Pacific Exhibition

Phoebe Young, Staff Writer

There is a vast array of wonderful clubs and organizations here at Saint Martin’s, one of them being the Pacific Islanders Club. The Pacific Islanders Club is an organization that aims to bring students from the Pacific Islands together and allow them to express and embrace their true identities. They also work to educate Saint Martin’s students about the culture and traditions of the Pacific Islands, as well as to share this culture with those who may not know about it or be a part of it. Furthermore, the Pacific Islanders club functions as an affinity space and motivates and encourages club members to strive for their fullest academic potential by providing them with the resources and assistance they need to achieve academic excellence.

The Pacific Islanders Club has put on a multitude of fun events in the past, such as; the Holiday Hangout that occurred at the beginning of December in 2021 dedicated to making gingerbread houses, eating Panda express, prizes and raffles; the Halloween Spooktacular that the club put on in October 2021 including a costume contest, food eating contest, game booths, prizes and more; the Pizza and Painting event held in October of 2021 for students to paint, study, hang out with one another and eat pizza; and many other exciting and inclusive events for students of all kinds at Saint Martin’s to participate in. 

This March, the Pacific Islanders Club is going to be putting on an event called the Pacific Exhibition. The event will occur in the Norman Worthington Conference Center (NWCC) from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, March 30. At this year’s Pacific Exhibition, the theme will be Stories of the Pacific. The Belltower spoke with club President Ligi Saolotoga, who told us that this theme was chosen with the intention of introducing people to stories and information about the Pacific they may not have known about before.

Saolotoga also went on to explain to me that the event will focus predominantly on displaying a collection of some of the incredible art that comes from the various Pacific Islands.

We chose this theme to showcase the different and unique stories of each Pacific Island that people may not have knowledge of. This event also mainly focuses on the showcasing of a mixture of dances and songs that originate from the different pacific islands.

President Ligi Saolotoga

The event will also be providing amazing Pacific Islander foods that you definitely do not want to miss out on. It is going to be an exciting event full of the beautiful culture of the Pacific Islands.

If you are interested in attending and experiencing the Pacific Exhibition in March, you can purchase a ticket later on. Spots are limited, so if you are planning on attending, be sure to get your ticket as soon as possible. Ticket sales will be advertised on the Pacific Islanders Club’s social media, so stay on the lookout and do not miss out on this wonderful event! You can keep up to date on this event and any others the club puts on by following the club’s Instagram, which is under the handle: @smu_pacificislandersclub. Make sure to stay updated and pay attention to the club’s posts so that you don’t miss out on the Pacific Exhibition or any of the other fabulous club events!

World Leaders Meet to Discuss Russia-Ukraine Conflict

Emmanuel O. Son, Staff Writer

Description: People taking part in the Unity March demonstrating Ukrainians’ patriotic spirit amid growing tensions with Russia. Photo Credit: Idrees Ali ( @idreesali114 ) on Twitter

As tensions between Ukraine and Russia continue to go back and forth, some world leaders have stepped up their talks on how to combat the conflict peacefully. Meetings come as many fear a Russian invasion of Ukraine and a potential war that would break out as a result of that. French President Emmanuel Macron has met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow while President Joe Biden is hosting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Washington.

With Russia hosting more than 100,000 troops on its borders with Ukraine, many have accused the country of planning an invasion of sorts, which Russian officials have been denying. Tensions between the two countries are happening again almost eight years after Russia’s annexation of the Southern Crimea Peninsula in Ukraine and a rebellion that took place in Donbas. 

A US official has also warned Biden of Russia potentially invading Ukraine. President Biden and security advisor Jay Sullivan have advised any Americans that are in Russia or Ukraine to leave. Biden has threatened to shut down and stop Nord Stream 2 Russian gas pipelines in Russia as a protest against the country. “If Russia invades again, there will no longer be longer Nord Stream 2. We will bring it to an end” Biden said. White House National Security advisor Jake Sullivan spoke with ABC News and stated that the US is currently seeking a diplomatic solution. “Putin has put himself in a position of military diplomats to be able to act aggressively against Ukraine at any time now” Sullivan says. However, neither the President nor any other US officials have stated how their solution would be done, only answering when asked, “I promise you we will be able to do it.” Concerns of the issue are also coming at a critical time as the Olympic games continue to push through in Beijing. Sullivan mentions the importance of preparation as intervention could happen either during or after the Olympic and Paralympic games. 

