PFW Baseball Team Went 1-1 in Doubleheader at Oakland

The Mastodons faced Oakland on Apr. 13 for a doubleheader. The final score for game one was 11-6.

The Mastodons got on the board with a two-run home run at the top of the second inning from Ben Higgins.

At the top of the third inning the Mastodons took a seven zero lead over Oakland. Jacob Walker led off with scoring from second base. Grant Thoroman stole home and scored. After a reach on error, Nick Sutherlin scored on Cade Fitzpatrick triple, which Higgins also scored on.

Oakland scored at the bottom of the fourth, but Jackson Micheels hit a home run in the top of the fifth keeping the Mastodons in a big lead. PFW ends up scoring twice in the seventh and once more in the top of the ninth.

In game two the Mastodons fall short to Oakland. The final score was eight to three.

The Mastodons took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first after Walker score off of Thoroman’s single. Oakland scored three times at the bottom of the first.

Oakland had a four point lead, but at the top of seventh Higgins homered cutting the lead to two. Oakland expanded the lead with three more runs in the eighth.

After the doubleheader PFW is now 13-21. Oakland improves to 17-17.

PFW Baseball Team Sweeps Northern Kentucky in Doubleheader

The Mastodons faced Northern Kentucky on Apr. 6 for a doubleheader. The final score for game one was 4-3 (10 innings).

The game started off slow for both teams. The Mastodons scored once in the second inning. Northern Kentucky started making a comeback scoring three times. PFW ended up scoring twice in the bottom half of the eighth inning. PFW’s Justin Osterhouse knot the game up with a two-out RBI double at the ending of the eighth.

Nick Sutherlin’s walk-off home run gave the Mastodons the victory in the 10th inning.

For game two of the day Carter Sabol leads the Mastodons in a 4-3 win over NKU. Sabol allowed one hit with nine strikeouts.

The Mastodons scorers for game two were Sutherlin in the fourth giving PFW a 1-0 lead. Jacob Walker and Grant Sawa scored in the fifth. The lead was 3-0 at the end of the fifth. Ben Higgins scored at the bottom of the eighth. PFW held NKU scoreless until the top of ninth.

The Mastodons improve to 12-18 and Northern Kentucky falls to 19-11.

PFW Women’s Basketball Team Loses in Super 16

The Mastodons season ends in the Super 16 of the WNIT. The final score from Friday’s, Mar. 29, game against Saint Louis was 82-78.

This was a very tight game from the beginning. Saint Louis took a quick 7-0 lead in the first quarter, but the Mastodons came back quickly. The game was all tied up at halftime.

The second half of the game was close. After Renna Schwieterman made free throws, the Mastodons were down by two with 55 seconds left in the game. Saint Louis ended up scoring the next possession gaining a four point lead. The Mastodons came up short on the next possession sealing the win for Saint Louis.

The Mastodons finish their season 23-13 which is their most wins as a Division I program.

Amellia Bromenschenkel lead the Mastodons in scoring with 27 points and 14 rebounds for the night.

Shayla Sellers career as a Mastodon comes to an end. She finished top 10 in points and sixth in rebounds in the program’s history. She averaged 11.4 points for the 2023-2024 season.

Mastodons Guard Shayla Sellers

Saint Louis improves to 19-18 and will play in the WNIT Great 8.

First Female NFL Official Makes Lasting Impact on PFW Campus

By Lindsay Burke

After reaching a milestone in her officiating career in becoming the first female to officiate in the National Football League and the first to officiate in a Super Bowl, Sarah Thomas takes her professional experiences as a learning tool.

Thomas spent time meeting and interacting with students on the Purdue Fort Wayne campus last Tuesday.

Her message was clear, “prove to yourself that you belong where you are.”

Her message was not centered around her being the first, but rather ways students can be successful when they take that step into their professional careers.

Thomas urged students to find a mentor, someone to lean on when things get tough – because they will at some point. She went on to say “don’t look at these tough times as failures, but rather speed bumps.”

She urged both students on campus and those in attendance at her Omnibus Speaker Series appearance on that evening to reach for their dreams.

“That work ethic, that attitude, how you carry yourself, and your field presence, that recognition will come,” Thomas said. “Don’t do things for the recognition, do them because you love them.”

