This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
From a petition submitted by McAuley freshmen to Residence Life. See Page 3.
‘Gasland’ director Josh Fox visiting ’Hurst to discuss fracking
Dancers to perform in ‘Cinderella’ this weekend
Opinion: Proposed budget cuts threaten higher ed in Pa.
Baseball hopes to turn winning streak into PSAC championship
gestions, SAC has a total of ﬁve bands that will ﬁll the Mercyhurst Athletic Center (MAC) on Friday, May 6, the opening night of Spring Fest. The list includes Plain White T’s, Andy Grammar and Parachute. All the contracts have been signed, and SAC is prepared to make the formal band announcement Wednesday night at 8:15 p.m. at the Launch Party in the Hermann Student Union. SAC is also bringing in local band Romantic Era as well as You Hang Up, featuring Frankie Muniz. “No matter what, people will ﬁnd something,” Lichtinger said. “They’ll ﬁnd one band that they like.” While students asked for bigger, many students cited concerns about ﬁve bands being too many, worrying about waiting too long for the headliner. “It’ll be good to get some variety up on stage,” senior Joe Krajcik said. “I can’t complain that it will be a longer concert. Hopefully everyone can enjoy at least one of the performers.” “We’re trying very hard to make sure that the turnover for bands is quick; that is our main concern,” Lichtinger said. “There will be plenty of giveaways and things going on in between to get students excited and involved.” To compensate for the large number of bands, SAC will be starting the show an hour earlier this year, opening the doors at 6 p.m. and starting the show at 7 p.m. They’d like it to close around 11 p.m., according to SAC adviser Sarah Allen. “We’re not going to have the show last until 2 a.m.,” Allen said. The two-day event will continue Saturday in the MAC. The theme for the day’s events will be Laker Luau, including a luau dancer performance, popcorn, cotton candy, Rita’s Italian Ice, a chocolate fountain with fruit and the annual Spring Fest BBQ held in Egan Cafeteria. “Students who have an unlimited meal plan will be able to eat in Egan normally on that day,” Lichtinger said. “All other students will have to get a ticket on the day of the event in the MAC to get the free meal.” SAC again responded to students’ opinions regarding activities. “We’ve heard from people that they do not like inﬂatables, so we’ve tried to steer clear of inﬂatables and go towards novelties, which are the things that people can walk away with,” Lichtinger said. SAC will bring back the caricature artist who was at both ‘Hurst Fest and Kids ‘N’ Sibs, a cash cube with $500 that students can win throughout the day, a high striker, a tropical obstacle course, arts, crafts and more. Tickets are available to undergraduate students in the Student Union until Tuesday, May 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. On May 4, tickets will be available to graduate students, faculty and staff, and on May 5 students can pick up guest tickets— one per ID. “We have to keep in mind that
April 27, 2011
SAC brings big changes to Spring Fest
By Joseph Pudlick
A little more than a month ago, the biggest surprise of the year at Mercyhurst was exposed. The headlining band for Spring Fest, Plain White T’s, was unceremoniously announced when a student fan of the band found Mercyhurst listed on the band’s website. Now, with just over a week until the big event, Student Activities Council (SAC) said that despite the unexpected early announcement, it still has many surprises up its sleeves. “Students were talking about them before we were even talking about it, which made us excited,” said senior Char Lichtinger, the outgoing SAC Chair and major organizer of the event. “In the past, most students have said they want a bigger Spring Fest, so I think this year we’re giving them that.” Working from student sugthe concert is being paid for by the Full-time Student Allotment fund, which is paid through your student activities fee,” Allen said. “So opening it up and allowing as many current students to attend as possible is the only way we feel that is an appropriate way to spend students’ money.” “I think that the selection of bands for Spring Fest is great. There is something for everyone and the variety is sure to please all music critics. As a freshman, I have only heard good things about Spring Fest and am sure that it is going to be lots of fun,” freshman Katie Jeffries said. Tickets are available ﬁrst-come, ﬁrst-serve, with 1,500 available. More ticket information is available at msg.mercyhurst.edu. This evening, students can get a taste of what’s to come at the Spring Fest Launch Party, as Romantic Era will perform in the Student Union while SAC makes its formal announcement of the weekend’s activities.
