Soaring season sees CCM softball clinch playoff berth

By Connor Iapoce
Sports Editor

The 2017-2018 Titans softball team found a rhythm early in their season with a 13 game win streak, but the schedule has had its bumps due to weather cancellations in their last four matchups.

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Titans freshman Hannah Brizek fouls off a ball during an 11-0 win in the rst game of a doubleheader against Sussex County Community College. Photos by Brett Friedensohn

Meanwhile, injuries sustained in games have impacted the team’s lineup with key players being injured for a stretch of time. The Titans at presstime sit on a record of 23-6 with a five-game win streak and are currently in the third spot of the Region XIX Division II standings and clinched the playoffs with an 11-0 win over Sussex County Community College Wednesday, April 18.

The Titans trip to Florida over spring break found them finishing with the best record of any Titans program at 12-0. Head Coach Greg Wardlow said he was excited about the way the Titans competed in the tournament against strong nationally ranked teams.

“We beat really strong national programs,” Wardlow said. “We beat Iowa Central Community College twice, who were ranked in the top 12 in the country at the time. We beat Parkland College, who was a national runner up a few years back. We beat a couple of other Midwest powers, St. Louis Community College and Spoon River College. When we looked at our schedule going down to Florida, we pessimistically said ‘Hey we’ll have a time tough with these games,’ but we won them all. We played very well.”

The lossless streak continued with a 9-0 victory against nationally ranked Brookdale Community College, but the Titans were plagued by a group of injuries to the core team during these 13 games.

“Along the way we suffered a couple of injuries,” Wardlow said. “We didn’t have a lot of depth to begin with, having only 13 players on the roster. In Florida, we lost our lead off hitter, starting outfielder, number 4 pitcher Hannah Brizek. She had a labrum tear in her shoulder. One of our leading hitters in Florida, Melissa Ackerman, in her first game back against Brookdale suffered a meniscus sprain in her knee, running out a hit to first base. So we were down a couple of kids.”

The Titans’ win streak earned them a national rank of 14 in the country in the NJCAA, marking the first time the team had never been ranked since Wardlow started coaching at CCM in 2005.

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Titans freshman pitcher Jonnalyn McClain throws a strike against a Sussex batter.

“They started out very strong down South, went 12-0 and reached 14 in the country in the NJCAA, which was very promising,” said Jack Sullivan, CCM athletic director.

The middle half the season was impacted by the appearance of miserable weather in the Northeast, consisting of snowstorms that made it hard for the team to practice outside. It ultimately impacted the team’s return to play when they came back Thursday, March 15, as the team was unable to practice. More injuries would hurt the Titans lineup, including a meniscus sprain, bone bruises, and a broken nose in subsequent games following the return.

“We played some key games not at full strength, but that’s no excuse,” Wardlow said. “Everybody suffers injuries.”

The Titans would win eighth more games and lose only six, leading Wadlow to believe the Titans have clinched a postseason berth according to their record. Four teams make the playoffs with a double elimination style tournament. The Titans have made the final four the past 9 seasons.

“We have to keep our kids motivated, because we think we have a very good team and we have a pretty good chance,” Wardlow said. “We just need to put it all together when it counts at the end and work on things over the next couple of weeks. It’s anyone of the four teams that qualify are going to have a chance, so it’s who’s playing well.”

The Titans have proved their strength and consistency during the long season, event with the difficulties resulting from the numerous postponements and cancellations. They have not lost a game by more than two runs and Wardlow attributes this to the players themselves.


“We have to keep our kids motivated, because we think we have a very good team and we have a pretty good chance.”

Greg Wardlow Titans softball coach


Freshman pitchers Nicole Carter and Kellie Faber are 11-3 and 9-3 respectively, with Carter pitching a perfect game in the first game of a doubleheader against Northampton Community College and Faber striking out ten in the first game of the doubleheader.

Freshman Kaitlyn Lloyd has an average of .526, earning the title of GSAC player of the week for the second consecutive week Wednesday, April 28. Lloyd leads the team is stolen bases with 21, putting her in the top 10 all time for a CCM player during one season.

“We have a really good record and a really talented team,” said Ally Tufaro, a sophomore outfielder and fine art major. “I think we can make it to [nationals in] Mississippi. That’s like our one goal for the entire season. I would say that’s where I see our team at the end of the season.”

Wardlow said he has the team practicing to deal with the lack of depth that has occurred as a result of the injuries. The team was averaging double figures in Florida but have not scored as many runs as the beginning half of the season.

“Right now, we’re just not scoring as many runs anymore,” Wardlow said. “Some of it is because our lineup has been depleted a little bit, so the lack of depth hurts so we do have to work on getting back into a groove hitting. Our pitching has been pretty consistent and strong. None of the four teams that we play at the end have dominating pitching, so we’re going to have to score runs to win. We’ll certainly work on hitting in the next couple weeks. A couple of things we noticed during games are kind of hard to correct in-game. There is not a lot of chances for practices, because we are always playing games. But certainly things we will try to tighten up in those last couple of weeks.”

The Titans stand in third place of the top four teams who are in positions to make the tournament. Sullivan said he thinks the end of the season will come down to the wire to determine the fourth team.

