Friday, December 9, 2011

Archdiocese of Winona heading to March for Life

By Matt Wagner
Cardinal Staff

The Archdiocese of Winona will be taking nearly 50 students from Winona schools on a trip to Washington D.C. for the 2012 March for Life on Jan. 19.

This will be the first time that the Archdiocese of Winona has participated in the March for Life, though some current SMU students have attended in past years. Freshman Keara Hannan attended the trip in January 2011.

“I was completely amazed and inspired by all the pro-life heroes I met and everyone around me,” Hannan said. “500,000 people had stopped their lives to take long car, bus and plane trips to D.C., to sleep in cramped high schools or wherever they could, all because they wanted to fight for life.

“It definitely renewed my hope that we will be the generation that finally ends abortion.

The pro-life trip lasts five days, beginning with an 8 p.m. Mass in Winona on Thursday, Jan. 19. From there, participants will travel nearly 18 hours to Washington D.C. where they will participate in activities such as Mass at the Basilica, a tour of the Holocaust Museum, a youth rally and the March for Life event, which is held in downtown Washington D.C.

“I went on the March for Life last year and had a ball,” freshman Janie Maki said. “It was a fantastic experience, and I cannot wait to go again this year. It is a great excuse to get out of school, and it is for a fantastic cause, too. I am looking forward to all that this year’s trip has to offer.”

This will be the 39th annual March for Life, and it’s expected to have a great outcome. The 2011 March was attended by nearly 400,000 people, and this year it is expecting even more.

The March for Life trip takes place Jan. 19-24. More information can be found on the Diocese of Winona’s website:

Open Mic Night provides unique, relaxing experience

By Marc Hartmann
Guest Writer

For one night a month, the usually-quiet Toner Student Lounge is transformed into a packed room overflowing with talent and energy.

As Open Mic Night enters its fourth year at Saint Mary’s University, the event is seeing more success than ever and seems to be growing in popularity.

OMN is a monthly event held in the Toner Student Lounge in which any member of the SMU community, including students, faculty and staff, can perform any act they wish. The event provides a laid-back atmosphere in which attendees can enjoy hot beverages and snacks while watching members of the community perform. Though the event has a start time of 9 p.m., performers are usually still taking the stage at 11:30 p.m. and need to be stopped due to time constraints.

Ben Scott and Niki Ciulla, co-presidents of OMN, have both performed and helped out with the club from the very beginning.

“I can remember a time a few years ago when we would put on an event and be happy to have a couple dozen or so people there,” said Ciulla. “Now, averaging over 150 people per event, I can’t even imagine that.”

Unlike most performance venues, OMN provides an opportunity to simply show up and give a performance. Scott and Ciulla both emphasized that OMN is not necessarily about the performing but, instead, about the sharing.

“People now realize that there is little uncomfortability at the event with no pressure to perform,” Ciulla said. “But people who do come to sing, read, juggle, or do whatever feel supported.”

Scott pointed to the “informal and spontaneous interactions” between the performers and audience members and the “relaxed and fun environment” of the event, which makes the performers feel at ease.

Scott and Ciulla said that, ultimately, the diversity it encompasses makes the event special and unique rather than its success in numbers.

“OMN strives to bring the entire SMU community together for an all-inclusive celebration of expression,” said Scott.

Ciulla said that the goal for the OMN group is to be “appealing to all and not intimidating to anyone.”

The next OMN is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 14, at 9 p.m. in the Toner Student Lounge. Those interested in performing can simply come and sign up. All supporters of OMN are encouraged to join the OMN Facebook page to keep up with all the latest news and view recent OMN performances.

New emergency notification system test a success

By Julianne Bartosz
Copy Editor

Saint Mary’s University’s new emergency notification system through Blackboard Connect was successfully tested on Nov. 17, according to Vice President for Student Development Chris Kendall.

The new emergency notification system uses Blackboard Connect to send out an emergency alert via email, phone call and text message. This technology supplements SMU’s emergency notification speakers in campus buildings and residence halls and cameras in key locations around campus, according to Kendall.

