University of California, Santa Barbara || Volume XIII, Issue VIII || Nov. 28, 2018 || BottomLineUCSB.com
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
SCIENCE & TECH
Visionary Urban Dance From France performs in granada theatre A&E
Photo by Laurent Phillippe | UCSB Arts & Lectures
SAT Scores Now Optional for College Admission
Black Lives Matter
A.S. Senate passed a resolution making SAT/ACT scores optional for UCSBâ€™s college admission process.
Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, spoke Nov. 15 evening on the importance of modern activism.
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
2 | NEWS
A.S. Senate Votes to Make SAT/ACT Reporting Optional for Future Admissions MINH HUA Campus Beat Reporter Associated Students Senate passed a resolution last Wednesday in support of making the report of standardized test scores such as the SAT/ACT optional in the UC application process. Senators for the resolution discussed how the SAT is biased against underprivileged groups while Senators against the resolution praised the SAT as a measure for university prestige. The resolution, authored by On-Campus Senator Lea Toubian and Off-Campus Senator Christian Ornelas, is a joint effort from the office of the External Vice President for Statewide Affairs (EVPSA) and the University of California Office of the President, according to Toubian. Additionally, Toubian clarified that this resolution is in support of making the SAT/ACT optional rather than outright abolishing standardized testing. Students who did exceptionally well on the SAT/ACT can still include their scores in their UC application, while those who elect to not take the SAT/ACT can submit alternatives such as a portfolio. The resolution claims that “neither the SAT nor the ACT are accurate measures of intelligence or abilities needed to succeed in college.” Much conflict surrounds the accuracy of standardized tests in predicting undergraduate performance. “High school grades will continue to forecast students’ graduation chances more accurately [than the SAT],” said Valerie Strauss, an education reporter for The Washington Post, in her article criticizing the ineffective
changes to the 2016 SAT. Among these changes include making the maximum score 1600 points instead of 2400, removing the guessing penalty, and overall restructuring the test. In fact, Strauss claims that “The exam will still under-predict the performance of females, students whose home language is not English, and older applicants.” Strauss attributes the SAT as an accurate predictor of family income, rather than intelligence, due to the non-egalitarian nature of test preparation academies. The resolution further states that standardized testing marginalizes disadvantaged populations because “underprivileged groups and low-income families cannot afford resources such as preparation classes or practice preparation books.” However, some Senators are concerned that the decreased emphasis on standardized testing may dull the competitive of edge of the university setting. “It is very clear that money does help with boosting SAT/ ACT scores. That being said, I don’t think we should eliminate the SAT or the ACT because colleges are competitive places and there must be some type of measurement,” said Proxy Dhishal Jayasinghe for College of Engineering Senator Alex Funk. David Z. Hambrick, an associate professor of psychology at Michigan State University wrote in The New York Times that research has found that SAT performance is a good predictor of overall college GPA. Consequently, Hambrick references a study that states that among young adolescents, individual differences in general cognitive ability level lead to dif-
TBL 2018-2019 STAFF Correction: In Volume 13 Issue 6, Zion Soloman was incorrectly referred to the pronouns she/hers instead of the preferred pronouns them/theirs in the article “Transgender Community Unites to Raise Visability and Protest Transphobic Legistalation.”
Image Courtesy of Official U.S. Navy | Flickr
ferences in educational, occupational, and creative outcomes in their futures. Consequently, the SAT works in its intended purpose of being a measure of general intelligence, according to Hambrick. On the other hand, having conversed with the Chair of Admissions on this matter, OffCampus Senator Rafael Cornejo stated “By focusing on the SAT/ ACT, you are limiting the student’s potential in acquiring a higher education and doing great things post-college.” “Admissions look at a student’s potential, as in what they’ve done in the past, extracurriculars they’re involved with and how that would fit into UCSB. By supporting this resolution, you’re supporting the admission process that’s already in place,” said Cornejo. Others have brought up the issue that the resolution misses the mark in addressing the mar-
ginalization of disadvantaged communities. Off-Campus Senator Ashley Ng stated “I agree that the SAT/ ACT requirement is a disadvantage for students who do not have the opportunity to attend prep courses. However, I think it is a problem with our education system and not a problem with admissions.” In light of the discussion, senators came up with potential alternatives to the resolution’s proposal. For example, On-Campus Senator Yash Nagpal suggested indexing the standardized test scores based on socioeconomic status. Another concern regarding the resolution is that without standardized testing requirements, UCSB could lose its prestige and its place in the top five public universities. But Senator Ornelas reminded Senate that UCLA and UC Berkeley, two schools more prestigious than
UCSB, have already passed resolutions similar to the one in question. In fact, the resolution states that “more than 1,000 accredited colleges throughout the US, including Cornell, NYU, and The University of Chicago” have already either abolished the standardized testing requirement or have made it optional. After 45 minutes of discussion, Senate passed the resolution in support of making the SAT/ ACT scores reporting optional with a 16-3-2 vote. “I think it’s really important to say to students: ‘If you’re not comfortable taking the SAT, we’re making it optional for you.’ We’re standing for the rights of students and I urge everyone of you here to think of yourself in the shoes of students who come from underrepresented high school who don’t have the resources to take this test,” said Briseno.
