EDITORIAL: Start your semester right by getting involved

Headed into its 50th anniversary, County College of Morris still sets out to defy stereotypes of a community college by giving its students even more individual and communal opportunities outside of the classroom this semester. Now, it’s our job to take advantage of them.

While it’s rather easy to get caught up in the frantic nature  of a new semester, with a sea of syllabi filling up our free time and the weight of textbooks dragging us down, it’s important to let ourselves, as students, engage in the community around us on campus.

It’s only January, and there are already plenty of activities you can take part of. The Student Activities Programming Board will host its semesterly Welcome Back Bash at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 30 in the Student Community Center where students can meet club leaders and get a feel for which clubs suit their interests. Some other upcoming events are SAPB’s Valentine’s Day Teddy Bear Factory at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 13 in the SCC, the New Social Engine’s Wing Eating Contest at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 20 in the SCC, and the Black Student Union’s Black History Month Art Show at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 27 in the SCC.

The school already planned out a Passport Day in April where the CCM community will get the chance to obtain passports through Morris County. In addition, students can take part in numerous social events like a Roller Skating Party from NSE a Comedy-Magic Show from the SAPB, and a performance of the musical Follies.

This is just a taste of how much is in store for us this semester, with various clubs, such as the recently reinstated Student Government Association, and committees constantly hosting events on and off campus.

These events exhibit the hard work and effort that goes into raising the standards of this college each and every semester. Preparation from both faculty and fellow students for the musical alone begins the very first day of the semester.

With that being said, none of these efforts mean anything without the participation and activism from the study body. Simply attending a show or even joining a club contributes to the great cause of continuing to make this college a better place.

This college doesn’t have to just be a place where you rush through your two years and move on “to somewhere better.” You’re allowed and encouraged to reap the benefits in exploring the opportunity that this school has for students to grow, as individuals and a community.

EDITORIAL: A Warm Welcome Back from Youngtown

As students say goodbye to beach days and long summer nights, they prepare for the back to school rush.

For some of us, this is an exciting opportunity for a fresh start: new notebooks, a planner (the true token to a successful semester) and an oversized pack of pencils that may or may not be missing by first week. Maybe we stock up on some new Titans gear to really show our back to school spirit. Regardless, we look forward to the gleaming potential of a new school year. The opportunity to raise our GPA’s, meet a friend or two, and snag the ideal parking spot every time we head to class (even if that means following student around Lot 6).

For others, the anxieties of a new school year may be taking over. What if I don’t pass all of my classes? What if I’m in the wrong major? What if Heart-Attack Hill actually gives me a heart attack? Maybe it’s your first year in college all together, or your first year at CCM. What building is what? What parking lots can I park in? (And why isn’t there any parking there?). The anticipation of a new semester can get the best of these students.

Or maybe you’re somewhere in the middle of these two extremes.

We at the Youngtown look forward to writing for everyone in this spectrum as we settle into our production room this semester. We are excited to deliver all the newsworthy  content CCM has to offer, from the groundbreaking changes to the Student Government Association, to the mysterious concoctions the cafeterias are stirring up this fall. Whether you’re thrilled or dreading the start of classes, we at the newspaper hope this semester is as eventful for you as it will be for us. We’ll be keeping our eyes peeled and our pads open as we take on this semester.

Feel free to join us as we kick off this academic year. Our next production is Thursday, Sept. 21 at 12:30 p.m. in LRC 216.

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.

EDITORIAL: Iacono starts semester strong

Fall is officially in swing – pumpkin spice lattes have returned to Starbucks and leaves have begun to change color. Students have settled into their routines and some are already preparing for the inevitable rush of work approaching midterms.

Dr. Anthony Iacono is also embracing the fall. He is taking strides to fully understand and engage the County College of Morris community in these first few months of presidency. Iacono has hosted three open houses, inviting staff, faculty and students to meet with him in an atmosphere that encourages discussion and openness to questions. He is continuing to engage with the campus community through new “Conversation and Coffee (CandC) with the President” available to faculty and staff.

He also has taken to sitting in on club meetings to understand what the students are doing – he even visited The Youngtown’s previous production meeting.

This endeavor for participation in campus life shows a real desire to understand what makes CCM “tick” before making any big changes. It’s refreshing to see him sticking to a position he established pre-presidency.

Iacono has a history of taking staff and student feedback and making changes based on that feedback. As vice president of academic affairs at his Indian River State College in Florida Iacono taught a class to better understand what instructors go through.

The attention to understanding the realities of his faculty is one of the reasons he is not planning on making any changes this first semester.

While this plan is sound and responsible, we need to be sure we do not use it to excuse future lack of action once Iacono is sufficiently embroiled in the community.

We hope he stays true to his word as he has done so far. Iacono has kept to his plan of getting to know the community in a day to day environment that hopefully will carry over into real action that has real benefits.

EDITORIAL: Join the Youngtown

The Youngtown Edition has been a staple on CCM campus since 1968 when its first issue asked its readers to choose its name. While we no longer need to build the paper using clips of typewritten text, our production meetings are still one of the best ways for students to learn the practical realities of journalism.

The staff of the Youngtown is made up entirely of current CCM students who, with the help of our faculty and technical advisers, are responsible for everything associated with the paper. We choose which stories to run, we write them, we edit them, we take the photos, we layout the pages, and we love it.

There’s a lot of freedom in having a student paper. It encourages the writers to use their voices and develop their senses of independence. We try new things – this semester, we are initiating a parking feature to run all the stories that are submitted to us regarding the less-than-ideal parking situation on campus called “Parking Pulse.”

Some people seem to have a fear of judgement when submitting their writing to their peers. But after last spring, many of our staff members have moved on from CCM and submissions are the best things to see. We love the participation. We love interaction from our readers, our peers. And right now, we could use the help.

It’s a commitment to write for the paper. We only have meetings every other week, sure. But they run for nearly six hours. And every member of our staff is a volunteer with responsibilities outside of the paper. But they give so much of their time and effort to bettering the Youngtown, creating a paper that would not otherwise be possible.

That’s not to say that there are no other benefits to working for the paper. It gives you concrete practice on writing and editing. You will learn software skills. You will walk away from the Youngtown with published clips of your writing that you can show future employers. You could even get a job – our previous Editor-in-Chief, Derek Allen, and former Senior Layout Editor, Drew Notarnicola both work professionally for a newspaper, The Progress. They would not have had the necessary skill set for that job without their experience on the Youngtown staff.

Writing for the Youngtown is one of the most rewarding experiences. It takes hard work, but we have fun. Stop by and see what’s going on at one of our biweekly production meetings, or email us at youngtownedition@gmail.com. We’d love to hear from you.