Towsonâ€™s campus and community news source
February 25, 2020
The Towerlight interviews student directors and actors ahead of the opening night of their one-act plays, pg. 10
Photo by Amanda Bosse, Photo Illustration by Victoria Nicholson/ The Towerlight
USE IT FOR
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G N I H T EVERY TOWSON.EDU
February 25, 2020
SPRING BREAK SHUTTLE
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Have you made your travel plans for spring break? Reserve your free ride to and from the airport or train station on the BWI-PENN Shuttle!
Departure Dates: March 12 & 13 Return Date: March 22
For details about locations and times and to reserve your seat, go to Bit.ly/TUShuttle
February 25, 2020
Editor-in-Chief Bailey Hendricks
What plays have you seen on/off campus?
Senior Editor Tim Klapac
News Editor Keri Luise Asst. News Editor Sophia Bates
Carrie from actors anonymous
I’ve seen “How I learned to drive” when I was still a baby student at TU
Arts & Life Editor Meghan Hudson Asst. Arts & Life Editor Grace Coughlan
Your responses could appear in our next print edition. The Towerlight may to include your social media profile picture with your response. Word on the Web compiles online submissions in response to questions posted by The Towerlight via social media. Follow The Towerlight on Instagram and Facebook to respond.
Sports Editor Jordan Kendall Asst. Sports Editor Muhammad Waheed
Staff Writers Ashley de Sampaio Ferraz Isaac Donsky John Hack Grace Hebron Brooks Warren
Do you like seeing live theatre?
Kayla Wellage Marcus Whitman
Photo Editor Brendan Felch Asst. Photo Editor Amanda Bosse
Video Editor Nicholas Gregorio
General Manager Mike Raymond
Art Director Victoria Nicholson
Circulation Staff Jack Baker Anthony Capparuccini Scott Halerz
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.
25 - 29 25
DINNER AND DISCUSSION
XTSR OPEN HOUSE
NYT TALKS: CAN TRUMP CREATE PEACE?
TU FITNESS COMBINE
A dinner and discussion about faith and life, hosted by the Center for Student Diversity, the Office of Inclusion and Institutional Equity and the Campus Ministry. More dates will be added between now and May 12, 2020.
Come visit the Media Center and see how XTSR works. Watch some hosts go live and see what it’s like in a radio station!
The Trump plan was create with Palestinian input and meets many of the Isreali government’s long-term goals. We will discuss Trump’s goals in the region suggest evidence from the background and rollout of their “Peace Plan.”
If you have ever watched the NFL combine on TV and thought “I’s like to give that a try,” then this is the event for you! This free competition will measure participants’ abiity in multiple categories
TU music faculty member Dave Ballou performs with pianist Angelica Sanchez and others in a concert celebrating the oddity that is Leap Day. Come check out their discoveries!
University Union 208b, 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Media Center 209, 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
WVC 307, 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Burdick Hall, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Recital Hall, 7 p.m.
THIS WEEKEND @ TU
Women’s Lacrosse vs. High Point University Saturday, Feb. 29 at Johnny Unitas Stadium at noon The Tigers host the High Point Univeristy Panthers in the team’s second home game of the year. Towson has never beaten High Point, having lost the only two previous meetings, including a 12-8 loss last season. The Tigers are still seeking their first win of the season after losing to the Loyola Greyhounds 14-10 last week.
February 25, 2020
What to do with your life after college MIRANDA MOWREY Columnist @mirandamowrey
"The world is your oyster." I've repeated this phrase a billion times to myself and others without actually knowing what it even means. Google's translation of the obscure expression really resonated with me: "You are in a position to take the opportunities that life has to offer." It seems scary to think about what we will do with our lives after college. Think about it -- we have been apart of the school system for 17 years or more. It is daunting to think of ourselves as anything besides a student. Remember, though, that the world is your oyster. You truly can do with this life whatever you desire. Here are some common roads people travel down after snagging their diploma: Move back home. As you blow the dust off that last can of tuna you found in the back of your sad and empty pantry, nothing sounds better than a wholesome home-cooked meal. Moving back home is not only cost effective, but enables you to ditch your all-ramen noodle diet for
what will seem like five-star cooking. Plus, your dog misses you. Travel. Backpack around Europe, renovate an old van and plan a road trip across the country, or if you're feeling extra ambitious, pack your bags and move somewhere -- anywhere! If you self-diagnose yourself with a travel bug, there is no better time to do it than when you're young, healthy, and aren't bound by a family just yet. Traveling will open your mind and allow you to discover things a b o u t yourself and the world that you will carry with you through all walks of life. Kickstart your career. If you're ready to use the degree that you worked so hard for, then finding employment in the workforce after college might be perfect for you. Build up your LinkedIn, finalize your resume, and start your search for a job sooner rather than lat-
er. Diving into your career field early will give you more opportunities to connect with others, and not to mention will pay much better than your current minimum-wage job. Continue your education. A lot of employers these days prefer a candidate with more education. Plus, student loans often get deferred when you enroll in a graduate school. If you want to specialize in anything specific, or simply love to learn, attending graduate school would be a great option. It seems terrifying to be thrown out into the real world, feeling the immense pressure to make the right decision about how to begin life as a college graduate. At the end of the day, when making any big decision in life, choose the option that makes you feel the most at peace, and do not underestimate the power of your gut feeling. Above all, don't forget that the world is your oyster, whatever that even means.