“The system works well, but we have also learned its flaws,” said Kendall. He said that 93 percent of the 2,680 total messages were delivered successfully during the test. Kendall said the test found that not everyone received messages, while some people received multiple messages.

Kendall said students, faculty and staff will be able to edit their contact information for the system through WebTools. He said he will send out an email when the primary contact form is ready to be edited on WebTools.

Senior Bob Rousseau, Student Senate president, said that the new system is a step in the right direction.

“I have always felt safe on campus, but it is essential to be ready if something does happen,” said Rousseau, adding that it is important to be able to reach people right where they are.

SMU’s Director of Campus Safety Phil Gaddis said the new system is “the link to the culture society is taking us to.” He said that the system will be used strictly for emergencies with the exception of a test each semester. “It will be used sparingly, but enough to keep us familiar with it and to make sure it works,” said Gaddis.

“We do not want people to dismiss it,” said Kendall. “I hope we never have to use it, but I do not want to have a situation where I wish we had the technology.”

Questions or concerns can be addressed to Chris Kendall via email at or his office phone at 507-457-1781.

Professors offer study tips

Samantha Kleese
Cardinal Staff

Finals week is fast approaching for the students of Saint Mary’s University, but two SMU professors have offered study tips to help students prepare.

Jeffrey Hefel, professor of business at SMU, suggests that studying in groups is best for complex studying, since it allows students to get other opinions. However, he said that less work might get done this way, as students might talk and become distracted.

Dr. Daniel Bucknam, professor of psychology at SMU agreed: “Working alone, students are able to understand the material better, but in a group, students have the ability to discus concepts and enhance the depth of the subject.”

Hefel said it is better to study for short periods of time, because this makes it easier to remember the material. For example, he said that it is better to study for an hour each night than to study for 10 hours the night before the exam. He also advised taking 10-minute breaks every hour.

Bucknam also said to start studying early and review often rather than cramming the night before an exam. He advised studying one topic for 30-40 minutes and then switching to the next. This method, he said, makes the material more distinctive and less confusing.

Hefel said students should have all of the class materials available, such as handouts, notes and worksheets, and should focus more on the material that they find more challenging.

Hefel also recommended that students create hypothetical exam questions and practice answering them instead of simply reading the material.

Similarly, Bucknam said students should develop examples of questions and practice writing as well as using charts and tables.

Bucknam said the library is, for most students, the best place to study. There are minimal distractions, which gives students maximum focus.

International student schooled in magical trade

Meg Beerling
Feature Editor

With an English degree from Geely University in China and two on the way from Saint Mary’s University in public relations and electronic publishing, senior Yuepeng (Lee) Li has a different trick up his sleeve.

During his time in China, Li was a professional magician. “I started when I was 19,” he said. A friend of his was a professional and asked him if he wanted to see a few tricks, he said. He took interest and started to learn the trade for himself.

Li said there are two types of magic: close-up, and stage. Close-up magic includes slight-of-hand tricks. These are tricks with cards, coins and other everyday objects in an intimate setting. Stage magic, on the other hand, uses big props and involves tricks like sawing a person in half. Li specializes in close-up magic.

At the time he started to learn the trade, Li was studying English in China. He said that college is a lot different there in that “there is a lot of free time.” This gave him more time to practice and learn the secrets of magic, he said.

“Practice doesn’t make your magic perfect, it makes it permanent,” said Li. “What I mean by that is the more you practice a trick, the more confident you will become in it; the more confident you are, the more deceptive you are,” he said.

“One week without magic makes your magic weak,” said Li. “Magic is something you have to practice daily, and you have to do it in front of a mirror. Presentation is just as important as the magic itself.”

Audience management is hard, but he said it’s something magicians need to learn. They must know their audiences and adapt their shows to them.

“Magic is an art to entertain people,” said Li.

People’s facial expressions tell a lot about what kind of audience members they’ll be, Li said.

“People like it when [magicians] mess up,” but that’s something that Li is okay with. “I like the idea,” he said, adding that magicians can entertain their audiences by messing up or pretending to mess up.

