Liberti Church in Center City is Giving Back to the Homeless Community

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Liberti Church, located on 17th and Samson street, is doing more that usual to help out their local homeless community. Every Saturday morning, the church opens it’s doors to hundreds of people for a free lunch-in.

“Emmanuel was a ministry that was started by First Baptist Church, right here in this building,” says Vito Baldini, the Pastor at Liberti Church. “They were looking for a way and a desire to serve their neighbors in the Philadelphia area that were experiencing homelessness.”

And not only were they giving a free meal to the homeless, but building a community of kind-hearted and loving individuals.

“We believe that engaging on a weekly basis is important in terms of building relationships, building community,” says Matt Soldano, the head chef of Emmanuel ministries. “When people don’t know if you’re gonna be there on Saturday it’s hard for them to trust you. So we’ve started to come every week.”

“Every person is treated with dignity and respect, and because of that we serve them with a good, quality meal. Volunteers love the experience, guests love the experience,” exclaims Pastor Vito.

Every week provides the homeless with a meal that they can enjoy, and moving forward, Emmanuel ministries hopes to expand what they are doing by providing even more for their community.

“What we want to do moving forward is be a consistent place where people can come out of the elements, get into a safe space, get a warm healthy meal, and be able to relax for several hours, while it just being in relation to the community with one another,” explains Matt Soldano.

Anyone who is interested in volunteering can travel to Liberti Church at 10:00 AM every Saturday. Hands are always needed, and volunteers are always welcome.

Honeygrow Utilizes Virtual Reality

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Honeygrow has caught the attention of employees everywhere, not because of how they work, but because of how they are trained.

After receiving a Google cardboard in a mail from the New York Times, the Philly-based restaurant chain decided to use virtual reality to train their employees.

“We loved it,” says Jen Denis, the Chief Brand Officer of Honeygrow. “And we thought it was such an interesting tool, and such an innovative way to look at things. We wanted to see how we could implement it in our training practices.”

Honeygrow has high standards for their training, and through the use of VR, employees gain an experience that cannot be gained through traditional training.

“We wanted to do something that would be rememberable,” says Michael Mazer from Honeygrow, “and something that might elevate training a bit.”  

“When we rolled it out, all of the general managers were required to try it out, and it was really… very cool,” says Larisa Hawley, a General Manager at Honeygrow. “Already being familiar with the brand, it was still very interesting to walk through it, and I went home and told my family about it, and they wanted to do it.”

Through this VR training, employees from across the globe are able to gain an introduction to both the brand and the owner over at the headquarters.

“We are now expanding to areas that are further away, Chicago and Boston, where they don’t necessarily get to meet all of the people who are here at headquarters,” states Hawley.

And although this concept for training is fairly new, Honeygrow has high hopes for the future of their brand.

“I hope that with the use of this our teams are super engaged and can embrace technology from day one,” says Denis.

Eagles Fans Celebrate the Eagles Super Bowl Win at the Eagles Parade

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On Thursday, February 8th,  Eagles fans gathered in Center City Philadelphia to participate in their first Super Bowl victory parade.


Eagles’ fans from around the region joined the big party in Philadelphia. From the  Stadium to the Museum of Art,, people cheered and celebrated.


“It’s a dream come true, it’s definitely a dream come true. I’ve been waiting my whole life for this,” Brian, a Delaware resident said, “ I was there for 2004 and I was rooting for them, and we had our chance for redemption, and here we are baby.”


With the waving of the Eagles’ flags and singing of the “Fly Eagles Fly” song, fans could not conceal their happiness and they could not wait to see the parade and the Eagles team.


Travis Davis, a Philadelphia resident said, “ I just wanna see the team. I wanna see the team. I wanna see the players”


Overall, Eagles fans had a great time celebrating with their peers, and with the players, at a once in a lifetime opportunity. They do not call it the “city of brotherly love” for nothing!

MSP Professor Wins the 2017 Innovative Teaching with Technology Award

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Prof. Laura Zaylea
Professor Laura Zaylea

The Innovative Teaching with Technology Award is a university-wide award, given out annually to a professor who significantly integrates technology into teaching and learning. This year, Media Studies and Production professor Laura Zaylea has been nominated, and ultimately chosen, to receive the 2017 Innovative Teaching with Technology Award.

