April 24, 2014
W W W. V S U S P E C TAT O R . C O M
Inside This Issue
Check out more photos from S.A.V.E.’s Earth Day celebration on the web!
- OPiniOnS: Students need to be heard by senate - FEATURES: Not your average suit and tie: new provost adds flair to academic affairs
- SPORTS: Valdosta baseball minors revisited
Today at VSU Women of Diversity informal - Come out to Bailey Science Center Room 1024 at 7:30 p.m. and find out what it takes to really be a woman of diversity.
This Day in History
VOLUME 86 iSSUE 13
On the Web w w w. v s u s p e c ta t o r. c o m
Check out Jordan Barela’s story, “Love overcomes hate,” on the web!
First Amendment wins Students get vocal: protest wakes up West
Campus publications recognized as public forums by McKinney
Workout On this day in 1982 Jane Fonda’s first workout video was released. Jane Fonda is a well known actress, activist, model and the daughter of famous actor Henry Fonda. Her workout video started a long line of workout videos for years to come and she is credited as being one of the first exercise gurus. Jane Fondas workout videos pioneered the home workout concept.
LaBelle on the Billboard On this day in 1962 the song, “I Sold My Heart to the Junkman,” by Patti LaBelle and her group The Blue Belles was introduced on the Billboards Hot 100. Since then LaBelle has gone solo and has had multiple hits on the Billboard list including two of her crossover #1 pop hits, “On My Own” in 1986 and “Lady Marmalade” in 1975. Source: History.com
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Will Lewis/ THE SPECTATOR S.A.V.E protestors for divestment leave their signs at the door of President William J. McKinney’s office in West Hall on April 23. The protest had both student and faculty members involved.
Will Lewis EDITOR-IN-CHIEF firstname.lastname@example.org
The Students Against Violating the Environment brought divestment to President William McKinney’s attention in their most direct way yet. A protest Wednesday involving both students and faculty took place just outside of Dr. McKinney’s door in West Hall. “We need President McKinney’s support if we want them to take this issue seriously,” Danielle Jordan, president of S.A.V.E., said. “He does represent our campus, and our campus has spoken in favor of this.” Jordan is speaking of the March 4 decision by the SGA to support divestment.
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S.A.V.E.’s continued pursuit of fossil-fuel divestment has succeeded in bringing the issue to Dr. McKinney’s attention. “What the divestment movement and S.A.V.E. on this campus has done is raise awareness,” Dr. McKinney said. “What they have done is focus attention on fossil fuel use; they have focused attention on sustainability.” There still isn’t enough information on divestment yet for the University president to place himself behind the campaign, Dr. McKinney said. But that doesn’t mean the campaign is unsuccessful. Dr. McKinney has proposed the establishment of a new committee researching See PROTEST, Page 2
The SPECTATOR President McKinney signs the Student Press Law Center Model Guidelines for College Student Media. The document states student- edited publications are established as designated public forums for student expression.
New building up and ready Joe Adgie SOCIAl MEDIA EDITOR
“The money will be going to, if I’m correct, long-term investments toward more green-fuel projects,” Senator Matt Cowan said in a March 6 Spectator article. “In the long-term end of it, it would actually increase profit.” SGA’s support followed the faculty senate’s November 2013 decision to support divestment. Jordan said visibility was the motivation behind the 9 a.m. protest. “We just wanted to send a message to Dr. McKinney that we are still on top of this issue; it is still urgent, and it still needs to be addressed,” Jordan said. “We want him to take a stand on the issue and come out in favor of divestment.”
