Monday, June 10, 2013


wow what a weekend! despite all the rain it was an amazing time.

yes yes, I did eventually 'give up' on liveblogging but only because I still have AT&T and still don't get reception down in Historic St. Mary's city.

but here are some highlights

  • Admissions is using the "I am St. Mary's" slogan these days which is kinda interesting
  • ate some crabs
  • slept in a bed BOTH NIGHTS which is an improvement from previous years when sleeping locations included a bench, random boat, bridge, professor's office in Monty, floors
  • Dave Chase was kinda mean 
  • Ben and I secretly hopped into the back of a Gator Cart (probably sold to the school by Paul Schulteis?) and laid down while the cart went all around campus and did some donuts in the grass (via now that URGO is gone [more like, URGONE] people can drive/park on the grass) and it was like being on a roller coaster
  • Someone told me that they drank 50 beers which is kinda scary but also impressive
  • Taught a lot of people what 'turnt up' means
  • Probably bullied too many people
  • Danced with older women
  • Swam
  • My entire body is incredibly sore
But you know probably my favorite memory is this. I was swimming on Saturday and didn't know what to do with my phone, so I found a random person and asked him to hold onto my nice phone (Galaxy S3) and to return it to LQ16 if I did not see him again. And you know what, Saturday night I'm playing some ledger and that dude walks in with my phone. Really made me appreciate the sort of people that St. Mary's has helped to develop.

also still hungover

Friday, June 7, 2013


At the alumni council meeting. It is 9am.i am too drunk for this nonsense. Cannot Deal. Lotta nerds here like chip Jackson (luv u) and Joanne gold water and others. I hope everyone else is also very drunk still bit based on the fact that they can talk coherently I am guessing they are not. Nerds. Paul shulteis is here, blesse ur john deer tractors. Can't believe that many people buy lawn mowers. Someone mentioned 30,000 foot questions, wtf does that mean. Ravioli ravioli give me the formuloi People here are dressed and nice looking. I am wearing a swim suit and a button down shirt with buttons open #jimmybuffett Wtf is this nerd talking about This dude is boring

9:35: Wait I used to HATE LEDGER but now that I am 'okay' at it I think it's really fun~

9:30: talked to a lot of old friends, HOOKUP COUNT: 1.

9:15:  I finally can play ledger successfully!!!

6:00: drinking margaritas at plaza delteco/alteco/i dont remember

5:45: all checked in

4:00PM: Fuck this traffic
2:05PM: I can leave work in 10 minutes. In 11 minutes I will be on the road. Probably gonna stop at a "Mexican" restaurant on the way down (via happy hour margaritas #worklife) with some friends. Stop by Plaza Tolteca (new place, since Cerro Grande shut down/moved) and grab a 'drink' (or 7) with me.

BONUS: One of the few photos of me from my first Alumni Weekend:

**~lookit dat booty~**
**~lookit dat booty~**
**~lookit dat booty~**

8:50AM: 5.5 hours until I can leave work and head down to St. Mary's. Reading a book on Investing #RetirementAccounts #RothIRA. ~feelin old~

8:08AM: Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me yer ears. This is the LIVEBLOG for the 2013 Alumni Weekend. Here is how it works (twerks):
  • I enjoy my weekend of being an alumni
  • I blog about it, posting updates w/timestamps
  • u read it
  • u enjoy it
The updates will be in such a way that newer updates will be at the top. I hope to update every so often, but it is also very likely that I will just forget to so plz stay 'tuned'

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Budget Meeting 6/5/2013 PANIC

There was a Budget Meeting yesterday. Urgo was not present, and probably won't be for future meetings and discussions, so as a "campus community" we should "mentally move on." Dad (via Urgo) went out for cigarettes and hasn't come back since (via seasons 16, episode 19 of the Simpsons when Nelson explains that his Dad went out for cigarettes and said 'smell ya later', but then he never smelled Nelson again #sad #bullies).

Anyway, Dorothy Fisher (who I have never met but she has cool lipstick) was there and transcribed a bunch of the questions and answers which is super rad. They are below~ thx bb #grateful(dead)

[Editor's Note: The Q&A is in live-blog format, so it's in reverse order, so read it from the bottom up plz. I bolded some 'cool' questions]

Meeting over everyone go home
friendly reminder to submit q’s to the budget committee via that google doc
Q- can there be a schedule of alumni weekend, or should we just go to the waterfront for 48 hours?
A- ok yeah we’ll send that out to faculty and staff
Q- will admissions committee be present during alumni weekend?
A- yes

Q- think about alumni who are also staff when thinking about branding because they know some shit
A- yeah
Q- why the fuck was there a shortfall?
A- idk but we need to look at data and self-evaluate
Q- hesitation about branding?
A- what are ‘authentic’ messages of St Mary’s? How do we communicate those messages?

