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VOL. 61, I SSUE 12



An open letter to students from Interim President and CEO Eddie N. Moore Jr. Page 7

Fire in Babbette Smith North Dorm By Alyssa Powell

A fire broke out in a Norfolk State University Babbette Smith North dorm room. On Friday, April 18 around 12:30 p.m., Norfolk’s Fire Department and University police responded to a triggered alarm in Babbette Smith North also known as the “Towers Girls’ Side” or “Freshman Girl’s Dorm.” The fire’s flames caused the sprinkler system to go off and bystanders could see light smoke through the fifth-floor window. The dorm residents were forced to immediately evacuate the building. The fire was quickly contained. The students waited in anticipation and confusion of what was going to happen. Four hours later, the students were able to go back to their rooms to get some of their items, but some still were not able to stay in their rooms. Some students, such as the girls on the fifth floor, were sent to a hotel for the weekend as others were sent to other dorms across campus. The students were not allowed back into their

dorms until Sunday afternoon. “My whole bed was on fire and I had to throw a majority of my things away,” said Stanaiza Garrett, a freshmen sociology major who lived in the room where the fire started. “I’m very upset, some my belongings are messed up and now I have to move all

spread throughout the dorm and everything else is okay,” said Jessica Steward, a freshman biology major who also lived on the fifth floor.

It was said that the dorm suffered minor water damage, but at least no one was injured. The cause of the fire still remains under investigation.

“Some of my shoes, such as my Uggs are done...” of my stuff to the second floor,” said Kierra Todd, a freshmen mass communication major whose dorm room was right next door to the fire. “Some of my shoes, such as my Uggs are done, but I’m just happy that the fire didn’t

Graduation commencement is scheduled to take place at the Norfolk Scope Arena in Downtown Norfolk on Saturday, May 10 Page 2

The Norfolk State University Police Department and the City of Norfolk Fire-Rescue responded at 12:30 p.m. to a fire at Babbette Smith Hall. Photo by Tykhari Cole

Damage from inside the dorm room where the fire originated. Photo by Jazmin Walker

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Spartan News



HBCUX launches new network from NSU campus By Donte Hayden As the opening event of this year’s annual MCJR Week, the students of Norfolk State University witnessed history on April 7 as Curtis Symonds, formerly of ESPN and BET, launched what many consider a future powerhouse in television, the HBCUX network. The network includes programming which ranges from sports and entertainment to education and lifestyle. The launch was hosted by the Mass Communications and Journalism Department on campus in the Student Center. “HBCUX is all about vision and growth. When we started BET, the vision was the only thing we had,” said Symonds. The network features 10 channels, catering to all four HBCU conferences, including many independent colleges and universities throughout the United States. These channels have live coverage of sports that showcase the many talents and skills of minorities. It also shows what it is really like on the HBCU campuses through X Magazine, which informs the public about what’s going on with the student body at HBCUs and keeps the public informed about the institutions. Although sports and showing the everyday life of the HBCU college student are important, Symonds said that’s not the only thing the HBCUX net-

work is about. HBCUX gives minorities a chance to showcase their talents through film and other forms of media. “We have a lot of talent at these universities, but they don’t know how to get their product out there,” said Symonds. “We’re here to give them that opportunity. We want the world to see how good these students really are.” The network gives students the opportunity to show independent films through the X Theatre. The X Theatre gives students a voice, and not only a chance to show their story, but it also gives them a chance to let the world see that they can compete with all the other players in the media field. As HBCUX comes to the forefront, it has been a struggle getting the network off the ground. “The money isn’t there yet, it’s all about growth. We have a vision with HBCUX and we are making it grow,” said Symonds. On the other hand, the fledgling network has come a long way from where it started. By making a name for themselves and establishing their vision, as well as making the right decisions to get where they are today, Symonds is confident to say the HBCUX network will last for many years to come.