‘Gasland’ director to address Mercyhurst
By Stacy Skiavo
On Tuesday, May 3, Mercyhurst College will welcome ﬁlmmaker and Sun Dance Film Festival winner Josh Fox on campus from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Fox was asked to lease his land located atop the Marcellus Shale area in Milanville, Pa., to a natural gas drilling company. Leery about the idea, Fox decided to check out other areas that had agreed to the drilling. This research turned into an award-winning documentary called “Gasland.” This movie reveals the potential danger of drilling, fracking and secrets that many are unaware of. Otherwise known as hydraulic fracturing, fracking occurs when chemicals and water are blended together and forced at high pressures into shale to create a ‘shake’ underneath the ground. Millions of gallons of water are used in this process which results in contamination of nearby drinking water. The documentary shows residents of fracking areas who are able to light their drinking water on ﬁre from the faucet, who develop chronic illness symptoms and who have pools of waste water killing vegetation and cattle. Aside from these issues, gas well blowouts occurred that were typically covered up by state and federal agencies. Fox was asked by Assistant Professor of Communications Anne Zaphiris, Ph.D., to come and speak at Mercyhurst. “Quite frankly, I just asked. We found a date that worked in his schedule and for Mercyhurst,” Zaphiris said. Gasland will be shown, free of charge for students and faculty, at 2 p.m. in Taylor Little Theatre. Following the viewing, Fox will be in the Hermann Student Union from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. to answer any questions from students and faculty about the drilling controversy. To end the evening, at 7 p.m. Fox will return to Taylor Little Theatre to speak to the campus and the Erie community. “Josh’s visit to campus will allow us to build knowledge and increase awareness about a controversial issue facing many communities. At Mercyhurst, our overriding message to students is to consider using their talents for social good and positive change,” Zaphiris said. Residents like Zaphiris have been working together on a campaign called “Our Water Our Rights” to prevent this from entering their community. Zaphiris is conﬁdent many from North East will attend the event and has been working hard with other residents to promote awareness of fracking and its consequences. Zaphiris isn’t the only one creating awareness; her Principles of Public Relations class is also promoting the Josh Fox event to let everyone know the importance of attending. “I plan on using word of mouth as a prominent marketing strategy, and we will target the teachers with our goals so we can provide Josh Fox with an audience,” sophomore Nayah Nicholson said about how she plans to do her part. The Public Relations class is also using posters and emails around campus to promote the event. “I’m making an educational, informative video on Josh Fox and his Sun Dance winning documentary, Gasland,” junior John Weber said. For more information about fracking or the North East drilling go to ourwaterourrights.org/ events/.
Josh Fox, director of ‘Gasland,’ will be at Mercyhurst to answer questions and spread awareness about fracking.
April 27, 2011
director and resident assistants (RAs) asked the residents to bring forward any information regarding who was responsible. The residents were warned they may be charged if no one spoke up, according to Assistant Director of Residence Life and Student Conduct Jessica Provenzano. Since no one came forward with information, the residents of the wing were each charged $30. The students were billed on March 16, which to common areas (lounges, stairwells, etc.) is assessed to the smallest, most likely group of residents possible when it cannot be determined who caused the damage. Damage in a residence will be assessed equally to all occupants unless a statement is received by the Residence Life Ofﬁce indicating who is accepting responsibility.” “When students sign their housing contract they agree to this,” Provenzano said. The freshmen who are being ﬁned have an issue with being classiﬁed as the “most likely group of residents.” “I don’t understand why we would be charged for something we clearly have no beneﬁt of doing,” freshman Eric Pelosi said. Bott questioned why his wing has to pay when these residents are the ones who had to clean up the ﬂooding. “There doesn’t seem to be much reason as to why they chose to ﬁne us for the ﬂooding,” said Bott. “We were the ones who had to deal with the ﬂooding the most, as our hallway and some of the rooms were ﬂooded. When it happened, we were the ones who cleaned up most of it, with the help from some other kids on other ﬂoors.”
