Friars Partake in Sales Showcase

by The Cowl Editor on November 14, 2019


by Brian Garvey ’20

News Staff

This Wednesday, the Ryan Center for Business Studies hosted the Friars Sales Showcase. Featuring 12 of the leading business-to-business sales companies in the country, students were given the opportunity to network, gain information, and apply for jobs and internships.

The showcase provided something for everyone: major or non-major, freshmen or upperclassmen, job seekers or those looking for internships—this event was designed to give students a chance to learn more about business-to-business selling and build their network of business contacts. Joe McDonald ‘20, a member of the American Marketing Association Board, said, “This is a really important opportunity for marketing majors. I feel like accounting and finance jobs dominate the career fair, and this showcase gives more people the opportunity to take the next step towards their future career.”

Many students took advantage of this fantastic opportunity and felt that the showcase was a really important guiding opportunity for them. Peter Chin ‘20 said, “I attended this showcase to really gain more insight into the sales field. It has definitely made me more interested in pursuing a career in this area, particularly with the company Toast.”

One aspect of the showcase that people were most excited for was the discussion panel with other PC alumni. Students were able to pick the brains of those who once walked in their shoes and learned more about how to transition from college to the workforce. McDonald said, “This part of the showcase is what I found to be most valuable. It was very cool to see freshmen and sophomores learning from graduates, and I think that this advice is more valuable than anything from a textbook.”

The visiting companies were impressed with the turnout of students. PC students spent their afternoon filtering in and out of different company tables, and showed a real enthusiasm for the showcase. There were many non-business majors as well, eager to learn more about a potentially exciting field. Dylan Holmes ‘20, a political science major, said, “I’ve never really been interested in a finance or accounting degree, but I found that I love the relationships that drive sales. This showcase definitely makes me think more positively about this field, and is definitely something I’ll consider while I start my job search.”

The success of this event has opened the door to more career-specific events in the future. McDonald said, “We love being able to promote these fantastic events. Anything that can help out students during such a stressful process is something that is very important to the student body.” The event provided networking opportunities and valuable career information for students. 

Students mingled with alumni and potential employers.
Nora johnson ’20/the cowl

Featured Friar: Victoria Haak ’20

by The Cowl Editor on November 14, 2019


by Hannah Langley ’21

News Co-Editor

Looking back four years ago, Victoria Haak ’20 probably would have never guessed she would end up becoming so involved at Providence College. Haak knew early on she wanted to be a biology major, but where she was going to pursue this interest, she was not sure. “Throughout the college process, I knew what I wanted to do, but I had no idea where I wanted to go. I applied to Providence College before I visited and did not expect it to be my final decision.”

However, Haak now ultimately knows why she decided to come to PC. She said“I chose Providence College because of the Friar Family,” and she has been an extremely active part of the Friar family ever since.

Since that decision four years ago, Haak has become involved in various clubs and organizations on campus, including working as a residence assistant (RA), orientation leader (OL), and the editor-in-chief of the PC yearbook since her sophomore year. She works as a social media ambassador for PC, and as a lab manager in Fr. Nicanor Austriaco’s, O.P., research lab. Haak is also the president of the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), a member of the pre-health honors society (Alpha Epsilon Delta), and a member of the research honors society (Sigmi Xi).

When asked what Haak loves most about being an RA, she says it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of her life. As a hall RA in Meagher Hall, Suites Hall, and currently McVinney Hall, Haak stated, “Being an RA has given me the opportunity to be an advisor to first year students, to be a support system, and to grow as a person. I have seen some of the lowest and hardest times in a student’s time at Providence College, but I have been able to see the growth that results from these experiences.” She said she feels blessed to see her residents grow and is proud to even call some of her former residents’ friends.

Not only has Haak become great friends with her residents, but she has also formed connections with her fellow RAs over the years. “The countless people I have met through being an RA is one of my favorite things, those being the residents and the other RAs,” Haak stated. “No one quite understands what you have to deal with as an RA except for other RAs, so it brings us extremely close. I want to thank all of those RAs who have been there for me.”

As an OL, Haak has also formed close connections and bonds with students and leaders. When talking about the various great qualities her fellow leaders have, Haak stated, “My fellow orientation leaders all have different styles and personalities which taught me the love and acceptance among the orientation staff. You want students to feel welcomed and supported once they stand on campus.”

