Radio talk show host urges students to vote

By Alexia Davis

(Left to right) Tarik S. Khan, Laura Coates, Bryan Monroe, Jean Strout, and Joe Madison pose for a picture after the “America In Crisis: Handling Election Angst” symposium. Photo by Alexia Davis

The Business, Computing and Social Science division hosted a symposium, “America In Crisis: Handling Election Angst,” at Marple Campus on Sept. 25. The discussion was moderated by Joe Madison, host of ‘The Joe Madison Show” on SiriusXM’s Urban View.

The panelists included Laura Coates, host of The Laura Coates Show on SiriusXM’s Urban View; Tarik Khan, a nurse practitioner with the Family Practice & Counseling Network; Bryan Monroe, Verizon chair and professor of journalism at Temple University; and Jean Strout, staff attorney at the Support Center for Child Advocates and an Equal Justice Works Fellow.

Keeley Mitchell, director of Paralegal Studies, said the event was organized because young people need to understand why voting is important.

“Whatever your beliefs, whatever your party, wherever you stand on the spectrum of things, go vote,” Keeley said. “Don’t let others be your voice.”

During the discussion Madison referenced information from the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP). The AARP data shows that Americans over the age of 50 are the nation’s most powerful voting block.

“What this means is that the older people are making decisions for [the younger generation] about what policies are going to be put in place,” Strout said.

The panel discussed issues of concern for the upcoming election, including the Affordable Care Act, freedom of the press, student debt, immigration, homelessness, and the opioid crisis.

The panelists also addressed potential roadblocks for voters. One such issue was the belief that there is no point to voting because a single vote doesn’t really matter.

“That’s an excuse,” Coates said. “People can’t use it as a crutch to not engage.”

Another roadblock was related to logistical issues, or not physically being able to get to the poles. Monroe suggested other options for voters.

“Even if you’re home, you can get an absentee ballot and send it in,” Monroe said. Absentee ballots are mailed before an election by voters who cannot be at the polls.

Other resources for voters include early voting and free rides to the polling place from Uber and Lyft drivers.

Toward the end of the symposium, Madison and Monroe spoke to individuals who cannot cast a ballot for reasons, such as age or immigration status. The panelists explained that these persons can still affect the system by sharing information and getting others to vote.

Monroe told the audience that democracy is not “a spectator sport.”

“We cannot, we must not, be a nation of onlookers,” Madison warned.

To view a video of the symposium, click here.

Contact Alexia Davis at

Free ‘expungement clinic’ offers individuals a second chance

By Dean Galiffa 

Paralegal studies student Brittany Murphy (left) and Staff Attorney at Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania Erica Briant (right) discuss an individual’s case. Photo by Dean Galiffa
Keeley Mitchell, director of Paralegal Studies, waits to sign in registered individuals. Photo by Dean Galiffa
Staff Attorney at Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania Guy Marinari (left) and paralegal studies student Nancy Stock (right) discuss an individual’s case. Photo by Dean Galiffa

Paralegal students, under the supervision of attorneys from the Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania, assisted students and community members Sept. 23 to determine if they are eligible to have certain prior arrests or convictions expunged or sealed from their record.

Held on Marple Campus, the free “expungement clinic” was organized by Keeley Mitchell, director of Paralegal Studies. Keeley said that registration for the clinic involved the individual providing key information for viewing their criminal record.

Expungement refers to the removal of certain offenses from a person’s record. For an offense to be sealed, the court records are destroyed that would otherwise be accessible as public record.

“Each individual is assigned a paralegal student,” Keeley said. “After they’re signed in, they meet with the student and go over their record. The students were assigned nine clients each.”

Mary Taylor, a second-year paralegal studies student, said classmates who were previously involved in the clinic recommended she apply.

“They said it had been a good experience,” Taylor said. “[The applicants] were narrowed down to 10 people.”

Brittany Murphy, a paralegal studies student in her last year, said that only seven of the 10 students were selected for the clinic. Murphy said that she applied during the first week of classes.

The application process involved students meeting a certain GPA requirement and submitting an essay.

After registration, the paralegal students were given information on the individuals’ criminal records.

“[The process] is not just today,” said Lisa Laffend, a paralegal studies student in her second semester. “We spent all week working on these cases.”

Keeley said that the paralegal students will inform the individual of what offenses can and cannot be expunged or sealed.

Keeley explained that paralegal students cannot give legal advice on their own, so the attorneys from the Legal Aid approve and make the recommendations for how to proceed.

“They normally take the intake and all information to the attorney and confirm what the next step is,” Keeley said. “Then, the attorney gives their blessing.”

Despite the attorney having the final say, Keeley explained that stuents still benefit from this eperience.

“It’s a win-win,” Keeley said. “They’re getting experience that they can put on their resume. Many of them have actually landed jobs. Legal Aid has pulled some for internships.”

Erica Briant, a staff attorney at Legal Aid, said that she became involved with the clinic through Keeley.