McAuley freshmen ﬁght against damage ﬁne
was during the second week of spring term. News editor “The decision to ﬁne the students is a mutual decision between housekeeping, maintenance and Freshman students who live in residence life,” said Provenzano. the south wing of the third ﬂoor of “The actual cost of the ﬁne and McAuley Hall are still dealing with a what it covered was to pay for the ﬂooding incident that occurred on outside contractor that was hired to Feb. 13. come in and extract the water from The ﬂooding occurred after the carpet.” someone clogged the sinks with Despite being warned of a ﬁne, paper towels and left the water runthe students were not notining. ﬁed they were actually A few days after this incident, being charged. the hall “The only reason I found out was when I went to financial services and they said there was a $30 charge,” ublesome ost tro e, freshman David Bott dence Lif dest and m ere have been Resi e wil ast th own as th said. “My RA didn’t g been kn ampus. In years p lism, and partying. has lon even know. So if they uley Hall yhurst c tion, theft, vanda s been McA ar ha Merc estruc r nts, this ye all on the are going to fine us, sidence h ories of property d g Mercyhurst stude ble housing unit fo re they might have the eous st o amon t and sta quie l ech outrag stories stil become a decency to let us oding incihile these McAuley Hall has 2014. W o ﬂo know they officially ave been tw of February. In ception. Class of the ere h the ex onth record, th n boys of will be, instead of e freshma our excellent track y Hall during the m e as a major surprise th just placing it on McAule place, but it cam spite of In or of e, e third ﬂo mmon our bill.” amaraderi ents on th may have seen co d s of c Provenzano cited past this eshmen boys. aracteristic onsequently, the s ch years ing. C ent fr led for it e, the student handr the curr ﬂoor is often riva e another’s well-be od was, in essenc fo o n book as justiﬁcaThe third d genuine care for o when our brotherh e ss, an tion for the ﬁne. ntent ck early th cleanline arked great disco . on de According to person nds went mops, towels and ding sp ﬂoo ll ha own ered efforts, a y an unkn ent the handbook, attacked b the wrecker’s best und 4 a.m. We gath ded hallway and w g in oo “Damage done Despite Feb. 13 aro the water in our ﬂ our rooms, includ p f orning of Sunday m e that could soak u sided, but many o ft inundated. le b on ls anything e ost of the water su afety’s ofﬁces, were assured that a pers re we .M were nd S ce, we to work Police a d and we maintenan w us and ver arrive those belo cAuley’s RAs called However, help ne hurst, one When M t over to assist us. cusable 36 hours. ing Mercy x h uld be rig devices for an ine on the rise, includ t such as this. The wo own even of llege left to our average cost of co ills would cover an ay and the closure re hed hallw to injury the enti With the that our regular b nc eve sult rty, the dre would beli ur personal prope ough, but to add in e of $30. e o n harsh e mage to damage fe or, south wing hav da with a seemed in this athroom s charged ts on the third ﬂo ted our b ing wa re mistrea residen r, south w ve we we third ﬂoo lt, the majority of s we belie a As a resu e $30 fee naïve fresh ion from d t to pay th rash rebell g gle ﬁnancially an ecided no d incident. a d be actions as stru ndle e should t poorly ha you may view our including myself, ree that w ﬁ gh us, Althou any of do not ag rly receive no bene y, we that m consider g way. Additionall mit as we clea men o a lon not com nd undersee $30 g r a crime we did harge us a allway. ished fo cision to c pun r de wn h nsider you ding our o from ﬂoo insist that you reco We must vances at hand. grie stand our th Wing Floor, Sou ectfully, Hall Third ley Resp and McAu Eric Pelosi
By Kelly Luoma
“We do not know who did it, so it’s unfair to punish the ﬂoor because we may all be innocent,” Bott said. Freshman Brett Ambrose was in Pittsburgh during the incident, but he is being ﬁned the $30 as well. Provenzano said she was not aware students were out of town when the ﬂooding occurred. Because the freshmen think they are being punished unfairly, Pelosi wrote a petition appealing the fine. Nineteen freshmen from the south wing signed it. One student refused. He is the only one who paid the fine. “I took the initiative of starting the petition,” said Pelosi. “We were upset about being charged $30 for something we didn’t do.” Pelosi gave the petition to a secretary in Residence Life on April 6 because Provenzano was out of town. No one has since contacted him about it. “A decision has not yet been made on what will happen with the ﬁne, which is why a response has not been granted yet,” Provenzano said. If a decision is not made soon, the freshmen who have not paid will be unable to register for fall term classes.