Haak acknowledges that many people dread orientation, but she does not mind it, saying, “As an orientation leader, you have the opportunity to make something mandatory into something extraordinary,” which is something she is very proud of as in being an OL.

Haak leads a busy lifestyle as a biology major and RA during the year, but she still finds time to partake in activities she is passionate about. Haak began working on the PC yearbook, Veritas, in her freshman year and became the editor-in-chief during her sophomore year. “Coming into college, I knew being a biology major would take a lot of my time,” said Haak. “Something I did not want to lose was my creative side. Yearbook became my creative outlet.”

Haak also uses her free time by giving tours around campus as a member of the Friars Club. Joining Friars Club in her junior year, Haak is appreciative of the fact that it allows her to not only interact with students already at PC, but to meet and talk with perspective students and families, as well. “I have so much pride and excitement every time I put on my jacket to give a tour or stand at a post,” stated Haak. 

“This club has allowed me to share my love for our school and show prospective students what it means to be a Friar. Being able to show someone the place where they belong and where they can be at home surrounded by the people they love is something that I am blessed to be a part of.”

As Haak closes in on her final semester here at PC, she talked about how she is not ready to leave the Friar Family yet. However, she is thankful and appreciative of all the memories she has been able to make over the past four years. Between Late Night Madness, Black and White Ball, Senior Ring Weekend, the spring concerts, and even working late nights in Fr. Nic’s lab, Haak would not take any of it back.

As Haak departs from PC in May to pursue a job in research before attending medical school for pediatrics, Haak is looking forward to seeing “who takes over after me, who will follow in my footsteps.” When asked to give advice for  freshmen, and especially biology majors, Haak responded, “Find your passion and find people who share that same passion. Never give up. Not every path is the same, but we can all accomplish what we set our minds to.”

Since she is from Buffalo, NY, Haak is extremely appreciative and thankful that she has found a home in PC. “Having my family close to eight hours away,” Haak stated, “I would not have been able to survive college without the love and support of the Friar Family. Providence College has become my home, and I love meeting past Friars, current Friars, and prospective Friars. I am grateful and blessed to be able to call Providence College home, and those who are here, my family. ”

Haak would like to thank her family in Buffalo, her friends, and all those who have pushed her to do more and to continue working hard.

Haak is originally from a small town near Buffalo, NY and Niagara Falls.
photo courtesy of Victoria Haak ’20

Bursting the PC Bubble: Impeachment Investigations Continue

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019

National and Global News

by Maura Campbell ’22

News Staff

On Sept. 24, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced a formal impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. This inquiry came as a result of allegations of a quid pro quo involving the president withholding aid from Ukraine until they agreed to investigate former Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s business dealings there.

Quid pro quo, a situation in which one party offers an advantage or favor to another party in return for something else of value, is generally considered to be politically unfavorable and unethical. In particular, the Constitution of the United States says that “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors”—which is generally considered to encompass the concept of quid pro quo —are impeachable offenses.

These allegations, put forth originally by an unnamed whistleblower, resulted from a phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, during which President Trump encouraged Zelensky to investigate Biden in return for dispersing U.S. aid to Ukraine. This has been largely defined as a quid pro quo in which the President withheld aid in an attempt to tarnish his opponent and therefore advance himself politically.

President Trump has denied the existence of a quid pro quo during this phone call, releasing a rough transcript of the conversation and stating that he wanted Ukraine to investigate Biden due to worries regarding corruption in Ukraine, not in an attempt tarnish his political opponent. 

Despite this, Pelosi said on Sept. 24, “The actions taken to date by the President have seriously violated the Constitution,” and that House committees would begin investigating these actions.

Over the next several weeks, six committees in the House of Representatives will investigate the allegations put forth against President Trump, and the Judiciary Committee will determine whether there is adequate evidence of wrongdoing. 

If the Judiciary Committee finds sufficient evidence of wrongdoing by the President, they will produce a list of articles of impeachment, about which the House of Representatives will then hold a vote on. If a majority of the House votes to impeach, the proceedings will move to the Senate, which will then hold a trial. In the end, the Senate would require a two-thirds majority vote in order to remove President Trump from office.

Since Pelosi’s announcement of the impeachment inquiry, reactions from media and citizens have been mixed and largely divided across partisan lines. 