First Amendment is not an excuse for misgendering JASPER SCELSI Columnist
A Religious Philosophy professor at Shawnee State University in Ohio claimed it was his first amendment right to misgender transgender students, which has recently made the news. The student asked him to call her “she,” “her,” and “ma’am,” but the professor refused and only called her by her last name. This actually happened to me on campus – I had a professor that refused to use my name and pronouns and just called me by my last name, and would get in my face and yell at me and graded me more harshly than other students. I never went to anyone about that, but luckily this student did. Professor Meriwether got an informal warning and a written warning for violating the non-discrimination policy of the school. But he argued that as “a Christian” it was his “sincerely held religious belief, based on the Bible’s teachings, that God created human beings as either male or female, that this gender is fixed in each person from the moment of conception, and that it cannot be changed.” So he sued the school with help from the Alliance Defending Freedom, a
group designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. It supports recriminalization of homosexuality and state-sanctioned sterilization of trans people. They claimed his free speech, freedom of religion, equal protection, and due process rights were violated. However, a federal trial court dismissed his claim, claiming misgendering is not free speech, and denied the other claims on precedent. The president of the school’s LGBTQ organization, Jae Keniston, said “Since this lawsuit began, transgender students have been worried that they would have to start skipping classes or avoid particular professors because Shawnee State would no longer be able to effectively address bullying, harassment, and mistreatment of transgender students,” on the matter. The fact that the misgendering was not allowed is a sign of society’s improved views on transgender people. Before, the suit may have gone through. But because Meriwether is a government employee, his free speech rights are limited. If this was another job, what would happen? Could an I.T. repair person misgendering customers sue their boss if they were reprimanded? That remains to be seen. But the outlook is hopeful. Hopefully people will see that being gendered correctly is a human right.
The Misadventures of Towson: Why is college so expensive?
Comic by Nyasha Marufu/ The Towerlight
February 25, 2020
Updates on the Democratic primary race
Courtesy of Matt Johnson on Flickr Creative Commons
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders became the first candidate to win the popular vote in the first three states of any primary campaign. Sanders won the Nevada Caucus with 46.8% of the vote and received 14 delegates.
TYRONE BARROZO Columnist
On Feb. 19, the ninth Democratic Debate was held in Las Vegas, Nevada and it was nothing short of entertaining. As everything comes down to the wire, we’re left with just six candidates left in the limelight— Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, former Vice President Joe Biden, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, former Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, and, for the first time, former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg. In less than five minutes, Sen. Warren managed to establish an uncharacteristically rapid pace for the evening. “I’d like to talk about who we’re running against: a billionaire who calls women fat broads and horse-faced lesbians. I’m not talking about Donald Trump—I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg,” Sen. Warren said in her opening statement. Warren, who remains among the top four of the DNC frontrunners, targeted the controversial Bloomberg who’s been deemed “Blue Trump” as he’s one of the
richest people on the planet, backed “stop-and-frisk” policies during his tenure as Mayor of New York, and been under scrutiny for sexist remarks and behaviors in the past. Reality checks were dealt throughout the night by Warren as she not only went after Bloomberg but also clashed against Klobuchar and Biden. Specifically, Warren criticized Klobuchar and Biden for their eagerness to compromise and collaborate with Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, who’s been responsible for his apathetic approaches towards hot-button issues such as gun control in the wake of numerous tragedies and for his active campaign to exclude the American public from knowing about Senate affairs. “Amy and Joe’s hearts are in the right place, but we can’t be so eager to be liked by Mitch McConnell that we forget how to fight the Republicans,” Warren stated. But aside from Warren’s debate highlights, Bloomberg continued to get bullied by virtually everyone on stage. From addressing aforementioned sexual harassment issues during his time in office to Bloomberg’s stance on stop-and-frisk policies. “It’s not whether he apolo-
gizes or not. It’s abhorrent,” Biden said, “Let’s get something straight. The reason that stop and frisk changed is because Barack Obama sent moderators to see what was going on.” Following after, Warren continued to capitalize with her own comment on Bloomberg’s policy history. “This isn’t about how it turned out. This is about what it was designed to do to begin with. It targeted communities of color. It targeted black and brown men from the beginning. And if you want to issue a real apology, then the apology has to start with the intent of the plan as it was put together.” Again, the evening was nothing short of a reality show-esque spectacle. In the end, however, Sanders would claim victory for the Nevada caucus, taking over 40% of the final vote, making him the first candidate—Democratic or Republican—to win all three early states (New Hampshire, Iowa, Nevada) in a primary. Biden would take 18.6% of the final vote, Buttigieg took 18.5%, and Warren took 11.8%. Despite an outstanding impression on the Southwest audience, Warren’s campaign is left in limbo as she continues to hang on to the bottom rung of the top four DNC candidates.
CHECK OUT THIS WEEK’S YOUTUBE VIDEO, A FOCUS ON THIS WEEK’S COVER STORY! https://youtu.be/BmV3EkR5lHE
February 25, 2020
Towson announces fee proposals for next year University discusses student fee changes at SGA-held student forum KERI LUISE News Editor @keri_luise
Towson University’s Student Government Association and Graduate Student Association held a student fee forum Feb.18 to announce fee proposals, including increases in athletic fees, auxiliary services fees and room rates, with no increase to SGA fees, parking fees, or Office of Technology Services fees. With a panel of speakers, the University addressed the process for determining proposed fee increases, including mandatory fees for all undergraduate and graduate students for the upcoming year such as fees for auxiliary services, athletics, construction, SGA, technology, housing and residential life and parking. “At the end of the day, the reason why all of us are here is to support all of you in getting the best education you possibly can at the most efficient price,” said Ben Lowenthal, TU’s vice president of administration and finance chief fiscal officer. “Walk out of these walls and go around with success in life -- that’s really all of our goals.” Lowenthal explained some of Towson University’s overall budget as being supported by revenues rather than the state such as summer and winter programs or anything to help students on campus that is not educational. “The only choice left [to pay for these services] is for the individual units to create a revenue so that they can balance all the expenses and provide good services to all the people,” he said. Some of the sources for this revenue includes student fees, revenue from customers outside of the student body and bonds. “We have operating expenses
and we have capital expenses,” Ben explained. “The operating expenses are the day to day – payrolls, supplies, things that we need to operate. Facilities, like buildings and major equipment that we might have are capital expenses, we have to cover those as well. There’s not any help coming from the state of Maryland for auxiliary services, so those are capital expenses.” According to Ben, student fees are due from all students and the goal is to ensure that fees stay reasonable. “The expectation is that all students carry some of that burden to offset or provide revenue to the expenses,” Lowenthal said. “They are out there trying to make sure that these expenses are at their minimum, trying to find out areas and ways to create revenue, not only on the backs of the students.” At the forum, TU’s athletic director, Tim Leonard, proposed an increase to athletic student fees, at a 3% increase for undergraduate students and a 4.4% increase for graduate students at the forum. He encouraged students to be involved with athletics going on around campus and to take advantage of their free opportunities. “The big thing that I want to make sure everyone in this room understands is that everybody here, all students are permitted to sporting events,” Leonard said. “So, like I tell our student athletes, I encourage you to be involved,
Brendan Felch / The Towerlight
Ben Lowenthal provided brief explanations on TU’s overall budget, particular units, proposed revenue updates and manadatory fees at the recent Student Fees Forum for the upcoming 2020-2021 fiscal year.