“This is my fourth expungement clinic,” Briant said. “The opportunity to work with students is wonderful because we are reaching up to 70 folks today. There’s no way that I could do that by myself.”

Keeley further explained that if individuals are able to have their record expunged and fit the income requirements, then Legal Aid will take them on as a client. Otherwise, they are told what the next step is.

“If they can’t get expunged, then they’re explained whether they have to do a pardon.” Keeley said. “In some cases, like with a juvenile record, they’ll try to seal them.”

A pardon involves a governor or president using her executive power to remove any remaining penalties or punishments of an individual’s convicted crime. This prevents any new prosecution for the crime.

This is the sixth expungement clinic held on the Marple Campus. There has been one during each fall and spring semester since spring 2015. In addition to the Marple Campus clinic, the first clinic at the Exton Campus will be held next semester.

Contact Dean Galiffa at

DCCC nursing program paves way for successful nursing careers

By Comfort Queh

Theophile Tembe, a science for health professions major, tutors a DCCC student in the Learning Commons. Photo by Comfort Queh

Theophile Tembe, a science for health profession major, was born in Cameroon and has lived in the United States for two years. Tembe maintains a 3.74 grade point average while working part time as a chemistry tutor at DCCC and full time for the Pennsylvania Agency of Nurses as a home health aide.

“I want to know as much as I can know, to build my career,” said Tembe, who also attends DCCC full time. Tembe will be graduating in May 2018 and transferring to Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions on an academic scholarship in September.

Tembe was awarded an acedemic scholarship of approximately $45,000 by Drexel University, under the condition that he maintains a 3.5 grade point average.

“I feel [Drexel] is the right place for me to be,” said Tembe, adding that attending DCCC helped him save money and time.

Tembe is one of many students enrolled in DCCC’s nursing program who are eager to graduate in May and pursue their nursing careers by transferring to prestigious nursing schools to finish their Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

Every semester students go through multiple steps to compete for an entrance into the nursing program at DCCC. Since seating in the program is limited, admission is competitive.

To be considered for the program, students must complete the two-part application process, the first part being a general admission application that all DCCC students are required to complete for acceptance into the college.

Part two of the admission process includes a mandatory aptitude test titled “Test of Essential Academic Skills” (TEAS), designed to determine if students will be able to succeed in nursing school. Students are required to score a “B” or above on the four part component test to be considered for admission into the nursing program.

Once accepted into the program, students undertake an intense curriculum for four semesters to complete the program. The program combines clinical laboratory experience and hands-on practice.

Students are able to save money and time through the three different pathways available through the program, said Faye Meloy, dean of Allied Health, Emergency Service and Nursing.

One pathway students can take is the transfer route that Tembe took, whereby students take a majority of their general sciences and gen-ed classes at DCCC, then transfer to a four year university with their Associate in Applied Science (AAS), where they will spend two more years to complete a BSN.

Another pathway students can take is successfully completing DCCC’s nursing program to receive their AAS, then moving on to a Nursing Residency Program where they are able to practice being a registered nurse (RN).

Once successfully completing the nursing program, students are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN, a state exam that allows the student to practice nursing, Meloy explained.

A third cost effective pathway available to students in the program is the ADN-BSN [Associate Degree in Nursing-Bachelor of Science in Nursing] enrollment program, a dual admission agreement that DCCC has with Drexel University.

“DCCC originally approached Drexel about the idea, thereby allowing other schools to pursue the program,” Meloy said.

Under this program, students in the nursing program are required to successfully complete all of DCCC ADN requirements while completing their BSN general-ed classes online with Drexel.

With this option, students receive approximately 40 percent off their tuition when they attend Drexel University’s nursing program.

All Drexel University students accepted into the nursing program are required to go through a co-op program, which provides professional and clinical work experience for students; however, according to the agreement DCCC has with Drexel, that requirement is taken care of when students successfully complete the AAS at DCCC.

Students like Tembe, Alyson Lyons, Marie Basilici and others, who are enrolled in DCCC’s nursing program, have all chosen different pathways to reach their career goals. Basilici and Lyons are both completing the dual admission agreement DCCC has with Drexel University.

Basilici, a wife, mother of three and returning student, will also be graduating in May 2018 after successful completing the DCCC nursing program. She will be attending Drexel University School of Nursing with only six more credits to complete her BSN.

“I was a little worried that going to an associate degree program would present a problem for me getting a job, but the way our nursing program is set up, they begin clinical hands-on work in the first semester, and that was really important to me,” Basilici said.

With this program, Basilici’s chances of being hired at any residential hospital after passing the NCLEX-RN exam are high.

“I really love DCCC,” she added. “I’m so happy I made the decision to come here.”

Lyons, 35, works part time at an Ace Hardware Store in Drexel Hill, while attending DCCC full time and attending Drexel University part time. Lyons will be graduating in May after completing DCCC’s nursing program.

“I would definitely recommend [DCCC],” Lyons said. “It’s been a great program, and the teachers are all great; lots of support throughout the whole program.”

