Tennis Tech trains future coaches Tennis Tech is a technical program that teaches students about the professional aspects of the sport.
Art club volunteers its time to teach monthly art classes at Disciple Place Village retirement community.
[ Story on page 6]
Art Club teaches at retirement community
[ Story on page 8]
The official newspaper of Tyler Junior College since 1927 w w w. tjc n ewspaper.com
Friday, March 18, 2011
Ty l e r, Tex as
Hell has no fury
Legislative Coverage: Part 2
like a Christian’s scorn By Joshua Mumphrey Editor-In-Chief “You all are going to hell,” said Jessie Morrell, a Christian protestor among a crowd of students near the Pirtle Technology building at Tyler Junior College. The sound of angry voices seemed to pierce the air as many expressed their opposing views on Christianity. Morrell believes in only one kind of existence; one of purity, righteousness, peace and love, but from the manner of his protest, students began questioning the values he represents and also the existence of the Christian faith. As the crowd steadily grew and the arguing escalated, Angela Rogers, a sophomore at TJC, stepped forward and spoke out against what she considered to be misdirection. “You don’t hear love. All you can hear is anger and hostility,” Rogers said. “I think the only thing people are going to walk away with today is intolerance for Christians and more hatred towards them. It’s truly heartbreaking.” Morrell showed no compassion to students, an attribute that is highly regarded and encouraged in the Christian faith according to the Holy Bible he read from in his left hand. His statements were harsh and degrading. Some of which were racially insensitive. He categorized many surrounding students as whores, fornicators, homosexuals and sinners, who he believed would suffer eternal damnation if not reconciled. “I don’t think he represents God at all,” said Jessica Love, her eyes slightly glaring as she spoke. “He’s calling people perverts or thugs and talking about the black race. Personally, I think he’s racist and I hope he never comes back here again.” While hoisting a vinyl red, black, and white sign in the air that read, “Trust Jesus and Stop Sinning, You Sinners,” Morrell justified his actions in accordance to what he believes is the will of God. “Jesus changed me,” he said. “And since I am changed, I have the right to judge, getting the beam out of my brothers eye as it was removed from my own, as stated in scripture.” The silence proved too much for TJC student and avid Christian Austin Blankbnnagel. He launched forward in an desperate attempt to try and reason with Morrell. Blankbnnagel questioned Morrell’s statements and behavior, explaining the difference in reaching people through being kind and understanding instead of resulting to hostility and anger. “I hurt for this person. He doesn’t know how to communicate love which is what being a Christian is all about,” Blankbnnagel said.
Legislative bill to allow concealed guns on campus By Howard Slacum Staff Writer
Photo by Joshua Mumphrey
Eternal damnation: Outside the Pirtle Technology Building Jesse Morrell preaches to TJC students about the sins he believes they are committing and that they will face eternal damnation if they do not reconcile.
Legislators want to make college campuses safer, but some think lawmakers are shooting blind. The Texas Legislature is considering proposed legislation to allow concealed handguns on college campuses. Proponents of the bill say it will make campuses safer while opponents say it will actually make campuses more dangerous. Either position could be correct. “This is an unknown and it will take several years of data,” Executive Director of Campus Safety Tom Johnson said. “You can’t hardly measure something that’s not in effect.... we don’t know what the outcome will be.” Proponents do not see it as an issue that requires data to validate the benefits. For some, it is a matter of common sense: if someone is attacking students with a gun, then someone with a gun could save lives by shooting the assailant. Tim Norris, a firearms instructor who teaches concealed handgun classes at Lock & Load, supports the bill. As he talked about the bill, he began speaking faster and raised his voice slightly. “What happens when a guy comes in and starts shooting? Who’s going to stop him? You going to wait until someone gets on 911 and he kills 30 people,” Norris said. That it can save lives by giving trained, armed citizens the means to defend themselves is perhaps the most widely cited reason proponents support the legislation. It is what motivated Texas State Representative David Simpson (R) to file the bill. “I wanted to restore that right of self-defense,” Simpson said. “That’s a God-given right that no government should take away from a law-abiding citizen and that’s what our government has done for quite some time.” — see GUN page 12 —
— see HELL page 12 —
TJC alumni Shea Whigham wins SAG award
Photo still from HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire.”
By Caylee Stamps Staff Writer
In the hallway of the theater department offices, there are portraits lining the entire length of the walls. These faces are of former students who walked, worked and performed on the stages of Tyler Junior College and have gone on to become successful in the performing arts. Among these faces is Shea Whigham, who recently won a Screen Actors Guild Award and the Golden Globe Award for the HBO Series “Boardwalk Empire.” The series won the SAG award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series and the Best Television Series. Whigham describes the experience of winning the SAG and Golden Globe. “It was surreal…you wonder,’’ did they really just call us,’” Whigham said. “I am not in it for awards. I don’t know how you judge a best
actor because what we do is subjective. It’s not an athletic event. Put a ball in the middle of a field or a court and play and whoever wins, wins. I don’t know what that means to be better than another actor, but it was an honor to be selected. This whole thing is not for awards, it’s for being on shows, like Boardwalk Empire. Where everyday you’re around these people who are the brightest in the business and just as creative as they could possibly be. HBO, who we work for, is unbelievably supportive of the show. I really love it.” Screen Actor Guild Awards are special in that fellow actors and actresses are the voters. Jacque Shackelford, property director and theater professor at TJC, recalled when Whigham was one of her pupils and initially became wrapped up in the theater department.
— see whigham page 12 —
Opinion.............................2 The Apache Belle’s, band members and alumni end their spring break trip to Hawaii with a tsunami. Learn more about their experiences at www.tjcnewspaper. com getatag.mobile.com Get the free mobile app at
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Rules you say, who needs them Restrictions can help, not hurt...
By Joshua Mumphrey Editor-In-Chief For a long time I never truly understood why rules were an important part of parenting, and not just parenting, but everyday life. I must admit that there were days when I’d wish I had a lot less limitations on where, how, and with whom I hung out with. I actually learned recently the method behind my mother’s “madness” as I called it, after hearing the heartbreaking news a few weeks ago that three young people were killed in a car crash in Lindale on a Sunday morning. Such a tragic and unsettling event. It definitely made me rethink the whole “fun with friends” thing a lot. So many young
people these days don’t actually consider the consequences of their actions and that some fun-filled nights out on the town don’t always end in laughs, but in tears. I often thought of rules and curfews as being unfair and overrated. As weird as it sounds, I still have to be responsible at 20-years-old and be at home before 7 p.m. unless given permission otherwise. My friends and I thought of my mothers teachings as strict, unnecessary and did I mention unbelievable, but to be honest I’ve learned how to develop a serious sense of true responsibility. There’s no doubt when I do leave the nest one day soon, I’ll be fully equipped with the necessary skills to survive and become an exceptional individual in the community. We all must learn that rules are enforced for many reasons and not just from a parting point of view. There are laws we must follow, standards we must always meet and just because we reach a particular age or point in life, that doesn’t mean we no
We care what you think...
longer have to abide by them. For goodness sake, do live life to the
Posted March 3, 2011 The Six Drop Rule: Christine DeVilla
“You may not understand it now, but you will sooner or later.”
