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See inside for the UP’s semesterly magazine


The Newspaper of Lamar University

Vol. 94, No. 11 November 30, 2017

Fisher, Quispe named 2018 Beck Fellows Ian Rye UP contributor

Sakurah  Fisher,  Port Arthur  junior,  and  David Quispe,  La  Porte  junior, were  named  the  2018 David J. Beck Fellows at a reception Nov. 20 in  Gray Library. Also  named  were  the three finalists for the 2018 Presidential  Summer  Fellows.  They  include  Emily

McCall,  Orange  junior, Margaret  Kay-Alana Turner, Lumberton senior, and Amanda Warner, Orange junior. The David J. Beck Fellowship  is  an  opportunity in  which  Fellows  receive one  year  of  all  school  expenses  covered  including $10,000 in funding to pursue a summer project. The Presidential  Summer  Fellowship  grants  up  to

Lamar dance concert set for Friday-Sunday

$10,000  in  funding  for  a summer research project to the remaining top finalists who  applied  for  the  Beck Fellowship. Fisher, who is majoring in psychology with a minor in biology, is a member of the Reaud Honors College and is involved with many clubs and organizations at Lamar.  “It’s  still  surreal  and shocking  for  me,  because

2018 Beck Fellows David Quispe and Sakurah Fisher

this is a humbling experience and I’m truly excited and  honored  for  this  op-

portunity,” she said.  Fisher  plans  to  spend the summer in New York,

See BECK, page 2

18-25s likely to fall for online scams


Rise Fall

Trace Cowan UP contributor  

The  Lamar  University  department  of theatre and dance will present “Fall and Recovery,” Friday,  Saturday  and  Sunday  in the University Theatre.  Travis  Prokop,  assistant  professor  of dance, said that the audience should look forward to variety as well as dancing of a high caliber. “(The students’) work ethic and camaraderie amongst each other is very nice,” he said. “If someone wants to see a very nice quality dance concert, this is the one for them.”  Senior Katelyn Kirk is both a dancer and choreographer in the show. “There are a lot of different genres,” she said. “There’s modern, tap, musical theatre, aerial silks, contemporary, hip-hop, point — there’s a mix. There’s a piece that opens the  show  that’s  technology-based called ‘A Bright Tomorrow.’” There are ten pieces in total, five in each act.    Kirk  is  in  three  pieces,  Prokop’s “Paper Trail,” Lou Arrington’s “Broadway Revisited:  South  Pacific,”  and  “Word  of Mouth” by Amy Elizabeth.  “It’s so hard to say a favorite, they’re all completely different genres, and they’re all so different,” she said. “I’ve never worked with  Amy  Elizabeth  before.  She’s  a new choreographer, and I really enjoy her piece. I think it’s really entertaining.”  Two other seniors, Latroy Gable and Brianna Georgie, are performing one of two of the student-created pieces in the show.  “It’s  called  ‘The  Edge,’”  Gable  said.  “I asked the teachers if I could perform this as a break. There are a lot of dancers that perform  multiple  times  so  I  wanted  to  give them time to relax. I asked to put this in as some kind of intermission.”  There are some stresses that come with creating a piece without the help of trained professionals, but the most important for creating  “The  Edge”  was  the  problem  of time, Georgie said.  “We  didn’t  have  many  rehearsals  to work on this,” she said. “It wasn’t like we had days and days and days. We had to get it done on our own, quickly.  “It’s exciting to get to perform this for a full audience, but mainly for our families. I

as  a  research  assistant  at the Nathan S. Kline Institute  for  psychiatric  research.  “I’ll be studying non-invasive  brain  stimulations on  impaired  subcortical networks,  or  brain  networking,  in  patients  with schizophrenia  from  both the Kline Institute as well as the Columbia University

Joseph Brooks UP contributor

Since  the  beginning  of  the digital age, unscrupulous people  have  looked  for  ways  to trick  unsuspecting  browsers out  of  money  or  even  their identity. Despite what people may think, senior citizens are not the most susceptible to online  scams.  In  fact,  the  18-25 demographic is most likely to be victimized. “There are all types of forms of  scams,  such  as  money scams,  real  estate  scams  and employment  scams,”  Liz Fredrichs, president and CEO of  Better  Business  Bureau  in Beaumont,  said.  “Unfortunately,  the  young  generation are only aware of money scams and feel they are the only form of scamming.” Recent studies have shown that  young  adults  from  the ages  of  18-25  are  15  percent more  likely  to  be  scammed than adults aged 35-50. “(From)  the  research,  we have  discovered  that  the  reason the youth are the main victims  is  that  the  young generation tends to have a biased  perspective  that  adults, due  to  their  ages,  are  more likely  to  be  scammed  as  opposed  to  themselves,” Fredrichs said. “The way these scams  happen  is  that  young people will often get emails or phone  calls  from  businesses that  offer  jobs  or  ways  to  increase their income.” The  BBB  have  reports  of numerous  scams  that  offer

UP photo by Trace Cowan

Latroy Gable and Brianna Georgie rehearse for the fall dance concert, Monday.

know Latroy choreographed it, but I’m really proud to be in this piece. I think it’s been a really great learning process to learn a different style and work with a partner.”  Gable  said  the  type  of  dance  is  called mature partnering.  “I haven’t had much experience with it before  —  it’s  very  close,  we’re  touching everywhere,” he said. “The hardest part was me and Brianna had never established a friendship. Now it’s different, we can convey the message a lot better now than we could before we had a background. It was a big honor for it to get into the show. It was really personal.”  The show’s finale is a mixture of everything, Kirk said.

