CAT | Final Project Main Story
While many fraternities found at Texas Tech are known for parties and alcohol, Alpha Kappa Psi has a bigger mission.
The co-ed professional business fraternity focuses on preparing their members to enter the business world by surrounding them with students of similar goals said Trevor McDonald, senior global supply chain management major from Arlington, Texas.
McDonald’s is Chaplin in the fraternity. His position is one example of how Alpha Kappa Psi is different.
“I’m charged with keeping kind of the spiritual well-being of all the members of the chapter,” McDonald said.
“If anybody is going through any sort of trials or tribulations,” he said, “I have a personal email that’s confidential that I can bring as far as prayer requests and stuff like that at the end of every chapter.”
The fraternity held a video game tournament on April 25 to raise money for their organization. Along with fun events there are ones that help the members prepare for life after graduation said the Chaplin.
“We have speakers that come in that will talk to us on how to build our resumes, how to go through an interview process, how to dress professionally, all that kind of stuff,” McDonald said.
“And little tricks of the trade, to network, and find the right job for everybody once they graduate.”
Alpha Kappa Psi is not new to Tech. They’ve been helping business students succeed for decades, said Halee Haggerton, a marketing major from Houston. She also said the fraternity is diverse.
“We accept all majors, and we promote just business in general,” Haggerton said, “So we have obviously a bunch of business majors, but we also have engineers, and computer science, and advertising.”
In order to join Alpha Kappa Psi, students must have a minimum of a 2.75 GPA, the standard for the Rawls College of Business, according to the fraternity’s website.
Pledging lasts six weeks, but once a member becomes active, they choose how much time they want to commit, according to the website.
Alumni of the fraternity include former US presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, and local alumni include Tech’s chancellor Kent Hance, according to the website.
Social media has become a must to communicate in today’s society.
This outlet has gone as far as applying for a job, dating and even finding a long lost pet.
Lubbock resident Laura Mata, decided to create a Facebook page called lost and found pets after her beloved bull terrier, Jeter, had gone missing last year.
Mata said she posted her information and a description of Jeter on her personal Facebook page and was able to find him within a week.
“I consider my dogs as a member of my family,” Mata said. “I know others feel this way and Facebook worked for me so I thought I could start up something to help others find their missing dog.”
Lost and Found Pets is a place where people can not only post information on their missing pet, but if they have found or seen any lost pets as well.
Mata said she hopes to expand this business into other social media outlets such as twitter and a new program called path. Both are similar to Facebook, however she said she hopes this will reach out to even more people.
“Without Facebook I wouldn’t have found Jeter,” Mata said. “My new website I created will also network with local and regular and pet-related businesses, a newsletter, and I’m trying to work with the city of Lubbock Animal services.”
Social media in society has almost created its own form of communication and language. The question is whether it has made society less personable, however with outlets such as Facebook and Twitter we are able to reach out to the world even more.
Mata said she is thankful for these media outlets because it opens the world to more jobs and it’s easier to communicate and reach out to a larger group of people.
“Our society is growing and so are ways of doing things,” Mata said. “Sometimes twitter and Facebook get annoying, but I think it has more good than bad.”
Tiffany Jewel, owner of a husky who went missing in early May said that the way Facebook has impacted her life has had more success than negative aspects.
“The Facebook page and the website has clearly been successful,” Jewel said. “It was an accident that he got out and my husband and I posted it right away and because of social media we were able to find him, thankfully.”
Jewel said she’s not a big fan of all of the social media outlets, but when it comes to better connection with others to find a pet or for business purposes then she cannot argue with the success it brings.
“These ways of communication can be misused for everyday things,” Jewel said. “But because we were able to use the website and the webpage to find a member of our family I now have more faith in this new way of communication.”
As the school year comes to an end, student’s thoughts turn to summer vacation, but before they can enjoy 3 months free of professors, classes, and exams, they must overcome one last hurtle, finals.
Students across Tech’s campus are preparing for the exams with the beginning of finals week approaching on Thursday.
