For the record

 

Sophomore

Nahum Redae

“A Penguin. The Penguin and Eagle would coordinate attacks from the air and ground. The Penguin would be referred to as ‘The Belly Penguin’ because it uses its belly to slide wherever it needed to go.”

First-year

Amanda Cole

“A Hummingbird, because they are the opposite of eagles. It would balance out the Eagle.”

Sophomore

Justin Hetrick

“A Bear. The Eagle could pick up the bear and launch him for vicious aerial attacks.”

Senior

Evan Jetsetter

“A Baby Sloth. Look it up on YouTube – it’s the cutest thing ever.”

Photos and Information compiled by David Smith

Lecturer Paul Felker joins EU staff

A humble spirit, a wise mind and a strong passion to help others are just some of the many qualities that make Paul Felker an incredible addition to Eastern’s community of committed educators.

For Felker, being at Eastern is more than just a professional career: it is an opportunity to grow in new and significant ways.

As a devoted educator in the Social Work Department, Felker takes pride in teaching his students not only the essentials of social work, but also in providing them with an understanding and zeal that goes beyond the everyday information in textbooks. And so far, his experiences with his students have been incredibly gratifying.

“I’m amazed by such bright, committed students who could do anything,” Felker said.

Felker explains that it has been rewarding to be able to contribute to his students’ professional development and educational growth.

However, Felker’s dedication to Eastern began some years ago when he too was a student studying at the university. When asked what drew him to Eastern’s Social Work program, with no hesitation he  credits its respected curriculum and great placement rate in the work field, as well as the program’s overall excellence.

Felker also confides that when he graduated from Eastern in 1991, he walked away with more than just a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work: he had grown spiritually in ways that he never imagined, an experience in which he is very grateful.

Before coming back to teach as an adjunct professor in 2004, Felker was a grief and trauma counselor in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at the Hershey Medical Center, a career that he believes allows him to “bring real life situations to the students.”

When it comes to the aspirations that he has for students, Felker said, “I hope they will be infused with a passion to help.”

Now a full-time educator, Felker is also earning his PhD at Widener University, where he also received his Master’s Degree. The married father of 22-month-old twins, Toby and Isabella, is most certainly enjoying his experience  at Eastern and is looking forward to the promising journey ahead.

Face in the Crowd

The phrase, “A dog is man’s best friend,” is one that almost everyone has heard, but for two new first-years on Eastern’s campus, it means everything.

Kirstie Simmons lives with Sebastian, her two-year-old yellow lab, in Sparrowk Hall. Sebastian is a fully trained seeing-eye dog who helps get her around campus.

Simmons is partially blind and can only see the shapes and colors of objects. Her parents noticed that there was something wrong with her vision when she was three or four years old, but she wasn’t diagnosed as being partially blind until she was seven.

Simmons has only had Sebastian since this summer. Even though Sebastian is on duty most of the time, he does have his breaks.

“Whenever he is wearing his harness he is on duty, but whenever it is off of him, he is a ‘normal dog,'” Simmons said. “We do get to go out and play as well.”

One thing Simmons would like us to note is to be careful to not touch Sebastian while he is on duty, as it distracts him.

Sebastian wears booties on his feet to protect his paws. “When it gets really cold or really hot out, being on the dark pavement or brick can hurt his paws. And in the winter when the sidewalks and bricks are salted, the salt can get into his pads and hurt him,” Simmons said.

As for why Simmons finds herself here in the Eastern community, she said that, “it was the only place I applied. I had visited other schools but felt very welcomed and at home here. I just knew it was a good fit.”

As far as schoolwork goes, it is nothing out of the ordinary for her. Simmons has what is called a C.C. TV that allows her to place her books under a magnifier to bring the pages up on its screen.

Once the pages are on the screen, she can adjust the color and size of anything she needs to.

Simmons also owns a pair of telescope glasses that gives her a magnification increase of 132 percent. Her MacBook Pro helps her out with features like a built-in reader and screen magnifier that she uses on a daily basis.

Being partially blind hasn’t stopped Simmons from pursuing her dreams. In high school, she was a member of the Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, which is a lower form of the ROTC, where students are trained to become military leaders.

Simmons was also a member of the concert band where she played alto-clarinet, B-flat clarinet and piano.

Simmons’ interest in music first began when she was five years old and in the doctor’s office. She was asked by a nurse at the office if she played the piano because, according to the nurse, she had “piano fingers.” Simmons immediately turned to her mom and asked, “Why don’t I play the piano?” Her mom turned that interest into a reality for Simmons and immediately enrolled her in lessons.