BBC is reporting that officials in Moscow are demanding that the NATO Military Alliance bans Ukraine from ever becoming a member, as well Ukrainian troops be brought out of eastern Europe. NATO has declined Russian requests and is now suggesting other solutions, such as lowering the use of weapons. Russia has also accused Ukraine of failing to enforce the Minsk Agreement, which is the international deal that would restore peace to the East in areas where Russian rebels control territory, sponsored by Germany and France. In 2014, 14,000 people had been killed in those areas. 

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has warned that any confrontation with Russia would lead to a “full-scale war”. After speaking with U.K Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Zelenskyy has warned that war that involves Ukraine would affect the whole continent of Europe. The President has stated that if a war were to break out, it would not necessarily be a war between Russia and Ukraine but of the whole European continent. “This will be, unfortunately, a tragedy if the escalation against our state begins.” “No one will give up their territories and people anymore,” he stated in a press conference. During the week, the President signed a decree which would increase the military armed forces by 100,000 over the next three years. 

The Associated Press is reporting that the Pentagon has ordered that 3,000 US troops be sent to Poland to reassure allies. President Biden and Putin are set to hopefully talk to each other in hopes of discussing the crisis together. Biden states that although troops are being sent over, there is no direct plan to go to war in Ukraine, but to serve economic sanctions against Moscow. 

The Biden administration’s plan on the handling of the Russia Ukraine situation has been met with some criticism. The Daily Mail reports that Alexander Vindman, a former White House staffer and Ukraine policy expert who oversaw the Trump administration’s handling of Ukraine, has criticized Biden for acting too late on the issue. Vindman has stated that a Russian invasion would look bad for the United States and its most important European allies. “The senior policymakers didn’t seem to come around to this threat until really quite late” he tells Yahoo news. He argues that the United States should have already been helping out the Ukraine military with advancing military capability against Russian moves. Vindman’s criticism came after Biden has threatened that there would be no Nord Stream 2 Pipeline. 

Sources:

https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-boris-johnson-joe-biden-europe-moscow-4d1e75eb68e1396bef885425c65039fb

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10492627/Vindman-says-Biden-little-late-deter-Russian-invasion.html

https://www.cnbc.com/2022/02/02/ukraine-warns-of-full-scale-war-and-tragedy-in-europe-if-russia-attacks.html

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-60292437

https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20220207_05/

Homecoming the Saint’s Way

Shy Yamasaki, Staff Writer

Homecoming is an important event at any point in your life, both during high school and in college. Whether it is your first or last, students need to have fun and celebrate spirit week. One may be asking, “why is homecoming so special?” It is the week to experience and participate in different events, leading to the pep rally and game. When experiencing homecoming week, one can have fun with their group of friends while participating in the various themes presented for each day. While some may think homecoming is overrated, it shows a united front with the school as they show school spirit. Students enjoy participating during homecoming week because it gives them time to relax and be one with everyone around them instead of always having their nose in a book. While academics continue to be necessary, participating in homecoming is when the community can come together and enjoy the smiles, laughs, and happiness around them. 

Saint Martin’s has created great campus events for us this week. Thanks to the Campus Activity Board, or “CAB” as most know it to be, this week was full of fun. It started with Marty Monday: everyone was to wear their Saints gear to class and then head down to Harned Hall from 12 pm-2 pm for a “pick me up.” It was encouraged to post pictures on Instagram and tag @smucampuslife to let everyone see that swag. On Tuesday, you are welcome to participate in  Thankful Tuesday by posting a photo with friends in coordinated outfits and another chance to tag campus life and enter a raffle for that day. 

