Student Community Government holds first meeting of the semester with 60 open seats
Abigail Nilsson, News Editor
Photo by Mark Medeiros
Wednesday evening, the Rhode Island College Student Community Government (SCG) held their first meeting of the semester with eight members of parliament in attendance. One of the topics of discussion was low attendance and the empty seats that need to be filled. When asked about how many seats should be filled, President Joshua Percy said, “ideally, double the executive board, which would be 20 people not including those of us here tonight. There are 60 available positions.”
At the moment, the secretary position on the executive board is open as secretary-elect, Genesis Garcia, resigned right before the semester began. Sign-ups are available for this position now until September 6.
When asked about her resignation, Genesis Garcia said, “Me resigning from SCG was a decision I have been thinking about the whole summer. It was not an easy one but in the end I just came to the conclusion that I wasn’t happy anymore being apart of it. The students of RIC have lost their faith in SCG a long time ago and I joined because I strongly believed that SCG needed representation, and I wanted to help make a change. I fought the good fight alongside officer Janelle Gomez and other past comrades... I hope this new school year SCG will work on rebuilding their relationship with the students of RIC because no real change can happen without the students fighting alongside with them.”
Along with Garcia’s resignation, SCG Administrative Supervisor Mary Levesque left her position for another job opportunity at Brown University. This position was filled by Diane Cary, who will begin training on September 9.
Sign-ups for class elections will also be held in September, with seats available in each graduating class. No student names were submitted for election last spring.
Another topic of discussion during the SCG meeting included the projected renovations in Horace Mann and Clarke Science buildings.
Alexis Polonsky, Speaker and Commuters at Large Representative, asked, “What happened to the Dunkin Donuts in Craig Lee?”
Arthur Patrie, the Staff Representative, did not have any updates as of two weeks ago but stated “when there is [an update] I will be happy to share it.”
The RIC SCG Mission states that it is “responsible for the administration of the revenue received for all of the student clubs funded. These clubs and services are provided for the promotion of the general welfare of the Rhode Island College community and the community at large.”
Without these positions filled, the eight members of SCG who were present are the sole members responsible for making final decisions regarding the distribution of the student activities funds that every RIC student pays for in their tuition bill.
EEE virus detected in Rhode Island
Abigail Nilsson, News Editor
The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) stated in a press release that a West Warwick man over the age of 50 has been infected with EEE (eastern equine encephalitis virus). The Center for Disease Control says EEE “is a rare cause of brain infections (encephalitis). Only a few cases are reported in the United States each year. Most occur in eastern or Gulf Coast states. Approximately 30% of people with EEE die and many survivors have ongoing neurologic problems.”
In a press release from the RIDOH, Deputy Director Ana Novais stated that “EEE is a rare, but very serious disease. We strongly recommend that people everywhere in Rhode Island to protect themselves and their families by using insect repellent, minimizing outdoor exposure at dusk and dawn, and wearing long sleeves and pants when outdoors at those times. People must also reduce opportunities for mosquitoes to breed by eliminating standing water around their homes.” The RIDOH suggests protecting yourself by wearing long sleeves and pants, using bug spray specifically with DEET.
The CDC noted that symptoms of the disease can present themselves differently relative to a person’s age. There are two different ways that the illness can present systemically, meaning it can affect every organ in the body, or encephalitic, causing swelling in the brain. Systemically it can cause fever, discomfort, chills, joint and muscle pain that can last up to two weeks. Encephalitic symptoms can start off similar to the systemic symptoms and include headache, irritability, restlessness, drowsiness, anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, cyanosis (having a blue or purple coloring of the skin), convulsions and coma, which can result in death.
The state of Rhode Island will conduct mosquito spraying in the near future, but what will Rhode Island College be doing to protect students from EEE? Following the press release from the RIDOH on Friday, RIC Student Activities held an outdoor movie night outside on the Student Union patio. RIC did send out a press release informing students and faculty about EEE on Friday afternoon before the first human case was reported by RIDOH.
The RIDOH suggests that schools and community leaders participate in the “smart scheduling” of activities. This means having early morning or events scheduled for dusk to take place during the early afternoon or indoors where there is a decreased risk of mosquito bites.
Visit the Rhode Island Department of Health http://www.health.ri.gov/mosquito for additional mosquito prevention tips.
Revising how students take public transit
Alison Darmetko, Anchor Staff
The Rhode Island College Administration has taken a serious step to assist students that depend on the Rhode Island Public Transportation Authority (RIPTA) to get to school each day.
On August 23, RIC students received an email in their inbox with the same message waiting for them. The message: RIC students are now able to ride the state’s public transportation system free of charge, provided they use their Student ID cards when boarding. This initiative has been a work in progress for some time.