“It’s going to be a mad rush to see who makes the final four team for the tournament,” said Sullivan. “As we stand, we are 3rd and the top four teams make it to the semifinals. We are looking at Mercer in first place, Lackawanna in second place, and Morris in third. Burlington is in fourth, but Del Tech Owens has an outside chance. That wouldn’t be our problem right now.”

The success of the rookie Titans have the team looking forward to next season, but with a shifting sophomore class, the team has also focused on recruitment efforts. A big effort is their sophomore


“They started out very strong down South, went 12-0 and reached 14 in the country in the NJCAA, which was very promising.”

Jack Sullivan CCM athletic director


“Next season we’ll retain all of our pitchers and all of our pitchers are freshman,” Wardlow said. “We lose a lot of offense and a lot of players on the field which is going to impact us for sure. We have two kids signed for next year, but we know we need more and we have to build up our roster size and depth. We’re always trailing in recruiting compared to four-year schools, but we have to work hard in April and May to get the right kids. That’s one of our focuses, even though we’re playing right now, to actively recruit at high school games and continue to push for that in the next month or so. We do need to build up our numbers for next September.”

Sullivan said he wants the team focused on the rest of this season, before worrying about next year but believes that under coach Wardlow’s leadership, the Titans will find success.

“Coach does a great job finding talent and making it translate to team chemistry, on the field and off the field,” said Sullivan. “There is solid leadership this year from Carly McDaniel and Olivia Feiger and the rest of the sophomores, they’re the core. I’ve always said in junior college, you are led by sophomores. They have been through the league before and they know what’s expected of them. They are all quality sophomores, and we have an outstanding group of freshman that came in, learning their way and by this time, I think they’re all ready to roll.”

Katlyn Lloyd, a freshman was hitting .526 at press time and was Player of the Week in the conference in the second consecutive week April 18.

“She does everything, she has 21 stolen bases already which is already in the top 10 for CCM in a season,” Wardlow said. “She hits with power, she’s the fastest kid on the team, and an all-around terrific player with a great season … Both our top two pitchers, Nicole Carter and Kellie Faber, have done very well as freshman. Carter is 11-3 right now and on Saturday, she pitched a perfect game in the second game of a doubleheader against Northampton Community College. Kellie Faber is 9-3, she struck out 10 in the first game of the doubleheader on Saturday. Both of those are certainly keeping us in game. We lost six games. The six losses, we lost 2-4 against Orange, we lost 5-6 to Lackawanna, we lost 3-5 and 2-3 to Mercer, we lost 4-6 to Del Tech, and we lost 0-2 to Western Connecticut. Those are our six losses and none of the ever by more than two runs. A little luck and maybe less injuries, our 21-6 is a lot loftier.”

County College of Morris will host the Region XIX tournament on April 28 and 29 at the softball fields near Parking Lot 1.

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SATIRE: Local Satirist Plagiarizes Self

By John Dumm
Satire Editor
The Youngtown Edition is absolutely and thoroughly bereaved to report yet another crime against journalistic decency as committed by Rogue Satirist John Dumm, who continues to use his unparallelled degree of academic irrelevance for evil. As of Friday, April 13, at 10:25 a.m., the legally deceased former columnist had attempted to turn in one of his own satire pieces in place of a final exam for Advanced Compositional Memetics (YGO 413). Editor-in-Chief Brett Friedensohn has agreed to coordinate with CCM Postmortem Communications adjuncts and the contracted head of the experimental Memetics Department, Cohen Edenfield, to relay the last known sightings of CCM’s most aggravating funnyman.

“Believe me, we are absolutely devastated by his latest loss,” Friedensohn relates, the increasingly contrived disappearances of his satire editor driving him into fits of tearful mania punctuated by what we are assured is less raucous laughter than a particularly nasty strain of tragedy hiccup.  “This is, what, the third time this year? First the coded insults to the Board of Directors, then the lawsuit with him, the libel machine, Fake Matthew and that Artix rep … What did him in this time? I hear it was, uh…”

Edenfield, the lesser known Cohen to whomst the hall was dedicated in secret by monks, has been asked to elaborate: “He, uh, handed me his paper, I started scanning stacks of them through the new SafeAssign processor we had wheeled in, and the thing went blaring red, pulled up three separate documents from the online storage of some newspaper nobody by the name of John Dumm. Works for some school piece called the Youngtown? Never heard of it, would’ve been the perfect crime were it not for the scanner thingy.”

Dodging the deep, soul-rending glares of Friedensohn, Cohen motions for his legal aide to finish the recount:

“The moment the sirens went off, five campus security officials in full riot gear busted in, carrying shotguns. They tackled John, shackled him to a golf cart they had gotten through the door , and drove off somewhere no one in this room has clearance to know about. They also shot and bagged a few members of the vaping team, but, well,”

At this point, Edenfield allowed himself a legally inadvisable interjection yelled from his Secure Debriefing / Trustee Loyalty Chamber to clarify: “I texted their parents, and they offered to split the life insurance 50/50 if I kept their names away from the vaping team. Think I heard one of those party noisemakers go off over the phone!”

