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Magnolia Blossom

A Southern Plains Publication

Spring 2012

Magnolia Blossom  1

Table of Contents Auburn Students Serving Others

page 3 - 5

Edelman Internship

page 6 - 7

Internet Helps Businesses Grow

page 8 - 9

The BIG Event

page 10 - 11


page 12 - 13

Auburn University Dance Marathon

page 14 - 15

New Parking Regulations

page 16 - 17

Journalism Legend, Al Benn

page 18 - 19

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Auburn Students Spend Academic Breaks Serving Others

While many students are trying to choose between the warm beach weather and skiing in the mountains for spring break, some students have already made the choice to spend their spring break serving others. Auburn University’s organization Alternative Student Breaks, known to most students as ASB, is an organization that provides students with opportunities to participate in community-based service projects during the University’s academic breaks. The organization provides both domestic and international trip opportunities.

ASB offers opportunities to participate by becoming a part of a college-team group, a site leader, an executive officer or a donor. Students wishing to participate in ASB fill out applications based on the trips they are interested in and provide essays about what kind of service means the most to them. After participating in a group trip, students have the opportunity to go through an interview process to obtain a position as a site leader or an executive officer. The site leaders plan the domestic trips each year and plan the budget for the trip in advance according to the service issue they will be focusing on.

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The locations for the international trips remain the same each year. The international trips have been created in order work on building positive relationships with the country’s organizations that ASB has chosen to work with. By continuing to travel to the same destination every year for the international trips, ASB is able to allow participants to see progress and the positive impact that they can provide to those particular organizations over the years. Once chosen to be part of a trip, the participants go through group training sessions. The sessions meet weekly or biweekly to become 4  Magnolia Blossom

educated on the issue related to their trip. The meetings also help each group establish fundraising opportunities and prepare for the trip as the academic break approaches. The cost of each trip is determined by the location and the community service the group will be providing. In order to help alleviate some of the cost for the trips, ASB provides fundraising opportunities throughout the year. For example, this past weekend the organization held a pancake breakfast to raise money for students participating in this year’s trips.

During this year’s spring break, ASB provided five different trip opportunities for applicants. Students participating in the domestic trips will be traveling to either Argyle, Texas to provide camp counseling to people with special needs, Florida City, Florida to work with an ecology preserve or to Baldwin County, Alabama to work with House United for Habitat for Humanity. The two international trips students could apply for were in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica working with community development.

For more information on Alternative Student Breaks contact or please visit communityservice/AlternativeStudentBreaks/

Photos courtesy of Hamp Price

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Edelman Internship:

A Public Relations Student’s Dream Gabrielle Hoyt, a senior in public relations, has been named a recipient of the Daniel J. Edelman/PRSSA Award. As the runner-up, Hoyt received a $500 cash reward and was offered an interview for an internship with the Edelman office of her choice.

The Daniel J. Edelman/PRSSA Award, named for the chairman and founder of Edelman, has been presented annually since 1990 to PRSSA student members who have demonstrated public relations related achievements, activities and recommendations from faculty members and industry professionals. Award recipients are evaluated on creativity, attention to detail and writing skills, as well as interest in global citizenship and digital acumen.

Edelman is the world’s largest public relations firm, with 63 offices and more than 4,200 employees worldwide, as well “I was so as affiliates in more than 30 shocked and cities. “Edelman has been a company I’ve admired since humbled by the I got into public relations at award, and Auburn. They are independent, consistently self-assess- excited to see ing and breaking barriers of how my future new technologies and ways to plays out.” communicate,” said Hoyt. The application process for the award consisted of a resume, two letters of recommendation from faculty or internship supervisors and ten pieces of individual public relations work.

“To be one of two awardees in the nation by the top PR firm is such a huge honor. It says a lot about Auburn’s PR program, Auburn PRSSA and the quality of work my internship with the College of Liberal Arts gives to me. I was so shocked and humbled by the award, and excited to see how my future plays out.”