The above petition was signed by all the freshmen who were charged except for one student who paid the $30 ﬁne.
is water, and yet we know so little about the deep oceans because we rarely see them with our own eyes,” she said. Widder is a specialist in the phenomenon of bioluminescence. Her presentation shared highlights of her oceanographic research and deep sea discoveries, including the discovery of a new species of squid with her “Eye-in-the-Sea” (EITS). She also discussed ORCA’s work to create technology to map pollution in the waters of our planet. The college’s Sustainability Award was also presented before the lecture. This year’s recipient was Michael Campbell, Ph.D., professor of biology. For those who missed out on this year’s Earth Day events, there are still two chances to get involved. On Saturday, there will be a Hike for Haiku, a guided hike which will feature wildﬂowers, edible plants and writing your own haiku poetry. In addition, the Pedal for the Planet Duathlon will take place on May 7 at Presque Isle. And Mercyhurst remains focused on becoming greener year-round. The Mercyhurst Green Team commits itself to projects and activities that it says are intended to “envision a sustainable future-that is, one in which all human societies can live healthy and productive lives without compromising the ability of future generations to do the same.” Recent projects have included installing two Earth Tubs for composting, a 100 percent update of all light bulbs and lighting systems in residence halls and apartments, as well as a 95 percent update of all lighting systems throughout campus. In addition, all electricity used on campus comes from windpowered turbines, a renewable energy source.
April 27, 2011
How do you try to “go green” to help the environment?
Mercyhurst celebrates Earth Day all year
By Lynn Dula
This past Friday marked the 41st celebration of Earth Day. Students and faculty at Mercyhurst College have created a special way of celebrating by participating in a weeklong celebration and also by taking part in green initiatives throughout the entire year. This year’s Earth Day celebration focused on reducing our impact on the planet with the slogan “Lose Your Footprint.” Events included a showing of the movie “No Impact Man” in the PAC on April 13, a Local Products Fair on April 15 and culminated with the 2011 Sister Maura Smith Earth Day Lecture. This year’s lecture guest was Edith Widder, Ph.D., who is the chief executive, president and senior scientist of the Ocean Research & Conservation Association (ORCA) in Fort Pierce, Fla. Widder gave a lecture titled “Exploring and Protecting Planet Ocean,” where she discussed her work to ﬁght pollution and learn more about the deep oceans. “Ninety-nine percent of the available living space on our planet
“I reuse everything I can, keep my consumption down to a minimum and when I do buy something, I try and buy it local.” -Hannah Beck, sophomore
Edith Widder, Ph.D. was the guest speaker for the 2011 Sister Maura Smith Earth Day Lecture.
Ethan Magoc photo
Public Speaking Club to host ‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?’
By Chris James
Mercyhurst’s Public Speaking Club will be hosting its own version of the show “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” on Thursday. The group will hold the event in Taylor Little Theatre and students and faculty will have the opportunity to show off their improv skills. Volunteers will separate into teams and perform sketches from episodes of the popular television show. President of the Public Speaking Club, Brandon Miller, is excited for the event. “I was trying to think of a way to incorporate public speaking and improvisation,” he says. The Public Speaking Club is a relatively new club but Miller hopes it will become more popular in the following years. The club itself works to help members become, oddly enough, better public speakers. “Our meetings are focused around impromptu speaking. We give people topics, and then we give them a minute or two to talk about them,” Miller says. But the club does more than its name basically implies. “We’ve had public speakers come in to talk, and we give members the opportunity to present class presentations ahead of time for practice and suggestions,” Miller says. This is meant to provide constructive criticism and help students improve. Miller says the event has already received interest. “Usually, the people that I have talked to are split half and half. Some are really excited to try it and others are excited to see it,” Miller says. The event will have teams of two to four people who will do skits from the show. “We have about 18 skits thought up already,” Miller said. One of these skits will have students providing voiceovers for muted videos in an attempt to create an interesting and funny scene. The skits will last a few minutes each. The event will run from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday. If you would like to register a team or get more information, contact Brandon Miller.