Thomas’ 10th season in the NFL has already begun as she is required to go through frequent testing to stay current on rule changes throughout the league. She does this all while raising her three children and working at a marketing agency.

It was brought up during the class lecture with students that officials in the NFL take a lot of criticism, but Thomas has trained herself to block out the negative noise and focus on what she can control in perfecting her craft.

Being in the public eye can have its negatives, but the importance of being self aware of what is being posted on social media and how we carry ourselves when we’re out is vastly important.

Thomas shared with the audience that she was scouted by the NFL while officiating a football game. She got their attention not because she was a woman, but because of her field presence and the way she carried herself.

She went on to say that she didn’t even know that scouts for NFL officiating existed, but because she carried herself with professionalism and dignity, she stood out.

Thomas continues to pave the way by traveling around the country sharing her experiences with students. To motivate and guide them into the mindset that anything is possible.

For more information on the Omnibus Speaker Series visit PFW.edu/omnibus.

PFW Men’s Basketball Team Falls Short in Championship Game

On Wednesday Mar. 27, PFW lose to Norfolk State. The final score was 75-67.

The Mastodons started the game off well leading by 17 points with 2:03 left in the first half. By halftime the Spartans cut the lead to 10 points.

With 11:40 left in game the Spartans took the lead after a made three pointer. They remained in the lead for the rest of the game.

The Mastodons had four players who scored double digits. Anthony Roberts had 18 points, Rasheed Bello finished with 13 points, Quinton Morton-Robertson had 12 points all coming from three pointers, and Eric Mulder 10 points.

The Mastodons finish the season with 23 wins!

PFW Men’s Basketball Team Beats Tartelon State Texans

The Mastodons win against the Texans on Monday Mar. 25 in a close game. The final score was 73-72.

In the first half of the game the Mastodons were down by 11, but cut the lead to five points at the half.

PFW made their comeback in the second half. Rasheed Bello’s three-pointer tied the game at 50 with 10:19 left. The Mastodons were lead by as much as nine points with four minutes left in the game, but the Texans went on a run and retook the lead with 46 seconds left.

After the Texans made free throws, they led by one point 30 seconds left in the game. Eric Mulder ended up hitting a game winner to send the Mastodons to the CIT Championship Game.

All five PFW starters finished the night with double digits scoring. Bello led the Mastodons in scoring with 21 points with 9-13 shooting from the field. Anthony Roberts hit 2,000 points for his NCAA career.

The Mastodons improved to 23-12 and the Texans fall to 25-10.

French Club Celebrates Mardi Gras and Tries to Save the French Minor

By Karen Chaparro

When curious guests looked into the Language Lab, they were greeted by heartfelt laughter, merrymaking, and bead necklaces as the French club invited them to join in on the Mardi Gras festivities.  

“Mardi Gras, from how I see, celebrates it in a secular way, Francophone culture as well as our own American culture,” said the president of the French club Veronica Johnson.

Mardi Gras is a holiday, prominently celebrated in New Orleans which has a large Francophone community, known for its lavish costumes, fatty food, and carnival festivities.

In English, Mardi Gras translates to Fat Tuesday because it takes place the day before Ash Wednesday and the first day of Lent where many Christians abstain from consuming certain foods.

In the spirit of Mardi Gras, an assortment of foods heavily associated with the celebration such as pączki and king’s cake were provided for everyone to enjoy.

However, despite the joyous occasion, there was great uncertainty behind the scenes.

At the time of Mardi Gras, the French minor had not been suspended. But, there had been concerns about finding a full-time French professor, after the previous professor retired, before the start of next fall semester.

As of March, the university canceled its search for a French professor after already having started the hiring process. The reasons for this decision are still unclear, but the French minor was suspended soon after. 

Although the university is willing to help a select few French minors who are further along in their degree fulfill their remaining credits, many French minors are being told to change their minors.

The French club has recently released a statement condemning the university’s decision to suspend the minor.

“This action set by Purdue University Fort Wayne sets a precedent for further reduction of foreign language programs throughout all levels of education,” according to their statement posted on Instagram.

The French club is a relatively new club at the university, having formed in March of 2023, but the French department has a longer and richer history at the university. 

 A large motivation for the formation of the French club has been to create an organized sense of community by providing opportunities for students to create strong bonds through participation in francophone culture.

