2014, debbie, debbiegillum, features, writing

Students taking food from dining halls

March 11, 2014 Denisonian in Features

Put down the cookie: Students taking food from dining halls


Have you ever taken something from the dining hall? A cookie? A bagel? Backpack full of bananas? Well, that’s actually a violation of Denison’s policy.
The policy that was set by Denison and is enforced by both Sodexo and Bon Appetit is that “nothing can leave the dining hall,” said Jennifer McGann, general manager for dining services.
If every student took food then Bon Appetit could lose a significant amount of money. McGann did not think that the current state of things was an “epidemic” but she did warn that if things get too out of control, meal plan prices could increase.
Students are not allowed to bring in their own containers such as ziploc bags or tupperware containers.
McGann said they try to be respectful of students by letting them bring their bags and backpacks into the dining hall and hope they reciprocate that respect by not filling their backpacks with apples.
The Bon Appetit staff does not rudely confront people who make a sandwich and stash it in their backpack for later.
“We want to be gracious enough to avoid putting anyone in an awkward situation. We want people to enjoy themselves while they are dining here so we don’t like to step in and mar that experience, but if someone is removing items they shouldn’t, we will have to ask them not to do so,” said Julie Mulisano, the dining hall manager at Curtis.
Mulisano said that students feel at home in Denison’s dining halls and she thinks that contributes to the number of students taking food outside. “The familiarity of the dining halls breaks down some of the typical barriers students have about taking things,” she said.
Another problem in the dining halls is that some students sneak in during busy periods such as lunch and dinner.
“If we see this happen, we will politely ask to see their student ID and then make a photocopy of it. If they are uncooperative, then we will call security, especially if they are repeat offenders,” said McGann. They ask security to help them deal with such matters.
Bon Appetit works closely with Denison security. They have recently asked security to better monitor the cameras in the Slayter snackbar.
“We’ve noticed a lot of items missing when we do inventory. We’re watching it a lot more closely,” said McGann.
She said that Bon Appetit loses more money when students take pre-packaged items from Slayter rather than fruit or vegetables from the dining halls, because those items “have a very small profit margin,” said McGann.
To try and make Slayter less troublesome, Bon Appetit managers have talked about putting up mirrors, having security guards or rearranging the food in Slayter because the problem “seems to have gotten worse in the winter,” said McGann.  
 In dining halls, both McGann and Mulisano have noticed that salt and pepper shakers, hot sauce bottles, silverware, cups, bowls, and plates often go missing.
“When I walk from Curtis to Huffman, every day I see a cup with melted mint chocolate chip ice cream on that bridge. And every day I pick it up and take it to Huffman,” said McGann, “I wish they would have just finished it inside the dining hall or just drop it off at the other dining hall.”
Mulisano said that the housekeeping staff returns boxes full of silverware and other diningware that is left behind in student’s rooms at the end of the year.
What about filling your tumblr with coffee or soda? McGann said, “That’s fine. It’s not ideal. But it happens.”
Students have gotten quite creative with taking items from the dining hall.
“I’ve noticed two or three times that somebody brings a blender in and fills it with 8 scoops of ice cream and milk and they take it back to their room,” recalled Mulisano. She said she was waiting until the student was alone and then would carefully confront them.
Another student took a whole loaf of bread and made multiple peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
“Students often take the decor, such as a red pepper or cucumber. But I’ll see people with five vegetables. We wish students would not grocery shop in the dining hall,” said Mulisano. The produce that is used for decor around the dining hall is used for later cooking and is not wasted.
Kiira Harkins, a junior from Chillicothe, Ohio, said that she has absolutely taken things from the dining halls. “It’s mostly little things, like apples or muffins when I’m in a hurry,” she said. She said that she only takes small food items.
“I’ve never taken anything larger,” Harkins said, “But, the rumor on the streets is that it is quite the mark of accomplishment to successfully filch one of the cups.”
Cora McHugh, a senior from Dexter, Mich., said she has seen students put food in their bags or in containers they have brought. She admits that she also occasionally takes out food, but only small things.
“It’s mostly fruit or a cookie. I sometimes used to make a little baggie out of a napkin and take some cereal,” said McHugh.  
Overall, McGann thinks that Denison students are very polite, respectful and behave like adults. She said that makes it a great place to work.




