Students Visit Time Warner Research Labs – The Highlander

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Michael Gombita, Reporter

 The communications department offered a very special trip to students who have volunteered their time in student media.

    Dozens of majors and non-majors visited Time Warner’s research lab in New York City.

    Students had to meet a Martz bus before departure 6 a.m. Nick Vitale, junior communications major, did not get enough sleep.

    “I only slept for an hour because I forced myself to do Mr. Kimbrough’s Film and Filmmakers [class] paper,” said Vitale. “I woke up at 4:20 a.m. and I was pretty excited going.”

    Students toured the media lab where they learned about the research strategies Time Warner uses to discover whether audiences will like products, which may include films and film trailers, and even product placement in retail stores.

    A Time Warner guide explained both quantitative and qualitative research methods.  For example, in a room staged to resemble an average living room, high-tech equipment measures the eye movements of viewers watching content on a television screen.  Data analysis reveals how the viewers felt about the content, and how often they attended to it.  In one study, researchers measured the habits of dual screen users, those who watch television programming while they also use a second device to post on social media.

    Afterwards, students had a couple of hours free to roam the city. Sean Lynch, first year communications major,  did not have a planned itinerary, but he enjoyed his time.

    “A group of us just walked around. We didn’t have spots in mind,” said Lynch. “We did walk around the piers of the Hudson, but other than that, we made the most of it.”

    Students visited a variety of tourist attractions, restaurants, and shops. Lena Williams, first year business major, did her share of visiting the city’s retail stores.

    “We went to some pretty expensive stores such as Dash, American Apparel, Lush, and Chanel,” said Williams. “We also used the subway for transportation and went to Bantam Bagels, which is one of Oprah Winfrey’s favorite foods.”

    Williams has a major interest in fashion so a trip to New York City was perfect for her.

    “I enjoyed seeing so many different types of fashion,” said Williams. “That is the one thing I love about New York is seeing all the different types of fashion.”

    Other participants decided to get the all-around view of New York City and get the “tourist experience,” which is what Matt Scanlon wanted to do.

    “We took a ferry to see an awesome sight-seeing tour of Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Statue of Liberty,” said Scanlon.

    Scanlon and five friends rushed to board the New York Water Taxi because the main attraction for the group was the Statue of Liberty. Unfortunately the group found a flaw in their plan.

    “We got on the wrong ferry,” said Scanlon. “We only got to see the Statue of Liberty from the boat and were not allowed to get off.”

    The group of friends seemed to find the brighter side of the tour.

    “It would have been nice to go to the actual statue, but we made the best out of the boat tour itself,” said Scanlon. “The views we got to see of the skyline were breath-taking.”

    The group headed up to the top deck where they were able to have a 360 degree view.

    They were able to see the Brooklyn Bridge, Empire State Building, Ellis Island, USS Intrepid, World Trade Center, Governor’s Island and other surrounding landmarks.

    Everyone who was on the trip then met up at the Stage Door Pizza restaurant where students enjoyed items on the menu compliments of the communications department.

    The communications department offers the trip to media-related sites every year. It is open to all students who participate in student media, regardless of major.