“It’s a mashup,” she said. “It’s got a mixture of musical theatre, tap — it’s very entertaining.” Kirk said that Hurricane Harvey meant that rehearsal time was shortened. “We felt rushed, but it’s come together really well,” she said, adding that one thing makes it all worthwhile. “Performing makes it worth it,” she said. “I’m really excited for this weekend.”  Show times are 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m., Sunday. Tickets are $7 for Lamar students, $10 for faculty, staff, seniors and other students, and $15 general admission. To reserve tickets, call 880-2250, or visit  

See BBB, page 2

Adoption Day leads to home for Anthony Hunter Abate UP contributor

UP photo by Hunter Abate

Judge Larry Thorne, center, dressed as the mayor of Munchkinland, shares a laugh with Bennie Berry and her new son Anthony, Nov. 17, at the Jefferson County Courthouse, following the Adoption Day event which had a “Yellow Brick Road” theme.

If one followed the “Yellow Brick  Road”  to  317th  district court  judge  Larry  Thorne’s courtroom  on  Nov.  17,  one would have found it packed to capacity with anxious families, eager to adopt their new son or daughter. Nov.  17  was  Jefferson County  Adoption  Day  and Thorne dressed as the mayor of Munchkinland to fit the day’s theme and add a sense of fun to the occasion. One by one, families stood before the judge and awaited the fateful words — “I grant this adoption.”  Hidden  in  the  crowd,  but with  the  biggest  smile  on  his

face,  was  Anthony  Benzell Berry. “To  be  honest,  I  really couldn’t  sleep  last  night,”  he said. “I told mom, ‘I don’t think I’ll  be  able  to  sleep,’  and  she was like, ‘I don’t think I am either.” Berry, a 16-year-old Beaumont native, was adopted after being in foster care since 2010. Berry is the oldest of the 18 children  adopted  during  the ceremony.  Adoption  was something that he had all but given up on due to his age and the hardships he faced during his time in foster care, he said. “I was going through a lot, but then I met my mom and it just kind of happened,” he said. Anthony  met  his  eventual

mother,  Bennie  Berry,  at  the Pathways  Learning  Center high school where she teaches English. “I wasn’t looking for anyone to  adopt  me,  but  then  I  met her,  and  I  started  talking  to her,  and  we  just  kind  of clicked,”  he  said.  “And  when she first said yes, she was interested in adoption, I was like, ‘Oh  yeah,  she’s  just  saying that.’  But  come  to  find  out later, when I left Pathways, I got a phone call and ever since then we’ve been here.” Bennie  Berry  initially thought  Anthony  was  joking, but quickly realized that he was serious  when  he  wanted  to See ADOPTION, page 2



Thursday, November 30, 2017 University Press Page 2


from page 1

Medical Center in Manhattan, New York,” she said. Fisher hopes that her research will help individuals with schizophrenia to normalize themselves to a more functional level in society. “I decided to choose schizophrenic patients because they are an underrepresented group in our society, and I feel like they are individuals who have lost their voice,” she said. Quispe is a double major in electrical engineering and mathematics, a member of the Reaud Honors College, and is involved in LU’s Institute of Electrical and Electron-


from page 1

hurricane victims FEMA-related jobs to targeted young people. Also, there are offers for people to earn up to $300 by becoming a secret shopper, but people who applied for that have lost a significant amount of money as a result. “Last month, on Sept. 14, we got a call from a young lady who applied for a job that she thought was offered to her by FEMA but later on, after applying, she found out that she lost $2,900,” Fredrichs said. “What happened is that when applying she included her bank information including her routing number and credit card number assuming it was needed for the job to pay her in the form of direct deposit.”


from page 1

show her the adoption website. “Well, at first I thought he was just making jokes, until he actually explained the situation,” she said. “Then we struck a deal — finish the assignment and then you can show me the website. Then he showed me his picture on the website and I said, ‘Oh, OK, let me see what they’ll say.’ So, I filled it out and got a response back. Then later I found it was really an option to adopt him, so we pushed forward.” Bennie said adoption is an incredible task to take on, but believes she is ready for the job. “It means a lifelong commitment, I guess that’s why it’s kind of surreal,” she

“The two most joyous times of the year are Christmas morning and the end of school.” — Alice Cooper

ics Engineers Student Chapter. “I feel excited, but I also feel a little calm at the same time — excited but calm,” he said. “I’ve been to Arizona (for research) before and I’m most excited about the ability to be efficient in a lab I’m familiar with.” Quispe will be return to Arizona State University next summer for his fellowship. His plan is to study a specific type of solar cell called a transparent conductive oxide layer or TCO to hopefully expand the variety of materials available for construction of the cells. “Specifically, my long-term goal is to try and provide underdeveloped countries an efficient method of generating and distributing electricity,” he said. “I see the potential that solar energy has, especially from

last summer when I was in Arizona.” At the ceremony, 2017 Beck Fellows Natalie Sfeir and Dillon Nicholsen each presented reports on their summer experiences. Sfeir had traveled Europe and the United States and studied different communal efforts to cope with dementia. Nicholsen stayed in France and studied Critical Theory while translating Marxist texts. The David J. Beck Fellowships reward outstanding academic achievement and allow top students to further challenge themselves with unique opportunities for undergraduate research and creative study. For more information visit the fellowship’s webpage at forms/studentsbeck-fellowships.html