2014, article, debbie, debbiegillum, deborahgillum, denison, news, writing

Farmer Fridays

S.K. Piper, Dan and David Ochs. 
Farmer Fridays is a new Dining Services initiative to help students learn where their food is coming from and to be able to meet the people who grow that food.
This Friday Feb. 7 was the first Farmer Friday in Curtis dining hall veggie room from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.. The featured farmers were Dan and David Ochs from Ochs Fruit farm, established in 1842 and located about 25 miles away in Lancaster, Ohio.
Students had the chance to eat lunch and ask questions to Denison Dining Sustainability Manager S.K. Piper and the Ochs farmers.
Unfortunately, a pipe burst in the Curtis veggie room so the event was disrupted so they had to relocate to a table farther away from general student traffic. Piper said that, “one or two students came over to say thank you for the apples,” but hopes for much more student participation as the series continues.
This is the first season Ochs Fruit farm has partnered with Denison. They provide around ten different kinds of apples to Denison at a time and grow over a hundred different types of apples.
“We’re very pleased with the way things have gone and the level of professionalism. When they talk about sustainability and high quality they actually mean it,” said Dan Ochs, a fourth generation apple farmer, talking about the relationship between them and Bon Appetit.
Bon Appetit has been using their apples since the season began in September but will likely run out next week, because Ochs Fruit farm stock of apples has finally run out. Apple season ended in November, which is when Ochs last harvested apples, and Denison has been buying those they had in storage since then.
Piper said that it was amazing that “we’re still getting delicious local apples in February because Dan Ochs has figured out the perfect temperature and humidity level to store the different varieties of apples for maximum flavor retention.” They know the exact temperature to keep the apples cold but without freezing.
Next week the farm will run out of it’s stockpile of apples so Denison will switch to using Produce One for their apples.
David Ochs explained that apples have a lot of nutritional benefits such as, helping to “reduce blood sugar, lower cholesterol, provide anti-asthma benefits, and they average only 80 calories.” He said that the skin on apples contains 70% of their nutritional value.
While the farm is not organic, Piper and both Ochs explained that the word organic is not synonymous with the word local or sustainable. It is difficult and impractical, according to Ochs, for small farmers to become certified organic. One of the things that sets Ochs Fruit apart from larger competitors is that they do not wax or brush their apples.
David encouraged students to “eat as much local food as you can.”
“You guys eat a lot of apples so keep at it,” joked Dan Ochs.
Piper hopes that Farmer Fridays will soon have a bigger following once more students learn about it. She’s going to change the time to 12 to 1 p.m. in order to accommodate students who have class at 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Next week the Farmer Friday will be Valentines Day themed. Piper will be the “stand in” farmer talking about the fairly traded Cordillera chocolate that the dining services uses. She spent a month in Columbia researching the fair trade chocolate, talking with farmers and seeing the factories and looks forward to sharing her knowledge with students.