Participation is a big part of Li’s performance. He said he wants the audience to be a part of it. He also doesn’t believe in leaving his audience curious. While it is a very controversial issue in the world of magic, Li doesn’t think that all tricks have to be kept secrets — just the big ones. He said that telling people a few tricks is good for magic; it’s what makes people want to do and see more of it.

“By letting people in on some of your magic, you give yourself some of the best promotion, and that’s word of mouth,” said Li.

But just because other people know your tricks doesn’t mean they know your magic, said Li. People can know a trick and still be entertained by it if the magician adds his or her own twist or creativity. With every person who knows the trick, there will be more people to adjust it and make it new, he said.

Li said that he enjoys doing magic in the United States more than in China since he thinks that people are more friendly and willing to stop and watch.

‘Double-decker’ bike designed by SMU junior

By Jenna Capelle
Cardinal Staff

One Saint Mary’s University student sees campus from a higher perspective than most, as he sits atop his own double-decker bike.

Over the summer, junior Jamie Cooper created the double-decker bike with a friend in his hometown of La Crosse, Wisc.

Rock climbing one afternoon, Cooper and his friend got the idea for building a double-decker bike. Neither of them had ever taken on a project like this before, but they didn’t fear the challenge.

“We were bored and thought [making the bike] would be something new to try. So we did,” said Cooper.

Out in the garage with welding masks and thick gloves, the guys stripped the steel-frame bikes completely, then welded them together with a wire-feeding welder. The welder melted the steel, connecting the two bikes.

A chain is stretched between the top and bottom bike frames. As Cooper pedals on the top frame’s pedals, the chain propels the bottom frame’s wheels, moving it forward.

“The hardest part was getting the chain to work,” said Cooper.

So far, Cooper and his friend have made two bikes, and Cooper plans to make more. The two bikes used for Cooper’s double-decker were donated by a local bike shop and the other double-decker was made from old bikes from his friend’s house.

Cooper wants to make a double-decker with Outdoor Leadership Coordinator Gary Borash and submit it to the Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance Auction next semester.

Besides wheeling around campus this fall, Cooper rode his double-decker bike to work and friends’ houses during the summer months. At SMU, he’s made a name for himself as “the guy with the big bike” and gotten a handful of questions about how to ride it as well as how he made it.

“To get on the bike I just kick start like a skate board and then climb up,” said Cooper.

Cooper is a graphic design major with an emphasis in photography. With encouragement from his advisor, he decided to enter his bike in the SMU all-student art show and received honorable mention. The exhibit can be seen in the Lillian Davis Hogan Art Galleries.

Lincoln documents discovered by SMU senior

By Meg Beerling
Feature Editor

Senior David Spriegel took one last look at the documents he filed under “miscellaneous” during his internship at the Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, Ill. and now, he’s glad he did.

Over the summer, Spriegel discovered two original documents written in 1844 by Abraham Lincoln during his legal career.

Spriegel said at first glance he hadn’t noticed Lincoln had been the lawyer to write these documents, and he filed them in a miscellaneous folder with similar documents. Most of them were land transfers, said Spriegel. For whatever reason, he went back to double-check that file, he said. He then read, “The above memorandum is in the handwriting of Abraham Lincoln. – M. Hay.”

“I thought, ‘No way is this true,’” said Spriegel. However, it was part of his job to pass it up to get the handwriting verified, he said. Sure enough, the handwriting was Lincoln’s.

Spriegel said the documents are now with 1,580 other manuscripts at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. He said he’s happy to have the documents safe and where they belong.

Spriegel said he was surprised at the amount of publicity he got after finding the documents. Stories about Spriegel’s discovery were run by the Associated Press, the Chicago Tribune and the Huffington Post, to name a few.

David is due to graduate from Saint Mary’s University in May 2012 with a degree in history.

Bauer fosters unique taste in musical instruments

By Brian Thomas
Cardinal Staff

Senior Andy Bauer learned how to play the bass guitar at age 12, but his passion for musical instruments didn’t stop there.

His knowledge of the bass guitar led to a “solid foundation in music,” Bauer said. This has allowed him to play more complex and exotic instruments such as the electric guitar, mandolin, bodhran and djembe, just to name a few.

