NOT SO SWIFT: Carrie Underwood sweeps CMA awards, Taylor walks away emptyhanded npage 5
Wednesday n April 21, 2010
POISED FOR POSTSEASON: MSU softball up to bat for playoff showing npage 7
your university n your voice
Two students know the hardships of having a husband away at war Lauren Wood Entertainment Editor
A police officer stands outside Hastings following a shooting that left five wounded in the store Tuesday. (Photo by Brittany Norman)
It is a 7,878-mile flight from Texas to Afghanistan. But to junior Lisa Moore, it can feel worlds away. She is an army wife. Her husband Chris is currently stationed in Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan for his yearlong deployment. “Chris deployed on Valentine’s Day this year,” Lisa said. “It is just another day to us and we really don’t celebrate it, so it wasn’t that big of a deal. Plus, I couldn’t even be there when he deployed because he was in Hawaii.” Lisa was only 15 when she met Chris. He was a friend of Lisa’s sister when the two were introduced July 5, 2005. “He went to college with my sister and she traded me to him for a sandwich,” Lisa said, a proud smile stretching across her face. Lisa’s sister wanted a sandwich that the 18-year-old Chris had just made, but he wanted something in return. She gave Lisa to him and immediately they hit it off. A quick three years later, the Seymour resident proposed and Lisa began planning the wedding. “When he proposed, I was so excited that I forgot to say yes. I just kissed him and he looked at me and said ‘so is that a yes?’” The couple was married in October of 2008, while Lisa was a freshman at MSU. Lisa admitted it was the worst idea she’d ever had. “I juggled planning a wedding, studying for tests and getting adjusted to college,” she said. “It was difficult handling all of the stress.” Over a year later, the 20-year-old has never regretted marrying a military man. “I think I married him sooner because of it,” she confessed. The couple had originally planned
One killed, 5 wounded by gunman Chris Collins Managing Editor
A lone gunman went on a shooting rampage inside a Wichita Falls bookstore late Tuesday night, wounding five people before driving to a nearby bar where he gunned down the doorman. The names of the victims, suspect and deceased had not been released by press time. The first call for help came from Hastings Books, Music & Videos at 9:25 p.m. The call from Toby’s
See SHOOTING on page 3
Deutschland studies await MSU students Chris Collins Managing Editor
German students have been attending Midwestern through the business and engineering schools for some years, but now MSU students are getting the chance to return the favor. This summer, three students have traveled to Germany as part of the university’s foreign exchange program. “Frankly, I brought that here because I had connections with German universities,” said program supervisor Dr. Frederike Wiedemann. MSU students already have the opportunity to participate in exchange programs in England, Spain and France. Now Germany has been added to the list. “The president would like our students to study abroad,” she said. “The difficulty is our students don’t speak foreign languages. So they need to find programs taught in English.”
See WIVES on page 4
(Top) Kaja and Cole Salsman are reunited upon his return from a tour of duty in Iraq. (Photo courtesy) (Bottom, left to right) Lisa Moore’s husband Chris is currently stationed in Afghanistan. (Photo courtesy) They stay in touch through letters, phone calls, texts and the Internet. (Photo by Julia Raymond)
See EXCHANGE on page 3
ACTing out for autism awareness
Time for a new New Deal? Chris Collins Managing Editor
The recession Americans are suffering through poses a threat to our economic way of life, but also grants an opportunity of change. Dr. David Kennedy, chair of history at Stanford University, discussed how the current fiscal situation relates to the Great Depression when he spoke at Akin Auditorium Tuesday. The venue was packed for the speaker, who talked for about an hour. “The big question is how our
crisis compares to the 1930s,” he said. He said President Obama isn’t in as deep as Franklin Roosevelt was when he was elected. When Roosevelt entered office, the countries unemployment stood at 25 percent. Today ours is about 10 percent. Also, the country’s gross national product was down 50 percent in Roosevelt’s day, while ours currently is up five percent. These may seem like comforting facts, he said, but Americans should stay wary. “Some people may think we’re
not so far down as our fore bearers were,” Kennedy said. One difference that gets overlooked when relating the two scenarios is the budget deficit. The deficit is the 1930s was $431 million, about four percent of GNP. Ours is about $1.4 trillion, about 10 percent of GNP. “The national debt is twice as large as it was during the Great Depression,” Kennedy said. Though the Depression left a huge monetary, social and psychological gash in 1930s America, it brought with it progress.
See LECTURE on page 3
Chris Collins Managing Editor
Dr. David Kennedy (Photo by Julia Raymond)
Samantha Spangler is a little different than most MSU students. When she was 15 years old, she was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism. Autism is a developmental disorder that affects the brain’s communication and social skills. Spangler said growing up with autism was difficult, but has learned to adapt. Now she helps others understand and deal with the disorder. She participated in a discussion session for the Autism Conference of Texoma last weekend, the second time it has been hosted at MSU. Over 155 people participated in the all-day event with about 30 exhibitors.