Michelle Brewer, director of consumer education at BBB, said young people are also the target of “spoofing,” where they get calls from their own phone number. People respond as they believe it is a call from their service provider. “This scam is done to try to steal personal information and even money,” she said. There are ways to prevent being scammed, Friedrichs said. The BBB’s website,, has a list of various scams that have occurred in Southeast Texas. The site includes information on how to recognize scams and take action if one has been victimized. “We have articles which includes the top-10 categories of scamming and it

also shows steps on how to avoid these scams from happening,” she said. “The best thing that anyone should do, as soon as they get an email or a phone call from an unknown business and they ask for your information for whatever reason, you need to immediately find out the organization. “Once you find the organization, you need to look up the organization on our website and see if it’s on there — if it is not, then it is not real.” She said “also never be to quick to just give out your personal information you must always find out the reasoning that your information is reading because once it’s out there it’s out there.” For more information contact the Better Business Bureau at 835-5951, or visit

said. “It’s not a day I ever sat down and planned. It’s very special though, because now have someone that I can love like my parents loved me — unconditionally. And he took my dad’s name (Benzell, as his middle name), so that’s really special.” Anthony’s story has led him to appear on Good Morning America and NBC Nightly News, and networks Fox News and CNN. He considers himself an advocate for adopting older children. “If you never thought about adoption, or didn’t want to be adopted, actually try it, because you never know,” he said. “Take in to consideration that for someone that does not love you, there is always someone that will love you — so just give it a chance.” Bennie Berry said she was looking forward to Adoption Day, but more that she

and Anthony could start their new life together. “My anxiety is not what it was, I just feel blessed, I feel blessed,” she said. “And to my son, ‘I love you Anthony.’” Anthony smiled and replied, “I love you too, Momma.” Even though he has received a lot of attention, Anthony is humble. “It is just not necessarily for me — like, I feel great about today, but it is for everyone that actually got the chance to get a new start, a fresh start, a new identity, to leave their past in the past,” he said. “I’m pretty sure I can say for everyone, ‘It is a great day.’” For more information, call 718-7220, email, or visit


The University Press can be read online at Advertising rates can be found on the site, along with practically all information that a person might be looking for.


December 1 & 2

“Fall and Recovery” Fall Dance Concert University Theatre 7:30 p.m. - 9 p.m.

December 3

“Fall and Recovery” Fall Dance Concert University Theatre 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

December 5

Therapy Dogs Gray Library, 1st floor 2 p.m. - 4 p.m., 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

December 6

Annual Library Wassail Gray Library, 1st floor 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Therapy Dogs Gray Library, 1st floor 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

December 7

Therapy Dogs Gray Library, 1st floor 2 p.m. - 4 p.m., 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

December 8

Opening Reception: Senior Thesis Art Exhibition Dishman Art Museum 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

December 10

Therapy Dogs Gray Library, 1st floor 2 p.m. - 4 p.m., 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

December 12

Last Class Day for Fall Semester


3 UNIVERSITY PRESS November 30, 2017

It is traditional for graduating UP management staff to pen a column as their Lamar story ends (dubbed a “-30-” column in recognition of the symbol to end stories in the old days of typesetting).

Hands-on experience adds to education

Historian reflects on value of having varied interests

If you had asked me freshman year whether I thought I would ever work for the University Press, I would have said no. I was a music major, an area of study that had next to nothing to do with journalism. Sure, I’d seen the papers in the little kiosks around campus, but I never thought about actually going to the office and putting in an application. If you had told me that one day I would be Editor-inChief, I would have looked at you like you were crazy. That changed dramatically my junior year. Working at the University Press wasn’t even my idea. In the spring of 2016, I had just been appointed the student information officer and campus liaison for the marching band. Our director, Eric Shannon, decided that a good way for me to make sure the campus community was aware of information about the marching band — and, in turn, make sure the marching band was aware of what was going on around campus — would be for me to come write for the UP. I had no expectations going in. As far as I was concerned, it was just part of my job. It was a job that I wound up really loving, and decided to stick with. The UP has basically been like a family — a crazy, fun family that I’ve enjoyed working with immensely. I’ve found out first-hand just how nice it is to enjoy your job, and to be able to laugh with your coworkers. However, the University Press has only been one part of my experience at Lamar. During my time here, I’ve also had the privilege of working with some amazing professors who have helped me and mentored me. Their assistance and support has made my experience at Lamar so much richer, by allowing me to do things I never could have without them, like my undergraduate research or my honors thesis. Now that my time at Lamar is ending, my advice to other students is to find professors you can work closely with, and take advantage of any help they have to offer — whether it’s facilitating your research, giving you guidance about your future career, inspiring your interest in a particular subject or just writing you letters of recommendation. Sometimes those relationships can be among the most fruitful aspects of your academic career. It is my sincere hope that everyone can find at least one mentor who proves as invaluable to them as some of my professors have been to me. I’d like to talk about a few of them and thank them for everything they’ve done. First, Eric Shannon — thank you for convincing me to come write for the UP in the first place. You have been a great band director, not just in terms of how much you’ve taught those of us in the band, but how fun you’ve made the experience. Thank you for always being willing to give advice to your students and laughing with us. Being in band is just somehow better when the director is just as big a nerd as the members — and I mean that in a good way. Second, Bryan Proksch, who oversaw both my undergraduate research and my honors thesis. Having the professor who teaches the subject I want to pursue as a career as my mentor has been enormously helpful. I have probably learned more about academic writing from you than anyone else on this campus, and can now basically do Chicago-Turabian style citations in my sleep. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that my prospects of getting into graduate school are a lot better because of the things you taught me, so thank you. Finally, Mark Mengerink, who taught me, above all else, never to take myself too seriously. Write an honors thesis about heavy metal, host an event for the history honor society that involves professors getting whipped cream thrown on them, wear steampunk gear to class… and don’t stress unnecessarily. When life hands you frogs, eat them (yes, he was that professor). Thank you. I hope the future Dr. McAlister is as awesome and cool in the eyes of her students as you are. I am going to miss you all.