After graduating, Lyons will be doing her residency at Geisinger Medical Center School of Nursing while finishing her six credits at Drexel to complete her BSN degree.

Eventually, Lyons would like to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA).

“Whichever paths you take you are going to become a nurse at the end,” Lyons said. “It’s a great program, with great staff and I definitely saved money because of the program.”

Contact Comfort Queh at

Does ‘13 Reasons Why’ confront rape culture?

By Dean Galiffa

In support of April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month, DCCC will be holding Clothesline Project events on every campus, from April 3-19. The Clothesline Project is an organization created to bring awareness to those affected by violence. Photo by Dean Galiffa

After reading the book and watching the Netflix original series adaptation, Marple campus Career and Counseling Center staff member Chris Doyle developed “Confronting Rape Culture: 13 Reasons Why,” a workshop exploring the “pervasiveness of rape culture” within the show.

“I thought pairing the workshop with ‘13 Reasons Why’ would get people’s attention,” Doyle said. “I wanted to focus more on confronting rape culture rather than the more controversial aspects of the show, such as the glamorization of suicide.”

Eileen Colucci, a fellow counselor, approached Doyle shortly after she developed the workshop.

“I was interested in partnering with her in this project,” Colucci said. “The idea was that we would use the show as a tool surrounding an important topic.”

Throughout this semester, there have been two workshops held on both the Marple and Downingtown campuses.

The first was held on Feb. 8 on the Marple campus during Q-Time and opened with Doyle explaining the purpose of the workshop.

“[Rape culture] is a society or environment whose prevailing social attitudes have the effect of normalizing or trivializing sexual assault and abuse,” Doyle said.

Doyle suggested that students ask questions when discussing sexual violence.

“One of our responsibilities is to educate and raise awareness about sexual assault on college campuses,” Doyle said. “This workshop is one of the more contemporary ways we’ve chosen to do that. We’re going to show scenes from the show and open up a discussion.”

Before beginning the presentation, Doyle said that the workshop was meant to explore the contributing factors of rape culture among men and women.

“This is not a man-bashing presentation,” Doyle said. “This takes into account the culture that affects women but also affects men. Pressure is put on both parties to act in a specific way.”

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91 percent of colleges in 2014 reported zero incidents of rape on campus. Photo courtesy of Mic Network Inc.

Jessie V. Ford’s article “‘Going with the Flow’: How College Men’s Experiences of Unwanted Sex Are Produced by Gendered Interactional Pressures,” published in Social Forces, examines 39 heterosexual men’s experiences with unwanted sex in college.

Ford’s data suggested that men typically conduct their sex lives to conform to society’s expectations of masculinity.

“Men consent to unwanted sex because accepting all opportunities for sexual activity is a widely accepted way to perform masculinity,” Ford writes. “They fear ridicule if stories are told portraying them as the kind of man who does not jump at any opportunity for sex with an attractive woman.”

A study in the Journal of Child & Family Studies titled “Sexual Assault Among College Students: Family of Origin Hostility, Attachment, and the Hook-Up Culture as Risk Factors” reports “Between one-third and one-half of college men admit to perpetrating some form of sexual assault against a woman.”

Another study in PLoS ONE titled “Sexual assault incidents among college undergraduates: Prevalence and factors associated with risk,” estimates 20 to 25 percent of college students in the United States are sexual assault victims.

These statistics prompted universities to enhance or develop policies and programs to prevent sexual assault.

According to an article by Jennifer R. Boyle in the American Journal of Health Studies, recent efforts against sexual assault on college campuses have focused heavily on the “bystander approach, [which] relies on third party witnesses to intervene in potential sexual assault situations.”

Current bystander programs, including the Mentors in Violence Prevention program and the Men’s Project, have shown some success among college students.

“There’s something called ‘Bystander Intervention,” Doyle told students during the Feb. 8 workshop. “It is a program to teach people how to intervene when they see something going on. I’m hoping to bring that training to campus.”

Rosie Long, a first-year psychology major, attended the workshop on Marple campus. She said a friend at West Chester University underwent the training.

“I think all teachers should have to attend that training,” Long said. “I’ve had past encounters with sexual assault and harassment in high school and the teachers and counselors involved did not handle it well.”

Long attended Upper Darby High School where she said she was victim of sexual harassment and assault on multiple occasions.

“In one situation, a counselor told me I could fill out paperwork, but it would probably lead to more harassment and bullying,” said Long in an interview after the workshop. “I was advised to avoid him in the hallways and sit away from him at lunch. He was an athlete, and he was very glorified and ran for homecoming king.”

Long completed her senior year through the Upper Darby School District Cyber Academy, a program offering classes to students online, after feeling too unsafe attending traditional classes.

During the workshop, Colucci said that she was shocked after hearing Long’s story. She related her experience to a scene from “13 Reasons Why,” in which a student was exonerated for sexual harassment on account of his athlete status.

Long said she read the book and saw the show before the workshop, and found it a useful tool.

