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Fort Lewis College News Magazine

Issue 39
















October 2012 FREE

Haley Pruitt

Kaitlin Martinez

Amanda Penington

Emily Griffin

Indy Editors & Staff


Michaela Goade Alex McIntosh Sarah Zoey Sturm ONLINE

Courtney Ragle

Jordan Alexander

Lexi Demos Lindsy Fuller Haylee Knippel Trevor Ogborn





Daniel Huppenthal Bryanna Kinlicheene Andrew Mangiona Hana Mohsin

Ayla Quinn

Graeme Johnston

Allie Hutto




Jandrea Fevold Rachel Giersch Meagan Prins Megan Ripe Carter Solomon Meesh Villaire

Emily Fagerberg

Adam Mohsin

Jimi Giles To contact The Independent or an Indy staff member, please see “Contact Us” on The Indy Online.

Allie Johnson










ws, e n g n i k r brea ity news, o f b e w the d commun n o s u t i s Vi s an uch more! u p m a c daily ports, and m s

© The Independent 2012

FROM THE E d i t o r ’s D e s k Dear Indy readers,

CONTENTS Small Businesses in Durango and What it Takes to Succeed

If you were to ask me if I love what I do, I’d say yes. I would say that the reason I pour my sweat, blood and tears (often literally) into this publication is simply because not doing so would be unthinkable.



The position of Creative Director was suddenly given to me a few weeks ago, and overnight I went from having nothing to do to having no free time whatsoever. I work late into the night, I harass my staff like an enraged insect, and, on the night before printing, I barely have two hours in which to close my eyes and attempt what I optimistically call sleeping. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.


I cannot accurately describe the hurricane of human activity that coalesces into the finished Indy every two weeks, but, suffice it to say that this, the magazine you are now reading, is the end result of dozens of people with nerves wound up so tightly they go ‘twang’ working night and day for months.

Story by Carter Solomon

Tips on Preparing Your Home for Winter Story by Rachel Giersch

FLC’s Center of Southwest Studies Available for All Story by Meagan Prins

Durango Harvest: from Produce to Meat

And we don’t even get paid.


So, why do we do it, you ask? Why do we kill ourselves twice a month for sixteen pages of text that eventually land in a recycling bin? Why do we work so hard for so little? Because we like it.

Indy on the Street


So read on, and know that all we do, we do for our readers.

Social Media Policy Implemented at FLC


Story by Jimi Giles

Story by Megan Ripe

Is Bullying Worth the Fight? Story by Jandrea Fevold

Reader’s Perspective: Slaying Your “Energy Vampires”


Thanks for your support,

Graeme Johnston Creative Director


Story by Kirsten Dunlap

Got something to say? We want to hear from you! We encourage reader participation through our perspectives section. Submit letters, cartoons, or anything else you’d like to see in print to Editor in Chief Kaitlin Martinez at or News Editor Jimi Giles at Note: The Independent reserves the right to edit submissions as necessary or deny publication. News tip? Contact Jimi Giles at For any other inquiries, contact Kaitlin Martinez at

If you would like to receive the Indy straight to your campus P.O. box, contact Jordan at:

Small Businesses in Durango and What it Takes to Succeed Story by Carter Solomon

A south facing view of Main Ave. in downtown Durango.


urango plays host to a large quantity of small businesses. Generally, small businesses employ about six to seven employees on average, said Joe Keck, director of the Small Business Development Center. Durango is a diverse environment for businesses, Keck said. There are businesses that range from energy to manufacturing to government jobs, he said. The government sector accounted for the most business on all three levels of federal, state, and local regulation, Keck said. In Durango, health care businesses make up the smaller, prominent, and successful establishments. There are many alternative and modern medicine practices in Durango, Keck said. Being a mountain resort town, Durango also has many shops that cater to tourist and local tastes, offering anything from food to outdoor equipment, he said. Durango has successful microbreweries as well, he said. For a business to survive in Durango, owners must have a good strategy of which direction to take their business and how they are going to do so, Keck said.


