Category Archives: News

Yale Professor Speaks on Importance of Hispanic Heritage

By Jesmarie Disdiel

Dr. Rolena Adorno, Department Chair and Sterling Professor of Spanish at Yale University, visited Central Connecticut Wednesday to speak on Hispanic heritage and its importance today, posing the question of what does Columbus Day mean now?

“Hispanic Heritage Month offers us a chance to reflect exactly on these matters,” said Adorno as she explained the challenges young people of diverse immigrant families face today.

Opportunities for Hispanics in the past were scarce.  Now, because of the efforts pushed by powerful individuals such as President Lyndon B. Johnson (who fist declared the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Week, which President Ronald Reagan eventually made Hispanic Heritage Month) opportunities are now presented everywhere.

Adorno explained Spanish colonialism while exploring what it means for us today.

“What I am going to share with you is the account written by an individual who was born after the Spanish conquest of the Incan Empire,” said Adorno.

Adorno introduced Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala, a Peruvian noble man who “has left for us one of the greatest eyewitness accounts of life under colonialism, in this case Spanish colonialism, that we have today.”

The manuscript, written by Guaman, is a historical account of the Spanish conquest of the Incas and gives a harsh critique of Spanish colonial rule and the deep problems that arose as a result.

The importance of this piece of history is to explain “what is meant at the time, and what meanings we can derive from it now,” said Adorno. “So in my view what Columbus Day is now, nationally, in this country is language and communication, and how it involves education.”

Adorno puts a strong emphasis on the importance of education and how important it was to visit CCSU for Hispanic Heritage Month. Her husband, who has faced challenges as a Hispanic, attended and graduated from CCSU.

“Central was the beginning of it all. Central offered an open door and they made his college education possible. It’s for this reason it is such a pleasure to be with you here today, this makes me emotional,” said Adorno. “To honor the opportunity it provided my husband and to recognize the opportunities that Central provides to all of you as students and all faculty members today.”

The Student Center: Providing Career Opportunities For 50 Years

By Ruth Bruno

After 50 years, the CCSU Student Center continues to provide a place for students to gather together to grab some lunch or do homework. But for others, the Student Center provides a job and many opportunities leading to future careers.

Tiffany Moffo-Simpson, Assistant Director of the Student Center, has worked there for almost 10 years. She began as an intern while she was a grad student at CCSU. Over the years, says Simpson, the Student Center has changed in order to meet the demands of the students.

“We’ve expanded in the sense that we now have many more clubs. The main difference over the years is our students. Our student body changes, so we try hard to keep up with those needs and what they want,” said Simpson.

Simpson works closely with student staff members and interns. She says watching and helping students through the same processes she experienced as a young intern has been one of the highlights of her job at the student center.

“Even now watching some of our students who start out as quiet and shy evolve into mature and involved, focused student leaders; that’s my proudest moment,” said Simpson.

Maria Santilli, Co-Assistant Director of the Student Center along side Simpson, says that the atmosphere of the center is familial, and members of the senior staff work together in a “tight-knit” way.

“We create an environment that our student employees want to come back to every day.  Our student employee retention is incredibly high,” she said.

The majors and career goals of those who work in the student center span a wide range. Maleka Powers, Breakers Game Room Operations Manager, notices and takes advantage of this. She says the experience she gains working with a diverse group of people will pair well with her degree in exercise science.

“The environment is very diverse and that’s my favorite part about it,” said Powers. “In personal training, you work with all kinds of different people. Working at Breakers, especially, you interact with a lot of different people from different backgrounds.”

For other students, their work at the Student Center has given them a resource to help lead them to explore new possibilities.

“To be honest, at first I just saw it as a job, but then as I became student manager, that bug has been placed in my ear,” said Pratik Patel, a mechanical engineering major.  He explains that the passion of his colleagues and managers around him has caused him to reconsider if he wants to continue in mechanical engineering.

“The idea of going into higher education has been sitting in the back of my mind,” said Patel.