Everything looks better in white, and Saints could join campus life for White Out Wednesday on 2/2/22. This event allowed students to show their best angel outfits. Later that day, you could join CAB in Harned Hall from 3-5 pm to manifest goals by writing down your affirmations. Everyone loves the opportunity to stay comfy in their pajamas, so on Thursday it was pajama day where you could wear your PJs during class. Eventually, the fun had to end, so we wrapped up the weekdays on Fun Friday, your chance to dress to impress with another opportunity to be entered in the raffle for the day. 

We hope that you enjoyed the events leading up to the big game. It was a fantastic opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and meet new people. Make sure to post all of the memories you made and tag our campus life. The pep rally is scheduled from 4:30-5 pm.

Inslee Electric Car Mandate

Emmanuel Son, Staff Writer

Governor Jay Inslee has signed an executive order on November 3 that will require state-government cars to all be electric by 2035. The Kent Reporter reports that the order was announced in an international submission in Glasgow, Scotland, which focused on creating ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Executive branch agencies will be required to buy battery-powered cars to replace current passenger vehicles. Light-duty trucks will also be required to be replaced by electric vehicles. 40% of the existing fleet will be required to become electric by 2025, 75% by 2030, and 100% by 2035. In 2040, mid-heavy-duty vehicles will be all a zero-emission fleet.

A spokesperson for the governor, Tara Lee, states that in total, about 5,000 state vehicles will be a part of the new changes. Inslee has suggested that plug-in vehicles be available, if not battery models. These requirements will apply to 24 agencies in the executive branch, as well as State Patrol, Department of Transportation, Corrections, and Social and Health Services. These agencies will be required to come up with their plan on being able to comply with the new order. OPD reports that the first agencies transitioning to an all-electric form of transportation are the Liquor and Cannabis Board, the Office of Equity, and the Traffic Safety Commission.

The Governor is also leading a coalition of 68 different leaders across cities, states, and foreign municipalities that are trying to cut emissions in half by 2030 and to get net-zero by 2050. Inslee has declared this coalition the “super nationals,” reasoning that they are going to set the bar for many national governments on this issue.

According to the Kent Reporter, Inslee has admitted to this plan being costly. However, he argues that while the transition will be expensive at first, the plan overall will save the state money and will be a better impact on the environment. A spokesperson states that the legislature is working to obtain funding to supply the electric vehicles and charging stations to go with them. Inslee has declared his goal of all new vehicles being sold in Washington to be zero-emission by 2035. Inslee also mentions that funding will also come from the federal infrastructure bill, which will help put charging stations along Interstate-5 from Vancouver, British Columbia, to California.

OPB reports that Inslee has stated that he does plan on putting charging stations at shopping centers and schools, saying, “We want them in our shopping districts, so they’re available when you go shopping. We want them in our schools, so you can pull up and charge while you’re at school.” Governor Inslee mentions that he feels it is important for American families to have a charging station right at their homes. The governor charges his personal vehicle, a Chevy Bolt, from his basement. Charging stations are difficult to build around specific apartments or condos, saying that it is vital to develop a charging station that can be accessible and built for any environment. He also mentioned his support of the concept of new building construction projects generating no net increase by 2030. “Together with the rest of the leaders here, and those everywhere else today who are committed to this fight, we will lead the charge on de-carbonizing the transportation sector,” Inslee said in a statement.

Seattle Seahawks vs Jacksonville Jaguars

Eric Bell, Staff Writer

Stepping into the enormous, enclosed, well-lit press box was like entering a whole new world. Writers feverishly typed away on their various devices, desperate to get their voice out to fans following along for updates and inside access on the contest. Sunlight, a rarity in Seattle on the final day of October, is shown through the large, clean, glass windows that looked out onto the field. Numerous wide-screen televisions displayed other games around the league taking place in the earlier 10 AM PST slate. Fans start to pile into the stadium and find their seats. Here comes the noise. Seahawks fans are nicknamed the “12s”, as they have become the 12th man for their defense, as there can only be 11 players on the field at one time. They are out in full force today on this Halloween afternoon despite their team’s rocky start to the season.

