Archive for February 2009
By Tristian Gourdet
Every semester, students who attend this College are always encouraged to get involved on campus. One way that the college has encouraged that is by creating student organizations and clubs, so students can join. These particular organizations and clubs are designed to provide opportunities for leadership and provide a sense of community among students, faculty and staff. A total of 63 student organizations exist on the Ammerman Campus. From the Italian Club to the Frisbee Club, many students get the chance to be a part of something. A lot of the students who are in these organizations build long life friendships and also build strong network connections. What really helps the student succeed as well is that each organization is related to their major or personal interest. Within these organizations, students look pretty happy and enjoy pretty much what they are getting involved with.
But what about members who are in these organizations and clubs yet feel about differently about other clubs members joining? If the College is trying to provide a sense of community among students, faculty and staff, is there interaction among these different organizations? Do members of student organizations resent other members from different clubs to join because they have different beliefs or don’t share the same values? Is there a sense of camaraderie between each student organization?
Scheri Stewart, the faculty adviser of the club Brothers and Sisters in Christ (B.A.S.I.C.) said she doesn’t have a problem with another club member joining their meetings.
“We welcome all and do not discourage or discriminate against anyone who may have views that are different than our beliefs,” Stewart said. Other organizations with different views and beliefs are also here on the Ammerman campus. Such organizations are the Gay/Straight Alliance and the Muslim Student Association.
President, Matthew Moore of B.A.S.I.C. also shared the same views that Stewart expressed. “We want people from the Gay Straight Alliance to come to our club. I encourage that,” Moore said, “I would consider that as a great achievement!” From past experience, Moore has always felt a misconception about Christians and their feelings towards other cultures. “We’re not here to shun people”, he said, “the bible said to love others, whether they’re homosexual or not.”
Mariam Paracha, president of the Muslim Student Association also feels that members from different student organizations are always welcomed. “No, it’s not a problem; our doors are open to everyone,” Paracha said. “We are an interfaith organization; everyone has a right to their opinion.”
Every Wednesday, from 11am till 12:15pm, many of the student organizations have meetings, discussing planned events that they tend to accomplish throughout the coming months. They also talk about general topics that affect their beliefs and values. However, if many of the student organizations are in favor of anyone joining them, including members from other student organizations, then why hasn’t there been more encouragement for interacting with different organizations from faculty advisers? Most clubs are busy conducting their meetings and do not have many opportunities to really dialogue with other groups.
“I can’t speak for the other advisers, but I think time conflicts is a part of it. I also think that some may not really feel there is a need,” Stewart said.
Bruce Barton, the faculty adviser of the Gay/Straight Alliance Club and a computer science professor here at the Ammerman campus said, “A couple of years ago, we reached out to other student organizations on campus, to have a forum meeting, but the plan fell through. Many of the other organizations felt obliged for this meeting to happen, but time schedules didn’t line up,” Barton said. He that his organization invited other religious and gender organizations to be part of the forum meetings.
“We don’t have a problem with other members joining our club but other members from other clubs may feel they have a problem joining ours,” Barton later said. Bartonsaid he feels that the gay community is only being tolerated and not being accepted. “There is a big difference on being tolerated and being accepted,” he said, “Being tolerated is just people putting up with you. Being accepted means that you are a part of something.”
What Barton and rest of the Gay Straight Alliance Club are trying to promote is understanding, cooperation and acceptance, which in today’s society there is a lack of. Whether or not other the organizations will continue to push for a forum meeting has yet to be seen. There has not been any announcement or push for this to actually happen. If there is any way for each of student organizations to feel accepted like Barton said, then more focus has to be made on making these event forums happen, so all the issues could be laid out on table and be discussed. The sound of having an “interfaith” organization should be a focus point instead of one organization being by itself.
By Mike Smollins
Last year, the Clippers’ baseball team finished first place in the season standings and fell one game shy of making it to the World Series after being ousted two games to one by the Grant Campus in the finals of the 2008 Region XV Tournament. Though that kind of experience could damage a team emotionally, they are hopeful that this season will be just as successful as the last, if not more.
Coach Eric Brown said he is very excited for this year, but isn’t exactly sure what to expect quite yet.
“I tell my teams every year that at some point they’ll develop a personality,” said Brown, “I tell them they have to push themselves. They are a talented group with a great attitude and great things can happen.”
