Gabrielle Pfafflin

Gabrielle Pfafflin

Born and raised in Austin, TX, I have lived all over the western world, learning new languages, cultures, and perspectives. I freelance for Talk Radio News Service, have published photos, stories, and videos across their website. Currently, I am the Station Manager for KXDU.

DU emptied for Thanksgiving

On Thanksgiving, 2012, the University of Denver revealed itself to be a lonely campus on the national holiday. Jerusalem’s, the only open business in the DU area, thrived despite the lacking student population.

Flyer for Thanksgiving celebration at Vista apartments.

Every year, DU purges the dorms of the majority of undergraduate students for winter break, and locks the doors until January.Although the rest of the Univeristy remains open during the rest of winter break, every office shuts its doors during Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Unfortunately, this leaves some students alone to celebrate Thanksgiving as best they can.

Because most businesses close for Thanksgiving, students often must depend on themselves to recreate the family affair at home, a restaurant, or forget about the holiday altogether.

The Vista Apartment Complex opened the common area for a makeshift Thanksgiving dinner available to its tenants.  Other students decided to make dinner themselves at each other’s home.

However, one establisment remained open and packed with customerss  like an oasis in the middle of the desert. Jerusalem’s, a DU legend and student staple boasts having been open everyday for the past 35 years, including all holidays.

.According to Mazel Akaswad, the Night Manager of Jerfusalem’s restaurant, “Our customers require us to stay open duting the holidays, because they love our food.”

A normally packed Starbucks lies completely empty.

DU students rock the vote

By Gabrielle Pfafflin and Sarah Ford

In a high turnout election night, DU students flooded the Centennial Halls Polling Center to vote on Tuesday.

From 9 AM in the morning to 7 PM in the evening, students passed through the doorways of Centennial Halls ready to vote and proudly flaunted their “I voted!” stickers upon leaving.

Chalk writing littered the DU campus, shepherding students toward Centennial Halls and reminding them to vote. Campaigners canvassed, called, and drove prospective voters to the polls.

The campus was abuzz with political involvement.

As the evening darkened on Centennial Halls, the DU Dems congregated to pass out free snacks and juice to all students that voted.

As he left the building, DU Graduate, Patrick Morris said, “I’m just glad that I’m here late in the day and there’s still voting.”

However, Campaign Coordinator of the DU Dems, Connor Evenson remained skeptical. He feared that DU has “been a fairly apathetic campus.”

“I think we can get an okay turnout,” He continued, “perhaps 35 or 40 percent, which is less than the normal electorate.”

Alex Johnson of the DU College Republicans disagreed. He claimed that the energy in this election was more palpable for conservative voters than in 2008. Although he expected DU to vote more blue, he elaborated that was not representative of the entire campus or state of Colorado.

When asked why they voted, students offered various reasons. Freshman Gege Sorenson said, “I feel like it’s kind of a privilege and it’s also kind of a duty at the same time.”

Shadi Maalaki offered a similar reason. He said, “It’s my civic duty in this society to vote.”

Students persevere without library

Students study in driscoll library, as construction of Penrose continues     As Penrose Library construction tears the DU campus in two, students continue with their studies and persevere without the staple study climate once provided at the University of Denver.

According to the Penrose website, the library reconstruction should finish by the end of January. Until then, students will have to seek help and research in the Driscoll Center.

“It’s pretty unfortunate, especially because in Korbel, the school I’m in, doesn’t have study rooms, so it’s pretty inconvenient.” Said, International Studies graduate student, Micky Lendenmann. “I have to work around it. “

With the ever deepening school year, new procedures to request research materials and lack of study space could cause increased difficulties for students.

During construction, all research materials and books from the library are being stored in Aspen Hall and in an off-campus storage facility. Current students must request research materials and research appointments beforehand through the Penrose website. Students must also work through the local library system.

“It’s just a hassle,” Said Rhiannan Price, an International Studies graduate student, “but otherwise I think that DU has done a really good job in making sure those resources are available elsewhere.”

Rebuilding DU

This slideshow illustrates the impact of construction on the student body without altering the environment. I primarily photographed the building materials across campus and the construction workers themselves. I waited for a particularly cloudy day to avoid overexposure of the subjects and allow an increased number of angles. At the time I feared the sunlight would weigh too heavily on an emotional impact through the shadows. I felt that the best shots were action shots of the construction workers,

Overall, I felt that the pictures worked well with the story, however, I wish I had gotten shots of the storage area where the library books are being held. I would give myself more time and not shy away from sunshine.

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