The fans became even louder when the Seahawks took the field. The roar became deafening, even through a sealed-off and supposedly sound-proof press-box. Everyone in the stadium then rose to their feet and removed their hats for the playing of the national anthem. The voice ran out through the only momentarily silent stadium.  After the anthem, the decibel rate rose even higher, with almost all of the fans having made their way into Lumen Field. The build-up to the kickoff was a feat, with the bright blue with white “12s” block letters being raised and fired up the fans even more than they already were. People were trying to talk between rows, and it was impossible to hear even at that short distance. The atmosphere was electric. Honestly, words cannot justify how loud, and crazy the environment became throughout the game. If you ever have the opportunity to come to a match and witness this extraordinary setting, it is definitely a worthwhile experience

Seahawks Versus Jaguars

Now to the game: After a Jaguars punt on their opening possession, the Seahawks started off on the ground, then got a 27-yard pass to Tyler Lockett to set up a Geno Smith 1-yard rushing touchdown to cap off their opening drive. The Seahawks then got another big play with Quandre Diggs picking off rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence. After the interception, the Seahawks marched methodically down the field, setting up a D.K Metcalf touchdown. After making an unbelievable catch over former Seahawk’s cornerback Shaquil Griffin, the Seattle star receiver ran to the padding on the goalpost stand and climbed on and hugged it, like a bear hugging a tree. He got an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for the celebration, but the play stood, and the Seahawks went up 14-0 with nine minutes to play in the second quarter. The Seahawks seemed to move the ball on offense as well, with little resistance from a struggling Jacksonville defense which picked up their first win just the previous week. The Seahawks added a 31-yard field goal just before halftime to make it 17-0 at the break. In the third quarter, D.K. Metcalf caught his second touchdown pass of the game, making it a 24-0 Seahawks lead. The Jaguars finally got on the board near the end of the game, with a five-yard touchdown, breaking the shutout Seattle was hoping for. After the score, the Jaguars tried an onside kick which was recovered and returned 43 yards for a touchdown by Seattle’s Travis Homer, capping off a successful day at the office. That’s how this one ended, with the Seahawks winning 31-7 over the Jaguars.

Thanksgiving and Saint Martin’s Values

Hillary Thompson, Staff Writer

As November ends, many students and staff are looking towards the Thanksgiving break, and many students discuss their plans. Senior Annika Briggs says, “My plans for Thanksgiving are to drive to my hometown and spend time with my parents and cousins.” Junior Rhea Herradura explains that over break, “My family has decided to have our regular/traditional get together with our close friends and family here in Washington. Every year we always think about what we’ll do, such as traveling or going on a road trip, but it usually ends up staying close to home”. Sophomore Alexandria Parsons shares with us her plans for the holiday break, “My plans this Thanksgiving are going to Utah to spend it with my sister and her family!” Saint Martin’s is known to throw amazing events for students to enjoy.

Director of the campus ministry, Colleen Dunne, informed us about Saint Martin’s upcoming plans for Thanksgiving: “So we don’t have a lot because so many of our students are close by and they go home. For our students who can’t go home, we are doing a Thanksgiving dinner! It is going to have more like a home-cooked potluck feel. It will be in the residents’ halls, and any student is welcome to come. There have been sign-ups that have gone out, and some of the food is coming from Bon Appetit. We are also reaching out to faculty and staff and asking anyone close by if they can make extra food or dishes and bring them! We are just trying to create a community feel with the dinner, and Janie Sacco, Sara Haugh, and I are working on it together. Thanksgiving is a holiday known for being centered around families and food. Students and staff share how Thanksgiving relates to Saint Martin’s values.”

