Editor’s Review: The Director: A Memoir by J.K. Stein

Length: 162 pages

Content: Mature

Genre: Memoir

Quality Rating: 5/5 stars

 

The Director by J.K. Stein is a memoir that will hit you so hard you will almost wish it doesn’t exist. In less than two hundred pages, Stein captivates the reader with a story that will mesmerize, disturb, and, ultimately, leave them with the feelings of hope and a willingness to help.

My experience with this memoir was incredibly special; I received a petite package in the mail, addressed in a bold black sharpie, I opened it to find a thin white book with four words and a name on the cover, along with Stein’s signature which I have fallen in love with. My first thought was how much this book looks like a screenplay, I was already intrigued.

Dedicating this memoir “To those who broke their silence and to those still searching for their voice,” Stein invites the reader to glimpse…no, not glimpse…walk alongside her in her unforgettable past; her unforgettable journey with a man known only as The Director.

The title, The Director, is incredibly intimidating. A director is one who is in charge of directing those working under them; Stein’s story is one of the many we have been hearing a lot of lately: a man with too much power always gets what he craves no matter what the cost is.

Within the opening two chapters we are introduced to J, a bright young college graduate beginning her New York adventure. She met The Director for the first time at a Starbucks where he was hypnotized by her overwhelming beauty. From then on, their relationship becomes a repetitive and uncomfortable wreck that no one, not even J, can turn their heads away from.

Throughout the novel we see J battling the desire for her future while suffering through the manipulations of The Director. The accounts are rivetingly graphic, often making me want to burst into the room and pull J out of these situations. There are plenty of times you will be asking why she doesn’t just opt out of working with this revolting human being, because, surely, there were plenty of chances to get out of this situation. But, like many times, it is not that simple.

At its base, The Director is a therapy piece; by utilizing her journal entries from her disrupted past, Stein pieces together a method that allowed her to reflect and see her own situation from a different point of view. This memoir is a journey of self-discovery and bravery, by the end any reader is able to see that you do not need to be afraid to tell your story.

There are 399 people that understand Stein’s story exactly and there are so many more that can relate to her story one way or another. It does not need to be a secret, you do not need to hide away in shame, you are understood and loved and your voice deserves to be heard and you deserve justice.

And to those of you, any of you, who choose to go against consent…your story will be told too; people like J.K. Stein are coming forward with a strength that will astound you in a way that will make you wish you never even looked at them.

 

For more information on The Director, or if you would like to order a copy, please visit www.thedirector.info/.

To have a book reviewed, please email editorinchief.ubpost@gmail.com for shipping information.

Letter From the Editor: April 2018

Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known”  -Carl Sagan


Welcome back from break UB Community,

I don’t mean to sound cheesy, but isn’t it crazy how much our lives change in such a short amount of time? One day you’re sitting on the couch in your onesie writing three different papers at once with the latest Korean drama playing in the background on Netflix, and the next you are walking on a boardwalk in Texas with someone you love and someone you will grow to love. I just think it’s so special to have experiences like that.

I’m a busy person with lots of stuff to do, but I need to just stop sometimes. I know some of you aren’t able to do that and it genuinely upsets me that the people that are working so hard can’t just sit back and see what they’ve accomplished, because you all deserve it.

Sometimes I reflect on the concept that so many things have been created because people just sat back and thought about what they could do. They were bored so they just made cool things that we see today! I honestly just believe people can be so amazing, no matter how many flaws we have and no matter how many crappy things some of us do.

As we head into the last few weeks of the semester, keep in mind that great things can happen when you just take a moment for yourself. There’s no reason to work yourself to death if you aren’t living for anything.

Enthusiastically Yours,

Olivia Dudley

The New UB

Welcome to “UB Should Know…”. Here, you will find a variety of different debates, discussions, and interests that you and your fellow peers are passionate about. Topics from art museums closing down to scientific breakthroughs to conspiracy theories can be discussed here between up to four people, not including your moderator. If you wish to be a part of the next edition of UB Should Know… please feel free to contact The UB Post at editorinchief.ubpost@gmail.edu


With a new creative platform, a re-designed logo and a reimagined strategic plan, the University of Baltimore looks to strengthen its position in the market and usher in a new era.

