DCCC nursing program paves way for successful nursing careers

By Comfort Queh

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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 communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Does ‘13 Reasons Why’ confront rape culture?

By Dean Galiffa

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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 communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Food bank meets need on Marple campus

By Andrew Henry

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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.

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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.”

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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 http://www.compass.state.pa.us.

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 communitarian@dccc.mail.edu

DCCC Multicultural and Badminton Clubs celebrate the Year of the Dog

By Comfort Queh

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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 

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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 communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Shames bids adieu to DCCC after 35 years

By Andrew Henry

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Reading Professor Dianne Shames is a teacher at heart. She used to teach children around the neighborhood for an hour a day before she was an official educator. She charged the same rate that she would to babysit.

Shames has been a member of the DCCC community for nearly 35 years. Deciding to retire after 44 years of teaching was a difficult decision for her, she wrote in a recent letter to faculty. During her tenure at DCCC, Shames received the 2003 Christian Lindback Award for Excellence in Teaching, helped to create the textbook fund, started several scholarships, was a graduation commencement speaker on two occasions, coordinated the Reading Department for many years, and helped to create the Developmental Learning Summit with Professor Dotty Russo, now retired.

“Dianne has been such an inspiration to her students as well as faculty and staff at the College,” said Dr. Grant Snyder, vice provost for Student and Instructional Support Services.

“She has touched the lives of so many individuals. I also remember fondly her efforts, particularly in the early years, with Achieving the Dream initiative.”

Shames also served on the first committees for Student Mentoring and Black Student Retention.

“Dianne was instrumental in helping me to become involved at DCCC,” said Dr. Lisa Barnes, Professor of Reading. “Sharing an office with her in my first years of working at the College helped me to observe how dedicated she has been to her students, her colleagues, and the institution.”

Barnes also recalled when Shames offered a student who

was hitchhiking in terrible weather a ride home. “This demonstrated the generosity that she

routinely offers to others,” Barnes added.

Over the years, Shames hosted faculty in-service workshops at her own home, coordinated the Reading and Writing Department for 12 years, taught in the ACT 101 summer program, volunteered for Senior Week, lectured about DCCC to organizations, such as The Optimist Club,

and served as Graduation Marshall.

“DCCC has been my home since 1984, and I leave with only the best regard for the institution,” faculty, staff and students,” Shames wrote. “I know that my story is not over yet, but I want to say thank you for being a part of my ‘first half.’ I will miss my colleagues, who are also, my friends.”

Predicting the unpredictable: The Stanley Cup playoffs

By Caroline Sweeney

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Los Angeles Kings forward Dustin Brown checks Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Shea Theodore during first period action in game three of round one of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on April 15, 2018 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, Calif. Photo courtesy of Robert Gauthier/LA Times

Approximately 2,500 games later the stage is set, and the matchups are finalized. After playing a long 82 game season, 31 teams have been whittled down to 16, all in the pursuit to hoist Lord Stanley’s cup. The playoffs began on April 11 with the first round matchups.

The Western Conference matchups for the first round are the Nashville Predators and the Colorado Avalanche, the Winnipeg Jets and the Minnesota Wild, the Vegas Golden Knights and the Los Angeles Kings, and the Anaheim Ducks and the San Jose Sharks.

First round matchups for the Eastern Conference are the Tampa Bay Lightning and the New Jersey Devils, the Bostons Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Washington Capitals and the Columbus Blue Jackets, and the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins.

I predict that the Western conference finals will include the Nashville Predators against the San Jose Sharks, with the Predators prevailing for their second appearance in the cup finals.

For the Eastern Conference finals, the Boston Bruins will be playing the Pittsburgh Penguins. If the Bruins win, they will head to the cup finals against the Nashville Predators.

Three playoff series that I am mostly looking forward to watching is the Flyers and the Penguins, the Lightning and the Devils, and the Golden Knights and the Kings.

The Pittsburgh Penguins have won the past two Stanley Cups and are on the hunt for a third. The Penguins are one of the favorites to win the cup because of the simple fact that the team has won the cup multiple times in past seasons.

The Penguins have also shown their power and resilience during the regular season. With the number one ranked power play percentage and goals on power plays, it is difficult to defend against this dominant team.

Most importantly, the Penguins also have two of the best players in the league in Sydney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Those two players alone give them a leg up on the Flyers. However, the Flyers have the ability to get under the skin of the Penguins players.

Once that happens, the Penguins begin to struggle and make poor plays, opening the door for the Flyers. When the game is not going the way the Penguins want it to, they become overly aggressive. The Penguins take unnecessary penalties, and these penalties lead to opportunities for the Flyers to score.

