Archive | April, 2010

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Campus Kitchens student group serves up 100,000th meal for Marquette’s neediest neighbors

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Matt Dixon

Campus Kitchen volunteers pose for a group picture after preparing meals. These volunteers passed the 100,000 meal mark at this session. The program uses leftover food on campus to feed others ranging from school children to the elderly. Campus Kitchen runs Monday through Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Straz cafeteria. (Photo by Matt Dixon)

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From left: Colleen Fiocchi and Jacki Adrians, freshmen in the College of Buisness Administration, help sort tomatoes for meals as part of Campus Kitchen, Monday, April 19.

From left: Colleen Fiocchi and Jacki Adrians, freshmen in the College of Buisness Administration, help sort tomatoes for meals as part of Campus Kitchen, Monday, April 19.

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Marquette employees give $70, 230 in political contributions

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Heather Ronaldson

The Democratic Party received $62,681 in financial support from Marquette employees between 2004 and 2010 according to the online database Opensecrets.org. Out of 58 total Marquette contributors, 74 percent donated to the Democratic Party in support of presidential and congressional candidates as well as Democratic support groups. Only 13 Marquette employees supported the Republican Party, donating $7,549, according to Fundrace 2008 by the Huffington Post and Opensecrets.org.

Other Jesuit institutions such as Loyola University in Chicago, Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, Calif., Fordham University in the Bronx, and Boston College in Chestnut Hill, MA, followed a similar pattern as Marquette.

Several students reacted to the presented information with a casual, “that’s unsurprising,” or “what else is new?”

According to John McAdams, associate professor in the political science department, a university’s title does not determine or influence a faculty member’s ideology, but rather academia.

“Liberals are like ducks in water in academia,” McAdams said.

Out of 42 Loyola employees, 40 contributed to the Democratic Party candidate, donating $29,419 total. Forty Santa Clara employees donated to the Democratic Party out of 44 total contributors. They contributed a total of $34,747 to the Democratic candidate; the four Republicans donated $1,455. Of the Boston College employees 104 of them financially supported the Democratic Party and donated $77,247, while five Republicans donated $5,257, according to Fundrace2008.

John Curran, professor of English, connected the high percentage of Democratic supporters to the dismay most feel toward the development of the Republican Party over time.

“Constructive elements of the Republican Party have been suppressed and many of us in the middle are quite dismayed,” Curran said.

Timothy Olsen, manager of communication in Marquette’s Office of Marketing and Communication, clarified that Marquette employees’ political contributions are individual and do not represent the university.
Curran saw a relationship between academia and liberalism 15 years ago during the political correctness movement. Curran said there was a weeding out of people that did not agree with far left politics.

“I don’t see that anymore,” Curran said.

McAdams does, however, see a difficulty for conservatives in academia.

“Conservatives often self select out because they view academia as hostile territory,” McAdams said.

Claire Schrantz, a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences, noticed most of her conservative teachers were “hush hush” about their ideology because liberalism is in the majority. McAdams pointed out that students face fierce indoctrination in some classes and a hesitation to share opinions in opposition to their professor.

Schrantz recalled an incident in English class when her professor brought up the issue of healthcare. She described the teacher’s remarks toward the conservative approach to healthcare as “sarcastic and condescending.”

“It kind of offended me, that’s unprofessional,” Schrantz said, “I just didn’t participate that day.”

McAdams authors a blog, called Marquette Warrior (which is not affiliated with The Warrior student newspaper) about left-wing influence and indoctrination on campus.

“In the School of Education, students are explicitly taught that they should use the classroom to indoctrinate their students in liberal and left wing political activism,” McAdams said.

The Marquette Warrior blog brings awareness to such indoctrination and publicizes students’ experiences with intolerant left-wing faculty.

In 2006, a philosophy professor suggested a student apologize for sharing a cop’s perspective of arrests involving minorities. The professor found the student’s comments “offensive to the diverse group in the room.”
Curran relies “on the professionalism of [his] colleagues” to separate political ideology from the classroom and encourages his undergraduate students to think for themselves. “Students are sacred. They should not feel menaced in my class,” Curran said.

