Recent graduate remembered as a dedicated and loved member of the College community

By Sydney Shaw
Managing Editor

According to an email sent to College faculty, staff and students on Thursday, Feb. 11, alumnus Jeremy Wasserman died in his off-campus apartment in Ewing, N.J., on Wednesday, Feb. 10.

The cause of his death is still under investigation, pending further study by the medical examiner, according to the email.

Wasserman, a criminology major, graduated in December 2015.

“(Jeremy) was an active member of student life at the college,” President R. Barbara Gitenstein wrote in the email announcing his death.

Originally from Pompton Lakes, N.J., Wasserman was a member of the College’s bowling team and a brother of Alpha Chi Rho (AXP), according to College spokesperson Dave Muha. According to the AXP website, Wasserman was tasked with incorporating safety and risk management-related precautions into AXP’s programs as the risk management chair on the fraternity’s executive board.

Rabbi Akiva Greenbaum announced via Facebook that the Shabbat on Saturday, Feb. 13, would be dedicated to Wasserman.

There will be a day service beginning at 11:30 a.m., followed by lunch at 1 p.m. in the Chabad House, located at 44 Chauncey Ave. in Ewing, N.J.

“Together with students, faculty, family and friends, we mourn the passing of a sweet and dear Jewish soul,” Greenbaum wrote in a post. “Jeremy Wasserman was a first class mentsch who inspired us with a sense of responsibility to help others.”

Wasserman’s friends also remember him as an overwhelmingly positive force in their lives.

“The TCNJ Club Bowling Team is deeply saddened by the loss of our teammate,” President James Napoli said. “Throughout his four years on the team, Jeremy was a dedicated student, competitor, e-board member, teammate and friend.  His upbeat personality, sense of humor and infectious smile were constants at our practices and tournaments.”

Even those who didn’t know Wasserman too well were struck by his charisma.

“Each time I met him, he had a smile and we were able to exchange a few words,” said Mylin Batipps, a 2015 alumnus of the College. “I only met him three times… he was just so friendly and easygoing. He was lighthearted and didn’t take everything too seriously, which was something I admired.

“It says a lot that someone can leave such a lasting positive impression on you, even though that person has only been a part of your life for a few moments,” Batipps said.

The College first sent out an email and made phone calls announcing Wasserman’s death to faculty and students in the criminology department prior to sending out the campus-wide email announcement, according to Muha.

“The College, just generally as a practice, works to reach out to those who might have known the individual in order to give them a heads up and to offer support,” he said.

Gitenstein’s email detailed the resources the College has available for students and faculty struggling with this loss: Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), TCNJ Clinic and TCNJ Campus Police, as well as the Employee Assistance Program for employees of the College.

“Staff members from Counseling and Psychological Services are reaching out to Jeremy’s roommates and friends,” Gitenstein wrote in her email. “If you are concerned about someone (students, staff or colleagues), please reach out to the resources above. It’s OK to ask for help.”

Wasserman is the second student from the campus community to die this year. Junior computer science major Daniel Thielke died by suicide on Saturday, Sept. 19.

In the aftermath of tragedies such as these, administrators at the College stress the importance of offering support to fellow students who may be struggling to cope.

“It is incredibly sad,” Muha said. “We lost somebody who just earned their degree a couple of months ago and was really at the beginning of their life with so many doors open to them. It’s a tragic loss.”


General Counseling Resources

Resources for Students:

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)
Eickhoff Hall 107
Hours: Monday–Friday, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

TCNJ Clinic
Forcina Hall 124
Hours: Monday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tuesday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-9 p.m.

TCNJ Campus Police
Contact Campus Police by dialing 911 from any campus phone or 609-771-2345 from a cell phone.

Resources for Employees at the College:

Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Forcina Hall 124
After hours: 609-571-0677

Johnny Football descends from his throne

By Matthew Ajaj
Staff Writer

Johnny Manziel, once the star quarterback of the Texas A&M Aggies and winner of the 2012 Heisman Trophy, appears to have hit rock bottom after he allegedly physically abused his girlfriend and threatened to kill himself, according to Dallas’s ABC affiliate.

