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Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)

How Have Freshman Grown In Their First Year At Monmouth? || Features

As the school year comes to a close, every student takes some time to look back and think upon how they’ve grown. It’s a special kind of feeling in that not a single person is the same as they were at the start as they now are at the end. Yet none have changed more so than the freshman, in their first year of their new life at a University. Their first year has likely been one of self-discovery, and will determine their place in the years to come.

“In my first year at Monmouth I’ve become much more independent, open-minded, and accepting,” said Mary Fitzgerald, a freshman mathematics student and future Resident Assistant next semester. The general growth of students is determinate on how they experience their first year at college. Stepping up to responsibilities cam allow for some excellent maturation and skills that can make the next challenge easier. It takes a lot to mature at college, but taking every day a step at a time can allow change for the better.

Although the standard of growth is important, people grow and change in different ways. Where one person grows from their studies and friends, others find their place in a club or group.

The feeling of having a collection of students who are going through the same trials as you or upperclassmen being there to guide you can bring out growth and maturation that would not have been found on your own. Gina Geletei, a freshman English student, came into her own thanks to her involvement with the Student Activities Board; finding a group of like-minded friends allows for students to grow together, instead of apart.

“I have been learning so many valuable skills and have met so many amazing people who have truly made a difference in my life. SAB has taught me discipline, people skills and organization which ultimately translated over in my school work,” Geletei said. She knew she found her place in the SAB, and it spread to her finding confidence and skill in her academics.

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Minimum Wage: $70,000 a Year? || Opinion

Just recently it was announced that the budding Seattle-based credit-card payment processing firm, Gravity Payments, owner Dan Price has increased his workers’ minimum yearly wage to $70,000 (it was prior to this increase at about $48,000). This move by Price was a very gutsy move. His ability to increase every worker’s wages like this was planned based on anticipated earnings by the company. If the company does not excel as projected, this raise may be all for naught. But, without being so negative, let’s look at what an incredible impact this action has produced.

While this company is in Seattle, Washington, a change like this would be incredible to happen here on the East Coast. In order to live comfortable in New Jersey the average person should be making around $60-70,000. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, average New Jerseyans make approximately $54,000 a year. So, while this number is not horrific, it doesn’t give much wiggle room for families to have a comfortable surplus for vacations, gifts, or even for unexpected payments such as car accidents or natural disaster damages.

Alexa Massari,a junior English and education student, said, “Doing this increases the help for the living style of the average person. People will no longer have to try and spread their paychecks thin to afford their personal lifestyles. Also, not to mention, $48,000 is the starting salary for teachers, so knowing this, we'll [future teachers] be able to have a better life for the job we do [if this change comes to the east coast].” What Price is doing by making the minimum yearly salary $70,000 is giving his employees some space to live comfortably, preventing them from living paycheck to paycheck as Massari suggested, and it allows them to have an extra stash of money to do things that make them happy.

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Quirky and Camera-Eyed || Features

hutchins color photoThe word film might be permanently bonded to the end of Ryan Hutchins’ name. In fact, he’s probably filming something at this very moment. And if he’s not, he’s trying to find an old beat up car to set on fire in a short film or applying for a grant to shoot footage somewhere in Beverly Hills.

“Film is my first passion and always will be,” he said. At 22-years-old, Hutchins is a storyteller. He gives life to people, places, and events that are important to him. “I make movies because it is the culmination of everything in life that I love. Human interaction, magic, writing, photography, storytelling, building, designing, expressing emotions, and music. Is there another art form that has such flexibility?"

Cheviot Hills, a beautiful neighborhood in the city of Los Angeles, is home for Hutchins and his filmmaking. While it’s an ideal spot to thrive creatively, he described it best as ‘loneliness.’

“There is this idea that all of these artists in LA are alone together, because we were misfits from where we came,” he said. So maybe he’s a misfit, similar to one of his role models, Edward Scissorhands. He believes it’s his struggles that give him strength as an artist.