operations across campus including the childcare center, student services, and more. According to Campbell, auxiliary services asked for a $13 increase per semester for full-time students. “We’re covering the expenses we can,” Campbell said. “We’re only asking what we feel like we can ask for at this point and time in terms of auxiliary fees.” TU student Fatima Sy, assistant director of marking for the Campus Activities Board, expressed concern for how auxiliary services have a deficit in fees at the forum. “It’s complicated for us to understand where this deficit is coming from,” she said. “But like we’re trying to figure out how is it that every year, every year that I’ve been here, the fees have gone up [and there is still a deficit].” BEN LOWENTHAL TU’s Vice President of Administration and Finance Chief Fiscal Officer Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs Kelly Hoover also spoke and proposed a to participate and be actively 2.5% increase in a room rates conRob Campbell, associate vice engaged on campus.” tract since this unit cannot receive president of Financial Affairs, also With increased mandated fees funds from the state. spoke at the forum to discuss aux“All the revenue that we generfor Towson athletics, Leonard said iliary services fees with service
that of their budget, over 25% stays right on campus and expenses go right back to help the overall University budget. “We are trying to be very specific and strategic about how we use our budget and how we come to students and ask for fees,” Leonard said.
At the end of the day, the reason why all of us are here is to support all of you in getting the best education you possibly can at the most efficient price. Walk out of these walls and go around with success in life -- that’s really all of our goals.
ate goes back into our operation,” Hoover said. “The increase that the two and a half percent will provide for us goes into a lot of things that are mandated.” SGA was the firstw University unit at the forum to propose a 0% increase to their fee for the next fiscal year. “We’re actually looking out to pull from some of the contracts that we have that were contracted to the university with and possibly giving it to or sharing it with another department so that we don’t have to keep raising SGA fees and that we can have a balanced budget and give our money back to the students,” said SGA President Naimah Kargbo. “We want all of our students to feel comfortable and have a comfortable college experience without having to worry if their student group can meet the budget needs or if their student group can do X, Y and Z because they don’t have enough money.” The University Office of Technology Services also proposed a 0% fee increase as well as park-
February 25, 2020
myTU webpage gets updated Panel discusses minorities in voting MARCUS WHITMAN Staff Writer
KERI LUISE News Editor @keri_luise
Towson University has been working on a new myTU webpage, an updated hub for important links for students and staff, as part of a university-wide initiative to improve TU’s digital experience. “The university has been exploring ways to transition to more simplified and digitally-accessible technologies for several years,” said Sean Welsh, Associate Vice President of Communications and Media Advancement. “The new myTU portal is a part of that.” The new webpage was being tested with a beta version available for preview before the full launch. According to Welsh, the new webpage is now currently updated. The page has a more visual style layout compared to the old version and the preview received positive feedback from students before the full launch. According to TU computer science major, Emily Vogel, the new layout feels very user-friendly. “The old one had a lot of links and was very cluttered and all that,” she said. “The new one, I mean it’s going to take people getting used to, but...from a usability standpoint, it is very usable.” The new myTU has a section for users to select links located in boxes with corresponding icons, whether it be Blackboard, OneCard, webmail, Peoplesoft, and more. It also includes a section to the side entitled “Latest News” and another sec-
tion for “Additional Links.” “This overarching, multi-year effort focuses on replacing dated apps and systems with simplified, standardized and mobile-friendly versions of what we use today,” Welsh said about the new site. “This is not solely a technology project, but more of a holistic approach to improve the digital experience for TU’s faculty, staff and students. As our physical campus advances and improves, our online systems need to keep pace as well.” According to Dan Fricker, Solutions Analyst for the Office of Technology Services at TU, this project, “which includes StudentApps, the new myTU site, and faculty/staff portal,” has been in the works since July 2019. “Project team members have worked more than 1,000 hours (and counting) to improve the digital experience for the campus,” Fricker said. “More than 75 individual users from TU have been directly involved with the project including members of OTS, Creative Services, Digital Strategy, Marketing and Communication, Office of Human Resources, Financial Affairs, and various subject matter experts across campus.” TU pre-nursing major Jazmin Techie-Mensah thinks that the new layout is better than the original, but one thing she would like to see added is a “daily events” section to the myTU webpage. Currently, events are located at https://www. towson.edu/calendars/. “I think they could add what’s going on that day, every day,” she said. “If someone were to log on to see what’s happening, if there are any events on campus and stuff.” According to Shauntia Mclean, a TU business administration major, the
new page is “organized and accessible, especially for a college student.” “I feel like students would interact with this more than the other view,” she said. “It’s more interactive, more chic and you have the pictures and everything. It’s more visual. I want to interact with it, I want to see.” According to Welsh, the new myTU look and feel is an attempt to modernize user experience without feeling too much of a drastic change. “The campus can still access all the info they need, but in a more intuitive way,” he said. “The myTU modernization project is the beginning of a broader vision and multiphased effort to provide a more personalized digital experience.” Fricker said that during this modernization period, a majority of the original links were retained and a few more have also been added on. “The vendor assisting with the project helped design the site with the consultation of our brand team, making sure the site accurately reflects the new TU brand,” Fricker said. “The placement of the links and tiles on the page are based on click statistics of the current usage.” Noah Shannon, a TU computer science major, also has given positive feedback to the new site. “I think it is nice,” he said. “I like how everything is compact in one space. I can click on anything and I know specifically where things are. I don’t have to click on a thousand different menus to find the one thing I want.” From just the beta testing stage of what TU students had seen for months, many felt that this site was off to a good start. When it came time for the full launch for the new myTU page, not much of anything was needed to be changed or added.
