EDITORIAL: Fall 2016 reflection

As the semester draws to a close and we look ahead to the approaching holidays, let’s take a moment to reflect on the past three months.

At the County College of Morris, we have welcomed a new college president. Dr. Anthony Iacono has, thus far, shown an interest in receiving honest feedback from the campus community. He has been holding coffee and conversations with the president and encouraging staff, faculty and students to speak candidly with him regarding issues and suggestions they have on campus . It will be interesting to see how that affects his coming semesters.

The CCM Board of Trustees has made the decision to close the college’s Morristown location. While we only have a bare-bones explanation, given in a press release, how the closure changes the way classes are dealt with at the college is yet to be seen. The board assures that the classes will be accommodated by the Randolph campus if needed, but how does that affect students who attended classes in Morristown to account for transportation issues? The spring will show how the college accounts for the campus closure.

Here at the Youngtown, our editorial staff has grown and everyone’s skills have strengthened. The camaraderie in our news room is one of the factors that creates such a strong paper. Our own Cecilia McGuinness, our senior layout editor, will be graduating at the end of the semester and beginning her time at a four-year university. We are so excited to see how she grows and flourishes there. Satire editor Moe Rahmatullah has created a position for himself in our staff that we did not have before him. That willingness to push the boundaries and try new things pushes growth.

While reflection throws growth into higher contrast, the Youngtown is excited to turn forwards to the spring semester and continue to take strides. While people may associate print news with the past, we are ready to show all the ways in which we embody the future.

College students drink frightening amount


College parties conjure images of red Solo cups and beer pong. While there may be no memories of the mistakes made, some could affect students for the rest of their lives.

“All I remember is that I killed it in beer pong that night,” an anonymous source from Rutgers University said. “The next thing I remember, it is the next morning, and I am in my bed naked with my throwup-covered costume on the floor in my shower. That was my Halloween last year.”  

According to Women’s Forum, “44 percent of college students from the ages 17-21 binge drink.” Binge drinking is defined as having five or more drinks during one occasion. The newfound freedom of students living on their own makes adolescents feel unstoppable.

“Binge drinking is such a problem because teenagers are on their own for the first time in their lives, and they feel like they are adults now and can do whatever they want,” said Amanda Carfagno, William Paterson University student.   

The aspect of peer pressure is also asserted in the college community – not the good peer pressure either. If one does not drink, some friends no longer consider him or her “cool”. The whole “Just Say No” campaign, started by First Lady Nancy Reagan in 1982, seems as irrelevant as ever. It seems as if the word “no” does not exist in the minds of these young adults.

“Most college students feel like if they are not drunk, they cannot have fun,” said Monica Onorata, The College of New Jersey student. “One drink and a little buzz is not enough to have a good time anymore.”

Not only does binge drinking lead to health problems, such as alcohol poisoning and liver disease, but to academic issues as well. “About 1 in 4 college students report academic consequences from drinking, including missing class, falling behind in class, doing poorly on exams and/or papers and receiving lower grades overall,” according to collegedrinkingprevention.gov.  

There has been an effort to help prevent this craze of underage drinking, such as the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program (D.A.R.E.). The D.A.R.E. program began in 1983 and is currently effective in 75 percent of school districts across the United States, according to www.scientificamerican.com. Nevertheless, statistics have proved that the college life is part of the party, and every undergraduate needs to realize the consequences of binge drinking on a higher level then not making it into the top fraternity on campus.


Partnership provides study abroad opportunities at CCM

Managing Editor

While movies of our youth showed Hilary Duff and the Olsen twins racing through Europe on their overseas excursions, students at the County College of Morris can mix that excitement with college credits through a study abroad partnership with the College Consortium for International Students (CCIS).

The consortium partners with a range of different schools, from large universities and state institutions to other smaller community colleges, including CCM.

As a CCM student, you get to travel with a slight discount and you also receive a credit transfer, which is arranged for you before you venture off to your temporary home abroad.

“If you’re a non CCIS member you can still apply to a CCIS program but you won’t get the discount,” said James Hart, chairperson of intercultural communications at CCM. “It would be like if you were a visiting student at a school. So you’d have to request a transcript which would then be sent to your home school. Here at CCM, all of that is already pre arranged so that we can make it as easy as possible.”

The prices range from as little as 4,000 dollars to as much as 20,000 dollars. The price depends on whether you’re going for a whole semester or for a couple of weeks in the summer. Some of the institutions offer summer programs, which are typically less expensive than the longer semester programs.

“I picked a major and then a place that made sense for that major,” said Sabrina O’Toole, marine biology major at CCM. “When I went to Hawaii, I had a scuba diving class so I was getting hands on experience.”

