Friday, December 14, 2012

Two proposed majors move through new curriculum approval process

By Regina Barbosa
News Editor

Two new majors are in the final stages of approval and could be offered at Saint Mary’s University as early as next year, according to Student Senate Vice President of Academic Affairs Serica Rowley.

A new major in the Business Department and another in the Math Department are being reviewed by the university’s administration, according to curriculum committee chair Dr. David Jackson. Although the majors are still in the approval process, he said one of the majors would focus on actuarial science and the other on finance.

“Part of who we are [as a university] is what we offer,” said Jackson. “These new majors would help students get to the career field they want to go into.”

The majors will be open to all students. Upperclassmen who wish to switch or add on one of the upcoming majors may have to put in an extra semester or year to meet requirements, according to Rowley.

But not all interested upperclassmen will stay longer to earn those degrees. Sean Pavelich is a junior majoring in accounting. “I’m really interested in the new finance major,” he said. “I just wish I had room in my schedule to take the classes before I graduate.”

If interest and need for a new major are found by a department, they start to define the expectations and desires of the new curriculum.  Then, according to Jackson, they make sure all of it fits into the mission of the university. He said the curriculum committee reviews a proposed major after the department approves it.

“It’s a process and the committee is just one step,” said Rowley.

Jackson said the curriculum committee makes sure that proposed majors are good for the university and its mission, that it is sustainable and that it meets the needs of both current and future students.

After being approved by the curriculum committee a proposed major moves onto the final approval step, which is the university administration, according to Jackson. The university’s Vice President of Academic Affairs Donna Aronson oversees this process.

After all final approvals are finished, a formal announcement will be made for these proposed majors to clarify and list the official course requirements.

Future Alumni give thanks with annual SMU-Giving

By Carissa Hahn
Copy Editor

The Saint Mary’s University Future Alumni Committee (FAC) held their third annual SMU-Giving event.

SMU-Giving was an event on Nov. 15 for undergraduate students with a theme similar to that of Thanksgiving. It was held on Give to the Max Day, a statewide event held to promote the importance of giving back to non-profit organizations.  

SMU-Giving was filled with activities such as a Madden football tournament, root beer pong, coupon finding contest, pizza party and a pie-eating contest, said Connie Budin, co-president of FAC. Budin said there were about 100 people at the event. 

“I believe this is a very important event for SMU students to come to for the simple reason that it educates on where a portion of the Saint Mary’s funding comes from,” said Budin. “Those who donate to SMU on Give to the Max Day are all SMU graduates from both Winona and Minneapolis campus, and I don’t think that information is shared enough with how much money is raised each year.” 

Jay Olson, co-president of FAC, said that SMU is in a separate “Higher Education” category in regards to Give to the Max day, which is held every November. 

“We had an updated total throughout the day to show students where Saint Mary’s stood in our category,” said Olson. “We wanted students to know that while we were here learning and going on with our day, there are people putting money forth to make it possible.”

Budin said that a lot of people stuck around to watch the last event, the pie-eating contest. “Even I got pied in the face afterwards,” exclaimed Budin.

FAC is always welcoming new members. Their next event will be the 2013 Polar Plunge, Olson said. 

New Cineclub provides opportunity to watch foreign-language films

By Megan Hafner
Cardinal Staff

A new movie club at Saint Mary’s University called Cineclub offers students, as well as SMU community members, the opportunity to view films created in either Latin America or Spain. 

This movie watching experience is unique because the movies are played in their country’s official language with English subtitles shown on the screen. Most of the films are in Spanish, but not all since most of Latin America includes Spanish-speaking countries. 

Dr. Kyle Black, SMU professor of Spanish who created Cineclub, said that “foreign films are a great way, especially for students studying Spanish, to hear the language being spoken and see what life can be like in another country 
without traveling there.” 

So far this year, Cineclub has watched films from Chile, Argentina, Spain and Brazil. Dr. Black also said that he “wants students to be able to view cultural films that lead away from the common Hollywood style and let students be able to appreciate the artistic side of the film industry.” 

Some of the films that will be shown next semester include Amador (2010), a Spanish film about a woman who cares for an elderly man and the secrets they share; Paraiso Travel (2008), which is about two young lovers traveling from Columbia to New York to gain a fortune; The Take (2004), a film about ceramic floors factory workers in Argentinian Patagonia; and a many other movies. 

Cineclub meets Thursday nights at 7:00 p.m. in the World Room in SMU’s Hendrickson Building. 

Dr. Black hopes to further the development of Cineclub by showing films every other week. In the future, he said he hopes to show films with an immigration theme.

Dakota tribe member attends ‘Dakota 38’ screening

By Jesús Adrián Martínez
Cardinal Staff

The Intercultural Awareness Association (ICAA) at Saint Mary’s University invited Gus High Eagle, a member of the Dakota tribe, to share his experience and aspects of his culture with the SMU community at the screening of the film Dakota 38

The ICAA explores different cultures and shares them with the SMU community. During the event, High Eagle explained that he and many members of his tribe have been traveling to various regions in the U.S. to share their experience of trivialization as Native Americans in the U.S. 

On Dec. 26, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln conducted the largest execution in U.S history; the hanging of 38 Dakota men in Mankato, Minn.        

High Eagle said that Jim Miller, one of his fellow tribe members, felt that he had to pay a tribute to his ancestors who fought for their rights and were murdered in cold blood. Miller connected his dreams to his experience as a soldier in the war in Vietnam. Miller killed 38 men in the Vietnam War, which was the exact number of Dakota men who were executed in 1862. 