Screenshot by Keri Luise / The Towerlight
The new myTU webpage is part of a campus approach to modernize and overall improve user digital experiences. The site replaced apps with simplified, mobile-friendly versions for advancements.
Sophia Bates / The Towerlight
TU’s Office of Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility held a panel to focus on the importance and impact of the minority vote. SOPHIA BATES Asst. News Editor @sophiabates23
The Department of Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility hosted a panel about the importance of minority voters Feb 19. The panel hosted Baltimore County Councilman Julian Jones, Madison Green from March For Our Lives Maryland, Students Learn Students Vote Coalition Partnerships Manager Kathryn Quintin and Vote Everywhere Ambassador for the Andrew Goodman Foundation Sophie Bertrand. The panel was set to be focused on “meaningful conversations about the importance and impact of the minority vote, in the upcoming elections and beyond,” according to the event page. But there was some back-andforth between Jones and Green after Jones shared comments regarding how politicians look at those who vote versus those who do not. “If I’m walking down the street and I want to hear some concerns from someone, am I going to talk to someone who may vote, think about voting, if they feel like voting or am I going to talk to the person that I know is going to vote,” Jones said. “And then I know that I have to satisfy that person to get that person to vote for me the next time. And the people that don’t vote, often times their voice is not heard because they don’t vote.” Jones added that people should vote because it is their civic responsibility. “You should vote because some-
body has to divvy up your tax dollars,” Jones said. “You put it all in the pot, somebody has to do something with it. Either you are going to participate, or you are not. If you don’t, you get what you get.” Green shared her disagreement with Jones about why people do not vote. “I think it’s really harmful to say that if you don’t vote it’s because you don’t care,” Green said. “Because you are really ignoring the generational oppression that people of color have gone through in this country.” Green added that there have been measures taken to address past oppressions around voting, such as people of color being allowed to vote. But, according to Green, there are many things in place that prevent people of color from voting. “When we talk about how they are shutting down polling places, primarily where people of color are located, and when we talk about the fact that we still don’t get off for the national election, this harms minority voters,” Green said. Green added the harm that comes from saying people who don’t vote don’t care, primarily women and people of color. “When you say that when we don’t vote, we don’t care, that’s really really harmful to systematic oppression that we’ve gone through and we’ve been through,” Green said. Quintin jumped in to share how the complicated system works against minority voters, such as Asian Americans. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
10 February 25, 2020
Arts & Life
Students produce one-act plays MEGHAN HUDSON Arts & Life Editor
Towson University students will be showcasing “An Evening of One Acts: Part 1,” a student-run series of one-act plays from Feb. 26 through 29. This event will highlight three separate one acts from three different eras in time, and three different genres. The first play to be showcased is “Three Skeleton Key,” which was written by James Poe, and is being directed by TU student, Samuel Pomerantz. It is a radio play about three lighthouse keepers and their struggle to survive when a ship bearing a strange cargo arrives on their reef. “It’s been a very exploratory and inventive process, especially with the cast work because it’s a radio play, so it heavily relies on sound effects,” said Pomerantz. “It was really fun trying to get my cast to explore the sound effect and timing aspect of it,
and then eventually I found myself
fun is the exploration.”
more than two people,” said Delogu.
it’s really hard because I want to do
exploring right alongside them so that was really fun.” Radio shows, as implied by the name, are plays which were experienced via the radio, beginning in the 1930s. This strictly audio experience has not been lost on many, as many radio shows have since been translated onto the theatre stage and preserved. “Three Skeleton Key” features foley artists who produce the sounds associated with the story in real time on stage, as well as narrators to the story. They utilize objects such as spaghetti noodles, potatoes, shoes, metal boxes, and more. “With how an actor’s voice is usually their instrument and their body and physicality, we don’t really get either of those” said Frankie Marsh, a foley artist for “Three Skeleton Key.” “It’s always just like, where did I put the potatoes? When does the trap door come? Not having an actual instrument or following some sort of melody is chaos, however, it’s still really fun because part of the
“Three Skeleton Key” is a horror genre production. Though you can’t see the horror, you can hear it. “I hope that this can be a story that everybody enjoys because I know that horror is sometimes not the genre that people will go to as their genre of choice,” said Pomerantz. “However, what I’ve liked advertising the show as is that, it’s not a horror story that you’re going to see, it’s a horror story that you’re going to hear.” Following “Three Skeleton Key,” is “A Marriage Proposal,” written by Anton Chekov, and directed by Towson student, Sophia Delogu. This play is a comedic one-act farce. “There is a father and daughter, and they have a neighbor, and the neighbor comes over and is hoping to propose to the daughter,” explained Delogu. “This gets put off because they keep on arguing and they can’t come to an agreement.” This is also Delogu’s first big directing job here at Towson. “This is my first time directing
“Overall the cast has been really great. They take direction really well, and it’s interesting to see them take what I’m imagining and actually put it into movement.” Finally, the evening concludes with the production, “Who Killed John Doe?” This play is written, produced and costume designed by Towson University student Alexandra Harrington, and directed by Sydney Pope, also a TU student. According to Harrington, it’s a murder/mystery/comedy making fun of classic who-done-it tropes with a lot of puns, and a lot of sex jokes. “The play started as a 10-minute play in a project for a playwriting class I was in a few years ago,” Harrington said. “I wanted to have fun with it. It’s a murder-mystery-comedy. So, I wrote that and was like, this is kind of fun, I want to explore this a little bit more. I really wanted to extend the play a little bit more and see if it could become a studio production and it did.” For Pope, directing alongside the screenwriter has been a different, yet rewarding experience. “I have directed in the past here at Towson and also outside of Towson locally,” said Pope. “It’s been really fruitful to expand some of the tools that I’m using as director, and in building more vocabulary. It’s also incredibly rewarding to see Alex’s work come to life. It’s so funny, and that’s been incredibly rewarding.” Though the pair and the cast have been working together to ensure a smooth transition from page to stage, there were still some challenges to be overcome. “I’m a really serious director, and working with a really funny piece, it’s been challenging for me to stretch and let people just play rather than having such a tight reign of control,” said Pope. “I’m grateful to have directed this piece because it stretches me as a director to say okay, let them have fun, let them explore, let them improv.” As the title implies, John Doe dies in this play, something that made playing John Doe more difficult for actor, Eric Panuela. “I’m an energetic person as is, so being still figuratively and literally,