Will Melton, an energy commerce major from Rowlett, Texas, said he’s planning his preparation based on the potential reward.
“I have two on Saturday, back to back,” Melton said of his exam schedule. “I plan to study more for one because I know I have a chance to make an A, and the other one, not as much, because I can’t make any higher than a B.”
Jenny Ngyen, a business marketing major from Sugar Land, Texas, said she will begin studying for her lone final on dead day, although she wishes the university would give students more free days for studying.
“I remember my freshmen year,” Ngyen said, “I had three back-to-back, and I would have loved having more than just one dead day.”
“I think we should have more,” said Megan Foreman, a business marketing major from Mansfield, Texas. “We should have dead week like everyone else.”
Nygen said one reason more free days would be helpful is for students, like her, who have to work though she said she has been lucky to have understanding employers.
“I would give my schedule to my manager and she would help,” Nygen said. “She’s really lenient because she knows a lot of the students that work there are college students so she just schedules based on everyone’s free time.”
Foreman said she enjoys not having any finals to prepare for, but it does not mean she has had it easy during the end of the year.
“It’s really nice,” Foreman said, “but it’s kind of sucked because, this past week and a half, I’ve had a lot of tests and projects and stuff. Basically, I still have a finals week, it’s just not the same as everyone else’s.”
Nygen said knowing when to begin studying and where to study were important to doing well during finals.
“Sometimes I try to avoid the library during finals week,” Ngyen said, “because I lot of people, they come here, but they don’t really study and that’s a really big distraction.”
“I think studying with others,” Melton said of what helps him, “because they may know something that you may not know.”
Foreman said her advice to students would be about time management.
“Start studying ahead of time,” Foreman said, “not just the night before.”
Finals week will conclude on May 14, with final grades due on Raiderlink by noon on May 20.
“We coordinate any type of campus safety and security activities, do a lot of education and training on campus, and develop our emergency management plan for buildings across campus,” Ronald Phillips said, “and just being ready to respond to any type of emergency.”
Ronald Phillips, emergency management coordinator for Texas Tech, said a large part of his job is to work with local entities outside of campus to respond in disaster scenarios. He explained Tech police and Lubbock police are first responders, but they have ties to federal agencies that take the reins if a situation is serious enough.
Phillips explained, in addition to communicating with outside authorities, it is important to inform the public. One way he said they do this is by utilizing the TechAlert system.
According to the official Tech website, Texas Tech University has developed TechAlert, an Emergency Alert Notification System to communicate important alerts and emergency response information to students, faculty and staff.
“Being able to communicate to 40 thousand people is not an easy thing,” Phillips said, raising his eyebrows, “so we implemented TechAlert.”
Allison Matherly, digital engagement coordinator at Tech, said she has been working with TechAlert since its inception three years ago.
Matherly explained the system is not only text messages, but includes a variety of different formats.
“TechAlert actually has a number of different ways to communicate with students,” Matherly said. “It has phone, text, email and then we have the ability to publish to our social networks directly through the system and also to our RRS feeds which are broadcast on the digital signage on campus so the screens that you see with events, they can be completely taken over to just be emergency communications.”
She said they use social media primarily because in the event an emergency situation should occur the student body, and their families, would often turn to that outlet for information first.
Matherly went on to say that students are automatically enrolled, but they should check their information to make sure it is updated. She mentioned at the very least students will automatically receive emails from the system in the case of emergency.
Alerts come from the Tech police department, Captain Steve Hinkle said.
“We’ll send out the initial alert,” Hinkle said, “and then the public information officer for the university, in his office, will actually pick it up from there and they’ll handle the rest of it.”
Matherly said keeping people calm helps keep them safe and informed.
“I want to make sure I’m keeping people as safe as possible,” said Matherly.
For many college students, being a part of a study abroad program is great way to head start in the after college career field.
Amanda Glidewell, a Major-Media Strategies major from Sudan, TX, said her study abroad trip in May 2012, the first group to go to London, was an amazing experience.
