, are their “Lunch Boxes,” from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. While at most Chinese food restaurants you have to pay per entree and per side, at Towson Best, you can save a few bucks, and order an all inclusive “lunch box” platter, which provides the perfect portions of any entree with a side of rice, a spring roll, and a soda, all for $7.50. They also offer sushi lunch boxes which come with two rolls and a soda, all for $9.50. Aside from lunch, “Towson Best” offers both Chinese and Japanese cuisine options, including sushi. Don’t feel like leaving the house? Towson Best delivers, and can be found on DoorDash!
Best fast food: Chick-fil-A Chick-fil-A is the best place to go for not only great food, but great service as well. While the closest Chick-fil-A drive-thru to campus is a few minutes away, located at 2008 E. Joppa Road, you can make the trip all the time for some inexpensive, “quality” fast food. However, if you live on-campus, fear not! Susquehanna has you covered! Towson University currently has a limited-menu Chick-fil-A located within the University Union. However, the line to get some fries and nuggets is always running long, so make sure you plan your trip with some time to spare. Not a fan of the Chick-fil-A on campus, and don’t have a car to drive all the way to the drive-thru? There is another Chick-fil-A location within the Towson Town Center! The mall is still walking distance from the university, or a ride on the Tiger in Town shuttle away, and offers a full-menu. Plus, you can follow up your delicious meal with a good walk back to campus when you’re finished.
Looking for the best burger in Towson to satisfy that lunch or dinner-time craving? Five Guys, which can be found at 936 York Road, is just the place to go! Known for their high quality burgers, generous portions of those addicting fries, and their delicious milkshakes, Towson’s Five Guys exceeds even the most well-known and respected local burger joints in town. Five Guys is the perfect “treat yourself ” meal, and it absolutely delivers. It will leave you full, but also fulfilled. The restaurant itself is clean and never packed to the brim for a relaxing atmosphere and all-around pleasant experience. This location is easy to reach from the road and is only a five minute drive from campus. It’s almost right in the backyard of many off-campus apartments. Whether it’s a quick stop or an outing with friends, there’s simply no denying that our local Five Guys is Towson’s best burger around.
Best sushi: Sushi Hana
Looking to curb that late night sushi craving? Sushi Hana is the perfect place to go. Located at 6 E Pennsylvania Ave. in Towson, Sushi Hana offers a wide variety of Japanese sushi and cuisine. Its relaxed atmosphere makes it a great place for a nice meal with family and friends. Sushi Hana is open until 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and open until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. For those who don’t feel like making the trip to the restaurant, delivery is always an option. One of the best parts of Sushi Hana is its extensive menu. There are so many choices that it can even be a little overwhelming. There is a large assortment of ramen noodles, sushi rolls, maki sushi, tempura, teriyaki, salads, and soups. Sushi Hana also offers combination meals, such as sushi or sashimi with shrimp tempura or beef teriyaki.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Susquehanna at TU has a Chick-fil-A Express.
January 28, 2020
Best breakfast and coffee: THB
Towson Hot Bagels and Deli is famous for their large selection of delicious bagels and for being known as one of Towson’s best breakfast spots. TU President Kim Schatzel even said the location was one of her favorites! At THB you can get a hot, toasted bagel in a variety of flavors, an omelette, a bagel breakfast sandwich, a panini, and more. Located in uptown Towson near campus, THB has become a popular spot for students to get a quick breakfast on their way to class, or relax in the shop with a good book and a scrumptious deli sandwich. What’s your go-to order?
Best pizza: Season’s Pizza Season’s Pizza, located just steps from campus, has been voted Towson’s best pizza for it’s fast delivery, large selection of flavors, and cheap prices. With specialty pizzas like chicken bacon ranch, Mediterranean, and more for around $15 for a large or an XL cheese for $13 delivered right to your dorm or apartment, it’s no wonder Towson students are using Season’s Pizza to fuel their study sessions. Plus, if you’re feeling more adventurous one night and want a break from pizza, Season’s also offers wings, sandwiches, build-yourown pasta, salads, subs, and more -- all for reasonable prices. Check online for specials and coupons to get the most pizza for your dollar!
Best place to work out: Burdick Hall
Burdick Hall is the best place to let off some steam after a long day of classes. With three different floors filled with exercise machines, boxing areas, basketball courts, a cycle room, a pool, yoga and dance studios, Burdick Hall offers plenty of ways to get your work out in. You’ll never have to worry about not getting a treadmill or an elliptical, trust me, there are plenty. Burdick Hall offers a bunch of different fitness classes which are great opportunities to hang with friends or meet new people while working out. From Zumba to boxing, there are classes for everyone to enjoy. If you’re looking to add a little bit of a twist to your workout, Burdick Hall has it’s very own Ninja Warrior course. Whether you are dominating it or struggling through it, the Ninja Warrior course is bound to bring you a fun, new experience.
Best bathroom: Liberal Arts
The Liberal Arts building is so beloved by Towson that even its restrooms topped our list as Towson’s best bathroom. Much of this is owed to how clean and spacious these restrooms are. When you need a crucial level of privacy and protection for that coveted personal bubble, the Liberal Arts building bathroom is the ideal space for when you have to go. This bathroom is really well maintained, and never seems to be out of any of the essentials. There are plenty of them to be found within the building, and the story is the same in each one. The bathrooms in the Liberal Arts building at Towson are easy to find and easy to use. Sorry, Stephen’s Hall - the Liberal Arts bathrooms take the crown as the best place for “business” at Towson University.
