A Student Publication of Lorain County Community College

Policy will ban tobacco on campus

Beginning on Aug. 1, all tobacco products will be prohibited on campus. Rebecca Marion Managing Editor With August 1st steadily approaching, the students and staff of Lorain County Community College can expect to breath easier on campus this fall semester….

Test anxiety workshop will ease finals stress

Zach Srnis Special Correspondent With final exams right around the corner, Americorps completion coaches at Lorain County Community College will be offering a test-taking workshop. The presentation will help students develop strategies for how to tackle exams and dealing with…

Collegian bags 9 Press Club Awards

Kristin Hohman Editor-in-Chief The Collegian took nine honors in the 2017 All-Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards from the Press Club of Cleveland. In the Best Print Feature category, Editor-in-Chief Kristin Hohman won for her two stories, “Suicide on campus” and…

The young and the homeless

Kristin Hohman Editor-in-Chief With the increasing cost of attending college in the United States, it should come as no surprise that many college students have to make considerable sacrifices for their education. One of the most substantial sacrifices is a…

College launches campaign against hunger insecurity

Matt Gergely


  As students all across the United States leave their homes dressed as goblins and ghouls in search of candy this Halloween, volunteers all across campus are getting involved in a community wide effort in Lorain County to destroy hunger insecurity.

  “The way we learned about the lack of food was actually from the voice of our students”, Vice President Tracy Green stated. Green said that LCCC President Dr. Marcia Ballinger was aware of the problem students were facing concerning hunger even before she became the campus’s president last year. Seeing this problem, Ballinger made compacting poverty a major goal for her campus.

  “Our goal was to help eliminate barriers that our students were facing and one barrier that we weren’t in tune with or familiar with was that we do have students that are going hungry,” Green said. However, it isn’t only students that may suffer from food insecurities but their families as well. According to Green, “Some students make the choice whether to buy a textbook or food for themselves and their families.” LCCC is trying to fight this insecurity because it is impeding on students and preventing them from being successful.

   The HungerFreeLCCC challenge isn’t the first attempt made by Lorain County Community College to provide students with an easy access to food. In recent years, the Commodore Cupboard was created as a way to provide students and their families a quick and easy way to access food. The food given out by the Commodore Cupboard is 100% donated and is completely operated by volunteers.

  While LCCC is taking the fight to the campus, it is supporting the fight against hunger all across Lorain County. Organizations like the Second Harvest Food Bank and charities like Chicks against Hunger have teamed up with LCCC in their goal to provide anyone that needs food in Lorain County.

  Anyone interested in supporting the HungerFreeLCCC can log on to the HungerFree LCCC page at LCCC’s website for more information.

The Hispanic Heritage Celebration brings awareness

Maria Alejandra Rey


  On Oct. 18, Lorain County Community College celebrated the Hispanic Heritage Month on campus; a celebration of culture and history with the musical performance by Latin Jazz Players and food provided by Student Life.

  Established by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to celebrate the Hispanic and the Latin American cultures that have shaped the U.S history, the celebration became an opportunity to bring awareness to the student body about the decisions the government has made and how it affects the Latin community.

  Veronica Dahlberg was one of the advocates explaining how the new regulations have been executed and how it is affecting the public. Dahlberg is the Executive Director of HOLA Ohio, an organization for the Latino community that provides civic organization and legal help.

“This is a month when we bring our culture from the margins of society to the spotlight,” Dahlberg said. Bringing the culture to the spotlight is important, and to talk about the most marginal members of it.  The illegal immigrants, families, and important member of our society who are being the most affected by the policies of the Donald Trump presidency.

  “It is plain racism, we are losing our rights and freedom, people who have been here and are hard workers and heads of family are being deported or put in ankle monitors to control every move they make,” added Dahlberg.

  The jail bails for illegal aliens went from $2,000 or $5,000 to a range of $8,000 to $25,000 without the chance of paying the usual 10 percent.  Instead, they must pay the full extent of the bail bond.

