Vol.82, No.20/4.8.09/Free

Semester in Shanghai
Sophomores Jonathan Arellano and Carson Loveday get immersed in Chinese culture.

Read more on Page 5

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April 8, 2009

Students dance, donate at charity ball
By Kelly Luoma
Staff writer Mercyhurst College students contributed to a charitable cause when they spent their Friday night dancing at the Masonic Temple Ball Room. The annual Spring Charity Ball was held on Friday, Apr. 3. The event is sponsored by Mercyhurst Student Government (MSG) and Student Activities Council (SAC). Students dressed in cocktail attire. The theme was a Black and White Tie Affair. The tickets cost $10 per student. The price of the event covered transportation to the Masonic Temple, a buffet dinner and night of dancing. The dinner consisted of salmon, stuffed chicken breast, pasta, cheddar mashed potatoes, salad and desserts. MSG voted to donate the money raised to Mercy Beyond Borders. “This is a charity in which the money goes toward war affected regions of the world where women and children are displaced and left widowed or abandoned,” SAC Chair Vicky Fleisner said. “The money will provide these women and children with food and education. Around $1,500 was given to this charity. “The Charity Ball is a great event, because it gives students the opportunity to have a fun time while raising money for a charitable cause,” Fleisner said. About 100 students attended the event.

Mercyhurst College students spent the night eating and dancing at the Spring Charity Ball on Friday, Apr. 3. The proceeds went to Mercy Beyond Borders.

Kelly Luoma photo

’Hurst art students use technology to teach
By Kelly Luoma
Staff writer Mercyhurst College Art Education students presented at the third annual Consortium for Computing in Undergraduate Education (C-Cue) Student Technology Forum at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania. C-Cue is an association working to expand the use of technology in education. Freshman Tyler Stauffer and sophomore Meredith Stalker presented “Wiki Spaces in the Classroom” on Monday, March 30. Stauffer and Stalker explained how wikis can be used in the classroom, and they focused on art educators making use of them. “Our objective was not only to promote wikispaces, but to show how we are using them for research purposes as well as classroom work,” Stauffer said. Their presentation used Skype technology. This allowed them to present to educators from Pittsburgh. The students presented to a group of about 25 people from universities and colleges. “I was the youngest presenter that day at age 19, and Meredith was second youngest at 20,” Stauffer said. Their presentation can be found at tstauffer.wikispaces. com. “It was a great learning experience, not only because we were teaching to students and professors, but also because it gave us experience presenting to groups of people with related interests,” Stauffer said.

Bucket Brigade to save the planet
Volunteers needed April 17-26
Mercyhurst orientation Wed., April 15 at 7 p.m. in the Herrmann Student Union on second floor

To get involved contact Tom Fuhrman at or 814.824.2407 or visit

April 8, 2009

By JoEllen Marsh
Managing editor point problem areas, save students money and revolutionize green efforts on campus. GETT will test their plan on the library, which uses more energy than any other building on campus. “To me, it”s mostly about efficiency and money. I don’t like paying over $30,000 a year, even minus grants and scholarships, to go to school here, and I am looking for any way I can to make my tuition or housing lower,” junior Andrew Flugher said. One difference between GETT and other green organizations on campus seems to be the variety of students who get involved. “I am not an environmentalist, but a realist. Energy efficien-

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cy has real world value to me,” junior Matt Visco said. “I’m not going to take the enviornmental-nut tree-hugger route here. I honestly believe that we can start to save money with energy conservation,” sophomore Tom Hermanowski said. Biology professor Dr. Mike Campbell gave several examples of wasteful uses of energy, including refrigerators with dusty coils, half-full dishwashers and dryers used with tiny loads. “We need everyone to help by being more conscious of what they do to waste electricity,” Campbell said. To get involved, e-mail

Think Tank saves money, energy
An interdisciplinary mix of students at Mercyhurst College is putting their heads together to start a green revolution on campus. “The Green Energy Think Tank is a group of professors and students who have concerns about sustainability, energy efficiency and waste management. It also wants to promote innovation and educate people about green awareness,” according to graduate student Bruno Ost, the founder of GETT. GETT members hope to pin-

Scoot Williams created a Firearms Awareness Club for students at Mercyhurst College.

Contributed photo

MSG to decide on firearms club
By Alaina Rydzewski
Staff writer Looking for a new and exciting club to participate in? The Firearms Awareness Club could become the newest edition to Mercyhurst College’s extensive list of extracurricular activities and clubs. Mercyhurst Student Government decides if they will approve the club next week. Daniel “Scoot” Williams, its creator and a campus leader for another group called Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, explained why he thought the club would be a good idea. “There is a strong anti-gun mentality on campus and there is no opportunity for students interested in shooting to do so,” Williams said. The club is for anyone who can legally possess a gun, hasn’t been convicted of a crime and wants to learn how to safely handle and fire a gun. All students are invited to join or at least learn about the club before they determine their feelings about it. The adviser for the club is Art Amann, the director of the Public Safety Institute at the North East campus. Williams thinks this is a good choice of adviser, because he is in charge of the police academy at North East and has firearm instructors who might be able to teach some classes if there is enough interest. “Basically what the club is going to be doing is taking students to local gun clubs to get them acquainted with firearms. For the more advanced students we may have some defensive pistol classes,” Williams said. Students with questions or comments can contact Scoot Williams at or Art Amann at

’Hurst students interested in astronomy
By Kelly Luoma
Staff writer With the warm weather, spring term is the best time for star gazing. Now, with the creation of the Mercyhurst College Astronomy Club, students can star gaze with others who share similar interests. The purpose of the club is to learn about and get other students interested in astronomy. The club intends on participating in events like meteor showers and eclipses. The Astronomy Club had its first meeting on Thursday, April 2. “I absolutely love astronomy, and I want to learn a lot about it,” coordinator of the meeting, sophomore Erica Brubaker said. Thursday, April 30 Photo ID required The club is interested in traveling, Brubaker said. Members of the club would like to visit museums, planetariums and science centers. The Great Lakes Science Center and The National Air and Space Museum are two places the club especially looks forward to traveling to. Besides traveling, the members of the Astronomy Club are interested in stargazing, learning about constellations and camping. They plan to have barbecues and movie nights. In addition to having fun, the group wants “to spread the awareness [of astronomy],” Brubaker said. “It’s a big part of our life.” In order to spread the awareness, the Astronomy Club would like to visit schools to teach students and excite them about astronomy. “This club has really been a dream of mine since I started here,” the advisor of the club, Dr. Clint Jones, said. The students at the meeting elected an executive board. Brubaker is the president of the club. Sophomore Ryan Miller was elected vice president. Sophomores Alicia Grasso and Eve Klajbor will share the responsibilities of secretary. Junior Kerri Maselko was elected treasurer. “I think this [club] is a really good idea,” Miller said. “I think we’re going to have a lot of fun.” The club plans to meet again in a few weeks. Thirty-nine students attended the meeting. 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Herrmann Student Union Great Room

The Community Blood Bank is holding the last blood drive of the school year
Donors must be at least 17 years old, weigh at least 110 pounds and be in good health. No appointment is necessary to donate blood

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April 8, 2009

Job seekers hunt for career possibilities
By JoEllen Marsh
Managing editor At least 10 students from Mercyhurst College attended the Western Pennsylvania Career Services Association (West PACS) Job and Internship Fair in Pittsburgh last week. Representatives from over 100 companies were there to find employees and interns. Some of the companies included AFLAC, Comcast, Enterprise, MetLife Financial Services and the Central Intelligence Agency. Junior John Lorenz was very satisfied after attending the career fair, which he learned of through flyers on campus. “This one was a lot better than other career fairs I’ve been to. I got calls from seven different companies the following day,” Lorenz said. The career fair was held at the Pittsburgh Indoor Sports Arena

in Cheswick, Pa. Attendees were shuttled from the Pittsburgh mills in order to make parking easier. As a marketing major, Lorenz took interest in several direct marketing companies and has interviews scheduled with Sage Point Financial and other companies. “A lot of employers say ‘if you go online and apply, we’ll

look at it soon.’ I liked how people got back to me really quickly.” Career fairs are one way to find job offers and internships in a declining economy. “One, you never know what you’re going to get, and two, a company may want you. It’s a good networking opportunity,” Lorenz said. In addition to getting job

Representatives from companies search for employees and interns at the West PACS Job and Internship Fair in Pittsburgh.

Contributed photos

offers, Lorenz thought the experience helped him understand more about the interview process. “I stayed for a good two hours seeing what kinds of people they’re looking for, what attributes they’re searching for,” Lorenz said.

“It gave me a lot of opportunities to commute,” Lorenz, a native of Pittsburgh, said. “It’s always good to find something close to home.” Students may contact career services for more information on career fairs.