“I didn’t like the book as much as the show,” Long said. “The show opened up a discussion on sexual assault, bullying, and suicide, even though it didn’t execute it very well. Using scenes was helpful, and having it be in the title of the workshop definitely appealed to students more.”

Erin McCarthy, a second-year psychology major who was homeschooled, attended the workshop on the Downingtown campus on March 6, 2018. She had not seen the show or read the book before the workshop and did not think using the show was a helpful tool.

“I went into it with low expectations and came out with even less than that level,” she said. “I thought the show was a very bad representation of rape culture.”

McCarthy added that the workshop was not about confronting rape culture, but blaming rape culture on many different aspects of today’s society.

“I thought the workshop would be about bettering the future of our society,” she added. “I expected us to be finding the root of the problem and discussing how to fix it. Instead, it was a lot of complaining.”

McCarthy said that she believes the issues surrounding rape culture can be dealt with from an early age.

“We need to teach children how to treat each other appropriately and with respect,” McCarthy said. “Parents should be teaching their kids how to act, not expecting schools to.”

In support of April being Sexual Assault Awareness Month, DCCC will be holding Clothesline Project events on every campus, from April 3-19.

The Clothesline Project is an organization created to bring awareness to those affected by violence. T-shirts are decorated and hung on a clothesline display as a testimony to the problem, according to the organization’s website.

Contact Dean Galiffa at

Food bank meets need on Marple campus

By Andrew Henry

The F.E.R.B program at DCCC provides food with nutritional value such as fruit and Gatorade to help hungry students make it through their day. The snacks are packed into white bags kept in the Campus Life office. Photo by Andrew Henry

It’s no secret that being a college student can be challenging. Sitting in a classroom for more than an hour, focusing on what the teacher is saying, all the while taking notes, not to mention having to study those notes for hours on end to retain the information.

Now imagine having to do that on an empty stomach.

Some may not have to imagine. For some, this is a reality.

Food insecurity is defined by Merriam-Webster as “unable to consistently access or afford adequate food.”

In other words, some students do not eat because they simply cannot afford to.

This issue is quite common on college campuses, according to a report published by Students Against Hunger, which reports the rate of food insecurity among college students as four times greater than the national average.

DCCC offers programs that help those struggling with food insecurities.

Kathy Schank, an associate professor of social work at DCCC since 2008, is also the faculty advisor to the Social Work Club.

food 2
An instructional placard outlining how to gain access to the food provided by the F.E.R.B program stands behind a sample of what one might find in a bag acquired from Campus Life on Marple campus. Photo by Andrew Henry

The club, along with Campus Life, noticed an ongoing problem on the Marple campus and other DCCC branch campuses.

Students are hungry.

Counselors also took notice and began bringing food to their offices, according to Schank.

Water bottles, snack bars, and other small snacks were brought in to help students make it through the day, but staff saw that it was not enough.

At a meeting with the Social Work Club during the 2011-12 academic year then Campus Life director Amy Williams Gaudioso suggested a solution: creating a food bank on DCCC’s Marple campus.

The Social Work Club agreed, and within one and a half years a program called the Food Emergency Resource Bank, or FERB, was created in spring of 2014.

“We asked for donations toward the food bank from the college community,” Schank said. “And we have been getting a great response ever since.”

Food bank items are selected based on nutritional value, and what would best help students make it through their day.

The food bank at DCCC is located in the Student Center, Room 1180.

Students can approach a counselor and simply tell her that they have a “food emergency.” Students will then receive a ticket that is to be taken to the front desk at Campus Life. They will be given a bag of food from the food bank with no questions asked.

The next step for the food bank is to expand into a larger facility and have it be manned by student volunteers. A team is actively working on the expansion and finding space to do it.

The food bank is also linked to a program called Keystone Education Yields Success, or K.E.Y.S, located in Room 2170 on DCCC’s Marple campus. The program is directed by Susan Bennett.

K.E.Y.S is designed to help recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) succeed in community college, according to their page on DCCC’s website.

The program supplies lunch vouchers, financial assistance, and rewards for students based on their academic achievements.

“There are students that are eligible for K.E.Y.S, and just haven’t signed up,” Bennett said. “If you received the Pell grant, you are more than likely eligible.”

food 3
An instructional placard outlines how one might gain access to the food provided by the F.E.R.B program. Photo by Andrew Henry

The program also provides free transportation, childcare, and gives students information about other programs for which students may be eligible.

If a student wants to check his eligibility, he can visit

A questionnaire takes about two minutes to complete.

“[Food insecurities are] one symptom of a larger systemic issue,” said Allyson Gleason, director of Campus Life. However, she does feel that the food bank has made an impact on students’ lives.

If you or someone you know is struggling with finding your next meal, contact the Career and Counseling Center on Marple Campus.

Contact Andrew Henry at

DCCC Multicultural and Badminton Clubs celebrate the Year of the Dog

By Comfort Queh


In celebration of the Lunar New Year, a traditional holiday in China, DCCC’s Multicultural and Badminton Clubs joined together to host their first fundraiser of the year on Feb. 14 to celebrate the year of the dog. The event occurred from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Room 2520 in Founder’s Hall and raised $287.

