Global Focus p. 5
Surviving the System p. 7
Contest: Enter to Win p.15
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On the Record
On the Cover: Accent’s Multimedia Editor Justin Hobby captured images of pedal-powered, butterfly bikes outside Austin Convention Center during South by Southwest Eco in October.
Audio: Hear from the employee who registered ACC’s first student 40 years ago.
Video: See our multimedia presentation on single parents at ACC.
Accent is Austin Community College’s award-winning, student-run publication. We operate a digital-first publishing model. Content is edited and posted directly to the website. We also print a tabloid-style magazine. In Fall 2013, we’ll distribute an October Issue, and a November Issue.
Carizma Barrera, Campus Editor Keri Gabriele, Photo Editor Justin Hobby, Multimedia Editor Michael Sismilich, Audio Editor
Leilani Alers, Design Editor Kimberly Hancock, Design Editor Emily Barker, Graphic Designer Stephanie Garrison, Layout Designer
Glenn Fraser Devorah Feldman Lucas Horner Njera Keith Denise Morales May-Jacqueline Patterson
Business Team Era Sundar
Interim Student Media Adviser
Photographers Chase Hoeppner Marissa McKnight Cecilia Soto Adrienne Sparks Jessica Vasquez
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Linda Tobin Njera Keith Reporter
inda Tobin is a sociology professor and has been with ACC for 12 years. Tobin has taken her interest in sociology out of the classroom and made it a personal experience by volunteering at refugee camps in Africa.
TOBIN: It made me realize the magnitude of the global refugee problem, and it’s made me want to do more. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, there are more than 10 million refugees under the care of the United Nations around the world. I wish we could all realize how fortunate we are.
ACCENT: Tell us about your work with refugees.
ACCENT: Do you have a most memorable experience from your time in Uganda and Zambia?
TOBIN: During my stay, children would always yell “mzungu! mzungu!” (How are you?) when they saw me on my bike. During one of my rides, a little boy reached out his hand and just grabbed mine. He was so thrilled. I was thrilled. That really stuck with me, because he was really happy. I just thought bless his soul. He was a child in that situation yet so happy.
are.❞ — Linda Tobin
TOBIN: I wanted to offer my sociology students a different type of lecture by speaking from my own experience. Four years ago, I spent seven weeks volunteering in Zambia, and this past summer, I spent three weeks in Uganda. ACCENT: How did the conditions under which the refugees lived change? TOBIN: Before becoming refugees, they lived normal lives, earned livings, worked in small towns and had healthy families. After being displaced, they’re trying to feed their children day to day. They’re trying to figure out how to get their kids in school. ACCENT: How did the experiences you observed differ between Uganda and Zambia? TOBIN: In Zambia they were more stable, resilient and hopeful because they’d been refugees for so long. In Uganda, the refugees had just recently fled the Congo, and the despair was still fresh for them. They aren’t able to focus as much on hope for the future, because they had to focus on survival. ACCENT: How did these experiences change your world view?
❝ I wish we could all realize how
ACCENT: Did you take hope from seeing proof that kids are still kids? Even in a situation such as the one in Zambia? TOBIN: Absolutely. As a human, you want nothing but the best for the future of the world and you hope that these refugees will have the best. ACCENT: How can students get involved? TOBIN: The easiest answer is to become involved in our own communities. We have huge needs here, and there are many nonprofits that offer volunteer opportunities. But for those who want an international focus, many international organizations can be found on the internet.
Editors Note: This article has been edited
November 2013 | 5
Student Diversity Marisa McKnight Photographer Thirty students from Denmark agreed that in Texas some things — trucks, casual dress and food portions to name a few — are bigger. The students, ages 17 - 20, were studying Texas literature, history and game development at the Northridge Campus as part of their secondary education program at Denmark’s Odense Tekniske
Gymnasium. They spent four weeks exploring Texas on the program. The students spoke of their Texas experiences at the Oct. 11 Student Life Diversity Conference held at the Eastview Campus. The event also included a religious panel consisting of a Protestant pastor, a Catholic priest, and an Imam from a local Mosque.