This sentiment was also expressed by the French tutor Alisa Schrock about the role the French club and learning French has had in her life.

“It keeps me in on our French learning community,” Shrock said. “It’s important because not only do students share homework, but become friends through the time we spend together studying and learning new things.”

One exciting visitor at the event was the retired French professor Dr. Nancy Virtue. Even whilst retired, she maintains strong connections with the French club and former students who have created a close-knit community.

“The current group of students have been amazing at creating a sense of community,” Virtue said. “They’re really engaged, so that makes me so happy and easier for me to retire knowing that I was leaving the French program at such a vital moment.”

Although Virtue’s retirement has been a catalyst for great change; the French department has seen a renewed sense of dedication towards foreign language learning, which is being ignored by the university. 

One theme that kept coming up during the event was that of community. Culture brings people together. Simple acts such as eating together or living alongside each other gives us greater insight into each other’s lives.

The Mardi Gras event gave everyone there an opportunity to participate in a piece of culture and expand their worldview into different people’s learned experiences, which creates empathy for the people around us.

The French club encourages people to contact them at frenchclub@pfw.edu for more information about the ongoing situation and to spread the news to friends, family, and the university. Students can also sign the online petition to keep the French minor as an option for PFW undergraduates.

PFW Men’s Basketball Team Wins a Close Game at Bowling Green

On Wednesday Mar. 20, the Mastodons beat Bowling Green in The 2024 CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. The final score was 77-75!

The first half of the game was close until the Mastodons went on a 20-4 run ending the half with a 12 point lead. Anthony Roberts capped it off went a dunk right before the buzzer.

In the second half Bowling Green started to make a comeback. With 8:50 left in the game they led by two points.

After a missed free throw from Bowling Green the game was tied 75-75 with 37 seconds left in the game. Eric Mulder made a layup with 15 seconds left giving the Mastodons the win.

The Mastodons had four players who scored double-digits. Corey Hadnot II finished with 10 points, Rasheed Bello had 11 points and two steals, Roberts had 17 points, and Jalen Jackson ended the night with 18 points and six rebounds. Jackson also took home MVP Honors.

The Mastodons improve to 22-12 with the win and Green Bay falls to 20-12

Oscar winner Michelle Mizner visits Cinema Center

By Noah Proffitt

The Cinema Center held a free screening of 20 Days in Mariupol and featured a Q&A with producer Michelle Mizner last month.

The film won best documentary this year at the 96th Academy Awards – the first time Ukraine has won an Oscar. The production covers the events witnessed by a team of Associated Press reporters trapped in the city of Mariupol during the first twenty days of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Video journalist Mstyslav Chernov, photographer Evgeniy Maloletka, and producer Vasilisa Stepanenkothey captured the graphic damage the invasion caused and the lives that were lost during it. The film does not hold back from showing the violence and terror happening in the region, leaving audience members shocked and moved by the scenes displayed.

In the film, news broadcasts from around the world use the footage that reporters filmed while in Mariupol. News reports from Russia showed how they accuse the footage of being fake news or that the people trying to survive in Mariupol are paid actors.

After the screening of the film, Cinema Center held a Q&A with Mizner, the editor and producer of the award-winning documentary, and Ann Livschiz, professor in the department of history at PFW. Audience members were able to ask questions about the film, and news on Ukraine now.

Mizner works for Frontline, a television series produced by PBS covering a vast number of topics. There, she edits hour-long documentaries for the show. With 20 Days in Mariupol, it was her first time working on and editing a feature length film.

Mizner worked closely with Chernov, who was one of the cameramen capturing the footage and is the director of the project.

Mizner mentioned that she was working with Chernov directly via satellite phones during the twenty days. He would send the footage over whenever they had access to satellite connection.

At the same time, Chernov and his team were also trying to avoid the Russians, risking their safety to inform the world of what was really going on in Mariupol.

She describes the work process with Chernov as “making an album.” She says she was the “producer” of an album and Chernov was the artist “who brings vision or something integral to them.”

Mizner mentioned how much the film means to Chernov and the rest of the reporters who captured the footage. The camera crew are all from Ukraine and were deeply affected by what they witnessed and went through.

Mizner mentioned her own connection and passion for helping create the documentary.