Capping off the tragedy, Friedensohn has prepared a short, heartfelt eulogy for the dearly thrice-departed jokemonger, as composed by famed school poet and head of the Promethean Revival Project, Michelle Wossname:

“If any students witness a golf cart speeding on campus, do not report the sighting. If any students witness a torn, ragged pile of riot gear covered in what appears to be car battery cleaner, do not report the sighting. Monday / Wednesday classes covering the History of Modern and early modern Europe are expected to be haunted for some time within the next three weeds; do not report the sightings and do not, we repeat do not leave unattended food, literature or electronics near the lecture room walls. Any last thoughts from Cohen Edenfield? Yeah, actually, the biggest tip off was that he turned in the whole newspaper, flipped to put his article on top.”

Club invites students to invest in business strategies

By Camarie Eaton
Contributor

One semester after the chartering of an Investment Club at County College of Morris, the club’s founders are recruiting members and visitors to meetings so they can teach and discuss investing tactics.

When Ben Devenezia transferred to County College of Morris last fall, he recognized the need for an investment club. He and fellow leaders of the club are now looking to build membership and create a sustainable resource for future CCM students.

The club meets at 12:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Devenezia, who is leaving CCM at the end of the spring semester, said the club’s current goal is to pass on information about investing, the process of committing or laying out money for future profit.

“My major goal is to find someone to take it over and do a better job than I did,” Devenezia said. “If we can really make something sustainable, you know, we can kind of create a lasting finance resource that CCM has never had.”

The club has become a resource for students to not only discuss finance and investment but also to receive advice on skills such as developing a social media presence, strengthening résumés, and landing internships in the finance industry. At the end of the semester, the club will hold a pizza party.

“It’s a great starting point ‘cause it’s free,” Devenezia said. “If you have someone, whether it be a professor or a few students that are willing to work with somebody, it can be a great experience.”

Students of all majors are welcome to the club regardless of prior knowledge in finance, Devenezia said. If he can help someone walk into an interview with more confidence, he said will have done his job well.

“I love what I love, but I’m not serious about anything,” Devenezia said. “So if you can just make someone laugh while you’re teaching them something, they’ll remember it more.”

Tony Dattolo, co-founder of the club, joined because he felt the club aligned with his goals to continue at a four-year college as a future finance major.

“General financial and investment knowledge affects everyone,” Dattolo said. “You do that stuff in your life regardless of who you are.”

As a new organization on campus which started last semester, the club has only so many events and projects they can hold, Dattolo said. However, with the intention of helping business students through the internship process, the club created a contact list of the financial companies in Morris County.

“It would be good if we could get a couple of those financial firms to send us guest speakers,” Dattolo said. “Or offer opportunities for internships and partner with places in the area that can help students that are driven enough and interested enough.”

Although discussing finance and investment can sound serious or intimidating, the meetings are often interesting and fun, Dattolo said.

Jonathan Barriga, a business major with a finance concentration, was singled out to join the club by Devenezia after their investment principles class one day. He often researches finance on his own time and takes a major interest in cryptocurrency, a digital currency that has become a recent global phenomenon.

“It’s definitely something we wanna bring into the club,” said Barriga regarding cryptocurrency. “Initially, I was thinking of doing something separate, but I think it’s a better fit in the investment club.”

As the founders are looking to create a sustainable investment and finance community at CCM, increase in membership is crucial, according to Barriga.

“If you’re not really in [investments], you have no idea like where to even begin,” Barriga said. “And this gives you a place to actually begin.”

Students cope with final exam stress

By Gina N. Fico
Features Editor

With final exams looming in the last few weeks of the spring semester, students at County College of Morris are working to figure the best ways for them to study and cope with stress.

Alexandra Meza, a challenger student, taking classes at CCM while still attending high school, said she is definitely stressed over finals but is not driving herself crazy. She added that pacing herself properly, studying the correct amount of time  and also not procrastinating will help. Meza said  the main difference between the high school and college experiences are that college is more up to the students while in high school one will get “reprimanded” for not doing homework.

“I think they are both equally both stressful maybe college is a little bit more stressful,” Meza said.

Tom Tuosto, a business administration major and challenger student says he does not feel too stressed about final exams. He said during the week of finals he studies with friends and that studying in groups helps if students have any questions about the material and added he also looks over his notes to prepare. He said in high school students can “get away” with putting in only a little time but said in college students need to know the material “in and out.” However, he explained that he is happy he chose to do the challenger program because of the freedom with scheduling.

“I basically got to pick my whole schedule for my senior year,” Tuosto said. “On days my friends had classes, I was out doing what I wanted or hanging out at home it was so nice to take a break.”

Sarah Grider, another challenger student, said she wishes she would have had a senior year but likes she that she got to see how the college process works through the challenger program.

“I definitely know that it’s going to help me understand how to the whole college process works,” Grider said. She explained that a lot of people she talks to about college feel “lost.”

She said she didn’t have finals in high school so there’s more pressure to do well now. She said she is a little worried about finals and the information on the finals but said going through the textbook will help.

Lydia Hier, a liberal arts major said she is feeling really stressed out about her biology final exam.

“Biology is the main one I am stressed about,” Hier said.

She said that there is a lot of content for biology and although she said she understands the material she still feels worried about remembering and knowing everything she needs to know. She explained she has been going to her professor for help, studying the book, and seeing an outside tutor. Hier explained the biggest change is not having review sheets like she did in high school and wishes that high school made her more independent to take an exam.

CCM student Jessica Haines said final exams are always stressful and that it’s a “group stress” because everyone has exams at the same time.