NSU witnessed history on April 7 as Curtis Symonds, formerly of ESPN and BET, launched the HBCUX network. Photo by Donte Hayden

Photos by Tykhari Cole

Graduation 2014:

Students prepare to depart from Norfolk State University this spring By Richelle Hammiel The Spartan Echo would like to congratulate all members of the graduating class of spring 2014! The road to graduation may have seemed long, but it is finally coming to an end. Graduation commencement is scheduled to take place at the Norfolk Scope Arena in Downtown Norfolk on Saturday, May 10, 2014. To ensure that all students are prepared to march, there will be a processional at 9:30 a.m. and shortly after, the program will begin at 10:00 a.m. Levar Stoney, Secretary of the Commonwealth, has recently been named as the commencement address speaker of the program. As the date quickly approaches, students continue their efforts to meet all of the graduation requirements outlined by the university. With the constant fluctuation of graduation rates, Norfolk State University is set to have approximately 770 students graduating this spring. President of Norfolk State University, Eddie N. Moore Jr., expressed his thoughts on the graduation rates. “It’s great. We’ve answered the state’s requirements.” Norfolk State University holds at least 25 different academic departments that stu-

dents are enrolled in to help them achieve their career aspirations. Having to compete with all other departments, the Nursing and Allied Health department has successfully managed to prevail with the highest number of graduating seniors in its program.

“It’s great. We’ve answered the state’s requirements.” According to Frances Gray, an assistant professor in the Nursing and Allied Health department, her department has achieved its high ranking by its aggressive mentoring and advising, enabling more students to join the program. It is impossible to ignore the efforts of other departments as well. All of the departments at NSU have pushed students to realize the importance of an education. For future classes to come, the university has already begun seeking ways to increase

graduation rates. “Students should attempt more credits, at least 18 credits, and finish within five or six years, and successfully complete the credits. Unfortunately, financial aid stops after four years,” said President Moore. This is Moore’s goal for bettering the students; however, the lack of financial aid is a huge loophole that will prevent many students from furthering their education. On the other hand, the Nursing and Allied Health department has also begun taking steps to maintain its high graduation rates for next year. According to Jessica Parrott, the Interim Department Chair for Nursing and Allied Health, the curriculum is already being redesigned, and the department itself is undergoing construction inside and out to increase pass rates. As students finally depart Norfolk State University, they will take with them the principles and values that Norfolk State has worked hard to instill in all of its students. To be a Spartan, is to reach the highest academic standards, and to become a leader that will also help others reach the potential that you’ve always strived to reach.

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Spartan News


Campus’ LGBT community celebrates fourth annual pride week By Kallie Gould

From left to right, Andre Christian (President of the NSU chapter of LEGASI), Kim Williams (Vice President) and Asia Page (Historian and Creativity Manager). Under faculty advisement from Dr. Charles Ford, LEGASI (Leading the Education of Gay and Straight Individuals) has had one mission since its conception and it’s to live up to & go beyond the organization’s namesake. Photo by Tykhari Coles

From Apr. 7 to Apr. 11, the Leading the Education of Gay and Straight Individuals, also known as LEGASI, held its fourth annual Pride Week. It included events from the “Hot Topics Forum” to ”Lip Sync for your Life Competition and Talent Show.” Members also established a presence in the Student Center with representatives set up to draw attention to the group and answer questions about the movement and their existence on campus. The week culminated on Apr. 11 with a “Cultural Pride Ball”, which over 150 people attended. This year’s Pride Week theme, “Pride In The Colors,” was planned by LEGASI E-board members sophomores Kimberly Williams and Taneisha Hurt, juniors Jasmine Adkins and Asia Paige, freshman Keiyah Allen, and the LEGASI Presi-

dent, graduating senior Andre’ Christian. Christian said the goal of Pride Week was “to increase awareness about the LGBT community in the Hampton Roads area by exposing populations to appreciate cultural differences. It’s our desire to be a resource for cultural competency, human rights and social justice.” “In a world where people are becoming more open about their sexuality, and the social norms of society are constantly being challenged, the LGBT community must be able to join together to let their voices be heard in a safe space. NSU LEGASI has been committed to fulfilling that mission at the intersection of being black and gay. Over the years, our supporting allies, especially faculty, have been pivotal in the success of our organization. We appreciate the embracing

A change in social media preference may be on the rise By Danielle Kirsh

Currently, Facebook and Twitter are no longer the preferred social media networks and may soon be the networks of the past. Many young adults are ditching the larger social media and migrating to other smaller networks, like Snapchat and Vine. In 2013, Snapchat, Vine and YouTube were the most popular social networking apps, according to businessinsider. com. As of Apr. 17, Snapchat and Instagram have been downloaded more frequently than Twitter and Facebook in Apple’s app store. However, Facebook and Twitter still dominate in total numbers with Facebook hav-

ing 1.2 billion users, and Twitter having 240 million. Facebook is also becoming a larger company than the social networking website we’ve come to know. In Feb., Facebook bought the messaging app Whatsapp, with its more than 450 million users, for $19 billion. Facebook also purchased the photo-sharing network Instagram, which has more than 150 million users. The other social networks provide essentially the same features, but with fewer parents, grandparents and other family members that Facebook tends to have. These smaller networks are increasingly becoming more preferred by young adults. According to a Pew Research