As Temple reported, Professor Zaylea is known for teaching a wide variety of formats, including a hybrid and online class, a large lecture, a lecture with a lab, and a studio production class. In each of her class, she finds a way to integrate multiple forms of technology, including social media platforms, classroom engagement sites and technologies, and different tools that aid online learning.

One of her classes, Intro to Media Technology, allows the implementation of various production technologies, which in return allows students to create audio, video, and graphic design projects. All of these works are then intertwined at the end of the year onto one coherent website, via Another class that Professor Zaylea teaches, an emergent media production course, allows students to explore different media technologies to create webisodes, iBooks, text-based games, multiple augmented reality projects, locative media projects, and creative coding projects.

Professor Zaylea also regularly hosts lectures within the Media Studies and Production department, on various topics relating to emerging media technologies. These lectures include Genres of Media Production, Technology and Culture, Media Institutions, and LGBT Media Representation. She also assists other professors at Temple with issues with teaching with technology, ranging from how-to Blackboard Questions to how to approach writing in an online course form.

Overall, Professor Zaylea is passionate about exploring different media technologies related to video production and digital storytelling. Emerging technologies and their immensely creative capabilities are central to her teaching at Temple University’s Lew Klein College of Media and Communications. Congratulations to Professor Laura Zaylea for her outstanding accomplishments, and for receiving the 2017 Temple University Teaching with Technology Award.


Temple Students Take Formula Race Car for a Spin On Campus

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Formula Racing can bring loads of excitement and adrenaline to anyone who attends, and Temple University had the opportunity to do just that. On Tuesday, Temple Formula Racing had the chance to take part in a race car drive right in front of the College of Engineering.

The car that was driven on Tuesday participated in The Society of Automotive Engineers event that took place last summer in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Temple students had the outstanding opportunity to see the formula car drive down Twelfth Street and around the Temple University campus.

See some footage of the car’s trip down 12th Street above.

The Philadelphia Ambassadors Big Band

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Who doesn’t love the sweet sound of Philadelphia Tradition?

The Philadelphia Ambassadors Big Band hopes to bring that tradition back with a bang, as they swing around every corner of Philadelphia with the tradition of Jazz. Lead by Dylan Band, a current Temple student with a passion for Jazz, and Joseph Block, a Germantown Friends School student who has a feel for swing, this band hopes to bring the sweet tradition back to life, as they play charts written by Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Stan Kenton, and many other great artists.

“I got together with Dylan Band, and we kinda started asking people last summer ‘Do you wanna join a big band with us?'” Joseph Block said. “Generally we just like this; we just love big band music.”

Along with the want and urge to start a big band, there was another big opportunity ahead of them that pushed the creation of the big band.

“Joseph and I were very familiar with this High School band competition called Essentially Ellington run at Jazz at Lincoln Center by Wynton Marsalis” exclaims Dylan Band, “and we thought it would be a really cool opportunity if we can go out to New York and compete in this festival. So we said you know what, that’s it. We’re getting a big band together, we’re gonna do it.”

Although they did not end up making in, missing the big shot by only two points, the band still pushes on strong. With practices weekly practice, the big band performs at venues such as The Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts, and the Community Unity Music Festival. But the swingin’ does not stop there.

“I think the hopes is to just play as much as we can, both at the Clef Club and anywhere else in the city,” said Joseph.

“I think it’s gonna turn out well,” states Temple student and trumpet player John Meko. “I hope we keep attracting young talent from throughout the Philadelphia area because that’s the only way the band is going to keep getting strong.”

And strong is just a light word that describes how great and professional the band sounds all together.

“Every time we play it’s just better and better,” stated Temple student and saxophone player Simon Crosby-Arreaza, “So hopefully, you know we’re playing at Chris’ Monday the 17th, hopefully we can start playing more places.”

The band held their first performance of the school year on Monday, October 17, at Chris’ Jazz Cafe on Sansom Street. There, family members, Philadelphia residents, and other Temple students got to come out and hear the sweet sounds of jazz played by The Philadelphia Ambassadors Big Band.

To find out more info on the band, you can check out their Facebook page.