Last updateThu, 02 Apr 2020 1pm


SGA Addresses Food Insecurity

SGA Food Insecurity

The Student Government Association (SGA) partnered with Fulfill, a mobile food pantry, to provide nearly 100 students struggling with food insecurity or lacking an on-campus meal plan with fresh, nutritious food, on Sept. 17.

Mehdi Husaini, a senior biology student and former SGA president, was key in nurturing the relationship between Fulfill and Monmouth’s decision to approve the mobile food pantry.

“Fulfill became involved last year after an event both they and SGA attended, sponsored by the Center for the Arts, where we tabled to raise awareness about The Nest (the on-campus food pantry) and Fulfill's ongoing programming in Monmouth county,” Husaini said. “I represented SGA at the event and wanted to see if we could do joint programming in the future. The mobile pantry idea was a result of the start of this partnership. Everyone at the organization has been so supportive and helpful over the last year, and it's easy to tell they are committed to fighting hunger in New Jersey.”

The Nest is Monmouth University’s on-campus, student-run food pantry which aims to increase access of nutritious meals to students struggling with food insecurity. The facility is open 3 days a week and secured its location on the lower level of the student center, maintained inventory, and increased community outreach last year.

“It really is a team effort and as this year's manager, I'm looking to continue to expand products we offer to accommodate for dietary needs and convenience,” Husaini said.

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Criminal Justice Department Commemorates 9/11

CJ Dept 911On the 18th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the University’s Department of Criminal Justice in conjunction with the 9/11 Memorial & Museum held a video screening, panel discussion, and gallery exhibit in Pollak Theatre. 

In coordination with events in the five boroughs of New York City, Monmouth University was the only New Jersey location hosting this exhibition.

The program, “Commemorating 9/11: Art, Perspective, and Reflections,” gave faculty a chance to voice their perspectives and stories from that day. Attendees listen to speeches by Virginia S. Bauer, a member of the Board of Directors for the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, as well as Douglas Collier, Criminal Justice Director of Professional Outreach and Engagement; John Comiskey, Ed.D., an Assistant Professor of homeland security; Christopher DeRosa, Ph.D., Department Chair of History and Anthropology; and Melissa Ziobro, a Specialist Professor of public history. 

Both Comiskey and Collier were prominent members of law enforcement at the time of the attacks. Collier said, “This event especially is one that will continue the conversation of criminal justice and homeland security. Our platform is never to be forgotten as the years go on, we can never forget the first responders who gave the ultimate sacrifice.”

Collier also mentioned how important this discussion is for our students, “It is critically important in why we study criminal justice policies and how they change the process of criminal justice reform.”

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100 Clubs Exhibited At the Annual Involvement Fair

Clubs Annual FairThe annual Involvement Fair, which allows students to connect with various on-campus organizations and get involoved, took place on Shadow Lawn on Friday, Sept. 13. 

With nearly 100 clubs and organizations set up in front of Wilson Hall, the event provided students with the opportunity to get involved by connecting with new people who share similar interests, and to find their niche on campus.

“Clubs and organizations take this opportunity to promote themselves to the students,” said Amy Bellina, Director of Student Activities and Student Center Operations. 

“It is an easy way for students to learn about the opportunities that are available to them,” she continued.

Bellina stressed the importance of becoming active on campus by utilizing the many student-run clubs and organizations at the University. “Being involved in clubs, organizations, and various activities gives students a chance to meet other students, feel more a part of the Monmouth community, build resume experience, develop relationships with people that may be mentors for them, learn more about a particular area of study, try something new, and to have fun,” she said.

Julia Fishern, a freshman student, said, “As someone brand new to campus, it is quite overwhelming how many clubs there are on campus. There’s something for everybody!”

In order to encourage new students to become excited about being active members of the Monmouth community, the Offices of Transition & Leadership Programs and Student Activities collaborate every year to hold Welcome Week and the Service & Leadership, Hawk Pride, Academics, Diversity, Organizations & Involvement, Wellness (S.H.A.D.O.W.) Program.

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Fly With Us New Fundraising Tool

Fly FundraisingThe Office of Alumni Engagement and Annual Giving have introduced a new crowdfunding fundraising platform entitled Fly With Us that supports various campus-wide projects for students, faculty and staff, and the Monmouth community.