Photo by Bryanna Kinlicheene

“They really need to have a good business strategy and know their competitive advantage,� he said. These operations cater to both tourist and local consumers, and by serving these demographics, businesses help to keep a relatively stable consumer base, he said. Conducting a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities/Limitations, and Threats analysis allows small businesses to run efficiently, said Steve Stovall, FLC’s visiting instructor for marketing and business administration. Whether talking about a small sole proprietorship or discussing plans for a large corporation, using a SWOT is a useful method for helping a business, he said. Businesses can use this approach which allows a veiw of their inner strengths, Stovall said. Inner weaknesses, however, need to be addressed, and changes must be made in order to help keep the business competitive, Stovall said. Outside opportunities, such as being the only business that offers a service in a certain region, can be taken advantage of to make a profit, he said.

Conversely outside threats should be assessed and handled accordingly, Stovall said. Another helpful practice for small businesses is to eliminate excessive amounts of debt, Keck said. The economy has affected local businesses as well. Some sectors of business have been hit very hard since the economic downturn of 2008, Keck said. Some areas, like construction and real estate, have suffered, he said. To start a successful business in the current economic conditions, a solid business plan must be created, he said. Understanding how to fund operations and manage any accumulated debt are two ways for local businesses to succeed, he said. Effective market research must be performed to learn about the prospective environment, possibly through data mining, known as economic gardening, Keck said. There is no shortage of hurdles for small local businesses to overcome to be successful, he said.

Seasonality is one issue businesses face, Keck said. To be successful, establishments should aim to sell products or services that are applicable to multiple parts of the year, not specifically winter or summer, he said. Running a business can overwhelm some proprietors, he said. Owners are responsible for handling and trying to market a product or service that is unique or somehow different from a competitor, interacting with customers, and training and paying employees, he said. Rent of a building also needs to be taken into consideration. Rental cost can be high in a resort community such as Durango, and can provide a challenge for small businesses, Keck said. One aspect that sets Durango businesses aside from other resort towns in Colorado is that they still hold onto the small-town feel, Keck said. Durango still offers people a chance to walk through and take in the atmosphere that this small town has.

Being a mountain resort town, Durango also has many shops that cater to tourists’ and locals’ tastes, offering anything from food to outdoor equipment.

-Joe Keck, Director of the Small Business Development Center


Tips on Preparing your Home for


Story by Rachel Giersch Photo by Bryanna Kinlicheene Graphics by Michaela Goade

ingering morning frosts after nights of freezing temperatures have begun to signal the arrival of autumn in Colorado. This progression into cold winter months leaves some homes in good hands, as some local property management companies have to carefully advise their tenants of specific duties to adequately winterize their homes. Doing minor maintenance in ways that reward both the environment and your pocket can reduce negative consequences of the winter season, such as health problems and high utility bills. Local property management businesses can assist tenants in the administrative operations and preventative maintenance of their properties, said Mariann Menor-Lewis, owner of Action Property Management. Property management companies will license with landlords, tenants, and contractors depending on the type of rental homes the company specializes in, she said. APM specializes in investment property rentals, maintaining 400 units in La Plata and San Miguel Counties on average, she said. Durango Property Management specializes in vacation and long-term rentals, maintaining around 300 units in the La Plata County area, from older Victorian homes constructed in the 1950s and 1960s to new, private vacation rentals in Tamarron, north of Durango, said Dawn Wright, a broker at DPM. The goal of most property managers is the tenant’s health, safety, and welfare, Menor-Lewis said. By administering a protocol that maintains different parts of the home according to the time of year, these property managers can do their best to keep the properties prepared for winter and tenants safe. Both DPM and APM send out letters to their tenants to remind them of certain duties throughout the year. These may include guidelines for following Durango’s code for snow removal or a reminder of community-wide events such as spring cleanup, MenorLewis said. The colder temperatures experienced in early autumn prompt property managers to send tenants letters regarding winterizing homes, she said. The letters are sent out to remind tenants to disconnect all hoses, turn off swamp coolers, and keep the heat at a minimum of 62 F, she said. A serious issue homes face in the winter is freezing pipes, she said. Letting tenants know the importance of keeping the heat at a minimum of 62 degrees when leaving for an extended period of time is important in preventing pipes from freezing, she said. Also, opening the cabinet doors that host pipes is good for air circulation, Wright said. Another high priority is removing the snow loads that are accumulated on roofs and decks and making sure to shovel them in a timely manner, Menor-Lewis said. A tenants’ welfare is at a much lower risk when wood stoves are checked and their filters are cleaned, Wright said. “We hire businesses to maintain and clean the chimneys and