a million different things,” Panuela said. “I’ll ask Sydney [to do something], and sometimes I just need to stick to a direction and I have to be reined in because it’s a really fun show but at the same time there has to be a strict direction, and sometimes I may stray away from the course of that.” Jade Eisenacher, who plays Wilhelmina Peck, said that she struggled giving depth to her character, who was originally intended to be ditsy. “For me, since its a very energetic show, and I’m not dead, I wanted to play around with my character and give her a little bit more depth then just being super out there and kind of dumb,” Eisenacher said. “I played a lot of silly characters before, so I wanted to give her a little bit more behind her. That’s been fun to explore not making her super ditsy and being a little bit of a stronger character for women. This is also my first time performing on a Towson stage so that’s been really scary for me, but I’m really excited.” Overall, the cast and crew hope for the audience to have a good time. “I just want [the audience] to laugh,” Harrington said. “That’s the goal. Everything is too serious in life right now. I get we’re in a very serious time, but I think sometimes we get too distracted with wanting our art to make a statement that we forget that it’s also supposed to be entertaining.” Isobel Springer, who is acting in “Three Skeleton Key,” believes their work on this production displays a variety of skill sets. “The wonderful thing about this, is that it shows an amazing array of what our department has to offer, because it’s a whole bunch of different shows doing different things,” Springer said. “It’s showing student writers, student directors, student actors all coming together to create amazing art in one night,” The production will begin running on Feb. 26th in the Ruth Marder Studio Theatre (CA 3044), and will run through Feb. 29. Tickets cost $5 for everyone and can be purchased at the TU box office online or in person.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Towson University students will have their opening night of “An Evening of One Acts: Part 1” tomorrow in the Ruth Marder Studio Theatre. The plays will run through Feb. 29. Tickets are available online.
Arts & Life
February 25, 2020
Film Festival returns for 12th time Educating young entrepreneurs at TU MEGHAN HUDSON Arts & Life Editor NORMA SORTO Contributing Writer
Victoria Nicholson/ The Towerlight
Jenny Thompson, who spoke at the event, is the founder of SafetyPIN Technologies, Inc. Her goal is to provide a safety net for the gig economy.
VICTORIA NICHOLSON Art Director @ToriNickel
Trusting someone to watch over your house or your animals can be tough, but what do you do when the person you trusted fails to do their job? This is what Jenny Thompson, Founder and CEO of SafetyPIN Technologies, faced, after trusting a Towson University student with access to her home to house sit and dog sit. On Feb. 18, Thompson hosted an “Entrepreneurship Unplugged” workshop in PAWS. The purpose of this event was to inspire young entrepreneurs and students on campus to pursue their own entrepreneurial visions. Jan Baum, a professor of Design and Social Entrepreneurship at Towson, organized this event in hopes of connecting students to a real life Baltimore-based entrepreneur. “I want students to realize what I’m doing in the classroom is real world,” said Baum. “I think we need to hear it from an entrepreneur, to see them, feel them, and hear them. It brings it more to life.” According to Thompson, when she arrived back to her home after being out of town for nine days, it became clear that the dog sitter abandoned her responsibilities. Thompson noted seeing stains on the floor, resources left untouched, and even the fresh sheets she left folded in the washing machine had not moved. “Has anyone here ever had to fold a fitted sheet?” asked Thompson. Pausing, only a small amount
of hands rose into the air, proving the task to be generally unpopular. Thompson’s point was that the sitter did not use the sheet, therefore, didn’t spend the night like she was paid to do. After confronting the sitter on what happened, Thompson asked the sitter for the money back which she owed for failing to do the job. Normally during these situations, one may block the other person’s number or social media pages, but the sitter had another idea. She decided to fake her own death, texting back as the heartbroken mother. “Please take out your notebooks right now and write, do not fake your own death when you owe someone $150” said Thompson. This situation introduced a problem to Thompson: how do you trust a stranger with access to your home? In an effort to create a solution to her problem, Thompson launched SafetyPIN Technologies, Inc. “At SafetyPIN we’ve developed a universal trust badge, primarily for the sharing and gig economy,” said Thompson. According to their website, SafetyPin has a “4-pronged algorithm that includes a broader criminal background check, a financial history screening, an ID verification, and a proprietary behavioral review.” After passing each of these checks, users will receive a unique, 8-digit SafetyPIN, which they can share on the app or in person to show that they are trustworthy individuals. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
