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Spring 2020

Announcements on Title IX Investigations

Written by Devon Mitchell This past Tuesday, on November 17th, the report from the Title IX investigation was released. Following a Roanoke College alum’s public complaint on Instagram of how her Title IX case was mishandled by Dean Brian Chisom, an investigation into Roanoke College’s response to Title IX and the ways Dean Chisom handled cases was conducted. Over the last four months, a third-party investigator gathered reports from about 80 people in the RC community, reviewed Roanoke policy, and compiled this information into a report on all the findings. The college intended to release a report by the end of October, but due to the amount of information, this was delayed. In a detailed email sent to the Roanoke community, the college outlined what was found, recent actions taken, and future plans to avoid Title IX misconduct in the future. The email first outlined seven actions taken by the college based on the investigation’s report and recommendations by the Board of Trustees. First and most prominent, Dean Brian Chisom resigned as Dean of Students at Roanoke College. Associate Dean, Tom Rambo, was named interim Dean of Students. Additionally, the Interim Head Baseball Coach, Cam Cassady, is no longer at the college. The current interim Title IX coordinator, Aaron Fetrow, will remain in this position until a new coordinator is named. New actions to be taken in the upcoming year include, a new position, victim advocate, which the College hopes to fill by 2021, a survey conducted every three years by a third-party to ensure improvement and promotion of resources provided by Sexual Assault Response and Awareness (SARA). The email outlined additional actions the College will take such as forming an alumni advisory group comprising of professionals in the field of law and Title IX, more visibility for training offered…

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor Comes to Roanoke

Written by Devon Mitchell On Tuesday, November 10th, Roanoke College students had the opportunity to talk to Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Hosted by the Public Affairs department and the Turk Pre-Law Program, Justice Sotomayor answered questions from students about a multitude of topics including the late Justice Ginsburg, her experiences as a Latina on the nation’s highest court, and more. The programming began with Dr. Todd Peppers giving a few words of praise and gratitude to Sotomayor for taking time out of her busy schedule to speak with Roanoke students and staff. She began first by answering questions from students about Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Sotomayor gave nothing but positive affirmations for the late Justice and spoke of the power and wisdom Justice Ginsburg brought to the bench. Justice Sotomayor recalled one memory in particular after she was first confirmed. President Obama asked Justice Ginsburg if she was happy that he brought her another “sister” for the court. Sotomayor recalled RBG’s statement, “I’ll be happier still when I have eight sisters”. To conclude her statements about RBG, Justice Sotomayor spoke directly to the young women of Roanoke College. She expressed the need for gratitude. Sotomayor said, “All young women owe it to her (Justice Ginsburg) to be able to sit as equals to their male counterparts.” Next, Justice Sotomayor answered questions about her career in law and the experiences which shaped her. When asked if she had ever doubted herself, she recounted a time when she worked for a law firm and didn’t receive a full-time position after her time there. She said she felt embarrassed and questioned whether or not she was smart enough to pursue a career in law. This led her to the question of “what parts of failure are internal and external”. Upon further thought, instead…

Golf’s Downfall? Low Ratings for 2020 Masters

Written by Katherine Clatterbuck The 2020 Masters teed off on Thursday, November 12th at Augusta National Golf Club. Following its postponement in April due to the coronavirus, the November start date caused problems for the green and for the players. During the first round on Thursday, the golfers were met with harsh conditions and a rain-soaked green. This led to a delay in the first round, which the tournament overcame to finish by Sunday’s final round. As the Masters is usually held in the spring, fall weather, including low temperatures and rain, have not played a role in tournament delays. Another factor that affected this fall time Masters was the texture and height of the grass. The grass was noted to be a different thickness by players, a change attributed to the different time of year.  The reigning champion from the 2019 Masters Tournament, Tiger Woods, was met with many challenges this weekend. Unfortunately, Woods was met with a water ball on hole 12 that led to a score of 12. This followed a performance of 3 in his 2019 hole 12, leading him to the win in 2019. After a four day tournament, Dustin Johnson, a South Carolina native, was victorious in his first Masters win. Johnson broke the tournament’s record score of 270, which was held by Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth, in their 1997 and 2015 championships, respectively. Walking away with the prize money, Johnson celebrated with his fiancé and friends in the Caribbean.  Not everyone was celebrating, however, as there was obviously a missing aspect from this year’s event. With COVID-19 safety protocols, there were no fans allowed at the event which greatly limited the amount of noise and excitement on the television broadcast. Furthermore, the television viewership was at an all-time low, suggesting a lack…