It took twelve years and $36 million, but the Health Sciences and Business Administration building is now open to the public. The building was officially opened on Friday afternoon in a remarkably well-attended ceremony, despite the heavy rains that day, and featured speakers such as the Georgia secretary of state and three VSU presidents, the current
one and two former ones. “This building stands here today as more than just concrete and glass,” current president Dr. William McKinney said. “It stands here as a symbol of regional collaboration, innovation, and engagement.” One former president, Dr. Ronald Zaccari, viewed Friday’s festivities as nothing short of a triumph. “Hallelujah,” Zaccari said. “Rejoice. What a day for all of us at VSU and in South Georgia.” Zaccari discussed his role
in making the HSBA building a reality, a role that started on his first day in office as VSU president back in January 2002. He received a phone call from the then-new chancellor of the University System of Georgia, Ron Merritt. “He said, ‘I have several assignments to give to you. What are your plans for VSU over the next few months?’” Zaccari said. “I’m going to plan a new strategic plan and a master plan. He said, ‘That’s great. I want you to approach the master plan for
ten years, and get those two plans to me within six months.’” That master plan featured a number of proposed improvements for a university that was projected to hit the 20,000 student mark by the year 2020. This included renovations to residence halls, a new Student Union, the HSBA building and a new football stadium, which would have gone between the PE Complex and the Education College, with the intended goal of moving VSU to
NCAA Division I. Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp said the HSBA is a great accomplishment. “I know how hard it is to get projects like this in the budget, put them back in the budget, and keep them in the budget, so I want to congratulate the local [legislative] delegation, and you have a good one for all their hard work,” Kemp said. The building will serve over 1,600 students. The first classes were held in the HSBA on March 24.
PAge 2 | vsusPectAtoR.com Police Briefs April 22 a driver was driving too fast for conditions by the P.e. Complex lot. a driver was driving too fast for conditions on Brookwood Drive. April 20 a driver received a warning for an expired registration. a driver was pulled over for equipment violation. a driver was pulled over for disregarding a stop sign on Baytree road. a driver was pulled over for defective equipment on Patterson Street. a driver received a verbal warning. April 19 a driver was pulled over for driving too fast for conditions by the Oak Street parking lot.
S.A.V.E. Continued from Page 1 possible strategies for reducing VSU’s environmental footprint. “i’m asking this group to examine many strategies,” Dr. McKinney said. “everything from alternative fuels to recycling−we don’t do a good enough job just recycling on this campus−and then including, but not limited to, divestment. “i want everything on the table, and i want a thor-
ough study done of this in order to make a responsible decision.” However, Jordan feels that enough information has already been given for the University to stand in opposition to the use of fossil fuels. “Dr. McKinney has agreed to establish a committee that will research divestment, but we also feel like we’ve provided a lot of information already and that the issue kind of speaks for itself in a lot of
ways,” Jordan said. “Now, it’s an issue of ethics and morality. So, the way we see it, divestment is the right thing to do because it is contradictory that our university is investing in something so damaging.” Once established, the committee will include members from both S.a.V.e. and the SGa. Dr. McKinney said that the committee should have a study prepared one year after the first meeting.
APRIL 24, 2014
Student’s car catches fire outside of residence hall
Barker sweeps SGA presidential election Joe Adgie SOCial MeDia eDitOr email@example.com
and bigger and better things.” Barker called his vision for VSU “phenomenal” and stated that he loved the potential of the university. His running mate, Nick Buford, ran unopposed for vice president. “i just want to say that we ran a great campaign, we were very confident, and i was very confident that we would win, and the results kind of reflected the hard work that we put into it,” Buford said. “i want to say thanks to our campaign team and thanks to all of the organizations who endorsed us over the last three weeks.” Buford also said that he
April 17 Someone was arrested for the theft/removal of SGaposted fliers. a driver was pulled over for driving without their headlights on College Street. a wallet was stolen. a driver was pulled over on azalea Drive for failure to maintain. While being stopped by police, the car ran out of gas. a driver was pulled over for parking in a fire lane and driving without a license on person.
tyler Barker is the next SGa president. He defeated tamelonie thomas in a landslide victory during the SGa elections last week, winning with almost a 2-to-1 margin. “Now, it’s time to get to work,” Barker said on Monday. “We’ve been discussing about shadowing (President Jimerson), and i really want to pick up right where he left off. We don’t want to miss a beat as far as going into next year, and i’m really looking forward to going into newer
April 15 it was reported that three males were sitting on a bench at the Dewar College of education entrance facing the Oak Street parking lot, making derogatory remarks to a woman and a student as they were walking by. Brandon l. Samuel, 20, of tampa, fla., was arrested and charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds and obstruction of a law enforcement officer, and Steven l. Samuel, 26, of St. Petersburg, fla. was arrested and charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds. the third male was not detained.
Sevyn Streeter rocks P.E. Complex
would start working to ensure a smooth transition between the outgoing executive board and the incoming one. Barker’s opponent, tamelonie thomas, remained optimistic. “My plans now are to just continue what i was doing before, just continuing on, being that student leader, (trying) to make people proud of me,” thomas said. thomas did not definitively say whether she would return to the senate. “i’m just going to see where life leads me, and i’m just going to go with that,” thomas said.