For the 12th year in a row, Towson University is hosting the “Bridges to the World International Film Festival,” which began on Feb. 7 and will continue through March 6. “We’ve been intimately involved in the bridges series since it began,” said Greg Faller, interim dean for the Center for the Arts. “There is some further back history, probably around 2001 or 2002, there was an earlier iteration of an international film festival that Towson was involved with that brought six films from six different countries all in one week, and that was a model that we had with the governor’s office.” According to Faller, that model didn’t end up being very viable, so the group took a hiatus after a couple of years of hosting this early edition festival. “12 years ago I re-engaged with other members across the state [and partnered with World Artists Experiences and Maryland’s Office of the Secretary of State International Division],” said Faller. “We started 12 years ago and formed a committee. The committee decides which five countries we want to explore that year, and we try to pick five [countries] from five regions of the globe. Then the World Artists Experience deals directly with the embassy, and the embassy in Washington D.C. provides the films and the screening rights, and then the films are shown in five or six venues depending on the year across the state of Maryland.” In 2020, the festival is highlighting films from Chile, Indonesia, Finland, China, and Egypt. Aside from Towson, the films are also screened in five other Maryland locations: Annapolis, Bowie, California, Cumberland, and Salisbury. Zachary Gambrill, an EMF student at Towson, believes that international films are important to experience. “International films are
important because you’re never going to get that kind of perspective without broadening your horizons and taking in art from people that seem to be so different from you,” said Gambrill. “The reason “Parasite” was such a surprising success is because people didn’t expect to relate to it so much because it was a film
caught between Abdi (Abshir Sheik Nur), a muslim taxi driver who is struggling to provide for his family and Janne (Ville Haapasalo) a leader of a neo-Nazi group. Judith Mordi, a student at Towson, attended the Finnish film screening. “I think it’s really nice to
you initially had to read with subtitles, and why would someone read a movie when they could just watch more English movies? It’s because the movie’s just good.” Faller believes that it’s important for students to experience films outside of the Hollywood filmmaking industry. “It demonstrates to our campus population who have probably kind of been “raised” on American Hollywood films, that there are many different ways of approaching filmmaking, many different themes to address, many different characters to develop, and many different ways to look at the world that we live in,” said Faller. “That broader expanse to a global perspective is key.” “Stupid Young Heart (2018)” is a Finnish drama romance film directed by Selma Vihunen, which was screened on campus last Friday. The film is set in East Helsinki, a working class neighborhood with the highest unemployment and poverty rates. It is about two teenagers, Lenni and Kira, who discover that they are expecting a baby. Neither has a stable home, loving parents, or an adult role model. Lenni finds himself
have these types of events because it lets us see other cultures and experience new things,” said Mordi. These film screenings not only bring a new film experience to campus, but often times the screening is opened by a special guest. “Last Friday evening when we had the Indonesian film, we had two guests from the embassy of Indonesia come up,” said Faller. “They introduced the film, they led a post-screening discussion, and they brought samples of Indonesian coffee to share with our audience members.” Ping Fu, a Chinese Professor in the Foreign Language Department at Towson, will be introducing this week’s film, “Cell Phone (2003)” from China, and next week Kimberly Katz, a professor from the History Department, will be introducing Egyptian film “Yomeddine (2018).” The 12th Annual Bridges to the World Film Festival is held in the Van Bokkelen Hall Auditorium (VB 204) at Towson University. “[I] encourage students, faculty and staff to join us,” said Faller. “They’re free screenings [for everyone] so it doesn’t cost anything to come on over to Van Bokklen.”
Norma Sorto/ The Towerlight
Towson University is hosting the “Bridges to the World International Film Festival” for the 12th year in a row, now through March 6.
12 February 25, 2020
tigers remain winless top-four finish Six unanswered goals lead Cornell to victory
for both squads Women finish in third, men fourth in CAA Championships 3-meter dive. The men’s team also had some success, led by senior Owen Robinson. He finished third in both the 200-yard backstroke and 100Towson’s women’s swimming yard backstroke. and diving team placed third at “He had a great meet of both the Colonial Athletic Association backstrokes,” Shrum said. “Both (CAA) Championships while the were lifetime best time. Dropped men’s team finished fourth in a lot of time. Moved up in our Christiansburg, Virginia. top-10 all time. Both strokes The women’s team finished were absolutely great and always with 557 points while the men great for a senior to get a couple tallied up 531.5 points. medals and be on the podium.” Senior Megan Cowan finished Junior Nick McClure took secfirst in the 200-yard butterfly ond in the 200-yard butterfly 1:58.68. timing 1:45.71. Cowan also placed second in Senior Matt Essling finished the 100-yard butterfly and for third in the 100-yard freestyle, the second straight year won the and the team of freshman Mi200-yard individual medley. chael Fazio, sophomores Cody “[Cowan] was our MVP this Stewart and Ryan Baldino and weekend,” head coach Jake Essling timed 2:57.59 in the 400Shrum said. “She was fantastic yard freestyle. and it really just says a lot for our Essling also took third in the team individually and on relay.” 50-yard freestyle finishing with Senior Sara new school-reah-Margaret Locke cord time of won 400-yard in19.75. [Cowan] was our dividual medley “He’s super exon Friday timing MVP this weekend. plosive,” Shrum a personal-record said. “He’s got a She was fantastic great mental edge 4:19.33. Locke was the first Tiger and it really just to the way that to win the event races. He realsays a lot for our he since 2016. ly works hard to team. “That was actuimprove in that JAKE SHRUM event and so it’s ally her first time Head Coach great for him to she’s raced that at the conference lower his time, championship meet,” Shrum bring it down and break that said. “It’s something she’s done school record.” pretty well in some things that Junior Will Canny finished we ran in practice and we desecond earning a silver medal in cided to focus on that event with the 3-meter dive with a mark of her a little bit more this year. 322.10. She really committed to working “Will’s always been great for hard on every stroke to get betus on the board ever since he’s ter at that.” come to Towson,” Shrum said. Senior Jacki Schoening fin“He just continues to really excel ished second, earning a silver in these championship environmedal, in the 100-yard breastments.” stroke with a time of 1:00.77. As a team, Towson’s seasons Senior Maddi Mangum finfor both the men and women ished third in the 100-yard backcome to an end. stroke and timed 54.79. However, a few athletes Christina Coleman finished will prepare for the NCAA seventh in both the 1-meter and championships that will take MUHAMMED WAHEED Asst. Sports Editor @MuhammedKWaheed
Amanda Bosse/ The Towerlight
Sophomore midfielder Ryan Swain scored a goal with 9:33 in the third quarter against Cornell. His goal cut the Tigers deficit to five in the 17-10 loss. The Tigers have started the season 0-3 for the first time since 2013.