Caitlin McAlister editor

______ Taylor Philips advertising manager

When I transferred to Lamar from Texas State I knew only that I wanted to graduate with a major in communications. At at the end of my first semester I considered an emphasis in advertising. The more I studied the subject, the more excitement I felt toward it. Halfway through my next semester, I heard from a professor that the University Press was hiring an advertising assistant. I had been searching for ways to build up professional experience that I would be able to showcase on my resume and this seemed like the perfect opening. Since starting my job here, the UP has provided me with access to state-of-theart software and equipment that allowed me to learn skills almost all advertising jobs require. I have produced multiple projects utilizing Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and Premiere, and after a year of working here I feel completely comfortable using them. Of course, classes on these programs come with the degree plan, but to the ambitious student that cares about having something impressive to show for at the end of their academic career, classes do not advance you far enough. The UP has given me the opportunity to grow and refine a skill-set that I otherwise would not have been able to achieve. When I started at the UP, I knew nothing practical about advertising. All I knew was that I wanted to pursue a career in it and I had to find a way to make it happen. Stephan Malick, our assistant director, quickly showed me how it was done. He explained that this is a changing field that requires versatile workers skilled at every angle that comes with the profession. In order to learn those skills, I would have to create the means of fulfilling them myself utilizing the UP as my platform. I consider this one of the most valuable experiences I have encountered at Lamar. Knowing how to do the work is one thing, but attaining the discipline that results from creating the work out of nothing holds a value that I place in an entirely separate category. All of the work I have produced through the UP has shaped me as an advertiser. I was given a working style to start with, and through practice and persistence I have seen that style grow into something much more personal. When I started off, I had no idea how to create an ad. I knew what good ads looked like, somewhat, but I hardly understood any of the elements that compose them. Now, after working with well over a dozen different clients both on and off campus, I can confidently construct anything from a 1-inch by 1-inch web ad, to a full-blown video campaign. In addition to the skill-set and the experience, working for the University Press has also provided me with works to display in a portfolio that I am proud of, which has already successfully landed me a job interview. Here at the end of my academic career, I stand on the edge of an unseen future with a steady outlook. I began, unsure of where I would find myself and with no concept of what it would take to get me there. Now, I find myself well prepared to spread my wings and take on a new and exciting horizon. It has been both a challenging and an enlightening experience getting here and I hold no regrets about it. I have learned more than I can express and made several friends along the way. I have achieved my original goal of graduating with a degree and have exceeded it, knowing now that I can leave Lamar University with the peace of mind that I am ready for the real world, and that is what working for the University Press is all about. My parting advice is to find an outlet where the lessons of the classroom can be translated to practical skills. The teachers can only take us so far. Part of a good college education is up to us.

UPeditorial End of semester a departure for some, break for others It’s finally here — the sweet relief known as the end of the semester. For those who are graduating, congratulations. You’ve worked hard to get to this point and you deserve it. Good luck with whatever your future holds, be it graduate school, a career, or something else. We know

you’ll miss Lamar, but the time has come for you to move on to bigger and better things. Even though it may be strange to leave somewhere familiar, you should embrace the unknown, not be scared of it — as Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, “The only thing we have to fear is

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

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fear itself.” For those of you coming back in the spring, know that by completing another semester, you are one step closer to finishing your degree. It may not seem like it now, but graduation will be here before you know it. When that time arrives, you’ll look

Individuals who wish to speak out on issues should send a letter fewer than 400 words in length to Letters to the Editor, P.O. Box 10055, Beaumont, TX 77710, or drop letters off at our office in 202 Carl Parker Building. The writer’s name, address, telephone number and ID number must accompany each letter. Letters received without this information cannot be printed. Letters may be edited for length, grammar, style and possible libel. Opinions expressed in letters are not necessarily those of the UP student management. Letters by the same writer on the same subject will not be published. Poetry and religious debates will not be published.

back and realize that all of those dreaded term papers and late nights up studying for finals were worth it. In the meantime, relax and have a safe holiday. Have some fun and unwind, whatever that entails for you. You’ll need the energy for spring semester. 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 2017

Page 4

Thursday, November 30, 2017 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

Holiday Fun Guide

Happening things to do during your Winter Break The Historic

Jefferson Theatre 345 Fannin, downtown

If you’ve never been to the historic Jefferson Theatre, there are two great opportunities to see the venue and some great music

An Evening with Jack Ingram

Thursday, Dec. 21 Doors open at 7 p.m. Show begins at 8 p.m. Price - General Admission: $20 plus fees - Orchestra Seating: $35 plus fees For more information call: (409) 838-3435

Roger Creager’s Party Song Sing Along “Piano Bar” Friday, Dec. 29 Doors open at 7 p.m. Show begins at 8 p.m. Price: 20$ for a limited time For information call: (409) 838-3435

Party Hardy News Year’s Eve Soiree

The Betty Greenburg Center for Performing Arts 4155 Laurel St. Sunday, Dec. 31 Time: 7:30 p.m. Price: $60 per person / $100 per couple For more information call: (409) 833-4664 A red carpet event with the Beaumont Community Players, filled with food, drinks, contests and more. Being held at The Betty Greenburg Center for Performing Arts on New Year’s

David Crowder Texas Takeover Tour

Julie Rogers Theatre 765 Pearl St, downtown

Jan. 10 Doors open at 6 p.m. Show begins at 7 p.m. Price: $20 - $40 For more info call: (409) 838-3435

Knuckle Deep – SFN – Goliad - TAME FURY The Gig 240 Crockett St. Friday, Dec. 22 Doors Open 8 p.m. For more information call: (409) 839-8300

Tracy Byrd

Backyard Dance Hall 3871 Stagg Dr. Beaumont, TX 77701 Saturday, Dec. 23 Time: 10:30 p.m. For more information call: (409) 838-9966

XMas WKND special events

Stop by at these local events if you are looking for something to do on Christmas Weekend.

The HFA’s on Christmas Eve-Eve

Lodge Style Party

Elk’s Lodge 11431 Highway 90 Sunday, Dec. 31 Time: 7 p.m. Price: $25 For more information call: (409) 540-2332

The Gig 240 Crockett St. Saturday, Dec. 23 8 p.m. Price: $10 at the door

Bar Local New Year’s Eve Bash

Bar Local 6358 Phelan Sunday, Dec. 31 Price: Free For more information call: (409) 866-2669 Bar Local is hosting a New Year’s Eve Bash for anyone who wants to join celebrate New Years with Bar Local. For a blast from the past, the event takes place at Bar Local on Phelan for New Year’s Eve.

