The Chronicle’s top ten news stories in 2016

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The Chronicle’s top ten news stories in 2016

Sarah Doiron

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There have been a variety of events and changes that have occurred at Quinnipiac over the past year. With 2016 coming to a close, The Chronicle gathered the top 10 news stories of the year. 

10) Residential Life alters hiring process for RAs and CAs

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The Department of Residential Life will no longer hire graduate students to be Residential Assistants (RAs) or Community Assistants (CAs) for the 2017-2018 academic year. In previous years, graduate students could apply to be an RA or a CA. Director of Residential Life Mark DeVilbiss said this new rule will be effective for the hiring of new RAs and CAs, and current graduate students who are RAs or CAs will be eligible for rehire for one more year. Residential Life decided on this policy because it will provide more undergraduate students opportunities to fill these roles and to also provide more space on campus for undergraduate students due to the growing class sizes in recent years, according to DeVilbiss.

9) Hamden approves construction of new athletic fields

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The Hamden Planning and Zoning Commission approved Quinnipiac’s plan to build two new athletic fields prior to the 2016-2017 school year. Construction is underway to create a stadium turf field for men’s and women’s soccer and lacrosse, fully equipped with seating, locker rooms and storage spaces for the teams. The university also plans to build a new field for the field hockey teams pending the approval by Hamden. The university plans to complete this project by fall 2017.

8) Celebrating the life of Jackie Gray

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Sophomore Jacqueline Gray passed away on July 4 from injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident. Gray was a psychology major and a member of the Quinnipiac IceCats. In her memory, sophomore Cameron Burbank created a GoFundMe page in order to fund the creation of a memorial bench to be placed at the top of the Sleeping Giant State Park’s Tower Trail. The bench was unveiled on Oct. 8 and any extra money from fundraising went to Gray’s family. On Nov. 5, Gray’s former roommates hosted “A Celebration of Life,” which was an event to honor Gray’s memory. All of the university’s spirit groups performed at the event with dances choreographed to some of Gray’s favorite songs.

7) QTHON exceeds fundraising goal

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QTHON broke their record in 2016 on March 5, when they revealed that students raised $115,685.13 for the Children’s Miracle Network and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. This was the fifth annual QTHON event, and the money raised surpassed the organizers’ goal of $75,000. The 24-hour dance marathon took place in Burt Kahn court and more than 900 people danced the night away and participated in activities and events.

6) Chartwells revamps Café Q

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After conducting multiple focus groups in the spring semester, Chartwells renovated Café Q on the Mount Carmel campus to include more dining options for students. These changes include the addition of a G8 station for people avoiding allergens; Pollo, which offers a variety of dishes with chicken; the Rosse Ville station, which serves calzones, strombolis and hot Italian sandwiches; a smoothie station; Sono Latin American Cuisine and Create Global that serves food from different cultures. In addition to the new stations, Chartwells also extended the Café Q hours until 8 p.m. on weekdays.

5) University unveils new brand identity

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Quinnipiac announced its brand identity change on June 13, which included new wordmarks, fonts, colors and logos. The new logo features the university’s full name in navy blue with an emphasis on the “Q” while the “u” in university remains lowercase. The new logo sparked controversy by upsetting many members of the Quinnipiac community, including senior Brett Segelman who created a petition to try and persuade the university to remove the lowercase “u.” The university is standing firm with the new logo and has no current plans to change it.

4 ) Students arrested after Bobcat Way rally

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Students gathered around the bobcat statue on Bobcat Way April 7 to celebrate the men’s ice hockey team win over Boston College in the Frozen Four semifinals. Two students, Robert Amonica and Maxime Giesen, were arrested and charged with criminal mischief after students climbed a tree and knocked it over after trying to set it on fire. The university suspended Amonica and Giesen pending their student conduct meeting. One of the students is still enrolled and the other is eligible to return to the university, according to Associate Vice President for Public Relations John Morgan.

3) Student arrested for weapon possession

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On Jan. 25, the Hamden Police Department received a complaint about a Snapchat video featuring Nicholas Pappas firing a handgun into the ground off-campus. Police arrested Pappas on Jan. 29 when they confiscated a police baton, an automatic switchblade knife and two pairs of brass knuckles from his car. The university suspended Pappas, and he is no longer a student at the university, according to Associate Vice President for Public Relations John Morgan.

2) The 2016 presidential election

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On Nov. 8, several student organizations hosted a watch party as the results of the 2016 presidential election came in. Within the early morning hours of Nov. 9, Republican nominee Donald Trump was elected to be the next President of the United States. The university hosted a discussion panel on Nov. 9 to talk about the future of the United States with Trump as president. After the shock of the election results, nearly 30 students, faculty and staff gathered on the Arnold Bernhard Library steps on Nov. 11 for a peaceful protest to “mourn” the election outcome.

1) Controversial Snapchat photo

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On Sept. 19, a Snapchat photo of a student wearing a charcoal face mask with the caption “Black Lives Matter” went viral on social media. The student in the photo, freshman Sarah Goodrich, was not punished by the university because she did not know the photo had the caption on it. Executive Vice President and Provost Mark Thompson said the student who took the photo is no longer a member of the Quinnipiac community. Members of the Quinnipiac community and beyond were outraged by the photo, leading to a peaceful protest on Sept. 24 on the Arnold Bernhard Library steps during the university’s Open House event. This incident also led to multiple discussions and panels throughout the fall semester on race and diversity across campus.