See ACTon page 3
Faltering GPAs can put students on ‘probation’ Andre Gonzalez For the Wichitan
So, you’ve been diagnosed with academic probation. It sounds like a disease, right? Academic probation is like a sickness that can plague a student’s college career and possibly put an end to it. Though it’s no laughing matter, surprisingly enough, 7.3 percent of students were put on academic probation last semester, according to the Office of Institutional Research. Academic probation, also known as scholastic probation, is stated in the MSU Undergraduate Catalog as: “A warning that the level of performance must improve if the student expects to continue in the University. A student whose Midwestern State University cumulative grade point average falls below the standards stated in the Table of Academic Standards will be placed on academic probation.” For Junior, Travis Twining, academic probation set him back a year. Twining said if he had not been placed under it, he would be a senior and on his way to graduating. “I just partied too much,” Twining said, “that’s all I did.” Twining stopped attending class and his party days eventually caught up to him when he was stuck under academic probation. Since then, Twining said the whole ordeal has opened his eyes and made him a better student. The Table of Academic Standards has standards that are based on hours earned by
a student. Students under 30 credit hours are to maintain a GPA of at least a 1.7 and students above 30 hours are to maintain a GPA of at least a 2.0. Students placed under academic probation are also not allowed to take over 13 credit hours in either Fall or Spring semesters and no more than six credit hours in the Summer terms. So it sounds pretty simple, right? You can just try your hardest and boost your GPA high enough to where you are in the clear. Some, however, aren’t so lucky. For those who continue to be under academic probation and do not to raise their GPA to the academic standard, academic suspension will come into place. To help explain it better the undergraduate catalog states: “A student on academic probation who fails to raise the MSU cumulative grade point average to the required level and who fails to earn a 2.0 semester average will be placed on academic suspension. Suspension or dismissal will be posted to the academic record and will remain as a permanent duty.” It’s like a three strike policy. Students placed on academic suspension are not allowed to attend MSU for one semester. However, that is only the first time. The second time a student lands himself in academic suspension, one calendar year must pass before they are allowed to return to the university. The third time a student lands in academic suspension, academic dismissal will be put on their academic record. They will not be allowed admission to MSU for
two calendar years. If you plan on returning to MSU after those two years be prepared for more academic probation. Barbara Merkle, director of admissions, said students will be placed back on academic probation when they return to the university after their time away from MSU. Students who continue to fail to raise their GPA back to the academic standard after coming back from academic dismissal will go back into a dismissal state and not be allowed admittance to MSU for another two calendar years. After coming back from their break, students who still continue to fail on raising their GPA to the standard will no longer be allowed as a student at MSU, permanently. You may think this is just at MSU and if you were caught in this situation you could easily just attend another school. Well, think again. “All universities honor our suspension rules,” Merkle said. This means no matter where you go, you will still be in the same situation in academic probation, suspension, or dismissal at your new school. Merkle said community colleges are recently starting to take notice in how they accept students according to their academic records, including Vernon Regional Junior College. According to the Office of Institutional Research, many freshmen are placed on academic probation. Last semester, more than
See PROBATION on page 3
April 21, 2010
thewichitan 3410 Taft Blvd. Box 14 n Wichita Falls, Texas 76308 News Desk: (940) 397-4704 n Ads: (940) 397-4705 Fax (940) 397-4025 n E-mail WICHITAN@mwsu.edu
nEditor in Chief: Brittany Norman nManaging Editor: Chris Collins nEntertainment Editor: Lauren Wood nOp-Ed Editor: Position open nSports Editor: Josh Hoggard nPhoto Editor: Julia Raymond nAdvertising manager: Jamie Monroe nCopy editor: Phoebe Kurmi and Amaka Oguchi nadviser: Randy Pruitt nReporters: Leah Roberts, Jaleesa Bealom, Ashley Nesbitt, Matt Ledesma, Loren Eggenschwiler nPhotographers: Loren Eggenschwiler, Patrick Johnston, Kassie Bruton
Copyright © 2007. The Wichitan is a member of the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association. The Wichitan reserves the right to edit any material submitted for publication. Opinions expressed in The Wichitan do not necessarily reflect those of the students, staff, faculty, administration or Board of Regents of Midwestern State University. First copy of the paper is free of charge; additional copies are $1. The Wichitan welcomes letters of opinion from students, faculty and staff submitted by the Friday before intended publication. Letters should be brief and without abusive language or personal attacks. Letters must be typed and signed by the writer and include a telephone number and address for verification purposes. The editor retains the right to edit letters.
If everybody jumped off a cliff... would you too? Donace Wilkinson For the Wichitan
The next time someone sends you a Facebook ‘friend’ request, whether or not you know person, just add him/her. And when you leave home, be sure to update your status to let everyone, including your criminallyminded ‘friends,’ know you are out. Be sure to say exactly where you’ve gone so they can estimate the time they will have to burglarize your home and then escape. Don’t forget now; everybody’s doing it. When you discover that you were robbed by one of your Facebook ‘friends,’ be surprised that people blame you for posting the details of your whereabouts on the Internet. Then say “You don’t know who your ‘friends’ are. I don’t think it’s fair to call
people stupid when everybody does it.” Believe it. This is exactly what happened to an Indiana woman about three weeks ago. My question to her and many others like her is this: when did the fact that “Everybody does it” make it smart? This is the first reaction and rationale intelligent people use when they realize they’ve been caught doing something stupid. “Mr. Ever Y. Body” gets blamed for the independent mistakes of people who know better. What if we were to apply this concept across the board? Think about it. At a time when HIV/ AIDS is prevalent, should people continue to have unprotected sex because everybody else is doing it? Knowing more smokers are diagnosed with lung
cancer than nonsmokers, should people continue to take up smoking simply because everybody else is doing it? At a time when cell phone use is fast becoming the number- one cause of vehicular accidents, should we continue to text and drive? After all, everybody’s doing it. Listen to me. Regardless of what your Facebook ‘friends’ are telling you, doing something stupid because everybody’s doing it doesn’t make you smart. It just makes “everybody” seem stupid. What I wish “everybody” would do is exercise some common sense. That way when people are caught being smart, they can say, “Hey, I did something smart today because… Guess what? Everybody’s doing it.”