Study Abroad Program Stands Up to International Conflict Carizma Barrera Campus Editor The summer 2013 study abroad program to Ammam, Jordan was planned and organized. Sightseeing excursions, Arabic classes and cultural experiences were arranged. The only thing missing was the students. Study abroad trips require a minimum of eight students. However, only two registered for the Jordan trip. Arabic professor and trip organizer Fahim Idais said safety concerns probably topped the list of reasons few students responded. “There is a lot of misinformation, and misinterpretation with traveling to the Middle East,” Idais said. “I was disappointed because students did not feel safe traveling to my home country.” Amber Howard, a Middle Eastern studies major and student in professor Idais’ Arabic III class, was disappointed when the trip was cancelled. “I saw the Jordan trip as a wonderful way to immerse myself in a culture and language that I found beautiful and fascinating,” she said. By summer 2013, the Arab Spring revolutions and the civil war in Syria — a country that shares a border with Jordan — had been well under way.
6 | ACCENT
Howard said her mother was concerned at first, but relaxed after doing some research on Jordan. “Day to day life in Jordan is safe,” William Hayden, Director of International Programs at ACC said. “We’ve been given regional security to keep the students safe.” Hayden said the Arabic study abroad program partnered with The Jewish Language Academy in Jordan. The JLA provided the host families, and conducted background checks on them to ensure the safety of the students. The group also arranged classroom facilities various activities. In spite of the setbacks this summer, organizers remain optimistic and a trip to Jordan is being planned for summer 2014. Although her trip fell through, Howard’s enthusiasm for the study abroad program has not wavered. “I would encourage anyone with the means to go immediately,” she said. Another study abroad trip to Jordan has been scheduled to take place from July 5 to Aug. 12, 2014. Applications are being accepted now through Feb. 28, 2014.
Marissa McKnight, Photographer
ON STANDBY— Students from Denmark’s Odense Tekniske Gymnasium wait their turn to speak at the Diversity Conference held Oct. 11 at Eastview Campus.
Free Skill-Building Services for Students
Veterans Discuss the Government Shutdown
Devorah Feldman Reporter
May-Jacqueline Patterson Reporter
ACC libraries now offer LearningExpress Library, an online math and writing skills tool which provides practice exams for the GED, COMPASS, SAT, GMAT and other assessment tests. “It’s self-paced,” head Round Rock librarian Sheila Henderson said. “You get the pre-test and the post-test, so you can measure your progress.” A confidential home page showing test scores and saved e-books is maintained. Students can also search job listings and learn about the interview process through the companion Job & Career Center database.
The 16-day, partial government shutdown in October affected many Americans. Several government services, payments and salaries came to an abrupt halt. ACC student and Army veteran Jeremiah Rodriguez learned about the shutdown while watching the news on TV. He said he wasn’t sure if it affected the GI Bill payments which cover his tuition and provide a housing allowance. “One thing I do know for certain is the government shutdown did not affect the health care I receive for being a veteran," he said. "I had a medical emergency that needed to be taken care of.” Veteran Miguel Segura, who also learned about the government shutdown through the media, said the shutdown did not cause him any long-term problems. “It just took the government a long time to pay the school and to give me my housing allowance.” He said ACC was understanding about the delay in his tuition payment, but it was still a stressful time as he waited for the payments to come in.
❝The guys and girls in foster care with you become your family.❞
Photo by Brenda Ladd
Foster Care to College: Surviving the System Njera Keith Reporter Difficulty in building close relationships is a lingering effect of surviving the foster care system, ACC paralegal student Angel Carroll said. Carroll, who attends the Riverside Campus, entered the foster care system when she was 14 years old and aged out of the system when she turned 18 earlier this year. Although upbeat about her experience and optimistic about her future, Carroll remembers being shuffled around in the system. “When you leave a job, it’s nice to give two weeks notice. But your case worker could show up one day and say ‘let’s go’ and that would be it,” Carroll said. “I attended twelve schools in one year.” Carroll has lived in foster homes stretching from Lubbock, in northwest Texas, to Victoria on the southeastern coast. Entering the foster care system was a shock and adjustments had to be made quickly. But having contact with her biological family provided some comfort for Carroll, and she has some fond memories of her time in foster care. “The guys and girls in foster care with you become your family,” she
said. “I’m still in touch with one girl who was in several homes with me.” Carroll considers moving often without much warning as one of the hardest parts of being in foster care. Loretta Edelen, the Community Outreach director and director of the Foster Care Alumni Program at ACC said many foster care alumni face destitution as soon as they exit the foster care system. They don’t have a permanent support system and many even face homelessness. Edelen said she’s encountered students who live out of their cars while attending school. However, for Carroll, the transition to college life was not too hard. Partly because of determination, she said, and partly because of programs like those offered at ACC. ACC’s Foster Care Alumni Program was created in 2005 to help students, who are former foster care children, overcome challenges. The program helps students activate a lifelong tuition fee waiver that they are eligible to receive as foster care alumni. As long as Texas foster care alumni attend a public college or university, their tuition is covered through government
programs. There are also programs that provide housing and book allowances. The Foster Care Alumni Jump Start Orientation teaches new students how to navigate college and offers students free refreshments and transportation during the orientation. Campus Champions, another initiative facilitated by the Foster Care Alumni Program, establishes ACC staff members as counselors who can offer advice on registering at ACC and provide information on available community resources. Every month the Foster Care Alumni Program offers gatherings for students who, like Carroll, experience difficulty meeting other students they can relate to. “This may sound funny, but I’d like to see even more of those meetings,” Carroll said. “Because my relationships with people in foster care didn’t often last long, I’ve become closed off to the possibility of establishing new ones. It makes it really hard to meet people.” Drawing on her own experience, Carroll encourages other alumni of the foster care system to keep working toward their goals.
