Archive for October, 2014


By Marvin Marcellus

Montgazette Staff Writer

“Sunday Best” is a gospel singing competition series which airs on Black Entertainment Television, best known as BET. Each year for the past seven years, the show and its judges have set out to find the best undiscovered gospel talent in America.

The show’s finalists compete each week with votes coming in from all over America until a winner is crowned. Current judges of the competition are gospel greats Yolanda Adams, Kierra Sheard and Donnie McClurkin. Gospel singer Kim Burrell serves as the contestants’ mentor, and the program is hosted by another gospel legend Kirk Franklin.

In the spring, at Reid Temple A.M.E. Church, hundreds of young hopefuls prepared to try and impress the first round judges. In the audition room, the judges made their decision within 15 seconds of hearing a contestant sing. Among those hopefuls waiting to be called into the audition room was Montco’s own Candace Benson, who had just recently celebrated her 22nd birthday. She entered the audition room surrounded by about a dozen other contestants and sang “Take Me To The King” by Tamela Mann. The once shy girl from Pottstown let her spirit shine through and won over the judges.

Over the summer, Candace had a successful run on the show moving on each week until the finale where she finished as runner-up in a hard fought, but friendly contest between herself and finalist Geoffrey Golden.

Candace is continuing her studies here at Montco majoring in music. I got a chance to catch up with Candace for a brief interview about her experience on a nationally televised show.

MM: What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve had to face this year with the show or in your life? I know your schedule has probably gotten a lot busier since the show.

CB: Yes it has! One challenge I had was just having the confidence to believe in myself and stay focused on my goals. My parents always say “Okay Candace, do you want that or do you want this music career that you’ve pretty much worked all your whole life towards?” So I just had to believe in myself in the midst of all of that. Second, I had to believe that I actually had what it takes. Like is my music good?

MM: Nice.

CB: People are inspired through my music and you know you have to believe in that, too. Also I can’t really depend on people’s accolades, I just have to go forth and do what I need to do. Third my shyness; I don’t have too much of a shyness now.

MM: It’s kind of been broken out of you now, right?

CB: Yea, when it comes to music, I’m like “okay, this is it, bam!” I’m learning how to control the shyness. The show “Sunday Best” definitely helped me to grow stronger. I’m definitely stronger. 2014 has definitely been a pivotal year for me. Everything that’s happened has helped me to focus on my musical path.

MM: Anything else you’d like to share with our readers?

CB: Montco definitely prepared me for the show because not only am I taking classes in music, but I’m taking classes in audio production. So when I got on the show, I wasn’t shocked by the lights and the production. My professors really prepared me, and I felt right at home on the set. I encourage students and really anyone to get educated in whatever field you’re in because it really opens up another world to you that you might not get if you don’t do it.


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By Thomas Kraft

Montgazette Staff Writer

Candace Benson is a regular 22-year-old music student here at Montgomery County Community College, but one thing makes her stand out: her voice.

Candace has become a local and national celebrity in recent months due to her performances on the BET program, “Sunday Best.” “Sunday Best” is a performance-based competition in which young, talented singers battle it out each week singing Gospel songs.

I got a chance to sit down with Candace, and she discussed her music and what she thinks the future holds for her.

Recently, Candace was interviewed for “MCCC on the Air” by Michelle Cuomo, Dean of the Arts and Humanities Division of Montgomery County Community College, and Candace spoke about her lifelong love of music. Candace said, “I have been singing all of my life. My musical career actually started at the age of four, and my mom would probably say before that because she said she knew, for some reason, that I was going to be a singer.”

Candace went on to explain that she started playing the piano at age four or five. So, Candace isn’t new to the music industry and the support of her parents gave her confidence.

Candace recalled a conversation that she had with her mom about singing, “…and I’m like mom, I don’t really want to sing, I don’t want to be a singer and then she was like no, I think you want to be a singer, so this is what you need to do and this is how you’re going to do it.”

Candace appreciates her parents’ guidance and says without her parents’ motivation toward her singing career she may have not embraced the God-given talent for singing.

Candace explained that God is the first source of inspiration that she looks to before she goes on stage, “I just really couldn’t do it without Him.” Candace prays every time before she sings to get strength to perform to her best ability. Gospel music is her favorite type of music.

So, when Candace went to “Sunday Best,” it was nerve-wracking for her to sing in front of a group of highly esteemed judges in the gospel music industry, including Kierra Sheard, Donnie McClurkin, and Kim Burrell. She was, however, able to succeed in the competition and moved through the stages to the season finale of the show. Candace made it all the way to the Top 2 on “Sunday Best.”

Many from the Montgomery County Community College community rooted for Candace. She says, “I couldn’t go in with the mentality that I was going to win, but as the numbers got smaller your hunger really grew, your passion really grew, and it really dawned on you why you were there.” The contestants grew closer to one another.

After “Sunday Best,” Candace sees herself in the years to come, “making hit albums, touring, singing to sold-out shows and sharing the message that I carry, which is the love of Jesus Christ. You know, Jesus is really cool.”

“Through my music and the way that I approach things, people will see that Jesus really loves people.”

