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The Minuteman

Friday, November 7, 2014


- The Department of English announced this year’s winners of the seventh Annual Creepy Conference. Placing first was senior psychology major Taleah Scott for her presentation titled “Pareidolia,” in which she examined why humans attempt to see faces in ambiguous objects, such as in window reflections, mist, fire, and even fruit. She argues that this phenomenon accounts for sightings of ghosts and other paranormal activity. Senior TV/Video major Dominic Flamini was named the runner-up for his presentation “Get ready for Freddy: An Analysis of ‘5 Night’s at Freddy’s.’” He argued that the video game “5 Night’s at Freddy’s” successfully incorporates elements designed to frighten viewers, such as characters seeming too real to be cartoons but too cartoon to be real.

-- RMU Sentry Media's Haley Sawyer (junior, communication) and Kendall Valan (junior, media arts) have been named semifinalists in the Generation Next Team Up competition sponsored by Media and Mental Health and the Entertainment Industries Council. The competition invites film, video and television, journalism, media communications and behavioral health students in colleges and universities throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania to participate in the following categories: 

1. Film, video and television (fiction, nonfiction or television pilot presentation) 

2. Journalism (news writing or multimedia) 

3. Social media

4. Behavioral Health

The goal is to write and/or produce compelling, accurate and nondiscriminatory stories about mental illness, or to create a social media campaign that advocates for the reduction of mental health stigma and discrimination. The competition is intended to promote greater understanding about mental health among those creating these works, college students and all who will be exposed to 

the completed projects. Nine semifinalists, three in each category (film, video and television; journalism; and social media) will be invited to develop the projects they proposed in their applications, with input from mentors assigned according to the needs of each project. Three winners, one in each category, will receive a cash prize of $1,000.  They will also be special guests at the Entertainment Industries Council’s 2014 SWPA Media & Mental Health Awards in Pittsburgh. Winners will be announced on Nov. 30. 

-- RMU was recognized recently in two national rankings for best colleges:

  •  The university takes the 118th spot out of 1,224 four-year institutions across the country in the 2015 Educate To Career College Rankings Index. The index analyzes the quality of students when they enter college, the total costs related to attending the college and the outcomes of the students when they enter the labor market. The results are determined by which schools did the best job of improving the earnings and attainment of quality employment of their students.
  • Robert Morris ranks 28th for the Best Online Colleges 2014, according to The Best Value Schools. This ranking factors in freshman retention, six-year graduation rate, student-faculty ratio, number of bachelor’s programs offered, breadth of subjects to study, College Prowler overall rankings, and percentage of “excellent” or “strongly agree” student poll responses on College Prowler. This is the 7th national ranking the institution has received for it’s online degree programs in the past two years. 


-- Joe Angelelli, director of Health Services Administration, will participate in a forum titled "The New Old Age: Perspectives on Senior Health," Monday, Nov. 17, at 6 p.m. at the Heinz History Center. The event is presented by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Highmark, and it is free to the public. For more information go to 

-- Christine Holtz, professor of media arts, has been selected to be included in two exhibitions that open today (Nov. 7). “Looking Out” with juror Andrew Lucas open at The New Hampshire Institute of Art’s Sharon Arts Center and the SPEMA Regional Conference Members Show takes place at Sunshine Art + Design in Lancaster.


-- Upcoming events in The University Honors Program Roundtable Series are:

11/7 at 1:45 p.m. in Franklin 201-- Liang Hong, "Risk pooling: How insurance works"

We will look at the fundamental problem of risk-pooling in insurance. Besides the traditional frequentist approach, we will also look at the Bayesian approach. In particular, we will look at the major results along the line of credibility theory and discuss some open problems for future research. The talk is intended for a wide audience especially those who are interested in actuarial science, insurance and risk management.

11/12 at 12:45 p.m. in Franklin 203-- Monica VanDieren, "The Mathematics Behind Enigma"

VanDieren will be discussing the mathematics behind "breaking the unbreakable Nazi code" during World War II. Come and learn about this complex math before seeing The Imitation Game in theaters this month! Check out the trailer here

The RMU Roundtable Series is sponsored by the University Honors Program, and is an occasional forum in which faculty can present on their research and topics of interest in an informal setting to students, faculty, and staff.

-- Please join the Office of Multicultural Student Services, Residence Life, and the Counseling Center for the screening of the new, award-winning documentary Brave Miss World on Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. in the Wheatley Center, Room 101. The film shares the story of former Miss World Linor Abargil’s courageous fight for justice after she was the victim of a violent stabbing and rape, just before winning the Miss World crown. The showing is free and open to the public. For more information please contact Victoria Snyder, Director, Multicultural Student Services at or 412-397-6488, and read more about this powerful film here.