article, debbiegillum, denison, university, writing

Beck Lecture

Things kicked off with a night of poetry. But these weren’t your stereotypical poets. Maggie Glover ‘05 and Paige Hill Starzinger both have full-time jobs, not related to poetry, but each just recently published their first book of poems.
Despite visiting campus together for the Beck Lecture series, the two women have radically different work.
English professor David Baker introduced the two poets, describing Glover’s poetry was “direct and voice-driven.” He joked that, “It is best to read Maggie Glover with a seatbelt on.” He said that Starzinger’s poetry was “visual art, likely to splinter and the product of a researcher.” He again joked that listeners should still keep their seatbelt on for Starzinger’s reading.
They spoke in the Barney Davis board room on Thurs. Feb. 6 at both 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. The event was originally scheduled for Wednesday but was moved back a day due to classes being cancelled. The afternoon talk focused on their careers as English majors while the evening meeting was a poetry reading.
Glover is currently the Director of Brand Marketing at Ipsy, a beauty website, and lives in San Francisco. After getting her MFA in poetry at West Virginia University, she was part of the fashion startup website called ModCloth. She read eight of her poems from her book How I Went Red including one about her admiration for Marc Jacobs and another one called “Refrain” that she wrote while staying in a hotel on what she called a “writer vacation.”
Starzinger read six of her poems from her book Vestigial. Some of her poems were about living in New York City. Starzinger added that her “poems are built like nests” and that “they often have braided narratives.”
In their afternoon talk, Glover presented on the marketable skills that English majors inherently possess and how those skills can translate into the job market. When an audience member asked how she finds time to write with her job, she joked that, “I don’t have dogs or children so I have time to write poetry.”
Starzinger displayed some of her work from her time at Vogue. She said that she “loves to hire poets, writers, Buddhists, and history majors because they bring their passion to their work.” She explained how writing captions for fashion magazines can be a challenging and fun job for English majors.
Isabel Randolph, a sophomore from Columbus, Ohio thought it was really cool to listen to Glover and Starzinger.
“I really enjoyed the opportunity to hear them because I’m an English major who wants to go into business, so it was super relevant,” said Randolph “I thought they were fun and personable and I liked getting their tips about things like combining work with writing.”
Glover and Starzinger were not only inspirational in their careers but also in their poetry.
“And I like both of their poetry styles so that was pretty cool as well,” Randolph added.
Caroline McCauley, a senior from Hartville, Ohio, attended the afternoon talk about the poet’s careers.
“Paige Starzinger’s and Maggie Glover’s presentations on their careers not only gave insight to the fashion and beauty industry, but also touched upon how to find success in any career,” she said.  
She found Starzinger’s remark “The smaller your frame of the reference, the smaller your range” to be helpful, and McCauley added it was “applicable to all aspects of my daily life and wise words to live by.”

