Penn State New Kensington Welcomes Class of 2020!

By Jay Wu

Staff Writer and Reporter

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. – On August 25th, Penn State New Kensington provided a warm welcome to the new freshman students making the transition from their high school environments to the college environment that PSNK offers them.

Unfamiliar with the campus in comparison to the upperclassmen who have occupied it for a while, the new freshman class may have their own contemplations about the setup of PSNK.

Moriah Kromer, a freshman Business major, stated that her campus experience has been very serene.

“It seems to be very relaxed, especially, compared to certain schools that I’ve heard,” she explained.

Rohan Kamat, an undeclared freshman with interests in Engineering Mechanical Electrical Technology (EMET), pointed out the campus’s similarities to a high school environment.  One similarity he specifically liked is the campus’s small size, which Kamat stated allows for “a lot of attention from teachers.”

The size of the campus has also benefitted Information Science and Technology (IST) Major, Alex Hoener.  According to Hoener, the campus is a good size for freshman, and has made the adjustment easier for him.

“It’s an easy transition between high school and college,” said Hoener.

Marshall Utiss, a freshman, majoring in Computer Science, stated that by only being at Penn State New Kensington for a month, he has grown to like the environment.

“The campus is pretty small, easy to navigate, the classes aren’t too bad, and I like the schedule that I have,” said Utiss.

With their schedules in consideration, the freshman continue to move forward with their classes and the students can become mentally engaged with their professor’s intentions of student involvement.

The professors are very relaxed and very organized when it comes to starting class, according to Kromer.

“They are very kind and courteous,” Kromer said.

Kamat, Hoener, and Utiss all stated that the professors were very helpful to them.

“I’ve enjoyed getting to know all of them so far, and they have helped me out if I have any questions,” Hoener said. According to Hoener, there weren’t any conflicts with the professors.

“The professors show up on time and make sure that you understand the material,” said Utiss.

With the transition from their high school environment, it might become intimidating for the freshman class to familiarize themselves with the college environment.

The classrooms are about the same size as a high school and the teachers are more involved when it comes to helping students, according to Kromer.

Hoener stated that the difference between high school and college is the timing between classes.

“It’s easier to get stuff done when I have a two and a half hour period between classes and it motivates me to stay focused on classes instead of jumping from class to class,” Hoener explained.

Utiss stated that the scheduling between classes is a difference for him.

“High school classes are all back to back throughout the entire day,” said Utiss. He also added, “It’s pretty similar especially being such a small campus, you get to see the same faces everyday. Also, you can meet with teachers individually.”

With the new course management website, CANVAS and new scheduling management website, LIONpath, freshman can become familiar with how professors grade their assignments and what time that their classes start. Additionally, they can turn in their assignments online.

The Freshman still try to learn the setup along with everyone else, according to Kromer.

Kamat, Hoener, and Utiss both stated that they are both easy to use.

“Obviously, CANVAS had a few problems earlier, but I think everything has worked itself out and having all of the homework online makes it easier to do it on your time,” Hoener explained.

“All of the assignments are posted, you know when assignments are due and you can always get access to the syllabus,” said Utiss.

Penn State New Kensington has been known to have a variety of degree options, clubs, and sport organizations that students can become involved in.

“It gives you a great opportunity to learn what your major is, gives you the tools that you need to succeed and graduate on time,” says Hoener.

Lastly, according to Utiss, the campus has a lot to offer and always has something ensuing.

With the middle of the term and finals vastly approaching, success is the main goal for students on campus, especially freshman.


A Letter FROM The Editor

As we here at The Nittany Pride continue to move forward, both under new management and with a new staff, we anticipated that we’d experience a few hiccups along the way.  One of those hiccups has been the delay in online publication of certain articles from our September newspaper.

Today, we’re finally resolving that hiccup, as the remaining articles from our September newspaper will be published on our website within the next day or so.

It should be noted that some of these articles are over a month old by now, and in the event that new information has surfaced since these articles went to print, updates/editor’s notes will be included at the bottom of those specific articles in need of updates.

On behalf of our staff, I apologize for the delay in publishing these articles online, as well as any inconveniences this delay may have caused our readers.  In the future, we will make a stronger effort to publish our content online in a more timely manner.

And to those of you who read our print editions, our October newspaper will be distributed throughout the Penn State New Kensignton campus on Monday, October 31 (Halloween), 2016.  We will also have our October articles published online within the next week or so.  We hope you enjoy reading our content, and we look forward to receiving your feedback.