A recent poll by NBC and the Wall Street Journal found that 49 percent of Americans are in favor of impeaching and removing President Trump from office. In particular, 88 percent of Democrats support impeachment and removal from office, whereas 90 percent of Republicans oppose impeachment and removal from office.

This is a developing story, with new polls and updates being released daily. Students interested in keeping up to date with this process should be aware that the Phillips Memorial Library offers free student subscriptions to the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, which can be accessed through their respective websites.

Trump finds himself in the hotseat as Democrats move to bring charges of impeahement against him.
photo courtesy of

A Play, Within a Play, Within a Play…: Understanding the Various References in and Work Behind “Something Rotten!”

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019


by Nicole Silverio ’22

News Staff

The past two weekends, beginning on Oct. 25, the Providence College Theatre Department has put on the comedic musical Something Rotten! This show is one of the largest and most challenging the theatre department has ever done, making it particularly unique. 

The director of the play, James Calitri, was very excited about this show and immensely proud of the cast and all the hard work that was put in to making the show a reality. “This is the biggest show we’ve ever done. Hundreds of costumes and tap dancing and about a dozen quick changes timed for seventeen seconds. We have a wardrobe crew of only five people.” 

Following Shenandoah University, PC is only the second college to gain the rights to perform the show. Calitri knew one of the producers, who entrusted him with doing the play on campus. 

Beginning the process on Sept. 3 and going into tech week on Oct. 18, 40 students auditioned resulting in 24 being cast.  Calitri talked about the cast of the show, saying, “Eleven students were either freshmen or brand new to theater, and they all worked so hard and were in great spirits. This show is the hardest show we’ve ever done but it has been a joy to work on it. It’s hard but we leave excited and proud.” 

 What made this show especially difficult was the physicality required by the cast. Out of all the tap dancers in the show, only three had tap experience. Calitri explained, “This was due to having great choreographers who helped the students build up their skills with things unfamiliar to them and to have the ability to appear equally as skilled as the ones who already have experience.”

 Maxine Wheelock, the costume supervisor, created hundreds of costumes, and the twenty four actors had seconds to do a costume change and return to the stage.

The sudden costume changes are only one part of the musical’s uniqueness, as the play also consists of intense lighting, sixty props, and additional sound. This is one of the biggest sets the Smith Center for the Arts has ever created, as well as the largest and most demanding volume of equipment they have ever needed. 

The crew for the production consisted of seventeen students and fifteen professionals who helped with the stage production. Famous professionals have worked with students such as a professional broadway star Liz Calloway, who helped with the stage experience, and Kyra Hockridge, director of Out Loud, who did team and ensemble building workshops with the students to bring them together. 

The stage manager of the play, Grace Dolan ‘20, had to manage hundreds of queues all at once. Since she plans to pursue stage management as a career, Calitri encouraged her to take on this challenge. She later told Calitri she needed this challenge before she graduates as this is a great resume builder and experience, since this musical is so complicated. 

Sixty props were created for the show, all made in Smith. These included handmade balancing scales and smoking pipes, as well as making replicas of Elizabethan-era items. 

Calitri explains that the show is approachable and heartfelt but generally very funny. The overarching theme is that it’s a parody of William Shakespeare, suggesting that his ideas were not always originally his own. 

The plot revolves around the Bottom Brothers, who create an idea that the character Shakespeare later steals and turns into Hamlet. The character of Shakespeare in this show is based off of a combination of Mick Jagger and David Bowie. Reflecting a conceited celebrity, Something Rotten!’s Shakespeare is not likeable. 

“If you’re not an expert in musical theater, you’ll just think the show is funny. If you are an expert in musical theater, you can catch the references to other musicals. There could be five to six references to other musicals in just one scene,” Calitri explained. In this one musical, there are about 80 homages to other shows such as Little Orphan Annie and My Fair Lady.  

“People don’t understand how unique theatre is. No one on campus does quite what we do. We meet with people from all over and I’ll work with them for ten hours and it’s very unique what we do over here and the community we’ve built,” explained Calitri. “They’re getting a full experience. We bring professional people in, they’re working with future artists to practice what they’re going to school for. That’s what’s unique about this department. People don’t always realize the life skills, reading body language, all these things they have to tackle.” 

He explained that since the tours do not go into  Smith, many students on campus have little to no knowledge about the building. 

