UNH PRIDE Offers a Second Chance

On Nov. 21 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the second floor studio of the Beckerman Recreation Center, UNH PRIDE held their annual Second Chance Prom. The purpose of this prom was to give those members of the LGBT+ community who were unable to take their significant other to their prom—because of any discriminatory rules or attitudes—a second chance to dance the night away.


Although this was the main intention, the prom was open to anyone who wanted to come out for a fun night of acceptance and dancing. The event lasted for two hours, and brought together people from many different backgrounds and experiences to dance while fighting discrimination, and that was the real success of the night.

Discrimination against the LGBT+ community is a far reaching problem, especially in the social setting of a school prom. It is that discrimination that prevents many couples from attending what is supposed to be the best night of their lives. UNH PRIDE, with Second Chance Prom, created an environment of acceptance and support that welcomed everyone equally with open arms.     Second Chance Prom was a night of not only laughing and dancing, but of love and acceptance.


The night offered music, refreshments, and even a second chance to take the perfect prom photo. Students piled into the Rec Center studios for a night they would never forget, and music forming memories that would last a life time. The turn-out was high, highlighting the support of the campus community and the common goal of ending discrimination worldwide.

The prom offered something for everyone, with very few guidelines; students could wear whatever they wanted, stay for as long as they wanted, and bring whoever they wanted. The experience was what you made it, which many say was the appeal to the whole night.

“No matter how you dress or who you want to bring, everybody should be able to have the prom they dreamed of,” said freshman Erin Ambrosio.

Students attended in everything from formal prom dresses to jeans and a t-shirt danced side-by-side and celebrated their ability to experience the prom they always wanted. Second Chance Prom turned out to be the second chance of a lifetime and a night to remember.

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Marijuana Survey Gets High Results

The University of New Haven has again put itself on the map, through the Economics Department’s efforts. For the past two months, select students have been working with faculty and outside consultants to conduct a survey, polling the entire student body and staff on contemporary issues. For the first round of polling, the issue that was surveyed on was the implications of the potential legalization of marijuana.

The survey was conducted by Economics majors Tyler Cordes, a freshman, and Kevin Lauber, a senior. Cordes and Lauber have been working extensively with Marcelo Nacht of Praxis Research, who has been polling for data for years. Nacht has connections with the University and serves on the Economics Department advisory board.

“It was a pleasure to mentor these student investigators on constructing a poll and analyzing its results,” said Nacht.
The survey consists of twenty-five questions regarding the general perception of marijuana, including “If recreational marijuana was legalized, how old should you have to be to obtain it?” and “If recreational marijuana was legalized, what organization should regulate its use?”

More in depth questions such as “Would a bar or marijuana café cause more police presence?” were asked as well.

Survey respondents could choose from various different answers to the survey. Demographical information was also polled, so as to give more context to the answers.    Sent out to all UNH students and staff, there have been over 500 responses, nearly 10 percent of the student body.

The responses have been very interesting, most notably the statistic that 68.7 percent of the respondents are in favor of legalizing both medical and recreational marijuana in Connecticut. 63.5 percent of respondents think that marijuana is less harmful than tobacco. While the results of questions are mostly in support of legalization, surprisingly, 53.2 percent of respondents have never tried marijuana. Considering that the University of New Haven is a predominately criminal justice school, this would make sense, as drug use is often a barrier to the work force for federal agencies. 52.1 percent of respondents were in the 19 to 21 age range, indicating that the survey was more responded to by students than staff. Gender was more or less equal, with 48.6 percent male response rate and a 51.4 percent female response rate.

Making a survey is no easy feat. “This has been a very valuable real world learning experience in the gathering and analysis of useful and interesting data,” Cordes said. “I am excited and proud of the results of the survey. I think our sample reflects the UNH community very well, but as we move forward with this initiative, I would like to move towards a sample representative of the Connecticut population.”

Similar sentiments were shared by other key investigator Lauber. “I wanted people to view the survey in a broader sense than simply ‘getting legally high.’ I wanted to address moral, economic, and practical implications in the most objective and pragmatic way possible,” he said. “I think we achieved that through the survey.”

Lauber has been continuously contributing to Economics department efforts, such as the Southern Connecticut Economic Performance Laboratory, a research center all Economics seniors work on in their last year as part of their experiential education requirements. Publishing quarterly reports, the SCEPL is continuously active and can be viewed at www.scepl.org.

Sponsored by the Economics Department, this research effort of polling data is part of a larger concept that the Economics Department strives for: providing students hands-on opportunities to make connections with professionals to better prepare for their careers. Economics Department Chair Doctor Armando Rodriguez is more than thrilled by the results of the survey.

“All of the students involved have taken up this project with a huge sense of passion, I couldn’t be prouder,” Rodriguez said.
Polling the student body is only one part of the research efforts. Coming next are online discussion boards regarding the results of the survey. The discussion boards will be a further opportunity for dialogue between students and industry leaders.

The UNH Economics Collective is an online sharing space where members, comprised of students, faculty, alumni, and professionals, can share content and input of contemporary issues. Everything from political conjecture to movie reviews goes on the Collective, and members can comment on each other’s posts and share others. Feel free to join at http://unheconomicscollective.

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