Weekly Horoscope 1/23/2023


Aries (March 21st-April 19th)

The feeling of wanting more from those around you has been at full circle. You have been craving the attention of the peers and loved ones around you and it almost never feels like enough. 

Taurus (April 20th-May 20th)

Financial stability has been in a complicated and deep spiral and has full intentions on continuing. Keep calm and know that the place that you are in your life is not permanent. 

Gemini (May 21st-June 20th)

Knowledge is going to be the key towards the end of this week. Creative problem solving is coming your way fast. The stress and wondering that has been flooding your mind will be resolved with peace. 

Cancer (June 21st-July 22nd)

Cancer has always been known to have a drive to work hard for what they want in life. Understand that your desire for control can be extremely rewarding for yourself, but you cannot always control the ideas of others around you. 

Leo (July 23rd-August 22nd)

Love is on your mind more than usual. Your lustful thinking towards possible matches that float around you has you been in constant struggle. Know that keeping your standards high is important no matter what people tell you otherwise. 

Virgo (August 23rd- September 22nd)

Virgo has been multitasking and juggling different aspects of your life. Although you care fully capable of doing difficult tasks, be aware of placing too much on your plate. Now is a good time to recognize what your limits are. 

Libra (September 23rd- October 22nd)

You are in desperate need of relaxation. Meditation of some sorts may be a new hobby to try out. The key for this week and towards the weekend is to focus on yourself and your own needs. 

Scorpio (October 23rd-November 21st)

Negative comments have been made your way and are taking control of your emotions. Know that sometimes good people do bad things and that we are all human. 

Sagittarius (November 22nd- December 21st)

Be prepared for a constant stream of luck coming your way. At the end of this week and into the next week you will be filled with situations of being in the right place at the right time. 

Capricorn (December 22nd- January 19th)

Capricorn is always good at seeing the world for at it is. However, be careful towards putting negative ideas into your own head. Focus on giving credit to those and the beauty around you. 

Aquarius (January 20th- February 18th)

Change has always been a scary concept for you to conceptualize. Now is the time for you to start to feel a relaxing feeling towards change and start to realize that not all change is bad. 

Pisces (February 19th- March 20th)

Pisces has been in a constant struggle with relationships lately. Your obsession with wanting to please and be kind to everyone is taking a toll on you. Your empathetic personality is at the front and prevents you from doing what is best for you. 

Alma College basketball update




Out with the old and in with the new. Scots, it’s time for some basketball. Now that football – with its season full of victories – is over, the time has come to focus on the triumphs of Alma College basketball. 

The Alma College Men’s Basketball team has had many personal victories, as well as team victories. So far this season, they have faced tough competition while winning four games and losing ten games. 

“We are still figuring things out and learning what works and what doesn’t. We have a lot of potential though, and I am hopeful that we will begin to turn things around during the rest of the season,” said Colton Meister (‘24)

In a significant game against Grace Christian, where Alma College ended the victorious game in triple digits for the first time since 2017, Landen Moore-Pierce (‘23) set a new program record for single game threes. 

In this game, Moore-Pierce put up nine three pointers. This topped the previous record belonging to Isiah Law of eight threes in a single game from 2017 . 

Additionally, Meister notably tied the Men’s Basketball program record for single game blocks in their game against Otterbein. Meister tied the 2007 record of seven blocks in a single game. This record was last tied in 2015 but has continued to stand for about 16 years. “It felt good to tie the record. I was surprised after the game when they told me,” said Meister.

“It is crazy to see all these records being tied or broken. Alma hasn’t always had the most athletic recognition in the MIAA, but since football season we can all… see that changing,” said Cole Pearson (‘25)

“From the perspective of a student-athlete in a different sport, it has been really cool to see the support the basketball team is getting this year and I hope it will carry over to lacrosse and other sports too,” said Pearson. 

Inner-sport support from multiple teams has been on the rise at Alma, and it has been especially evident this basketball season. For instance, the Alma College Swim and Dive team recently supported the men’s basketball team at Olivet College. 