filters of our units as we move into the winter months,” Wright said. A consequence of minimal to frequent use of a chimney is the buildup of a flammable residue because it becomes a fire hazard when ventilation is inhibited, she said. Besides chimney ventilation, making sure the vent pipes on the roof are clear is a precaution used to avoid bad gases from entering the home and causing serious health risks, Menor-Lewis said. Renters are responsible for any repairs that need to be fixed by communicating the problem to their management company so the property manager can hire an independent contractor to resolve the issue, Menor-Lewis said. “We watch our properties and maintain them, but there are circumstances you can’t always prevent,” she said. Renter’s insurance is a safe and smart purchase because for about $10 to $15 a month, the insurance covers the tenants’ personal property, but it also covers liability in property issues, such as accidentally leaving a window open during the winter when on vacation, she said. Beyond simply maintaining the room temperature of the home, it is important to be aware of the property’s age, as older homes require more maintenance to avoid potential risks in the winter months, Menor-Lewis said. Codes for every element of the house are consistently upgraded to higher standards of efficiency, so if a homeowner chooses to remodel or reconstruct the house, they must conform to the most recent housing codes, Wright said. Tenants of older homes can further prepare the house for winter by adding weather stripping around doors, using a plastic kit to insulate the inner window panes, especially if the windows are singlepaned, and insulating pipes by all possible means, she said. One local non-profit, the Four Corners Office for Resource Efficiency, known as 4CORE, helps educate the public on ways in which it can decrease its energy use, said Teresa Shishim, 4CORE program manager. 4CORE recommends using low-e double pane windows, as they are efficient in eliminating excess carbon emissions, Shishim said. 4CORE provides weatherization for low-income families free of charge, she said. “Renters are eligible for the weatherization program as well if they’re income qualified,” she said. “If the renters are students and they wanted to apply for weatherization, they’d have to get their landlord’s consent.” College students typically rent duplexes and older, single-family homes downtown, Menor-Lewis said. If a student’s home is very cold, weatherization may be an option to look into, she said. Investing in a programmable thermometer is another way to save money, Wright said. Based on the tenant or homeowner’s desired schedule, the thermostat will adjust from a recommended base temperature of about 60 F to a warmer temperature and will revert back down to the base heat as programmed, she said. The thermometer could be programmed to begin increasing the heat an hour prior to waking up. The thermometer would maintain the newly increased temperature until the point at which the house’s occupants decide to leave, she said. Then, the heated house would decrease to a 60 F base until an hour prior to the return of the home’s occupants, Wright said. “In my personal home, when I put in a programmable thermostat, it contributed to 40 percent of savings on my gas bill,” she said.

, FLC s Center of Southwest Studies Available for All

Story by Meagan Prins Photos by Hana Mohsin


he Center for Southwest Studies will not lose touch with the rest of Fort Lewis College due to the elimination of the Southwest studies major. There is no concern that this will happen, said Jay Harrison, director of the CSWS. Other than the Southwest studies major, the CSWS has been intertwined with many other majors such as art, anthropology, history, and Native American and indigenous studies. The center has had projects available for students working on a public history major, he said. The department of Southwest studies had the same relationship with the CSWS as other departments did, such as anthropology or Native American and indigenous studies does, even though it was housed in the building, Harrison said. “Those majors all have equal status and equal access to us,” he said. “I think there was, for a lot of years, this misconception that the Southwest studies major and the center were the same thing, when in reality, the major came along quite a bit of time after the center was founded.” If students are still interested in a Southwest studies degree focus, there are still options. Many of the same classes are still offered, they are just spread out over several different departments, Harrison said. The CSWS is a resource for FLC students and faculty alike. For many students, particularly those new to campus, the opportunities of what lay inside of the CSWS are a mystery. The facility is a cultural studies institute that researches the Southwest, ranging from studies of its people and cultures to its geography, Harrison said. The Southwest region of America means a lot of different things to different people, and the center sets out to explore those meanings, he said. “This is the place that was set up in 1964 by the Ballantine family of Durango with the cooperation of Robert Delaney and some of the other professors here at the time to study those topics and give students and people from outside the school the opportunity to study them,” Harrison said. The center’s name implies its purpose, said Jeanne Brako, the head curator for CSWS. “Our name is a part of who we are and what we do,” Brako said. “As the Center of Southwest Studies, what we are trying to do is help people interpret the Southwest.” Employees of the CSWS wish to not only provide their interpretation but to provide primary source material, she said. “We want to have that authentic material here for people to either look at or learn about,” she said. CSWS is a library, an archive, a museum, and a focal point for programming at FLC for topics relating to the Southwest. The center runs a series of programs during each se-