Calitri added to this point, saying, “A main reason to do this play was to get people in the arts center, getting people to be more aware of the Smith Arts Center and take a peek into the building to see what’s going on.”

With sold out shows throughout the first weekend, it is easy to say that Something Rotten has been a major success. Students, faculty, and families will hopefully become aware of the Smith Center’s mission and dedication to their work and talent. 

Although much strenuous work has been put in to create Something Rotten!‘s final product, the cast and crew have made it a success and, therefore, believe it was all worth it. 

Hundreds of costumes were made for this PC production.
photo courtesy of Daniel Jameson ’21

Building Successful Careers and Good Character: Adam Posner Inspires PC Students at Leadership Conference

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019


by Peter Mazzella ’22

News Staff

On Saturday, November 2, Providence College welcomed a very decorated speaker, Andy Posner, to speak about personal branding, beliefs and achieving goals at the Rhode Island Conference on Values-Based Leadership. Posner founded the Capital Good Fund, which is a certified non-profit that helps fight poverty. By providing financial assistance to low income families, he has helped change the lives of thousands of people.

One thing that distinguishes Posner’s financial assistance program from other programs is that his work is done right here in the Providence area. He has been featured in Providence Business News, Providence Phoenix, The Bank of Boston’s Federal Reserve, and countless other sources. 

After receiving his masters from Brown University, he realized the problems low income families were facing in the Rhode Island area. This influenced his decision to enter the microfinance field and start the Capital Good Fund.

Upon his graduation from Brown, the economy was in shambles. The Financial Crisis of 2008 hit and  devastated low income families. Posner took action and risked his own savings to lend money to those who had been affected by the crisis.

By not only providing financial assistance but also personal coaching along with his team, Posner has turned many lives around for the better and worked hard to expand his organization.

Environmental conservation is something that Posner holds close to his heart. He spent five years traveling without a car and realized alternative ways of transportation. 

Posner is always looking for new solutions to modern day problems like climate change. His extensive work in turning around economically challenged families lives, as well as helping in the greater scheme of things such as global warming, makes him a very accomplished man and a perfect candidate to speak to PC students.

During his keynote this weekend, Posner offered multiple workshops that encouraged students to take a look at what they value and believe in, and how that can influence what goals one sets for oneself. 

The influence of personal beliefs on goals for the future is something that is important to remember down the line, when applying to jobs, and directing the course you want your life to take. 

Some of the participants went into seminar classrooms, where they created a short speech to present to a partner who was a part of theYear Up Program as well as discussing unconscious bias. This raised awareness for something that is done every day without even realizing it. 

By putting a spotlight on society and how people judge others, it is important to block these thoughts that intervene with our perceptions of others.

Posner is a family man, too. When he is not on the job, he loves to spend time with his wife and son. They enjoy hiking together as a family, as well as playing with their dog. 

To unwind, Posner writes poetry, and has even been nominated for one of his poems in the 2019 Pushcart Poetry Prize. His busy lifestyle is something he is proud of, and it keeps his mind active and healthy.

By learning the importance of self-realization and unconscious bias, students were able to learn to value their beliefs as well as to see others as equals, which is an opportunity that does not present itself often. This mentality is one that is hard to achieve, but once it is accomplished, a new sense of fulfillment can be reached. 

Posner is an individual who seeks the best in others and has made a difference in the community. He looks to make a difference worldwide.

Posner is the founder of the Capital Good Fund.
photo courtesy of

Featured “Friar ”: Fr. Isaac Morales, O.P.

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019


by Nicole Patano ’22

Featured Guest Writer

Under the white robes, every friar has a unique story. Katie Burdick ‘22 and Sahrah Rajeh ‘22 have been sharing these stories on their WDOM radio show, “Beyond the Habit.”

Fr. Isaac Morales, O.P., appeared on the show on Oct. 20 to discuss his identity as a Dominican friar and as a member of the Providence College community. 

Fr. Isaac is a relatively new addition to the St. Thomas Aquinas Priory. He was ordained in May 2018 and began his professorship that autumn. Despite this, he is well-known on campus; a fedora is his staple accessory, and he even wears a Marvin the Martian wristwatch.

Fr. Isaac’s name encapsulates his character perfectly. While he first said he chose “Isaac” as his religious name for practical reasons, such as being able to transition easily between English-and Spanish-speaking ministry, there appeared to be more to the story. 