She said the trip not only gave her a first-hand look at public relations and advertising in the real world, but also saw those aspects on a global scale.
Glidewell is going on the trip again this year, she said she hopes to make more career connections and hopefully find a future employer.
“This industry is a lot about who you know,” she said, “so networking is extremely important.”
On the 2012 trip, Glidewell said she was able to make a few connections.
“I was able to make some contacts within the agencies we visited,” she said, “which was incredibly helpful as I’m graduating soon and will be entering the workforce.”
Glidewell said tips she received from people working inside the agencies the group visited has given her a big advantage in applying for jobs and internships.
“Networking is a big part of the media and communication industry,” Glidewell said, “and studying abroad is a great tool to do just that.”
Studying abroad and visiting the companies, she said, has sparked her interest in possible career outside the U.S.
“Going back to London to study abroad again,” Glidewell said, “has given me the opportunity to apply to a few different companies and hopefully land a interview.”
Not all of the trip was public relations and advertising based, there was some room for touring too.
While on the trip last year, Glidewell said her favorite experiences were touring the Hampton Court Palace, and the British Museum.
This year, she said she hopes to add a few more places to that list.
Glidewell said, “Some of the things I’m looking forward to this time around is going out to Stratford, Shakespeare’s home, Warner Brothers Studio tour, Edelman PR, and the publishing house.”
Grounds Crew prepares for the planting portion of the Arbor Day festivities.
Chanel Burke, a junior chemistry major, said she found out about the event because she heard the band playing when she came out of class and wanted to find out more.
“I heard music when I came out of the chemistry building,” Burke said, ”so I decided to ask someone and walked up and saw people sitting and eating so i decided to join in the event.”
Burke went on to say the Tech Activities Board, or TAB, put on a great event and it was a fun way to get the students to come together and enjoy a beautiful day.
Many different organizations set up booths around Memorial Circle handing out free items such as T-shirts, koozies, bags, ice cream, and frisbees, while others came to show their support for Tech.
Baleigh Troull, a member of Phi Upsilon, an honor society for human sciences, said she was out for a community service event to spread awareness about their group and show love for the campus and students.
“It’s one of our community service projects,” Troull said, “It’s just kind of to show our support for the campus and we have done it every year of the event.”
Sami Tiano, a sophomore education major from Frisco, Texas, said she saw the huge crowd of people surrounding Memorial Circle, and couldn’t help but be excited to get involved with such a unique event.
“When I was walking back to my apartment, I saw a ton of people surrounding Memorial Circle and decided to see what was going on,” Tiano said. “The band was awesome, and I raced to get in line for my own personal plant.”
Tiano said she got to take home a cilantro plant to grow at home, and stayed to listen to the music and eat with her friends.
“I didn’t want to leave right away,” Tiano said, “So I called some of my friends to come and hang out.”
Shelby Williams, a junior human development major from San Antonio, said she was at the event to hear the awards for the different student organizations.
“They give out awards for the best organizations,” Williams said, “and they do awards based on the division like best religious, best greek, and for the other student organizations.”
Burke, the junior chemistry major, said although she didn’t know about the event beforehand, it was really easy to be informed and felt very included.
“It really changed my average boring day,” Burke said, “instead of it being slow and boring, it was really fun and I’m not ready to leave.”
Brown is beautiful.
At least that is what dermatologist Michael Lehman hears from the skin cancer patients he sees every day.
Lehman sees anywhere from 3 to 10 skins cancers in a day at the Lehman Dermatology Clinic, a majority of them that he said are caused from tanning.
“The old adage in skin is, ‘No tan is safe,’” he said. “There’s no such thing as a safe tan.”
The belief that tanning beds are safer than outdoor tanning is a complete myth, he said. In fact, people who use tanning beds are 10 to 12 times more likely to get skin cancer than people who lay out on the beach, Lehman said.
This is because of the different levels of rays found in sunlight and tanning beds, called UVA, UVB and UVC, he said.
