Young Hornets Spark Hope For Great Season

By: Michael Raimondi

The Lyndon State Women’s Soccer team is just one win away from matching last year’s total wins.

The 2013 Hornets ended the season with five wins, which left them in eighth-place in the NAC. This year’s team has a new look. With the addition of ten freshmen players, the young squad has won three of their last four games.

With a record of 4-3, the Hornets are feeling good heading into the start of conference games. Senior Katy Ebner believes the early success is making the team confident.

“We are very positive and upbeat,” Ebner said. “It is very different from last year, as we are playing much better.”

Ebner described how last season was tough on the team as they rarely had enough players to substitute during matches. She explains that the team has greatly benefitted from the addition of new players.

“Half of the team are new players, and we are getting used to different playing styles,” she said. “Everything is completely different from last year as returners are in new positions, but it has been really cool.”

Ebner admits it was difficult to adjust to ten new players at the start of the season, but having a full roster helps the team.

“I like that half the team is freshmen, because they are learning how to play at this level, but it is really cool seeing everyone mesh together really well,” she said.

The Hornets struggled in the NAC last year posting a 2-7 record in conference play. The goal of the team is to make playoffs, and they will have to improve their record in the conference to make their goal happen. The team needs to continue to play well, and Ebner believes that the team is poised to make noise in the NAC.

“The mindset is totally there, as everyone is on the same page as we all want to win,” she said. “Everyone is working hard towards our goal, and I think going into Castleton we are all super excited.”

With the playoffs in mind, the Hornets travel to NAC rival Castleton on Sept. 20th to take on the Spartans.

 

CAB Amends Constitution

By: Seth Vandenburg

Lyndon State Campus Activities Board (CAB) kicked off the new academic year with a well-attended meeting on September 16th, 2014.

Beginning with a review of the previous week’s events, attendees shared experiences with recent CAB events and discussed ideas about how to distribute information about these events widely on campus. The weekly STUALL e-mail lists all the weekly events that people can attend. The information is also available on CAB’s Facebook page.

One student suggested taking a clipboard and surveying students to find out what they think CAB should do to make their experience better.

Discussion continued with questions about events of the last two weeks including this week’s soap factory event and last Friday’s Amazing Race, based on the TV show, with the prize of an Amazon gift card.

The Executive Board announced that they had proposed changes to the CAB constitution and had the members vote on which changes to approve and refuse. Meagan Leduc, vice president of CAB closed the meeting, saying, “The entire goal of CAB is not about what we think would be good to see, but what you think would be good to see.”

SaVe

By: Sarah Chen

 

Lyndon State College is launching a program to increase student awareness of the need to prevent sexual misconduct on campus.

Last Wednesday, LSC students met at Rogers Lounge to introduce an educational program about The Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act. Students were encouraged to join this program. The SaVE program not only gives students, faculty and staff opportunities to learn how to prevent rape, acquaintance rape, domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, but enables them to teach and help others.

According to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance…”

As regulations and laws against sexual violence, rape, and stalking are strengthened, more and more schools are including the SaVE program to help students as much as possible. At the Wednesday meeting, Residence Hall Director Jinai Gordon told attendees: “Any time students have any issue about campus violence, rape or stalking, they are welcome to tell their Resident Assistants (RAs) or Resident Hall Director (RHD).” Jessica Gullbrand, RA, asked students at the meeting about their experiences with acquaintance rape, domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking. She also provided free information to attendees about helplines to call when they face these issues. The helplines are open 24/7 for everyone. Although not many people attended this first information meeting, there are many opportunities on campus to learn how to protect yourself from improper behavior.

From Where I Sit

Michael Miley

 

In my previous column, I discussed a government program called EB-5, and warned about the disastrous consequences it will have on the Northeast Kingdom. In my zeal to catch regular readers up on the developments that occurred over the summer, I neglected to inform new readers as to what EB-5 actually is!

