Candidate Pete Buttigieg speaks at event

first_imgMore than 1,000 people attended the Q&A-style event moderated by Fox 11 anchor and 2008 graduate Elex Michaelson and organized by the Center for the Political Future, Fox 11 and the USC Political Student Assembly.  Michaelson asked Buttigieg why voters should consider him the ideal Democratic candidate to run against Trump in the upcoming presidential election. In response, Buttigieg said he will confront Trump for pretending to care about “forgotten” Americans from places like the industrial Midwest. “If he can make reforms like he said, with people making $100,000 or less — if he actually made that happen — I think that would be really big for a lot of people in America who can’t afford college or would be drowning in student debt,” Clever said. According to Howes, students whose questions were approved were answered by Buttigieg’s campaign manager before the town hall began and were similar to answers that Buttigieg later provided students. Stephanie Lund, a sophomore majoring in business administration and environmental studies, said the town hall changed her perception of Buttigieg and gave her a more personal understanding of him as a candidate. “It kind of threw me off a little, it’s like this isn’t a town hall, you’re just reciting something that’s super rehearsed, and I mean, yeah LGBTQ issues, but I think that something much more important right now is climate change, especially for our generation,” she said. Buttigieg said he will advocate for Americans he believes Trump has failed to represent. He has not been a target of racism, but he said he plans to prioritize the voices of those who have. Rachel Maltz, a senior majoring in business administration and communication data science, asked Buttigieg for his best advice for young people interested in politics, to which he said that students should find their own path to political involvement. In light of USC’s announement Thursday, Buttigieg commended new financial aid policy, which makes tuition free for all entering first-year undergraduates whose families make less than $80,000 a year and ends consideration of home equity in deciding all students’ financial need. He also shared his similar college affordability plan, which would grant free tuition to families making less than $100,000 through state-federal partnerships with public universities.  “I know that no one is suffering the pain of living under Donald Trump’s presidency more than voters of color, who have been singled out for discrimination with racial rhetoric and in so many ways are hurting because of this president, so I know that there is a laser focus on making sure that we can win,” Buttigieg said. “As someone who actually lives in the industrial Midwest, who can speak to how divisive and how unsupportive his policies have been, I think I’m in a different position than anybody else in the race to do that,” Buttigieg said. “The most important thing is to find something you care about,” Buttigieg said. “Plunge in and look for a way to make a difference … Don’t overlook the significance of the local [government] … It is often underestimated how much power and influence you can have at that level.” “I think that he definitely has good policies, and he was more likeable in this setting than he has been for me via Twitter and other media,” Lund said. “I was kind of surprised by how much more I liked him … I definitely thought he was a bit more robotic previously but now he feels more genuine.” “It’s great to see USC showing leadership in that regard,” Buttigieg said. “What we’ve got to do is have federal matching grants that are attractive enough that states will want to step up and do their part.” “We need to recognize that the moral as well as economic as well as political future of this country depends on dealing with these patterns of inequality, which are also so closely connected with patterns of racial exclusion in our country,” Buttigieg said. Buttigieg closed his speech with a call to action for 2020 voters, asking the public to unite around the common interest of defeating Trump. Margaret Howes, a junior majoring in animation and digital arts, initially indicated she would ask a question about LGBTQ rights but instead asked Buttigieg why young voters should support him when he receives donations from individuals who oppose environmental reform. Buttigieg said he believed everyone should be able to contribute to his campaign regardless of their beliefs.  “To have a candidate come to campus and speak — especially when the pool is now so small as the Democratic side fights for this nomination — I want to be a part of that and take this conversation seriously and see if I can learn something and figure out who I want to cast my vote for,” Goetze said. Kambiz Akhavan, executive director of CPF, said attendees had the option to submit questions through Eventbrite as they registered for the event. Those questions were then shared with Fox11 who screened them ahead of the town hall to look for questions that weren’t redundant, ranged in topics and would challenge Buttigieg. Akhavan clarified that the questions were not shared with the Buttigieg campaign. Gus Goetze, a senior majoring in business administration, said he attended the town hall to learn more about Buttitieg’s platform. Buttigieg also discussed the intersection of poverty and racial inequality, saying the two issues are intertwined and carry financial and ethical significance. Former South Bend, Ind. mayor and current Democratic presidential nomination candidate Pete Buttigieg spoke on the 2020 election, civic engagement and campaign funding at a town hall in Bovard Auditorium Thursday. “I think we could look back on 2020 with great pride, in how we came together to change the trajectory of this country,” Buttigieg said. “Time is running out. We have got to do it now, and that’s why I’m asking for your help.” Pete Buttigieg discussed USC’s new financial aid policy and his college affordability plan for public universities. The former mayor also urged attendees to vote in the 2020 election to help defeat President Donald Trump. (Ling Luo | Daily Trojan) Elsa Clever, a freshman majoring in business administration, said she believes Buttigieg’s education plan is promising. “I don’t take corporate PAC money — just individuals’, and all of that is disclosed,” Buttigieg said. “I believe in transparency. I believe in changing the entire campaign finance system, but to do that, we have to win. And I also believe in defeating [President] Donald Trump.” EDITOR’S NOTE: The article was updated to include comment from the Dornsife Center for Political Future regarding whether questions asked to Buttigieg were shared with the candidate’s campaign prior to the event.last_img read more

