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The Newspaper of Lamar University

Vol. 94, No. 16 February 15, 2018

QEP hosts WINGS ‘Mardi Gras’ forum Shelby Strickland UP editor

UP photo by Shelby Strickland

QEP student subcommittee members take attendance at Tuesday’s WINGS event.


Event to honor living legends

Lamar University and the ExxonMobil BEST (Black Employees Success Team) join in celebrating African-American History Month by honoring living legends in the community at a special event, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday, in the Lamar University Event Center on the eighth floor of Gray Library. That evening, BEST will recognize six living legends in the community: Constable Christopher Bates, youngest constable and constable of the year; Annie Carter, STEM influencer and GT-Tame; Johnny Hulin, executive director Willie Carter Community Outreach Center; Christopher Williams, LIT outreach coordinator/motivational speaker; Amber Lucas, Linda’s Lighthouse; and Norman Bellard, LU interim athletic director and chair of the Greater South Park Neighborhoods Partnership. Attendees will hear from keynote speaker Angela Bransford of the Beaumont ISD Board of Managers. A 20-year resident of Beaumont with her husband and three children, Bransford has served with several organizations to promote educational and leadership opportunities for local youth. Her community affiliations include Golden Triangle Links, the Junior League of Beaumont, Jack and Jill of Beaumont, St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica School and Antioch Missionary Baptist Church. She is a graduate of the University of Arizona in Tucson and Georgetown University Law Center. Previously, she served as the Equal Employment Opportunity Officer at The American University in Washington D.C. and Columbus State University in Georgia. “Lamar University is honored and happy to partner with ExxonMobil BEST in hosting this very important annual African-American History Month Event,” John Bello-Ogunu, Sr., vice president for Global Diversity and Intercultural Affairs, said. “This event is yet another opportunity to recognize and to celebrate the rich and immeasurable contributions that African-Americans have made, and continue to make to the greatness of the United States of America.” For more information about the event, contact Allyson Lattimore, special events co-chair, Beaumont Black Employee Success Team, at 240-3858.

QEP, quality enhancement program, hosted a “Mardi Gras” student forum Tuesday. The event informed students about WINGS. WINGS is a plan that will reconstruct the way math courses are integrated into the Lamar University curriculum. Raegan Minaldi, member of the QEP student subcommittee, spoke on what WINGS is,

and how it saves students time and money. The math courses a student will take depend on their TSI, SAT or ACT score. WINGS helps students complete these courses quicker. The program has been in development since the beginning of 2017. Minaldi said there are about six basic math classes that don’t count towards a person’s core degree, but WINGS streamlines these courses See WINGS, page 2

Now you see it…

UP photo by Hannah LeTulle

LU senior Freeman gives magic a modern twist Olivia Malick UP staff writer

The old image of the magician in the tuxedo pulling a rabbit out of a hat is, literally, old hat. Grant Freeman is changing that. By adding Rrated stand-up to his slight-of-hand magic act, Freeman is bringing magic into the 21st century with two shows at the Port Arthur Little Theatre at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., Feb. 23. Tickets can be purchased through the Port Arthur Little Theatre Facebook page for $16.70 each. No one under 17 will be admitted without a parent. “If I do my job right, people can expect to laugh and be amazed,” he said. “This is my first full-length show by myself doing raunchy comedy magic, so we’ll see how it goes.” Freeman, a chemical engineering senior, spends his time perfecting his craft — R-rated comedy. A typical performance consists of a magic routine interspersed with raunchy stand up comedy. “I got into magic in seventh grade when my middle school actually hosted a magic class,” the Houston native said. “After the class, most kids took all the cards and the ropes

and shoved them in the back of their closets, but I stuck with it.” Freeman said that at first he just wanted to know the mechanics of how the tricks worked. “I started doing little things to see the expressions on people’s faces,” he said. “Then I did it to entertain. I started adding jokes to the routine to make people laugh while I was ‘amazing’ them. It was more rewarding to perform a routine than to watch one.” Both his magic act and stand-up comedy routine are influenced by some of his favorite comics, like Steve Martin (who is also a magician), but Freeman is original in his content. “I write my own jokes,” he said. “There are particular routines that are like my babies — I’ve perfected them over time and worked on those tricks since I was probably in high school or late middle school.” Freeman has been performing his show for audiences since he was 13 years old, and while he said his first show didn’t go well, it only drove him to keep doing it. “In eighth grade I did my first birthday party,” he said. “The birthday kid cried through the middle of

it, and ran into his room crying and locked the door and wouldn’t come out until I left. It was awesome. That moment really sticks with me because it was my first cohesive performance.” The R-rated comedy magic show is a relatively new frontier in the realm of performing arts, but Freeman said he enjoys the ever-changing landscape. “The entire goal is to be edgy and make people laugh while also fooling

