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Monthly Archives: March 2011

Facing Immigration

Graphic designed by Adriel Lopez.

By: Rene Howard-Paez, Staff Reporter

Students, faculty, religious leaders and concerned neighbors were in attendance Tuesday, March 15 at Dominican University’s immigration forum.

The evening’s discussion addressed the statistical, legal, theological and ethical aspects of immigration, beginning with the question “Is dreaming illegal?,” which was also the title of the event.

The four-person, comprehensive panel, all of different backgrounds, was co-hosted by the Center for Global Peace through Commerce and the Siena Center.

Claire Noonan, the director of the Siena Center, provided opening remarks giving context to immigration and the university. “It is a deeply personal issue for all of us at Dominican University, where we pride ourselves in being a relationship-centered place, where the participation in the creation of a much just and humane world is a driving priority,” she said.

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Custodian arrested for allegedly watching student shower

Mateusz Sokacz, 22. Provided by the River Forest Police.

By: Mary Stroka, Copy Editor

A maintenance staff member at Dominican was arrested for disorderly conduct after police alleged he was watching a female student shower in a residence hall bathroom on March 4.

The victim identified the suspect as Mateusz Sokacz, 22, who allegedly watched her “as she showered by looking over a wall that divides the showers,” a River Forest Police press release said.

Eurest Services immediately suspended and has since terminated  Sokacz, Rebecca Monroe, Director of Communications at Eurest Services said.

“He was also immediately barred from campus, his clearance was rescinded, and keys confiscated,” Monroe said.

Sokacz was initially employed by KIMCO and Eurest Services later bought out the company and Sokacz remained in employment.

“We will treat this seriously. All appropriate people were notified within 24 hours,” Senior Vice President for Administration in the Business Department at Dominican Amy McCormack said. “We consider this a very serious and unfortunate incident.”

“I would hope students would feel comfortable reporting any suspicious activity or uncomfortable situations,” McCormack said.

Sokacz, of the 3400 block of Laramie Avenue in Chicago, is scheduled to appear at the Maybrook courthouse April 15.


SGA urges involvement

By: Mary Stroka, Copy Editor

After two presidents’ resignations, Dominican’s Student Government Association (SGA) finally has a president who has remained in office, and feelings are optimistic. Nevertheless, not everyone is convinced the SGA is addressing all relevant issues.

SGA President Tim Lazicki took office last fall. Since then the SGA has started pushing for 24-hour printing access in the residence halls, an SGA bulletin board on the second floor of Lewis Hall and online elections to supplement the paper system.

Lazicki had been a student senator during the two previous administrations.

“After two presidents resigned, even though they may have had good reasons, I became frustrated with the fact that a crucial organization to student life was having a hard time maintaining leadership,” he said. “I became president with the conviction that I could give the organization the leadership it needed during this time of re-establishment.”

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Child porn suspect investigation leads to weapons charges

Mark Gondolfo, 51. Provided by the River Forest Police.

By: Mary Stroka, Copy Editor

River Forest Police investigating reports of possible child pornography at the Dominican library arrested a Forest Park man on an unrelated gun charge on March 11, according to a River Forest Police press release.

Police said a Dominican security officer saw a man in his 50s on a computer looking at what the security officer believed was child pornography on the morning of Jan. 11.

Police later identified the man as Mark Gandolfo, 51.

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US military spy operation to manipulate social media

Gen. David Petraeus has previously has said US online psychological operations are aimed at ‘countering extremist ideology and propaganda’. Credit: Associated Press

By: Kaitlin Kimont, Samantha Sanchez and Angela Romano

Even the U.S. military is on social media sites these days, but their intentions might not be the same. It has been reported that the U.S. military is currently developing software that will let it create fake online personas that will then be used to spread pro-American propaganda while influencing other’s opinions and confronting extremist ideology.

United States Central Command (Centcom) has just partnered with Netrpid, a California corporation, to create the fake online personas called “sock puppets.” The contract states that U.S. servicemen and women should be able to operate up to 10 personalities each and they must be convincing. The personas must have believable backgrounds and information that would make it hard to hack and discover that they aren’t real.

There is speculation that the persona project is apart of Operation Earnest Voice (OEV). The program started much like this one, but in Iraq as a means to combat the online presence of al- Qaida. It is now a $200 million program that has also been used in Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Middle East.

According to the former commander of Centcom, General David Petraeus, the main goal of OEV is used to counter terrorism and radicalization propaganda. Petraeus said, “counter extremist ideology and propaganda and to ensure that credible voices in the region are heard.” He went on to explain that this is so the US military could be “first with the truth.”

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Opposing Viewpoints: South Side Irish Parade

The 30-year Chicago tradition began as a whimsical walk in the city but turned into a massive street party filled with drunken brawlers, underage drinkers, massive crowds and multiple arrests. These factors led to the cancellation of the South Side Irish parade in 2009. Credit:

Chicago needed change, one parade is enough

By: Dominic Schwab, Staff Reporter

Does Chicago really need two St. Patrick’s Day parades?  I don’t think so, especially when one takes into account the history of the parades and the reasons given for the South Side Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade cancellation.

In March 2009, the South Side Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee announced that they would no longer hold the annual South Side Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade.  Many people, both residents of the South Side and elsewhere, were shocked and upset by the news.  This particular parade, which had taken place each year alongside the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in downtown Chicago, had been held for just over thirty years.

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Opposing Viewpoints: South Side Irish Parade

Take away parade, take away tradition

By: Stacy Portilla, Contributing Reporter

Although I have only lived here for four years, I’ve come to realize the important dates here in Chicago. March 17, St. Patrick’s Day, is one of them. When a Chicagoan brings up St. Patrick’s Day, most people think of the South Side Irish Parade. Two years ago on St. Patrick’s Day, I headed down to the South Side to report on what the holiday would be like without the traditional parade and festivities that the people of Chicago had grown accustomed to. Although there was no parade, they had set up a day of family festivities including crafts for children, booths, and live music. Although Irish Fest was a big hit for small children, it lacked interest for adults. Sure there was beer and corned beef and cabbage, but compared to the South Side Parade, Irish Fest appeared to be a disappointment. From the people I talked to, I concluded that while people were impressed with Irish Fest, most people were still upset that the parade, once a South Side tradition, was dead. Sure, there is still Unofficial at University of Illinois and the downtown parade, but when people think of St. Patrick’s Day in Chicago, the South Side Parade comes out on top.

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