Earth Week 2009 Schedule
Robert Bullard Panel Discussion 3:30 p.m. Mercy Heritage Room Sister Maura Smith Earth Day Lecture 7:30 p.m. Taylor Little Theater

The Jazz Mandolin Project 7:30 p.m. PAC See page 11 for more details

Bring you own item to tie-dye 4 p.m. Briggs Avenue Pavilion

Local Product Festival and Green Raffle 11 a.m. -4 p.m. in Garvey Park

April 20-25

Hike for Haiku in Wintergreen Gorge 10:00 a.m. PAC Kids N Sibs seed planting 1 -4 p.m. Garvey Park

Presentation by Anne Chen and John Vance 7:00 p.m. Taylor Little Theatre

How much land does a man need?

April 8, 2009


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Destination China
By Jenna Golden
Contributing writer Two Mercyhurst College sophomores, Jonathan Arellano and Carson Loveday, are currently studying abroad in China through the Cultural Experiences Abroad program. The students left for Mercyhurst in mid-February of this year and will be there through September 2009. Both students are attending Shifan Da Xue (Shanghai Normal University) in Shanghai, China. Arellano and Loveday are majoring in International Business and plan on getting a minor in Chinese. Arellano said he is having a great experience. “China is amazing and I absolutely love it. I ended up here out of sheer luck, because I was bored at the marketing

Two Mercyhurst students take their studies to Shanghai
firm I was working at and did research and applied to the CEA program,” he said. Even though both students had taken Mandarin for two terms while at Mercyhurst, they agree that China has been a little overwhelming. “I knew very little Chinese when I came and it took some time to adjust. Our first day of school our teachers spoke 95 percent Mandarin and only five percent English,” Loveday said. In addition to the language barrier, Arellano said the culture is different as well. “When I first arrived, it was a huge culture shock, but as each day went by I loved it here more and more,” Arellano said. Despite the initial culture shock, the boys have made some great friendships along the way. “After about a week or two, Jonathan (Arellano) and I had built a solid group of friends from all over the world,” Loveday said. The students also got jobs in Shanghai. Arellano is working as a promoter for a nightclub and Loveday is teaching English in a Shanghai middle school. The boys have a tour guide

Arellano and Loveday took two Chinese courses before heading off to China. Shown here roaming Shaghai’s streets.

Contributed photo

Sophomore Jonathan Arellano poses with some classic Chinese sculptures shocwased on the streets of Shanghai.

Contributed photo

at their disposal to show them around Shanghai and other places tourists don’t usually get to know. Loveday said his best experiences have come from touring around different parts of Shanghai. “Whether it is overlooking the bund or going to the old districts where government officials lived, it has been a blast,” he said.

“The night life is amazing and his [Loveday] job also helps him to meet new people,” Arellano added. Loveday said the only downfall of the trip was, “the slow movement towards understanding the language. It is very tough to master.” For more information about studying abroad in 15 different countries, visit www.gowithcea. com.

Chip Magalhaes chips away at ice sculptures
By Kelly Luoma
Staff writer Not only is ice good for keeping drinks cold, it is great for sculpting. A new ice sculpting/carving class will be offered for students at Mercyhurst College and chef instructor Chip Magalhaes will be teaching the class. Magalhaes is the Executive Chef of the Grotto Dining Room. He teaches Food Service Management I and II, and International Cuisine. Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management (HRIM) students will be able to enroll in the Ice Sculpting/ Carving class. It has not yet been determined if other students will be able to sign up for the course. Magalhaes said that teaching ice sculpting to HRIM students will expand the students’ knowledge from food to ice. He was asked to teach the course after the HRIM program received a grant from the Statler Foundation. He responded to this offer by saying, “Absolutely, my skills are not polished in ice sculpting, but practice makes better.” According to Magalhaes, ice sculpting is an important part of the HRIM industry. Ice sculptures add decoration to many formal events, like weddings. Numerous shapes can be carved out of ice such as “fish, dolphins, eagles [and] baskets for shrimp cocktail,” Magalhaes said. These carvings are sculpted with the help of a chainsaw and precision tools. “Ice carvers, when the sculpture is good, can make an excellent living as long as the demand is there,” Magalhaes said. Las Vegas ice sculptors can earn about 400,000 dollars a year, Magalhaes said. The course will be offered during the fall and spring terms, because these times of year provide ideal weather for ice sculpting, Magalhaes said. Magalhaes said he and HRIM instructor, Peter Zohos, expect many “new courses such as Ice Sculpting to raise the bar here at Mercyhurst.”

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April 8, 2009

Restaurant Review
By Amanda Valauri
Staff writer

French Street Café offers food, study area
It’s spring term and by now, all possible combinations at the Subconnection have been exhausted and the Egan Cafeteria has run out of creativity. Fear not, there is a new joint in town to cure your food boredom. The French Street Café, located in downtown Erie at E. 4th Street and French streets, has a delicious breakfast and lunch menu to spice up your week. The Café was opened as quick and delectable alternative to the historical Pufferbelly Restaurant, and it offers a large variety of soups, salads, sandwiches, pastries, desserts and specialty beverages. Who loves pizza for breakfast more than college kids? This is no Papa John’s though. The breakfast pizza at The French Street Café is topped with scrambled eggs and cheese with a choice of veggie and meat toppings for under $5. Their breakfast sandwiches and burritos are paired with their gourmet coffee selection with flavors like Snicker nut and white chocolate truffle for just $1.50. With a generous bowl of broccoli cheddar soup at just $3.29 including a fresh backed roll, it beats Panera in price and portion. Creative salads like the pasta chicken artichoke selection can be more exciting and healthy than the old stand by sizzle salad from the Laker Inn. The French Street Café menu has a variety of grilled Panini sandwiches, flatbread pizzas, wraps and a daily quiche special all under $7. If you left enough room for dessert do not over look their mammoth muffins and pastries all under $2. The chocolate mocha muffin can easily be a sweet breakfast or mid-day treat. While the Café is limited in space, not having to stand in a long line of college students comes as a welcome break. While they don’t have Wi-Fi yet, it still can serve as a nice alternative to studying on campus. The French Street Café is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. and has daily specials. For a full menu with prices visit their Web site at

The French Street Café has a simple décor with a French influence.

Scoot Williams photo

Grilled Portabella Mushroom Sandwich Black bean burgers Hummus Platter
Lunch $ 5 Dinner $ 5.50 Lunch $ 5 Dinner $ 5.50
6” Sub $4 Combo $5 12” Sub $5.75 Combo $6.75

11:30 a.m. -8 p.m. Lunch $ 5 Dinner $ 5.50

Chicken BLT-Veggie (no cheese) Spinach-Asian Salad

M Caesar Salad T Steel City Sandwich W Chicken Quesadilla TH Gen. Tso’s Chicken F Portabella & Red pepper Wrap S BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger

S Meatball Sub M Meat Raviolo T 2 slices pizza W Potato Bowl TH Sizzle Salad F Baked Fish S Chicken Finger Sub

April 8, 2008


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Shields takes cover, pins down all rivals
By Carolyn Carlins
Contributing writer Mercyhurst College sophomore Josh Shields won first place in this year’s NCAA II Wrestling National Championships, making him Mercyhurst’s first national champion in wrestling. Shields, 165 pounds, is the fourth Laker to reach the title match, but the only one to win. This year the championship was held March 13-14, and was hosted by the University of Houston in Houston, Texas. Shields defeated University of Nebraska at Omaha’s fifth-ranked Aaron Denson, 5-0 during a suspenseful title match. He ended the season with 21 match winning streak and a 29-3 record, earning his second all-American certificate. Mercyhurst has had at least one allAmerican since the program’s inception in 2001 and at least two all-Americans in the last seven years. Shields, along with his teammates, Andy Lamancusa and Payne Lint, who also won all-American awards and placed third and eighth, respectively, have year in high school, and he has worked hard to make his goal a reality. “I just kept working hard and believing that I could win,” Shields said. The road to this year’s championship proved to be difficult at times. “There were some pretty close matches at Nationals,” Shields said. “In the quarter finals I was down by two with 60 seconds left. I ended up taking him down and pinning him. That was pretty scary, but I knew me winning was meant to be. My coach [Mike Whehler] and I knew we did everything right to win.” In addition to this record breaking event, the Lakers also set the singleseasons win record. Shields attributes his winning to the hard work spent training with his practice partners, Michael Baxter, Jordan Shields and Pat Carter, and to the unyielding support of the coaching staff and Mercyhurst Athletic Administration over the past two years. Shields said he is very proud of his accomplishment and hopes his success continues to follow him throughout his wrestling career. (See related story on page 18.)

Josh Shields stands with trophy and brackets in hand. He is Mercyhurst’s first national wrestling champion.