Best dining hall: West Village For the second year in a row, the West Village Dining Hall has been voted the best dining hall on campus. With a large seating area, and an even larger dining area, West Village Commons offers a great environment to eat a meal and even decompress or study. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch, or dinner, there are always delicious options. The omelette, pasta, sandwich, and burrito stations all give you the option to create a more personal meal. One of the perks of the omelette station is that you can order pancakes or french toast to go along with your eggs. For dinner, this dining hall will rotate home-style dinners such as roasts, chili, and pasta dishes. The dessert bar always has ice cream, and rotates cookies, brownies, cupcakes, and even pudding. They even make holiday staples for every holiday season.
Best bar: Greene Turtle Looking for a great night out with some local flair? Greene Turtle in Towson is the perfect spot for you. Located right in the heart of uptown Towson, this bar at 408 York Road is a must-visit. It’s a great place for its food, atmosphere, and its role in making Towson’s night life what it is. Appetizers are a must at Greene Turtle, with diverse options such as wings, pretzel crab dip, loaded tater tots, and rockfish bites. From burgers to salads and soups to tacos, Greene Turtle has everything you need for a great meal and a great time. The bar is always brimming with people, making it perfect for any social gatherings and get-togethers. It has the perfect sports bar feeling while keeping things low-key. Greene Turtle in Towson is simply the best place to get your fix of crab cakes, football, and a great time with
Best academic building: Liberal Arts
Whether you’re looking for fascinating and perspective-building classes, searching for that quiet place to study, or simply a good atmosphere to cultivate your intellectual curiosity, the Liberal Arts building is the on-campus spot for you. The Liberal Arts building is the
perfect place to dive into topics such as history, geography, family studies, foreign languages, philosophy, English, and everything in between. The Liberal Arts building is regularly home to enlightening speakers raising awareness to important issues in our society and the world as a whole. Academics aside, the Liberal Arts building is the perfect place to find somewhere quiet and
chill to study without the restrictions and loneliness of a library. Home to the LA Cafe, the Liberal Arts Building will provide you a great place to study, a great cup of coffee, and a sandwich to help you get through your day and hopefully also get that A. This makes the Liberal Arts building Towson’s best academic building.
Best club: Torrent Are you looking to dance the night away after a long week of working and classes? Luckily, Towson’s hottest nightclub is a short distance from campus. Located on York Road, Torrent Night Club is open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. and features a full bar, which makes the club a popular and hot spot for students to let loose on the weekends. The dance club also hosts a variety of age 18 and over music shows with ticket prices ranging from free to $15 throughout the year. Are you feeling extra? Torrent offers VIP reservations and more, which you can call and inquire about or email at info@ torrentnightclub.com. This spot is definitely a hot place for students that love music and love to sweat it out.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
The College of Liberal Arts was voted Towson’s Best academic building for its quiet study areas.
14 January 28, 2020
Best fraternity: Kappa Sigma and Alpha Epsilon (TIE)
Kappa Sigma and Alpha Epsilon Pi have tied for best fraternity on campus. Kappa Sigma is a men’s collegiate social fraternity. Their current philanthropy is the Military Heroes campaign. This fraternity prides themselves on their foundation of fellowship, leadership, scholarship and service. Alpha Epsilon Pi was founded as a fraternity for Jewish men, but is open to both Jewish and non-Jewish members. Their main focus is to form a lifelong comradery amongst members and to promote high academic achievement, a Jewish environment, and space to have fun. They pride themselves on having one of the most tight-knit group of brothers compared to other fraternities at TU. You can meet both of these fraternities at Meet the Greeks on Jan. 29 in the West Village Ballrooms from 5 to 7 p.m.
Best residence hall / on-campus apartment: Glen Towers Although this residence hall is one of the older halls on campus, Glen Complex is still the best place to live on campus. Having four Towers, which all have around 380-450 students per building, “the Towers” makes making new friends super easy! Plus, the views around campus can be pretty phenomenal at sunset. The common areas also serve as a great place to hang out with people on your floor. The Glen Complex is also home to TU’s international student housing, called “Global Village,” located in Tower D. Students can opt-in to Global Village living, and share a room with an international student! Additionally, all rooms are suite-style, meaning you and your roommate only share your bathroom with the room next to you. Overall, the Towers are the best place to be in order to live closer to academic buildings without paying up.
Best off-campus apartment: Kenilworth Apartments Towson is full of apartment options for students looking to live off campus, but the Kenilworth at Charles Apartments have outshone the rest. Located just a couple miles off campus, right across from Trader Joe’s and Atwater’s, Kenilworth at Charles Apartments are the place to be. With one, two, and three-bedroom apartment home options, walk- in closets, full-size in-home laundry, fully-equipped kitchens and a resort-style swimming pool and sundeck, the complex provides the perfect comfortable and convenient home for you. The Towson University Kenilworth Express shuttle even comes straight through the complex, making the commute to campus a whole lot easier. And the apartments are pet friendly for your furry friends too!
Best place to park: Towsontown Garage Towsontown Garage is located right beside the Liberal Arts Building, and the Residence tower. With relatively low-incline hikes to Linthicum, Smith, Hawkins and the Psychology Building, as well as convenient parking for those who have most of their classes in the Liberal Arts Building, this garage certainly wins best parking when it comes to convenience and accessibility. Speaking of accessibility, this garage reserves its ground level floor completely for handicap parking spaces. As far as student parking goes, like all lots, spaces are first come, first serve. Spaces in this garage are usually gone by 9 a.m., and it’s pretty time consuming to circle the garage aimlessly in search of an exiting student past this time. However, if you are someone who has later classes, the garage tends to clear out after 3:15 p.m. classes end. Then ensues mass exodus. It’s totally worth showing up early to claim a spot. You can use any extra time to do homework, study, or get in a workout at Burdick, which is also right next to this garage!