See MAGIC, page 8

Grant Freeman

Four named as distinguished Alumni Cade Smith UP staff writer

The Lamar University Office of Alumni Affairs has named four recipients of the Distinguished Alumnus Award for 2018. A dinner will be held at 7 p.m., Feb. 23, on the eighthfloor of Gray Library to honor the recipients. “The Lamar University Distinguished Alumnus Award is the highest award bestowed upon a Lamar University graduate,” Shannon Copeland, director of alumni affairs and advancement services, said. “The award is meant to recognize outstanding achievements

of a Lamar graduate who has been loyal to the university, and has made significant contributions to their field or the community.” This year’s honorees include James Bell, a retired program manager at United Launch Alliance in Denver, Colo.; Angela Blanchard, president emerita of BakerRipley in Houston; Ellen Rienstra, writer and historical consultant; and Don Shaver, former certified public accountant and investor in several operating companies. “The award is meant to inspire and instill pride in the LU community,” Copeland said. “The award basically will show

Angela Blanchard the attendees how far an LU education can get someone.” The nominations are open to anyone involved in the community, which includes faculty, staff and alumni. Honorees are selected by a committee com-

Don Shaver

Ellen Rienstra

prised of members of the alumni advisory board. “Bell is a 1984 graduate with a degree in mechanical engineering — he was very highly placed with the United Launch Alliance,” Copeland said. “They

James Bell

would apply him all across the country, and they would not do a rocket launch without him physically being at the location.” Bell was also a member of the See ALUMNI, page 2


Thursday, February 15, 2018 University Press



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“A healthy attitude is contagious but don't wait to catch it from others. Be a carrier.” — Tom Stoppard

from page 1

National Society of Black Engineers, and contributed to help establish the Dr. Richard L. Price Scholarship in Engineering, Math and Science. “Blanchard is a 1984 graduate with a degree in business administration in accounting, and has been recognized nationally for her work in urban development and transforming neighborhoods,” Copeland said. “She’s been selected by different presidents of the United States to serve on national committees and councils, and she also helped during Harvey making sure the victims had meals.” Blanchard also serves on the Board of the Business In-

novation Factory and the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. “Rienstra is a 1962 graduate with a degree in English literature with a minor in history, and 1980 masters graduate with a degree in English literature,” Copeland said. “She has published more than 10 historical books, journals, plays and articles, including a book about Spindletop Gladys City Museum, and is an accomplished violinist.” Rienstra serves as a member of Women and Philanthropy, established the Ellen Rienstra Scholarship in Music, and in 2016 was hon-

ored for Outstanding Contribution to the Humanities by the Southeast Texas Arts Council. “Shaver is a 1976 graduate with a degree in business administration in accounting, owned several businesses, and helped with financial consulting,” Copeland said. “He was a member of the golf team at Lamar. He and his wife have established several scholarships at Lamar in audiology and accounting.” Shaver has helped renovate Lamar’s golf practice facility, currently serves as a Trustee of the Lamar University Foundation, and was a former accounting instructor in the

College of Business. Guests are required to wear cocktail or business casual attire. “Guests will have a choice of beef tenderloin, Caspian Sea bass, or an eggplant dish for vegetarians,” she said. “The deadline to register was last Friday, however, if we have spots available then everyone can still register until Friday, with a $40 fee for the dinner.” The reception begins at 6:30 p.m. and the awards dinner starts at 7 p.m. For more information, call 880-7819, or email cope

WINGS from page 1

‘From the News Room’ the new UP staff blog on our web page


February 26

Film and Southeast Texas Gray Library, 8th floor 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

March 5

REDtalks: Streamlining Math for an Efficient Graduation Gray Library, 6th floor 1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.

March 6

“Play While You Can” Campaign: Impaired Dodge-Ball Behind food truck near Gray Library 10 a.m. to 1 p.m

March 9

and students now only take four or less. In the past, students have had to take more math classes than necessary. Lamar had one in ten students who made it through all of their basic math with this program (out of 40 percent of students). The first implementation of QEP classes will begin in the fall of 2018. The QEP will be hosting RedTalks on March 5, and an SGA panel in April. Date and time have yet to be announced. For more information on QEP or WINGS, email wings@

Check out


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NSF and NIH Grant Workshop Room 113, Center for Innovation, Commercialization and Entrepreneurship 8 a.m. to 4 p.m

March 6

“Play While You Can” Campaign: Impaired Dodge-Ball Behind food truck near Gray Library 10 a.m. to 1 p.m

UP photo by Shelby Strickland

Drawing for the love of it Graphic design sophomore Crystal Tirawan, left, draws free caricatures in the campus Starbucks on Valentine’s Day, Wednesday. The art department asked for volunteers, and Tirawan jumped at the opportunity. By lunch time she had already drawn twelve caricatures.

March 20

REDtalks presents: The Art of Embracing Disability 702 Gray Library 1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.