Q- is board looking at branding’s relationship to budget shortfall?
A- we have a consulting company (which is obviously pretty shitty?) but this is so sudden (??) that no specific conclusions have been drawn
Q-What is happening with the gallery? (Who asked this? It wasn’t me…)
A-Reduction in operating budget. Cristin will have to decide how the gallery is maintained. The art storage facility has needs that need to be addressed. Selling some of the art is possible, but very complicated and would require we use the money to support the collection. The gallery will probably be kind of open.
Q- what about short-staffed staff depts?
A- this is a tricky one. no deets yet. concerns have been heard

Q- is college’s ‘branding’ changing?
A- short answer yes. Long answer not sure how this will need to change

Efforts to strengthen transfer pipeline for the base and others
Reduced personnel is not going to mean increased workload for remaining personnel. If anything, reduced services
Aaaaand there is now a new student/ family helpline, and admissions is trying to get out the message for first years that everything is stable
Also there is some kind of roster for enthusiastic alumni
Q- what about implementing alumni interviews? Not even as screening but as a persuasive tool
A- this is a great idea, which will be given to admissions

Q- can we harness the alumni to get a lot of energy and also dollars?? Specifically alumni weekend is like tomorrow, so hop to it
A- St Mary’s is all about people, community, stick to our talking points, ask alumni for money this weekend and also ideas

Q- wtf is up with budget increases in specific disciplines?
A- specific alumni gifts (I was wondering this too)

Q- are we asking Rich Edgar to come back??
- long applause-
A- it has been proposed, but isn’t currently in the cards

Also we’ve gotten an assload of donation money recently. Not sure if this is the same $$ mentioned in the email about jurgo or whether this $$ goes toward budget shortfall
Q- continued support for admissions while it reevaluates etc?
A- we need everyones good energy used for publicity and be tactical about reducing budget for fund raising and admissions
Q- is there alumni involvement w/ budget issues??
A- idk
(Beth Rushing is going to take the issue of Alumni back to budget committee for discussion)
also there was a weird discussion about pins that i didn’t understand
Q- will eliminated positions come back when things get better?
A- proposals for all new positions come to budget committee, which is transparent and recommends to president which new budget expenditures get put in place—it sounds like eliminated positions are really gone?
Q- why is the block grant a good thing?
A- it provides a tremendous amount of autonomy and has preserved us through many times of financial hardship—we might tweak block grant but it is here

Q- what about facilities improvements
A- 10% cut to projects this fiscal year. Long term facilities master plan was just completed, basically everything is going to be put off and the plan will be reevaluated and adjusted
A- Anne Arundel hall is state money so it’s going ahead anyway
Q- (convoluted) but I think it was about bloated administrator salaries?
A- no one has thought about this yet but they need to and it will definitely a topic of consideration
Q- why aren’t staff eligible for wage increase?
A- because the state doesn’t earmark money for that specifically and it just comes in a block grant which is different from other colleges and now that we have no money we can’t? Someone also shouted out that they would rather have less or no raise than have people lose their jobs
A- independent and committee reviews are underway, no actual changes yet
Q- how has commitment to academics actually played out?
A- filling vacant faculty spots, more proposed reduction of academic dept budgets than is necessary to best optimize what comes from where (this didn’t make sense to me)
A- also everyone on the committee wants to hear what you think about budget cuts

Q- dept chair budget cuts were proposed
A- they did a good job and if they have more ideas Beth rushing wants to know about them?
Q-enrollment data
A- final numbers won’t be real until the fall, but we need to plan for 3.5 mil
A- this is a problem that will be with us for a few years, and once we solve this in the short term we will need to keep thinking long trtm
Chip Jackson chokes up: “These are tough times for the college. Don’t let it be divisive.”
Discussion of living wage and furloughs etc: there will definitely be furloughs. there will also not be the recently state-mandated 3% cost of living increase but there will still be wage increases? Lowest end of pay scale gets highest increases. Same with furloughs. Low end of pay scale will get fewest furlough days.
20 vacant positions will “not not be filled” and 18 vacant positions will not be filled
Personnel: it’s possible to solve shortfall without layoffs???
Consistent discussion about implementation of transparency
4 principles for budget reductions:
1) preserve core academic principles
2) focus on teaching
4) work on unfilled positions rather than cutting people
(Sorry, I missed #3)
Budget stuff now:
enrollment level def means 3.5 million budget reduction
Kate Chandler is on budget committee! Also a lot of cool faculty! Also staff, students and administrators! Good.
Q- new/interim pres needs to be willing to conduct internal review and understand ‘soul’ of the college

