She’s with the Band: Samantha Schussler

Samantha Schuster ’19, second from right, is a member of Performance Music at Scranton who plays the French horn.
Q: When and why did your passion for music begin?
A: I’ve always had a passion for music. My family is very musical, so I’ve grown up around playing and performing. I started piano lessons when I was 6 and have since learned how to play over additional 10 instruments.
Q: What made you want to join the band?
A: I joined band in 4th grade and have continued to do so ever since. Joining Performance Music at Scranton was just a given for me! I don’t own my own horn, as they are really expensive (a decent one is at least $2,000). I currently use a school horn. I just love playing with an ensemble and making something beautiful that people familiar with band ensembles and those who are not can relate to.
Q: What’s your favorite moment as part of the Scranton band?
A: My favorite moments as a part of the Scranton band is making jokes with my section. There are only three of us this semester, so we know each other well. We make jokes about when we mess up or about the stuff said by Cheryl Boga, the head of the Performance Music Department. We also celebrate each other’s victories in the songs and are able to laugh about messing up instead of being embarrassed. Being able to joke and enjoy each other’s company during rehearsals helps us to not only play more cohesively as a section but to bond and build stronger relationships with one another.
Q: If you could play any other instrument, what would it be and why?
A: If I could play any other instrument, it would be the euphonium. Its sound is beautiful and it has nice bass lines with the tuba section.
Q: Who is your musical inspiration?
A: My musical inspirations are the other people in my section. They are all so talented. I practice and try to sound like them during rehearsals and performances.
Q: When is the band’s next performance?
A: The band’s next performance is on Nov. 10 at 7:30 p.m.

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Rowing Forward: A Woman on the Men’s Crew Team

Elizabeth Kugler ’20 is a female coxswain on the men’s crew team. We sat down to talk with her on her experience.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a woman on the men’s crew team?
A: To be a woman on the men’s crew team means that anyone can do anything if they care enough. If you want to make a commitment and strive for accomplishment then nothing, not even gender, should stop you.
Q: Do you think there’s a real difference in the way woman and men perform athletics?
A: Truthfully I do not think there is a difference in the way men and women perform athletics, but the difference is the dynamics of a team. When it comes down to it, anyone can run a mile or learn to row a boat or shoot a basketball. I think a sport is not defined by gender but rather how each individual team uniquely plays that sport.  
Q:  What has been the hardest part of assimilating to an all-male team?
A: The hardest part of assimilating to an all-male team is fitting in. Not to sound like its middle school, but no matter how hard you try, genetic predisposition can define where you stand. All the guys have been so nice to me and I knew most of them before joining so I definitely had made good friends. But, there will always be an underlying feeling of being different or that you won’t get the jokes they tell. Its a sense of being unable to relate and a fear of not being taken seriously. But, thankfully the team has been very accepting of having a female coxswain. 
Q: Any advice for women who want to do something that’s traditionally male-dominated? 
A: My advice for women who want to do something that traditionally male-dominated is that you can do anything you set your mind to (I know, cheesy).  I have heard stories about girls wanting to join their high school football teams and I have known girls on male hockey teams and I think its great. Also being a woman in business, I know the fear of not being taken seriously. But in reality, gender is just something that impacts how we look, but not how we perform.

Off Campus Adventures: ‘ThanksLiving’ 2018

There’s an entire world off of this campus (believe me, I’m a local.) This week’s off-campus excursion took me to Indraloka Animal Sanctuary’s Annual ThanksLiving Event. Yes, ThanksLiving, not to be confused with Thanksgiving.

ThankLiving is a heart-warming day at the sanctuary, where the resident turkeys are honored and celebrated. These turkeys were paraded to their own table where they enjoyed a meal of spinach salad, fruit, seeds, watermelon and pumpkins. Indraloka’s ThanksLiving event showcases a more compassionate take on the typical Thanksgiving meal.

The turkeys weren’t the only ones with full bellies, as Parlor City Vegan catered the sold-out event. Guests were able to eat delicious vegan food while listening to live music and taking part in raffles and a silent auction to benefit the sanctuary’s mission

ThanksLiving was hosted by Olympians Rebecca Soni and Malachi David, news anchor, Paola Giangiacomo, WBRE Eyewitness News Anchor, Mark Hiller and author, Eric Lindstrom.

This year’s event had a special twist, as it was held on Indraloka’s new and more accessible property in Dalton. This property will help Indraloka continue to compassion for animals and humans alike. The main sanctuary barn will have classrooms for children, yoga studios, music rooms, art rooms and more.

 

Behind the Scenes: Fresh Food Co.