2014, article, debbie, debbiegillum, deborahgillum, denison, university, writing

David Hallman Remembered

The DenisonianFebruary 11, 2014News

The Denison community mourns the loss of senior history major and economics minor David Marshall Hallman III, 21, from Erie, Pa., who passed away on Saturday Feb. 8 after a search of campus and the surrounding areas.
“My hope is that in a small community like Denison, that we can give his life and legacy more meaning. We all can, in a way, be more aware and kinder to each other,” said Professor Mitchell Snay, one of Hallman’s professors this semester. “We can embrace our friends and our professors and our students.”  
Hallman’s father called the Granville police department on 12:56 p.m. Saturday afternoon to report his son missing. He was last seen leaving Brew’s cafe around 1:30 a.m wearing a black North Face Jacket, a navy blue dress shirt and blue jeans according to Brew’s surveillance video. Hallman had missed a noon appointment with his girlfriend and was unreachable by phone, according to the Granville police department’s news release.
At 2:50 p.m., a DU Alert was e-mailed out to the student body asking them to contact security or Granville police if they knew anything about his whereabouts.
Hallman’s friends provided information of his last known location. An emergency request was sent to Hallman’s cell phone provider, Verizon, and his cell phone was tracked to help law enforcement locate him. Officers searched the area around the signal location in the afternoon and evening.
Dr. Tim Miller, economics professor, had Hallman in his econometrics class, and Hallman was one of his advisees.
“He was always very positive, upbeat, fun to talk with, respectful and was always prepared,” said Miller. He said that Hallman’s passing was “upsetting” and said that young people “ought to wait until they’re 90 ‘til they die.”
“Whenever a young person dies, it’s upsetting, and in this case, it seems unnecessary and pointless. He had so much future and potential ahead,” said Miller.
Search parties were organized with help from Ohio State Highway Patrol, Granville Police Department, Licking County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit, and the Granville Township Fire Department. The Ohio State Highway Patrol used an air unit to do an over-flight of the area.
On Saturday evening at 7:20 p.m., another email was sent out from Laurel Kennedy, Bill Fox, Adam Weinberg and Garret Moore., which stated that “At this time, we do not have reason to believe he has fallen in harm’s way but are very actively pursuing every possible lead.” It also said that counselors and clergy came to campus and were available for students.
By 8:15 p.m. Hallman was deemed a missing person and a DU Alert was sent out via e-mail, text, and phone call.
One of David’s roommates, Eric Fischer, a senior from Longmont Colo., and swim teammates went around to the Sunset apartments Saturday evening looking for Hallman.
Saturday afternoon, roughly over a hundred students gathered in Slayter and split into six groups to search the residential halls for Hallman.  
He was found by two female professors who were searching for Hallman at 10:34 p.m. Saturday night. The Granville Township Fire Department emergency squad was dispatched to the scene at 5 Parnassus Village Dr., near the Granville Golf Course.
At 11:22 p.m., a DU Alert was sent out that confirmed Hallman’s passing. Members of the campus community who wanted to gather could come to Swasey Chapel at 11:30 p.m. Approximately 700 students, faculty and staff gathered at Swasey Chapel to mourn the loss of Hallman.
At this time, the cause of death is unknown and is under investigation by the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the Granville Police Department and the Licking County Coroner’s Office, according to the Granville police department’s news release.
In the spring of 2013, Hallman took “Traditional East Asian Civilization” and “The Confucian Classics” classes with professor Dr. Barry Keenan in the history department.
“He was a quiet, always clean cut and pleasant student,” said Keenan.
He remembered how Hallman would always warmly greet him whenever he saw him in an elevator or around campus.
“There were no defects in his personality. He was so thoughtful,” said Keenan.  
It was stated in the news release that “alcohol is suspected of being a factor in the case.” In addition, the Newark-Advocate reported that  Granville police Sgt. Keith Blackledge said, “[Hallman] most likely died from exposure.”
A gathering of students and community members was held in Swasey at 11:30 p.m. Counselors were available to meet with students in the Shepardson Room on the 4th floor of Slayter Hall, beginning at 11:30 p.m.
Dr. Suzanne Condray, communication professor, had Hallman in her “Freedom of Speech” class and said he was a “nice guy.”
“He talked a lot about his values and beliefs. He had very strong values and beliefs, perhaps from his upbringing at Catholic school,” she said. Hallman attended Cathedral Preparatory School in Erie, Pa..   
Dr. Jessica Bean had Hallman in her very first Economics 101 class at Denison in his first year, and this past fall semester he was in an elective she taught, the Evolution of the Western Economy.
“That was probably the most fun and inspiring group of students I’ve had in any class yet,” she said, “David was hard working and good humored, fun to have in the classroom, always polite and respectful, and just such a good and nice kid in every way.”
She said that she “will always have an image of him laughing with the rest of the class on our last day last semester.”
“This is a very, very hard loss for all of us, and I will be very, very sad not to get to see him graduate with his class,” she said.  

Front page story

Continued onto page 3

This was one of the most challenging articles I’ve ever had to write. I really wanted to do it respectfully. It was emotionally exhausting to interview his professors so soon after they heard the news. I didn’t interview any of his friends or roommates but perhaps I should have.  It was difficult to combine the news part of his death with the personality profile his professors painted. In the end, I’ve received several sincere compliments about this article and that means a lot. 
2014, debbiegillum, denison, review, theatre, writing