PSNK is On Par with New Disc Golf Course

By  Kierstin Flickinger

Staffwriter and Reporter

For over four years, Lauren Blum, the Assistant Director for Student Affairs, had been trying to get a disc golf course on the Penn State New Kensington campus. She began to take student leaders to a summer camp where they learned to play the fun and innovative game. “Our orientation leaders started asking me every year [to put in a disc golf course],” she said.

On Friday September 2nd, this ambition finally became a reality. As the New Kensington campus debuted the nine-hole disc golf course with a tournament. “Finally I was able to pull through funding and get approval from Jason [Bush] and Dr. Snider.”

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Star Trek: The 50th Anniversary

By  Isabella Bordonaro

Managing and Online Editor

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa,- In 1966, Science Fiction was an up and coming phenomenon in the television series world.  Not many shows attempted it, since technology was not yet advanced, and humans had not even stepped foot on the moon.

One show, though, boldly went where no show had gone before.  Not only did they create an innovative Sci-Fi TV show, they taught viewers that space could be reached, and humanity could all coexist peacefully together.

Star Trek first aired on NBC, from 1966 to 1969, according to Dwayne Day, author of the article Star Trek as a Cultural Phenomenon.  It was a story about a ship called the U.S.S. Enterprise and its crew, traveling space on a peaceful mission to explore the universe. The main crew consisted of Captain James Kirk, Science Officer Mr. Spock and Doctor Leonard McCoy.  Their ship would travel around the galaxy, and gain knowledge about it for the world.

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Local Church Celebrates 40th Anniversary


Amplify Church Pastor Lee Kricher and his wife, Linda (Photo Courtesy of Monica Fiore).

by Monica Fiore (Staffwriter and Reporter)

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa.- What started out as a home Bible study of about six people in Lee and Linda Kricher’s home in 1976 overtime led to more than fifty people and the sense that it was more than just a Bible study; it was a church.

The legacy for Amplify Church all started with two college students, Lee and Linda Kricher. “When my wife and I committed our lives to Christ as college students at IUP, something inside of us said, ‘Our lives have been so positively changed as a result.  We’d loved to be a part of that story for other people,’” said Senior Associate and Lead Pastor of the Amplify Church Pittsburgh East campus, Lee Kricher. “We were invited to start this home Bible study. We would start by singing some worship songs with one guitar and then do a Bible study and that was it. We didn’t expect it to become more than a Bible study.”

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Remembering September 11, 2001


The One World Trade Center skyscraper (Photo Courtesy of Google Images).

by Monica Fiore (Staffwriter and Reporter)

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa.- Some people cannot remember, while others would prefer not to. Most people watched the horror of September 11, 2001 on their televisions, in New York City, and will never be able to forget that fateful day. 

According to an article on, “September 11 started out as a normal, sunny, crisp, autumn-in-New York kind of morning.”  However, by the end of the day, it would be remembered as one of the most tragic, depressing days in the history of the United States.

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Democratic Party; Alive and Well

By: Sarah Steighner

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. – Within the nation’s ever changing political landscape, the horizon in particular Pennsylvania areas is still a deep Democratic blue.


Even students at Penn State New Kensington (PSNK) have been active in Democratic events in Pennsylvania. Biology major and 21-year-old PSNK student, Broderick Gerano recently travelled to Youngstown, Ohio to see presidential candidate Bernie Sanders at a rally. He also recently attended Sanders’ rally in Pittsburgh. Gerano described the atmosphere as “humorously serious.” “We all were emotional, but we weren’t just upset for the fun of being upset; Bernie Sanders clearly laid out why we were upset, giving our emotions credibility,” Gerano said.


Gerano listed the environment and issues of equality as some of his biggest draws to the Democratic Party. “Democrats believe everybody deserves a fair chance at leading a successful, happy life, not just a select few,” said Gerano. He further explained that he is excited to become a part of the Young Democrats, and other similar political groups, next year when he transfers to University Park to finish his degree.


In fact, University Park not only has a College Democrats group, but groups such as Students for Sanders, and Students for Hillary have popped up within the hype of the current presidential election. Senior and 21-year-old Ryan Valencia is majoring in International Politics and History at University Park where he is also the Chair of Governmental Affairs and College Democrats, as well as the President of Students for Hillary.