Best shuttle route: Black
Did you run late for school and need to park in the West Village overflow lot? Are you dressed too nice to bust a sweat hiking all the way to Stephens Hall? Just hop on the black route in you’ll get dropped off at class in no time! The Black Route spends the day circling around campus, essentially hopping from building to building. It starts at the University Union, before heading to the West Village Commons building, Marshall Hall, the Liberal Arts building, the Health Center, Scarborough Hall, Stephens Hall, and finally, the Glen Garage/Admin building stop. This route also circulates much faster than other routes, as it doesn’t have very far to travel. When living on campus I found this route to be great when I wanted to visit my friends in West Village late at night, but didn’t want to walk in the dark alone, or was simply too tired to take the hike.
Best student group: TU Rocks A student group where members can spread joy and positive messages across campus, TU Rocks is the perfect creative and positive group on campus. In hopes to inspire those at Towson and in the surrounding community, TU Rocks has followed the trend of rock painting (with environmental friendly paint of course) with an emphasis on positivity. This eco-friendly, inclusive club paints rocks with helpful, positive paintings and sayings. Then, they hide them throughout campus. Spotting one of these adorable rocks might just make your day! These bright rocks are ready to inspire students and help give us the confidence boost that we know we all always need. And the best thing still is that when you find one of these precious pebbles you may keep them for yourself or re-hide them around campus to continuously spread the joy!
Best construction project: Union
A “Brand New U” is in the works to present Towson University with a vibrant new center for student life by the fall of 2021. Since the start of construction in August 2019, the University Union has been going through stages of construction to make this student center the absolute best that it can be! The renovations and expansions to the Union will have improved event, dining and student group spaces. There is even going to be a 300-seat auditorium and movie theater! Renovations and additions also include a new food market with seven new venues, such as Dunkin and Chick-fil-A, a 15,000 square foot ballroom, an expanded Career Center and double the student activity space within the new Union. Towson is ready for this Brand New U!
Best place to study: Cook Library
Cook Library is by far the best place to study on campus. It offers plenty of nooks for individuals or groups to focus and get work done. The second floor is definitely the most social of all floors. Most group studying takes place down here, as there are private study rooms groups can reserve, as well as large tables, and individual study nooks along the left wall. Also on the second floor, is a silent study room, for those who prefer to study in total silence. The third floor, which is ground level, is quieter than the second floor, and has many more computers, as well as some group tables, individual tables along the windows, and first come first serve study rooms. There is also a 24-hour study room, and a Starbucks on this floor. The fourth and fifth floors hold more books, and more offices, but like all floors, offer individual desks and study nooks along the walls.
January 28, 2020
Best male athlete:
Best local team: Ravens Despite a disappointing performance in the divisional round, the Baltimore Ravens season was one to remember. The Ravens finished with a league best 14-2 record and were the top seed in the AFC for the first time in franchise history. Baltimore was led by quarterback Lamar Jackson who became the first quarterback in NFL history with 3,000 passing and 1,000 rushing yards in the same season. “Big Truss” was a rally call around Baltimore, and the Ravens offense was revolutionary. Running back Mark Ingram and the offensive line led by guard Marshal Yanda lead the NFL in rushing. Baltimore’s defense finished fourth in total defense despite losing linebacker C.J. Mosley and safety Eric Weddle in free agency. Despite the loss to the Tennessee Titans in the playoffs, the Ravens season won’t be forgotten in Baltimore anytime soon.
Redshirt senior quarterback Tom Flacco left his mark on the Towson football program. In his two years as a Tiger he threw for the third most touchdowns in program history with 50. He was named a FCS AllAmerican and First-Team All-CAA in 2018 while leading the Tigers to their first FCS playoff appearance in five seasons. Flacco finished fifth in the Walter Payton Award voting in 2018 which is considered the FCS equivalent of the Heisman Trophy. Last season, Flacco threw for 2,831 yards and 22 touchdowns with only six interceptions. Flacco also played baseball for the Tigers in 2019 and started in right field. He batted .221 and finished second on the team with 11 stolen bases, including a steal of home to win a game against Delaware. Towson’s football program finished with a winning record each season he was a Tiger. Flacco rejuvenated the program and the University’s excitement around it. He helped Towson regain its status as a top-25 program. Flacco is now training for the NFL draft, and he is expected to generate interest at the next level.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Tom Flacco was Towson’s quarterback for two years.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Nukiya Mayo helped Towson win their first CAA title.
Best female athlete:
Senior forward Nukiya Mayo was a key factor in Towson earning their first CAA title and NCAA tournament bid in 2019. Mayo was the Most Outstanding Player of the 2019 CAA tournament highlighted by a 20-point and seven-rebound performance vs. Drexel in the championship. Her 50 blocks in the 2018-19 season are the eighth-most for a single season in Tigers history. Her defensive performance resulted in her finishing in the top five in rebounds and blocks in the conference. A two time All-CAA selection, Mayo led the CAA in offensive rebounds her sophomore season. This season Mayo is currently fifth in the conference averaging 7.6 rebounds per game. She is also one of eight players currently in the CAA averaging over 1.0 blocks per game.