When asked about the new policy, Vice President of Administration and Finance, Stephen Nedder, pointed to the history of similar policies at private schools, where students are given free bus fare as part of their tuition fees. According to Nedder, the RIPTA organization has expressed interest in making a similar deal with the three largest public colleges in the state. RIC, the University of Rhode Island and the Community College of Rhode Island, respectively.
“So, before RIPTA went down a road of suddenly having to provide this to every student across the state, I thought this would be a great opportunity to bring it here to our campus,” explained Nedder.
Now, rather than purchasing individual trip fares or a $35 monthly pass through the Student ID office, members of the RIC Community can use their School ID card with no need to preload the card with money. The new RIC U-Pass program is being paid for through the transportation fee included in RIC tuition.
The intent behind this initiative is to help minimize out of pocket costs to ride the bus for the existing commuter community. The effectiveness of this will not be seen for some time, as Nedder will only see the information on commuter statistics after the program has been running for some time.
As part of the agreement to launch the U-Pass system, RIPTA also agreed to extend the path of the Route 55 bus (Admiral/Providence College) to help support the volume of commuter students. This was a simple solution as the 55 ran close to RIC. Therefore, RIPTA was able to extend the route to include the main campus. Additionally, access to this new route extension will be provided to the campus seven days a week.
At the present time, Nedder is hopeful that the U-Pass system will be very helpful to the current students, noting the difficulties of finding parking spaces and the convenience of being able to take mass transportation to reach the campus. He reaffirmed that this is a very personal goal to him, to help decrease extra monthly costs for students.
RIC welcomes new Chief of Campus Police, James J. Mendonca
Abigail Nilsson, News Editor
Photo by Abigail Nilsson
On April 29th, Rhode Island College held a swearing in ceremony for the newly appointed Director of Safety and Security and Chief of Campus Police James J. Mendonca. Chief Mendonca has a detailed history of serving the community.
Mendonca started his career with the U.S. Marine Corps and continued to become a correctional officer, a patrol officer and eventually the 16th Chief of Police for the Central Falls Police Department. He earned his Bachelor’s of Science Degree in the Administration of Justice from Roger Williams University, and his Master’s of Science in Criminal Justice, with a Concentration in Homeland Security and Emergency Management from Excelsior College. He received a fellowship at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and is a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Academy.
He has been honored for his service and dedication by the Office of the Attorney General, and was given a Hispanic Heritage Award by members of the Central Falls City Council. He has also received several departmental and individual awards of Congressional Recognition.
As co-chair of the Committee on Civil Rights at the Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association and a member of the Rhode Island Commission on Bias and Prejudice, Chief Mendonca said, “I want to give a sense of comfort for students.” He believes that trust building within the RIC community is integral. “The first interaction a student has with campus police should not be getting a parking ticket.”
Mendonca feels that students should be comfortable on campus, particularly when they see campus police. Building a trusting relationship with students on campus is very important to him, so that in the event of an issue, students are willing to come to the campus police; especially regarding any Title IX issue. He wants students, their parents and faculty to know that the campus police are there for them.
Proving direct, courteous, and efficient service is one of his goals on campus. He plans to open the lines of communication between students, teachers, and campus police to make the college experience a positive and memorable one. If there is a problem he encourages students to let someone know about it. Mendonca said, “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.” He adds, “Don’t worry about bothering us, we are here 24 hours a day. If we can not address it, we know or can find out who can.”
Chief Mendonca said, “Change happens at the speed of trust,” and he wants students and their families to know that campus police officers are working to gain a trusting and positive relationship with students and faculty members on campus.
Cirque du G7
Sean Richer, Asst. News Editor
In 1975, the world’s 7 largest economies gathered to discuss the most pressing financial issues of the time. In August of 2019, in the town of Biarritz, France, The Group of 7 consisting of, The United States, China, Canada, Germany, Japan, France, Italy and the United Kingdom have continued this practice. As is the case with every summit, tension was overwhelmingly present.
The first matter at hand was Brexit. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada and newly-appointed Prime minister Boris Johnson of the UK began new trade negotiations as Britain rapidly approaches its departure from the European Union. Afterwards, the host of the event, French president Emmanuel Macron, also held a surprise meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, and volunteered himself as a mediator between Iran and the U.S. in order to reach a new nuclear agreement.
Everyone in attendance also agreed to make changes to World Trade Organization, as explained by the French president, “The days of naiveté are over but so are the days of trying to solve the problem bilaterally. Joint work is the new way of doing things."