The celebration featured Chinese and Vietnamese dishes, Henna tattoos and handmade Valentine’s Day cards and gifts for students and faculty members to purchase while enjoying the decorations and festivities that members of the club had organized.

All the proceeds from the fundraiser will go toward the clubs’ future events and equipment needed for the Badminton Club, said Chayawan Sonchaeng, who has a master’s degree in TESO (Teaching English to Students of Other Language), teaches ESL at DCCC, and is one of the co-advisors of both the Multicultural and Badminton Clubs.

Sonchaeng explained that the fundraiser is used as a platform for the Multicultural Club members to “raise awareness about others culture so we can learn to respect one another.”

“We would like to use this as a way to educate people about other cultures so they can learn about it and embrace it,” Sonchaeng added.

The Lunar New Year is celebrated in countries with a significant population of Chinese heritage. In other countries, this holiday is called by a different name: The Vietnamese refer to it as Tet, and the Tibetans refer to it as Losar. In Japan it is referred to as Shogatsu, and the Koreans refers to it as Seollal.

The fundraiser began with five different stations, each offering different items and foods for purchase.

Students at the first station sold summer rolls, a Vietnamese dish prepared by Hang Tran, the president and founder of the Badminton Club. Tran and other members that manned the station were dressed in their Ao Dai, a traditional Vietnamese dress.

Students and faculty were able to purchase $2 for one summer roll or $3 for two. “It’s very good and tasty,” said Jiajun Huang, a first year mechanical-engineering student at the college. Huang attended the event for the first time with his friend Charles Yang, a statistics major.

The second station displayed different Henna tattoos that students and faculty could purchase for $5.

“I really like it,” said Idalis Lloyd, a second semester business student after getting a full hand henna tattoo for the first time.

The third station offered $1 spring rolls and dumplings for purchase.

The fourth station sold $1 hand-made Valentine’s Day cards, teddy bears, and heart shaped pillow.

“The decorations are beautiful,” said ESL tutor Bobbi Morris.

“It’s a great way for them to work together,” said Morris. “I think it’s absolutely terrific that I could buy a Valentine’s Day card.”

The fifth station was a selfie station where students and faculty could take $1 selfies. Heart-shaped sunglasses, colorful beaded necklaces, and heart-shaped Mickey Mouse ears were some of the available props.

“It’s very good, friendly people and it’s cheap,” said Daiki Ito, a second semester ESL student. “I can get to know different countries and cultures. I like this.”

The Multicultural Club meets every Friday in Room 1180 from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Students can share information about their cultures with each other. Some of the countries that the club members have discussed include India, Madagascar, Albania, Bangladesh and Vietnamese.

“It’s very special and interesting because we are from different cultures,” said Premisa Kerthi, the president of the Multicultural Club. “We talk in English to help build our confidence because most of the students are from ESL classes.”

Contact Comfort Queh at communitarian@mail.dccc. edu

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Financial aid administrator Ray Toole is about to take a bite of his summer roll at the Multicultural Lunar New Year fundraiser on Feb. 14. Photo by Comfort Queh
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ESL tutors Bobbi Morris and Lynn Maharaj show Valentine’s Day spirit by purchasing handcrafted cards made by the Multicultural Club at the Lunar New Year fundraiser on Feb. 14. Photo by Comfort Queh
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Yen Le wears an Ao Dai, a traditional Vietnamese dress at the Multicultural Lunar New Year fundraiser on Feb. 14. Photo by Comfort Queh

Black History Month: how a week became 28 days

By Andrew Henry 


February is Black History Month, but why?

When 10 students on Delaware County’s Marple Campus were asked, nine of them admitted to having absolutely no idea.

“Isn’t is because February is the shortest month of the year?” asked Angel Goins, a criminal justice major.

The reason February was chosen has nothing to do with the length of the month. It was chosen by a black man named Carter G. Woodson, the second black man to earn a doctorate degree from Harvard University, according to Daryl Michael Scott, a professor of History at Howard University and vice president for Programs of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History.

In 1915 Woodson went to Illinois to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the emancipation of the slaves in the United States. The event commemorated the progress black people in America had made since the abolition of slavery. Approximately 6000 to 12,000 black U.S. citizens attended the three-week event, according to Scott.

Due to the overwhelming turnout, Woodson formed an organization known as the Association For the Study of Negro life (ASNLH), which promoted the study of African people’s history and genealogy, and the sharing of those findings.

Woodson thought that sharing the historical facts about Africans would help to improve race relations by changing the way that Africans were perceived.

In 1926, Woodson established that a week in February would be known as Negro History Week and would be used to promote and teach the history of black people, writes Scott.

The Month of February was chosen because it holds the birthdays of Frederick Douglass, a former slave turned abolitionist, and President Abraham Lincoln, the president who wrote the Emancipation Proclamation to free the slaves.

In 1976, 50 years after the establishment of Negro history week, the ASNLH finally had enough influence to establish Black History Month, and since then every president has acknowledged February as Black History Month, according to Scott.

