Category Archives: Know these names

What exactly is University Unions?

The term “University Unions” refers to the physical buildings of Festival and the Madison Union (Warren, Taylor, and Grafton,) as well as the programs and organizations they house. The goal of these services, programs, and facilities provided by University Unions is to create community at JMU, and to really cater to the needs of the students.

Students use University Unions facilities every day: from grabbing a cup of coffee in Java City, to playing pool in TDU, to meeting with group members in a room in Taylor, to asking a question at the Off-Campus Life desk in Festival. The buildings provide places for students to work and relax. There are also plenty of organizations within University Unions with which to get involved, like University Program Board, Make Your Mark on Madison, Student Activities and Involvement, Fraternity and Sorority Life, Kijiji Leadership, Student Government Association, and Mad4U. University Unions also provides valuable services including Ride Board, UDAP, Off-Campus Life, the Club House, and Outriggers.

University Unions is the “Heart and Soul of JMU.” Check out the University Unions website for more details of upcoming events and ways to get involved!

“Going the Distance” with JMU Alum Geoff LaTulippe

Last night, students lined up outside Grafton Stovall Theater to see a free screening of Going the Distance, staring Justin Long and Drew Barrymore. Afterward JMU Alum and the films screenwriter, Geoff LaTulippe, answered questions from the audience. The film received a great response from the audience and many students had insightful questions for Geoff. Geoff’s demeanor was one just like a college student; he was laid back and spoke some vulgar language. He still provided the audience with beneficial words of advice. He told them, “you’re going to be poor at home, you’re going to be poor wherever you are, so be poor where the most opportunity is.” And in his field he said  you are going to have to pick your battles. Geoff lost a lot more battles then he won. He had to fight hard to keep certain scenes, such as the one were Charlie Day is sitting on the toilet in plain view and the Thanksgiving dinner table scene after the incident with Long and Barrymore.

Geoff has some scripts in the working, but he was only able to speak of one. He is currently working on the script for Breathers: A Zombie’s Lament, based off the novel by S.G. Browne.

What did you think of the film and what Geoff had to say afterward?


by Molly Robinson

Before the concert, raffle winners got to spend a few minutes of one-on-one time with the Cartel.  Sophomores Katie Pullis and Mandy Jenkins, two out of the few JMU students who won the opportunity to meet the band, have been fans since their middle school days. They described it as an experience they won’t soon to forget and said, ‘’They [Cartel] were really nice; they were really cool. We had some witty banter with them.”

JMU’s own Casey Cavanagh band opened for Cartel. The audience enthusiastically welcomes the lively student band that vocalist/guitarist, Casey Cavanagh, describes as mix of “Rock and Roll with an Alt-Country flair and pop sensibilities.” The band’s set list showcased a variety of different musical styles, from their classic rock-inspired, “The Weight” to their alternative sounding song, “Coming Home.”

Each of the band members- including, Casey Cavanagh, John Giardinere (guitar/ backup vocalist), Sam Gillett (guitar/drums), and Jeff Pober (bass guitar/backup vocals)- manage to juggle their class work, organizations, and jobs and internships with fostering the success of their band. Casey, who has been a fan of Cartel for years was honored to open for them and described the experience as “surreal.”

Magenta lights, black pants, bass notes that shook the stage…Cartel’s concert on Friday, September 24th proved to be an energetic and enjoyable experience that left that audience wanting more.  Large sections of the seats in Wilson’s auditorium were left vacant, but not because of low attendance levels– the energetic fans circled around the active stage. Grey and magenta light washed over the band and highlighted the unique style of band members Will Pugh (vocals/guitar), Joseph Pepper (lead guitar), Nic Hudson (guitar), Jeff Lett (bass), and Kevin Sanders (drums). Cartel played about ten songs including their smash-hit, “Honestly”,  “Say Anything”, “If I Fail”, and a cover of Oasis’s “Wonderwall”.