“I don’t buy plastic water bottles anymore, I carpool as much as possible and I only use the AC in my car when I’m on the freeway.” -Juliana Franks, junior
“When I give gifts for birthdays and such, at least for my closer friends, I make them presents and cards rather than give in to over-consumption and buying nonsense material things.” -Adam Ferrari, sophomore
April 27, 2011
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
A dance-themed display has been erected in the Hammermill Library entrance area as well to provide information about dance to the general campus community. The National Dance Week activities at Mercyhurst culminate with the Dance Department’s performance of the classical ballet “Cinderella,” a production for which the dancers have been rehearsing all throughout spring term. Moreover, dancers will be appearing on campus in costume to distribute ﬂyers with information on both National Dance Week and the upcoming performance of “Cinderella.” Still in honor of National Dance Week, though outside the actual week of celebration, both Dance Club and the Nu Delta Alpha Dance Honor Society will be hosting open master classes in May. These classes include a tap class taught by Kelly Stolar of Kristin’s Dance Company and a swing dance class instructed by Geoff and Carrie Bach of City Style Swing. Whether a dancer or simply a dance lover, National Dance Week is the perfect time to reﬂect on the importance of dance in our culture and the worth of the arts in general for inspiring and transforming lives.
Dancers celebrate National Dance Week
By Sarah Mastrocola
Each spring, dancers across the country observe National Dance Week, a celebration of the beauty and power of dance to enrich lives. This year, National Dance Week runs from April 22 through May 1. The mission of National Dance Week, according to the organization’s ofﬁcial website, is “to encourage the growth and development of dance in America by raising the public consciousness to the values, importance and contributions of dance to our daily lives and culture.” First formed in 1981 through a small grassroots movement, the Coalition for National Dance Week now calls upon dancers, teachers and dance lovers across the nation to ensure that dance receives the recognition it deserves as an art form. “It is a time when dancers can demonstrate to the world at large that dance is not just an art form but that it also requires hard work, dedication and athleticism,” said senior and Nu Delta Alpha President Jessica Borowczyk. Liturgical Dance Ensemble
Tyler Stauffer photo
Various groups within the dance department wiil participate in activities promoting dance.
President Christine Wilbur said of National Dance Week, “This week and its events can help to spread awareness that dance is a highly sophisticated art form.” The National Dance Week website suggests such activities as holding a performance, hosting a charity dance-a-thon or presenting lecture demonstrations in local schools, among other options, as possible means of celebrating the event. This year, the Mercyhurst Dance Department in conjunction with Dance Club will be recognizing National Dance Week in its unique way. Dance Club is hosting a clothing exchange in which dancers can swap dancewear as well as donate dancewear to be given to underprivileged students. They also created a specially dedicated observation area outside Palmer Studio in the Dancespace to encourage passersby to watch the dancing happening inside.
‘Cinderella’ sure to entertain families
By Emma Rishel
This weekend, the Mercyhurst dancers will present “Cinderella,” the well-known fairy tale based on the French folk tale, “The Little Glass Slipper.” Performances are Saturday at 2 and 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center There will also be a special preview performance on Friday at 4 p.m., with all tickets just $5 and only balcony seats available. Dance department chair and artistic director Tauna Hunter is excited to be closing the department’s season with this ballet since they haven’t presented it since 2000. “We are excited to bring it to life once again for the Erie community. I consider this the best way for families to introduce dance to their children,” Hunter said. Those not familiar with classical ballets are sure to enjoy “Cinderella” because not only is everyone familiar with the story, but it is full of comedy, a bit of suspense and brings a happy ending. Because all of the acting is done in mime, the actions of the stepsisters are exaggerated and all the more amusing. The four season fairies, along with the fairy godmother, add a magical touch to transform Cinderella into the mysterious princess who appears at the ball, captivating
Senior music recitals are learning experience for all
By Alex Stacey
Every student who is a major in the D’Angelo Department of Music is required to present a senior recital. Any student who has chosen to declare a performance degree has to present both a junior and senior recital. Junior Marie Karbacka presented a recital in early April. She says the most rewarding part of having a junior recital was “to go through the recital process once before my big senior recital. “It helps to understand the time and effort that go into something like this. I’m really excited to learn new repertoire and present it next year,” Karbacka said. Most recitals are presented in the spring. They represent a complete four years worth of repertoire and skills the student has learned. Not only are they an opportunity for the featured student to exemplify everything they have learned while studying at the music school, but student recitals also give a chance for younger students to watch their peers and learn from colleagues. It is a great way to be exposed to repertoire, to watch performance practices and overall musicality. Sometimes, merely supporting students and classmates makes attending worthwhile. “Attending recitals in the spring provides me with a living example of what comes from four years of work in developing your craft as an artist here at Mercyhurst,” said freshman Natalie Pertz. To read the complete version of this article, visit merciad.mercyhurst.edu/ arts_entertainment.
