USG starts work on fall agenda

Posted on September 17, 2020Categories bmjvhkslTags , , , , , , , , , , ,   Leave a comment on USG starts work on fall agenda

first_imgThe Undergraduate Student Government began work on many campus initiatives by meeting with administrators over the summer to kick off several of its school-year projects.President Chris Cheng and Vice President Nehi Ogbevoen are setting out to make several improvements on campus and improve relations between USG and important departments within the university.“A lot of relationships [with] some of the administrators had been lost in the last year or two. It was a big goal for us to build those again,” Cheng said. “It helped us prioritize what we want to do and we wanted to find out what kinds of goals [the university] wanted.”These meetings led to several campus improvements already underway this summer, including  the addition of  bike racks and a bike parking lot near Parking Structure B.Cheng said the bike parking lot, which he said should be completed by the end of the summer, will provide students with an area for safe overnight parking.“That was a common goal between us,” Cheng said. “[The administration] doesn’t want the bikes kind of free-roaming.”USG will also provide a monthly trips for students to venture off campus, inspired by the success of the L.A. Live tram — a project undertaken by last year’s administration.“It’s nice to get somewhere around L.A. without having to borrow a car,” Ogbevoen said. “In October we’re going to Manhattan Beach. Once we told auxiliary affairs, they responded well.”Ogbevoen said the implementation of the tram project was another example of why it was important for USG to communicate with university administrators.“The advice we got from the administration was to start early,” Ogbevoen said.The work has just begun, however, and USG still has plenty of issues to work through going into the school year. A $1 rise in the student programming fee, intended to cover a budget shortfall that was discovered last spring, has yet to be confirmed by the USC Board of Trustees.“We actually created two budgets … We’re definitely ready for both scenarios,” Cheng said. “If we are fortunate enough to get that extra money. It will go directly to the funds that influence students the most.”Cheng and Ogbevoen also began research on many issues they plan to begin dealing with at the beginning of the school year.Among these is an improvement to the Lyon Center, a mission that previous USG administrations have undertaken. To get an idea of what changes they’d like to see at the Lyon Center, Ogbevoen and Cheng visited recreation centers at other universities.“There was just more space — you can tell that they designed the building for students,” Ogbevoen said of the recreation center at Cal State Fullerton.Overall, Ogbevoen and Cheng said they felt the summer was a success and are prepared going into the school year.“I think the biggest advantage we had was meeting with all the administrators and getting advice from them,” Ogbevoen said. “All of them had a lot of input.”last_img read more

Melissa Piacentini finds comfort on ice at Syracuse

Posted on September 16, 2020Categories bfymlamyTags , , , , , , , , , , ,   Leave a comment on Melissa Piacentini finds comfort on ice at Syracuse

first_imgNicole Renault was getting ready to go to sleep. She turned off her lights in her room and began to climb into her bed. Then she noticed the lights flickering in the living room of her South Campus apartment.It was Renault’s new roommate who was flipping the light switch up and down. She wasn’t making a great first impression on Renault.“I didn’t know her at the time,” Renault said. “It was my second night here.”But later that week, her roommate, Melissa Piacentini, told Renault she has Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Four years later, Piacentini is Syracuse’s all-time leader in points (112), goals (53) and assists (59).A few weeks ago, Piacentini was procrastinating on an essay. Instead of writing the essay, she wrote about living with OCD instead. She posted it on a blog called “Tini’s Thoughts.” Since then, she’s gotten feedback from people she knows and people she doesn’t. Family and friends. Teammates, too.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textHer hockey career is wrapping up as SU begins the College Hockey America tournament on Friday, when the Orange will face Penn State in the semifinals. But when the Orange’s season finishes, whether in the conference or NCAA tournament, Piacentini will lose a sport that’s helped her curb her anxiety disorder.“The sport of ice hockey has been a way for me to control my OCD,” Piacentini wrote. “It’s been a gateway to escape reality. Anyone who plays the game knows exactly what I’m talking about — the game helps escape reality.”She first began developing symptoms in her sophomore year of high school, long after she began playing hockey as a 4-year-old. Piacentini would play with her lights at home. She would constantly turn on her house’s faucets. She would open doors and immediately close them. She began hopping over lines on her floor.What were once unnoticeable objects became immovable obstacles for Piacentini, who would spend up to half an hour managing her compulsions.“If there’s a rug and a hardwood floor, that really throws me off,” Piacentini said. “I don’t like those.”Her older brother, Rob, also had OCD that caused him to perfectly align the family’s shoes and welcome mat at their front door. But Piacentini’s parents say her compulsions were worse than Rob’s. Tony Piacentini, her father, said she seemed superstitious and like she was in a trance when she started developing her compulsions.Fortunately for Piacentini, her anxiety disorder has never affected her on the ice. In her new blog, titled “Tini’s Thoughts,” she wrote that the sport alleviates her anxiety that she experiences every day.Piacentini can’t help but to pay attention to the game while she’s on the ice. The sport’s fast play controls her thoughts and reactions as the puck could carom in any direction in an instant. Piacentini says she’s always ready for the puck to fall right in front of her stick.“Your mind is always being taken over by what’s happening in the play,” Piacentini said. “You never really know what’s going to happen. That instantaneous, on-the-spot thinking is what I like best about it.”Her OCD does affect her in the game’s down moments. She occasionally has to squirt her water bottle while on the bench. She straps, un-straps, and re-straps her helmet back together. Sometimes, she has to use a specific puck in practice.But her teammates, including Renault, say they’ve never seen it affect her in-game. And because most people don’t notice it, she’s not self-conscious about it. Head coach Paul Flanagan said he didn’t even know about Piacentini’s disorder until her sophomore year.Moriah Ratner | Staff Photographer“Somebody told me,” Flanagan said, “… I guess those are things you’re supposed to ask kids now.”In her blog, Piacentini also wrote about her team’s policy of leaving their shoes and cell phones outside Syracuse’s locker room at Tennity Ice Pavilion. The shoe policy is meant to prevent salt intended for snow removal to affect the players’ skates. The cell phone policy is designed to prevent distractions from the team.To Piacentini, leaving her shoes and cell phone outside the locker room is similar to leaving her OCD outside of her body, she wrote in her blog. Piacentini added that she knows she can’t get rid of her disorder, but she can ease it by occupying her mind.Inside SU’s weight room are sayings posted on the wall. There’s an area in between years listed where a dash should connect the two numbers. But that dash is missing. Flanagan and Piacentini both noticed it one day.“‘That bothers me,’” Flanagan recalls Piacentini saying. “And every time I look up there, I think, I gotta get that fixed for her. Because I don’t want it to bother her.”Flanagan has called someone to add the dash and has thought about fixing the error by drawing it with a blue marker.But next year, Piacentini’s issues can’t be solved with a simple dash. Next year, Piacentini won’t have a locker room to leave her shoes outside of and her cell phone behind. She won’t have her “release” in hockey. She will still have OCD, which she calls “a powerful existence” in her life.Piacentini isn’t sure what her next solution is. She’s heard of others replacing hockey with golf or tennis. She admits neither has hockey’s intensity.“The game takes over my mind,” Piacentini wrote in her blog. “And for that — I’m forever grateful.”By the end of March, hockey will stop. Her coping mechanism will be gone. And although she’s confident she’ll find something to help her cope with OCD, it will continue. Comments Published on March 1, 2016 at 11:11 pm Contact Chris: cfthomse@syr.edu Related Stories Melissa Piacentini hopes to cement legacy with Syracuse in final seasoncenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more