Stories from our archives – Shane Inman

Stories from our archives

Shane Inman

Managing Editor

 

1941 has hardly been a year for uplifting stories, so any chance for a change of pace is a welcome one. Sometimes a person steps up in a way that makes us all a little prouder to be part of humanity, and when that person is a student at Rhode Island College they make us just as proud to be members of this storied institution.

Morris Irving is one such student, apparently willing to put his own life in danger for the good of another. What motive could he have had beyond simple human compassion? He has not asked to be recognized for what he did. He does not want to be called a hero. But we at The Anchor feel that, especially when the world roils in war and hatred, it is essential to recognize the power of even a single act of selfless kindness. This is what we as a species are built on, and it is what we as a college are founded on.

If you happen to see Irving walking across the campus, try not to draw attention to him, but let him know in some quiet way that you are grateful for what he has done.

Saving trees one search at a time – Evan Christopher White

Saving trees one search at a time

Evan Christopher White

News Editor

 

Imagine if you could help save the environment by searching for your favorite place to eat or newest SNL video online. One small eco-friendly tech start-up is hoping to make that a reality, their name is Ecosia. This ambitious group of environmentally conscious techies plan to harness the power of the search engine for an environmentally sustainable purpose.

Ecosia started as the dream of Christian Kroll, who is the current Chairman and CEO of the organization. Mr. Kroll became disenfranchised with the profit motive as the chief aim of business when studying Business Administration in Nuremberg, Germany. After traveling around the world for one year, Mr. Kroll decided that his calling was to aid in the protection of trees. His ideas for an environmentally sustainable business model came true when he launched Ecosia in 2009. Ecosia is still a relatively small start-up with a staff of only 18 employees, based out of Berlin, Germany.

Their business platform is straightforward: a user logs on to their website and uses the search bar to make an inquiry that then takes them to a results page with advertisements found along the top of the search results. It’s through those advertisements where Ecosia generates the revenue to power their environmentally sustainable initiatives. A full 80% of all discretionary income is spent on planting trees, which Ecosia believes is the most effective way they may help fight the negative effects of Climate Change.

Ecosia boasts that it only takes “11 seconds” using their search engine to plant a tree. In fact, it only takes around 0.28 Euros in operating costs to plant a tree. As of February 2017, Ecosia had already generated over 2.8 million Euro’s worth of donations, which is approximately 3 million dollars. Ironically, 3 million is also the average active user rate for the search engine, with each user generating revenue from each search they make. Ecosia, however, is nowhere near the level of usage of other search engines on the internet, with Google alone averaging over 3.5 billion searches a day.

Currently, Ecosia has integrated itself into Google Chrome as an extension, where the user can log onto chrome and see in the top right corner, how many trees they have ‘planted’ through the aid revenue generated from their searches. The Chrome addition can be added to any user’s existing Chrome browser, and works by replacing the traditional google search homepage, with Ecosia’s own, thus using the accessibility of the Chrome interface with Ecosia’s pre-existing search engine. In addition to the Chrome extension, Ecosia has launched a personal search app for both the IOS and Android platforms, so Ecosia can be easily accessed on any smartphone or tablet device.

Ecosia’s hopes that it’s form of environmentally friendly business model, as espoused by Christian Kroll, can inspire other businesses to become environmentally conscious as well. Ecosia is still relatively unknown in the world of search engines, but that only leaves room to grow.

( Photo courtesy of Ecosia.org )

Rhode Island College named a ‘military friendly’ institution – Evan Christopher White

Rhode Island College named a ‘military friendly’ institution

Evan Christopher White

News Editor

 

Rhode Island College has been ranked as a Military Friendly® school for 2017. This honor comes from Victory Media, an online portal for active and ex-military personnel who are interested in pursuing higher education.