3 UNIVERSITY PRESS Thursday, February 15, 2018

Get real ‘face time’

UP illustration by Olivia Malick

Online dating apps no substitute for human interaction This Valentine’s season, I found myself on dating apps like Plenty of Fish and Tinder more frequently than usual. I wasn't alone. According to Time Magazine, visitors to online dating sites traditionally rise 10-30 percent at this time of year. I don't consider myself to be that anti-


Antonio Del Rio UP contributor

social and I do go out, but my dating life is nonexistent. Honestly, I don't even like using dating apps, but there I was swiping left and right. This got me thinking: Is this the future of dating? My online dating began during my time in the Navy and continued when I returned home. A fellow sailor, who met his wife through POF, went on and on pontificating about how great the site is (they divorced a year later). Being as I was single and had no game, I decided to check out the site. I signed up and opened a Pandora's Box. I do not claim to be a Casanova, but I did go on many dates thanks to dating websites like POF and OK Cupid. While I made a few good friends, I also had a plethora of bad experiences. There were so many that if they were made into a movie, it would take a series of

UPeditorial Big Red shows big numbers for Cardinal View

Saturday’s Cardinal View recruitment event featured a turn out of 260 students and 598 guests, despite ugly weather. The Office of Student Engagement hosts the event every semester to showcase what Lamar has to offer to potential new students. The event’s success reflected the hard work put forth by the student engagement staff and the entire Cardinal community to promote Lamar’s unique atmosphere and college experiences. Beginning in the Sheila Umphrey Recreational Center, future students met with group leaders corresponding with their preferred major, who lead them around campus. Lamar University has a lot to offer — more than can be shown in one quick advertisement — and Cardinal View gives LU hopefuls a chance to see everything there is to participate in. It is up to us to bring as many people as possible to Lamar, whether it’s by sharing our experiences or simply advertising our campus, because everyone benefits from an environment that includes people from all walks of life. A campus is only as good as its students and new students give the campus the opportunity to evolve in a diverse and well-rounded environment.

Editor............................................Shelby Strickland Managing Editor.............................Cassie Jenkins Staff .................................................Hannah LeTulle .......................Keiosha Addison, Antonio Del Rio ...................................Sierra Kondos, Olivia Malick, ..........................................Matt Beadle, Cade Smith, ............................................................ Shane Proctor Business Manager ...............................Jason Tran Advertising Assistants....................Gabbie Smith ........................................................Eloisa Lopez Advisors Andy Coughlan and Stephan Malick Member of Texas Intercollegiate Press Association

films to do them justice. I've met ladies who showed up to dates high, drunk, unemotional, unsociable and/or unhygienic. I’ve met snobs, swingers, women still living with their exboyfriends, women still hung up on their ex-husbands and illegal immigrants looking for help. I was even “catfished,” when my online date turned out to be older and physically different from their photos. My worst experience came courtesy of OKC. I sat down to eat with my date and I thanked her for joining me. She immediately told me, “I’m here because I want to kill you.” I asked if she was kidding? She repeated herself, adding, “I’m going to cut off your tattoos and place them in a box to remember you. You will be dead.” I stood up and grabbed my coat. She said, “Where are

you going?” She then said, “I’m just having fun.” I said, “So, you are joking around?” she looked at me with a big dung-eating grin and replied, “No! I really am here to kill you!” I stared at her blankly for 30 seconds before she blurted out, “I’m joking.” I chose not have a second date with her. My main problem with online dating is the whole setup process. We are expected to make a judgment based off of well-angled shots, a bio, and conversation that is either too short, exaggerated or fabricated. With Tinder, we basically swipe simply on looks. Even if one has a good feeling about someone, the mood can change if the person doesn’t fit their profile when we meet. If we would have met this same person in a social setting, there

wouldn’t be that initial disappointment based on unrealistic expectations. Many of us are socially awkward or shy, which is why dating apps are convenient. Many of us are afraid to put ourselves out there out of fear of rejection. Some of us just need a reason to get out. However, when we depend on technology, we either aren’t giving the right people a chance, or aren't giving ourselves a fair chance. So, I am putting down my phone and going out into the world. Maybe I will go to a club. Maybe I will go to an art opening. Maybe I will go to a music venue. As long as it is somewhere with actual people I can interact with. Maybe that perfect someone is out there — she certainly isn’t on my screen.

A well-suited match Most boyfriends would never let their girlfriends tell them what to wear. However, since it's for special occasions, my significant other, Hunter, usually lets me plan out our outfits. It's always a lot of fun picking out what we're going to wear and having to scrounge something together last minute. We end up matching by accident a lot, too, so that's where this "hobby" of ours began. Yes, we are annoying and maybe even a little crazy, we know this. But I think it's important to find new and different things to try out with one another to keep things interesting.  Whenever Hunter and I match it's usually when we're going to a party, which isn't very often. As soon as we walk through the doors of whatever party we're going to we're instantly greeted with the “oohs”