For others, working in the Student Center provides them with the encouragement and experience to continue in their chosen field.

Julie Koivisto, a grad student studying in the counseling program here, has began her internship at the Student Center just this year. “Just working here for the last couple of months has really reassured me that this is what I want to do,” said Koivisto.

Colleen Powers, Assistant Director of Student Activities/Leadership Development (SA/LD) says that working with students and interns is something that many of the programs hosted in the Student Center – including SA/LD and Central Activities Network (CAN) – strive to do.

“I think for most of us who work in higher education the whole reason we do it is because we want to work with students,” said Powers.

Powers further explains that the interns and students who work for SA/LD and CAN are advised about what activities to host on campus, but most of the decisions are made by them.

“The last two years, we definitely noticed a different energy and enthusiasm of the incoming class and I think part of it has to do with efforts we’ve made toward making orientation a better program for them,” said Powers.

She says there has been an increase at events and a demand for more educational opportunities. As a result, on-campus programs are offering more lectures that students can tie into their classes.

Powers said that having a building and department like the Student Center has been an important factor in bringing these programs together so that they can be easily coordinated.

“Our location is great,” said Powers.  “The Student Center staff takes a lot of pride in making sure the building is the best it can be and making sure it offers the most possible to students.”

STEM grad program

By Ruth Bruno

For the first time at Central Connecticut, certified teachers will be able to earn their graduate degree through a Masters of Science in STEM Education.

This particular graduate program, that began this semester, is designed to accommodate any K-12 teacher who wishes to incorporate the different aspects of Science, Technology, Education & Math (STEM) into their classroom.  The 33-credit program is designed so that students can take two classes per semester to finish in three years.  Most of these classes will be held at night to accommodate those currently teaching.

“We really have striven to make this a program where our students can manage to teach while they’re earning their master’s degree,” said Dr. Marsha Bednarski, a professor of geological sciences and one of the coordinators who organized the new program.

The program is attracting former undergraduates at CCSU who have recently graduated, as well as teachers who have decided to come back to school to get the higher levels of certification they feel they need.

Bednarski says she hopes that students who graduate from the program will be well equipped to help their own students understand how Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics merge together.

Dr. Glynis Fitzgerald, Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of Graduate Studies, expressed a similar sentiment.

“They already have the teacher certification,” said Fitzgerald of the grad students.  “Now they get the STEM masters and they can bring all these different fields together for their classroom. Instead of being just a math teacher or just a science teacher, they can talk about how math incorporates with science.”

Fitzgerald says this kind of program was spawned as part of an effort to meet the needs for the state of Connecticut and its residents. She says that with an increase in manufacturing and advancing technology, teachers will find it beneficial to keep up with the latest STEM programs.

“I think that these teachers are going to be better prepared to meet the changing needs of the workforce.  As we become more and more technologically driven the students that come out of our program will be better equipped to teach students and to learn themselves how to work in this kind of new environment,” said Fitzgerald.

According to Bednarski, the entire process of developing and opening the new graduate program lasted about 30 months.  No new faculty members were fired.  Those coordinating the program took existing programs and faculty members and brought them together.

Fitzgerald says that the biggest obstacle in starting the new program was explaining and clarifying what the STEM graduate program would entail to administrators.

“The toughest part was communicating effectively about what this new field is. It took a little bit of talking to principals to explain to them what we were doing and to show them how exceptional it is,” she said.

There are currently between 15-17 students enrolled in the program.  Fitzgerald believes these numbers will increase.

“I think the faculty have done a good job and I expect that number to grow dramatically in the next year,” she said.

CCSU is currently the third largest graduate school in the state of Connecticut, second only to Yale University and the University of Connecticut.  According to Fitzgerald, it is the faculty of CCSU that make the university stand out.

“Here at Central we have real faculty teaching the courses every single day and you get to learn from that and be a part of the research teams as well,” said Fitzgerald.  “I think that’s a really exciting benefit that CCSU offers that other [larger universities in Connecticut] don’t.”