Hoyt was a founding member of PRSSA, Public Relations Student Society of America, at Auburn University. She was the PR director in 2010 and served as “When you’re dealing with a the chapter’s president in 2011. Hoyt has company like Edelman they interned with createTwo and is currently receive hundreds of resumes for posian intern with the College of Liberal Arts. tions, especially entry-level internship po- While holding positions in a social sororsitions. Getting my foot in the door there ity, Hoyt was also the Administrative Vice was a huge advantage,” said Hoyt. President for the Auburn University Pan6  Magnolia Blossom

hellenic Council and a Student Recruiter for her sophomore and junior years.

me land my first internships.”

For more information on the Daniel “I think PRSSA has provided J. Edelman/PRSSA Award “I feel prepared a vast amount of networking please visit http://www.prssa. for interviews org/scholarships_competiopportunities for students looking to break into PR. It and for the tions/individual/edelman/ also gives you opportunities index.html ‘real world’ to work on real campaigns because of and meet professionals from For more information on around the South. I feel prePRSSA at Auburn University PRSSA.” pared for interviews and for please visit https://fp.auburn. the ‘real world’ because of PRSSA. It has edu/stuorgs/orgPage.aspx?ID=413 allowed me to expand my skills beyond the traditional classroom setting. Also, having it on my resume has helped

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Internet Helps Auburn’s Small Businesses Grow

In a society where most people have a phone within reach at all waking hours, the Internet and social media are more important than ever before. For many small businesses, the use of social media and the Internet has become crucial to promotion and advertising.

Stores such as Wrapsody have seen a positive response with use of social media and a personal website. Employees of the store said that along with social media, using emails also helps them to keep in touch with customers outside of Auburn about promotions the store is having.

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For businesses, using Facebook and its own personalized websites allows the company to post information about any upcoming events or sales the businesses may be offering. Having a business page on Facebook allows customers to “like” a business and share the company with their friends. “I really like how businesses are using Facebook and their own websites now,” said Madeline White, a sophomore at Auburn University. “It makes it easier on the customer to find what they’re looking for and know whether a certain store is what they’re looking for or not.”

Photo courtesy of Blake Menke

Amour Boutique is one of the newer additions to the retail stores in Auburn. Amour Boutique is located on North College and has been open since summer 2011. Hollie Brown, manager of Amour Boutique said they’ve found Facebook to be helpful. “We’ve found that using Facebook is really helpful because we are able to post our new items as they come in and people are able to look at the items first without coming in the store,” she said. “Our customers seem to really enjoy that.” In addition to using social media, some small businesses have chosen to sell their merchandise online. Allowing customers to purchase merchandise through an online location helps businesses to keep a strong customer following and also helps their company to continue growing. Although many small businesses have already made a name for themselves in the

online world, there is always a place for new merchants to make their mark. The Small Business Development Center, SBDC, of Auburn University has been helping small businesses develop for the past 23 years. The center offers seminars, training and other resources to help new businesses develop. The Small Business Development Center Auburn is hosting an Internet education session on March 5 in Lowder Hall at 405 W. Magnolia Ave. The session will provide resources and information to small and local businesses about using the Internet. The session, titled “How to Use the Internet to Improve Your Business,” will be held between 6 and 8 p.m. in Lowder Hall 111. Resource materials will be provided at the session. For more information contact the center director, Jackie DiPofi at 334-8444220. Magnolia Blossom  9

The BIG Event

Serves the Auburn Community The mission is simple: One Big Family, One Big Difference, One BIG Event. However, the impact is far greater than any person can express in print. The Big Event is a one-day student-run volunteer event that serves to thank Auburn and surrounding communities by giving back.

more than 250 residences, schools and other organizations that need help.

The Big Event was started in 1982 on a college campus in Texas and was brought to Auburn’s campus in 2003. The event is designed to show the community that the students are thankful for providing a posiLast year the Big Event had 2,400 stutive and supportive atmosphere to learn dents participate and were able to serve and live in. The group’s mission stateat 196 different job sites in Auburn and ment says, “In keeping with the spirit of the surrounding communities. This year’s the Auburn Family, the Big Event enables event will be held on March 24, 2012. The students to make a difference through directors of the event hope to recruit more selfless service to our ever-supportive than 3,000 students and partner with community.”