Although the game did not end in Alma’s favor, “it was really cool to be able to go and support our men’s basketball team at Olivet. I was really able to see how they worked as a team, even when the game wasn’t going their way,” said Matthew Arrigoni (‘24)

With National Girls and Women in Sports Day around the corner on Feb. 1, it is very fitting to recognize and celebrate the successes and achievements of the Alma College Women’s Basketball team, too. 

The Women’s Basketball team recently defeated the Olivet College Comets on Jan. 14 with a final score of 73 points over Olivet’s 62 points. 

“Basketball season has been full of competition, and I am really looking forward to the conference tournament,” said Madison Robbins (‘23), a senior basketball player for the Alma College Women’s team. The conference tournament will conclude the 2022-2023 season.

The Women’s Basketball team also recently visited the Nike World Headquarters with Ed Osowski, an Alma College alum and Board of Trustee member. 

“Visiting the Nike Headquarters was very inspiring. We were able to see how hard work in athletics pays off, whether that be on the court or off,” said Robbins. 

Finally, the basketball games would not be the same without the Alma College Spirit Squad or the Alma College Dance Team. At this season’s home games, what players and students are most excited for, “the atmosphere in [the Art Smith Arena has been] so energetic,” said Robbins. 

“I think the games are always really fun no matter the outcome. We’re all there to cheer on the basketball teams and help everyone have a great time and get pumped up,” said Anika Ried (‘23), a member of the Alma College Dance Team. 

Be sure to attend the coming Alma College basketball games to see the Scots in action as they take on their next tough competitors. For more information on the rest of this year’s highlights visit the Alma Scots’ website.

New membership system at Stone Rec Center



New year, new upgrades. The start of the year marked the arrival of a new membership system for the Stone Recreation Center. This system, RecDesk, will provide a digital platform for scheduling, programs and membership information. 

“The reason we switched to this is because… it gives us more functionality with memberships on the backend like getting more information from our members and … also allows us to send bulk emails [and] text messages,” said Dahmir Noel, Assistant Athletic Director for Recreation and Facilities at Alma College. 

One of the key features of this new platform is the digital calendar option. “Without even being logged in it shows you which courts are being used, when the rock wall is open, when the pool is open, when intramurals are happening [and] all of those different things,” said Noel. 

If you like working out at slower times or are interested in using a specific space within the recreation center, RecDesk may be a positive addition for you. “Now you’re not just showing up, you can check it,” said Noel. 

It is important to remember there is often an adjustment period when adopting new systems. Students, faculty, staff and community members are all working to get their memberships set up properly.

“There [have] been some challenges, but right now we’re starting to really see that more and more people are getting on there and know what they are doing with the system,” said Noel. 

“The only [issue] I ran into with the new member system was not being informed that there was one. I showed up to work out one day and they told me I had to make a new account,” said Sawyer Hill (‘23)

It can be challenging to adjust to change, however, once you set your membership up there shouldn’t be much of a difference for you. “You’re still checking in the same way… The only difference now… is we put more on the consumer to do a lot of the setup on the front end,” said Noel. 

For students, faculty and staff, this membership is still free. “If you enroll in the proper membership, you should get it for four years,” said Noel. 

RecDesk also offers ease with renewal. “It tells you when you’re about to expire [and] all you have to do is enroll again,” said Noel. 

Fitness classes will continue this semester with some possible new additions. These classes are free to students, faculty and staff and require minimal commitment with no signup required.

This semester, the classes offered are Power Hour/HIIT with Tessa from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesdays, Cardio Drumming with Tincy from 5:15 p.m. to 6:15 p.m. on Wednesdays and Gentle Yoga with Shana 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. on Thursdays. 

“We’re going to try to get some of our older community members who play pickleball a lot in here to potentially offer a class for beginners,” said Noel. This would be a great opportunity for campus and community connections not previously available. 

