Story Spotter: Mary Fran’s “More Than Love”

Photo by Jessica Veazey ‘13 

Mary Frances Cavallaro, senior English major at Chestnut Hill College, seems to have fallen into “More Than Love” with writing a novel for which she has acquired a publishing deal.

Mary Frances began writing her novel, “More Than Love,” about a year ago during a creative writing class she took over the spring semester of 2012.  She came to realize that what she wanted to achieve with the piece would require something much longer than a standard assignment for class, and decided to present the opening chapter to a publisher.

The novel “is a bildungsroman,” Cavallaro said.  “It is the story of a woman named Frances “Fanny” Dickens who gets involved in a scandal. She arrives at Chesterfield College to student-teach a class with a most peculiar professor named Charles Christle, an elderly man who is not “all there” and has quite the affinity for William Shakespeare. Throughout the story, Christle takes on the role as her mentor and, using Shakespeare, he guides her through the year.”

Life events inspired the story, and some important friends helped to inspire some of the characters, including the professor and the sister of the main character Fanny. Mary Frances has also been influenced by Edgar Allan Poe and William Shakespeare.  The title of her book “actually comes from Poe’s ‘Annabel Lee,’ and Shakespeare’s plays echo throughout  the novel,” Cavallaro said.  The main character times life lessons and advice from the professor— through the use of Shakespeare—which coincides with her actual life events.

“I have always been writing, as long as I could formulate written word,” Cavallaro said.  “I have been captivated by writing, and by other authors.” Her favorite written works include mostly short stories and plays such as “Pygmalion,” “The Crucible,” “Oedipus Rex,” and “Luella Miller.”  She says that she enjoys classics “that can usually be found on a syllabus.”  While loving standard masterpieces, a childhood favorite “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” was the first to come to mind when asked about her personal favorite.

Getting a novel published is an amazing feat for anyone, but especially so for a college student.  How did she pull it off?  According to Cavallaro, she found a post on, a freelance writing website, that was in search of a writer for a collaborative work.  When she applied for the job, she noticed that the company, Kellan publishing, took applications for books.  She applied, and they wanted to publish her story.

Her first draft is due quite soon, on March 1.  If you are interested in finding out more, please ‘Like’ her Facebook page for updates on the writing and publishing process, as well as personal quips on writing at

Amanda Finlaw ‘14

A Preview of the Chestnut Hill Griffins’ Baseball Season

The winter weather may be brutal so far this semester, but that does not stop the Chestnut Hill Griffins baseball team from preparing for the upcoming season. The team consists of 25 players this season; 17 returning players and eight new players joining the squad. The Griffins are led by head coach Robert Spratt, who has been at the helm since the program’s inception in 2008. Before joining Chestnut Hill, Spratt revived a baseball program at Penn State Abington that had not competed for 15 years.

In what was the best season in the program’s history, the team won a record 19 games in 2012.  They also ranked second in the All-Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) in runs scored per game (5.71) and with 135 stolen bases (135), were the tenth best team in all of Division II. Current sophomore Taylor Steen, considered one of the team’s most explosive players, led the team in categories such as runs scored (33), doubles (6), triples (4), total bases (60), and sacrifice bunts (11).

Returning senior players this year include Robert Hopkins, Timothy DiMonte, Joseph Crane, Richard Cavazza, Ryan Lanzalotto, and Travis Kakareko. Also returning are juniors Desmond Lites, Jonathan Bernhardt III, and Joseph Mullin. Sophomores Dane Gahr, Vincent Manzella, and Seamus Finnegan are also returning. Alumni Jesse Daywalt, who led the team in hits (44), and stolen bases (29) last season, will also return to the team this season as an assistant coach.

During the College’s spring break, the team will be traveling south to warmer climates to compete in tournaments. From Feb. 22 to 24, the team will be playing in the Northeast Challenge hosted at the Ripken Experience Tournament in Myrtle Beach, S.C. for the third consecutive year. There they will face fellow NCAA Division II teams the Molloy College Lions, the Southern New Hampshire University Penmen, and the Franklin Pierce University Ravens as a tune-up for the upcoming regular season. Afterwards, the team will head down to Fort Pierce, Fla. to play in the Florida Coast Spring Training Program. There they will play double-headers against fellow Division II rivals Northwood University and Mercyhurst College.