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa Program provides conditional visas to foreign nationals who invest $500,000 or $1 million into a government-approved business, a class which includes Jay Peak and Burke Mountain. The EB-5 program is reprehensible for several reasons, which span the political spectrum. Firstly, EB-5 projects, like Burke, are mostly sub-par investments that but for EB-5, would not attract capital in the free market. The repeated assurances from Mr. Stenger and Mr. Quiros that “EB-5 works at Burke” is essentially a tacit admission that the businesses they own are failures that would be unable to stand on their own financially. People who have invested in EB-5 projects might find their investments go up in smoke if the unstable business they thought they were investing in (more on that later) goes belly up.

Secondly, EB-5 discriminates against the poor by allowing the super-rich to buy their way to the “front” of the immigration line. An average person has to wait– on average– seven years to be approved for a green card, but the wealthy elites who can pay half a million dollars can be approved in less than two.
Lastly, the manner in which the corporate leaders of the EB-5 projects at Jay Peak and Burke, that is, Mr. Stenger and Mr. Qurios, have conducted themselves has been shady to say the least. As I stated in a previous column, Stenger and Qurios took the EB-5 investors ownership equity and– secretly– converted it into unsecured debt. Five months later, Stenger and Qurios decided that the investors were worthy of hearing this news. Stenger called this “an oversight,” but such an action is far too significant for Stenger and Qurios to have simply forgotten. Add in the fact that Patrick Leahy has attempted to remove the strict job creation requirements that are (at least for now) a nominal part of the EB-5 program, and a pretty unpleasant picture emerges.
EB-5 is a profoundly damaging program that has allowed a wealthy few to run roughshod over the Northeast Kingdom at the expense of all the people who live here. People of all political stripes can find something distasteful about EB-5, and we must all come together to rid ourselves of these parasites, and take back this place we call home.

Science Majors Explore Organic World

The Department of Natural Science took me and my fellow Science Majors to the outside world for Major Activity Day. Unlike other majors, our trip was overnight; we left on Friday and got back by Saturday. We didn’t end up staying outside for long because of poor weather.

We started on Friday by visiting a local organic farm by Chandler Pond run by an alumnus of Lyndon State College. While there, we learned about composting and how they make their fertilizer from their cows’ manure and other organic items. There was also a talk about how raising animals, especially pigs, revolves around a schedule, where they can expect piglets twice a year. Also, at Chandler Pond, we helped pick string beans and winter squashes. We met the different farm animals that reside there. We also gathered foodstuffs to make dinner for the night. Around lunch time, we went to the cabins at Wheeler Pond where we would be spending the night.

We all chose where we were going to sleep. As soon as our sleeping situation was settled, we started a fire in the wood stove because it was chilly outside. Professor Ben Luce and Professor Ian Balcom then led a hike up one of the trails while Professor Alan Giese and Professor Alison Lathrop stayed behind to mind the fires and make dinner.

Afterwards, everyone went out to the other cabin and enjoyed a fire. I, on the other hand, stayed in the first cabin where it was warm, to maintain the fire. The day’s activities led me to go to bed at a decent time, and everyone trickled in as the night wore on. I woke up periodically during the night to keep the fire going and make sure there was wood in the stove.

The next morning, we all had a breakfast of bagels, coffee, eggs, bacon and sausage and took some time to let the food settle.Professor Giese and Professor Luce and all of the students went on one last hike down a trail called “Gnome Stairs”, which follows the stream that feeds Wheeler Pond. We finished the hike, packed up and headed back to campus, refreshed from all of the fresh air and vigorous outdoor activity.

Intramural Coach Launchs Facebook Initiative

By: Tyler Hall

Lyndon State College has a new intramural director who plans to engage students with intramural activities more than ever. Kevin Pezanowski, hired in August as intramural director and head men’s lacrosse coach, previously coached at Ohio State University, MIT, Curry College, Merrimack College and Franklin Pierce. His 27 years of experience in athletics includes coaching, teaching and coordinating intramurals from preschool to college levels.