The University of Baltimore is still the same institution at its core, delivering Knowledge That Works to the nontraditional student: the first-generation college-goer, the career changer, the adult learner. Since 1925, UB has supported students who are dedicated to making a difference and driven to succeed; these same students have gone on to become pillars of the legal community, innovative entrepreneurs, public policy leaders and influencers in the creative writing, design and technology communities.

But while the heart of UB hasn’t changed, the marketplace has. Much like many other institutions, UB has struggled in recent years to differentiate itself among the competition and to confidently communicate its invaluable contributions to the city, state and region. And that’s where a new brand comes in.

According to Victoria Reid, vice president of enrollment management and marketing at UB, “It’s important to take a step back every so often and take a hard look at how we’re communicating who we are, what we do and how we do it. This ensures we are accurately conveying how we serve our students, our communities and the value UB brings to the marketplace.

“To remain known and competitive in the higher education market, we needed to tell our unique story and re-establish UB as the University of first choice for students who are committed to a college education and driven to succeed in a modern society,” Reid continued.

With support from Kurt Schmoke, UB president, and Darlene Brannigan Smith, B.S. ’78, MBA ’80, executive vice president and provost, Reid assembled a core brand team of faculty, staff and students from across the University. Reid also brought on Ologie, a Columbus, Ohio-based branding firm known for its work with other institutions such as Oregon State University, West Virginia University, Northwestern University and the University of Arizona. Together, the core brand team and Ologie led and executed an in-depth qualitative and quantitative analysis of the perception of the UB brand and, based on the resulting data, rebuilt the UB brand from the ground up.

“The University of Baltimore is responding to the same pressures that many universities face today, and in doing so, may have lost sight of the things that made it so very distinct,” said Doug Edwards, associate strategy director for Ologie. “After our first visit to campus and speaking with the UB community, it was immediately clear what made this place so special.”

THE PROCESS

Through two online surveys, Ologie and the core brand team examined the results of more than 2,000 respondents from the internal community—current students, faculty, staff and alumni—and the external community, including prospective undergraduate and graduate students, high school counselors and community college advisers from Maryland and neighboring states, potential employers and friends of the University.

The research, conducted over several months in fall 2017, uncovered three brand pillars that support UB’s core value proposition. This framework serves as a platform for crafting communications about the impact UB has in the community, for promoting the University’s world-class academic programs and faculty and for further solidifying UB’s place in the market.

Brand Pillars:

•Nontraditional University: “We believe that ambition, hard work and resilience are the truest indicators of success. So we create a different kind of experience—one that welcomes anyone committed to a college education. And we make it possible for them to achieve success in their life, every day.”

•Urban Location: “We believe that the best way to prepare for the demands of the modern workforce is to fully immerse yourself in it. So we’re seamlessly integrated into the city and plugged into its cultural undercurrents.”

•Access to Transformation: “We believe that the greatest sense of accomplishment is found in confronting challenges to arrive fully at ones highest potential. So we take opportunity out into the community, to pave avenues for others to max out their talents and achieve their every goal.”

Core Value Proposition:

The University of Baltimore Forges Engaged Citizens of a Modern Society: “We believe that a UB education drives social progress, upward mobility and a thriving economy. We equip learners with the knowledge and fortitude necessary for a successful next step, in whichever direction that step may be.”

With these themes in mind, Ologie developed distinct creative platforms to help convey—verbally and visually—UB’s brand story. The firm presented two creative platforms and new logo options at meetings to gather feedback from the larger UB community. With this feedback, along with input from the Student Government Association and the staff and faculty senates, Ologie and the core brand team combined elements of both creative concepts to form the final platform that would become UB’s new brand and visual identity.

“This [effort] isn’t about us bringing a brand to the community,” noted Paul Davis, executive creative director at Ologie. “It’s about rallying and helping cultivate the authentic story of this University. The process [of] developing this new expression was collaborative on purpose. It truly is a brand built by the UB community for the UB community.

“[UB] has a lot of impressive stories and makes a huge impact throughout the region,” he continued. “The brand helps bring that to life. It’s time for this University to authentically and confidently tell its story.”

LAUNCHING A BRAND

On March 29, 2018, UB revealed its new brand and visual identity, which included a robust messaging strategy and the new UB logo. Students, faculty, staff, alumni and other members of the UB community attended a town hall session in the UB Student Center’s Wright Theater

The UB brand story powerfully conveys the experience the University creates—and it starts with a big, confident idea: “Here, knowledge works. Make no mistake: Even if you don’t know our name, you know us.”