Gabbie Smith UP contributor

UP photos by Gabbie Smith

and “aahs” of our friends and family. Our friends expect it, and we always get some laughs. They love seeing what ideas we come up with and we usually have to stop and take pictures with everyone, too. For Halloween this year, we didn't decide what we wanted to be until the day of the party, so we ran to Goodwill and quickly found the perfect outfits for each of us. I was Wendy Peffercorn and he was Squints from the movie “The Sandlot.” Before, we would have just worn boring Halloween shirts and called it a day, but this way we got to collaborate together

Letters Policy

and be creative with what we wanted to do. Hunter and I have been dating going on six years, so we're constantly looking for ways to change things up. One thing we've been trying to do is be more social, which involves going to more get-togethers and parties. This increase in parties leads to more outfits, of course, so it keeps us interested and entertained. We're constantly having to come up with the next outfit we want to put together. It's not always goofy, though. We have similar tastes, too, so we do it for fun, but also we

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just think it looks nice when we go out. We also got our dog involved which has been the best part of this experience so far. About a year ago, Hunter gave me a pug for Christmas. We named him Parker. And, of course, if he's going to be a part of the family, he's got to get into it as well. Luckily, he loves dressing up, too. I think it makes him feel fancy. Plus he just loves the attention.  What started off as an accident ended up being something that brings us together and we plan on keeping it going for as long as it stays fun for the three of us. 

The opinions that appear in editorials are the official views of the University Press student management as determined by the UP Student Editorial Board. Opinions expressed elsewhere on this page are the views of the writers only and are not necessarily those of the University Press student management. Student opinions are not necessarily those of the university administration. ©University Press 2018

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Thursday, February 15, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

UPcampus briefs REGENTS’ MEETING The Texas State University System Board of Regents’ Meeting will be held on LU’s campus today and Friday. Meetings will be held at the University Event Center on the eighth floor of Gray Library. Spaces in parking lot E-5 will be reserved for guests. Students and faculty may need to park elsewhere. While this will be an inconvenience, please help Lamar welcome important guests representing the other seven schools in our system, the TSUS staff and administration from Austin and the university’s regents from across the state. RESEARCH ENHANCEMENT Research Enhancement Grants applications and University Scholar nominations are now open. All submissions must be done using LU Competition Space. The guidelines when the competition opens as changes will have been made. Deadline to apply is March 2 at 5 p.m.

NEW SCHOLARSHIP The Lamar University Foundation has announced a new endowed scholarship. The Todd and Jennifer Hoffman Scholarship in Business honoring Drs. Robert and Marleen Swerdlow, will provide financial assistance to business students who classify as sophomores or higher. The late Robert Swerdlow graduated from Lamar University in 1970 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. After receiving his doctorate at the University of Arkansas, he returned to Lamar where he served as a marketing professor rising steadily through the ranks, and served twice as interim dean of the College of Business. At his death in 2003, he was associate dean of the College of Business. He was posthumously named a Lamar University Distinguished Alumnus in 2006, and honored as a member of the Lamar University College of Business Hall of Fame. Marleen Swerdlow joined the LU faculty in 1984 as an assistant

UP photo by Hannah LeTulle

Sweet heart treats professor of business law following a law practice. She earned her Doctor of Jurisprudence from University of Houston Law Center in 1977. She advanced in rank at LU, becoming a full professor in 1994. She has served as director of both the General Business Program and the BBA   online program. She has been honored as both The Martye and Bart Simmons Faculty Scholar in Business and The Jerry and Sheila Reese Faculty Scholar in Business. For more information on establishing an endowed scholarship, contact the Lamar University Foundation at 8802117.  

“BARE SIDEWALKS” TALK The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Lamar University will host Narayanan Komerath, professor from the Georgia Institute of Technology Daniel Guggenheim School of

Aerospace Engineering in “Bare Sidewalks and the 21st century Village: Technology for a Rural Enterprise Revolution.” His talk takes place at 11 a.m., Friday in 117 of the Chemistry Building. Rural areas lag big cities in the technological revolution and wealth creation of the 21st century. The chasm is wide in developed nations, but far worse in the developing world. Farmer suicides are a shocking symptom of the desperation that infests the rural areas where some 70 percent of the world’s population lives. Lack of employment and opportunity drive migration to the already-overcrowded cities, adding to the congestion, environmental degradation and human tragedy. Komerath and others believe careful use of technology can solve this problem and have embarked on a roadmap towards developing Smart Villages. 

Sigma Nu sorority member, Jennifer Hernandez sells Valentine’s Day treats to Eddie Macias outside the Mary and John Gray Library, Tuesday. Following the presentation, participants will be invited to participate in a discussion on the issues and opportunities in setting up transportation infrastructure that can enable modern business to thrive in rural areas, with lastmile physical connectivity turning the villages into the ideal places to live as well as operate modern business enterprises.