“I think that the six drop rule is good actually. I feel it’s a necessary rule to enforce in order for students to get a lot more serious about their education. There should be less than six courses dropped in a student’s college career. If a student who lives in the Philippines, where I’m from would drop just one course, that would be the end of their semester. You would have to wait to the following semester to enroll. Here at Tyler Junior College, you are given the opportunity to make an A after making a C once you have retaken the course without any problem. It’s amazing and you can have the perfect GPA. I’m a nursing major here at TJC and I feel the classes are a lot more easier to pass because of theses rules.”
fullest and have fun, but just consider how safely you do it! Who want’s to be the kid who’s farthest Spring Break vacation included an extremely exciting endeavor through the terrain of his or her very own backyard? My mother would always say, “You may not understand it now, but you will sooner or later.” Well, I’m beginning to believe what she said was true and I can honestly say I’ve learned so much because of the dreaded rules and restrictions. We must remember they are not here to hold us back or to put a damper on our life experiences, but to keep us focused on the proper path we all must travel to become successful.
Posted March 3, 2011
Response to Budget Cuts: Kristina Broadway “I think the budget cuts are ridiculous. I think since we pay for school, we should be able to keep every opportunity still available to us. I’m a theatre major and I know that the fine arts are generally the first to go, so it’s really scary and painful. I don’t think there is a way by cutting the budget that we can actually benefit. We put so much in our sets, props and costumes and by cutting the budgets for our programs, we couldn’t be as proud or our sets as beautiful. We wouldn’t be able to draw people to the next play and they won’t be looking forward to the next show.”
What students think... on campus.
Response of week 3 | Equality: “I am woman...”
“We could use some female equality at TJC. A female softball team would be great for physical activity and workout. “ - Whitney Williams
e d i t o r i a l
Senate Bill 354: A measure of safety or violence The Texas Legislature is considering passing a bill that would allow carrying concealed handguns on college campuses. Allowing concealed handguns on college campuses would be putting students and faculty at a great risk. Not only would this be allowing normal people to carry dangerous weapons, but it could be putting those carrying the weapons in danger as well. Senate Bill 354, sponsored by Sen. Jeff Wentworth of San Antonio, would allow both college students and employees to carry concealed weapons on public college campuses in Texas. This would mean that anybody who has a license to carry a concealed weapon would be able to walk around campus with a dangerous gun on their person. This would be the opposite of keeping guns off campus and the reality that anyone could be carrying such a dangerous weapon can be extremely unsettling for students and faculty, as well as campus safety. With instances like the Virginia Tech shooting and the recent incident at the University of Texas at Austin, having the complete freedom to carry concealed weapons on a college campus seems like anything but smart. The people that would be carrying these weapons aren’t law enforcement officers or anything special. They are normal citizens whose only difference is that they have a license to carry a concealed handgun and obtaining a license actually isn’t that hard to get. This shows the reality of how risky it would be. Many gun crimes are crimes of passion and if someone carrying a concealed weapon was to lose their head, then this puts everyone in danger. It would be just like the instances at Virginia Tech or the University of Texas, but if this bill passes then it would be like asking someone to walk on campus with a weapon and do what they please. This bill passing could also give the people carrying the guns a hero-aspect, where they think that since they have the gun, it is their jobs to protect. It is possible that if there were a fight on campus, then a person carrying a concealed weapon couldn’t take justice into their own hands and possibly use their weapon to stop the fight. These people aren’t trained to protect and handle guns in high-adrenaline situations and most likely only tragedy would result from situations like that. Those who are supporting the bill believe that it will actu-
ally make campuses safer because if someone is at school shooting students with a gun, then someone with a gun could protect themselves by shooting the attacker. The training with a concealed handgun license isn’t like police training and dealing with circumstances like a school shooting puts a lot more pressure on
“Allowing concealed handguns on campus is much too dangerous for students and faculty, and Senate Bill 354 should not be passed.” the person. Letting an untrained person shoot to protect others could actually result in more people getting harmed, whether it’s by stray bullets or misunderstandings. Allowing guns on campus, even for safety reasons, is just too risky. Allowing concealed handguns on campus is much too dangerous for students and faculty, and Senate Bill 354 should not be passed.
comment of the week Posted March 3, 2011
Response To: Online Courses... Good or bad? “I feel online courses are convenient and necessary. You can do your work any and everywhere as long as you have a computer or laptop nearby. It depends on the individual, but I haven’t had any problems taking them. To me, it’s easier than a real classroom setting.” - Evelyne Odhiambo
Student Life Editor
for the future?
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WATCH THE VIDEO ONLINE NOW! Results of Previous Poll Do you think students should be allowed to show their affection for one another in a public place?? Yes
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Andrews Center provides help for East Texans By Madeline Muñoz Staff Writer
The Andrews Center is a behavioral healthcare system based in Tyler, Texas. They provide hope and help to those with mental health challenges and offer job opportunities to college students. “We offer testing to determine if someone has an Intellectual Development Disorder. We have group homes for people with disabilities and day programs for them to go to,” said Cynthia Grace, Chief Operations Officer for The Andrews Center. The Center serves five counties in East Texas; Smith, Wood, Rains, Henderson and Van Zandt counties. “We are the only community behavioral health center in Tyler. Our primary function is behavioral health services. There are clinics located in Tyler, Athens, Canton and Mineola. We have psychiatrists, nurses, case managers and outpatient services,” said Waymon Stewart, Chief Executive Officer for the Andrews Center. With all of these different services, there are many available job positions. “We have a big need for staff,” said Grace.
“There are positions available in our group homes which are great for students because of the flexible hours and weekend openings.” The center has services for East Texans of all ages. “We welcome people of all ages. Early childhood all the way to geriatric patients,” said Stewart. “We have a daycare for kids with disabilities, and a program for kids with autism,” said Grace. “For college students who need help we have adult day treatment and group homes for people ages 18 and up, where they can receive training on basic daily living skills. There is also substance abuse counseling available.” The center can offer support for a wide range of mental health issues. “We do see some substance abuse. Most of the people that come here fall into three major categories: severe depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder,” said Grace. There are also options for people worried about payment. “We contract with the state to fund some of our patients; there is also funding locally and people can pay on their own and we — see center page 11 —
Apply for graduation The deadline to apply for graduation from Tyler Junior College is April 1.
Photo by Joshua Mumphrey
helping those in need: The behavioral healthcare facility, the Andrews Center is located on Front St. in Tyler, TX.
Job shortages provide new opportunities for recent graduates in expanding fields By Jasmine Millican Staff Writer
Over the last couple of years the job market has slowly deteriorated, while the unemployment rate soared to new levels that this generation has not seen. Though the economy has been in an extensive recession, this year’s college grads may anticipate an opening job market. According to CollegeBoard.com, some of the occupations with the highest growth expectancy by 2012 are paralegals and legal assistants, medical assistants, preschool teachers, graphic designers and dental assistants. Most of these jobs only require an associate’s degree and Tyler Junior College offers a number of the programs to attain such a degree. “There are always shortages in the nursing fields and soon there may be a shortage for teachers,” said Kim Stacy, supervisor of employment services for Texas Workforce Solutions in Tyler. In East Texas there are many hospitals and a ton of opportunities, as well as many other regions in America. There is always a need for employees in
the health care field. One can do things such as being an administrative assistant, patient account representative, medical information specialist, insurance specialist and/or coding specialist. The students who decide to take part in the medical field as a major have to go through rigorous classes and training but once they graduate, there will always be a need in the profession. Anyone with degrees in nursing or medical office management has a good chance of finding work anywhere. According to the Texas Board of Nursing the graduates needed for supply to meet demand in 2010 was 9,700. Texas only produced 8,913. The expected amount of graduates needed for supply to meet demand in 2013 is 15,199. “The nursing faculty is an aging workforce.” said Rebecca Seeton, department chair of nursing at Tyler Junior College. The baby boomer’s generation is now able to retire or find it better suited to go into teaching, rather than work twelve hour shifts in the hospital causing them to leave the hospital as well as opening slots to be filled by recently qualified applicants. According to Seeton, associates degrees produce 59 percent of
nurses in the state of Texas. “TJC has grown in the number of nurses that are being produced from 2008. I had 102 graduates in 2010. I expect 134 [students] to graduate in 2011,” said Seeton. “So we [nursing program] are growing the best we can.” The education field alone has many job openings such as teachers of all grade levels, school board officials and counselors. These jobs require an associate’s degree or beyond and are thought to have a lot of opportunities opening up in the near future. The students who are graduating between now and five years are said to have a job ready because of the teachers who have been retiring or not meeting the requirements to teach. The field of education is of importance to the future of the economy. If children are not taught effectively then there is a risk of the economy going back “downhill” in the future. “There are now more positions for part-time and full-time employment,” said Stacey. Because of this, the graduates of the near future are looking at an opening job market and motivation to continue pursuing their education.