Club sports could be another addition to the recreation services on campus in the future. A club sports survey has been released on social media to gauge interest in this. 

“We’re attacking this from a perspective of being as inclusive as we can be. We don’t want to say, ‘Oh, this sport works at Adrien or Albion so let’s just bring it here.’ We want to figure out what people really want and then if it’s feasible to do,” said Noel. 

It’s important the addition fits our campus culture and will be appreciated by the students. “The last thing you want, too, is to create a club and [then] no one really cares about it… A club is supposed to be students–for the students, by the students,” said Noel.

Follow @almacollegerec on Instagram to get updates and engage with their discussions. Students can access RecDesk, the fitness class schedule and more information about campus recreation here: https://www. alma.edu/campus-recreation/.

Sean Burke named new Alma College Provost



On Dec. 14, 2022, Alma College announced that effective Jun. 1, 2023 Dr. Sean Burke will be the new Provost and Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs at the College.

The announcement came after a months-long search that saw many different candidates apply for the position. The application process included meetings with both faculty and students on campus as well as receiving a campus tour.

Currently Burke is an Associate Professor of Religious Studies as well as an Associate Provost at Luther College, a liberal arts college located in Decorah, Iowa. He has also served as a professor at the college since 2007. 

Burke will replace the outgoing interim Provost Dr. Jamie Diels who has held the position for the duration of the 2022-23 academic year. Dr. Diels will be returning to her previous position as Associate Professor of Communications following her tenure in the role. 

One of the focuses Alma College has set forth to set itself apart from other colleges and universities is its unique approach to education by coupling both traditional in the classroom learning with experiential study. Much of that approach starts with the provost. 

“I am drawn to a specific kind of education that combines foundation in the liberal arts with attention to vocation [including] both how you prepare for work but also how you prepare for being intentional about the rest of your life,” said Burke.

The Provost is an important position at Alma College because they are the individuals who ultimately decide which classes are offered at the college. In addition, they also make important decisions such as which programs are added and cut each academic year. 

The provost’s office is located on the first floor of SAC closest to the Learning Commons. Their hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. 

Students can utilize the office for various academic related inquiries including things related to completion of their major or minor, course scheduling, and credit bearing internships. The office also helps professors when developing course schedules for upcoming semesters as well as developing major tracts. 

Some of the more recent programs to have been added at Alma College include the addition of an engineering major as well as the addition of two graduate programs. The first graduate program added was a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative writing and the second was a Masters of Science in Communication and Technology.

“Are there majors that could be reimagined, are there maybe some that [are not] drawing as many students as they used to, but could if they were reimagined,” asked Burke in response to what programs he saw being worked on in the future. 

Alma College has cut multiple majors within the last few years including Anthropology, Religious Studies, French, and German, citing a lack of interest in the programs.

Dr. Burke also said he hopes to look into adding programs that would help students who are transferring in with some previous college credit but have not yet completed their undergraduate degrees. 

Alma College has sought to create a more welcoming environment for transfer students within the last few years including offering competitive scholarships and creating a transfer-specific living learning community.

One of the first things Burke hopes to work on during his first six months in the position is connecting with students and becoming a part of Alma College’s campus community. 

“One of my priorities is to be a presence whether at Student Congress, athletic events, or other things to just really focus on connecting with students,” said Burke.

Mixed feelings on new FYS curriculum



For the 2022-23 academic year, Alma College decided to change the First Year Seminar curriculum in hopes of a more engaging course that develops critical thinking and communication skills inside and outside of the classroom. 

FYS is an introduction-to-college class that focuses on setting first-year students up for success at Alma College and allows them to explore topics beyond their major. But after last semester’s section, many students are left questioning whether this was truly accomplished or not. 

“It didn’t feel like [our discussions] had a direction sometimes and that was a little frustrating. [I wish] there was more of a point to the end of the semester, …like one big takeaway,” said first-year student Ella Cusack (‘26)

Students like Cusack note how there were many topics crammed into one class, making it seem unorganized at times and lacking a final purpose that most other classes have. 

