The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer

The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer

The Student Voice of Fordham Lincoln Center

The Observer

Gabe Samandi

GABE SAMANDI, News Editor Emeritus

Gabe Samandi, Fordham College at Lincoln Center ’22, served as a news editor for The Fordham Observer in 2019. Starting as a freshman reporter covering race, economics and student organizations, Gabe worked for two years at the Observer’s News desk.

Following his study abroad in South Africa, which coincided with Fordham’s 2020 shutdown to a digital campus, he left his E-Board position to specialize on stories about racism, culture and inequality - and to practice his photography. Gabe Samandi is majoring in international studies and is a native of San Antonio, Texas.

All content by GABE SAMANDI
spellman hall, the residence of president mcshane and other jesuits

Student Express Little Interest in Search for McShane’s Replacement

October 8, 2021
WittKieffer hosts a student panel and compiles characteristics the Fordham community would like to see in the university's next president.
for an article about covid-19 photos, a student swipes their card to enter Fordham LC while wearing a mask, face shield, and latex gloves

[Photo] A Year of COVID-19 at Fordham in Photos

May 21, 2021

The hybrid fall semester began on Aug. 23 with the...

a drawing of an antidepressants pill bottle with colored swirls pouring out of it

The Next Revolution in Antidepressants Is Here

February 27, 2021
A new solution to the mental health crisis may have arrived, though they may not be the antidepressants you’d expect: psychedelic drugs.
Dining Hall

[Photo] Aramark Adjusts to COVID-19 Restrictions

September 21, 2020

All aspects of food handling and preparation have been...

Students take classes in a social distanced space

[Photo] Expectations Versus Reality: The Fall Semester

September 19, 2020

Students are required by the Ram Pledge to wear masks...

Students Return to Dorms

[Photo] What Social Distanced Dorm Life Will Look Like

August 22, 2020

As students begin to return to the dorms, students...

an NYPD cruiser with its lights on sits in front of the Columbus statue at night

[Photo] Tightening the Circle: Police’s New Tactics in LC Neighborhood

August 20, 2020

New York City is one of a handful of major cities in...

two students with personal protective equipment on and VitalCheck on their phones

[Photo] VitalCheck, Fordham and You

August 20, 2020

Students returning to campus in the fall are required...

a black hand scrolling past an Instagram photo of a black square posted by Fordham with the caption Black Lives Matter #blackouttuesday #theshowmustbepaused

An All-Online Student Community Wrestles With Racial Injustice on Campus

June 7, 2020
As protests and demonstrations swept over the country, nearly all of Fordham’s online student circles engaged in the conversation. Social media platforms were buzzing with livestreams, stories, posts and comments about George Floyd and police violence. For once, it seemed like other people in America were listening.
An empty Columbus Circle

[Photo] Coronavirus Pushes Earth Day Celebrations Online

April 25, 2020

Columbus Circle, photographed on March 22, has been...

Fordham Lincoln Center Lowenstein entrance empty of people

[Photo] What Lies Ahead for New York?

April 22, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has shut down the streets...

A man wearing a mask and carrying a trash can walks along the middle of Columbus Avenue in front of a shuttered Lincoln Center.

Fordham Forced to ‘PAUSE’: NYC Shuts Down

April 1, 2020
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a new executive order, “PAUSE,” on March 20 that urges New Yorkers to stay home to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, dramatically impacting the lives of Fordham students who are still in the city. Student journalists capture life in the desolate city.
Ian Smith, Fordham College Lincoln Center ’22, considers the impact of the 1976 Soweto uprising, sitting just a few feet away from where the first student was shot on his way to school.

Living Within the Divide

February 29, 2020
For most university students in South Africa today, the legalized form of segregation and disenfranchisement of the majority of the population is not just the obscure history of their grandparents: It is the history of the years leading up to their birth. Since 2012, Fordham has sent a group of students to South Africa for its smallest study abroad program, the Ubuntu Program in South Africa.
TikTok is a popular social media app among Fordham Students, but the U.S. Army believes it could be a risk to their security.

Students React to TikTok Investigation

December 4, 2019
The app, which many students have dubbed “the next Vine,” has gained mounting scrutiny from American tech executives and government officials in recent months.
Vaping is a term misunderstood by many, even by those who do it.

UPDATED: Clearing the Air: Addressing The Misconceptions about “E-Cigs”

October 16, 2019
With nearly 1,200 reports of lung disease and 26 deaths across the country, users are left with questions about what an “e-cig” actually is, and more importantly, what the devices are doing to their health. 
The Fordham Lincoln Center Campus has gone through a number of changes since it was founded in the late 1960s. The Board of Advisors was one element of continuity from 1989 to 2019.

What Was the Board of Advisors?