“Keep your head up. Everything happens for a reason,” she said. “My goals didn’t seem attainable when I was in foster care, but now, I’m using my tuition fee waiver to pursue a paralegal certification. It does get better.”
Njera Keith, Reporter
ADVOCATE — Loretta Edelen is Community Outreach director and director of the Foster Care Alumni Program at ACC.
November 2013 | 7
ent Me S tu d e n
L e a d er s
Campus Team Students received over 100 hours of organizational leadership training.
Student Life Impact The Orientation Program (TOP)
1100 intramural participants
1st Annual SL Summer Student Leader Retreat. Over 50 student leaders attended to train for their leadership roles over the year.
Fall 2011 Fall 2012
FTIC Black Males that participated in orientation had a next term retention of 80%. Those that did not attend had a next term retention of 41.9%.
8 board forums
SGA initiated the installation of diaper changing tables in men and women’s bathrooms on each campus.
“We are the classroom without walls.” - SL
SGA President attended a conference in Washington D.C. and lobbied with Board of Trustees members.
r ts Spo an
These resources enable students to succeed in the classroom and beyond.
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This unique learning environment is supported through a variety of clubs and organizations, community-building events, experiential learning programs, leadership, and volunteer opportunities.
Ex ear pe
The Austin Community College Office of Student Life’s mission is to promote an environment committed to students’ personal, emotional, cultural, social, and ethical development.
Over the course of the 20 win awards and be recogn community college studen
Some of their awards incl Feature Photo, Story, and
Fall 2012: 9 Awards Association Conferen Spring 2013: 17 Awa Association Convent
$20,141 in student incentives
600 voted in the SGA election
By Samantha Cook and Alanna Hollyway
1300 service hours
37 recognized organizations
532 activities and events
April 24th saw the 15th Annual Nite in the Life Awards, recognizing student achievement throughout the year. NBA Hall of Famer George Gervin was the keynote speaker.
3 Chartered Orgs
(sponsored by ACC to enhance our college mission)
and 34 Non-Chartered
Student Program of the Year
Student Organization of the Year
Campus Team of the Year
Riverbat Excellence Award
The Hunger Banquet (CKI)
Circle K Intl.
South Austin Campus (SAC)
Marcelo Urieta-Bravo & Kristina Marie Kay
(student-created to support common goals).
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ACC intramurals continued itâ€™s 2nd year of ACC vs. Australia Basketball.
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ACC SGA selected to host Region IV TJCSGA 13 Conference.
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(Texas Community College Journalism nce) ards (Texas Intercollegiate Press tion)
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luded General Excellence (Accent Staff), Page One Design.
Hom el e Hu ssne ng ss er an
012-2013 year, the Accent has continued to nized as an innovative leader among nt media programs in Texas.
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Each Student Life Office utilized My SL to engage students and foster leadership. Year totals: 887 active student users & 79 active groups.
2nd year of ACCâ€™s dance team. They performed at 64 events this year!
2nd Annual Diversity Symposium: students participated in leadership dialogues. 5th Annual Unity Jam: campuses represented countries to promote cultural learning.
ts ven e of
2nd year of Student Organization Council operating independently. SOC officers offered impactful budgetary input at SAFAC.