Americans in the doghouse Vicki Starr For the Wichitan
This is the year of the “dog.” Don’t believe what the Chinese calendar tells you, trust me. Year of the dog. In a time where Americans are out of work, working for less money and barely able to feed their children, dogs are being fed well. Not all dogs are eating high on the hog since some are still owned by struggling Americans. If you doubt my words check out the commercials aimed at dog owners. To love your dog is to feed them refrigerated dog food that has passed USDA standards and claims pure ingredients, not the filler foods that we poor humans eat. We need to exercise our pets daily. Not to benefit
any of the 25 percent of people that are overweight, but because Fido needs to be healthy so he can live longer. Many Americans are barely able to afford food, much less health insurance. Yet there is pet health insurance available to help offset the cost of taking Fido to the vet regularly. One car insurance company offers the convenience of adding Fido’s insurance policy while they are writing your auto insurance. As a matter of fact, that insurance company also employs Fido, but he is currently unavailable to assist the customer. Break time for Fido, probably. Evidently there is a doggy union to make sure he is protected. Still doubt my words? Take a trip to the local
pet superstore. You can buy Fido an electric toothbrush, toothpaste and aspirin. The aspirin is for his headaches and pains, but I forgot to check the label to see if it covers menstrual pains. America is quickly showing the earmarks of Third World countries that we have such empathy for. A vast valley exists between rich and poor. We are going to the dogs. In the U.S., 50 million people go to bed hungry each night. (This is not counting those people who are on a diet). Yet there are no commercials promoting any programs to feed the hungry in the U.S. Sarah McLaughlin does have a touching commercial that raises money for animal rights. Don’t get me wrong. I love dogs. However, I value human life more.
nLetter to the Editor
Dear Editor of The Wichitan: We sincerely offer our thanks to the staff of The Wichitan for the supportive articles you have published in order to inform MSU students about the Career Management Center’s services, events, and the positive ways we assist students and alumni in achieving their professional development goals. Helping students and alumni achieve job obtainment and graduate/professional school admittance is a passion of ours. Also, we wish to compliment those students who recently attended the MSU Career Fair and the West College of Education Career Fair. Employers are eager to share their impressions of our campus, students, and alumni. Of those responding to both the MSU Career Fair Employer Survey and the West College of Education Career Fair Employer Survey, 100% said the appearance of MSU students and alumni was either good or excellent. Additionally, we had several employers state that MSU students and alumni were very prepared and serious with their professionalism at the MSU Career Fair. Conversely, these employers also indicated they had not experienced such strong professionalism from students at other university and college career fairs. MSU students and alumni made a positive impression, which is very important to job search success. We want to encourage you to stop by the Career Management Center located in the Clark Student Center, Room 108. We look forward to working with you. Best, MSU Career Management Center (940) 397- HIRE (4473) firstname.lastname@example.org
April 21, 2010
The Wichitan n 3
SHOOTING..............................................................................................................continued from page 1 Bar and Grill was made at 9:34 p.m. “Officers saw the suspect leaving (Toby’s) at a high rate of speed,” said Sgt. Joe Synder, public information officer for the Wichita Falls Police Department. The suspect drove to a house on at 2004 Victory and ran inside. Minutes later, he was found by police in the home with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The suspect was still alive when police transported him to United Regional Hospital. Synder said the wounds inflicted on the Hastings victims were not life-threatening. “It sounded like a big balloon popped, like it exploded,” said Jeremiah Colbert, a member of the Air National Guard, who was at Toby’s during the shooting. “Everybody jumped up. I turned around to look and I saw the doorman fall. I heard another shot and everybody just hit the deck. We all were under the table huddled up with one another. I saw the doorman laying there and he shot him again. Point blank.” Colbert said everyone moved to the back patio and waited for police to arrive. MSU student Matthew Moudy arrived at Hastings shortly after the shooting to check on a friend who works there. “This is a good place to hang out,” Moudy said. “This isn’t something you expect to happen in Five people were wounded when a gunman opened fire inside Hastings Tuesday Wichita.” night. (Photo by Brittany Norman)
LECTURE.................................................................................................................continued from page 1 Progress that has helped us through our current crisis. “American society would look very different today if not for the Great Depression,” Kennedy said. The most significant outcome of the Depression, he said, was the New Deal, a series of economic programs passed by Roosevelt and Congress to combat the crisis. The most important of these programs was the Social Security Act, which gives socially funded insurance money to retirees and the disabled. We have
the New Deal to thank for many of the programs in place today. The Fair Labor Act and Federal Housing Authority are also results of the New Deal. “The New Deal has greatly shaped our history,” Kennedy said. A big problem facing Americans of the 1930s was that most married women did not work. That means the 25 percent unemployment rate meant 25 percent of homes were out of work. And even though the New Deal eventually helped to pull
Americans out of the hole, it took a long time. “The New Deal did not pull us out of the Depression,” he said. Kennedy said he thinks American’s biggest weakness during the crisis was stoicism. “The people blamed themselves,” he said. What the people should have done was turn to the government to help them solve their problems. Today, Kennedy said, our situation puts us on the cusp of change.