Online registration for Maymester classes and summer session classes begins on March 27. Online registration for Fall 2011 classes will begin on April 17.
Anderson Update Nate Anderson will be tried as an adult. Anderson is accused of murdering his sister and TJC student Amanda Anderson on Sept. 15 at the family’s Chapel Hill home.
TJC Student killed in car accident TJC student Randy DeShawn Smith was killed in a car accident on March 9. Smith turned into the path of an SUV which then collided with Smith’s SUV causing it to over turn. The vehicle then caught on fire. Rescuers were unable to save Smith despite repeated attempts.
Earthquake hurts texas company
A person with special training who helps lawyers prepare for cases, analyze and organize necessary information.
A person who performs administrative and clinical tasks to keep doctor’s offices running smoothly.
A person nurture, teach and care for children who haven’t entered kindergarten.
A person who plans, analyzes and creates visual solutions to communications problems.
A person who performs a variety of patient care, office and lab duties.
Depending on location and size of firm, starting salaries can be anywhere from $30,000 to $45,000 a year.
Depending on experience and skill level, starting salaries can be anywhere from $20,000 to $30,000 a year.
Preschool teachers earn salaries from $15,000 to $25,000 a year.
Graphic designers earn salaries from $25,000 to $35,000.
Dental assistants earn salaries from $20,000 to $30,000.
Source: Department of Labor
Source: Department of Labor
Source: Department of Labor
Source: Department of Labor
Source: Department of Labor
Texas Instruments manufacturing site in Miho, Japan suffered major damage in the aftermath of an 8.9 earthquake. It will slowly reinstate production in stages over the course of several months.
Nuclear explosions Several explosions have taken place at different nuclear plants in Japan due to the damage caused by the earthquakes and tsunami. They are now issuing iodine to people in the areas surrounding the plants.
Staying fit and healthy is a challenge for spring By Stacey Gonzalez News Editor
Spring time is around the corner and for many it’s not only a time of climate change, instead it’s a time to get in the mood for a healthy lifestyle. According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention’s website, the reason many college students get the idea of living a healthy style is that of looking good for someone else and not thinking of one individually. Appearance is a challenging factor for healthy lifestyles, thus a majority of students tend to spend hours in front of a mirror, stressing themselves without a cause. “I consider healthy when you eat right. As long as you exercise every day, trainers out there will train for the money and not to keep you healthy. I advise exercise healthy everyday for at least 30 minutes,” said Guadalupe Alvarez, a freshman Kinesiology major. Statistics have shown that physical inactivity can lead to Type 2 diabetes and obesity. The CDC data states that physical inactivity is linked to where people live, how much money they earn, their culture and their family history. “I can relate to the fact of where [we] manage the time to have a physical activity. When I lived in Dallas, time was not much of consumed for working out since I had to spend most of my time working and at school. By the time I would get home, my exhaustion lead more to the time I spent driving than that of me doing my daily routine,” said sophomore Belinda Rebollar. Spring season is a time of climate change as well as closet clean-up time for many. That is the
moment many consider the hard part of a change because during the cold weather season a couple of pounds were gained and the jean sizes from the previous year are no longer fitting. Appearance seems to relate importance not only to females but also to males. Many consider the physical appearance as part of a lifestyle to fit in and not to be left out. For many it is the key to crush and find a happy heart. “Spring is the best season of the year. That’s really when I do most of my workouts. As a guy, I think that looking hot is what girls are looking for in a guy I wake up every morning and do my regular workouts at the gym and from then [on] begin my day. Without working out I can’t seem to make my day a good one because I’m already use to it,” said Francisco Garcia, sophomore. The CDC suggest that college students should avoid fatigue, improve eating habits be active, maintain mental health, have healthy relationships and avoid violence. Being healthy is part of being safe, anyone who believes they are struggling with a health issue should find help in ways of talking to someone they can trust, such as a parent, teacher, friend, or counselor. Helpful information can also be found on the CDC website at www.cdc.gov. “I stress everyday in managing my weight I consider it part of my life. I don’t exercise much because I don’t have the time, but what I do is avoid greasy foods and drink lots of water. That is what I’ve been doing for a couple of years. Sometimes I find it helpful to park far from any store, to find it as part of a physical activity to move around during the day and not only stay seated in the office,” said sophomore Vanessa Vega.
Contact The Apache Pow Wow Student Life Editor Reginald White with questions, comments or concerns at rwsagittarius@yahoo.
Friday, MARCH 18, 2011 | www.tjcnewspaper.com
The apache pow wow | page 4
Campus workshops develop TJC students potential By LaToni Thomas Staff Writer
Photo by LaToni Thomas
wORKING TO SUCCESS: Students were seen gathered in Rogers Student Center, signing up for workshops in their field of interest. The purpose for the event was to inspire students to aim high and allow them the opportunity to gain real world experience.
There’s no better way to get hands-on experience than attending a workshop. The Career Services department hosts a series of workshops each semester for students to get that extra training with professional fields outside of Tyler Junior College academics. The Assistant Director of Student Life, Ishmael Benjamin, is constantly collaborating with Career Services to make sure the students get what they need from these workshops. “I have a car-care workshop in place, which will teach students the importance of car maintenance,” said Benjamin. “I also have a computer-care workshop where students can bring their laptops to learn about computer maintenance.” Whether students want to learn how to write a resume, know the logistics of fixing simple car problems or learning key tricks to fixing a computer, TJC wants to make sure they are providing workshops that the students would like to see on campus. “It’s important for students to attend
the workshops because they are free,” said Benjamin. “The knowledge from these workshops will not only help you be successful on a college level, but in life as well.” The workshops held by Career Services are not associated with classes on campus. These aren’t ordinary workshops hosted by your college professors; these are a wide spectrum of workshops on presented by professionals that teach students skills they can take off campus. “We are also having a financial literacy workshop. I think it’s something that we definitely need out here,” said Benjamin. The financial literacy workshop will guide students on how to obtain financial aid. It will teach who can qualify for grants, which loans are the best to take out, how to pay loans back and the amount of money available. They will be discussing that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel with financial aid and that it is not a word to fear for the rest of an academic career. The date for this event is to be determined and will be posted around campus soon. — see Workshop page 5 —
Apache Chiefs light the way for new comers By Katavious Daniel
Staff writer Tyler Junior College Apache Chiefs are taking leadership roles and mentoring incoming freshman students. “We try to get a very diverse group, as far as students, that are on varieties of different organizations on campus,“ said Ashleigh Lewis, director of First Year Experience. Lewis said that many of the members are from other organizations such as RA’s, Apache Belles, and members of Student Senate. The Apache Chiefs were established in 2008 to oversee new student orientation for the incoming freshmen. The members and leaders are chosen through an application and interview process with the director of the First Year Experience. The students receive a scholarship for their efforts and must maintain a G.P.A of 2.0 every semester to remain eligible. Scholarships, vary from leadership advisor’s, and member’s community service hours. The scholarships are given for every fall term and vary from $500 to $1,000 dollars depending on their status in the organization. “The scholarship will help me benefit from my classes and my school as well as my communication skills,” said Katie Weekly. The scholarship is also a transferable scholarship to any member that is planning to transfer to a 4-year university or can be applied to the student’s TJC account for the following fall term. “Being an Apache Chief really helps you to learn how to take pride in your school,” said Carolina Espinoza, an Apache Leader.
