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132nd YEAR ISSUE 46


Supplemental Art professor retires after 36 years Instruction increases MSU student success EMMA KING




The Mississippi State University Learning Center’s academic-oriented program, which aims to help increase student success in the classroom, is on its way to national certification. Supplemental Instruction started in spring 2015 in hopes to help students increase their success rates in historically difficult classes. SI Supervisor and Coordinator Chelsey Vincent said originally, SI began with seven leaders throughout seven sections of classes. In the course of one semester, it grew to 21 leaders. “We funded SI through the Learning Center initially, so that’s why we started small,” Vincent said. “After the spring, the Center for Student Success learned about SI, and wanted to help with funding the program.” The process of deciding which classes would benefit from SI begins by looking at the classes with the highest percentage of students making D’s, F’s and withdrawing from the course. Director of Student Success Rodney Pearson said chemistry, biology, American government, psychology and almost all math classes are among the historically hard classes for students to pass. “We hire a student who has done fairly well in that class in the past, and we pay them to go to class again,” Pearson said. “They go to

class, take notes and then two or three nights a week, they hold group-tutoring sessions.” When students attend the voluntary group tutoring session, the SI leaders act as facilitators and try to get the students to discuss among themselves. SI leader Taylor Reeves said SI is not tutoring, rather it is more like a group discussion. “My job is not to be your tutor, but to lead this group discussion of people learning these new concepts, and making sure that it’s not getting too far away from what they need to be learning,” Reeves said. “It’s all about leading this group discussion and the students learning from each other.” Reeves is an SI leader for modern U.S. history with Professor Stephen Powell. Reeves said on average, around 10 to 20 students show up to an SI session, and this number fluctuates with what is covered during class. Reeves said the closest he has ever come to having no one show up is after a midterm when only one person attended. SI leaders are required to wait for more than half of their session time in case a student shows up. “If the session is for an hour and 15 minutes, the SI leader has to sit there for 45 minutes; and if the session is for 50 minutes, the SI leader has to sit there for 30 minutes,” Reeves said. INSTRUCTION, 2

Brent Funderburk, a professor at Mississippi State University’s Department of Art for 36 years, is set to retire at the end of this semester. A reception will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. May 2 in the Colvard Student Union Dawg House. Faculty, students, staff and the community are welcome, and refreshments will be provided. After working in three institutions over the past 40 years, Funderburk described his time at MSU as a magnificent ride. He said MSU allowed him to pursue his own creative endeavors, while encouraging art students to do the same. Funderburk has received multiple recognitions during his time at MSU. In 2016, he earned MSU’s SEC Faculty Excellence Award, was named a William L. Giles Distinguished Professor and received the Ralph Powe Faculty Research Excellence Award in 2015. Funderburk also received a John Grisham teaching award and a Burlington Northern teaching award. In addition, his artwork has also gained international attention. Despite his numerous awards and honors, Funderburk’s biggest source of pride is his students’ successes. Before MSU student Madison Cheek became an art student, he was blown away by his future mentor’s beautiful artwork. “His masterful use of rich watercolor and strong contrast builds a spiritual gateway into another world,” Cheek said. “Now

Brent Funderburk | Courtesy Photo

After serving the university for almost four decades, Brent Funderburk will retire from the Department of Art at the end of this semester.

that he is going to retire, he has a chance to work fulltime painting. I’m excited to see where his art will go from here.” Funderburk also credited his wife Deborah Funderburk for the artistic muse she is as a dancer, choreographer, fellow artist and MSU professor. Throughout his teaching career, Funderburk taught twice in Europe and traveled with students across the Gulf ’s barrier islands, the Rocky Mountains, under Utah’s red rock arches and across the Black Prairie’s fossil-filled badlands. Katie Erickson, one of Funderburk’s traveling partners and students, said he is the most memorable professor at MSU. “No matter the distance,

took place last Wednesday. In his Painting Survey course, the final results of a finished project critique brought him to tears. The professor was reportedly not alone in this reaction; the entire class felt the same closeness to this grasp of beauty. Senior art major Claire Burgett gave Professor Funderburk full credit for bringing her to MSU. Burgett attended a portfolio review day at Watkins College of Art, where Funderburk represented MSU. “I knew as soon as I left that table, I wanted to attend Mississippi State University,” Burgett said. “That day he spoke to my soul, my gut, whatever you want to call it. I just knew I had to go.” PROFESSOR, 2

Brent (Funderburk) has always been right there for me in the most pivotal points in my career as an artist,” Erickson said. “I can even say that his passion has been abundant enough to overflow into my life and drive my unforeseen success as a student here at MSU. Ask any student, whether they have had him as a professor or not, Brent is the main icon of the art department.” He once lost vision in his left eye for a 2-month period while teaching, and combined his current painting course with his wife’s dance classes. It was a marvel to witness non-art majors uncover their hidden talents, Funderburk said. Funderburk’s favorite memory at MSU, however,

Participants discuss immigration policy in forum KATIE POE


The student-led organization No Lost Generation held an immigration forum last week as a part of a national initiative. The Department of State supports No Lost Generation, which aims to raise awareness, money and scholastic support for young refugees affected by the crisis in Syria. The National Issues Forums Institute in collaboration with the Kettering Foundation created the forum “Coming to America: Who Should We Welcome, What Should We Do” held Thursday. During the event, groups of student and faculty participants talked about three possible options for an immigration policy. The first option was the least restrictive, with actions such as giving those who entered the U.S. illegally a path to legal status, accepting more refugees fleeing war and allowing all residents to vote in city elections, no matter their status. Political Science Professor


Katie Poe | The Reflector

No Lost Generation, an MSU student-led organization, hosted a discussion on immigration last week as part of a national campaign.