Residential Hall Upgraded Over Summer, First of Several

by Daniel Schwager

The Robert Vance residential hall has provided adequate housing to students since 1971, but over the summer for the first time in 43 years, Vance received its first major overhaul.

Renovations were done on the inside and outside of the building, costing about $700,000 to accomplish.

“This was Vance’s first major renovation since it was built,” said James Grupp, Coordinator of Capitol Projects and Facilities Planning on campus.  “Yes, we did do some minor renovations, with getting new furniture eight years back.  Vance definitely needed to get upgraded, it got pretty bad in there the last couple years.  There definitely needed to be changes.”

One of the bigger renovations that happened in the building was fixing and replacing the cement floors with all new wooden floors.  In the dorm rooms, the closets were redone by adding new doors and shelves.  Beds received new mattresses and bed stands that no longer have to be bunked.  Every room was repainted a different color to help bring a more unique look and life to each.

“The grounds around campus do look much nicer, and Vance looks nice with a less industrial feel on the inside.  Last year, there were cement floors and old closets, and every room had same dull paint,” said Brian Murphy, a senior at CCSU and current Vance residence who lived in the dorm last year.

According to Grupp, they added about six to seven feet to the kitchens on every floor, along with newly remodeled cabinets.  They also got upgraded appliances, and each comes with its own flat screen TV and bar stools for students to sit while waiting for their food to cook.

Security measures in the building were also improved.  Students now have to use their Bluechip cards to get into their dorm, instead of using keys.  Another way they enhanced security is by adding dorm alarms to all the side emergency exits of the building.

Students now have easier access to do homework and other activities online with the installation of WiFi in the building.

“WiFi was definitely a need in the residence halls.  By adding WiFi students now can do more homework in the rooms, instead of having to use the computer labs in their dorms,” said Fred Bonvicini, head of Facilities Management Operations on campus.

The Vance Hall mascot has also changed to go along with the new renovations, from an Ant to Spartans.

CCSU is going through a lot of renovations and they plan to continue to do so over the next several years, with even more plans in the works around campus. The next dorm on the list of renovations for campus is Carroll Hall.

“When the new residence hall is complete, which is projected for fall of 2015, then Carroll will go offline and get the next major renovation,” said Bonvicini.  “Carroll will be equipped with AC. Students in Carroll will get first dibs on the new dorm next year. That is one of the reasons Vance got upgraded. It is part of our plan to renovate and improve all residential halls. After Carroll will be Beecher.”

Tony’s Restaurant Forced to Relocate After 25 Years of Service

By Jacqueline Stoughton

The local pizza joint, Tony’s Restaurant, that has been serving the CCSU community for the past 25 years has recently been forced to relocate following a leasing dispute with the plaza’s landlord.

Matthew Levy, of Levy Properties, LLC and owners of the Central Square Plaza where Tony’s was located, said in a statement to the New Britain Herald that Tony and Sevy Antonaras have been very good tenants, and they wish they would’ve stayed in the plaza.

“From my understanding they were forced to move out by the landlord this wasn’t something they wanted to do,” said David Blitz, CCSU Philosophy professor.  “They had an established restaurant and they put in hundreds of thousands of dollars to improve it over the years.”

Levy made it clear to the New Britain Herald that Tony’s restaurant was not evicted but rather the lease had just expired.  Although their landlord had made an offer to move them into a vacant spot within the same plaza, a decision is still yet to be made whether or not Tony’s will reopen.

The vacant spot that Tony’s would be moving into is completely undeveloped, lacking plumbing for a working bathroom and a finished ceiling.

Blitz says this is an example of bad faith on the part of the owner.  “They were negotiating the terms of the renewal of the lease and so far as I know had a disagreement, which is not unheard of in relationships between a landlord and a tenant. But what this landlord did was bring in another tenant and basically used a technicality to force them to move.”