Photo By: Katavious Daniel
LENDING A HAND: From left to right: Carolina Espinoza right, Ashleigh Lewis, Josh Egnia, and Katie Weekley pose proudly in the lobby of a Ornelas dorm, promoting their vision to help students in any way they can. The Apache Chief’s are committed to perfection and meeting the needs of in-coming freshman to Tyler Junior College.
Their main goal is to really focus on the summer orientation. “Its very exciting and you meet new people and you have the new incoming freshmen look up to you,” said Espinoza. Apache Chiefs have a variety of activities that they are involved in. Some of them include class presentations, student activities, run check-ins, give guided tours of the campus and complete new students sessions before summer starts. The FYE
extravaganza is also mainly led by the Apache Chiefs. They complete any preparations before the session starts. They also participate in community service projects for each semester. “We try to give a goal perceive so that way an incoming student can find his/her nitche here at TJC,” said Lewis. — see CHIEF page 5 —
Our generation’s form of communication By Reginald White Student Life Editor
Photo Illustration by: Joshua Mumphrey
Technology plays a major part on the way we now communicate with each other. In this new generation, technology appears to be quickly taking over the world we live in and is now even effecting the way we learn in our classes. Computers and machines have evolved on such a massive level since the days of the early Microsoft computer, and their capabilities are really being put to use. For many college students, the use of email, obsessive texting, and social sites like Facebook, almost eliminate the need for face-to-face communication between people anymore. These new methods greatly affect the way students talk to each other, learn in their classes, and operate in their normal lives. According to the University of Adelaide, “stu-
dent evaluations of the on-line discussion forum provided a number of interesting perspectives on the efficacy of such a learning tool. The majority of students found the on-line discussion forum a worthwhile element of their studies, but only 51% of students stated that they enjoyed using it. Similarly, only 52% of students stated that they would like to participate in an on-line discussion forum again.” “I take a couple of online classes. It’s just easier to me because I can do them whenever I have some free time and I can always email my teachers whenever I have problems with a homework assignment or something,” said Camron Christopher, a freshman TJC student. Many college professors also use technology to communicate with their students.
— see TECH page 5 —
w w w.t jc news p ap e r.c om
Fr iday, March 18, 2011 | Page 5
WORKSHOP continued from page 4
The Career Services center is making sure they are making the workshops more interactive and have people move around to not only learn the message of the workshop, but also to get to know other students with the same interests. “I don’t know about any of the workshops on campus because I don’t live here,” said Robyn Sewell, a freshman at TJC. “I would like to see a workshop for filling out applications such as FAFSA [Free Application for Federal Student Aid].” The students’ concerns were met. On March 22, the Financial Aid department is having a financial aid workshop about FAFSA applications. Usually while some students are sitting in the audience, others are working behind-the-scenes to get the most out of the experience. “Usually, I’m helping with the workshops,” said Haley Koonce, sophomore at TJC. “They benefit the students because there’s always something you need improvement on. There is always something that we don’t always know what to do or need help with.” Kim Harden is the staff aide for Career Services and encourages the students to take advantage of something that is free. “Free is always good,” said Harden. “When the students go out into the work force, the students will know the skills and techniques of how to get a job.” The variety of workshops at TJC are endless and Student Life, along with other departments, hosted a Health Fair on March 1 about updating a health report card with a series of tests including HIV testing, blood pressure, glucose and dental hygiene. Running these tests are very expensive at a doctor’s office, but was free of charge on-campus. There also was a Black History Month Open Panel discussion on Feb. 24 over minority issues and a resume workshop this past semester. “If you look at all the workshops we have done so far, it goes beyond college,” said Benjamin. “I’m using the resources on campus to help students become more successful.” Benjamin and Annie Lan will be hosting more workshops throughout the semester .The advertisements will be posted around Jenkins Hall, Rogers Student Center, Pirtle Technology Building and A-frames will also be in the walkways on the way to classes. For more information and updates on workshops, call Benjamin at 903-510-2613.
CHIEF continued from page 4
Recently Apache Chiefs traveled to the Regional Conference and won the student leadership award in Region 4. In the future, Apache Chiefs will continue their interaction with students they meet through the summer programs and make sure the incoming fresh-
men have a positive first-year experience. They also strive to ensure that new students feel engaged and connected while entering TJC.
TECHcontinued from page 4 “The teachers here at TJC all have e-mail addresses and sometimes their personal phone numbers included online or on the syllabus we provide for the students so that they can always feel that we are available to them whenever they have any questions or problems,” said Shawn Taylor, a math instructor. Texting is slowly becoming one of the largest, if not the most used, way students are communicating with each other. Texting is reaching the point to where it now has its own special language. “Texting is just faster to use instead of having to actually call the person and have a whole conversation with them.” Jamica Bennet, a sophomore student said, “Sometimes I just want to ask a simple question that needs a simple response to, or sometimes I just don’t even feel like actually talking to that person, but I’ll just text them for a while instead.” “Nobody really talks on the phone now a days anyway. I can just text my friends or whoever then just meet up with them later on if I wanted to really talk with them,“ said Keith White, a freshman student.