Prohibition Bash

Logon Café 3805 Calder Ave Sunday, Dec. 31 Time: 8 p.m. – 2 a.m. Price $10 For more information call: (409) 833-6950

Xmas Nite at TASI The Art Studio, Inc. 720 Franklin St. Monday, Dec. 25 Time: 7:30 - midnight Price: $5 Cash


FESTIVITIES ‘Yule’ never believe it


Thursday, November 30, 2017

UP illustration by Olivia Malick

Christmas was not always sedate family holiday Olivia Malick UP staff writer

ow that Thanksgiving has passed, Christmas celebrations are in full swing. Christmas, however, is not celebrated in every home — in fact, it’s estimated that around 17 percent of Americans do not celebrate Christmas, and those that do celebrate it dramatically differently than the inventors of Yule. Although Christmas centers around the supposed birthday of Jesus Christ, it is quite a secular holiday. An estimated 13 percent of non-practicing Christians celebrate the holiday, and many non-Christians celebrate Christmas in some form or another. Also, with the commercialization of Christmas, it is more a time of presents, decoration and sales rather than a church day. The origin of Christmas occurred centuries before Jesus was born and was not rooted in religiosity. Four hundred years before Christ, in ancient Scandinavia, Yule was observed to celebrate the winter solstice and the end of harsh winter. Before the advent of Christianity, paganism ruled the spiritual world and there were many variations. For example, the Germanic people used Yule to honor their god Odin. Their version of the holiday was much darker than that celebrated today — Odin was believed to roam the skies at night, deciding who got to live and who got to die, so most people stayed inside. The Romans celebrated Saturnalia, also occurring around the winter solstice, which paid homage to the god of agriculture, Saturn. Along with Saturnalia, Juvenalia was observed simultaneously in the form of a feast for the children. The nobility of Rome celebrated the birthday of Mithra, or the Light of the World, on Dec. 25. In the fourth century, Jesus’ birth became a holiday, and although it is not known when Jesus was actually born, Pope Julius I chose Dec. 25 as the day of celebration. Being that the new holiday occurred around the same time as Saturnalia, a lot of the same pagan traditions were adopted, and eventually the celebrations merged. Christmas became a rancorous holiday with excessive drinking and partying. It was an occasion of mischief, and the poor would go to upper-class houses and beg for food and drink where they would browbeat the rich to


gratify them. This is how Christmastime became known as the season of helping the less fortunate. In 1645, Oliver Cromwell overthrew the English monarchy and took power. A staunch Puritan, he cancelled Christmas, which he thought to be an immoral holiday. This, among other things, made Cromwell extremely unpopular. When the monarchy was restored in 1660, Charles II restored Christmas. When the pilgrims came to America, they held Puritan beliefs, so Christmas was not celebrated in the New World from 1659-1681. Christmas did not come into mainstream American culture until 1870 when President Ulysses S. Grant declared it a federal holiday. The Americans decided to reinvent Christmas as a family holiday of peace instead of the traditional riotous occasion. From that moment on, Christmas has evolved into a family-centric holiday focusing on giving to the less fortunate. There are, however, other celebrations that occur in December aside from Christmas. The Jewish observance of Hanukkah can fall anywhere between late November and early January and, in the Western world, has become an increasingly commercialized and recognized holiday, due to its occurrence close to Christmas. Hanukkah was first celebrated in the second century B.C. in commemoration of the Maccabean Revolt and the Second Temple in Jerusalem. Also called the Festival of Lights, it commemorates the miracle in which the menorah candles of the Second Temple burned for eight days, even though there was only enough oil to keep the candles lit for a single night, hence the eight day celebration. Foods served during Hanukkah are fried in oil, including latkes (or potato pancakes) and sufganiyot (jam filled donuts). The menorah is nine branched to represent each of the eight days, with the ninth candle being used to light the others. Three percent of Americans celebrate Hanukkah, making it the second most celebrated winter observance. Two percent of Americans celebrate Kwanzaa, and though it is often mentioned in conjunction with Christmas and Hanukkah, its origins and celebrations are unique. The holiday is relatively new having been created in 1966 by Maulana Karenga in response to the racially-charged Watts riots the

Krampus, Santa’s dark brother, gaining popularity Olivia Malick UP staff writer

Christmastime is a joyous occasion in which children receive presents from Santa Claus. Ginormous trees are decorated with lights and ornaments, stockings are hung from mantles, lights and decorations illuminate almost every neighborhood in America, and cookies and milk are laid out for the mystical St. Nick. Christmastime is even dubbed “the most wonderful time of the year.” But the ancient traditions of Yule in Europe view Christmas as a much scarier holiday. Krampus — also known as the Christmas Devil — is believed to be St. Nicholas’ other half, a darker, more twisted creature. Stemming from Germanic folklore, Krampus is a half-goat, half demon with horns and fangs, equipped with a chain and sticks in order to beat children in to being nice. Krampus is also known for taking naughty children back to his lair in Hell. In 2015, Krampus was newly introduced to America in the form of a holiday horror film, and made its way into mainstream media. In Austria, Hungary, Slovenia and the Czech Republic, there are “Krampusnacht” (Krampus Night) festivals where men dress up in costume and drunkenly take to the streets to scare people. The Catholic Church outlawed Krampus, stating that the celebrations were too riotous. During World War II, Krampus was seen as political figure of Social Democrats — heavily opposed by the fascist regimes of the time. Krampus has always been used as a means to scare children into behaving so that they would earn their presents from St. Nicholas, and while the tradition has become modernized in recent decades, the underlying point is the same. Because of movies and social media, Krampus’ presence has become more frequent, even in places like America that do not have traditional ties to the ancient demon. It might not be the sweet Santa we have come to know, but Krampus may be more of a motivation to be good than the threat of a lump of coal. previous year. Kwanzaa, which takes inspiration from celebrations of the Zulu and the Ashanti peoples, centers around seven principles that Karenga believed would help African Americans unite — unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith. On each night of Kwanzaa, one principle is discussed and one candle is lit on the kinara to represent that idea. Festivities include dancing, meals and storytelling, all centering around traditional African customs. There are also seven symbols essen-