“Wing It On!” is the new restaurant that has moved into where Tony’s used to be and is currently open for business. Along with many other restaurants surrounding the CCSU campus, they accept payment by Blue Chip card when purchasing their wide selection of burgers, wings, salads and wraps.

CCSU student Annemarie Perge explains how she enjoyed visiting Tony’s restaurant, especially since it was cheap for students and easily accessible to walk over to grab a quick normal meal instead of settling for fast food in between classes.

“To give it to somebody else and have them move to a different, more inconvenient spot, I think that’s very unfair,” said Perge. “Especially since they have been clients to this landlord for awhile now. The landlord should’ve been more sympathetic towards them.”

Blitz explains how students are now being deprived of a restaurant they’ve come to depend on since the beginning of the term, and that this new restaurant could have easily been moved into the vacant space instead which would have avoided this dispute entirely.

“Tony’s has been a part of our extended community for a quarter of a century. They’ve done such a good job at providing decent meals at a decent price for CCSU students and staff,” said Blitz. “To place them in a situation of possible financial ruin and certainly great personal stress in which the landlord has done is a case of unethical business practice on the part of the landlord.”

Central Checks in on Student’s Mental Health

By Matt Knox

Central Connecticut focused heavily on mental health awareness last week by providing multiple events to it’s students through the Fresh Check program culminating in a resounding finish with Fresh Check Day on Thursday.

“It’s exciting. It was a much bigger event this year,” said Dr. Jonathan Pohl, Wellness Education Coordinator for Student Wellness Services.

According to the its website, the purpose of Fresh Check is to bring awareness to mental health resources and coping strategies available on college campuses. This was done through interactive booths, music and food.

The fun atmosphere worked to encourage dialogue about mental health between students and the resources available to them. CCSU also hosted a moving lecture to it’s students from Ross Szabo.

“I have personally helped someone that was dealing with a mental illness,” said Jen Cardines, a senior at CCSU visiting the event. “Most people don’t know enough about them.”

While originally planned for Vance Lawn, the event was moved into Alumni Hall because of impending rain.  Before entering each student had to register. Registering meant they would receive a “passport,” a card with 10 spots representing the 10 booths that they would find inside.  By visiting at least five of the booths, students were given a food ticket which allowed them to get a free sandwich. By filling out a survey after leaving Fresh Check, participants were also entered in a raffle to win various prizes.

The ten stations included: a bean bag toss, aromatherapy, painting a bird house, walking with impairment goggles and a few that involved writing messages. A majority of the booths were run by volunteers from student groups and departments. At the bean bag toss station, the real motive was to test your knowledge. After tossing a bean bag, a volunteer asked a question regarding mental health and the appropriate resources.

“This event is important because it brings awareness about suicides, which can be prevalent on college campuses,” said Nicolas Leahey, Fresh Check student volunteer.

At one booth, participants finished the sentence ‘Love is louder than” with anything they wanted. As part of the Love Is Louder Than campaign, each student’s picture was taken with their message.  The pictures will be put together in a collage and hung around campus.

“It’s important that people who are struggling know that they are not alone,” said Jenna Hohman, a student Fresh Check volunteer.

At a booth with a stuffed elephant on the table and cards with elephants on them scattered about, breaking the silence was the goal. Students had the choice to write down on the cards something that they didn’t tell people because of social stigmas and embarrassment. Simms Sonet, SGA President, manned the booth and encouraged people to participate, citing some of his own struggles with mental illness as examples.

Throughout the event, there were other activities taking place that focused on helping students relieve stress. Therapy dogs were being led around the room continuously, gaining lots of fans. A taste of gong therapy was accessible, and Zumba and yoga instructors took to the stage periodically, encouraging people to join in.

“I think this event shows that the school cares,” remarked Leahey.

Mental Health Advocator and Author Visits CCSU

By Matt Knox

Ross Szabo, a recognized leader in the mental health movement and author of the book Behind Happy Faces, visited CCSU last Tuesday to speak to students about balancing mental illness and the rest of their lives.