Little opera gets big crowd

The DenisonianFebruary 4, 2014Arts and Life
By Debbie Gillum, News Editor Emeritus
Opera singing pirates happily pillaged and plundered Denison’s theatre this weekend.
The Singer’s Theatre Workshop performed Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Pirates of Penzance” on Jan. 31 and Feb 1. at 8 p.m. in Burke Recital Hal. It was an operetta which means “little opera.”
The operetta started with everyone and their cousin coming onstage as pirates. The humor began instantly when Ruth, Frederic’s nurse (Laura Wilson), admitted that she had meant for Frederic to be an apprentice to a pilot but there was a miscommunication so now he was a pirate. Wilson had a brilliant accent, melodic voice and a strong stage presence.
General Stanley’s daughters took the stage next and did a Mary Poppins-esque high pitched song and dance in uber feminine colorful dresses. Picture Fleur Delacour and her friends from Harry Potter and you’ll get an idea for what these lovely ladies were like.
Mabel (Mary Libertini) fell in love with Frederic (Steven Hix). Libertini’s powerful soprano voice made me feel like I was at a real opera. Her voice could’ve broken glass or given a Disney Princess a run for their money. Hix did a solid job with such a large role. He is a confident singer and embraced the part.
“I am the very model of a modern Major-General,” so sang Major-General Stanley (Ben Flox) in the most famous Gilbert and Sullivan song. I think Flox may have been born to play such a role. He was a crowd favorite.
Another stage-stealer was The Pirate King (Chris Morriss) who continued his tradition of excelling in Denison theatre productions. He was very commanding on stage, had an impressive voice and was always in character.
In Act II, the constabulary performed a cute Tweedle-Dee-and-Tweedle-Dum-esque song and dance. I found the childish bumbling actions to be really funny. The Sergeant of Police (Will Blount) was especially entertaining because of his subtle but hilarious facial expressions.
The audience also realized that because Frederic’s birthday is February 29, he is actually only five years old instead of 21. The humor never stops. Since Frederic’s apprenticeship to the pirates ends on his 21rst birthday, it is still his “duty” to be a pirate.
My only quarrel with the “Pirates” was that at times I found the musical hard to understand. I couldn’t make out what people were saying or singing and I didn’t know what was going on.  It was a very fast-moving play with a lot of people on stage at once.
Overall, the costumes, props, sets and pit orchestra were amazing. It all came together really nicely, earning a standing ovation.
I’m always amazed at how hard my classmates and fellow Denison students work to put on such a great musical, on top of their usual classwork. Their passion for theatre and music blossomed through in their performance.
Dylan Dyer, a senior cinema and Spanish double major from Athens, Ohio, went to see the play because she was familiar with the play.
“I think I will enjoy it. I haven’t seen it before but I know half the cast.” After the play, Dyer said she was impressed by the play and liked it.
Singers Theatre Workshop continues their tradition of wowing audiences by putting on such high-quality (and free) productions for Denison and Granville.

Front page article
Continued onto page 8
Featured on the front page

2013, bullsheet, debbie, deborahgillum, denison, writing

Deer will now be students

Hey. Here’s a satire piece I submitted to the Bullsheet on November 9, 2013. Enjoy! 

The university announced yesterday that in order to relieve racial tensions on campus and to promote diversity, deer will now be admitted to the campus.

“What better way to teach students to value diversity than to have diversity of species within the classroom?” said Denison’s president.

The university is the first of its kind to take such dramatic steps, but they are confident that it will be successful.

This decision came partly because of financial reasons.

“The deer have been freeloading on this campus for too long. It’s time they pay tuition like everyone else,” said an administrator eating Halloween candy.

The deer will be paying the full $50,000 semester tuition that includes food and lodging. The office of financial aid said that some deer will be given merit scholarship but only if they demonstrate, “exceptional academic promise.”

To accommodate the new students in the dorms, deer-doors will be installed over the summer in Shep and Shorney. Huffman and Curtis will also be offering tofu grass, organic twigs, and gluten-free grain for the deer.

Students have long complained that the campus was not diverse enough so the administration hopes that this decision to blend humans with animals within the classroom will once and for all end the debate.

The administration is emphasizing to students that any hazing of the deer will not be tolerated.

“They be grazing, not hazing, let’s be amazing” rapped one administrator.

The deer are excited to gain the respect of students and begin a rigorous schedule as a full-time student.

“I’m going to have to cutdown on my time standing in the middle of the road so I can really prioritize my environmental studies readings,” said one deer. The deer was seen shopping at J.Crew in order to prepare to blend in with fellow students. “Now, I’ll finally be able to swipe into Slayter instead of charging in there,” said the deer in an exclusive interview.

Students have mixed emotions about their new classmates.

“I don’t like the deer. They are too annoying. I don’t know how much more of their deer drivel I can take,” said a sophomore from Hawaii.

“This is great news. Now we’ll have more students available to attend fake protests,” said a student wearing Ugg boots in November.

To help integrate the deer onto campus, they will have their own unique Deer-O pre-pre orientation starting tomorrow followed by a pre-orientation beginning a week before classes start in the spring and then a formal orientation a month after classes start.