the prince’s heart. The three-act ballet, set to the music of Sergei Prokoﬁev, is a perfect length for families and younger children. After each performance, a few characters will come out to the lobby to meet audience members, sign autographs and take photos. Seniors Christopher Taddiken and Nicole Lyons will dance their ﬁnal performances as Mercyhurst students as the prince and Cinderella. The roles of the stepsisters, hilariously portrayed by seniors Sarah Mastrocola and Claire Hinde, are sure to keep audience members laughing. Tickets are available by calling 8243000 or visiting the PAC box ofﬁce.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 27, 2011 September 3, 2008
Education in jeopardy
By Caitlin Handerhan
A few weeks ago, I received a call to speak on behalf of the Young Democrats at a union solidarity rally in my hometown of Mercer. Organized on behalf of the teacher’s union, rally organizers wanted to incorporate youth into their message of solidarity because education and education funding are crucial for the future of this country’s youth. Standing before an assembled crowd of approximately 300 teachers and other union tradesmen, I could feel a sense of urgency pulsing throughout the crowd. Newly elected Republican Gov. Tom Corbett proposed a budget that severely cuts funding to Pennsylvania public education to the tune of $1.2 billion, and the impact of these cuts are already being felt. Many school districts have already released furlough notices and are cutting teachers— not the kind of job market you want to step into if you are an education major right now. The assembled teachers were outraged at such preposterous cuts in an already laughable budget, and they had a right to be. Though these teachers are understandably upset with this draconian budget, they are not entirely the victims in this instance. Despite the PSEA’s endorsement of the Democratic gubernatorial candidate in the last election, 81 percent of PSEA members voted against their union and supported Republican Tom Corbett. Does something seem wrong with this picture? Teachers and other union members will need to turn out in the next election and remember that their vote could mean their job. It seems as though many in this demographic fell victim to the tea party and anti-incumbent rhetoric that swept the nation last
November. Hoisting ﬂags bearing the slogan “Don’t Tread on Me,” these right-wingers preached ﬁscal accountability and less government spending. While there is certainly less spending, as evidenced by Corbett’s budget proposal, the economic beneﬁts they so direly wished for are further from sight than ever. We are in an era of Republican politics where corporations are paying little to no taxes despite record proﬁt. Many in the middle class are facing unbeatable economic odds, and it is no wonder that people are now motivated to rally in solidarity for sensible economic policies. As I stood in front of the crowd, ready to begin my speech, I noticed a teacher holding a sign that said “SOS: Save Our Schools.” If conservative politics continue through the next election as usual, it is not just our schools that will need saving. It may be our souls, as well.
Relay For Life will take place outside the Hermann Student Union this Saturday from 1 p.m. to 1 a.m. The event will help raise money for cancer awareness and research.
Maintenance crews are cleaning around the sidewalks on campus. There are puddles of mud everywhere! Students have been coming down with the respiratory ﬂu. With only three weeks left, there is no time to be sick.
If you don’t want it printed . . . don’t let it happen.
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Mercyhurst club offers safe haven to LGBT students
By Mike Lado
On April 15, high schools and colleges around the nation observed a day of silence in protest of bullying lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender students. LGBT people are everywhere. We are students, doctors, lawyers, teachers, professors. Why am I telling you all of this? As society becomes more accepting of LGBT people, bullying and hate declines. Still, there is still a long ﬁght ahead. The day of silence helped us remember LGBT teens who have taken their own lives. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students hear anti-gay slurs about 26 times a day, or every 14 minutes on average. Suicide is one of the leading causes of deaths of LGBT students. Back in October, a series of suicides among gay teenagers sent shockwaves through the nation and propelled bullying among LGBT teenagers onto the national stage. Although the day of silence for the most part went unobserved at Mercyhurst, there are still opportunities to get involved and help LGBT people realize there is a better world out there. As a gay student on campus, I ﬁnd refuge in Mercyhurst College’s Gay Straight Alliance (GSA). Run by faculty advisor Richard McCarty, Ph.D., of the religious studies department and co-presidents Mark Ennis and Erin Lindell, they and a number of other students have built a RSCO for LGBT students and their allies. When I go to a GSA meeting, I feel safe because I am around people like me. The Mercyhurst GSA is special, largely because the college has a Catholic denomination. For most Catholic schools, a Gay Straight Alliance is a no-no. But since we at Mercyhurst College are socially merciful, we are able to have a Gay Straight Alliance on campus. And I hope it will continue to exist in the future. LGBT people can go on to do great things. There are faculty and staff on campus like Dr. McCarty who have proven that LGBT people can advance in society. Also, there are young people like Mark and Erin who will also do the same. If you are LGBT or just want to be an ally, come to a GSA meeting and meet some cool, friendly people who just want to be accepted for who they are.