tial in the observance of Kwanzaa — crops (fruits and vegetables representing work), place mats (representing African history and culture), an ear of corn (representing fertility), the seven candles (which symbolizes the sun’s light), the kinara (symbol of ancestry), the unity cup (used in the libation ritual) and the gifts (which encourage success). December may be known for Christmas, but Hanukkah and Kwanzaa provide a different take on universal themes — family, food and faith. Each of these three celebrations may be observed differently, but all are an opportunity for togetherness.

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Thursday, November 30, 2017 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

‘The Lonesome West’ to open Friday Olivia Malick UP staff writer

Not every story ends in a happily-ever-after. In “The Lonesome West,” drunken fights mixed with murder charges bring two brothers to their wits end and no one knows what will happen next. Ad Hoc will open the play Friday, with additional performances Saturday, Dec. 8, 9, 15, and 16, at The Art Studio, Inc. Irish playwright Martin McDonagh’s play is set in the town of Leenane in western Ireland. The dark comedy explores how two brothers cope with their anger, and the death of their father and acquaintances. “This play focuses on character relationships,” Michael Saar, LU associate professor of library services, who plays one of the brothers, Valene, said. “Ad Hoc is drawn to dark humor. This play is funny, but there is an intensity to it.” Saar said the play examines compassion in an environment when everyone is looking out for himself. “It shows how people interact with religion and family,” he said. “We thought it would be interesting to explore that on stage.” Michael Mason, who plays

Coleman, said he has wanted to do a McDonagh play with Ad Hoc for a while, and said that the show plays to the group’s strengths as performers. “I’ve always liked McDonagh’s work and I think other people enjoy it as well,” he said. “We like to explore dark humor where terrible things are funny, and it’s nice to perform a show that is a little closer to life than maybe a musical would be.” Brothers Coleman and Valene constantly argue with each other, and are jobless and lost in their own worlds. Saar said that portraying someone quite different from himself is a challenge. “I looked at what my character was trying to achieve,” he said. “This is the third play in the Connemara trilogy, so there’s a lot of information about who these characters are and how they are viewed by the rest of their community, which is definitely helpful when trying to develop a character.” Mason said that the play will appeal to a younger audience and that the performance is unlike most shows one would see in Beaumont. Saar said that Lamar students will enjoy the play, given

The University Press staff has compiled a series of questions related to upcoming holidays. How much do you know? Answers are posted below.

1. Which state was the first to declare Christmas an official holiday?

2. On what date does Hanukkah begin this year? UP photo by Olivia Malick

Michael Saar, left, and Michael Mason rehearse a scene from Ad Hoc’s “The Lonesome West,” which opens Friday at The Art Studio, Inc. that the theater department has done a few of McDonagh’s plays in the past. “Lamar presented the first play in this trilogy (“The Beauty Queen of Leenane”),” he said. “These plays do not present a pleasant portrait of humanity — they really look at the people on the outskirts. There’s no typical leading man or woman, which I think students can relate to.” Since the play is set in rural Ireland, the cast members had to develop accents and different speaking pattern, which Mason said was difficult, but rewarding. “The lines in this play were

hard for me to memorize,” he said. “The syntax and rhythm order are very different than what I’m used to, but listening to Irish dialects helped me find that rhythm which helped the lines roll out of my mouth smoother.” McDonagh also wrote the movie “In Bruge” and is currently tipped for an Oscar nomination for writing “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Tickets are $15. For more information, contact Ad Hoc on their Facebook page. The Art Studio is located at 720 Franklin in downtown Beaumont.

Retired teacher draws historical art Shane Proctor UP contributor

Wendell G. Williamson, Houston artist and retired history teacher, draws images filled with inspirational sayings. “I started drawing when I was half past the knee of a grasshopper,” he said. His images are put together from memories and from life experiences. Williamson also gets ideas and inspiration from patrons who hire him to make drawings. “In many of my drawings, I will copy several photo-

graphs of my subject matter and draw them to fit together as one composition,” he said. Before his commits to drawing subjects with historical content, he will research the topic and create the drawing as close to the historical reference of the subject. For some of his civil war drawings, he has visited the sites where the battles happened to get a connection with the space. Williamson travels all over the U.S. selling his drawings at fairs and trade shows. The retired history

UP Trivia

Wendell G. Williamson teacher loves to share his works, along with a small

UP photos by Shane Proctor

history lesson for each piece of work on display.

3. True or false? Kwanzaa occurs before Christmas this year.

4. What country did the tradition of Christmas trees begin in? 5. Which U.S. president was the first to participate in the lighting of the National Christmas Tree?

1. Louisiana, which officially declared Christmas a legal holiday in 1831. Although Arkansas also began observing Christmas as a legal holiday the same year, it was not yet a state.

2. December 12. The eight-day long celebration runs until December 20.

3. False. Kwanzaa will begin on December 26 and last until January 1. 4. Germany. The tradition became popular outside Germany in the 19th century, especially after Queen Victoria married Prince Albert, who was German, and the British royal family began incorporating Christmas trees into their holiday celebrations.

5. Calvin Coolidge. The tradition of having a National Christmas Tree lit by the then-current President of the United States began in 1923.