Internet Project study, teens and young adults cited that they disliked the “increasing number of adults” on Facebook along with the “drama” and “inane details” their friends of-

ten share. Those who use Twitter and Instagram reported to the study that they felt like they could “better express themselves on these platforms.” As of late, the original social networks of this generation, such as MySpace and Facebook, are losing their relevance. Graphic by Tykhari Coles

spirit on our campus that’s tolerant of our movement,” said Christian. NSU is the first and the only HBCU to host a LGBT Pride Week. The first pride week took place in March 2011 and was started by former NSU student and former LEGASI president, Toni-Michelle Williams. “I started pride week because it simply was time!” exclaimed Williams. “During that era of my life, I was finding my voice and place as a student leader, a member of the black LGBT community and ultimately as a Spartan. I wanted to see something different on campus; something for me and something for my friends to enjoy and be a part of.” Williams went on to point out that many other groups were already represented on campus, everyone from Caribbean descendants to commuter students to Christian bible study. “I’m proud that people are still walking up to the table to add in the pieces necessary to further our movement,” said Williams. “There were and are so many stereotypes, stigmas and myths that surrounded our community that no one had access to the truth because we simply were not visible. So it was time and it will always be time until everyone gets it.” And there is still work to be done as far as LEGASI is concerned. “We can’t do this fight alone. Many gays, including non-black, stood with blacks for the fight for equality; we must be able to reciprocate their efforts of equality. In closing, I’m reminded by Dr. Martin Luther King, ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere’,” noted Christian.

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Spartan Sports



Football will be back in a flash: Are you ready? By Jason Gill

It’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon. The student section is as alive as ever. The Spartan Legion is playing in the background. The crowd resembles a sea of green and gold. Get ready football lovers. NSU’s 2014 season is closer than it appears. The Spartans will open their 2014 campaign on the road on Aug. 30 when they travel to Orono, Maine to face the University of Maine in a rematch of last year’s season opener. NSU will then host Liberty University at William “Dick” Price Stadium on Sept. 6 for their first home game of the year. “This season should bring a tremendous amount of excitement to fans of all ages,” All-American junior linebacker Linden Trail said.

“Our defense has only lost two starters which means they should expect the same intensity from our side of the ball.” The Spartans will look to make up for a dismal 3-9 finish from last season in which they won just a single game in front of their home crowd. “I’m hoping for a better season. When the team wins, our student section is the livest,” freshman mass communication major Danielle Campbell said. “I love going to games that are packed and energetic, but when the team isn’t winning, no one really wants to go anymore.” With the additions of former Morgan State head coach Donald Hill-Eley—who will serve as the new offensive coordinator—and coach Gordon Gregory—who will

be the new quarterbacks coach—the fans should look for big improvements on the offensive side of the ball. “On top of being tired of losing the past two seasons, we’ll return nine starters on defense, while adding some wrinkles on offense. This will give fans a lot to look forward to,” redshirt sophomore wide receiver DeAndre Sangster said. NSU’s recruiting class has also added some speedy weapons for coach Hill-Eley and company to utilize. The team will look to reverse a trend from last season when they were dead last in the MEAC only scoring 14.0 ppg. Above all, the Spartans need to bring the excitement back to the student body. If the team is enjoying success, they will also enjoy

The Spartans will open their 2014 campaign on the road on August 30, promising to bring back the edge and excitement of Spartan football. Photo by Tykhari Coles

a packed house supporting them every step of the way. “If you win, they will come,” junior mass communications major Jalen Grant said. “A few years back when the football program won the conference, there was an electricity at the home of the Spartans like no other.”

NSU won the MEAC title outright in 2011, which was the only time in school history they’ve achieved the feat. Let’s just hope that with the new coaches, to go along with the new offensive talent, the Spartans will play up to their capabilities and put forth an effort that will have Spartan Nation rocking once again.

