All posts by Cameron Dering

Ewing residents picket at Community Fest

Neighbors of students come to campus to have their voices heard. (Photo courtesy of Cameron Dering)

This past Saturday, a dozen or so Ewing residents stationed themselves at the Pennington and Green Lane entrances of campus to protest off-campus student conduct. These residents are members of the Ewing Park/Braeburn Civic Association, which, according to its mission statement, is an organization aiming to “be pro-active in maintaining the quality and property of our homes” and “provide a medium for the exchange of ideas and concepts that promotes harmony, safety, and a wholesome neighborhood.” Their signs read: “Show our Community Respect” and “Shh.”

Meanwhile, in the center of campus, the College was hosting its second annual Community Fest, which is a cooperative effort between the Township of Ewing and the College to provide a day full of activities and food, sponsored by vendors and companies from within the community and staffed by many student volunteers from the College.

While residents from Ewing were enjoying the event on campus, these protesters gathered to picket against “student conduct/behavior included but not limited to” property damage, unreasonable noise, disorderly conduct, littering, loitering, low morals, traffic violations, (and) health and safety violations including drugs and alcohol.”

Their biggest complaints revolved around off-campus partying, because they claim that is when students are most disruptive, throwing up and littering on neighbors’ lawns and making unreasonable noise when they leave past 2 a.m., either talking loudly as they walk through the streets or waking up neighbors by slamming their car doors and locking their cars with loud beeps.


Students have a responsibility to remember

We promised to never forget 9/11, but this year the day seems to have come and gone with little fanfare. (

In the days leading up to 9/11, I was on the lookout for the TCNJ official email regarding an on-campus memoriam, moment of silence or any of the like, and grew increasingly concerned when none ever popped up in my inbox.

September 11, 2012 came and went with absolutely no campus recognition.

Last year, Student Government did organize a 9/11 memorial ceremony, which was a larger remembrance event than was typically held at the College, because it was the 10-year anniversary of the attacks, but it’s extremely disappointing that College administration didn’t step in to resume its responsibility to organize some sort of smaller remembrance event this year, as they had held in the student center in years past.

Meanwhile, other colleges and universities across the nation, even in areas not nearly as directly affected as New Jersey, continued to commemorate what is now actually a national holiday, Patriot Day.

“Students and staff at Lake Superior State University launched 231 balloons in memory of the number of Michigan victims lost in the attacks,” according to The Detroit News, and students at Grossmont College in San Diego, California “wrote their thoughts on cards and hung them from an olive tree,” according to KPBS.  In Texas, students at Texas Christian University placed 2,977 American flags in the campus common areas, with one flag representing each person killed in the 9/11 attacks, according to the Star-Telegram.

But we at TCNJ — a state institution of New Jersey — did nothing as a campus community, when 749 people from our state were killed in the attacks and, as of July 10, 2012, another 148 men and women from New Jersey have been killed in the subsequent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to

Living in Middletown, a town with one of the largest numbers of New York City commuters in New Jersey, I vividly remember sitting in my fifth-grade computers class during last period when our teacher told us what had happened. I remember how frightened, distressed, and panicked I felt watching the news coverage — of the plane crashing into the second tower, the towers crumbling to the ground, American citizens jumping from the buildings to their deaths or running from the scene, terrified and covered in dust — over and over and over again on the classroom television and bulky Dell monitors.

At 10 years old, all I knew was that my dad worked in New York City, and on the TV, New York City was collapsing. How was I supposed to know that he didn’t work on the 64th floor of the North Tower anymore? Or that his ferry didn’t make it to the City before the planes hit? At 10 years old, how could I possibly comprehend how lucky I, and my family, had been not to lose someone dear, when so many others met less fortunate fates?

Now, I can. So I think it’s extremely important to look back each and every year and remember the day our country was attacked and thousands of innocent lives were lost, and to remember the waves of betrayal, anger, fear, love, support, hope and fervent patriotism that swept from coast to coast during the aftermath. And I can’t be the only one.

After the 9/11 Memorial Ceremony last year, current SG President Christina Kopka was quoted in an online Her Campus TCNJ article saying, “It’s really important that our generation remembers 9/11 and keeps in mind what happened, because we’re the ones that are going to be carrying it on.  Our brothers and sisters were too young to remember what happened. We need to be the ones to make sure it is not forgotten.”

This year, not only we the students, but the entire campus community has failed to fulfill this vital duty.

As the generation defined by 9/11, in the future we must actively make the effort to convey the poignant reality of that day, and the effects it has had on our lives and on our country, to those younger than us.  This is our obligation.  In choosing not to do so, we let the true impact and implications of September 11, 2001, as well as the memory of those lives lost, die with us.

Numerous TCNJ students did post Facebook statuses and pictures claiming they will “never forget.” But that’s exactly what we seem to be doing.

The prospect of the September 11 attacks slowly drifting into our nation’s subconscious until they are merely a blip on our radar, remembered only once every 10 years, together with the thought of all of those lives lost and sacrifices made by American families in the years to follow being completely forgotten, really scares me.  Almost as much as the original attacks did 11 years ago.


Nicaragua nostalgia: Students reflect on summer trips

For a typical college student, summer means time to hit up the beach and work on your tan, catch up with old high-school friends and work a seasonal job or — if you’re lucky — an internship.  But for 26 students of the College, this past summer also meant the opportunity to broaden their cultural horizons by volunteering in what is, according to UNICEF, one of the poorest developing countries in Central America, with 16 percent of citizens living below the international poverty line of $1.25 per day — Nicaragua.

Members of WILL's third Solidarity Project pose with children from a school in a rural Nicaraguan community. (Photo courtesy of Jamie Primeau)

Thirteen members of Women in Leadership and Learning spent the past academic year studying the economics, politics and history of Nicaragua and fundraising $2,100 each in order to participate  in the organization’s third solidarity project.

W.I.L.L. advisor Mary Lynn Hopps, who initiated the first solidarity project to El Salvador in 2006, said, “It’s really a two-semester community engaged learning experience that culminates in a trip to the country.”

The trip was organized through the Center for Global Education, which provided the itinerary, transportation and a translator for the group as they traveled the Spanish-speaking country. The students met with leaders and employees of non-profit organizations with focuses on poverty, HIV/AIDS and female equality during their 10 days there.

Senior English and secondary education double major Micaela Ensminger gained a new perspective after meeting with Nicaraguan women who attempted setting up their own sewing cooperative with the help of non-profit organization Jubilee House.