Opinions expressed in TBL do not necessarily represent those of the staff or UCSB. All submissions, questions or comments may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor-in-Chief | Alex Yam
Features Editor | Victoria Penate
Multimedia Beat | Dominick Ojeda
Web Editor | Docean Park
Managing Editor | Mable Truong
Arts & Entertainment Editor | Addison Morris
Photo Editor | Juan Gonzalez
Layout Editor | Natalie Dye
Executive Content Editor| Lauren Marnel
Science & Tech Editor | Hannah Maerowitz
Campus Beat Reporter | Minh Hua
PAGES: 4, 5, 6
Opinions Editor | Jessica Gang
Isla Vista Beat Reporter | Alondra Sierra
Layout Editor | Chrissy Cho
Senior Copy Editor | Spencer Wu
Video Editor | Fabiola Esqueda
National Beat Reporter | Jacob Wong
Co-News Editor | Arturo Samaniego
Advertising Director | Tanya Gosselin
Copy Editor | Sheila Tran
Layout Editor | Vivianna Shields
Co-News Editor | Annette Ding
Marketing Director | Erica Kaplan
Copy Editor | McKinsey FIdellow
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
3 | NEWS
Photo by Marla Aufmuth | TED Talks
Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter Speaks at the MCC on the Movement and Other Issues ARTURO SAMANIEGO Co-News Editor Patrisse Cullors, co-founder of Black Lives Matter and an adjunct professor at Arizona’s Prescott College, spoke on Thursday, Nov. 15, before a full house at Corwin Pavilion on a variety of topics, including the origins of the Black Lives Matter movement, Donald Trump’s presidency, and the importance of activism in our current time. The event was hosted by the UCSB Multicultural Center as part of their Engaging Communities in Resilient Love in a Time of Hate series. Cullors has received many awards and recognition for her activism, as well as for organizing movements to confront social
and racial inequality in the United States. At the age of 22, she won the Mario Salvo Young Activist award and in 2015 was named by the Los Angeles Times as a civil rights leader for the 21st century. “Part of organizing is trying to be innovative about how we undo centuries worth of white supremacy, patriarchy, capitalism, trauma,” Cullors said in her opening remarks. She stated that the organizing that she has been doing with Black Lives Matter is a challenge to the structure of the U.S. and how this country understands itself. “Black Lives Matter has really positioned a new global conversation about anti-black racism and the resilience of black communities,” said Cullors. Cullors then went on to to
recount how Black Lives Matter started. She dissuaded the notion that Black Lives Matter emerged out of nowhere on social media, clarifying that the movement was started by three black women: Alicia Garza, Opal Tometi, and herself. “[Black Lives Matter] was a guttural response to one of the tragedies of our generation,” Cullors said. The movement began in response to the 2012 death of Trayvon Martin at the hands of George Zimmerman and the ensuing trial that followed. Cullors asserted that Trayvon Martin was on trial for his own murder, not George Zimmerman. She cited the pictures that were brought up during the trial, such as ones that displayed Martin sagging his pants or smoking weed.
“They were trying to build a defense that he deserved to die,” Cullors said. After Zimmerman’s acquittal, Cullors stated she felt devastated and searched online for a way to respond to the trial. While online she found Alicia Garza’s post that included the phrase “black lives matter” and found it to be a source of inspiration and a way to raise awareness over the racial discrimination black individuals face in America. Cullors then shifted gears and began discussing the current political climate that has been brought on by President Trump. “The role of this administration is to keep us demoralized — it is to smash organizing,” Cullors told the crowd, adding that the Trump administration is “cen-
tered on denigrating marginalized communities” and had built its campaign on Islamophobia and hatred. Despite the demoralization she felt after Trump’s election, Cullors stated that organizing has become more important than ever. “This is the moment to build the broadest and biggest coalition we can possibly build so in 2020 we can have a new country,” said Cullor. As the event drew to a close, Cullors answered a few questions from the audience, including one regarding how she responds to criticism of the phrase “black lives matter” as excluding the importance of other people’s lives. “When black lives matter, all lives matter,” Cullors replied.