Summer programs are usually as short as two to three weeks and as long as six weeks. They’re similar to CCM’s summer classes, which are broken down into five week mini-semesters. Whatever class you take during the mini-semester counts as a regular class, just a condensed version. When someone goes abroad, there is always an academic component, though it may be as little as a three-credit class.

Kelly Guapacho, CCM alumna, fondly reminisced about the time she spent at the Lorenzo De Medici Institute in Florence, Italy. She stayed in a hostel while she was there and didn’t meet her room mate until move in day. She said her only regret was taking too many classes but that she spent her weekends traveling as much as she could.

“I recommend it to anyone seeking adventure” Guapacho said. “It was enlightening. Spiritual. It was everything all at once. It was amazing.”

According to Hart, CCM chose to partner with CCIS because they offer a wide variety of study locations.  There are 26 countries available for travel, some with as many as five programs.

“I thought the application process was going to be a lot harder than it was,” said Julia Ryan, communication major at CCM. “I had to write a reflective essay on why I wanted to go to England and fill out a request for transcript form, which altogether, only took me an hour to finish.”

“There are so many advantages of studying abroad,” Hart said. “It increases your intercultural sensitivity and creates important communication skills which can apply to people within your own culture. It teaches you how to make yourself understood along with how to connect with someone who you don’t have a lot in common with.”

TBS’ ‘People of Earth’ engaging, layered comedy

Entertainment Editor

Hot off the heels of last season’s absurdly brilliant critical and commercial success Angie Tribeca, the TBS mid-fall lineup may have found a worthy replacement in People of Earth. Created by David Jenkins with executive producers Conan O’Brien and acclaimed screenwriter Greg Daniels, it cultivates a cool blend of jokes and intrigue.

The series follows the journey of Ozzie Graham, played by Wyatt Cenac, a journalist who is tasked to pen a story on an alien abductee (they prefer the term “experiencers”) support group in Beacon, NY. Ozzie is initially highly skeptical of the authenticity of the delightfully quirky group members’ differing reports on their experiences. However, he soon finds himself pelted day and night with disjointed, constantly changing visions of him hitting a deer with his car on the way to Beacon that don’t quite seem to add up. Couple this with constant hallucinations of a talking deer, and he decides to join the group himself to figure out the truth about what’s been happening to him.

Group member Gerry, played by Luka Jones, takes a particular liking to Ozzie, and agrees with his sentiment that the group should shift to a more investigative approach. The group clearly has some interpersonal communication issues (the yelling matches reach obscenely hilarious territory), and Ozzie’s relatively stubborn yet constructive personality helps to  keep them grounded. Under Ozzie’s wing, the group now has a mission: to understand why and how these experiences occurred, not just mope about them once a week.

Many members of the group recount wildly different “experiences”. Some swear that they were encountered by reptilians. Others insist that they were taken aboard a ship by grey aliens. Two of the women assert that they were seduced by a man with long hair who “looked like Ryan Gosling.” The show manages to explain these varying reports by revealing that they are all in fact true, as the alien ship which they are being taken to houses a reptilian, a grey, and a long-haired man who slightly resembles Ryan Gosling. It’s a unique, Cabin in the Woods-esque way of potentially explaining the stark variations of extraterrestrial encounter reports. Soon we find that the aliens are a laughingly dysfunctional trio, and it’s certainly an interesting juxtaposition to witness their flawed interactions in contrast to the group.

Given its supernatural aura with comedic aspects peppered throughout the dialogue and situations, more than a few comparisons can be drawn to that other high-concept comedy this season, NBC’s The Good Place. Though People of Earth doesn’t hold the same level of star power as Kristen Bell and Ted Danson, it does a remarkable job of resonating a genuine sense of curiosity with the viewer whilst not taking itself too seriously.

People of Earth airs on Mondays at 9pm on TBS.

Men’s basketball shoots to improve on last season

Sports Editor 

The men’s basketball team at County College of Morris started its season 2-1 in region play and 3-5 overall with a 92-78 loss to Raritan Valley Community College Tuesday, Nov. 29.

CCM hosted this season’s men’s Turkey Hoop Shoot Tournament, an annual four-team single-elimination tournament featuring teams from the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and taking place during the NJCAA’s regular season. CCM was eliminated in the first round of the tournament with a 94-77 loss to Rowan College at Gloucester County (RCGC) Friday, Nov. 18.

Assistant coach Clinton Barnhill, who acted as head coach at the game in the absence of head coach Anthony Obery, said that the team worked well in the first half but not the second.

“We lost our principles in the second half,” Barnhill said. “We teach this stuff all year long: defense starts offense. We did it the other way around, and when you give a team like that confidence, this is the end result.”