Photos courtesy of BIG Event facebook page 10  Magnolia Blossom

BIG Event kick-off, 2011

Students wanting to volunteer for the Gabrielle Hoyt, a senior and student volevent are encouraged to sign up in teams unteer said, “Last year a group of pledge of 1 to 10 people. The teams help out in sisters and I worked on painting the chathe community with schools, churches pel of the church. The pastor and church and at resident’s homes. The directors for workers were so thankful, they even Big Event work throughout the year to bought us lunch! What I thought was realmake this day of service as successful as ly cool was the church also sent their own possible. The directors and group of Big Event volun“Big Event project coordinators work teers out to help out someenables together to recruit volunteers, one besides themselves.” find jobsites and evaluate the students to make number of volunteers each a difference The Big Event is unique in site needs to serve their parthat the experience conthrough selfless ticular need. tinues to impact everyone service to our involved long after the day This year’s director, Kyla ever-supportive ends. When students take Wilkinson commented, “We the time to help out the community.” have a team of more than 80 community, the commupeople who have been worknity helps back. The event is ing tirelessly to ensure that this year’s more than just raking leaves or painting, event is the biggest ever, but we can only the event is a way to continue to help the reach this goal through the combined efcommunity grow. forts of our students, faculty and community members.” For more information visit or contact Kyla Wilkinson at Some participants get the opportunity to work with residents of the community. Magnolia Blossom  11

TALONS Day Provides Insight For Future Students

As a prospective student of Auburn University, many opportunities are presented to visit the campus and catch a small glimpse of everything Auburn has to offer. Talons Day is just one of these many visits that students and their parents are able to attend.

jor. I also didn’t know that you didn’t have to spend an entire semester abroad but there are shorter programs where you can still get credits.”

Following the opening session, participants split into groups led by students in Auburn’s Student Recruiters organization. An acronym for Talented Academic Lead- The attendees are taken to activities to ers Outstanding National Scholars, Talons help them better understand all that AuDay is designed for scholarship students burn University has to offer. to become more familiar “I learned that with the experiences they One of the activities the there are ways to can receive at Auburn. attendees attend is a panel discussion. During this get help with The day’s events begin with paying for college event, students and para presentation by curents are split in two rooms and possible rent students, alumni and where they are able to have professors of Auburn Uni- employment right a question and answer sesversity. The students and after graduation.” sion with a panel. Some of their parents are shown the other activities offered various videos ranging in for the participants include topic from all the accomplishments alum- an honors forum, a campus tour and a ni have achieved to students studying housing tour of the Village and Quad abroad. In the session that occurred on dorms. Friday, January 20, attendees were able to hear testimony as well from a current A favorite activity among all the particistudent who studied abroad in Germany. pants is the presentation by the Southeastern Raptor Center. During the presenMany of the parents and students said tation, families were able to see a screech that the opening session was very inforowl, snow owl and of course, one of the mational regarding the study abroad opfamed war eagles. portunities. Incoming freshman, Trey Colley said, “I didn’t know that studying The day’s event also offers an academic abroad was not just a general trip for any- browse activity. During the academic one but they can be specific for each mabrowse, each college has a table set up 12  Magnolia Blossom

with information and a representative for students and parents to visit and ask questions they might have regarding a particular college. “I liked being able to talk with someone from the school of Nursing and I learned that there are ways to get help with paying for college and possible employment right after graduation,� said John Menke, another incoming freshman.

Many of the students and parents felt that attending Talons Day was a beneficial experience. The information provided to the attendees was helpful and presented opportunities for students they may not have found otherwise.

Photos found on Google Images Magnolia Blossom  13

Dance Marathon :

Setting Fundraising Records The Auburn University Dance Marathon, AUDM, was held this past Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012, in the Auburn Student Center Ballroom. All of the money raised by the yearlong campaign was donated to the Children’s Miracle Network. The yearlong fundraising culminates in the main event which is a 12-hour dance marathon consisting of games, food and fundraising. This year’s AUDM was held from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Prior to the event the organization had approximately 400 participants registered.

Maddie” campaign. The staff put flyers all over Auburn’s campus with the words “Ask Maddie.” The following day the staff replaced the flyers with a new set that had a picture of a young girl, the words “I’m Maddie” and information about Children’s Miracle Network and AUDM.