REGENTS’ STAFF AWARD Delores Black, administrative associate senior in the Mary Morgan Moore Department of Music of the College of Fine Arts and Communication at Lamar University, has been selected to receive the 2017 Texas State University System Regents’ Staff Award. A member of the LU staff for 41 years, Black has worked in the music department in many capacities.  She is an alumna of LU, holding a Bachelor of Science in

music education and a Master of Music Education. During her career, she has received the President’s Staff Award, 1979, President’s Award, 1991, and the Distinguished Staff Award, 1998. An active participant in the university’s Staff Senate and Lamar University Staff Association, Black will receive the Regents’ Staff Excellence Award at the TSUS Board of Regents meeting today and Friday on the Lamar University campus. Black is also well known for her active involvement in the Beaumont community. She performs with the Symphony of Southeast Texas Chorus, serves as membership chair and corresponding secretary for Beaumont Interfaith Choral Society, is the business manager of Beaumont Civic Opera, and has performed with the Beaumont Community Players.

UNIVERSITY PRESS • Thursday, February 15, 2018

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Panel to discuss SETX’s film legacy Vy Nguyen UP contributor

The Lamar University Center for History and Culture of Southeast Texas and the Upper Gulf Coast will sponsor two panels focusing on Southeast Texas film history, Feb. 26. A student session will be held at 2 p.m. in Landes Auditorium, and an open session will be held at 5 p.m. on the eighth floor of Gray Library. This event will start with a reception, followed by panel discussions over the history of film, film production in Southeast Texas, and how they connect. Featured panelists include J.D. Feigelson, producer and screenwriter; David Hooker, actor-professor and local film historian; and Gordon Williams, producer-director. LU film professor O’Brien Stanley will moderate the panel. “We got a couple of writers/producers/directors that have succeeded in the film industry,” Stanley said. “Then we’ve got a local film historian who’s written a book about the film history in Beaumont.” Stanley said that his job as a moderator is to get the panelists to talk about what they’ve done, their personal contributions to the film history in Beaumont and various

projects that he has previously worked on with them. Williams, LUTV studio operations manager, has been working at Lamar since 1999 and has produced six films. “What Gordon really loves doing is making film,” Stanley said. “He is incredibly creative and has the soul of a filmmaker. Getting to witness and participate in a Gordon film in the making is a cool thing. He’ll pull together faculty, students and former students who’ve gone into the film industry.” Williams’ films range from romantic-comedies to science fiction. “Not only is Gordon part of Beaumont film history, but he also made a historical film about Beaumont,” Stanley said. “The Example” is set in 1943, when Beaumont had a race riot due to many white workers having trouble dealing with the increase in African American workers, which led to job competition, Stanley said. “To be able to create a project that had a diverse group of people coming together, of all different ages, to tell a historical fiction story — it was meaningful to me to see it come to life,” Williams said. “The race riot (is still) such a difficult topic over 70 years later.” Feigelson is a Lamar graduate who produced the short historical

film, “One of the Missing,” about the American writer, Ambrose Bierce. “This film was picked up by CBS as part of a young filmmaker series 11 years later, and it ran on national television,” Stanley said. “Within five days, ABC called and Feigelson left his business of making commercials and informational videos in Beaumont and never looked back. Feigelson then became a writer and producer in Hollywood.” Stanley said that he enjoys telling this story to his film students as a way to motivate them not to constantly worry about their big break, and instead to focus on the quality of their content. “Feigelson’s retired now, but he always wants to give back to Lamar,” Stanley said. “So, when we had the opportunity for this panel, we had to have him.” Hooker teaches humanities and English at Lamar Institute of Technology, and is a film lover and local film historian. His book on growing up a film buff in Beaumont is called “Somewhere Under the Moon.” “Hooker has lived in Southeast Texas since the late 50s, so he brings all of that knowledge of film, TV, and anything that relates to movies in Beaumont from the mid 50s up until now.”

The panel is a perfect opportunity for students to learn more about the panelists’ takes on film while exploring about their own, Stanley said. “Students can pick their brains on how to get into writing, how to get started, what kind of genre they like, if they want to write in a particular genre, and what would they have to learn,” he said. “I definitely want to let the students have a chance to ask questions.” Williams said the goal is for the students to learn about the film industry. “It’s about sharing the history of film in this area and seeing where it goes in the future,” he said. “I believe that this will inspire students and locals to pursue this craft, start writing and making their own short or feature films.” Stanley said more and more people are seeing that film is an important part of the area. “To know that there’s a history here is inspirational, because If you know what’s been going on in the past then you can connect to these people that have done these things, and also connect to your future,” he said. “You know where you are when you know where you’ve been.” For more information, call 8808036.

J.D. Feigelson

Gordon Williams

David Hooker

O’Brien Stanley

LU ambassadors seeking applicants Trace Cowan UP contributor

The Lamar University ambassador program is a leadership development program and the students who participate represent the student body at official functions and at executive level functions where the president is present, Shannon Copeland, LU director of alumni affairs, said.  Ambassadors also represent the university in marketing campaigns and serve as official representatives at meetings and events. 