Best women’s coach: Diane Richardson
Richardson is in the middle of her third season as head coach of the Tigers. Her first two years have already reaped numerous rewards. During her first season, Towson earned victories over local rivals UMBC and Loyola as two Tigers earned all-conference honors. Richardson’s second season was one to remember with Towson capturing their first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Championship and the school’s first trip to the NCAA Tournament. Richardson was named both the CAA and ECAC Coach of the Year and multiple Tigers received all-conference honors and all-tournament honors at the CAA Tournament. Richardson has already guided Towson to a six-game winning streak in her third season as the Tigers look to defend their conference title and return to the NCAA Tournament.
Best men’s team: Lacrosse If there is one sport that one of the top universities in the state of Maryland should excel at, it’s lacrosse. Towson University has often boasted one of the best lacrosse programs in the country, and that trend continued last season. During the 2019 campaign, the Tigers earned a No. 1 national ranking for the first time in school history after a victory over the previous No. 1 team, Loyola. Towson continued this domination after the season ended, capturing the school’s eighth Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Championship. The Tigers hosted the University of Maryland in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, their first home NCAA tournament game since 2005. Despite losing to the Terps in overtime, Towson compiled one of the most successful seasons in school history, with four players being named All-Americans, and a No. 9 finish in the final national polls. Heading into the 2020 season, the Tigers have the sixth-toughest schedule, according to lacrossereference.com, with home games against Cornell, Georgetown and Duke. Towson will also host an exhibition against the defending national champions, the University of Virginia.
Best women’s team: Volleyball
An historic season for the Tigers was capped off with arguably the program’s best postseason performance ever. Towson finished the regular season undefeated in conference play, including three straight wins without losing a set. The Tigers ended the regular season on a 20-match winning streak, and didn’t slow down in the conference tournament. Victories over Elon (3-1) and James Madison (3-0) gave Towson their first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Championship since 2004. These performances gave the Tigers a trip to the NCAA Tournament, where they grabbed national attention by defeating American University in the first round, the program’s first NCAA Tournament victory. Although they fell to Penn State in the second round, Towson finished the season in the top 30 of the NCAA’s Rating Percentage Index. Individual accolades were abound on this roster, with senior setter Marissa Wonders earning the CAA Player of the Year, freshman middle blocker Lydia Wiers winning CAA Freshman of the Year and head coach Don Metil receiving CAA Coach of the Year, respectively.
Best men’s head coach: Shawn Nadelen and Pat Skerry (TIE) Shawn Nadelen - It only makes sense that the coach of the Best Men’s Team would receive this honor. Shawn Nadelen has revitalized the Towson men’s lacrosse program since arriving on campus in 2004. During his tenure as head coach of the Men’s Lacrosse team, Nadelen has taken the Tigers to the NCAA Tournament five times thanks to five Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Championships. Under Nadelen’s leadership, Towson advanced to the NCAA Final Four for the first time in school history in 2017. Nadelen was named the CAA Coach of the Year in 2016. Thanks to the success Nadelen has created, Towson has routinely finished in the top half of the CAA in yearly attendance. Every year, the Tigers face a tough schedule and that is another credit to Nadelen’s ability to build a strong program. During the 2019 season, Towson faced eight ranked opponents, including four in the top-10. The Tigers 2020 schedule includes six games against teams ranked in the final NCAA polls from last season. Pat Skerry - Pat Skerry has revived a basketball program that had been suffering losing season for the previous 15 years. Since taking over, Skerry has guided the Tigers to five winning seasons, including the largest single-season turnaround in NCAA history during his second season. Skerry has also overseen three 20-win seasons as head coach at Towson. Skerry was named the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Coach of the Year following the 2013 season. While the on-court success can be appreciated, Skerry’s efforts off the court have been a true reflection of what type of coach he is. Under Skerry’s tenure, Towson has the highest Graduation Success Rate in the CAA. Skerry’s contributions to Autism Awareness have resulted in both the men’s and women’s basketball programs at TU holding an annual Autism Awareness game. As head coach, Skerry has witnessed the Tigers move into SECU Arena, become a success in the classroom and a force in the CAA.
16 January 28, 2020
Arts & Life
Uplifting black businesswomen
Tips to spice up your planner VICTORIA NICHOLSON Art Director @ToriNickel
Courtesy of Angel Green on Facebook
Angel Green, a Towson University junior, created an organization last semester called The W.O.M.A.N Society, which aims to foster a supportive atmosphere for black women to network and uplift one another.
GRACE HEBRON Staff Writer
Towson University junior, Angel Green, is kicking off this semester by founding a new organization: The W.O.M.A.N Society, an organization that aims to uplift, educate and inspire black women. W.O.M.A.N stands for a woman who is woke, optimistic, malleable, an achiever and who is notable. “I’ve always tried to get involved with volunteer agencies and other community programs as much as possible,” said Green. According to Green, the W.O.M.A.N Society plans to host a range of events for students, including arts and sports events, community service opportunities, and learning expos. All of which she hopes will cultivate professionalism and techniques for success for young black women. Green’s older sister, Treasure Doberson, described hearing of her sister’s idea to create the organization as a proud big sister moment. “It was a way for her to use herself as an outlet to give to women like herself,” said Doberson. “When she made the idea into reality, I looked at her in awe and saw a woman that could make anything happen for herself and her community of people.” Sophomore Jordan DeVeaux said she feels the organization could create a wonderful and much-needed network for black women on Towson’s campus. “I believe in safe spaces, I
believe in brave spaces, I believe in affinity groups,” said DeVeaux. “I just think that it’s wonderful to surround yourself with likeminded people that hold your same ideals and are on the same path.” Creating a lasting network is what Green said she had hoped for when she founded The W.O.M.A.N Society. “I think it’s very important for black women to network with one another and get a glimpse of how partnering with each other can get them far,” Green said. Green shared that she also hopes to shed light on mental health in the black community. Her organization will be partnering with the Raymond Banks “A Way With Words” foundation to bring a communication health forum to Towson University next month, which Green says will feature resources related to self expression, safe havens and healthy coping mechanisms. “I want [members] to feel like their best selves when they enter the W.O.M.A.N space,” Green said. Like many students navigating college life, Green has had her share of setbacks. “Even in transferring to Towson, I made a lot of mistakes that set me back financially and in school because I did not have the proper knowledge of how to handle certain situations,” she said. Green hopes that the organization will facilitate mentorship among black women of all ages and debunk the idea that a mentor has to be someone who is older.