After meeting Candace and listening to her sing, it is safe to say the sky is the limit for this talented, young, beautiful woman. So, next time you see her around campus, stop and say hello. She will certainly talk back and share her love of music.

If you are interested in booking Candace, you can e-mail her at candacebensonbookings@ gmail.com or you can go to her official website at www. candacebensonmusic.com. For Instagram or Twitter users, you can follow Candace at @candacesb7.

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By Dave Aston

Montgazette Editor

To the Editor:

Oh, wait. That’s me.

Hi. I’m Dave Aston. Editor of Montgomery County Community College’s The Montgazette and Mass Media Industries Blog. I just started my third year here at Montco, and I am elated and honored to hold these prestigious and important positions.

I’ve been a writer for years. Mostly short stories and novels. Right after starting my journey at this amazing institution, I had one of my COM100 articles printed in The Montgazette. The first thought that went through my head was, “What? Me?” Yes. Me. Like some of you, I felt journalism was either not worth my time or was outright political propaganda. At Montco, that’s not the case.

I took a critical look at past The Montgazette articles and the original articles posted on our young Mass Media Industries Blog and found many common threads. The articles were concise, well organized, sourced properly, ethical and, above all, personal. Finding this out spurred me on to be an editor.

The main thrust of The Montgazette is that it focuses on our connections to Montco, its students and its community. The Mass Media Industries Blog takes this idea one step further by zeroing in on the media industries. Movies, TV, Radio, etc.

The most important part of what I have to say is that The Montgazette and the Mass Media Industries Blog are for YOU. They are both here to broadcast YOUR voice. So let it be heard.

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The Latest and Greatest iPhone

By Matt Hawkins

Montgazette Staff Writer

The saying goes “bigger is better” or at least that’s the case for the new iPhone 6. This new phone unlike the other iPhone models come in a much bigger size. Its dimensions are 4.7 inches diagonally, about .7 inches larger than the previous iPhone5, and if that’s not enough, Apple has come out with an even bigger iPhone called the iPhone 6 plus. This iPhone model measures 5.5 inches diagonally; both are very thin and have round edges which makes them kind of slippery.

Some new integrations that the iPhone 6 has is the dual domain pixels which provides wider viewing angles when looking at the screen. With the latest iPhone 6 models, they worked on one of the most popular features the camera. They added a new exposure control that lets you adjust pictures before you take them.

Another new camera feature they added is the optical image stabilization, which is suppose to help you when you move your hand. With so many people relying on the iPhone to take video they added a new cinematic video stabilization, which auto focuses nonstop while the video is recording.

One of the new features that both the iPhone 6 models have is the new Apple Pay. This is a faster, easier, more secure system to paying for things using just your iPhone. You will be able to pay for all sorts of things, perhaps, even tuition if you are a college student, without even waking up your iPhone or having to type in your shipping information. The Internet speed and multi-tasking capability is a lot faster.

Due to the massive size of the new models, Apple has introduced a new feature called “reachability,” which is basically a one-handed remote. This feature makes the display slide down to the bottom to make it easier to reach; however when in that mode, you cannot access the keyboard which makes it kind of useless.

Not so appealing might be when using in landscape both models of the iPhone 6 are nearly impossible to text on because the screen is so big. Compared to the other leading brands of smart phones, the iPhone 6 could have had more to do with the size of the screen, like give it a better zoom feature or stylist pen, but instead, they just made it a bigger screen.

Along with the release of the iPhone 6 and the six plus, comes an even newer device that will support the phone—it’s called the Apple watch. You can use this just like the iPhone 6.

The iPhone 6 plus can still fit into an average-sized pocket, even though it’s almost twice its size from the iPhone 5. Due to the style and thinness of the newly designed IPhone 6 models, it makes them more fragile and, quite frankly, a bit slippery.

Bottom line, there are some neat new features, which are great ideas and neat innovations, but it also creates a few glitches as well. You can have the latest and greatest device out there, but is it really that great? You decide.

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By Kevin LaTorre

Montgazette Staff Writer

It was a great day for a soccer game as the Montgomery County Community College (MCCC) Mustangs tied the Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC) Eagles 1-1 on Sept. 9 at Central Campus in Blue Bell, Pa. The weather was comfortable, cloudy, and windy at times, which turned out to be perfect weather for a soccer game.

MCCC looked to have their third conference win as they finished their fifth game in seven days. Coaching for MCCC in his second year, was Obed Arango. Key starters for MCCC were Sophomore Jeremiah Garcia, Sophomore Austin Messner, Sophomore Sebastian DeRosa, Freshmen and leading goal scorer for MCCC, David Massanga. In net for MCCC was Freshman Andrew Toro.

MCCC took the first tap of the game as they had a great start by getting the first shot on net in the first minute. The pressure continued for the as they earned two corner kicks fifteen minutes later. HACC made the first substitution in the 20th minute. MCCC continued to dominate possession, however; the HACC took advantage to have fresh legs most of the first half and substituted whenever needed, which proved to be a positive as HACC capitalized on a penalty kick in the 36th minute. Sebastian DeRosa committed the foul in the box and gave the Eagles a 1-0 lead going into the half. Freshman Goalkeeper Andrew Toro made stellar saves to keep the game at 1-0.

