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David Aston
Montgazette Editor-in-Chief

There’s an old aphorism, “Figures don’t lie but liars figure.” Many news agency polls leading up to this year’s presidential election magnify each leading candidates’ divisive attitude, focused on how bad the country is going to be if the opposing candidate wins the election. These polls and the leading presidential candidates are missing two key things: People are voting out of fear and they want to hear the candidates talk about key issues.

A recent Pew Research Center poll shows that more than half of potential voters are doing so out of fear. Many of Montgomery County Community College students feel the same way.

Jennifer Zera, a 29-year-old Human Resources student, says she’s voting for Donald Trump because Hillary Clinton is not trustworthy. “She lies and she only appears interested in topics when she is trying to earn votes.”

Brianna Johnston, a Business student, 34, fears for the popularity of Clinton’s opponent. “Trump is bringing our country’s problem with hate and bigotry out into the open,” she says.

Reina Paredes, a 20-year-old accounting student, who says she’s supporting Green Party Candidate Jill Stein, doesn’t like the Democratic Party nominee. “Hillary [is] a criminal and [a] liar who takes money from Wall Street.”

Gail Clark, a Nursing student in her sixties, feels that Trump’s behavior could induce more fear. “[He] attacks women and non-Americans.” What disturbs Clark most is that the candidates don’t “focus on the main problems in our country.”

Michael Malley, another Nursing student, 35, who also says he’s voting for Jill Stein, wishes the candidates would have a more “long-term focus” on all levels of education, from grade school to college.

Katherine Bampfield, a 51-year-old Web
Development and Design student, wants the future president to talk about immigration reform, job creation and “how to decrease some of our cost of living.”

Victoria Esten, an Accounting student, 31, wants to see issues from equal pay rights for women, to the economy to healthcare and schooling discussed. She says, “I’m sick and tired about talking about Trump’s wanting to see Obama’s birth certificate or Clinton’s e-mail scandal. Can we get on with things and get to the issues at hand?”

The polls’ statistics and figures may not be wrong but they aren’t concentrating on the key factors that are important to Montco’s students, much less the country. The sooner news media organizations and, more importantly, this year’s presidential candidates start talking about the issues instead of ignoring them, the more likely voters won’t have to vote out of fear.

Cameron Dushanko
Montgazette Contributing Writer

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past year and a half, you know that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were fighting for the presidency of the United States of the United States. But how do the Millennial students of Montgomery County Community College feel about this election and the country that nominated these two divisive candidates?

I decided the best way was to take a survey of Montco students. My questions centered around how the country has improved in this century and how Millennials feel about the results of this year’s presidential election. Out of the 25 individuals I surveyed, I found that their answers mimic those of many recent news agency polls.

The majority of the participants felt that the country has improved since the year 2000 but a sizable 40 percent disagreed. However, when I asked them if they felt this year’s candidates support the middle class, about half said “yes” and just over half said “no.”

When it came to their of the future, 56 percent said they feel that the country will improve in the next four to eight years. The rest said things would either stay the same or get worse.

Reactions to the primaries were shocking. An astounding 58 percent were scared about the outcome of the primary election and a slim 3 percent expressed optimism. Another surprise twist was that nearly a third were disappointed about the primaries’ outcomes.

Figures, of course, don’t tell the whole story. One student who wished to remain anonymous put it best. “We really need to focus on improving morale, living situations and corporate layover, [these things have] made the American dream so endlessly bleak.”

I don’t share this view. I believe that our country has stayed stable since the beginning of this century. But I fear that the presidential candidates are not showing that they are fighting for anyone but themselves. Unless their rhetoric changes, I will continue feeling like nothing has changed.

From the Editor

David Aston
Montgazette Editor-In-Chief

A tense presidential election will soon be behind us and finals are ahead of us.  No matter what’s happening, the students of Montgomery County Community College are prepared to give their best no matter what obstacle is in their way. Mercifully, there are ways for students to learn while taking time off from the worry that may float through their minds.

The MCCC Presidential Symposium on Diversity on November 9 features acclaimed children’s author Jacqueline Woodson. A winner of multiple awards, Woodson will discuss her memoir and feature a talented MCCC student poet. Sorry, no spoilers. You’ll have to be there to see who won the poetry contest.

“Say Goodnight, Gracie,” a stage play by Ralph Pape will be performed by our talented Drama Club from November 17 to 20 in the treasured Black Box Theatre on the Central Campus. A week prior, West End Student Theatre (WEST) will perform “Slip Shot.” The Jacqueline Goldfinger play will be shown at West Campus’ South Hall Community Room from November 10 to 12.

If that’s not enough, stop by the Fine Arts Center at either campus anytime. The marvels there will make you speechless or keep you talking. Either way, they are places to stir imagination and passion.