Brian Shoup first described different kinds of legal immigrants to the group, which include students who have visas, those who went through the diversity lottery, refugees and those who hold temporary work visas. While they cannot vote, these people hold legal standing. According to a 2015 Pew Research Center study,



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there are about 11 million unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. Shoup, who moderated a small group, first asked them what the concept of borders means. Sea Frey, a sophomore political science and agronomy major, said she thinks the idea of borders is valuable. “I think borders are really

important,” Frey said. “I think a lot of strength of a nation comes from people’s willingness to buy into the idea of it. America definitely pushes that.” Trey Wallace, a senior industrial engineering major, agreed with Frey because he said the U.S. has a civic, not an ethnic culture. “I think because our

FORECAST: This week’s spring-like weather will reach temperatures in the 70’s. Tuesday will be bright and sunny with Wednesday and Thursday rolling in a few clouds. Courtesy of Accuweather

nationalism isn’t seeded in a culture specifically—it’s seeded in an ideology— the borders are particularly important to the United States,” Wallace said. Shoup said the first option is not a method the U.S. has typically been keen to. “This is not the approach the United States has always taken,” Shoup said. “I want to be very clear, this is a vastly more open one than what even the most liberal immigration law would have. This last (point) I don’t think anyone would support; (to) just allow anyone to vote.” The second option stated there needs to be a fair system, where the rules are enforced by police. The option says there is a long line of people waiting to enter America illegally, and there is an obligation to them to enforce borders and deport illegal immigrants. Shoup said this option is more restrictive toward illegal immigration. “This asks to tighten the screws on illegal immigration,” Shoup said. “Its principal focus is: ‘We welcome legal immigrants who come here, we want them, they can work,

but people who are here illegally are breaking the law, and if the nation’s borders and its laws are to mean anything, those institutions need to be followed.’” Wallace mentioned a point-based system as a compromise for the issue of immigration. “For example, you move to a specific country and you start out with zero points and you need to accumulate 500 points to stay there,” Wallace said. “So, securing a stable job could earn you 70 points, marrying and having a child secures you so many points. There are a hundred different avenues to do this, but when you’ve met the quota, then you’ve done enough to earn citizenship.” Yashaswin Sridhar, a sophomore psychology major and Indian international student, said with a point-based system, there is the problem of defining what holds more value. Frey said it is a controversial issue to base someone’s path to citizenship on what they can and will do.


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BAD DAWGS Tuesday, April 10, 2018 11:12 p.m. Student reported his bicycle stolen from outside Colvard Student Union. Arrest made for theft by receiving stolen property. Referral was issued. Thursday, April 12, 2018 11:25 a.m. Student was transported to OCH from Moore Hall for breathing problems. 7:58 p.m. Student was transported to OCH from Hathorn Hall for intoxication. 9:09 p.m. Student reported light smoking in Dorman Hall. Scene cleared by SFD. Friday, April 13, 2018 8:06 a.m. Student reported his vehicle burglarized while parked in Herbert Hall parking lot. 1:50 p.m. Resident of City/County reported an unknown person stole money from his Coca-Cola truck while parked behind Perry Cafeteria. 5:10 p.m. Employee reported damages to her vehicle while parked on Buckner Lane. 6:58 p.m. Resident of City/County struck a lift gate on a parked truck behind Paterson Engineering with Ladder 2 firetruck. Saturday, April 14, 2018 8:20 p.m. Student reported she was flashed near the Drill Field by an unknown male.

In order for the Learning Center to receive data from SI, the students must provide their net IDs when they attend a session. Reeves said other than receiving a student’s net ID, the sessions are completely anonymous. The sessions are on a “come and go as you please” basis. “What I do for a review session is split the students up into different groups, and have them feed and learn off each other,” Reeves said. “It can be a fun experience.” In order to be an SI leader, there are certain qualifications to meet. Vincent said the potential SI leader needs to have made an A in the class, have a 3.25 GPA, have open availability to attend the class and hold SI sessions two to three times a week. Reeves said he is also required to hold one office hour per week, which is held at the Learning Center. “We send an email out to students, and invite them to apply,” Vincent said. “After the application process, we interview everybody that applies and then from there, we work with faculty members