The second biggest campaign for the staff occurred one week before the event. The public relations staff organized a flash mob on the concourse just outside of the Haley Center. The dance “I really began started with Aubie and a few In addition to sponsors and to understand members of the AUDM staff entertainment, the staff behind him. As the dance all the was able to organize spegrew, a crowd continued to difference we gather around the group. cial guests to attend as well. Seven children and their had all made!” Eventually the crowd and families from the Children’s flash mob was so large that Miracle Network were in attendance. Dur- students and staff as far as three buildings ing the event the staff scheduled families away were stepping outside to see what to speak every hour about their personal was happening. stories and the positive impact Children’s Miracle Network has made for them. Amy The AUDM staff also created a Twitter acYoung, a senior in art, said, “Being able to count for the event. During the marathon see the children and their families was in- they used the hashtag #FTK, meaning For spiring to everyone. It reminded everyone The Kids. Using this hashtag participants what all their hard work was for.” were able to tweet about the event as it was going on and keep up with others During the months leading up to the who were also in attendance. event, AUDM’s public relations staff held several events to raise awareness for Chil- This year’s event set a record for the most dren’s Miracle Network. One of the most money fundraised by a first year Chilmemorable among students was the “Ask dren’s Miracle Network Hospital dance 14  Magnolia Blossom

marathon. Through registration fees, online donations and their fundraising throughout the year, AUDM was able to raise $65,995.25. The total amount raised was revealed to everyone in attendance at the end of the night with the help of Auburn’s mascot, Aubie.

and thanked the dancers and staff for everything that they had done and as tears ran down her face, I really began to understand the difference we had all made!”

Although the event contained fun experiences such as themed hours, a dance competition between Auburn celebrities and a Samantha Link, a junior at Auburn Unirave that took place in the last hour of the versity, was the Assistant Director of event, the real purpose was not forgotten. AUDM for this year. Following the close “That was the most rewarding experience, of the event Link said, “It’s hard to say being able to see the smiles on the kids what my favorite part of the event was faces and their families faces knowing but if I had to pick one it would be right that all the small things I had done made after the total was revealed. One of the a big difference in the life of someone Children’s Miracle Network Hospital chil- else,” Link said. dren’s mothers grabbed a microphone

Photos courtesy of Emily Frazier Magnolia Blossom  15

Auburn City Council Approves New Parking Regulations At the March 6 meeting of Auburn’s city council, new parking fines and regulations were passed. The ordinance was voted on and passed to make amendments to Auburn city code Chapter 22, Article II. The new regulations officially took effect on March 22, 2012.

If a vehicle is parked in the same location 2 hours after a ticket has been issued for the first violation, $20 will be fined for the second violation. For the third violation the owner will be fined $40. The city code also states that no more than 3 parking citations shall be issued in one day, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., for multiple violations by Stated in a news release posted on the city the same vehicle in the same space. of Auburn’s website, “The new parking regulations are part of recent efforts to Young said, “I understand what the city is help ensure availability of parking down- trying to accomplish with the new regulatown, including both on-street parking tions. However, I usually have a fine when and the parking area behind Toomer’s I leave my 3 hour studio class because I Corner. In total, you can find 372 metered can not feed my meter. I think parking in spaces downtown, with additional parking Auburn is a problem in general and hearavailable for lease.” ing the parking fine has increased only adds to student’s problems.” One of the changes to the ordinance includes increasing the fine for parking The new regulations also allow for the tickets. If a vehicle is parked in a metered towing of vehicles with excessive parking space and the parking meter indicates fines consisting of $140 or more. Accordthe time limit has passed, the vehicle is ing to the city code, if a vehicle is towed considered illegally parked and the owner for excessive parking fines the vehicle will will receive a fine. The first offense will be be released to the owner upon payment of $10, increased from $5 with the change in all outstanding parking fines. The owner the ordinance. will be issued a receipt by the city as evidence of payment. The owner will also Amy Young, a senior at Auburn Universi- be responsible for paying any towing and ty, said, “I don’t agree with the increase in storage fees to the towing company. the fine. I have all my classes in buildings close to downtown with no convenient C- Along with the new regulation to allow Zone parking locations.” towing of vehicles, the ordinance allows for the establishment of a parking fine 16  Magnolia Blossom