“It is very important to have a group of black women who do not see each other as competitors, but as contributors to each other’s success,” Green said. “I’ve come to find out that the empowering moments come from learning from sharing knowledge from those with similar experiences.” DeVeaux said she feels that this dynamic could benefit black women on campus by creating a positive culture of mutual success. “I think that that would eliminate the idea that ‘if I succeed, you can’t succeed,’” DeVeaux said. “It means when that I’m slipping, you can lift me up, and that when you’re slipping, I can do the same for you.” Green hopes that joining The W.O.M.A.N Society will help members better understand themselves. “I want them to take new risks, step outside their comfort zone, feel driven, I can’t even list all of the things I want for my members because there are so many great things I want for them,” Green said. “As black women, we are already so confined by standards that I want to generate a new type of space where we are free to be ourselves.” The W.O.M.A.N Society will be hosting their first two meetings on Feb. 14 and 28 in Burdick Hall, Classroom 0109 from 4 to 5 p.m.. Businesscasual attire is recommended but not mandatory for the first meeting. More information can be found on the organization’s Instagram page, @ TheWOMANSociety, as well as on their Involved@TU page.
I used to think I was too organized to use a planner, but boy, was I wrong. Going into this semester with six classes, I need some sense of control, especially since half of my classes are on campus and half of them are online. Being the couponer I was born to be, I got a 20192020 planner due to the fact that it was marked 40% off. Since half of the book was dedicated to the 2019 semester, I decided to make the wise decision to rip those irrelevant pages out. Quickly, I realized I had ripped down to March 15, 2020… which I should note is the beginning of spring break. So far my idea to have a planner and be put together isn’t going so well, especially considering I now have about 20 loose planner pages lodged into the middle of my book. If you’re like me, join in on this new experience as I learn the tips and tricks of maintaining an organized planner, well somewhat organized. Highlighters: If you’re a visual person like I am then color coordinating will work best for you. Begin by using a different color for each class, or if you’re like me and have online classes then use two different colors for your online work and the work you have in-class. Plus it will make it easier for your brain to automatically connect to which class things are due in. Weekly to-do lists:
If your planner does not offer this option then draw it yourself! Your planner doesn’t have to be strictly school related, so even jotting down simple tasks like going to the grocery store or paying your bills on time can be extremely beneficial. These lists will help you remember all of the tasks you need to do for the week. Follow your syllabus: Use sylly week to your advantage and take some time to write down all your due dates in one sitting. Allowing yourself some time to make note of due dates for all of your classes will help you in the future by already having all important dates laid out in front of you. Get into a routine: Whether you like to do your homework on the night it’s due or the week before, f i n d ing a routine that best fits you when it’s time to look at your planner is going to be helpful. I am not the best morning person, so the likeliness of me gazing at my planner when I wake up is low. Personally, I am a night owl so I plan on looking over my planner around dinner time daily. Time assignments: If you have multiple assignments due at once then include time frames you wish to work on each class. Consider which tasks will take more time and learn how to prioritize. Reading will generally take less time than writing an essay, so give yourself about 30 minutes to read (including the amount of time you’ll spend on your phone) and an hour to push out some parts of your essay.
Arts & Life
January 28, 2020
“Cats” receives harsh reviews The Grammy’s DANIEL KUNDRAT Columnist
After first bringing the theatrical production, “Les Misérables,” to the film industry, director, Tom Hooper, has now challenged himself with the task of making the Broadway behemoth, “Cats,” just as successful in a movie theater. Inspired by a series of poems by T.S. Eliot, it was then crafted into a musical hit by Andrew Lloyd Weber. “Cats” is a story with one playful plot, but too many messages to count. Its music, costumes, and choreography were a sight to behold, and thus its beauty made up for its struggling storyline and became the one of the longest running productions in Broadway history. Many have argued that the aesthetic of the story is meant to be captured through the naked eye of the audience, not the camera. Director Tom Hooper thought otherwise, and through the phenomenal casting choices, musical numbers, and arbitrarily imaginative costumes using today’s technology, the “Cats” story has arguably been given an even harsher grade but an even sharper performance. The film entails a stray cat, named Victoria, who is found by the mysterious and energetic community called The Jellicle cats. While many of the cats have a unique niche and name in their community, only a few compete for their sacred leader’s blessing, (“The Jellicle Choice”) to venture for a new life in the “Heaviside layer,” and receive a new life. Hooper built a playground for esteemed performers from all industries of entertainment. Starring national celebrities like Sir Ian McKellen (Gus) and Dame Judi Dench (Old Deuteronomy), to modern stars like pop artist, Jason Derulo (Rum Tum Tugger) and musician, Taylor Swift (Bombalurina). Marvel’s Guardian of Asgard and watcher of the universe has now become a watcher
and threat towards the Jellicle Cats, as Idris Elba plays the wanted kidnapper, Macavity, the main antagonist in the film. Out of all the big casting choices that Hooper made, choosing the iconic role Grizabella, who sings the production’s hit song, “Memory,” was the most important. A star in Broadway’s “The Color Purple,” The Voice coach, and without question, The Princess of Soul, Jennifer Hudson blended into Grizabella with beauty and grace, not to mention with the literal work of CGI, but no technology can crack the hit-song open, like J-Hud can. At first, Eliot’s band of cats were composed of exotic bodysuits and stage makeup. Three decades later, the innovative work of CGI has now completely changed their appearance, and while some have found it to be a modern upgrade, many have found it quite disturbing. Choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler saw to it that the dance numbers would live up to its reputation. But the man-like figure of these felines combined with their creepy crawling and exotic dance moves, made audience members and sadly, critics too, highly uncomfortable. Washington Post writer Michael O’Sullivan exclaimed that they have “oddly unsettling human breasts and faces.” While the songs were wonderfully sung, and the choreography was beautiful, the film and