4 | NEWS
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
The Bottom Line File Photo Board of Regents discusses student UC students safety and security.
UC Board of Regents’ Quarterly Meeting Discusses AFSCME Negotiations and Other Student Issues JACOB WONG National Beat Reporter The UC Board of Regents met at UCSF Mission Bay from Nov. 13-15 for its quarterly meeting, where the main focus was on the ongoing AFSCME negotiations and basic needs security for UC students. UCSB had a brief moment in the spotlight during the Regents’ Public Engagement and Development Committee meeting when Chancellor Henry Yang delivered a presentation on efforts that the campus has made to reach out to the Santa Barbara community. The meetings convened early on the morning of Nov. 13 during the Board’s first open session, which began with a public comment period featuring heavy representation from UC Berkeley students and supporters of the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). Last month, the labor union organized protests at UCSB and other UC campuses against the outsourcing of university employees. “UC has tried to portray this
UC Office of the President (UCOP) CFO Nathan Brostrom reported that the University system had already exceeded its goal of providing 14,000 beds to students by 2020. However, he stressed that more beds were still needed. protracted dispute to be about wages, and this is where your failure begins,” stated Kathryn Lybarger, President of AFSCME Local 3299. “This is about standing up to second-class treatment; it’s about fighting growing inequality; it’s about stopping outsourcing; most importantly it’s about securing a stable future for our families.” Another topic that received heavy exposure during the public comment portion was food and housing security. A number of speakers including Nuha Khalfay, External Affairs Vice President for UC Berkeley, urged the Regents to approve the proposed establishment of a special committee on basic needs, which would focus on improving food accessibility and housing resources for students.
“The conversation about basic needs has been shifting from an initiative to long-term funding and strategy and that’s a strategy that we need to continue, especially when the UC food security survey shows that about 42 percent of students in the UC system are either food insecure or very food insecure,” stated Khalfay. The Regents approved the committee during its Governance and Compensation Committee meeting later that day. On the topic of food and housing security, the Regents also discussed advances in the UC Housing Initiative and funding for its Hunger Free Campus program. During the open session, UC Office of the President (UCOP) CFO Nathan Brostrom reported that the UC system had
already exceeded its goal of providing 14,000 beds to students by 2020. However, he stressed that more beds were still needed. At UCSB, 8,819 undergraduate students and 1,345 graduate students were reported to be living in campus housing during the 2017-2018 academic year, which is around two-fifths of UCSB’s total student population. UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang made an appearance during the Regents’ Public Engagement and Development Committee meeting, where he gave a report on UCSB’s community involvement. He focused on the university’s role in the surrounding Santa Barbara area as an advocate for primary school education and a leader in scientific and economic innovation.
“Deeply rooted in community service, UC Santa Barbara has flourished into a preeminent research university that has tremendous impact not only in the region but also in the state of California and far beyond,” stated Chancellor Yang. Yang went on to highlight a number of community-oriented programs that the university and its affiliates had undertaken in recent years, including research done by Earth Science Professor David Valentine for local officials following the Refugio State Beach oil spill in 2015, and its collaboration with local Harding University Partnership School, which teaches students from grades K-6. The Regents had high praise for both UCSB’s community advocacy and Chancellor Yang himself. “You are beloved in the community; everyone talks about how involved you are and all the outreach programs and engagement, said Regent Sherry Lansing to the Chancellor. “You make us proud.”