“They are always stressful because you never know how it’s going to go until you take the exams and see your grade,” said Haines. She said she cuddles with her dogs as a way to relieve stress during final exam time and that her advice to students struggling with stress with final exams would be to find balance. She explained that finding balance between “calming yourself down and getting stuff done” will help. She added that students will not learn much if they study while they are stressed.

Matt Menagh, a criminal justice major, said he has a lot of studying to do but feels prepared from his professors. He said that taking breaks to relax and time management helps with the studying process.

“I was at a four-year school before this so I just transferred in,” Menagh said.

Feminist Book Club offers safe environment for literary discussion

By Charlotte Channell
Contributor

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Feminist Book Club members hold a meeting in the lower level of the Learning Resource Center. Photo courtesy of: Chloe Smith

The Feminist Book Club at County College of Morris addresses the multitude of struggles women have faced throughout history by picking books to aid in weekly discussion.

Chloe Smith, founder and president of the Feminist Book Club, said she felt as though CCM was in dire need of a safe space for students to read and discuss stimulating literature. At the start of the spring 2017 semester, she took it upon herself to organize the group, and it has been active ever since.

“My favorite kind of literature is feminist women’s literature, so I thought I’d make that specification so we would be reading those kinds of books,” Smith said. “I took a women’s studies class my senior year, and it really got me into the topic.”

“One of the first books we did, ‘She’s Come Undone’ by Wally Lamb, talked about sexual assault, which is a huge topic right now,” Smith said.

This semester, the club is reading Margaret Atwood’s ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’, a dystopian novel that explores patriarchal society while also addressing sexual abuse.

The latter theme was Carol Mathusek’s inspiration for joining the book club, this inspiration eventually leading to her becoming the vice president.

“I know women who have been the victims of sexual violence, so I’ve always held that feminist ideology close to heart,” Mathusek said.

After taking a Women’s Studies class at CCM, she said her eyes were opened to the prevalence of gender roles in today’s society, and she found solace in the book club.

“We are in an age where women are so objectified, and despite our greatest efforts, women are not moving forward,” she said. “I think it’s important to have an atmosphere at the school where women, and even men, can get together and talk about issues that really matter.”

The club’s faculty adviser and CCM English professor Dr. Philip Chase, said he also finds the discussion of these heavy topics to be extremely valuable, especially as the discourse stems from such inspiring literature.

“The club provides a space for students to talk about books in a situation where there’s no pressure from grades; it’s just a pure love of reading,” Chase said. “It’s also important to talk about books with the feminist lens in mind, knowing that we live in a society that is still not entirely equal.”

Chase hopes the book club will continue to flourish in the coming years and that students will take advantage of the many benefits it has to offer.

“Almost 100 years after women got the vote, there are still things that need some sorting, and a feminist approach, not just to literature, but to life, is vital,” Chase said.

Student artwork on display at CCM gallery

By Deanna Roma
News Editor

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Photos by Deanna Roma

County College of Morris’ Art and Design Gallery is decking its walls with student artwork with three exhibits in April and May when members of the public can view the pieces in the lower level of the Learning Resource Center for free.

The Art Club Spring Exhibit ended Friday, April 13, followed by the photography program’s thesis exhibit set to close Friday, April 27. CCM’s “best of the best” student exhibition will run Friday, May 4 to Friday, May 18.

“The annual exhibition provides an opportunity for the community to view outstanding artwork,” said gallery director Todd Doney, an art and design professor at CCM. “Each program will be on display [and] represent each area of the CCM department of art and design.”

The whole exhibit is sponsored by CCM’s Art Club and all featured art is the work of CCM students.

“This project is a lot about identity,” said photography technology major Claire Neely. “I think all of our work here is about identity. Everyone here has kind of picked something that they are passionate about.”

Neely said that photography is a longtime passion of his.

“I have been taking pictures for a very long time,” Neely said. “I come from a family of photographers, so it’s kind of in my blood.”

All artwork entered can potentially be awarded one out of four prizes: Best in Show, Award of Merit, Honorable Mention and the 2018 Scholarship Gala Purchase Award. As for the winner of the Gala Award, the student’s artwork will be purchased by the art club and donated to the CCM Foundation which raises money for programs and scholarships at CCM. The art club’s donation goes directly to the Tony Lordi Scholarship Fund.

“The gallery opens up a big opportunity,” said gallery monitor Kathy Dodds. “It displays their work and it also shows that they have had their work in an establishment. I myself have had some of my artwork displayed in this gallery … It is very crucial that you get your artwork out there so people can see how good you are at your work. You can tell how hard the students have worked on their pieces.”

The thesis show will hold a reception at 5 p.m. Friday, April 27 under the guidance of professor Hrvoje Slovenc. The student exhibition reception runs at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 10.  The art and design gallery hours are Mondays and Wednesdays from noon to 5 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 8 p.m., and Fridays from noon to 4 p.m.

Before transferring out, consider your purpose in college

By Elena Hooper
Opinion Editor

As the semester begins to draw to a close and the promise hot, sunny days, pool parties, and lazy afternoons on the porch keep us hopeful during the dreary fog of spring, I’m sure quite a few of us are already gearing up to take summer classes or even transfer to a four-year school. Summer if often a time to get the small stuff done, like Gen. Ed. classes or transcript reviews, so that the bigger, more important moves in our educational career can run smoothly. What many of you might not stop to consider what is actually quite a pivotal question; Why, exactly, are you going to college? You may think you know the answer to that, but have you really given it a proper thought? I’d like to explain why pondering this question is actually worth your time and a crucial deciding factor to your future and life satisfaction.