its unique character design is now being used everywhere by critics and other media, as a prime example that technology does not need to change everything, and at the very least, classical stage productions. From the moral messages conveyed by the cats, to the direct lecture from Old Deuteronomy at the end of the film, this story has many points, or - how critics have argued - no point at all. Grizabella’s growth, and the Jellicle Ball being a competition where one wins a second chance in life, seemed like the universal themes, but from what the media and other viewers are passing around, neither of these seem to exist. Aside from this dilemma, the Jellicle choice and the main character were both competing spots the entire movie. Victoria, of course, was the welcomed stray cat, but later in the story, it is debatable on who is more important than another. None of this necessarily means that “Cats” was a bad movie, rather it was just different from others. The way the plot decided to play and the uneasy decision on who is the main character, are just unique ways to tell the story of “Cats.” If one were to search for a positive review for “Cats,” it would be very difficult to drag in. Critics all over the internet have used this movie as a punching bag to get out all their emotions of 2019 out, upon entering the new decade.
Courtesy of DoD News on Flickr Creative Commons
Jennifer Hudson, who played Grizabella in the film, earned producers praise for being the perfect fit for such a soulful and prominent role.
celebrates icons MEGHAN HUDSON Arts & Life Editor
The Grammy Awards are one of the biggest nights in award show season for musical artists. Winning a Grammy is a sought after achievement as it serves as a milestone award for artists seeing success in their careers. This past Sunday night premiered the Grammy Awards 2020. Let’s recap some of the night’s performances. Opening up the award show was Lizzo, an artist who has seen much success over the past year. With chart topping singles “Truth Hurts,” and “Good as Hell,” as well as seeing other achievements such as being the first black female in 2019 to score a number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100, I expected for her to bring the energy to her performance. Needless to say, she delivered as always. Like many artists of the night, Lizzo began her performance with a dedication to Kobe Bryant, a former Lakers basketball player who recently passed away in a devastating helicopter crash. Vocally, she nailed it. She has shown an incredible amount of consistency with her ability to belt lyrics, and even after having seen dozens of her performances from the past year, I still found myself getting chills from her incredible range. Next up was one of Hollywood’s more recent power couples, Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani, who also dedicated their performance to Kobe Bryant. This somber song really brought all the feels. Not only was the connection between this duo incredibly personal and emotional, the context for which the words to their latest collaboration song, “Nobody but You” were sung, made it hard to hold back the tears. The Jonas Brothers, who announced their surprise comeback in early 2019, followed by their first single “Sucker” which
debuted number one on the Billboard Hot 100, were not by any means a surprising option performance wise for the 2020 Grammy Awards. They sang two of their more recent singles, “What a Man Gotta Do,” and “Five More Minutes.” As usual, they had a high energy performance with even more energetic attire. I think gold suits are officially their staple look. Despite the food stuck in Nick’s teeth, they had a wonderful performance. Tyler the Creator, in my opinion, is an artist who is truly in it for the artistic expression, and not for vocal ability. While I do believe he is a great artist, vocally, I feel that the most captivating part of his performances is the artistry and experience he brings to the viewer. I actually found this performance, even though I viewed it through a camera lense, to be even more captivating then when I saw him live last year. The way that he rotated and shook the camera to the music, and danced as rigorously as the beat of his music, made it hard to blink throughout the entirety of the performance. One performer I didn’t expect to see in this decade, was Usher. He paid tribute to the late singer, Prince. He performed “Little Red Corvette,” “When Doves Cry,” and “Kiss.” Honestly, I was convinced he was lip synching at first. His falsettos and general vocal ability throughout the performance were really impressive considering his musical hiatus the past few years. However, he indeed was just singing very well. There was a lot of controversy around this performance, as FKA Twigs, who is also a musical artist, was not asked to sing alongside Usher, but instead dance for him throughout his performance. The general consensus seemed to be that she has so much more to bring than just being a dance partner, and I’d have to agree. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
18 January 28, 2020
Tigers climbing the caa Winning streak at six as Towson moves into 2nd place
Kobe’s impact on basketball JALON DIXON Columnist
File photo by Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Sophomore guard Jakigh Dottin brings the ball up the court in Towson’s season-opening victory over GW. The Tigers are on a six-game winning streak and currently sitting in second place in the CAA Standings. TIM KLAPAC Senior Editor @pacofkla After a sluggish start to conference play, the Tigers have caught the attention of the entire Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) with victories over James Madison, Elon and first-place William & Mary to extend their season-long winning streak to six games. Towson (12-9, 6-3 CAA) entered their game with the Tribe (15-7, 7-2 CAA) having lost their last three matches against them. One of the issues that has haunted the Tigers this season was being able to hold onto a lead the entire game. Towson avoided this misstep and led the entire game, building their lead to as large as 12 points in the 70-58 win. “This is a great team win, our guys really stuck together,” head coach Pat Skerry said to Towson Sports Network. “The defense was really good in the second half. Our perimeter guys made some tough, tough plays and our forwards made great plays, especially late. It was a great atmosphere today, we found a way to hang in there and execute on offense.” Freshman point guard Jason Gibson had his best performance in his young Tiger career, scoring 21 points, one of three Towson players in double-figures. Despite only getting five points from the bench, the Tigers were able to get strong showings from their starters, including 17 points from senior guard Brian Fobbs and eight rebounds from senior for-