Without a doubt the two star topics of the summit were the American-Chinese trade war, and the wildfires engulfing the Amazon Rainforest. After the second day of the summit, President Trump shared with Prime Minister Johnson that he does not regret the tariffs he has imposed in opposition to China and that he plans to continue this practice. President Trump also suggested the admission of Russia into future summits at the G7, a notion that was soundly rejected by the other attendees.
Afterwards, their attention turned to the Amazon as France pledged emergency aid to Brazil in order to combat the flames, likely caused by loggers, sanctioned by the Brazillian government. This follows strained relations between Brazillian President Jair Bolsanaro and President Macron, following Bolsanaro’s mockery of the French First Lady’s age on social media.
Brigitte Macron spoke out at the summit saying, “Times are changing. There are those who are on the train of change, women are there with you, like you, you’ve almost all understood, gentlemen. Not everyone, some are still on the platform and I’m sure they will soon get on the train.” Bolsanaro has refused to accept the G7 aid money until both apologize for insulting him.
This last week proved to be extremely strenuous, and made the opinions, and feelings of these global titans plain to see. With so many issues facing the global community, and with tension boiling just under the surface, it appears the future still remains full of uncertainty.
Arts & Entertainment
The Café hosts first of many exciting Open Mic Nights
Sophia Guerrier, A&E Editor
A booming speaker, a microphone and a chocolate chip cookie was all that was needed for last Thursday’s Open Mic Night led by guest singer Lijie.
Most tables were filled with Rhode Island College students eating and mingling during the musical performance put on by their peers and featured musician. As over 15 RIC students rose on stage to perform a song, a majority of them revealed that they were theatre majors, some of them even being songwriters themselves.
Lijie who is an Asian singer-songwriter based in Seattle, is a polished guitarist and singer who displayed her talents throughout the night in between sets of RIC students. She performed her own songs from her sophomore album “Lijie the Music Maker” which ranged from upbeat pop tempos to a more solemn sound. Lijie has performed on local television network FOX 25 Boston as well as numerous clubs, colleges and street corners across the world; to name a few, London, New York, Los Angeles and China. She even has a co-written track called “Glorious” which was the title track in the animated film “Rock Dog.”
As the night went on, plentiful RIC students sang passionate karaoke including one RIC attendee performed a song from the hit musical “Chicago”. A couple RIC musicians even brought their guitars on stage and sang their own songs confidently. Freshman Maci Dorantes stole the show singing “Gold” by Brit Nicole, meeting a great amount of cheers and applause.
Free T-shirts were handed out to students and pizza was one of the special treats of the night as well … even though it wasn’t free. Nevertheless, the open mic was a successful kickstart to the semester from the Student Activities Programming Board and will be held again on Oct. 16.
Missy Elliot Honored at the MTV Video Vanguard Award at 2019 VMAs
Sophia Guerrier, A&E Editor
Rocking a lavish black and glittering gold jumpsuit and visor, Hip Hop veteran and superstar, Missy Elliot, stood nobly on the MTV Video Music Awards (VMA) stage after accepting the highest award of the night—the Video Vanguard Award. The award was presented to her by current rap phenomenon, Cardi B.
Elliot proceeded to grant a lengthy but more than appreciative speech in which she thanked over 20 people who assisted in her rise to musical excellence and fame. Among those names were her mother, critically acclaimed music creatives Timabland, Dave Meyers, Hype Williams, and Hip Hop contemporaries, Busta Rhymes, Janet Jackson and the late Aaliyah.
“This Michael Jackson Video Vanguard means so much to me, I have worked diligently for two decades and I never thought that I would be standing up here receiving this award,” Elliot said. “I want to dedicate this award to the dance community all around the world because when you all get on stage with these artists, you all are not just props, you all are the icing on the cake, you all are the beat to the heart.”
Before receiving her accolade, Elliot who is now 48 years old, performed an electric, choreography-filled show of her prominent hits, “Work It”, “Lose Control”, “Get Your Freak On and “The Rain”; bringing out the iconic black garbage bag suit recognized as ‘image-defining’ in “The Rain” music video that was released in 1997. It was the first time since 2001 where Elliot performed at the VMAs.
The Virginia rapper and record producer has accumulated numerous musical awards and milestones since launching her solo career in 1997 from short-lived R&B group, Sista. Her debut album Supa Dupa Fly, garnered platinum certification and was the highest charting debut for a female rapper at the time. Elliot would go on to sell over 30 million records in the United States and has become one of the highest selling female rappers of all time. She also boasts eight VMAs and five Grammys, including back-to-back wins for Best Female Rap Solo Performance in 2003 and 2004.