In 2008, Miller was compelled to round up a group of horse riders set out from Lower Brule, S.D., on a 16-day journey to Mankato, Minn. The journey was documented in the film Dakota 38. The 330 mile journey was said to be “a journey of recollection and reconciliation” as part of the 150th anniversary of what is now known as the 1862 Dakota Conflict. The film is an explicit depiction of the Dakota tribe’s culture, rituals and experience. 

Throughout the film, one sees a high sense of collaboration within the tribe as members make an effort to jounrey to Mankato, Minn., to pay tribute to their ancestors. On this journey, the Dakota tribe also collaborated with several tribes along the way and helped decrease the number of suicides of Native American in the United States due to their outcasting. 

High Eagle left the SMU community with strong words at the end of the movie screening. “It is not about brown skin or white skin,” he said. “It is about how we’re all human beings. We just want peace.”

Tea party raises funds for ‘The Nutcracker’

By Kelsey Hulbert
Feature Editor 

Over 200 people attended the seventh biennial Sugarplum Tea Party Fundraiser on Nov. 18 that raised funds for the Minnesota Conservatory for the Art’s (MCA) “The Nutcracker” production and scholarship fund. 

The tea party is MCA’s largest fundraiser. There were two place settings that featured a variety of finger food and specialty teas served by characters of “The Nutcracker.” Tickets were $18 for adults and $15 for children.  There was also a boutique selling a variety of homemade holiday gifts and crafts.    

The best part of the event, according to MAC’s Managing Director Joelle Harris, is seeing all of the little kids’ excitement at being able to see all the costumes and take pictures with their favorite characters.  “All of their faces lit up when they got to stand next to a fairy and touch their costume,” she said.  

The event is crucial for MCA and would not happen without the help of volunteers, said Harris. “Families and volunteers that step up to the plate really drive the event,” she said. 

Harris said the fundraiser helps to support and showcase the talent of their dancers and the community. Dance is an important part of being a well-rounded student because it teaches discipline and teamwork, she said.  “It creates a wonderful foundation for a future work ethic in a job setting,” said Harris.  

Pre-Finals Breakfast shows students support before stress of finals

By Julianne Bartosz
Editor in chief

The annual Pre-Finals Breakfast for Students has become a Saint Mary’s University tradition for faculty and staff to show students support as they embark upon the stressful time of finals, according to Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Donna Aronson.

The Pre-Finals Breakfast, which has been held at SMU for about 20 to 25 years, will be held on Thursday, Dec. 13, from 10 to 11:30 p.m. in the Toner Center dining room, said Barbara Schmidtknecht, the administrative assistant to the academic vice president of the college who has helped plan the event for many years. She said that not much has changed for the event except that it is now co-sponsored by SMU’s Office of Academic Affairs and Chartwells Food Service.

“The Pre-Finals Breakfast has always been well attended,” said Schmidtknecht.  “It is a nice tradition to continue.”  She estimates that between seven or eight hundred students attend the event each year.

Dr. Aronson emphasized the opportunity that the event allows for faculty and staff to show their support and wish them success in finals.  She said she understands the importance of the event as an opportunity for students to see faculty in a different role.  However, Dr. Aronson said that she never understood how pancakes help students study.

In addition to the late night snack, students are also invited to sing Christmas carols while dining in the cafeteria.  Dr. Aronson and Young Alumni and Student Relations Associate Director Bob Fisher said this is their favorite part of the event.

“The Christmas holiday always reminds me of family,” said Fisher, who has played the role of Santa at the two previous Pre-Finals Breakfasts.  “The Pre-Finals Breakfast represents the SMU family by allowing us all to come together to support students and end the semester as a community.”

Dr. Aronson said that the Pre-Finals Breakfast serves as an initiation for faculty as well as an event for students.  She said the first-year faculty work the late shift while second-year faculty work the early shift.  In addition to this scheduling, additional veteran faculty members attend the Pre-Finals Breakfast each year.

“It emphasizes the importance of service and serving,” said Dr. Aronson. “It gives students a sense of goodwill from faculty.”

Dr. Aronson wishes all students study hard for finals and have a safe break.

Christmas Light Service: Students can take a break for the Christmas story

By Laura Beyer
Cardinal Staff

The Christmas Light Service on Dec. 13 at 9 p.m. will feature a retelling of the Christmas story through words and song to celebrate the birth of Christ.  

The singing of Christmas carols, dancing, playing of handbells and praying is a non-denominational way to celebrate Christmas as a community, said SMU Theology Professor Laurie Ziliak.

Ziliak, who oversees the event, said that a lot of preparation went into the service as choirs, actors, dancers, readers and music makers all had to learn their parts as well as know where they fit in during the event. Ziliak is excited to see the final product after all their hard work.  She said that the Christmas Light Service is usually “one of the fuller liturgies” SMU has. 

Freshman Cassie Ricker will be singing and playing the piano with sophomore Lauren Salonek.  After weekly practices and several rehearsals, Ricker said that she is excited for the service in order to showcase all of the musical talent that everyone has.  “I am excited to see how everything comes together,” Ricker said.  

The service will end with a procession to the Nativity Scene where the trees behind it will be lit. 

Afterwards students are encouraged to attend the pre-finals breakfast. All students can take advantage of this opportunity for a study break. “It’s a great to relax and finish off the semester together,” said Ziliak.  

‘The Nutcracker’ stirs holiday spirit

By Paul Schmitt
Cardinal Staff

Holiday spirit filled the Page Theatre with the showing of “The Nutcracker” by the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts’ Dance Repertory and Saint Mary’s University’s Department of Theatre and Dance.

The ballet ran from Wednesday, Nov. 28, through Sunday, Dec. 2, and sold out almost every night.  It included over 100 cast and crew members of all ages from SMU, the Winona area community and Wisconsin who have all worked diligently on the production since August.