“The ambassadors work events like dinners, where they represent the campus, to outside constituents like alumni, donors, legislators,  regents and community leaders,” Copeland said. The program is seeking applications and there are currently 12-15 positions available. Applicants should visit the alumni office in 102 Rudy C. Williams Building in the John Gray Center to pick up a packet, fill out the basic  information  and answer some essay questions. The applicant must have been at Lamar for

one semester, with at least three semesters left. “Obviously, they need a good conduct record,” Copeland said. “They must have a recommendation from a member of the faculty who they’ve worked with. After that is turned in, the application is sent to their college dean. The dean signs off on it if they have good standing with the university. Then it is sent to a committee who reviews the applications. Finally, we interview the applicant to determine if they will be an ambassador.”  The deadline for applications

Courtesy photo

Lamar University Ambassadors represent the school at official functions and also have the chance to make professional contacts with alumni.

is noon, March 1. Applications must be submitted to the dean of the student’s college. Last October, the students participated in the Presidential Circle dinner. “They dressed in formal attire and interacted with some Lamar donors — it’s an important job,” Copeland said. “The private donors provide a lot of funding for scholarships and activities, even the Reaud Building.” The ambassadors  participated in the “A Dinner in Conversation” event, Feb. 8, where they connected with alumni who are leaders in the community, Copeland said.  “There are business leaders, a doctor, an audiologist, a school  superintendent  and more,” she said. “The ambassadors get to engage in conversation with these professionals to get the day-to-day about what it is like to work in that field. The alumni can give advice about what to read, how to prepare for med-school, things like that.”  Copeland said it is a mentorship opportunity for students. Many ambassadors will follow-up with the alumni, and some have made lucrative connections. 

“Previously, an ambassador spoke with an alumnus  who owned a business,” she said. “The ambassador praised the company’s business plan and said he would love to work for a company like that some day. The alumnus told him to apply for an internship  once he graduated. Today, that ambassador is the vice president of the company.”  Copeland said this type of connection is common.   “One ambassador sat next to an alumnus, a  division chief at NASA, and the alumnus told the ambassador  to let him know when he was applying,” she said. “The ambassador received the NASA internship. I feel like the alumnus helped push him to the top of the stack.” Copeland said the program emphasizes diversity.  “We try to have the  statistical makeup of the ambassadorship be similar to the statistical makeup of Lamar’s student body,” she said. “That means we include as many different majors as possible.” For more information, visit, call 880-8921, or visit the alumni affairs offices. 

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Thursday, February 15, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

LU Brass Festival set for March 1 The 3rd annual Lamar University Brass Festival, March 1-3, on the LU campus, will feature trumpet artist Phil Snedecor, trombone artist Thomas Hulten, and horn artist Natalie Brooke Higgins, as well as many unique concerts and events, including a performance by the Brass Festival Artist Ensemble. The festival kicks off with a 7:30 p.m. concert, March 1, in Rothwell Recital Hall in the Simmons Music Building featuring innovative pieces performed by various brass quintets, a tuba/euphonium ensemble, and a horn en-

semble. Admission is free. Prior to the concert there will be a free master class by Senior Airman Justis MacKenzie of the United States Air Force Band of Flight at 5:30 p.m. in Wiley Rehearsal Hall. March 2, the featured concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. in Rothwell Recital Hall in the Simmons Music Building. The annual chamber music showcase will feature the Cardinal Brass and Honors Brass Quintets. Admission is free. Master classes by festival artists, and a demonstration by Pickett Brass shows,

March 3. Exhibits will be held in the Wiley Rehearsal Hall in the Simmons Music Building from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., giving the public an opportunity to try out new instruments and mouthpieces, and talk with brass company experts. The Gala Concert, 7:30 p.m., March 3, in the University Theatre, will begin with trumpet ensemble and trombone choir works followed by the Lamar University Brass Choir performing selections from Gustav Mahler’s “Songs of the Wayfarer.” The second half of the program will feature the

Artist to show installation at Orleans music festival Artist and Lamar University alumnus Maurice Abelman will present his latest installation project, “The Tree of Knowledge,” Saturday, at The Music Studio, 215 Orleans in downtown Beaumont. The free show will be part of the “New Orleans on Orleans” festival, featuring music and activities from noon to midnight. The installation wil be on view through March 22.

Brass Festival guest artists with Lamar music faculty in a combined professional brass ensemble. The Brass Festival Artist Ensemble will perform selections from Carl Orff’s masterpiece “Carmina Burana,” various brass arrangements of opera favorites featuring guest solo artists, and even a little rock’n’roll. Admission to the gala performance is $5 and tickets can be purchased in cash only at the door. For more information, contact the Mary Morgan Moore Department of Music, at 880-8144.