UNIVERSITY PRESS • Thursday, November 30, 2017

Page 7

Accomplishing goal just leads to raising bar

What a year, or, rather, a semester. This semester I accomplished one of my biggest goals since coming to the university – being a sports editor. In high school, I thought through every occupation possible, picturing what I wanted do and who I wanted to be in the future. Scary stuff, I know, but, at the end of the day, I picked two of the things I loved most — reading and writing. I didn’t want to be a novelist — too lonely. I didn’t want to study English literature — not enough expression. I like to talk. I like to meet new people. I like to learn. I wanted to have a career with diversity, and a chance to travel and explore the world. So, what job could incor-


Cassandra Jenkins UP sports editor

UPsports Volleyball Amy Hollowell and Haley Morton had strong efforts in their final match in a Lamar University uniform, but the Cardinals (4-22 overall, 2-14 SLC) fell to host Stephen F. Austin in straight sets in a Southland Conference women’s volleyball match, Nov. 11. Alan Edwards has also resigned as head coach for Lamar this season.

porate all these things? Journalism. I fell in love with it after writing my first article for the University Press and seeing my name printed in a newspaper. I knew this was what I wanted to do, and nothing could stop me after that. My first interaction with the media was by volunteering for the University Press. Well, technically, it was mandatory for my multimedia class, but it quickly began to stop feeling like work or a grade. It was fun. Fun? In college? I know right. But it was. I got to experience the campus from a new perspective. I got to talk to teachers and professionals, I would have never met otherwise. Eventually, I took on the role as staff writer. Now I was getting paid to do what I truly wanted to do. I began to gravitate towards sports. No one on the staff at the time knew much about sports, or liked them, except me. I grew up playing basketball and watching football. I even tried soccer once but it was too much running. So, I edged my way into the category, crossing my fingers that I was doing a good job. Which looking back now, I guess I did. Last spring, I was told I was going to be the new sports editor.

Tennis The Lamar University men’s tennis team closed out the fall season with an exclamation point at the Ron Wesbrooks Invitational, Nov. 15. The Cardinals won three singles titles and a doubles title on the final day of their lone home tournament of the fall. The Ron Wesbrooks Invitational concludes the fall season for the Cardinals. LU will open the spring season Sunday, Jan. 14th with a doubleheader in Stillwater, Okla. The women’s tennis team exits the

I was thrilled and couldn’t wait for the next semester to start already. I got a badge with my face on it and my official title underneath. I went to games of all kinds and travelled all across Texas. I endured a three-hour long rain delay in Cougar Stadium at the University of Houston for football. I went deep into the heart of Aggieland at College Station to watch our soccer team kick ass in an incredible

game, win or lose. I sat in pristine press boxes with snacks and drinks available at all times. I flashed my press pass as I skipped long lines at the doors to enter stadiums huge and small. It was awesome. I felt like a kid in a candy shop. Thinking back, I will remember all these experiences. I was introduced to the Beaumont Enterprise’s sports editor last se-

2017 fall season with a bitter taste after dropping a 4-1 decision to Southland Conference foe McNeese State, Nov. 5, on the final day of the George E. Fourmaux Invitational in Hammond, La. Big Red’s lone victory came from sophomore Sanja Jolic at No. 2 singles. The match wrapped up the 2017 fall season for the Cardinals. The Red and White will now have three months to prepare for the start of the spring season. Big Red opens the spring Saturday, Jan. 20 at Rice.

Golf Lamar University’s Cody Banach finished tied for 18th as the LU men’s golf team placed 12th at the Steelwood Collegiate Invitational that wrapped up, Oct. 29. The tournament marked the end of the fall season for the Cardinals, who don’t return to competition until they open their spring season at the All-American Collegiate, set for Feb. 16-18 in Humble. The women’s Elodie Chapelet overcame a slow start to the final round to

mester and it didn’t take long before I was writing freelance stories for them, too. I went to my first bass fishing competition. I experienced the thrill of Mid-County Madness. I also found out high school football was a whole other game than college. I suddenly lost the luxury of snacks, stat sheets and flashy press boxes. But, it taught me how to take my own stats, always prepare for cold weather and how to smuggle in snickers bars. Being a sports editor is an amazing feeling, but knowing I am headed in the right direction is even better. Every game, win or lose, is a new experience to me. Every coach, player and team has different styles, different personalities. To talk to these people about their hopes and dreams, what they accomplished and what is still to come will always be my favorite part of being a sports writer. In the spring, I am being promoted to managing editor, second-in-command. Apparently, I will still be sports editor as well. A couple of years ago I would never have thought I could handle it all. But that’s what experience shows me. I can handle it all — and love it.

finish tied for ninth at the USF Invitational at the TPC Tampa Bay, Oct. 31. The Lady Cardinals will open their spring season at the Texas State Invitational, set for Feb. 12-13. Cross Country The cross country teams turned in solid showings at the NCAA South Central Regionals, Nov. 10. The LU men’s team finished eighth out of 24 teams, while the LU women placed 10th of 24 teams at Texas A&M’s Watts Cross Country Course. 

Congrats, intramurals Champs Intramural Fall 2017 Champions 5 on 5 Basketball Champions Zeta and Pike Men: lil Saint BBB Corporation 7 on 7 Flag Football Champions Zeta & ATO Men: Pi Kappa Alpha 8 Ball Pool Champion ATO - Marc Lerma

Badminton Champions Singles: Nguyen Nguyen Doubles: Hendez Johns Panakkal  & Naga Venkata harish Chitikela Indoor Cricket Champions Team X

Table Tennis Champions Women Singles: Thanh Tsan Men Singles:  Syed Ali Men Doubles: Kim T & Ravin Nguyen Residence Halls Sand Volleyball Champions Morris Hall

Residence Halls 3 on 3 Basketball Champions Monroe Hall Indoor Soccer Champions Swag Dragons Air Hockey Champion Roshan Patel

6 on 6 Volleyball Champions Women: Spiked Punch Men: Smashing Ballz Football Pick ‘ems Week 7 Standings