Hannah Schwarze, SMU sophomore who was one of the dancers in the ballet, said a typical week for her included 12 hours of rehearsals for what she considered “a light role.”  Schwarze said, “Ballet is one of the hardest things you can make your body do because it goes against your anatomy completely.”

The hard work paid off in the end with a ballet production that got many people excited for the Christmas season.  Kathleen Bryant, stage manager for the show, said that the story of the ballet, in which a girl named Clara saves the life of the Nutcracker prince from the Rat Queen, “brings out a lot of the human kindness that the holiday season entails.” She added that this sentiment is part of the reason the ballet has become a holiday tradition for many.

It would seem that another major factor in the longevity of “The Nutcracker” tradition is its communal nature.  For Joelle Harris, managing director at the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts, the sense of family and the fact that there is something for everyone to enjoy in the ballet is what she admires about it.  Whether one goes for the sugar plum fairies or the Russian dancers, it’s the gathering of friends and family that keeps audiences coming back.  

“‘The Nutcracker’ is like the tree-topper on the Christmas tree,” said Harris. “While the whole thing is good already, it is the perfect piece that brings it all together.”  

Gifts for Winona: Saint Mary’s and community partner to provide presents for needy families

By Kelsey Hulbert
Feature Editor 

The eleventh annual Gifts for Winona event will provide gifts to over 1,600 local children and elderly in need this holiday season.  

Spokesperson Ann Merchlewitz said Gifts for Winona is humbling and teaches students the importance of being philanthropic. “Students learn what it means to give from your heart and expect nothing in return,” she said.  All of the gifts are given anonymously.  

The gifts will be distributed Dec. 17.  SMU community members are encouraged to participate by taking a tag from any of the trees, purchasing a gift and returning the gift to the tree by Dec. 12. It is recommended that $35 be spent on each gift.   

Merchlewitz said her favorite part of Gifts for Winona is being able to shop for the person in need.  “The people are so grateful that others are so selfless and kind,” she said.  The gift recipients get to celebrate Christmas festivities with caroling, cookies, hot chocolate and people dressed up in Santa hats as the gifts are distributed.  

As the numbers of families in need grow, Gifts for Winona hopes to reach even more of those in need. According to the Winona Food Shelf, there has been a 17 percent increase in the number of Winona families using its services. 

The giving trees are located at the three Severson Sinclair stations, Walmart, the Winona Public Library, the Winona Post and the Security State Bank in Lewiston, Minn.  

The Gifts for Winona, composed of SMU faculty and staff, is partnered with the Winona Volunteer Services, Winona Post and Winona Radio.

All-campus art exhibit features wide variety of artists

By Petey Brown
A&E Editor

Saint Mary’s University hosts an all-campus art exhibit along with a senior showcase of two art majors in the Lillian Davis Hogan Gallery from Nov. 17 until Dec. 15. 

The two seniors are Marie Fidler, a Graphic Design major, and Nikki Farmer, a Studio Art major.  There are also pieces in the show that have been submitted by other Saint Mary’s students that are art and non-art majors.  

Farmer has five pieces in the show: four installations and a lithography print.  The print is a water color painting that goes along with the installations, which are painted sculptures of human bodies containing deer skulls and bones.

“They [the sculptures] are made with plaster, wire and acyclic paint,” Farmer said.  “The sculptures are mainly pieces that describe how nature and humans have survived the difficult times in life.”

Farmer said she was inspired by an idea while studying abroad in Italy. Her inspirational idea was to bring a painting into a three-dimensional world.  

“I am very interested in the human body; it is beautiful and full of grace. The deer skulls and bones helped bring an interesting concept to the art,” Farmer said.  “To not only see a painting, but to be surrounded by the life it has.” 

Farmer said her favorite part of the show was opening night when people were there asking her how her pieces were made and what inspired them.

“It’s exciting to see people really engaging in the art and wondering why it is there,” Farmer said.  “Without the help of the Art Department and the advice of the art professors, I could have never made my ideas a reality.”

The art show also had pieces submitted by a variety of SMU students.

“The students who submit art work do not have to be art majors or even have taken an art class,” said Saint Mary’s Art Chair Preston Lawling.  

The submitted pieces are chosen by the faculty to be exhibited because there is not enough room to display all the artwork.  

Sophomore Midge Reller, a journalism and graphic design student, has two pieces in the show.  One is a charcoal and pastel drawing titled “Time After Time” and the other is a pastel drawing titled “Fruit of the Loom.”

“The pieces I entered were both in-class assignments from my Drawing II course that I have with Preston right now,” Reller said.  “There are a lot of talented artists here at Saint Mary’s with a lot of unique styles, and a show like this gives everyone the opportunity to see the pieces that students have worked hard to put together.” 

Another student with pieces in the art show yet is not an art major is senior Brendan Cahill, who is studying public relations.  He had two pieces in the art show that are black and white printed photographs.  

“One picture is inspired by a Billy Joel song and the others are three pictures in a series that was inspired by a verse of an epic poem I wrote,” Cahill said.  “I love the art show so that non-art students like me can show their art work.”

Lawling also said how he likes that ths art show gives all Saint Mary’s students the opportunity to show off their talents. 

“The exciting thing about this show is that we get to see the creativity of all the Saint Mary’s University students, not just the art students,” Lawling said. “The Saint Mary’s community should know that all of our students are creative, and we enjoy showcasing the works of these students.”

Movie Review: ‘Life of Pi’ is heavenly

By Midge Reller
Cardinal Staff

Oscar-winning director Ang Lee brought Yann Martel’s 2001 novel Life of Pi to theatres Nov. 21. The film stars Suraj Sharma as young Pi Patel and Irrfan Khan (Slumdog Millionaire, The Amazing Spiderman, The Darjeeling Limited) as adult Pi.