PROBATION.................................................................continued from page 2 22 percent of freshmen were placed on it. For those freshmen, a “First Year Probation Program” is required of them. This means they are to enroll in MWSU 1003 or better known as Skills for Success, the following semester. Skills for Success teaches students how to apply effective learning strategies for areas they may struggle in. Freshmen are also required to repeat the classes they did poorly in. However, freshmen were not the main ones placed on aca-
demic suspension or dismissal. That title belongs to the sophomores. Over the last three years sophomores have barely taken away the entitlement from the freshmen. Out of the sophomores, 3.4 percent of them were placed on academic suspension or dismissal and only 2.6 percent of freshmen were. Gender also plays a part. According to the Office of Institutional Research, more male students have been placed under academic probation. Last fall,
nearly 10 percent of all male students at MSU were placed on academic probation, that number was only 5.8 percent for female students. The outcome is the same for academic suspension or dismissal. For male students, 2.8 percent of them were placed on academic suspension or dismissal. That number was only 1.2 percent for female students. “It’s a big warning to us that they may not be able to manage collegiate work,” Merkle said.
Journey of Hope Grief support Group in CSC Apche at 3:30 p.m.
Real Women, Real Beauty Group in CSC Apche at 3:30 p.m.
Fantasy Forum in Moffett Library at 3 p.m.
Honors Recognition Banquet at the Wichita Falls Country Club at 6:30 p.m.
n Tuesday: Percussion and Pan Ensemble in
Akin Auditorium at 7:30 p.m.
“Crises are devastating at the time, but can help rebuild society,” he said. The crash of Lehman Broth-
ers in 2008 gave the Obama administration the chance to pass a new health care bill in March. “People argue about whether
the Obama agenda will amount to significant reform,” he said.
“There were people lined up out the door,” she said. “I was a little intimidated, but I did my best to answer the questions.” Spangler was joined by an 11-year-old boy named Mason for the question and answer in Cheyenne. He is also autistic. She said she was little nervous before the talk began, but has spoken to more people at one time before – once she gave a keynote presentation in front of 650 people. “I was nervous because I didn’t know what people were going to say,” she said. “I didn’t know what questions they would ask. But it wasn’t the most difficult public speaking I’ve ever done. It was a lot more casual.” She said the crowd at her talk was mostly parents and professionals within the field of autism. One thing she discussed in the session was her theory about why autistic people are attracted to anime. “We have a hard time reading facial expressions,” Spangler said.
“They’re exaggerated in anime.” Both Spangler and Mason shared stories of being bullied. “I experienced that more when I was younger, but I think people just got used to me,” she said. “But in seventh grade one guy did try to strangle me. I think he had issues of his own.” She said it’s hard for people with autism to express themselves clearly or to realize how they appear to others. She terms people with standard functioning brains as ‘nuerotypical.’ “I have a hard time understanding how the nuerotypical brain works and how people think,” she said. “That’s an extremely hard thing for some people with autism.” Spangler said she thinks in images and feelings, not words. “Sometimes those images don’t have words attached to them,” she said. “I have to connect the words almost consciously. Sometimes I’m not able to connect the words to what I’m thinking.” “About a month ago the government decided Asperger’s
didn’t exist and lumped it in with everything else,” she said. But this doesn’t change her mind about her condition. “I still consider myself to have Asperger’s.” The American Psychiatric Association (APA) decided in February to incorporate Asperger’s Syndrome into the rest of Autism Spectrum Disorder. In other words, Asperger’s will no longer be a recognized disorder. “I think it’s stupid,” Spangler said. “In classic autism, you’re non-verbal. You don’t communicate. You’re trapped in this little world. Classic autism is completely non-functioning. There needs to be a middle ground between people like me and people in Rain Man.” The disorder has also been removed from the authoritative Diagnostic Statistical Manual. “If something’s not recognized, people won’t recognize it,” said Jessica Dunn, director of the Autism Support Program. “They may not be recognized for their gifts.”
Attending a university in Germany is always tuition-free, she said. After the cost of living in Europe for the summer, students will spend about the same amount they would have taking classes at MSU for the summer. “If you have ever spent any time in a foreign country, you come back a different person,” Wiedemann said. “It’s very simple. You see the world differently; you hear opinions that you haven’t thought of before. You discuss things with
people who have a different historical background than you. That opens your eyes.” The German language courses will be geared specifically to each student’s learning ability and previous knowledge of the language, Wiedemann said. This should make it easier to immerse themselves in the society. The German program will work a bit differently than the others, Wiedemann said. For one, the other international programs are taught by American instructors
living in Europe. All the Birkenfeld professors will be European. Another important difference is that the students attending Birkenfeld come from all over the globe. Brazil, South Korea, France and many other countries are represented within the school’s walls. Students using financial aid can still take the trip to Germany since the courses at both schools correlate to one another. The group will return from the 18-credit program in July.
ACt...............................................................................continued from page 1
EXCHANGE..................................................................................................................................................................................................continued from page 1 The students will be attending the Environmental Campus in Birkenfeld, a branch of the Trier University of Applied Sciences, which specializes in everything environmental – from business and economics to physics and waste management. The school, which used to serve as an American barracks, has a neutral carbon footprint. “I saw the school when the Americans left and I thought, ‘You can never turn this into a school. It will always look like barracks,”
she said. “But they did a very nice job with it.” When she started considering how to start the program, Wiedemann said she met with deans and chairs of various departments to stir up interest. “The word got out,” she said. Wiedemann spoke to students interested in participating in the program last semester. By April 1, they were already on the way overseas, courtesy plane tickets bought by Dr. Jesse Rogers. When the MSU students ar-
rived at the airport, Wiedemann said, they were greeted by their ‘buddies,’ English speaking, German students who will accompany them during their time in Germany. “They will get a good idea of how Germans live,” she said. “In Germany, things are cheaper for students. When you go into the movie theatre or museum, everything is cheaper.” Public transportation is also low-cost for students in Germany.
4 n The Wichitan
One small step..