and make a good decision for the class.” Vincent said each SI leader works a maximum of 10 hours a week, and gets paid $8.50 an hour. Of those 10 hours, three are spent retaking the class, three are spent holding SI sessions, two are spent planning those sessions, one is spent for their office hour and the last one is spent talking with Vincent and the professor of the class. After modeling their program off of the original program at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, MSU’s SI program is on its way to becoming nationally certified. Vincent said in order to be nationally certified, the program has to have trained supervisors, a consistent 20 percent attendance rate, higher ABC rates in SI than non-SI and routine observance of SI leaders. “You have to submit documentation that all of the requirements are filled and then they will review it and either certify you or not certify you,” Vincent said. “We are waiting for a couple more things before we submit, and

then we should know by the end of the year whether we have become a nationallycertified SI school.” If MSU becomes a nationally-certified SI school, it will be the only certified school in Mississippi. The SI program is only made available to the classes where the professor wants it. If a professor does not want their class affiliated with SI, then an SI leader will not be placed in the class, Vincent added. “Faculty support is crucial because we found that when faculty members talk about SI in their classes, we have higher attendance in our SI sessions,” Vincent said. “If a faculty member doesn’t want SI, then we won’t work with them.” Vincent said they have had faculty members reach out to them wanting SI in their classes. Once this happens, Vincent looks at the class’s DFW rates and determines whether SI would help that particular class. Powell said he has thoroughly enjoyed working with SI this semester. Powell said he believes one of the

IMMIGRATION Frey said the second option would be sensible if the immigration system was not so flawed already. “I think this would be a much more reasonable option if it weren’t so difficult and so laborious to get in legally,” Frey said. “Obviously, every country it takes many years to fully get through the process, but if it weren’t so difficult and complicated, I think it would be a lot more feasible and ethical to have strict controls.” Next, the third option was introduced. This option recognized high immigration levels and stated the country is already diverse, so it must regain its national identity. This option aimed to reduce the immigration rate, including the number of legal immigrants admitted, and

major things SI helps with is getting the students more comfortable with speaking around people who are not necessarily their peers. “I think then hopefully what that does is manifest itself in later years, so when students are turning into juniors and seniors, they are willing to go talk to their professors and T.A.’s and have professional conversations with them,” Powell said. When Reeves and Powell meet each week, they discuss what the SI session should focus on. Powell said these meetings are crucial because it allows for Reeves to focus heavily on the information on the test. Along with becoming nationally certified, Vincent said the Learning Center has various goals for Supplemental Instruction. “We not only want to increase the quality of our SI sessions, but the quantity as well,” Vincent said. “We also want to increase awareness of the program in general, and make it known to students that this resource is made available to them.” CONTINUED FROM 1

Lawful immigrants 33.8 million (75.5%)

settled in the same place. Shoup said some Americans feel there is a sense of division in the country, which gives way to this option of rebuilding common bonds.

“It says, ‘I have to work on me.’ It’s that classic breakup line,” Shoup said. Frey said this option is treating a symptom, not a cause. “I think the baseline issue with this is that America has never been a country that’s based on one ethnic population,” Frey said. At the end of the discussion, Shoup said if he had to pick an option without changing anything, he would pick the second option. Nevertheless, he said cookiecutter immigration policies are major problems in political discussion. “Part of the problem with all the discussion for creating immigration policy is that people want it to be delivered in a nice, neat package,” Shoup said. “It can never be so. This is part of the political problem.”

1978, however, Funderburk was informed by a staff member at his graduate school he was born to be a teacher. With no teaching experience whatsoever, Funderburk applied to a few schools and took the first offer, leading him 1,000 miles from home to Lincoln, Nebraska. Once there, it only took a few demanding students to ignite his passion for teaching. One of his current students, Shawna Williams, vividly remembered the encouraging and inspiring advice Funderburk once gave her regarding being a music and fine arts major. “I now know that my life’s journey consists of completing the songs that my spirit sings and sharing them to the world, not just through my artwork, but through my ability to play, sing and write music,” Williams said. “These

words remind me of why I strive so hard every day to do what I love doing the most.” More than students inspire Funderburk to keep working, though. “Working with passionate colleagues who set high standards has also kept my fever for teaching, for learning up,” Funderburk said. “Robert Henri said that an art school should be a ‘boiling, seething place.’ The high energy of our department and college still inspires me.” Funderburk also disclosed his secret to vitality—waking up each day to a classroom of 20 year olds. Though he still avoids mirrors, this has made him feel perpetually younger, he said. Funderburk will not officially retire; instead, he said he will continue creating and residing in his 20-yearold amber.