Earlier this week, he created an Intramurals Facebook Page to enhance accessibility for students who are interested in intramurals. Pezanowski believes using digital media should add excitement to intramural athletics.“My hope is to really use [Facebook] as the first kind of tool for the students to keep [track of] scores, updated general media, pictures,” he says. “I’d like to get to the point [to] maybe do some video clips that we can download, essentially trying to do a little more multimedia and student friendly contact as opposed to taping notes to my door. I’ll still have a visual of intramurals on my door, but Facebook is obviously a great tool that is easily accessible.”

Pezanowski feels that sending group emails and posting things to his door is not as efficient as using Facebook. “It’s a lot easier for people to check game scores, status updates, with weather, and things like that, a lot easier for me to go on Facebook than it is to try to send out group emails, because we know a lot of the students aren’t necessarily checking their email,” he said.

He is also looking for ways to connect intramurals with varsity and club sports. He and IT are discussing the idea of having an intramurals attachment on the LSC Athletics website. This could allow students to sign up for intramurals by simply filling out an online form.

Technology, says Pezanowski, can make“it much easier for us to aid students who are reaching for information about intramurals,”.

Hospitality Follow-Up

By: Katrina Floranza

With the talk of a possible Hospitality Program being a hot topic lately, President Joe Bertolino and Provost Kellie Bean have sent out an e-mail to all faculty to clear up any misunderstanding of the possible program.

“I communicated to faculty earlier this week with an apology,” says Dr. Joe.

As mentioned in last week’s article, it seemed as though some faculty were left in the dark when the hospitality program was advertised and brought up. “Kellie and I agree with the faculty that we made a mistake, for this we apologize. The program should not have been marketed in advance of the approval process,” Dr. Joe tells faculty, “Be assured that this will not happen again.”

According to Dr. Joe, they have “been talking about a hospitality program for probably over a year now.”

It started when Bill Stenger, CEO of Jay Peak Resort, had approached Dr. Joe and faculty. “He actually met with some of our faculty to talk about our curriculum and given the changes that are happening in the Northeast Kingdom and the investments that he and his investors had been making in the Northeast Kingdom, he talked a lot about how Lyndon State College could play a role in that and prepare our students for those possible jobs that would be coming up in the near future,” explains Dr. Joe.

Not only did the CEO of Jay Peak approach Dr. Joe, but so did the owner of Q Burke Mountain. “We received a request from Ary Quiros, who had articulated to us the desire to provide internship and employment opportunities to our students and that it would be helpful if Lyndon State College had a hospitality program,” Dr. Joe continues, “So, that led us to then have a conversation with the leadership of Johnson State, because Johnson State has a hospitality program.”

From there, the two colleges engaged in discussion more about the program and the potential partnership between the two colleges to work with Quiros and Stenger, if LSC did in fact end up developing a hospitality program in the future.

Johnson State may have been the only Vermont college to currently have a hospitality program, but Lyndon State College was not the only Vermont college to be approached for an idea of the hospitality program, “I know that Bill Stenger had originally approached Burlington College and one of the reasons for that is because public institutions tend to be bureaucratic. Burlington College is a private institution, so, I think the thought was that they can do it faster,” explains Dr. Joe, “Mr. Stenger was not convinced that the Vermont State Colleges could deliver such a program in a timely fashion without significant bureaucracy.”

“I reminded Bill that we’re right here in the backyard and we’re here in the Northeast Kingdom, so, I think we are a better fit,” Dr. Joe adds, “We need to reach out to folks over the summer and say, ‘we really need to get this in our publications, is there a fast track or is there another way we can do this?’”

Though the hospitality program was still an idea, Dr. Joe explains what the college was doing with it, “Simultaneously, the Academic Affairs team here started to collect some data to see if in fact there was a market for a hospitality program and if that made any sense to explore.”

Provost Bean then had the task of putting together an exploratory group to look at the possibility of putting together proposal. “And that’s where we are at right now,” says Dr. Joe.

Recently, the hospitality program was advertised on the Lyndon State website and that was what caused the most controversy over the nonexistent program. “That was a mistake on our part. The administration made a mistake,” admits Dr. Joe.