Life of Pi is a story told by adult Pi to a writer through a series of flashbacks. At age 16, Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel was the only survivor of a shipwreck. Inspired by this, a writer goes to Pi for an interview several years later to document Pi’s life story. The writer is told that Pi will tell him a story that will make him believe in God. 

The Catholic-Hindu-Muslim explains to the writer his life growing up in India with his family-owned zoo. As a young boy, Pi’s curiosity leads him to the cage of the Bengal tiger, named Richard Parker, whom he attempts to feed. His father, who is outraged, tells Pi that this carnivorous animal is not to be trusted. 

Several years later, Pi’s family boards a Japanese ship. A violent storm sinks the ship, leaving all passengers dead except Pi. After the shipwreck, the protagonist finds himself alone on a lifeboat with Richard Parker, the zoo’s Bengal tiger.

Life of Pi is a story of survival and of spirituality. It touches on the idea of faith, and its up-for-interpretation ending raises a lot of questions about the meaning of the film. The film is not only visually stunning but its philosophical nature leaves audience members pondering the symbolism even days after seeing the movie.

Most would agree that being alone on a raft with a tiger for the majority of the film sounds like a daunting task to portray. However, Sharma pulls off the challenge magnificently. Sharma brings the gangly, lovable Pi to life and keeps audiences captivated the whole time.

Overall this film is brilliantly crafted. The story has profound depth and soul, the scenes are thrilling, the acting is convincing, it has beautiful imagery and there are lots of splashes of witty humor. Life of Pi is definitely a movie worth seeing.

Music Review: ‘Blood’ by In This Moment

By Allison Christensen
Cardinal Staff

Feeling stressed about finals?  Try venting some of that frustration by listening to In This Moment’s new album, “Blood.” 

Maria Brink (vocals) and Chris Howorth (lead guitar), the founders of the band, met at an open jam in Los Angeles, Calif., in 2005. They recorded their first album, “Beautiful Tragedy,” in 2007 with former band members. 

Today, the band includes Randy Weitzel (guitar), Travis Johnson (bass) and Tom Hane (drums). In This Moment has steadily gained more fans with each new album. The latest, “Blood,” is their most successful album. 

“I knew that I wanted this album to bring out elements we’ve never shown before,” said Brink. “This alluring, darker, sinful side of us that no one has ever seen.” 

Each song on the “Blood” album is like an exposed nerve. The harsh vocals and distressing lyrics exude raw emotion. Inspired by bands they toured with, Brink held nothing back in the creation of this album. 

“Watching all those bands helped me let go of my fear, following my art and not worrying about ‘Is this too much?’ or ‘Am I pushing too far?’ or ‘Are people going to judge me?’ This album is the most fearless I’ve ever felt making music,” said Brink.

Scream-o tracks such as “You’re Gonna Listen” and “Comanche” create a perfect balance between chaos and control. The shredding vocals are intense and somewhat unpredictable, but the tight rhythms and constant beat prevent them from sounding sloppy. 

On the other side of the spectrum, the tracks “It Is Written” and “Aires” convey a very different feeling. The computer generated sounds and Brink’s mysterious whispering create an eerie, if not slightly disturbing, sound. Mixing these in with the rest of the album’s fast and furious tracks creates an interesting contrast and gives the album more depth and meaning.

Visit In This Moment’s official site,, to check out tour dates and purchase merchandise.

Music kicks off Christmas in weekend of holiday concerts

By Regina Barbosa
News Editor

The Music Department at Saint Mary’s University celebrated the Christmas season with holiday concerts on Dec. 6-9.

The SMU Jazz Ensemble performed at the Page Theatre on Dec. 6, led by the new Director of Jazz Studies Eric Heukeshoven. Featured vocalist Jessica Ingvalson showed her skills in “Georgia on my Mind” and “When Sunny Gets Blue.” The ensemble highlighted their improvisation with the songs “Take Five” and “Fly Me to the Moon.” Joining the jazz ensemble was the world drum ensemble on Dean Sorenson’s “Carneval del Sol.”

On Dec. 7, the choirs performed “Lessons and Carols” at the Chapel of Saint Mary’s of the Angels. In this Christmas service directed by Dr. Patrick O’Shea, the choir and audience sang Christmas hymns together and Bible readings were read between hymns.

The Saint Mary’s Band played a winter concert on the afternoon of Dec. 9 in the Page Theatre. The program onducted by Janet Heukeshoven included: “Fanfare & Flourishes” by James Curnow, “Symphonic Suite” by Clifton Williams, “Canterbury Chorale” by Jan Van der Roost, “Inglesina – the Little English Girl” by Davide Delle Cese, “Ireland: Of Legend and Lore” by Robert W. Smith and “A Christmas Festival” by Leroy Anderson. The band followed their performance with Leroy Anderson’s “Sleigh Ride” as an encore piece. Then, they hosted a Christmas party in the lobby. Smaller ensembles performed Christmas music during the gathering, and holiday cookies were served.

In the evening of Dec. 9, the Chamber Orchestra put on their “Sounds of Christmas” concert in the Figliulo Recital Hall. New director Dr. David Leung conducted “Christmas Concerto” by Corelli, “Winter” by Vivaldi, “O Magnum Mysterium” by Lauridsen, “Sleigh Ride” by Mozart and “Farewell” symphony by Haydn. Between the pieces, special guest Dr. Kyle Black, a professor from the Modern and Classical Languages Department, recited sonnets in various languages.

Cardinals help fight cancer with Hour of Power Relay

By Regina Barbosa
News Editor

The Saint Mary’s University Swimming and Diving team swam against sarcoma cancer last month in the sixth annual Hour of Power Relay.