DCCC’s Marple campus will be holding events all throughout the month February.

Allyson Gleason, director of Campus Life at DCCC expressed the importance of promoting diversity on campus both during Black History Month, and all year long.

“It’s important to acknowledge and celebrate different cultures,” Gleason said. “We try to reach out to everyone, which is why we had the play ‘Tres Vidas’ in October for Hispanic Heritage Month.”

Contact Andrew Henry at

Why it matters that Melania Trump wore a pith helmet on her trip to Africa

By Elizabeth Wellington

The Philadelphia Inquirer

As the world knows, first lady Melania Trump took a safari in Kenya on Friday in a pair of slim-fitting khakis, knee-length boots, a crisp white shirt, and topping it all off a hard white hat of the type made popular by colonizers.

The offending accessory has a name. It’s called a pith helmet, and it shows up in pop culture all the time in stories like Tarzan, where Africans are depicted as savages tamed at the hand of Europeans.

Laura Seay, an assistant professor at Colby College who studies African politics, told NPR that in some cases pith helmets were worn because colonialists were afraid of high levels of radiation in the tropics. (That unscientific theory, like many built on ignorance, was eventually debunked.) They were routinely worn by colonial military personnel.

Cue the visceral reaction.

Frankly, I’m tired of writing about the drama tangential to the Trump White House. As with the president’s Twitter feed, we focus on the lady Trump’s fashion _ and move away from the issues at hand.

I want to ignore her. Why give this woman any more ink or, more important, any of my precious time?

But the reality is we can’t afford to look away because these outfits are costumes of white supremacy. And we’d be kidding ourselves if we didn’t see them as such.

The optics are important, and the first lady’s handlers are keenly aware of this. They are yet another dog whistle for the white-supremacist fringe who’d prefer not to see people of color in “their” country, and if they do would rather they be the help.

On Saturday, journalists asked Trump about her Friday ensemble. And standing in front of Egypt’s Great Sphinx in yet another white hat _ this one more favored historically by segregationists rather than colonizers _ she told reporters “I wish people focus on what I do, not what I wear.”

Oh, for the love of God.

This is from the first lady who carefully curates everything, starting with her appearance in a powder-blue Jackie Kennedy-esque ensemble at President Trump’s inauguration and extending to that Zara drawstring jacket emblazoned with the words “I really don’t care, do u?”

So I won’t _ no, I can’t _ ignore this Columbus Day weekend choice to promote her “Be Best” campaign wearing khaki-hued ensembles inextricably linked to some of the world’s most violent colonizers.

Visiting the center of the slave trade, including Ghana’s Cape Coast Castle, the former model posed as though she were in a fashion magazine center spread, wearing the outfits of men who’d committed some of world history’s most awful monstrosities.

But she wasn’t in a make-believe world created by fashion directors to entice us to buy clothes. This was real-life images embracing colonialism.

Traditionally, it is the first lady who acts as the well-dressed conscience of the country. She represents what she wants America to be to the world. She is the country’s face of kindness. She is what America aspires to be.

God help us all.

Don’t kill me

By David Delloso

I was halfway up the hill on hole seven at Springfield Country Club when my knees buckled. I didn’t know what was happening, but I was going down.

My team hovered over me when I opened my eyes. They looked as confused as I was. My whole body ached with cold sweats despite the heat of August.

Lab Corps drew blood at 7:30 a.m., but before samples were sent the diagnosis was given. On Sept. 5, 2014 I was diagnosed with type 1 juvenile onset diabetes.

I was 16.

The severity of the situation did not become apparent until my mother teared up. I had no idea that a lifelong battle was to ensue.

Juvenile onset diabetes is defined as a chronic condition where the pancreas produces little-to-no insulin, a hormone that regulates the glucose levels in our blood.

Living as a type 1 diabetic, I need to give myself insulin through injections. That alone is a rough existence. After being diagnosed, it was a hard idea to grasp.

Juvenile diabetes is a game of ups and downs. As a patient, I have experienced hospitalization, interruption of my education, severe anxiety surrounding my condition, and a compromised lifestyle.

However, since my four years of being diagnosed, the most horrific event was the U.S. House of Representatives vote to pass healthcare “reform” in 2017.

The GOP Healthcare Reform Bill proposed an alteration to the mandate to allow people with pre-existing conditions to purchase health insurance policies. Although created and presented by President Donald Trump via mass media, Republicans had to endorse the idea.

If denied health insurance, many type 1 diabetic patients would face mental and physical trauma.

For instance, insulin prices are sky high. According to Truven Heath Analytics, there has been an over 700 percent price increase since 1996 on fast-acting insulins like Humolog. In 1996, a vile sold for $21; in 2016, the same viles sold for $225.

The national average of income remaining after routine bills for Americans is roughly $1,700 monthly. For a diabetic like myself, I use an average of four viles of insulin per month, all manufactured by Novo Dorisk. Fortunately, with coverage, I pay nearly nothing for them, yet others are not so lucky.