In American society for at least forty years now, it’s customary that when we reach the end of our time in high school, we begin our search for colleges, far and wide, that provide a plethora of degree programs that we’re not sure if we’re even interested in to begin with. Most of us barely make up our minds about how we feel about ourselves and yet are essentially thrust into a situation that is completely beyond the maturity we’re capable of and out of our emotional and executive functioning depth. But we do it because it is our condition, and we make do, and a good portion of us come out on the other side relatively unscathed.

It would be easy to overlook our real motivations for pursuing a college degree as it is programmed into us from a very young age. We often see it as a means to an end and as the narrow path that leads us from one stage of life to another. It’s seen as normal and in some cases, even obligatory, to go to college in the United States, and those who do not participate are often seen as slackers.

Now I’m sure there are many people who go to college because they want to and they thrive in such an academic environment, but the opposite is true for many as well. There are often many people who feel a sense of duty to go to college, despite having little interest in it, and struggle semester after semester to keep their grades high enough so that they are not expelled, even if they put a sufficient amount of work into their studies.

The truth of the matter is: college is not easy, and it’s meant to be that way. For many hundreds of years, university was attended by the elite and only the elite who were pursuing the study of the arts and sciences. It was meant to be a rigorous endeavor that tested your mind and your values. It was meant to challenge you as much as possible and to expose you  many different perspectives. When one attended university, it was because he was in the pursuit of knowledge; he was there to learn. He was there to understand. Much of that, I believe, has been lost now in recent years due to the urgency and necessity placed on us to get that “perfect” white collar job. To that I say: nonsense. College is not a means to an end. It is meant to be an experience of knowledge where the process of it all outweighs the end product. But people cease to really learn or understand anything if they are only there to take a test. If they only want to memorize and not actually comprehend the information they’re being taught. This is not completely college students’ fault, however, as the education we received prior to coming to university was constructed the same way. Information itself has little value, only your ability to spit it back out for a test is what matters, and that is a truly poisonous idea.

So if the current state of postsecondary education is frustrating you like it’s frustrating me, you might be itching for a solution. Truthfully, the ideal solution would be for our overall culture to realign its values and work ethic with what people are capable of, not what we force them to do, but that’s going to take much longer to fix itself than the smaller decisions I’m going to suggest one could make. This may worry you as you’ve probably been told many times that the only way to have a happy life is if you go to college. This is also nonsense, you’ll just have to do a little digging.

For those who find themselves in a constant struggle with their postsecondary education and can’t seem to feel secure in a college environment no matter how hard they try, it might be time to reconsider the path your on. It might be difficult to accept that if you’ve been to a few different universities already or have been at the two-year level for quite awhile now, then university might not be for you, and that’s okay. So if that is the case, you might be wondering what your options are. You might be surprised at just how many careers are out there that don’t require a four-year degree. For example, construction and building inspectors made an approximate median annual salary of $59,000 but only need a high school diploma or equivalent and five years of work in a related occupation, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics which says that the field is expected to grow 10 percent by 2026. Also, elevator inspectors and repairers made an approximate median annual salary of $79,000 in a field expected to grow. But these are only a few examples of the wide array of careers you have to choose from.

Keep in mind that the foundation from which you build your career should be based on strong skills you have, not what you’re passionate about, and not what’s going to make you the most money. It may turn out that your passion is also a strong skill you have that can be easily marketable, but that is often not the case. True satisfaction in career comes from what you’re good at, but you should also enjoy what you do in the process. And if you struggle to identify what skills you have, then there are plenty of legitimate online quizzes to choose from that can help you in that process, or for even better results, you can even see career counselors including those at CCM’s Office of Career Services in CH 203. There are many two-year degrees, certification programs, apprenticeships, and vocational and technical programs that utilize the skills of those who may not have a knack for the scholarly but for the practical and hands-on. It is just as honest of a living than if you pursued a four, six, or even eight-year degree.

Now of course there are many people who pursue the scholarly, who pursue the white collar jobs, because they genuinely want to and it’s what they’re good at. There are also many people who come from poor or immigrant families who go to university to have a better life than what their parents had, and that is also valid. But where it becomes a problem is when people feel an obligation to go to university instead of a motivation. They don’t feel any reason to be there other than it’s what they’ve been told to do, but there is nothing wrong with not liking a university environment as it’s a very difficult environment for people to be in. It’s supposed to be like that.

So as the summer draws near, remember to really get in tune with yourself. Ask yourself what you want out of a university education, if anything at all. Are you there (or going there) because it’s a comfortable environment for you? Because you enjoy the challenge and the results you get from those challenges? Or are you going because it’s what you were told to do? Because it’s what everyone does? Or just because you want to make a lot of money? If your answers are the latter four, then maybe it’s time to look into other options. If you’ve been struggling for a while now to make ends meet in your university career and you feel like you’ve reached a dead end, just know that there is hope for a better future; it’s just not there. There’s just as much value in a career that’s vocational or technical as there is in an educated one. Being honest with what you want is much more likely to guarantee you satisfaction in life than trying to please others expectations.