She joined the elementary school band in fifth grade by playing the B-flat clarinet. In eighth grade, she decided to tackle the alto-clarinet. Simmons plans on continuing her music career at Eastern by majoring in Music Education.

Simmons’ inspiration came in the form of her schoolteachers. “I had a couple of really great music teachers and I saw their influences on my life and I want to be like them,” she said.

Defying all odds

Dr. Zbysek Brezina wasn’t looking for a job when he found Eastern: he was looking for a challenge.

The school’s newest history professor is no stranger to a challenge.

In the late 80s, Dr. Brezina deserted the mandatory service in Czechoslovakian army and his university, joined the student movement in Western Bohemia and co-founded a university preparatory school.

Before these adventures, Dr. Brezina had been planning to become part of French Foreign Legion that was fighting against the Communist movement. His first hundred English words were all military commands.

Growing up in what was then Czechoslovakia, Dr. Brezina and his family were discriminated against in the 80s because of their faith and political beliefs. Because of his family’s ideologies, Dr. Brezina was not going to be able to attend college.

“My test scores were excellent, but even with Gorbachev’s changes, getting into University was very difficult,” he said.

While at the University, Dr. Brezina was offered a membership to the Communist Party, but he turned it down and instead dropped out of school to stand up for his beliefs, despite the societal demand to join the Communist Party.

During this time, people of faith were often besmirched in the political and social arenas. “If you display a faith, no one was really happy about it,” Dr. Brezina said.

Now, close to 85 percent of Czechs do not believe in God.

 

“Eastern didn’t try to hide that they are Christian,” Dr. Brezina said. “That’s something I like.”

Dr. Brezina had worked at Bethany College in Kansas before his move to the East Coast. His wife, Sue, had just published a book, and they were expecting their second child. For the move, Dr. Brezina didn’t want just another job but a spiritual community.

Dr. Brezina always knew he wanted to teach. With only a few exceptions, he came from a family of teachers for the last 200 years. “Teachers, priests and soldiers – I think they have the same job: they spread the message.”

That is exactly what Dr. Brezina aimed to do in 1992, when he and others established a university preparatory school. No one could have been surprised.

What surprise did come was a recent Vassar graduate by the name of Sue. She had come to the prep school to teach English just days after she’d learned about the opening. “We paid her almost nothing,” Dr. Brezina said.

It was difficult for the two of them to communicate at first. “I didn’t speak any English, and she didn’t speak any Czech,” Dr. Brezina said. But somehow it all worked out, and Dr. Brezina found himself moving to the United States to be with her.

After all that has happened, Dr. Brezina is pleased to be in America and at Eastern where he can be open about his faith. “You don’t have to be shy of it,” he said. “[You] have the opportunity to freely show your belief in Jesus.”

College Day on the Parkway

Approximately 15 Eastern students went to College Day on the Parkway Saturday, Sept. 25. The weather was beautiful, the museums were free and the trains were on time: what could have been better?

Information compiled by Chelsea Post

Photos by Andy Meneses

Photos: The Philadelphia Museum of Art was completely free, along with seven other Philadelphian museums; College students flocked to the various tents set up around the Parkway, all of them looking for food or other prizes.

WEUR

Broadcast journalism has officially returned to campus and is looking to stay. WEUR, Eastern’s newly established radio station is giving students new opportunities and providing the Eastern community with a new way to stay connected.

The development process began about two years ago when junior James Laughlin sought out communications professor Kevin Maness in hopes of setting up a broadcasting program that would unite the students, faculty and friends of Eastern.

The school’s previous radio station, WECR, was a regular FM station that originated in the 1980s, but due to improper programming and fines from the Federal Communication Commission, it was shut down in 2000. Now, thanks to careful planning by Maness, Laughlin and last year’s addition of sophomore Matt Curcio, students can once again look forward to a unique representation of Eastern’s diversity.

Having gained student government approval last year, general director Laughlin and program director Curcio look forward to the future possibilities that are in store for the station.

According to Laughlin, the station has great educational opportunities. “Radio broadcasting provides an experience that nothing else can,” he said. “Every department mixes in some way to the radio station.”

With the programs that Laughlin and Curcio have planned, students in all areas will be given the opportunity to share what they know and learn from others in the process.