“I own a didgeridoo, an aboriginal instrument mostly [used in] Australia, [and] a charango, an instrument I got from Argentina,” Bauer said. In an attempt to fine-tune his skills, he brought several of the instruments to school with him to practice regularly.

“The charango is an instrument unlike anything else I have played,” said Bauer. “The tunings are challenging to work with.

“The mandolin is always challenging. It requires a lot of nimbleness in the fingers which is very different from bass [guitar],” he said.

Bauer said that his favorite instrument will always be the bass guitar, since it’s what he started with. He is usually a crowd favorite, playing bass guitar in several acts in SMU’s Blue Angel and Gaslight music shows.

Bauer has considered taking on a new instrument as well: “I have always been fascinated by the tabla,” he said. A tabla is a pitched drum, which is something different, and the rhythms are truly different. I think that the challenge would be fun.”

Choirs to present “Lessons and Carols”

By Trisha Stachowski
Arts and Entertainment Editor

The Saint Mary’s University Concert Choir, Chamber Singers and Chamber Orchestra will be performing their annual Christmas concert, “Lessons and Carols,” directed by Dr. Patrick O’Shea on Saturday, Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m. at the Chapel of Saint Mary of the Angels.

As in previous years, the concert will infuse the traditional story with “a celebration of and meditation on the Christmas story that features readings and various styles of music performed by members of the Saint Mary’s community,” said senior and Chamber Singer Nick Anderson.

The concert will involve the SMU choirs, as well as various other SMU students, staff and even audience members, said Anderson. “The music and readings alternate back and forth throughout the service. So it’s quite literally lessons and carols” said Anderson.

The Concert Choir, Chamber Singers and Chamber Orchestra have been busy preparing for the concert since the beginning of the semester. “We spend a good chunk of the semester learning the pieces first, before polishing all of the remaining rough edges before we present the music to an audience,” said Anderson.

The concert will feature a wide variety of music, including choral and orchestral music covering many musical periods and styles. There will also be a few a capella pieces along with more traditional Christmas songs.

“When a song really goes well, it’s a reward for both the audience and the performers,” said Anderson. “Those who enjoy the Christmas story and beautiful music will love this concert.”

The Chapel of Saint Mary of the Angels is located at the corner of Wabasha and Vila streets in Winona. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for both students and seniors. They can be purchased through the Page Theatre by phone, in person or at

The Good Lovelies bring holiday tunes to campus

By Raquel Romo
Cardinal Staff

The Good Lovelies, an award-winning trio from Toronto, rang in the holidays at Saint Mary’s University with their performance in the Page Theatre on Dec. 1.

During the show, the upbeat trio played their own renditions of holiday classics like “Santa Baby” and “Silent Night.”

“As presenters, the Good Lovelies delivered on the promise of beautiful harmonies, great fun and a twist to the holiday tunes we all know,” said Page Theatre General Manager Patrick Grace. “Personally, I had a great time. It is refreshing to have a group of singer/songwriters that are able to create new work that resonates.”

Grace said that there was a great turnout for the Good Lovelies performance. “We had a very diverse crowd present, young and old; many told me they loved the concert and the whole evening,” said Grace.

Along with the show, audience members had the opportunity to dress up in their most creative vintage attire to replicate the style of dress that the trio wears during their performances.

The Canadian natives started in 2006 and played their first show at Toronto’s Gladstone Hotel that same year. Since then, they have not only performed in the U.S., but also the U.K. and Australia. Their self-titled full-length album won the New Emerging Artist Award at the Canadian Folk Music Awards.

Jazz Combo, Ensemble to perform holiday concert

By Trisha Stachowski
Arts and Entertainment Editor

The Jazz and World Drum Ensemble will be bringing a little holiday spirit to Saint Mary’s University with their holiday concert on Friday, Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in the Page Theatre.

The concert, which has been an annual event for over 30 years, will feature swing, funk and latin music, said Dr. John Paulson, director of both the Jazz Combo and Jazz Ensemble. The concert will also feature “some jazzy Christmas arrangements featuring vocalist Jessica Ingvalson, and both Jazz Combo I and the Jazz Ensemble will combine with the World Drum Ensemble on several pieces,” said Paulson.

