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The Stony Brook Press - Volume 32, Issue 11

The Stony Brook Press - Volume 32, Issue 11

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Ralph Nader, Stony Brook Athletics, Stony Brook University, Seawolves, Undergraduate Student Government
Ralph Nader, Stony Brook Athletics, Stony Brook University, Seawolves, Undergraduate Student Government

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Published by: The Stony Brook Press on Mar 31, 2011
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Vol. XXXII, Issue 11|Friday, April 1, 2011
The arrival of April, the approach-ing end of the semester and warmerweather can only mean one thing–it’salmost time for the Undergraduate Stu-dent Government elections.According to USG’s website, 100students have signed up to run for a po-sition this year. Karen La Grega, chair of USG’s election committee, said thisnumber is a significant increase fromprevious years and will most likely havea big impact on election results.“[The number of potential candi-dates] will absolutely affect the resultsas there will be a lot of competition, andhopefully some good people will getelected,” she said in an email. “It alsomeans that a lot of people want to getinvolved on campus and make a differ-ence for students here.”La Grega said it is too early to tellwhich parties students are representing,as the Party Coalition deadline is notuntil April 6. “But if there are severalparties running, this is an opportunity for students to get out there and supporta party that they believe in,” she said.The first round of the election pe-riod begins on April 11 at noon. Al-though the voting process, which takesplace through SOLAR, remains thesame this year, La Grega said that as thechair, one thing she plans on changingis her communication with the candi-dates.“The elections process is tricky andone can easily be disqualified for miss-ing a simple deadline or misreading thelaws,” she said. “I want all the candidatesto know that I am here to help themmake it to the polling process as easily as possible. I’m also trying to enforcethe law and keep things simple andclear.”Students who wish to run for a po-sition are currently petitioning. StartingApril 4, those who become valid candi-dates will campaign up until voting be-gins, and they will also participate in adebate that will take place on Wednes-day, April 6, during Campus Lifetime.The results for the first elections will beposted on April 15, then runoff elec-tions will follow on April 25, with re-sults posted April 29.
Vote or Die: USG Edition
By Alyssa Melillo
Though generally against tuitionhikes, the majority of Stony Brook stu-dents recently surveyed by the Under-graduate Student Government said they are willing to pay higher tuition rates inorder to prevent the discontinuation of majors and class offerings.The survey, conducted online,asked students which operational andacademic services they would be will-ing to pay higher tuition for and col-lected their opinions regarding Stony Brook’s budget cuts and tuition hikes.The Undergraduate Student Gov-ernment collected responses from ap-proximately 800 students—roughly 5percent of the undergraduate studentbody.Of those surveyed, most were con-cerned about graduating on time andbeing able to continue their majors. Stu-dents said they would be least willing topay more for campus events and athleticteams.Seven percent of participants saidthey would be forced to leave Stony Brook if tuition rose by $400. If tuitionrose by $1,000, 15 percent said they would have to leave the university.A segment of the survey allowedstudents to comment directly to USGabout the budget issues. The majority of the students who commented agreedthat educational aspects, such as majorsand class offerings, should not be cut.“Honestly, Stony Brook offers agreat, affordable education,” one studentwrote. “Or at least it used to. With de-creased class availability and overall re-sources, it is slowly losing its pres-tige...As other schools raise their tu-ition, there’s no reason that Stony Brook shouldn’t be allowed to do the same. Iwould recommend doing it at a gradualpace, but in all honesty, Stony Brook needs to raise tuition. I’m sick of seeingthings go away.”Many students also commented onthe increase of the student Comprehen-sive Fee that will take effect next semes-ter. They said they believed that sincethe majority of students here are notathletes, the most cuts should go to ath-letics. Many also said they believedthere is no need to raise the technology fee.“I feel as though raising the tech-nology, athletic and transportation feesis unnecessary,” one student wrote.“Most students do not spend a majority of their time in SINC sites or computerrooms…I feel a great discomfort at theincrease of the athletic fees.”In response to the survey results,the USG Senate proposed a resolutioncondemning state budget cuts to Stony Brook. It calls on New York State to“reprioritize higher education” and “in-vest in its youth’s education, their future,and New York’s future by ceasing toslash the budgets of Stony Brook Uni-versity and other SUNY institutions andby ensuring adequate functioning of such by providing adequate funds forpublic education.