Curran credits Marquette University’s commitment to cura personalis, which means caring and respecting each person in mind, body and spirit, and while doing so, upholding the commitment to the wider world. “I feel like my opinions are respected overall,” Schrantz said, “there were just some instances with one teacher that were offensive and unprofessional.”

by Heather Ronaldson
[email protected]

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T-shirt company offers innovative networking for the unemployed

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Katelyn Ferral

Recent graduates will soon have another weapon in their arsenal of social media networking tools—T-shirts. Hire Me Tee, Inc offers self branding apparel in the form of long and short sleeve shirts for men and women to advertise a technical skill, recent degree, religious background and even ethnicity to a potential employer.

Photo courtesy of Hire me Tee, and Andrej Bula

Photo courtesy of Hire me Tee, and Andrej Bula

“It’s essentially a mini-resume meant to facilitate discussion and networking,” said CEO and founder Andrej Bula, who was a recruiter for Fortune 500 Companies for fifteen years before starting Hire Me Tee. Bula said his experience in recruiting has “I know what’s effective and not effective,” he said. “The objective is to help people find jobs through self-branding.”

The company launched in December, 2009, in New Jersey and already Bula said business has exceeded projections. Since the launch, the company has marketing campaign that has kept sales steady.

“I think it’s a novel idea and initially the reaction was that is was not something that was embraced initially it took them a few months to adjust According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 70% of all jobs are found through networking, a fact Hire Me Tee notes in the marketing of its product as a “quasi walking billboard, promoting ones self to the public, and allowing for networking in a friendly, fun, and relaxed manner.”

Bula said the challenging economic climate makes apparel an During this difficult employment climate, I believe it is important that Marquette students be aware of this ‘out of the box’ method of meeting new contacts, networking, and expanding their client base. Job seekers are often recognized and rewarded with this type of creativity; ultimately, a Hire Me(trademark) t-shirt may lead to an employment opportunity through a method that is friendly and fun.

Apparel that promotes a job seeker’s alma mater is in the works for Hire Me Tee in addition to shirts that meant to connect college alumni each other.

“Schools are a huge drawing factor of how people are attracted to other people for positions,” he said. “They’re building a market brand in a marketplace in the form of a commonality like Marquette University.”

Shirts can be purchased online at http://www.hiremetee.com/ and range in price from $21.95 for the T-shirts to $33.95 for sweatshirts

by Katelyn Ferral
[email protected]

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Much hypocrisy found amongst American immigrants

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Wade Balkonis

America, land of the free and home of the brave; where every person is granted the chance to make of their lives what they wish, right?

Perhaps, and perhaps not; as many of you may have heard, early this week the Arizona governor signed into law a bill which allows any person “suspected” of being in violation of immigration laws to be apprehended by authorities if they suddenly get an unclench to do so.

Maybe my life as a legal citizen of the United States has been lived under false pretenses, but I was under the impression that being stopped and required to produce documentation just because you look funny was unconstitutional? But, that is beside the point.

For a moment allow us to consider what these illegal immigrants do, oh wait I don’t need a moment to consider, I can just answer. They do all of the jobs that we privileged American citizens think are below us. You know, working in hot fields, meticulously harvesting vegetables for sub-par wages, or perhaps watering and cutting our lawns for dollars a day.

Yet, those lawmakers in power for some odd reason think they are saturating the American work force, and keeping the average Joe out of work. This is obvious nonsense.

Now, I am not misguided, and I do understand that our country requires security and immigration should be controlled and monitored. However, consider if we allowed all of the illegal Mexican immigrants that we fear so much, that we believe suck so much of our tax dollars, to be citizens; citizens that pay into our tax revenues and contribute to American society as a whole.

For one thing it has been speculated that social security would no longer be on the brink of collapse if every illegal immigrant was granted citizenship.

Secondly, consider the vast amounts of money now spent on finding and regulating illegal immigrants, and how much that would be saved if they were no longer a concern. The fact remains that I am directly in debt to my own immigrant heritage, as most Americans are.

My great grandparents came to this country from Poland and Lithuania with little money and knowing little English, exactly as most see Mexican immigrants today. But, simply being given the chance to be a part of the American dream they paved the way for my family to be successful in the U.S., and I as a university student have to always be thankful that they could stand up and succeed when “Americans” alienated them for not being from this land.