“We have some great songs that include some amazing solos,” said Jill Congdon, a senior member of the Jazz Ensemble trumpet section.

The Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo have been hard at work practicing since they concluded their concert over family weekend, the first weekend in October. “We have worked hard to get ready for this concert,” said Congdon.

The concert will feature more than 10 songs from the Jazz Ensemble, Jazz Combo I and the World Drum Ensemble.

“We elected to play some really challenging music for this concert,” Paulson said. Paulson will make an appearance as a performer in the concert as and Ensemble member but not as a soloist in the Jazz Combo. “This concert is going to be amazing; we’ve got a great group of musicians and a great director,” said Congdon.

Tickets for the event are $10 for adults and $5 for both students and seniors. They can be purchased through the Page Theatre by phone, in person or at

Art department holds all-student, senior exhibits

By Andrea Allis
Editor in Chief

The Saint Mary’s University art and design department opened its student art show “Ideas that Spark” at the Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries on Nov. 19.

About half of the gallery is devoted to the all-student portion of the show, which accepted entries from students of all years and majors. Prizes were awarded for first, second and third places, as well as three honorable mentions. The first place prize of $100 went to Jeff Truax, the second place prize of $75 went to Chelsea Pumper and the third place prize of $50 went to Chris Speltz. Jamie Cooper, Lisa Nihart and Jim Tandberg were awarded honorable mentions.

The other half of the gallery showcases the work of four senior art majors: Charlie Williams, Brianna Nelson, Danielle Cossetta and Sarah Kraft.

“This is the first time we have included a senior exhibit in the main gallery in November,” said Preston Lawing, art and design department chair, “but we have four December graduating seniors, and they are required to have an exhibition.”

Lawing said the student art shows “are vital to SMU to spotlight the artistic talent of all majors, not just the art and design majors.” He said this year’s exhibit showcases the talents of students majoring in biology, psychology, theatre, English, philosophy, mass communications, art, history and business, among others.

Said Lawing, “The student art show [celebrates] the creative spirit that all of our students have.”

The exhibit will be on display until Dec. 15.

Women’s hockey gets down to business

By Morgan Stock
Cardinal Staff

The Saint Mary’s University women’s hockey team entered into the full swing of conference play when they faced off against Hamline University on Nov. 11, opening conference play with a 1-0 win at home against the Pipers.

On the road the next day for game two in St. Paul, the Cardinals couldn’t pull off another win, and the Pipers evened up the match with 1-1 tie.

After losing only 4 seniors from last year’s team, the Cardinals have many returning players, and the incoming freshmen have talent to add to the team.

“Our team is doing pretty well so far; we have a lot of potential and so much talent,” said junior captain Erin Stenseth. “We just have to score more goals and be able to close out games with our defense.”

As of now the Cardinals are 2-5-3 overall and 1-3-2 in the MIAC. The leading scorer for the Cardinals is senior captain Nicole Olson with 3 goals and 3 assists. Right behind her is freshman Breanna Peterson.

“This year, our top team goal is to make playoffs because of how much talent we have on this team,” said senior defenseman Dana Kreuser.

“Other goals that we have are being more aggressive with shooting the puck, having successful power-plays that we score on and working as a team with the system that Coach Terry Mannor has set for us,” Kreuser said.

Senior manager Madeline Lenz said, “The girls need to play every single shift and every minute of every period. By making mistakes in a game, they are learning from them, which is helping them become better players.”

The Cardinals will play three non-conference games over Christmas break. They are back in action for conference play on Saturday, Jan. 21, at home against the University of St. Thomas at 2 p.m.

Men’s basketball kicks off season

By John Kaiser
Cardinal Staff

Despite the shortened NBA season, basketball has been very much alive at the collegiate level. For six weeks, Saint Mary’s University players have been going through rigorous daily practices.

Captain Pat Freeman said the biggest challenges this season are going to be “adjusting to new players and finding a new chemistry.” He also added that last year’s top three scorers left, leaving new roles to fill for returning players.

However, there are plenty of positives surrounding the new team, said Freeman, such as starting point guard Evan Pederson. Freeman described Pederson as a player who plays several minutes at a fast level. He said Pederson has exceptional vision and passing, which makes the whole team better.