5 | FEATURES
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
Coffee Organiks is Sure to Perk Isla Vistans Up CHARLES STOCK Staff Writer Coffee Organiks, one of the newest businesses to arrive in Isla Vista, offers affordable, authentic, 100 percent organic South American coffee — setting itself apart by delivering straight to residents’ doorsteps. Michael Trump, founder of Coffee Organiks, has fostered a personal connection with South America by spending time traveling the continent. He has even worked on the same coffee plantations in Costa Rica which now supply the coffee he provides to fellow Isla Vista residents. Coffee Organiks was launched on Nov. 6, 2018 in Isla Vista in hopes of competing with existing corporations, while also providing the community with a
more efficient and personal way to acquire coffee. His inventory consists of imported coffee from Peru, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Mexico, El Salvador, and Ecuador, and he delivers it via bicycle throughout Isla Vista, reserving car deliveries for larger quantities. After traveling and working in South America for a year and a half, Trump met a woman from California who stole his heart, eventually leading to his relocation. He brought with him an acquired taste for authentic coffee and connections which allowed him to begin sharing his imported coffee with friends. His friends were so fond of his coffee that they began purchasing it regularly. After considering the scarcity of high-quality — yet affordable — coffee, Michael and
Photo by Charles Stock | Staff Photographer
his business partner decided to import batches from all over the South American continent to deliver to friends, colleagues, and customers. In an interview, Trump told The Bottom Line that he considers delivering tasteful and exotic coffee “more of a passion than a business.” He insists on spreading the taste of paradise throughout Isla Vista for fair prices because he considers large coffee companies to be excessively chemically altered, expensive, and impersonal. Trump thrives on seeing the smile on people’s faces when they try his coffee. “I’d rather see Isla Vista’s community drink better coffee for better prices, and ultimately just enjoy freshly brewed imported coffee,” he said. Customers have found it easy to place orders, simply contact-
ing Trump through text message or on social media platforms including Instagram and Facebook; interested Isla Vistans simply include their order, an address for delivery, and the preferred timing of the delivery. This process is set to grow even more streamlined with an upcoming website launch, followed by an app launch in the upcoming month. Coffee Organiks accepts both cash and Venmo, and encourages environmentally conscious container choices, rewarding patrons who use their own mugs or containers with a 50 cent discount. Waste of transport containers is minimized as well through the use of Hydro Flasks — dually appropriate as they maintain proper temperature in drinks being delivered, which come as hot coffee,
iced coffee, or cold brew. Current hours target the early risers of the world, ranging from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. on Monday through Thursday, and extending to 11:30 a.m. on weekends. These relatively short hours are balanced, however, by the flexibility of ordering in advance. The company’s official launch attracted more than 200 users on Facebook alone. In addition, Coffee Organiks intends to provide special prices and beverage options during final exam season, and even adding coffee beans to its menu by December. As of now, Coffee Organiks is a quickly growing company providing a new method for Isla Vistans to get their morning cup of joe. “That’s us,” said Trump. “What you see is what you get: fresh coffee on time.”
6 | ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
Compagnie Käfig Review
Compagnie Käfig combines Brazilian Urban Dance and Circus Arts in Pixel JESSICA GANG Opinions Editor On Tuesday, Nov. 13 at the Granada Theatre, modern dance troupe Compagnie Käfig delivered an electrifying performance of their production Pixel. Pixel makes innovative use of an interactive, virtual environment, and this fusion between dance and technology proves that Compagnie Käfig is at the top of the contemporary dance game. French-based but Brazilianborn Compagnie Käfig performed as part of UCSB “Arts & Lectures’ Fall 2018” season. Arts & Lectures has been long committed to bringing established and creative artists to Santa Barbara, and Compagnie Käfig is no exception. The company is made up of 11 dancers, many of whom were born or trained in Brazil. The team is known for their allencompassing dance style which combines elements of hip-hop, modern dance, and circus arts with traditional Brazilian
urban dance and capoeira. The Granada’s center stage — which is usually characterized by an abundance of warm lights and classical architecture — was transformed into a darkened, boundless landscape. The seemingly endless quality of the stage was achieved by a floor-to-ceiling digital screen. The translucent screen served two main purposes: the first as a divider, separating the stage into two main parts, and secondly (and most import antly), the screen served as a surface onto which tiny illuminated units, or “pixels”, were projected. In order to fully explain the visual experience that Pixel evoked, it’s easiest to
draw a comparison between Compagnie Käfig’s performance and the last dance performance I attended: Company Wang Ramirez’s Borderline, which was also part of the dance series hosted annually by Arts & Lectures. Both dance companies are widely considered to be at the forefront of the modern dance revolution, partly because