Contributed photo

contributed to giving Mercyhurst one of its best years in the record book.

Shields said winning this championship had been his goal ever since his senior

Sister Sullivan keeps the ’Hurst singing
By JoEllen Marsh
Staff writer Over the course of 51 years, Sister Helen Jean Sullivan did a lot to keep music alive at Mercyhurst College. She began teaching voice, piano and organ at Mercyhurst in 1954 and stayed until her retirement in 2005. “I’ve been around music since I was about three. My parents would take me to church choir practice,” Sullivan said. She entered the Sisters of Mercy at Titusville on Sept. 8, 1947, made her first vows on June 21, 1950, and made her final vows in 1953. Sullivan left all her music at home, but found out quickly that music would still be a part of her new life. “We had a song fest the first night before we’d been received,” Sullivan said. “The community decided that because I’d had piano, I’d continue with music.” After studying for two years at Mercyhurst, she was sent to the New England Conservatory in Boston to earn her bachelor’s degree in voice. Sullivan was the Director of the Music Department until 1973, when Dr. Louis Menini, a native of Erie who retired from Eastman School of Music, took over the department. With the help of Sullivan, Menini convinced the college president Dr. William Garvey, to allow a preparatory school for young people to be created with a connection to the Music Department, a school now known as the Sullivan Conservatory. Sullivan stopped teaching at Mercyhurst to become director of the new conservatory, a position she kept until her retirement in 2005. “They said they wanted to name it the ‘Sister Helen Jean Sullivan Conservatory’ and I thought, ‘Oh my, it’ll take them the whole envelope to write the address,’ so I said ‘well, maybe the last name if that’s what you want,” Sullivan said. The Conservatory went through a rocky stage for several years after Sullivan left. Rebecca Ryan recently decided to take on the role of director. Ryan believes the conservatory is flourishing now. “I hope to continue [Sullivan’s] spirit of generosity and excellence,” Ryan said. “If I had one word to say for my life, it would be gratitude. I could never thank God enough for all the people He has brought into my life,” Sullivan said.

The Mercyhurst College Sullivan Conservatory of Music is named after Sister Helen Jean Sullivan, pictured above. She was the conservatory’s director until 2005.

Tyler Stauffer photo

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a better, more peaceful place,” freshman Rachel Brown, who attended the event said. For some, the immigrants’ rights rally was their first exposure to real, immediate activism. Being at the conference with hundreds of AI people and marching right next to AI Executive Director Larry Cox gave us so much inspiration and ideas for our club. Never have I heard as many depressing things and been so empowered at the same time. I talked to a Zimbabwean woman who had to choose between letting her children starve and being killed for leaving her house. A man who was an interrogation officer in Iraq spoke at the torture plenary. “You go in with a mind and a heart, and that’s all you need to have a successful interrogation,” he said. State Radio’s Chad Stokes played an awesome concert on Friday night. He played some new songs (Mr. Larkin, Calling All Crows), a few old Dispatch songs (Elias, The General), but they all had more meaning for me when I learned he wrote them to support things like prisoners of conscience in Zimbabwe and abolishing the death penalty. “Hey hey ho ho arbitrary detention has got to go” had a definite cheesiness factor (and way too many syllables), but all the people at the conference genuinely cared about the issues, whether they’d been fighting for human rights in Zimbabwe for 10 years or had just signed their first petition last week. “The whole weekend I never stopped learning,” Brown said. “I became more knowledgeable on the issues that already mattered to me and became passionate about new issues I had not previously been informed about.” I would love to meet more people at Mercyhurst who are passionate about turning the world into what it should be.

April 8, 2009

’Hurst students march among monks, soldiers
By JoEllen Marsh
Staff writer Que queremos? Justicia! Cuando? Ahora! This was the chant of over 300 Amnesty International (AI) members rallying for immigrants’ rights in Boston, Mass. the weekend of March 28-29. On Thursday night Campus Ministry’s Greg Baker, four girls and I loaded into a van for a weekend at the AI Annual General Meeting. On the first day, there was a rally at Boston City Hall for immigrants’ rights. Marching prominently in this crowd of people who ranged from student activists and hippies, to soldiers and monks was my group from Mercyhurst College’s local Amnesty International chapter. “It was truly inspiring to see hundreds of people together marching in solidarity for human rights, trying to make the world

Contributed photo

Rachel Brown chanted along with other Amnesty International members in support of immigrants’ rights.

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Mercyhurst students went to a rally for immigrants’ rights outside Boston City Hall during the AI Annual General Meeting.
Contributed photo

Call Jon Connole: Days: 814-899-7602 ext. 314 Evening: 814-866-5102 Cell: 814-881-2087

APRIL 8, 2009


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English Department to host Literary Festival
By Kyle King
A & E editor Inspired by the renowned reading series at the University of Notre Dame and wanting to bring such a tradition here, English Department Chair Dr. Jeffrey Roessner collaborated with Dr. Kenneth Schiff in 2003 to bring the Mercyhurst College Literary Festival to life. Kicking off the seventh annual festival celebrating contemporary literature is poet Sonia Sanchez, a pioneering black feminist who was a key figure in the Black Arts Movement, which created a distinctly black poetry to explore the African American experience. She will speak at Taylor Little Theatre on Thursday, Apr. 16, at 8:15 p.m. Sanchez has written more than 16 books, including “Homecoming,” “We a BaddDDD People,” “I’ve Been a Woman,” “Under a Soprano Sky,” “Like the Singing Coming off the Drums” and, most recently, “Shake Loose My Skin.” She has earned numerous awards, including the 1985 American Book Award for “Homegirls and Handgrenades” and the Langston Hughes Poetry Award in 1999. “Does Your House Have Lions?” was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle The capstone event of the Literary Festival is the unveiling of “Lumen,” which will take place in Taylor Little Theatre on Thursday, Apr. 30, at 8:15 p.m. Copies will be available during the event and will be available afterward from Schiff at his office in Preston 214. The entirely student-produced creative arts magazine will include an accompanying interactive CD for the fifth year incorporating student submissions in the fields of fiction, poetry, photography and artwork. Senior John Ladd is editorin-chief of the 2009 edition. Junior William Cundiff designed the print version and the Flash interactive CD, whose designs explore themes of light and luminescence playing off the magazine’s name. During the unveiling ceremony, awards and cash prizes will be presented during the reception to the top three works included in “Lumen.” In addition, the P. Barry McAndrew Award for the best essay in literature will be announced. Students will have the chance to read their work in front of an audience after the unveiling. “I think the Open Mic is one of the best parts of the program, because it gives students a chance to present their works in a public venue,” Schiff said.

Samuel Hazo was named the first State Poet of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1993, serving until 2003.

Sonia Sanchez is a poet, activist, professor and international lecturer on black culture and literature. She will speak at Taylor Little Theatre on Thursday, April 16, at 8:15 p.m. Her speech is presented in conjunction with Mercyhurst’s yearlong ‘Beyond the Dream’ lecture series.

Promotional photos courtesy of Ken Schiff

Award. Samuel Hazo will speak the following Thursday, Apr. 23, at 8:15 p.m. in the Taylor Little Theatre. Hazo is the founder and director of the International Poetry Forum. He is also McAnulty Distinguished Professor of English Emeritus at Duquesne University, where he taught for 43 years. He was the featured speaker at Mercyhurst’s first annual literary festival in 2003. Hazo was chosen the first State Poet of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1993 by Gover-

nor Robert Casey, a position he served in until 2003. Some of his recent books of poetry are “A Flight to Elsewhere” and “The Song of the Horse: Selected Poems, 19582008.” Among his other publications are the fiction works “Stills” and “This Part of the World;” the dramas “Feather,” “Mano a Mano” and “Watching Fire, Watching Rain;” the essay colections “The Power of Less: Essays on Poetry and Public Speech” and “Spying for God;” and the memoir “The Pittsburgh That Stays Within You.”

Hazo was a National Book Award finalist in poetry for his 1972 collection “Once for the Last Bandit.” “I think that these are two outstanding figures in the field of contemporary poetry and I think it’s important for the students to come and hear their voices, what they have to say,” Schiff, director of the English Department’s creative writing program, said. “In addition, there will also be a creative wriring workshop with Sonia Sanchez open to select students in the creative writing program,” Schiff said.