The Griffins continue their quest to be a strong presence in both non-conference and conference play and are very optimistic they will be able to build off of last season’s success. The triumphs of the returning players in previous campaigns look to have the Griffins poised for a promising spring trip and season. 


Chelsea Maguire ‘15

Going Out Guide

-Kaila Kane ‘16

Lights Out Glow Party ft. Seven Lions w/ KDrew and more TBA

Soundgarden Hall - 520 N. Columbus Blvd.

Feb. 22. 8:30PM-2:30AM

Tickets - $15

Love Letter Train Tour – a tour of 50 rooftop murals showcasing love letters from a guy to a girl, an artist to his hometown, and citizens to their city.

Saturdays and Sundays

Tickets - $20

Sweat Fitness and Frames Unlimited Bowling Sundays

3300 Henry Ave.

Feb. 17, 24

Tickets - $10. Unlimited bowling with a shoe rental

All Star Weekend Concert with Cute Is What We Aim For, Beneath The Sun, and Tiffany Alvord

TLA (Theater of Living Arts) - 334 South St.

Feb. 15

Tickets - $20

Green Day’s American Idiot Broadway Performance

Merriam Theatre - 250 S. Broad St.

Feb. 12-17

Tickets starting at $20

Titanic the Artifact Exhibit

Franklin Institute - 222 N. 20th St.

Running through April

Tickets from $19.50


Internet Issues

Throughout the school year I’ve grown increasingly more frustrated with the quality of Internet on campus. Our school is so tiny you’d think the Information Technology (IT) part of it would be running like a well-oiled machine, but that isn’t the case. Weathering an internet blackout, which typically occurs at the most inopportune of times, is like a rite of passage here at CHC.

I get that running an efficient IT department is hard (my dad works in IT at Kutztown University, so I’ve always had a mild understanding of it) and it’s tough keeping up with rapid changes in technology, but when students can’t even rely on a basic service like school email, I have to question the quality and consistency of the internet. Why, even after installing dozens of new access points in the residence halls, does my connection move at a glacial pace? It’s incredibly frustrating, whether I’m working on a paper that requires me to do research online or just watching Netflix.

A few months ago I read an article on the Huffington Post about a U.S. News & World Report on the most connected colleges in the country, which says that Bowdoin College in Maine is the most connected college in the U.S.

Bowdoin College only has 1,778 students. Of the 25 schools on the list, 12 have an undergraduate enrollment of less than 5,000 students and 19 schools have less than 10,000 students. Smaller schools are clearly succeeding.

Shouldn’t we have the luxury of reliable Internet?

And webmail. Good old webmail. Most of my qualms lie within our email system. Because our IT department hosts our email, there are several costs associated with doing so, like hardware and software maintenance costs. I think Chestnut Hill should look into outsourcing our email to a service like Gmail or Microsoft Live, which a number of other schools, including larger state schools like Kutztown University and Lock Haven University, and smaller, local schools like Arcadia University and Rosemont College, have already done.

Granted, Chestnut Hill would lose control over our email service by making the switch, but it would free up the IT staff to work in other areas. Email maintenance would go down tremendously, email addresses would stay the same, we would have a lot more storage (no more “inbox overload” reminders), and, most importantly, it’s completely free. Not enough of the budget is allotted to this growing, quickly progressing department. If we want our IT department to run more effectively, administration needs to give the department more support.

-Taylor Eben ‘14

Sally Says: Notebook or Laptop?

Dear Readers,
            This week, we examine the New Age battle between laptop and notebook. Which tool is tops in the classroom? Well let’s do a run down of the benefits.

            Props to the notebook for being lightweight, super portable and always ready to use seeing as it never runs out of battery life. However, the laptop steps up to the plate with speedy note-taking keyboard, and Google to go help out when you don’t understand something.