1st place: Flavies Heffner-121

2nd place: Jason Harrington-111

Page 8

Thursday, November 30, 2017 • UNIVERSITY PRESS

Cardinals continue to brave storm

Cesar J. Delgado UP contributor

With Hurricane Harvey two months in the past, many students have returned to their routines. However, three Lamar students are still dealing with the aftermath of the storm. “It has been stressful with a capital ‘S,’” Odalys Terrazas, Port Arthur freshman, said. “My family and I were left with no house, no vehicles, and more than half of our belongings were ruined. It has been devastating.” Terrazas said her family received no help from the Red Cross, and her immediate family had to turn to their extended family for aid while they rebuild their house. “At the moment, our uncle is allowing us to stay at his house,” she said. “Truly, that is about all the support we have now.” Between juggling school, working and reconstruction, Terrazas said she feels her class work has been affected. “The first few weeks of school I did not have any type of internet connection, so I was not able to start that first week of school when our classes started online,”

she said. “Plus, we were financially limited and, as a result, I struggled to get the books I needed for my classes. Also, we were struggling to get a permanent vehicle to get to school.” However, Terrazas and her family said that they have achieved some type of normalcy. “We are expecting to have our house reconstructed in the near future,” she said. “Maybe, in a month or so. That is what the timeframe is looking like because my family and I are the only ones working on it.” Although Terrazas is aiming for a normal life, she said that it will take some time. “Personally, this feels like a big setback,” she said. “Honestly, this situation will suck for a while. Nevertheless, it will get better.” Alston Jones, Vidor freshman, shares a similar experience. “Me and my family lost everything,” he said. “We got eight feet of water in our house. We lost five vehicles and all of our personal items.” Jones said he feels that his family has handled the adversity well. “We did not receive help from FEMA or Red Cross, however,

that is fine,” he said. “Right now, my family is living in a traveltrailer. I am staying on campus, so we are doing well. It may take up to nine months to rebuild our house, but that’s no problem.” His positive outlook is the result of his family being prepared for Harvey, Jones said. “Prior to the storm, we had flood insurance,” he said. “My family and I have always thought, ‘Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.’ Of course, no one wants to think about such extremes, but it really helped out this time around.” Jones said he has not let Harvey affect his performance at school. “I am still putting in the same amount of effort I would have if we started without problems,” he said. “Classes have been going good. My only concern was that school was not going to start on time, but here we are, more than three months in. That is all that matters. Honestly, I am quite satisfied how we have progressed.” Now, Jones and his family play the waiting game. “For a while, they were not allowing us to rebuild our house in the area where it originally was,

UP photo by Cesar J. Delgado

Corby Lee stands in the gutted hallway of his home which flooded during Harvey. since it was in a flood zone,” he said. “It took some time to finally get the approval, but we received it. Our circumstances can only go up from here.” Corby Lee, Vidor senior, was not so lucky and has decided to take the year off before finishing his degree. “I was going to go back with some financial assistance from my grandparents, but since Harvey happened I could not commence my studies,” he said. “We had to use that money to rebuild. As a result, I decided to stay with my family and assist them.” Lee said he is determined to finish his studies. “It is going to be a struggle to be able to go back to school, but my family and I will pull through

together and come out on top,” he said. “I look forward to returning to Lamar next fall.” Lee has encouraging words for people who are struggling with the storm’s aftermath. “If there are any other students that are out there dealing with a similar situation, I ask that they keep their heads up,” he said. “That is the only way to get through this disaster. That is the only way we can survive — the small victories will pull us through to see the end of this. “We cannot change what happened, but we can change where we go from here. Keep in mind, there is always a silver lining to any cloud in the sky. No matter how dark and grey it may seem.”

LU Grammys to benefit sophomore Walker, Dec. 7 Maia Smith UP contributor

Lamar University’s Future Cultured Society is partnering up with Woman 2 Woman and the Lamar Fashion Merchandising Association to hold “LU Grammys,” an award show at 7 p.m., Dec. 7, in Price Auditorium. Admission is a donation of clothes, shoes or toiletries for a student in need at Lamar. “The goal of the event is to highlight the positivity on campus and to network with other organizations, so that we can come together to put on a show for the

students,” president Merrick Needham, Houston junior, said. “‘LU Grammys’ is a student-run award show to reward the students that stand out by their peers as a good representation for a particular category. There is strict dress code for everyone that is going to attend. We want it to be like the Grammys is being really hosted here at Lamar. Not only do we want to bring recognition to our organization on campus, we also want to help out our fellow Lamar student in need.” The “LU Grammys” was previously a pay-for-entry event, but the organization decided to ask

for donations after a recent tragedy affected a fellow student. Houston sophomore Kayla Walker and her family suffered a devastating loss when fire destroyed their home on Thanksgiving Day. In addition, Walker’s mother is battling severe Lupus, an autoimmune disorder. The family is in need of housing assistance, food and other necessities. “I would like to not only thank FCS, but the whole Lamar community for helping me and my family during this trying time in our lives,” Walker said. “Although we may have lost a lot of things,

we did not lose our lives. The support that I and my family have received from the Lamar community has been amazing and reassures me that Lamar is not only the school I attend, but an extended family.” Needham said that is what their organization is all about — it is an extended family and group is available to support fellow students. “As an organization, we stand for the student body which means bringing them together and helping them when it matters most,” he said. “With this mindset at hand we decided to change

it to benefit our friend Kayla in a time where she needs her school the most. The ‘LU Grammys’ about everyone coming out to network, walk the red carpet in their nicest attire, and support one another as well as have a good time.” Donations will also be accepted Dec. 7, 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m., in front of Brooks Shivers may also be made at to at inghousefirelief For more information, email, or follow @futurecsoc on Twitter for updates.

University Press November 30, 2017  

The Award Winning Student Newspaper of Lamar University