ward Dennis Tunstall. Tunstall also recorded his 105th career block, passing Jerrelle Benimon for eighth place in Towson history. The victory moves the Tigers into a three-way tie for second place in the CAA with the College of Charleston and Hofstra. Against the Phoenix (6-16, 2-7 CAA), Towson received production from up and down the lineup. Baskets from four different players, including Fobbs and redshirt freshman guard Nicolas Timberlake, fueled a 15-0 run in the first half, which gave the Tigers an early lead. Despite trailing at halftime, Towson managed to hang with Elon until the final five minutes of the game. Redshirt junior forward Juwan Gray scored five straight points to give the Tigers the lead for good and Gibson’s three pointer with under three minutes to play turned this game into a battle of free throws. “We knew this was going to be a hard game, they have good schemes defensively,” Skerry said. “I thought we played well the last eight minutes, we moved the ball well then.” Free throws have become a specialty for Towson as it ranks fourth in the CAA in free throw percentage. The Tigers made all 10 free throws in the games final minutes, capping off a 72-61 win. Towson wrapped up their threegame homestand with a victory over the Dukes (8-12, 1-8 CAA) thanks to a second-half surge that saw the Tigers build a 20-point lead over their opponent for the third straight game. “I thought that for the first seven or eight minutes of the second half, we
were at a really high level,” Skerry said. The winter weather outside had an impact on both teams’ abilities to shoot in the first half. Both Towson and James Madison shot below 30% in the opening 20 minutes, but the Tigers erased those struggles quickly in the second half. “We said during shootaround that our defense would win us the game,” Skerry said. “Our offense would dictate by how much.” Led by redshirt senior forward Nakye Sanders, who scored nine of his 15 points during this run, Towson made their first nine shots in the second half. The Tigers would lead the Dukes 44-23 with less than six minutes into the second half. James Madison would make the game close as junior guard Darius Banks scored 22 of his game-high 27 points in the second half. Banks would score 14 straight points for the Dukes as they trimmed the deficit to five points with less than five minutes remaining. “I might have messed up some of our guys’ rhythm,” Skerry said. “Usually we sub really quick but we got going and I felt we could go a little longer and I might have messed up our rhythm and that’s no me.” Once again free throw shooting aided Towson as they made all 12 attempts in the final 1:19 of the game to seal the 69-61 win. The Tigers will host the UNC Wilmington Seahawks on Thursday, Jan. 30 and the College of Charleston Cougars on Saturday, Feb. 1. The first 500 students to attend Thursday’s 7 p.m. game will receive a free t-shirt.
As prayers go out to future Hall of Fame guard Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and the seven other passengers who fell victim to a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California this past weekend, we now commemorate and reflect on the everlasting impact that Bryant had on and off the court. On the court, only a few words could describe Bryant, icon, ambassador, competitor, “The Black Mamba.” To fans of the sport of basketball and the NBA, Kobe was a physical representation of the Tim Notke quote “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” As a young 17-year-old drafted back in 1996 out of Lower Merion High School, Bryant was never supposed to become the person he did. In his first two seasons, he only started a combined seven out of the 150 games that he played. However, that never deterred him. As a fierce player with dreams of catching the legendary ghost of Michael Jordan, the 6-foot-6 guard soon became larger than life and maybe even the sport itself. Five championships, 18 All-Star Game selections, four All-Star Game MVP Awards, two NBA Finals MVP Awards and a single regular-season MVP Award. With the world on his shoulders as one of the young building blocks for the league as the NBA transitioned from the days of forward Larry Bird vs. guard Magic Johnson and the Chicago Bulls’ dynasty, Bryant embraced the challenge as assassin on the court and mentor to those looking to follow in his footsteps. By inspiring a generation of outstanding basketball talent that includes forward Lebron James, guard Dwayne Wade, forward Carmelo Anthony and others, one could say that the very success that the NBA reaps the benefit of today stems from the many contributions that Kobe made. Off the court, Bryant’s post-career life was just getting started and he may have already been on track to be just as great after basketball as he was when he was still in the league. After retiring at the conclusion of the 2015 – 2016 season, most believed that after dedicating so much of his life to
the game, his transition to life after basketball would potentially be a dark path for the Laker legend. Not only were the doubters wrong, but Kobe did not make haste in showing his potential as a successful executive. Months after his retirement, he unveiled Kobe.inc, his $100 million venture-capital fund, in a partnership with entrepreneur Jeff Stibel, to invest in media, technology and data firms. Then as if that were not enough for him, Bryant followed that up with an amazing 2018 that showered him with accolades. Bryant won an Oscar and a Sports Emmy Award for Best Animated Short Film for his six-minute film “Dear Basketball” that was based on a poem that he wrote and had published in The Player’s Tribune. In such a short time, Kobe was becoming more and more of a global entity by the day as both an ambassador of the NBA and a representation of black excellence as a business mogul. At only age 41, most would consider Kobe’s time on Earth to be enough for two lifetimes. When it comes to Kobe “Bean” Bryant, it will never be about the five titles or being fourth all-time in scoring. For me, I will always see the legacy he left through how he influenced the entertainment and globalization of the league that I love so much. The fact that he was so dedicated to his craft is so inspiring and his willingness to reach beyond his threshold to become even better than what most considered to be his peak was like something out of a story book. I will forever scream “Kobe!” before shooting a paper ball in a trash can as we all are guilty of doing every once in a while because it just feels like the right thing to do. I will remember him for moments like when he tore his Achilles tendon back in 2013 and still got up to shoot those two free throws to ice a 118 – 116 victory over the Golden State Warriors. Or the final game of his 20-year career against the Utah Jazz where he went out in Kobe fashion, scoring 60 points in a 101 – 96 victory. Those moments embody the person he was. Now as we live on with the great memories of his excellence as a player, father, husband, and son, we realize now more than ever that every day should be cherished and be spent uplifting one another.