Crowdfunding is a 30-60 day online fundraising campaign in which a passionate group of advocates request online donations from their own personal networks including alumni and University friends which can be shared via email and various social media websites.

The crowdfunding platform currently has six campaigns listed including the Marquita Hannibal- Francique ’02 Endowed Scholarship fund, the Women’s Basketball International Trip fund, and the Class of 2019 Giving Campaign.

The Class of 2019 Giving Campaign received donations from 409 class members. This was the greatest class participation in monetary donations in Monmouth history. Each student who gave money towards the campaign donated $20.19 to represent their class year.

Each campaign includes a description of its purpose, goals, and benefactors. When individuals are looking to donate to the specific campaigns there are designated “giving levels” which vary from 25 dollars to a few thousand. Individuals are also able to enter a desired amount that they would like to give. Donors can also choose if they wish to have their name and or donation amount displayed on the Donor Wall page of campaign page.

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Fury Named Writing Services Director

Fury Writing DirectorFrank Fury, Ph.D., Lecturer of English, started as the Director of Writing Services on July 1.

In an email to Writing Assistants, Fury wrote, “I am so grateful to be working in such a welcoming environment and to have the opportunity to contribute to such a valuable service for our undergraduate and graduate students at Monmouth.”

Fury’s goals for the Writing Services include maintaining the efficiency of operations that has endured for years, and in the long-term, to ensure students are receiving the best possible instruction and writing assistance.

He plans to adhere to the Writing Services protocol, which is known among the staff to be: “emphasize the writing process, not the product.”

“We want our students to become better writers; it’s not all about writing papers,” Fury said.

At Monmouth, Fury has taught both College Composition I and II where his feedback on student papers revolved around the writing process including aspects like thesis, structure and paragraph development, rather than mechanics. Writing is more than formatting, it’s about understanding the overarching elements, according to Fury. 

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University Warns About Vaping

Uni VapingAn article was released by Suanne Schaad, Substance Abuse Coordinator and advisor to the Students in Recovery Club, and Kathy Maloney, Director of Health Services, in response to the growing vaping epidemic and health concerns last Tuesday.

According to Schaad, there have been 450 reported cases of young persons aged 15-35 years old and five deaths confirmed in the United States.

Schaad warned, “There is a growing epidemic of acute severe respiratory disease associated with e-cigarette products/vaping.”

According to Health Services, indications of the disease begin to appear over the course of 1-7 days, with the first symptoms being coughing and shortness of breath. Later, the symptoms can worsen to chest pain, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, and diarrhea.  

“The severe respiratory disease that occurs as a result of vaping is associated with chemical exposure and does not appear to be caused by an infectious agent such as bacteria,” Health Services wrote in the article. “That means antibiotics are of little use in treating the type of pneumonia, acute lipoid pneumonia, seen with many of these cases.” 

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), most electronic cigarettes contain nicotine, an addictive substance found in other tobacco products and regular cigarettes. Nicotine is harmful to the adolescent brain, which does not fully develop until around age 25. Among the parts of the brains that can be affected by nicotine are the ones that control attention, learning, mood and impulse control. 

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Athletic Department Hosts Barbecue

Athletic Dept BBQThe Monmouth University Athletic Department and MSAAC (Monmouth Student Athlete Advisory Committee) hosted a Welcome Back Event barbecue for over 500 student athletes this past Sunday at Kessler Stadium. 

Assistant Athletic Director for Academic Support, Emily Howard, explained that this was an opportunity for all student athletes to bond and have something fun to kick off the semester. “MSAAC has brought this up as something they were really excited to do and a tradition to bring back. We had done an event like this in the past, and we’re excited to bring it back,” said Howard.

The event was filled with music, food, games, and endless joy. Coaches and athletes were able to relieve stress of the 24 hour, seven day commitment to athletics and bond with others from different teams. Each athlete had the opportunity to express themselves in a nonjudgmental environment. 

MSAAC President and Senior Women’s Soccer Player, Jessica Johnson, explained that the purpose behind the concept of SAAC is to bring all athletic teams together to discuss how we can continue to build our community. “We are a community as athletes, so it’s important for us to remain connected. The BBQ was meant to introduce everyone to the new year but also hopefully get people to talk to others, in a more comfortable setting, from other teams,” said Johnson.