In the 2012-2013 year the ACC chapters of CKI and PTK participated in 37+ service events focused on the above areas. In addition, ACC CKI was awarded a total of 10 awards and scholarships at the Texas/Oklahoma CKI District Convention.
Leadership Training TOP provided Student Leaders with training before they served as peer mentors, faciliators, and student role models at the orientation sessions over the summer. Campus Teams attended APCA and received over 100 hours of organizational leadership training in their 2nd year of providing student-created activities and events on each campus. Student Leaders received diversity training that covered inclusion, awareness, conflict management, and problem solving.
Campus Ink May-Jacqueline Patterson Reporter
Tattoos were often considered markings of the rebellious. However, they have now taken a more mainstream place in society. Accent takes a closer look at tattoos on campus and the meanings behind them.
FULL PLUME — Patrick-Austin Nuñez
BIG FAN — Chris Grief’s leg tattoo is a
said his tattoo reminds him that although beautiful, peacocks only show their feathers when provoked.
tribute to Outkast, one of his favorite hiphop groups. He’s spent over $10,000 on tattoos so far.
ABOUT LOVE — Ashley Smith’s wrist tattoo honors the best advice
she received from a friend. Smith said “Love Selflessly” adorned with a floral vine reminds her to really love people — especially her fiance. Photo by Keri Gabriele, photo editor
UNIQUE — A couple holding hands
forms the face of a skull on Ivy Dinan’s upper arm.
10 | ACCENT
REMEMBRANCE — The Koi-fish, sleeve tattoo
on Patrick Sores’ arm represents life. Sores got the tattoo in honor of his late aunt.
Texas-born artist Amado Peña formed intricate designs with his paintbrush while describing his journey in art at the Sept. 26 Artist in Residence event at the Rio Grande Gallery.
ENGAGING — Peña chats with the audience and answers questions during the open forum. This was Peña’s third visit to ACC as an Artist in Residence.
Artist in Residence Keri Gabriele Photo Editor
Peña, whose work is characterized by bold color, said he starts most work in pen and ink, then colors like a coloring book with acrylic inks and softbodied acrylic paints. A lifelong artist and educator, Peña said he would get frustrated when he heard students say they weren’t creative. His response: “Well, who dressed you this morning? You did, right? You created that outfit. You are creative.”
FOUNDATION — Pen and Ink form the basis
of Peña’s drawings. He uses faces in profile, mesas and buffalo as reminders of his Yaqui, NativeAmerican heritage.
PROCLAIM — The event poster displays an example of Peña’s work. Peña started his professional career as a high school art teacher and liked it so much that he decided to get a master’s degree in art and education.
OPEN DISCUSSION — Peña describes his art while demonstrating his technique. He received his master’s degree in art and education from Texas A&M University - Kingsville.
November 2013 | 11
Campus Viewpoint Jessica Vasquez Photographer
“No, I think technology helps us become more sociable. I believe that technology is a great thing, but it needs to be used in moderation. Having a face-to-face conversation is still a very warm connection that we need to preserve.” — Zac Egan
“Yes, nowadays, I think there are a lot less genuine conversations between people. I’ve seen people texting each other from across the table instead of just talking. Even something as simple and nice as a well-thought-out letter is lost. — Keith Foley 12 | ACCENT
Do you think mobile devices prevent us from connecting with the people around us?
“Yes, face-to-face conversations are better than texting. You especially get more respect when you ask a girl out in person rather than over a text message. Breaking up with someone over a text is just disrespectful.” — Dana Jamal Crowder
“Yes, because some people don’t pay attention to their family or friends when they are together. It distracts people from some important things in life — even school.” — Colin Wade
"Absolutely. I think today there is more of a loner society. A text message is a curtain where you can't really know what the other person is thinking. The cell phone says to the person you're with, 'I'm the alternative in case you become boring.' " — Jeana Poteet
Reviews > College Eats
‘Echoic Memory’ Michael Sismilich Audio Editor
Keri Gabriele, Photo Editor
CULINARY ARTS — Above: Italian-inspired mixed green salad topped with Gorgonzola. Below: (left to right) Student chefs Heather Geracie and Liam Cole in the bistro kitchen.