Unauthorized immagrants 11.0 million (24.5%)

Naturalized citizens 19.8 million (44.1%) Lawful permanent residents 11.9 million (26.6%)

Temporary lawful residents 2.1 million (4.8%) Source: Pew Research Center

Total US foreign-born population: 44.7 million

Rosalind Hutton

giving preference to those who already speak English. It also stated cities should welcome refugees fleeing political and religious persecution, but make sure they are not all


Despite all this reminiscing, Funderburk refused to focus on the past. “I don’t have time to be nostalgic; I want each day, class, student to be better, to surpass, supersede, to be transformative against the odds,” Funderburk said. “Yep, today. I remember most the scintillation of today’s colors.” Funderburk first came to MSU in 1982 under the job title “Watercolor Painter,” one of the only university studio art positions he had ever seen. Funderburk was more than prepared for this work after being mentored by American master watermedia artist Edward Reep. He was also in awe of the art by Walter Inglis Anderson, and thrilled to move to Anderson’s home state of Mississippi. Funderburk’s original life plan was to become a record album cover designer. When cassettes took the stage in


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An In-Class Distraction



... in 1936, an odd clue led to solving the murder of Nancy Titterton. A novelist and the wife of NBC executive, Titterton was raped and strangled in her upscale home on Beekman Place in New York City the morning of April 10, 1936. The only clues left behind were a footlong piece of cord used to tie up Titterton, and a single horsehair. The body was found in the afternoon the same day by Theodore Kruger and John Fiorenze, who worked at Kruger’s upholstery shop. The two were delivering a couch Titterton was having reupholstered, which was stuffed with horsehair. The hair from the couch matched the hair found at the crime scene. Both denied entering Titterton’s bedroom the morning she died. After a week of combing through every rope and cord manufacturer in the Northwest, police were able to trace the maker’s records to Kruger’s shop. Investigators learned Fiorenze had been at the Titterton house on April 9, and came in late to work the morning of the murder. Further investigation into his background uncovered how Fiorenze had four prior arrests for theft, and had been diagnosed by a prison psychiatrist as delusional. Detectives gained his trust by pretending to need his help in solving the crime, and then sprang on him the evidence they found about the cord. Surprised, Fiorenze confessed to the brutal crime, but claimed he was temporarily insane. This did not hold up in trial, and Fiorenze was executed on Jan. 22, 1937.

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Need a job? Need an employee? Check out the Cumulus On-Air Job Fair where you can post a help wanted ad for free to be advertised on air or look through our help wanted ads and apply for a job! CLASSIFIEDS 4 BEDROOMS AVAILABLE FOR RENT IN A LARGE HOUSE. Sunroom, dining room and a laundry room. Two full baths, large living area with fireplace. Hardwood and ceramic tile flooring, garage, fenced in yard, petfriendly environment for a fee. Only seven minutes from campus. Affordable room prices range from $325 per month to $400 per month. If interested call 662-312-5630. For MSU students only. For rent: 1 bedroom,

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The Syrian airstrikes: unwarranted or a necessary evil? The United States should not feel the need to act as ‘policeman of the world’ DAVID SIDES STAFF WRITER

The U.S. has once again found itself embroiled in an active conflict in the Middle East. It has to be justified this time, right? The U.S., arguably the only superpower in the world, has unfortunately earned themselves the title of “policeman of the world.” Wherever there is injustice, wherever there is a breach of human rights, we are there. When the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, almost everyone was in support of military action. According to Edward Wong of The New York Times, Saddam Hussein, the truly despicable despot of Iraq, was shown using chemical weapons against his own people, particularly against the Kurds in northern Iraq. When the United States voted on the “A U T H O R I Z A T I O N FOR USE OF MILITARY FORCE AGAINST IRAQ RESOLUTION OF 2002.”, the vast majority of Republicans and a substantial number of Democrats favored the invasion, James Love of the Huffington Post explains in his article. When we see cruelty and violence being used against innocents, it is a natural feeling to want to help them. I believe this conviction (possibly combined with other less savory motivations) led to our invasion of a sovereign nation in 2003. Yes, what Hussein was doing was abominable. Yes, he deserved to be removed from power. The question I want to pose is: Was/Is invading another country a fruitful endeavor? Do not take this as my advocation for isolationism. I just want us to critically consider whether our activities in the Middle East are the best course of action. As we say, hindsight is 20/20. If we reflect upon our actions in the Middle East in the early 2000’s, there are many regrets and not many things to celebrate. Susan Sachs of The New York Times states how although we removed Hussein from power, cutting

the head off the snake did not end the war and violence in the region. According to The Encyclopedia Britannica, the U.S. had boots on the ground for another 8 years, leading to thousands of military and civilian casualties. When we look at the recent action in Syria, it is hard to imagine it ending well. However, I want to divorce my feelings on the matter from partisan politics. Although President Donald Trump criticized former President Barack Obama on Twitter in 2013 for launching attacks on Syria without Congressional approval, something he himself did last week, this is not the main issue I have here. In fact, in another 2013 tweet, Trump made a great point, saying, “What will we get for bombing Syria besides more debt and a possible longterm conflict? Obama needs Congressional approval.” I disagreed with Obama’s decision to get involved in Syria, and I disagree with Trump’s resumption of bombing last week. In order to understand the issue with U.S. involvement in the Middle East, we have to look at the law of unintended consequences. According to the UN Refugee Agency, since 2011, over 5.4 million people have fled Syria, and around 6.1 million have been displaced within the country. This means 5.4 million people had to flee their homeland and integrate themselves into other countries. Matt Broomfield of The Independent describes how the majority of these refugees are stuck in refugee camps in neighboring countries, particularly in Turkey. According to ORSAM, the squalid and oppressive conditions in these camps are the perfect breeding grounds for extremism and antiAmerican sentiment. In the minds of those displaced, interference from Western nations is to blame for their plight. Whether or not this is reality does not matter, because it is their perception of the situation that affects the actions they take. In trying to achieve their own foreign policy goals in the