they both incorporate digital technology into their performances. However, the two performances approach technology in radically different ways. While Company Wang Ramirez included high-tech elements like rigging, wiring, and electronic music in order to supplement their existing routine, Compagnie Käfig quickly made it clear that digital technology was as integral to Pixel as any dancer; maybe even more so. Pixel was a collaborative project between digital artists Adrien Mondot and Claire Bardainne and choreographer Mourad Merzouki. Dancers continually wove through the pixelated projections that were thrown up onto the screen. The dancers moved effortlessly around the projections, between them, and even through them, creating an illusory effect. This effect was rendered even more striking by the fact that the projections themselves moved just as frequently. Optical illusions caused the pixels to form into different shapes: in mountains underneath the dancers’ feet that suddenly rose up only to collapse and in raindrops that continually battered the stage. Although the virtual aspects of the performance were undoubtedly its center, the actual choreography was deeply moving, centered, and emotional, as well. In a performance dominated by optical effects designed to make the audience feel as if they were soaring through the air, the dance was remarkably grounded. The only time any dancer left the floor was when they were hoisted into the air by another performer, and even then these moments were far and few in between. Though, unfortunately,
the fact that dancers rarely left the floor made it difficult to see their movements, especially for those seated at ground level. However difficult it might have been to see the dancers at certain moments, keeping the dancers grounded helped the group play to their talents and strengths. The members of Compagnie Käfig have a wealth of versatile experience, from ballet to breakdancing, and from capoeira to contortionism. Although there are eleven performers in Pixel, the large number of dancers didn’t detract from the performance — rather, the individuality of each dancer was highlighted over the course of the night. In fact, a major theme of the piece was individuality and society’s struggle to escape a collective group mentality, especially in the age of information and technology. Dancers had solos that were specific to their particular style and dance background, and their differences were celebrated and emphasized. At the end of the performance (amidst the applause) each dancer stepped forward to do a final, spontaneous solo that drew some of the loudest cheers of the night. In short, the performance was an incredible celebration of technological ingenuity anchored by human emotion, and I left the performance with a deeper appreciation of the rich results that can occur when digital forms work in tandem with human dancers to create a novel, immersive experience.
Photo by Agathe Poupeney | UCSB Arts & Lectures
7 | ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
Preview: Two Chances to See “The Nutcracker” in Santa Barbara
Photo by David Bazemore | UCSB Arts & Lectures ADDISON MORRIS Arts & Entertainment Editor Now that Thanksgiving has passed, Santa Barbara residents can look forward to two different productions of the Christmas favorite “The Nutcracker.” Both Santa Barbara Festival Ballet and State Street Ballet will bring the beloved show to life for only three performances each, so mark your calendars and buy your tickets now if “The Nutcracker” is the next event on your holiday checklist. Santa Barbara Festival Ballet accompanied by Elise Unruh’s live orchestra will perform on Dec. 8 and 9 at the Arlington Theatre while State Street Ballet, with the help of Opera San Luis Obispo Grand Orchestra and Gustafson Dance students, will take to the stage at the Granada Theatre December 15 and 16. Santa Barbara Festival Ballet
is a school of dance dedicated to producing skilled dancers at every age-level. They have been putting on “The Nutcracker” annually for 44 years. The Santa Barbara Symphony’s current director, Elise Unruh, has been conducting the music for their show every year since 1993. State Street Ballet, led and founded by Rodney Gustafson and co-directed by William Soleau, is celebrating its 24th season. Opera San Luis Obispo Grand Orchestra has had a similar lifespan, starting in 1985 and acting as the only professional opera company in the San Luis Obispo/ Santa Barbara region. The last contributor to their team — Gustafson Dance — is the school for the State Street Ballet dancers, ranging from young to old and novice to professional. With such a wide range of talent for both productions, “The Nutcracker” is sure to impress audiences.
Unfortunately, however, the high admission price — with tickets ranging from $24 to $104 (both ranges combined) — will probably discourage many people from attending. Yet, the skill of both the Santa Barbara Festival Ballet students and the State Street Ballet’s professional dancers combined with The Santa Barbara Symphony and Opera San Luis Obispo Grand Orchestra’s trained musicians will probably excuse such a high fee. Santa Barbara News-Press has previously called State Street Ballet “perfection in conception and execution” while the L.A. Times acknowledged that “State Street Ballet is proving that ballet is alive and kicking in Southern California.” The Santa Barbara Independent calls Santa Barbara Festival Ballet’s annual show an “amazing tradition.” The choice to put on “The Nutcracker” is a traditional one
around this time of year, but each company is sure to have different interpretations. For one, Santa Barbara Festival Ballet is a school of dancers, most of whom are children. State Street Ballet, in contrast, is a company of professional dancers and is only accompanied by their school’s younger children. For those who need a refresher, “The Nutcracker” follows young Clara and her enchanted toy nutcracker who comes to life at the stroke of midnight on Christmas Eve. Based on E.T.A. Hoffmann’s “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” and originally choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov with music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, “The Nutcracker” has remained a popular holiday play since its first showing in 1892, Saint Petersburg, Russia. Its most famous numbers include “Dance of the Sugar Plum
Fairy” and “Departure of the Guests” which have been redone and referenced in countless other popular productions and Christmas comedies, including “Office Christmas Party,” “The Simpsons,” and “Daddy’s Home.” It’s safe to say that “The Nutcracker” is a cultural staple to Americans’ Christmas repertoire as it’s so widely reproduced and recognized. For those interested, State Street Ballet’s “The Nutcracker” is playing at the Granada Theater Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 15 and 16 at 2 p.m. on both days and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday. Santa Barbara Festival Ballet’s productions are running at the same times on Dec. 8 and 9. Tickets are pricey, but both companies’ excellent reviews will probably make the shows worth the cost.