mester and into the summer that people may get involved with, Harrison said. For students, there are numerous ways to explore the center and all the resources it has to offer, he said. For Arielle Liakat, a student at FLC who works at the center, the CSWS was enticing because of its interesting work with not just books, but also the archives and the museum that give a deep look into the history of the Southwest. “I like that it’s history-based, and everything provided here matters to the Southwest and this area,” Liakat said. “We could always use more volunteers and students getting more involved in events that go on here.” The CSWS has speakers who come and talk about Southwest issues. Seeing more people attending these events would be good, she said. Work-study and internship opportunities allow students to come in to complete museum work, Harrison said. Museum work ranges from handling artifacts to working in the archives, he said. The CSWS may also provide help for student projects. Talking to a CSWS reference librarian or museum curators about specific topics of research or interest is always available, he said. “We love to show people around,” Brako said. Anytime students want to come, someone on staff will make themself available and is happy to do so, she said. Because the CSWS is open to the public, people wander in to take a look at the museum and galleries, Brako said. It is still, however, mostly students who use the resources provided, she said. “A lot of artists will come to see the mediums that they are interested in,” she said. “Anthropology students come all the time because they heard of something we have in one of their classes or from an excavation.” The center is important for research and hosts archeologists, anthropologists, historians, and mineralogists who all come from distant places, Harrison said The CSWS sees researchers come to work on doctorate degrees, master’s degrees, or other projects, but most of the people sitting in the library are FLC students, Harrison said. The staff of the CSWS would like to see attendance of the center grow, he said. “We have a really unique collection here,” Harrison said. The center has ceramics that were dug out of the ground that date back to about the time when Rome was crumbling, he said. Additionally, textiles, rugs, serape, and things that people dressed themselves with in the Southwest for centuries are also featured, he said. “Here in Durango, people know about the Center for Southwest Studies, and the goal is to expand that for a new generation,” he said.


Durango Harvest:



Story by Jimi Giles Graphics by Allie Hutto

A colorful selection of locally grown produce.


ith fall comes harvest, and before winter arrives, foods ranging from produce to meat arrive at dinner tables and in freezers. Specifically in fall, farms are entering their final production days and Colorado is beginning its hunting season. The last farmers’ market in Durango is Oct. 27, said Rachel Landis, Fort Lewis College’s Environmental Center coordinator. Spread throughout the end of August to the middle of November are Colorado’s six hunting seasons, one of each in archery and muzzle loader, and four in big game rifle, said Joe Lewandowski, the Southwest region’s public information specialist at Colorado Parks and Wildlife. On Oct. 14, Growing Partners of the Southwest hosted its fifth annual Home Grown Apple Days Festival in Durango’s Buckley Park. “The event’s officially sponsored by the Growing Partners, which is a consortium of various nonprofits and groups in town that are concerned with or involved with local food security,”


Photos by Daniel Huppenthal

Landis said. “And so the Environmental Center is an official partner of that.” By being a partner with the Growing Partners, the Environmental Center has been involved with Apple Days since its beginning, she said. The EC’s contribution to the festival was aimed toward student involvement. “We try with all of our community partnerships to make sure that the partnership is serving our mission,” she said The mission of the Environmental Center is to strengthen students’ commitment to an ecologically and socially responsible world through actual action. The EC was in charge of volunteer recruitment for the event, Landis said. The Home Grown Apple Days Festival had over 100 volunteers, mostly students, and volunteers harvested apples the day before, ran the apple presses, and made the cardboard palace that children played in, she said.