The Video Vanguard Award honors an artist’s accomplishments in music and film, encompassing music videos as well. David Bowie was the first recipient in 1984, and Elliot will be joining great company like The Beatles, Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake and Jennifer Lopez, who was honored last year.
After winning Video of the Year for her new hit song, “You Need to Calm Down”, Taylor Swift delivered an acceptance speech challenging the White House regarding a petition for the Equality Act that calls for equal rights for all citizens. The petition acquired 500,000 signatures which Swift said is, “five times the amount that it would need to warrant a response from the White House.”
Among other highlights of the annual show, Lil Nas X’s global success “Old Town Road” won Song of the Year, Ariana Grande won Artist of the Year and Swift, Grande and Billie Eilish tied for most awards of the night with three each.
Days prior to the VMAs, Elliot released her highly-anticipated EP, Iconology which is now streaming on all major platforms.
FIFA 20: What’s new this time?
Lucas Del Savio, Anchor Contributor
EA Sports comes out with a new FIFA game every year and the question that often arises is, “What’s different this time?” To answer that, a lot has changed within the game in its latest iteration. FIFA 20 has undergone major changes in gameplay, game modes and even online services by updating the game’s teams and adding some new features.
FIFA disc cases in the past have always featured some of the biggest names in soccer, such as Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Ronaldinho and Wayne Rooney. This year’s players featured on the cover are Eden Hazard (Real Madrid) for the standard edition, Virgil Van Dijk (Liverpool) for the champions edition and Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid Manager) for the ultimate edition.
As for the game itself, the biggest feature added to FIFA 20 is “Volta”. Volta is the newest game mode where players can create their own character and team. Volta can be used in one of four small-sided match options, but not your typical 11v11. Volta is based on an old EA Sports game known as “FIFA Street,” which, despite its dedicated fanbase, has not had a game released since 2012.
From Volta, we head to the game mechanics. All the fixes and changes came from the community’s feedback, which EA Sports puts into consideration to make the game better. Set-pieces have been completely rebuilt due to feedback of inconsistency within the game. Now users can aim where they want the ball to go, add power to the kick, and add spin to the ball if they please. EA developed a new system for button inputs for certain situations such as passing, shooting and defending to occur at a faster rate.
The feature that has had the most user feedback for improvement was Career Mode, and EA responded. Players are now able to customize the club manager to how the player likes. You are even able to create your own manger, changing the hairstyle, clothes and other features. Players are now able to attend the press conferences the managers, while negotiations with in-game players now take place in other settings other than an office.
We can’t forget about FIFA Ultimate Team, the game mode where players get to form their dream teams with famous players from any team. With the return of Squad Battles, Division Rivals, and FUT Champions, players can partake in weekly challenges to receive rewards and in game currency. Some new features added to FIFA Ultimate Team are club customizations, squad management screen redesigns and new icons added.
FIFA 20 is set to be released on Sept. 27th to PlayStation, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch with three editions to choose from.
Rhode Island’s newest $21 million landmark
Samantha Scetta, Editor In Chief
Native Rhode Islanders can recall a time where travel from one end of the Providence River to the other was only accessible by a walking bridge close to the downtown area, or by gondola. Now, as of mid-August, city walkers in Providence can walk down a (literally) shiny new bridge to get from the East side of Providence to the Downcity area.
Complete with built in chess boards and lit up benches along with a dazzling view of apartments under construction and the skyline of Providence for you to enjoy, many folks in Rhode Island are wondering what this bridge is really offering to the city of Providence.
For the artist community here, the bridge represents more than just a bridge. The $21.9 million piece of architecture will stand as a symbol of art and innovation in the state’s creative capital city.
In regards to the new pedestrian bridge, Rhode Island College alumni Ariella Jeter said that, “It’s a great place to get from one part of the city to the other easily, and to see the city of Providence while exercising. I see many people taking photos in front of it daily and posting their photos on Instagram or Facebook.” The photos of the bridge themselves are becoming a marker of Providence, giving it a place on the map with an identifiable landmark to non Rhode Islanders, other than the iconic Providence Place mall and movie theaters or restaurants and nightlife.
The surrounding area is enriched with innovative restaurants and cafes, as well as a sunflower garden.
RIC alumni and Bachelor of Fine Arts recipient Samantha Malley says that the surrounding gardens can symbolize a place of inspiration for the local artist community. "The art community has wasted no time taking advantage of the bridge already! It has been the perfect spot for photo meet ups using the backdrop overlooking the city skyline, as well as the bright lights adding something different to a photo.”
The pedestrian bridge has been a talking point for many Rhode Islanders, as some believe that the money could have been used elsewhere. Besides the bureaucracies that are inevitably involved with the implementation of such a structure, photographers and walkers alike can share a perspective of positivity associated with Rhode Island’s newest man-made landmark.