In the west, the Golden Knights have been the major surprise throughout the NHL season, despite being an expansion team with nothing but young, inexperienced players from other teams and a few veterans that have been in the league for years.

With a 51-24 regular season record and ending with 109 points, the Golden Knights lead the Pacific division and occupied third place in the Western Conference. Even with their impressive regular season, the Golden Knights will probably not make an impact in this year’s playoffs because they are an inexperienced playoff team and do not have the same depth in players that the Kings do. The Kings have a majority of the same players from the team who won the 2012 and 2014 Stanley Cup.

The Kings were the number one team in goals allowed, despite having a top ranked, former Vezina trophy winner in Jonathan Quick. The Kings let in a lot of goals, and the quick shots and slick hands of James Neal and William Karlsson have made their mark on this playoff series and the regular season.

The playoffs are unpredictable, and anything can happen. Teams that have been at the top of the standings, like the Tampa Bay Lightning, have the real possibility to lose in the first round to the New Jersey Devils.

Naysayers may argue that what happens in the regular season is an indication of what is to happen in the playoffs. But every team is now on a clean slate since making the playoffs. During the regular season, the Devils swept the Lightning, one of the top teams in the league. The Lightning were number one in goals scored and second in power play goals.

Tampa Bay has built their team through the draft and made big moves during free agency, so they will not fall in the first round. They are simply too good in many different categories.

Anything goes in the playoffs. NHL analyst, commentator, and former player Edward “Eddie” Olczyk said it best: the playoffs are a war, players are bloody and beat up, like nothing you have ever seen.

So anything can happen. Maybe the “City of Champions” feeling will inspire the Flyers and Philadelphia will have a third parade.

Contact Caroline Sweeney at communitarian@mail.dccc. edu

Pippin

With an infectiously unforgettable score from four-time Grammy winner, three-time Oscar winner and musical theatre giant, Stephen Schwartz, Pippin is the story one young man’s journey to be extraordinary. This updated circus-inspired version of Pippin continue to captivate and appeal to audiences across the age spectrum. Photos by Andrew Henry

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The band of Pippin before the show.
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Raheem Harris plays a newscaster informing Pippin of the terrible things his father has done.
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The cast of Pippin’s final pose after performing the song “Just No Time at All.”
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Fastrada (Sara Abo-Harb) plots against her son and husband. 
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Pippin (Jason Boyer) speaks to a beheaded soldier (Jeff Bynu) after his first battle. 
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Catherine (Casey Innes) and her son Theo celebrate Pippin’s (Jason Boyer) one year anniversary with them.
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The actors in the royal court of Charlamagne. 
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Matt Morris as King Charlamagne.
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Boyer as Pippin decides to talk to his father.
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Pippin (Jason Boyer) and the leading player (Jasmine Bryant) read the bad news about his father.
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One of the submitted Pippin posters designed by Madison Argo, a graphic design major at DCCC.

Autistic students can succeed with support

By Dean Galiffa

Jane Hutchinson, of Springfield, Pa., pursued immediate action for her son Frank’s future education when he was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at age 3.

After exhibiting delays in speech and occupational development, Hutchinson’s son received early intervention services through the state.

When the Delaware County Intermediate Unit suggested that Hutchinson enroll him in a developmental delay preschool, she did so at the Pennington Education Center, which serves students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

“At first it was very difficult,” Hutchinson said. “One day at the pool, I remember explaining to another parent where Frank would be attending school. That was the first time I said the word ‘autism.’”

But over the next several years, Hutchinson educated herself on the disorder.

“When Frank was first diagnosed, it was one in every 150 kids,” she explained. “Now, it’s one in every 65. And, it’s more common in boys over girls. I found comfort in that knowledge.”

For Hutchinson, choosing to enroll her child in specialized education rather than mainstream resulted from a combination of suggestions from doctors and educators.

“Typical kids were not Frank’s peers,” she said. “Kids with autism were Frank’s peers.”

Hutchinson’s son is now enrolled at The Vanguard School, a specialized education program of Valley Forge Educational Services.

As she prepares for her son’s future, Hutchinson faces a decision similar to many parents of children with autism spectrum disorder: what postsecondary life for their child will be.

In the journal of Remedial and Special Education, researchers L.E. Smith and Dr. Kristy Anderson noted that families parenting a child with autism spectrum disorder experienced significant stress levels, especially during adolescence. Parents also played critical roles in their child’s post-high school transition.

According to Dr. Jo M. Hendrickson writing for the journal of Education & Treatment of Children, “autism-friendly” school environments positively impacted the mental health of family members and the student.

However, data that indicated a college environment to be autism-friendly, meaning each student received person-centered aid, was scarce. The Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability suggested that traditional college accommodations did not meet the needs of students with disabilities.