Most of the apples were harvested from private property, she said. Gala, Fuji, and Honeycrisp are the primary apple varieties that do well in Durango, she said. “This area used to be one of the primary apple producers in the West prior to Washington State cornering the market,” Landis said. Durango’s previous apple production left several apple trees that are not harvested because there are not enough people to do the work, she said. FLC offers its own means of harvest through the student garden located on the north side of campus immediately across the new turf fields, she said. The garden is in its sixth year and has been producing food since May, and it acts as a space for people to learn how to grow and produce their own food, she said. Every week, produce is harvested and donated to the Grub Hub, which is the on campus food bank that is open on Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Reed Library room 16, she said. If students have an interest in gardening, they are urged to get in touch with Landis or the Environmental Center’s Local Food team. FLC junior and engineering student, Daniel Abshire, has a passion for harvesting his own meat. Abshire learned how to hunt from his mother and uncle when he was 9 years old, and he has been hunting big game since he was 12, the age at which an individual can legally start hunting the larger take, he said. “We grew up in it,” Abshire said, referring to himself and his family. “I don’t know, it’s just a kind of normal thing for me, I guess.” Hunting is something humans have done forever, because humans are predators, Lewandowski said. Humans also advanced considerably when the consumption of protein began, he said. Big game hunting refers to deer, elk, bear, pronghorn, moose, and big-horn sheep, the first two being the most prominent targets, Lewandowski said. A hunting license is necessary for hunting, and the owner is obliged to abide by Colorado rules, he said. Hunting’s major rule is preparing the edible meat from the killed animal, he said. The quality of the meat from harvesting is the driving force behind Abshire’s passion. Wild animals have a lower chance of ingesting genetically modified organisms, Abshire said. “They graze in the high country all summer,” he said. “They eat the freshest of grass, drink the freshest of waters, without any chemicals in them.” “You can’t really harvest any meat that’s any more organic than deer, elk, or turkey,” Lewandowski said. Harvested meat is grass fed, high in omega-3 oils, and contains very little fat, he said. “It tastes a little different than your fatted calf, but it’s very

healthy food,” he said. Other people are starting to recognize this quality, Lewandowski said. “This is an area that’s known for hunting, and it’s just a great place to come,” he said. The total number of hunting licenses in Colorado is about 350,000 licenses sold each year, he said. For all manners of deer take in 2011, Colorado had about 76,000 hunters and 33,000 deer were harvested, a success rate of 43 percent, Lewandowski said. For 2011 elk rates, 212,000 people were hunting and 43,000 elk were harvested, a success rate of 21 percent, he said. The CPW estimates that there are around 600,000 deer and 260,000 elk in Colorado, Lewandowski said. Abshire successfully hunted an elk last year, and he still has a few packages of meat left in his freezer. A deer will last him three to four months, and an elk will last for a year, Abshire said. “We like to say that sometime the really hard work starts when killing the animal, because you have to field dress it, skin it, haul it back to your vehicle,” Lewandowski said. “It’s not an easy thing the way that I do it,” Abshire said. Abshire hunts without the use of allterrain vehicles, hiking to his spots. Most of his trips are done solo, and bringing the dressed animal to his parked car requires hours of work and multiple trips, he said. Dressing an animal refers to removing its internal organs, he said. Dressing is a skill that was passed down by his uncle, Abshire said. “I care for it,” he said, concerning the dressing process. Abshire was successful in taking a deer in the archery season, which ranged from Aug. 25 to Sept. 23, he said. “It’s just a bummer that hunting season starts right when school starts,” he said. Abshire wishes he could take a fall semester off to hunt every season, but FLC doesn’t offer enough engineering summer classes to make up for a lost semester, he said. Not only does the quality of harvested meat encourage Abshire, it’s the handling as well. “If you’re handling everything yourself, then you know exactly where that meat’s been,” Abshire said. “It’s all about knowing where it came from because all of this commercial stuff is just, it’s pretty disgusting actually, from everything, from the way that it’s raised, to the way that it’s killed, to the way that it’s processed,” he said. Abshire has high hopes for an elk this season. If he is successful, he plans on mixing his meat with saved pork fat from his friend’s pigs. Because elk meat is naturally lean, most hunters mix their meat with pork fat. “Then it will be like gold,” he said. “It will be red gold.”