This was part of Fresh Check Week and the living room lecture series held by the university.

“A majority of mental illnesses come to the surface between the ages of 18 and 24,” said Laura Tordenti, the vice president of Student Affairs, who introduced Szabo.

“A lot of people have the wrong idea when I say mental health,” Szabo said. “Mental health is not a problem, it’s how you balance everything in your life.”

According to Szabo, scientists have recently discovered that one of the harshest and effective interrogation techniques is to only let a person sleep three to five hours each night. This is disturbingly close to the four to six hours of sleep a night that the average college student gets.

“People have competitions to see who can be more stressed out. The winner is the most dysfunctional person,” said Szabo.

Szabo informed the audience that roughly one in four college students have a mental illness, but only 34 percent of them ever seek help. “Why don’t people seek help?” he asked the crowd.

Senator Blumenthal joined Szabo mid-lecture to speak succinctly on the subject at hand. He spoke about the fight to have mental health coverage guaranteed on the same level as physical coverage by insurance companies. This has only just recently started going into effect in Connecticut. Aetna insurance, that is mandatory for all students attending CCSU to be under unless waived with their own equally adequate insurance, also provides coverage for mental health to CCSU students.

Before leaving, Blumenthal commended CCSU, exclaiming how grateful he is to CCSU for their courage to face this problem so openly with each other.

After thanking Blumenthal for his time, Szabo recounted his own struggle with mental illness. At age 16 he was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder with anger control problems and psychotic features. He told the students how he began to drink alcohol to quiet his uncontrollable mind, which on some nights would not let him sleep for more than an hour. Meanwhile, he believed that he should “just suck it up” and acted as normal as possible around other people. He played sports, and hung out with friends just like the average teenager would.

“It was my external life,” said Szabo. “Not the life I lived.”

During his senior year in high school, Szabo fell into a deep depression. That January, he was hospitalized for attempting to take his own life. “I hated myself more than anyone in this room can imagine,” Szabo said.

Towards the end of the lecture Simms Sonet, Michelle Zohlman, Dr. Christopher Diamond and Dr. Jason Sikorski joined Szabo in armchairs beside alumni stage for a panel discussion. Spectators who were lucky enough to find a sticker on the bottom of their chair were able to get a free copy of Szabo’s book, which he offered to sign.

“I hope this lecture reminds you of the power you have,” said Szabo.  “Embrace that power and start making a difference.”

SGA budget to clubs

by Jacqueline Stoughton

With over 100 clubs on campus, SGA must undertake the responsibility of allocating budgets to all clubs, a process that SGA has been accused of being unfair at on multiple occasions when determining how much money is given to each club.

“I think that SGA tries to find anyway possible to cut funding from clubs.  Ever since I’ve been involved with the PE club the funding has gone down.  The year before I attended CCSU, our funding has gone down from just over $10,000 to $4,770,” said Niko Zimmitti, president of the PE club.  “We did ask to see the budget allocations for the last three years to see if there was a trend.  We still haven’t received them.”

“Clubs always feel like they’re being ripped off, that’s the reason I joined SGA, when my club didn’t get enough money and I wanted to make sure that wouldn’t happen to other clubs,” said Kory Mills, Treasurer of SGA.
SGA begins its funding to clubs for the school year in lump sums; every April, clubs must submit a base budget request.  This includes submitting a written-out, detailed report of all the events and trips they need funded.  The proposal needs to match their club’s mission statement, and clubs are encouraged to present their proposal to the finance committee as well.

 

“Ideally, we want to give more money for putting on more on campus events and to larger clubs,” said Mills.  “Or, if they present to us they’ll have a better chance of getting more money since we’ll understand what they’re asking for better.  They have the opportunity to show us what they want, we have the opportunity to ask questions for clarification.”

According to Mills, $638,000 is put into the SGA large account every year, which the bylaws mandate 62 percent to go toward campus club funding. This means that SGA has $321,000 for base budgets that must be split up between 110 clubs.