After building a warehouse by hand, the women ordered sewing machines and supplies from Venezuela. The items they received were broken, incomplete and unusable. Two years later, their business and their dream remains at a standstill as they have no functional equipment and are fighting a lengthy legal battle.

“But still, when we were talking to these women, they were so amazing because they weren’t angry or bitter when they told their story,” Ensminger said. “They had the strongest and most hopeful spirits I had met in my whole life.”

According to Ensminger, the attitudes of these women exemplify that of the entire country. “Even though they deal with massive amounts of poverty that students at the College can’t even fathom,” she said, “these people have a strong sense of culture and community and that’s what they really value.”

The Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children is a national organization dedicated to providing health care in areas that lack sufficient coverage while teaching children preventative measures to stay healthy. This

Members of FIMRC give a lesson to students at the elementary school in Limón, Nicaragua on the dangers of Dengue Fever before teaching them how to prevent contracting the disease. (Photo courtesy of Megan Phillips)

past summer, five students from the College’s local chapter of FIMRC traveled for a week to the rural town of Limón, Nicaragua.

Stationed at Las Salinas Clinic, the group spent a good portion of their time shadowing doctors and nurses in the clinic’s remote setting and learning about the Nicaraguan health care system.

Junior nursing major Megan Phillips quickly recognized the startling difference between the health care benefits U.S. citizens often take for granted and the ones sanctioned by the government in developing countries such as Nicaragua.

“The lack of (health care) in Nicaragua was an eye-opener to what its like for the majority of the world and the access other people have to health care, and how much health care we really have here,” she said.

The small clinic, with a medicine cabinet operating as a pharmacy, served eight surrounding towns. Some residents took hour-long bus rides just to get there. Once at the clinic there was no appointment system, so people had to wait and hope they were lucky enough to receive some of the limited supply of medicine. The nearest hospital was hours away and no one could afford an ambulance, which is considered private care and therefore not funded by the Nicaraguan government.

“If they were in a real emergency situation,” Phillips said, “they don’t have a lot of equipment necessary to help them.”

The group also spent much of their time in the classroom with second, third and fourth graders giving lessons in Spanish on how to avoid contracting diseases from mosquitoes.

“The goal is teaching the kids young so they have (the skills) for life and they don’t get these diseases that the country doesn’t necessarily have the means to treat,” Phillips said.

Despite their hardships, the patients and students that the group met never complained.

“They really seemed content with what they had,” Phillips noted. “But I don’t know if that was just because they didn’t know any different.”

Bonner Scholars spent a week and a half in Nicaragua, living on homestays and learning about the residents’ lives. (Photo courtesy of Megan Gerity)

Eight Bonner Scholars spent a week and a half in the Central American country studying the effects of U.S. policy on Nicaraguan politics, economics and communities during the annual Bonner trip for rising juniors and seniors sponsored through national organization Witness for Peace. The students were placed in a homestay in the small rural community of Ramón Garcia and interacted with Nicaraguan citizens from all backgrounds — from economists, community organizers and humanitarians to factory workers, coffee farmers and even children on the streets.

“The families we stayed with did not receive monetary compensation, but instead chose to host us in order to be a part of a larger positive change and relationship with people from other countries,” said senior urban education and history double major Megan Gerity in an email.

This summer was senior international studies major Kathrine Avila’s second trip to Nicaragua for the Bonner Center. Avila said she hoped to reconnect with her host family from last year, but found that the family no longer lived there; when their crops weren’t making enough money for them to survive, Avila found out, the parents were forced to send their two daughters, ages 10 and 15, to opposite sides of the country to live with and work for other families before they left Nicaragua altogether in hopes of a more profitable future in Costa Rica.

Avila said she still can’t believe that “(the Nicaraguans) were really, really nice to us even though they know how our policies make them suffer.”

The trip left Gerity with a new sense of what it means to be an American citizen.  “Being an American,” she said via email, “should not be about ignoring or denying our past decisions to make ourselves look better, but instead owning up to and fixing our past mistakes. That, to me, is the strongest form of patriotism.”


Finals Fest fully funded, campus-wide Easter egg hunt open to all students

Student Finance Board

Student Government was granted $7,908.70 at the SFB meeting last Wednesday for it’s bi-annual event, Finals Fest, which is held at the end of each semester to provide students with activities during finals week. These activities encourage students to take a break from studying and aim to alleviate the anxiety of final papers and exams.

This semester, SG received funding for bagel and dessert giveaways from Sodexo, pizza and soda giveaways from Mama Flora’s and free massages for students by Sue Walker of Bodyzen Wellness. SFB also covered $600 in food insurance costs for these events, which is included in the total amount allotted to SG.

The Asian American Association (AAA) requested $1,607.50 to host a Pan-Asian Spring Festival in the Alumni Grove on April 30, as a part of SG’s Finals Fest. In conjunction with the Pan-Asian Alliance, which includes AAA, Barkada, Chinese Culture Club, Indian Students Club, Japanese Club and TCNJ Taiko, AAA hopes to put on an event featuring cultural Chinese, Indian, Japanese and Filipino foods and interactive Asian crafts and games.

Senior biomedical engineering major Brian Franco is a part of the Pan-Asian Alliance. Franco believes this type of event is a good way for the clubs to share their cultures with other students.

“It’s also a great way for us to fulfill our mission of spreading awareness of each of our respective clubs’ cultures,” Franco said.

After adding $200 to the request for food insurance and $153 for the building services fee required in order to have an event in Alumni Grove, SFB members unanimously voted to fund $1,960.50 for AAA’s Pan-Asian Alliance Spring Festival event.

The Outdoors Club requested $50 to organize a campus-wide Easter egg hunt from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday, April 22.

“It was a spur of the moment idea,” said junior biology major and member of the Outdoors Club, Paul Fourounjian. “We realized we missed Easter egg hunts from when we were younger.”

All students, not only those who celebrate Easter, are encouraged to participate in this event.

“I’ve mentioned the Easter egg hunt to some of my friends, one Muslim and one Jewish one, and they’re excited about the idea of just finding free candy around campus,” Fourounjian said.

SFB board members unanimously voted to fully fund it.

The Art Student Association requested $120 for supplies for the event “Self Expression: Visual Art Performance.” ASA is teaming up with TCNJ Musical Theatre for this event, and it is meant to combine forms of dance and paint in one experience. The TMT dancers will create a painting by dancing to music with bottles of paint on top of an 8-by-11-foot canvas drop cloth.