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Where Are They Now - Jorge Branco ‘13 Psychology | Study Abroad in London in Fall 2010 || Features

study abroad

Growing up as the first generation American I often visited family in Portugal which helped to create in me a strong desire to travel and see more of the world. With those memories at heart I knew that studying abroad was a core dream of mine and nothing would stand in my way. I decided to study abroad in London and it began a life changing and pivotal moment in my life. I became determined to reach deep down and look at my flaws. I desired to overcome and change, to follow my life dreams and aspirations, and more importantly to really become the man I knew I could be. In college we have a many choices impacting our future. We are young and strong enough to open the doors of our past and fix anything about ourselves we don't love, and choose to be anything in our future that we DO love.

The study abroad experience made me appreciate being a Monmouth University student more and to take advantage of all that it offers every student. I took my classes more seriously and opened up my eyes to all the opportunities that lay before me.  I realized that just showing up wasn't enough, I had to learn and apply as much as possible. That is really just one of the many intangibles of the study abroad experience, the fact that you can wake up. I think you grow up faster into an adult with values and actual plans, other than just what the weekend entails.

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Where Are They Now - Britt Travis '05 Communication | Study Abroad in London, England in Fall 2002 || Features

study abroadI wasn’t enjoying my experience as a freshman in college…and I had dreamed of being abroad my whole life. When I saw the advertisement & met with Robyn, I felt like I would meet similar people to me. It ended up being the best decision of my life to date.

Robyn was amazing to us; we really felt like we had a person to connect to…many of the other schools seemed to ship students off without a “home base contact.” That was crucial.

At first it made me more connected to people like me at Monmouth – and that was really important. I was 19 – young, unsure of who I was. It sounds silly, but studying abroad helped me gain confidence so that I could really succeed at Monmouth. After traveling through countries where no one will speak to you in English, smartphones weren’t a thing yet, you had to be confident to get through the program. It set me up to continue to have confidence in myself after the program ended. While it didn’t alter my career path – I had always wanted to be in advertising, it enabled me to utilize what I learned to excel further. How many potential employees could speak fluently about different advertising as it was viewed in other countries, compare it to America, and have an opinion on how to make ours better? Not many. It made me stand out – and ahead, of the pack. It enabled me to get hired weeks after graduation.

First, Study Abroad forced me to be confident; second, it made me know what my “musts” in life are (ie: I will not date a person who will not travel; my future children will study abroad…) I know, for sure, I am a changed person because of studying abroad. Travel is a part of who I am now.

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Where Are They Now - Bill Stryker || Features

I’ve been working with Merrill Lynch since August of 2006.  I’ve held a couple positions.  Right now I’m the staff assistant/office manager for Alternative Investment Product Services located in Hopewell, NJ. I am currently residing in Asbury Park with my sister, Sarah, who is also a study abroad/Monmouth alum.

I studied abroad because I wanted to experience something new and get away; I had never really traveled before. I went to a preliminary meeting, explaining the study abroad program and was hooked from the start. The desire to experience a variety of cultures drew me to London and the easy access to travel Europe was the most appealing part of it.

Studying abroad forced me to be outgoing and to meet new people. This is something I had not really done in my life prior to that. It’s given me endless stories and memories I will have for the rest of my life. I’m completely a better person today than I would have been if I didn’t take advantage of this program. I will be a groomsman in a wedding next year, both the bride and groom are best friends of mine, the bride-to-be I met studying abroad and we’ve remained extremely close ever since. Studying abroad has created everlasting bonds with several people. Many of us, myself included, have a “NW1 4NS” tattoo which is the zip code for Regent’s University London area.

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Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED) Chapter at University Announced || News

online_exclusive_newsThe Pre-Professional Health Advisory Committee (PPHAC) is announced the installation of a new chapter of Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED), the national health preprofessional honor society, at Monmouth University – New Jersey Delta Chapter on Friday, Oct. 3 in Magill Commons.