11 Weeks of Pure Heroine
Sophia Guerrier, A&E Editor
In this 11 week series, I will be lightly or heavily, depending on my mood that week, analyzing each song from Lorde’s 10-track debut album, “Pure Heroine”, which is undeniably one of the masterpiece LPs from any pop artist in this millennium.
“Pure Heroine” laid the blueprint of songwriting, style, tone and establishment for any upcoming pop artist that followed after its release in 2013. The best example of an offspring of this album is easily Billie Eilish’s 2019, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”
Before we all start sniffing the in-depthness of Pure Heroine, of course the basic and significant background knowledge on Lorde is crucial in further understanding its composition.
Born Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O'Connor in Auckland, New Zealand, Lorde grew up as any ordinary suburban girl- except her mother was a nationally recognized poet. Her mother was specifically known for her poem collection, “Clung”, which won her “Best First Book of Poetry” at the New Zealand Book Awards. It’s hard to ignore that her mother has professional experience in literary culture, considering that Lorde has listed her as a primary influence along with many other poets and short story writers such as Walt Whitman and Sylvia Plath.
The sentence structuring of Lorde’s lyrics resembles that of Whitman considering they both indulge in loose modelings and anaphora to enhance the reader’s , or in Lorde’s case the listener’s, way of comprehending the speaker’s main idea. A quick example of Lorde’s use of anaphora is on her hit single, “Team”, where she sings, “A hundred jewels on throats, a hundred jewels between teeth” and later “Dancin' around the lies we tell, dancin' around big eyes as well.” This use of a repetitive structured proclamation is frequent throughout the works of Walt Whitman and in particular his poem, “The Unexpressed”.
Lorde has also mentioned the semi-cynical and realistic author, J.D. Salinger as an influence to her work as well. His most notable book “Catcher in the Rye” retain themes of innocence, adolescence and the idea of inevitable adulthood which are recurring ideas that are present in The Love Club and Pure Heroine. Salinger who was also known for being skeptical towards authenticity and a critic of the "corrupting influence of Hollywood and the world at large" parallels that of Lorde’s mocking of mainstream pop culture and aesthetic expectations of the youth on “Royals”.
Mentioned before, ” was Lorde’s self-released 5-track EP which was also her first project at the early age of 15. With the help of New Zealand producer Joel Little, the two wrote and produced the EP in only three weeks and would go on to be nonuple (9x) platinum in Australia and platinum in New Zealand. “Royals” first appeared on this EP as well.
Now, a year later, at the tender age of 16, or should we say seasoned age of 16, Lorde released Pure Heroine in 2013. An electropop, dreampop, hip hop infused album sporting no features and herself as all primary writing credits. She titled the LP Pure Heroine because the two words “sound right and they look right .. I just thought it was cool.” Lorde’s stage name is a result of her strong interest in aristocracy and wealth and only added the “e” in order for it to sound more feminine. It does raise the question why Lorde didn’t name the album “Pure Cocaine” instead considering that cocaine is referred to as the “rich man’s drug” but it is her album and not mine.
The minimalist white lettering to black background cover art matches the minimalist, computerized production that is then smothered in Lorde’s subliminal mockery of consumerism and tales of an overly wealth-concerned society that we live in like in “White Teeth Teens”; the opposite of minimalistic. As much as Lorde may express her skepticism towards commercialism, she does embrace the honest growing pains that embezzle teenage culture. In “400 Lux” and “Glory and Gore” we hear the themes of youth and the misconceptions of lack of responsibility and concern that her generation is often under attack for.
I could totally write a 10 page pdf on just the background of this album but I think the amount of information that has been absorbed by your brain at this point is enough. I guess I can throw in that she won “Song of the Year” and “Best Pop Solo Performance” at the Grammys for “Royals” but that was expected. Tune in next week for my analyzation of the first song on the album, “Tennis Court.”
R.I.P. Transit Authority
Lucille Di Naro, Managing Editor
Rhode Island College now joins eight public and private higher education institutions in Rhode Island that participate in the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority’s (RIPTA) U-Pass program. Contrary to the monthly pass program previously offered at RIC, this program is free of cost and requires no registration process. A simple swipe of your RIC identification card and bus fare is covered on all RIPTA bus lines. By redirecting tuition fees to support this program, the RIC Administration has made a direct effort to support its students academic pursuits, regardless of socio-economic status.