Senior art education major Katie Petrillo believes the event will bring together students within various art education programs.

“Basically, what our club likes to do is bring together different disciplines,” Petrillo said. “(This event is) bringing together performing arts and visual arts in one.”

Junior accounting major and SFB’s operations director, Alexa Kaminsky, also thought this is a great way for students to come together as a small expense.

“I think this is one of those cool things that’s really inexpensive,” Kaminsky said.

After adding allowances for photocopies and a half-page Signal advertisement to publicize the event, SFB board members voted to fully fund the event, which will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Alumni Grove on Wednesday, April 27.

Voice of Hope requested $300 for the Mildred & Ernest E. Mayo Concert Hall staffing for its annual spring concert. SFB members voted to fully fund the event, which was held from 4 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 16.

“Usually when it’s later, towards finals, not a lot of people come,” said junior chemistry and mathematics double major Rachael Roesch, “so we’re hoping that since it’s earlier in the semester more people will come.”


Students address stigmas surrounding the hijab

Students at the College came together to demystify the myths surrounding the Islamic hijab. (Photo courtesy of Cameron Dering)

The hijab, defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary as “the traditional covering for the hair and neck that is worn by Muslim women,” has been a topic of controversy among Western feminists, political figures and media outlets for many years. Last Monday, Muslim women and men at the College joined forces to battle common misconceptions on campus, such as how the veil is viewed as a mechanism of oppression, forced on women by the males of the religion to subjugate and de-womanize them by some in Western cultures.

The Hijab-a-thon, the first in a series of events for Islamic Awareness Week, gave non-Muslim students the chance to experience the hijab for a day. From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., members of the Islamic Society manned a table in the Brower Student Center, providing the hijab to any woman willing to try it.

At 7 p.m., those who took part in the event gathered in the Spiritual Center to discuss their experiences and dispute the myths associated with the hijab.

Half of the female students arrived at the forum still wearing their hijab, while the other half had since taken it off. Once there, Muslim students Sarah Cassim, a freshman biology major who wears the hijab, and Sana BenNacef, a junior history secondary education major who does not wear the hijab, led the discussion.

The first myth they tackled was that Muslim women are forced to wear the hijab, either after they get their first period or when they get married, as part of the religion, as some audience members believed.

“It’s not forced. It’s not meant to be forced,” Cassim said. “You do it for your own sake when you want to be closer to God.”

Though some believe that Muslim fathers or husbands force their daughters and wives to wear the hijab, when BenNacef approached her parents because she was considering wearing the hijab, her father encouraged her to do research and take her time with this important, life-changing decision. BenNacef and Cassim expressed that this is often the case: Fathers don’t rush their daughters into wearing the hijab and will even keep them from doing so if they don’t think they’re ready.

Guest speaker Christine Morsy, mother of junior international studies major and Islamic Society member Adam Morsy, shared her own inspirational story about being raised Roman Catholic but converting to Islam after 10 years of marriage and her decision to wear the hijab two years later.

She said that putting on the hijab “has to be for the right reason; it has to be for yourself.” When Morsy chose to wear the hijab two years after she converted, it was entirely her own decision. “It was not my husband’s making,” she said.

Next, Cassim and BenNacef discussed the myth that Islam, and the hijab specifically, degrades women.

“Western feminists call it an oppressive veil, but that’s not the point; the purpose is to keep women protected,” BenNacef said.

Rather than feeling oppressed, “a lot of women find it liberating,” Cassim said. “Instead of degrading her, it builds her up.”

Cassim has found the hijab to be liberating from her own experiences. “I think the hijab helped me resist peer pressure more,” she said. She figures, “if I can face people wearing this, I can face anything. (The hijab) helped me be more comfortable with myself and my own identity.”

In Islam, Cassim said, “there is so much honor, so much respect given to a woman.” For example, childbirth is not considered a curse or punishment in Islam as it is in Christianity, but instead it is seen as the strength of a woman.

“The mother is often seen elevated from your father,” Cassim said. “She is in fact the most celebrated person.” In fact, in Islam if your mother prays for you, the prayers hold more weight with God than prayers from anyone else.

“Unfortunately,” BenNacef said, “it’s really skewed by the media.”

Freshman journalism major Francesar Georges gained new insight from taking part in the Hijab-a-thon.

“Walking around, I noticed that some people I would see, they would look at me as if they wanted to say something but never opened their mouth,” she said. “I didn’t feel bad about it, but I was like ‘Wow, it makes no sense for them to look away.’” Overall, Georges said, “It was an eye-opening experience.”

Freshman early childhood education major Karen Martinez, who also participated in the Hijab-a-thon, agreed. “It gave me an appreciation for Muslim women,” she said.

Sumer Mohamed is a sophomore biology major who practices Islam but has not chosen to wear the hijab.

“I’m afraid what people will think and if they’ll treat me differently,” she said. When Mohamed approached her mother about this anxiety, her mother told her it proved that she wasn’t ready to start wearing the hijab. Her mother told Mohamed that when she is ready she will know because she will have a strong spiritual connection with God and will no longer care about what other people think.

“The main thing for me right now is to battle that insecurity, and then eventually I’ll start wearing (the hijab),” Mohamed said. “I think it’s beautiful.”

Cassim added that “the point (of the hijab) is also for women to realize to respect themselves.”

“It protects me from the oncoming woosh of ‘you have to be thin, you have to be thin, you have to be thin’ in America,” Cassim said. “I realize I am worth it as a person.”

Cassim and BenNacef stressed the fact that true Islam is very different from cultural practices, which differ greatly from America to Egypt to the Middle East and everywhere in between.

“The religion is 100 percent part of me, but the culture is not,” Morsy explained.

“When you see something strange or different, people aren’t going to ask about it, which perpetuates the misunderstanding of Islam,” BenNacef said.

“Before people jump to conclusions, before people start judging, you have to think,” Cassim said. “Don’t be spoon-fed, that’s not why you have a brain, you have a brain to question.”

BenNacef said she actually really appreciates it when people ask her questions because she would rather give them factual information about Islam than have them continue living with false notions.

“Encourage your friends, Muslim or not Muslim, to open that dialogue,” she said.

Cassim agreed, saying, “I think when you start to question these things and start to be more tolerant or more understanding, the world will be a better place.”


