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News

Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)

University Debate Team Reaches Finals in California

debateThe University’s Debate Team won 10 awards at the Western National Novice Debate Championship hosted by the Sacramento State University in CA. 

At the tournament, six teams of two students competed from the University. 

The debate team has two co-captains: Michelle Grushko, a junior political science and psychology double major, and Dan Roman, a senior political science major. 

The Monmouth Debate Team won a total of 10 team and individual awards. Five teams continued to the playoffs after six rounds and two days of debating. Competing schools included the University of San Francisco, California State University, and the University of Washington.

The Monmouth Debate Team was founded in 2008. According to Dr. Joseph Patten, Chair of the of the Political Science and Sociology Department, and coach of the debate team, this year has been their most successful. 

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Author and Mental Health Advocate Visits University

IMG 2910Nationally recognized author and New Jersey native Andy Behrman spoke to a crowd of University students, faculty, and members of the community about his experiences with bipolar disorder, how it has affected his life, and how he manages today at a lecture in Wilson Hall Auditorium on Tuesday March 31. 

Behrman based his talk off of the content in his book Electroboy: A Memoir of Mania, which was sold and signed before and after the event. The book describes his experience while he was undiagnosed. 

The author explained how he tried 45 different medications and eventually endured 19 rounds of electroshock therapy. He said that his memoir is a brutally honest and is not for the faint of heart, “I knew that if I was going to tell my story it wasn’t going to be sugar coated at all,” he said. 

The memoir was described as, “…a story that is like no other yet is familiar to so many,” said Erica Lee Lapid, University alumna and Co-Founder of Monmouth University’s Counseling Alumni Connection (CAC) who also introduced Behrman. This was his 411th talk since the publication of his book in 2002. 

One of Behrman’s main messages was the importance of talking about mental health and bringing awareness to the issue. “For me, the biggest issue is talking about mental illness,” he said.

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Black Maria Film Festival

Matthew Lawrence, a specialist professor of communication, curated the Black Maria Film Festival. The festival is an opportunity  to showcase independent short subject and feature length films from both domestic and international filmmakers. 

At this event, nine shorts were chosen to showcase the festival’s diverse selection of films on Thursday, April 2 in Pollak Theater, 

Donna Dolphin, an associate professor of communication  who usually curates the event, was on sabbatical. Lawrence  said he jumped at the opportunity to host it, and felt the process more rewarding than nerve-wracking, especially given the turnout.

“Personally, just as a filmmaker, my favorite part of the filmmaking experience is after it’s done and you screen it in front of an audience, so I want to please people,” Lawrence said on curating the event. “Even though you didn’t make the film, it feels great to pick a film in which you see the audience is really engaged and they’re laughing or you can see when they gasp at a moment in the film and you’re like, ‘Okay, I made the right decision here.’”

The shorts in the program included documentaries, animation and narrative films. The documentary category included: Umbrella House, about a group of immigrant “squatters” who lived in abandoned tenements in New York and dedicated themselves to political activism and art; Self Portrait Portrait, a meditation on art by a man who has been drawing self portraits every day for the last twenty years; The Stick Maker, which relates the passion Alfred Jacques has for lacrosse who imbues his love and knowledge for the game in every lacrosse stick he makes;  and Fausto and Emilio, about two brothers who have worked as barbers for the last few decades, bringing their culture to their job in subtle ways.

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iCIMS Visits MU

Colin Day, CEO of iCIMS, a leading provider of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) talent acquisition software solutions, presented a special seminar on Wednesday, April 1 in H.R. Young Auditorium. 

The program was designed to help students successfully compete for employment in today’s marketplace. 

Day is a human resources and technology expert who shared tips on how students can use social media and other emerging trends to “be found” by employers looking for talent.

This event was sponsored by the Department of Career Services, Alpha Kappa Psi and the American Marketing Association. A total of 95 students from various majors were in attendance. 

Monmouth University has formed a strong referral relationship with the talent acquisition provider through participation in the annual Fall/Spring Career Days and on-campus recruiting efforts held on campus. With 48 MU alumni currently based at iCIMS’ corporate headquarters in Matawan, NJ, the relationship has proven to be equally valuable for both establishments. 

Each year iCIMS receives an increasing amount of well qualified applications from the University’s students which has played a large role in growing the in-house headcount to nearly 450 or more employees.

“Monmouth University is a great source of local talent and iCIMS provides a fantastic local employer option to our graduates,” said Jeff Mass, Assistant Director of Career Services at the University. 

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Al Jazeera America President Visits Monmouth

kate 1The inaugural #coMmtalks launched as the University hosted Kate O’Brian, the President of Al Jazeera America, on Monday, March 30.

O’Brian’s campus visit included an interview recorded by Hawk TV with representatives from each University news outlet: Hawk TV, The Outlook, and WMCX. Afterwards, she spoke to a few classes and culminated her trip with a conversation organized by the Monmouth Oral Communication Center (MOCC).

A graduate of Smith College in 1980, O’Brian spent over 30 years with ABC News, notably as Senior Vice President of Newsgathering Operations, which includes all ABC News bureaus worldwide. She also served as general manager for ABC News Radio, as well as in production roles in Rome, London, Washington DC, Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York.

Dr. Datta Naik, Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate School said that the #coMmtalks are part of the University’s strategic plan initiatives, incorporating “transformative learning” that “extends beyond the classroom” on the campus. “#coMmtalks is a perfect example of one such experience,” said Naik.

Jim Hickey, a veteran of ABC News, former National correspondent for ABC News Radio, and personal friend and colleague of O’Brian, hosted the conversation. When #coMmtalks was in its infancy, he said that the communication council originated it as “The Master’s Lectures Series.”