Students Say Metz Chickened Out – The Highlander

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Mike Gombita, Reporter

Students are crying fowl over changes to dining menus.
As a result of student and guest feedback and executive decisions of the management, Metz Culinary Management changed the “J. Clark’s Grille” weekly menu.
“They stopped serving grilled chicken every day out of nowhere,” said Mike Harth, first year medical imaging major. “They didn’t notify anyone that they would do that.”
“Currently, on a daily basis we offer chicken patties, turkey burgers, hot dogs,” said Dale Lent, executive chef. “On Monday, Wednesday and Fridays, we offer hamburgers. Tuesday and Thursday we offer grilled chicken and on the weekends they are both served on the daily items.”
Bruce Deeble, general manager, said guests may have hamburgers five days a week and grilled chicken four days each week. He said there are alternate chicken selections when grilled chicken is not available.
“We do have chicken available as a patty,” said Deeble. “It’s not a processed patty. It is a chicken breast patty that is offered every day.”
Julianne Cariola, first year occupational therapy major, said grilled chicken is a mainstay.
“I think it’s bad because it’s the most popular item on the menu,” said Cariola. “One day when I was getting dinner, I had to wait in line for so long because everyone wanted grilled chicken.”
Cariola feels grilled chicken is a staple in students’ diets.
“All the athletes need their protein,” said Cariola. “They don’t have a sufficient protein meal in the main plate. Veal is available, but a lot of people do not like it. So then people are left with kind of nothing to eat.”
Cariola also mentioned that she has also seen students add the grilled chicken to their salads as part of their meals.
Jordan Hoffman, a first year physical therapy major, said the grilled bird is always a good choice for a meal.
“I do not think that people eat off of the main plate as much. If I do, it is maybe once a week,” said Hoffman. “I am kind of bummed out.”
Hoffman, who is also a member of the softball team, says it is important that she has balanced and healthy meals.
“Grilled chicken is healthier than the fried foods,” said Hoffman. “Now I kind of have to go to the fried stuff because if I do not like the main plate, I have to eat the fried items on the menu.”
Deeble said he has heard students’ complaints, but there is good reason for the menu change.
“We had more of the concern on the grilled chicken than the hamburgers,” said Deeble. “Our reasoning is the cost of the product and doing it seven days a week, twice a day.”
Lent is interested to find out whether the menu changes will be a success.
“In the beginning of the fall semester we added a gluten-free area,” said Lent. “This semester, we added more items like cereal, pop tarts, and bread.”
Deeble listed more healthy dining additions.
“We added the Live Well Station that contains hummus salad and fruit,” said Deeble.
“We also added spinach this semester to the salad bar every day by students’ request.”
Deeble said sustainability is another reason for the menu switch.
“We don’t limit what you pick. We give you what you would ask for,” said Deeble. “That is why we are very cognitive about that.”
The T.A.S.T.E. Initiative has also helped in sustainability as well.
“It has the students eat what they take,” said Deeble. “In return, they get a stamp and then if they get ten, they get a token.”
Deeble explained that the waste level dropped a substantially as a result of the program. This semester, the waste level had dropped to about seventy pounds.
Metz Culinary Management does its best to please everyone, Deeble said, and he understands that students may be getting tired of some menu items.
“Students eat here six to seven days a week,” said Deeble. “You can go to your favorite restaurant in the whole world, and if you are eating there every day, you will get tired of it.”
Deeble explained that there are many food choices in the dining hall.
“The deli has many meats and cheeses for students to choose from,” said Deeble. “You can basically make your own sandwich there hot or cold.”
Deeble said Metz is willing to accommodate special diets. Students may contact Metz if they have any concerns.


Staff Artist Unveils Mural – The Highlander

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Michael Gombita, Reporter

Residents of the Rasmussen House have noticed something beautiful in the children’s play room.
A large mural, unveiled at the end of March, is the result of an agreement with artist David “Razz” Randazza to create something to entertain the kids while they are playing.
Randazza works in the maintenance department, but he is also a painter.
“When I had the time to paint it, we decided to do a tree with animals,” said Randazza. “Then we decided to put it in the playroom so the kids could see it.”
The Rasmussen House, located on the corner of Lake Street and W. Center Hill Road, accommodates six students who are in the Ruth Matthews Bourger Women with Children Program. The house, which is designed for the needs of mothers and their children, offer rooms like the playroom to benefit the families.
The mural consists of a tree with various animals, including a blue jay, cardinal, opossum and two squirrels. The tree also has an interesting feature that has the children stretching their imaginations.
“There’s a hole in the tree, but there are eyes inside of it,” said Randazza “They are all wondering what it is, and that’s why I put it there so they can keep their interest up and they’ll be wondering what it is, and each kid has their own idea of what it is.”
The mural took Randazza only six to seven hours to complete.
“I think it brings a lot of energy to the room,” said Randazza. “The kids see it and it makes them jump around, and they get happy. It also lightens the room up and looks more like a playroom.”
This is not the first project that Randazza has done on campus. He has contributed his time to many other pieces around the university, including a mural outside the elevator on the first floor of Mercy Hall. He also restored the crucifix outside of the chapel, built a new tabernacle, and he has painted many signs. Randazza said he has painted hundreds of signs in the 20 years that he has been an employee.
“Most of the work I do here is very involved with my job,” said Randazza. “I also have my own side business doing signs, truck lettering and murals. When I do it at Misericordia, it is just for the college, and I do it just because I enjoy it.”
The Ramussen house has had many upgrades to the structure in addition to the newly installed mural.
Katherine Pohlidal, director of the WWC program, has seen the house grow, just like the children who live there.
“We have done a lot of changes to upgrade it and renovate it a bit,” said Pohlidal, “a lot of interior painting throughout the house in which Razz has helped us with as well, along with volunteer projects.”
Pohlidal said the main floors in the house have been redone and repainted and crews incorporated a study room and office for the WWC coordinator, Theresa Doughty. She said she feels confident improvements will feed the creativity of the house.
“We feel like we are getting in that creative zone where we are able to add in more of the aspects that add more energy and have an inviting atmosphere,” said Pohlidal. “We want the families extremely welcomed and to feel like they are at home.”
Doughty, who Randazza said came up with the idea of the tree, has brought the wilderness inside.
“It was an idea to bring the outdoors in,” said Doughty. “It also just makes it alive.”
Both Pohlidal and Doughty feel that it brings a special meaning to the house.
“It brings a lot of life into it and makes that space for the children,” said Doughty. “It is a source of exploration every time they look. There’s something new they see or it causes them to wonder a little. It is also something that engages them.”