Elan Waite/THE SPECTATOR
VSU student Brandon Grace, junior biology major, smelled gas and saw smoke coming from his car. When his car caught on fire, he went into Sustella Market to get water, trying to put it out. Firefighters were able to put the fire out, and a police report will be available Friday.
LaShawn Oglesby S ta f f W r i t e r firstname.lastname@example.org
On Monday, a VSU student’s car caught fire in front of Centennial residence Hall around 9:15 p.m. Brandon Grace, junior biology major, said he smelled gas and saw his car starting to smoke. When a small fire started, he told his girlfriend to call 911 and began running in and out of Sustella Market to get water from the market’s sink, trying to put it out before it got big. Despite Grace’s efforts to put out the blaze, the fire eventually grew to cover the
rest of his car, mainly the area near the gas tank. VSUPD arrived and directed students away from the fire for their safety. firefighters were able to put the fire out and then worked on opening the hood of the car before loading it onto a truck. “i thought it was someone smoking weed outside since yesterday was 4/20,” raymond fontanez, senior chemistry major, said before finding out what happened. “i wouldn’t have guessed it was a car.” the police report addressing the incident will be available to the public friday.
Happy ‘Tator Day!
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Upcoming Events April 25 Deaf, Deaf World will be held in the Student Union ballrooms from 10-11:30 a.m. and 12:30-2 p.m. Journey through deaf history and culture, interact with deaf community members and learn basic communication skills! Carlin Morrison/THE SPECTATOR
April 26 WVVS-BlaZefm 90.9, the Main Squeeze and the Gates at Valdosta present Blazefest 2014 Outdoor Concert. the event starts at 2 p.m. on the front lawn. there will be live music by eight Bands: the Dredges, Byrd, eggwater Palace, John Weeks Plays, Colder Mf raines, amilli Devanni, Oddly Known, and Me and My M80.
Sevyn Streeter, singer most notably known for her single “It Won’t Stop” featuring Chris Brown, was the featured artist at the CAB Spring Concert on April 17. Streeter performed songs from her EP “Call Me Crazy, But...”
Come see some of the film and video talent that VSU students have to offer this semester at the film & Video Spring Showcase at 7 p.m. in the Student Union theater. Several students have worked very hard on their projects during the spring season, and this is the chance to sit down and enjoy their creative visions on screen.
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Our point of view...
Students need to be heard by Senate E
very so often an issue pops up that stirs the student population and causes them to voice their opinions, and if they’re lucky they are listened to. We appear to be short on luck. As of April 17, the scheduling issue that has been the topic of many discussions among both students and faculty was voted on, and the moving of spring break was approved. Spring Break would be on the twelfth week of the spring 2016 term, starting March 28 and ending April 1. The SGA conducted a sur-
vey last year on the issue, and it was unanimously decided that students wanted a break earlier in March. The SGA offered up two alternative weeks for spring break that could be used, March 711 or March 14-18, but these options were ignored. The fact that the faculty senate decided to ignore the voice of the students is discouraging. Students tend to shy away from important decisions, especially if they feel like they’re not being listened to. Students can feel more secure in their collective voice because they have a particularly strong ally.
“In terms of the placement of Spring Break, I concur with the Student Government Association,” President William J. McKinney said in a letter addressed to Dr. Walker, the president of the faculty senate. Dr. McKinney went on to list his reasons for siding with the students, saying that the new schedule for spring break is “contrary to the reasoning used to reinstate fall break.” The logic behind reinstating fall break is that without it, students would be in class for a long period of time without any type of break. The second reason is that only a small
amount of employees would benefit from the change to Spring Break. It’s good to know that at the very least our president has our back on this issue. What is the point of asking students and our elected officials how they feel about issues if their voices fall on deaf ears? The faculty senate should take into consideration how students feel about issues. What’s a form of government that blatantly ignores the voice of its people? If anything, we should always hear the voices of students echoing throughout decisions made by the VSU administration. Rebecka McAleer/ THE SPECTATOR
This editorial was written by a member of the editorial staff and expresses the general opinion of the editorial staff.