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Thirst for First

sarah 2$100 wig? Check. $100 admission fee? Check. $150 hard and soft shoes? Check. $165 passport? Check. $3,000 handcrafted “stoned” (rhinestoned) dress imported from Northern Ireland? Check. A priceless appetite for success? Check. Sarah Oldam mentally ran through her travel checklist before she voyaged to Montreal, Canada on March 29. When she boards her plane four days from now and heads back to the States, she plans to have to make some extra room in her suitcase for her first place trophy.

Over 6,000 competitors will be hoping for the World title.

“To me, dancing isn’t just life―it’s who I am,” passionately stated Sarah, the current second place Irish Dancing World Champion. After 14 years of practice, the Monmouth University freshman yearns to dance her way to the judge’s hearts while upholding her family’s Irish roots.

 Competing in the ‘Under 20’ group, Sarah’s only goal is to win after she almost tasted victory last year in London, England. She refuses to accept anything less.

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Freshman Honor Society Inductees Celebrate First Year Excellence

phietasigmaThe University’s chapter of Phi Eta Sigma inducted 288 students into the Honor Society on March 28 at Pollack Theatre. The event featured a description of the society, the expectations of the members, and distinguished guest speakers.

Phi Eta Sigma is a freshman Honor Society that celebrates students who earn a 3.5 GPA or higher in their first college semester. 

“Being inducted into Phi Eta Sigma is a very important honor for first year students,” said Lisa Henry, Office Coordinator of First Year Advising. “A lot of students struggle during the transition from high school to college, so it is important to celebrate those that achieve stellar grades.”

The ceremony began with an introduction by Chapter President Taylor Bernosky, a junior mathematics and music performance major. 

Bernosky told the inductees of the great honor they were receiving and reminded the students to always abide by the Phi Eta Sigma expectations, that is, living an education-filled, healthy lifestyle.

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Transgender Artist Dylan Scholinski Gives Lecture

Transgender author, speaker, and artist Dylan Scholinski spoke to a crowd of University students, faculty, and members of the community about the obstacles and discrimination he has encountered throughout his life in Pollak Theatre on Thursday, March 26. 

Scholinski, born Daphne Scholinski, was in a mental hospital from ages 15 to 18 after being diagnosed as an “inappropriate female.” Dylan describes his experiences within his book The Last Time I Wore a Dress: A Memoir in which he read specific passages from as a part of his presentation. 

Nancy Mezey, Associate Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, offered a definition of transgender. “Transgender people tend to be people who have transitioned from one gender to another through an operation or through hormones. There is a whole variety of people who fit into that category of transgender.”

Scholinski described how the people around him had a hard time accepting his change, “There wasn’t anything wrong with me, it was more about making others more comfortable with me,” he said. In college, “It was really hard for some people to understand the concept of something other than the binary, where you have to be one or the other and you can’t be two different identities at the same time,” he continued.   

Mezey discussed the discrimination and judgment transgender people face in their everyday lives. “Every person wants to be treated with dignity. Gender is one of the big blueprints in life that we look at. When we look at someone we think about whether they are male or female and decide how to interact with him or her,” she said. 

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Gourmet Dining, LLC to Replace Aramark Food Services at MU

foodAfter almost 40 years of service, Aramark will be replaced by Gourmet Dining, LLC as the University’s new food service provider on or before July 1, 2015. Improvements to all dining facilities on campus are expected to be completed over the course of the next 18 months. 

A committee of administrators from several offices on campus, including Student Life and Leadership Engagement, Residential Life, Finance, Athletics, and Conferences Services, among others, reviewed the Requests For Proposal (RFPs) sent to the University by various food providers. 

The committee made campus visits and reference calls as a way to further understand the strengths and weaknesses of each food provider. 

There were also two students from the Student Government Association (SGA) who helped the committee reach their final decision.

The University received RFPs from Sodexo, Parkhurst Dining, Gourmet, and Aramark, the incumbent. The committee deliberated for nine months before deciding that Gourmet would be the best fit for the University’s campus.

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MU Alumnus and Celebrity Publicist Visits University

Louis2Entertainment and brand publicist at Illumination PR, Louis Garbarini, advises students to take risks and put themselves out there in the job force. 

As a part of the University’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Speaker Series, Garbarini shared his experience and gave advice on internships, finding a job after graduation and how to take risks in one’s field of choice during his presentation in the Jules L. Plangere building on Wednesday, March 11.

Graduating last May, Garbarini pointed out to students that nothing is wrong with changing majors and career paths while in college. “It’s important to be passionate about what you choose to do as a career,” he said. 

Garbarini shared how he was originally a psychology major his freshman year at the University but decided to go down a different path by switching his major to communication with a concentration in public relations/journalism later. 

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Facebook Adds Suicide Prevention Resource

who is gerald lol okLast month Facebook released suicide prevention resources that will provide users with more options when they see a friend post something that is concerning.

The updated tool lets users flag content on both their desktop and mobile versions of Facebook that they find worrisome. If a Facebook friend posts something that implies that they might be thinking of harming themselves, users can flag the post to report it. Facebook will then offer the concerned user the option to contact the friend, contact another friend for support, or contact a suicide helpline.

Facebook has given users a way to report potential suicidal content in the past. Since 2011, users could take screenshots of a troubling post and go to an official page for suicide prevention to help out their friends. However the recent updates are a more timely and simpler alternative to a “clunkier system,” said the Times.

“This tool has the potential to have a positive effect -- perhaps even a lifesaving one -- for those who make use of it.  For a person who is feeling alone and suicidal, knowing that a friend noticed their distress and tried to help in this way provides evidence that his or her pain is not invisible. Also, being presented with positive options of responding and reaching out for help can make it easier for the suicidal person (who may be feeling too drained to seek out that information themselves) to take that path,” said Jamie Goodwin, an instructor of psychology.

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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