Stockton News - Feb. 2, 2024


Pan-African Flag RaisingPan-African Flag Raising Kicks Off Black History Month

Did you know that the Pan-African flag was the first flag of cultural heritage to be permanently displayed in the Arts & Sciences Circle at Stockton University?

According to Haashim Smith-Johnson, an Admissions recruiter and former president of the Unified Black Student Society, the idea of having the flag raised for more than the month of February came out of the organization’s desire to make a statement on campus in 2017. He encouraged students to honor the organization’s legacy through decisive action when thinking of ways to make Stockton an inclusive campus for everyone.

“This one thought turned into action, which turned into Black Stockton history,” Smith-Johnson, who is currently staff advisor for UBSS, said. “Student leaders of UBSS and all of the other adjacent student organizations: no idea is outlandish. Please continue to represent the culture and advocate for yourself. Your future self, as well as future generations of marginalized Stockton students, will absolutely thank you.”

This was just one of many valuable lessons that attendees heard during the annual Black History Month Flag Raising on Thursday, Feb. 1. Following a beautiful rendition of the Black national anthem, “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing,” by student Lillian Nickels and professor of Music Beverly Vaughn, several speakers all had a common thread — the importance of acknowledging history that future generations will learn from and study.

In her remarks, Terricita Sass, Stockton’s executive vice president and chief of staff, boldly proclaimed that Black history is intrinsically tied to American history and that the absence of Black history is an ahistorical “distortion.” She implored the audience to learn more about prolific previous leaders, such as Carter G. Woodson, the creator of Black History Month’s predecessor “Black History Week;” Vera King Farris, the first Black female president in Stockton’s history and Juanita J. High, a former Stockton administrator and Foundation Board member.

📸Viewmore photoson Flickr.

study abroad fair Fair Hopes to Dispel Myths About Studying Abroad

Louis Santiago-Conde loves to travel, but he never thought he could afford to study abroad.

But the first-year student’s world view has totally changed after attendingthe Education Abroad Fair in the Multicultural Center on Jan. 30.

“I learned that financial aid can help, and that definitely made me more excited,” said the esports management major who wants to go to England where gaming 'is one of the biggest things.'”

“I was just walking by, but once they started talking to me, I got interested right away,” said the Camden native. “It was a very positive and awesome experience.”

The idea that studying abroad is too expensive is one of the myths that senior Nikki Troehler would like to dispel. She works in the Office of Global Engagement and is traveling to Greece this summer to finish her Liberal Studies degree with minors in Global Studies and Historical Studies.

“I didn’t know that studying abroad was a thing coming from a first-generation background,” said the Mays Landing native, who has traveled back and forth several times to Greece with her Yaya, or grandmother. “Aside from my personal experiences, I didn’t think this was accessible. I thought it was too expensive. I thought it would delay graduation."

two students at tableUnity, Balance and Intention: Celebrating Muslim Heritage Through Art

What better way to conclude New Jersey’s new Muslim Heritage Month in January than with learning about Islamic art and the impact it has in preserving religious and cultural heritage?

The Muslim Student Association (MSA) held a fair centering on Islamic art and artists on Jan. 31 in the Campus Center Event Room. Participants explored artwork that included calligraphy, vegetal/biomorphic patterns and geometry, bought from and supported local student businesses and even joined in on the fun with interactive art stations.

Students like Melissa Zou and Ayish Medical explored art forms they were previously unfamiliar with.

Zou, a graduate student in the Master of Occupational Therapy program and president of the Eastern Brush Painting Club, was pleasantly suprised to have been invited to table for the fair and lead the station on calligraphy. Researching and learning more about Arabic calligraphy has sparked an interest in continuing learning, and the club hopes to collaborate with MSA for more events like the fair.

“We wanted to broaden our knowledge because, in our club, we currently don’t have anyone who knows the Arabic language, so this was a learning process for us. We hope to widen our club as well as incorporate different ethnicities so that we can try out new things,” the Mays Landing native said.

📸View more photos on Flickr.