Students debate vaccinations LaShawn Oglesby S TA f f W r I T E r
It is every parent’s right to decide whether or not to have his or her child vaccinated, but that choice can put other children who do get vaccinated in harm’s way. Schools require that their students be vaccinated before attending. However, guardians can opt out of getting their child vaccinated by filing for a vaccine exemption. Vaccinations lower a person’s chances of contracting diseases by 85 to 99 percent. If a disease is contracted, the symptoms will likely be minor and less problematic if the person has been vaccinated. This is because of community immunity or herd immunity. This term is defined by vaccines.gov:
“When a critical portion of a community is immunized against a contagious disease, most members of the community are protected against that disease because there is little opportunity for an outbreak.” The risk of contracting a disease rises within schools when a child attending the school is unvaccinated. So if there is more than one unvaccinated child in attendance, that risk is compounded. It is understandable for parents who vaccinate their children to want other parents to do the same for the entire school’s safety. Vaccination isn’t just about one person’s safety; the more people who get their shots, the less likely it is that some
Lamarcus Wilkerson A S S T . f E AT U r E S EDITOr
Children, teenagers and adults of all ages follow a rigorous immunization schedule implemented by the institutions they are associated with. Establishments force people to receive vaccinations for illnesses that are nonexistent. The mandatory vaccinations are enforced to guarantee safety from various diseases that could be potentially life-threatening. At times, these vaccinations do not serve their initial purpose and may do more harm than help to an individual’s well-being. Immunization shots are known to cause numerous side effects.
Common vaccinations, such as ones for HPV, smallpox and varicella, can cause individuals to experience discomfort. Side effects may include pain, swelling, nausea, headaches, fainting and seizures. Too much energy is being put toward making sure an individual receives his or her vaccines. In order to ensure safety from diseases and promote wellness, institutions should reconsider vaccinations and shift their focus to a more reliable source of health. Currently, immunizations are left solely up to chance.
are disgusted and some pass no judgment, while others applaud the tapes for the entertainment. Personally, I try not to pass judgment on others, especially those who are adults and fully capable of knowing what is right and wrong. But do people realize the consequences of sex tapes? Do people even care about those consequences? Has the price of fame changed to just an hour-long video of your intimate moments?
dangerous disease will arise to take lives. Parents and guardians who exercise their right to keep their children from vaccinations should be respectful and mindful of other parents by homeschooling their children. However, if enough students aren’t being vaccinated, there should be schools provided for those children. Measles, chicken pox and polio are mostly a thing of the past, and many want to keep it that way by keeping their children vaccinated. While everyone has the right to do what they want, those rights shouldn’t interfere with the safety of others. Having separate schools would help to keep that from happening. In such a situation, everyone gets the safe environment they want for their children, which is what it all boils down to.
Vaccines can either affect you in a positive way or a negative one. By receiving routine vaccination shots, individuals are gambling with their well-being, and if the vaccination doesn’t work it’s a waste of time. The higher-ups that implement vaccination shots as requirements are misusing their power. You should better invest your trust into something that isn’t left up to chance. Develop healthy eating habits and a good hygiene to help combat invading diseases. By doing so, individuals are not misplacing their trust in uncertain drugs which may do more harm than actual good.
Letter to the Editor
Diversity needs to be understood It’s outstanding to witness students speaking up for themselves and their peers. for that, I applaud the SGA. In response to their resolution and recent articles in The Spectator, the Office of Social Equity (OSE) would like to provide pertinent information regarding meeting the needs of students from diverse backgrounds. The disparity between representation of both faculty and students from diverse backgrounds was mentioned. Although the OSE recognizes that the concept of cultural diversity encompasses many dimensions of difference, the major concern of the SGA focuses on the needs of students from diverse racial backgrounds. This leads to the faculty hiring process and the need to recruit diverse faculty. Even during the most ideal hiring situation, faculty recruitment is complex and involves many administrative and academic units. Some students assume there are tons of applicants from diverse backgrounds with doctoral degrees in the applicant pool and search committees are turning them away. This isn’t the reality. for varying reasons, individuals from underrepresented backgrounds tend not to pursue and complete doctoral degrees in the same numbers as their majority counterparts. Other factors in the faculty recruitment process include: salaries, course workload and the appeal of an institution’s geographical location.