These few words aim to convey the core of what UB has to offer and how it impacts not only the students that graduate from its programs but also the communities served by UB alumni. Even if some people aren’t familiar with UB by name, they are likely familiar with the successful outcomes produced by UB, its fac- ulty, students and alumni, and the breadth of UB’s reach. “UB’s re-freshed brand identify builds on the ambition, hard work and resilience of our nontraditional students; the seamless integration of our urban location into student learning, fac- ulty scholarship and community engagement; and [the idea] that a UB education drives social progress, upward mobility anda thriving local economy,” Smith said of the effort. “

In short, the new brand identity will allow us todevelop and execute a robust marketing and communication plan to tell the UB story in a bold,meaningful way.”

Together with the new strategic plan, the new brand will help UB: elevate UB’s academic reputation and perception attract more best-fit students, staff and faculty take ownership of UB’s urban location create a consistent message and story inspire support for UB’s future.

“UB must leverage its strengths if we are to effectively differentiate the University, grow enrollments and achieve financial stability,” Smith explained. “Developing a unique brand proposition that resonatesin the mar- ket and positions UB as the region’s premier professional, career-focused education is a keystrategy in our new strategic plan.”

Over the course of the next several months, the UB community will witness the brand activation phase including updated internal communication, environmental pieces and marketing and advertising. A brand ambassador program will give selected students, staff and faculty the tools and knowledge theyneed to help champion the new UB brand.

As part of a comprehensive toolkit for the UB community, the University’s Office of Marketing and Creative Services is developing a new online web presence that includes guide- lines for implementing the brand. This information will be available shortly at www.ubalt.edu/brand. In addition, the Office ofMarketing and Creative Services is seeking sub- missions from the UB community of stories—standout students, alumni, programs, initiatives, etc.—that can help illustrate the new brand. Submit your ideas to marketing@ubalt.edu.


 

Amongst the Stars

Science mourns the loss of Stephen Hawking

By Olivia Dudley

Editor in Chief

On March 14th, 2018, renowned physicist Stephen Hawking peacefully passed away at the age of 76 in his Cambridge home surrounded by family. He will forever be remembered for his fascinating studies of quantum physics, black holes, and gravitational singularity theorems.

Throughout his life, he persevered in his studies and uncovered scientific breakthroughs that changed the way humanity sees the stars and the entire universe around us. His life was filled with a passion for science and educating. While he had been diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease nearly fifty years ago, he refused to allow anything from stop him from pursuing a higher knowledge of the world around him.

“He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years.” his children Lucy, Tim, and Robert said soon after their father’s passing.

“Stephen Hawking will be remembered for his incredible contributions to science making complex theories and concepts more accessible to the masses,” stated Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

Particle physicist Yangyang Cheng of Cornell Univer- sity also noted to the world on Twitter that “As a little girl in China, over many years & countless days, I’d stare at the translated copy of “A Brief History of Time” on father’s bookshelf, longing for the day I’d be able to read it. Thank you for gracing the world with your presence & continuing to illuminate it with your mind.”

Hawking will never be forgotten; his imprint on human history is as vast and never ending as the universe he dedicated his life to.

If a Tour Guide, a Slam Poet and a Curator walked into the Owl Bar: Baltimore’s Classroom

Dr. Rachael Zeleny

Contributor

Last semester, I took my Arts 304 (Arts and Ideas) students to the Walters Art Gallery to see the museum’s gorgeous Renaissance paintings firsthand. I stood behind them as they observed different works and gathered snippets of their conversations: “The people in the halls….and the people on the walls…they don’t look like me.” Another student nodded her head, agreeing, noting that her grandmother had worked as a security guard for the Walters for years but that she only ever felt comfortable bringing her grandmother lunch; the museum itself seemed too intimidating to walk through.

I went home and looked at the remainder of my syllabus. I realized that if I wanted my amazing and diverse group of students to truly participate in experiential learning, I needed to rethink the experience I was offering. I needed to do my part to not only help them feel at home in places like the Walters but also to highlight how “people who looked like them,” created the very pulse of this city and so many cities that have come before. I rewrote the syllabus that night.