‘Happy-Go-Lucky’ Guelcher film focuses on upbeat teacher
By Kyle King
A & E editor As part of its Guelcher Film Series, the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center will screen of the 2008 English comedy “Happy-Go-Lucky.” “Happy-Go-Lucky” centers on the character of Poppy, a cheery, colorful, 30-year-old London schoolteacher whose optimism tends to exasperate those around her. Poppy is played by Brit Sally Hawkins, who took home the 2009 Peter Sellers Award for Comedy at the Evening Standard British Film Awards and a nomination for Best Actress at the British Independent Film Awards for her role. The film is a slice-of-life exploration honing in on scenes in school; with her flatmate Zoe, a long-time friend; her two sisters, though she is only close with one; driving lessons with a grumpy instructor; flamenco dance classes with a Spaniard; and conversations with a social worker about a student’s aggressive behavior. The film examines the root of Poppy’s happiness and questions whether her buoyant behavior leaves her susceptible to personal harm. “Happy-Go-Lucky” will be shown at the PAC on Wednesday, Apr. 8, at 2:15 and 8 p.m. Tickets are $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and students, $3 for President’s Card holders and free for students with Mercyhurst ID. The Guelcher Film Series selection for Wednesday, Apr. 15, is the Swedish vampire film “Let the Right One In.”

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first single charted in 14 countries, including Japan, Ireland and the Netherlands. Her first two singles hit top ten status on the UK Singles chart. Alesha is joining Enrique Iglesias on his upcoming world tour. B is for Backseat Goodbye & The Beat Poets. Backseat Goodbye is the solo project of Chad Sugg, a 22-yearold from Murfreesboro, Tenn. Since starting Backseat Goodbye in 2004, Sugg has played with The Format, Hellogoodbye and Third Eye Blind. Backseat Goodbye also played a showcase at this year’s SXSW (South By Southwest) music festival. BG’s songs are simple and catchy, with an overall goal to make the listener happy. The Beat Poets are the next big thing to come out of Ireland. They have been compared to U2 and Snow Patrol, and have shared the stage with Sonic Youth and The Chemical Brothers. Needless to say, for a band that self-released their album, The Beat Poets are in very good company. Their highly anticipated single, “Staring Stars Down,” is now available on iTunes. C is for Cavashawn & Clayton Senne. Cavashawn is made up of a group of friends who have been playing music together since high school. They describe their sound as a blend of early Maroon 5 (think Kara’s Flowers) and Jack’s Mannequin. Over five years and 800 shows later, Cavashawn is making a name for themselves with their debut EP. They have opened for such diverse acts as OneRepublic, Jon McLaughlin, Jason Mraz and Better Than Ezra. Their self-titled EP is available on iTunes now. Clayton Senne grew up in a musical family in Kansas, so it was no surprise to his parents when he decided to become a songwriter. He has been playing piano since kindergarten and wrote his first song when he was 18. Five years later, Senne is now living in Orlando, Fla., and touring across the country with artists like Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers and Vertical Horizon. His debut EP, entitled “Wonderland,” is available to purchase online. D is for Daylights & Damnwells. The Daylights formed in 2004 in Los Angeles, Cal. The band is made up of brothers Ricky and Ran Jackson and Svend Lerche. The Daylights have released two EPs to date, including 2008’s “Sans Radio,” and are currently recording their debut full-length album. They cite Led Zeppelin and Radiohead among their influences and have toured with the likes of OneRepublic. The Damnwells formed in 2001 with a base of alt-country and alternative pop/rock sound emanating from all of the members, especially singer Alex Dezen. The band was signed to Epic Records in 2003 and released their debut album. They were dropped by Epic in 2005, and after a lackluster sophomore album release in 2006, the original core disbanded. In 2008, Dezen joined forces with Andrew Ratcliffe, Adrian Dickey and Freddy Wall and released a free digital download of their new album, “One Last Century,” through Paste Magazine. E is for Escape Frame & Eliot Morris. The Escape Frame was founded by Dustin Phillips and Chris Harvey in 2005. They recorded their debut album in 2007, and released it on Immortal Records, gaining exposure and a following. Later that year, they spent five weeks recording a sophomore effort, but decided to sign on to the End Sounds label, postponing the release. The Escape Frame’s second album was finally released to concertgoers at the 2008 Vans

April 8, 2009

Learn the ABC’s of unknown musical artists
By Casey Harvilla
Staff writer Finding 26 bands in different genres from A to Z is a feat for anyone. I decided to go a little further, offering you 52 unsigned and/or unknown bands and artists, all of whom are currently recording or touring. I hope you enjoy learning (and hopefully listening to) a new and more interesting alphabet: The ABC’s of Unknown Artists. This week will feature letters A-E. A is for And Then There Were None & Alesha. And Then There Were None (ATTWN) was formed in 2003 by a group of five friends. They are signed to Tooth & Nail Records, a company which they say helps them spread their music and their message. ATTWN’s sound is best described as new wave punk with an overlay of euro-dance beats and lyrics promoting positive social action. Warped Tour. Eliot Morris was not always into the whole “music thing.” In fact, Morris did not even pick up a guitar until high school, when he started playing and writing as an emotional release. Although his sound and writing style has been compared to those of John Mayer and Gavin DeGraw, Morris said he would rather write about the deeper things in life than relationships.

Eliot Morris has toured with the likes of John Mayer and Gavin DeGraw.

The Damnwells “Tonight and Forever”
This melodious ode’s smooth rhythm and reassuring lyrics leave one thinking of a simple time with a loved one: “I’m calling you to say / That I’m going to be / Anywhere you want / Tonight and forever.” Though they resemble Kerouac and Ginsberg in no discernible way, shape or form, The Beat Poets do have a sound reminiscent of The Strokes or The Libertines.

The Beat Poets

“Staring Stars Down”

And Then There Were None’s CD, “Who Speaks for Planet Earth,” is in stores now.

Cavashawn “Out of My Mind”

Alesha Dixon, a former member of the now defunct girl group Mis-Teeq, is a British singer with a lot to say. Her second solo album, “The Alesha Show,” was released in the UK last November. Her

The comparisons with an early, rawer Maroon 5 are apt, especially in spiralling lyrics like this: “I stop and I think about / The life that I could live without / Watching another, follow the other / Blind faith, that’s the way it is.”

April 8, 2009


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PAC welcomes The Jazz Mandolin Project
By Hazel Jennings
Staff writer The Jazz Mandolin Project, a unique and multi-media production focused on environmental issues, will come to the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center as part of the “PAC Series” on Wednesday, Apr. 22, at 8 p.m. James Joyce once said the short story “How Much Land Does a Man Need” by Tolstoy is the greatest tale the world of literature has ever known. The Jazz Mandolin Project decided to build an entire production from it. Tolstoy’s plot follows a man urged by the Devil to acquire so much land that he dies of exhaustion in a land very distant from his home. Though it was written 120 years ago in Russia, the themes remain pertinent. So the Jazz Mandolin Project pairs music with video montages of American lifestyles and landscapes to shoot the message to the contemporary audience. The developing experiment has been forming and improving since its first debut in 1993 on the coffeehouse circuit in only a performance enhancer, but a storyteller. Though they use their many media to give a particular message, they are by no means a musical. One juxtaposition of their performance, however, is more familiar; these musicians are masters of mixing composed and improvised music. The Jazz Mandolin Project holds a jam band status ensuring they never give the same show twice. The Jazz Mandolin Project cannot be classified, much like their audience. Performing at independent venues, colleges, famous music festivals and everywhere in between, the music and production has been well-received from all age levels, political viewpoints and music preferences. They are sure to shock as much as they impress and turn each audience member’s perceptions of the world and boundaries of music, performance, literature and message around or at least raise them up for reevaluation. Tickets are $20 for adults, $17.50 for seniors, students and President’s Cardholders, $12.50 for youth and $10 for Mercyhurst students.

The Jazz Mandolin Project, which bases its production on the Leo Tolstoy short story “How Much Land Does a Man Need,” is coming to the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center as part of the ‘PAC Series’ on Wednesday, April 22, at 8 p.m.