We all must never forget that the majority of us Americans’ forefathers did not come from this land, but were given the chance to prove their worth and work for their dreams. Why in the year 2010 can we not grant these people the same opportunity?

by Wade Balkonis
[email protected]

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Sodexo assures Marquette students more change will come next year

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Joe Defelice

Over the last year Sodexo, the corporation responsible for the food and beverage services on Marquette’s campus, has come under pressure from the student body. Students are unsatisfied with a number of aspects of Sodexo’s services including prices, quality, and transparency of operations.

This dissatisfaction climaxed with the Marquette University Student Government’s senate voting to terminate the university’s contract with the multinational corporation. This decision is ultimately left to the Marquette administrators, but the student voice carries weight. A full semester later Sodexo is still at Marquette, though they did begin to make some changes to the way they operate some of their major dining halls already, starting this spring semester. Furthermore, Sodexo hosted a widely publicized open forum recently to allow students a chance to voice their concerns.

Food quality and menu options have been a major concern of students for quite some time. With a fairly decent number of students having special dietary and nutritional needs this has been a major concern. Many students are alarmed at the high levels of sodium and carbohydrates in many of the foods, especially at McCormick Hall’s dining facility which serves a majority of students.

“Shouldn’t nutrition be a main priority here at Marquette?” asked one concerned student during the forum, “How are milkshakes all day, every day a healthy choice?”, when asking about the new diner theme being designed for Mashuda Hall.

At the forum, Sodexo gave a brief presentation describing their currently planned solutions to improve dining in the coming years.Some of these solutions addressed the problem by assuring that they would be working to incorporate more local produce and dairy products in their facilities. Sodexo representatives reminded students that primary growing seasons are generally during the summer when students are not on campus.

Many students are concerned with available options for those who have special dietary needs, especially those with a vegetarian diet or those who need gluten-free foods. “I’m a vegetarian and I’ve found that most of the time the best meal I can get is a grilled cheese sandwich, sometimes that’s all I can find for two meals a day,” said a student who preferred to remain anonymous. Some have found that if they can call ahead by about an hour or so they can have a meal specially prepared for them by the dining staff. Of course, on a college student’s schedule that is not always convenient.

Another major issue is the mandatory policy that underclassmen purchase a meal plan. This raises the concern of where the discrepancy between the cost per meal paid by students and the cost of one plate of food that they receive. When asked for specific facts and allocations of money, Sodexo seemed unable to answer students on where exactly their money was going by percentage in certain areas of the budget.

“I’m very concerned where my money is going, I’d like to see the prices go down per meal. I’d like to see what it costs, per meal, I want to see what we’re actually paying,” said Brian Graf, a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Former MUSG president and College of Arts and Sciences senior said he was pleased that Sodexo was continuing to work with students in order to better their services provided. It was also an opportunity for Sodexo to renew the faith of the students that they were working to fit their needs. They stressed the need for time to make big changes happen.

“The changes that have come about in the last few years have come from meetings very much like this. They have been built on the student feedback that we have been getting. We encourage students to continue to provide input,” said Dan Auger, general manager of Sodexo at Marquette.

Jordan Reff, a College of Arts and Sciences sophomore and Schroeder Hall resident was very pleased, “I think it’s great that they are trying to work with the students because those are the people they are serving.”

Graf participated in a small meeting with some of the same Sodexo employees and other students that lived in McCormick Hall last year and says that good things have come from it already. “Last year I was in a small group meeting with students and Sodexo. We discussed what was then current dining hall availabilities and food quality. The things that came up were good and bad, what we liked and disliked. We proposed new ideas and by this year they had changed or made better the ideas that we had discussed. As far as I can see they are interested in changing when students ask them to. We realized that not everything can change so quickly, however, but they make the effort to change as fast as they can.”

In light of the concerns raised last semester Sodexo made changes regarding their service hours and quality, especially at McCormick Hall and Cafe Italiana at Schroeder. Some of the changes included extending the serving hours at the various sections of McCormick such as the international grill and sandwich station. Cafe Italiana’s hours of operation were extended to every night of the week as well. Many students noted this change at the semester.

“I noticed a definite change at the beginning of the semester. There are also more limited time offers which are great, for instance tonight I got a mean plate of nachos at the AMU,” said Matthew Schulz, a sophomore in the College of Business Administration.