Roger Stevens, assistant athletic director at CCM, said that he has noticed the team making vast improvements from last season when it finished 1-14 in the region and 3-19 overall and failed to qualify for the playoffs.

“From what I’ve seen, they look 100 percent better than what they were last year,” Stevens said. “So if they continue that way, game by game, they certainly have a chance to be in the playoffs.”

After the loss to RCGC, which gave the team a record of 2-1 in the region and 2-3 overall, Barnhill expressed disappointment in the record, citing struggles on defense as hinderance.

“Just to be frank, it sucks,” Barnhill said. “We expect a lot out of these kids; we expect for them to be winners, and at this point, it’s early in the season, yeah, but there’s no moral victories … We have to be better on defense. I think if you see it where we’re giving up 85 points in a game, on this level, that equates to a lot of losses. We know what the issue is. It’s just about the kids buying in.”

Lamont Williams, men’s basketball player and liberal arts major, said that he expects his team’s record to improve as the players learn to have more cohesion with each other.

“Early on, it’s not where we want it to be,” Williams said. “We’re a very young team, and most of them are freshmen, so once we start getting a knack for each other and trusting each other, we’ll have a better record.”

After the loss to RCGC, Williams agreed with Barnhill regarding the team’s need to improve on defense.

“Like our coach said, we lost our principles late in the game,” Williams said. “We started giving up silly points … Scoring is our strength. Hustling is our strength. We’ve just got to get better on defense.”

Barnhill said that he has confidence in his team improving in necessary areas.

“We’ve got a young group, and they’re learning,” Barnhill said. “But at the same time, it has to click, and when it does, we’ll be that special team that myself and the other coaches see, but until then, we’ll have the roadblocks.”

End of semester message from Youngtown staff:

The most fun anyone can have at County College of Morris is being part of the Youngtown Edition production staff. We know it’s the law of the journalism writing land to stay subjective, but it’s an unadul- terated fact that when a student joins the Youngtown, they join a family. We are comprised of fast thinkers, witty talkers, and talented writers, whose growth through writing through our bi-weekly production has blossomed before our eyes. It’s truly amazing to watch timid students quietly take a seat in the corner at our 12:30 p.m. meeting time, and see them walk out at 6:00 p.m. and join our little posse for Thursday night dinner in the Cohen Cafeteria, as if we have been a group of friends for years. Every individual who walks through our production door every Thursday has experienced a whirlwind of poorly brainstormed headlines, where the conclusion to an hour-long argument usually ends in “I hate it, but it’ll work,” and that there are absolutely no food or drinks allowed in the production room. We welcome all into our arms, and it is the drive and passion that brings us and ultimately keeps us together, as long as you know who “The Cranberries” are.

Finding the cure for finals fever

News Editor

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, finals nipping at your toes. It’s study season at the County College of Morris (CCM) and students are whipping out their textbooks.

Many students have their choice of studying techniques and routines for this chaotic time of the semester. Figuring out what works best can sometimes be difficult when there are multiple ways to absorb information in an efficient fashion. Every student is unique in the sense of applying different study methods to help them achieve the grade they desire.

“I loved starting study groups. It may sound corny nowadays, I feel, but they really do work,” said Maria Saldana, business alumna of CCM. “I would ask other students in my classes to meet up somewhere on campus with their notes and we’d play competitive study games.”

Study groups generate energy and help students learn in a dynamic manner by engaging thought in a social setting. Effective study groups should have roughly 3-4 people and one group leader to keep everyone on task and set a schedule for meeting dates. Every member should contribute and take the study group sessions seriously to better the overall repercussion for everyone.

“I found it to be very efficient when it came to studying because everyone would talk about the subject and you’d really grasp the information,” added Saldana. “Plus, I met my closest friends by doing that.”

To study adequately, students need to find their study “spot.” When the spot has been decided, it’s time to actually study. Yes, actually sit down and study. This can be difficult for some people: getting started on studying. Once the ball gets rolling, the hard part is over.

Studying can be like working out for the brain. The brain, just like the body, needs breaks from the strenuous work being put in. It is recommended to take 15 minute breaks between every hour of studying.

“I like to set goals for myself. I’d get through 2 chapters and take a break. I’d go to Starbucks and get a coffee during my break,” said Elizabeth Manella, general studies alumna of CCM. “If I was studying for a test, I’d study a quarter of it and take a five to 10 minute break, then go back to it. When I try to cram it in all at once, it doesn’t help me. So if you come back to it, back and forth, it’s helpful.”

Try to make studying fun. Color code your notes, make your own study guides and quiz yourself. Make mock exams in the beginning and then start studying for them until the material is ingrained in your brain. Try to always attend the review lectures. Most importantly, really be fascinated in the information and want to learn more about the material.