Is this history in the making? Perhaps By Jason Gill

The football team of Northwestern University has taken a huge step toward what could be a major change in college athletics, as well the end of the NCAA as we know it. On March 26, the Regional Director of the National Relations Labor Board (NRLB) ruled that college athletes are employees, and therefor, able

to form a union. “In some ways, what’s happened here is that the NCAA has waited a little too long to make some important changes and now the outside forces are taking over,” said David Murphy, a Labor and Employment partner with Dorsey & Whitney, and one of the top experts in the country on union-related disputes.

The Northwestern football team seeks to claim victory establishing their own official union. Photo courtesy of hokesmadmagicians.

“If the NCAA doesn’t do something on their own here, others will come in and do it for them. Although one regional director’s decision doesn’t set the rule for the whole U.S. right now, it does have the potential to lay the foundation for the future law of the land.” The decisions made by the NRLB, as well as the football players of Northwestern University to take this courageous position, have brought about many mixed feelings and legitimate questions. While admitting that changes needed to be made, NCAA President Mark Emmert disagrees with the way in which these student athletes are approaching the issue. “The notion of using a union employee model to address the challenges that do exist in intercollegiate athletics is something that strikes most people as a grossly inappropriate solution to the problems,” said Emmert. “It would blow up everything

about the collegiate model of athletics.” Among the matters the Northwestern football team, as well as many other student athletes around the country is looking to change, are better medical coverage, concussion testing, four-year scholarships, and the biggest of them all, the possibility of getting paid. Murphy believes that “if college athletes were deemed ‘employees’, there are some important questions to be raised: How will minimum wage be treated considering all of the time these athletes practice? What will happen with safety issues? For instance would now an OSHA investigation be launched into the safety of football helmets? That is an area that falls under current employment law. What about advertising. Currently, there are labor laws that deal with the use of employees for company advertising. College sports’

marketing is big business and currently feature their athletes heavily. What would happen with that? What changes might there be regarding healthcare coverage? Currently, if a freshman football player injures himself, he could lose his scholarship and is not guaranteed extended coverage. This could fall under workman’s compensation in the future. And if you do this for your football and basketball players (the bigger money makers for colleges), what do you do with the other teams and, specifically, women athletes? There could be potentially drastic changes and demands from women players.” What the Northwestern football team has done is just the beginning of a long, drawn out process. This could very well be a historical movement that is taking place right before our very eyes.

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Spartan Sports


It has been a challenging yet fulfilling year for athletics By Jazmin Sherard

Photo by Keith Cephus

Photo by Mark Sutton

Photo by Frank Selden

Photo by Mark Sutton

The NSU Athletics Department has had its highs and lows this year. Generally speaking, the department has done exactly what NSU’s Athletic Director Marty Miller asked of them. “Overall, our student athletes have done well this year, especially inside of the classroom, which is what we wanted them to do,” said Athletics Director Marty Miller. “Although some programs did not achieve what they planned on the field, we still had a great year.” While the athletic programs thrived at being both students and athletes, there is certainly room for improvement, especially when it comes to our sports facilities on campus. “We definitely have some projects going on this summer when it comes to our facilities,” said Miller. “One of those projects being here in Echols Hall, where we will be working on getting both a new scoreboard, adding a video board, and re-doing the bathrooms.” Financially, athletics has done well this year, especially the revenue sports, both the football and basketball program. “Yes, both the football and basketball programs have done well financially, but as a department we are working on improving the attendance to games not only in the revenue sports, but also the nonrevenue sports,” said Miller. “It’s about having support from the students. That’s what our athletes need. They need to see that the students are supporting them.”

Being the Athletic director for the past 10 years, Miller and his staff have overcome many challenges within the department. Miller’s main obstacle early in his tenure was to eliminate a deficit exceeding $1,100,000, and essentially ending the year with a positive fund balance of over $1,200,000. Along with his staff, not only did he accomplish the above, but over the years they’ve made tremendous improvements to major facilities. One of them being in 2007, with the help from alumni and fans, the school completed a major renovation of the NSU softball field, which included the installation of new dugouts and a press box. “My staff knows that I have great expectations of them, I have great expectations of myself and the work that us a department encounter,” said Miller. “We all are about working and improving in every way that we can.” With a leader who’s vision is to ensure unity not only within athletics, but with the students as well, while possessing the perspective and willingness to deal with the ups and downs, shows that NSU as an entity will flourish. “One word to describe this athletic year would be challenging. “ I say that because we have encountered many obstacles within the department and with our athletes,” said Miller. “Our athletes have experienced obstacles when it comes to not winning and injuries, but at the end of the day, that’s life and we will be just fine.”