March 3 Schedule 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Exhibit Hall Open 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Exhibit Hall Time and Demos 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Pickett Brass Demo 11 a.m. to noon Exhibit Hall Demos Noon to 1 p.m. Natalie Higgins Master class 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Thomas Hulten Master class 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Exhibit Hall Demos 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Phil Snedecor Master class



UNIVERSITY PRESS Thursday, February 15, 2018


Cardinals to begin season with home-opener, Friday Cassandra Jenkins UP managing editor

Around the Bases • LU baseball is predicted to finish in sixth place in the Southland Conference poll, the Perfect Game and D1 Baseball polls have the Cards in fourth.

• Tanner Driskill, Robin Adames and Grant DeVore each received pre-season SLC All-Conference recognition for their respective 2017 performances. • Big Red is 916-463-6 all-time at their home stadium, with over 57 percent of Lamar's 1,600 wins in program history coming within the confines of The Beck. • Last year, the Cardinals won 23 of 29 games played in Beaumont, the best winning percentage since 2013.

LU’s Avery George, baseball freshman, top, takes a swing during Lamar's scrimmage game at Vincent-Beck Stadium, Feb. 8, and junior Jason Blanchard pitches during the game.

MEN’S BASKETBALL Lamar University had a four-point lead with 1:03 remaining, but turnovers on their last two possessions cost the Cardinals as they fell at Sam Houston State, 71-69, Saturday, at the Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum in Huntsville. LU knocked down 10 of its first 13 shots to start the second half but finished just four for their next 16. Junior Josh Nzeakor led all scorers with 23 points and junior Nick Garth  came off the bench to score 17 points. The Cardinals built a five-point lead midway through the second half before SHSU rattled off a 7-0 run to reclaim the lead by two, but the Cardinals put an end to the run on the very next play feeding the ball to Colton Weisbrod for the layup. From that point on neither team gained larger than a three-point lead as it was a back-and-forth affair before the Bearkats got two free throws to tie the game heading into the locker room tied at 32. After the Bearkats opened the second half by surging back in front by four, LU got a three-pointer from senior James Harrison  at the 14:57 mark to pull within a point, followed by an Nzeakor layup on the next possession to take a one-point lead.

Lamar University’s baseball team will kick off the 2018-19 season this weekend in the Cardinal Classic, a non-conference tournament featuring Illinois, Texas Southern and Missouri State, at Vincent-Beck Stadium. “(In) non-conference, we have some pretty challenging opponents,” head coach Will Davis said. “We open up with Illinois, Missouri State — who is ranked. We are also playing Texas and Tulane, so we’ve got some good opponents before conference.” This year’s squad includes 21 new recruits and three returning All-Southland Conference players. “We’ve got a nice mix of both new and older players this season,” Davis said. “Besides having 12 freshmen, we also have three returning all-conference players. Our pitcher, Tanner Driskill, returns, first baseman Robin Adames, and our second baseman Grant DeVore — they will definitely set the tone for us.” Davis said he is eager to see what the team can do this year. “We’re really excited about the players we have,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of young players, but I don’t want to say that is a weakness because they are very talented. I’m sure there will be some growing pains as we’re going along, but we are very excited about them nonetheless.” Davis said he is taking it one game at time, but is definitely excited to get out of practice and start playing games. “We judge all of our opponents equally, so we’re looking forward to playing all of them,” he said. “We’re excited. We’re ready to get going and see what this journey holds for us.” LU will start their home tournament against Illinois, Friday at 6 p.m. Tickets are free for students with I.D.

UPsports briefs The Cardinals would not surrender that lead for the next five minutes, pushing their advantage to as many as four. The Bearkats answered with a 7-0 run to reclaim a three-point advantage with 9:29 remaining. The Cardinals got the ball back after senior Torey Noel drew a charge. The Cardinals followed the SHSU mistake with a Nzeakor dunk to take a four-point lead with 1:03 to play but the Cardinals turned the ball over on their next two possessions and the Bearkats followed with scores to edge Lamar by three. The Cardinals returned to action Wednesday, when they hosted Incarnate Word. Scores were unavailable at print time. LU will play their last home game of the season, Saturday, against Texas A&M Corpus Christi at 4:30 p.m. in the Montagne Center. WOMEN’S BASKETBALL Chastadie Barrs broke her own Southland Conference record for steals in a season as the Lamar University Lady

Cardinals clinched a berth in next month’s SLC Women’s Basketball Tournament with a 68-44 win over the host Sam Houston State Lady Bearkats, Saturday, in the Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum in Huntsville. Barrs had eight steals, pushing her season total to 149 as she extended her conference record for career steals to 414. Barrs also had game highs of 19 points and seven assists as the Lady Cards ran their winning streak to nine games, the secondlongest streak in program history. Kiandra Bowers had her team-leading ninth double-double of the season for the Lady Cardinals, finishing with 12 points and 14 rebounds. Bowers moved into third place on LU’s career rebounding chart with 867 boards. The Cardinals got off to a slow start against the Lady Bearkats, leading just 138 after one quarter. LU dominated the middle periods, outscoring the Lady Bearkats 21-12 in the second quarter for a 34-20 lead at halftime, and 24-14 in the third quarter to lead 58-34 heading into the final period.