The Best COVID-19 Friendly Friendsgiving

Written by Mia Shelton Pass the mash and gravy! Are you just dying to get home to finally get your hands on a home-cooked meal, see your friends, and just bask in the holiday air? Who isn’t? Thanksgiving is a great time to gather the ones you hold closest and have a grand ole feast. Gather your friends, put on your favorite party dress, and throw the best Friendsgiving in history. First, make sure everyone understands the importance of giving thanks. Don’t forget to always be thankful for what you have. Understand the weight of everything and know that it can all be taken away in a matter of minutes. This day serves as a great reminder to be thankful for what you have, remember and cherish the good that is in your life every day. When gathering your closest friends, assign something for each person to bring. Here is a list of the essentials: turkey, cranberry sauce, green beans, stuffing, mashed potatoes, dinner rolls, and corn. While most people our age probably don’t know how to cook a big turkey, a possible alternative could be turkey sandwiches. Don’t forget the pie! Now that everyone has food assignments, don’t forget the venue. Some COVID friendly options could be the park, a friend’s backyard, over video chat, or an empty parking lot- any place where it is possible to spread out and be safe. Throw in some blankets in case it gets chilly! The next step is what you will wear. Now, it is important to show up in your best dressed to drop jaws, but comfort is a key factor in this Friendsgiving equation. Like most people, this is the day to stuff your face. Try and find some cozy matching pajamas that the whole crew can sport. Add your…

How to Celebrate the Semester’s End

Written by Zach “the End is Only the Beginning” Dalton  Here we are, Maroons. The end of the semester. I mention in my opinion piece how difficult the semester has been so I will not get into that too much here, but let’s just say the end of the semester calls for celebration. Here are some safe ways to celebrate!  Do a little photoshoot! Most everyone has a phone with some sort of camera in it. Go out and around campus and do a photoshoot with your friends! This is a great way to celebrate each other and the bond you formed over the semester. Have a Friends-giving! This was introduced to me by the Brackety-Ack staff themselves. Pick a date and time and have all of your friends get together. Everyone should bring their own dish and drinks and you can enjoy a college Thanksgiving. If someone has already left or can’t make it, do it over Zoom as well so everyone can enjoy it! Go for a hike! Get together with your group and drive up towards Macaffee’s Knob or Sawtooth Trail and go take in nature. Once you get to the top, enjoy the view with everyone and maybe just sit and talk with each other because you won’t be seeing each other for a couple of months.  A gift exchange! This one is good to knock out two birds with one stone. Here you can all get together and hangout, but at some point start a gift exchange. This could be anything from a Secret Santa or White Elephant. A personal favorite of mine is wrapping a box up multiple times. Play music and whenever the song stops the person unwraps the gift. Whatever number they get is the present they unwrap. Make it interesting by…

A Crack in the Glass Ceiling

Written by Alexis Barton This week, the Miami Marlins made history as they hired Kim Ng, the first female General Manager in the history of any men’s professional sports league in North America. After a successful career, breaking history along the way with 3 other MLB franchises, Ng interviewed for a number of other GM positions with other franchises before landing with the Marlins. With plenty of major league experience, most recently as the Assistant General Manager for the New York Yankees, she is now tasked with leading the team through some major transitions with CEO Derek Jeter. After missing the playoffs for 16 seasons, the Marlins were able to win their wild card series against the Chicago Cubs before being swept by the Atlanta Braves. The challenge for Ng now is paving the way for women in the sports industry while leading her franchise to long-term success.  The Marlins are not alone in their efforts to allow greater opportunities for women in the sports industry. During the World Series between Tampa Bay Rays and Los Angeles Dodgers, Jessica Mendoza made history with ESPN by being the first woman to serve as a national World Series game analyst on a major media platform. Mendoza’s presence in radio coverage shows the slow, but meaningful progress that has been made in professional baseball specifically. In addition to analysts like Mendoza showing a positive change, the MLB has also created a new position with the sole purpose of creating an inclusive environment for women and people of color. In August, commissioner Rob Manfred announced that Michele Meyer-Schipp would be the new Chief People and Culture Officer for the league. This decision came after the MLB’s poor ratings in diversity within their players, front offices, and other workplace operations. This role should create more…

A Little Spring in Your Semester

Written by Zach “We’re Almost There” Dalton The Fall Semester is coming to an end. I have mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again, this semester was a challenge to say the least. It was filled with uncertainty from week to week, but in the end, it all came together. Roanoke College has already announced its plans for the spring semester moving forward, but a lot could change. The following is my prediction on what will happen in the next coming months. Depending on how I do guessing, this article will either age very nicely and we will all be pleasantly surprised…or it will age poorly and I will be booed and hissed at like never before. So here it goes. As of now, Roanoke plans to move forward with the semester as a hybrid form. This means classes will be held both in-person and online simultaneously and at the professors’ discretion. The college will focus on maintaining that plan. This may mean something similar to the start of the fall semester in which there was a staggering move. Once everyone is on campus there will be a week of online courses then the hybrids will begin. This move will also help keep the number of cases to the bare minimum. Along with hybrid forms, sports will also begin to resume their seasons. This became more and more likely especially since the ODAC announced their full plans for the next semester. I believe this will lead to a slight spike in cases due to the constant interactions between other schools and athletes. I do not see this being enough to switch to online only. The most important thing, however, is for you all to be smart over the break. The holiday season is definitely something to be excited for…