Victory Media had surveyed over 8,800 institutions across the United States, using a mix of their own surveys and public data from each institution in order to calculate the likelihood of each institution providing essential needs to veterans and active service members. Their survey calculated military friendliness by looking into each institution’s graduation rates, career placement abilities, loan repayment and default rates and retention rates. Within each category surveyed by Victory Media, Rhode Island College surpassed the benchmark required to be considered Military Friendly. Out of all the institutions surveyed, only 1,273 were designated with the honor of being Military Friendly.

Scott Kane, the interim vice President for student affairs commented on the ranking, stating, “Rhode Island College is once again proud to receive the designation as a Military Friendly School.” Mr. Kane further added praise for the faculty of Rhode Island College saying, “Faculty and staff across our campus contribute to a comprehensive effort to support our military and veteran students, and this recognition is a tribute to their efforts.” The President of Rhode Island College, Frank D. Sanchez also expressed his gratitude stating, “Rhode Island College supports our men and women who have served in the armed forces. It’s important now for us to prepare them for the workforce. We have a network of resources in place to help our veterans navigate their path toward a college degree. We are forever grateful for their service and are honored to have been recognized as a military-friendly school.”

National Security Advisor resigns after allegations of Russian dealings emerge – Derrik Trombley

National Security Advisor resigns after allegations of Russian dealings emerge

Derrik Trombley

Anchor Contributor

 

In what became headline news across the country last week, Retired General Michael T. Flynn resigned as National Security Advisor to President Donald Trump. Flynn’s resignation came after it was revealed that he had misled Vice President Pence, among other top White House officials, regarding conversations he had with the Russian ambassador to the United States.

Flynn, a native Rhode Islander and URI graduate, had been an early supporter of the President’s campaign and was designated to the National Security Advisor post as part of President Trump’s transition team. The specific action that caused his resignation has to do with a conversation that took place between Flynn and the Russian Ambassador concerning sanctions that had been placed on Russia by President Obama in response to Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential Election. These communications were made before Donald Trump had been sworn in as President and represent a clear violation of the Logan Act which would be enough on its own to potentially necessitate resignation. However, the denial of these communications by Flynn only increased the problem. Having denied the accusations, it was feared by the Justice Department that Flynn could have been vulnerable to blackmail by the Russians if they threatened to make the communications public.

Flynn had held the position for merely twenty-three days when his resignation came with gripping political intrigue that one might expect to find in the wildly successful Netflix series “House of Cards.” Only hours before his resignation was announced, Kellyanne Conway, one of the President’s top counselors, said on MSNBC that the President had “full confidence” in Flynn. But, another top counselor to the President, Steve Bannon, along with Vice President Pence pushed for resignation due to the nature of Flynn’s misleading statements along with his previous history of embarrassing the administration. Flynn’s son, Michael Flynn Jr., had taken part in spreading conspiracy theories about Hillary Clinton’s involvement in human trafficking at a DC Pizzeria on social media. Afterwards that pizzeria would be attacked by a man due to his belief in that conspiracy.

Ultimately, this incident has led to the Trump Administration being increasingly connected to Russia. This is a position further complicated by Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential Election which benefited Donald Trump. It is also one that the President and the rest of the Administration do not wish to find themselves.

Activists demand Citizens Bank stop funding the Dakota Access Pipeline – Evan Christopher White

Activists demand Citizens Bank stop funding the Dakota Access Pipeline

Evan Christopher White

News Editor

 

A little over a week after the headquarters of Citizens Bank in downtown Providence was protestested by roughly 100 members of the Environmental Activist Group known as the FANG Collective, a delegation where six of its members returned on Feb. 15th  to deliver a letter to the financial institution calling for an end of its contribution in the financing of Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL).

According to FANG Collective, Citizens Banks is currently offering a “revolving line of credit” to a company named Sunoco Logistics Partners, which is one of the co-owners of the DAPL. Recently, sunoco has merged with Energy Transfer Partners, creating an even larger corporation which is currently in the process of owning and developing four Pipelines, including DAPL.