So whether you’re looking to mentally heal from two straight years of politics or for an excuse to postpone studying for finals, Thanksgiving weekend comes right on time.

But I say don’t waste a minute! Not now, not ever. Fill your time and your mind with something powerful and insightful. Might I suggest, say, this paper.

Give thanks and I’ll talk to you all next month.

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Justin Patrick Oakes
Montgazette Staff Writer

Former  President William Clinton visited the campus of Montgomery County Community College to welcoming crowds.  The stop was one of many to various other locations around the country on behalf of his wife, Secretary Hillary Clinton as she campaigns for President of the United States.

In addition to President Clinton, other politicians like Joseph Shapiro, were also in attendance on the  Montco’s  Blue Bell, Pennsylvania campus.   President Clinton talked about the importance of voting  and acknowledged community college’s role in providing quality  education for  a diverse group students.  He says the country should operate like community colleges with appreciation for uniqueness of cultures and different backgrounds.

One of the students in attendance said regardless of personal party choices, it is impressive that a former president of the United States came to  Montco  to speak to the students and community.   He spoke of many of the things his wife says she will focus on if elected president like clean and renewable energy, climate change, marriage equality and jobs.

The crowd was excited by the speech, especially when he began to talk about the work that would be done to make sure that community colleges become tuition free.  Brad Parsons, a student, said, “I did enjoy [the speech] because I got more knowledge about Clinton and her policies and what she’s going to do for us.”

The visit, however, didn’t happen without it’s hecklers. At one point,  during the president’s speech one could hear shouts of  discontent  ringing throughout the atrium at Parkhouse Hall. One student said that the people rallying behind Secretary Clinton are “supporting a lying, twisted person.” Most people in the audience were supporters, but there were some who did not support her. The monumental event was open for everyone.

Montgomery County Community College students and the community were  fortunate to have someone so revered come to speak. It is sure to be a time that all attending will not forget.

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Former President Bill Clinton addresses the crowd at Montgomery County Community College.

From the Editor

David Aston
Montgazette Editor-In-Chief

The hot summer is falling away and a contentious presidential election is still to come. In between is Montgomery County Community College pressing on with a new academic year.

This year heralds a bunch of firsts for Montco and The Montgazette.

Dr. Kevin Pollock begins his first full academic year as the college’s president. Starting with this issue, The Montgazette is bringing back the sports schedules. Also, you’ll see we’ve added a new section called “College Spotlight.” Each month, The Montgazette will showcase a MCCC partner college or university. These spotlights will present important information you need to know so you can make an informed choice on where to transfer so you can continue to achieve your dreams after your time at Montco.

For all of the new students for this academic year, Welcome! The Students Office of Leadership and Involvement hosted the club fair at the start of the semester and numerous students clubs were represented. I am here to encourage you to get involved! We have included in this issue a few highlights from the club fair. Enjoy!

If you would like to join the team here at The Montgazette, we welcome your story perspectives. During my time at Montco, I have put my all into making this paper thrive in a climate that says the paper is dead. You, the readers of The Montgazette, have proven the naysayers wrong. You see the value in bringing your voice to the world and I am humbled to be the leader that has made that a success.

So this, in the words of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, a famous novelist, “Stories matter.”

By: Genotra Vinson
Montgazette Contributing Writer

Wendell Griffith, Coordinator of Mentoring Services and Ed Brown, Academic Advisor for the program, introduced Montgomery County Community College students to the Minority Student Mentoring Initiative, or MSMI at a meeting of new students, returning students and mentors at the start of the semester.

Currently, MSMI has 165 members at both Central and West Campuses. Griffith explained how the program has seen many students through to graduation and on to rewarding careers. Members of MSMI are often aided with obtaining scholarships. Griffith stated students with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher are in a better position to earn a scholarship. However, according to Griffith, internal college scholarships are offered to students who commit to the program’s expectations and are actively persisting to degree completion. Tutoring isalso provided for students who need the extra help.

MSMI has mentors who meet with students to provide guidance and help new students to navigate through the college’s student website and portal. Griffith made it very clear that members would receive support no matter what the need. He went on to explain that the program’s support goes beyond the campus. Often mentors will assist students with personal issues as well, seeing to it that they are able to continue with studies.

Members of the program connect with one another by sharing advice, making career goals and participating in community service events. Students also attend college trips to colleges and universities such as Bloomsburg and Mansfield. On these trips, students meet with faculty members, advisors and make useful connections for securing acceptance to a university.

MSMI is dedicated to providing all the support and resources needed to ensure the success of their members. The MSMI is excited to welcome new students as well as returning ones to their program.

Photos by Bridget Depew

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