t e e r t S e h t n o y Ind y? it iv t c a ll a f e it r o v a f r What is you Dillion Washburn 20 Pinetop, Arizona Playing golf and enjoying the fall leaves Sarah Petrick 20 Tulsa, Oklahoma Looking for pretty leaves and pressing them

Sam Llyod 21 Boston, Massachusetts Waiting for the snow to start falling Morgan Kozinski 19 Chicago, Illinois Enjoying the fall beauty, the color change

Morgan Boaman 20 Longmont, Colorado A tie between visiting pumpkin patches and driving from Silverton to



Jackie Glendinning 20 Connecticut Pumpkin carving!

Social Media Policy Implemented at FLC F

Story by Megan Ripe

ort Lewis College enacted a social media policy for faculty, staff and student workers this past May. The Social Media Policy addresses the expectations of effectively using social media when representing FLC, said Lindsay Nyquist, FLC social media coordinator. “Most people define social media as online platforms that allow people to interact in a more open environment,” said Mitch Davis, the FLC director of public affairs. These outlets include sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and the like. The policy is directed towards FLC staff, faculty and student workers, and does not include personal accounts, Nyquist said. “This policy only applies to people speaking on behalf of the brand of the college,” she said. The policy helps to regulate social media platforms that represent FLC, and because FLC is a school funded by the state, there are certain criteria that must be followed, said Barth Cox, assistant professor of English and communications. “It is a protection for the college and for the people who are on the social media as well,” Davis said. “There needs to be a balance between the freedom to express ideas and have that open discourse about issues and also what Photo Illustration is not appropriate or what is going too far.” The policy is directed to anybody and everybody who wants to use FLC’s social media and communicate on the college’s forum, Davis said. “I think we had a few messages that perhaps were towing the line about whether or not this was really appropriate for the Facebook page,” Davis said, concerning comments made on FLC social media outlets. Without a policy put into place, these types of posts would not be able to be taken down without reason, he said. Having guidelines for social media sites protects the college and those who are using the sites, Davis said. This will eliminate spam, advertisements, and will allow people to say things on the site and not be attacked for it, he said. FLC is a product and all of the different departments within the college represent that product, and therefore there needs to be uniformity in terms of how the college is represented, Cox said. “When we work within a department, whether it be a student worker, faculty member, or staff member, we’re representing the college and there needs to be something to keep that to a standard,” Cox said. Social media is a recent technology that allows people to interact in a new way, he said. “Technology plays a big part of it,” Cox said. “The ability to create content and then alter the content as a group, share it, move it around, is part of the elements of social media.”


The different social media platforms allow the college to recruit new students as well as give current students a voice, Nyquist said. Three of the five top reasons why students leave college after their first year are related to social issues, Nyquist said. “So if we can use Facebook… “ she said. If social media can be used as a method to help people build social connections, then maybe FLC will be able to retain more students, she said. Every official page has two staff administrators that are responsible for monitoring their site, Nyquist said. Just as people can choose what they see on their Facebook news feeds, page administrators can also determine what is seen on the different representative pages, Cox said. “I like the fact that social media does allow for some democracy of voices,” Cox said. This diversity of voices that come together allow participants to control what voices they want to hear and those that they don’t as well, he said. The policy can be found on the college’s website and addresses the expectations required for representing the college within social media, such as appropriate cotent and confidentiality rules, Nyquist Daniel Huppenthal said. Although freedom of speech is a concern within policies of media, FLC has yet to run into any real issues, Nyquist said. “I have to go in and really look at it” she said, concerning posts on FLC media sites. “Why are they bringing up this issue, are they just ranting or are they bringing up a real issue?” Trying to find the balance where freedom of speech isn’t infringed upon is the tricky part, Davis said. Problems can arise when users post questionable comments on FLC social media sites, he said. Differentiating between opinions and self expression draws a fine line, he said. “When does that stretch into threats or liable?” Davis said Nyquist looked at other college’s policies such as Ball State University and University of Colorado Boulder to help her compose FLC’s policy, she said. “I did most of the writing by compiling policies from other colleges,” she said. FLC’s web director, Robin Cole, Dean of Students Haeryon Kim, Public Relations Officer, Mitch Davis gave input on the policy, Nyquist said. Policies within social media are being put in place but social media is rapidly growing, and the policies will need to adapt to those changes, Cox said. “The thing we know right now is that social media is not going