Citizens Bank is currently assisting in the funding of a $3.78 Billion dollar section of the Dakota Access Pipeline that would travel underneath the Missouri River, which happens to be a vital source of drinking water for the indigenous Sioux Tribe. The Bank has an open line of credit valued at $72.5 million dollars. So far, there are no signs that Citizens Bank will be ending its current funding of the Pipeline.

The protesting of financial institutions that fund the construction of pipelines like DAPL are nothing new. TD Bank, a prominent financier of the pipeline’s construction, saw protests this past year here in Providence and across the United States. Activists at FANG have put their concerns to paper, with one line reading, “These projects are neither conscionable or sustainable, and we write to advise that Citizens immediately close its line of credit for Sunoco Logistic Partners.” They are addressing their grievances to Peter Lucht, who is the head of media relations for the financial institution. So far, Mr. Lucht has not responded in any form.

FANG’s criticism of Citizens Bank did not end with the bank’s financing of the Pipeline, but included a call to publically condemn the violence that has erupted during the protests at Standing Rock. FANG addressed the violent clashes during the protests at Standing Rock in a further section of the letter stating, “We call on you to act now: condemn the violence at Standing Rock. Align your financial investments with your commitments and climate justice and indigenous rights as pillars in your mission. Protect your moral standing.”

Standing Rock has been the sight of violent clashes between law enforcement officials and indigenous protestors, and is considered a symbol of Native American resistance to the construction of the pipeline. The struggle at Standing Rock has deep symbolism for FANG, with various references to it in their public statements and in their Facebook posts. One such post reads, “On February 4, while supporting the No DAPL struggle, Krow (Katie Kloth) was assaulted and arrested by a Bureau of Indian Affairs officer (there is video of the incident below). She was walking on a public road, away from the Sacred Stone camp, when she was chased down by the officer. It is believed that she was specifically targeted because of her ongoing involvement and visibility within the No DAPL resistance, which had resulted in two arrests on misdemeanor charges previous to this incident. Krow was also known at Standing Rock for being an advocate for creating a unified front in fighting the pipeline.” So far Citizens Bank has not produced a public statement  in regards to the violence at Standing Rock. The FANG Collective has vowed to keep the pressure on Citizens Bank to produce a statement of condemnation.

Activists like the FANG Collective have been mobilizing across the United States amid the news that President Donald Trump had expedited an approval for the completion of the DAPL project. Earlier in February, the United States Army Corps of Engineers had given the green light for the construction of a segment of the pipeline under Lake Oahe, a body of water connected to the Missouri River. Day-by-day, the construction of the pipeline inches forward toward the segment covered under the Citizens Bank direct funding. With the backing of the current administration, the Dakota Access Pipeline is estimated to be completed roughly around the middle of March 2017. FANG Collective joined a chorus of other environmental activist groups in stating their concern for the ecological impact the pipeline might have on the area, including the possible contamination of drinking water for the local population.

Despite the major disagreements over Citizens involvement in the financing of DAPL, FANG wasn’t completely critical of the financial institution. The group had praised Citizens for offering community programs that help improve financial literacy and assist in the reduction of homelessness within the region.

 

Picture Courtesy of (Tim Faulkner/ecoRI News photos)

Ali interviews: Gwen Deblois – Ali O’Gara

Ali interviews: Gwen Deblois

Ali O’Gara

Sherlock Center Intern

 

Gwen DeBlois spent two years at Arcadia University before transferring here to Rhode Island College, but she loves the community on RIC’s campus. Gwen lives here on campus and she participates in different events that clubs organize. She also enjoys her work in the Theatre department as a technical assistant at Nazarian Center.

On a normal day at RIC, Gwen typically goes to work at the Nazarian and hangs out  with her suite mates as well as her friends at the radio station. Gwen loves to read different types of books but she doesn’t have a favorite author. Gwen enjoys eating sushi and just anything with avocado. When Gwen was asked the question  “If you could travel anywhere in time, who would you meet?” her answer was, “I’ve thought about this a lot and never could come to an answer. There are so many people that I could not think of a specific one.”