“Come out and join us, everyone is welcome”

Annika Briggs shares, “Thanksgiving ties into the SMU values because of the respect for persons, and the time to reflect on who we are grateful for. It is also a time to give to those in need, which is a key part of hospitality. Doing things for others is an important aspect of the Thanksgiving season.” Alexandria Parsons shared that Thanksgiving values relate to the values of SMU because, “I think the community is a key part of both Thanksgiving and St. Martins, the two focus on togetherness!” Rhea Herradura discusses how values and the holiday are related. She said, “How I see Thanksgiving tying into the values of Saint Martin’s University is how we build a sense of community with those we love and care about, around us or even far away. It’s almost a celebration of gratitude where we appreciate our relationships, in which we gather and enjoy each other’s company. We relish in the greater understanding of service towards others and letting go, with our trust in one another I would associate that with faith. Of course, the last value is reason. I believe this is self-explanatory through the years of loving memories and stories. Sure, there are other holidays such as Christmas where you could argue we celebrate one another, but those times are different in the sense of where our focus is. Thanksgiving is around family and friends, while Christmas is more about the birth of Jesus Christ and/or a day of rest.”

Sister Raphaela Cady shares her insight on the values of SMU and how they relate to Thanksgiving, “For me, the Benedictine value of simplicity comes to mind. Inclusiveness, gathering people together, and gratitude are important aspects of the holiday. Thanksgiving has traditionally been about people being together and sharing what they have. Hospitality is a Benedictine value at Saint Martin’s encompasses as well. There are many opportunities for people to participate in Thanksgiving at Saint Martin’s to engage in the Benedictine hospitality of creating space for people to gather. This is essential to who we are so we can continue to create hospitality and give ourselves room for simplicity.” Overall, Thanksgiving is seen as a time for students to spend time with loved ones and reflect on what they are thankful for.

Upcoming Events

Emmanuel Son, Staff Writer

It’s a new school year and with midterms passed and the semester drawing to an end, it’s time to destress and celebrate with some school activities. Now that classes for the most part are back to in-person learning, the games at the TUB are open again, and the community is large again. There are now a number of events that are coming back, continuing to follow COVID-19 protocols. Campus Activities Board (CAB) member Erin Luong and new Campus Life Activities assistant director Shandra Witke talk about some upcoming activities to be on the lookout for.

Some upcoming campus life events to close off the semester include a movie night for international week, the annual Christmas under the canopy, and a number of other events that will be hosted by the clubs on campus. While many events for next semester may not be official yet, many of them are in the planning stages. Some usual events will include commuter lunch every first Wednesday of the month where it includes an opportunity for commuter students to win raffle prizes.

International education week is an opportunity for students across campus to meet international students on our campus and learn about new cultures around the world. At the end of the week, a movie will be played. The week will consist of Campus Life partnering with the Office of International Programs and Development. The movie night will be at the Worthington Center on Friday November 19 at 7 PM. “The movie that’s chosen will hopefully give a good viewpoint of the international experience and give students a good idea of what it might be like in other countries” says Witke.

On November 8, first generation college/university students and alumni at Saint Martins will have an opportunity to speak their stories and thoughts at a first gen lunch event hosted by Campus Life. The event will feature a Q&A panel where attendees can ask different questions and share their stories. On the 9th, ASSMU will be hosting a coco social at the TUB from 3-5.

With the Christmas season coming up, campus life has events planned out that will help celebrate the holidays. Christmas under the Canopy celebrates the end of the Advent season as the Saint Martin’s community prepares themselves for the coming of the Christmas season before the month-long break. The prayer service is followed by the tree lighting as well as music provided by the choir and the band. One of the largest events that is yet to come is the campus’s annual Winter Ball which will close off the Fall 2021 semester. This event was cancelled in 2020 due to COVID-19 protocols. The event will be in its usual venue at Indian Summer Country Club and Golf Course.

CAB is in the works right now planning an event for the week of Veterans Day. That week will feature an event that will honor both veterans and active military members for their service.

For Spring of 2022, some events that CAB has planned out are its annual Welcome Week. Just like the beginning of the fall semester, Welcome Week is meant to celebrate the return of students for a new semester and an opportunity for new students to get to know the university better. While the weather in January might be different from a sunny and warm summer in August, events such as games and other activities are being planned out to be indoors following COVID-19 protocols. CAB is also working on throwing another destress event for the spring semester.

Homecoming week is another annual event that is in the making. This week will consist of the Men’s annual homecoming basketball week where students can have an opportunity to win prizes. It is also a great opportunity for the alumni to come back. Most club events are still in the planning process. Dates and times are subject to change.