Photo courtesy

Photo by Mark Sutton

Photo by Mike Sarino

Photo by Keith Cephus

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Spartan Lifestyle


By Ciara Simmons

Summer is the time when vacations are taken and memories are made. Although we can show all of our adventures by posting our favorite pictures on social media sites, we aren’t easily able to share the roads in which we took to achieve them. That’s where comes in. is a website where you can plan and share your vacation plans with family and friends. You begin by typing in all of the places you want to travel. The site then creates a printable version of your journey so that your friends can take the map with them on their next trip. Friends are also able to follow your map using their portable devices.

Users can update their guides with tips on the best places to stay, the greatest restaurants, or the places with the best views and most interesting museums. You are able to remain connected as friends check off the places they’ve visited, as referred by you, and tell you what they’ve enjoyed. Only the people you authorize to view your maps have access to do so. Jauntful is always updating their site to ensure users get the best experience, in addition to answering user questions through their social media sites such as Twitter. Visit their website and view the many examples that include places from Atlanta and Annapolis, to Paris and Stockholm. You just might find your next vacation destination!

A few of the services available on campus include: 1) Harrison B. Wilson Hall Administration Building; 2) L. Douglas Wilder Performing Arts Center; 3) Facilities Maintenance Building; 4) West Campus Dining Hall; 5) Brambleton Community Outreach Center; 6) University Police Station; 7) Lyman Beecher Brooks Library; 9) Mary Scott/Dozier Dining Hall; 10) The New Student Center; 11) Student Services Center; 12) Ticket Office; 13) Picnic Area; 15) Spartan Station; Photo retrieved from

Be prepared, not late By Ciara Simmons

The first day of classes can either be an exciting experience or a dreaded one. There’s nothing worse than feeling like you have everything under control, only to lose your confidence because you just weren’t prepared. Although NSU isn’t a large campus, unable to find buildings you can still get lost and wind up late for class. Taking the time to map out your day on campus doesn’t take long and can save you a lot of frustration and headache. Start off by seeing where

your first class is located. From there you can determine where’s the best place to park if you’re a commuter student. That way you won’t spend 10 minutes searching for a parking space. Next, you should map out each class for the day. Use the campus map to locate every building. It doesn’t hurt to do a trial run also. See how long it takes you to reach each class. That will help you determine whether you can take your time or if you’re going to be in a hurry everyday. Make sure you locate all

the important places like where to eat and where to study. You will also want to be aware of where your resources are located such as financial aid, and your academic advisor. Finding a campus map is easy. When you purchase a parking decal, you are provided with a map or you can search on the NSU website. Don’t get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the first day. Just like you, many others may be rushing to be on time. Never feel like your going overboard by planning. It’s better to be prepared than lost.

Have a good time without the drama By Ciara Simmons

As the warm weather approaches, there are more stories of people getting caught in compromising situations. This is not hard to believe with the popularity of social media and the enjoyment many find in catching and posting people online. Lives can be ruined for the fun of one night. We can all remember the stories of the girls who had too much to drink, the guys who tried too hard to be noticed and the torment they may have endured in person or online. But who said you can’t enjoy your summer without being ousted? There are many ways to have the time of your life without the feel-

ing of restrictions, while still protecting your reputation. When you go out, be sure to stay with a group of people you know and trust. These are the people who will make sure you don’t do anything crazy or harmful. You should also plan to leave with the people you arrived with. According to the Better Health Channel, you should always make a plan to get home, while having a plan B just in case your plan A fails. When going to unfamiliar areas, be sure you pay attention to your surroundings. “Pay attention to street signs, business names and buildings,” says the travel site Never go with someone you

don’t know. Though that may seem like common sense, it’s easy to get caught up talking to someone and wind up feeling more comfortable than you should. Try not to get caught up in the hype. There are many fads like “doing it for the Vine” or appearing on the popular urban site WorldStar Hip Hop. Your adrenaline is rushing, you’re having a good time and people are hyping you up. You could end up doing something that you will regret in the future. As I’m sure everyone has heard, “your reputation precedes you.” Be safe and have a drama-free, scandal- free, summer.