UVA and UVB rays are both found in natural sunlight, but UVB tends to cause more superficial damage over a longer period of time, resulting in a sunburn or a tan, Lehman said.
“UVA penetrates much, much deeper into the skin and it gets down into those precancerous cells that really start stimulating cancer,” he said. “Those are primarily in tanning beds.”
While the deeper ray penetration allows for a much quicker, darker tan, it is also more dangerous and carries a higher risk for skin cancers such as basal cell and melanoma, he said.
Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer and causes around 8,000 deaths in the US each year, according to the CDC.
Two decades ago, the rate of melanoma was 1 in 200 people, Lehman said. Currently, it is 1 in 50.
“It’s also the number one cause of death in women between 20 and 29,” he said. “Greater than breast cancer, greater than colon cancer, because they keep going. They want that dark tan.”
Shannon Johnson, a nurse for 27 years at the Joe Arlington Cancer Center, said 10 percent of college students aged from 22 to 27 come in with melanoma or other forms of cancer.
“We do have many college students that do come with dis-colored moles that have signs of becoming cancerous,” she said. “It is hard to treat melanoma because it requires for the infected skin to be removed and it spreads very quickly.”
Lehman said he has seen an alarming amount of 20-year-old girls with melanoma because they have spent their early high school years ‘fake baking’ in tanning beds for proms, dances and other social events.
Kelsey Blackburn, the manager of a local Planet Beach, said a majority of her clients are college students looking for a tan.
However, Planet Beach does offer spray tanning, which Lehman said is completely safe.
The difficulty with skin cancer is that often a person does not see the effects until maybe 20 years after their exposure, Lehman said, which is why he encourages frequent skin exams and the use of sunscreen.
But there is no use in paying big bills out of pocket for high SPF sunscreens, he said.
“They are no more effective than an SPF 15 or 30,” Lehman said. “The key to sunscreens are ingredients. And the number one protective ingredient is zinc oxide. The second most effective sunscreen ingredient is titanium oxide. These are heat repellent, reflective type sunscreen ingredients.”
Simply covering up will not protect you either, especially in a tanning bed, he said.
“That is false because the sun rays, tanning bed rays,” he said, “when they get into the body, they travel. That’s why many people will come in and say, ‘I have a mole on my lower back and I never get any sun on there.’”
Lehman said it is crucial to get any unusual moles or lesions that seem to appear from nowhere checked out at the doctor.
“A skin cancer won’t heal. If that goes for around two months, it definitely needs to be checked, because everything else will heal,” he said. “An unusual mole you’re not used to seeing, that needs to be checked. So, the sooner you get these things taken care of, the better for yourselves.”
Texas Tech holds an annual ceremony called the Carol of Lights before the holiday break to invite Lubbock locals and Tech students to experience the buildings being lit up by thousands of lights.
The traditional celebration was held around Memorial Circle on December 1, at 5:30 p.m., and included the Masked Rider and Horse, Saddle Tramps Torch Light Processional and High Riders starting off the ceremony at the University Seal.
The Texas Tech Choir and the Texas Tech University Combined Choir conducted a variety of Christmas songs that were sang before the official lighting took place.
This event has been going on for 54 years, states the Texas Tech website, and illuminates 13 buildings with over 25,000 lights.
Each year the university converts 20 percent of the lights to LED, and in 2013 the entire ceremony should be 100 percent LED.
According to the website, the Residence Halls Association sponsored event is one of Tech’s largest and oldest traditions, with over 20,000 people in attendance this year.
Alex Skartsiaris, a junior marketing and management major from Highland Park, Texas, said this was her first year to attend the ceremony.
Skartsiaris said she attended the event with her sorority sisters, and enjoyed experiencing the holiday cheer that was in the air.
“The singing was really cool and reminded me of home,” Skartsiaris said. “It was really pretty and everyone was really into it.”
Skartsiaris said her favorite part was when the lights were turned on and the buildings around Memorial Circle were lit up.
The website states the lights will be turned on every night through January 1 from dusk until midnight.