   For many people, the country is starting to feel like a huge “detention center” as is the case for the Dreamers or children who were brought to the U.S. at a age younger than 16 years-old who benefit from the Defer Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).  Norma Pacheco a DACA recipient, who came to the states with her family with a medical aid visa for her sister at 8-years-old and stayed in order to continue the treatment for her sister. “What people think about DACA is that we received a free path to citizenship and that we received grants and scholarships for school, but this is not the case. We (the Dreamers) pay out-of-state tuitions and the same taxes as any other citizen,” Pacheco explained.  Pacheco also gave information on how to help the DACA recipients with their current state.

  To finalize the event, Kenny Marrero did a presentation on the state of Puerto Rico, and how to get involve to help rebuild the island.

Gardening blossoms on campus

Madelyn Hill


Have you ever walked through a garden and marveled at how beautiful it is? Have you ever wondered who actually takes care of the gardens and keeps them looking so nice?

Danielle Squire is the Specialty Gardens Coordinator, and she puts a lot of hard work and effort all year round to make sure the gardens look their best. There are multiple gardens around campus that you can enjoy. There is one in the Robert Callaway Memorial Healing Garden in the courtyard, the hummingbird butterfly habitat garden by the Patsie C. Capana, Sr. Engineering and Development Center and many more through out the campus.

  Squire said before she took over as the specialty gardens coordinator, “They weren’t taken care of as much and were unmanageable.” But now with the help of students and people from the community, Squire is working hard to make the gardens more sustainable. She gets about one to four student volunteers, and some of the work includes pulling weeds and shoveling mulch.

Even during the winter there is still work to be done.   

Squire is working on making a plant database and plant labels to better educate the public on what is growing in the gardens.

The gardens aren’t just for nice scenery.  There are students here at LCCC that use the gardens for educational purposes. They study the different plants in the garden and the breakdown of each plant. During the winter, Squire takes the volunteers  into the greenhouse, which is located on the third floor of the lab sciences building, and they do research of each of the plants; known as biologics.

“I want to better educate the community so that they get a different view of beauty,” said Squire.

  Squire also said that they are working with the occupational students to make the gardens more handicap accessible so that everyone can enjoy the gardens.

Helping Squire in the garden can also go toward school credit through the service learning. Students can also go and help her out and keep the gardens looking nice every Friday from one to four.

  There is work that can be done all year long, either research in the greenhouse or going out in the garden and weeding. Squire said, “It’s hard work and it’s visibly rewarding seeing people in the garden and talking about them.”

Anyone interested can contact Squire at d.squire1@mail.lorainccc.edu.

Professor urges students to freeze their credit

Matt Gergely


Taking out student loans is pivotal for this generation of college students to pay for their education.

  Student loans are only one of the few different kinds of transactions that can build up one’s credit portfolio. A credit portfolio is a record of credit transactions and provides potential lenders and employers a credit score that can influence a student’s interest rate on future loans, such as mortgages, and chance of being hired by an employer.

Which is why it is concerning that many of LCCC students could be the victim of a massive cyber breach on a company they most likely never heard of before, Equifax.

  Equifax is one of the three major private credit reporting businesses along with Experienne and Transunion.

As most college students start their credit journey with their student loans, most are unfamiliar with the three major corporations that control all of their personal information such as their social security number (SSN) and driver’s license, and make the majority of their profit by selling this information to business and banks.

Presently, the suspected number of people’s portfolio compromised by the breach is around 143 million people; about half of the entire U.S. population. This means a 50 percent chance of someone having hackers access to all of their personal information.

“I think it’s a bigger deal than most realize.  Unlike breaches in the past that targeted credit cards, the significance of Equifax is that hackers now have access to information like your SSN which they can do much more damage with then a credit card,” Huber explained.  Huber also said that he believes that while the breach may feel over for most, there are most likely many more years to come involving this story.

