Thu08172017

Last updateWed, 16 Aug 2017 8am

Editorial

Think Outside Your Major

“Get involved;” next to “you’re late,” those are arguably the two most common words for a student to hear on a college campus. We spend much of our high school career being told to get involved in order to spice up our college applications and then, once in college, we’re further told to get involved to spice up our job résumé.

We believe most students by their second year or so, can finally understand the vast importance of getting involved. But is getting involved in your own department enough? After all, we’re all Monmouth students, regardless of major.

The Communication Department offers seven different platforms for students to get involved with. All of these organizations are student-run and give students an opportunity to get hands on experience in their field before stepping foot into the dreaded ‘real world.’

Of course, the Communication Department isn’t the only department which offers hands on experience. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a major that doesn’t have a coinciding club, organization or extra-curricular aspect to get involved with.

Here at The Outlook, we acknowledge all the hard work our fellow students put into their fields and the passion shown for respective clubs and organizations. Bringing the news to this campus each week has pushed most of us to step outside of this sanctuary we call Plangere and take a look at what other departments are doing.

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What Does the Football Team’s Move to the Big South Mean?

Two weeks ago, the University football team split with 16 year affiliate, the Northeast Confer­ence. Now, they will head to the Big South. Overall, The Outlook is happy that the football team will now be accepted into the Big South Conference but the switch raises certain questions amongst the staff.

Although there is currently no concrete evidence to support it, The Outlook is con­cerned that the move to the Big South Conference will jeopardize the price of tuition. It is to our knowl­edge that the Big South Conference is composed of seven teams including MU. This means we would play three away games in the conference located in North Carolina, South Caro­lina, or Virginia. Geographically, the schools in the Big South Con­ference are a farther distance than the schools in the Northeast Con­ference are. It’s possible that the football team will be traveling a farther distance for an away game than they have in the past. The Outlook wonders how the Univer­sity will cover the cost of travel for away games.

Currently, the University‘s football team roster has nearly 100 student athletes. The cost to either fly or drive all of these ath­letes, as well as the coaches and other staff members, could total a large amount of money. Whether it is by plane or bus, the financial situation will be an impending is­sue.

Another factor to keep in mind when counting the numbers will be lodging. How will the Univer­sity afford lodging for all those affiliated with the football team? The Outlook a lso w onders i f t he move to The Big South will cause the University to offer more ath­letic scholarships. And if so, we are curious as to where this mon­ey will come from. We believe that we will not be able to tell how the move to the Big South Confer­ence will impact the University financially until the fall of 2014.

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A Challenge For More Faculty to Participate in The Outlook

Every week, students from a vari­ety of majors attempt to come up with story ideas, mold them into topics of interest and finally collect comments from professionals as expert sources. On top of other commitments includ­ing homework, other clubs and em­ployment, these students regularly get it done.

One of the most frustrating things for a writer is being ignored when asking a professor or staff member of the University for a comment or an interview. Here at The Outlook, we understand a busy schedule as well as anyone, but is it really that hard to email the writer back either stating you are not the best source for com­ment (It is always appreciated when someone suggests who would be.) or that you do not have the time to share your thoughts?

The Outlook does not reach out to faculty and staff members haphaz­ardly. Our writers take time to look at course selections and professor profile pages to find the best sources to par­ticipate in our articles.

One might feel it is, actually, an obligation of staff members, profes­sors in particular, to share their schol­arly knowledge with the University community and the paper. Our job as journalists is to publish facts and opinions surrounding situations and concerns that are important to our readers.

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And They Say That A HERO Could Save Us

Every year since 2007, the Uni­versity has held its Designated HERO of the Year Award Ceremo­ny, a national movement to prevent drunk driving accidents that came as a result of the death of Ensign Elliott, a May 2000 graduate of the United States Naval Academy who was killed in a head-on collision with a drunken driver on July 22, 2000.

In this ceremony, students nomi­nate themselves or someone they know and the HERO Cam­paign Group at the University chooses a win­ner. The purpose of this ceremony is to prevent tragedies that come as a result of drunk driving by awarding the usage of sober designated driv­ers.