Middle East, no matter how noble they seem, the U.S. has succeeded in only one thing: creating a pervasive culture of anti-Westernism and support of Islamic extremist sects, such as the Wahhabist terrorist organization, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). Just as Al-Qaeda built their platform on pushing American forces out of Afghanistan, ISIL has built their platform on removing Western influence from the Middle East. In their article, Khetam Malkawi and Omar Akour of the Associated Press expound on how although ISIL is not as powerful as they were in 2014-2015, the Jordanian

The United States has an obligation as a world power to fight global tyranny



The U.S. has often assumed the role of “policeman” of the world, especially when other nations and international organizations fail to act on pressing issues. A recent example of this is the U.S.-led coalition airstrikes against the Syrian Assad government. It is without a doubt all of our readers are aware of the years-long conflict in the Middle Eastern nation of Syria, but I have spoken to many who do not understand why the U.S. is involved in the conflict, or how risking U.S. lives

Nobody freak out...but I may have just dropped my donut on the launch button.




Rosalind Hutton

military reports Syrian refugee camps are becoming a primary recruitment zone for ISIL. With the poor conditions in the camps, combined with a promise to retake their land from Western influence and interwoven with a common religious goal, it is not hard to see the appeal for restless refugees, and specifically for youth. In short, if we continue to use drones and bombers to achieve our political goals, we will only create more issues regarding terrorism and opposition to Western ideals in the Middle East in the coming years.

to stabilize the far-away nation brings any benefit to Americans. At my core, I am a diplomat. I stand firmly resolved diplomacy should always be the first method employed in quelling tensions, but I also understand how words must be backed by actions, and breaking diplomatic agreements must be met with repercussions. According to BBC News, since all diplomatic channels have failed, these airstrikes have emerged as one of the few remaining viable options in making it known to Assad how the

world will not stand idly by while he attacks his own innocent civilians. To have the U.S. regarded as the “leader of the free world” spearheading these airstrikes, adds gravity to the belligerent players, which shows this so-called leader of the free world will not allow a continuation of these atrocities. When no one else is able to enforce international law, someone must step up and take on this mantel. The U.S. ignoring violations of international law sets an egregious precedent. If Syria is allowed to violate it, what is to stop other nations from doing so as well? All of our diplomatic achievements will be meaningless if we lack the military willpower to hold violators accountable for their actions. Imagine a scenario where the police attempt to stop an active shooter without having a gun on them. Rather than shooting the shooter, they simply yell at him to stop what he is doing as they witness him mowing down innocents with complete disregard for everything the police shout at him. It seems unreal, does it not? Well, this is the current reality for the innocent Syrians. I feel passionately about this subject for two reasons: I am an international political science major, and I am a Jew. The first title does not require much elaboration as to its relevance in this piece, but I would like to speak briefly on the latter. Jon Sharman of The Independent argues the crimes against humanity which occurred during the Holocaust bear resemblance to the Assad government’s ongoing actions in Syria. A corrupt politician turned military dictator arrogates power in a nation and uses this power to commit genocide against his own powerless people. Far more damage would have occurred to the helpless civilians in

Nazi Europe if not for the U.S. and other nation’s intervention. The U.S. has seen what happens to peoples living under an unchecked military dictator after standing idly by for too long. Do we really want to subjugate the people of Syria to the same fate of those under Nazi rule when we have means to deter such an abomination? I cannot think we do. I am not a war hawk. In fact, war scares me. However, I am also scared of the idea of drawing meaningless lines in the sand so often that the world loses respect for us. Andrew Roth and Hannah Ellis-Peterson of The Guardian describe the high tensioned exchange the U.S. had with Putin since the attack. We told Putin to stay out of Georgia, he ignored us; we told Putin to stay out of Crimea, he ignored us; we told Assad to stop using chemical weapons against his people, he ignored us.

“All of our diplomatic achievements will be meaningless if

we lack the military willpower to hold

violaters accountable for their actions.”

This trend of military dictators ignoring the U.S.’ positions in favor of the greater good, in favor of those who are too tired and defenseless to remain vocally opposed themselves, must be stopped, and these recent airstrikes in Syria bring us closer to telling the world we mean business. The U.S. should be a beacon of hope to all peoples, American or otherwise, and we must fight tyranny with our allies wherever we find it until a competent international organization which does so emerges.

We peaked in the 1990s and have steadily declined ever since


is a freshman majoring in English. Contact him at

With all the recent controversies, I have become nostalgic for the simpler times. The 1990s were a time of extreme technological, cultural and economic growth, so why did we ever leave? We are all just bumbling around in 2018, trying to figure out how to solve crises, when we could be watching Jurassic Park in theaters for the 70th time. Think about it. Everyone loved the 90s. I loved the 90s, and I was only in them for a year.