DeA’ngela Mathis scored 14 points for LU, while Ashlan Miles came off the bench to contribute seven points and four rebounds while matching her career high with four steals. The Lady Cardinals played Incarnate Word, Wednesday. Scores were unavailable at print time. They will return to Beaumont to close out the home portion of the schedule by hosting Texas A&MCorpus Christi at 2 p.m., Saturday at the Mongtagne Center. SOFTBALL The Lamar University softball team dropped a pair of games to nationally ranked teams at the Sand Dollar Classic, Friday. The Lady Cardinals threw a scare into 14th-ranked Ole Miss before the Rebels rallied for a 4-2 win in eight innings. The Lady Cards weren’t as fortunate against 11th-ranked Alabama as Crimson Tide’s Courtney Gettins threw a five-inning nohitter in a 13-0 Alabama victory. The last two games were wiped out by heavy rainfall as Lamar finished the tournament 1-2. The Lady Cardinals return to Texas in a four-game tournament in San Antonio. LU will play Missouri State, Friday, at 11:30 a.m on the UTSA campus.

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Thursday, February 15, 2018 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

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them within the realm of magic,” he said. “Magic is generally considered to be a ‘kid’ thing, so I think it’s cool to take stand-up comedy and raunchy humor and combine the two. They are two very opposite fields but make for a very interesting show.” Although the stand-up comedy routine was a later addition to his magic act, Freeman’s love for stand-up goes back almost as far as his love for magic. “As a kid, I enjoyed watching the cheesy magician with the hat and handkerchiefs, so that’s what I learned to do,” he said. “As I grew up, I started watching stand-up comedy. Right now, I have a whole album on Netflix filled with specials. “I thought ‘I want to try that,’ so I started doing open-mic nights, and began to refine my standup skills and then adapted it to what I already do.” Freeman’s routines typically last about 90 minutes, and can sometimes feature other players, although Freeman said that hasn’t always been a good thing.

“I really enjoy some of my worst moments on stage, like making the birthday kid cry or when the mechanics of a trick go completely wrong because it makes for a great story,” he said. Freeman said his main goal is to create a show that he would want to go see himself. “A big reservation people have about coming to my show is that magic is cheesy, which it often is,” he said. “I make fun of that in my routine. I don’t hold back — I’m the first to criticize magic because it’s funny to take shots at something I love. Hopefully, I’ll be able to bridge the gap and modernize it, and make it appeal to people my age and older.” Freeman said he tries his best to balance every aspect of his life, from his studies to his job to his magic. “It takes a lot of time management skills, with rehearsals, and business meetings with theaters and my associates, and then, of course, getting all of my schoolwork and projects done,” he said. “Plus, I still need to sleep.

It all comes down to scheduling.” While Freeman would love to be a full-time comedic magician, he knows that there is more stability for him in the chemical engineering field. “I really enjoy performing, but I am also good at math and science and I like my classes here — but the two careers don’t exactly mix well,” he said. “Chemical engineering is a steady job, I can expect that income, whereas magic fluctuates depending on the time of the year and the area, so that’s a dilemma.” Freeman said he’s going to keep doing his act as long as possible and audience members for the Feb. 23 performance can expect a big show. “In a way, some parts of the show I’ve been rehearsing since I was 13, but this weekend we’re really trying to scale things up,” Freeman said. “We’re definitely putting in the man-hours during rehearsals— these are probably the most physically UP photo by Hannah LeTulle active tricks I’ve done so far.” LU senior Grant Freeman will bring his R-rated comedy show to Port Arthur Little Theatre, Feb. 23.

Sigma Xi to host research ecologist, Feb. 22 The Lamar University student chapter of Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Honor Society, will present “Wetlands & Climate Change: The Reconnection of People and the Land,” a lecture by Beth Middleton, research ecologist at the Wetland & Aquatic Research Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Lafayette, La., Feb. 22.

The event, 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., in the Dr. Richard L. Price Auditorium, Herman Iles Building, John Gray Center, on the LU campus, is free and open to the public. Middleton’s research focuses on potential climate change impacts to wetlands using a macroecology approach to study ecosystem function

across large geographical areas. She holds a Ph.D. in botany from Iowa State University. Her work is of interest to scientists, managers and the public in that it informs the way forward for climate change management, according to a release. She maintains a longterm network to examine climate change effects on some of

the most pristine cypress swamps in the southeastern United States. Her studies on the response of drought-stressed vegetation to hydrologic remediation are of critical importance to future natural resource conservation. Middleton’s talks focus on bringing an understanding of the effects of climate change on

world wetlands to university and public audiences. She gives many invited lectures on her ecological research as well as Earth Day talks and a TEDtalk called “Conservation Oblivion.” For more information, contact Jim Westgate, university professor of Earth and space sciences, at 880-7970.

University Press February 15, 2018  

The award-winning student newspaper of Lamar University

University Press February 15, 2018  

The award-winning student newspaper of Lamar University