However, is this definition of a “hero” one that is universal to those outside of a university com­munity? According to some of The Outlook staff, the meaning of a “hero” as being someone who serves as a designated driver is one that belongs to the University but could also be considered a stretch for the world at large.

To many college students, a “hero” is someone who saves girls from waiting in the cold in the Cedar parking lot as they wait for their cabs or volunteers to “take one for the team” by being the designated driver. They step up in times of need, sometimes sacrific­ing their own fun, to ensure that their friends get home safely. Rare­ly are they thanked or recognized.

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All Students Should Participate in Picking New President

Later this year, the University will be announcing the presidential candidate that will be taking President Paul G. Gaffney II’s place after 10 years. But before the next president is hired, the students are able to get to know the four candidates running for the opening position.

Is it important that the students of the University get to know their new potential president before he is chosen? Here at The Outlook we tried to answer that question.

A special committee has been created to help with the process of the presidential search, and although students are not able to make the final decision, The Outlook believes it is essential for students to be involved in the process.

The University has been holding information sessions for each candidate where students can ask any question they wish. This gives students the opportunity to speak to the candidates on a more personal level before any decision is made.

An email was sent to students with a link to an electronic form to be filled out after attending the sessions for the candidates. The form consists of five simple questions. The first two are multiple-choice asking to pick the candidate you liked best and then what your position at the University is. The next three are short answer asking about the candidate’s strengths, the concerns you have with this specific candidate and your name, which is optional.

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Textbooks Expand Your Knowledge and Shrink Your Wallet

With the arrival of a new semester comes the promise of new experiences and different classes as we begin a new chapter in our college lives. However, one thing that will not be different is the high prices we students pay each semester for the cost of textbooks.

Book prices are not only an issue here at MU, but it is something many college students around the country face at the beginning of each semester.

According to an article in USA Today, students at four year colleges spend nearly $600 on textbooks per semester. The sad thing about this is that most of the time these books sit in rooms and collect dust for 16 weeks, as sometimes books that are “required reading” are never even opened.

One of the issues we have with the bookstore on campus is that it seems they overprice on some books and then under cut you when you go to sell them back. We have even seen cases where used books at the bookstore are more expensive than if you were to buy that same book online in new condition.

There’s also the idea of certain books being available only in the bookstore and they cannot be found online. This forces students to use the University bookstore if they wish to purchase the book.

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Since When Did the Holidays Become so Expensive?

Christmas as a child used to involve Santa Claus and snow forts. At our current ages, Christmas has come to mean purchasing the most expensive present, most likely a technology-based gift, in order to show we care. The typical Christmas present is no longer a handmade craft which we give to our parents, but instead range anywhere from the iPhone to the Kindle. So what has caused the standard price for holiday gifts to raise in recent years?

There are various reasons as to why the price we spend on those we care about has increased. One thought is perhaps the price is too heavily enforced, especially in the media. Commercialism has put too much emphasis on cost and has many believing they not only want, but need, all these luxurious items.

The media also enforces the notion that quality reigns supreme. A prime example of this marketing strategy can be seen amongst jewelers nationwide. They make sure to include in commercials and advertisements that if you truly love someone, then you will buy their product as a sign of that love. It is a true shame such a special holiday has been so overtaken by commercialism.

There is another economic force at work increasing our holiday spending. The financial scapegoat is inflation, which has been affecting Americans for years. It happens every year and we as consumers cannot stop it but only contribute to it. Thus, the increased cost of a present could simply be inflation.

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More Rooms For Residents, Less Parking for Commuters

As students, there are many things we have to deal with. Some primarily face the battle of getting work submitted on time, while others adapt to lifestyle changes the most and must bear the harsh reality of becoming an adult. However, one issue that all of us are familiar with is whether it is better to be a resident or a commuter. The University has obviously made that decision for us by choosing to build a new dorm in Parking Lot Six near the library.

Current residents may not care about this, but it does affect all of us. After all, who among us doesn’t at least have a friend who has said, “I’m late to class because I can’t park!” Beginning this spring, we’ll have 200 less parking spaces. In return, the University promises to have more bedrooms some time during 2014.