Valencia said that he has certainly noticed a rise in the Democratic presence and activism lately at University Park. Valencia explained that the College Democrats is a recognized student organization that has been on campus for at least 50 years. Valencia continued to discuss the wide array of activities that the College Democrats participate in. “We register votes, knock on doors and do phone banking to get Democrats elected at the local, state, and federal level as well as plan programs that push forth progressive values,” said Valencia. Aside from also occasionally partnering with the College Republicans group to engage students in the political process, Valencia said that their members have diverse backgrounds, yet many are Political Science majors.


While it seems as though there is a strong Democratic presence on college campuses lately, the Democratic Party is alive and well in many other local communities. Hillary Clinton’s campaign opened their first official Pennsylvania office on March 24 at 216 North Highland Avenue in East Liberty. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders’ campaign opened his first office in Pittsburgh on March 23 at 1317 East Carson Street in the South Side. With the Pennsylvania Primary approaching, however, it is not only official campaign offices that are making themselves known. Various grassroots organizations have also come into fruition, including Burghers for Bernie.


Burghers for Bernie is a grassroots, volunteer led group with a core organizing committee of about 20 members including organizer Beth Ussery of Pittsburgh. Ussery explained that Burghers for Bernie started out in July 2015 after a small group of Sanders supporters held a livestream event which called grassroots organizers in to action. Burghers for Bernie has held debate watch parties, collected over 2,000 signatures to get Sanders on the Pennsylvania ballet, and also helped to organize a march for Bernie in Pittsburgh. According to Ussery, their casual volunteer group numbers into the hundreds, while their march attracted thousands of people. Ussery described the diversity of the group, as well as their unity. “We’ve created this amazing coalition of people from all walks of life; students, minorities, middle class workers, academics, and people of faith. The list goes on,” said Ussery. Meanwhile, she also addressed that their Democratic movement goes beyond merely supporting Sanders. “We also have to support the political innovators in our local and state governments, which is what we plan to do,” said Ussery. She continued, “Even after this election cycle our group intends to continue its work to support grassroots Progressivism in and around Pittsburgh.”


Other Democratic groups that are more focused on engaging Democrats as a whole, versus existing just to support presidential candidates, also exists. One such group includes the Armstrong County Democratic Committee. Complete with a full executive staff, the committee meets every third Monday at 6 p.m. in the County Commissioner’s office at the Armstrong County courthouse.


Committee person for Kittanning Township, Rick Drumm, explained that one of the Armstrong County Democrats main goals is to raise awareness that they exist, especially in a county that is largely Republican. Drumm explained that they hold events such as their summer picnic, fall banquet, and annual breakfast in hopes to encourage local Democrats to come together as well as meet and listen to local Democratic politicians.


Drumm explained that their committee is trying to do more things to help support local Democrats and overall Democratic causes. “I believe that the Democratic Party stands for people having the ability to choose to be who they want to be, without fear of discrimination or retribution,” Drumm said. “They [the Democrats] want to help the people do things, and the Republicans want to take that away.”


Vice Chairperson of the Armstrong County Democratic Committee, Marsha DuFour, explained that while their might be a slight rise in interest and support for the Democratic Party in Armstrong County that they are still recovering after a lot of Democrats involvement dissipated. “It’s like a few years ago it came out that the “L” word [liberal] was bad,” said Dufour. She explained that overall she believes the Democratic Party is pro-women and fights for women’s issues. However, she explained that it is hard to get volunteers for their Democratic Committee in Armstrong County, especially because they don’t have the college demographic around.


During the Armstrong County Democratic Committee’s annual breakfast in March, Kittanning Mayor Kirk Atwood spoke about his journey to hopefully become a delegate for Sanders at the Democratic National Convention this July. He later explained that he used to be a Republican for many years, before switching to be an Independent, and then eventually becoming a Democrat which he has officially been for the past year. “As a liberal Republican, I was completely discouraged to see that even some of my former friends had begun to move further to the right and I soon realized that the ideological umbrella of that party had shrunk to a point that there was no room for me under it any longer,” said Atwood.


As Atwood has been busy collecting signature and fulfilling the requirements to become a delegate, he has also been actively supporting Sanders and even attended the Sanders rally in Pittsburgh March 31. “It is interesting to note that both of our [Democratic] candidates seem to square off over who can be more helpful, while the Republicans have been focused, in my opinion, on who should be left out of the American Dream,” said Atwood.


Pennsylvania is set to hold their general primary election on April 26. Voters must have been registered to vote by March 28, and are required to be registered as a Democrat if they wish to vote for a Democratic candidate.