John Heflin, a College of Arts and Sciences sophomore, is still waiting for more. While he was not at the forum, he was disheartened to hear that Sodexo did not provide facts and figures when it came to using students’ money.

“Yes, they have made noticeable changes, but there’s still a long way to go. The results we see are still less than acceptable. I commend them for their efforts at trying to make the conditions more acceptable, but I challenge them to do better.”

Sodexo indicated certain benchmarks that they want to meet by the years 2010, 2012, and 2015. Students should continue to provide feedback via the means provided them on Marquette’s campus.

by Joseph DeFelice
[email protected]

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Marquette Club Football brings camaraderie, brotherhood to the field

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Joe Defelice

Many college students reminisce about their high school exploits on the sports field. An amazing catch in the outfield, a perfect jump shot to win the game, making the playoffs in the high school hockey league. But of all things, the most prominent memories are those made on the high school grid iron. Many of these experiences are left to faint recollection as students move on to college, where competition is fierce to earn a spot on the squad. Some universities don’t have varsity teams at all. However, there are those who find a place to play at their school, merely for the love of the game. It’s called club football, and for Sophomore Matthew Rainey it’s his way of continuing his high school passion. Far from all the pressures and politics of Division 1 athletics, right here at Marquette, a young group of students come together a few times a week and perfect their game, testing their mettle against their peers here. The goal? Saturday’s game.

mu footballFor Rainey, it’s all about the love of the game, “I like the camaraderie, and the chance to continue to play the sport I love. I didn’t think I’d get the chance to play football again after high school, I thought it was over. This gives me the chance to continue to play football, and that’s a great feeling.” “The great thing about football is that it’s really a team sport. When one person fails the team fails. If I look over and the guy next to me is struggling, I’m struggling too. You really learn to rely on each other and build that brotherhood.” The team doesn’t just stop at the field either. “We go hang out on the weekends, and everyone of us is a student here,” says Gorham. The best part for some is the relaxed atmosphere. Most players like that they only have to practice twice a week and still get the college experience, while playing football without all the politics.

So, who does our club team play? What’s the season like? The Golden Eagles start practice in August as the school year begins. They practice every day for about two to three weeks to develop cohesion and have a solid base to work from. This also helps knock off the dust and get everyone back in shape for the season. As the school year starts the team scales it back to two days a week to ensure that no one’s studies suffer. Game days vary between Saturday and Sunday depending on the match up that week. Generally when they play Division 3 schools the game is typically Saturday. For conference games against other club teams the games are usually on Sunday. The season spans eight games during the fall semester. The team battles other clubs like Miami Ohio, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, and SIU Edwardsville, as well as Division 3 teams like Concordia of Wisconsin and UW Parkside.

Marquette’s Club also plays a short spring season. “The spring is more or less for recruiting purposes and to dust off our game. We get out there and hit some people. It’s a chance to develop our offense with our new players and really a great time to have some fun,” Rainey says. This year the team will cap their spring season with a scrimmage against University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

With recent rumors circulating about the possibility of a D1 football team Gorham doesn’t seem worried that it will affect the club negatively. “The great part about club football is that it’s for the love of the game, the guys we play with now could have easily played on a D3 team no problem and maybe even on a D1 squad. We love football, and we chose to take on the academic challenge at Marquette. It would be cool to have a D1 team but I don’t think that it would detract from the club at all.”

So…where do I sign up? Marquette Club football maintains a web site at www.marquetteclubfootball.com. Here, interested students can find rosters, practice schedules and contact information for players and the officers of the club. If you have any questions about joining, dues, or anything else you can also send an email to   [email protected] and an officer will respond as quickly as possible. Even easier, show up to a practice and talk to one of the staff. Have a friend on the team…that works too. If you love football, then this is the place to play.

by Joe Defelice
[email protected]

Marquette Club Football Team (Photos courtesy of Marquette Football)

Marquette Club Football Team (Photos courtesy of Marquette Football)

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Marquette men’s rugby compete at midwest All-Star tournament

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Joe Beres

Last weekend Chicago played host to the annual rugby All-Star tournament for the Midwest. Wisconsin, which is perennially seen as the powerhouse of the tournament, was one of just eight teams that participated in the tournament hosted by the Local Area Union (LAU). This year Marquette was well represented in the tournament, sending four players to the All-Star tournament which tied for most amongst any college in Wisconsin.

