I Never Knew How Black I Really Was: Identity

Riana Texeria with her mentor Shirley Rush

Riana Teixeira, mentored by Shirley Rush, presented to a full audience on University Day. “I had the great privilege of working with Miss Riana on a special topics class about identity development,” Rush said. “And this is a result of her semester of work.” Teixeira, who is Cape Verdean, spoke about coming to Presque Isle from Brockton, Mass., and gaining independence. “I was under my parent’s thumb,” Teixeira said. “As a Cape Verdean, you’re taught you’re really supposed to respect your parents’ wishes and follow their path.” Teixeira found herself not liking the path she was on. “I was like OK,” she said. “Let me go somewhere far where I can do my thing and my parents will be a phone call away.” Continue reading “I Never Knew How Black I Really Was: Identity”

From Maine to Tanzania

Michaela Therrien looks up at her final slide, clearly missing Tanzania.

When students get the chance to study abroad, they may go to England, France or even Germany.  For Michaela Therrien, she and her classmate Lauren went with their professor, Shirley Rush, to Tanzania. “For junior year, we have to do 200 volunteer hours and I decided to go to Tanzania because Shirley has been taking students since 2016,” Michaela said.  Tanzania is a country located in eastern Africa.  “I wanted to experience something interesting.  I’ve never been out of the country and I wanted to because we volunteered in an orphanage for seven weeks.  So, I wanted that experience,” Michaela said. Continue reading “From Maine to Tanzania”

Student Leads the Discovery of Aroostook County’s Lost Town

What is Maysville? Thanks to UMPI student Evan Zarkadas and mentor Kim Sebold’s University Day presentation, we now know that Maysville was a town across from Presque Isle. Maysville was first settled in 1816 and was annexed into Presque Isle in 1883. Through research, Zarkadas learned about the history of the pioneers and infrastructure of Maysville. “You travel through Maysville every day,” Zarkadas said. Continue reading “Student Leads the Discovery of Aroostook County’s Lost Town”

Wild Ride Through PCJ



Smith and DeLong after their presentation

Brandy Smith and Garrett DeLong, seniors at UMPI, presented their journey through professional communication and journalism on University Day. In an hour-long presentation, the two took turns sharing their experience in PCJ classes over the last four years. “These are my two seniors in the program,” Dr. Jacqui Lowman, their academic advisor, said when introducing the duo. “They are going to take you on a brief trip down memory lane.” Continue reading “Wild Ride Through PCJ”

Writers Without Margins Gives Four Ex-Cons a Voice

Creative writing positively benefits mental and physical health. Writers Without Margins is a non-profit organization “dedicated to the fusion of art and advocacy…” especially for those “isolated by the challenges of addiction recovery, trauma, poverty, disability and mental illness.” Recently, Writers Without Margins joined forces with Wahl St. Productions to create a film called “In Their Shoes.” The film tells the stories of Zach, Stephen, Jean and Marcel. These four men tell their own stories, in their own words, about their participation in a “prison re-entry and addiction recovery creative writing program.” Continue reading “Writers Without Margins Gives Four Ex-Cons a Voice”

Leaving the Owls Nest

The tour group poses for a photo. In the background there is the National Mall and the Capitol Building.

Leaving the Owl’s Nest shares the story of a trip to Washington, D.C.  Brandy Smith, Tiffany Smith, Tong Liu and other UMPI Owls spread their wings and flew to the nation’s capital.  The trip was a spectacular, cultural immersion for both Chinese and Americans on the trip. Continue reading “Leaving the Owls Nest”

No One Is Above the Law

David versus Goliath, a Boston newspaper versus the institution of Catholicism: “Spotlight” is the story of a team of reporters.  The team members covered a story that affected the world.  They fought to oust the repeated accusations of molestation within the church.  Secrets buried, the accused protected, and thousands upon thousands of silenced victims are all stories that the Spotlight team made public. Continue reading “No One Is Above the Law”

Investigative Journalism: Necessary to bring Victims’ Closure

     It’s not every day that an investigative journalism piece moves you. Winning the Academy Award for best picture 2015, “Spotlight” is based on true events and real people. The film follows the investigations of the Boston Globe’s Spotlight team into allegations of widespread pedophilia by priests that the Church hierarchy covered up. Uncovering evidence in forms of victim testimony and court documents, viewers are in for an overwhelming sensation of eagerness as they get further into the film. Continue reading “Investigative Journalism: Necessary to bring Victims’ Closure”

Spotlight: When the Church Turns Its Back on the Children

If you were a child sexually abused by the priest in your church, surely your parents wouldn’t turn a blind eye. If people in your church knew it was happening, they would definitely help. Wouldn’t they? If the neighborhood you lived in, the city that neighborhood was in, the lawyers, judges, schools and police in that city knew what was happening to you and hundreds of other children like you, there is no way they would stay silent. Right? What if the Church itself knew? All the way up to the top. What if the archdiocese knew…or the pope? Continue reading “Spotlight: When the Church Turns Its Back on the Children”