Last updateMon, 10 Dec 2018 4pm


Monmouth Sends Silence Packing

MU Sends Silence PackingOn Sept. 18, Send Silence Packing, an event with a display of 1,100 backpacks representing the 1,100 college students who commit suicide every year, finally came to Monmouth on its traveling tour.

The rain did not deter the over 400 students that trickled through the Student Center Patio to read the mini-display filled with stories of those affected by suicide.

Not only that, but students were able to understand warning signs, identify local support systems and were able to recognize campus support programs as well.

250 students, faculty, and staff roamed through Anacon Hall as they viewed the 1,100 student backpacks.

Active Minds, a nonprofit organization that raises awareness about mental health, has monumentalized those lives lost by placing these backpacks on campuses throughout the nation.

The event, Send Silence Packing, has been implemented at other campuses such as, Farleigh Dickinson University, The Ohio State University, University of Michigan, and many others.

Christopher McKitrick, Psychological Counselor with Counseling and Psychological Services, said “While participants noticed the gravity behind the reason of the exhibit, many expressed a sense of hope after the exhibit.”

Read more ...

Insight Into International Education

Studying abroad is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, one that many Monmouth students enjoy – it allows students to travel and experience new cultures, all while still earning a semester’s worth of credits.

However, there are differences between the classes taken studying abroad and those taken at Monmouth. Study abroad classes are typically three-hour sessions meeting once a week, especially at Regents University, the University’s partner school in London.

“It feels a lot more stressful,” said Ally Rao, a senior English student who studied abroad in London for the spring 2017 semester. “I know classes at Regents were real school, but being back at Monmouth actually feels like school again. London was like a vacation. Being back here feels like home, but it’s also back to reality.”

Brianna McGuire, a senior student, also agreed, elaborating on the differences between the classes at Monmouth and the classes she took while studying in London.

“It’s definitely different,” she said. “Classes abroad are a little less busywork-heavy and focus more on class discussions, rather than on graded assignments throughout the semester.”

As someone who studied abroad as well, the differences between Regents and Monmouth are clear – Regents did not require textbooks, and class attendance was less enforced than at Monmouth. Many only had midterm and final projects, as opposed to homework assignments due on a weekly basis, and several classes utilized the city around them – for example, a professor teaching a literature course would lead students on a tour through a relevant section of London, explaining how the author was influenced.

However, even though students may face changes and a sort of reverse culture shock, study abroad advisor, Jonathan Kull, thinks the program is great for students – not only does it give them a new perspective on the world, but it also can influence choices they make later down the line, especially when it comes to pursuing international education.

Read more ...

In Joe, We Trust

“Me? What’s so special about me?” Joe Lynam, safety guard at the Monmouth University Library asked as the corners of his mouth turned upward. He was in a perfectly pressed police uniform with a gold name plate reading “Joe” on the left side. His white mustache lifted into a grin; he was wondering why I would want to interview him.

As I tried to explain myself, Joe’s attention was interrupted a few times with students entering and leaving the library, greeting him with huge smiles and waves. They don’t even know his name; he’s just the person who creates students’ first smiles before studying and more importantly, the last smiles before leaving. After all, studying and libraries can be a pretty traumatizing experience, so smiles are very much needed.

Joe realized I was struggling to get my sentences out in between greetings, so he compromised, “Let’s go sit in that room so we can talk, how’s that?”


I took a deep breath to prepare to get my words out in one shot, in case any one of Joe’s silent fan club members made an appearance.

“So anyway,” I said with an exhale and a smile. “Here’s your answer on why I picked you.”

I asked him if he remembered when It down-poured and thunder-stormed a few weeks ago. Yes, he did. I explained that I was having a bad day, especially because I wore slippers and they were totally soaked. Leaving the library, my head was down glaring at my sad excuse for shoes. The nameless safety guard with a white mustache in a police uniform tapped me on the shoulder and pointed into the distance. It was a rainbow. This small act turned my whole day around.

“And, well, yeah, that’s why!” I told him. Joe’s grin turned into a full grown smile and held his hand out waiting for mine to interlock with his, “Well then, how about that. Let’s get started.”

Read more ...

What’s Next?

Life After Graduation: Graduate Studies

Life After Graduation 1After graduating from Monmouth University in the spring of 2017, English undergraduate student, Lauren Niesz, decided she loved Monmouth so much she needed to come back. Now a computer science graduate student, Niesz wanted to continue the work she had been doing in the past, and incorporate it into her new life at Monmouth.

Post-graduate life can be a gray area at times, and continuing education in graduate school can seem even more confusing for undergraduates. Some might wonder if graduate school is any different from undergraduate. Niesz originally believed it would be similar, but has found things to be completely different.

“There are a lot of adjustments that must be made in order to aim to be a successful graduate student. For one, the norm for credits is 9 credits, which is definitely a change from the usual 15 credits that I am used to taking. However, what this lighter class load accounts for is the more rigorous materials I will be learning and the extra work I will be completing,” Niesz explained.