Pre-vet club crawls its way onto campus

Students with a passion for pets can join the pre-vet club. (AP Photo)

This year, four determined underclassmen have taken the initiative to fill what they believe to be a major void on the College’s campus: the need for a pre-veterinary club.

“The College has pre-law, pre-dental and pre-med clubs, and I thought pre-vet is an important profession so why not include it?” freshman open options science major and Signal staff writer Annette Califano, one of the founders of the emerging pre-vet organization, said. “I feel it would be a disadvantage for future veterinarians here at the College to not have a club where they learn more about veterinary medicine, get help about the application process and just meet other people who are interested in the same things they are.”

Califano approached her advisor, the assistant dean to the School of Science Patricia Van Hise, early last fall semester with her interest in starting a pre-vet club. Van Hise connected her with fellow open options science majors Mike Perkel, freshman Raine Robinson and sophomore Amy Zuzock, who would become Califano’s three co-founders for this student organization.

Since then, the four future veterinarians have been working hard to draft a constitution and garner interest among students at the College. The first hurdle the team faced was securing a faculty advisor to support and guide their new club. After some searching, they found an eager volunteer in assistant professor of biology Matthew Wund.

The team then reached out to the campus community via e-mail and was pleasantly surprised by the feedback. “So far, our charter list has about 15 potential members,” Califano said. “I was expecting a charter list of maybe six people, and that would be including Raine, Mike, Amy and myself!”

The four founders were able to connect with Tim Manzi, a junior biology major on the pre-vet track, who they selected to serve as the club’s first president.

Manzi had thought about starting a pre-vet club himself, but said, “I didn’t think there was enough interest on campus.”

According to Manzi, the pre-vet club, which has yet to be officially named, will hopefully be up and running by the beginning of next semester. The founders and Manzi are aiming to hold meetings at least twice a month, where pre-vet students can come together to discuss veterinary schools, entrance exams and volunteer opportunities in the College’s surrounding community.

“Also, I would like to have some guest speakers — veterinarians from hospitals and veterinary colleges, like (University of Pennsylvania), Cornell (University), Colorado (University), etc.,” Califano said.

“To unify us is really important,” Manzi said, “because we have had students go to great vet schools. It’s important to let people know that you don’t need to go to a school with pre-vet as long as you’re taking the right classes, and we have a great program here.”

The pre-vet club is not just for veterinarians-to-be, however. The club is hoping to reach out to all animal lovers who are interested in getting involved and possibly volunteering.

“We used to have some animal rights groups on campus,” Manzi said, “but they seemed to have fizzled out, so to bring that base back would be great.”

Like Manzi said, “A psych major who really loves animals could come to a meeting and realize that they want to be a vet and that they actually can if they take these classes.”


Mixed Signals funded for another R.O.C.K. bash

Mixed Signals, along with co-sponsors TCNJ Musical Theatre and All College Theatre, requested $4,800 at last Wednesday’s Student Finance Board meeting for its Rather Odd Comedy Kickout (R.O.C.K.), an improvisational comedy show featuring performances from student improv troupes from other colleges, the New York improv group Upright Citizens Brigade Touring Company (UCB TourCo) and the Mixed Signals.

“We just like people to have access to comedy for free,” said junior women’s and gender studies major Liz So. “It gives the entire campus the opportunity to enjoy improv along with us.”

The event also features an improv workshop given by UCB TourCo the day after the performances. All students are welcome to sign up. The workshop “is really really good for working on your presentational skills and thinking on your feet,” So said.

After cutting $50 from the request for glossy fliers, which SFB board members felt were unnecessary, Mixed Signals was granted $4,750. The performances will be held in the Kendall Hall Main Stage Theatre, pending approval, at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 22, with the workshops to follow the next morning.

The Women’s Center requested $1,800 for its annual event “Take Back the Night,” which raises awareness of sexual violence as part of sexual awareness month.

The president of the Women’s Center, senior psychology major Sharanya Mohanty, said, “It serves to educate the campus community of how prevalent the issue of sexual assault is,” while providing the campus with “tools to stop things like this from happening.”

“We’re doing an empowering silent march around campus,” Mohanty said. “We’re literally reclaiming the nights when people were assaulted.”

The Women’s Center hopes to bring keynote speaker River Huston to discuss her own personal experience with sexual assault and how it affected her. “Take Back the Night” will also feature a variety of musical performances.

Aside from $1,500 in funding for the keynote speaker, the Women’s Center also requested $100 for 200 wristbands that would say “Break the Silence” and $200 to buy 40 “Take Back the Night” T-shirts that the Women’s Center would then sell and reimburse SFB with the $200.

“I like the keynote speaker, I think that would draw a pretty decent crowd,” said Anthony Czajkowski, senior accounting major and SG representative to SFB. “The bands I’m okay with, but I’m not too sure about the T-shirts,” he added.
After some discussion, the SFB board members agreed that fronting an organization money to buy T-shirts was out of their jurisdiction. After cutting $200 from the request, SFB funded $1,600 for “Take Back the Night,” to be held on Wednesday, April 20, in the amphitheater of the Art and Interactive Multimedia Building.


Interfaith Council funded for Japan relief

Student Finance Board

The Interfaith Council requested $95 for its event “Pie the Professor,” which will charge students $1 to pie a participating professor in the face or $0.50 to pie an executive board member of the club, in order to raise money for the Japanese Disaster Relief. There was some debate among members because SFB-funded events can’t force students to make a donation.

Senior mathematics major and SFB equipment center manager Garrett Hoffman said, “You don’t have to donate. If you want to donate, then you get to pie Dean Rifkin.” Members agreed that this event did not force students to donate and fully funded “Pie the Professor,” which will be held outside on the grass area in front of the Social Science Building from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on April 6.

The Interfaith Council also requested $550 for another event to raise money for the disaster relief in Japan, the “Better Together Bash.” The event would feature Japanese food and decorations, a speech from Dean Rifkin and a performance by the student group TCNJ Taiko. However, SFB members took issue with the fact that the Interfaith Council was looking to collect a donation at the door.

“You can’t really force students to donate to a cause, it’s kind of uncomfortable and inappropriate,” said SFB Operations Director Alexa Kaminsky, junior accounting major. “You don’t want people to feel they can’t come in because of the donation,” she said.

SFB board members agreed, and, after adding insurance costs, fully funded $727 for the event with the stipulation that there can be no suggested donation at the door, but that donation boxes can be placed around the room for the event so that students can donate if they wish. The “Better Together Bash” will be held in Brower Student Center 202 West on April 13 from 7 to 9 p.m.