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 email@example.com.
April 27, 2011
for us,” Pilson said. Senior defender Maggie Yackel agreed with her coach’s assessment, but feels the Lakers are coming into their own. After the Lock Haven loss, the Lakers ﬁnished the regular season at 3-1 despite a stinging double-overtime loss to Gannon. “We feel like we are peaking at the right time. We feel like we can beat anyone,” Yackel said. This season’s schedule has been different than in years past. This year, there is no East and West division. Every team played each other once throughout the year, meaning the conference tournament will be the second time the Lakers meet Bloomsburg, their ﬁrst round opponent. With teams only getting one crack at each other, it has amped up the competition level. Each team realizes they only have one shot to earn wins in conference. “We feel like every year Bloomsburg is a very tough game. Whoever shows up that day will win,” Pilson added. The Lakers need three victories to become PSAC champions. The
teams that likely stand in their way: Bloomsburg, West Chester, and either Gannon or Lock Haven. The Lakers have a shot at redemption, a theme they will be repeating the playoffs. Each team the Lakers will face beat them during the regular season. Bloomsburg was the ﬁrst step. “Redemption will be out mantra around here this week, with potentially three games against teams we lost to during the year,” Pilson said. For the Lakers, the road to redemption began Tuesday at Bloomsburg. With a ﬁnal score of 13-10, the Lakers achieved their ﬁrst goal of this postseason. The Lakers once again had a strong game from their stars, Keirn and Masterton. Keirn landed the ﬁrst goal of the game ﬁve minutes into the game en route to a four goal and three assist game. Masterton added four assists, while sophomore Kayla Minner added three goals of her own. The Lakers look to continue their play-off run against top-seeded West Chester Friday, April 29, at 1 p.m. in West Chester.
Women’s lacrosse seeks redemption in PSAC playoffs
By Spencer Hunt
For most teams, a 12-5 record is respectable. For the Mercyhurst women’s lacrosse team, it is disappointing. After a 16-2 mark last season, this season brought a few bumps in the road, beginning with a 12-9 loss to Limestone. Coach Cecil Pilson, like the rest of the team, had high expectations going into the year. The team welcomed back its top two scorers from last season in junior Ally Keirn and senior Kim Masterton, and had a promising group of incoming freshman. Behind the strong play of Keirn and Masterton, the Lakers rallied off seven straight victories after the opening loss. But the team hit a lull right in the middle of the year. The seven-game streak was snapped with a 16-10 loss to West Chester followed by an 11-9 loss to Bloomsburg. “This year has been tougher than most to get into a rhythm,” Pilson
Coach Cecil Pilson, above, and the women’s lacrosse team had a down year by their standards. The Lakers hope to redeem themselves in the PSAC tournament.
said. “We hit a funk in the middle of the year with West Chester and Bloomsburg.” The Lakers rallied back from the two losses with a commanding victory over East Stroudsburg, winning
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by nine goals. Still, the low point of the season was yet to come. The Lakers suffered their worst defeat of the year, a 17-1 pounding by Lock Haven. “Lock Haven was an eye-opener
April 27, 2011
said. Behind Aschley, who holds a 6-1 overall record, and Nick Gillung, 72, the Lakers have had outstanding pitching to this point. Offensively, senior Kevin McCall and junior Shane Latshaw have been excellent all season long. For the seniors, this is their last run at a championship. “We have a light atmosphere, we like to have fun but we stay focused,” said senior pitcher Thurman Schaetzle. “These last few games are all winnable, and that will help us have momentum going forward.” The Lakers certainly have momentum; note the 10-game winning streak. But postseason success is a whole different demon. The Lakers aren’t looking too far ahead just yet, with six still to play. The team can make it 11 or 12 straight wins in Friday’s home doubleheader against Slippery Rock. “This is our last chance to do something. We have the talent for a national championship,” said Schaetzle, son of the football team’s coach. “Look at football. They got (conference) rings, and I want one for myself.”