            Hold on now, its not always rainbows and gumdrops. There are some issues on both sides. Let’s take a look at the notebook. The real, sad truth is that it’s pointless if you don’t have a pen, then, if you run out of ink it becomes an issue. Also, when trying to keep up with a lecture you may scribble notes so quickly that later on they are illegible.

             Stop right there! Before you decide to make the laptop the champion, remember you have to lug it around from class to class with your books, not to mention that it can become a huge distraction in class. In addition, although you don’t have to worry about running out of ink, if there’s no outlet around well, you better pray for your battery.

            So the moment you have been waiting for my tip of the week is: Take a notebook! It will save you back pain and keep your attention on the professor rather than Facebook, but do yourself a favor and carry extra pens.

Neatly noted,
Sally Says

Looking Back on the 2012 Phillies Season

Tiffany Urena ‘15

As we make our way into fall, sports fans around the country may be thinking about the excitement of the football season. For many though, this means that baseball and the exploits of the boys of summer are coming to a close. Although it didn’t end the way fans had hoped, the Philadelphia Phillies really did keep the fans involved and on edge all season long.

The Phillies came into this season expecting to be World Series contenders. They were coming off a season that saw them win a franchise high of 102 games and had assembled three pitchers that finished in the top five of the Cy Young voting.

Unfortunately for the team and its fans, the blueprint for the season didn’t go as planned. In fact, most of this season ended up being a struggle, with hope only briefly on the horizon near the end. Most of the season came and went and the Phillies didn’t really “boom” the way they were expected to until after the trade deadline. At this point they came close but ran out of time and finished outside of the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

While the season didn’t go perfectly, there were underlying factors that had the Phils doomed from the start. No team is going to do well with the middle of their line-up and ace on the disabled list for most of the season. As a result of these three missing players, the Phillies stumbled into the second half of the season attempting to grasp a destination that proved to be out of reach.

Although the injuries did hamper the team, there were other reasons for the Phils lackluster performance. The starting pitching wasn’t as advertised and the bullpen also left much to be desired.

Having made it just past 70 wins by late September wasn’t what the Phillies expected during spring training. Having their two biggest home run hitters, Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, on the disabled list for most of the season didn’t help them either. On the other hand, their lineup was supposed to be offense-dominant. When they opened the season, they had Juan Pierre, Placido Polanco, Freddy Galvis, Shane Victorino and Carlos Ruiz on the roster, which on paper made for a solid starting five. As the Phillies learned however, you don’t win games on paper.

So even though the season didn’t exactly work out for Phillies fans, regardless of the numbers, any baseball fan can say the Phillies surprised a lot of people especially in the end. Whether there were injuries or not, they still played their hearts out and despite not making the playoffs, ended the season with a lot to be proud of and lot to build off of come 2013.

This Week’s Top Tweets

@PinterestFake:  Pumpkin spice donuts dipped in a pumpkin spice latte on a plate made of a big hunk of pumpkin, for your husband, a pumpkin wearing glasses.

Drake’s slow songs be having you miss people you don’t even know

Ur like that one dumb hard pistachio that just didn’t grow up right and is way too salty

#WeLiveInAGenerationWhere young girls and middle aged women legitimately want to marry vampires.

Harry Potter Weekend

Michael Bradley ‘14

On Oct. 27 Chestnut Hill College’s 3rd Annual Brotherly Love Cup will kick off. While the Cup has been an inarguable success in the past, it will be even bigger and better this year.

The CHC Griffins Quidditch Club, which is sponsored by the Student Activities Office, has been planning the event since last spring semester to ensure this year’s cup is better than years past.

"We had somewhere between 2,000 to 3,000 people attend last year, and we are trying to beat that this year,” said Wes Mandoske 2013, communications chair for the CHC Griffin’s Quidditch Club.

One of the most noticeable changes will be the field on which the games are played. This year, teams will be dueling on the softball fields directly below the stairs outside of Fournier, rather than the soccer field, which was used last year.

 Also new to the Cup this year are student-club vendors. Several clubs from the College will be seated at tables around the matches selling food, conducting games or raising awareness in support of their groups.