The Islamic Society requested funding for its event “I am Muslim” to raise awareness of famous Americn-Muslims with a picture presentation in the lobbies of the student center and Social Sciences Building. “It’s basically to show students some of the public figures that they might see on a daily basis are actually Muslims and that not all Muslims fit the stereotypes,” said junior economics major Jaffer Ahmed. After cutting unnecessary snacks from the request, SFB funded $50 for the event, to be held on April 12 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Islamic Society also requested $490 for its event ISLAMERICA, a student panel and discussion meant to address common misconceptions of Islam. Members also hope to serve pizza and gyros at the event followed by a question and answer session. For this event, SFB board members thought the food was more appropriate and really added to the event.

“You’re getting gyros, which are a Muslim food and pizza which is an American food, so you’re having them both together which is what the event is all about,” said assistant SG representative for SFB John Wintermute.

“I really like the student panel discussion, and I think food will give people more incentive to go,” said Alicia Daniels, freshman open-options business major.

SFB unanimously voted to fully fund this event, which will take place on April 14 from 7 to 10 p.m. in the Business Building lounge.

The Council for Exceptional Children requested $225 for the movie rights to “Temple Grandin,” a movie about how a women with Asperger’s Syndrome, for screening during Autism Awareness Week.

“We were under the impression that the library already had the rights, but in finalizing our plans we found that they didn’t,” said junior special education and English double major Kim Stivers of the late request.

SFB fully funded the rights for the film, whch will be shown in the BSC Food Court on April 6 at 8 p.m.


CUB requests a ticket to Boston, SG spotlights N. Korea

Student Finance Board

College Union Board requested $5,030 for an overnight bus trip to Boston from April 2 to April 3 at SFB’s meeting last Wednesday.

“We’ve had interest in Boston over the years, but the issue is always that it’s too far away to just do a day trip,” said CUB representative Marisa Gonzalez, a senior marketing major. Students would be housed in a hotel overnight and provided with transportation to Quincy Market and Harvard Square, a tour of the Freedom Trail and meal vouchers. Students would also have free time to explore the city or see friends who attend college in the greater Boston area.

“It’s a city that’s relatively close to us but that not a lot of people have been to and that a lot of people want to go to,” Gonzalez said.

“I like this event a lot, I just don’t know how cost-effective it is,” said SFB equipment center manager Garrett Hoffman, a senior mathematics major, whose main concern was that a maximum of only 50 students would be able to attend this trip.

After cutting $1,344 from the request, which would have reduced the student cost for the trip from $74 to $50 a person, SFB members voted to fund $3,686 for the overnight bus trip with the stipulation that at least 40 students sign up.

Student Government requested $370 to host Liberation in North Korea, or LiNK, a non-profit organization based in California that is touring the Northeast trying to raise awareness of the present-day situation in North Korea.

The group goes to schools to show a film, “Hiding,” a documentary about North Koreans who escape to China, according to Ga Young Han, a junior biomedical engineering major.

“I’m fine with pretty much everything except the audience refreshments,” said Alexa Kaminsky, junior accounting major and SFB Operations Director.

After cutting $20 from the request for audience refreshments, SFB funded $350 for the event, which will be held in the Brower Student Center Food Court at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, March 28.

SG also requested $6,181.50 for a luau on March 30 as a part of their Meet and Greet Week. The luau, which will take place in Alumni Grove, is replacing the luau that is normally held during Finals Fest but was cut from the list of Finals Fest activities this semester.

“During the luau we’re also going to have some entertainment groups from the College performing, like the juggling club and The Trentones,” said Josephine D’Amico, a freshman finance major. SFB voted to fully fund this event.

The creative writing organization, ink, requested $1,250 to fund The Goods, an all-day celebration of student art and creativity that takes place every semester in the Rathskeller.

“The point of the event is to have students come and perform in any creative way that they want,” said ink president Enrico Bruno, a senior English and self-designed creative writing double major.

Students typically perform from 1 to 7 p.m., followed by a headliner reading and a question and answer session from 7 to 8 p.m. This semester, ink members were polled before the headliner was chosen, and they chose to bring published poet Daisy Fried.

The event received full funding.

Ink also proposed a request for $3,030 for their Master Workshop. “We invite a master writer to campus who then workshops the work of two or three senior creative writing students taking the capstone class,” Bruno said. The writer workshops these pieces in front of an audience, then does a reading, giving general advice on creative writing, followed by a question and answer session.

Some members thought that this event was not worth the money because it would only be benefitting the three students who got their work critiqued. SFB Operations director Alexa Kaminsky, junior accounting major, disagreed.

“I do think it might be beneficial to everybody,” she said. In the end, the motion to fully fund the event was passed by a majority vote.

TCNJ Musical Theatre was granted $1,900 for their event “Deaf Awareness Day — Performance of Little Theatre of the Deaf,” which is being organized by the Deaf Hearing Connection and will be held in Kendall Hall, pending approval, at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, April 13.

“Unless you take a sign language course, students at the College really don’t get to learn about the deaf culture,” said junior special education and English double major Mark Accardi.

“This sounds like a phenomenal event,” said John Wintermute, assistant SG representative for SFB.

“It’s a great price and I think a lot of people will go to it,” he said. “The combination of DHC and TCNJ Musical Theatre will draw a lot of people out.”


Events funded for Latino Awareness Month celebrations

Union Latina was granted a total of $5,511 for a series of events in April to celebrate Latino Awareness Month. The month will kick off with “Latino Awareness Celebration: Explosion,” an event to showcase culturally diverse student talent. This event received $341.87 in funding and will be held on Friday, April 2, in Brower Student Center room 202.

The next event will be a screening of the film “The Cartel” followed by a panel discussion. SFB granted $119.99 for this event, which will be held on Wednesday, April 6 in room 101 of the physics building. SFB also granted $3,440.37 for Copa Night, a celebration featuring live Latino music and entertainment in the T/W Main Lounge on Thursday, April 14.

Union Latina was allotted $300 for the lecture “Tattoos & Body Modification: Anthropological and Historical Views” by professional tattoo artist Jorge Torres, to be held on Thursday, April 28, in BSC room 210. The month will wrap up with a closing ceremony on Friday, April 29, in the Decker Main Lounge for which SFB granted $1,309.45. There will be traditional Latino food and the history of Latino influence at the College will be discussed.