The four players represent the depth of Marquette’s club team. Seniors Adam Kreutter, Austin Ryan, Kevin Ryan and Vince Kelly each played for the Wisconsin All-Star team with most of them having earned multiple selections. Austin and Adam were selected for their third consecutive selection while Kevin earned his second selection. This is especially impressive considering that just four years ago Marquette’s club team did not have anyone represent the Golden Eagles in Chicago.

The tournament is broken down into two tiers each containing four teams. The first tier is comprised of the top four teams from the Midwest as determined from the previous year’s tournament, with the second tier containing the remaining four teams. The winner of the first tier is deemed champion of the Midwest while the loser of both games is forced to swap places with the victor of the second tier.

Wisconsin entered this year’s tournament as the reigning champion, and found itself sitting pretty with a number one seed. Wisconsin’s dominance has been so prevalent that it has assumed a dynasty-esque appearance over the past decade so expectations were high for this year’s team. Combine that with the fact that Marquette’s four reps were seniors, it isn’t hard to see how bad they wanted to win another championship. Wisconsin has proved their run as a dynasty by winning four of the past five Midwest All-Star tournaments and this year showed no reason why they should not repeat.

Wisconsin opened their weekend slate Saturday afternoon against arch-rival Minnesota and looked to score an early win from a hated opponent. Unfortunately, after a tough fought out game Wisconsin fell 25-17 in a heart wrenching loss. After a big team dinner and plenty of sleep, the Wisconsin all-stars followed on Sunday and pounded Iowa 29-0 in a game that was never close. Kreutter summed up the feeling saying, “Before this year we had won four of five, so definitely we wanted to defend our title, we just weren’t able to.”

Next year’s all-star team will go down as the number three seed and once again will be faced to match up with the second seeded Minnesota once again which fell in the championship to Ohio. Since Iowa was unable to score a victory they will be sent to the second tier and forced to play their way back to the top tier.

Although all fours reps from Marquette were seniors, it has not lowered expectations for more players being invited by the Wisconsin team in the coming years. When asked whether Marquette is expected to send anyone next year, the assistant captain, Austin Ryan simply replied, “Definitely! We had thirteen guys tryout this year and almost all of them could easily be on the team next year.”

Kreutter, a senior in the College of Engineering, completely agreed saying that, “Marquette’s team is filled with all-star caliber talent and the fact that four of us made the team shows the depth of the entire team not just the individual players.”

Although MU’s involvement in the tournament is extraordinary, each of the players noted the importance of moving past simply a Marquette affiliation and identifying themselves as the Wisconsin team. Ryan claimed that it was actually one of the best parts of the tournament, because “the ability to build camaraderie across the state and allows us to compete with others across the Midwest that take rugby seriously.”

The ability to play alongside some of the best players in the state, not to mention the Midwest, means that rivalries with other schools are temporarily forgotten in favor of the ability to represent this great state. Kreutter remembered a specific instance about which he said “I really could not stand this one guy from Wisconsin-Whitewater whenever we played them, but once I played with him my opinion quickly changed and we became great teammates.”

The importance of cohesion is shared by Ryan who lamented that “At this tournament, individuals do not win games, which was why we lost our first game. A lack of team cohesion is one of the biggest weaknesses a team can have.

Wisconsin is a team that specifically focuses on team cohesion, making the loss due to individualistic play that much harder to swallow. After they trimmed down the original 70 Wisconsin all-star hopefuls to the final 25, they have two scrimmages that focus largely on cohesion. This cohesion has proved invaluable for the players under the system as many have their play elevated to a whole new level. Two-time all-star Kevin Ryan recalled what his first selection did for his game saying, “After playing at a higher level, it gives a perspective of where you are, and allows you to elevate your own expectations. This improvement is hard to see at a local level.”

The exposure to some of the best talent is also the direct result of the ability to play under some of the best coaches in the Midwest. The rugby players’ performance also provides a great opportunity to showcase their skills allowing them potentially to play for the Midwest team. Austin Ryan performance warranted an invite to the Midwest Developmental game a great accomplishment. The depth of Wisconsin has been continually proven by past players as over the past 5 years; three guys have gone on to play for the All-American team.