With the collapse of the Soviet Union on December 25, 1991, it is practically un-American for people to dislike the 90s. No one was whining about how America should be more inclusive or more aware of its consequences, and no one questioned whether America was right in its actions. It was everything a true patriot could ask for. Speaking of unAmerican, North Korea was too busy dealing with massive famine to invest in a nuclear program capable of reaching U.S. soil. Sure, they could still hit Japan and South Korea, but if the capability did not force our hand the first time our country lived through it, it definitely will not bother us the second time. Similarly, China was just starting their switch to a freer economic system in the 90s, so we

got the benefits of cheap products and credit with none of the geopolitical threat of 2018. If you are down about the recent revelation that 87 million people’s information was ill-gotten through Facebook, do not worry one bit. The internet was still new and innovative in the 90s, so you can sit back and relax. Google, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram were all nonexistent, so it was just you and your old pal AOL. The sweet, sweet sound of a computer connecting to the Internet through a dialup connection still warms one’s soul. Plus, the lack of cell phones meant everyone always talked face-to-face, just like it is supposed to be. The best part is we can start using wacky lingo again, like “radical,” “tubular” or “I am confident that my private

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Donʼt mind her. She peaked in the 90s.

Rosalind Hutton

information is secure.” In the 90s, President Donald Trump was busy not being the president, and if you are sad Hillary Clinton lost in 2016, you can be somewhat satisfied with Bill Clinton embodying the same economic policies of

Hillary, but with objectively twice the charm of his spouse. However, if you do like Trump’s presidency, Bill has got you covered on the “president who has several sexual assault allegations against him” side of things. That is a compromise the


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whole country can agree on. One might ask, “What year in the 90s? All your evidence you have used is dispersed within the decade.” The answer is the nebulous, nostalgic ideal year of the 90s encompassing everything people remember about the decade, without any of the actual specifics. This way we can all enjoy playing with Pogs, and watching “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” but not have to choose anything. Choosing things is what caused us to be in the current predicament, so we should avoid this responsibility at all costs. In conclusion, let us all agree to stay in the 90s where we belong. 2017 was an obvious divine sign we were not meant to surpass the year 2000, so it is time to head home before the option to leave closes forever.

Circulation/Sierra Pruitt

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MSU Community band is a social and muscial experience EMMA MOFFETT


Around 100 musicians gather together each spring to participate in the Starkville/ MSU Community Band. The community band is comprised of musicians throughout the MSU community, as well as the Golden Triangle. The only requirement to join is previous music experience since this is not a group for beginning musicians. The band houses a diverse range of musicians from previous members of the MSU Famous Maroon Band, to band directors from local schools. The band staff also invites high school students who are at least 15 years old with one or more years of band experience to join, although their band director’s permission is required. This spring ensemble meets Mondays for two hours and performs in two different

concerts during the semester. The first concert of the season was Feb. 18, and the last concert was April 8. Director of the MSU Community Band Craig Aarhus said despite the age difference, students and community members are able to connect during a break time during rehearsal. “The adults love getting to know the kids, and the kids love to learn from the adults,” Aarhus said. “Both groups would likely not encounter each other any other way, but they all share the same passion: to make music.” Aarhus said the community band started in 2003 as an outgrowth of the band program. Since there were not enough students to create a third concert band, Aarhus said he believed with students and the community combined, there would be enough musicians to warrant the need for a community band. “Being in a university town

where there are a lot of people with a lot of backgrounds, we have enough talents to sustain a community band with this type of model so people can continue to practice music, even if it is not their profession,”Aarhus said. Associate Director Clifton Taylor said the community plays a wide variety of music, ranging from typical band pieces, marches, transcriptions of orchestral literature and medley of popular literature from Broadway or movies. Taylor said they pick the music based on the personnel of the band and what they enjoy rehearsing and performing, as well looking to see what the audience would enjoy listening to. Taylor said the community band is a unique way the community can come together and learn from one another. “It is a social experience as much as it is a musical experience for those who do it. Band People like to commune with people who do

Emma Moffett |The Reflector

Director of the Starkville/MSU Community Band, Craig Aarthus, leads rehersal before the final performance on April 8.

what they do,” Taylor said. “In addition to the sitting down and playing music together, it is like a family reunion where everyone can visit together. They will rehearse and take a break where they can have a

social time to eat and time.” Aarhus said the group has improved over time, and they have had faithful members who take advantage of the opportunity to perform music since the band started.

“We try to provide a good music experience and social experience,” Aarhus said. “If we do those two things well, people enjoy what they are doing and want to come back.”

Theatre MSU anticipates energy and laughs in ‘Noises Off’ EMMA MOFFETT


Theatre MSU’s final performance of the season, “Noises Off,” will run Thursday through Saturday at the McComas Theatre. “Noises Off ” is a highenergy, farce comedy for mature audiences. The play is fast-paced and designed to provide an interesting and hilarious look into theatre life many do not get to see. The performance consists of more physical work than other plays and many of the actors work out together to ensure they are are in shape to fulfill the play’s requirements.