Cinema in the CityCome Out for Cinema in the City

This spring semester, the entire Stockton community is invited to enjoy feature films, free food and drinks, as part of “AC Campus Movie Nights: Cinema in the City.” 

Attendees are asked to bring their Stockton IDs. Movies will be shown at 8 p.m. in classrooms B119/120 of Kesselman Hall at Stockton Atlantic City on the following dates: Feb. 5, 8, “Devotion;” Feb. 19, 22, “Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 3;” March 4, 7, “Barbie;” March 25, 28, “The Fast and the Furious - Tokyo Drift;” April 8, 11, “Aquaman;” and April 22, 25, “The Equalizer 3.”


Brian GembaraWhen you hear the word "hackers," what comes to mind may be updating your online passwords frequently, being cautious with online banking, and watching for spam emails, but so much more goes into cybersecurity, especially when it comes to a large organization.

Brian Gembara, Stockton's cybersecurity engineer, completeda virtual course, "Enterprise Penetration Testing," offered by the SANS Institute in December, which really broadened his ever-growing skillset. Gembara joined Stockton's Office of Information Security full time in April 2023 but worked there as a student, earning degrees in Computer Science and Mathematics in 2019.

At the course's end, the instructor organized a "Capture the Flag" (CTF) hacking competition for the 35 participants, and Gembara led his team of four to first place, scoring 7,000 of their 7,500 points. 


Communing with Ancestors in GhanaCommuning with Ancestors in Ghana

A picture worth 1,000 words during a recent faculty-led trip to Ghana is best described as “communing with our ancestors,” said Donnetrice Allison, professor of Communication Studies and Africana Studies, who facilitated the study tour. 

“We had just finished pouring libations and calling out the names of our ancestors at the Assin Manso Ancestral Slave River, which was one of the last stops enslaved Africans were brought to be cleaned before being put in the dungeons to await the ships that would transport them to the Caribbean and North America,” she explained. 

Pictured are Keisha Richards, Africana Studies major; Renee Tolliver, liberal Studies major/Africana Studies minor; Tamara Farrow, MBA student; Lilly Nickens, Africana Studies major; Beverly Vaughn, professor of Music; Allison, and Debra Barnett.

Stay tuned for full coverage of their trip in the upcoming Spring 2024 Celebrate Diversity Digest, which is due to publish this month.


what's trending - Feb. 2, 2024Instagram: That’s a wrap for January. 🦅

Facebook: What does your morning routine look like, Ospreys?

LinkedIn: Let the #CountdownToCommencement begin!


women’s basketball team playing Stockton Cruises Past Rutgers-Newark

The women’s basketball team had 11 players reach the scoring column as the Ospreys ran by the Rutgers-Newark Scarlet Raiders 71-54 on Jan. 31. Madison Dulude and Imene Fathi led the Ospreys with 12 points each.

Rutgers-Newark jumped out quickly, forging a 7-3 lead with 7:12 remaining in the first quarter, but would not score the rest of the period. Stockton finished the quarter on a 9-0 run led by Dulude with four markers, as the Ospreys took a 12-7 advantage into the second frame.

🎀🏀The women’s basketball team is hosting its “Think Pink” gametomorrow, Feb. 3, to celebrate breast cancer survivors and continue to bring awareness and raise money for breast cancer research. The Ospreys will host Montclair State University at 3 p.m. in the Sports Center.

mens basketball team playingStockton Falls to Buzzer Beater

The men’s basketball team used a strong second half early Jan. 31, butgave up a lead late and fell at the buzzer to Rutgers-Newark, 66-64. EJ Matthews-Spratley led all players with 23 points.

The Scarlet Raiders started strong, scoring 12 of the first 19 points in the game, forcing Stockton into a timeout. The home team did not slow down, expanding the margin to 23-14 before baskets by Rynell Lawrence and Jalen Collins narrowed the gap to 23-18 at the 6:33 mark.


The following message was shared with the Stockton community on Jan. 30:

We have recently learned of the passing of Stockton retiree, Dr. Juanita J. High. Dr. High passed on Jan. 24 at the at the age of 93.