October 16, 2019
“I think one of the unfortunate things, and I think I might have done this differently if I could go back and do it over, was that the board was very quiet. They didn’t trumpet what they did, but they did an awful lot,” said Grimes. “I would hate for anybody to think that they were do-nothing board. They really quite a bit.”
Members of SOL sell colorful bracelets from Nicaragua and Guatemala to raise money for communities in Central America as part of the Pulsera Project.

What Does It Mean to Be Latinx?

October 16, 2019
Two people who identity Latinx sit down and have a conversation about what it means to to be part of the community during Hispanic Heritage Month.
The Board assisted the Dean of FCLC in overseeing how the entire college was run. Dr. Wertz (left) served as interim dean after Fr. Grimes (right) stepped down due to a medical emergency. Last Spring, Dr. Auricchio (center) was appointed to the position.

FCLC Board of Advisors Disbanded

October 16, 2019
Two nights before their quarterly meeting last April, the secretive “Board of Advisors” received an email tacitly announcing the Board’s termination. Since then, the influential alumni who made up the board’s members have been caught in a state of limbo.
Students and faculty approaching the University from the Columbus Circle metro station reported alarm upon seeing the crowd gathered outside.

UPDATED: Fire Drill Interrupts Midterm Schedules

October 8, 2019
A fire safety drill in the Leon Lowenstein building impacted students and staff alike on Oct. 8, disrupting classes during midterms. The drill, originally set for 10 a.m., took place at 11:15 a.m with little warning.
Fordham Faculty United members protesting at an event at the height of tensions during their campaign in April 2017.

Fordham Faculty Fights for Fair Pay

September 18, 2019
On Aug. 28, 2019, every professor instructing a class at Fordham University knew exactly what their salary was going to be for the upcoming academic year. This wasn’t the case just two years ago.
Students from the Class of 2023 who participated in Urban Plunge had an early start learning about all New York City has to offer, as well as the mission of Fordham University.

New Class, New Dean, New Fordham

August 25, 2019
Plenty of online lifestyle articles, high school counselors and nostalgic relatives can offer advice about adjusting to a new life on a college campus, but only few know what it’s like to be new to FCLC.  
Esther Harber

Woman Reignites Claims of Sexual Assault by a Fordham Alum

August 15, 2019
Esther Harber claims she was sexually assaulted nine years ago by a priest pursuing his doctoral degree at Fordham University.
Tuition Increase

Fordham Cost of Attendance Soars for 2019-20 Academic Year

August 10, 2019
Fordham's tuition has increased 3.3%, making the sizable difference in the 2019-20 cost of attendance.
Fordham Lincoln Center blackout

NYC Power Outage Hits Fordham Lincoln Center

July 14, 2019
Just before midnight Saturday, Con Edison confirmed that power had been restored to all customers affected by the blackout. 
Next years USG President and Vice President, Tina Thermadam (second from right), FCLC ’20, and Robert Stryczeck (right), GSB ’21, rang the bells at commencement.

Transformation: The Class of 2019 Departs Fordham

July 7, 2019
It was the first warm day after an odd May cold front. After a stretch of days begging for coats and sweaters, the notoriously fickle New York weather had decided that, for no particular reason, Fordham’s graduation was to be a ceremony marked with sweat, sunburns and sunshine that would thankfully be partially-blocked by one’s square cap.
Photos, candles and flowers line the steps of Keating Hall, the building where the accident occurred, to honor the life of Sydney Monfries.

Reflections on Sydney Monfries’ Passing

May 1, 2019
In the eyes of most students close to her, Monfries was the victim of a series of tragic events, with her death becoming the target of intense scrutiny nationwide drawing criticism and commentary from the furthest reaches of the country. Misperception of the events and a national search to place blame quickly overshadowed the impact of Monfries’ loss to the Fordham community.
Rafael Zapata, chief diversity officer of Fordham University, has used this year to begin the planning process for policy overhauls. These initiatives aim to decrease discrimination and exclusion on campus.

Administration Addresses Concerns About Diversity and Inclusion

May 1, 2019
Historically, conversations between Fordham’s student activists and its administration have ranged from the cordial to the contentious. However, under Fordham’s Chief Diversity Officer Rafael Zapata, it appears as though the many conversations surrounding identity and inclusion on Fordham’s campus have finally come to a head.
USG President Demetrios Stratis, FCLC 19, said that the reason for initially withholding the vote tallies was to avoid a public reaction to the results.

UPDATED: USG Withholds Election Statistics, Bends Constitution in Vote Counting Process

April 10, 2019
For the first time in four years, Fordham Lincoln Center’s United Student Government (USG) has decided to release the tallies for election results.
Gordon Caplan (left) intends to plead guilty to criminal charges in the national college admissions case.

Law Grad to Plead Guilty in Admissions Scandal

April 10, 2019
Gordon Caplan intends to plead guilty to charges of mail fraud and honest services mail fraud.
Gordon Caplan (left), and Dean Matthew Diller (right), wait at JFK international airport with Fahimeh (Farimah) Kashkooli (Center) and Fordham Law students for the arrival of Alma Kashkooli.