Brown’s track record speaks for itself. He has coached for 22 years at Suffolk and has composed a dazzling 428-251-4 record in that time frame with four Regional Championships in the years 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2006 and also Coach of the Year honors in those years.
Brown has also surrounded himself with a great coaching staff with assistant coaches Lou Klammer (10th year), Joseph Kosina (7th year), and Ron Davies (7th year). Klammer, whose son once played here, coaches first base and is responsible for the outfielders. Kosina graduated Suffolk in 2000 and got his bachelors degree at the University of Arizona in 2004.
Ron Davies has lived in the baseball world both as a player and a coach for over 44 years, and his insight is a huge help to the team. He came over after many years at Adelphi to help Coach Brown. Davies is a member of the Suffolk County Sports Hall of Fame, as well as the Adelphi Hall of Fame.
“I always felt that Long Island kids could compete, and they proved it by playing teams representing the entire country. They beat teams from places like Florida and California,” said Davies, a lifetime member of the Baseball Coaches Association.
Brown said he feels good about his coaching staff, but also there are some returning players he really believes in. Trevor Thorstensen is a returning player who was awarded 2nd Team All American in the pre-season. Anthony Constantanos is the ace of the pitching staff and he went 7-1 last season. Brown is hopeful he can match that success, if not top it.
Catcher Thomas Butler was awarded 1st team All-Region. One player Brown is really excited about is Joe Budalmante. Budalmante is a sophomore who didn’t play last year; however, he did help the 2006 team go all the way to the Jr. College World Series. Coach Brown also expects good things out of his freshmen.
The Clippers’ season starts with a road trip to North Carolina and then to Middlesex, New Jersey. Brown likes the idea of starting the season with a road trip.
“I like the trip for two reasons. The team tends to bond on the trip down, and that helps them develop personality. Also, most of these guys go to four year schools. Displaying them down there in in-game action helps their chances of being recruited,” Brown said.
Many of the players have been recruited. Constantanos is going to Lander University in South Carolina with a scholarship. Thonstenson is going to Adelphi with a scholarship as well.
The Clippers have all the pieces to success. They have a solid experienced coaching staff, a great array of freshmen, and they have guys who shared success last year returning to the team. The only question that remains is if they can find their personality. Though Brown isn’t sure if they will find their personality, Davies can sum up the season in four words, “We’ll do very well.”
By Jessica Reed
The majority of students on campus say that they don’t hear public announcements on a regular basis. Come to find out, announcements are only coming through the Babylon Student Center. Most of the students at SCCC don’t even know about the announcements and don’t have the time to participate in events that are being announced.
“I just go to school and go home. I don’t really care about anything else” said, Shaquan a student on campus.
But lack of interest is not the only reason students fail to attend campus activities. Other reasons include work schedule conflicts, and lack of knowledge about the events.
Director of Ammerman Campus Activities Sharon Silverstein works to promote student activities on campus. She makes sure overall that every event is organized properly. She talks to whomever needs guidance on their ideas and help others to work out problems if it they have difficulty.
“Our staff and I make a paper calendar of events every two weeks, twice a month. It has everything at your advantage,” Silverstein said. “Also, it is a great way to socialize with other students here on campus, and all the experiences you have will make you a better citizen,” she said.
Despite the hard work that Silverstein and her staff are doing, students are not getting the message.
Simone, another student on campus commented on the bulletin board saying “the flyers are discrete in the corner on the wall, plus nobody notices it really.” Another problem is students prefer socializing. For instance talking in the cafeteria is a popular thing to do to pass time. Other students don’t have the time to go due to studying for exams. Students are not really motivated, so it’s only up to the student to partake in the events.
Another problem with the public announcements is that certain students making the announcements do not project their voices clearly enough; therefore, a disadvantage has come into play. If it is not clear, students will not know what is going on.
What Silverstein is trying to do, is to get the students who work at the information booth and train them, so future announcements will be noticed by students. Eventually through time our colleagues will pay more attention.
“The other concern is over doing the announcements is that they can be irritating to the students as well,” Silverstein explained. Now we understand the problem of communication between the colleagues and the announcers.