According to Coach Eric Lindquist, the Cardinals devote their practice time for the event each year, which raises awareness and money to support research for sarcoma research at the Comer Children’s Hospital at the University of Chicago.

The Hour of Power began in 2006, after Carleton College swimmer Ted Mullin passed away from the rare form of soft-tissue cancer that affects young adults. According to Lindquist, Mullin’s favorite workout at practice was a one-hour relay. In honor of his memory, his family created the Ted Mullin Hour of Power Relay. 

About 160 teams with a total of over 8,000 athletes participated in the relay event, which takes place in pools all across the country and internationally as well, according to Lindquist.

Members of the Mullin family came to the Jules Gernes Pool at SMU to thank the participants of the relay and cheer them on during the event.

More information about the Ted Mullin Hour of Power Relay can be found at

Men’s basketball hopes to improve in MIAC

By Samantha Borawski
Sports Editor

The Saint Mary’s men’s basketball team is hoping for a better season than last year. After going 5-20 overall in the 2011-2012 season, the Cardinals are only looking up. 

Their season officially started this year with an exhibition game against Winona State University on Nov. 11. Since then, it’s been a rocky road for the Cardinals, who are 0-6 overall. The Cardinals are 0-3 in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) after taking hard losses from St. Olaf, Hamline and fifth-ranked Saint Thomas. 

On the bright side, a couple positives for the team are the return of senior Michael Burfeind and the depth and experience that is seen throughout the entire team.

Although Burfeind missed three games due to a concussion, including the home opener against St. Olaf, his return is a sign of what is to come. In the game against Hamline, he scored a season high of 14 points.  He continued this dominant play against St. Thomas, scoring a new season high of 24 points. His return is a sign of relief seeing as he was the team’s leading scorer 18 times last season while averaging 18 points a game. 

Other players returning for the Cardinals who received significant playing time last year are seniors Tom Gores, Joe Murray and Josh Bennett and sophomore Evan Pederson. Even with multiple experienced returners, the team has big shoes to fill with the loss of last season’s three seniors, including Pat Freeman who averaged around 11 points a game. 

A couple players trying to fill those roles are freshmen Will Swiggum and Mark Schumacher, who are averaging 9 and 11 points respectively. 

Off the court, the team has partnered with Gifts for Winona for the annual SMU Men’s Basketball Toy Drive, which took place on Dec. 8 during their game against Crown College. Everyone in attendance was encouraged to donate a toy that was later distributed to boys and girls in the Winona area who are in need this Christmas. This is the 11th year the event has been taking place and helping kids during the Christmas season. 

Hockey hopes to help community

By Katie Krull
Cardinal Staff

The Saint Mary’s men’s hockey team continues to give back to the community through their annual games to honor veterans and donate teddy bears to Toys for Tots. 

This is the second year that the SMU hockey team has hosted a game to honor veterans. This game really hits home for the Cardinals because of an alumnus that had served in Afghanistan and lost both of his legs in a tragic accident. 

“We thought that it would be a good way to honor him,” said Head Coach Bill Moore. “And it went over so well we decided to make it an annual event.” The proceeds of this year’s game have been donated to help maintain Vet’s Park at Lake Winona. In addition to dedicating the game to veterans, the players also donated their time to repaint parts of the park.

The hockey team also hosts the “Teddy Bear Toss.” This game, which benefits Toys for Tots, was inspired by watching other teams give back to their communities. For this game, the fans are encouraged to bring teddy bears or buy teddy bears at the game to throw onto the ice after the Cardinals’ first goal or the first period. This event has been taking place for three years, and the SMU hockey team is one of the largest contributors to Winona’s Toys for Tots foundation, according to Coach Moore.

The Cardinals wrap up the first half of their season with all away games.  However, students are encouraged to wish the Cardinals good luck and attend the games during second semester.

When the hockey team isn’t donating their time to the community, they are on the ice sharpening their skills in order to maintain a winning conference record. 

Opinion: Palestinian living conditions less than adequate

By Tom Walker and Kristin Wilkes 
Students in LCT 375 E

Throughout the semester in Dorothy Diehl’s global issues Lasallian Core Traditions (LCT), we have been studying issues in Palestine. We have primarily been discussing the rights of Palestinians that have been violated by the Israelis. 

Our focus has been on articles from the Declaration of Human Rights, created by the United Nations. Each article states a different right that all humans are entitled to. Our current assignment is to create an awareness campaign about how one of the rights of the Palestinians has been violated as stated in the Declaration of Human Rights. Our group has the right to an adequate standard of living. Please continue reading for more information on this issue and what you can do to help.

Could you live on less than the minimum amount of water each day? Could you live without electricity for 16 hours a day? Could you support your family without a job? These are many things that people in America take for granted, but it is part of daily life for many Palestinians. According to the Gaza Humanitarian Situation Report of 2009 by the United Nations, 80% of the population in the Gaza Strip could support themselves and are dependent on humanitarian assistance in 2009.  It also stated that almost 95% of the water pumped in the Gaza Strip was polluted and unfit for drinking. Palestinians’ right to an adequate standard of living is violated every day.

The issues in Palestine have not improved since their displacement in 1948, so this has been going on for 64 years. As Americans, we need to become more educated about these issues in Palestine in order to end the occupation. One way to stay educated is to enter the emailing list of the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR). Education can be one of the strongest forms of support, so keep your friends and family educated as well. 

Another thing we can do is write letters to local and state representatives asking them to take action in the Palestinian conflict.  Their human rights have obviously been violated. Not only is this against the law, but it is against what we stand for.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Voices for Justice a huge success

By Marc Hartmann
Guest Writer

Saint Mary’s University held its first Voices for Justice event on Nov. 9 to raise awareness for different causes and issues that students see in the world around them while raising money to donate, according to Hall Director (HD) Charissa Jakusz. 