Not only does Isaac represent the characteristic of obedience of the Dominicans by willingly offering himself as a sacrifice in Genesis: 22, his name means laughter. Anyone who knows Fr. Isaac knows he does a lot of that.

The full religious name Fr. Isaac chose is Isaac Augustine, with Augustine as his devotional name. Like Saint Augustine, Fr. Isaac attempted to oppose God’s will for a good portion of his life. Although he suspected he was called to priesthood in college, he did not want to be a priest at all; he wanted to get married and have a family. He said in one sense discerning his vocation was a gradual thing, but “in other ways it was like a lightswitch flipped on.” When he told his mom he was looking into joining the Dominican Order, she told him, “It’s about time.”

Most of Fr. Isaac’s family is supportive of his vocation, and he tries to visit them whenever he can. He is Latino, but most people do not know that his great-grandmother was Lebanese. 

When Fr. Isaac did an AncestryDNA test, he discovered that he was 11 percent Middle Eastern. He joked, “That’s how I got the schnoz.” People will often mistake him as Jewish, which is hilarious to him as such a devout Catholic.

The one word Fr. Isaac used to describe himself was “goofy.” He does not find goofiness and the life of Catholic devotion to be mutually exclusive. In fact, he said they are necessarily related. “The goal [of religious vocation] is happiness and human flourishing,”he said. 

One of his personal goals for PC students is for them to see that faith is not opposed to human flourishing and happiness.

Fr. Isaac is primarily a faculty member of the theology department, but he has three “moonlighting gigs” as chaplain of McVinney Hall, the women’s soccer team, and the Board of Programmers (BOP). He finds being part of this formative time in students’ lives to be the most rewarding aspect of his role at the College. 

Visit him at a BOP event, take a class with him, join him for Baking with Fr. Isaac every month in the McVinney kitchen, and you will see that his love for God and his students comes through in everything he does on campus. 

Regardless of your religious background, if you are interested, ask him about attending vespers in the priory. It is sure to be an experience you will not soon forget.

Fr. Isaac likes to be involved on campus with the student body.
photo courtesy of Abigale Kiernan ’21

Featured Friar: Kyle LaForest-Roys ’20

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019


by Alexandra Huzyk ’20

News Staff

Kyle LaForest-Roys ’20, a marketing major with an economics minor, has held a number of roles within the Providence College Office of Admissions and Orientation Staff.

LaForest-Roys is one of 12 senior students to become a Senior Admissions Fellow. As a Fellow, LaForest-Roys helps with the recruitment of prospective students, primarily conducting interviews with these students and writing interview summaries afterwards. 

LaForest-Roys says, “These interviews are not evaluative, but take into account an overall impression of the student and if Providence College would be a good fit for them. They act as the last point of resource for counselors when they’re evaluating them for admission.”

LaForest-Roys applied to be a Fellow this past spring semester, while he was abroad in Rome, Italy. He shares that he reached out to some of his friends who had previously held this role, as well as some admissions counselors, to learn more about the position itself. After he applied, he was accepted in April. 

During the summer, the Fellows completed two weeks of training that informed the students about the specific requirements of the position and how to conduct the interview process.

LaForest-Roys is also an Admissions Ambassador, which is a position that enables current students at the College to connect with prospective students in the admissions process. In this particular role, LaForest-Roys shares that he is able to talk to students, as well as share his story and the information he has on the admissions process itself. 

He says, “Having worked as an office assistant in the Admissions Office since my sophomore year, I knew I wanted to become an Admissions Ambassador because I would be able to expand on my more administrative role and be able to share my story.”

As for LaForest-Roys’ story, he shares that it has been about “finding more challenges and people through different opportunities,” whether that be joining clubs like the PC American Marketing Association (AMA) his sophomore year or joining the orientation staff during his junior year. He says, “I want to make an impact on people who maybe want to go to Providence, and then impact those who are already here.”

LaForest-Roys shares that out of the three different positions he holds in Admissions, “The Fellow role is the most engaging, and combines all of the roles together. I’m able to share my experiences and the different challenges that I’ve had to overcome, as well as relate to students who are applying in a more conversational interview setting.”