Not functioning well in an academic environment doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with you, or that you’re stupid, it just means that it’s not right for you, and you can find happiness and security in a career that doesn’t require such education. It’s true that you won’t make as much income than if you did have a university education, but if the only place you derive satisfaction from in life is how much money you make, then you will always feel dissatisfied. You’re not going to find joy in life by being complacent or from being able to own a mansion with a fancy car but from how productive and useful you feel and feeling like you’re working to your highest potential. Utilizing our skills and feeling like we’re making a difference, no matter how prestigious the job, is what’s important. A university education is not the only way to feel that, so I want you to consider this very important question: Why do you want to go to university?

Primary Primer: What students should know for upcoming House of Representatives elections

By Caroline O’Brien
Contributor

Registered voters in six New Jersey Congressional districts will elect their party’s candidate for the November federal congressional midterm election Tuesday, June 5.

United States House Representatives serve two-year terms and are up for reelection every even year. Twelve New Jersey candidates will serve in the U.S. House, one from each congressional district.

U.S. House representative in District 11 since 1995, Rodney Frelinghuysen, announced he will not be seeking re-election in the district which encompasses County College of Morris and most of the rest of Morris County. This will guarantee change for New Jersey’s 11th district.

Neighboring districts with primaries in June include District 5 which includes most of Sussex, Warren, Bergen, and Passaic Counties where incumbent Josh Gottheimer hopes to represent the Democratic Party again. Also, incumbent republican Leonard Lance is seeking re-election in District 7 which encompasses most of Hunterdon and Somerset Counties, parts of Mercer County, and some Morris County municipalities including Mount Olive, Chester Township and Borough, Washington Township, Long Hill, and Chatham.

Mikie Sherrill, a Democratic candidate seeking election for District 11, is displeased with current policy makers.

“After promising not to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Rodney Frelinghuysen broke his word and voted with Donald Trump to end protections for preexisting conditions, let insurance companies charge individuals over 50 five times more than others, and to strip away health care from nearly 30,000 district residents,” her website says. “Rodney Frelinghuysen got in line and voted for Donald Trump’s tax plan that eliminates state and local tax deductions. This is a $4,000 tax increase for most families in our district. He sided with Donald Trump to defund planned parenthood, cut education funding, and has the worst environmental record of any member of the New Jersey delegation.”

Mark Washburne, a CCM history professor and Democratic candidate for District 11, said congress should do a better job of holding President Donald Trump accountable.

“In drafting the 1787 United States Constitution, our Founding Fathers anticipated that we would have a rogue President from time to time as they had experience dealing with rogue kings,” Washburne said. “They purposely established a three-branch government with checks and balances. The drafters of the Constitution assigned Congress the task of being the check on a rogue President … The current Congressman from New Jersey’s 11th District refuses to fulfill his Constitutional duties by speaking out and being a check on this rogue President.”

Tamara Harris, a Democrat seeking election, said she is confident in her adversity to current legislation. She  believes planning for the resiliency of our state and our nation will spur growth. Harris advocates research and development of green technology as means to provide new jobs and tax revenues.  She supports universal Pre-School to give more children across the country a fair opportunity to succeed. According to her campaign website, the GOP’s current budget plan would remove $2.4 billion in grants for teacher training and $1.2 billion in funding for summer and afterschool programs. Students need support from teachers who prepare them for their future beyond the classroom. Students need more options to graduate without debt and relieve existing debt. Undergraduate and graduate students need options for work while in school, including programs such as Federal Work-Study program. Harris will work to make higher education more affordable and accessible in NJ11’s college rich district. She believes in retaining functioning parts of the Affordable Care Act and fixing the parts that need improvement. She supports universal background checks on all gun purchases and banning assault weapons and prohibiting technology that increases a weapon’s rate of fire and destructive capabilities. She is Pro Choice, and pro-education for our teens as they begin to make life choices that can affect their physical and sexual health and economic viability. Harris also believes immigration system is broken, and needs to be fixed, replacing it with a safer and more accountable system that includes a path to citizenship for immigrants. Harris also supports continued investment in our roads, bridges, and tunnels, to ensure the safety of residents.

“Republicans in Congress recently passed a slew of tax cuts for the ultra-rich and big corporations that will burden New Jersey’s middle class and working families with higher taxes,” Harris said on her website. “The Republicans in Congress who vote for this tax-plan are sacrificing the middle class and creating extreme disparities in wealth that will impact economic mobility for generation to come. My advocacy for students, singles, families, and seniors requires me to stand firm against these Republican tax giveaways.”

Allison Heslin, a Democratic candidate seeking election, knows  collecting sufficient information is a critical first step to policy reform.  According to her website, Heslin advocates investing in renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, and reducing energy consumption through energy efficient technology while also creating jobs. In addition, she promotes modernizing waste management practices to divert organic waste into composting facilities to prevent a full 18 percent of methane emissions. Management and protection of our forests and oceans is crucial to support their natural role of absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere, while also supporting wildlife and biodiversity. She considers the Hudson River tunnel is a critical piece of regional and national infrastructure, which needs an immediate guarantee of federal funding contributions.  Heslin supports a tax system in which wealthy and corporations pay their fair share, in order to adequately fund public services without overburdening middle income earners. Heslins campaign also address’ different forms of institutional violence in order to create a more just society.