Natashia Swalve, Associate Professor and Chair of Psychology and Sociology, Interim Associate Provost and FYS Director, is part of the committee tasked with structuring FYS. This year “it was set up to be one single class with the theme of ‘college in the good life,” said Swalve. 

According to Swalve, “this year there were a lot of transitions…the previous person in charge ended up leaving and we had to last minute take over everything which meant that the vision wasn’t really fully able to be seen through the semester and that probably didn’t lead to as much success as we would have hoped,” said Swalve. 

As a first-year student myself, I experienced the flaws firsthand. The course primarily focused on reading and response type assignments with several reflection pieces throughout the semester. Much of the content felt thrown together which made it difficult to find a common theme for the course. 

Additionally, the initial rubric for writing assignments made it near impossible to get a perfect score, or anywhere close for the matter. Instead of developing writing skills it pressured students to write under rigorous guidelines with little room for leeway.

Despite its flaws, some students still believe that FYS was a beneficial course overall. 

“I liked when we would have people come in through different departments and explain things to us … [like] how to rent a computer or check out books at the library and stuff like that,” said Noah Murphy (‘26)

Like many other students, Murphy felt it was helpful when the course focused on the integration of first-year students into Alma and college life in general. FYS made him more “comfortable” in navigating the transition from high school to college.

Another thing students liked about FYS was how it connected them to others in their year that they would not have gotten to know otherwise. 

“I liked getting to meet different people in my grade,” said Cusack. “In my class we did a lot of ‘Socratic discussion’ where we put our chairs in a circle, so we got familiar with each other really fast.”

Swalve is hoping to get feedback from this year’s FYS students in order to improve the course for future students. She held two FYS focus groups on Jan. 17 and 18 for students to share “the good, the bad, and the ugly.” 

“What we’re doing is trying to …hear from you all in terms of …what things you hated, what things you actually enjoyed, what you want more of and what things you want less of,” said Swalve. 

The college already has some ideas on how to alter the curriculum, like “involving a community engaged learning aspect” and “more skill building activities so it’s not as much learning how to write based on a reading but learning how to take a test or give a presentation,” said Swalve.

If you missed the focus groups and would like to share your opinions on FYS, Swalve emailed out a survey for feedback.

The trouble with Metz



Ever since Metz Culinary Management took over as Alma’s dining vendor this fall, some students have been hoping for massive improvements from Sodexo’s subpar food and services. Unfortunately for the student body, Alma’s campus has been left with few food options and few improvements have been seen. 

“In this industry, it takes time to transition between contractors,” said Micah Braman, General Manager of the Food Service Management Team at Alma. 

This transition has been difficult for some students because of the unpredictability of the quality of food and what’s being offered. 

Part of the issue with Metz has been a lack of food choices both in Hamilton Commons and in Joe’s. After Joe’s old location was shut down due to plumbing issues, Metz had to quickly turn around and open a temporary location in the Thistle Room to accommodate students’ needs.

Despite this temporary location being opened so quickly, the lack of products in the store left students with little more than snacks and drinks to spend their Munch Money on. In Joe’s previous location, there was a variety of options available including simple grocery items, snacks and drinks. 

“We’re struggling with, as the industry is, trying to find consistent products,” said Braman. Due to supply chain issues from Metz’s distributors, products like the grocery items in old Joe’s are harder to order and keep on the shelves. 

I’m understanding of supply issues and how it leaves the Alma College Food Management Team with few options, but it’s difficult as a student to understand these struggles when we have gone through multiple semesters with few food options.

Also, while understanding why Joe’s is so limited in its merchandise, it has left those on the senior meal plan without many other options besides light snacks and candy. Even then, switching back to the 210 meal plan isn’t feasible for many students given the reduced meal options in Hamilton Commons. 