Fordham Alum Accused in Nationwide Admissions Scandal

March 27, 2019
Gordon Caplan, a well-respected alumnus from Fordham University School of Law ’91, is one parent who allegedly engaged in the nationwide conspiracy.
Betsy DeVos, who heads the education department, supports these cuts.

Trump Proposes Cuts to Federal Student Aid Programs

March 27, 2019
Proposed cuts would mainly effect three federal programs for funding higher education: reducing funding for The Pell Grant, and ending both Federally Subsidized Loans and the Federal Loan Forgiveness Program.
Fordham University runners assist FDNY EMT responders with rescuing a man in a Bronx park.

Fordham Athletes Encounter Medical Emergency, Assist EMS

March 10, 2019
According to Brian Cook, Gabelli School of Business at Rose Hill ’18 and current graduate student at Fordham, the students were on a routine training run when they came across another runner in the park assisting a man lying in the snow.
The introduction of a disabilities studies minor comes as a valuable new voice in the ongoing dialogue about disabilities at Fordham. Students for Disability Awareness (SDA) Vice President Lucy Clancy (left) and SDA President Cristina Pardo (right) also work to bring attention to the inaccessibility of Fordhams campus.

Advocating for Accessibility: Fordham Upgrades Disability Studies Minor

March 9, 2019
The introduction of this minor comes as a valuable new voice in the ongoing dialogue about disabilities at Fordham.
Mireille Twayigira spoke at Fordham Lincoln Center about her experiences as a refugee in central Africa.

Rwandan Genocide Survivor Brings Hope to Campus

March 7, 2019
Dr. Mireille Twayigira was just two years old when her home country descended into chaos. Twenty-five years later, she visited Fordham University Lincoln Center to share her experiences as a refugee in central Africa.
After the McKeon closures over winter break, students face housing uncertainty as spring break approaches.

Holiday Closures Confuse Freshmen, Confront Students with Tough Choices

February 20, 2019
Matthew Chen, FCLC ’22 and an international student, recalls being frustrated when he saw the first email from Residential Life in his inbox. “It’s relatively short notice, to do something like that,” he said. “I live 16 hours away by flight, and tickets to Taiwan aren’t exactly cheap.”
The Word Between the Sheets: FCLC Sex Stats

The Word Between the Sheets: FCLC Sex Stats

February 12, 2019
Over the past month, The Observer conducted an anonymous survey about sexual activity and health among undergraduate students on campus.
SAGES runs a hotline that provides contraceptives to students upon request: the Condom Fairy.

SAGES Defies Fordham’s Sex Policies

February 12, 2019
While they behave much like an advocacy club on Fordham’s campuses, SAGES is not officially sanctioned by the university. Thus, they frequently demonstrate, petition and campaign against the university.
These increases in diversity and academic achievement coincide with increased acceptance of female students.

Class of ’23 Set to Become Most Diverse and Highest Achieving

February 6, 2019
Fordham continues to accept higher-achieving and more diverse students every year, indicating Fordham is becoming a more competitive institution in terms of admissions.
Members of The Comma celebrate their new independence.

The Comma Punctuates Its Independence

February 6, 2019
In its first wholly-independent magazine, students will find content published in The Observer in addition to unreleased works from this semester.
Assistant Dean Milton Bravo leaves administrative responsibilities to pursue a Fordham doctorate degree. (JOE ROVEGNO/THE OBSERVER)

Bravo’s Departure Surprises Student Body

January 23, 2019
Bravo reminds students that “above all, I am thankful to have been given the opportunity to serve FCLC students.”
Something they may not tell you on college tours: Dont miss out on yourself.

Suffering from FOMO? Here’s What You Should Really Fear

December 5, 2018
Taking a moment to slow down in a city so fast is healthy.
Activist Isra Chaker delivering her speech to Fordham LC Students on Nov. 7. (ARIA LUGO/THE OBSERVER)

Fordham MSA Invites Advocacy for Justice with Guest Speaker Isra Chaker

November 16, 2018

“Isra, when are you going to realize that someone who looks like you is never going to win?” Those words were said to Isra Chaker, an activist, policy advocate and Refugee Campaign Lead at Oxfam...

You Don’t Get To Tell Me I’m White

You Don’t Get To Tell Me I’m White

November 14, 2018
I’m a minority in the United States, but I’m also a minority among minorities. I’m a member of so many cultures that I belong to none.
A T-shirt design meant to disparage socialists from Karl Marx to Bernie Sanders. (COURTESY OF LIBERTYCADRE.COM)

Redefining Socialism: Bringing Hope Back to the Democratic Platform

November 7, 2018
We need to start redefining the way the left is viewed in America. The primary term that needs a new definition is socialism.
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