“I’ve heard that they [SGA] have extra money and they just aren’t awarding it to fund the budgets of clubs. I don’t understand why that is. Perhaps they have some kind of motivation to keep the fund big, I’m not sure,” said Joseph Dauphinais, vice president of the International Association of Business Communications.  “Much of that money should be given out though. I’m not suggesting that they pay for fun trips that have nothing to do with education, but it shouldn’t be too much to ask for our membership dues to be covered.”

“The problem with that is when we originally allocated that money in the bylaws we only had about 68 clubs,” said Mills. “So, over the years, we haven’t gotten any more student activities fees, so every year we have to give clubs less money because we have more and more clubs with the same amount of money.”

Mills explains how, since this obviously wasn’t enough money, he persuaded the finance committee to up the base budget amount to $414,000, so clubs would receive a little more money this year.  The money used to increase this base budget amount was supplemented from SGA’s own reserve account.

Although it’s not ideal, since this is what causes clubs to accuse SGA of being unfair with their budgeting, cuts need to be made.  This year, SGA will no longer be funding individual chapter dues.  They will only fund large chapter dues for the whole group on campus.  For sports teams, 30 percent automatically goes towards all sports teams on campus.  But, if teams want something extra other than the basics that SGA will fund — such as team jerseys — they must pay for that on their own.

Dauphinais says that things such as membership dues for a club that is academically orientated should absolutely be covered. If any clubs should be favored in any way, it is the academic clubs instead of the special interest clubs: “I’m not sure how they favor them, and if friends of friends are awarded more, or if politics are heavily involved.”

“To make this a more fair process I don’t think that the SGA should have total control over the budget. I personally think that there should be a huge meeting where the SGA, presidents, and treasurers of each club meet and go over the budget for the upcoming school year,” said Zimmitti.  “The SGA can go over what they plan to give each club and if there is disagreement with the budget funding for one club it can be disputed during that time. There can be a vote with everybody there to see if that budget funding is justified for that club.”

New this year, clubs who are denied the funds that they request have the opportunity to come back and file a contingency request where they’re able to ask for that money again in the fall. Clubs can also file a contingency request if they need more money for unanticipated, new or emergency events that pop up.  Contingencies follow the same process as base budgets, except contingencies require that clubs present to the finance committee.

“It’s a little more work on the clubs part but we think but we think it’s more fair to make sure they present to us, we really want them to have the money,” said Mills.  A supplement budget of $40,000 is also available for clubs this year that want to hold campus events or trips.

“At the end of the day we have a lot of clubs and not a lot of money, not everyone’s going to be happy,” said Mills.  “Not everyone’s going to be happy, we have to cut sometimes, but there’s simply not enough money for every single club to get what they want.”

Central Celebrates Two Occasions With Warsaw Lecture

By Acadia Otlowski

The lecture was given by Michael Alfred Peszke, a Polish-American historian and psychiatrist. He studies difference aspects of the Polish Armed Forces during World War II. He is the author of multiple books on the subject of the Warsaw uprising.

The lecture was held in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Polish Studies program being established at CCSU. Additionally, the program will be holding a celebratory gala on October 19.

Peszke spoke to a crowded room on the second floor of the library, Thursday night. A number of students were scattered throughout a mostly older crowd. When Peszke asked if anyone had lived in Warsaw during Uprising, a couple of hands were raised.

The event was held on Oct 2, which marked the 70th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising.

“We wanted to commemorate this event and we wanted to talk about this event,” said Mieczysław Biskupski, the Stanislaus A. Blejwas Endowed Chair in Polish and Polish American Studies Coordinator for the Polish Studies program.  He said that he could think of no one who could talk about it better than Peszke.

Biskupski has known Peszke since 1976 and spoke highly of his work. Peszke worked for many years as a psychiatrist, according to Biskupski, before retiring into the study of history.