amnesty program. The program allows for the city council to authorize ticket amThe amendments to the ordinance pronesty periods to help individuals resolve vide consistent penalties for different unpaid parking fines. parking violations. The code also officially outlines specific hours, days and periods The city will also work to install new park- of time when meter use is suspended, ing meters and pay stations. The new pay which allows free parking in metered stations will still be capable of receiving spaces. coin payments but also allow for the option to pay with a credit card. The pay sta- Jillian Lewandowski, a senior, said, “I tions will regulate multiple parking spaces usually don’t park downtown while the instead of having one meter per parking metered spots are being enforced. I think space. if the city has been having a problem with fines and excessive violations they are takFor construction and maintenance veing the right steps to tackle the problem.” hicles, the ordinance allows for no cost parking permits to be issued. The permits For more information about the changes will allow the vehicles to park in metered to the parking regulations please visit spaces while providing service to a down- town business.

Photo found on Google Images Magnolia Blossom  17

Journalism Legend, Al Benn, Visits Auburn “I love journalism, especially newspapers. Always have, always will,” Al Benn said about his career. From a very young age Benn had a love for newspapers and journalism.

ham in 1964. Benn said, “Really I am the last man standing when you think about the civil rights era.”

Benn said he first reported in Birmingham on Aug. 4, 1964. “That’s the day they Al Benn was chosen to give a lecture as found the bodies of Schwerner, Chaney a part of the Neil O. and Henrietta Davis and Goodman, three civil rights workers Lecture Series. The lecture who were murdered in Mis“My love affair was held on Wednesday, sissippi,” Benn said. Benn with the printed shared his experiences with Feb. 22, 2012. word and the ink covering rallies and trials, th Now in his 48 year as meeting the influential leadthat creates each a journalist, Benn has ers of the civil rights moveletter began long ment and some of his interbecome a legend in the newswriting field. During before I got my actions with members of the his lecture, Benn recountKu Klux Klan. paper route.” ed the experiences of his career and the importance As Benn discussed the expeof journalism in our world. riences of his career he recommended to the idea that many people start at the lowFor many in the audience, the lecture was level jobs and try to work their way up inspiring. Joni Richards, a professor of the corporate ladder to what they feel are Communication and Journalism at Aubetter jobs. However, Benn said, “Nothburn University, said, “I think he has had ing could compete or compare to what I so many experiences. He is like an old di- experienced with those first two and a half nosaur that is so wonderful. I think he has years with UPI in Birmingham.” a lot of things to impart, we just learned so much tonight. It was just a great, great In 1966 Benn began working for the Daily presentation.” Decatur. Benn later worked with the Montgomery Advertiser for 32 years and After serving for six years in the Marine retired from the paper in 2003. Benn has Corps, Benn hoped to seek out a career in continued to work in journalism through journalism. Benn began working for Unit- his well-known feature, “Al Benn’s Alaed Press International, UPI, in Birmingbama.” 18  Magnolia Blossom

Through his almost half-century career, Lee in line buying my book.” Benn said Benn has gained a love for the local news- Lee bought two copies of his book. Benn paper and shared with the audience his passed around a picture through the audidisappointment in the fall of print jourence of the special moment. nalism. Benn said, “[Ed Williams] is a firm believer in local newspapers, and Benn hoped that by recounting to the auI am too, because who’s going to write dience how his career started, they might about weddings and engagements and get a better understanding of what newsAunt Nellie’s peach cobbler? You know papers meant to him. big papers aren’t going to do it and the way they’re folding, you Benn said, “My love affair ““My heros were with the printed word and wonder what’s left.” the ink that creates each the men and In her remarks on the lecletter began long before I women whose byture, professor Joni Richgot my paper route. As a lines graces the ards said, “He’s like an old kid I grabbed our copy [of bear from the old school the Lancaster New Era] stories and I journalism. Newspapers when it came to our house became a big fan of are going away, it’s upsetand read it from front to them .” ting to him cause that’s back admiring the way the what he did.” sentences were formed. My heroes were the men and women Although he has received many distinwhose bylines graced the stories and I guished awards during his career, Benn became a big fan of them.” recalled one of his favorite moments for the audience. Benn said, “Talk about a proud moment for me, I’m down there autographing my book two years ago in Monroeville, I look up and there is Harper

Photo courtesy Magnolia Blossom  19 20  Magnolia Blossom

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