“Only half of undocumented migrants in the U.S. crossed the border illegally, the other half arrive legally through official points of entry and overstay their entry period,” Heslin said on her campaign website. “Additionally, of those apprehended by Border Patrol in 2016, less than half were from Mexico. The national focus on reducing undocumented populations by targeting Mexican migrants through increased border security does not match the reality of contemporary migration, and policy proposals based on this misrepresentation of migration will not address their stated purpose.”

Mitchell Cobert, a Democratic candidate, advocates funding by the federal government for the Gateway Tunnel Project, according to his campaign website. He plans to develop a fair immigration system protecting our national security and bipartisan solutions that benefit all and put immigrants, particularly Dreamers, on a path to citizenship. ​He believes in drug abuse preventions and cure over prisons and jails. Will work to ban offshore drilling and fracking and support transition to clean, solar, tidal and wind energy.  Cobert will fight any attempts to privatize Social Security and work to expand benefits for all recipients. He will also work to advance equal rights and opportunities of all persons with disabilities to help them fully realize their potential as contributing members of society.

Mikie Sherrill,  a Democratic candidate, calls climate change an economic and national security issue that affects all of us.  According to her website, she is a Naval Academy graduate, navy pilot, former federal prosecutor, and is ready to fight back against Trump. Sherrill supports access to affordable, quality education, healthcare, and will never support cuts to social security and Medicare. She believes the federal government should have no say on when, how, or with whom women decide to start a family. She also supports policy to keep guns out of the hands of violent criminals, domestic abusers, and terrorists.

As a Democrat seeking election, Washburne has relied only on voluntary sharing through social media and has declined all monetary donations for the primary election. If elected to Congress, Washburne said he will speak out and hold President Trump accountable for his often dangerous, unethical, and illegal behavior.  Washburne supports strengthening the Affordable Care Act to ensure more people are covered. According to his website, Washburne considers a landmark study in 1993 at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed that bringing a gun into the home puts everyone at much greater risk. The National Rifle Association pushed Congress in 1995 to stop the C.D.C. from spending taxpayer money on research that advocated gun control. Congress passed the Dickey Amendment in 1996 and cut funding that effectively ended the C.D.C.’s study of gun violence as a public health issue. Washburne supports rescinding the Dickey Amendment and allowing the C.D.C. to be able to study firearm violence in the U.S. He also supports universal background checks before purchasing a firearm and gun  control measures to remove weapons meant for war off American streets.

According to his campaign website, Patrick Allocco, a Republican candidate, decided to take up the political torch that Rodney Frelinghuysen is putting down. He believes votes matter and District 11 deserves a fast and easy way of conveying thoughts on every bill presented to congress.

Peter de Neufville is a republican candidate seeking election to the U.S. House to represent the 11th Congressional District of New Jersey and, according to New Jersey Globe, wants to improve gun background check standards and combat national debt.

Antony Ghee, an investment banker and Army Reserve major, announced he is seeking election a day after Assemblyman Anthony Bucco announced he would not run for Congress.  His campaign website accepts contributions except from corporations. He has an undergraduate degree in Business Administration, with honors, from Virginia Union and my Juris Doctorate from Howard University School of Law. In addition, he received a Masters of Law from Georgetown University School of Law, specializing in Securities & Financial Regulation. He is currently employed as a director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in the Global Wealth & Investment Management Chief Investment Office in New York City.

Martin Hewitt  is running as a Republican in order to serve all the people of District 11.  According to his website, Hewitt decided to run as a moderate Republican because, while he feels both parties have a strong heritage, it is the Republican Party that has lost its way. He is running as a moderate Republican after listening to many of the constituents who believe that Congressman Frelinghuysen no longer represents their best interests. He believes in freedom of speech and that all people have certain rights including life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Hewitt advocates healthcare as a right for all people. He also believes the government should not dictate who to love or who to marry.

Jay Webber is a republican member of the New Jersey General Assembly, representing District 26. Webber was elected to the chamber in 2007 and was re-elected to a new term in 2017. His campaign website states Webber is leading the effort on transparency to put all of New Jersey’s taxpayer receipts and expenditures online for taxpayers to see. Webber is also leading the way in an innovative bipartisan effort to emphasize prevention and early treatment of chronic disease for public employees, which will improve the quality of outcomes for the employees and save money for taxpayers. Webber is an advocate for expanding educational opportunities for kids stuck in our lowest-performing schools, by giving them a chance to go to a school of their choice. As for higher education, he has proposed innovative ways to make college more affordable to students and their families, by allowing them to finance their educations in ways that will minimize student loan debt.

Polls are open June 5 from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.  If a New Jersey voter does not provide valid identification at the time of registration, he or she must show identification at the polling place, student IDs accepted.  Early voting permits residents to cast ballots in person at a polling place prior to an election. To vote absentee, an application may be submitted in person to county election officials until 3 p.m. June 4, or if sent by mail, it must be received by election officials no later than May 29.