Statistics have shown about 90 percent of the students and 10 percent of faculty and staff make the announcements. So who is ineffective in this? If the staff is doing their job communicating, so should the students because it is their College too. Applying more help for the faculty staff and Silverstein will bring more students to engage in all the cool activities on campus.
Although the announcements may need more attention, some students are participating in the campus activities and events. About 336 participants showed up in the year of 2007-2008 to every club, Silverstein said. If no one shows up then the faculty advisers find out new ideas to organize it better. More than 50 clubs and news events occur in the evening and night during school hours.
To ask for information go to the student Babylon Center across from the Ammerman building. You’ll see students wearing green vests. They will be happy to give you the correct information of every event. For extra access students can use www.sunysuffolk.edu to look up different types of college athletics, clubs, and theatrical events and also find out what is going on outside of campus.
While enjoying the time that you have at Suffolk County Community College utilize the free time by signing up for a club during common hour every Wednesday from 11-12:30pm. And, be sure to listen for public announcements.
By Cassandra Mariotti
Each year, millions of students are logging on to use the website Rate My Professors. Students use this website to choose which professor they want for the particular class they are going to take. The website has been around since 1999 and at least 6.5 billion users log on. The website offers ratings to over 6,000 schools. Students like to be ensured that they will have a good professor, but what they fail to realize is the type of affect it has on the professors.
There are a lot of pros and cons to the website. We as students are not always sure if people are telling the truth about certain professors. For example, one might say that a particular professor is a horrible grader, or gives too much homework. Another might say that the same professor is only a horrible grader because no one in that class tends to pay attention. There are always two sides of every story, but the only sides students care about, are comments that the student write towards the professor. How are students, who are scheduling their classes, ever able to know the truth if they don’t give those professors a chance? There are times when you read something about the professor and it turns out to be true, but there are also times when students are just writing biased feelings because they couldn’t keep up with the class. Many students said they feel as if this website is their safety net to survival; that they’re only going to be safe for the semester if they check out who is a nice professor and who is a mean professor.
There aren’t only negative aspects of this website; a lot of critiques that people write are sometimes true. It’s mainly for students to help out one another, and give negative and positive advice. Professor Tamara Slankard, a literature professor here on campus, said she had mixed feelings about the idea of students going on a website and picking out teachers they wanted to have.
“When I first started teaching I would look at the site all the time to see if the students liked me,” Slankard said. “I think it’s better for students to talk about the teachers to each other rather than looking at the site.”
Slankard said she is not against the site, but she said she feels that there are other ways to go about the situation. When asked if there was anything that might worry her about this website, she said, “I worry if the student’s ratings would ever affect a teacher’s tenure.” From hearing that response, is it possible for a professor to lose their position because of how a student feels?
Rate My Professor is not a website that only gets ratings on professors’ attitudes or how much homework they give, but the site also rates how good looking a professor is and alows ratings by students on professors’ qualtity of instruction. If a professor is very good looking, they will get a chili pepper next to their name. If their teaching is of good quality, they will have a yellow smiley face. Professor Slankard stated, “I want a chili pepper next to my name.”
In all humor, I guess anyone can say they would want a chili pepper next to their name. There are a total of 1,016 professors on the SCCC rate my professor website. You have to wonder if every professor were to look at their ratings, would they change who they are to come across differently to students?
Professor Linda Barber, a cultural anthropology professor here on campus, also had some feelings to contribute to this matter. Although Barber said she does not look at this website, she went on to say, “I feel that it is a good concept, but I don’t think it’s working. I don’t feel it’s doing what it is supposed to be doing.” This website is not a favor to all, but no one said the website should disappear either. “The people that love you will take the class, the people that hate you will not,” Barber said.
Students will rush to see the ratings on each professor before they make their last minute decisions. Rate my professor will always be around for students to rate their teachers, but the question is, will the teachers always be around to see what has been said?
By Rhyanne Green
The aroma of small fried chicken bites, cut cheese and fresh fruit filled the air at College President Dr. Shirley Robinson Pippins’ farewell party in the Babylon Student Center upstairs in the Mildred Green Room Wednesday, Feb. 11.
The goodbye celebration, put together by Director of Campus Activities Sharon Silverstein along with the help of Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Curriculum and Instruction Dee Laffin and faculty members, offered a huge spread of appetizing refreshments to a host of faculty and students.