Survey Says...
By Alyssa Melillo
The Stony Brook Press
If you’re a nerd like me, there’sonly one thing that can get you toenter the athletic complex here atStony Brook, and it obviously isn’tbasketball. For the thirtieth year run-ning, I-CON is returning to campus,and I assure you that all of your geeky friends are psyched.For those of you who remainnaïve to the seductive charms of I-CON, it’s Stony Brook’s very ownscience fiction and fantasy conven-tion. Each year, nerds, geeks,
TheStony Brook Press
’s Associate Edi-tor Evan Goldaper and the like grabtheir costumes and prepare for aweekend of geeky excess. Conven-tions like this usually feature specialguests from the industry, and of course I-CON is no exception. Thetwo headliners this year are JulieBenz, who appeared in “Buffy theVampire Slayer” and plays themother on TV’s “No Ordinary Fam-ily,” and Thomas Jane, from HBO’s“Hung,” in addition to dozens of significantly more minor celebritiesranging from Pokémon’s Brock (in-sert fanboy squeal here), ColdSpring Harbor Labs, DC’s Answer Man and my next-door neighbor Dan. Side note: Only at I-CON canyou have celebrities
minor than Darla from Buffy. But I digress.All of them will be appearing in avariety of panel discussions andsigning autographs.I hope that this year, unlike pre-vious ones, I will be able to build upthe courage to tell Brock how im-pressive he was at voicing Seviper and Croagunk. As a fair warning, if you want to do something similar,like tell Julie Benz how improbableit is that she’d be able to run at super speeds in high-heeled shoes, prepareto wait on very long lines. These area feature of all conventions, and arebest dealt with by bringing a DS andtaking advantage of the fact thateveryone around you
has a DS.I-CON also features a massivemerchandise floor that’s like the fleamarket of my dreams, where allguests can purchase such necessitiesas Super Nintendo games, importedmanga, and adorable plushies and isbasically thus the place where all of the money I earn all year seems tofind itself. There are also smaller events like trivia competitions, alive performance of the PhoenixWright musical, a masquerade balland such stage shows as “CosplayBurlesque.” I have no complete ideaof what that last one entails, but their write-up promises “naughty” ver-sions of beloved characters rangingfrom Tuxedo Mask to Harley Quinn,which personally leaves me scaredout of my mind.If you’re sensing that I-CON ison a much smaller scale than other conventions like Comic-Con, you’reright. Big industry reveals aren’tmade here, and you would never ex-pect to see people as famous as StanLee or Tim Burton. That doesn’tseem to bother fans on campus, whostill seem incredibly excited. An-other I-CON expert, ColleenO’Connor, noted that the smaller size allows for it to have a muchmore intimate feel than its bigger siblings. She added, “I love I-CON.I’ve been going to I-CON for years.It was my first convention, so it’sspecial to me.”Indeed, this sense of communityis something I-CON loves to stress,and it is common for students to re-turn many times. This year’s will bemy fifth consecutive I-CON, whichmakes me feel old, but still excited.Other students will be making their first appearance at I-CON this year.One of our staffers here at
The StonyBrook Press
, Sarah Evins, said that“I’ve never been to a convention be-fore, so I’m excited to be inductedinto a whole new level of geekdom,I guess.”It may not be full of prestige, butif you’re reading this issue, I-CONis probably the closest convention toyou. Tickets are in the form of mem-bership, which is on sale online or atthe campus bookstore. Students doget a discount, so you have no ex-cuse to not go. I, of course, suggestthat you do. Look for me: I’ll be theone with all the humorous pins.
I-CON Is Back! 
By Evan Goldaper
Thomas Jane negotiating his contract with I-CON officials.

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