As a result, VSU often loses candidates to institutions that can offer higher salaries or a more ideal location. This is a national issue not unique to VSU. Some institutions seeking to better diversify faculty identify potential faculty among their student body/alumni population and encourage them to complete the training needed to return to their alma mater as faculty. This is referred to as a “grow your own” faculty program. Participants tend to have a greater investment in the success of their alma mater and agree to serve as faculty despite any perceived disadvantages. The draft of VSU’s Institutional Diversity Plan includes a “grow your own” program. The plan was presented to SGA President Jimerson during fall semester for his feedback and suggestions, and approved this week by the SGA. Also mentioned was the need to separate the OSE and hire new staff in the Student Affairs Division to assist students from diverse backgrounds. The OSE is currently staffed with two individuals and is charged with time sensitive and intensive duties with confidential information that cannot be delegated to student employees, currently our only other form of assistance. Adgie’s article stated the OSE has five employees. This is inaccurate. Three of
those five employees are fully funded by a federal grant, and regulations mandate that those employees only work on grant-related activities. When compared to the number of staff in a similar office at another institution within the USG, our office is severely understaffed. If additional positions are created, it would be logical to assign them to the OSE so services can be expanded and carried out in a more efficient manner. It would also be logical to follow the action steps and timeline listed in the Institutional Diversity Plan which includes goals to create centers for underrepresented students. Again, I applaud the SGA. At the same time, I encourage all who are truly concerned about achieving diversity on our campus to get an understanding of what the OSE’s specific responsibilities are, policies we must observe, and the processes involved. With that understanding, perhaps we can move forward together. Unfortunately, there is no single remedy that will completely solve the issues expressed. There must be, however, a genuine desire within the hearts of men and women−at all academic and administrative levels of our institution−to see an improved campus culture and community. Maggie Viverette, Ed.D. Director of the OSE
Sex-tape scandals keep stars relevant S TA f f W r I T E r
TV personalities Mimi faust and Nikko Smith, who are featured on VH1’s reality series, “Love and Hip Hop NY,” sent Twitter accounts into a frenzy across the country when their “homemade” sex tape dropped online last week. There has been a mixed reaction to sex tapes in the celebrity world. Some fans
There have been numerous celebrities with sex tapes, including socialite Paris Hilton and, of course, reality TV star Kim Kardashian. Mimi’s fans seem more concerned with the acrobatics she’s doing in the video than the actual video itself. regardless of why she chose to release this tape, it is definitely helping her not only keep a spot on the show but also attain more relevance. What other possible reason could a businesswoman and
full-time mother such as Mimi have for acquiring this permanent stain on her reputation? It just goes to show that people will really sell their souls for fame. It does get the job done, though. After all, who would Kim Kardashian be without her sex-tape scandal? Of course people always claim that these tapes were “leaked,” but that’s just an excuse. As soon as you see a cameraman lurking in your bedroom, you know exactly
Spectator Staff Editor-in-Chief: Will Lewis Managing Editor: Olivia McLean Business Manager: Kristen Varney Advertising Manager: Aimee Napier Circulation Manager: Sara Turner Opinions Editor: Elan Waite Features Editor: Hillary Straba
Sports Editor: Alex Tostado Photo Editor: Carlin Morrison Multimedia Editor: rebecka McAleer Web Designer: John Preer Graphic Designer: Galen Coles Copy Editor: John Stephen Social Media Editor: Joe Adgie
what you’re getting into. The public is growing more and more desensitized to things that should shock us. There are so many outlandish stories surfacing not only about celebrities but also about average, “everyday” people; crazy almost seems normal. Unfortunately for Mimi, whether people were shocked or supportive, this tape is something that will hinder her for the rest of her life. Love and Hip Hop won’t be cutting
her checks when she’s trying to retire or trying to send her daughter to college. This action has not only hurt her public reputation but also her daughter’s. She made a permanent mistake for fifteen minutes of fame, and when that “fame” clock stops ticking, she’ll realize that sex tapes are like energy drinks: it’s great in the moment, but there’s a horrible crash after.