SFB granted The Perspective $23,000 at its meeting Wednesday, March 2, to invite Sam Harris to the College to give a lecture titled “Do You Need God to be Good?” Harris is an author and neuroscientist in the atheist community and will speak to students about his most recent novel, “The Moral Landscape,” followed by a short question-and-answer session. The tentative date for the lecture is Thursday, April 19, in the Mildred and Earnest E. Mayo Concert Hall, pending approval.

SFB allocated $3,900 to Chabad for their event “Eat, Play, Laugh — A Purim Celebration” in the Rathskeller on March 20 in honor of the Jewish holiday Purim. The event will feature ethnic food, traditional Purim activities, world-renowned comic Ari Teman and a comedic student performance.

Amnesty International was granted $636 for their Social Justice Film Series with Special Guest Lectures, to be held in physics building room 101 the week of March 24. On April 7, there will be a presentation by Bermese Monks regarding the film “Burma VJ,” which will be screened during the series.

Student Government received $429 in funding for their event “The Writings on the Wall,” which will be held the week of March 16 and includes an arts and crafts display and features speakers who will talk about their experience with hateful language and how to deal with and overcome this type of discrimination.

The Astronomy Club was granted $1,000 for a bus trip to the American Museum of Natural History’s Rose Center for Earth and Space on Wednesday, March 23, to visit the Hayden Planetarium.

SFB granted the Deaf-Hearing Connection $2,000 for a bus trip to the premier liberal arts university for the deaf, Gllaudet University in Washington, D.C. The trip will take place from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, April 16, and will give ASL and DHH an unparalleled opportunity to interact in a deaf community.

The Progressive Student Alliance was granted $2,000 to send a delegation of students to the anti-war protest in Washington, D.C. on March 19, which is the eighth anniversary of the war in Iraq.

After being denied funding for an authentic Haitian band on two previous accounts because the cost was too high, the Haitian Student Association received $6,000 to bring a live band to their sixth annual “Ambiance” on Saturday, April 9. The cost for the band, Kreyol la, includes the price of the sound engineer and is $2,000 less than HSA’s previous request for the band T-Vice.


SFB funds TCNJ College Republicans’ bid for Ben Stein


SFB funded TCNJ College Republicans’ request for $26,300 at last Wednesday’s meeting to try to bring Ben Stein to campus sometime during the last week of March.

“I think it really pertains to students because he’s kind of a pop-culture phenomenon, plus he has a lot of experience with politics and economics,” said Nick Lukaszewicz, junior political science major and president of the College Republicans.

Lukaszewicz also argued that this event would appeal to all students, not only Republicans. “He is conservative, but he does cross party lines on some issues. He’s not just someone that goes along the party lines,” he said.

“I think it’s really cool they want to bring a political speaker that bridges the gap of pop culture, and I think it will be really well-attended,” senior management major John Wintermute, the assistant SG representative for SFB, said.

If the College Republicans are able to book Ben Stein, the event will be free for students from the College, who will need to show their ID at the door.

The College Democrats requested $1,985 for an event called Eat Trenton, to be held in the Brower Student Center on Thursday, March 17 from 8 to 10 p.m. Hoping to form and facilitate a good relationship between students at the College and local restaurants in Trenton, the College Democrats will be bringing between 10 to 12 culturally diverse restaurants, chosen by the Trenton Downtown Association, to campus to offer a small buffet of their food.

“The event is essentially to get Trenton businesses and Trenton restaurants integrated into the College,” said Alex Burger, senior political science and philosophy double major. “Trenton, other than one square block in Manhattan, has the most variety of ethnic food in the world.”

Berger said the event would be “a great first step to integrating the two (College) and Trenton communities.”

SFB finance director Garrett Hoffman, senior mathematics major, said, “I think it could become a yearly thing, and I think it’s true that people are scared of Trenton. It’s kind of like a weird relationship, so I think it would be cool to have people coming here and people going there.”

The College Democrats were looking to charge students $2 each to attend the buffet, but SFB members agreed that more students would come if the event was free, so members voted to fully fund the event with the stipulation that students would not be charged to attend.

SFB funded $790 for the Mars Hill Christian Ministry’s Love 146 Eternal Flame Coffeehouse on Saturday, March 26, from 6:30 to 10 p.m.

“The primary purpose of this would be to raise awareness around the campus of sex trafficking,” said Hyuna Yong, junior art history major.

The event will feature three outside performers and the College’s Trentones a cappella group, with documentary-style clips about sex trafficking in Southeast Asia from the Love 146 website playing in between performances. There will be Starbucks coffee and food catered by Mama Flora’s.

Publicity for this event will include cards and posters with information on sex trafficking in the main lobby of the library and on stakes along the Alumni Grove.

“We believe that not enough people know about human sex trafficking, which is a form of slavery, and today, we see the most ever,” Yong said.

SFB also granted SG $3,725 to fund their event Lets Talk About “IT!” with sexual assault awareness activists Kelly Addington and Becca Tieder on Wednesday, March 16, from 9 to 10:30 p.m. on the Kendall Hall Main Stage, pending approval.

“It’s essentially a sexual empowerment and sexual assault prevention program,” said SG vice president of equity and diversity Lynette Barnes, a psychology and women’s and gender studies double major.

“I think its important that we spend a little money on fun stuff, a little money on multicultural stuff and a little money on stuff like this, for an educational event,” Hoffman said.

The Campus Ministry Leadership Institute requested $818.15 for their executive board to attend the Campus Ministry Leadership Institute conference this summer.

“The purpose of the conference is really to increase the programming abilities of (Catholic Campus Ministry) on our campus,” said junior biology major Brianna Reilly.

Emily DeCarlo, junior statistics major who attended the conference last year, said, “You get to see what all the other CCM are working on and present to each other so it’s a really valuable way to get ideas.”

“This is the best put-together conference request I have ever seen. This seems great,” Samlin said.

SFB members unanimously voted to fund this trip.

During Wednesday’s meeting, members of SFB also approved three new organizations for SFB funding: Psychology Club, Russian Club and TCNJ EOF Alliance.

Canterbury House requested $280 to help offset travel costs for their spring break trip to Camden this year.

While they agreed this was a good cause, some SFB board members felt this request was outside of their jurisdiction.

“I mean, it always hurts me to not be able to help out groups like this, but this isn’t what we do, so I feel like we can’t fund this,” Wintermute said.