Q- why doing pres search and admissions reevaluation simultaneously?
A- issues are complex but a ‘course correction’ can still be executed in the short term
Q— why are we using an organization to find a candidate for an interim president rather than looking at internal candidates?
A— we are looking for someone with wide range of leadership experience, not just student life or faculty or fundraising
Q— what is the long term efficacy of these presidential searches—this is the 3rd in 4 years? we need to think longer term than this
A— small, efficient, transparent committee? They’re not sure yet? Counseling with other people who do these kinds of searches (that’s a job?)
Q-  student/faculty involvement in search for short and long term presidents?
A- “A representative” from student faculty staff each. Balance of inclusive and efficient
External agency is seeking interim president. Expect person by July or August. “Not just a placeholder” —not an internal faculty/admin person then
Increasing board involvement on campus. Seeking ideas about how to interact with students more.
liveblogging budget meeting commencing

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Urgo: A Postmortem

I liked Dr. Joseph Urgo from the very first day I realized I could combine his name into Jurgo (I think multiple people realized this at the same time, idk). I still like him and still think he was a pretty okay President. There are definitely some things that he did that I disagreed with like:
  • Restructuring of Admissions and Financial Aid(e)
  • Firing of Edgar
  • Pat Goldsmith
  • "failure to engage with student activists re: living wage and meatless mondays"
  • Rebranding as a more "elite/quasi-private" school
  • Fedoras
  • Leslie's massive power over staff 
But what I really liked about him, more than Maggie, was that he was visible. I met Maggie twice, and only because of my involvement in SGA. And granted, he was probably very visible to me because it was his first year, and he wanted to make a good/visible presence that first year, so my thoughts and memories are a bit rose-tinted I suppose. So here are some of my fond memories of the man:
  • Inviting he and his wife to dinner at our Townhouse Senior Year
  • Vespa Scooter
  • Weekly Open Hour
  • Weekly Radio Show
  • Beard
  • Baldness
  • Kinda funny and very casual with students
  • Let us get eat crabs and drink at his house (buy it now for only 900k!)
  • p chill dude
So IDK I mean it's definitely easy to blame this whole situation on Urgo, and probably a lot of it is his fault, but I still liked the dude I guess. That said, my favorite Townie made this for the blog, a SMCM Red Wedding~

 So leave your thoughts in the comments, what his "legacy" will be (via hot or not)

live-bloggin test

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

And to go out not with a bang, but a whimper

After three years as president of St. Mary’s College of Maryland, Dr. Joseph Urgo has decided, for personal and professional reasons, to move on in his career.  He has requested that the Board of Trustees not renew his contract.  “I leave with mixed emotions because I have enjoyed my time so much at St. Mary’s College,” said Dr. Urgo.  “Leading St. Mary’s College for the past three years has been a tremendous privilege and a great pleasure.   The College’s legislative charge of high academic standards and financial accessibility, while challenging, is an inspirational mission.  In parting, I wish my friends and the good people of St. Mary’s the very best. ”
 During Dr. Urgo’s three years in office, the College endowment grew by nearly 30%  and the College received two $1M gifts earmarked for need-based financial aid, and an additional $1M gift for academic programs.  The College received additional state support through legislation that will fund a two-year tuition freeze and secured a performance-based funding project aimed at raising College retention and graduation rates. In all, the legislation amounts to a 14% increase in state funding for the College and the first legislated increase to the block grant since that method of funding was established in 1992.
Throughout his tenure as president, Urgo has supported broad access to education in the liberal arts and sciences, speaking and writing often on St. Mary’s public mission.   Joe and Lesley Urgo have been strong advocates for the natural beauty of the campus and under Lesley’s volunteer efforts, established the College Arboretum.
The Board is grateful for Dr. Urgo’s commitment to St. Mary’s College of Maryland and his advocacy for liberal arts education.  The Board wishes Dr. Urgo well in his future endeavors

President Urgo's House is For Sale

That is all.

Alumni Weekend

Wow yall alumni weekend in like three days...planning on leaving 'twerk' (that is what c00l kids call work) around 2:30 and then getting some 'mexican food' (aka Margaritas #its5oclocksomewhere) with some friends.

Kinda wanted to go to Cerro Grande but....apparently it's been closed

R.I.P. bb ~only the good die...young~

Luckily there are a bunch of new 'mexican' restaurants around these days #phew (more on that another time)


I got a 'smart phone' now and I've been thinking about 'liveblogging' Alumni Weekend, and I would like some input from yall regarding what I should 'liveblog' about.