Contacting Us Faculty Advisers: Dr. Pat Miller, Dr. Ted Geltner, Keith Warburg Reporters/Photographers: Stephen Cavallaro, Jessica Cooke, Allison Ericson, Eric Jackson Jordan Hill, Tyra Mills, Isaiah Smart ,Taylor Stone, Alexis Waters, Christopher Webb, Lamarcus Wilkerson
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Not your average suit and tie: new provost adds flair to academic affairs John Stephen Copy Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
VSU has finally found a permanent provost—a welltraveled trinidad and tobago native who jams to vinyl records, has a passion for helping students succeed and yes, even takes long walks on the beach with his wife. dr. Hudson rogers, father of two and grandfather of one, currently lives in Fort Myers, Fla., where he has resided for the past 17 years while working at Florida Gulf Coast University, moving his way from finance and marketing department chair to dean of FGCU’s Lutgert College of Business. But now dr. rogers and his wife, dr. Elsa rogers, are leaving behind the sunny Florida coast to start a new life in Valdosta as he becomes VSU’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, one of the highest and most influential posi-
tions on campus. “(i have) dr. rogers says an experiential he is “elated” to be frame of referchosen for the ofence and a skill fice. set that fits well “Exciting things with the univerare happening at sity, and i look VSU, and it is an forward to joinhonor to have the ing an outstandopportunity to be a ing faculty, staff part of the VSU and administrafamily,” rogers tive team fosaid in an email. cused on stuthe search for a dent success,” new provost proved dr. rogers said. to be long and dr. rogers somewhat difficult. has certainly acA special commitcumulated an tee at VSU scoured impressive track a nationwide pool record. of candidates, lookHe holds a ing for just the doctorate deValdosta State University right person. gree in business Dr. Hudson Rogers is VSU’s new provost. The univerduring that time, administration, sity made the announcement April 7 and he will begin president William J. work July 1. and in addition to McKinney said that his extensive adcommunity and the unanidr. rogers swiftly emerged ministrative experience, he mous first choice of our as one of the top conhas taught marketing at sevsearch committee,” dr. tenders. eral universities in the UnitMcKinney said. "Not only did dr. rogers ed States and other coundr. rogers said he was instantly rise to the top of a impressed with VSU from tries around the world, invery competitive pool in cluding Germany, France the start of his journey to our national search, but he and his home country of becoming the provost and was also the unambiguously believes that he is the right trinidad and tobago, or clear choice of our campus “trinbago,” as he fondly fit for the job.
Internet lives on after heartbleed Are your passwords safe? that depends on when you last changed them. on April 7, it was made public that the security of the internet was compromised by the Heartbleed bug. Heartbleed, or CVE2014-0160 as it is technically named, is an openSSL security bug that has affected about 17 percent of the internet’s websites. the bug allows hackers to exploit the security to gain information on user cookies and passwords. An openSSL is an internet system that acts as a library for encrypted data. it is used by websites for password and username security. the name Heartbleed, coined by the security company Codenomicon, comes from the heartbeat extension that the bug exploits in the openSSL. According to heartbleed.com, the bug allows anyone on the internet to read the memory of the systems protected by the vulnerable versions of the openSSL software. this compromises the secret keys used to identify the service providers and to encrypt the traffic, including the names and passwords of the users and the actual content. this allows attackers to eavesdrop on communications, steal data directly from the services and users, and even impersonate services and
Spec Tech with Joseph Albahari
users. “Some might argue that [heartbleed] is the worst vulnerability found (at least in terms of its potential im-
Courtesy of Codenomicon
pact) since commercial traffic began to flow on the internet,” Joseph Steinberg, Forbes writer, said. Some major sites that may have been affected include Facebook, instagram, pinterest, tumblr, twitter, yahoo and Google. Websites that have confirmed that they were affected include healthcare.gov, Netflix, Minecraft and youtube. Users are advised to change their passwords for protection against the theft of their information. if you think you should change your password, go ahead
and do it just in case. A new version of openSSL has been developed and distributed to websites so that they can update their pages and protect their users. Many websites, such as tumblr, put a notice on their website urging users to change their passwords while their website’s tech team worked on updating the SSL security. Changing your password is all a user can do to protect themselves from this bug until all sites have updated their openSSL. to see a list of all websites that have been affected by the bug, mashable.com has compiled a list for users to refer to.