Vermont. Now an internationally touring production and frontrunner in the realm of multi-media performance, The Jazz Mandolin Project pushes the boundaries of literature, sound, instrument, video and the way all of these parts can come together. Experts in their field, the group has recorded six albums to critical acclaim. The Project are comprised of leader Jamie Masefield, Grammy-winning pianist and

accordion player Gil Goldstein and upright bassist Greg Cohen, who can claim Tom Waits as a former performance partner. Music critic Philip Booth proclaimed that The Jazz Mandolin Project “may constitute the world’s most creative and most unusual power trio. AcousticElectric funk…Celtic Folk… Quiet balladry…What creative, improvisation-minded musician wouldn’t want to spend time at play in the fields of these ambitious, unclassifiable composi-

tions?” Audience members are also flocking to their fields, as they perform in acclaimed and diverse venues like the Bonnaroo Music Festival. The musicians, music, message and main stage production are completely impossible to categorize as they put a traditional folk instrument, the mandolin, into a new age of jazz, put classic Russian literature in a music show and use rough hand-cam video footage as not

Opera ‘Don Giovanni’ stars local talent, ’Hurst students
By Kyle King
A & E editor The Mercyhurst College Music Department, led by Louisa Jonason, a former international opera star who has been directing operas at Mercyhurst since 1992, in conjunction with the After-Dinner Opera Company, staged the opera “Don Giovanni” last Friday night and Sunday afternoon. Dennis TeCulver, starred as the title character, a charismatic womanizer whose list of conquests comprises nearly 2,000 women spanning most of continental Europe and the British Isles. Featured as his love interests were Rebecka Bani Kerr, who played Anna; Danielle Wright, who played Zerlina; and adjunct faculty member Lydia Howery, who played Elvira. Receiving some of the most applause of the evening was Don Giovanni’s sidekick, Leperello, played by Erie’s Eric Marshall. “My favorite character was Leperello,” junior Mary Spinelli said. “He brings a lot of comic relief to an otherwise dramatic opera. We want to root for him because of his glimmers of morality, and it’s so rewarding that he survives through the end of the opera,” Spinelli said. “My favorite scene was Don Giovanni’s death. I thought the lighting and the dry ice gave a great illusion of his freezing to death rather than burning in Hell, which is how it usually ends,” Spinelli said. In addition to singing roles, three Mercyhurst dancers, freshman Isabel Milkovich, sophomore Bridget Toms and freshman Kelly Clymer, starred as The Fates, who oversaw the opera’s action and pass judgment on the characters. “I thought the production was very riveting for never having seen an opera before,” junior Zoey Alderman-Tuttle said. Furthermore, a number of Mercyhurst students served as pit musicians, led by Stephen Colantti and assisted by strings professor Dr. Samuel Rotberg. The opera will travel to Honduras to perform two concerts with the Honduras State Orchestra this summer.

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The views expressed in the opinion section of The Merciad do not necessarily reflect the views of Mercyhurst College, the staff of The Merciad or the Catholic Church. Responses on any subject are always welcomed and can be e-mailed to


APRIL 8, 2009 September 3, 2008

Horrific killing leads to discussion of death penalty
How putting a criminal on death row could be an easy way out
By Hayley O’Hare
Staff writer By now I am sure you have heard about the tragic events that took place in Pittsburgh on Saturday, April 4. Three police officers were shot and killed after answering a domestic dispute call from a woman in an argument with her son. Richard “Pop” Poplawski, 23, shot the three officers. They were led into the house by his mother with an AK-47 assaultstyle rifle. Poplawski attended the same high school as me, and although I didn’t know him as more than a face and a name, this information was even more shocking to me. The news coverage surrounding the tragedy has been littered with other faces and names I recognize, bringing it even closer to home. I have been listening to and reading everything I can about what happened early that morning, and many issues arise. What was going through his mind? Why did he have so many weapons and ammunition? Why did his mother tell police there were no weapons in the house? Could this have been avoided? What should his punishment be? It has been reported Poplawski had strong beliefs about the state of the economy and President Obama’s views on instating a ban on guns. He vehemently believed in his right to bear arms. It is alarming to know a young man with two ‘protection from abuse’ orders against him, a dishonorable discharge from the Marine Corps and fearful neighbors, was in his mother’s words, “stockpiling guns and ammunition, buying and selling the weapons online.” Many are arguing whether Poplawski should be given the death penalty, although the state of Pennsylvania has not executed a prisoner in years. Due to the events that took place this weekend and the suspect previously mentioning he was going to kill himself, leaves me with one thought. If this person was considering suicide, and took the lives of three people, he should be given life in prison and not the death penalty. In my opinion, to give a person the death penalty is an easy way out for them. I understand that out of anger and sadness some people may want to see a murderer given the death penalty. However, if killing another person is wrong then how can you justify ending another life, even if they are a criminal. The heartbreaking deaths of the three police officers will not be reversed if Poplawski is dead. It is my hope for the future, no matter how long it may take, he will realize the implications of his actions, get help with his own disturbing ssues and live a long life tortured by the guilt of what he has done.

Obama failing to live up to high Visitation restrictions expectations of country in need leave students irritated
By Amanda Valauri
News Editor We are into day 79 of the first 100 days of the Obama administration. So far, Obama (also more fondly known in my townhouse as “Giggles,” coined by Michael Savage) has a cabinet made up of criminals and lobbyists that don’t pay their taxes, he has a stimulus bill with millions of dollars in wasteful spending and a horrible derogatory comment toward the mentally handicapped. For an amazing orator, he is not good on the fly. At least when Bush made up words, it was only insulting to his own intelligence. He has been seen at some of Washington D.C.’s most expensive, upscale restaurants about three times a week dining with his wife. His inexperience is showing, and he thinks he is on vacation. I will say his trip abroad is having a positive impact for our international public relations (minus the embarrassing so far in the red, closing your eyes and signing a stimulus package because it was “needed immediately” was a huge waste of money we don’t have. What needed to happen was a carefully analyzed plan. We have seen one good day on the Dow since the package and other than that there has been no change. This recession will be his legacy if the economy remains this way while he is in office. He also needs to stop saving companies and let them get what they deserve. He is setting a precedent for more and more CEOs to get away with crimes with the continuous government bailouts. Obama needs to put down the bowling ball, the fancy, knife and log some serious hours fixing his fiscal policy. Get your butt back here and start figuring out how to help the millions of your fellow Americans who need you.

By Kelly Luoma
Staff writer

The recession will be his legacy if the economy remains this way while he is in office.

multiple snubs to the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his family) but, other than the warm-fuzzies, we have yet to see any actual policy change. I struggle to think of a good thing he has done within the borders of our country yet. Within the first 100 days he’s already broken promises as to be expected by any president, but when our national debt is

Amanda Valauri

It was a Friday night. My homework was finished but I couldn’t go out because I don’t have a car on campus. I’m under 21, so the Cornerstone wasn’t an option. My first thought was to go to my boyfriend’s room in McAuley Hall to play video games. I have become quite addicted to Grand Theft Auto. This, of course, was not an option, because visitation is banned in McAuley due to residents damaging property. Of course, it is not all of the residents who behaved in this manner but, all of them are being punished. If I lived in McAuley, I would be outraged. For the amount of money we pay to live here, it is not right that we should also have

to “pay” for problems that others cause. I do not think it is fair for everyone in McAuley to be disciplined, because a few people behaved poorly. I am affected by this, and I don’t even live there. The administration at Mercyhurst College has a very misguided interpretation of what fair is. I expected to have more freedom at college. I am away from my parents for the first time, but I have found that I am granted many more privileges and freedoms at home. We are adults. Here, I expected to be treated as such. I quickly found out the school does not believe its students are able to make good decisions, so they think we need to be treated as children. I am surprised we are not given a curfew and told what time to go to bed.

April 8, 2009

gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million “educated” people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th century because of gun control: 56 million. Now consider Switzerland, the most heavily armed citizenry on the planet where there are roughly three million privately owned firearms, 1 million being Sig 550-type assault rifles. This is in a nation of only 7 million people. It has one of the lowest crime rates on the planet and near zero gun crimes. Then consider Australia and the U.K. whose authoritarian governments are banning personal gun ownership and thereby a right out of existence. In the first year after the ban, Australia’s homicide rate went up 3.2 percent, assaults went up 8.6 percent and armed robberies went up 44 percent. In Victoria alone, homicides with firearms went up 300 percent. You won’t see this data on the U.S. evening news or hear politicians disseminating this

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Taking lessons of past into future of gun control
By Thomas Kubica
Contributing writer Over 200 years ago, when the revolutionary generation and the Founding Fathers drafted the Second Amendment, no one questioned the need for private gun ownership. The framers considered private firearms to be essential to protecting personal liberty as a means of opposing foreign threats and as a check against excessive government power. The framers were passionately devoted to the idea that a selfsufficient, armed citizenry was the best means of preserving liberty. When it comes to freedom, we cannot afford to forget the lessons of the past. The history of gun control teaches us there is a terrible price to pay when we lose our right to keep and bear arms, and the government has a monopoly on weapons. In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. In 1911, Turkey established information since all corporate news in this country is idiotic and rarely gets to the truth of matters. Guns in the hands of honest citizens save lives and property and yes, gun-control laws adversely affect only the law-abiding citizens. If officials want to challenge the Second Amendment, they should do it by proper debate and by amending the Constitution. They shouldn’t be waiting until their party is in power, circumventing the Constitution and then trying to ram unconstitutional fascist, rightsstealing legislation down our throats. The history of government is one of usurpation of people into slavery. Examine the Declaration of Independence and understand, “the people” declared themselves independent of government, never to be told again they are not to have the means to insure their freedom. When people are disarmed, their slavery is guaranteed by government, it’s just a matter of time. With guns we are citizens, without them we are subjects.