Pippins has been hired as senior vice president of programs and services for The American Council on Education in Washington, D.C., and will assume those duties in March. She has had a positive impact on the faculty and student body in her five years as president of the College, said those who shared their thoughts about her presidency. The positive impact was shown through the speeches at the goodbye celebration.
The first speaker, Executive Dean William F. Connors, Jr. , discussed Pippins’ contributions to the faculty and staff, all of the good work she has done over the years and how she will truly be missed. Connors had the honor of introducing the other speakers, Dr. Tina Good, Ammerman faculty senate president, and two students Amber Butler and Eddy Rodriguez.
Good spoke very highly of President Pippin’s fashion.
“She is the best dressed president I have ever seen,” said Good, who called Dr. Pippins “classy” and honored her with a top 10 list of the things Good admired most about Pippins.
Good concluded she would miss Dr. Pippins, and said she enjoyed working with her.
Student Amber Butler emphasized how she prospered as a student under Pippins’ leadership.
“I admire her class and her style,” said Butler. In her speech she also included how she was influenced by Pippins to be a good professional. In conclusion, she said she will miss Pippens. As she spoke, Butler’s voice was shaky as if she were going to cry.
Rodriguez began his speech by saying, “I admit I was not a good high school student but… by going to Suffolk County Community College under Shirley Pippins’ leadership as president I have done better in college.”
Pippins said positive and appreciative words to Dr. Tina Good at the end of her speech. “I have seen you grow so much and you have done a wonderful job,” she said. “I will miss all of you and I will continue to represent Suffolk County Community College,” said Pippins.
After the last speaker spoke, Connors said his last goodbyes to Pippins, and he told everyone to continue eating. Several photographers and student body members attended. Activity clubs were at the celebration, including the Student Government Association, Campus Activity Board, the executive of recruitment for student orientation and a photographer from the Compass were all in attendance.
“This celebration is unknown, not much (many) people heard about this event,” said Alex Vogiatzis, a photographer staff of the SCCC Compass said. The announcement was never put in the SCCC monthly calendar.
Vice President of Institutional Advancement Mary Lou Araneo said, “Dr. Pippins made the announcement of the goodbye party during the Christmas break, but somehow it was not put in the SCCC Calendar.” Despite the party’s not being highly publicized, the Mildred Green room was still crowded with faculty and students who did know about the celebration.
The students and faculty who knew about the gathering and attended had nothing but positive words to say about Dr. Pippins. The executive of recruitment for student orientation, student Steve Vandelli said, “I am here to show support for Shirley Pippins.” The event was not only on the Ammerman (Selden) Campus but it took place on the Grant campus (Brentwood) last Wednesday during common hour. Next week the very last goodbye celebration will happen at the Eastern Campus (Riverhead) during common hour.
By Matt Gibson
A rare relic from the Holocaust is currently on display at the Flecker Memorial Art Gallery in the Southampton building.
The relic is a book that was originally used in Poland during the period of the Holocaust. The book originated in the Charych family of Lodz, Poland. Alex and Henia Charych met and married in Warsaw and eventually moved to Lodz years later in December of 1945. In 1945 World War II and the Holocaust were in full swing. This book entitled “Extermination of the Polish Jews: a Picture Album” includes the first photographic documentation of the Holocaust. This book had a significant impact on the world’s view of what exactly transpired during the Holocaust itself.
The exhibit at the Art Gallery was created by The Suffolk Center on the Holocaust, Diversity & Human Understanding, Inc. (CHDHU) and is entitled Extermination of Polish Jews. Along with the book, this exhibit also features various moving and revealing photographs of the Holocaust and the horrendous conditions that the Holocaust caused specifically in Poland.
This exhibit is on display at the Flecker Memorial Art Gallery until Feb. 27.
The gallery’s hours are Monday-Thursday from 11:00am-3:00pm and again from 5:30pm-7:30pm. On Fridays the gallery is open from 10:00am-2:00pm.
Anyone who is interested is encouraged to come down to the Southampton building and take a look for themselves. Any questions or comments should be directed to Steven Schrier at 631-451-4700 or email@example.com.