With the General Assembly in recess, legislative progress has stalled on the Rhode Island Promise Scholarship. I am glad to see that our Administration has used their time wisely and maintained advocacy of our students. Clearly, their commitment to access to education is genuine and extends beyond the scope of the RI Promise. This, I can appreciate. Any person can attest to the importance of securing safe transportation, and the impact it has on one’s ability to secure employment, adequate healthcare and an education. Current and prospective students alike will become much less constrained in travel to and from work, school and extracurriculars should they take advantage of the U-Pass.
In my experience as a college student in Boston, MA, I became acutely aware of the impact an efficient public transportation system has on students academic careers. With the flexibility to choose between multiple modes of travel, each with nonstop service running between 5 a.m. to 1 a.m., students in Boston are enabled to make the most of their academic careers without having to worry about convenient transportation.
However, commuter culture in Rhode Island is quite different from the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA). Vast differences in population and state infrastructures influence the capacity by which RIPTA can fulfill commuters needs. However, this does not wholly excuse RIPTA from its responsibility to address convenience. Despite the fact that I live a mere eight miles from RIC’s campus, an average trip to RIC from my home involves confusing transfers that disrupt travel and an hour of my time. This experience is shared by many Rhode Islanders whose bus service extends beyond Providence county, and it is far from practical.
Is RIPTA equipped to efficiently and effectively accommodate students who decide to take advantage of this program? High school students who rely on RIPTA busses to commute throughout Providence often face tardiness as a result of frequent service issues. While I would love to take advantage of the financial and environmental benefits of leaving my car in the driveway, personally, I am not so sure that I can rely on RIPTA as it currently operates.
A rider survey report administered by RIPTA revealed that across all RIPTA fixed routes, over 50% of their ridership consists of people between the ages of 13 and 34. Further, riders expressed that they overwhelmingly prefer more night service to more daytime service and more frequent service to longer service span. As a public service that must cater to its diverse ridership, investments must be made to improve both rural and urban mobility and to meet the needs of its most frequent users.
For RIPTA to exist as a competitive and truly accessible mode of transportation for students, I suggest extending the span of service on all routes, not just the key corridor. Students today are commuting farther distances to learn and grow in the Providence area. Students need service to extend past 7 p.m. on weeknights, as classes and study sessions run well beyond most last call trips. RIC has demonstrated its commitment to students and their access to education. If RIPTA intends to capture our interest as they plan for the future, they must do the same.
RIC’s Parking Spots Are Too Narrow
Jake DeBlois, Anchor Staff
Everyone who owns a car and has taken it to Rhode Island College will tell you the same thing: parking is a problem. Commuters, visitors and residents often face completely different difficulties when parking on campus. We often disagree with each other over who has it worse. For commuters, everyday annoyances like finding an open spot in the sea of cars fifteen minutes before class is unrelatable for a resident like myself. Residents can, however, find common ground with commuters when it comes to the space widths in the resident lot.
I noticed this issue last year on my constant escapades to my cushy, always open, resident’s parking lot. I drive a full-size sedan, not a truck, but a large car some may call a “boat.” I often find myself struggling to align my car within the lot’s white lines. This is an issue I have not had in any other parking lot. Something has to be wrong. These spaces have to be narrower than what seems to be the standard. I should be able to get in and out of my car with cars parked on either side. There simply is not enough space.
I took to the web to figure this out in the name of investigative reporting—my own little mission, I would not be able to sleep at night if I did nothing about this parking crisis. My googling quickly brought me to Wikipedia. Wikipedia states that “In the US, minimum width standards of parking spaces usually range from 8.5 to 9.0 feet”.
Now, I have been in schooling long enough to know not to trust Wikipedia. Bad men often write fake facts their attempting to misinform people on the widths of parking spots. So, I took to the streets with a trusty tape measure to find out for myself.
I went to Stop & Shop, CVS and Family Dollar to measure their parking spaces and got 120-inches, 116-inches and 104-inches, respectively, for an average of 113-inches in width. Finally, I came back to RIC and measured the spaces in Resident Lot J. Those spaces measure just 91-inches—22-inches smaller on average than other local lot spaces, nearly 20% narrower.
That difference of nearly two feet surely has its reasoning, right? One reason a location like Stop & Shop has such large spots is so that you can easily load items into your vehicle from a shopping cart. Additionally, parents can easily extract then install their children from the back seat with less fear of the door hitting another vehicle.
Regardless, the primary function of a parking spot is a safe spot to leave your vehicle. With spaces so cramped it becomes impossible to load and unload items, never mind yourself. It also presents an open season for accidental damage to property like when my sideview was smashed last year. My suggestion to RIC? Up those spots to at least 100-inches.