Freeman also described post Mike Burfeind as one of the more established players in the conference.

Overall the team is young, but they’ve put in a lot of work, especially over the summer, said Freeman.

The team’s goals are to make the playoffs and to have a better conference record than last year, said Freeman.

The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is a conference known for competitive play, but Freeman believes the Cardinals will do well.

Softball team prepares in off-season

By Nick Bravos
Sports Editor

The Saint Mary’s University softball team is busy with its off-season preparations for the Feb. 1 season opener.

The team lost four starting senior infielders last year to graduation. However, with the help of a large freshman class, they’re looking to improve on last year’s third-place finish in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and overall 23-16 record.

NCAA regulations state that a coach is allotted 12 scheduled practices in September. After that “we can’t tell them what to do in the off-season,” said Head Coach Jen Miller. “We put heavy influence on fundamental work [in September] so that continues throughout the off-season.”

“The only game plan is getting our team chemistry up and getting some sort of routine,” said junior captain Hailey Ohl. “It looks like another great season coming up if we can keep up on working hard as we are now.”

The body of their season takes place during a compact schedule of 28 games in April. “Softball is a game where improvement comes in the off-season because our season is so short,” said junior captain Paige Carter.

“Our goal is to make another MIAC tournament appearance,” said Carter. “We did it last year, and we could very well do it again.”

The first test for the SMU softball team will come during its spring trip to Florida in March “to see where we are as a team and what we need to sharpen up on before conference games start,” said Carter.

Last March, they travelled to Tuscon, Ariz. where they achieved a 7-3 overall record, clinching victories against nationally-ranked Iowa teams, Coe College and Central College.

How much do we really know through our media?

By Jenny Daniels, Caroline Stringer and Katie Adelman
Guest Writers

As Americans today, we believe we have a finger on the pulse of international news through our interconnected world of newspapers, radios, televisions, Internet and smartphones. But just how unbiased are the sources from which media outlets gain exclusive cover stories? The United States media relies greatly on The Associated Press (AP) as a means of obtaining international news. However, if media sources look only to the AP for news, does it limit their ability to report the truth? Practically every media article about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict passes through the AP Israeli bureau.

But to what extent is the U.S. media biased?

There have been instances in which the Israel AP bureau has not pursued leads regarding Palestinian children being killed. In November 2004, an occupying Israeli military soldier killed a stone-throwing 12-year-old Palestinian from 985 feet away. There was an AP photo of the incident on the Internet, but no American news source printed it, perhaps due to the lack of an accompanying story.

That same AP bureau was again involved when an Israeli soldier shot and wounded a 14-year-old Palestinian. With no signs of hostility on the Palestinian side, the Israeli solider simply drew his weapon, took aim at the boy and pulled the trigger. An AP cameraman caught this on tape, but the footage never aired and was later erased.

Occasionally, news stories from the Israeli AP bureau contain the byline of a Palestinian. This is a misrepresentation: a Palestinian journalist phones in information to the bureau, but an Israeli journalist writes the story. Additionally, the Israeli point of view is more often portrayed. In one year’s time, 165 Israelis and 549 Palestinians were killed. In 2004, it was 107 Israelis and 821 Palestinians; the media portrayed this as a period of decreased violence.

Finally, on May 11, 2004, an AP news story reported repeated Israeli violence against Palestinians, some under the age of 14, in detention centers and prisons. This story of the Israeli human rights violations was read everywhere in the world except the U.S.

American citizens expect their media outlets, whether newspaper, television or radio, to provide them with the most accurate information possible. The U.S. is one of Israel’s biggest supporters, and much of America’s hard-earned money — over $10 million dollars a day — goes toward Israeli aid. Wouldn’t you like to get the two-sided, unadulterated version of this conflict’s story?

Written for LCT 375 Section E
If Americans Knew. Why Don’t We Know What’s Going on in Israel
& Palestine? Retrieved from

Weir, A. (2005, July- August). Americans for Middle East
Understanding: The Coverage—and Non-Coverage—of Israel-
Palestine. The Link, Volume 38, Issue 3.