Students learn the ropes at CCM Climbing Club

By Jonathan Rogoff
Contributor

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A climbing wall in Atlanta where the climbing club toured in 2014. Photo courtesy of: Facebook

The Climbing Club at County College of Morris offers students a chance to either try climbing for the first time or climb with a group of like-minded enthusiasts who have a passion for the sport.

The club aims to bring climbers together as a tight knit community and to draw as many people into climbing as possible, while fostering a healthy relationship with being active and climbing.

“There was a group of maybe about a dozen students who were super into climbing,” said Ian Colquhoun, a faculty member of the engineering technologies department and adviser to the Climbing Club.  “They wanted to form a club, so they looked at what the proper channels were and they needed a faculty adviser, and it just so happened that one of the students at the time was a student of mine. So that’s how it all kind of came about.”

Colquhoun, who used to be more of an avid climber but enjoys it more casually nowadays, said that indoor climbing is the perfect place for students to hone their climbing skills.

“It’s good to start indoors where it’s safe and fun and everything, and then once your skills get better, you can transition to outside, and get some more skills and a little more knowledge and some really close friends, and then all go and climb together,” Colquhoun said.

“The club started five years ago,” said Emma Plunkett, a member of the club and a liberal arts major at CCM.  “We know the people who started it, and we see them climbing sometimes at the place we go to which is nice because they want to see the club continue.  We meet at 8 p.m. at the Randolph Climbing Center and they allow us to climb there and give discounts to CCM students so that we can get the equipment cheaper.”

The club meets every Tuesday and Thursday and contains 19 people on the email list while nine people have been to club meetings and five people have been to the climbing center.

“We asked the boss of the climbing center, who is very generous, if they would mind giving us a discount,” said Tatiana Castellanos, an exercise science major at CCM.  “We are college students, and we are on a budget, and he said that it was no problem.”

Castellanos said that the climbing center even allowed the club to do a free night for people who are new to climbing, just to see what it is like and to get people aware of what climbing is.  Castellanos also added that a lot of students can be timid and hesitant when they see something they need to pay for, so it is nice that they can offer something for free because students will be more inclined to try it.

“I just got hooked,” Plunkett said.  “The reason I kept going was because everyone was so nice and welcoming that I fell in love with the actual sport of it, and now I’m super into it.”

Castellanos said that she is “obsessed” with climbing.

“I started when I was 18, so five years ago,” said Castellanos, who was working in gymnastics on the other side of the climbing center.  “I saw that we had a rock wall, and then one of the employees asked if I wanted to try it, and everyone there was so welcoming, and I tried it out … It’s basically just hanging out with your friends while doing something you all really like.”

Counseling center hosts series of events to raise awareness about sexual assault

By Amanda Edwards
Staff Writer

In honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the Office of Counseling and Student Success presented a number of events between Thursday, April 12 and Wednesday, April 25, to raise awareness with the proceedings supported by the student clubs active minds, gender club, and LGBTQ+ club.

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CCM student Matthew J. Bristol holds a promotional sign for the Counseling Center’s awareness campaign. Photo courtesy of: Facebook

The events were Teal Day, Spin The Wheel of Fact VS. Fiction, “No more” Campaign, and “Denim Day.”

These events were collectively designed, according to a release by the Office of Counseling and Student Success to “raise visibility, encourage conversation, and help break the social stigma surrounding sexual assault and violence.”

Kaitlin Dias, counselor at CCM, was one of the key organizers of the events.

“It affects us more than we know,” Dias said.

In fact, statistics from the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, (RAINN) state, “Every year, there are approximately 237,868 victims of sexual assault; 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men in the U.S. will be a victim of sexual assault.”

Dias said that while this topic may make some people feel uncomfortable, students should access the counseling center’s services when necessary.

“This topic could be very triggering for those who are victims of sexual assault,” Dias said. “I understand that. Nevertheless, I strongly encourage all students to visit the Office of Student Services and Counselling, whether it is they themselves who need help, or they’re worried about a friend. Even if it was a case from before you attended CCM, I advise you to come. You are not alone, and we will support you in a non-judgemental way. This is also an opportunity to use your voice to prevent this from occurring again.”

At “Teal Day,” active minds president Stephanie Camacho related the purpose of the awareness campaign to the club’s mission to encourage mental health.

“Active Minds is keen on spreading awareness because we know that sexual harassment affects mental health,” Camacho said.

Also, as she encouraged students to sign the “No more” pledge, Active Minds Volunteer Allison Bratsch told the participants :“It’s okay not to be okay. Be strong.”

Vice president of Active Minds Raven Resch said she has struggled with a number of mental illnesses in the past.

“During those times I felt so isolated because no one wanted to be associated with the girl with the psychiatric problem,” Resch said. “It was hard, but I’ve recovered since then because of time social workers and psychologists have spent with me. Sometimes, it’s not the person that has the problem, but its trauma from the environment and I want to break the shame that the victim feels. I am passionate about spreading awareness about sexual assaults because I know what mental illnesses can do to someone’s life. Those times were difficult, but I also  wouldn’t change any of my flaws. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without those experiences, so I encourage others to seek help.”

Dias advises students who need help to call the National Sexual Assault Hotline to be connected to a trained staff member in their area. Their contact number is

800-656-HOPE (4673).

Counselors are available from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays in SCC 118.  Students can also reach the Office of Counseling and Student Success by calling 973-328-5140, or email counseling@ccm.edu.”