It was great to get to know about Gwen and what her days look like.

Vagina Monologues – Kristy O’Connor

Vagina Monologues

Kristy O’Connor

Secretary

 

With such a jarring name, The Vagina Monologues, may prompt a judgmental reaction until one sits back to experience first hand what the play is really about.

Vagina Monologues was written by Eve Ensler and is traditionally performed during V-Day week each year. V-Day is a global activist movement that aims to end violence against women in every way that they can and has been doing so for 16 years.

Once you’ve arrived, actresses channel the emotion and struggles of the women whose stories are being shared.

“It’s important that people hear these kinds of stories and are able to learn and understand what these women and other people have gone through,” says Amanda Irwin, a Senior at Rhode Island College who has participated in The Vagina Monologues for three years.

The Vagina Monologues raises money for local charities every year, and this year The Sojourner House was the beneficiary. The Sojourner House is a comprehensive domestic violence agency and is committed to serving victims of all kinds of violence and abuse by providing shelter, support, and services.

Cedar Hayes organized and hosted the event this year, and as a senior at RIC this is her third year hosting the production. She explained the lengthy process that goes into planning the event, and explained that the cast is put through domestic violence training with representatives from the Sojourner House.

“It is important to make small communities at RIC remember that we care and there are groups that remind transexual women and women of color and all these different women that they are welcome, important and that their voices matter”, says Hayes.

Hayes stressed how much of a bonding experience this provides for the cast members, as the whole production is extremely emotional. One surprising fact that Hayes shared was that they only have two rehearsals in order to preserve the integrity of the stories and remind the audience that the people that performed the stories did not write them. This year was also the first time that one of the personal monologues was in the form of a song, which was a beautiful and moving addition to the production.

Jacqueline James participated in the monologues by sharing her personal experiences through a song she wrote and performed.

“This is important because there is little acknowledgement of the things women go through. To bring a bunch of people together, whether women or transgender men or any oppressed communities together and have them experience something empowering brings people together and helps some people realize what is really going on,” James says.

Hosted by Feminists United, the event also had several cosponsors–The Gender and Women’s studies Department, The Women’s Center, Alpha Sigma Tau, Delta Phi Epsilon, Active Minds, and Day One.

If you were unable to attend the event this year, definitely make a point to go next time because it is a production that has a powerful impact. This is just one of the many ways that awareness can be brought to the different issues surrounding women such as rape, domestic violence, and judgment of being who you are and saying how you feel.

Superhero Central – “The Runaways” run to Hulu – Sara Massa

Superhero Central – “The Runaways” run to Hulu

Sara Massa

Anchor Staff

 

Superheroes have monopolized the silver screens ever since “X-Men” came out in 2000. Since then, the superhero crowd has moved to TV, where we see “Arrow,” “Flash” and many others, before making their way to online streaming. After taking over Netflix, superheroes have now nudged a place on Hulu where the new series, “Runaways” will be featured.

The show will be based around the Marvel comic book series about a group of teenagers who come together to defeat a common enemy – their parents. They are the children of villains known as The Pride, which houses people from mob bosses to aliens.

“Runaways” introduces Alex Wilder, played by Rhenzy Feliz, the son of a mob boss. Even though he has no real superpowers, he becomes the unannounced leader of the group. Then we have Nico Minoru, portrayed by Lyrica Okano, a goth Japanese-American teenage girl who is also the daughter of dark wizards. Gertrude “Gert” Yorkes, played by Ariela Barer, is the child of time-travelers and with no real powers besides an odd mental link with a dinosaur named Old Lace. Chase Stein is the son of mad scientists and the oldest of the Runaways. He also has no real superpowers, but possesses x-ray goggles and Fistigons, the most powerful gauntlets in the world. The only alien on the team is Karolina Dean, a kind of solar-power-stealing alien known as a Majesdanian. She is also the only member of the team that is also homosexual. Lastly, there is Molly Hernandez, who is one of the only characters who has had her name changed. Originally named Molly Hayes, she is a mutant in the comics who ends up affiliated with the X-Men. This aspect has been removed because of the X-Men franchise is affiliated with 20th Century Fox, making Molly a bit unexpected for the Hulu series.