Manziel was born to a wealthy Texas family in 1992 and as far as any member of the media knows, his life only continued to get better for the next two decades. A multi-sport high school superstar, Manziel cemented himself as a local legend and was bestowed the “Johnny Football” moniker. Continue reading

Former College athlete runs to coaching position

By Julia Livesey

Walker returns to his alma mater with new plans for the team. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)
Walker returns to his alma mater with new plans for the team. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)

All it took was a little convincing from a high school algebra teacher to influence Michael Walker to join the track and field team. He figured it would be a good way to stay in shape before baseball season started.

Little did he know he’d be permanently trading baseball cleats for running shoes. Continue reading

Team unity leads to success on the mat

By Connor Smith
Social Media Editor

Packer Hall was filled to capacity on Friday, Feb. 5, as the hometown crowd awaited the wrestling team’s first home match since Winter Break. The Lions — currently ranked 10th in the National Wrestling Coaches Association’s Division III poll — lived up to their billing, dispatching No. 18 Wilkes University, 26-9, with relative ease.

“This is the first time we’ve had a group quite like this,” senior Antonio Mancella said. “The sense of unity on the team is one of a kind. It’s never really happened in my time here.” Continue reading

Fast runs not enough for track team

By George Tatoris
Sports Assistant

There was only one other team to beat on the track on Saturday, Feb. 6.

Each year, the track team faces the College’s local rival, the Rider University Broncs, in Lawrenceville, N.J. 

This year, the Lions held fast, securing impressive wins over their opponent, but were ultimately stampeded by the Division I Broncs. The men’s team lost, 106-60, and the women’s team, 100-64.

Women’s track wins the 800-meter relay by seconds. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)
Women’s track wins the 800-meter relay by seconds. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)

“Leaving without the win definitely made us realize that we are really going to have to put in work the next few weeks before conferences,” sophomore Emily Mead said. Continue reading

North Jersey casinos will harm the state

Casinos in North Jersey will threaten Atlantic City. (AP Photo)
Casinos in North Jersey will threaten Atlantic City. (AP Photo)

By Tom Ballard
Opinions Editor

Let’s face it: the Garden State has a gambling problem. Last month, the New Jersey Senate Budget Committee approved a proposal by a 9-2 vote that will lead to a referendum question being placed on the ballot in November’s general election, allowing New Jersey state citizens to determine whether or not to change the state constitution and expand the construction of casinos to the northern part of the state. While a powerhouse of elite Trenton politicians has come out in support of the expansion, the referendum, if passed, would be a disaster for the state and for Atlantic City in particular. Continue reading

The Signal asks… did you watch the Super Bowl?

Gayle Mayani, freshman international studies and marketing double major.
Gayle Mayani, freshman international studies and marketing double major.

“Yes I did… I watched it for the food.”

Brian Sutera, junior marketing major.
Brian Sutera, junior marketing major.

“(I did watch it) less for the game and more for the commercials, since I’m a marketing major.”

Katrina Calderon, senior health and exercise science major.
Katrina Calderon, senior health and exercise science major.

“Yes… because a lot of my friends were watching it.”

Dan Tran, junior psychology major.
Dan Tran, junior psychology major.

“I did not… I was actually working that night.”

The Super Bowl attracts a wide range of viewers,  from diehard football fans to commercial connoisseurs. (Rob Birnbohm / Cartoonist)
The Super Bowl attracts a wide range of viewers, from diehard football fans to commercial connoisseurs. (Rob Birnbohm / Cartoonist)

Around the Dorm 2/10: March Madness upsets, NBA Rookie of the Year and Rio 2016

In this week’s edition of Around the Dorm, the “Ref,” Miguel Gonzalez, asks our panel of experts three questions: Can a No. 16 seed beat a No. 1 seed during March Madness? Which NBA rookie will win Rookie of the Year and should the International (IOC) postpone or relocate the Summer Games in Brazil?