Director Cody Stockstill said “Noises Off ” is one of the most complicated plays he has worked with, but he is confident the performers will meet the challenges of this play. “I have been doing theatre for a long time, and ‘Noises Off ’ is one of the most complex plays anyone can do anywhere,” Stockstill said. “It is just about the most complex show, not only for the design and tech of it, but for the actors as well. So much is going on in the show.” Since it was key for the performers to master the physical comedy of the show, auditions were held in

December to allow plenty of time for the performers to learn the script which includes many stage directions. Stockstill said “Noises Off ” includes a diverse cast of actors from across campus. Many members of Lab Rats will perform in this play, along with an engineering student and a range of other people interested in comedy. “What I always tell my actors is that if they didn’t stand out, I wouldn’t have cast them,” Stockstill said. “Each of the actors in this play stand out in their own individual way.” Alyssa Parrish, public

relations intern for the theatre, said the entire theatre is excited to perform this well-known Broadway play. “In comparison to other plays in the season, this is definitely our most complex,” Parrish said. “In fact, it is probably the most complex play we have put on in many years.” Parrish works primarily in the costume department, and said since the play is a play within a play, the head designer Jamie Alexander analyzed each character and determined what the characters would wear, as well as the characters the characters play. While designing the

costumes was complicated, the set was the most complex aspect of this performance. The set is a two-story rotating set, the largest feat the department has attempted. Stockstill said he took a long time designing the set, starting last fall, and continuing to make adjustments up until they began building. It required a lot of lumber orders and assistance to build, but fortunately, this year they had a lot of help within the department to make the process smoother. “This two-story set has to essentially rotate 180 degrees,” Stockstill said.

“That is what we have been working on since February. It is basically a big jungle gym of a set that also has to rotate.” Hannah Boyette, a student interested in attending the play, said she has heard many positive reviews of the play, and knows Theatre MSU will do justice to this popular Broadway hit. “Theatre MSU always does an amazing job in their performances, and especially with their set,” Boyette said. “I have no doubt that this play will be both hysterical and well-designed. I hope other students and community members come to see it.”




MSU seniors continue their basketball journey on a professional stage MELISSA WEITZEL STAFF WRITER

Mississippi State University’s senior guard and second all-time leading scorer, Victoria Vivians, was drafted by the Indiana Fever 8th overall in the WNBA draft last Thursday. She joins Ohio State University’s Kelsey Mitchell, whom the Fever drafted number two overall. Vivians leaves MSU as a four-year starter who averaged 19.8 points per game, 48.5 percent from the field, 40.4 percent from 3-point range, and 80.9

percent from the free-throw line in her senior year. Last season, she was a First-Team All-SEC and All-American selection. After a National Championship berth two years in a row, Vivians joins a rebuilding team in the WNBA. The Fever posted a 9-25 record last season, and finished second to last in the league. Vivians was not the only MSU women’s basketball player to sign with a team. MSU’s senior point guard Morgan William signed a training camp contract with the Las Vegas Aces, who also picked South Carolina

superstar A’ja Wilson with the first overall pick in the draft. The Aces, previously known as the San Antonio Stars, will play their first season in Las Vegas this year. The San Antonio Stars were last in the league last season, finishing with a record of 7-27. William finished her career at MSU tied for 3rd in career assists in school history, started all 39 games, and finished 3rd in NCAA Division I turnover/assist ratio. WNBA training camps begin April 29, and the preseason begins May 6.

Victoria Vivians

923 field goals, 2,527 total points (second in MSU History) 8th pick in WNBA draft to the Indiana Fever 38 double figure games and had 20+ points in 20 games 2018 NCAA All-Final Four Rosalind Hutton

COLUMN: A welcome back to a more competitive NBA playoffs FORREST BUCK

Forrest is a graduate student in the kinesology department contact him at

The NBA playoffs began this past weekend and are off to a great start. Last year’s postseason turned out to be a bit of a downer, as the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers predictably met in the finals for the thirdstraight season. Both teams easily forged through their respective conferences, and the Warriors just as easily disposed of Lebron James and the Cavs in 5 games. However, fast forward one year later, and all of a

sudden, the outlook of the NBA playoffs is different. The Houston Rockets now have Chris Paul and were able to surpass the Warriors during the regular season in terms of record. As a matter of fact, the Rockets were so good at full strength, they only lost two games the entire year when their best three players in James Harden, Paul, and Clint Capella were all in the lineup. Whether or not this translates to success in the postseason is a different story, but finally, it seems as if there is a real threat to the Warriors in the West. Speaking of the Warriors, what about Stephen Curry? Just how hurt is he, and when is he coming back? Curry is ruled out for the entire first round, and his status after that is still to be determined. The Warriors struggled mightily down the stretch of the

regular season without Curry in the lineup, and finished the season in especially poor fashion losing by 40 points to the Utah Jazz. However, the Warriors seem to have regathered themselves after an impressive game one performance against the San Antonio Spurs. What about the Spurs? For nearly two decades, they have been one of the primary contenders in the West and were expected to be so again. However, Kawhi Leonard only played in nine games this season, and the Spurs seem to be in some sort of weird rift with their best player. Leonard was cleared by team doctors for months now, but refuses to play and there is no timetable for his return. The Oklahoma City Thunder is another interesting team out west. Last season, Westbrook was a one-man wrecking crew,