  The breach occurred in an age where people can also find anything about a person  from various social media pages such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

According to Huber, “People freely put out their information on pages like Facebook, very sensitive information; information a social engineer would love to have.”  For Huber, the breach is symbolic of the way our society treats its own personal information in the age of the internet.

  In terms of security, many would look to third party credit monitoring companies like LifeLock to secure their information but Huber would advise against it as information that was compromised at Equifax is the same information in LifeLock; making them a target of a future breach.

According to Huber, the best solution to the Equifax problem is simply freezing your credit. While freezing your credit on Equifax is a good first start, it would be advised that freezing your credit with all major credit reporting companies is the only to be completely sure about your information being safe.

An option that directly to the pages of each company that allows you to freeze your credit was created by the HBO host John Oliver after he ran a segment about the breach on his show The Last Week Tonight Show.

The show’s twitter tweeted the direct links to all three companies’ websites that allow students to freeze their credit.

Abusive memories hang around the College Center

Kerri Klatt

Staff Writer

While walking through the College Center Commons at Lorain County Community College the week of Oct. 23, students were able to read stories of abuse written on T-shirts lining the center staircase. These T-shirts are part of The Clothesline Project.

   Hanging along the staircase in the College Center Commons, the project is a visual display to increase awareness of violence, sexual assault, and abuse. The T-shirts on display represent the victims and/or family member of a victim in Lorain County. The mission of the project is to educate students as well as the community on the issue of violence; a problem in all communities.

  Each colored T-shirt represents a type of abuse: The red T-shirts represent a present sexual abuse victim, yellow represents a victim of physical abuse, and the green T-shirts represents a childhood sexual abuse victim. The purple shirts represent victims of hate crimes, blue shirts represent incest victims, and the grey T-shirts represents abuse against the mentally impaired.

  The project was founded by a group of women from Hyannis, Massachusetts in 1990. The project began with 31 shirts and now has over 100 shirts on display.

Music is a sound way to develop the brain

Zac Wenzel

Staff Writer

Music is a universal and unifying form of art that can bring together people of all different backgrounds, this is demonstrated countless times throughout the past and present. But music can have a much more profound effect on people than even they realize and play a vital role in the development of the human brain starting at the very moment we are born.

Dr. Gerald Evans, a professor at Lorain County Community College, has been teaching music on the campus for over 25 years. Evans teaches music theory, ear training, and music history among other music-centric classes at LCCC, and advocates that the practice and enjoyment of music play a large role in the development of the brain, starting at the youngest of ages.

“Music is essential, art is essential, for complete integration and full brain development,” Evans said, suggesting parents begin to introduce music at a very early age. “The voice is the first instrument the human body is introduced to,” Evans goes on to say, “the voice really is an instrument everyone uses.” Singing helps to create and connect melodies, developing many levels of the brain.

Once someone is old enough to being learning an instrument, the development of the brain grows from new skills learned. Playing an instrument combines both the left and right sides of the brain, causing someone to use both the intellectual and physical parts of the brain. “Playing an instrument helps develop hand-eye coordination, as well as full left and right-hand body coordination.,” Evans said.

Music and adulthood

The relationship between brain activity and music does not stop when someone is young, and a combination of the two has been linked to academic success. Evans reinforces this in his music theory classes, by focusing on the mathematical side of music, the notes and tones of a music.

The benefits expand further than just mathematics. Learning an instrument and practicing music can help critical thinking, and ear training can help oral communication in students and benefit their decision making by improving on what they hear in communication with others.

Evans has seen in his students over the years, that music majors tend to be students who do well in other areas of academia. They carry higher grade-point-averages, feel more comfortable writing papers, and tend to be more varied in their experiences and knowledge of history.

“Music, and humanities as a whole, are essential for our ideas of the world, whether we listen to music or play it ourselves,” Evans said. These ideas begin to be molded when people are young, and can help shape who that person becomes as they grow older. Integrating music into brain development helps music to be used as a global expression, through thoughts, ideas, and emotions.