Jakusz was one of the primary organizers of the event. The event was held in the Toner Center Dining Hall and consisted of a live auction, musical performances and a presentation from representatives of 10 different causes that were voiced.

“Our goal was that during our centennial year, we could start a program that would tie into our mission of empowering students to ethical lives of service and leadership,” said Jakusz.

The event raised over $2,100. Jakusz exclaimed without hesitation that the event was a huge success.  She said, “Being able to give over $700 to each of the three causes far exceeded our expectations.”

Nominations to voice a cause were sent around campus prior to the event.  During the event 10 students and organizations voiced their cause and gave the audience an opportunity to vote on their top three causes. 

After what Jakusz called “a very close vote,” the three winning charities that split the proceeds were Casa Miller, the Wounded Warriors Project and Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare.  Casa Miller is a school for indigenous boys in Guatemala that was started by Brother James Miller, a SMU alum who gave his life in Guatemala in 1982. The Wounded Warriors Project provides services to severely injured service members during the time from active duty and transition to civilian life.  Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare is based in Saint Paul and provides medical and other care to children with disabilities.

The live auction at the event gave members of the audience the opportunity to bid on items donated by members of the SMU and local community.  Some of the items included gift certificates to local restaurants, a tablet, free rounds of golf and movie baskets.

Pre-fundraising programs to raise money for the causes voiced at the event were implemented by resident assistants (RA’s) around campus throughout the semester.  Some of these events included a car wash, a trash pick-up, a taxi service around campus and a pie your RA/HD.  All proceeds from these events went directly to the causes chosen at the event.

Jakusz hopes that the event will be a tradition carried out at SMU for years to come. “Next year hopefully even more people can get involved, and we can raise even more money for some great causes.”

Jakusz expressed special thanks to everyone who came to support the event, the individuals that donated items for the auction, the RA’s who spent time planning the event and students who voiced a cause.

Bushlack named benefit dance recipient

Mary Nordick
Cardinal Staff

Saint Mary’s community has unanimously chosen Sabrina Bushlack to be honored as this year’s recipient of the annual Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance (TRBD).     

The Saint Mary’s University community was shocked this past July when one of its own, Bushlack, was involved in a car crash in which she suffered critical injuries. Bushlack is a very active member of the Saint Mary’s community. She is biochemistry major and is on both the volleyball and track teams. Since the accident, Sabrina has been defying the odds as she continues her rehab, getting stronger every day.

“There are a lot of different things going on in our community, but I was happy that we had lots of nominations and they were all for Sabrina,” said Nikki Richmond, mother of Taylor Richmond who the dance is named after. “The community and her peers were the ones that choose her and I am very proud of that.”

Nominations are accepted from all SMU community members who are willing to nominate someone.  Then, the TRBD Committee that plans the event chooses the recipient who will receive all the money collected from the event.

“I’m seriously astonished and entirely grateful, and it means a lot to me and my family,” said Bushlack. “It’s something I never dreamed of and never would have expected.”

The TRBD is a formal dance that began in 2001 and is now entering its thirteenth year, fittingly matching the thirteen that Bushlack wore on her SMU volleyball jersey. The dance will take place on March 23 at 8 p.m. in SMU’s gymnasium.  It is always very well attended by the entire SMU community.

Student Activities Committee utilizes social media

By Alexi Lund
Cardinal Staff

The Student Activities Committee (SAC) of Saint Mary’s University (SMU) is taking steps towards increasing their social media presence on campus with a goal to engage more students in activities that are happening frequently around campus, according to Director of Student Activities Lance Thompson.

As technology advances, groups like SAC are constantly thinking of new ways to advertise and promote events on campus. There will always be ways to utilize flyers and posters that are spread throughout campus, but Thompson thought that SAC needed to be more serious about this opportunity to promote events through social media.

This year, SAC created a new position on their e-board to specifically manage social media for activities and events. The main social media outlets that SAC is present and active on are Facebook and Twitter, where they post daily messages about what is happening around campus. SMU students are encouraged to follow them on Twitter or like their Facebook page.

SAC hosted an event with the mobile device app “OHHLALA” at the beginning of the year, said Thompson. This was a success for being the first time SAC has used this technology at SMU. “I think this will be a useful tool in the future,” said Thompson. “The company is just starting out so we are all learning right now.”

SMU senior Carissa Hahn, who is responsible for SAC’s social media, said, “I really hope to increase our presence on Facebook and Twitter because I want these pages to be the places students go to see what is happening around campus.”

Hahn has started implementing a social media calendar for her personal use to ensure more frequent and up-to-date posts are available to students. “I am working on publicizing SAC’s Facebook and Twitter accounts around campus because I do not know if many students are even aware of them,” said Hahn.

Hahn said one of her biggest challenges has been being able to stay on top of it. “There is always something to be posted about, there can easily be more than one post a day,” said Hahn.

SAC’s increased presence on these social media pages is very beneficial for students. “I think this transition will be a very positive thing,” said Hahn. “Most students are busy and use their phones or laptops a lot, which is why using Facebook and Twitter to find out about events on campus can become very convenient.”

SMU students make a difference in the community

By Regina Barbosa
News Editor

This year, 177 Saint Mary’s University students volunteered around Winona, Minn., on national Make a Difference Day.

“Make a Difference Day” is a national day of helping others that was created by USA WEEKEND magazine. It is held on the fourth Saturday of every October.  This is SMU’s fifth year proudly joining the millions of people throughout the nation who are volunteering.

“This was our largest year for need. We had 58 organizations contact us,” said Co-Director of Campus Ministry Chris McClead. Students went out in various groups and did everything from cleaning creeks to helping the elderly and disabled, he said.