1. Given the numerous upsets that have occurred during this year’s college basketball season, is it possible that a No. 16 seed will defeat a No. 1 seed in the upcoming NCAA March Madness Tournament?

(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

Connor: It’s a common cliché in sports that anything is possible. However, a No. 16 seed has never won an NCAA tournament game in the competition’s 76-year history. The fact that Coastal Carolina managed to come within 14 points last season is considered over-performing. Although the rise of one-and-done players has made the competition less predictable, a No. 1 seed has all the coaching, scouting, recruitment and facilities to plow through a lowly No. 16 seed. Upsets happen every year, but a No. 1 seed would have battled through tremendous obstacles that a No. 16 seed has no chance of matching. Continue reading

Trump is an aggressive, attention-seeking candidate

By Jake Mulick

Trump gains attention by making controversial remarks. (AP Photo)
Trump gains attention by making controversial remarks. (AP Photo)

Donald J. Trump appeared on CNN with Wolf Blitzer about a month before the Iowa caucuses for a half-hour long, exclusive interview. In this interview, Blitzer questioned Trump on his personal relationship with some of the other potential Republican candidates. Trump answered, somewhat disgruntled, “Some of us are also friends, but you won’t report on that stuff. The conflict is more fun.” I actually had to stop and rewind the YouTube video I was using to replay the interview since I was so astounded by his statement. Trump is the master of conflict. He has successfully bamboozled many in the American public into thinking that he is a viable option for the most powerful position in the country: the presidency of the United States. Continue reading

Lions improve in the NJAC standings

By Otto Gomez
Staff Writer

The Lions continued their hunt for a playoff spot with three more New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) games in a span of six days and came out with a 2-1 record.

This stretch was particularly difficult because of the traveling, as they beat Montclair State University, 93-76, at home on Monday, Feb. 1, and then traveled to Glassboro, N.J., and scored another win against Rowan University on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 90-82. The team finally returned home to go against New Jersey City University on Saturday, Feb. 6, losing, 81-56. Continue reading

Team loses ground in conference playoff hunt

By Anthony Caruso
Staff Writer

The College’s women’s basketball team went 1-2 in three conference games last week. The Lions fell to the Montclair State University Red Hawks, 49-57, on Monday, Feb. 1, and the Rowan University Profs, 66-87, on Wednesday, Feb. 3. The College was able to close out the week on a high with a win against New Jersey City University (NJCU), 74-41.

Seniors Lynch, Merlin and Esposito are honored before the game. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)
Seniors Lynch, Merlin and Esposito are honored before the game. (Photo courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)

Before the game began, the senior players were acknowledged for their time with the team during the team’s senior day. The three seniors — guard Angelica Esposito, forward Christina Merlin and guard Jess Lynch — were recognized by head coach Dawn Henderson, as well as the players’ families, who were in attendance.

As a group, the seniors have won 62 games in their four years. Continue reading

SFB funds request for Chinese New Year celebration

By Roderick Macioch
Staff Writer

The Student Finance Board’s first meeting of the Spring 2016 semester came to order at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 3, to decide what events deserve funding.

The Asian American Association (AAA) requested the necessary funding for a performance by Korean-American singer-songwriter Clara C.   

“There are very few Asians represented in the media,” the request form read. “Having an Asian American representative performing will not only speak to those of the same culture, but to those interested in music.”

The association expressed plans to invite students from both Princeton and Rutgers universities.

The AAA’s plan to charge for admission was met with some opposition from the board. As a result, the event proposal was amended to make the event free of charge for all attendees. Continue reading

Fat Shack: Fan favorite for late-night fried food returns

By Chelsea LoCascio
News Editor

For months, many students have been in need of a late-night food option that could deliver deep-fried sustenance to their door well into the early morning.

Luckily, the search is over.

Fat Shack returned to Ewing, N.J., last Thursday, Jan. 28, and vows to serve up fresher fried-food-filled fat sandwiches than they ever had before, the store’s founder and owner Tom Armenti said. The eatery had closed in April 2015, but now that it’s open again, students can get Fat Shack delivered to them Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 7:30 p.m. to 3 a.m. Continue reading

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