averaging a triple-double and winning MVP, but his team did not have enough help around him and OKC was easily dismissed in round one. Things have changed as the Thunder went out and added Paul George and Carmelo Anthony to the mix. The trio has not been a perfect fit, and has had their share of struggles throughout the year, but have looked better down the stretch and opened strong in game one against the Jazz. If they can get the chemistry right, there is enough talent on their roster to challenge the Rockets. The biggest surprise of this year’s NBA playoffs is the Eastern conference. For the first time in what feels like forever, it seems like some team other than the one Lebron plays on can actually get to the finals. The Cavs have dealt with turmoil all season long, and ultimately

Moorhead on finishing up spring football practice



Mississippi State University football planned to host a second scrimmage, but due to inclement weather, they held a normal practice, a week before the Maroon-White Spring game this Saturday. Head coach Joe Moorhead discussed missing the scrimmage with the media last Saturday. “I think the kids were a little disappointed because of the weather that we were not going to have an opportunity to scrimmage,” Moorhead said. “But we got a full practice in, all of our team periods and individuals in. So we got much out of today. I thought the kids did a great job not allowing circumstances outside of their control to dictate their attitude and behavior. So they did a great job.” With a week left of spring practice, Moorhead said he liked his team’s progress over the course of spring. He said they installed everything they wanted to this spring. “For what we were putting in this spring, everything is installed by today,” Moorhead said. “But that doesn’t mean that is all we are going to see in fall camp and in the season. But the base foundation of all three phases are in. The full installation of the playbook means they can focus on details as they finish out spring practice. “ C o n t i n u e d understanding of the scheme and getting better from fundamental, technique and precision aspect,” Moorhead said. “The installation is done, and now it is just about refining.” While a lot of coaches see the spring game strictly for the fans without much to gain, Moorhead sees the value in the game itself, for his players and his team.

“We are putting them in the stadium for the first time, and the opportunity to compete in front of the fans and get used to how we operate on game day from a substitution and an operational standpoint,” Moorhead said. He said they will try not to do too much play-calling during the game. “I do think you want to keep it simple and allow them to play fast and to be more concerned about their general assignment and execution, the fundamentals and technique than you are about trying to scheme it up,” Moorhead said. The team has talent from top to bottom, and the spring gave the new coaching staff an opportunity to see the talent. Moorhead said there is competition across the board with guys pushing each other. “That is one of the great opportunities for a team with a new coaching staff, and that is the depth charts are written in pencil and not pen,” Moorhead said. “If you come out and don’t perform and the guy behind you does better, then you move down on the depth chart and the other guy will replace you. It’s not rocket science, and I think the kids understand it. On any given Saturday, we are going to play the best 11 on offense, defense and special teams. Competition makes everybody better.” The team will play in the maroon and white game on saturday at 3:00 p.m. at Davis Wade Stadium. Former Bulldog players now in the NFL will be at the game as guest captains. Those captains include Dak Prescott, Johnathan Banks, and Gabe Jackson. The Women’s Basketball team will also be recognized at halftime for being NCAA national finalists, and will have an autograph session that same day at the north concourse of the stadium from 1:30-3:30.

underachieved, finishing with the fourth-best record in the conference. You have to go all the way back to the 2008 season to find the last time a Lebron-lead team finished lower than a three seed in the East, and that year they were eliminated in the second round. Could history repeat itself 10 years later? The Cavs are already off to a rocky start losing at home by 18 to an underdog Pacers team. If the Cavs are able to bounce back and win their firstround series against Indy, there is a very good Toronto Raptors team potentially waiting on them which seems to have a different feel than the Raptors teams that underachieved in the playoffs in years past. This year, the Raptors finished with the best record in the East, and were one of the top offensive and defensive teams in the

league. Toronto also has the best bench in the NBA. Then there is the upstart Philadelphia 76ers who finished the regular season on a 15 game winning streak to ultimately pass the Cavs and take the 3 seed. With Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward both out for the Celtics, the path looks clear for Philly to advance all the way to the Eastern Conference finals, and anything can happen from there. Ultimately, if Curry returns healthy, I believe the Warriors will win the championship again. I also believe Lebron will find a way to get to the finals, which means I expect to see Warriors/Cavs part four. However, I am not totally confident in this, and things just seem a lot more interesting. Welcome back NBA playoffs, we missed you last year.

Schedule for Maroon and White Game: April 21, 2018 8:00 a.m. :

The Junction opens for tailgating

10-11 a.m. :

MSU football team autograph session on west concourse Dawg Walk in the Junction, and Davis Wade Stadium’s gates open

1:30 p.m. : 1:30-3:30 p.m. :

Women’s basketball team autograph session on north end zone concourse

3:00 p.m. :

Team takes the field, game begins Hunter Cloud

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Kelly Price| MSU Communications

Maurice Smitherman, a junior from Adamsville, Alabama, practices a cornerback drill.

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