Regardless of the outcome in Chicago, all four players agreed that it was an incredible experience. Hopefully
the recent past will prove true next year as Marquette hopes to once again send more players to represent Wisconsin in the 2011 All-Star game.

by Joe Beres
[email protected]

rugby boys

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Just One More Marquette Year

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Andrew Sinclair

Dear Marquette,

Congrats you made it through another school year. In the school year of 2009-2010 we enjoyed a year that caused each of us to take a deep breath & realize nothing burned down (yet). During the year we sipped just a few more cups of Brew coffee, incurred just a few more hours of lost sleep, learned just a little more, shared just a few more drinks with our friends, spent just a little more money (tuition did go up), and just spent another year finding ourselves. Whether you are graduating or just surviving another semester let this article be a send off for all, a space to state all the lessons we take away from our college experience.

Handshake after handshake, we continuously have introduced ourselves to hundreds of people. At the end of the day a few of those people have stuck and made an impact on our lives both small and large. We found people who would help us study and we found those who would just YouTube video after video with us and sing Miley. We found people would who would wait outside in the cold before basketball games with us and those who stayed up all night with us just to talk about life. We met people who drove us crazy and showed us who we didn’t want to be, and met those who inspired us to want to be a better person. We found friends who would drive us to Kopps for custard and others would prefer to run to the lake instead. We found people who would drink with us until all became blurry and those who would stay in on a Saturday to watch a movie. We found those who would be there unconditionally for us and those who came and went. We found those who would walk to church with us and those who would go on a beer run with us. No matter what we searching for or needed, chances are we could find someone here.

Somewhere amongst the people we meet, we became someone and a part of something. At times it was not being afraid to keeping dancing or playing intramural volleyball–even if the score is never quite in our team’s favor. Maybe it was taking a chance and trying something you never dreamt of doing such as being part of a Fraternity or Sorority. Maybe it was just doing what you were already passionate about. At college we all have a chance to be a part of something greater. We are Fanatics and Big Brothers. We are RAs and Senators. Some of us are Athletes and others are Midnight Runners. We are people at with Active Minds and people looking to Clean Up Hunger. Here we are a part of something—we are Marquette.

And after you are done meeting all these different people and doing all those things, don’t forget to set your alarm and go to class in the morning. In between everything it’s hard to remember we came to learn. We learned the slope of supply curves & demands curves. We learned how to handle ad-campaigns, how to act, and how to speak. We learned differential equations, how to brew beer in chemistry labs, and learned how to wire circuits. At times we take that knowledge and just let it flourish, fully prepared to use it in the real world. Other times we bury it, acknowledge it, and move on. Hey its college, we can’t learn it all but at least we are learning something daily.

Chances are whatever we learned, some classes had phenomenal professors who helped you discover areas you would excel in and chances are some classes had professors who should consider moving to another profession. Good or bad they still taught us and that’s what we are here for. Each helped us add a little more to our learning process and refine it. From Day 1 freshman year until now we are always refining that process. We will use this process daily for the rest of our lives. Whether we use it to keep ourselves entertained or help further our academic and professional careers everything we learned, attempted to learn, failed to learn, and have yet to learn is helping us forge our future.

College makes us find ourselves. It enables us to ask the tough questions. What do I want in life? What do I want to do? Will I be happy? Should I be worried or unworried for tomorrow, for next week, or for what comes next? What will my impact be on Marquette, my friends, or my career after I leave this place? What am I capable of? We continually get to ask and ask and ask ourselves these questions. Perhaps the best part of college is that every day we can slightly change our answer and just keep defining and redefining ourselves.

College gives us a chance to keep meeting, keep learning, at times to keep drinking. It allows us to just keep being ourselves because we all need time before we get to the next step. So take your time because after we leave this place we will all just long to be back–longing to be back drinking beer, sitting in class, sipping coffee, paying tuition (ok maybe not that part), and just asking ourselves what the future holds for us. No matter what you learned in college just don’t forget to set an alarm, because tomorrow will come too soon.

By: Andrew Sinclair
[email protected]

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Students use stimulants to get the grade

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Marissa Evans

cover piece with bottle

The NCAA finals might be over but Marquette students are preparing for their own set of finals. With papers, readings, constant studying and late nights in Raynor Memorial Library coming soon, students will be doing all they can to pass their finals and classes with flying colors. For some, that includes taking stimulants, or “performance enhancers” to study.