How to Secure Your “Holidate” Via Online Dating Apps

Written by Kaelyn Spickler Netflix recently released Holidate where a woman, bitter about being single for the holidays, runs into a man who is tired of “crazy women” forcing him to tag along too soon to family events during the holidays. The two make a pact to be each other’s “holidate”- AKA someone to accompany them on holidays without any string attached. If you are looking to secure your own holidate, or just someone to message you while home for the holidays, online dating will be your safest option due to COVID-19. That means the first step is to download those dating apps- Tinder, Bumble, etc.    If you are taking the Tinder route, click here, to make sure you are not hindering your Tinder.    If you are taking the Bumble route, keep reading! Here are the Bumble basics: the women must message the men first (nerve-wracking for the women, but easy for the men), and it must be done within 24 hours of matching (even more nerve-wracking). Then, the men have 24 hours to respond or else the match will disappear as if it never happened.  Conversation starter tips for the women: Pay attention to their photos or additional information included in the bio to see if you have any common interests. One thing about Bumble is that there are a lot of options to see if you have any similarities with these potential matches before the conversation even begins. If you notice some similarities, start the conversation there. Go to topics that would be about sports or music.  Test out your cheesiest (or best) pick up line. Maybe you’ve had some good lines directed at you from your Tinder matches or DMs that made you laugh, roll your eyes, and/or cringe. Now’s your turn to see how…

NBA Offseason Heats Up with Draft and New Start Date

Written by Katherine Clatterbuck Following the Lakers’ triumphant season, the NBA is working towards the next season as the December 22nd start date gets closer and closer. Before the announcement, many players, including stars like Lebron James, had pushed for a January 18th start date. This date was requested in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, as a show of respect and honor for the societal changes being promoted by many NBA players. This request from players was rejected as the NBA’s financial and business concerns led to the preparation for the earlier start. The earlier start date also meant a shift in another important date in the NBA season: the draft. On November 18th, the Minnesota Timberwolves, Golden State Warriors, and Charlotte Hornets had the top three picks. Anthony Edwards from the University of Georgia was the first overall pick, going to the Minnesota Timberwolves. LaMelo Ball was the third draft pick, going to the Charlotte Hornets. Ball now joins his brother in the professional leagues, Lonzo Ball, who is a point guard for the New Orleans Pelicans.  Prior to and following the draft, trades took place all across the league. Chris Paul was traded to the Phoenix Suns from Oklahoma City Thunder, followed by Jrue Holiday, who was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks from the New Orleans Pelicans. Another important trade has been rumored via Twitter, as James Harden publicized the teams he wishes to be traded to, including the Brooklyn Nets. A trade to the Brooklyn Nets would set the Nets up for a productive season, as Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving both reside on the team. This trio is predicted to be successful as they each exhibit the strengths of great teammates.  With training camp near the beginning of December, the league’s 30 teams are…

Lyrical Deep Dive: Picture of My Dress

Written by Devon Mitchell Recently a new band has come across my desk. The Mountain Goats, an indie rock/folk band first formed in the early 90s, was introduced to me by my good friend Kristi. While driving to get coffee, an interesting Mountain Goat’s song came on Kristi’s queue entitled, “Picture of My Dress”.   My introduction to the Mountain Goats has been plaguing my thoughts for far too long, as I have been trying to interpret the bizarre lyrics of “Picture of My Dress”. Upon the first listen, they make no sense. The narrator of the song first talks of meeting “somebody’s grandma” at a truck stop in New Mexico. It is at this truck stop we first get a picture of the narrator’s dress with skinny white shoulder straps. In the next verse, the narrator describes being in a “Dallas Texas Burger King” while eating a crispy chicken club with extra mayonnaise in the parking lot. Strange, right? To procrastinate studying for finals, I began conducting research as to what these lyrics mean. What you will continue to read is my humble analysis.   The story mentioned in the above paragraph is only the first half of the song. The second half is a little clearer, talking about only wearing this dress one time, specifically nine years ago. Then some metaphorical language wondering when the narrator will be set free. From these last couple of verses, I gathered the narrator is a divorced woman. The dress she is talking about is her skinny white strapped wedding dress which she only wore once. But what does everything else mean and why is she taking pictures in her wedding dress? This is where the research comes in.   Two years ago, in December 2018, poet Maggie Smith tweeted, “photo essay that won’t happen:…