The Warsaw Uprising was one of the major acts of resistance during World War II by the Polish Resistance Home Army. It’s intent was to liberate Warsaw by timing the uprising to coincide with the advance by Soviet forces that were approaching the city and the retreat by German forces. Ultimately, the resistance failed because the Soviet forces stopped short of Warsaw and the uprising was lost 63 days after it began.

“It was in the streets of Warsaw, in the sewers of Warsaw, that the battle for Warsaw itself was fought,” said Peszke.

Peszke said that, in addition to the gallantry of the soldiers in the Polish Home Army, in addition to the fortitude of the civilians that were involved, it was the bravery of the crews that attempted to fly supplies into Warsaw that helped the fight last as long as it did.

“It was the Polish crews flying in horrendous conditions and that history is barely known in the West,” said Peszke, who said that most of the men on these crews knew that they were on a suicidal mission when they brought supplies into Warsaw.

The decision to sport an uprising was made at the end of July 1944. Peszke said that the decision was very controversial.

Peszke said that many felt that the Warsaw Uprising was the last shot for Poland to fight in World War II, though many didn’t know it at the time.

According to Peszke, many of the authors who have written on the topic of the uprising are critical of it.

“There’s a lot of arguments going on, historical arguments: who was responsible for the Warsaw Uprising?” said Peszke. The Polish commander-in-chief did not order it, according to Peszke. He said that the Poles were given advice not to go through with the resistance unless there was a strong relationship between them and the Russians.

Peszke then went on to talk about the intricacies of the uprising. He then answered a variety of questions  from both students and others in the crowd.

Honors Diaries Brings Light to Women’s Rights Issues

By: Amy Arriaga

A wet and dreary Wednesday night didn’t stop CCSU students from heading down to Vance for a viewing of the “Honor Diaries” (2014), a chilling documentary that enlightens a culture shock: the immense difference of women’s rights in other parts of the world.

The viewing was sponsored by the CCSU College Republicans, CCSU chapter of Young Americans for Liberty and the Women’s Center.  Around 50 students showed up for the 90-minute film screening that dedicated itself to the terrible reality of honor violence in Muslim societies.

“I thought it was powerful and eye opening, after seeing the movie I realized that there was a lack of information about the issue and human rights in general,” said Jason Ramons, Junior psychology major.

Ramons, along with fellow psychology majors who populated the audience, knows something about the issues being discussed in the film, but not to the extent that the documentary brought to light.

“I feel very strongly about human rights, awareness is a big key and just informing,” said Ramos.

A sense of enlightenment came over the audience when the documentary was over.  A loud chattering of students engaging with one another began immediately following the film’s conclusion.

“I see a lot of injustices in the world and where ever I feel it’s taking place I feel it’s important to bring light to it,” said Brian Pryor, co-president of the Young American’s for Liberty.

“Our club is engaged in numerous fronts.  We recently did a free speech wall that brought light to the idea that our first amendment rights are being infringed by the NSA,” said Pryor.  “They’re watching and it creates a chilling affect.”

Michelle Guerrero, junior public relations major who is working for the Red Flag Campaign, was in attendance to promote RFC and the Women’s Health Center.  “The Red Flag campaign raises awareness on domestic violence and dating violence on college campuses.”

This is the first time that the Young Americans for Liberty teamed up with the Women’s Center.  The great turn out and response brings satisfaction to both clubs, reassuring them that there will definitely be more upcoming, united events with both clubs at CCSU.

Although the film did focus mainly on Middle Eastern women, the realization that human rights are being violated all the time and all around the world is apparent in and on college campuses in the United States.

Recently, California just passed a consent law on college campuses: if there isn’t an affirmative yes to consent, legal action and jail time are likely consequences.

“Women don’t say anything because they don’t know what exactly consent means and what being sexually assaulted is,” said Guerrero.

Organizations such as the Red Flag Campaign and their partnership with the Young Americans for Liberty and the Women’s Center bring light to the reality of inequality and domestic violence and human rights being violated right here on campus. The goal of these clubs is to inform and teach students so they can pass on the information learned.