“I wasn’t happy with the team’s effort with sloppy passing and communication,” Arango said, “We need to do a better job of passing the ball on the ground to open more space on the wings.”

A more dominate second half for MCCC offense as they continued to pressure the ball against HACC defense. A corner kick was earned by MCCC in the 83rd minute, as Freshman Felipe Silva took the corner kick placing a perfect ball and Freshman David Massangna scored on the header to equal the score 1-1. The defense for MCCC let up only three shots during the second half. MCCC almost found a game winner but Massanga missed on a wide open net and Freshman Wilson Gonzalas missed on back to back shots with minutes remaining. The game was forced into overtime.

Overtime consisted of two ten-minute half’s.

In the second overtime, it was HACC who had the best chance to win the game as a shot from inside the eighteen ringed off the crossbar with minutes remaining. The game ended in a 1-1 tie in double overtime.

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By Alexandria Somers

Montgazette Staff Writer

Ray Rice, a professional football running back, is no longer with the Baltimore Ravens and is suspended indefinitely by the NFL.

On March 27, 2014, Rice was arrested and indicted for third-degree aggravated assault. The Ravens were forced to do the right thing, after a video was released by TMZ revealing what happened in February inside a casino elevator in Atlantic City, according to USA Today.

Rice punched his then fiancée, now his wife, rendering her unconscious and then dragged her by the hair out of the elevator. A few months after the incident, Rice and his wife Janay Palmer sat in a news conference, where his wife apologized for her “role” in the incident. After reviewing the videotape, her role looked to be as if she was the victim.

Victims of domestic abuse often are in difficult situations. There is help if you are in an abusive relationship. “If people are not willing or able to leave a situation, I would encourage them to get therapy to begin to figure out what their best course of action would be,” said Dr. Stephanie Yoder, Director of Clinical Services at Brooke Glen Behavioral Hospital in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania.

“It starts young,” says Kristin Fulmer, a counselor at Montgomery County Community College. Rice could have underlying psychological problems that led to this incident. While this is not an excuse for his actions, there are other assessments that need to be conducted to effectively evaluate and treat a volatile situation.

“There are many underlying causes for abusive behavior,” states, Dr. Yoder. “No matter if you are a celebrity or not, domestic violence is not to be tolerated, no matter what the circumstance.”

There are outreach groups that you can contact if you are going through abuse in a relationship. Montgomery County Community College, for instance, has counselors in the student success center like Kristin Fulmer, who students can talk to about any problems. If you are a victim of domestic abuse, you can visit http://www.mc3.edu, select Campus Life and under the drop down list, select sexual misconduct, for more information.

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By Molly Hennessy

Montgazette Staff Writer

Smart phones are used all over the world in incredible ways.

Now Apple has developed a way for the iPhone 6 users to pay for anything just by swiping their phones. This means that countrywide stores will have to implement reading devices for the Apple Pay. But before you say this is too big of a task to complete, remember that most of Europe and Japan have implemented payment systems like this. Where you can pay for anything with the use of your phone? You want to ride the bus to work? Swipe! You want to get that morning coffee? Swipe! You want to buy that dress you’ve been eyeing all week? Quick swipe! All without reaching for your wallet or purse.

Apple Pay makes buying anything easer with just the swipe of your phone. Apple Pay is a program that runs from the iOS6, which takes your credit cards and stores them on the phone for the purposes of paying. So, it’s just like swiping my card, right? Wrong!

According to Rich Mogull at Macworld, the system will utilize “tokenization,” which makes your secure information safe from hackers. Current card swipe systems need the credit card number to establish that the account is legitimate, which it exposes on a network. With tokenization, not even Apple sees the account numbers. Unique connection numbers, which are used in place of your account information, will be issued to each card for every single iPhone in existence. These “token” numbers are exposed to check the account legitimacy instead of your numbers. This makes the system incredibly secure to use.

But, what if I lose my phone, or someone steals it? The Apple Pay program will and can require up to two passcodes in order to pay, and you can even make it ask for your fingerprint to verify the payment, in addition to a phone password.

Well, it’s probably impossible to set up and use, right? Wrong again! You will be able to use a credit card you already have linked to your Apple account, or even simply take a picture of your credit card to upload the information to the phone directly. According to Kenneth Downie, “The system is too easy to use, and just about anyone can pick it up… the user interface is very forgiving, and multiple confirmations will be used to make sure that you don’t accidently do anything.”

If I fork up the money for the new phone and try to use the Apple Pay, will I be able to and where?

Well, according to The New York Times, “Tens of thousands of retailers in the United States, including Whole Foods and Macy’s, are already planning to accept the Apple Pay in their stores.”

So, you will be able to use the Apple Pay in most of the larger brand name stores countrywide. Once the payment system is completely implemented, the use of plastic cards will be obsolete. Colleges and universities will benefit from this system too, because it will make purchases on campus easier.

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