Karolis Kundrotas builds off Lithuanian upbringing as Elon freshman

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Elon administration charged head basketball coach Matt Matheny to go find overseas players. He had already established relationships in different countries when he was an assistant at Davidson. But now in charge, he was tasked with finding international athletes for his own program.He found Karolis Kundrotas at a prep school in London that has served as a basketball hotbed of talent. But London is not where Kundrotas found his love for basketball. It’s from a basketball-obsessed city in Lithuania that has developed numerous NBA talents.“Karolis fits perfectly into what we look for in recruiting at Elon,” Matheny said, “He’s someone that is coachable, that is tough and that is willing to work.”The 6-foot, 11-inch freshman Kundrotas, who was born and raised in Kaunus will come to the Carrier Dome on Saturday at 7 p.m. to face Syracuse (2-0) as a part of the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament. Though he’s scored just five points in 15 minutes this season for Elon (2-1), Kundrotas’ past stops shaped the promising player.Kundrotas moved to England with his mother in 2006 and played at the Barking Abbey Basketball Academy. The academy’s professionalism helped prepare him to play Division I.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAfter failing to bring in European recruits in past years, Mattheny successfully reeled in Kundrotas.“The coaches there are really sharp,” Kundrotas said of the Academy. “The closest program that I’ve been to that matched American standards.”The Barking Abbey program, which head coach Lloyd Gardner called the British version of an American“prep school,” is linked to a normal British state high school and is regarded as one of the top basketball programs in the UK for developing young players.The Abbey program previously sent fellow Lithuanian Paulius Satkus one year earlier to James Madison and Kundrotas followed a similar path.Program director Matt Clark said that every Lithuanian player comes with solid fundamentals and a 3-point shot, which Clark called a “signature” of all European big men.“Lithuanians grow up with basketball,” Clark said. “It’s their national sport. A large number of their heroes are basketball players.”Kundrotas’ hometown in Lithuania, Kaunus, is a goldmine for basketball stars, producing several NBA players including Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Donatas Motiejūnas Arvydas Sabonis, Šarūnas Marčiulionis and Linas Kleiza.“Being from the same place,” the freshman said, “they’re people that I look up to. I idolize them.”While many young athletes in Lithuania look up to players like Ilgauskus and Montiejunas, Kundrotas said that his hero was another Lithuanian basketball star.Šarūnas “Šaras” Jasikevičius was another product of Kaunus, Lithuania and played point guard in the United States for Maryland. Jasikevičius played a majority of his career overseas, but had a brief stint with the Indiana Pacers in the NBA.“He was the man in my eyes,” Kundrotas said, “with Zydrunas of course, he’s also legend.”Kundrotas hasn’t come close to the level that his heroes have reached yet, but Matheny thinks highly of his future.Matheny believes that despite Kundrotas coming more game-ready than the coaching staff anticipated, he still has a lot to work on and to learn before he can play big minutes for the Phoenix.Both are excited for the opportunity to play at Syracuse. It’s a chance for Kundrotas to play in the type of venue his countrymen became accustomed to.“I can’t believe the opportunity I’ve got from where I come from,” Kundrotas said, “I can’t wait.” Comments Published on November 20, 2015 at 12:02 pm Contact Jack: jfupton@syr.edulast_img read more