is BULLYING worth the FIGHT? Story by Jandrea Fevold


ullying continues to receive news coverage on most major networks and news sites. Up-to-date national news stories including a high-school homecoming queen chosen as a prank in Michigan, bleach balloon bombs aimed at African American students at the University of Texas, and the fatal fraternity hazing at Tennessee State University are just a few incidents which media have brought to attention. “Here at Fort Lewis College, bullying tends to be dealt with on an interpersonal level,” Equal Opportunity Coordinator at FLC, Haeryon Kim said. The policy on bullying falls into the college’s Student Conduct Code, which provides guidance for dealing with disorderly conduct on campus, she said. Bullying takes many shapes and forms and is often subtle, she said. What may not be bullying to one person, may be bullying to another, she said. If students feel bullied, they don’t need to take it, and they should let other people know by talking to someone they are comfortable with, such as friends, counselors, professors, and Residential Assistants, she said. Bullying is not necessarily a violation of the code, but it’s disruptive and is handled as student misconduct, she said. “You always have a choice to avoid that person, and to make sure that person knows what they’re doing, and that it’s not cool,” Kim said. In college, people are surrounded by different types of individuals from different places, and everyone socializes in different ways. Not everyone knows proper behavior and language, and some people need to be told, she said. There are issues every day in human interactions, and a lot of the time people blame themselves as a victim and become passive, but in order to not participate in bullying, they need to feel empowered and speak up, she said. “You don’t want to be a victim, and you don’t want to encourage that behavior,” she said. It’s an educational opportunity for bullies to take notice of


their actions, she said. People need to be generous in embracing each other’s differences while not letting bad behavior go unnoticed, she said. It’s essential that people do their share in being a productive person, Kim said. In doing that, high community standards are upheld, she said. The best thing people can do is empower each other, FLC’s Coordinator of Student Wellness Initiatives Kendra Reichle said. The reason people bully is different in every case, Reichle said. “In younger kids, you can see it more clearly, that they have something they’re fighting against,” she said. But in adults, it’s not limited, she said. It happens everywhere, from the classroom to the office, she said. Office gossip or making fun of what someone is wearing are all forms of bullying, she said. “Why do you have to put someone down?” she said. The more confident a person is, the less likely they are to be affected by bullying, she said. “You have to feel empowered to speak up,” she said. Bullying usually involves a ringleader and followers. The followers usually feed a group mentality that has little interest in what’s right and what’s wrong, Reichle said. Peer education and making healthy choices can alleviate the problem, she said. “I am so proud when I see students sticking up for each other and choosing to not participate in putting someone down,” she said. “Psychological research shows that those who are bullied tend to be bullies,” Psychology Associate Professor Brian Burke said. In attempts to study bullying dynamics, Dr. Craig Ferris from the University of Massachusetts used hamsters as his subjects, Burke said. In Ferris’s experiment, a hamster was placed in a cage with another hamster the same size or larger than it. The smaller hamster felt weak and the larger acted as the abuser, he said. The smaller hamster was then placed in a cage with another

hamster smaller or the same size as it, and it was aggressive toward that hamster, he said. Biologically, human brains are wired with a fight or flight response to fear, during which our brain chemistry changes, he said. People who are bullies are afraid of something, he said. Their actions are an attempt to compensate for or overcome their own fears, and human evolution includes the presence of alpha members, he said. According to The Secret Service Unified Division, in a study conducted on bullying, 71 percent of perpetrators were bullied or persecuted before committing bullying acts, Burke said. The more attacked or lower a person feels, the more likely he or she is to become an attacker, he said. In counseling, for a person who is perceived to be a bully, there are three principles of treatment, commonly known as anger management, Burke said. The first is promoting physical and mental relaxation, such as meditation, deep breathing, something to calm the body, he said. The second principle is focusing on cognitive responses in thinking, including working with the aggressive thoughts,

learning to change those thoughts, and what the individual is telling himself or herself, he said. For example, if someone is walking down the street and a person looks at them the wrong way, instead of reacting, they should learn to control their individual thoughts and control their reactions, he said. Thirdly, placing focus on the drive that initiates anger, by evaluating if someone is in need of anger management, can prevent or stop the behavior, he said. The aim is to teach the individual how to react when feeling angry in order to productively handle future scenarios, he said. “Our culture values dominance and power, and, in conquering someone, a bully can feel like they’re winning, like they are immortal,� Burke said. The last principle is easier to control in the school setting, he said. Behavior is controlled by reward and punishment, he said. Good behavior is rewarded and bad behavior is punished.

Photo Illustration by Hana Mohsin Graphics by Graeme Johnston


Slaying Your

g r e n “E

” s e r i p m a yV

Column by Kirsten Dunlap, Fort Lewis College Environmental Center staff writer


n an age where resources are being consumed at a rapid and unsustainable rate, it has become necessary to educate people about ways to conserve resources and utilize them more efficiently. Of the many supplies being ravaged, one seems to hit closer to home: electricity. Electricity provides power for virtually everything, ranging from items such as a phone charger to a refrigerator. As it supplies power, it also contributes to something else: empty wallets of consumers across America. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration website,, two years ago the average American home consumed around 11,496 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. That is about 32 kilowatt hours being exhausted every day. To put this information into more relevant terms, the average American will pay over five dollars every day for electricity. Though five dollars may seem insignificant, it all adds up to a cumbersome total. The average annual cost of electricity is around $1,956. These high figures indicate high rates of electricity consumption. However, not all of the energy being consumed is being used efficiently. Many appliances powered by electricity remain plugged in even when not in use, which leads to high amounts of wasted power, accompanied by wasted money. The Forbes website offers a list of items such as phone chargers, digital picture frames, and laptop adapters that are among a few of the appliances known as “energy vampires.” These “vam-

pires” constantly feed upon the energy being supplied to them from the outlet and the “green” within our wallets. As the amount of wasted electricity and dollar signs accumulate, the future turns bleak. Slaying energy vampires requires a few simple alterations in lifestyle. When an appliance is not in use, unplug it. This is where many people make mistakes. Though your phone is not plugged into its charger, the charger still pulls electricity from the outlet, and results in a higher electricity bill. With many appliances, simply shutting it off does no good, the consumer must physically unplug it from an outlet. For those who would rather not take the time to hunt down cords, get tangled up in cables, or stick their fingers into an electric socket, there is another option: power switches. These special switches shut down the flow of power, allowing an appliance to remain plugged in, saving energy and money. Not only do manufacturers sell energy efficient power bars, consumers can also purchase energy star appliances. These appliances are specially designed to utilize less energy than every day, run of the mill machines. In addition to saving energy, this equipment may also earn a tax break. There are many easy solutions that can combat the waste of energy. A simple change in habit can go a long way in saving money and energy . If you are interested in finding more resources, additional tools and information can be found online at

Editor’s Note: This column was contributed by the Environmental Center. The Indy is not responsible for any views stated in this piece. The Indy is open to suggestions and requests for column space from other campus organizations. For more information contact the News Editor, Jimi Giles.


A future for us all. Clean water. Clean air. Clean energy. Local agriculture.

Gwen Lachelt

Go Gwen


La Plata County Commissioner Democratic Candidate Make it happen with your vote and your support at Paid for by Gwen Lachelt for La Plata County. Allison Morrissey, Treasurer, 970-375-2690.

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Issue 39  

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Issue 39  

Print issue to online