College gets a supersized lecture; Quest takes main stage

After being denied funding for Lemony Snicket two weeks ago, CUB requested $16,600 to bring documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock to the College for the annual Spring Lecture.

Spurlock, famous for his documentary “Super Size Me,” will come to talk about his newest work, “The Greatest Film Ever Sold,” which explores the omnipresence of the media in American society and was ironically funded entirely by product placement. The film is set to hit theaters in late April, but CUB hopes to bring Spurlock to the College before the film is released and provide an exclusive sneak preview screening of the film as part of the event, followed by Spurlock’s lecture and a question and answer session.

After adding $800 to the request to fund the presence of campus police at the event, members of SFB unanimously approved $17,400 for this lecture. The event will take place on the Kendall Hall Main Stage, pending approval from the building operators, and the tentative date is April 2.

CUB also requested $11,200 for a lecture by Jamie Tworkowski, the founder of the inspirational organization To Write Love On Her Arms, which works to discourage depression, cutting, self-harm and suicidal thoughts and behaviors in young adults.

“I don’t think we’ve had a comparable event on campus. The fact that it’s such a motivational event sets it apart,” said Maggie Murad, a freshman history secondary education major, during CUB’s proposal.

Although SFB rarely funds two lectures in the same month, members felt that these two lectures were different enough to draw large audiences both times.

“I like this event a lot. I think this company is pretty well known. I always hear about it on campus. I see it on Facebook all the time,” said Anthony Czajkowski, senior accounting major and SG representative for SFB. “There’s been a huge increase in suicides and thoughts of suicides. I think there’s going to be a lot of students who will want to go to this.”

SFB unanimously voted to fund the lecture, which will be held on Monday, April 18, on the Kendall Hall Main Stage, pending approval.

CUB also requested $19,200 in funding for a dance troupe show to be held in Kendall Hall, pending approval, on Thursday, April 21. This interactive dance show will feature the dance group Quest, the third season winner of Randy Jackson’s “America’s Best Dance Crew.” The show will also incorporate a student opener, the College’s dance team and a local step team opener, No Mercy Step Company, which together will offer a wide variety of different types of dance.

Some SFB members thought the timing for the show was less than ideal, falling very close to many other large events at the end of the semester.

Sara Hanson, senior accounting major and board member, said, “I know it falls close to finals, and we’re a nerdy campus, so students will have tests and projects, so I don’t know if that will affect (the turnout at this event).”

Members decided that this event was large enough and different enough to potentially fill Kendall Hall, and after adding the price for police security, SFB members unanimously voted to fully fund this event for $20,600. This event, along with the two lectures, will be general admission events open only to students from the College. Students will have to show their ID at the door to be granted access.

The Haitian Student Association returned to request funding for a popular Haitian band, T-Vice, for their event, Ambiance, this spring. Last week, HSA was denied $10,000 for this same band because SFB members thought the amount was a bit excessive for an event that cannot accommodate more than 200 people.

“When we looked into other types of bands, T-Vice e-mailed us and said they would reduce their price by $2,000,” said Naomi Thony, a member of HSA and a junior biology major.

This week, HSA requested $8,000 for the band and $100 for utensils. SFB board members believed the price of the band was still too high, especially considering that last year’s band for Ambiance only cost approximately $5,000. SFB will once again allow HSA to search for a less expensive band — around last year’s price range or cheaper — and return to request funding.

The American Marketing Association requested $750 from the SFB at last Wednesday’s meeting for a bus trip to New York City. The trip would include a tour of a major advertising agency, J Walter Thompson, in the morning and allow students to freely roam the city for the rest of the afternoon.

“I feel like it’s an academic event, it’s only going to be for their club members, and all my reservations that I had going into this were just magnified when I found out only 10 or 15 people went last year,” said senior management major and assistant SG representative to SFB, John Wintermute.

Alexa Kaminsky, junior accounting major and SFB operations director, disagreed. “If it’s just a tour, I think a tour of a real marketing company is really cool. It’s not a forced networking event, it’s like come see a big company in New York City,” Kaminsky said.

“This year, we want to go all out to all students, let them know that the trip is not just about networking or business or boring stuff — it’s going to be a fun day in the city,” junior marketing major Caroline St. Angelo assured SFB during the proposal.

Warren Samlin, junior finance and political science double major and administration director, thought that the trip would have a real draw among students. “Bus trips have never been so popular. There used to be a bus trip every Saturday, and now it’s more like once or twice a month. I think there’s more demand than last year for them,” he said.

The Japanese Club also requested funding from SFB in the amount of $4,500 for a bus trip to the Sakura Matsuri, a celebration of Japanese culture complete with a parade, street festival, demonstrations and more, in Washington D.C. on April 9. The request covers the cost of two charter buses for the day, which will leave campus around 5 a.m., arrive in D.C. around 10 a.m., leave D.C. around 6 p.m. and return to campus around 10:30 p.m.

This event has been a huge success among students from the College in the past. “It’s the largest concentration of Japanese culture in the country. It’s a really great way to be able to experience Japanese culture without actually going to Japan,” said Japanese Club member Jenn Hurler, a junior interactive multimedia major, during the proposal.

Board members seemed to like this event. “Apparently, this is the largest fair in the country. This is the festival of the year for people converging in D.C.,” Samlin said. SFB members approved the funding for two buses and said that if the student demand was high enough, they would be willing to fund a third bus for the event.

SFB unanimously approved $1,960.35 for the Central Eurasian and Middle Eastern Studies Society’s Nowruz Festival: Celebrating the Persian New Year. The event will take place on at 6 p.m. March 23, in the Brower Student Center Atrium and will include Middle Eastern and Central Asian cuisine and performances from Amir Vahab, a Persian musician and Zulya Rajabova, an Uzbek dancer.


Spring Spectacular, Bollywood Night Part Deux fully funded

Student Finance Board

The College’s dance company, Synergy, requested $1,792.50 from the Student Finance Board at Wednesday’s meeting to fund its Spring Spectacular, which is its annual dance recital. This money will be used to cover the cost of Kendall Hall, with light and sound equipment, technicians, decorations and costumes.

“We haven’t had costumes in a long time,” said Katie Martinez, junior history secondary education major, during Synergy’s proposal. “It would be really nice if we could have new costumes, because the girls work so hard, and it’s been so long.”

Some board members were apprehensive about funding costumes for Synergy, but Garrett Hoffman, senior mathematics major and equipment center manager of SFB, said, “I don’t really have a problem with the costumes, especially since, at least as long as I’ve been here, I don’t think we’ve given them money for costumes.”