CCP offers students chance to jumpstart college education

Kennedy Tesar


Many schools in the Lorain County school district offer the College Credit Plus program to high school and occasionally middle school students in the area. The CCP program allows for students to receive college credit before officially being college students. Some split their time between high school and college, while others are at LCCC on a daily basis.

Molly Ptacek, a student at Avon High School, splits her time between the two, managing one class at the high school each day and three classes on the LCCC campus: quantitative reasoning, chemistry in society, and government. “I wanted to get some of my college classes out of the way and be able to do it for free,” Ptacek said.

Many different types of students apply for and utilize the program, whether to get a jump start on their college education, be in a higher learning environment, or help to save money and time in the long run.

Emily Herner is a Teacher Exploration Education Student, a program that partners with Lorain County JVS and LCCC. She also divides her time between high school and college courses, as well as taking a CCP class offered at Avon High. Students can choose specific CCP courses to take that are provided in the high school environment if desired. Emily is applying her credits toward college and her major. She plans to use her CCP credits at an in-state school that accepts them. “Why not take advantage of the credits,” she says. “I plan on majoring in special education, so the material I learn in CCP classes will be helpful.”

Noah Radcliffe, also an Avon High School student, started the program through an engineering class at his high school and progressed to take courses at the college level. “I had to take an engineering course at the high school, then the next two years are taught at LCCC, so I became a CCP student that way.” Enrolled in the Project Lead the Way CIM class, Noah said he prefers the atmosphere of the college over the high school, “I feel like I have more freedom and options throughout my day.”

CCP students are a commonality on the Lorain County Community College Campus this school year. High school students fill the halls, taking advantage of their school’s partnership program. If the question is being asked, why start college while still in high school? This question and many others can be answered by the high school students passing by on the way to class each day.

CCP students maintain the workload of a college student, while often still involved in high school activities. Herner is a cheerleader, Radcliffe plays football, and Ptacek runs track in the spring. Each story and goals of CCP students are individualized.

LCCC works to provide a comfortable and helpful atmosphere for these students integrating into college life. Next time you walk the campus, think about the many high schoolers right alongside you that are working to achieve their dreams, too.

Chinese professor brings perspective to LCCC

Andre B. Malabanan


Following the partnership between Lorain County Community College and Changsha University in China, the two institutions have been engaged in a program where an educator from Changsha University will have an exposure in LCCC.

  This fall semester’s visiting international scholar is Julie Pan Chen, a Chinese English professor, who was given the chance to teach here.

Pan said that she enjoys working in the college. She is mainly in charge of the on-line Chinese course, Chinese 151, and also tutors students with interest of learning the Chinese language.     Aside from that, she also gives culture presentations about China.  She has already done four and will be doing another two presentations.

  It takes her almost a week to prepare the presentations but doesn’t complain about it because she always loved teaching.

“When I was young, I know I want to be a teacher and also loved language. The minute I got to know English, I fell in love with it. In the last year of my high school I just knew that I’m going to be an English teacher,” she said. The exchange program is a significant one according to her because being a language learner, culture is best to be experienced than just simply knowing about it.

  “I didn’t experience a major culture shock but there are still differences that surprised me,” she said. Pan had been teaching English since 2008 and had been teaching Chinese to American students as a part-time job back in China.

As she was now exposed to both the American and Chinese educational system, she noted of the differences that they have. First thing that she observed was the class size. “Back in China, in my class, smallest is like 50. The biggest class size that I handled was composed of 80 students. We have to use a microphone,” she said.

Secondly, as she has also given the privilege to observe in classes, she observed the good teacher-student interaction in classes at LCCC. “The teaching style here is very casual,” she said. “And it seems okay for them that students just stand up and roam around casually while class is on-going, which usually doesn’t happen in China,” she added.

Lastly, she narrated an experience in observing an 8 am class.  “I’m a little surprised to see this morning, I went to academic English writing class, and the teacher carries a prize box. I was surprised that adult students will still be interested in small prizes. But that’s a good tip”, she said.