In the new version of the class, I co-teach with Dr. Ian Power. My degrees are English and Art. Dr. Power’s background is Music and History. The students continue to learn about major artistic movements but we also look at how marginalized groups have constructed themselves within or against the mediums used by those in power. For instance, our unit on the Renaissance now includes an explanation of how the music of the church (played by Dr. Powers), the sonnets for Queen Elizabeth, and the slam poems of UB senior Lady Brionne can all be described as artistic and political.

As a way of truly bringing the Walters to my students, Joaneeth Spicer, curator and author of Revealing the African Presence in Renaissance Europe, visited our class to discuss a girl believed to be the first black child featured in Renaissance art, and who was hidden until the painting’s restoration revealed her presence. When my students revisited the Walters the following week for a scavenger hunt, they noted that for the first time in their lives, they understood how a museum was organized and that they knew what to look for.

In our unit on architecture, we visit the breathtaking Peabody Library with Paul Espinosa on one day and then, during the next class, we look at how slave quarters were hidden from public view when we take our Historic Ghost Tour of Mt. Vernon with Tim Paggi.

In the weeks to come, we will use an honors course enhancement to pay for our visits to the American Vision two buildings of interest, two artistic locations, one restaurant and one place of their choice. As the final step, another student needs to take their tour and reflect on the experience of walking through the city with someone else’s “glasses” on. Tour last semester included a Lady Day (Bille Holiday) tour, a Brothers in Blue tour featuring the Baltimore Police, a Good Luckary Arts Museum and the Reginald Lewis Museum. Our last speaker will be Pat Cruz, the director of an organization in Baltimore called Young Audiences whose mission is to “work with teaching artists to provide training and support in aligning programs to the state curriculum and developing lessons with effective and creative assessment tools.” It is an ideal close to the semester as it demonstrates how Irish Heritage tour, among others.

Perhaps my favorite part of this new course is our final project called the BaltiTour project. Students are asked to create a theme that reflects their personal way of interacting with the city. Every location needs to be within 15 minutes walking distance of UB. The tours include 6 locations:

One of my student’s tours, themed “Secrets,” has inspired my fall class, Arts and Society. I can’t tell you what’s in that course, for obvious reasons. Like what you’ve read or have a suggestion for other experiences we should add to the course? Email me at rzeleny@ubalt.edu or keep up with our adventures on my blog www.rachaelmzeleny.com.

Cyclists get social

Bike events in Baltimore—and at UB

By Laura Melamed

Contributor

The weather is getting warmer. It’s time to check out some fun bike events around town. Here’s a few I think sound pretty cool.

Bike Swap and Social Saturday
April 7, 2018
11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Baltimore Streetcar Museum 1911 Falls Road

I had lots of fun at the bike swap last year chatting with people, checking out used bikes and art made from used bicycle parts. It was a great way to start off spring, hanging out in the sun and drinking Zeke’s coffee with a bunch of other bike riders and a nice view of the Jones Falls Trail.

Spin Class and Pizza
April 2018
University of Baltimore
Campus Recreation and Wellness Free

Meet other students, get some exercise and chat about the UB Bicycling Club. Join the club on Org Sync and stay tuned for details.

Showers Race May Flowers Sunday
April 15, 2018
12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

R. House and Mt. Vernon Market Place
$5 in advance/$10 at the door

Bike ride down the Maryland Avenue Cycle Track between R. House and Mt. Vernon Marketplace. Bring your friends and wear a costume! The ride helps support Bikemore, Baltimore’s bicycle advocacy group. Check out more details at bikemore.net.

Baltimore Bike Party Friday
April 27, 2018
6:30 p.m.

St. Mary’s Park

A slow-paced ride, two or three hours around Baltimore. Expect lots of music in motion. Check out Baltimore Bike Party on Facebook and stay tuned for April’s route–and costume theme.

 Kinetic Sculpture Pre-Race Ride Sunday
April 22, 2018
10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM)
800 Key Highway

Ride through Federal Hill, Inner Harbor, Harbor East and Canton. Take the same path more than 35 kinetic sculptures will cruise during the Kinetic Sculpture Race on May 5th. The ride is weather permitting. For more details, check out avam.org.

Handlebar Café Bike Ride University of Baltimore
April 2018

Meet at UB and bike ride down the Maryland Avenue Cycle Track and on the Waterfront Promenade at the Inner Harbor. Stop at the Handlebar Café for lunch.