Typically prescribed for attention-deficit and learning disorders, stimulants like Adderall, Concerta and Ritalin are increasingly becoming the tool of choice for students looking to meet deadlines and get the best grades possible.

“I only take it when I really need to get something done, maybe the day before a paper,” said a male freshman student in the College of Business Administration, who agreed to speak to The Warrior on the condition of anonymity.

The student said this semester was the first he tried “performance enhancers” to help him study, and said he buys whatever types of stimulant pills he can from students who have prescriptions.

He said although he mainly uses the drug to study, he occasionally uses it recreationally as well.

“I know people who are way more into it than I am. I have done it recreationally, to party too, but not all the time,” he said.

While the student said he usually buys one pill at a time, around high-stress times of the year, like midterms or finals, the demand for pills goes up—and so do prices.

“Normally the price (for a pill) is about three or four dollars, but around midterms or finals, they’ll jack up the price and it’ll be about eight.” Despite price increases around peak test times, the student said he considers the transaction a good deal.

“It’s really pretty cheap,” he said. “If I can crank out a whole night of homework for four, six, or eight bucks, it’s totally worth it for me.” The student said he has taken one or more stimulant pills seven times this semester and estimates he has spent more than 50 dollars on the drugs.

While the student said the use of performance enhancers is widespread at Marquette, he doesn’t consider the abuse of drugs like Adderall, Ritalin or Concerta academically dishonest.

“No one is talking about it, but it seems anybody can get a prescription,” he said. “I don’t think it’s a problem;  academically dishonest, no. If people want it, they can get it.”

Stimulants used by students to study such as Adderall are in the amphetamines family, while others such as Concerta, and Ritalin are in the ethylphenidate family. Both groups are known for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Adderall is typically prescribed to children and adults who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is seen as a stimulant for the brain by controlling impulses and regulating behavior and attention. It influences the availability of neurotransmitters in the brain, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Classified by the FDA as a Schedule II drug due to its high potential for abuse and severe psychological or physical dependency, it is still currently accepted for medical use. The Schedule II drug category consists of opium, cocaine, methadone, amphetamines, and methamphetamines.

Abuse among students who do have a prescription for drugs like Adderall and Concerta does exist, and often involves a student manipulating the prescription in order to deal to those without one. One underclassman male student in the College of Communication who requested anonymity said he routinely re-fills his Concerta prescription for his Dyslexia and ADHD so he can sell his pills non-prescribed students.

“I don’t think of it as a big deal,” he said. “People know I have the resources to get it.” The student said he often checks up with customers to see how well the stimulant worked and has between ten and fifteen freshman friends and clients. Students who approach him for pills often have “the voice in their head that tells them to get something done, ‘or else,’’ he said. “(They think) this medicine can help me get it all done.”

He said he has also seen some purchase Concerta because “they like how they feel when they’re on it” especially when taken at parties.

Although “performance enhancers” like Concerta do not improve intelligence, the student said it does, “enhance your drive to get it all done.”

During times where he has taken the pill to study, he has experienced a loss of appetite, is unsociable, very focused and quiet. He advises students who buy from him to take the drug to study and while they are taking the test as well.

“It’s an association thing,” he said. Studying with stimulants does occur at Marquette and continues to be a growing trend with college students across the country.The National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), in an April 2009 report found of the 28,027 full-time college students between the ages of 18 and 22 surveyed they were twice as likely to use the amphetamine drug Adderall without prescription as those who had not been in college at all or were only part-time students. In 2008, the study found that full-time college students who had used Adderall non medically “were almost three times more likely to use marijuana, eight times more likely to use cocaine, eight times more likely to use tranquilizers non medically, and five times more likely to use pain relievers non medically.”

Although many students do not think using of stimulants to study is illegal, if students are caught, there are legal penalties.

“We get involved when it comes to finding people in possession of a controlled substance without a prescription,” said Officer Richard Lopez of the Milwaukee Police Department. According to Lopez, arrests and criminal charges for possession are the big things when it comes to non-prescribed drugs. According to Wisconsin state laws, those convicted of simple possession can receive a sentence under state law of drug treatment rather than jail time, and probation may be available to first-time offenders for more serious offenses. In addition, for Wisconsin, possessors can be fined between $1000 and $10,000, with the average jail time being between six months to three and a half years. There is also a mandatory driver’s license suspension for a minimum of six months and a maximum of five years for all drug offenses.