Stock.Xchng image

Human skulls from the killing fields of Cambodia

gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated. China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents,

unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated. Cambodia established

Technology provokes distraction for impolite audiences
Glowing cell phone screens disappoint performers on their big night
By Alexandra Stacy
Contributing writer As a performer, I have had many encounters with audiences. Whether I am sitting in the audience watching or watching them from where I am on stage; one thing I have noticed is people in our society today don’t know how to be a polite audience member. People are texting, getting up and leaving and generally lounging in their seats. That kind of behavior is not only rude, but very distracting to the performer. I was a part of the opera, Don Giovanni this weekend held in the PAC and I can’t tell you how many glowing faces I saw from people using their cell phones. It just isn’t OK

to watching what is going on onstage. One thing I have I understand sometimes you aren’t thrilled to be sitnoticed is people in ting at an opera or a conour society today cert, but just be polite, for the performers’ sake. don’t know how to When a performer comes be a polite audience out onto the stage and sees member. people sitting in the audiAlexandra Stacy ence, it is a rush. That is their goal: to get People need to learn how to people to watch them. sit and devote an hour or two

But when you see the glow of a cell phone on someone’s face or you see people getting up when it isn’t quite appropriate, it really makes you feel second rate. All I ask is for people please turn off their phones and sit quietly. Watch and appreciate what performers have spent so long preparing for their audience.

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false myths of empire, we only deceive ourselves. Presuming restored hope through the unholy medium of President Obama, people willingly and often with smug smiles surrender their freedoms to the authority of government they falsely believe will do more good. All this happens while we ignore and tread on the Global South, the Non-Aligned Movement of over 116 members, 55 percent of the worlds population. This ignored element of the global family is disregarded, because they are the people exploited, killed, starved and

raped in order to expand the empire propagated by the Council on Foreign Relations, Bilderberg and the Trilateral Commission, which have help build presidential cabinets for 30 years, including now. The last 30 years under this cohesive, tyrannical, power control have seen both great improvements and drastic deteriorations. The paradox identified with progress are great strides in technology with the Internet, iPods, cell phones, and GPS while real communications and just relations have deteriorated with rates in depression, divorce, environmental degradation, disenfranchisement and dehumanization increasing at an rapid speed. We can learn to appreciate reality, each sacred moment and our own perceptions as we realize people wrote the myths, perpetuated alienation and control the system. A wise Charlton Heston, while acting, once said, “Soylent Green is People” referring to the corporation-approved and manufactured food. Fortunately for us, HR 875 has not yet been passed and we still have the opportunity to eat real, organic food, not made

April 8, 2009
from cloned animals or people. Now our metonyms for people are citizens, tax payers, consumers, objects, commodities, celebrities, politicians, bureaucrats, kids, one-worlders, democrats, fascists, adults, students and professors. We need to drop these replacement dividers, these false constructions. People are people, nothing more nothing less. People enjoy the potential to be good or evil and an element of the divine, but most importantly people need people, because people are ideas and myths, the metonyms we forget.

Columnist against G-20 conference on economy
By Jerrod Markle Staff writer
A group of people, the G-20, met last week to solve the “global economic crisis” by implementing policies consistent with the institutionalized ideas of the European Union, the IMF and Central Bankers. This meeting of the minds may have been soothing for many people, desperately clinging to faith in the hierarchal ordered global reality, but by remaining unaware the perception is distorted by the

Applying ‘stranger danger’ to downtown Erie night life
By Jordan Zangaro Staff writer
This past Thursday night, one of my roommates dropped a few of us off downtown for a night out. We got out of the car and a man approached us crying and upset. He said he was just released from the hospital after being brutally attacked. His hand was wrapped and a contusion covered a portion of his head. He only had half the money he needed for a bus ticket home. While all of the chaos was going on, another man approached us and told us how he was going to file a lawsuit against a gas station around the corner. While the second man was telling us his story, I was looking at the injured man deciding how much money I was going to give him. I could tell two of the girls standing next to me were uncomfortable and nervous. We expressed our concern for what the second man had told us, and then I walked past the first man and gave him some money in hopes it would help him make it home. One of the other girls did the same. Right after I put my wallet away, my roommate glared at me, shook her head and said, “He is lying. He is on drugs and most likely preys on young girls to give him money.” As I walked away, the young man yelled, “God Bless.” I just let it go and said to my roommate, “Oh well. No big deal.” She laughed and made a joke, hoping he was not God testing her, and she just failed big time. Later on, we found out the men were there last week, too. It was not until the next morning I started thinking about the whole situation again. Am I too naïve? Did those men see me coming and think they could get money from me with ease? Was giving him the money a huge mistake? Was I in danger last night? The bottom line is my initial reaction was right. No matter what the answers are to those questions in my head, the money was not a big deal. I was taught to help those when I can. However, while I am not upset at the loss of money, I am worried about the potential danger I could have been in. I realize writing a stranger danger article would be a waste of time. But, I am one of the most paranoid people in the world and when I was in the actual situation it never even crossed my mind. Realistically, a call to the police should have been my first instinct. Heed my warning because these men might still be out there roaming the street looking for naïve people. I hope my initial thoughts were true, and I hope my money helped the man get home. But, if I am wrong and for some reason the con-artist is reading this article… you owe me money.

If you don’t want it printed . . . don’t let it happen.
Positions Editors Editor-in-Chief Casey Greene editormerciad Managing Editor JoEllen Marsh mgeditormerciad News Editor Amanda Valauri newsmerciad Features Editor Javi Cubillos featuremerciad Opinion Editor Heather Donovan opinionmerciad Sports Editor Brad Moehringer sportsmerciad Sports Editor Sam Sellinger sportsmerciad A&E Kyle King entertainmentmerciad Photographer Scoot Williams photomerciad Photographer Tyler Stauffer photomerciad Caitlin Bly Advertising Manager admerciad Gretchen Yori Copy Editor copymerciad Ashley Pastor General Assignment apasto22 Bill Welch Adviser wwelch Brian Sheridan Adviser bsheridan

The Merciad is the official student-produced newspaper of Mercyhurst College. It is published throughout the school year, with the exception Of finals weeks. Our office is in Hirt, Room 120B. Our telephone number is (814) 824-2376. The Merciad welcomes letters to the editor. All letters must be signed and names will be included with the letters. Although we will not edit the letters for content, we reserve the right to trim letters to fit. Letters are due Mondays. by noon and may not be more than 300 words. Submit letters to box PH 485 or via e-mail at

April 8, 2009

of my ethos and the focal point by which my worldview is oriented. Anyone who knows me well could tell you that I am a passionate, devoted follower of Jesus Christ. I believe that no part of my life is more valuable than my relationship with Christ. You may be thinking, “Great, another proselytizing religious fanatic.” Believe me, I understand. Just by putting the words “passionate” and “Jesus Christ” together, I have already evoked all kinds of terrifying associations. Televangelists with wild eyes and weird haircuts asking you for money. Hypocrisy, scandal and intolerance. Not to mention the crusades and the current army of cultural fundamentalists who would rather stamp their feet and shout about why everyone else is wrong than offer any beneficial answer to society’s troubles. I concede that the Christian religion has not always run the greatest public relations campaign over the past 2,000 years. Frankly, having to navigate my way around these preconceptions can be difficult and embarrassing. But this is where my views on faith take a radically different turn. It seems to me we always want to imagine the Christian faith within the context of a highly organized, structured and dogmatic institution. But what if faith, at its deepest level, was something personal? What if God exists entirely outside of what other people say or do about him? I believe my own desire to know my creator transcends any attempt to narrow him down to a political statement or a cultural crusade. As I see him in scripture and as I have perceived his hand at work in my own life, I see vaguely, but with ever increasing clarity, the one who I call God is worthy of my whole-hearted devotion. His love has set me free, and his grace and kindness give me a reason to live. “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full,” (John 10:10). This promise of life is what gets me out of bed in the morning, and as I seek him day by day, I see this promise fulfilled in everything I put my hands to. I look to Christ because I find that he is the only answer that makes sense; that he offers relevant faith for an incredulous generation; that in his hands there is healing for a broken world. Ray Horton is a junior majoring in English. His plans include, “going to graduate school to pursue my M.A. in English. After that, I will either study to enter full time ministry, or I will continue in graduate school to pursue my Ph.D in English, in order to teach at the college level.” His favorite aspect about Mercyhurst College: “I love the strong sense of community the campus environment affords its students. It’s very easy to get involved, interact and make a difference in your own area of interest while forging close friendships and rewarding acquaintances along the way.”