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
8 | SCIENCE & TECH
Image Courtesy of SB Hacks
Recruitment Commences for Fifth Annual SB Hacks Event CLAUDIA MAZUR
SB Hacks gives UCSB students access to the unique environment of a hackathon, with applications to code in UCSB’s hackathon now open.
SB Hacks, an organization that organizes the biggest hackathon on campus, has begun the process of recruiting volunteers and hackers for the fifth annual SB Hacks event, which will take place from Jan. 1113, 2019. What is a hackathon, you may ask? It is 36 hours of frantic coding, collaborating, and hands-on problem solving. It is also a great opportunity to network with many brands and companies, win incredible prizes, and come up with innovative solutions to problems. It is a hands-on experience where coders from around the nation can compete using company technology that isn’t usually accessible to them. Many applications we use today, including GroupMe, were originated at hackathons. In addition to creating useful applications and exploring new ideas in an intense, creative environment, hackathons give participants access to the largest names in the tech industry, such as Google and HP. SB Hacks gives UCSB students access to the unique environment of a hackathon, with applications to code in UCSB’s hackathon now
open. If a coder is accepted to participate, they will be able to compete for general prizes, which are yet to be publicized, as well as companyspecific prizes from corporate sponsors. A common misconception about hackathons is that you have to be a hacker to participate. However, SB Hacks is also accepting volunteers, who help with everything from catering to running the event. In exchange for their time, volunteers get to watch the hackathon, a chance to interact with industry professionals, and free food and gear, including stickers and shirts. According to organizers of the event, the organizing team recently interviewed and accepted some new members to assist with organizing the event. As the event approaches, the organizing team is working on ensuring that this year’s event is the best hackathon UCSB has put on so far while also onboarding the new members to take over positions for next year. The team wants newer members to get hands-on experience in order to better understand the event and perform in their year-long roles next year. Although it may seem like the event is put together within a quarter, there is a year-long process of
preparation that takes place behind the scenes. This process includes recruiting sponsors, raising funds, advertising the event, and securing a venue and accommodations for participants. In an interview with The Bottom Line, Valeria De Leon, Development Team Lead for SB Hacks and third-year communication major at UCSB, broke down the calendar of events, stating that check in will be at 5 p.m. on the day of, with the opening ceremony for the event starting at 8 p.m. She also stated that the fifth annual SB Hacks has already received substantial attention, with over 300 hackers submitting applications to code since the application has gone live. According to De Leon, acceptances for hackers will be sent out right before Christmas — a mere month away. Visit SB Hack’s website https:// sbhacks.com/ or Facebook event page https://sbhacks.com/fb-event in order to apply to the event by Dec. 20. With applications for the event rolling in at a rapid pace, now is your chance to partake and #makewaves with UCSB’s own hacking club, SB Hacks.