By Dan Burgos
The Department of Physical Sciences at the Ammerman campus announced on February 6, 2009 that, our college has been selected by NASA to present new and stunning images to all the people of Long Island. A breathtaking unveiling event will take place at the Smithtown Science Building, in room 109, on February 20th when two new images taken by NASA’s Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, and Chandra X-ray Observatory will be unveiled to the public. Suffolk County Community College is one of only four community colleges in the nation to partake in the International Year of Astronomy celebrations.
The stunning photographs of the spiral galaxy, Messier 101, will be unveiled by Dr. Michael Inglis, Astrophysicist and Associate Professor of Astronomy at Suffolk County Community College. Dr. Inglis noted, “As part of the celebration, we will be featuring a 6-foot-by-3-foot image which shows three striking full-color images that showcase the galaxy’s features in the infrared light observed by the Spitzer Space Telescope, the visible light observed by Hubble, and the X-ray light observed by Chandra. The images show not only the details of the grand design spiral structure for which the galaxy is famous, but also the underlying giant clouds where stars are born, as well as the hidden locations of black holes and exploded stars. These multi-wavelength views provide both stunning beauty and a wealth of scientific information not even dreamed of by Galileo.” ” After the unveiling, a presentation will be delivered by Dr. Inglis, titled “The Life and Legacy of Galileo”.
The Messier 101 is a spiral galaxy about 22 million light-years away in the constellation Ursa Major, and is nearly twice the diameter of the Milky Way. Hubble’s visible-light view shows off the swirls of vibrant stars and glowing gases. In contrast, Spitzer’s infrared-light image sees into the spiral arms and reveals the glow of dust lanes where dense clouds can collapse to form new stars. Chandra’s X-ray uncovers the high-energy features in the galaxy, such as the remains of exploded stars and matter zipping around black holes. The combination of these observations from the three telescopes provides an in-depth view of the galaxy for both astronomers and the public. Dr. Hashima Hasan, lead scientist for the International Year of Astronomy at NASA Headquarters in Washington describes the second 3-foot-by-3-foot image of Messier 101 as “using your eyes, night vision goggles, and X-ray vision all at the same time.”
2009 was designated the International Year of Astronomy Celebrations by NASA to commemorate 400 years of exploring the universe since Galileo first turned his telescope to the heavens in 1609. Scientist at the Space Telescope Science Institute and Project Manager for The International Year of Astronomy, Denise Smith commented, “During the International Year of Astronomy, we want to provide opportunities for children, youth, and adults nationwide to discover the universe for themselves. Suffolk County Community College has a tradition of providing programs for the local community that instill a personal sense of wonder and curiosity, making SCCC an ideal partner for the image unveiling. “
The release date of the images were planed in junction with Galileo’s birthday on Feb. 15. After the presentation an observing session using many of the Astronomy Department’s telescopes will be held, if the weather permits.
By Samantha Lujan
Recognizing the urgency of getting the word out about hate crimes, members of the multicultural affairs club hosted a session at Babylon Student Center on that topic Wednesday Feb. 11.
Detective Janet Cassidy of the Suffolk County Police Department addressed an audience of about 20-25 people, where she discussed hate crimes not only in Suffolk County but also here in our community.
A hate crime is any violation of law against property or person.
“It could be race, nationality, color, ancestry, gender-female or male, sexual orientation, that being straight or gay, disability, age, religion and religious practice,” Cassidy, said.
Many questions have emerged due to the latest reports of hate crimes inflicted upon Ecuadorian immigrants in Patchogue and the murder of Ecuadorian immigrant Marcelo Lucero, 38. On Nov. 8, seven Patchogue-Medford high school students attacked Lucero fatally stabbing him in the chest. Other charges regarding other immigrants that were assaulted have recently been added. Consequently, a month later Jose O. Sucuzhañay and his brother both from Ecuador were brutally beaten with a baseball bat by two men who shouted anti-gay and anti-Hispanic slurs. A week later he was pronounced dead at the Elmhurst Hospital Center.
Hate crimes do not necessarily have to be physical assaults. Other actions such as damage to property, verbal abuse or insults, offensive graffiti or letters are also classified as hate crimes.
Even if you have committed such a crime over the phone, you can still be caught. An investigative tool that is available for everyone to use is # 57. You can trace a call but just as you get charged for text messages, you might get charged a fee for dialing it depending on your cell phone carrier. The only time you can use such a method is if you are a victim of phone harassment, not because you have a curiosity to find out who is calling you.