April 21, 2010
Relay for Life participants walked all night to raise money for cancer reearch
Heavy rain couldn’t keep this group down. Relay for Life went on despite a downpour outside, and groups spent from Friday evening to daylight Saturday walking in D.L. Ligon Coliseum in order to raise money for cancer research. Aside from the walking, there was also music, face painting and even some snacks for sale. (Photos by Julia Raymond)
WIVES...........................................................................................................................................................................................................continued from page 1 for a long engagement but the military benefits made it easier for Lisa to see him. Chris deployed only five months after the wedding. Throughout her husband’s three-anda-half-year experience in the Army, he has been stationed in the Philippines and Thailand, and has recently been in Hawaii, training. However, this sergeant still has about three more years to complete and will finish in November of 2012. “The scariest thing about his deployments is the fear that every time he leaves, it may be the last time I see him,” she said. The first time Chris deployed, Lisa felt empty and lonely, however, once she heard his soothing voice, the feeling subsided slightly. “He called me when he was at the gate to his plane and we talked until they took off,” she recollected. This most recent deployment was a little easier for Lisa. It is his third in three years. “You get used to it after awhile,” she said, her shoulders shrugging. “Since we were separated before his deployment with me being in school, it wasn’t that difficult.” Only when she thinks about where he is exactly, does she start to worry. Now, with the distance between them, they email every day as well as talk on the phone every three or four days. However, sometimes talking isn’t enough for the biology student. “Sometimes you just need to be held,” Lisa said. “I miss the normal everyday stuff like cooking for him and cuddling.” Despite the distance between the couple, Chris manages to put a smile on her face every time he sends her text message, calling her “punkin head,” a favorite nickname of hers. Lisa will get to see Chris soon, however. He gets three weeks of rest and recuperation
in July so the couple will travel to the snowy slopes in Australia and New Zealand. “We’ve both always wanted to go there,” she said excitedly. “We are going to snowboard in New Zealand after we visit Sydney, Australia.” After she finishes school, Lisa plans to move to Hawaii for his last year of service. They want to start a family soon afterward while Chris goes to college. “I’m so proud of him,” she said, twisting the wedding band that forms perfectly to her left ring finger. “He’s my hero.” While Lisa is dealing with her husband’s departure, sophomore Kaja Banas Salsman is rejoicing with her husband’s return from his latest deployment. Kaja and her husband, Cole, met through a mutual friend in the hot summer of 2008. “We met at Stage West and he taught me to dance,” Kaja, a mass communication major, said, a huge smile spreading across her face. “He asked me on a date, picked me up the next morning to go to lunch but I was really sick. He took care of me the rest of the weekend and I was hooked.” Not even a year later, at the youthful age of 19, Kaja said “I do,” and was introduced to a different world. Cole has been in the Army Reserves since 2007 and in April 2009, was deployed to Afghanistan. A couple of months later, he was stationed in Qatar. “When he left I felt like a part of my heart, soul and body was ripped from me,” Kaja recalled. “I felt like I was a half a person. The loneliness and missing feeling hit right away.” When Kaja took Cole to the airport, she was able to watch him go through the gate. However, once he was out of sight, Kaja broke down crying. “It’s nearly impossible to not feel lonely,” she said. “No person or amount of people
can fill the void of your husband being gone.” The couple communicated through video chat on the computer every Sunday. She was lucky if she got a phone call from him during the week. “The hardest thing about him being in the military is nothing is ever for sure,” she said. “You cannot make plans and you never know what will happen next.” Cole, a Wichita Falls native, returned from Qatar on March 12, straight into the waiting arms of his wife. “I went to the airport with his family on the day of his arrival,” Kaja explained. “When he came through the doors I ran up to him and hugged him and we hugged for what seemed like forever.” It was an emotional reunion for the couple. Cole’s family and Kaja cried in happiness as they welcomed their soldier home. “It was the most exciting, nervewracking, emotional experience of my life,” Kaja said. “I wanted to cry, laugh, smile, collapse and skip, all at the same time.” Cole’s term with the Reserves ends in January 2015 and is not scheduled to deploy again. “The fact that I don’t have to worry about his safety is the most enjoyable thing of having him back,” Kaja said. “It’s great being able to talk things through face to face and have each other’s company.” Kaja can now breathe a sigh of relief, knowing her husband is back. Lisa, however, awaits the safe return Kaja and Cole Salsman enjoy spending time together now that he has of her husband, scheduled for next returned from his tour of duty in Afghanistan. (Photo by Julia Valentine’s Day. Raymond)
April 21, 2010
The Wichitan n 5
Academy of County Music Awards
p u d n u
ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR Carrie Underwood TOP MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR Brad Paisley TOP FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR Miranda Lambert TOP VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR Lady Antebellum TOP VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR Brooks & Dunn TOP NEW SOLO VOCALIST OF THE YEAR Luke Bryan
Top Left: Carrie Underwood, Top Right: Lady Antebellum, Reba McEntire, Brad Paisley attended the 45th Annual Academy of Country Awards. McEntire hosted the show, as well as performed. (Photo Courtesy)
Lady Antebellum, Underwood sweep ACM Awards Lauren Wood For the Wichitan
The 45th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards aired Sunday, live from MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Carrie Underwood walked away with Entertainer of the Year, but Lady Antebellum stole the night with five awards, including Top Vocal Group of the Year. Nearly half a million fans voted for the Entertainer of the Year category and named Carrie Underwood winner of the evening’s biggest honor. This is the second year in a row Underwood has been given the prestigious award. Underwood is the first female to ever win the Entertainer of the Year award twice and only the seventh female to take the award in the 40 year history of this category; previous winners include Loretta Lynn in 1975, Dolly Parton in 1977, Barbara Mandrell in 1980, Reba McEntire in 1994, Shania Twain in 1999, The Dixie Chicks in 2000 and Underwood’s first Entertainer of the Year award in 2009. Underwood also received the Triple Crown Award, thanks to her past wins for the categories of Entertainer of the Year, Top Female
Vocalist and Top New Female Vocalist, which has been won by only one other female artist – Barbara Mandrell in 2004. Brad Paisley won Top Male Vocalist and Miranda Lambert won Top Female Vocalist. This is Paisley’s fourth consecutive win as Top Male Vocalist and Lambert’s first win as Top Female Vocalist. Brooks & Dunn won Top Vocal Duo and, in addition, the pair sang the fan-selected song My Maria as their final Academy of Country Music Awards performance. Lady Antebellum took home their first Top Vocal Group honor; the group won a total of five honors in three categories during tonight’s telecast, making them the night’s top winners. Also this evening, Montgomery Gentry was honored with the 9th annual Academy of Country Music/The Home Depot Humanitarian Award, which salutes an artist or group in the country music industry who is committed to serving others, has a generosity of spirit and a dedication to helping build the dreams of those in need. Following is the list of winners in the 16 categories voted on by the membership (excluding the Entertainer of the Year and Top New Artist categories, which were voted on by a combination of professional ACM members and fans).