Penfield: Less Than Promised
Billy Ramirez, Anchor Contributor
Photo by Billy Ramirez
The living space here at Rhode Island College had shocked me ever since I toured the school back in April. For freshmen, there are a total of three dorms offered: Sweet, Willard and Penfield. There is nothing special about Sweet Hall. Each room looks like an average dorm that you can find at any college. On the other hand, Willard Hall looks like a prison camp for the students. Architecturally, the courtyard gives Willard its own unique style compared to the other halls. Penfield Hall is the newest of the halls to be renovated. Even with all of these so-called renovations, Penfield is still in need of some improvements.
Looking through my suite, I saw many things that were not clean, broken, and improperly painted. Over the summer break, the walls in each dorm were repainted. The walls are two different shades of yellow. In contrast, the white concrete in the living room is stained black and blue. The white ceilings are speckled with stains and the tiles in the kitchen are caving in slightly. Inside the living room suite, the coffee table is close to snapping. Recently, the sofa had to be replaced because there was a vile white stain that smelled terribly. The actual hallways of Penfield are bare, which makes this place far from homey. Though Penfield was being renovated during the summer, it feels like a cheap motel you would live in when you are on a budget road trip with friends.
Being a freshman, I do not know how the dorm was before the renovations; however, from the mouths of upperclassmen, Penfield was supposed to be a newly renovated apartment like dorm. During move in, I realized this was not the case. Penfield feels like a hotel in the middle of the Residential Village, not like the modernized apartment style dorm that was being promised by upperclassmen. Despite the issues in my dorm, I still enjoy the living space that I am in and I am appreciative to have the opportunity to live inside Penfield Hall. However, I wish that Penfield lived up to what was promised.
Creature Comfort: Cancer for Commuters
Alison Macbeth, Opinions Editor
You, like roughly five thousand other students, decided to stay local and commute to RIC. That way you can be close to home, work and be a good Rhode Islander who never leaves the state. Often this cozy attitude often leads us to rush home after classes to get back in our pajamas with our dog. This routine hardly helps with our educational responsibilities. While we might be saving thousands of dollars by commuting, I believe that it is essential to experience the incredible benefits of a college from being part of a campus community. Here are three ways to reject the creature comforts of home and flourish as a commuter:
Join a club. For just a few hours out of the week you get to start networking with your colleagues in a setting that builds workplace and field experience. At the same time, by joining a club you get to explore new interests and make interesting friends. Campus clubs are a fantastic way to volunteer and develop career skills.
Go to an event. Maybe instead of binging on a new Netflix show you can attend one of RIC’s campus events. Clubs often host fun activities in addition to the plethora of events put on by Student Activities. Likewise, with RIC’s impressive theatre, music and dance department there are plenty of creative and inspiring performances given by your fellow students. And most of them are cheap or free!
Studying with a classmate. Again, I know how easy it is to go home to your bed to work on homework, but there is something to be said about studying with your colleagues at Adams or at Don. Studying with fellow students will enhance your learning experience, help you feel connected to the campus community, and further your college experience.
While these suggestions may seem rudimentary, they are practical ways to fight against the complacency I often feel as a commuting student. Life is busy and commuting can be exhausting, but let’s not miss out on the opportunity that our college career offers and make the most out of the unique chapter of life we are in.
Alison Macbeth, Opinions Editor
Photo by Mark Medeiros
If you thought Rhode Island College couldn’t be more inefficient or bureaucratic then you have not been to the bookstore this semester. This week I sauntered down to the bookstore in the student union ready to be part of the crowd of other slightly unprepared college students. I was met with a debacle.
I opened the door to the student union to see a line billowing out of the campus bookstore. At first I didn’t think anything of it but confidently walked past the line to grab my books like I’ve done the last four semesters at RIC. Then I saw all of my books behind swinging doors freshly labeled “EMPLOYEES ONLY.” It was then that I realized that I had to wait in the line of twenty-plus students just to see if the bookstore had my textbooks.
It took about forty minutes. I waited in line for thirty minutes and when I got to the desk I gave the attendant my classlist. After waiting for a few more minutes, the bookstore employee came out with two classes’ textbooks, and I waited in line for another couple of minutes to check out.
Now, the alternative and preferable option to this headache is ordering your books online and then picking them up. I would have saved a healthy hour with this. However, I was completely unaware of this change at the bookstore. Had I known of its new system, I would have chosen the more time-efficient approach. It certainly would have been nice to have been given a heads up by the Barnes and Noble campus bookstore.
My biggest complaint, besides the lack of communication with the change in operations, is the fact that I no longer get to physically pick out my books. There is something about being able to look at used books and decide which one you’ll take to have and to hold, cry over and freak out when you accidentally spill something on it. With the new system that barrs students from viewing the books, we as college students become more disconnected from the small choices we have in our academic pursuits. It may be a small detail, but I am sure I am not the only one who feels like they’ve missed out on the back to school treat of picking out their own textbooks.