Co-President of Volunteer Mentors Jacinta Jude helped organize the volunteer day at SMU. She worked with a group that helped clean up the Winona Visitors Center. “It’s fun to see the difference when you start to when you end, and how appreciative the people are,” she said.

Other groups went to Shives Creek and various homes in the neighborhood. The students did a variety of activities including raking leaves, cleaning behind refrigerators, putting in storm windows and moving furniture. The students put in over 530 volunteer hours combined.

“We try to engage the larger community of Saint Mary’s in service to the residents of Winona,” said McClead. The Office of Campus Ministry and Volunteer Mentors also organize Spruce Up Winona to be held on April 20 and the freshman volunteer day, which was held on Sept. 1.

“To create a positive relationship and to help achieve something simple does feel good and that is the difference that is made,” said McClead. It’s also a great opportunity to share in our Lasallian Catholic mission, he said.

SMU reveals Strategic Plan 2017

By Julianne Bartosz
Editor in chief

Saint Mary’s University’s Strategic Plan 2017 encourages the university to grow on its strengths while maintaining a vibrant community for students, according to SMU President Brother William Mann.

In a town hall forum for students on Nov. 6, Br. William and Senior Vice President of University Advancement Steve Titus discussed SMU’s new strategic plan.  The SMU Board of Trustees approved the plan on Oct. 5.

“The new plan is a five year guide for launching into the next century,” said Titus.  “It emphasizes a collective, collaborative voice.”  He added that this is the university’s first strategic plan in over a decade.

Titus said the strategic plan aims to make SMU “a top tier national university preparing tomorrow’s leaders.”  He said the goals of the plan will be sequenced over the next five years, rather than implementing all aspects of the plan.

The new strategic plan includes three themes: “strengthen and preserve our core mission and identity,” “innovate and grow – the three centers of excellence” and “steward and strengthen our resources.”  Each of these themes has three goals, which have at least one additional objective.

Br. William said that these themes will allow the university to help students grow as a whole person, including both curricular and co-curricular activities.  Titus added that they also allow the university to grow based on the principles of its mission.  He said the mission is important because “a lot of people invest in the university because they strongly believe in the mission.”

Titus said that over 900 people were involved in the development of the Strategic Plan 2017, including “student voices that helped us shape what we’re doing over the next five years.”

“It includes a lot that concerns the student body.  We want students to get more involved,” said Br. William at the Nov. 6 forum aimed at educating students.  Only two students were in attendance.  He associated the lack of attendance with a strong level of trust between students and administration as well as student interest in the U.S. presidential elections.

Town hall meetings were also held on both the Winona and Twin Cities campuses for faculty and staff.

The Strategic Plan 2017 is posted on SMU’s website at

SMU celebrates El Día de los Muertos

By Carissa Hahn
Copy Editor

Saint Mary’s University (SMU) has been celebrating El Día de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead) during the month of November through a memorial created in the Saint Thomas More Chapel.

Graduate Assistant for SMU Office of Campus Ministry Keith Donovan said that the main purpose of this holiday is to remember and pray for our loved ones who have passed away and honor them for leaving a lasting impression on us.

The memorial consists of an altar with memorabilia that community members have shared to honor loved ones who have passed, said Donovan. At the center of the table lies a prayer book called “The Book of the Dead,” where people are invited to write the names of their departed loved ones.

Donovan said that the Office of Campus Ministry also held a prayer service on Nov. 2 near the memorial. Community members who were present shared stories of the loved ones that they were remembering, said Donovan. Over a dozen people attended the prayer service.

Lorelle Brune, SMU student and active member of Campus Ministry, read at the prayer service. Brune said the altar also consists of pictures, incense, candles and other artifacts in remembrance of loved ones who have passed.

El Día de los Muertos is a Hispanic holiday. The traditions of acknowledging the dead and the spiritual world at this time of year dates back to ancient times, said Donovan.

The first was held thousands of years ago when Pagans and Celts celebrated the feast of Samhain. Samhain represented the end of the harvest season and the beginning of winter. People believed that the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead was at its thinnest during this time. In order to remember the dead on the night that falls halfway between the autumn equinox and the winter solstice, they would use prayer and ritual. The American term “Halloween” comes from contractions of “All Hallows Eve” or “the holy evening.”

Each year, the Catholic Church recognizes Nov. 1 as All Saints Day and Nov. 2 as All Souls Day. Donovan said, “The Church uses the month of November to continue to remember those who have gone before us.” This tradition is sometimes referred to as “Novembering.”

“I think people wanted to celebrate Day of the Dead because it is a Hispanic tradition, and at SMU there seems to be some intentionality to involve students of different cultural backgrounds,” said Brune. “It was a way to unite both our Catholic identity, and our multicultural campus community.”

‘Meet the Pros’ event offers career insight to students

By Megan Hafner
Cardinal Staff

Saint Mary’s University’s Public Relations/Business (PR/B) Club visited prominent professionals to gain insight at PDI Ninth House in Minneapolis, Minn., on Nov. 15.

About twenty students from SMU attended the “Meet the Pros” event hosted by the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), according to Coordinator for Mass Communication Dean Beckman. Students also visited the Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota to hear about the experiences of two SMU alumni who work in the communications office there, said Beckman.

“These types of field trips are a great way for students to take a step toward their professional development by learning about what others do in the industry,” said Beckman. Some of the representatives at the “Meet the Pros” event included the Vice President of Weber Shandwick Tracy Kurschner and the Editor in Chief of American Craft magazine Monica Moses. Weber Shandwick is an international Public Relations Firm.

PR/B Club Secretary Shannon Nelson said, “This is a great networking event for students to meet professionals in this field.” She said this was a field trip open to all students to listen to professionals talk about what they do and the path that they took to get to where they are today in the public relations field.