9 | SCIENCE & TECH
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
New App Will “FLIP” the Way You Study FLIP Will Provide Students with a Catalyst to Focus on Their Work with its Focus Timer for Study Feature ANNIE HUANG As college students, we all have goals: study for our classes, get a workout in, develop our hobbies, or differentiate ourselves at our jobs or internships. For many of us, these goals are within reach, as long as we put in some effort each day. However, more often than not, we get distracted by our text messages, news alerts, or social media. With the introduction of the new application FLIP - Focus Timer for Study, our phones are converted from distraction devices into tools that can be used to enhance productivity. FLIP has time tracking and focus grading features that help users monitor their progress on goals by setting daily quotas of work to be done. FLIP’s key feature and namesake is its ability to track productive time by having the user flip their phone over. After a user sets a goal and flips their phone over, the app will start counting down until the user’s goal end time. If a user chooses to use their phone for more than a few seconds during this work time, the app will indicate that the user took an unscheduled break and decrease the user’s focus level by a letter grade. This provides an incentive for the user to increase their focus level again by being more productive. FLIP’s graded productivity scale gives users a concrete idea of how productive they’re being. The pressure of the timer and focus grades also mimics the high-tension testtaking environments in classes, motivating even the biggest procrastinators to use their full focus during the designated productivity The app times users using the Pomodoro Technique, which is a method for time management intended to improve levels of productivity through the use of repeated periods of high-focus work time separated by small breaks. While the app’s standard is 25 minutes of
focus for every five minutes of break, the user can customize the timers to whatever they feel is best. Although the app’s flip feature is simple, it is effective for various psychological reasons. For example, the app eliminates the the need to physically turn on the phone screen to begin and pause timer, which decreases the chances of getting distracted by notifications. FLIP allows users to add the timer as a widget to their phone’s home screen, where it can serve as a visual reminder of the user’s goals. This feature is also efficient — with a single tap of a button, users can start tracking their productivity. Another useful feature is that a user can set a “D-Day” as a goal, such as an essay deadline or final exam date, which ensures that the user will work on that objective every day until D-Day. All of the data the app collects can be viewed again through its statistics pages. The charts and timelines on this page make it easy to track how well the user has been focusing over time and whether or not objectives are being met. FLIP has a reward system built into the application, with hours of being productive corresponding to its in-game currency of points that can be used to unlock more features within the app. This is especially useful for those who have trouble sticking to a task when there is no immediate reward. By channeling the psychology behind video games, users feel the satisfaction of small, easy achievements as they work towards a larger goal as well as small rewards. FLIP was created by RinaSoft and released in November 2017. Since the app is relatively new, the production team is extremely responsive to bugs and always open to criticism and suggestions, which is evident in their responses to reviews. FLIP can be downloaded in both the Android Play Store and iTunes App Store as of November 2018.
Photo by McKinsey Fidellow | Copy Editor
10 | OPINIONS
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
Illustration by Natalie Dye | Layout Editor
The Teen Mental Health Crisis in America JESSICA GANG Opinions Editor Recently, a news article published in the Santa Barbara Independent highlighted the growing prevalence of a trend that has begun to alarm many school leaders, staff members, and educators: teen suicides caused by increased levels of emotional stress, anxiety, and depression. In the past two years, the Santa Barbara Unified School District has experienced more than 100 attempted teenage suicides, and this frightening statistic is not specific to Santa Barbara alone. Suicide has become the second leading cause of death in the United States for children, adolescents, and young adults aged 10-24, and each day in the U.S. there are on average 3,041 suicide attempts made by students in 9th-12th grade. In order to combat the growing epidemic of young adult and teenage suicides, school educators and community health partners
have focused their efforts on tackling mental health issues, viewed by mental health experts as one of the “defining characteristics” of the post-millennial generation. SBUSD, for example, is rallying behind instructional intervention. The district is introducing a solution called socio-emotional learning (SEL), which aims to teach students about “self-awareness, self-management, responsible decision-making, and relationship and social awareness.” SEL is just one of multiple initiatives that SBUSD is hoping to implement, all of which are new steps being taken to address the reality of teen suicide in schools. In the past there has been an intense social stigma surrounding suicide in general, but this is even more true when it comes to teenagers and young adults. Much of this stigma stems from the fact that problems like intense academic stress, social anxiety, social pressure, and more are viewed as commonplace. More often than
not, we teach students that these difficulties are a natural part of high school and college, not issues that could have an extremely detrimental effect on someone’s life. But the first step towards treating a problem is embracing its existence. In spite of the marked increase in suicides that has occurred over the past few decades, the United States is just now beginning to face the reality that mental health is an essential part of our wellbeing, and that ailments like depression and anxiety are just as real as AIDS/HIV or heart disease. There has been no “war on depression” in the same way that there’s been a “war on HIV” or a “war on obesity” — but perhaps there needs to be. In the past year, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) spent more money on researching dietary supplements than it did on suicide prevention. In this day and age, the pervasiveness of social media and technology make it easy for teenagers and young adults to lose them-
selves in a world of unrealistic comparisons. The sad truth is that suicidal thoughts and actions are becoming a very normalized part of our society, which makes it even more difficult for teenagers and young adults to feel more comfortable reaching out and asking others for help. It’s the responsibility of educators, parents, and community leaders alike to remind teenagers and young adults that they are more than just their grades, test scores, ethnicities, genders, or sexual orientations. LGBTQ youth are three times more likely to commit suicide than their cisgender, straight counterparts, and over the course of their lifetimes, women are three times likelier than men to have suicidal thoughts. Men however, still have the highest chance of acting on suicidal thoughts. The rise of the mental health crisis in America can no longer be ignored, and nowhere is this epidemic more jarring than it is
amongst teenagers and young adults. If we as a society fail to take concrete steps towards solutions, we are doing a disservice not only to ourselves, but also to the young people whose lives are increasingly being put at risk. If you feel like you or someone you know may be in danger of taking their own life, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1 (800) 273 - 8255, or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. More information about suicide prevention, including warning signs, can be found at suicidepreventionlifeline.org. If you or someone you know at UCSB is in need of mental health assistance, please reach out to UCSB CAPS at (805) 893-4411, or visit their website at http://caps. sa.ucsb.edu/. Santa Barbara - specific resources may be accessed at countyofsb.org/admhs.