JOHN HACK Staff Writer @johnhack10
The Tigers matched up with no. 12/11 Cornell Big Red and fell short 17-10. Senior midfielder Jon Mazza and sophomore attack James Avanzato each scored two goals for Towson (0-3) and six other Tigers found the net once in the game. “We lost to a hard-working, fundamentally-sound Cornell team,” head coach Shawn Nadelen said. “Feel like they just kinda chipped away at us, made small play after small play. It was tight early on, it went back and forth then I think they did a good job of wearing us down.” However, for roughly the first 10 minutes of the game, Towson’s defense was able to hold Cornell’s (2-0) offense to a minimum when it came to high percentage scoring chances and forced four turnovers in the first quarter. Two of these turnovers resulted in Tigers goals as Towson held a 2-1 lead. The Tigers were dealt with some adversity in the opening stanza as senior defenseman Gray Bodden exited the game due to an injury. “We had to go with some inexperience there and I think at
times that showed, as well as our defensive midfield group as well.” Nadelen said. The Big Red scored three unanswered goals before senior attack Brody McLean scored his fourth of the season. Six seconds later, Cornell took advantage of a face-off win and added another goal to take a 5-3 lead into the second quarter. In terms of goal scoring, the high point for Towson was the start of the 2nd quarter, which saw redshirt senior midfielder Grant Maloof score his second of two goals. Junior attack Tim Montgomery and junior midfielder Greg Ey each scored their first goals of the 2020 campaign, as the Tigers tied the game at six with 11:39 remaining in the half. “Offensively we were decent, we were far from good,” Nadalen said. “Thought we got a little bit stagnant sometimes and our decision making and ball movement I thought we made some poor decisions there.” However, this was the closest Towson would get to a comeback as the Big Red’s offensive attack was able to move the ball around and score from different areas of the field. Many of these tallies came from behind goal as Cornell revealed a particular penchant for the wrap around goal. To end the
first half the Big Red scored four unanswered taking a 10-6 lead into halftime. “We gotta keep working hard at our fundamentals,” Nadalen said. “Ground ball play continues to be a bit of a concern for us. Were not doing a great job of reading the ball, earning the ball off the ground, and reading the ball when it gets goosed around. When you’re in a pile and all a sudden, the ball squirts out this way, we seem to be a step behind it.” Coming out of the second half, Cornell added another two goals resulting in a 6-0 run that lasted nearly 15 minutes of game time. The Big Red outscored the Tigers 7-4 in the second half, but Towson scored the final two goals of the game from Avanzato and Mazza. Cornell outshot the Tigers 4834 including 30-18 on goal. The Big Red won 21 of 31 faceoffs, and 11 of their goals came after winning a faceoff. “It really comes down to putting ourselves in position to get good shots off,” Nadelen said. “We’ll continue to work and improve but there’s a good ways to go.” Facing another short week, Towson will continue looking for the first win of their season Wednesday when they travel to Baltimore to visit Loyola on Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 7 p.m.
February 25, 2020
towson sweeps phoenix TU clinches first-round bye in CAA tournament JALON DIXON Columnist
The Tigers celebrated Senior Day with a bounce-back performance over Elon, 84-71. The victory earned Towson (17-12, 10-6 CAA) a first round bye in the CAA tournament, and secured a sweep over the Phoenix (710, 11-19 CAA) for the first time since 2016. Senior guard Brian Fobbs, redshirt senior forwards Dennis Tunstall and Nayke Sanders played their final home game at SECU Arena and head coach Pat Skerry expressed he is appreciative of their impact on the program. "I love these guys,” Skerry said. “t's been a privilege to coach them at home. They all played well today from Dennis having a career high four assists for a forward which is unbelievable to Nakye's last 10 minutes and Brian was good. He is the horse that pulls the wagon. He knows how to strain. Good team win." In a collective effort, freshman guard Jason Gibson and Fobbs led the Tigers with 19 points a piece and a combined 12 rebounds. “We’re back, we’re in the mix, we’re having a good year,” Sker-
ry said. “I still think we can have a great year. That’ll be determined March 8th to 10th down in D.C., but I’m appreciative of these guys for getting us back in the mix.” Towson got out to an early 12-4 lead as Elon missed three of their first five shots. The Tigers hit three straight from deep including two from Gibson and held a 26-11 lead with 11 minutes in the first half. Three-point shooting played a significant role in the first half as Towson hit seven of 13 shots while the Phoenix only made two of their 12 attempts. The Tigers led at halftime 40-30. In the second half Gibson scored six consecutive points and extended Towson’s lead to nine points. He scored ten points in the second half and was featured on SportsCenter after a miraculous save out of bounds that led to a dunk on the other end. “That wasn’t shocking by Gibby,” Sanders said. “We see what he can do everyday in practice. He goes hard, he’s a great leader out there at the point guard spot. Tough, he’s a great piece for us.” With the score 58-46 with 10:35 left in the game, the Tigers began to pick up the pace after a three-pointer from redshirt freshman guard Nicolas Timberlake started up what would turn
into a 14-5 to 5 run that ended with a dunk from Fobbs to put Towson up 70-51 and give them their biggest lead of the night. The celebrated senior group of Fobbs, Sanders and Tunstall combined for 37 points and 16 rebounds. “It’s definitely a great feeling,” Tunstall said. “It’s definitely been a long journey. Every game is a big game, our next goal is to cut down the nets in March.” The Tigers struggled offensively as they took the loss 61-51 to William and Mary. Towson only shot 27% from the floor and 35% from three. Fobbs was the only Tiger with over ten points, scoring 15 and adding seven rebounds. The Tribe’s (2010, 12-5 CAA) duo of junior guard Luke Loewe and senior forward Nathan Knight combined for 29 points. “Tough loss, thought we played hard but it’s obviously hard to win a ballgame against a good team when you’re shooting the ball that poorly.” Head coach Pat Skerry said. For Towson, their offensive struggles would start to haunt them early. After going just over four minutes without scoring, Fobbs hit back-to-back threes to put the Tigers up 6-5. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Freshman guard Jason Gibson scored 19 points in the Tigers 84-71 victory against Elon. One of Gibson’s four assists was featured on ESPN’s Sportscenter as Towson clinched a first-round bye in the CAA Tournament.