Dr. Dorothy Lobo, AED Advisor, and Dr. Bernadette Dunphy, Co-Directors of PPHAC, presented the 30 installed members with their certificates and congratulated them on their success. The ceremony was also attended by Dr. Frank Dyer, National Counselor, and Dr. Nuran Kumbaraci, AED Regional Director, as well as family members and distinguished guests from the University.

The guest speaker was University Alumnus, Dr. Sunaini Kaushal. Kaushal graduated in 2009 from Monmouth and attended Drexel University Medical College through the Monmouth Medical Center Scholars Program. She is currently at Drexel in Internal Medicine completing the second year of her residency. She spoke to the newly installed AED Members about the hard work ahead of them and to be truthful and passionate about their decision to pursue medicine.

AED is dedicated to the encouragement and recognition of excellence in preprofessional health scholarship. The society welcomes all students engaged in the pursuit of a professional development, provides a forum for students with common interests, and extends a program of service to benefit the college/university community. AED serves not only as an honor society but also as a service organization.

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SCREAM Theater || Entertainment

Dating and getting to know people can be nerve-wracking, but the threat of sexual assault is even scarier than battling nerves on a first date. Rutgers University's Students Challenging Realities and Educating Against Myths (SCREAM) Theater addressed the issues of sexual assault on college campuses on Tuesday, Sept. 30 in Wilson Hall.

The performance, consisting of undergraduate students, graduate students, and alumni of Rutgers University, began in 1991 and has become a campus-wide phenomenon.

Brady Root, a member of SCREAM Theater, started the program by rattling off startling statistics regarding sexual assault. "Twenty percent of women are raped, mostly in their college years," Root said. "One in every 33 men younger than 18 are sexually assaulted in their lifetime."

Behind her was a stage, depicting a stereotypical college dorm getting ready for a party: there was a table with solo cups and a pitcher of alcohol, as well as an area on the right-hand side of the stage that represented the upstairs, containing a bed and more drinks. The improvised scene consisted of eight characters named Jess, Rachel, Liz, Ryan, Alex, Corey, Sam and Elena.

Jess and Liz were both excited to hang out with the boys that they met earlier, Ryan and Corey. The boys invited the girls over to drink before going to a party later in the night. The girls' friends, Rachel and Elena, tagged along. Before they get to the party, Jess and Liz explain how they really like Ryan and Corey, and could see pursuing serious relationships with them.

The scene then switches to the boys in the dorm, accompanied by their roommates Sam and Alex, gossiping about the girls. Corey states how he actually likes Liz, although he would take things to the next level if she wanted to. Ryan says, in vulgar terms, how he just wants to have sex with Jess. The girls walk in and they all begin to drink.

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Confronting Campus Rape Culture || News

rape_culture

The prevalence of sexual violence on college campuses and ways to prevent sexually violent behavior was discussed by a crowd of University students and faculty who attended the "Confronting Campus Rape Culture Discussion and Workshop" event in Wilson Hall on Wednesday, Oct. 1.

"The crisis of sexual assault is so great," said Dr. Johanna Foster, an assistant professor of political science and sociology instructor.

"According to the recent task force report released by the White House, one in five women in college have been sexually assaulted," Foster said.

Foster explained that women and girls of all races are affected the most by sexual violence and that the victims are often aquatinted with their assailants. "Mary Koss's research on campus date rape and acquaintance rape found that nearly 44 percent of all women surveyed, experienced some form of sexual activity when they did not want to," Foster added.

Nicole Smith, President of the Gender Studies Club, said that sexual violence is present at the University, "I believe there is a problem with sexual assault here as well, though I am proud that the University has taken these issues to heart and has attempted to work on them," said Smith.

"A staggering 27 percent of men would rape a woman if they thought they could get away with it," said Smith. "We need intensive sex education and scrutiny on campus. Men are the primary perpetrators of rape and violence against women, and we need education to support this idea that no means no."