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Art club students become the teachers By Haley Smith Managing Editor Students sit around the table, piecing together their collages with well-worn grins stretched across their aged faces as their college-age instructors help them with the gluing or the assembly of their art pieces. This is different though from the usual teacher/student setting because here the students are older while the teachers are younger. The Tyler Junior College Art Club members are turning in their titles as students and use their talents to teach and entertain others. The art club members teach two-hour classes to the residents at the Disciple Place Village once a month. “They love it. They absolutely love it,” art club sponsor Derrick White said. “They had a great time during the painting. Most of the people that came back were people that had heard about it and wanted to come see it or were returning, but they’re very responsive to it. They get right in, roll up their sleeves and get involved.” The Disciple Place Village is a retirement community on Highway 31, east of Loop 323. “We got contacted last semester by a woman named Tonya Dixon,” White said. “The residents were looking for more variety in the recreational activities that they have and she called and asked if we’d be interested and I said they would so that’s when we got started.” The student volunteers teach different aspects of art to the residents, ranging from painting to clay. “We taught a painting class, doing acrylic painting in the fall,” White said. “This last time we went out and taught the residents how to do collage and then we haven’t really planned what we’re doing the next time but it will be some sort of variety of art making. We might do clay or prints or something like that.” They teach a two-hour class every third Thursday of the month between 1 and 3 p.m. “It gives us a chance to go out and do something we’ve never done before,” art club member Erika Garrett said. “We get to work with people we don’t know, and probably learn something from it as well as they do.” About eight to ten students have volunteered to teach the classes and there are usually 10 to 12 residents who attend the classes. “It was actually really entertaining for me because I really enjoy interacting with people,” art club mem-
ber Carley Baker said. “I took pride in helping them make collages and glue the pictures that they chose, help them cut out stuff to put on their papers. It was really fun and I enjoyed it.” The art club members who help teach the classes are all volunteers. “It’s really interactive and you get to know the people you’re working with,” Baker said. “You’re not just there to serve food. You’re actually there to talk and communicate and help them do something fascinating and enjoyable for them.” Art Club meets every Wednesday at 12:15 p.m. in the art lobby in Jenkins. “It’s really just a camaraderie club, a club where we can get together, share ideas, share ideas, information about events and just have some fun,” White said. “We take community service very seriously and aspects Courtesy Photos of what we do as a student organization on campus very seriously…and we do have the most fun of any The students become the teachers: Above: Marithe Reyes Diaz de club on campus.” Leon helps choose pictures for student. Below: Art students show how to make collages.
Turn the Music Down Listening to music too loud may damage your ears
Photo by Karena Love
damaging your ears: TJC student Jace Weiss is shown listening to his iPod while working on the computer.
By Karena Love Staff Writer
While rushing to class, students often grab their fully-charged iPods and mp3s. Not only do students listen to music while walking to class, but while commuting to campus or traveling to other destinations. “In my case, I like the particular song and it’s kind of… is my little break, my little vacation since I don’t get one between classes,” said Avery Meister, criminal justice major. “So I can kind of put myself somewhere else for a little while” Students tend to turn up their iPods or mp3s to the maximum level while having some type of earphone embedded in their ears. Some students who have vehicles tend to show off their sound systems by blasting different types of music that either rattles the hood of their trunk or the inside speakers of their vehicles with the windows rolled all the way down. “I mean if I want to turn up my music I am going to turn up my music. I know it’s harmful for my hearing when I turn it up too loud, but sometimes you need to groove. You need to hear the music,” said Meister.
Students may or may not realize how loud their music is. However, some students do not have to turn their music all the way up just to enjoy it. “I don’t turn it up all the way. I try to keep it kind of right in the middle. I try to have my settings on the actual iTunes lower, just mainly because I need my eardrum,” said Laura D’Eramo, music major. “Mainly the reason …I am a music major and we have to hear what we are playing and we have to be able to hear certain chords like intervals.” According to the Kansas State University audiologist Robert Garcia, if someone is listening to music with headphones on and cannot hear the person talking next to him/her or if a neighbor can hear the music, that could be damaging to your hearing. “Well your ears do try to warn you,” said Dr. D. Hand from the Lindale Medical Clinic. “If you go to a loud concert or you’ve been listening to loud music and you stop for awhile and you feel like you’re not hearing well or you may have a ringing in your ear.” — see music page 7 —
Arts students share the wealth during auction By Christopher Jones Verve Editor
Students majoring in art are hoping one day to have their art displayed in an exhibition or a private collection. The hopes of their pieces being sold are even more inviting. But on this occasion, they put the money somewhere other than their pocket. The TJC art club holds a silent auction in the art hallway of Jenkins Hall from April 4-7 with donated art turned in no later than the 4th. All TJC students are eligible to have their work auctioned off. The catch is students must donate their art to the art club and the proceeds pay for art club programs. “It is something we started six or seven
years ago as a fundraiser,” said Chris Stewart, Art Department Chair. “When we first started, we had no clue what we would end up with. I think we brought in a surprisingly large amount of money.” The money is divided to help pay for art club functions. Some goes towards art scholarships and a portion goes to charity. “The students and faculty donate pieces, either stuff they did in class or on their own. All the proceeds go to the art club, who uses that money for scholarships and charities. We always donate part of our proceeds to a charity like Make-A- Wish or something like that,” said Stewart. The art will be put on the walls of the art hall with a slip of paper beside it. The bidding
will usually start at zero and bids placed must have the person’s name and phone number with a bid of no less than two dollars over the standing bid. “At the close of the auction, around 4 p.m. Thursday April 7, the art club students volunteer by calling the highest bidder. They have a week to come and claim their purchase and at the end of the week. If they have not claimed it, it will go to the next highest valid bid,” said Derrick White a professor in the art dept. and faculty sponsor of the art club. This year the art department has added a new variation to buying the donated art. “This year we are going to have the added feature of a buy-it-now price on a select number of pieces or the people that can’t be here to
guard it. They can have it taken out for a set price,” White said. The reason for the students donating pieces varies. Some students do it for recognition and some do it to help. “Last semester I donated a piece because I received a scholarship and I just wanted to give them something back and also it is a way to have my artwork seen,” said Alejandro Alfaro, an art student at TJC. People walk down the hall all the time and look at other student exhibitions and other artist showings. — see ART page 7 —
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continued from page 6 Hair cells in the inner ear are especially sensitive to sound. “The sound wave comes in, vibrates against the drum, sends a message to the hair cells in the cochlea, kind of vibrates and then it transmits a message to your brain,” said Dr. Hand. According to audiologists, exposing ears to excessive sound pressure can harm those small hair cells in ears. If harmed, those hair cells can lose the ability to transmit sound to the brain. As a result, one could experience noise induced hearing loss. “What they think happens is that the little hair cells, the tiny fibers, that repetitive loud noise irritates them and damages them,” said Dr. Hand. “A good analogy is walking on grass. If you walk on it just occasionally, it pops back up. If you walk on it a lot, it gets trampled down. That’s what happens to your hair cells and that’s what causes the deafness.” Decibels are used to measure sound levels heard by the ears. When referring to sound decibels, it is used to measure the amplitude of the sound wave. Decibels are used in measuring sound; they can represent the range of sound levels of the human ear that can be heard. “Normal conversation is about 60 decibels.
Now these iPods can go up to 110 or 120 and loud concerts go up 120 to 140 decibels. Decibels are how we measure sound. The higher it is, the louder it is,” said Dr. Hand. According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), ear bud style headphones are dangerous because they don’t block outside noise as well as headphones that fit over the ear. This results in you listening at volume levels that can damage hearing in as little as an hour and a half. “The problem with iPods [is] they can go up to 110 and 120. Now, I was reading that in Europe they try to limit theirs so that it would not go over 100 decibels,” said Dr. Hand. “Actually there is a hearing, or ear bud, out there that kind of helps protect your ears because it won’t let you turn it up louder than 80 decibels, a safe range, no matter how much you try to turn it up.” According to OSHA, to prevent hearing loss, the best solution is to wear ear protection such as ear plugs when attending loud musical events and keep headphones at a level where can still hear normal conversation above your music.
ART continued from page 6
“The auction is a really good thing because you do have a lot of people come down here and browse,” said Alfaro. There are many types of art donated to the auction. Alfaro said he would probably donate a painting or collage this semester. Anyone who wants can walk by and place a bid on a work they like. It could be a piece that would go great on the wall of their home or office. “Anybody can go there. We encourage everyone. It is a great way to get some good quality work at a remarkably low price, especially with a budget and all the money goes for the students,” Stewart said.