Fall sports preview: Women’s Tennis
Jake Elmslie, Sports Editor
Entering his 8th season, at the helm of the Rhode Island College women’s tennis team, Coach Adam Spring has very little to complain about. His team is coming off of their 4th straight Little East conference regular season championship and are even more notably, fresh off their second straight Little East conference tournament championship; a feat they achieved while going undefeated in both of the last two seasons.
As conference champions, the RIC team competed in the NCAA Division III women’s tennis championship, where they were able to advance to the second round of the event, for the second year in a row, in which they fell to the national champion Wesleyan University Cardinals.
The team is poised for another championship run with RIC, being ranked number one in the annual Little East coaches poll.
“The team knows championships aren’t won by polls, we’re glad other coaches see our program as strong but our goal is to win the last match of the year, it’s a nice accolade but we’re focused on winning a championship,” explained Coach Spring to the Anchor.
The team returns almost the entirety of its championship core, missing only one player, senior captain Katherine Raganca. Notable additions include transfer recruit Michaela Burr from Florida State University (FSU). While Burr did not play tennis for the FSU team, she’s a player that Coach Spring has had his eyes on for a few years, going back to her time as a part of the Westerly High School team. She’s made a strong early impression and will begin the season playing out of the number one singles spot. Rounding out the roster are freshmen recruits Jenna Lisi and Sarah Gonick, hailing from La Salle High and Kingston, Massachusetts respectively.
The Anchorwomen return a slew of players, boasting a treasure trove of accolades including five players who were named to the All-Little East Team Second Team in either the singles or doubles category.
“Because of the experience level on this team, I’m going to try and work on some more technical elements with the girls that I wouldn’t have last year. I’m going to push myself to work more on the skill building and strategy. The returning players are ready for more.”
RIC students will get their first chance to see the team Tuesday, Sept. 3rd when the Anchorwomen open their season with a home out of conference contest against the Wentworth Institute of Technology Leopards. Coach Spring hopes that the student body will be supportive of the team. “We’re blessed with a lot of really good tennis players, and it’s good for RIC sports fans. We want them to come out and watch our matches, this is a really special team.”
Fall Sports Preview: Volleyball
Joseph Griswald, Asst. Sports Editor
In almost any sport, players entering their second year have to try and avoid the Sophomore slump. The same goal applies for coaches, including Rhode Island College head volleyball Coach Sherri Heard; who is also leading the Anchorwomen for the second season in a row.
Coming off of a 15-12 season and a loss in the Little East Conference (LEC) semifinals. This team is looking to take that next step and make a run at the Little East Title. Which is a conference, that the Anchorwomen are projected to finish in the middle—an expectation the team hopes to exceed.
Despite the semifinal loss last season, Heard understands that there are aspects to build off of.
“One of the biggest things that worked for the girls is chemistry, we have a lot of returners so we don’t have to fill many gaps.”
Some of the returning students aiding in that jump will be Seniors Sadie Swap, Jessica Brielmaier and Jacqueline Jutras. They hope to lead this team and usher in new players, while also continuing to build on the chemistry from last year.
Coach Heard understands that the foundations built last year, can allow the team to be successful this season. The Anchorwomen have built a culture based on chemistry and communication based on playing with teammates like they are family. Which allows the girls to leave it all on the court and play for one another in every set.
“I think they are going to enjoy playing with each other…I think the hustle and the heart will be there so when we are in the fifth set of game five, they will have that extra push to get that win.”
The Anchorwomen will begin their season on Sept. 3 at Worcester State and will open their home schedule against Smith College on Sept. 10.
Anchormen sink Coast Guard’s ship
Jake Elmslie, Sports Editor
The Rhode Island College men’s soccer team opened up the 2019 athletics season at RIC, on a high note. With a 1-0 away victory over the United States Coast Guard Academy Bears. Both teams struggled to generate much of anything offensively, with the lone goal of the game coming off of a penalty kick in the 29th minute of play, by RIC Senior midfielder, Kevin Tay Munoz.
Overall, there were only 12 combined shot attempts by both teams. As a result of this, both teams goalies only faced a single shot on goal apiece. RIC goalie Charlie Tashjian, was able to turn the shot into his only save of the day. While the Coast Guard goalie, Dakota Harich was unable to stop the lone shot attempt by Munoz and thusly exited the season opener with a save percentage of zero.
The Anchormen will remain on the road for another out of conference match-up, Wednesday night against the Worcester State University Lancers, kickoff is set for 7 p.m.