Synergy was willing to charge parents a $5 entrance fee to the recital to help offset the costs of the event, but the members of SFB felt that was unnecessary and unanimously voted to grant full funding for the Spring Spectacular.

The show will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 3 in Kendall Hall, pending approval of the building space.

The Indian Student Association requested $2,125 from SFB to fund Bollywood Night Part Deux, to be held at 7:45 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 25 in Brower Student Center room 202.

“It’s basically a night to celebrate fine Indian culture, especially Bollywood, which is the largest film industry in the world (in terms of ticket sales and number of films produced),” said junior biology and sociology double major Ann Mary Philip, an active member of ISA involved with planning the event.

The night will be complete with a DJ, dinner and dancing, as clips and music videos from Bollywood movies play in the background.

Members of ISA provided a thorough breakdown of the budget for the event, brought an example of the centerpiece they wish to create for each table and passed around a sample of their flyers, which they will hang on corkboards around the school as part of their advertising campaign.

Some SFB board members were impressed with the presentation.

“I think it’s really well planned out,” said Cynthia Sha, sophomore international business major.

“I went to this event last year, and it was loads of fun,” added board member Billy Freyberger, sophomore finance and psychology double major.

After adding $200 to the requested amount to cover insurance costs, SFB unanimously approved ISA for $2,325 worth of funding for Bollywood Night Part Deux.

The Art Student Association requested $298.62 in funding for their Visual Arts Open-Mic Night, to be held from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 25 in Arts and Interactive Multimedia Building room 126. This event will feature live musical performers, and students who attend will use art as a way to interpret the music as they design pastel and charcoal creations on 18 by 24 inch sheets of paper.

“It’s a good challenge to try to get people to visualize the sounds that they’re hearing, and then everyone can take their artwork home with them at the end,” senior art education major Katie Petrillo told the SFB board members.

After cutting $50 for refreshments, which board members agreed should come out of the group’s fundraising budget, SFB approved $248.62 for ASA’s request.

After being denied funding for their Black History Month keynote speaker last week, members of the Black Student Union returned to request $1,300 from SFB to bring a local playwright, mentor and speaker to the College. Rashad “Reggie” Walker will present to the College on Wednesday, Feb. 16 in BSC room 202.

After cutting $175 for refreshments from the request but still allocating $25 for food and water for the speaker, SFB approved BSU for $1,125 for the event.


SFB grants $85,000 for carnival, denies Lemony Snicket bid

Representatives from CUB received funding for its first spring carnival. (Kate Stronczer / Photo Assistant)

The Student Finance Board unanimously approved the College Union Board’s request for $85,000 this past Wednesday to fund the College’s first annual spring carnival, which will be held on Friday, April 29.

CUB’s proposals for previous carnivals over the last two years were struck down, but this year’s plan was approved by SFB because it was more complete, members said. The lawn and parking lots outside of the Brower Student Center will be transformed for the carnival, complete with field games, rides, food tents, mini golf, caricaturists, balloon artists, stilt walkers and more.

Admission to the carnival will be free of charge for students from the College, who will receive a wristband upon arrival granting them access to all the rides and games, as well as two meal vouchers worth $3 each, which can be redeemed for food from any of the food vendors. Non-students are welcomed to buy a wristband for $10 which will allow access to rides and games, but food and drinks are not included.

Both SFB and CUB are hoping to make the spring carnival a legacy event, comparable to Rutgersfest, that students from the College will be able to look forward to every year.

Because this will be the carnival’s first year, SFB was approved to use money from its reserve fund, which contains $850,000, to finance the carnival so that no money is taken away from other student activities and events that are currently built into the budget.

If the carnival is a success, however, expenses for the carnival will have to be built into SFB’s budget in the years to come, which means that SFB may have to cut back funding for some other activities and events throughout the year.

SFB also approved CUB’s request for $29,732 for a board game-themed late night event in the student center on Saturday, March 19. The student center will be transformed with decorations, life-size games, a DJ, bounce and slide inflatables, food, crafts, two massage therapists, three manicurists and more, all fit to the themes of various boardgames. Raffle tickets will also be given away during the event, giving attendees the chance to win prizes, such as a Wii or an iPad, at the end of the night. SFB agreed to fund this event with the stipulation that members of CUB will not be eligible to win the raffle prizes.

The members of SFB denied CUB $18,200 to bring author Daniel Handler, who writes under the pseudonym Lemony Snicket and is best known for his “A Series of Unfortunate Events,” to the College for the Spring 2011 lecture. The board members felt that Handler was not an appropriate speaker for the lecture because he caters to a younger audience, and they felt he would not be able to draw a crowd at the College.

The Jewish organization Chabad was granted $4,730 for Shabbat 100, which will be held in BSC room 202 at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 18.

The event will provide traditional Jewish foods, such as matzah ball soup, challah and noodle kugel, to give students the opportunity to experience the Jewish culture. The event will also feature Jewish celebrity Tamir Goodman, a former NBA basketball player, who will be giving a speech.

After almost an hour of debate, SFB unanimously voted to approve the Black Student Union’s request for $3,400 for a closing ceremony on Feb. 26 to mark the end of Black History Month, provided that it is held in the student center’s atrium. However, it denied the group $8,000 in funding for a keynote speaker, Columbia University professor Marc Lamont Hill, who board members considered not popular enough to draw a large crowd and therefore not worth the hefty price tag.

SFB also granted the Haitian Student Association $1,927 for its sixth annual Ambiance, an event to celebrate Haitian culture, planned for Saturday, April 9. Members unanimously agreed to fund all but one request from HSA for this event — to book a popular Haitian music band, T-Vice, from Florida — because the price of the band was $10,000. SFB agreed that they would allow HSA time to find a less expensive band and return to request more funding if the band was a more reasonable price.

PRISM requested $596.61 to fund their eighth annual Queer Wedding, an event to represent different couples — straight, gay, lesbian and transgender — getting married. After cutting $70 from PRISM’s request for 100 glossy fliers, which board members thought was excessive, SFB allocated $566.61 for the event.

SFB also approved $1730.40 for the Inter-Greek Council to send its four executive members to the Northeast Greek Leadership Association’s conference in Hartford, Conn. from Feb. 17 to Feb. 20, provided that they somehow implement what they learn about programming from the conference at the College when they return.