Teaching Art: Members of the TJC art club teach and help members of the Disciple Place Village make arts and crafts.
Art Auction The auction will begin on April 4 and run through April 7.
observing art: In the art department hallway, a visitor examines a piece of art on display.
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Tennis Tech trains the coaches of tomorrow Tennis
By Mollie Jamison Staff Writer
By Jarah Wright Associate Editor There are many types of sports injuries that athletes sustain each year. One of the most dangerous and sometimes overlooked injuries is a concussion. Concussions can cause a ripple effect and seriously damage the body if not treated properly. Many athletes have suffered concussions. At the time it might not have seemed like a big deal but in some cases has led to devastating consequences. I lost my softball career due to a concussion. It was the first district softball game of my high school freshman season. The details are a little fuzzy but it was at the beginning of the game and I somehow got on first base. I looked at my coach who gave me the signal to steal second base. On the pitch, I took off full speed. The catcher threw the ball way in front of the base. The shortstop wasn’t paying attention to me and wound up in the base path. As soon as I started to slide, we collided. This was before there were helmet requirements about face masks and chin straps. I hit my head on the ground and bounced up a little bit. The helmet flew off. I hit my head on the ground again before the shortstop fell on top of my head. I was knocked out for a few minutes. I came to and it didn’t really seem to affect me that much other than a bad headache. I got up and finished playing the rest of the game but I couldn’t tell you any details. I don’t remember much about the game after the collision. However, I do remember piling into the back of my mom’s suburban and heading to the emergency room after the game. The ER doctor had me undergo an MRI which turned out to be normal. His prognosis was a concussion and I couldn’t play for two weeks. Eventually the headache went away and the season progressed. That summer, I played in a national tournament with my tournament team out of Bullard and was recruited to play softball for a Division I college with a full scholarship. Things were looking up and six months passed. In September, the headache came back and it was worse than before. I went to a neurologist and had another MRI as well as a CAT scan. Apparently, that seemingly innocent concussion from six months earlier had caused brain damage and took part of my memory with it. Needless to say, as soon as the college heard about my injury, the scholarship and spot on the team evaporated into thin air. Other schools didn’t want to risk having an “injured” player so my promising softball career ended after my senior year of high school. Let me tell you that nothing is more embarrassing than recognizing someone and knowing that you know them but not being able to come up with a name. I went to the mall with my mom and one of my friends came up to say hi and I couldn’t think of her name. It was so frustrating because I know that I knew her. I had to relearn several names and faces. To this day there are times when the memory lapses and I’ve had to learn to cope with the damage. Natasha Richardson is an example of the deadly consequences that concussions can have. During a skiing lesson, Richardson fell and hit her head. She said she felt fine and didn’t need medical attention. Three hours later, she was suffering from a headache and was taken to the hospital. By the end of the next day, she was dead. On her autopsy, it was ruled that she died from an epidural hematoma due to blunt impact to the head. Since her death, many groups have started enforcing rules requiring skiers to wear helmets. The National Football League is beginning to recognize the seriousness of concussions by instituting more penalties when there is helmet to helmet contact. Many manufacturers are also starting to address this topic by issuing newer helmets that are more padded and stabilize the head to reduce the risk of concussions. One athlete who began using one of these newer concussion reducing helmets was DeSean Jackson. He used this helmet during the 2010 football season after suffering a concussion due to a hit by Atlanta Falcons cornerback Dunta Robinson that sidelined Jackson for almost a month. Some may say that this might cause players to not be as tough but when it comes to the brain, which is one of the most important organs in the body, it’s best not to take any chances. By addressing this topic and by providing ways to prevent it, athletes in the future will have healthier, safer and longer careers.
Photo by Mollie Jamison
Practicing his swing: One Tennis Tech student practices hitting tennis balls on the courts at the JoAnn Medlock Murphy Tennis Complex.
Tennis tech Employment 90 percent of students who graduate from the TJC Tennis Tech program find full-time tennis jobs.
Students slouched in undersized desks, have their hoods up and their heads down. They listen to the drumming of their own pencils as they try to stay awake. The familiar setting of a classroom has bored them to death and they shrink into their seats as the professor calls their names. Meanwhile, tennis tech majors are outside practicing their tennis grunts as they receive a high five and a ‘Good Job’ from their coach. As the sweat rolls down their faces, they think ‘This is what I get to do the rest of my life.’ “My job is to teach people how to teach tennis,” said Director of Tennis Tech Kimm Ketelsen. Tennis Tech is a technical program geared towards teaching students about the professional ins and outs of the sport. Tyler Junior College offers an associate’s degree in professional tennis management and a one-year certificate of proficiency program. There are currently 21 students enrolled in these programs this semester. The program is over 20 years old and has attracted students from 50 states and 20 countries. Ketelsen is a former Texas Longhorn coach and a two-time NAIA All-American. He is the primary teacher of the classes at Tennis Tech. “I teach 95 percent of the classes and Coach Peterson teaches one of my classes each semester,” he said. Ketelsen said he only teaches two classes per day in a classroom setting. The students also gain experience at the JoAnn Medlock Murphy Tennis Complex during labs lasting 15 hours per week. The associate’s degree in Professional Tennis Management requires students to take all their core classes along with two to four rec-
Coming full circle: Former Apache comes back to coach By Jarah Wright Associate Editor Tyler Junior College baseball has served as a training ground for many athletes. One of them is the current baseball coach, Doug Wren. Wren is currently in his second season with the Apaches. He began his baseball career at the age of three and continued to play earning several awards before graduating from Arlington High School in 2001. “I was on first team All-District, the first team All-Area and team MVP,” said Wren. He had several college offers from schools like Abilene College and Hill College before choosing to play for TJC. Courtesy Photo “I chose to come to TJC because of the campus, facilities and Eying the ball: Coach Doug Wren slides safely into third base. Wren played for the environment,” said Wren. “I Tyler Junior College from 2001-2003. He primarily played shortstop and third base. liked the coaching staff. It was a great fit and it was close to home.” According to former baseball coach fer scholarships. This wouldn’t affect the Wren played for TJC from 2001- Jon Groth, the seasons in which Wren sophomores who were leaving but it did 2003 at shortstop and third base. He then played were seasons full of transitions. affect Doug and the rest of the freshwent on to play for Howard Payne Univer“In 2001, we had a scholarship team. men.” sity. While at Howard Payne, he garnered We were a Division I team in the Texas This transition drastically altered the All-Conference honors, was named hitter Eastern Conference that included schools team. of the week several times as well as being like Navarro,” said Groth. “We found out “Out of the 15 to 18 freshman, only named team MVP. He then coached at at Christmas that we would be changing Weatherford College before making the conferences for the 2002 season. We were — see Wren page 9 — transition to TJC. now a Division III team and couldn’t of-
Coached by: Doug Wren March 19, 11:00 vs. Western Oklahoma State College March 21, 4:00 vs. Texas College March 26, 12:00 @ Brookhaven College
Coached by: Sandy Terry March 17-19 Illinois Central Tournament Goose Pond Colony, Scottsboro, AL March 28-29 Cententary Univ. Tournament The G.C. @ Stonehenge, Bossier City, LA
reational classes per semester, totaling over 70 credit hours in two years. The average amount of hours required for other associate degrees at TJC ranges from 60-64 credit hours. After completing the technical program at TJC, 90 percent of the students find full-time tennis employment, sometimes even before they graduate. Matt Moreman,a Tennis Tech student in his last semester, said he already has job offers in the area. “Coach K and Coach P really help us find jobs. I’ve met so many people through this program that will give good references,” said Moreman. Career opportunities in tennis are not limited to a certain geographic area. Ketelson said his former students are spread out all over Texas. “I have graduates working here in Tyler at Tyler Tennis and Swim, and Hollytree Country Club. I even have graduates in other towns such as Dallas, Lufkin and Houston,” said Ketelsen. Tim Young, the current coach at Grand Saline High School, graduated from Tennis Tech in 2004. When he retired to Tyler after his career in Dallas as a stockbroker, he heard about the Tennis Tech Program and decided to enroll. “I decided I wanted to find something I would enjoy doing until I die,” said Young. “Now I am 60 years old and I’m on the tennis court every day making a living.” Young also works and lives in Holly Lake Ranch Retirement Community, located in Hawkins. He gives credit to Ketelson for success in his field. Coach Young and his high school players paid a visit to Tennis Tech on Feb. 24 when they had a tournament cancelled due to weather. This gave tennis tech students a great opportunity to practice their teaching. “Not only does Tennis Tech teach students how to teach tennis, but it teaches them the importance of lifelong physical activity,” Young said. “That is a lesson we need to instill in society.”