High had ties to Stockton for more than 40 years. She was a full-time Affirmative Action Director, Special Assistant to the President, and Executive Assistant to the President at Stockton, from which she retired in 1996. She went on to serve as a consultant for Stockton’s Office of Development and Alumni Affairs, became an active member of the University’s Foundation Board of Directors starting in 2002, and served as a treasured member of the Council of Black Faculty and Staff. High established a Foundation scholarship opportunity; The Dr. Juanita High Distinguished Student Book Award benefits full-time students in good academic standing with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. 

In 2022, she was recognized and received the Traiblazer Award by the Stockton University Black Alumni Association. She was also selected in 2022 to be featured in a public mural titled “Education Trailblazers,” as part of the Atlantic City Arts Foundation’s mural arts program. As one of four distinguished female educators from Atlantic City highlighted in the mural, it was designed, along with the help of several Stockton students, to celebrate those chosen for their commitment to their careers, the community and Atlantic City, as well as reflect on the Stockton’s mission and commitment to exceptional teaching, lifelong learning, and community engagement.

Services will be held on Feb. 10, at St. James A.M.E. Church at New York and Arctic Avenues in Atlantic City. Please visit this link for Dr. High’s obituary, guestbook and additional service details.

Read more about High in The Press of Atlantic City's tribute.


Stockton Now graphicRead the Winter 2024 Issue of Stockton Now

As Stockton faculty, staff and students get into the heart of the spring semester, let's take a moment to learn more about President Joe Bertolino, who is heading into his second semester at the University. 

President Joe joined Stockton in July 2023, bringing more than 30 years of higher education and social justice experience. He's driven by a desire to make sure all students, and all members of the Stockton community, feel valued, seen and heard. In this issue of Stockton Now, you can learn more about President Joe as well as just a few of the amazing things our students, faculty, staff and alumni are up to, like DJ Campbell and sisters Emily and Kimberly Menck.

New Lifelong Learning Courses Focus on Spies, Poetry and Quilts

Not sure college is for you? Or maybe you love higher education so much you want to keep learning more?

Stockton offersa unique way to get to know some of its best professors in science, history, the arts and wellness but without a big commitment or investment.

The Stockton Institute of Lifelong Learning (SILL), which is part of the Stockton Center on Successful Aging (SCOSA), has announced its February and March programming, which includes eight classes both in-person and online.

“Our SILL classes are an opportunity to take classes with college professors across different academic topics,” said Christine Ferri, an associate professor of Psychology and SCOSA’s assistant director. “There are no papers or homework — just learning with others who are curious.”

An Update on Inclement Weather Procedures

❄️The groundhog may be predicting an early spring, but wintry weather may still impact campus. Visit the Inclement Weather Procedures page for a refresher on campus closure decision-making and guidelines for students and employees. Sign up for text alerts in the Stockton portal by selecting "Update Emergency Contacts" in the Personal Information section under the Employee tab.


✊🏿✊🏾✊🏽February is Black History Month

Events for Alumni & Friends

Spring 2024 Professional Development Opportunities 

🎭 Spring Programming at the PAC   

🎨🖼️ Spring 2024 Art Gallery exhibits

Now-March 31:"Ducktown: An Atlantic City Immigration Story"  

Feb. 2:Putty Dance Project- Glimpse

Feb. 4: CelloGayageum

Feb. 5:OspreyHub Training for Faculty/Staff (1-2 p.m.)

Feb. 7:Forced to Flee - Dalia Ziada’s Story of Courage

Feb. 9: The Barber of Seville

Feb. 10: 🕹️Second Saturdays - Fall in Love with Esports 

Feb. 14 - May 17: ‘Our House is on Fire’ Noyes Galleries

Feb. 16: BREAK! The Urban Funk Spectacular

Feb. 22: Pathways to Peace - Discussing Israeli-Palestinian RelationsIndigenous Culture Day, 🎉Multicultural Center Birthday Bash 

Feb. 29: Natural Dyes Club

Feb. 29-March 2: 🩰 Spring Dance Concert 

March 3:Stockton Chamber Players 

March 5:💼 Spring 2024 Career & Internship Fair