What can complicate things even further is changing the course of study. Graduate school allows students to choose a realm of study completely different from the one they pursued as an undergraduate. Niesz said, “I was an undergraduate English major and now I am in the Information Systems program in the Computer Science & Software Engineering Department. This is a change not only of study, but of the school of study as well. Humanities to sciences is a huge leap and I was very hesitant at first to take it.”

Read more ...

Changing University Climate on Disability

University Disability Climate 1Monmouth University prides itself on being an accessible and diverse campus, but what is it really like to be a person of any degree of disability on campus? As a person who has just recently been put on crutches, I was very curious for my first day on campus to find out just how ‘easy’ life would be on campus with this new debilitation.

Being on crutches is not easy, period. So, I did not expect it to be easier on campus—I knew it would be difficult to get around, but that isn’t Monmouth’s fault. Another thing that is not Monmouth’s fault, but dampened my spirits was the lack of aid from peers. It was shocking to me how many students did not open doors for me and how many students flashed harrowing looks at me because of my crutches—simply because I looked different.

Life gets turned completely upside down when one day you are walking all over campus confidently and the next you are hobbling around and trying not to draw attention to yourself. All of the sudden your thoughts switch from, ‘What should I get at the Student Center for lunch?’ to ‘I won’t be able to hold a piece of pizza on a plate and use my crutches at the same time.’

Everything is different and you have to change your mindset completely. Thinking about trying to get to an office on the second floor of Wilson? Think again if you’re on crutches or have a disability of any kind. Wilson Hall, while spectacularly beautiful, is not very handicap-friendly. There are elevators, but there are plenty of horror stories about getting stuck in them, so most try to avoid taking them.

Another thing I noticed was that on some buildings, like the Jules L. Plangere Center, the handicap button to open doorways are either very far from the doors, or placed in odd, unnoticeable places. I also found myself walking out of my way just to get to elevators in various buildings and around buildings to get to ramps, which is something that I really shouldn’t be doing being that I shouldn’t be walking great distances.

Read more ...

Vegan Foods Meet Food Trucks: The Man Behind Try Vegan, NJ

Vincent Gulino, the owner of New Jersey food truck, Try Vegan, has made a huge splash in the mobile food industry. What started out as dream once never thought to become reality, became more than just a job. Gulino has been serving smiles and a positive, can-do attitude, oh and some of the most delicious vegan food you can get on the road, for over four years. Soon after he finished college at Rowan University, he became a manager of a Walmart, working a busy and physically trying schedule. “It is really something that wears on their soul. One week you’re handing them [employees] paychecks, the next you have to fire them” said Gulino.

After a few years at Walmart, he moved on to a job at one of the supermarket giants at a higher-paying and even more stressful and busier managerial position. Gulino found himself working six days a week with “optional” weekends that he realized weren’t as optional as they made it out to be. Again, Gulino found himself stuck at a terrible job he did not enjoy wondering why life was full of such grim and unhappy times. Was this what everyone works towards and thinks success is?

After earning himself a week-long break, Gulino was overlooked for a business positon, which was his focus of studies while at Rowan, because he was “not office trained.” He couldn’t even come close to understanding what that could even mean. “I was so torn down and broken” he said. During that time, Gulino received some advice and encouragement from a guy he had just met that will forever change his life. After telling this man about the positon he had failed to get, Gulino began to describe his idea for a vegan restaurant. It was a dream he had had many times before, but never really knew how to chase. Well, this guy motivated and inspired Gulino to stop being miserable at a job he didn’t enjoy and to chase the dream that would make him happy. That very night, Try Vegan was born.

Read more ...

Here Comes... Ms. Senior America

Saturday, April 29, Specialist Professor of Management and Decision Sciences, John Buzza’s small business management class will be holding the Ms. Senior America Talent Competition for the organization Senior America, Inc. The event begins at 1:00 p.m., in Pollak Theatre, free of charge.

According to their website, Senior America Inc., is a non-profit organization that is “designed not only to enrich the lives of seniors but also to tap their energy to enrich the lives of others.” Known for their Ms. Senior Pageant, the organization emphasizes that their seniors are the foundation that helps to build a future, and supports them in the pursuit of continuing to seek personal growth.

Organizing the event was a semester-long project for members of Buzza’s class in which students are assigned an organization that they have to organize an event including everything from getting participants to planning the schedule, as well as marketing for the event itself.

“As always, I hope our students get an opportunity to grow outside of the classroom and to garner experiences that they would not get through lectures and classroom rigors. Best case would be through the connections made and the experiences gained, if it could lead to a job in this or any industry,” said Buzza.

Read more ...

Puppy Protectors

Puppy ProtectorsStudents of Monmouth University’s Communication (CO 320) course – Small Group Communication under the guidance of Professor Shannon Hokanson--are taking part in Service Learning Projects to connect with diverse populations beyond the University’s campus. The students selected non-profit organizations of interest to them in which they planned, designed and executed an event to financially support their community partner.