calls it. dr. rogers is full of ideas for maintaining and improving the quality of post-secondary education, and he hopes to assist in resolving
“I believe that we
ﬁnd our passion by being a part of and involved in something bigger than ourselves. ” - Dr. HuDson rogers
the major issues that plague VSU and most higher education institutions, such as budget reductions, tuition increases and rising student debt. He understands the difficulties students face because he faced the same challenges while in college−trying to find access and affordability and attempting to balance school, work and life in general. dr. rogers said motivating students to succeed, de-
spite the obstacles they encounter, is one of his greatest accomplishments, right after raising two children with his wife. “the drive to succeed is a gift/blessing that was given to me by my parents, teachers and mentors, and i am simply paying it forward,” dr. rogers said. “i believe that we find our passion by being a part of and involved in something bigger than ourselves.” When not focusing on the academic world, dr. rogers reads for entertainment and cultivates his love for music−blues, jazz, and especially calypso, a form of music that originated in trinidad and tobago. Early in his life, dr. rogers found a passion in collecting vinyl records, and he now possesses over 3,000 of them. if dr. rogers’ music interests are any reflection of his personality, students can expect a new provost that is easygoing and humorous as well as upbeat, intelligent and unique.
APRIL 24, 2014
PAge 5 | vsusPectAtoR.com
Valdosta baseball minors revisited Alex Tostado S p o rt S E d i to r email@example.com
Baseball reigned King. Baseball and tobacco, that is. in 1939, minor league baseball came to the small, southern town of Valdosta, Ga. Until 1958, (with the exception of 1943-45 due to World War ii) the residents of this rural community would experience minor league baseball for themselves. Four different major league teams had Class d affiliates in Valdosta during this time period, including the Brooklyn dodgers, pittsburgh pirates, St. Louis Browns and detroit tigers. in 1952, deane Mink, a young pitcher from Cocoa, Fla., came to Valdosta with a minor league contract. despite only playing one year in the town, Mink picked up on the culture, which was baseball and tobacco. Mink went to a tobacco auction not far from town after arriving in Valdosta. “if you have never seen (a tobacco auction), it was the funniest thing in the world,” Mink said. “Fifteen or 20 buyers are walking up and down these big piles of tobacco, and this guy is literally chanting and auctioning off the tobacco.” Mink recalls baseball being so popular because there weren’t many other options. “(Baseball) was king (when i played in Valdosta),” Mink said. “there was nothing else. there was no tV. if you had a tV, you were the richest guy in town, but it only had one channel.” the now 79-year-old Mink is a chiropractor in Valdosta, where he has been practicing
for the past 53 years. there are still residents in Valdosta that recall minor league baseball being played in their little farm town. Lynn thomas is one of those residents. thomas remembers going to pendleton park, the baseball field the teams played at, as a child with his mother and watching baseball games. thomas saw players such as don Wert play in his hometown. in 1958, Wert was a member of the Valdosta team that won the GeorgiaFlorida League championship. Wert played eight seasons with the detroit tigers and was a member of the World Series-winning 1968 team. After getting married, thomas moved to Houston where he attended many Astros games and became familiar with people in the organization. one year, Wert was in Houston for an old-timers game. thomas received word from a former player that Wert would be playing in a charity golf tournament the day before the game, and he was able to meet Wert after the tournament. “i walked over (to Wert) and said, ‘i’m from Valdosta,
Ga., and i used to watch you play third base (when i was 10 years old),’” thomas said. “He looked at me like i was a man from Mars. He said, ‘You’re kidding me.’ “i don’t know who was more thrilled. He was really excited about it once he realized i wasn’t feeding him a lie.” More recently, thomas found Wert’s ’58 championship ring on an online auction and knew he had to have it. After negotiating with the seller, thomas acquired the ring and immediately donated it to the Lowndes County Historical Society. in 2006, thomas moved back to Valdosta. it was shortly thereafter that he decided to dig up the past and look at the roster for the 1958 championship team. After noticing a handful of players that went pro, thomas was inspired to write a book on the 39 players who came through Valdosta during the 1940’s and ‘50’s and made it to the big leagues. thomas wanted to make them more human than just their statistics, and that’s what he did in his book titled “From Valdosta to the Major Leagues,” which was published in 2012.
Alex Tostado/THE SPECTATOR Lynn Thomas, authour of “From Valdosta to the Major Leagues,” studies his baseball collection that he donated to the LCHS.
Alex Tostado/THE SPECTATOR Deane Mink examines a baseball card of himself from the 1952 season. Mink played for the Valdosta Trojans and is now a chiropractor.