Monthly, an uncovered diabetic may spend $800 to $1,000 on insulin, not including testing supplies, needles and backup supplies. It is not just a hardship, but a matter of life or death.

Many stories of the tragic, untimely deaths of young men and women unable to afford insulin on and off insurance policies arise more often than I would like. Most recently I read a testimony of a spouse to a diabetic. She watched her husband perish as he faced Diabetic Ketoacidosis.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis, or DKA, is the main cause of death from complications while managing type 1 and 2 diabetes. It is a mass build up of sugar in the blood which draws out nearly all the water from cells, resulting in organ shutdown and rapid deterioration, all of which is corrected and avoided by insulin injection.

I faced short bouts of DKA at the onset of my diagnosis and the pain and nausea experienced is something comparable to nothing I had ever experienced before.

For young adults like me, it is imperative to not only manage my condition for health purposes, but necessary to keep well documented records in that event that insurance companies deny my well being in the future.

At 20 years old, the thought of that as a possibility is truly unnerving.

In a short six years, when I move off my parents’ health insurance plan, I too will be at the mercy of the insurance companies if I don’t have a well paying job with solid health insurance. I don’t live in fear, but I am also a realist.

Therefore, I use my resources at DCCC to advance my education on the issue, make connections with other patients, and strive to succeed for myself and my condition.

The stakes are forever high. If the Republicans continue to get their way, they may literally kill me.

So be active in your civic duties to help a friend, student and neighbor, like myself, to continue to thrive.

Vote on Nov. 6.

Contact David Delloso at

The ‘Brett bounce’: what the GOP will rely on for midterm elections

By Dean Galiffa



Brett Kavanaugh was sworn into the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 8 as a result of a 50-48 vote, one of the slimmest margins in American history, confirming his lifelong position as an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

The majority ruling was determined by two coalitions of the same bloc. The larger group, led by senators Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham, believes that granting an alleged sexual predator life tenure is a fair price for a 5-4 conservative majority.

The smaller group, led by senators Susan Collins and Jeff Flake, could not conceive the concept of abstaining from their ideologies for the sake of morals, although both credited the insufficient FBI investigation into accusations made against Kavanaugh as the basis for their decision.

Unfortunately, Kavanaugh’s appointment has seemingly intensified a partisanship divide between both legislatures, with Republicans hoping to hold their majority position in the Senate, due to what some have called a “Brett bounce,” a new wave of support for Republican candidates as a result of the successful confirmation of Kavanaugh.

Democrats, on the other hand, are ostensibly projecting that their votes will secure a more liberal House of Representatives because suburban swing districts, especially those that heavily voted for Trump in 2016, are predicted to vote blue.

According to FiveThirtyEight, as this paper goes to press, there is a 77.4 percent chance Republicans win control of the Senate, with a 22.4 percent chance Democrats do. However, there is a 77.9 percent chance Democrats win control of the House of Representatives, and a 22.1 percent chance Republicans do.

But four weeks is a long time in politics, and the Republican support for the Senate is naive and fleeting, almost an ignorant bliss. Historically, political parties are more likely to stay angry longer than happy, so there is a greater likelihood that the Democratic party will sustain the same energy.

Some believe that Kavanaugh has been subjected to mischaracterization surrounding events that allegedly took place during his academic career. Testimonies accusing the new Supreme Court Justice state that he sexually harassed Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and other women. However, both Ford and Kavanaugh went under oath and gave their testimonies.

After several hours of sharing her claims and answering any and all questions that arose, Ford’s patience and calm demeanor never faltered. Furthermore, what does Ford have to gain by lying? She has subjected herself to lifelong assault for her testimony, including villainization. So why bother if she is not telling the truth?

Kavanaugh, on the other hand, was in hysterics after at least 20 minutes of questioning. While some may argue this is the mark of an innocent man in question, I would say that this only characterizes his unfit ability to serve on the highest court of the land.

Registering to vote is the most proactive and efficient way to resolve the current judiciary dilemma.

Contact Dean Galiffa at

Turkish police think Saudi journalist was killed in Istanbul consulate

By Vivian Nereim, Donna Abu-Nasr, Alaa Shahine and Riad Hamade

Bloomberg News


RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — Authorities in Turkey believe that a Saudi journalist who went missing after entering the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul this week was killed there, a Turkish government source said.

The assessment came three days after Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman said Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist critical of his rule, had left the building shortly after entering it and that he was ready to allow Turkey to search the consulate.

“The premises are sovereign territory, but we will allow them to enter and search and do whatever they want to do,” Mohammed said in an interview Wednesday at a royal palace in Riyadh. “We have nothing to hide.”

Khashoggi’s murder is believed to have been premeditated, Reuters and the Washington Post reported.

Khashoggi, who’s been living in self-imposed exile for the past year, has been missing since Tuesday. His fiancee and friends said they fear he was detained or kidnapped for his criticism of the government.

Speculation that Khashoggi was detained focused new attention on what critics say is a broad crackdown on dissent under Mohammed that has coincided with his attempts to loosen social restrictions and create a more dynamic economy less reliant on oil. It also risks worsening relations between the kingdom and Turkey, already strained over Ankara’s support of political Islam. Turkey summoned the Saudi ambassador to explain the journalist’s disappearance.

Mohammed, the 33-year-old heir to the Saudi throne, used the interview to defend actions that have tarnished his reputation abroad as a man trying to overhaul one of the world’s last remaining absolute monarchies. He said the arrests of clerics, women activists and some businessmen over the past year were a small price to pay for peacefully eradicating extremism in the world’s top oil exporter.

The prince said authorities have detained about 1,500 people over the past three years on national security grounds rather than as part of a clampdown on dissent. The number, he said, pales in comparison with Turkey, where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has locked up tens of thousands since a failed coup against him in 2016.

“I didn’t call myself a reformer of Saudi Arabia,” Prince Mohammed said when questioned about criticism of the arrests. “I am the crown prince of Saudi Arabia and I am trying to do the best that I can do through my position.”

Khashoggi said last year that he moved to the United States because of concerns that he would be arrested in Saudi Arabia or prevented from traveling abroad.

“I have left my home, my family and my job, and I am raising my voice,” he wrote in the Washington Post, for which he was a regular contributor. “To do otherwise would betray those who languish in prison. I can speak when so many cannot.”

On Wednesday, Ibrahim Kalin, a spokesman for Erdogan, said Turkey believed Khashoggi was still inside the consulate. “We will continue following the matter closely. There is an international law, Turkish law and humanitarian aspect in this issue,” he said.

(Abu-Nasr reported from Beirut. Taylan Bilgic and Nayla Razzouk contributed to this report.)

UN Ambassador Nikki Haley resigns, to leave at year’s end

By Noah Bierman and Tracy Wilkinson

Los Angeles Times


WASHINGTON — Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, announced her resignation Tuesday in a move that President Donald Trump said had been in the works for months, but which caught many White House officials by surprise.

Trump, making the announcement at the White House, told reporters that Haley had informed him about six months ago that at the end of a two-year period on the job, she’d want to take a break. The resignation will take effect at the end of the year, Trump and Haley said.

“She’s done a fantastic job, and we’ve done a fantastic job together,” Trump said, adding that he’d be happy to have her back in another position.

Haley’s departure marked one of the rare examples of a senior Trump administration official making a graceful exit. The president heaped praise on her, saying she brought glamour and importance to the position. He allowed her to address reporters from the Oval Office, a departure from the abrupt tweets Trump often uses to announce high-level staff changes. Trump said he would name a successor within the next two or three weeks.

Haley, in turn, thanked Trump and praised members of his family before mentioning her own family. She also moved quickly to squelch speculation about her political ambitions.

“No, I am not running in 2020,” she said, adding she would campaign for Trump’s re-election.

Haley, who called herself a “lucky girl,” said she was leaving because she needed to take time out after an intense six years as governor of South Carolina which included a hurricane, a major flood and mass shootings directly followed by two years at the United Nations.

She said her departure matched her belief that those in government should have term limits. She has served at the U.N. since the start of Trump’s presidency.

Haley also praised the effectiveness of Trump’s foreign policy efforts, which have drawn widespread criticism.

“Now, the United States is respected,” she said. “Countries may not like what we do, but they respect what we do.” A recent survey by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center showed public opinion toward the United States has plummeted in many countries since Trump took office.

Haley cited Trump’s tough trade policy, his decision to leave the Iran nuclear deal and the move of the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, which infuriated many allies and regional partners.

Trump, she said, is “showing the rest of the world we will put our embassy where we want to put our embassy.”

She also took credit for cutting the U.S. contribution to the U.N. budget, characterizing the move as moving the organization toward more efficiency.

Haley achieved a rare feat in the Trump administration: maintaining her personal popularity despite the president’s polarizing politics. An April Quinnipiac University poll found 63 percent of voters approved of her job performance, compared with 17 percent who disapproved. That included a majority, 55 percent, of Democrats.

The 46-year-old child of Indian immigrants has been viewed as a rising star within the Republican Party and is widely believed to harbor ambitions for higher office. Before Trump took over the party with his nationalist politics aimed at the GOP’s white male base, Haley endorsed his primary opponent, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who wanted to push the party toward a more multicultural future.

Conservatives, even those who are suspicious of Trump’s “America First” policy, have tended to give Haley the benefit of the doubt, even as she carries out his agenda.

She has been more outspoken in calling out Russian aggression than Trump, for example. She also often sides even more strongly with Israel than Trump, who has pushed U.S. policy away from its officially neutral stance on the conflict with the Palestinians. She once threatened to “take names” of countries that have opposed American policy in Israel.

“Nikki Haley has been a clear, consistent and powerful voice for America’s interests and democratic principles on the world stage,” House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said in a tweet. “She challenged friend and foe to be better. I am saddened that she is leaving the administration, but so grateful for her service.”