Besides his multiple roles within the realm of admissions, LaForest-Roys has also been a part of the freshman orientation staff. LaForest-Roys shares that in the fall of his junior year, he was on the operations team. “We were behind the scenes, setting up all of the events, going over the logistics for orientation leaders, and subbing in to groups and sitting in,” he says. 

In the following school year, as a senior, LaForest-Roys was an orientation leader. He says, “It was fun to go from operations to being a leader. I got to use all of the training that I had learned and apply it.”

All of these roles have allowed LaForest-Roys to see the intricacies of the entire admissions and enrollment process; from touring, to interviews, to orientation. “Seeing the whole process is kind of cool,” says LaForest-Roys. “Their level of interest often starts with knowing Providence College through a friend or family member, and then they might come in for a serious interview, and then there’s the potential to have them in an orientation group.”

LaForest-Roys shares that the communication skills he has learned within these many roles will transfer into a future career. Upon graduating, LaForest-Roys plans on going into market research and, eventually, attending graduate school to attain an MBA. His dream job is to work for the Boston Red Sox’s marketing department.

Laforest-Roys cherishes his role as an Admissions Fellow.
photo courtesy of Kyle Laforest-Roys ’20

Medical Shuttle Lends a Helping Hand

by The Cowl Editor on November 7, 2019


by Max Waite ’21

News Staff

For about five years, Ernie Adamo has been helping the Providence College community by providing shuttle rides around campus to those with physical ailments.

Adamo, along with his wife, had worked in the alumni office here at PC for 18 years prior to taking his latest job. 

Instead of heading into retirement, he gave the office of Public Safety a call to see if there was anything available for him. Adamo explained, “I can’t stay home. I just like to be working.”

As it turns out, he was given the opportunity to drive students around campus who could not walk on their own. Additionally, Adamo and his team of shuttle drivers get to drive six students off-campus for their student teaching positions at nearby schools.

Jake Murray ‘21 is another shuttle driver who drives student teachers to their schools off-campus. Murray says, “I like driving the vans on/off-campus because it is a work-study job where I can connect with other PC students in a different setting other than the classroom. Driving around the local communities around the PC campus has given me insight into the Rhode Island community and the people associated with PC. I wouldn’t trade the job for any other one on campus.”

An interesting part of the shuttle drivers’ is how drastically the College’s campus has changed since Adamo started driving for the school just five years ago.

Since the College closed off part of  Huxley Avenue, it has been much safer for students traveling across campus. Adamo describes, “The traffic patterns are much better, and students are much safer by not having to cross a busy street.”

Currently, Adamo and his team drive about 14 students around campus with two vans. The larger shuttle is wheelchair-accessible and can fit four people, while the smaller van is not wheelchair-accessible and can fit six people. 

Up until three years ago, the College only had the six-passenger van, which was especially difficult for those in wheelchairs.

Steve Joyce ‘21 has ridden on the shuttle since the start of the semester due to an injured leg. Joyce said, “I honestly have not had a ride in the shuttle that wasn’t a good time. I am extremely thankful for all the shuttle drivers, and I hope to be back on my feet soon!”

What the drivers have found especially difficult to juggle has been the fact that there are only two vans to take students both around and off-campus. Adamo also wants to caution students to look both ways before crossing the streets on-campus for their own safety. 

Despite that, the PC community applauds Adamo and his drivers for their job well done.

PC’s medical shuttle fleet includes a wheelchair-accessible van.
Jay Willett ’20/THECOWL

Bursting the PC Bubble: ISIS Leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi Killed By U.S. Forces

by The Cowl Editor on October 31, 2019

National and Global News

by Matthew Mazzella ’20 

News Staff

On Sunday, October 27,  Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the terrorist organization ISIS, was found dead in northwest Syria after a raid by United States special forces. President Trump made the announcement of his death on Sunday morning and highlighted this as a win for national security. The President expressed enthusiasm about the result by saying, “Last night, the United States brought the world’s No. 1 terrorist leader to justice. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead.”

al-Baghdadi was said to have killed himself by detonating a suicide vest after the invasion of United States troops in a dead-end tunnel. He had been the leader of the terrorist organization since 2010, and the death of the ISIS leader is a huge step in the everlasting fight to end global terrorism. al-Baghdadi had been a top target for the United States for a long time, and there was even a United States offering of a $25 million reward for his capture. The Islamic States spokesperson and al-Baghdadi’s right-hand man was also killed hours later with the help of Kurdish and United States troops in northern Syria.