Here are some possible ideas:
  • People that I see
  • Interactions with faculty/staff
  • Reviews of the various events
  • Stories from talking with old people
  • A running total of the number of people I see that I have hooked up with 
  • SGA Reunion
  • IDK other things
So hey this weekend there should be a lot of updates or maybe one big update that keeps growing, be sure to check it out when you are recovering from the two-day hangover Monday at 'work'. Or maybe I'll just totally forget. And leave some livebloggin suggestions in the comments kthx.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Regarding "grammar"

Recently there have been a lot of "criticism" (via the comments section) regarding the "grammar" of this "blog." (hello i would like to point out that if you look to the left <--- b=""> I put the 'period' inside of the 'quote' which is grammatically correct so yes i could learn u a thing or 2 about the grammars)

I think maybe there were a lot of shoobies (via Rocket Power) who just don't "get it" but thats okay hey i luv u all, feel free to stay 'awhile' and check out 'old articles'

~sticks n stones may brake my bones, but words may never hurt me~  (via antiquated notions of bullying)

SMCM is going to be fine… as long as we stop Kenjes

Note: This ‘guest post’, whatever the hell that is, is directed at Alumni. If you’re a current student, get off the internet and go back to being drunk and not having responsibility – trust me.

Seriously, SMCM is going to be fine. I love the outpouring of concern and passion for our alma mater but 15 years ago our school was best known for the massive amount of narcotics done on campus and today that’s not even in top 10 things we are known for.

It’s going to take more than a budget deficit, fewer freshpeople (wish we had that senior year) and a poorly written op-ed by an uptight, right-wing reactionary spinmeister to take down the Seahawks. KaKAAAA!

What ya’ll should be worried about is the fact that this rag-tag, sorry excuse for a web log run by a baby-eating drunk is still up and running. You know Kenjes makes money off this (Editor's Note: $600 so far)?

Is no one else concerned that this old dude with a creepy beard still spends all of his time stalking college students? Someone told me they let him near high school kids too, that’s kind of messed up. I ran into him at an O’s game and he was legit just standing outside the student section leering at minors. Leering.

Seriously, this shouldn’t be allowed near children.

While we are on the subject of things that are bad for SMCM and possibly small children, can we talk real quick about the number of recent grads threatening not to donate over all this ish? First of all, I highly suspect if you’re saying that, you weren’t exactly about to write a check – you’re not fooling me.

Second of all, your reaction to a budget deficit and high tuition is to cut off funding to the school? Don’t get me wrong, I am not worried… they’ll survive without a few $10 contribs but that doesn’t exactly send the message, ‘we are here for you and want to be a part of the solution.’

Our reaction should be to cut out a few drinks at the next Bocci league mixer and throw some money St. Mary’s way. AND make sure you tell them to put yours in unrestricted because restricted funds are terrible in a budget crisis and stupid in general.

As an aside on the topic of drinks, who else misses the hell out of $7 pitchers at the Door…? 7 bucks gets you like a shot of beer in the real world and it never comes with a pizza.

Painting of The Green Door available at the Campus Store for $200. You can also just buy The Green Door for $250.

But back to baby-eating Kenjes – he is the real threat. Has anyone explored the possibility that the drop-off in admissions rates resulted from parents finding this blog? Would you send your kids to a school constantly watched and internet-ed about by a bro whose beard looks like it could sustain the ecosystem of a Peruvian rainforest? No way. You just wouldn’t.

I am just saying the board can fire Urgo and huff and puff all they want but if you want the source of SMCM woes, look no further than that smiley face/boat train wreck of a ‘logo’ above – seriously a monkey throwing feces could design a better logo (that’s by the way how I designed The Point News logo, minus the monkey).

Oh and if they do fire Urgo, again, the school will be ok. Yeah, we all love the guy – he has that classy beard (in contrast with Kenjes’ creepy one) and he actually cares about students but there are evidently some issues… firing a bunch of people who seemed pretty competent at their job, leaving 100+ slots open and digging us in to a budget deficit – maybe the distant, rule-by-rocket launcher approach Maggie took has some merit?
This happened.

All I am really trying to say is, I love you all and I am so pumped for alumni weekend. And at some point we need to have a little Team SMCM meeting and figure out what to do about the creepy blogger who is scaring off new students. Boom, problem solved – world saved. Roll credits.

Always yours,

Dave Chase
Classiest Class of 2012
Former Big-wig, The Point News Publications

PS. Big shout out to Greg ‘12 and Jess ‘11 who got married last weekend at Brome Howard! Seahawk lovin’

If you would like to write a "guest post" on the topic of your choosing, shoot me an email