According to Professor Hokanson, “a service-learning project links the teaching and learning strategies of the community service with the academic study so that each strengthens the other”.

“We all learn and share each other’s knowledge and experiences; every party is an equal”.

One group, “The Puppy Protectors”, selected the Monmouth County SPCA for the benefit of their fund-raising efforts. The group composed of – Jordan Bornstein, Nicole Giordano, Olivia Lipp, Eileen Jones, Michael Losasso and Hunter Rainis selected an off-campus event to reach outside of Monmouth’s community and an on-campus event for within.

The Puppy Protectors’ off-campus event was a “Paint and Sip” night at Asbury Park’s, Uncorked Wine Inspirations establishment held on Wednesday, March 29th. Those in attendance painted a beach scene entitled “Evening Stroll on the Shore”. The night was an awesome experience and a huge success, selling out with 30 attendees, and raising $300 to benefit the SPCA.

Read more ...

¡Ich suis Plurilingüe!: Benefits of Being Multilingual

Walking down the street, languages from every person’s homeland are heard: Spanish, Russian, Polish, French, and so many other native languages fill the air with cultural awareness. Our people are vibrant and make for a flourishing land filled with cultures all over the world.

According to The Daily Texan, “The United States is largely monolingual. In fact, only about 15-20 percent of Americans consider themselves bilingual.” This low percentage further increases the likelihood that citizens, natural born or otherwise, will end up either being shamed or feeling ashamed for speaking in their native tongue or being prideful in their cultures and nationalities.

Dr. Mirta Barrea-Marlys, Chair of the Department of World Languages and Cultures, said, “I have seen this reaction and have experienced it myself when I first came to this country from Argentina. It was hard to assimilate into a different culture, especially since I did not speak English and back then there weren’t any ESL [English as a Second Language] programs to help students in schools.”

Additionally, the fluctuation in numbers for the college track for Spanish has seen a variation in numbers, “There is always fluctuation of interest in different language fields. For example, there used to be many more Education/World Language majors, but the numbers have dropped as it has in other areas of Education,” Barrea-Marlys added.

Getting accustomed to a new environment is scary in and of itself, but, coming into a new country and having to immerse yourself in a new culture is something that cannot be imagined. Many foreign students and citizens that emigrated to another country, like the United States, experience a degree of culture shock--a sense of confusion or uncertainty that can end up having an affect on people exposed to another culture or environment without adequate preparation.

Read more ...

Experiencing Post-Graduate Life

Experience Post Graduate LifeSo many of us graduating seniors are bombarded and weighted with the doom and gloom of the future—the monotonous humdrum corporate life just knocking at our doors. But, don’t fret, because we still have time to thrive.

It is not to say that our future jobs and/or possible internships won’t be amazing, but sometimes thinking about being an adult in the working world can be scary and daunting. Trying anything new is hard to think about, but not when it is something perhaps you’ve always wanted to do.

We have summer 2017 to do some of the things we have always wanted to do, but couldn’t do because of the mountains of work and school-affiliated responsibilities we had in our four years of undergraduate studies in college.

Dr. Chris Hirschler, Chair of Health and Physical Education and associate professor, said, “Life doesn’t stop after graduation. Students who worked really hard during their time at Monmouth will likely not have a lot of free time as they will be applying for graduate school or jobs and preparing for either endeavor. Other students might realize that they had much more free time in college than they do post-graduation.”

With this extra time, we can engage in activities we didn’t have the time for during our undergraduate studies. Many of us would have loved to study abroad at our time here at Monmouth, but it just wasn’t in the cards. Perhaps we couldn’t find the money, spare the time, or bring ourselves to leave home for so long. Whatever the issue may have been, we didn’t get to study abroad.

Read more ...

“Springing” into Schoolwork

Springing Into SchoolworkWhen the springtime weather starts rearing its head, there is a feeling of rejuvenation and a higher level of focus on getting things done. There is a reason that there are things like spring-cleaning and the temptations of buying new wardrobes for the spring season.

This rejuvenation is either a positive or a negative in our schoolwork. On one hand, this great weather could inspire us to be more productive and really get things done.

When the semester is winding down, we have quite a bit of work to not only do, but to catch up on too.

So, when we start to feel better about ourselves and our state of mind because of warmer weather, we can accomplish all of these tasks at hand.

Dr. David Strohmetz, a professor of psychology, stated, “There is something called the good mood effect. When the weather is nice, we tend to be a better mood, which does influence our behavior. We become more willing to help another person in need and also become more generous.” 

“For example, people tend to tip their server more when not only the weather is nicer out, but even when they believe that the weather is forecasted to be nice. So, regarding spring days, we do tend to be in a good mood those first nice days when it seems that the gloom of weather is over,” he further explained.

When we are in good moods because of this weather, we are nicer and in a happier state of mind in general. This helps us focus more on our work. Victoria Howe, a senior psychology student, said, “springtime, the nice weather at least, makes us view ourselves more positively and motivates us to do better in our classes.”

Read more ...

Contact Information

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

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

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151