Bottom Left: Brooks & Dunn, Reba McEntire, Lady Antebellum, Taylor Swift and Gloriana all performed at this year’s 45th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards, which aired Sunday, April 18 live from Las Vegas. (Photo Courtesy)
TOP NEW VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR Joey + Rory TOP NEW VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR Gloriana TOP NEW ARTIST Luke Bryan ALBUM OF THE YEAR Revolution - Miranda Lambert SINGLE RECORD OF THE YEAR Need You Now - Lady Antebellum SONG OF THE YEAR Need You Now - Lady Antebellum VIDEO OF THE YEAR White Liar – Miranda Lambert TRIPLE CROWN AWARD WINNER Carrie Underwood THE HOME DEPOT HUMANITARIAN AWARD Montgomery Gentry
April 21, 2010
Lopez has a ‘Plan’ and a new leading man Lauren Wood For the Wichitan
Lopez has a new leading man and a ‘Plan’ J.Lo is back on the big screen with her latest film, The Back-up Plan, which opens Friday. The Back-up Plan is a comedy that explores dating, love, marriage and family, but not in the traditional order. After years of dating, Zoe ( Jennifer Lopez) has decided waiting for the right one is taking
too long. Determined to become a mother, she commits to a plan of artificial insemination, makes an appointment and decides to go it alone. That same day, Zoe meets Stan (Alex O’Loughlin). Trying to nurture a budding relationship and hide the early signs of pregnancy becomes a comedy of errors for Zoe and creates confusing signals for Stan. When Zoe nervously reveals the reason for her unpredictable behavior, Stan commits fully and says he’s in.
However, the real pregnancy test comes when both of them realize they really don’t know each other outside of hormonal chaos and birth preparations. With the birth of the baby nearing, both begin to experience cold feet. The Back-up Plan proves anyone can fall in love, get married and have a baby but doing it backwards in hyperdrive could be proof positive that they were made for each other. After being on hiatus for some
nGentlemen Prefer Blondes: AN ENTERTAINMENT COLUMN
Movie revamp to current standards Most of the movies we grew up with would be considered completely outdated today. Technology has changed, societal tastes have changed, but most of all kids have changed They don’t wear out their much-abused VHS copies of The Lion King- they pull them up on their iPods or HD DVRs. But what if our favorite movies of the 90’s were remade today? Hollywood would ruin them and make zillions of dollars. Home Alone II: Lost in New York Starring: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci Original story: The McAllister family has way too many kids. Since Mom is super stressed, she decides they should all take a vacation to Miami for Christmas. Unfortunately, chaos in the airport leads Kevin, the oftenoverlooked middle child, onto a plane to New York, while his family boards the plane to Miami. Conveniently armed with Mom’s credit cards, Kevin lives it up in New York, fools a couple of would-be crooks and makes friends with a homeless lady covered in pigeons. It all ends happily, when Kevin reunites with his Mom in Central Park. 2010 Remake: Kevin, played by Taylor Lautner, spends about ten minutes actually alone, and never actually makes it to New York. He gets separated from his family in the airport, but his mom uses a child-tracking app on her iPhone to locate him. The family all make it to Miami, and to prevent Kevin wandering off again, he wears a leash until his freshman year of high school.
Jamie Monroe Advertising Manager In You Shouldn’t Be Home Alone, the inevitable sequel, an emotionally-scarred and under-appreciated Kevin goes on a killing spree, terrorizing kids lucky enough to be left home alone in order to get revenge on his own parents. Mrs Doubtfire Starring: Robin Williams, Sally Field Original story: Daniel Hillard can’t seem to hold down a job. His wife leaves him and takes the kids with her. So, in order to see his kids, Daniel cross-dresses as an old British woman and answers the nanny ad placed by his ex-wife. Hilarious Robin Williams hijinks ensue- losing his prosthetic mask, using the wrong public restrooms and just generally looking like an elderly woman. Ultimately, he gets caught, but his kids really aren’t that creeped out by it. In the end, he gets to visit them anyway, minus the dentures and support hose. 2010 Remake: Williams is too old for 2010 audiences, and so he is replaced by the hipper, fresher Steve Carrell. Not only does the new Daniel Hillard gain laughs as the lovable Mrs.