The Quidditch games themselves are going to be bigger than ever this year as well. A total of 16 colleges, universities and community teams will be gathering on campus to compete for the winning title.

“Every year there is a little more magic, a little more excitement, that is brought to the Quidditch pitch,” said Kaycee Flore, 2013 beater for the CHC team. “This year, having more involvement from the college communities, it is sure to be an impressive experience.”

Other college/university teams will be traveling from as far away as Amherst, Mass., and Ithaca, N.Y., to the College. Also in attendance will be two community-based teams from the Philadelphia area.

Whichever team places first in the Cup will advance onto the regional championship, which will be held in Roanoke, Va., or Newport, R.I., in mid-November.

Sally Says Welcome

Dear Readers,

Do you ever feel overwhelmed by college? Is there a problem you can’t solve, stress you can’t suppress, or a feeling that you need to express? Well, I have the answers for you! The tips, tricks, and the simple fix for all your college questions. I want to share with you the ways to not only survive but enjoy your college experience. I will give you weekly tips, tricks, and advice to make your stay at Chestnut Hill College even better!

Happy to help,
Sally Says

Subjective Scrutiny Comic by Gabriel Henninger ‘15

Subjective Scrutiny Comic by Gabriel Henninger ‘15

A Preview of Men’s Basketball’s Upcoming CACC Season

Brandon Edwards ‘13

In 2011-12, the CHC men’s basketball team had their best season in program history with an overall record of 18-12. Unfortunately, the team came up short in the CACC championship tournament against Dominican College losing by the smallest of margins, 79-70. It was a hard fought game and the players certainly gained experience. Despite going into the season without top scorers Dan Comas ‘12 and Brandon Williams ‘12, both of whom graduated and scored over 1,000 points in their career with CHC, the team is confident that they can build off of their strong finish last season and use it to once again make the playoffs this year.

Although Comas and Williams are no longer with the team, there are strong returning players who are ready to make their impact. One of these players is senior Mark Dirugeris ‘13, who along with Comas was named to last season’s All-CACC team. Dirugeris has scored 1,000 career points and will look to increase that number in his final season as a Griffin. He is ready to be this team’s next shining star and his leadership will be a vital part of the team’s success.

Also returning is another senior standout, Francis Ashe ‘13. Ashe played well last season, finishing third on the team in rebounds and assists and averaging seven points a game. Now that Comas, the team’s main defensive and offensive weapon is gone, Ashe will likely get more minutes and will be given a more important role in the defensive backcourt.

Coach Jesse Balcer believes that “the leadership abilities of Dirugeris and Ashe are going to be immeasurable.” He adds that this upcoming season there will be a different type of team on the court and that this difference will be a good thing. Balcer has always supported his players and this season will be no different. He sees no reason for this team not to improve upon last season’s results and become stronger as the season goes on. 

In addition to the senior stars, Balcer has strong belief in the depth the Griffins have when it comes to their bench. Coach Balcer believes in the ability of his team to work together.  “There are other players that come off the bench and play well,” he said. 

“Overall, we will be just as good a team this year or better,” said Balcer, adding that he is looking forward to seeing how this team will take on an identity all their own. Balcer believes that this upcoming season the team will be as exciting as any other team he has ever coached and this is certainly something that gives the team and its fans reason to be excited.

Janice Kuklick: Our Superwoman

Ariama Long ‘13 

A passionate advocate of social change and athletics, Janice Rensimer Kuklick, M.Ed., chair of the physical education department, has long practiced what she preaches through years of dedication and hard work.

Kuklick offered a presentation on Sep. 19 to celebrate the last 40 years of societal and legislative progress towards gender equality. “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.” (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to the Civil Rights Act).

Until this particular piece of legislation passed, women struggled to be recognized as athletes, and still continue to today. But thanks to the tireless efforts of females at Chestnut Hill College and across the country, the fight to be seen as equals on and off the playing field does not wage on in vain.