Bistro 3158 Keri Gabriele Photo Editor
Culinary students Heather Geracie and Liam Cole served as student executive chefs during the Oct. 24 dinner service at Bistro 3158. The service featured two internationallythemed, four-course meals. Student chef Geracie chose Italy as the inspiration for her menu. The fourcourse meal began with a sweet, tangy mixed-green salad topped with Gorgonzola, dates and apples wrapped in pancetta. The salad was then drizzled with a balsamic vinaigrette. Geracie’s second course consisted of a savory, creamy spinach and artichoke cannelloni. A crispy-skinned roast quail with polenta starred as the main course followed by a flaky, chocolate and espresso pastry. Student chef Cole looked to Greece for his inspiration. His first course, a vegetarian friendly option, consisted
of minty, stuffed grape leaves and a fried halloumi salad. Halloumi is a salty cheese made from sheep’s or goat’s milk and is often fried because it melts slowly. Sauted bass with fingerling potatoes formed the main course and a sweet and crunchy fig rolled in nuts with yogurt sauce completed the service. Bistro 3158, named for the classroom on the Eastview Campus which houses the student-run restaurant, is like the final exam of International Cuisine, which is the capstone class of the Associate of Science in Culinary Arts. During the fall 2013 semester, the bistro operates on Thursday evenings between Oct. 10 and Nov. 21. Front of house service (hosting and wait staff) is provided by the Dining Service class.
“Echoic Memory” is a self-published, short story by ACC student and one-time Accent contributor Nathan Bustillos. The tale thrusts readers into the dark world of former FBI-agentturned-hit man Frank Haynes, who is struggling to cope with the loss of his son, and as a result, becomes a cigar-smoking, raging alcoholic. Anytime Frank is not out on a job, he’s drinking. We see him spiral into despair very closely as it’s magnified throughout the book. Haynes is good at his job, but not immune to the act of killing. Bustillos gives readers an intimate look into Haynes’ mind as he prepares to pull the trigger. It’s not the typical, expressionless portrait of a killer often shown on TV or in the movies. Although this Courtesy of amazon.com type of main character isn’t original, the formula works. The characters are well written, the dark, gritty setting provides the appropriate backdrop and the underlying theme — loss — is very relatable. The dark night on which the story takes place, the places Frank visits, the
jobs he takes and even his apartment accelerate his descent into depression. However, because loss is constantly pushed to the foreground as a recurring theme, there isn’t much more for the reader to absorb. I found myself wanting more — more descriptions of everything. How dirty is the life of a hit man? How much care and intensity does Frank put into maintaining his equipment? What does his apartment say about his state of mind? I kept asking these kinds of questions, but never really got the answers. Overall, "Echoic Memory" is an interesting read and the characters are worth meeting. “Echoic Memory” is Bustillos’ first published work and is available for Kindle and Nook for 99 cents on amazon.com. Bustillos also plans to have a new series of stories completed by early next year. “I’m actually working on a collection of short stories as we speak,” he said. “ It’s going to be 10 to 12 stories including “Echoic Memory”, and it’s going to have a similar theme.”
❝ He took a deep breath before moving his finger to the trigger. The last few seconds before Frank took the shot were always the most tense. He took one last deep breath and steadied his aim in the scope. Quick and painless; that was always his motto for every kill. ❞ — Nathan Bustillos, “Echoic Memory”
November 2013 | 13
Each fall Accent submits the published articles, photos, multimedia presentations and layout design of its contributors for contests at the Texas Community College Journalism Association convention. On Oct. 4, 2013 Accent won the following awards at the convention held at Texas Womanâ€™s University in Denton,Texas:
First place Website Newspaper Division I
(ADVISER) ce Second pla Overall Excellence Newspaper Division I
Mention Honorable Feature Writing Newspaper Division I, Headline Newspaper Division I
14 | ACCENT
First place Picture Page/Panel Newspaper Division I
Third place Cartoon Newspaper Division I
Advertising Newspaper Division I
Fifth place Overall Placement in Contest
Picture Page/Panel Newspaper Division I
General Column Newspaper Division I
In Depth/Investigative Newspaper Division I
ng for the next wa i k o o l ve of Gre Journalists ! is at
CONTEST SUBMIT YOUR: • • • • •
Selected Entries Published in Accent
Feature Articles, On the Record Interviews Photo Essays Audio/Video Presentations Infographics
Gift Cards for 1st, 2nd & 3rd Place Winners
Entries May Qualify for Extra Class Credit*
Contest Deadline December 16, 2013
ENTER NOW! * Visit www.theaccent.org/contest/ for full details November 2013 | 15
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