Baseball looks to turn winning streak into PSAC title
By Spencer Hunt
No one expects beautiful weather in Erie during college baseball season, but the weather this spring has certainly proven worse than expected. “This is easily the worst weather we have had since I’ve been here, and that’s 14 years,” coach Joe Spano said. Despite the weather, the Mercyhurst baseball team has played quite well. The team got off to an exceptionally hot start, opening the season with an 11-3 record. Coincidentally, these 14 games were played in the sunny locales of Florida and North Carolina. The Lakers were 13-3 before they had to play in the rough Erie weather. The team managed to go only 86 over its next 14 games, including 6-6 in the tough PSAC West. “This has been an exciting season because everyone is having their best year in the PSAC,” Spano said. With the PSAC playoffs only a few weeks away, conference games are extremely important down the stretch. The team won’t know who
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Senior Jonathan Keppler and the baseball team have won 10 straight games, with only six remaining. This weekend’s two-game series against Slippery Rock could land the Lakers the No. 1 spot in the PSAC West heading into the postseason.
is in and out of the playoffs until the last day of the season, with only ﬁve games separating ﬁrst and last place. “With four of the ﬁnal six games being doubleheaders, we need to stay focused mentally,” Spano said. To date, the team is 31-9 overall and is rolling on a 10-game winning streak. Chemistry plays a major role
in any deep playoff run. “We gel together a lot more than last year, and everyone is behind each other both on and off the ﬁeld,” junior pitcher Erik Aschley
Athletes miss breaks to pursue success
By Billy Colton
Breaks are a time for everyone to go home and relax and see family and friends, as well as get away from college. For everyone, that is, except athletes. Every team has a time during the year when they miss out on a break. This means staying around on a quiet campus, practicing and preparing for an upcoming game or tournament. Women’s lacrosse just experienced this with Easter as they had a game on Saturday, which they won, 12-11, against Indiana (Pa.). Kimberly Masterton, a senior on the lacrosse team, has never experienced a spring break in the four years she has been here. This, though, doesn’t bother her. “It doesn’t make a difference to me that we never have spring break because of lacrosse,” Masterton said. The main reason for this is that the team is very close, and they can do what they want on spring break after their college years are past. “It’s a good experience and many memories–good and bad–have come out of team spring break trips,” Masterton said. Masterton also thinks athletes understand that missing breaks is essential to success. “There is so much preparation that needs to happen in order to get ready for the upcoming season or game, and we need all the time we can get, whether we want it or not,” Masterton said. Men’s soccer player Oliver Gage, agrees that the preparation required warrants missing out on breaks.
Senior Kim Masterton is putting all the extra work to good use, leading the women’s lacrosse team with 53 goals and 76 total points.
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The soccer team comes in around two to three weeks before fall term begins, missing the last few weeks of summer. “I like coming in early. We train twice a day with all the boys, which is great fun, meet all the new players, and it’s a good way to get ready for the season because there are no distractions,” said Gage, a graduate student. During fall preseason, although the team is only training twice a day, there is not really much free time. It doesn’t matter that the campus is empty. “Whenever we’re not training, we’re either sleeping or eating. It’s all about preparing properly for the next session,” Gage said. Masterton looks to make all the hard work pay-off as the women’s lacrosse team moves on to the semiﬁnals of the PSAC tournament.
Men’s lacrosse tops No. 1 Limestone
The Mercyhurst men’s lacrosse team defeated then No. 1 ranked Limestone this past Saturday. The Lakers won by a score of 12-8 for their ﬁrst victory over a No. 1 ranked opponent since beating Dowling in 2007. The victory over Limestone has propelled the team to third in the men’s Division II coaches poll released Tuesday. The Lakers hope to add to their 9-2 record with only three games remaing. Fortunately, all three games will be played at home. Next up for the Lakers is No. 7 New York Tech this Saturday at 1 p.m. at Tullio Field.