-- RMU will host “A Symposium on Executive Power” on Tuesday, Nov. 11, featuring an examination of the power of the American presidency by several scholars and journalists. The event is sponsored by the Department of Social Sciences at RMU and will feature a keynote address by David Shribman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Other speakers are Jay Cost, staff writer for The Weekly Standard; Justin DePlato, assistant professor of political science at RMU; Jules Lobel, the Bessie McKee Wathour Endowed Chair at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and president of the Center for Constitutional Rights; and Sharece Thrower, assistant professor of political science at the University of Pittsburgh. The event gets underway at 11 a.m. and takes place in the Sewall Center at RMU’s Moon Township campus. For a complete schedule go to To RSVP for the luncheon and keynote address, email The lunch costs $5 but is free for students. The rest of the symposium is free and open to the public.

-- Please join the Department of Media Arts on Tuesday, Nov. 11, for a lecture by visiting artist/photographer Aaron Blum from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. in the Wheatley Center, Critique Space. Aaron Blum is an eighth-generation West Virginian, and creates art deeply linked to his home. Most of his work centers around a single question: What does it mean to be Appalachian? His creation process is a diversified approach of image-based media to create a glimpse into his own concepts of Appalachia, and the social fabric of a very large and misrepresented people and place. His series Born and Raised is a granulated depiction based on the false impressions of others, and his idealizations and personal experiences. He pays close attention to the quality of light and the landscape as well as cultural markers to produce a unique version of the life in the hills of Appalachia. For more information please contact Christine Holtz, Director, professor of media arts at or 412-397-6210.

-- RMU Colonial Theatre invites you to Massey Theater for the showing of Titanic the musical! (Maybe the ship won't sink this time?) Directed by Professor Barbara Burgess-Lefebvre, the show runs from November 12–16 at 7:30 p.m. each night with a Sunday matinee at 2pm. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door. 

Saturday, Nov. 8

Football vs. Wagner (noon/Joe Walton Stadium/tix 412-397-4949 or; free for RMU students and employees)
Military Appreciation Day; First 1,000 fans receive a RoMo Bobble Head thanks to Trib Total Media
Sign up on the plaza to take the Clearview FCU Quarterback might win $500!
Free halftime food on the plaza for RMU students under the tent (sponsored by RMU Multicultural Student Services)
Women's Volleyball vs. Saint Francis (3 pm/Sewall Center/free admission) -- SENIOR DAY

Sunday, Nov. 9
Men's Soccer vs. Saint Francis (1 pm/North Athletic Complex/free admission) -- SENIOR DAY

THE RMU FOOTBALL COACH'S SHOW...featuring head man John Banaszak resumes on Monday, Nov. 17 at 8 pm at Buffalo Wild Wings in Cranberry. Come out for the live airing of the show. The RMU Football Coach's Show is at different Buffalo Wild Wings around the Pittsburgh area Mondays during the Robert Morris football season and provides the inside scoop on the Colonials. The show can be heard on 970 AM ESPN as well as on the iheart radio app.

RMU HOOPS ROAD TRIP...Travel packages range in price from $200-$425. Packages include motor coach transportation to and from Washington, D.C., hotel accommodation and tickets for when Robert Morris men's basketball plays at Georgetown on Saturday, Nov. 22. To get in on the fun, contact TJ Brown in the RMU Office of Institutional Advancement at 412-397-5456.

RMU HOCKEY AT CONSOL ENERGY CENTER!...There is an exclusive presale link for Robert Morris fans only for tickets to the 2014 Three Rivers Classic. Click the “More Info” tab to go straight to seats in the RMU section. No password necessary! This offer is for the two-day package only and time is limited. The dates are Dec. 29-30. Penn State, Colgate and Western Michigan join the Colonials in this year's field. Here's the link

 TOYS FOR TOTS...The RMU Athletic Department has partnered with the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve on this annual community outreach program every year since 2008 collecting hundreds of toys for area youths thanks to the generosity of many Colonial fans. Collection bins on campus are once again located in Joe Walton Stadium (first floor main lobby), Sewall Center (main arena and third floor), Island Sports Center (main lobby), Nicholson Center (across from Admissions Office) and Hale Center (inside third floor doors facing Franklin Center). Please be generous by donating a new unwrapped toy. Or better yet bring a new unwrapped toy to any or all of these Robert Morris home games and get in free!

  • Football - Saturday, Nov. 15 @ noon vs. Saint Francis (Joe Walton Stadium)
  • Men's Basketball - Tuesday, Dec. 2 @ 7 pm vs. Youngstown State (Sewall Center)
  • Women's Basketball - Wednesday, Dec. 3 @ 7 pm vs. LaSalle (Sewall Center)
  • Women's Hockey - Saturday, Dec. 6, @ 3:05 pm vs. Penn State (Island Sports Center)
  • Men's Hockey - Saturday, Dec. 6 @ 7:05 pm vs. Sacred Heart (Island Sports Center)

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