“i thought, ‘What kind of guys were (the 39 players)?’” thomas said. “We don’t necessarily think of athletes as people, and more so now with the media… putting everything they do on the internet. “Back then, unless you happened to know one of (the players), you didn’t know what they were about.” thomas interviewed the players and their loved ones to tell the stories in his book. He doesn’t only mention their time in Valdosta, but their whole careers. Some of the players featured by thomas include don Hoak, who played in the majors for 10 seasons; Eddie robinson, who played and coached in the majors for more than 40 years; roger Craig, who played 12 years with five teams, pitched in four different World Series, and managed for 10 years; and dick McAuliffe, who played for 16 years, including 14 seasons for the detroit tigers. thomas also writes about Jackie Moore who was a
bench coach for the texas rangers from 2008-13. Moore was a coach from 1970-99. He made a return to the majors in 2008, and was the last remaining player from the Valdosta minor leagues in the majors. When baseball was being played in Valdosta, the town rallied around its team. during Mink’s rookie season, there was a one-game playoff against Waycross for
the league championship. Mink remembers seeing signs in the middle of inter sections−the few that existed at the time−advertising the baseball games. “(there were) 7,000 people trying to get into (pendleton) park to see that game,” Mink said. the stadium only held 1,200 people. thomas donated a portion of his collection to the LCHS, including the championship ring. His collection consists of baseball cards, autographs and photographs. the proceeds from his book also go toward the museum. thomas used his book as a way of making his knowledge of the game count. “As we get older, you just start thinking back on things and… i really want(ed) to try to make some sort of contribution,” thomas said. “i thought that was a story worth telling.” pendleton park was removed in the 1980’s and South Georgia Medical Center sits on the lot the park once occupied.
A N S W E R S
PAge 6 | vsusPectAtoR.com
APRIL 24, 2014
Blazing QB battle Baseball nears end Eric Jackson
S P o rT S W r I T e r
S P o rT S W r I T e r
With just two games remaining in the regular season, Valdosta State (24-16) looks to get on track for the postseason and play winning baseball. The Blazers host non-conference opponent Thomas (26-16) this Saturday in a doubleheader. The Night Hawks, competing at the NAIA Division I level, should prove to be a tough test. VSU should embrace the chance to play a quality opponent, as a win could be a well-timed boost in momentum.
Height: 6’3” Weight: 220 lbs. Previous school: Florida Atlantic Spring game stats: 11 of 20 passes for 216 yards and three touchdowns
Medlock undoubtedly has the experience to be the next starter. He started 23 games for the Panthers. Medlock comes into a battle after leaving a quarterback battle at FAU, so he knows the drill.
Medlock is adjusting quickly to the new offense, which is similar to the spread offense that he ran at FAU. If he can remain healthy, which he’s had trouble doing before, Medlock could
have a memorable final season. Division I experience cannot be denied. Coach Dean has had a fair share of success with transfer quarterbacks, and he may have found another.
Kaleb Nobles Height: 5’9” Weight: 192 lbs. Previous school: Fitzgerald High School Spring game stats: 13 of 22 passes for 221 yards with three touchdowns and one interception The incumbent has an edge on Medlock due to the sole reason that he already knows the playbook. Nobles dazzled in a couple outings last season, including a comeback win against UWG. Appearing in 10 games last season
helps his chances. Nobles has played the backup role the last two seasons and rightfully deserves to be crowned starter. This battle should come down to the wire; regardless, the Blazers are set at QB. As the saying goes, let the best man win.
The game will prove to be a battle of strengths; the Blazers’ bats will be facing strong pitching from Thomas, who boasts an impressive team erA of 3.20. However, the Blazers’ offense has been impressive in its own right, with a team batting average of .310 and over 90 extra base hits. VSU ranks in the top three for the Gulf South Conference in batting average, doubles, home runs, rBIs and total bases. VSU second baseman Matthew Fears leads the way, hitting .380 to go along with 14 doubles, which are both tops for the team. Fears, who had been hitting at .405, has seen his average drop a bit over the past few
weeks in the midst of a mild slump. Bryant Hayman has been strong all year for VSU, leading the team with nine home runs, 50 rBIs and a .670 slugging percentage. Thomas has a quality hitter of their own, Tyler Palmer, who is hitting .462 on the year. Thomas could be victims of rust come Saturday because they haven’t played in two weeks due to rain. With no reaming conference games, the Blazers stand fifth in the GSC with a conference record of 13-12, the same exact spot they were in last year when VSU won the conference tournament. The GSC tournament begins Friday, May 2.