11 | OPINIONS
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
Esports Are Becoming Increasingly Relevant in Universities and Beyond
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia
JESSICA GANG Opinions Editor Are video games a waste of time? According to the growing number of students across the United States that possess esports scholarships, the answer is a resounding no. Competitive multiplayer video games, known colloquially as “esports,” are becoming more and more popular at college campuses, where high school students can compete for a limited number of scholarships. Universities that offer esports scholarships tend to classify gaming in a few different ways: some colleges house their esports programs in the engineering department, others in the design department, and most controversially, some universities have chosen to house their esports under the umbrella of the athletics department. While unconventional, esports has carved out a name for itself in the sports stratosphere, and should be respected as a sport, but also kept in a league of its own. The National Association of Collegiate Esports has given out an estimated $16 million in esports scholarships over the past two years, but even in spite of esports’ growing popularity, the sport has faced backlash from critics who argue that it should not be held to
the same standard as more traditional athletic sports. In response to this criticism, Kurt Melcher argues that “the games . . . in the collegiate sphere have real depth. . .and require strategic teamwork and. . .mastery to be successful.” Melcher is the head of the esports program at Robert Morris University Illinois. Esports at Robert Morris is housed in the athletics department, and gamers attend regular practice and have access to athletic trainers, just as other athletes in the department do. While this backlash is understandable, it seems to stem from an instinctive fear of the unknown any real dislike for the sport itself. Esports doesn’t contain the traditional physicality that we associate with athletics, which is why we don’t think of it as an athletic sport. Because of this, it probably shouldn’t be categorized as such. But in the same way that digital art, multimedia studies, and more are fusing media with traditional subjects, esports has the potential to change the way that we interact with technology. On Nov. 23, an article published in The Independent revealed that the U.S. army is branching into video games and esports in particular, as they aim to increase steadily declining military recruitment. In an announcement posted
via Reddit, the US military stated that they would be putting together a military-branded esports team, made up of active duty personnel, reservists, and veterans. The team would travel to various esports competitions and would be shadowed by military recruiters. While it’s clear that esports doesn’t require the same amount of physicality that traditional sports does, it’s also apparent that there is a very real use for esports in the real world. And if the words of Kurt Melcher are to be believed, it’s possible that esports is even more uniquely valuable than other traditional disciplines taught at universities. At UCSB, the gaming and esports community might not be as prevalent as it is at other schools (UC Irvine, for example, recently launched a state-of-the-art gaming arena equipped with high-end PCs, a stage, and a live webcasting studio), but the Gaucho gaming community is alive and well. Interested video game players can check out the Gaucho Gaming Facebook group, an open group where members can post about their favorite games, be alerted to various internship opportunities, and get informed about volunteer opportunities and club events.
12 | PHOTO
TBL | Nov. 28, 2018
On saturday nov. 17 KCSB combined with the i.v. co-op to host the quarterly Open mic night. Students and i.v. community members came together for a fun night of musical performances, spoken word poetry, and stand up comedy. Overall, it was a great event for students to showcase and appreciate local talent. Photos by Esmeralda Oropeza | The Bottom Line
student opens the show with a soulful acoustic ukelele performance under twinkling lights. Spencer and Solee perform a popular cover, Maroon 5’s “She Will be Loved.”
Student performer delivers acoustic folk song to an effervescent audience.
Adam Fagenson soothes the audience through the rhythm of the keyboard while singing “Feels Like Home.”
Nov. 28, 2018 | BottomLineUCSB.com