There are plenty of ways to make summer memories without risking one’s dignity and reputation. Photo by Tykhari Coles

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Spartan Opinion

Letter to the Editor from President Eddie N. Moore, Jr. End-of-Year Note to Students

Dear NSU Students,

First, congratulations on completing the 2013-2014 school year at Norfolk State University! This year brought a lot of changes to the institution but in the end, I believe we emerged a stronger University. This End-of-Year Note is to encourage you to consider several things as you approach the summer months: 1. For returning students, I encourage you to set a goal to finish in 4 years. Review your course load, talk to your academic advisor and take (and pass!) a minimum of 15 credit hours each semester so you can graduate on-time. For students on financial aid, it is critical that you understand the limits that exist on student aid and what happens when it ends. Know where you stand right now and set your goal to graduate within 4 years. 2. If you are graduating in May, congratulations on this important milestone in your life! Strongly consider pursuing a graduate degree or entering into the workforce as soon as feasible. Why? You do not want to wait too long between graduation and the next phase of your life because (as we all know), life happens and your next step can be delayed. Consider graduate school at Norfolk State University in one of the many graduate programs being offered. 3. Remember to give back to your community and of course, to Norfolk State University. Many students rely on the University for financial and non-financial support—so helping or offering to help a colleague, friend or stranger, is a wonderful way to pay back what you have received during your time at Norfolk State. I have secured an office on the 3rd floor of the Student Center to meet with students during the upcoming school year. Look for the announcement and I am eager to interact with you. Best wishes in all that you do and enjoy your summer! Sincerely, Eddie N. Moore, Jr. Interim President and CEO

Letter from the editor: farewell to NSU By Brittany Elmore

Graduating senior Brittany Elmore says her goodbyes to the organization that helped her launch her career in journalism to infinity and beyond. Photo by Tykhari Coles

Norfolk State was by no means my first choice in institutions for higher education. I wanted to go anywhere but Virginia; I wanted to be at a big school where I could get lost in the swarm of endless students and constantly meet new people. In the long run, I ended up in an intimate setting where my professor and department head knew me by name. I didn’t think a close knit program was what I wanted, but I ended up falling in love with Norfolk State. When I entered NSU as a freshman at 17-years-old, I was focused on one thing, going through the motions and getting to graduation

day. Along the way, I had to face some pretty hard truths about life after college— I learned that just going to class wasn’t enough. I had to stretch myself nearly translucently thin, working multiple jobs with a full-time class schedule, all in the hopes that my dreams would come true and I would graduate with gainful employment. Those dreams have also changed as the journey progressed. Instead of entering the workforce right out of undergrad, I have decided to continue my education on the graduate level. I haven’t made any concrete plans for the big step off the stage in May, but I have decided my education isn’t over yet. All in all NSU wasn’t what I wanted, but was exactly what I needed. I will forever be a proud Spartan,

and NSU will always hold a special place in my heart. If it weren’t for many of my professors such as Steve Opfer, Mike Cotter and Jordan Storm, I can guarantee you, I would not have pushed myself so hard, I wouldn’t have been involved in the Spartan Echo, and I definitely wouldn’t be looking forward to grad school. I owe so much of my successes, both current and future, to those three people— without you, I would still be wandering through the halls wondering what to do with my future. To all my fellow graduating Spartans, congratulations on our accomplishments, but don’t stop here. To all future graduates, and future Spartans, don’t sit back and wait for your future to happen; go out and make it happen. Behold the green and gold!


editors Brittany Elmore Editor-inChief

DeVanique Riley Online/ Managing Editor

Danielle Kirsh News Editor

Ciara Simmons Lifestyle Editor

Jason Gill Sports Editor

Robert Hayden Multimedia Editor

Trenton Fouche’ Entertainment Editor

It’s not too late to get involved with the Echo! We meet every Tuesday and Thursday in room 344 at 12:30 pm. All majors welcome.