We’ve all eaten at the Fresh Food Co. on the third of the Denaples Center, but chances are you’ve just lovingly dubbed it “Third.”

Saturday brunches, upscale Wednesdays and the ever-rare, yet coveted, ice cream sandwich station are three of the many reasons why it’s captured your heart as a Scranton hallmark.

However, the food doesn’t just magically appear every time you swipe your Royal. It takes a team of dedicated cooks and staff to bring Third to life.

Kelena Gonzalez, the mastermind behind the Southwest Vegetarian station, gave a behind-the-scenes look into our beloved third-floor.

Q: What’s your all-time favorite dish to make?

A: I love making southwest sweet potatoes with a black bean corn salsa. It’s so colorful and good for you, and the kids always love it.

Q: When are you the busiest?

A: There’s really not a day that’s busier than another, but it is always, always crowded at noon.

Q: What’s one thing about dining services that students might not know?

A: Everything is always fresh. A lot of places say that, but we really mean it. I feel like the students might know that already.

Q: How do you prepare for your noon rushes?

A: I just make sure I have all of my products ready to go. I make sure I have enough plates counted too.

Q: What’s the relationship like between the cooks and staff?

A: We’re really all a big family. We’re all friends, and that’s why we work so well together.

 

 

 

 

 

We Want You! (To Vote)

In today’s political climate, it is more important than ever to get to the polls to express your voice. In the last midterms, only 42 percent of registered Americans voted, which was the lowest voter turnout since 1978. The voter turnout for college-aged individuals was even lower, with only 20 percent of millennials voting. It’s important to raise these numbers this election season, as your vote on Nov. 6 matters. Government elected officials have a part in every aspect of our lives from healthcare to education to human rights and everything in between. By voting, you get to personally have a say in how you think America can do better for its citizens.

To get any excuses out of the way, here’s a definitive list of what to do to get to the polls with confidence.

How to get there:

Pennsylvania registered voters can head to Pennsylvania’s voting website or  GetToThePolls.com to find out the closest polling location.

What you need:

-If you’ve voted at the polling place before, you don’t need to bring ID.
-If you’re a first-time voter, or if you’ve never voted at the polling location you need your ID. You can bring a Pennsylvania driver’s license or PennDOT ID card, ID issued by Pennsylvania or the US government, your US passport, US military ID or even your student ID. Also, you could show an employee ID, a confirmation issued by the County Voter Registration Office, non-photo ID issued by Pennsylvania or the US government, a firearm permit or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, or a government check that includes your name and address.
-Have no fear if you don’t have one of those forms of ID; you can just fill out a provisional ballot.
Still not convinced? Here are what two Scranton students have to say about why voting is essential.
“I think it’s important for students to vote in the upcoming election because the youth vote has the power to be so influential in our country. Students don’t realize that they have the power to directly influence issues that affect or could in the future. Our world seems to be going backward and young people tend to complain instead of actually doing something that can be impactful like simply voting can do so much. Older generations see the world differently and they have a larger voter outcome which is clearly seen in our country today. Voting is a privilege and having a larger college student vote turnout can make a huge difference in shaping and fixing our country. We have the ability to voice our concerns and make change for our future and generations to come. It’s about moving forward in a positive light.”
Maveli Espitia ’20
“Personally, I am not involved enough in politics but I know I should be. My parents are very active and they have lots of conversations about them. Through them and my personal beliefs, I know that I look for candidates that want the best for others but still don’t take away given rights. I identify as a Republican, but I feel I’m economically conservative and socially liberal. It’s also difficult to find information on the candidates and their beliefs because almost everything is biased. There’s no perfect way to vote but we are given our right at the age of 18 for a reason. This has to do with the people who run our country and if we’re not involved in that decision we can’t complain that we don’t like who’s in charge. We’re the next generation, we are the rising adults. It’s become our say and we want our children and their children to come into this world knowing the importance of who is in office and how they are running the particular position.”
Allison Steitz ’20

Get to the polls Nov. 6 and vote the change you wish to see in the United States!

Acapella Spotlight: Deanna Leicht ’20

What acapella group do you perform with?
I perform with The Octaves, the co-ed group.
What has been your favorite piece to perform and why?
My favorite piece we have performed so far was the “Daft Punk Medley” which was originally performed by Pentatonix. I loved it because it was a really hard piece of music that posed a challenge for us but we really dedicated ourselves to it and it paid off!!
When did your passion for singing begin?
My passion for singing began when I was very young. My mom enrolled me in musical theater and I fell in love with art. Something about it takes me to another world and helps me forget everything on the surface. Music is so powerful and has the capability to do that.

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