Consequently, these students are at high risk for dropping out. Furthermore, experts evidence suggested that the views of parents and students attending postsecondary programs did not align, interfering with the student’s progress.

A study published in the Journal of Developmental & Physical Disabilities suggested similar conclusions.

In interviews conducted between 10 parents and six university personnel, five themes emerged, including the personal needs of students with disabilities and their transition to the university.

Findings suggest that services offered by universities may need to be expanded to meet the unique requirements of students with disabilities.

The journal of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry & Mental Health evaluated the transition from high school to postsecondary options among students with autism.

The students used an online interactive program called the Better Outcomes & Successful Transitions for Autism, or BOOST-A.

The program “empowers adolescents on the autism spectrum to plan their transition from school to further study, training, or employment,” according to the article. “The trial will involve adolescents on the autism spectrum in high school and their parents, who will be alternately assigned to a control group….or an intervention group.”

The goal of BOOST-A is for students with disabilities to successfully transition from high school to postsecondary options, including employment.

The University of Iowa Realizing Educational and Career Hopes Program, or UI REACH, as described in the journal of Education & Treatment of Children, is a “well-integrated two year certificate program.”

The program integrates students with disabilities into the mainstream college atmosphere. Residence halls and classrooms are occupied with typical students and students with disabilities alike.

A student can earn a collegiate, trade, or technical certificate after two to four years of study.

Despite the progress made at some institutions of higher learning, Hutchinson said she still struggles with the decision to allow her son to attend a postsecondary institution.

“When I sent him to specialized education, I looked at it as Frank being in a community of his peers,” said Hutchinson. “He would not have benefited from attending mainstream education. Now, he’s getting to the age of making another big commitment.”

The Vanguard School, where Hutchinson’s son currently attends, allows students to remain enrolled until age 21.

“After that, I really would like to see Frank in a college setting,” said Hutchinson. “But I am very hesitant to make those decisions now. College isn’t specialized education, and Frank would have to learn basic skills in order to live on his own.”

Hutchinson explained that her son may experience difficulty leaving high school.

“Frank does not transition well,” she added. “The idea of college is too open-ended to him, and he views the world in a very precise and logical way.”

For now, Hutchinson hopes that her son will pursue higher education and possibly attend trade school.

“He’s very hands-on,” she explained. “I think a trade would be good for his stronger assets. More than anything, I just want him to be happy. I want the best for him.”

Contact Dean Galiffa at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Grief is not a checklist

By Emily Steinhardt 

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Emily Steinhardt and her father, Chris Steinhardt posing together when Emily was a toddler. Photo courtesy of Emily Steinhardt

I lost my dad in the beginning of March and the grieving process has been a lot different from what I expected.

When my dad was diagnosed with cancer in November 2016, I expected my reaction to be like those that happen in the movies. I expected there to be tears and lots of feelings of denial. Instead, I responded with, “Ok, so how do we go from here?”

My parents raised me to be an independent individual. I have been doing my own laundry since I was 12. We are also very busy people; my life always seems to be moving. When I have downtime, I usually never know what to do with it.

So when my dad was diagnosed with stage four signet cell colon cancer, life didn’t stop.

I am transferring from DCCC in the fall to study musical theatre. To get into these programs, I needed to audition. I completed all 12 of my school auditions while my dad was on the couch at home, too sick to move.

Before the audition for my dream school, my dad was rushed to the hospital.

My parents signed hospice paperwork the night before my last audition.

He died the next week.

Throughout this entire process I haven’t been responding in the way society taught me I should. And that has been worrying me.

Is there something wrong with me? Am I insensitive? Did I not truly love my dad since I haven’t been a complete mess since he died?

The answer to all of these questions is “no,” but that doesn’t mean I feel any better about how I’ve been responding to all that’s happened.

I have been living with the reality that my dad was going to die for 18 months. I looked up the survival statistics for his type of cancer as soon as he was diagnosed. He passed much quicker than anybody expected, but at least I knew it was coming.

I have come to understand that there is no one proper way to grieve. Everyone grieves in a different way and many people acknowledge this when talking to someone who is going through the process, yet I’ve noticed that even though friends have said this to me, it still feels like they expect me to go through some sort of checklist of feelings.

For me, this process is not about big moments, it’s about little moments.

When I bought clothes from where I will be going to school next year it sucked seeing the “DAD” shirts. Move in day, when everyone’s mom and dad are helping them, will definitely be difficult.

So will graduating from college, when I hopefully make my broadway debut, and walking down the aisle on my wedding day. All the little moments are going to suck.

Humans are complicated. Loss is complicated. Grief is complicated.

People going through that process should not be held accountable to society’s checklist.

Contact Emily Steinhardt at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu