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thebattalion l tuesday,

march 4, 2014

l serving

texas a&m since 1893

l first paper free – additional copies $1 l © 2014 student media


Bryan Johnson — THE BATTALION

Items collected to honor the request of a California elementary student.

Ricky Seals-Jones, redshirt freshman wide receiver, catches a pass during spring practice.



Cold sets in, practice heats up Sumlin gets head start with early practice slate Patrick Crank The Battalion


he Texas A&M football team held its third spring practice Monday. Practice was inside the McFerrin Athletic Center due to the cold weather as players suited up in full pads for the first time. “We’ve got six or seven new guys out here that have got to get used to [wearing pads],” said Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin. “We’ve got a lot of installation in. I wish we were outside, but we’ve got a great facility here we’re able to utilize. We got a lot of snaps in. All in all, I liked the energy — I liked how it was going.” A&M started spring practice earlier than any other SEC school this year, which Sumlin said has helped maintain the momentum generated from the Chick-Fil-A Bowl. “[With] the ability to have some carryover, I think timing was different this year,” Sumlin said. “We’re able to still get a seven or eight week cycle of strength and conditioning in and get practice going. Every team’s different, but we just felt like with the guys that we have, we’re better off going early this year.” See Spring football on page 4

Tanner Garza — THE BATTALION

Tori Scott, junior guard, visits Bohnam Elementary in Bryan with the women’s basketball team.

HOPE AND HOOPS Youth see athletes for more than on-court personas

Tyler Stafford

The Battalion o fans of the Texas A&M women’s basketball team, names like Jordan Jones, Tori Scott, Cristina SanchezQuintanar and Taylor Cooper are known for their achievements on the court. For fifth grade students in Alicia Mohundro’s class at Bohnam Elementary, they are revered as friends and mentors. Jones, who graduated in the top-15 percent of her class at Desoto High School, said she understands the value of giving back to the community — especially to children. “It’s very important to give back to the community because these kids look up to us,” Jones said. “They see us doing what we love to do — being our best — and we are positive role models for them. When we go to their school they are so excited to see us. It’s a great feeling — the energy they give off when we walk in the room.


It’s like we’re celebrities to them.” Jones was recently named to the SEC Community Service Team for her impact on the students she mentors. Jones said she has a special bond with Eryn, a 10-year-old student at Bonham Elementary. “Me and Eryn have this thing going where we call each other best friends,” Jones said. “She has a very special place in my heart and I love her. She’s a great kid.” Every Monday at 2 p.m., Mohundro’s fourth period class expects to see “the children,” as the students refer to the players. “Every time I walk into class they run up and give me hugs,” Sanchez-Quintanar said. “The other day, when they didn’t see me at the game, they asked the teacher, ‘Where’s Cristina?’ The teacher said, ‘She’s back home in Spain.’ They were like, ‘Oh, she’s not going to come back?’ with sad looks on their faces. They are so sweet.” See Community service on page 4

Child’s letter prompts response A&M package prepared for 5th grader Jennifer Reiley The Battalion


he Department of Student Activities received a letter Wednesday from Preni, a fifth grader in California, asking for information on Texas for a school project. Student Activities posted online and asked for donations — and received responses in the form of anything from a copy of Aggie Bound, A&M’s prospective student guide, to T-shirts, pencils and a cadet bider. Cami Steele, social media and marketing intern for student activities, is in charge of collecting and organizing all of the information and donations. Steele said when she posted the information on social media sites, she didn’t expect the kind of reaction she received. “I started receiving things the next day [Thursday],” Steele said. “I don’t work on Friday, so I came in this morning to a stack of things on my desk. Now I feel like I’m playing bridesmaid because I’m writing out everything we’ve received and where it came from.” Daisy Enggina, communication coordinator for the department of student activities, said this was the first time she See Project on page 2

mardi gras


Piety to indulgence: ‘Fat Tuesday’ rooted in history

Illusionist uses tricks to heal, delight Elizabeth Evans The Battalion


ty for him and he used his house colors and his house colors were purple, green and gold. It was an honor to him,” Williams said. Williams said the holiday was celebrated in Europe and the New World. “The first Mardi Gras came from the carnivals and Italy and Spain and France and Europe in the 1600s and it’s called ‘Le Boef Gras’ which means ‘fat calf’ because during Lent, you can’t eat meat,” Williams said. “So what they’d do is they’d fatten this calf up in January and December and on Tuesday before Ash Wednesday you’d have this big huge party and everybody would eat this big calf.” Mardi Gras signals the transition into the season of Lent. Ann Kelson, freshman education

ntent on using his talents for more than pulling rabbits out of hats, illusionist Kevin Spencer is bringing his contemporary magic show and his magic-trickbased physical therapy to Bryan-College Station Spencer will be in the community until Thursday, working with teachers in Bryan and College Station ISDs as part of the Healing of Magic and Hocus Focus programs. Healing of Magic is a program that uses simple magic tricks as a form of rehabilitation therapy, Spencer said. “Say you’ve been in a car accident and you’re in occupational therapy and you’re relearning how to use your hands,” Spencer said. “There are a lot of traditional forms of therapy that you can use, like putting pegs in a board and those sorts of things, but they’re not very motivating.” Spencer said he designed the program after being in a car accident early in his career that caused a brain and spinal cord injury, putting him in therapy for a year. “It’s frustrating and it’s boring and it’s hard to get motivated to do the therapy you need to do,” Spencer said. “So I decided there’s got to be a better way to do this and who doesn’t get excited about a magic trick?” The Hocus Focus program follows the same concept, but is education-based and student-centered, giving students with learning disabilities the chance to practice fine motor skills. “For the smaller tricks, which are what we teach, the movements required to do those simple little tricks

See Fat Tuesday on page 2

See Illusionist on page 3

William Guerra — THE BATTALION

Katie Canales

The Battalion uesday ushers in a holiday that is more than the gold, green and purple-themed New Orleans extravaganza that it is commonly known for. Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday, marks the end of the Mardi Gras season. The Mardi Gras season begins on what is known as King’s Day, or the Three Wise Men’s visitation to Jesus. David Williams, junior history major and New Orleans native who has worked as a tour guide in his hometown, said the holiday’s key colors are symbols of the frankincense, myrrh and gold that the Wise Men brought. “In 1872, the grand duke of Russia visited New Orleans to see the big parade so Rex [The King of the Carnival] decided to have a big par-


BAT_03-04-14_A1.indd 1

campus news Polls open for primaries Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday for Primary Election Day. Voters are only able to vote at the polling location in their precinct. Patriot Paws A service dog trainer and member of Patriot Paws is unable to train her dog due to the no-pet policy at Aggie Station, an apartment complex on Wellborn Road.

World hunger Ken Davies, global coordinator of the U.N’s Purchase for Progress Initiative, will visit A&M with his wife to lecture on the P4P initiative and address world hunger and disease.

3/3/14 9:07 PM

Senior Boot Bag

page 2 tuesday 3.4.2014

Fat Tuesday Continued from page 1

Price Includes Logo and Name

(More logos available) Bag is lined and boots are divided by Charlotte, Reveille’s Seamstress



Jake Walker, Editor in Chief THE BATTALION is published daily, Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters and Tuesday and Thursday during the summer session (except University holidays and exam periods) at Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843. Offices are in Suite L400 of the Memorial Student Center. News: The Battalion news department is managed by students at Texas A&M University in Student Media, a unit of the Division of Student Affairs. Newsroom phone: 979-845-3315; E-mail:; website: Advertising: Publication of advertising does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by The Battalion. For campus, local, and national display advertising, call 979-8452687. For classified advertising, call 979845-0569. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Email: battads@ Subscriptions: A part of the Student Services Fee entitles each Texas A&M student to pick up a single copy of The Battalion. First copy free, additional copies $1.

major, said Lent is time for Lenten observers to honor Jesus’ 40-day abstinence of food and water by making sacrifices themselves. “You have to give something up and by giving that up, instead of focusing on that materialistic thing in your life or whichever object was consuming a lot of time within your life, you focus more on God or Jesus,” Kelson said. Walter Kamphoefner, professor of history, said though Lent was originally a Catholic holiday, it is still celebrated in other religious communities. “Some Protestant denominations have retained more of the Catholic heritage than others,” Kamphoefner said. Eman Abdul-Razzak, freshman visualization major, said Mardi Gras is so sensationalized that she was unaware of its ties to Catholicism. “I was honestly pretty shocked when I learned that Mardi Gras was actually a religious holiday,” Abdul-Razzak said. “A day dedicated to partying it up and letting loose is the last thing you’d expect to be holy. To me it seems like it kind of defeats the pious idea of Lent.” Kamphoefner said even

Project Continued from page 1

had seen something like this. She said the department’s next step is to pack everything up and send it to California. “We first are going to send a letter to the parents or guardians letting them know that a big box is coming,” Enggina said. “We know we still have some things coming into College Station, so Friday is probably when we’ll send everything. The deadline for [Preni’s] project is the end of March, so we don’t want to send it too late.” The letter will request that the parents take some pictures of Preni with the donations. Even if the University does not receive photographs, Steele said she is proud her post received such positive feedback. “It feels pretty good,” Steele said. “I remember do-

BAT_03-04-14_A2.indd 1

news thebattalion though the holiday has been commercialized, the holiday is historically an ironic one. “Mardi Gras is what, I guess if you were cynical, you’d say when you get all of your sinning done or all of your excesses done before Lent clamps down,” Kamphoefner said. “There was a time when Christians frowned on sex during Lent and you would see a seasonal drop in conception. It’s an interesting combination of doing just the opposite of what you’re supposed to be doing during Lent.” Kelson said she felt the reverence of the holiday has been somewhat lost over the years. “I feel the meaning used to be a lot more well-known,” Kelson said. “And nowadays people know about Mardi Gras, but they don’t know anything about it or why it’s going on.” Williams said the parades in New Orleans are a testimony to the commercialization and irreverence of what Fat Tuesday has morphed into over time, but it isn’t enough to distract believers from the holiday’s meaning. “At its core, really it’s still a religious holiday,” Williams said. “No matter how much you advertise it, it’ll still be that.”

ing this project in school and I never got this kind of feedback. It’s cool to think I was in her shoes once and now we can send it off and be able to help someone.” Junior university studies major Donald Ashburn, who sent a picture of the Corps forming the block T on Kyle Field, a Corps bider, Corps brass and RV brass, said he was interested in donating items because he knew he had certain resources other students don’t. “I think often we claim to be ‘the most friendly university in the world’ because of our spirit to help a buddy out and traditions like saying ‘Howdy,’ but this was just another act to back up the way we already talk,” Ashburn said. “It really shows that we practice what we preach and shows we truly are one of the most, if not the most, friendly and helpful campus in the world.

3/3/14 9:11 PM


page 3 tuesday 3.4.2014


Illusionist Continued from page 1

require things like opening and closing the hand, grasp and release, all these very intricate movements,� Spencer said. “In order to perform a magic trick, you have to be able to have fine motor skills, but beyond that you have to be able to plan and sequence the movements required.� Spencer said while he loves being a performer, making a positive impact in the community is the most rewarding part of what he does. “When you can give somebody the ability to do something that the normal, ablebodied person can’t do, and when that person has a low self-esteem or self-worth, that is such a tremendous boost to their self-esteem, and it really does motivate them in so many other areas of their life,� Spencer said. Spencer’s show, Theatre of Illusion, will be in Rudder Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. “We call the show ‘Theatre of Illusion’ because we really want to break the stereotype of what people think of when they think of a magic show,� Spencer said. “It is a combination of my love for theater and my love for magic.� In designing Theatre of Illusion, Spencer said he

I’m a firm believer that the art of illusion has the ability to move an audience, emotionally and intellectually, the same way as great dance or powerful theater or great music. But people don’t see magic performed that way.� — Kevin Spencer, illusionist

didn’t want to do a typical Vegas show. “It’s not that razzle-dazzle, Las Vegas thing at all,� Spencer said. “So if that’s what people are expecting, that’s not what they’re going to get.� Spencer said the show combines all the great elements of a Broadway production with the high energy of a rock concert and wraps it around some phenomenal magic. “I’m a firm believer that the art of illusion has the ability to move an audience, emotionally and intellectually, the same way as great dance or powerful theater or great music,� Spencer said. “But people don’t see magic performed that way.� Spencer said he designed the show both as a contemporary, sophisticated challenge and as a portal to the audi-

ence’s sense of wonder. “You know when we’re little kids, everything kind of fascinates us,� Spencer said. “And the older we get, we start to take for granted the wonders that happen all around us.� Senior computer science major Andrew Rodriguez said the show is a unique experience not often found on campus. “A lot of people don’t know about magic and it’s dying as a performing art in our country,� Rodriguez said. “I would really recommend and encourage them to see Spencer’s show, because it might not be something you would normally see.� Rodriguez serves as the president of the Order of Aggie Illusionists, a teaching club that works to build people’s confidence with magic. The illusionists will attend Spencer’s show and have the opportunity to meet with Spencer afterward. Spencer’s show has already enticed students looking for something different to see in College Station, like junior psychology major Brittany Perez. “His show seems like it would be pretty interesting,� Perez said. “I like that it isn’t a typical Vegas show and brings in elements of theater.�


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3/3/14 6:58 PM


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tuesday 3.4.2014



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Spring football

(inside office)

Reveille’s Seamstress

Continued from page 1

Since 2003

The departures of Travis Labhart, Mike Evans and Derel Walker from A&M’s wide-receiving corps have opened the door for competition among this year’s crop of wide-outs. Sumlin recognizes the challenge in replacing three of A&M’s most productive players and said it will take some time to get the young guns up to speed. “Reps, reps, reps,” Sumlin said. “We’re able to do that with coaching right now and they’ve gone out and done their own seven-on-seven. Right now what you want to do is get as much video and as many reps with these guys as you can. Reps right now are as important as anything.” Two former A&M players, Dante “Xfactor” Hall, a former Pro Bowler for the Kansas City Chiefs, and Tiki Hardeman, have returned to A&M to finish their degrees and have been lending a helping hand in spring drills. “We have a number of players who went on to play in the NFL who may or may not have finished their degree, but when you have guys like that who love football, it’s different than me and Coach Beaty yelling at them,” Sumlin said. “While they’re here, they’re giving our guys some knowledge from an aspect that can really, really help them and we’re really appreciative.” In addition to spring practice, the football team will host its pro day on Wednesday, where a large turnout of NFL scouts and coaches has become the norm. “Ever since we’ve been here, every

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the battalion

Freshman Kyle Allen practices Monday as spring football — and the race to be the next A&M quarterback — heats up. Bryan Johnson — THE BATTALION

team shows up,” Sumlin said. “A couple [of our] guys did real well at the combine. I think it’s big when you have those types of marquee players. What it does is create opportunities for other players who weren’t at the combine and I think that’s a big deal. Last year, I forgot how many guys we got into [an NFL camp.] It was a large number of guys that at least got

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Continued from page 1

On Feb. 14, each class that came through Mohundro’s door made hand-written Valentine’s Day cards for every member of the women’s basketball team, especially Scott — whose birthday was the following Monday. “That was so special,” Scott said. “I got a bunch of birthday cards, too. There were maybe 30 in my locker when I got back.” Jennifer Jones, strength coach and director of player development, said she stressed the importance of mentoring young students. That message hits close to home for Cooper, who had a similar experience with mentors growing up. “I think it’s the impact we can make on the kids,” Cooper said. “When I was younger, I remember we used to have some of the college students that would come and visit us. You look up to people like that. The example that we set is really important.” For many of these student-athletes, the time they spend volunteering at Bohnam is some of the only time off they have during days filled with workouts, classes and tutoring. “It feels great to spend some time with them,” Sanchez-Quintanar said. “It’s relax-

ing for us because we get the chance to play some games with them and just help them with their homework. I look forward to going to see them every week.” Jones earned her second SEC Player of the Week honor on Monday, due in part to recording the third triple-double in A&M history with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in the Aggies 77-54 victory over Arkansas Thursday. With an 83-72 win over Florida on Sunday, the team secured a tie for its best-ever conference record at 13-3. Its performance this season secured A&M a No. 3 seed in the SEC tournament, which begins Wednesday. There are some students who may pay attention to the players’ on-court performance, but others will look forward to their return to class next Monday so they can practice their reading skills with the players — their friends and mentors. “We just want to give credit to the teachers at Bohnam because they’re doing a great job with those kids,” Jones said. “They seem to have a fun time learning in the classes that we’ve been in. They are very supportive of their kids and they are very welcoming of us when we go into the schools. We just want to thank them, the principals and the viceprincipals for allowing us to come.”



Aggieland 2015

Qualifications for editor-in-chief of the Aggieland yearbook are:

REQUIRED • Be a Texas A&M student in good standing with the University and enrolled in at least six credit hours (4 if a graduate student) during the term of office (unless fewer credits are required to graduate); • Have at least a 2.25 cumulative grade point ratio (3.25 if a graduate student) and at least a 2.25 grade point ratio (3.25 if a graduate student) in the semester immediately prior to the appointment, the semester of appointment and semester during the term of office. In order for this provision to be met, at least six hours (4 if a graduate student) must have been taken for that semester;




Summer 2014

(The summer editor will serve May 11 through Aug. 15, 2014)

Fall 2014 –Spring 2015 (The fall and spring editor will serve Aug. 16, 2014, through May 16, 2015)

Qualifications for editor-in-chief of The Battalion are: REQUIRED • Be a Texas A&M student in good standing with the University and enrolled in at least six credit hours (4 if a graduate student) during the term of office (unless fewer credits are required to graduate); • Have at least a 2.25 cumulative grade point ratio (3.25 if a graduate student) and at least a 2.25 grade point ratio (3.25 if a graduate student) in the semester immediately prior to the appointment, the semester of appointment and semester during the term of office. In order for this provision to be met, at least six hours (4 if a graduate student) must have been taken for that semester.

Application forms should be picked up and returned to Sandi Jones, Student Media business coordinator, in Suite L406 of the MSC. Deadline for submitting application: 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 1, 2014.


Application forms should be picked up and returned to Sandi Jones, Student Media business coordinator, in Suite L406 of the MSC. Deadline for submitting application: 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 1, 2014.


Abbate Health Ken Abdullah Physics Maegan Ables


Finance Michelle and Fisheries Abney Sciences Andrea Abrams Communi cation

ent InformatiKelli Adam on Systems Emily Managem ent Informati Adamcik on Systems Seth Adams Spacial Sciences Joshua Aduddell Health Teresa Aguilar Human Resource Developm ent Krystle Aguirre Interdisci plinary Studies Omobola Ajao Chemical Engineeri ng Food ScienceTeresa Aldredge and Technolog y Denise Communi Alex cation

Lydia Wessner Entomology David West Aerospace Engineering Erin West Chemistry Amanda Whatley English Lesley Wheeler Communication


Kristen Womac Management Andrew Wood Psychology Benjamin Wood Meteorology Dorothy Wood English

Bradley Whelan Aeronautical Engineering Matthew Whigham University Studies Lindsay White History Bryan Whiting Industrial Distribution Emily Whitmoyer Communications & Journalism

Morgan Whitwell & Journalism Agricultural Communications Jonathan Widdig Biology Koby Wilbanks Psychology Ryan Wilck Political Science Kathleen Wild Biomedical Science

Rachel Williams Forensic Entomology Kelly Wilmoth History Emily Wilpitz University Studies Angela Wilson Horticulture Jason Wilson Agricultural Education

Paul Witkowski Civil Engineering Joshua Witter Agricultural Economics Ryan Wolff Information & Operations Management Jordyn Woltersdorf Health Alyson Wolthoff Human Resource Development

Tracy Ashton Agricultur al Kaela AstleyLeadership and Developm ent Accountin g Michael Atkinson Computer Science Jonathon Ausburn Biomedica l Science Jaime Austin Psycholog y Jamesia Austin Agricultur al Laura Avila Leadership and Developm ent Mathema tics Michael Babcock Accountin g Eliezer Badillo Internatio nal Commerc Brennan e Bailey Biomedica l Science James Baker Agricultur e Leadershi Andrea p and Developm Bakke ent Biomedica l Science Mary Baldwin Psycholog y Zachary Baldwin Wildlife and Fisheries Nathan Sciences Ball Civil Engineeri ng Chrystel Ballard Sociology

Mary Ballenger Communi cation John Bandas Ocean Engineeri ng Kyle Banner Electrical Engineeri Sarah Banschba ng ch English

Eric Wilkins Mechanical Engineering Dana Willenborg Psychology Ashley Williams Biology Clora Williams Health Jennifer Williams Biomedical Science

Jazmyn Wilson Bioenvironmental Sciences Jordan Wilson Interdisciplinary Studies Markay Wilson Biomedical Science Tory Wingate Bioenvironmental Sciences Heather Winkle Interdisciplinary Studies

Sponsored by

Texas A&M’s Faculty Senate met with its counterpart from UT-Austin on Monday for the annual meeting between the two bodies. Amber Muenzenberger, director for remote learning and outreach education in A&M’s College of Engineering, said her group discussed the possibility of bringing Massive Open Online Courses, or MOOCs, to A&M after their success at UT. “MOOCs are alive and happening on the UT campus,” Muenzenberger said. “[We are checking if] A&M and UT might partner together to come up with some content … that we can share.” John Rangel, city desk assistant

PREFERRED • Have completed JOUR 301 or COMM 307 (Mass Communication, Law, and Society); • Have demonstrated ability in writing, editing and graphic design through university coursework or equivalent experience; • Have at least one year experience in a responsible position on the Aggieland or comparable college yearbook.


*Offer Code: 2for1tix • Limit 2 tickets Per Offer • Offer valid for tickets in Zones B, C & D Only • Not Valid for Tickets Already Purchased • Offer Expires 3/9/2014/2014 • Discount taken from regular ticket price.

A&M, UT faculty senates hold annual meeting

PREFERRED • Have completed JOUR 301 or COMM 307 (Mass Communication, Law, and Society) or equivalent; • Have at least one year experience in a responsible editorial position on The Battalion or comparable daily college newspaper, – OR – Have at least one year editorial experience on a commercial newspaper, – OR – Have completed at least 12 hours in journalism, including JOUR 203 (Media Writing I) and JOUR 303 (Media Writing II) or JOUR 304 (Editing for the Mass Media), or equivalent.


2 for 1 Tickets Available for Students!*

an opportunity that maybe they wouldn’t have had if there’s not a Luke Joeckel here, if there are not those types of guys.” Twelve former A&M players will participate in A&M’s pro day at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, including Johnny Manziel, Mike Evans and Jake Matthews.

Mathema tics Carolina Aramayo Finance Lauren Arditti Psycholog Ashley Ariscoy Finance Cody Arnold ral Economic s Crystal Arnote Accountin g Arringto n English



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Krysten Yezak Development Educational Admin and HR Sarah Yezak Interdisciplinary Studies Tiffany Ynosencio Microbiology Chase Young Sport Management Katherine Young Spanish Lauralee Young Marketing Lauren Young Environmental Geosciences Lauren Young Economics Shaley Young University Studies Lauren Youngblood Development Agricultural Leadership and Casey Zander English Sadie Zapalac Biomedical Science Tegan Zealy Animal Science Mark Zemanek Agricultural Economics Karen Zerda Communication Amanda Zietak Kinesiology Tamara Zuehlke Communication Michael Zurovec Mechanical Engineering Haili Zwiercan & Journalism Agricultural Communications

seniors & graduate students |


Mary Anne Internatio Baring nal Studies Megan Baringer Environm ental Design Blanton Barkeme yer Industria l Distributi Ashlie Barker on Psycholog y Lindsey Barlow English Alexande r Computer Barnes Engineeri Mackenz ng ie Barnhart Human Resource Developm Monica Barone ent Psycholog y Jonathan Baros Agricultu ral Economic Kristina s Barsten Biomedica l Engineeri ng Sarah Bass Communi cation Mark Batis Nutrition al Sciences Catherin e Chemistr Baxter y Brock Beard Managem ent Staci Beaty Human Resource Developm ent

seniors &

graduate students | 537

HELD OVER BY POPULAR DEMAND One more day to have your portrait made for the 2014 Aggieland yearbook. See the photographer 9 A.M. – 4 P.M. Tuesday, March 4, in Suite L400 of the MSC. All Texas A&M students welcome. There is no sitting charge.

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The Battalion: March 4, 2014  
The Battalion: March 4, 2014