This operation has been in the works for weeks now, after the U.S. was informed of al-Baghdadi’s whereabouts. The United States ultimately got the go-ahead Saturday morning after receiving “actionable intelligence,” according to Vice President Mike Pence. Donald Trump explained how the raid was executed, and said special operations forces flew into the compound in eight helicopters from an undisclosed location to reach the destination in northwestern Syria. After they reached his location, United States forces were met with heavy gunfire at the doors of the compound but were able to force al-Baghdadi down a tunnel with no escape route, where he eventually took his own life. No United States military personnel were injured, although one K-9-unit dog was hurt in the process.

President Trump watched the operation in the White House with his team, and the mission to take out the ISIS leader took about two hours. He was joined by Vice President Pence, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, along with other military officials. This mission was a success according to the President, as he stated, “Last night was a great night for United States and for the world.”

Evan Howells ’20 shared his thoughts on the news that broke Sunday morning, expressing his optimism in the fight against terrorism. Howells stated, “I was relieved to hear about the al-Baghdadi news because of the implications it has on the war against terrorism. The United States taking out their leader will hopefully weaken the terrorists that wreak so much havoc in the world we live in. Quite honestly, it makes me feel a little bit safer that we are one step closer to putting an end to something so horrible.”

While this is a step in the right direction for the war on terrorism, unfortunately the fight is not over. Through allies in the Middle East and the courage of United States troops, the battle on global terrorism will fight on in hopes of a safer world in the near future. al-Baghdadi’s death marks a severe blow to ISIS, and it will help in the battle to end the horrible actions of terrorism around the world.

al-Baghdadi’s death has been a serious blow to ISIS efforts in the Middle East.
photo courtesy of

“Let Me Be Brave in the Attempt” : PC Special Olympics Set to Host Unified Basketball Tournament

by The Cowl Editor on October 31, 2019


by Peter Mazzella ’22

News Staff

The Providence College Special Olympics group hosts events to transform lives through competitions such as swim meets, basketball tournaments, and even an end of the year dance. Using the excitement of competition, Special Olympics can change lives.

Special Olympics is the largest organization worldwide for people with intellectual disabilities. They host over five million athletes from 193 different countries. The organization also requires many volunteers.

Recently, the PC Special Olympics club held an informational meeting with the intention of getting new volunteers to help at Special Olympics events that will be coming up in the next few months. 

On Nov. 23, PC Special Olympics will be hosting their Unified Basketball Tournament, which brings many opportunities for those interested to get involved.

Some roles that students can take on are electronic and written scorekeepers, who are responsible for keeping score and cheering on players; announcers, who bring enthusiasm and play-by-play commentary of the game; as well as those distributing awards during the ceremony.

These positions are not the only ones that PC Special Olympics offers; volunteers can help as court monitors, who watch over the courts and players’ actions as well as fans in the stands, to encourage good sportsmanship and having fun. With a plethora of options and different ways to get involved, everyone can help to make a difference in someone’s life.

Special Olympics Coordinator Catherine Flugel ‘20 spoke about the meeting, saying, “It was a great turnout, there were many people who showed enthusiasm towards helping out during the upcoming events which is exactly what we were looking for!” 

Coordinating and planning events for PC  Special Olympics is no small feat. Flugel works tirelessly to ensure every aspect is in order, which is why the task of gathering a large group of willing volunteers is essential.

With a successful meeting behind them, the next task is to arrange volunteer roles. Flugel is not alone, however. There is a group of individuals who assist in the coordination and role assignment of volunteers to ease the process. 

Sarah Kerrigan ‘20 is Flugel’s “right hand.” She is the Awards Coordinator, and the two work to bring the joy and energy that each one of these events delivers for all that are involved. 

Kerrigan gave her take on the importance of preparation for each of the events, stating, “Being prepared is the most necessary part of each of our events. If everyone is not on the same page, then it is hard to get things accomplished, which is why we take the time to make sure each of our volunteers knows their task and where to find us during the event.”

PC Special Olympics has over 70 active members who range from event coordinators to volunteers. There is no shortage of staff when these events come around. 

The number of people involved in these events shows how much students at PC care about volunteering.This strong community atmosphere that the club emphasizes is something that will be carried on for generations to come and will continue to serve and benefit the Special Olympics community.