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Reflecting on complete devotion to faith

Writing about belief is tricky, because it is so personal. How could I attempt to unravel the strands that weave the fabric of my life, turn them into words and expect to duplicate them with the same fervor and conviction with which they grip my own heart? But however feeble the product, the attempt must be made. I am motivated and inspired by a number of ideas, causes and interests all worthy of discussion. But as I seek to cut to the heart of the matter, I immediately return to the centrality of my faith. This faith is the main pillar

Students who have forged through 40 days and 40 nights may breathe easy come Easter Sunday. The Lenten season has come to an end, so pick up those chocolate bars and let out those swear words.

‘Frank and Cam’ did a number on the car on the top of Lewis Ave. Finding your car covered in Saran wrap and feminine hygiene products can’t be a good start to your morning.

Uncertain future stresses soon-to-be graduates
By Caitlin Bly
Advertising Manager The future is always a matter of uncertainty, but with the economy in the state it is right now, college graduates face the greatest challenge among Americans everywhere, finding a job. Like fellow seniors on the verge of graduation, my future is unclear and the stress of not finding my dream job is beginning to take its toll. Come May 24, 2009, I will most likely be unemployed like the rest of them. In today’s society, a bachelor’s degree is equivalent to a high school diploma. Basically, we have spent the past four years pulling all-night study sessions, barely making project deadlines and writing ridiculously long essays, so when I am up against a high school grad for a position with a company, he or she can slide into home without even blinking an eye. How fair is that? Businesses and companies are downsizing. This is the reality we have to face. College graduates need to prepare themselves for mediocre jobs until the economy gets its feet back on the ground and can afford to have us on their team. I hear McDonald’s is hiring. Why not put that English major to good use flipping burgers down the street? I think I speak for the seniors when I say; I want to get out into the world and see what it has to offer. I am sick of being a poor college student and working a part-time job to pay my bills. I want to make some real cash. I want a grown-up job and to run away from my minimumwage sales position at Victoria’s Secret and never look back. There are the ever-dreading student loans looming over our heads, and we are all looking forward to paying off for the next thirty years. I postponed my search for a potential job. Instead, I am looking at graduate schools as an option, because I do not want to wear one of those silly visors the workers at McDonald’s have to wear. My ears just aren’t cut out for that kind of hat. A lot of college graduates are looking at other schooling options like me, because there is nowhere else to turn right now. The hopes for the future are big with the new president in the house, but until we see some change, college graduates better have a Plan B come the day after graduation.

The staff of The Merciad discovered how gullible a majority of our fellow classmates are as student after student fell for the McDonald’s April Fool’s joke. P.S. Dr. Gamble was duped too.
Please e-mail any suggestions to The GB&U is a compilation of student opinions.

Perfection ends against Gannon
By Katie Waldin
Staff writer This past week the Mercyhurst College Lakers were bumped up to the No. 3 seat for the Division II Women’s Lacrosse rankings nationwide. With an undefeated season so far, the Lakers could not be too surprised at the move up within the ranks. Despite the boost in overall national ranking, when the pressure crept up over the weekend against cross-town Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference rivals Gannon University, the Laker perfect record slipped away. Earlier in the week the Lakers trampled over Seton Hill 20-3 in another great success, moving their record to 9-0-0. With nine different players contributing to the goals against Seton Hill, the Lakers are abundant with talent and are playing well together. The 13-8 loss against the Knights came as a shock to many fans with Mercyhurst being ranked No. 3 and Gannon ranked at No. 6 in the country. “We were all pretty disappointed after the Gannon loss, but it was a reality check and made us realize that we are now one of the teams that everyone is going to want to beat because we are at the top.” said Sophomore Kim Masterton. With an 8-4 advantage at halftime, Gannon’s defense kept the

Baseball........................................................Mar. 31, W 7-4, Wheeling Mar. 31, L 7-5, Wheeling Apr. 4, W 6-0, Lake Erie Apr. 4, W 8-5, Lake Erie Apr. 5, W 18-0, Lake Erie Apr. 5, W 10-5, Lake Erie Softball........................................................Mar. 31, W 10-1, Edinboro Mar. 31, W 5-4, Edinboro Apr. 5, L 9-1, Slippery Rock Apr. 5, W 10-0, Slippery Rock Men’s Lacrosse..........................................Apr. 1, W 14-8, Seton Hill Apr. 4, W 16-4, Dominican Apr. 5, W 20-4, Grand Canyon Women’s Lacrosse....................................Apr. 1, W 20-3, Seton Hill Apr. 5, L 13-8, Gannon Women’s Water Polo......................................Apr. 4, L 11-7, Indiana Apr. 4, W 10-4, Gannon Both the men’s and women’s hockey teams were honored by Erie City Council members for their successful seasons on April 1 at the Municipal Building in downtown Erie. Women’s coach Mike Sisti and men’s coach Rick Gotkin were presented with certificates to honor their seasons and deep runs into the playoffs. The men’s team finished with an overall record of 22-15-3 before bowing out to Air Force in the Atlantic Hockey Association Championship Game. The women recorded their first ever 30-win season and made it to their first ever Frozen Four and National Championship game before being defeated by the University of Wisconsin. They finished with an overall record of 31-6-0.

Mercyhurst hockey teams honored by Erie

Lakers out of their half of the field pushing back towards the Lakers goal. “We lost not because they were the better team, but solely on the fact that things just weren’t clicking for us.” said senior Katy Miller. With the loss behind the Lakers, the women are reevaluating their style of play and figuring out together what can get them back on their winning track. “Saturday was a huge mental game for us. Unfortunately we did not show up 100% on Saturday and we didn’t get the outcome that we wanted. Regardless of the games outcome, we win and lose as a team and we pride ourselves on that.” said senior Elizabeth

Senior Beth Neil goes on the attack in a loss against Gannon University 13-8.

Scoot Williams photo

Wagner. Senior Breanna Haggerty commented on the game, “I think our loss to Gannon was a reality check for us. We definitely didn’t play our game and that hurt us. It’s a tough thing to beat a team twice, especially when they are your rival.” said Haggerty. “We lost to Gannon this time, but were glad it happened now rather than in our post season. Not being undefeated anymore takes a little pressure off us as a team and it’s easier to go into a tournament with a loss or two under your belt.” said Haggerty. As the Lakers move forward towards the national tournament, they must take the season game by game and look to beat Slippery Rock this week.

Michelle Schmitz-Softball

Mercyhurst College sophomore Michelle Schmitz was named Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference West Softball Athlete of the Week. Schmitz batted .583 for the week and accumulated a .917 slugging percentage, one double, one home run and seven RBIs for the week.

Steve Grife-Baseball

Mercyhurst College junior pitcher Steve Grife was named Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Western Division Pitcher of the Week. Grife threw his first no-hitter as a Laker in a 6-0 victory by the Lakers over Lake Erie College. Grife has complied a 4-1 record with a 2.95 ERA on the year.

April 8, 2009


Page 17

Lakers win despite weather Rowing kicks off
Softball splits series with The Rock in rain-soaked week
By Sarah Powell
Staff writer see the bats light up and score 10 runs in the second game,” Schmitz said. “Of course the Gannon game is huge, so the anticipation for the game is huge and despite the delays, the team can’t wait to take it to them on Thursday,” added Schmitz. The Slippery Rock game showed everyone the Lakers are a great team when they play hard and work together. After losing 9-1 in 5 innings, the Lakers turned it around to win 10-0 in five innings. Schmitz and freshman Emily Redig each homered in the first inning of the second game and gave Mercyhurst the boost they needed. The Lakers’ record now stands at 13-14. Mercyhurst has an intense schedule this week. Today, they will be traveling to Clarion University of Pennsylvania for a 3 p.m. game. Thursday, the Lakers will travel cross-town to take on Gannon. Friday, the Lakers will have their second meeting with California University of Pennsylvania. In the first meeting between the two teams, Mercyhurst went 0-2, losing the first game 0-8 in five innings, then 0-2 in the second game. The final doubleheader of the week will be played against West Chester University on Saturday. Three out of the five doubleheader games will be played at Mercyhurst. Currently in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Western Division, the Lakers are ranked No. 3. California (Pa.) is leading the division with a perfect record, followed by Slippery Rock with a record of 3-3, Mercyhurst with a record of 3-3, Edinboro is at 2-4 in the conference and Gannon rounds out the poll at 0-4. Only two of the five doubleheader games Mercyhurst has this week are PSAC West conference games, but it is important for the Lakers to improve their record to continue on to their goal toward a bid in the conference tournament at the end of April.

season in New Jersey
By Anne Sobol
Staff writer Mercyhurst’s rowing teams will kick off their 2009 spring season this weekend at the Knecht Cup in Camden, N.J. Coming off a fifth place finish at the 2008 NCAA National Championships, the women are heading into the weekend with a No. 4 spot according to the U.S. Rowing/Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association polls released on March 25, ahead of their nemesis Dowling College. Western Washington won gold for the fourth consecutive year and is currently ranked No. 1, while U.C. San Diego is sitting at the three spot after their second finish as runner-up in as many years. Dowling and Philadelphia took 3rd and 4th place at the championship respectively. While Dowling began the month of March ranked at No. 2, they have since dropped from the polls. Instead, that spot was taken by Philadelphia University who will also compete this weekend. The Lady Lakers will face off in the Club Eight event with Philadelphia, Dowling, Lafayette, Penn State and Barry University, which is hanging onto the 5th and final spot in the polls. Last year, the women took third in this event behind Dowling and Philadelphia and just ahead of Lafayette by one second, so this match-up will definitely be a nail-biter. The women’s second boat to compete will be a four, which is also sure to be a highly adrenalized race. As for the men, they have entered five boats in four races. These include A and B boats for the varsity pair race, a freshman four, and a four in each of the varsity and lightweight events, both of which they swept with gold at last year’s Cup. They are expected to make a strong showing for themselves as usual.

Heavy rains last week caused some problems for the Mercyhurst college women’s softball team. Thursday’s game against Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania was postponed until Sunday and Saturday’s game against Gannon University is postponed until tomorrow Apr. 9. Having two big games postponed in one weekend can put a damper on a team, especially when one of those games is against cross-town rival Gannon. “After two days of games being delayed we had a rough game coming up against Slippery Rock. I was very proud of the team coming out the second game and fighting back for a huge win against The Rock.” sophomore Michelle Schmitz said. “After only scoring one run in the first game, it was nice to

Page 20:
Junior Steve Grife (14) delivers a pitch in Grife’s no-hit performance in a 6-0 victory over Lake Erie College at Mercyhurst Collge on Apr. 4.

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Sophomore Michelle Schmitz homered and drove in four runs against Slippery Rock University on Thursday.
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By Gary Coad
Staff writer

April 8, 2009

Laker’s offense heats up
Men’s lacrosse continued its winning ways this past week with three victories. Roll might not be the best way to put it, perhaps steam rolled would be more appropriate as the Lakers outscored their opponents by a total of 50-16 during the week. The first game was against Seton Hill University and this proved to be the biggest test for the Lakers. A red hot start gave the Lakers a 6-0 score to work with and they never looked back. The final score was 14-8 as sophomore Cameron McLean and junior Tyler Burton combined for nine goals in the game. Junior Michael Sciulli did his best to facilitate the offense dishing out four assists. Seton Hill came into the game ranked ninth but was no match for the fifth ranked Lakers. Cameron McLean followed his big game against Seton Hill with a career day against Dominican College as he posted seven goals. Lead by McLean, who singlehandedly outscored the opposition, the Lakers cruised to a 164 win to improve to 8-1 on the season. Using a goaltender-by-committee system the Lakers limited Dominican to only four goals, three of which were when the Lakers were in a man-down situation. Also contributing to the victory was Senior Mike Bartlett, who added two goals and three assists. Next for the Lakers was the Grand Canyon University. Grand Canyon’s defense had Grand Canyon-sized holes as the Lakers won 20-4. Twelve players added goals in the blowout and it was a great showing for the whole team. The Lakers now have a short break before continuing their season on April 11. They currently sit at No. 5 in the polls with a at 9-1 overall and 3-0 in the conference for the season.

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Josh Sheilds wrestled all the way to a national championship as he compiled a 29-3 record this season.

National champion on the mat
Just an ordinary kid on campus
By Devin Swanson
Staff writer definitely had the right to be there,” Shields said about his championship match. Though not a major decision, Shields’ five-point margin was the largest of any championship match, most coming down to one point or overtime. How does one prepare to wrestle for the national title? Shields said he gets ready the same way before every match, including never taking his shorts off before his shirt. “I’ve been wearing the same socks for every match since 12th grade,” Shields said. It certainly works, because after he lost to Denson on Jan. 10, Shields went on a 21-match tear, during which he beat thenNo. 1 Kyle Keane of University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and surged into the national final without a loss. Stomping Denson in the championship match, which included an escape point, three near-fall points and a riding time advantage point, was not only fitting, but also extremely satisfying for Shields. “It definitely added a little fire to my fight since he beat me once before,” Shields said. Shields’ championship caps another extremely successful year for the Laker wrestling team. This year three wrestlers, junior Andy Lamancusa, senior Payne Lint, and Shields earned All-American honors. Coach Mike Wehler said “the guys who made All-American were consistent all year and really deserved to be where they were.” Wehler preaches hard work and commitment as the keys to success in his program, and, with his results, who can argue?

When he’s not winning the D-II national championship in wrestling, sophomore Josh Shields enjoys being a normal student at Mercyhurst College. Get him inside the boundary line, however, and chances are when the match is over he comes out on top. Shields proved this in his last match of the season at the NCAA Division II National Championships Festival in Houston, Texas. Held over a five-day period in mid-March, the tournament became one for the history books at Mercyhurst when Shields defeated the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Aaron Denson in a 5-0 decision to become the Hurst’s first wrestling national champion. “It was a pretty great feeling. [Denson] was a tough kid and

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Mercyhurst College senior Mike Thorn takes a shot in the Lakers 20-4 victory over Grand Canyon University.

Jim Cooper photo

April 8, 2009


Page 19

Buy me some peanuts
MLB opens season over weekend
By Samantha Sellinger
Sports editor The Yankees didn’t just acquire new players, though. They look forward to playing in the new state-of-the-art stadium, deemed the “New” Yankee Stadium. “The new stadium looks pretty awesome, although the old one will be missed for all its memories,” Tucker said. “It looks pretty freakin cool though!” Last season’s World Series Champions, the Philadelphia Phillies weren’t proud of their season opener either. They lost to the Atlanta Braves at the Phillies’ World Series celebration game. While some fans are lamenting their team’s losses, others are rejoicing at success. The Pittsburgh Pirates came back against the St. Louis Cardinals in the top of the ninth for their first win this season on Monday. Used to dealing with defeat, Pirates fans are hoping to have a season to celebrate. But the fact of the matter is, there is still a long way to go in the 162 game season, and anything can happen.

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Mercyhurst College hitters tore through the Lake Erie College pitchers as the Lakers hit 42 runs in their weekend sweep of the Storm.

Lakers navigate through the Storm with Stoll at the helm
By Nick Glasier
Staff writer The Mercyhurst College baseball team entered the weekend looking to jump-start an offense which sputtered the weekend before. The Lakers accomplished this with a 42-run offensive explosion, as they obliterated Lake Erie College in a sweep of the Storm. The “Big Three” who propelled the Lakers this year were led by senior Jeff Stoll. He batted .500 for the weekend, with two home runs and 10 RBIs. Sophomore Craig Denman rebounded from a cold weekend at the plate against Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania by hitting .416 against Lake Erie with six RBIs and one grand slam. Freshman Ethan Santora was held to one hit as the Storm’s pitchers pitched around Santora and put his chase for the home run record on hold. Senior Jamie Walczak batted .500 and scored seven runs in the series to add to the red hot Laker offense. The Lakers at home on Saturday defeated the Storm 6-0 in game one and 5-5 in game two. The Lakers’ performance was highlighted by junior pitcher Steve Grife who tossed his first no-hitter as a Laker. Junior Trey Bennett paced the Lakers offensively in game one with a grand slam. In game two, the Lakers rallied with a four-run sixth inning to defeat the Storm 8-5. The Lakers traveled to Eastlake, Oh. to play at Classic Park, a minor league baseball field, to play the Storm. In game one, the Lakers bludgeoned the Storm with a 18-0 performance as the Lakers one-hit the Storm with five different pitchers. Stoll hit two home runs in the game, one out of the park, and added six RBIs. Craig Denman added a grand slam to the Lakers’ hit parade. The Lakers went on to win game two 10-5. The Lakers improved their record to 21-12 and third in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference West Division. The Lakers will be back in action against second-place Slippery Rock University on Friday, Apr. 10.

Baseball fans, dust off those caps and get those mits ready to catch some fly balls, because it is Major League Baseball time again! This past Sunday, April 5, 2009, MLB started off the season. For some teams, such as the New York Yankees, the season is off to a rough start. All the Cracker Jacks in the world can’t cheer up the fans who watched their team lose to the Baltimore Orioles in their season opener. Incidently, the Orioles finshed last in the league last year. After spending over 400 million in the off season signing free agents, seems like a waste to fans who are dissppointed with the outcome of last weekend’s game. “I was dissappointed they lost opening day, especially after spending millions of dollars on new players,” senior Randy Tucker said. “But hopefully they’ll be able to turn the season around.”

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Junior Steve Grife no-hits Lake Erie College on Apr. 4 << Page 19

Grife tosses no-hitter

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