Doubtfire- he’s also a crimefighting nanny superhero once the kids are in bed. Crooks and thieves never expect a little old lady to have bricks in her purse, and Daniel turns into a modern-day Batman. Except a nanny. By the time his identity is revealed, he’s saved the city of San Francisco ten times over. Mom dumps her new man, the family gets back together and everyone lives happily ever after. Space Jam Starring: Michael Jordan, Bugs Bunny Original story: When aliens land in Toon Land with the intent of enslaving the Looney Toons characters at the Moron Mountain amusement park, Bugs Bunny challenges them to a basketball game in order to save his friends. In order to win, the aliens go and suck out all the talent of 1998’s biggest basketball starsexcept for Michael Jordan, who has retired to play baseball. The Looney Tunes pull him out of retirement and both Toons and Jordan team up for the most epic basketball game in the universe. 2010 Remake: Due to copyright and licensing fees, it is cheaper for animators to create new, generic cartoons than to pay to use Bugs Bunny and friends. It is also much cheaper to use recently-shamed Tiger Woods than pay millions of dollars for a basketball giant. So instead of an epic basketball game, the fate of the world hangs on the outcome of a golf match. Woods saves the world, and also his reputationall in IMAX 3-D.
time, the 40-year-old dancersinger-actress Jennifer Lopez, is hoping to make a comeback with this film, as well as guest appearances on How I Met Your Mother and Saturday Night Live. For her return to the big screen, Lopez returns to the genre of her highest-grossing film, the romantic comedy Maid in Manhattan (2002), which took in $94 million. Only now, instead of playing a maid who falls for a rich guy played by a big star (Ralph Fiennes), she plays a rich gal who falls for a guy played by a perfectly fine lesser-known (Alex O’Loughlin). O’Loughlin, a 33-yearold actor who starred in CBS’ Moonlight and Three Rivers
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Jennifer Lopez and Alex O’Loughlin star in “The Backup Plan,” coming to theaters April 23. (Photo Courtesy)
New games changes shake up the originals Justin Hoeger MCT
Supreme Commander had so much going on – it was both impressive and daunting. It wasn’t just the sheer array of structures and units players could create with their Armored Command Unit robot suit. It was the way each land, air and naval factory had to be manually upgraded through three tiers of advancement, each with its own set of units for each of three factions. It was the way resource management was dependent on
“Command & Conquer 4” and “Supreme Commander 2,” are two revamped games. (Photo Courtesy)
and plays Steve McGarrett in the network’s upcoming Hawaii Five-O revival. He also played in August Rush (2007) along side actors Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Kerri Russell. More recently, he was along side actress Kate Beckinsale in Whiteout (2009).
Number of students, faculty, and staff who are helping build a house through Habitat for Humanity. The house should be completed in April.
carefully placed and upgraded farms of mass extractors, power generators, storage structures and - well, it could all be a bit much to handle sometimes, especially in cutthroat online games. Supreme Commander 2 cuts down on the plates a player has to spin. More advanced units and buildings, and upgrades for existing ones, are unlocked by spending research points factories are no longer upgraded, but can be given add-ons such as shields and tactical missile launchers. The player’s ACU can also be upgraded, and higher research levels unlock numerous experimental units for construction. Experimentals are larger, more expensive and more powerful than bread-andbutter units like tanks, fighters, bombers, artillery, submarines and so on. Most are giant robots, giant battleships, giant flying saucers, and so on, but some are structures, like the Illuminate Space Temple, a teleportation device; or the UEF Noah Unit-Cannon, which can lob units into enemy territory. The game features a campaign mode, with several missions each for the trio of factions from the first game (the alien Seraphim race from the Forged Alliance expansion is absent). Players who plan to battle opponents online will want to dive into the customizable, free-form Skirmish mode for practice. While Supreme Commander 2 tweaks the original game’s formula considerably, Command & Conquer 4: Tiberian Twilight really shakes things up for its long-running series. This entry ends the 15-yearlong story the Global Defense Initiative and the Brotherhood of Nod. GDI and the series’ perennial villain Kane are working together to save the world from the toxic, alien Tiberium that is on the verge of rendering Earth unlivable. Well, mostly working together, anyway. Kane has plans of his own, and splinter groups of both GDI and Nod aren’t keen on his schemes coming to
fruition. Command & Conquer 3 was a throwback to the series’ glory days; its expansion, Kane’s Wrath, introduced specialized subgroups to the game’s factions. Tiberian Twilight takes this idea and runs with it. The player can choose from three Mobile Construction Vehicles, or Crawlers, which are deployed to the battlefield and produce all units and structures in the game. Crawlers can build and store units while mobile, but have to plant in the ground to deploy them. There’s no true base building or resource harvesting here. Instead, players have a limited supply of Command Points that each unit takes a share of – hit the ceiling and nothing more can be created until something is destroyed or decommissioned. It’s a very different feel from older “C&C” games, which encouraged massed armies compared to this game’s smaller strike forces. Each side’s Crawlers come in three flavors that have similar capabilities: Offense, which mostly pumps out tanks and other ground-attack vehicles; Defense, which focuses mainly on infantry units and is the only Crawler that can build and power structures; and Support, which chiefly produces airborne and other specialized units. Playing the game in any mode earns experience points that increase the player’s rank, which unlocks more advanced units, upgrades and special powers across the board, from the campaign to online battles. The online and skirmish modes also take a cue from Battlefield - Crawlers can be rebuilt if destroyed, and victory is gained by controlling strategic nodes for long enough to rack up 2,500 points. Tiberian Twilight requires players to log in for every session, online or not, and maintain a constant Internet connection. If that connection is interrupted during play, progress and experience past the last checkpoint won’t be saved - an aggravating copy-protection trend in recent PC games.