“Graffiti is any mark you don’t have permission to make,” Cassidy said
Graffiti that has been unlawfully done, meaning with out the permission to do it can lead to the arrest or imprisonment, fine and or community service.
“Hate crimes do more than threaten the safety and welfare of all citizens. They inflict on victims incalculable physical and emotional damage and tear at the very fabric of a free society.”
This quote appeared on a power point presentation during the meeting.
Photos and criminal charges also were presented through a power point presentation. Cassidy spoke of gang-related activity and its role in society and in hate crimes in particular.
Perception has also a lot to do with how we all interact with people. The way we see someone and the way we make assumptions makes us believe certain things that are not true.
“Sometimes it’s something as simple as not getting along with somebody, stereotyping,” Cassidy said.
A hate crime in Farmingville several years ago sparked the production of a documentary film called “Farmingville”. The producers Catherine Tambini and Carlos Sandoval decided to live in Farmingville for about a year. They wanted to create a documentary that would discuss the events surrounding two day laborers who were beaten by two men who were white supremacists. Also, the film’s goal was to show the challenges that communities face due to the increasing population of Latinos and the challenges that Hispanic immigrants face each and every day.
“It makes us feel insecure about where we live,” said Falak Akhter, a student who attended the hate crimes presentation, when asked how she thinks hate crimes affect us.
Hate and bias related crimes affect greatly not only our community but also our nation. Suffolk County Police and Suffolk County Community College have decided to take a step towards ending hate and bias crimes by providing such workshops that teach and inform Students and Faculty.
“I think that hate crimes are huge. We are living in a climate where there is misinformation and misunderstanding between people in general,” said Stacey Brown, coordinator of multicultural affairs.
“The only thing necessary for triumph of evil to prevail is for good people to do nothing,” stated a quote from Irish political statesman Edmund Burke that was displayed through powerpoint as the presentation drew near its close.
By Elysha Giatras
Since the 2005-2006 school year, tuition has increased 23 percent, with little change to show for it. The college now has an aesthetically pleasing plaza, undoubtedly adding beauty to the campus, but the change hasn’t offered a solution to other problems.
The journey a student embarks on every morning to get to class, as well as every afternoon to get as far away as possible is often overlooked. The perils of parking are reason enough for a headache, though the fault for that lies on no one but the dense population of the students. The roadways and intersections that lead to the parking lots however, are the real problem, or rather the lack of stop signs and traffic lights on them.
The last storm that hit Long Island made the campus look like a snow covered war zone (unlike its regular war zone-esque appearance). Dozens of cars were trapped in parking lots for over an hour, trying desperately to get on the main road leading out of campus. People already on that road wouldn’t allow others to merge in, or pass over to the opposite lane, even when the flow of traffic stopped completely. Collisions are abundant on campus as it is, without the extra-fun element of snow.
If people on campus will not be courteous, or in the very least, abide by common driving laws, (what part of ‘never block an intersection’ do we not get?!) there should be some sort of contraption, an apparatus if you will, that controls traffic; perhaps a light or stop sign. They seem to work great elsewhere. Maybe Suffolk should try to adapt this kind of technology.
Wouldn’t it be just swell, if for once, it didn’t take 20 minutes to get from lot four to Middle Country Road? Or to save precious energy and creative explicative’s for when you really need them?
Once a student has actually made it on campus and has found a parking spot (usually farthest possible from where they need to be), there still lies the feat of getting into the building. The condition of the campus is not only becoming unappealing but also physically unsafe, notably; the crumbling cement stairs outside of some of the buildings. Metal slip guards were at one time placed on the edges of the stairs, but now some of those guards are coming off, making them even more dangerous. The windows in some of the buildings like Southampton and Riverhead, either won’t open or won’t close, so on windy days like the past few, windows will fly open, nearly shattering.
People will still attend Suffolk, regardless of the inevitable wear and tear it takes, the lack of upkeep it receives, and the absurd increases in tuition every year. The increase in tuition should be reflected in the appearance and efficiency of the school. The few fixes done in the past couple years were beautiful additions, but did little in the way of benefiting the people of SCCC. Unless, of course the clock tower has enabled students to be more mindful of the time, having some positive affect on tardiness, though the theory seems implausible.