Several editors pointed out that it might be a very serious problem for students looking to use the library late at night. If library parking is deferred to the Woods Theater lot, then, if students are at the library late at night, it could be a daunting experience to walk that distance at that hour.

Moreover, this could cause serious overcrowding of the Woods Theater lot during the day, meaning students who have class in there may have to park far away and race across the entire campus.

In addition to Lot Six being one of the few commuter lots on the north end of campus, students have been complaining almost non-stop throughout the entire semester about a lack of parking during certain times. Despite the valet parking service, many students find themselves consistently running late, due to the inability to find places to park. One editor points out that if it weren’t for being an honors student and thus having the ability to park in the honors lot, he might have needed to rearrange his schedule.

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Hurricane Sandy Causes Professors to Revamp Finals

Since the closing of the University due to Hurricane Sandy, students have been running around like well-educated chickens with their heads cut off to figure out what assignments are due and how to catch up on over a week’s worth of course work. To further add to the disorganization of the revised syllabi and new due dates, students now have to deal with a change in the schedule for finals week.

President Gaffney sent a campus-wide email saying faculty members must schedule exams or examlike exercises before the semester ends on December 21. He also said that if take home final exams are used classes still must be held during the final examination week. This last week thereby meets the 15 week federal requirement.

The opinion of most of The Outlook editors is that the course work they were given at the beginning of the semester is not going to change. Very few professors altered the content of their syllabi due to the storm. Most due dates were adjusted accordingly, but most likely there will still be as many exams as there would have been without the storm.

Overall, the amount of work has not changed, but some students are confused as to what they have to do for their individual classes. Students are used to basing whether or not they have to go to class the last week of the semester on the exams they have to take. This year, both students and faculty members will have to adjust accordingly in order to be prepared for finals week.

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Hawks Mend A Broken Wing

It has now been two weeks since Hurricane Sandy made her way through the tri-state area, leaving nothing but a trail of destruction in her path.

The high winds caused trees to fall and power to go out while the ocean surged and made its way onto land.

A week and a half of classes and many other campus happenings, were cancelled due to the storm, including two issues of the weekly Outlook. In this time, many Jersey shore communities were changed forever. Never before has a storm of Sandy’s magnitude shaken the foundation of so many different towns.

 The Long Branch boardwalk and Pier Village was greatly damaged, parts of the Seaside Heights boardwalk are now in the Atlantic Ocean, huge trees fell, and the ocean met the bay down in Long Beach Island.

There are students and faculty members whose lives were directly affected by this storm. Some may not even be back to classes for a while depending on their situation.

In these hard times, it is important that we all remember one message, a message President Gaffney constantly passes on to the students; take care of each other.

While students were gone, the University served its community the best way it could. The MAC was offered as a shelter and it went on to be the biggest shelter in the area. Now that we are all back on campus, it’s time that we do our best to serve and look after everyone involved in the campus community.

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When it Comes to Midterm Grades, Some Professors Fail

Remember the days before college when you had to worry about report cards being sent to your house? You would get home everyday, a nervous wreck, wondering if your parents knew about the D you had in geometry. Well, those days are long gone. The only updates we get nowadays are the midterm grades halfway into the semester.

The Outlook staff thinks that midterm grades are for the most part, pointless. Some professors don’t have enough grades to give you a real idea of how you are doing in the class.

If you only have one or two grades so far in the semester, what does the midterm grade really mean? It just tells you how you did on your first exam and a paper. If the class only has one grade, does the result of a single multiple-choice test really explain how you are grasping the material?

 Midterm grades also don’t factor in attendance and participation. If you are the type of person who attends all of your classes and actively raises your hand, your final grade is going to be a lot higher than the letter you receive from WebAdvisor.

Many professors downplay the importance of these grades we receive in the middle of the semester. Some give lower grades to keep the students working hard, while others tell their students that the grade is meaningless. Other instructors have said that showing improvement throughout the semester could change the weight of our grades, having things later in the semester become more significant than originally planned. If our instructors see the grades as a joke, why shouldn’t we?

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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