If there’s a lesson that she learned so far, it’s how the Americans treat time differently compared to the Chinese. “I believe Americans value time very deeply. And the way Chinese treat time is quite different from Americans. Chinese people like to look back.  They pay special attention to the history but Americans, in my opinion, they look forward to the future. They like to make plans. They stick to their schedules. But Chinese people they’re like, well, you can make a plan but plans can change, so we don’t like to set schedules and I think that’s what we need to learn. That’s what I learned here and I think that’s very good,” she said.

Spitzer Center hosts debate on Issue 2

Matt Gergely


As the cold winds of autumn approaches, Lorain County Community College students and all registered voters across Ohio will head to the voting booth.  Perhaps the most infamous decision on the ballot this year is Issue 2: The Drug Price Standards Initiative.  In order to provide an informative discussion about Issue 2, the Lorain County Democratic Party hosted a public forum at the Spitzer Conference Hall on Oct. 25; a couple of weeks before election day.

  Issue 2 has made a splash on the political scene since it was officially approved for the ballot on Sept. 30.

    Polls conducted by SurveyUSA found about 54 percent of Ohioans are still undecided about the issue compared to the 30 percent for and 15 percent against. This indecisiveness has led the Lorain County Democratic Party to host a public forum to allow the public to be informed about both sides of the issue. Unfortunately, the speaker for the “No” side was unable to make the forum, but that didn’t stop voters from learning about both sides of Issue 2.

   The forum was moderated by the Director of the Lorain County Board of Elections and Lorain City Democrat Chairman Paul Adams. The speaker for the “Yes” side of the ballot was Derek Barnett, a consultant of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation located in Cleveland. With no speaker for the “No” side present, a member of the Lorain County Democrats read the official statement of the “No” campaign submitted to the Ohio Secretary of State.

   Barnett spoke for about 90 minutes and answered many questions from concerned voters ranging from the impact of the issue on Ohioans who aren’t covered by state insurance to the legal defense of the initiative’s sponsors.

Barnett was asked questions from both sides of the issue but was successful in answering and informing voters about an important issue that can affect as many as 4 out of 10 Ohioans.

For those who are interested in learning more about state Issue 2, log on to yesonissue2.com for the “Yes” campaign and noonissue2.org for the “No” campaign.

Cross country wins regional championship

Mark Perez-Krywany

Sports Editor

Every runner on the Lorain County Community College women’s cross country team ran their season high in pursuit to win the NJCAA Division Region 12 Championship on October 28 advancing to the National Championship.

The men’s team finished the race in second place behind Columbus State. All but one of their runners recorded their season high. Jake Kelley, in the middle of the race had to run with their shoe untied, which is why he didn’t break his season best, according to head coach Jim Powers. The men’s team will also participate in the national meet.

“We’ve only had a full team twice since we came back in 2009,” said coach Powers. “The last time we had (a full women’s team) was in 2012 and the women’s team then, came in ninth in the country and we had an All-American runner coming fourth in the country.” He is referring to Hannah Weibel and she is currently the assistant coach for the teams.

The Commodores are not ranked nationally. Powers  believes they are under appreciated, because they are not a known team.

LCCC defeated three Division I teams at the meet in Lansing, Michigan. He also believes they have “a good shot to do well in nationals.”

“This is postseason … ,” he said. “Hopefully, our training has paid off and everybody is in the best of the year, they’re mentally focused, they’re into their routine and they are going to do their best at this time of the year as opposed to doing their best at the beginning of the year and it turned out that all of the women, all six women, six out of seven guys had their season best times. That’s how it should be.”

The Commodores have a long bus ride to the Division III  National Championship, which will be taken place at  Holyoke Community College in Massachusetts. The men and women’s teams will be participating in the event.

“They’re hungry,” he said.  “They are trying to do their best time of the year and that is all you can ask for.”