“There are many things that I hope,” Mizner said. “One of those things I hope is journalism. We think about journalism, and what it takes to make good Journalism, and the risk they take to gather that information.” 

When Chernov came to the United States, both were able to finish the film with the footage they had. They were able to put out the message and facts in the film from the footage they gathered, to let people know what was really happening in Mariupol.

The event was held at the Cinema Center, a not-for-profit theater that shows a wide range of independent films and hosts unique events. Every year, they host their own film festival “Hobnobben,” showing local independent films and others from around the country.

The Center has held multiple events like this in the past, showing a movie, then holding a Q&A afterwards, with people who are educated on the topic. The goal is to allow citizens and audience members to engage with the material and ask their own questions, creating a space to hold important conversations.

After the event, audience members formed a lengthy line to thank Mizner for her work and for coming to the Cinema Center.

Mizner mentioned that all Frontline films are available for free on YouTube.

“They are long formed and deeply reported documentaries,” she said. She strongly encourages others to check them out at Frontline’s website, as they are a terrific way to learn about America and the world.

PFW Gives Faculty the Opportunity to Express Themselves Through Art

By Bayley McDonald

Purdue Fort Wayne displayed artwork created by faculty members and put them up for sale, with all the proceeds going to the Department of Art and Design scholarships.

The “Creatives” art exhibition had an opening ceremony on Feb. 1 with 44 creative works by 22 members of the PFW community.

This was an exhibition specifically for faculty and staff who maintain some kind of creative practice outside of their work on campus. This exhibition includes drawings, paintings, fiber arts, photography, glass art, and wood art.

The exhibition was coordinated by Derek Decker, the director of the Visual Arts Gallery and a professor at PFW. Decker has taught at PFW since 2012 and is currently teaching two classes this semester on top of running gallery events.

“To show the community, as well as our students on campus, some of the ways that art can influence your life,” said Decker when discussing the importance of this event.

He also discussed how many of the staff members use art to de-stress and connect to their creative side, apart from their role or department on campus.

Decker believes that art can always impact your life in a beneficial way, even if you are not a professional, and that should be celebrated.

“Instead of just seeing them as your engineering professor…no, that engineering professor also likes to wood turn,” Decker stated. “He also has, like we all do, likes and hobbies outside of what we do.”

Decker also discussed how this exhibition is an important way to humanize PFW faculty, and for the students to see another side of them.

One of the artists, Bruce Kingsbury, discussed the importance of this event, and displayed his piece Modest Femme.

Kingsbury is currently a professor in the biology department, and previously served in other roles such as associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and chair of biology.

However, he spends his free time creating unique artwork, like the one pictured here.

“It is a form of validation, that people appreciate what I do,” Kingsbury said. “I think they did a very good job and gave my piece some life.”

Kingsbury described this event as a great way to get to discuss his art with others as well as a great opportunity to bring people together and create interactions that benefit students and staff.

This event also benefits Kingsbury in another way. He said he experiences feelings of believing he should not share his art due to “imposter syndrome”. However, this event gives him an opportunity to experience people enjoying his artwork.

He also believes it has great impacts for students.

“I think it’s great for students to pursue their dreams, and this is a way that the college can help do that, and a way that I can help do that,” Kingsbury said after discussing how the proceeds from this event go to scholarships for PFW students.

These scholarships help current, or future, students pursue their passion for art. Just in the 2020-21 academic year, $91,213 were awarded from the Department of Arts and Design scholarships. 

Lauryn Wulliman, a communications student at PFW, was also in attendance at the opening of the exhibition.

“They get to put their artwork out there and to show the world, especially students…something that they have put their heart and soul into,” she said.

Wulliman believes that it is essential for students to see and experience art in a way they may not usually do. She thinks this is beneficial in general, but specifically to non-art majors.

Wulliman also said that this event was very enjoyable, and she plans on attending next year. She also hopes that more students will take the time to come look at the artwork and meet the artists next year.

The exhibition was open from Feb. 1 to Feb. 25. Since the exhibit is now over, the artwork is no longer up for sale and the remaining artwork has been returned to their artists.

 However, Decker reported that 16 pieces were sold from the “Creatives” exhibition. This totaled out to $1,199.04 put toward the Art & Design Student scholarship fund.