January 28, 2020
Super Bowl LIV Preview: 49ers vs. Chiefs JORDAN KENDALL Sports Editor @jordankendall54 This year’s Super Bowl is one of the most exciting matchups in recent memory. Both teams have a lot of talent on both sides of the ball and are equally matched. The Kansas City Chiefs have not played in the Super Bowl in 50 years, while the San Francisco 49ers have not won since 1994. Regardless of what happens, this should be an exciting game and a fitting end to the 100th NFL season. Here is a preview of what’s to come in Miami. The Chiefs are led by quarterback Patrick Mahomes who continues to grow into the face of the league. He threw for 4,031 yards and 22 touchdowns this season with only five interceptions. His ability to make throws from any angle and his mobility and effectiveness outside the pocket makes him nearly impossible to stop. For those who watched the AFC Championship, Mahomes can also win with his legs, leading Kansas City in rushing with 53 yards including a 27-yard touchdown run that was one of the plays of the season. What makes the Chiefs so dangerous on offense is they have the best quarterback in football, but also multiple targets that create matchup nightmares for opponents. Wide receivers Tyreek Hill, Mecole Hardman, and Sammy Watkins are arguably the best trio in the NFL. Hill and Hardman are some of the fastest players in the league
and use it to their advantage. Both are used heavily in jet sweeps and screen passes which can easily turn into a 50-yard touchdown. Watkins provides a reliable third option and can step up when needed. Tight end Travis Kelce is a top three tight end in football, he makes plays that few can match. The Chiefs defense has been playing significantly better in recent weeks than the beginning of the season. In the playoffs, they have the third-best run defense allowing 89.5 yards per game. One of the keys has been the play of their front seven. Defensive ends Frank Clark and Chris Jones stepped up in a big way vs the Tennessee Titans and shut down the NFL’s leading rusher in running back Derrick Henry. Despite rushing for nearly 200 yards in his previous two playoff games, Henry was held to 69 yards against Kansas City. Clark and Jones had at least eight sacks in the regular season as well, and are playing as well as anyone. Safety Tyrann Mathieu is the leader of the defense, his 75 tackles and four picks in the regular season are a big reason why they are heading to Miami, and he doesn’t show signs of slowing down. On the other hand, the 49ers are led by quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Despite throwing just eight passes in the NFC Championship, he proved this season he can win with his arm. He threw for 3,978 yards and 27 touchdowns completing 69% of his passes. While he has receivers such as Emmanuel Sanders and Deebo Samuel who each had over 800
receiving yards, his best target is tight end George Kittle. Arguably the best tight end in football, Kittle led the Niners with 85 catches for 1,053 yards. Not only is he a reliable target, he’s arguably the best blocking tight end in the game. Despite this, San Francisco’s offense is a run first unit that stepped up in the playoffs. Running backs Tevin Coleman and Raheem Mostert are equally dangerous for the 49ers. Coleman rushed for 105 yards and two touchdowns in the divisional round, and Mostert followed with 220 yards and four scores in the NFC Championship. What makes San Francisco dangerous is no one knows which one will have a big game, leaving defenses to guess and hope they’re right. Usually they’re not, and the Niners take advantage of it. This will be interesting to watch, can Kansas City stop this rushing attack or not. San Francisco is led by their defense, which was the second-best in the league this season. Led by defensive ends Nick Bosa, Arik Armstead and Dee Ford, their pass rush was a top-ten unit in sacks and quarterback hits. The linebackers are just as talented, led by Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw. Each of them had over 85 tackles and made up the best front seven in football. Cornerback Richard Sherman is arguably the best corner in the game like he said, and is so intimidating most teams avoid throwing his way. This unit is complete and has the depth that should match up with the Chiefs very equally.
Towerlight staff predictions Tim Klapac, Senior Editor
Muhammed Waheed, Asst. Sports Editor
Jordan Kendall, Sports Editor
Keri Luise, News Editor
Isaac Donsky, Contributing Writer
Victoria Nicholson, Art Director
Qierra Murray Women’s Basketball
Redshirt senior guard Qierra Murray scored a career-high 22 points while leading Towson to a 84-71 victory over Hofstra. Murray also contributed eight assists and didn’t miss a three pointer in the Tigers sixth straight win.
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INSIDE: The Towerlight surveyed Towson students to find the best spots on and off campus (pg. 12), The world reflects on Kobe Bryant's legac...
Published on Feb 4, 2020
INSIDE: The Towerlight surveyed Towson students to find the best spots on and off campus (pg. 12), The world reflects on Kobe Bryant's legac...