Jason Gibson Men’s Basketball
Freshman guard Jason Gibson scored 19 points in Towson’s 84-71 victory over Elon. Gibson was featured on SportsCenter after making a miraculous save out of bounds to set up a dunk by redshirt senior guard Brian Fobbs.
14 February 25, 2020
Flyers soaring above expectations ANDY PALM Columnist
Don’t look now, but the Philadelphia Flyers are a mere five points out of first place in the Metropolitan Division. Besides the fact that their mascot Gritty was accused of assaulting a 13-year-old kid but was cleared of charges, things have been looking great for the broad street bullies as of late. First-year head coach Alain Vigneault has this young core buzzing and looking dangerous for a playoff run. Last week the team faced off against the Columbus Blue Jackets twice in a home-andhome set. In the first meeting on Tuesday, which was played in Philadelphia, the Flyers put on an offensive clinic. The team tallied five goals, scoring two within the first five minutes of the game. The team was very efficient in their attack on Columbus. Philly was 33.33% when shooting on net, as they only needed 15 shots to score five goals. In perspective, Columbus put 29 shots on net and only scored one. Before the final horn sounded, a milestone was reached. Flyers team captain Claude Giroux capped off the night by notching
his 235th career power play assist. This figure makes him the new franchise leader, surpassing Hall of Fame center Bobby Clarke. Thursday would be a closer affair, as the two teams faced off again -- this time in Columbus. Although this game would require overtime, the result would be no different. Philly came out on top, 4-3. The Flyers are playing complete hockey right now. They are getting solid offensive pressure consistently, while also having a good young goaltender they can rely upon. Goalie Carter Hart had a lot of expectations on his shoulders coming into this season, and he has done a decent job of answering that call. The 21-year-old net minder was sidelined for nine games in late January due to an abdominal strain, but besides that, he has been highly effective. Hart is 18-12-3 in 36 appearances this season, with a 2.54 GAA. His record isn’t necessarily reflective of his performance this season. Philly only just recently started to give Hart solid offensive backup. Now that the team seems to have found its chemistry, and linesman are settling into their roles, Hart will have less pressure going forward. - To read the rest of this column online, visit thetowerlight.com.
PuzzleS on page 15
towson splits road trip Murray joins the 1,000-point club against NU
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Redshirt senior guard Qierra Murray became the third player this season to reach the 1,000 point milestone. She reached this milestone against Hofstra and scored 13 points with a career high 12 assists. BROOKS WARREN Staff Writer @Broookksss
Towson went 1-1 in their penultimate road trip of the season against Hofstra University and Northeastern University this past weekend. The Tigers (13-12 8-6 CAA) now sit five games back of Drexel for first place in the CAA. In the second contest of the weekend, Towson dropped a 6663 decision to Northeastern. Jeter led the shorthanded with all scorers with 25 points, while Mayo contributed 12 points and five rebounds. The senior forward played despite battling a fever, reportedly playing at about 65% of her usual powers. “Just stay focused,” Jeter said. “Don’t worry about the calls, either we going to get them or not. We can only do what we can do.” Old issues plagued the Tigers once again, allowing the Huskies to throw the first punch and getting out to a slow start in the first half trailing 13-0. In the second quarter Towson played catchup, taking their first lead of the night off a Jeter layup capping a 9-2 run. Freshman guard Maggie
Sharp played a pivotal role in the first half, scoring seven points to keep the Tigers on top. The efforts were all for naught, however, as Northeastern ended the first half with a five-point lead. The Huskies took control and reeled off a 9-4 run to grow the deficit to eight points late in the third quarter. Mayo once again cut the lead to one early in the final frame with her layup, but Northeastern scored six straight points to keep Towson at bay. The Tigers had another chance late to secure a win after a Jeter layup with four seconds left, but the Huskies hit a free throw with a second left to clinch the win. “I think as a team we should feel good about today,” Murray said. “Yes we came up short but we adjusted with what we had. The whole (team) is battling sickness right now.” The first game of the weekend was a 71-54 victory over Hofstra University. Senior redshirt guard Qierra Murray headlined the contest when she scored her 1000th career point. Murray became the third Towson player to accomplish the feat this season and the 19th overall after a 13 points, a career high 12 assists,
and eight-rebound performance. She joins senior forward Nukiya Mayo and redshirt junior guard Kionna Jeter on the exclusive list. “Feels good, it’s been a long journey but everything was worth it,” Murray said. “And my teammates did a good job knocking down shots.” The first half was tightly contested, neither team led by more than five points and were tied at 30-30 at halftime.The Tigers were able to build a double-digit lead in the second half after outscoring the Pride 21-11 in the third quarter. It all started with Mayo and her seven-point third quarter along with a 7-0 run to take an eight-point lead late in the quarter. Hofstra got as close as seven in the fourth quarter, but Towson responded with an 12-3 run, staking out a 13-point lead after Murray knocked a 3-pointer down. The Tigers scored the final five points of the game to seal their victory. “Just all-around good team effort,” Murray said. “My teammates were getting open and I was delivering.” Towson returns home to SECU Arena against William and Mary on Friday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m.
February 25, 2020
See page 14 for answers to this week’s
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INSIDE: Towson University students prepare to direct and star in their own one-act plays (pg. 10), an updated myTU page launches (pg. 7), In...
Published on Feb 27, 2020
INSIDE: Towson University students prepare to direct and star in their own one-act plays (pg. 10), an updated myTU page launches (pg. 7), In...