“The ‘Meet the Pros’ event is a great way for juniors and seniors to get their name out there, and networking is a good way to get a job for out of the classroom, real-world experience,” said Nelson. Seniors and juniors were encouraged to bring their resumes and cover letters for the professionals to look at and improve, while also asking questions about the public relations industry.

SMU student publishes book

By Joua Xiong
Cardinal Staff

A Saint Mary’s University senior published his first book, The College Life Guide 101, to provide helpful tips and resources for students who are heading off to college.

SMU senior Brian Thomas published his book in March 2012. His book offers tips on handling student loans and the process of the financial aid application. The book also gives advice on how to manage and balance a college schedule as well as choosing the right major.

The College Life Guide 101 is the perfect preparation tool for college,” said Thomas, who hopes to guide future college students. “I wanted to help future students with the same kind of struggles that I had coming to college.”

Thomas enrolled as a freshman at SMU in 2009 with some of his difficulties adjusting to college life. “College has a lot more responsibilities,” said Thomas. “It was a major transition from being a high school student.” He said his struggles motivated him to start the book in 2010.

According to Thomas, his goal is to have the book translated into other languages. In the future, Thomas hopes to create a new edition that features additional series of the college life guide.

Thomas, from Chicago, Ill., is majoring in English and minoring in art. He is the Student Senate’s vice president for public affairs and a member of the men’s varsity basketball team. He writes for the Cardinal newspaper and enjoys creating poetry.

The College Life Guide 101 is now available and can be purchased at and 

Habitat promotes recycling

By Kelsey Hulbert
Feature Editor

Habitat for Humanity collected aluminum cans to fundraise and promote awareness of a more eco-friendly campus, according to SMU Habitat for Humanity President Desiree Caballero.

Habitat set up collection areas in each dorm to allow all students the opportunity to make a difference, said Caballero.

“Recycling does not get taken care of as it should,” said Caballero.

Caballero said she wants to spread awareness of an eco-friendly campus because the current recycling system is not convenient and is not used properly by students.  The aluminum cans collected, including beer cans, were given to Habitat to cover chapter fees and raise funds to help students go on a January trip to Fergus Falls, Minn., said Caballero. The trip will focus on building houses and teaching students home-building skills. 

“You can still make a difference even if you don’t know anything about construction,” said Caballero. “It’s a great way to learn to do something you wouldn’t normally do.” 

Habitat also participated in trick-or-treating for cans and change in the Winona community. They collected seven trash bags of cans and $170. 

“It’s great getting the word out and letting people know what SMU is about,” said Caballero. She said that Habitat will also be selling tool-shaped cookies to fundraise for supplies that Habitat is in need of.

Peace and Justice Club’s Fair Trade Friday offers free treats

By Kelsey Hulbert
Feature Editor

SMU’s Peace and Justice (P&J) Club promotes sustainability and supports small scale farmers by offering free Fair Trade coffee, tea and hot chocolate every Friday from 7-10 a.m. in Saint Mary’s Hall.

Fair Trade is an organized social movement that aims to promote sustainability and help producers in developing countries to make better trading conditions like fair and equal wages without exploitation.

“Fair Trade Friday is a club tradition that also raises awareness of a social justice issue,” said P&J Club President Meghan Campbell.

Even though Fair Trade Friday items are given to SMU students, staff and faculty for free, Campbell said that donations are greatly appreciated.  “We have received a record amount of donations this year,” said Campbell.

The donations collected help the P&J Club replenish supplies for their weekly Fair Trade Friday, which are bought at Winona’s Bluff County Co-op.  Additional funds are put toward other club activities like their trip to the annual School of the Americas (SOA) Vigil at Fort Benning, Ga.  

The P&J Club will also hold a Fair Trade sale Nov. 28-30. The sale will include items like coffee, candy, chocolate and crafts. Campbell said that all purchases will directly support the person or people who created the item, which can often play a major role in their survival.

Another future event is the club’s Common Threads clothing drive, which will take place second semester. For this event, the club accepts clothing donations from the SMU community and sells them to raise funds for the club.  Campbell said the remaining clothing is donated to Winona Volunteer Services.

Further club initiatives include promoting going green. The club has purchased mugs from the Salvation Army and urges students to use the reusable mugs to eliminate using paper cups. 

Campbell said her favorite part of being in involved in the club is educating others and learning about social justice issues.  “I’m big on social justice, equality and helping people become aware of things that are going on around the world,” she said.  

S.O.U.L. trip to Milwaukee teaches students about urban agriculture

By Kelsey Hulbert
Feature Editor

On an October Serving Other United in Love (S.O.U.L.) trip to Milwaukee, Wis., ten SMU students learned about problems in agriculture today while working at Growing Power.

Growing Power is an organic farm in the heart of the city that focuses on providing healthy food to urban areas.  The organization focuses on sustainable food production and the growth of communities through local gardens.

Present agricultural problems that SMU students learned about center around the reliance on processed and pre-packaged food.  By furthering the reliance on processed food, people are giving up their right to have safe, affordable and plentiful food.

­­­SMU students also had the opportunity to gain hands-on experience like mucking chicken pens, picking tomato plants, spreading mulch, sifting dirt and weeding.

Will Allen, the CEO of Growing Power, is hoping to create a foundation of urban agriculture in order to bring the benefits of a community food system to the needs of a large city.

Agriculture has become increasingly more industrialized and reliant on unsustainable practices while creating a huge gap in between the food source and the consumer.  This forces people in large urban areas to buy inexpensive and low-quality food and sacrifice fresh fruits and vegetables for low-cost processed food.  This has an avalanche affect on healthcare and social welfare and especially harms the poor.