I am looking forward to how they will go about this new hero series, from Chase and Gert’s relationship, to the portrayal of Karolina and her insecurities as an alien and a lesbian. The show has no definite release date, but it is coming in 2018. Get ready for a new show to binge watch!

Q & Anchor – Gianna Rocchio

Q & Anchor

Gianna Rocchio

A&L Editor

 

What are the biggest issues at RIC that directly affect students?

 

Christine Lantagne, Social Work 2018 – “The tuition increase is a problem considering all the other costs going up, it makes it difficult to afford to be here everyday. The parking issues are also a huge problem. I am commuting here so I am forced to leave an hour early in order to find a parking place and make it to class on time.”

 

Kelly Palumbo, Social Work 2018 – “Parking is awful!! Makes me late to class. Especially awful that we are ticketed for parking elsewhere.”

 

Natalia Navarro, Social Work 2018 – “The speed bump signs are very small and difficult to see, especially at night. I’ve spoken to other students and those who live in the community who experience the same issues with the speed bump sign visibility.”

 

Alicia Barra, Social Work 2018 – “The classes fill up way too fast and have limited options for students, which is hard for those of us that work and go to school. The parking is horrible too.”

 

Anthony Palumbo, Social Work 2018 – “The parking situation is awful on campus. The school should build a multi-level parking garage on top of an existing parking lot.”

PVD Events – Gianna Rocchio

PVD Events

Gianna Rocchio

A&L Editor

 

Thursday February 23

 

Anti-Fascist Cinema: A Global Perspective

Featuring “Brutality in Stone” & “Germany in Autumn”

Cable Car Cinema

$10 // 7 p.m.

 

Bach & Beer

Featuring internationally-acclaimed cellist Steuart Pincombe

Foolproof Brewery

$15 // 7 – 9 p.m.

 

The Midday Social

Networking event for musicians all over New England

Alchemy Providence

Free // 7 p.m.

 

Friday February 24

 

Young the Giant

With special guest Lewis Del Mar

Lupo’s Heartbreak Hotel

$26 // 7 p.m.

 

Firstworks Artistic Icons Series

Featuring Rennie Harris Puremovement dancers

The Vets Memorial Auditorium

$18 // 8 p.m.

 

Taboo

With Humanbeast and Virusse

Columbus Theater

$10 // 9 p.m.

 

Saturday February 25

 

25 Annual Mardi Gras Ball

Live music, food, & drinks all night long

Rhodes on the Pawtuxet

$30 // 6:30 – 12 a.m.

 

The Naked Magicians

There’s nothing up their sleeves; they don’t have any

The Vets Memorial Auditorium

$44 // 8 p.m.

 

Ian Edwards

Known from “Conan” & writer on “Black-ish”

Comedy Connection RI

$15 // 10 p.m.

 

Sunday February 26

 

Terror Con

Actors from your favorite horror flicks & shows

RI Convention Center

$25 // 10 a.m.

 

Valley Talk: Wright’s Farm

Learn the history of the beloved farm, their food & pastries

Museum of Work & Culture

Free // 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.

 

Aaron Tveit

Broadway star takes on TV with “Graceland” & “Braindead”

The Vets Memorial Auditorium

$39 // 7 p.m.

 

Ongoing

 

Providence Improv Guild

Featuring house teams & special guests

Southside Cultural Center

$5 // Thursday – Saturdays 8 p.m.

 

Drag Show: Detention Thursdays

Hosted by the EGO Girls Complete Destruction

EGO Providence

Free // Thursdays 9 p.m.

 

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The first “rom-com” of its kind

Trinity Repertory Company

$20+ // Recurring through March 26