Why did it cause so much controversy? “It presumed that the program would have been approved and that’s not fair, it’s not respectful to the process and that not at all the intent,” Dr. Joe explains, “When Admissions and Academic Affairs decided to move forward with the marketing, they were doing so to be pro-active. I don’t think the intent at all was to circumvent anything, I think that they were looking strictly from an enrollment management and the financial challenges that we were facing. They were just trying to get it out there saying, ‘hey, you know, we might have this program, isn’t that exciting.’”

Dr. Joe tries to understand what happened from an admissions point of view, “There are two things to think about. One, we are facing some enrollment challenges and we do believe that this program would be helpful in our recruitment. Two, we are facing some significant deadline for publications in order for us to meet admissions recruitment season.”

“We have taken it down from the website and we are making some adjustments to the existing printed material without having to reprint them. We’ve had some conversations with the Faculty Federation and I think we resolved the issue and come to an agreement,” Dr. Joe says.

According to Dr. Joe, “The proposal is now sitting in the Mountain Rec. Department for their consideration.”

“I’m excited about the possibility, but if the faculty vote down, then I will respect that decision. I won’t override that,” concludes Dr. Joe.

Regardless if the hospitality program is approved by the faculty or not, Lyndon State College definitely has the resources to fund it.

Vermont received $891,679 in Northern Border Regional Commission funds under the Farm Bill. That amount was then dispersed into five grants. Governor Shumlin recommended these grants go to “targeted economic development and job creation by improving infrastructure and strengthening communities.”

On Thursday, September 18, Lyndon State College was awarded one of those five grants, amounting to $226, 739. The grant’s purpose is to go towards establishing the Hospitality Program.

“I would like to think that being awarded the grant adds credibility to the proposal, because what it says is that we have created this proposal and now we have the financial resources to back up such proposal,” comments Dr. Joe.

As Dr. Joe mentioned, the Hospitality Program is still just a proposal. Therefore, Lyndon State College had received a grant for a program that is still a proposal. However, that didn’t stop LSC from applying to the grant. “Well, first, obviously, you’re always applying for grants well in advance whenever the deadline is. Given the resources that we have here, that is not unusual and you never know what’s going to happen,” Dr. Joe explains.

Being a proposal, it means that faculty may vote no on passing the proposal and making it into a program. “If at the end of the day, the Faculty Assembly should decide not to support the Hospitality Program, what we would have to do is say, ‘thanks, but no thanks’ to the grant and give the money back,” says Dr. Joe.

“The grant money is contingent upon us, it’s soul purpose is creating a Hospitality Program. If we approve a program, we have money to fund it. If we don’t approve a program, we don’t lose anything,” Dr. Joe simply puts it.

 

CAB Event

By: Andrew Baughn

CAB welcomed author CL Lindsay, who visited Lyndon State College September 11th in the Alexander Twilight Theatre to give audience members a lecture of how to obey the law and topics such as pre- party prep, fake id’s, avoiding citations, public urination, underage drinking, party donations and legally serving.

Lindsay explained to the audience key points regarding Vermont Law (local statues on noise disturbances included), different codes from Iowa and Texas as well as other states. Also included were tips of how to plan your parties and keep yourself safe.

What gave the presentation even more pizzazz were the photos used in the presentations. Photos used featured action figures of well known superheroes and cartoon characters such as Spiderman, Barbie and Ken, and even the Scooby Doo gang. Each photo displayed the characters in situations that went along with the topics covered during the lecture. The Critic had the opportunity to sit down with Lindsay before the event to ask about his unique approach to teaching these laws.

“I had to have some kind of pictures and honestly I was flat out broke. I didn’t have enough money to do anything, I started buying barbies on eBay and figured that this was a good, cheap way to illustrate legal philosophies,” said Lindsay.

“The whole idea of almost everything that I do is, the law isn’t…that hard to understand. It isn’t this unreachable thing and you can definitely inject humor into it and definitely make it approachable for students and that’s how I tried to write the book and that’s what I try to do when I give lectures, I try to make it approachable and fun,” said Lindsay.

For those interested in Lindsay’s work, more of his lectures can be found on YouTube.

Backpackers Guide to Europe — Where to Sleep?

By: Kaylee Murphy

When it comes to sleeping in Europe, the typical backpacker tends to sleep in hostels. There are hostels everywhere in Europe. They are easy to find online and oftentimes cheaper than staying in a hotel.

Major cities will have more hostels, but if you venture out into the countryside you probably won’t find any.

There are many different types of hostels. There are chain hostels, where it’s the same hostel name in several different countries. There are hostels, that look like people’s houses and probably are. Some hostels are party hostels and typically these types of hostels have a bar in them.

The cheapest rooms in hostels are the ones with the most beds in a shared room and are co-ed. Co-ed dorms tend to board more males, and the largest recommendable dorm room would house twenty people. Typically twelve is the ideal number. I would stay away from forty-bed dorms because there are too many people to make any connections with, it’s always noisy, and most nights there is an orgy.

Whether or not you want to pre-book a hostel entirely depends on what kind of trip you are planning. Booking in advance has some benefits, such as knowing that you definitely have a place to stay, but then you have to find your reserved hostel. July and August are the busiest months for hostels. Usually during the week it’s easy to find a place to stay, but weekends can be challenging. It has some downsides too, because if you don’t like the city that you’re staying in, you have to stay there because it’s too late to cancel your reservation. Another downside is you may have trouble getting to your hostel on time due to travel difficulties and you would still have to pay for that night.

Always book in advance if there is a huge event going on in that city and you know it ahead of time. For example, if there is a music festival or a huge sporting event, all your affordable room options are gone.

If you didn’t know that there was a huge event going on, you will probably be homeless. If you find yourself homeless in a foreign country, find a hostel anyways and see if you can keep your bag there. They will most likely let you.

An important thing to know is how to get rid of bed bugs. Bed bugs are real and you can get them. It doesn’t matter if you’re staying in a five star resort or a dirty, cheap, illegal hotel: bed bugs suck! It’s hard to tell if you have bed bugs because they look and feel like mosquito bites. They are a pain to get rid of. Do your laundry immediately and take a long shower. In order to suffocate them, put your backpack in a trash bag, tie the bag up, and make sure that there is no air in the bag. Also buy bug spray and spray yourself and your clothes.

Hostels are not your only option. There are also cheap hotels. If they don’t take down your passport number and don’t accept credit cards, they are probably illegal and may not have comfortable or clean rooms.

Hostels, will often offer cool activities, such as free dinner, and pub crawls. If they have a bar at the hostel, they might have drink specials. They pair up with free walking tour companies, so the tour guide will pick you at the hostel. Sleeping in hostels are a great and inexpensive way to meet people.

 

22 Jump Street- Review

By Jacob Dodge

In cinema, it is a rare thing indeed for a sequel to overshadow its predecessor. While 22 Jump Street falls short of breaking that rule, that does not mean that it isn’t worth seeing.

The film is gleefully self-aware, poking fun both at itself, and the film before, constantly and beautifully inverting the precedent set in the previous film. It knows it’s more or less the same movie as 21 Jump Street. It knows it, you know it, and the director makes sure you know it. They even make a direct title drop of another imminent sequel, and it feels perfectly fine. I cannot say more without spoiling major plot points, but it is hilarious on a wonderful level. It is no spoiler however, that a great deal of the humor is very mature. Children need not view this.

For a “buddy-cop” film, there is a shocking, and very touching amount of character development. Jenko, played by Channing Tatum, is given several genuine feeling crisis moments amidst, of course, the balls out hilarity. And Jonah Hill’s Schmidt, yes, he’s annoying, incredibly so, but that’s what his character’s purpose is. However, to Hill’s credit, he does have a couple of redeeming moments. He chafes under the knowledge that, oftentimes, he drags Jenko down, dramatically in fact, and his attempts to upset this trend are often some of the best moments of the film.

The verdict is a simple one. While it is not quite on par with the movie it is born of, 22 Jump Street is a delightful, gut-bustingly funny romp that actually leaves the viewer excited for the next film. Few movies can make that claim.