SPARTAN ECHO| Norfolk State University 700 Park Avenue Norfolk, Virginia 23504|NEWSROOM: 757.823.8200 E-Mail:

Spartan Entertainment


Tupac biopic in early stages By Trenton Fouche’ Despite his untimely death eight years ago, Tupac Shakur has remained a polarizing figure. After bursting onto the scene with his first solo album, 2Pacalypse Now, Tupac would go on to become one of the highest grossing rap artists of all-time. With a triumphant music career and a promising future on screen, Tupac seemed destined to continue on his successful path until an unknown assailant gunned him down in 1996. Now, eight years later, his story may finally get told. This past February, John Singleton signed on to direct Tupac’s biographical film. The Oscar-nominated filmmaker has directed films such as Boyz

n the Hood, Poetic Justice and Baby Boy. Singleton grew close to the rapper’s mother after his death. “Tupac was the guy who I planned to do a lifetime of films with,” Singleton told “His passing deeply affected my life as well as countless people in this world.” The film is still in its early stages and there is no indication of who will play the late rapper. It is known that it will cover his rise to fame, as well as his notable feuds with other rappers including the Notorious B.I.G. who was also killed a year later. The film is expected to pick up steam this summer.

John Singleton has signed on to rewrite, direct and produce an untitled biopic of the late rapper/actor Tupac Shakur. The question now turns to who will play Shakur. Photo credit: https://www.


Microsoft appoints first African-American chairman By Trenton Fouche’

Taking the role formerly occupied by Microsoft co-founder Gates is 64-year-old John W. Thompson, one of the leastknown black corporate executives. Photo credit:

After serving as a member of Microsoft’s board of directors for two years, John Thompson has been selected to succeed Bill Gates as the chairman of Microsoft. The move comes as Microsoft has begun to lose ground to its competitors and has struggled to sell its Windows computers. Thompson is familiar with being in charge after serving as chief executive for the computer software corporation Symantec, as well as vice-president at IBM. On the company’s website, Thompson addressed shareholders who have been disappointed by Microsoft’s lackluster performance. “As part of my new role, one of my key contributions, I hope, will be to engage with shareholders and keep focused on how together we can bring great innovation to the market and drive strong, long-term shareholder value.” Thompson, a Florida native, received a music scholarship to attend Florida A&M University where he earned his bachelor’s degree in business before earning his masters at MIT Sloan School of Management. Thompson’s promotion comes on the heels of a push for diversity in corporate America after shareholders at Apple expressed disappointment in the company’s lack of diversity. Facebook and Twitter have also been criticized in the past for not having enough female staff members.

Summer reading... and dating By Kallie Gould

Still single? Still starring at your phone wondering why he or she hasn’t texted back yet? Never fear, your boldly honest friends Greg Behrendt and Amiira Ruotola, who wrote the modern day dating bible “He’s Just Not That Into You”, have come to the rescue again with their follow up, “It’s Just a F***ing Date.” With technology and the 21st century bringing about a whole new list of rules to follow and new circumstances, their book focuses on bringing back the art of dating and setting your own standards, while sticking to them. Part one of the book is broken down into “The 8 Super Extraordinary Principles for Ultra-Successful Winner Dating”. Acting like your honest, unbiased best friends, Behrendt and Ruotola warn you not to accept anything less than an actual date, not to be that needy girl, and to accept the harsh reality that not every date will turn out to be the fairy tale relationship of your dreams. Even being so bold as to warn, “The date you are about to go on probably won’t work out. Most of them don’t, that’s just life.” Yet, they encourage the reader to keep playing the field and to meet as many people as possible to get to where you want to be, which is not alone on the couch in your sweatpants on a Friday night. The book is full of comical dating anecdotes the authors

Check out Greg Behrendt and Amiira Ruotola’s best-selling new guide, It’s Just a F***ing Date. The best-selling authors who wrote the 2004 modern day dating bible He’s Just Not That Into You Photo by Kallie Gould and Tykhari Coles

have been through, representing both the male and female viewpoint of dating situations. Also included are questions from readers of their past books, asking for more specific advice. The readers also aren’t afraid to tell them exactly where they messed up or went wrong. Part two continues with “Carpe Datem- Seize the Date!” and deals with how to handle the actual date, Internet dating, and even more importantly, not to blow up his or her cell phone afterwards. They also give more sage advice like “Be easygoing, but don’t be easy.” Overall, the book gives good advice from both the male and female perspective about what commonly goes through our minds prior to a first date, while talking you through your nerves to abandon your preconceived notions. Although tough at times, Behrendt and Ruotola are honest friends who ultimately try to instill the message that the best asset you can have for dating is your own self esteem.

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The Spartan Echo is the student newspaper of Norfolk State University.

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