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Clichés Haunt ‘Annabelle’ || Entertainment

"The Conjuring" really captured my attention back in 2013, standing out among other horror movies for its relative lack of jump scares, the way it did not rely on tropes to move the plot along, and how women were still shown as being strong characters. Though it did rely on some clichés, it set a high bar for what such movies could attempt, so I eagerly sat down to watch "Annabelle" on Friday, Oct. 3.

This anticipated follow-up fell short in nearly every single category, with its issues ranging from claustrophobia-inducing camera angles and an exhaustingly overused plot to utilizing tropes at almost every possibility. Where its predecessor at least attempted originality, the 2014 'prequel' bored me, only drawing my attention in the last few minutes (not counting its numerous painful jump scares).

"Annabelle," directed by John Leonetti and written by Gary Dauberman, is about a young, recently-married couple, consisting of the pregnant Mia (Annabelle Wallis) and John (Ward Horton). The movie opens with them at church talking to Sharon Higgins (Kerry O'Malley) and Pete Higgins (Brian Howe), who live next door. After, John notes that they "shouldn't talk about the pregnancy" around them, as their daughter Annabelle ran away two years earlier. Coincidentally, Annabelle returns to the Higgins household with an unnamed male, murders her parents, then the two break into John and Mia's house and attempt to kill them as well. This ends with Annabelle committing suicide while holding the 'Annabelle' doll and bleeding on it, with the movie implying that her blood somehow let a demon begin using the doll as a conduit to attack Mia and John.

Throughout the film, the writers bash the viewers over the head with Satanism, Occultism, and related horror-movie clichés, ranging from Mia watching a documentary on Charles Manson in one of the opening scenes to a book called "The Devil's Welcome" prominently displayed in a bookstore window (which seems unlikely for Pasadena in the 1960s, when everyone was terrified of Satan worshippers). Nearly every scene seems obliged to mention demons, the mysterious 'A' shaped mark that appears throughout the events, or cult worshippers. The only times these aren't mentioned are when Mia is being attacked by said demon, so no one had to mention that it was there.

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Jackie Evancho: From Second Place to the Top of the World || Entertainment

In competitions, there can usually only be one winner. However, when it comes to shows like "America's Got Talent" (which concluded its ninth season on Sept. 17 by crowning magician Mat Franco), remaining contestants still have the future at their finger tips even though they were not awarded the big prize. To prove that contestants all still have a real shot at achieving their dream, "America's Got Talent" Season 5 runner-up Jackie Evancho, now a platinum recording artist at the young age of 14, released her third studio album on Tuesday, Sept. 23 entitled "Awakening."

Since "America's Got Talent," Evancho has proven that you do not need to win the talent competition in order to reach new heights in your career. From performing for the President of the United States and the Royal Family to making regular appearances with the Tokyo Philharmonic, she has showed future contestants that it's not always about winning.

Her journey began when she signed with Columbia Records and took a jump start in pursuing her career shortly after the completion of "America's Got Talent" at the age of 10. Prior to her latest album, she released two other studio albums entitled "Dream with Me," which was certified Gold, and "Songs from the Silver Screen," which topped at #1 on the Billboard Classical Charts.

However, with her latest album "Awakening," Evancho diverted slightly away from the all-classical inspired albums by taking on some more contemporary songs. While the album still contains classical selections such as "Think of Me" from "Phantom of the Opera" and "Ave Maria," it also contains modern-day songs such as U2's "With or Without You" and "The Rains of Castamere" from HBO's "Game of Thrones."

In response to her diversion away from classical music towards pop, Evancho told Sony, "Of course there are always going to be some classical pieces, but I wanted to reinvent the pop songs and make them my own. The only thing that mattered was that the song spoke to me."

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Contact Information

CAMPUS LOCATION
The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication 
and Instructional Technology (CCIT) Room 260, 2nd floor

MAILING ADDRESS
The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey 07764

Phone:(732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151
Email: outlook@monmouth.edu