In addition to legal ramifications of abusing the pills, there are also some severe health ones as well. The FDA finds that non-prescribed, illegal use of Adderall can result in “rapid heartbeat palpitations, increased blood pressure, restlessness, insomnia, seizures, depression, headache and stroke,” with long term affects including liver problems and addiction. Students, who use Adderall without a prescription, may need to take central nervous system depressants such as pain relievers or tranquilizers to counteract the stimulant effects of Adderall.

Prolonged levels of a high attention span that occur when stimulants are taken repeatedly can
result in a ‘speed crash’. A speed crash, in medical terms follows the high level of energy originally felt, and leaves the person feeling nauseous, irritable, depressed or extremely exhausted. The FDA has found that those who take the drug for actual medical purposes have fewer side effects.

In addition, the NSDUH, found that nearly 90 percent of non-presciption full-time college students who used Adderall in the past month were also binge alcohol users.

Bucket of Pills

More than half were heavy alcohol users. A 23-year- old female graduate student at Marquette who also agreed to speak to The Warrior on the condition of anonymity, said many students in her program also use performance enhancing drugs like Adderall. While she said she does not use the drug, the students she knows who take it do not have a prescription.. Usually using it the night before an exam, students who use them tell her their ability to study and retain information is increased.

“A normal person can study for five hours and absorb a certain amount of material, but if you’re on Adderall and study those same five hours, it’s the most intense five hours of your life…it just gives you that edge, that intense ability to concentrate for more extended periods of time.”

With academic programs where students are ranked creating a particularly competitive situation many students feel the need to do whatever they need to do to get the best grades possible to get the highest rank.

“It’s not that people are proud of it, they just do what they need to do to get the grade,” said the student.

by Marissa Evans and Katelyn Ferral
marissa [email protected]

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This weekend, rock out at The Rave

Posted on 28 April 2010 by Amy Wilson

This past weekend was filled with some great music at The Rave near the far west side of campus. On Saturday, April 24, The Providence performed at the venue along with The Audition and Anarbor. On Sunday, April 25, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus headlined at the lower level stage and had five bands to open for them.

The Audition came out last month with a great CD entitled, “Great Danger.” This CD was completely done by the band. They had no producer and wrote all of their own songs except for one that was done with Adam. An industry-savvy friend told me that usually when bands produce a CD on their own, it can go one of two ways: they either fail miserably or they succeed beyond anyone’s expectations. Exceeding beyond all expectations was definitely the result for Great Danger, their latest CD, The Audition, proved themselves even more. There are not any bad songs to this CD. They even mixed up the sound and have a slower one entitled, “Run Away.” Everyone I have spoken to has said that they loved the CD. Since the CD was so great, it was disappointing that The Audition did not headline. However, they are definitely one band worth following.

Anarbor has also released a new album entitled, “The Words You Don’t Swallow.” This CD is really unique because in February they had been featured in Take Action, Volume 9. One of the songs on their current album is entitled “Mr. Big Shot” is reminiscent of the “Over the Rainbow” melody.

Despite music found with Anarbor and The Audition, Red Jumpsuit Apparatus was the band with the story for the weekend. The band was going to cancel their concert because their bus broke down about 100 miles away from The Rave a few hours before the concert. However with this, it meant that they had none of their instruments. Band members ended up having to use the instruments of the band before them. Interestingly, the band, Fit For Rivals were actually childhood friends of the lead vocalist in Red Jumpsuit. They ended up singing a debut that they wrote together when they were 19. Both bands were from Jacksonville, Florida.

The Red Jumpsuit concert was very low-key. It was not promoting a new album and also did not have a playlist. Instead, the bands asked for requests from the audience, which was a unique feature. They even put songs up for a vote. For example, they asked even if they did not have piano if we wanted to hear “Cat and Mouse” still. The band also asked how many people wanted to hear “Believe.” They did guide the requests slightly because there were three songs that they wanted to play towards the end of the night. They ended the night with the same song that they always end their shows with, which ironically, was the first song they ever wrote as a band.

by Amy Wilson
[email protected]

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