Junior Student Athlete and Criminal Justice Major, Erik Massey, even believed that this event helped athletes come together as one. “The impact that the event left on the students is that we are a family. We aren’t separated by teams, but we are all one knowing we all have each other’s backs. This gives us the confidence to compete better and always support one another,” said Massey. 

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Social Work Retreat

Social Work RetreatMonmouth’s Social Work Department held its 21st annual social work retreat in Magill Commons to provide students with an opportunity to connect with faculty on Wednesday, Sept. 4.

Sanjana Ragudaran, assistant professor of social work, said, “[The student retreat] helps to orient new and returning students (in addition to faculty and staff) to the Social Work Program and the campus in a fun and informal way.” 

These retreats give students a chance to interact with their advisors, faculty, and other students outside the classroom to extend their support network within the program. Students are also able to ask questions about the upcoming year, Ragudaran said. 

The retreat took place from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., ending before freshman welcome. Robin Mama, Ph.D., Dean of the School of Social Work, explained that each year, the retreat has a different theme and this year’s theme was overcoming obstacles. The goal of the theme this year was to get social work students to think about they have overcome obstacles in life and how to excel personally and professionally, as social workers. 

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Athletes Partake in Mentorship Program

Athletes MentorshipVernon Smith, Director of Educational Counseling and Leadership and Assistant Professor of education, Monmouth University Athletes, and the Big Brother Big Sisters of Monmouth and Middlesex Counties have partnered to form a Peer Mentorship program for students of Neptune High School.

Smith commented, “I’m just tired of seeing all the negatives about black males in the news and that’s not all we have to offer. Once I got here at Monmouth, I recognized that within Monmouth County and the community, we had young men of color, especially black males, who faced adversity and we want to make sure their surrounded by a strong support network.” 

Smith believes that this program will be beneficial based on the resources that Monmouth offers. “We have a lot of black males who are involved in athletics, the Equal Opportunity Fund (EOF) programs, and just solid students making a difference. How do we begin to at least give back to our community? I figured this is an important program that helps Monmouth students the importance of giving back and connecting with high school students encouraging them to move forward providing mentorship.”

With mentorship, Smith notes, it helps the mentors to grow, as well as the mentees. “It is a beautiful way to develop an empowering black male leadership opportunity,” he said.

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Datta is New Interim Provost

Datta ProvostRekha Datta, Ph.D., a Professor of political science, was appointed Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs on Aug. 1. 

In this new temporary role, Datta will work closely with President Leahy to provide leadership in planning, developing, implementing, and assessing the academic activities of the University and its Strategic Plan. 

While she serves as provost for this academic year, a new search for a permanent provost will be conducted in the meanwhile. 

“This is my 26th year of service at Monmouth University. I am grateful to Dr. Leahy and to the university community for the opportunity to serve as the university's Interim Provost for this academic year,” said Datta. “The opportunity to work with students, staff, administrators, and with my faculty colleagues to advance the academic mission of the university is energizing, exciting, and above all, humbling.”

She continued, “Since I took office on August 1, as Interim Provost, I have enjoyed working with faculty and the university community on the pragmatic aspects of my role, ensuring service to students and faculty, shared governance, personnel management, and empowering departments and schools.” Datta said that she welcomes the opportunity to work closely with students in order to advance their academic success at the university. 

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Mercedes Crashes into Hesse Hall

file (7)A Mercedes crashed into the front of Hesse Hall on Monday, Sept. 9 at approximately 2:15 p.m., leaving the driver injured. No student injuries were reported.

The 61-year-old man backed his white Mercedes Benz into the rear-end of a parked white Jeep, changed direction, and then crashed head-on into the dormitory. Both vehicles were then towed once the building was deemed safe.

The driver of the vehicle was rushed to Hackensack Meridian Health Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune. His condition is unknown at this time.

Morganne Dudzinski, the Director of News and Public Affairs said about the driver, “I checked in with the university’s police department and as this is an ongoing investigation, no further information can be released at this time.”

The university community was notified of the incident via email by new President Patrick Leahy, Ph.D. around 4 p.m.

“Hesse Hall was evacuated and the building damage is being evaluated by a structural engineer,” Leahy wrote. “Students housed in the affected areas of Hesse Hall will be relocated until those areas are deemed safe for occupancy.”

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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