Ashley Carter, an undecided major from Lubbock, said this is her second year attending the ceremony. She said it is a cool tradition to be apart of, and it is fun to see everybody come out and enjoy it.
Erica Wolver, a senior nursing major from Corsicana, Texas, said her favorite part was when the lights turned on, as well.
Wolver said that aside from the heavy crowds it was a great experience and she was glad she attended.
A 38-foot Christmas tree was raised at the Broadway entrance of campus, the website indicates, and is lit up in addition to the lights every night.
Brody Anthony, a history major from Midland, Texas, said this was his first year attending the event. He said it has nothing to do with school spirit, but it is a great opportunity to show versatility as a university.
“I think it’s just a really neat experience because not all other campuses do that,” Wolver said. “Whenever you see all the lights and the big Christmas tree it just puts you in the Christmas spirit and just puts you in a good mood.”
State secession has become a hot topic in Texas after the reelection of President Barak Obama in November.
According to NBC News an online petition made by an online name of Micah H. from Arlington, Texas. This petition has sparked debate after reaching about 118,425 signatures as of December 3, 2012, according to petitions.whitehouse.gov. Leaving room for the president to comment on the matter, although he has yet to do so.
Catherine Frazier, press secretary for Texas Gov. Rick Perry said she, “believes in the greatness of our union and nothing should be done to change it,” in an interview with NBC News.
Sean Cunningham, assistant professor for the Department of History at Texas Tech University, said Gov. Rick Perry has commented on the issue. “Certainly, a couple of years ago our governor, Rick Perry, gave a speech in which he mention the possibility of secession; he has since backed off of that statement,” Cunningham said.
Molly Pattillo, a sophomore accounting major at Tech from Alamogordo, New Mexico and chairman of Young Conservatives of Texas at Texas Tech, said Texas has petitioned to secede for a long time, but has sparked more of a recent influx due to the reelection of the Obama administration.
“Many other states, 34 at my last count have also had petitions arise. While the secede mentality is a part of the ‘Texas culture,’ it is not very realistic,” Pattillo said.
Many different students on the Tech campus will agree with Pattillo and have said that secession of Texas will not occur.
Megan Featherston, a senior English major from San Antonio, said that no matter how many signatures this petition receives, the likelihood of secession is slim.
“Just because a bunch of ignorant people signed a petition online doesn’t mean anything,” Featherston said.
Cunningham says he does not believe secession will actually occur.
“I don’t think that there will be a session. I think that this will fade relatively soon,” Cunningham said. “I think people’s attentions spans are very limited.”
Pattillo said that even though she has not personally signed the petition, she is glad to see Americans voicing their opinion, even if it is online.
‘The Obama administration should not play this off as a fringe movement of ‘Crazy Texans’ but rather a backlash to his reelection,” Pattillo said.
Written by: Gloria Ogletree
The holiday season is upon us once again and the fifth annual Polar Express train ride in Wolfforth, Texas aims to make it a memorable one.
All people attending the recreation of Chris Van Alsburg’s book awaited their journey to the North Pole by singing along to the festive music at the station and drinking hot chocolate served from a side car window.
Linda Ginn, a gift shop clerk at the station said the holidays are a time of year when everyone gets together. She said the Polar Express train has increased the amount of people in her family and now considers those she works with her family, as well as the customers who come to the event.
“It’s a special closeness that they can have,” Ginn said.
The lines were designated with festively colored flags, and nearly all of them were full of people, not one of whom possessed a displeased demeanor.
Matt Dunscene, a father attending the Polar Express train ride, said the holidays are a time of year when his children seem most happy. He admitted to enjoying the time of year above all others.
“It’s my favorite time of the year,” Dunscene said, “the family, the food; it’s great.”
Jackie Rutherford, another clerk in the gift shop said it is important for events like the Polar Express train to keep the fantasy of Santa alive in children. She said the holidays are about believing and that is the main point Alsburg’s story emphasizes.
The holiday’s are here and those attending the Polar Express train ride in Wolfforth, Texas agree: The spirit of the holidays is abundant around the event.