Such programs include live sports broadcasts, news reports, poetry readings and even a new show developed by Laughlin called “Faith, Reason, and Justice.” This weekly production will include half-hour segments that will give students the opportunity to share testimonies, debate theological topics and explore the need for missions in the world.

In addition to educational benefits, Curcio has looked to the community that WEUR will bring. “Our community already stands out as one of the best, but the addition of a radio station provides a new medium for students, faculty, staff and people at home to connect,” he said.

Because of FCC frequency regulations, the majority of this year’s broadcasts will be done online, giving an international range to the station. Curcio has also been looking forward to a program called SNOW (Sunday Night of Worship) during which students will be able to listen to worship music or hear various theological speakers.

With the programs and SGA approval set, only a few more things need to be done, not the least of which is getting the proper equipment. The team still needs to purchase a computer that has the ability to run twenty-four hours a day as well as a special broadcasting program. Audio mixers, microphones and headsets for sports broadcasts are also on list of equipment that will be purchased.

Other major goals include the search for a tech director, plans for business management and the gathering of money and FCC approval for a regular FM station. Despite what still needs to be done, Laughlin and Curcio are encouraged by how far the station has come in a few short years and the tremendous amount of support given by the Eastern community.

If anyone is interested in joining WEUR, contact James Laughlin at jlaughli@eastern.edu.

Revelation Generation: Christian bands entertain the masses at concert

On Saturday, September 4, nearly 50 Eastern students took a day-trip to Revelation Farms in New Jersey.

They were anything but alone. With over sixty musical artists including major label acts such as The Devil Wears Prada and Anberlin, it is no surprise that this year’s Revelation Generation had an expected attendance of more than 30,000 people.

For six years, Revelation Generation has been providing people with an enormous musical experience with truly something for everyone. Enjoy the heaviest, most aggressive music you can find? Impending Doom can do it for you. Prefer Hip-Hop? Just pop into the urban tent to see Tedashii. There’s even a tent for Bluegrass and Country.

Regardless of style, all the bands performed phenomenally, and fan reaction was good. A positive atmosphere pervaded the 140 acres of land that housed the festivities, brought on by speakers who encouraged the crowd to be safe and have a good time.

Most importantly though, Revelation Generation most likely had the safest mosh pits you could find. The reason behind this is that Christ is the true focus of and driving force behind Revelation Generation.

Speakers would open each set with encouraging words centered upon Him, many beginning with a prayer before even the toughest bands. The day was eventually topped off by Grammy-nominated rock band Skillet. They put on an explosive show which provided the perfect epilogue to a full day of energetic and empowered performances.

Bienvenidos!

A young, energetic new lecturer has popped up on campus this year with incoming faculty. Heather Young will be tackling the responsibility of being a Spanish teacher.

Young’s story is one of resistance, faith and the battle between them that led to discovery.

Her love for Spanish started in high school. “I realized there were all these people in the world that I would never get to meet because I only spoke one language.”

She went on to complete her undergraduate work at the College of New Jersey, and Young found that she was one of the only Spanish majors who was not also involved in education. “I had absolutely no interest in teaching,” Young said. “I refused to consider it.”

 

After receiving her Bachelor’s degree in Spanish, Young found herself faced with the daunting task of trying to find a school at which to continue on with graduate work.

When she couldn’t find a school with a good program concentrating on translation and interpretation, she decided to try the “alternate route” program, a program designed to certify teachers through a year of research programs and teaching classes. Young spent three years on the secondary education level learning how to become a teacher. “Once I got in, I loved it!”

Young was finally able to enroll in full-time grad school at Temple and finished her master’s degree last December.

As for ending up at Eastern, a friend of a friend referred her here after she had sent out many resumes. Although she hadn’t heard about Eastern before, Young was excited by the promise of combining her faith and teaching.

Teaching in itself is definitely rewarding for Young as she loves “showing [students] that can really speak the language, that it’s not all memorization and vocabulary.

For the record

Sophomore

Rachel Blair

“Yes, because if we truly believe that men and women are equal in our society, then we should be equal in every aspect,

including dating.”

Junior

Nathaniel Jones

“The guy is supposed to pay because the man is supposed to be the leader when it comes to things like money.”

Sophomore

Mary McEvoy

“I’m old fashioned so I would go the traditional route.”

First-year

Zakk Bowman

“It depends on the situation, but in general I think it’s better for the guy to pay.”

 

Photos and Information compiled by Kiara Hall