Her entire career is a testament to this cause. Kuklick has been named a member of the Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School Hall of Fame, the West Chester University Athletic Hall of Fame, the Pennsylvania Lacrosse Hall of Fame and the USA Lacrosse Hall of Fame. These prestigious titles are only in addition to her 35 years of service to the College as faculty since 1977, as well as her time spent here as a student. She has held almost every office in the athletic department: from player to instructor to director, and has become a positive role model to virtually any student who has come in contact with her.

Shannon Salandy, a senior education major, said: “I have class with her now, yoga and pilates. And she’s still got it. She really pushes her students through hard work and motivation…and pain.”

Many students marvel at the intensity and drive Kuklick manages to exude with every activity. “It’s ridiculous, but you know, in a really good way,” Richard Browne, senior, said in reaction to finding out the amount of time Kuklick has spent at the College.

It is not just the students who admire Kuklick and all that she accomplishes on a daily basis, but the College faculty and staff do as well. Susan Magee, M.F.A., assistant professor of communications, reflects on when she was a student at the College and had Kuklick as her aerobics instructor. “She was like eight months pregnant and doing every move and kick,” Magee said.  “It was amazing but very sad for us that we couldn’t keep up with her. I’m sure she can still out-kick me.”

Kuklick will always be recognized and loved as the most energetic and lively person at the College, and an inspiration to male and female athletes and students alike.

Photos by Adriana Pascarella ‘16

Style Spotter is a regular feature in this section that showcases some of the diverse fashion tastes found on our campus. Think you or one of your friends is well dressed? Feel free to send recommendations to us at

Study Abroad: From London to Morocco

Photo by Olivia Marcinka ’13

“Hey Liv. Spring break, wanna go to Africa?” asked Matt.

“Sure,” I answered without a second deliberation. It wasn’t until our plane cleared past the final tip of Spain, moving hurriedly over the Strait of Gibraltar and into the Atlas mountains, that I felt regret for entering into such a hasty agreement.

Matt is a nervous flyer, and even though it was late into the evening, he could not stop talking and tapping, talking and tapping. I looked down over the vast black that stretched its arms up and around our aircraft. It was so dark. The only lights I could see stood in small circular patches, flickering like fire. This didn’t happen again for miles. I, being the object of rationality, wanted to politely unbuckle my seatbelt and run back and forth through the cabin screaming, “Africa is on fire! Africa is on fire! Turn around! Take me back to London!”

But, Matt is a nervous flyer. Instead I hoped for both the flight and the cartoon strip on my flight safety card to never end.

As we prepared for our landing in Fes, Morocco, the plane’s tires bounced playfully on and off of the one-plane tarmac. I stepped off of the plane and onto the track heaving in a chest full of African air. Out of both fear and excitement I exhaled saying, “mmmmmmMorocco.”

After passing through the country’s border, all that was left to do was to declare nothing to the Moroccan officer and to find our cab-driver. I waited respectfully for the man that I was with, Matt, to shake hands with the driver, and then I politely introduced myself. Finally, we were on our way.

Arriving on the outskirts of the Medina [marketplace or city] we located our hotel called the Riad Damia [a building having a rooftop garden that overlooked the Medina]. The owner of the Riad was there to greet us. He welcomed us through a very small wooden door that opened up to an incredible room of palatial size and décor. We sat down in the center of the room and marveled at the illusion.

“You look tired,” the Riad owner said to us pouring what was a blend of mint, tea leaves, and brown sugar into two thin glass cylinders. We stared blankly at the owner with his arms outstretched in offering. Our arms remained crossed over our bodies and our backpacks on.

“It is ment-m-ment-tea,” he explained waving his hand in the direction of the silver plated tea tray he had left on the table in front of us.

After shuffling around the massive room for a few minutes, the owner came over and sat down on the couch beside ours.

“Don’t worry,” he said placing his hands on his knees. “Now, you are home.”

I looked around the intricately adorned room, at the surrounding mosaic that crept up the walls of the Riad like ivy. “I am?” I thought.

Olivia Marcinka ’13

Comic by Gabriel Henninger ‘15

Comic by Gabriel Henninger ‘15

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