“If I’m being honest, the quality of food isn’t fantastic,” said Faron Grossman (‘24). Although Alma students were told there would be an increase in [the] quality and variety of food, Metz hasn’t been able to deliver. “They both seemed really bad [at] the moment,” said Grossman when asked to compare Metz to Sodexo. 

“I’m vegetarian and can’t eat meat. When I go to get vegetables, half of the time they’re just dripping in oil,” said Grossman. A regular meal plan at Alma costs $2,900, and yet many students are struggling to find safe and healthy meals at the only place that serves hot meals on campus. 

“There was one time earlier this semester when we got lettuce from the salad bar and there were worms in it. Not just a few, it was teeming with worms,” said Grossman. This seems to have happened more than once, as videos have been uploaded to Yik Yak and shared over social media at least twice throughout the last semester.

Hopefully, with the opening of the new Joe’s-esque store in the Learning Commons, students will go back to having a variety of meal options and having more control over what they eat. However, we’ll have to wait until March 6 for this new location to officially open.

American Teacher Act first step towards fair pay



On Dec. 14, 2022, a new act was introduced in the United States Congress by Representative Frederica Wilson, a Democrat from Florida. 

The American Teacher Act, which was referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor, promotes the increase of wages for American teachers. The legislation was also drafted by the nonprofit organization, Teacher Salary Project, which strives to assist teachers in becoming financially viable. 

This act is a response to the current nationwide teacher shortage and decreasing morale of educators. If passed, the American Teacher Act could lead to an income of $60,000 a year. This is about a $20,000 increase from what public school educators are typically paid. 

“Having a minimum wage of $60,000 is just the beginning of paying teachers what they are worth. Teachers are critical to our nation’s future,” said Dr. Peggy Yates who serves as an Assistant Professor and Director of Special Education Teacher Preparation at Alma College. 

Dr. Yates has 25 years of teaching experience and acts as Vice President of the Alma Public School Board of Education. 

“Raising the base pay is a step in the right direction, but so much more can be done to promote the importance of the profession across the nation,” said Yates.

“Of course, doing something about the teacher shortage in our country is critical right now, and the American Teacher Act is an important step in creating a better future for teachers and students alike,” said Katie Rooney, an Alma College alumna who graduated in 2022. 

“Ultimately, I think the passing of the American Teacher Act would be a humongous leap forward in treating teachers like the invaluable humans they are,” said Rooney. Rooney also recently began her career as an elementary school teacher. 

“Education is power, and teachers place that into the hands of our country’s future citizens – parents, politicians, influencers, innovators, etc… We should be paying teachers a comfortable living wage at the very least, and there is no reason teachers should have another stressor on our already overfilling plates,” said Rooney. 

“As a second-year teacher, I make around $41,500 per year. I am constantly being told I am lucky to even make this much, while at the same time, I struggle to make ends meet and pay my bills,” said Jessica Headlee, a 2020 Alma College alum. 

“This is a huge reason why I have two other jobs on top of my job as a teacher. I face disparaging burnout, financial struggles, loss of family time and lack of sleep every day because my career simply does not pay teachers what we are worth,” said Headlee.

“ There is a huge disparity here as you can see. It is clear that teachers are not valued as professionals since we are hardly paid as such.” 

“Another benefit I hope for is that, if the American Teacher Act passes, hopefully, we will draw more qualified candidates into the field of teaching,” said Headlee. “I am aware of multiple teaching positions that have had to be filled by long-term substitute teachers. Is this really what is best for our students?”

“I think if this act were to pass, it would definitely shine [a] light on the profession and encourage people in America, especially college students, to consider going into teaching,” said Raegan Stambaugh (’23), an Alma College student in the process of her first semester as a student teacher.

“This bill would help to send a message and prove that teachers are a valued part of society,” said Stambaugh.

One thing many hope to see is how much further the income can be raised. “$60,000 will not go very far in bigger cities such as New York or San Francisco. It would be nice if they could even set the salary even higher,” said Stambaugh.

Whichever trajectory this new act will take, the surrounding conversation is certainly a step in the right direction.


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