UPCOMING TJC ATHLETICS: MARCH 2011
Coached by: John Peterson March 24-26 Juco Dual Matches, Baytown, TX
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WREN continued from page 8 two of them came back: a catcher and Doug. We couldn’t keep them [sophomores] without the scholarships,” said Groth. “Doug was a talented athlete and a hard worker. He grew into one of the leaders of the team.” For the next two years, the baseball team competed independently. “It was challenging for the schedule and we felt like nomads,” said Groth. “We didn’t have a place to call home.” The next season they were allowed to play in the Metro Conference. The team posted good results placing first or second each year for the next five years when they were excused from the Metro Conference. This transition instilled thoughts of retirement in Groth. “When I decided to retire, I encouraged Drain [athletic director] that he needed Wren. Wren was a good fit for many reasons,” said Groth. “One of them was that Wren had gone through this kind of transition as a player and knew the mindset. It would also be easier to maintain continuity.” Wren had worked as an assistant under Coach Groth gaining experience working with hitters and position players. When Groth announced he was retiring, Wren was surprised. “I was shocked to hear Groth was stepping down,” said Wren. “When I was named the new coach a million things were going through my mind. It was a lot to filter through.” According to Wren, that summer was definitely full. “It was a whirlwind summer. I was going to Nicara-
gua with the Athletes in Action team that I was coaching, recruiting and scheduling for the next season as well as trying to finish up my master’s [degree] classes,” said Wren. “It was definitely an eventful summer.” Wren has since been posting impressive results with the Apache baseball team and Groth said he couldn’t be prouder. “Doug has grown into the role of coach really well,” said Groth. “I told him it took me 15 years to get the baseball program to the World Series and he got them there in one year.” Initially there were some who were worried because Wren is so young but according to several of the baseball players, it makes him more relatable as a coach. “Coach Wren is only a few years removed from playing,” said pitcher Josh Holley. “He knows where we’re coming from and it helps us play better because we feel like we’re in a comfort zone.” According to outfielder Eric Weiss, having a young coaching staff lets the players interact more with the coaches. “Coach Wren is definitely a player’s coach,” said Weiss. “He’s always there for us. We know we can come to him if we’re having any problems on or off the field.” For Wren, it’s that kind of a relationship with the players that makes coaching worthwhile. “As a coach, it’s what you set out to do,” said Wren. “You want that relationship with your players. They understand that we’re here for them and look out for what’s in their best interests. They are good kids and are great to work with. They make it special.”
Photo by Jarah Wright
Waiting to score: Outfielder Josh Salmon and Coach Doug Wren wait for the next pitch and potentially the next chance to score a run.
Basketball Honors Men’s Basketball Malcolm Moore: All-Region Team and All-Conference Team Mitch Marquis: All-conference team honorable mention Kader Tapsoba: All-conference team honorable mention
Women’s Basketball Markisha Hawkins: All-Region Team and All-Conference Team Cecillia Okoye: All-Region Team and All-Conference Team Latika Smith: All-Conference Team Source: apacheathletics.com
Page 10 | Friday, February 11, 2011
The A pache Pow Wow
variety Friday, MARCH 18, 2011 | www.tjcnewspaper.com
continued from page 3
accept most major insurance companies,” said Grace. In the case of a mental health crisis, for instance if someone was suicidal, they can call the 24hour hotline at 1-800-256-5851.“People in crisis situations can come to the center without an appointment to get help and then we can refer them to an inpatient facility,” said Grace. The Andrews Center serves more than 6,000 people in a five county area and according to their website, andrewscenter.com, there is never a shortage of need for volunteers. Their program, Andrews Angels, offers many opportunities for college students with big hearts to get involved with the mentally disabled in their community. “I think it would be awesome for people to get involved with a place like the Andrews Center,” said Tyler Junior College student Justin Atchison. “Whether they are volunteering or trying to get a job, it’s a great way to help out.” With depression and suicide rates increasing on American college campuses, organizations like the Andrews Center are a safe place to go for help. “We can really help an individual with a mental disorder to function well in their community,” said Waymon. Having a mental health illness or disorder does not have to hold back a person from leading a productive life and the Andrews Center is working hard to keep it that way.