April 21, 2010
The Wichitan n 7
Top-ranked Mustangs rested and rearin’ to go Chad Steele
For the Wichitan The brief seizer of action, as the Mustangs’ doubleheader was cancelled Sunday afternoon due to rain, gives an opportunity to reflect on the great season they have had so far.
Boasting an impressive .875 winning percentage they are poised and ready for postseason action. The Mustangs again stand at the top of the NCAA Division II South Central Region rankings released Wednesday from Indianapolis.
The Mustangs are just one of five teams from the Lone State Conference to make the top 10. The top eight teams in the region advance to the 2010 NCAA Division South Central Regional, taking place May 14-16. The regional is played in two fourteam double elimination tour-
naments held at campus of the highest seeded teams. As of right now, Midwestern would host one of the sub-regional tournaments. It would pit (1)MSU against (8)St. Mary’s in the first round, and then play the winner of (4)Angelo State and (5)Central Oklahoma. (2) Em-
poria State would play host to the other sub-regional. The winners of the sub-regional would then meet in a best 2-of-3 series in the superregional hosted by the highest seeded team. The super-regional will be in St. Joseph, Mo. May 27-31.
The Mustangs, who have won 20 of their last 22 games, need just two more wins to match the school record for victories in a season. The Mustangs next home game will be Senior Day, Saturday, as they take on Northeastern State.
Golfers rake in awards Chad Steele
For the Wichitan
An MSU Lady Mustang slides belly down in a match against Texas Women’s University. Photo by Patrick Johnston.
Cyclists keep on rolling despite soppy weekend Loren Eggenschwiler For the Wichitan
MSU Cycling Team hosted a weekend of races. Of course, Wichita Falls did not have the best weather options as it was a soaking wet weekend. Races began early Saturday morning out by Hatton & Hammon. It rained consistently all day. Many racers did not finish due to the cold and wet conditions. For the men’s A, Danny Robertson finished second and Jason Short fifth. Jen Purcell took the win for the Women’s A and Claire Routledge took third. Sean Brown took seventh place for the Men’s B. The rain continued Saturday afternoon as MSU made history with the first collegiate Street Sprints. Josh Carter, Jason Short took the top two spots in the Men’s A Street Sprints with Matt Fox in fifth. For the Wom-
en’s A Purcell took another win followed by teammates, Marilyn Cullinane, Routledge and Loren Eggenschwiler. Fidel Goytia grabbed the lead for the Men’s B, with Matt Sauls close behind in second. Stanton Porter took fourth for the Men’s C in the Street Sprints. After a long day in the rain, clothes had to be dried and shoes stuffed with newspaper in preparation for the in/famous crit. Though the rain was no longer a torrential downpour, it stayed a steady drizzle on \campus Sunday. High school racers started the morning early giving the college race a chance to rest up. MSU’s first appearance in the Sunday crit was the Men’s B, where Roy Bracey took third even after going down three times in what is known as the “crash corner.” Spectators gather around the intersection near Trigg and Sun-
Jen Purcell takes the slick corners with ease after getting off the front to take the win. Photo by Loren Eggenschwiler.
watcher to see the mishaps. Sean Brown came in at fifth. After a short break for lunch, the Women’s A began. The first turn took out two riders, Cullinane from MSU and Schultz from UT. They were able to catch back up after making a few adjustments to the bikes. Purcell lapped the field twice and took the win. Cullinane came in third followed by teammates, Tiffany Stewart and Routledge. The day ended with the Men’s A race, where there were several more crashes.
However Robertson was able to win the race even with A&M’s Haga brothers. Short came in fourth followed by teammates Carter, Todd Elenz and Alexi Martinez. Despite the miserable rain MSU was able to have a very successful weekend and will be heading down to Austin this weekend to race the Conference Championships at UT. MSU also plans to attend Collegiate Cycling Road Nationals in Madison, Wisc. May 7-9.
The Men’s and Women’s Golf teams were well represented as the Lone Star Conference announced its annual postseason awards Sunday night. Three Mustangs men, Travis Klutts and Chad Bryant garnered All-Lone Star Conference Honors, and Brett Perry was named to the Lone Star Conference Commissioner’s Honor. Klutts, the junior from Lake Kiowa, is no stranger to these accolades. He received firstteam honors for the second year in a row. As a freshman, Klutts received second-team honors and was also named LSC Freshmen of the Year. Klutts finished fourth at the Dallas Baptist Invitational and the UCO/Kickingb ird Classic, and has turned in countable scores in all 18 rounds this season. Bryant received second team honors. The sophomore from New Castle, Okla. turned in countable scores in 21 of the 22 rounds he played in this season. Bryant, who has an impressive 75.0 average score, also won MSU’s first individual championship last year at the Charles Coody West Texas Intercollegiate Tournament. The Commissioner’s Honor Roll is voted on by the leagues sports information directors on the basis of both academic and athletic achievements. Perry, from Edgewood, Tex., turned in countable scores in 9 of his 13 rounds this season. The sophomore also carried a 3.30 grade-point average as a general business major. Student athletes must carry at least a 3.30 GPA and must be a sophomore, both athletically and academically, to be eligible for LSC academic awards. On the women’s side the sisters Kyla and Kendra Whittley received All Lone Star Conference Honorable Mention. Kyla, a junior transfer, turned in countable scores in 14 of her 15 rounds and had an average score of 80.46. Kendra, the younger sister, also recorded countable scores in 14 of her 15 rounds and had a best team average score of 79.67.