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Th e A p a ch e Pow Wow
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“Shea was a tennis player. He was on the tennis team. He took one poetry and prose class and then he just started taking more. Soon he was all theater. He had a lot of drive and competitiveness and followed his heart everywhere,” Shackelford said. Whigham describes his first time on stage after being cast in the play “A Lie of the Mind” by Sam Shepard under the direction of Dr. Crawford. “It was my first chance to truly get on stage and you know, me terrified and David (Dr. Crawford) trying to get me to figure what this thing is all about. So for that I am really grateful for them to be able to put me in,” Whigham said. Whigham graduated from TJC in 1990. He then attended the State University of New York for four years at Purchase. From there, he formed the New York City theatre group known as The Rorshack Group. He has been in films such as “Wristcutters: A Love Story,” “Pride and Glory” and his big break came with “Tigerland” where he had the opportunity to work alongside Colin Farrell, who were both hired on the spot during the audition. He is now in “Boardwalk Empire” where he plays Elias “Eli” Thompson and will be in the motion picture “Lincoln Lawyer,” starring Matthew McConaughey. The film hit theaters March 18th. “It has been a long, hard journey for me,” Whigham said. “It didn’t happen right out of the gate for me at all. I didn’t do Tigerland until 8 years after I graduated from Purchase. But it has been well worth it. Even if I hadn’t ‘made it’ I still would have done the same thing.” Theater majors feel encouraged by the successes of predecessors of the same programs and facilities. “It is so inspiring and encouraging to be working in a department where so many successful performers trained. I can really see how TJC’s theater program instills the true spirit of the performer,” theater major Lloyd Luthas said. “I feel myself grow as an actor on a daily basis through the training of professors like Dr. Crawford, Jacque Shackelford, Becky Faulds and WG (Denise Weatherly-Green).” Theater Major Austin Strong also feels confidant about the success of the theater department’s past students. “It is an assurance thing. It is like a system that has been tried and it works. If professional actors can come through TJC and make it big who is to say that not just anybody can show up and get the same training and the same level of involvement and do the same that they are now doing. It is very reassuring,” Strong said. Students who are in the theater program experience more than just acting. Each set is built from the ground up, lights are gelled, positioned and timed to create the perfect stage picture. Many costumes are sewn or made and many more crews work steadily from the day after auditions to opening night. three a.m. is a time most people do not see; the students involved with theater not only see it, but will also see it pass while working hard to make each show its absolute best. “The TJC theater department is a great place if you want to just test the waters. You can build the show. You can light the show, everything possible to create that show and that just gives you a taste of it all,” Strong said. Whigham and TJC student T.J. Rankin discussed skills they have each developed through involvement with theater. “I went into being an actor as one type of person and now it really enabled me to be open, to see other points of view. When you’re an actor, especially living in New York City, you run into the most fascinating people you could ever meet. It really opened me up to other people,” Whigham said. “We allow for multiple people to do a plethora of things. This especially helps out people like me. I am not going to be in theatre. I will not be pursuing theatre as a profession. It has shown me
so many options that I may be able to do or use when I get my job. I may be able to use skills from lighting or sound in my job, or even acting, perhaps as a writer. It has shown me this wide array of things I could use not just in theatre but in any job I choose,” said Rankin. The directors have also helped students, including Whigham, develop and grow through their theater and TJC journey. “It is where it started for me,” Whigham said. “It is special because that’s where I turned to begin this monstrous thing called acting. I asked, ‘What do I do and they (the directors) started to guide me. Take a look at these plays, take a look at these writers…they were positive. They said, ‘Come on in,’ and that to me is the ultimate gift.” Rankin explains his own experience with the directors. “The directors and the teachers, they know what they’re saying. I think for actors it gives you a good experience especially being a two-year school. You are shoved right in there and start from day one. It is just a really good stepping-stone,” Rankin said. “The directors have helped me learn how to adapt to different people. Dealing with this kind of boss or that kind of boss, whether it is more laid-back or stricter. Also teachers like WG have helped me expand on my acting in ways I never thought I could.” Directors also provide support off the stage as well. “The directors have become even more than a family for me. I can go to them about anything, whether it’s personal problems theatre problems, school problems and they will help out, anytime of the day,” Strong said. While the theater students feel lucky to have caring directors take them under their wings, the directors feel the same way. “We are really lucky here at TJC because we have an enormous circle of talented students and they mostly stay in touch. We got to keep up with them,” Shackelford said. “I have Shea on my answering machine right now. He was making a movie in Austin and he calls and says ‘Hey it’s raining so I may have a couple days off so I think I can make a trip to Tyler to come talk with you.’ He has come to talk to students a few times and he will again if he can ever find a hole in his schedule.” Despite all of the hard work, long hours and late nights, the theater program at TJC has earned a name for itself through the collaboration of dedicated students and driving directors. Shackelford laughed as she told a story of a student who lived in Tyler and attempted to skip out on what TJC theatre had to offer. “He went straight from high school to New York and was auditioning for a New York-based theatre group. They said ‘Oh, you’re from Tyler. Why did you not go to Tyler Junior College?’ He ended up coming back to start with us,” Shackelford said. Whigham describes the challenge to keep going and the advice he would like to send to all young, aspiring actors. “When I was a young actor, everyone said, ‘You’ll never make it, you won’t be able to do it, it’s too hard,’ and all of those things are true,” Whigham said. “But people do make it. It is possible. It is a brutal process and the hardest thing you’ll ever do, but it is possible. It can be done. My advice is to dream as big as you can. Try to make it happen, because it can happen. Through all the toughest of it and how difficult it really is to become an actor, try not to listen to that and try not to take that and just go for it. Because what happens is, let’s just say if you don’t get to that goal you still meet the most fascinating people on the journey you take through this and it is still worth it. You would have still had an amazing journey, lived in New York or Los Angeles and you’ll have the experience that makes it all worth it. Just go for it.”
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Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, concealedcampus.org, a national organization that supports allowing concealed handguns on campuses, argues that preventative measures, such as cameras and text alert systems, are reactionary systems that are ineffective preventative measures and schools cannot guarantee their students’ safety. They see a school’s inability to guarantee safety as driving the need to allow concealed handguns on campus. “Any institution which cannot provide for protection for its visitors must not deprive those visitors of the ability to protect themselves,” Students for Concealed Carry on Campus state on their website. Johnson acknowledged that concern. “What we try to do is prevent the crime or mitigate it once it happens,” Johnson said. “No law enforcement agency can ever guarantee ... that crimes will stop.” He proceeded to note a number of things in place to deter crime and assist in responding to crises. But it is the belief that armed citizens may be able to respond faster and save lives that drive those who support the law. “Unfortunately, the police do a very good job and they do a tough job, but they usually get there to clean up the mess and look for witnesses,” Norris said. Both Johnson and Director of Campus Safety Randy Melton stated that, as officials, they could not provide an opinion on whether or not they support the bill. However, they provided a law-enforcement perspective on how the bill could affect certain situations. A situation, which concerns opponents, is having people who may know how to shoot a gun, and who may even be good shots, but who are unqualified to handle a violent crisis. “There’s a major difference between the level of training for a concealed handgun person versus
what a police officer goes through,” said Melton. “They may shoot but it could go through the wall and hit an innocent person,” Johnson said. “There’s a lot of factors that go in before you actually pull the trigger. The unfortunate thing is you only have a split-second to make that decision and you can’t pull it back once it’s done.” “That is true,” Norris said. “However, are the campus police going to be in that cafeteria when the guy comes in and starts shooting? How many people is he going to kill before the police get there?” Some students share Johnson’s and Melton’s concerns. “You get training with your concealed handgun license but I’m sure a law-enforcement guy has a lot more scenario training [and] knows what to do in certain situations,” said sophomore Tyler Lewis. Should someone with a concealed handgun find himself or herself in a gunfight, both the concealed handgun holder and officers will face another challenge. “We have to treat each person we come across as someone who could be potentially a bad guy,” said Johnson. “It scares us to death,” said Melton. “When we’re responding in a crisis situation to make split-second decisions, I don’t know who the good guy is or not. That places us in danger and is a violent dynamic situation.” Johnson said he experienced being shot at during his time as an officer with the Houston Police Department. When it comes to multiple parties sending bullets flying, he summarized how he sees it. “Friendly fire isn’t,” he said.
Photo by Joshua Mumphrey
Opposing Views: While Jesse Morrell protests outside of Pirtle Technology building, TJC student Austin Blankbnnagel attempts to reason with him on Christianity.
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“I walked up to a guy that was smoking and we shook hands and started talking and it turned out I got to connect with him more than the protestor. It’s all about how you talk to people and the way you show understanding.” Although many students disagreed with what Morrell had to say, there were some who felt the protesting wasn’t all negative. “He’s brave to be out here by himself,” said Ebony Rogers, a sophomore in the crowd. “I believe he is saying the right things, just maybe in the wrong way. I think he actually will bring people in instead of driving them away.” Students were upset and disturbed by Morrell’s protest, but Campus Safety told them that there was little they could do considering he was on public property and that people are allowed to demonstrate their beliefs under that circumstance. In the right hand corner of the crowd, Larry Corrao an older, heavyset, long haired man stepped into sight and said, “I think this is upsetting everybody. I feel what he is doing is wrong. He’s judging people and he doesn’t have the right. He calls himself sinless but the Bible tells us we’ve all sinned,” Corrao said. “He’s acting like he’s Christ, but I don’t see him raising to heaven. He’s wrong, period. Wrong.”