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Thursday, December 1, 2016

southtexannews.com

Volume 91, Issue 13

Texas A&M University - Kingsville

The South Texan /TheSouthTexan

Al Jones

Edward A Martin

Fred Heldenfels

@TheSouthTexan

Larry Urban

@TheSouthTexan

Mike Shaw

Sam Susser

Tony LaMantia

ANATOMY OF A ‘SECRET’ MEETING

A&M chancellor says merger push likely dead; rebukes local media, merger critics Larry Urban

The watershed moment for the merger proposal was the release of notes detailing a meeting on Oct. 5. In attendance was a mixture of local state legislators and prominent businessmen from Corpus Christi. The South Texan gathered information about the businessmen since they were clearly important to any merger push.

-Curriculum Advisor at Texas A&M University and -Co-founder of Urban Engineering, which has supported the drone program at TAMUCC, as well as other engineering programs

Mike Shaw

-Advertises at nearly every TAMUK home football game. -By 2010 Shaw owned seven local car dealerships -TAMUK’s Athletic Hall of Fame is sponsored and named after Shaw -Mike Shaw Automotive was named TIME’s Dealer of the Year in 2012 -Shaw co-hosted the Oct. 5 meeting

Al Jones

-In 1989 became CEO of American Bank Holdings -He served until 2015 as chief executive; today he is president of the company -Past Chairman of the Board for the Regional Economic Development Corporation -REDC places emphasis on its work for higher education, presenting both TAMUCC and TAMUK on its website, and invests heavily in both universities.

Edward A. Martin

-President/CEO of Berry Contracting -In 2013 was honored with TAMUCC’s Kirkland Award -Has ties to both TAMUK and TAMUCC; his interests include the business programs at both universities

Fred Heldenfels IV

-President and CEO of Heldenfels Enterprises -Heldenfels Enterprises has worked on several different stadiums, including Kyle Field at College Station, McLane stadium in Waco, Whataburger Field, and the American Bank Center -2010-2013 Chairman Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board(THECB) -The THECB would produce a report detailing any successful merger plan for legislators.

Sam Susser

Photo by Crystal Zamarron

Chancellor John Sharp speaks at a Nov. 21 town hall meeting at Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds in Robstown Alex Guerra Reporter @alxgrr

ROBSTOWN, TX—Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp backed away from supporting a potential merger between Corpus Christi and Kingsville campuses after controversy erupted over an Oct. 5 meeting involving state legislators and more than a half-dozen of the area’s most prominent businessmen. Sharp hosted a sometimes heated town hall gathering at the Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds on Nov. 21 to answer concerns regarding the

proposed merger, which he later said was “dead as a doornail.” Much of the town hall was spent reassuring members of both South Texas communities, some of whom were upset about news of a private meeting between the chancellor, local state legislators and several wealthy businessmen. Sharp said there was nothing unusual about the meeting, though critics say the fact so many stakeholders were absent says otherwise. “I did not call a secret meeting. I did not participate in a secret meeting,” Sharp repeatedly told the Robstown gathering of a few

See Merger, page 5

hundred people. TAMUK President Dr. Steven Tallant reiterated as much Monday during his presidential round table. “This has not been a series of magical, undercover meetings,” he told students. MERGER TALKS CATCH STUDENTS, FACULTY BY SURPRISE The public, including students, faculty and staff at both campuses, were only made aware of the proposed merger plans after State Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, who was present at the Oct. 5 meeting, confirmed to a Corpus Christi television station on

-Former non-executive chairman for Sunoco LP -Built chain of more than 650 convenience stores under Stripes brand with revenues of several billion dollars -Energy Transfer Partners purchased Susser’s business for a deal valued at $1.8 billion -The Oct. 5 meeting was held at Susser’s Corpus Christi office and was hosted by Shaw and Susser

Tony LaMantia

-Partner with L & F Distributors, a beer and spirit distribution company that focuses on megabrands like Budweiser, Michelob, and Bud Light, with warehouses across Texas and in New Mexico -LaMantia serves on the Corpus Christi Regional Economic Development Corporation Board; in 2009 he was named chairman -The board has many regional partners including TAMUCC -LaMantia family organization supports education with numerous annual scholarships

Answering students, faculty concerns

Fall 2016 President Round Table lets students voice their opinions and questions Alex Guerra Reporter @alxgrr Texas A&M University-Kingsville students and faculty gathered to discuss campus concerns at the President’s Round Table forum on Monday. The semi-annual event, sponsored by the Student Government Association

Final Exams Schedule, Page 5

encourages students to have their voices heard by administration. Those present included President Dr. Steven Tallant, Provost Dr. Heidi Anderson, Dr. Terisa Riley, senior vice president for fiscal and student affairs, Randy Hughes, chief of staff, Dr. Dolores Guerrero, dean of College of Arts & Sciences; and D. Scott Gines, vice president of intercollegiate

athletics and campus recreation. Tallant addressed the now publicized Oct. 5 meeting and attempted to put to rest some persistent rumors. According to the TAMUK president, talk of a merger is nothing new and has been a running dialogue before his administrative term began in 2008.

“This has not been a series of magical, undercover meetings,” Tallant said. He advocated how forward thinking will promote the university’s status. Tallant made it a point to say that A&M-Kingsville is far more advanced compared to any other sister school within the system. Considering what students in 30 years will need in order

INSIDE STORIES Fall 2016 Graduation ceremony information, Page 4

33rd annual Jazz Bash, Page 3 Senior Art Exhibit, Page 2

to be the best, he thought that the merger was a worthy idea to discuss. After a series of negative stories in the local media, however, he feels the timing is not yet right to move forward. Tallant said the merger concept lacks legislative support and is “…as dead as a doornail. “It won’t happen for 400

years, promise,” Tallant said. The merger was not the only major issue Tallant and other administrators addressed at the forum. The issue of parking shortages due to construction of the new music building was raised. A portion of Manning Hall’s lot is barricaded and

See Round Table, page 5

INDEX

#JAVLIFE........................................2&3

Farwells from 2 The South Texan contributors, Page 6

CAMPUS NEWS...............................4&5 ED./OPINION....................................6 SPORTS.............................................7 AD....................................................8

NOTE: Last paper of the semester. Good luck on Final Exams from The South Texan!


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Thursday, December 1, 2016

southtexannews.com

#JAVLIFE

Bobby Puentes

@paperboybob

LET THERE BE LIGHT

The annual tree lighting ceremony brightens up the campus, brings holiday cheer to students Bobby Puentes Reporter @paperboybob Do not fret; do not fear for Christmastime is finally here. The weather may have been a bit warmer than usual but it took nothing away from the atmosphere of the up coming holidays. Christmas music was sung, Santa stopped by and the campus lit up with decorative Christmas lights all by the flick of a switch from President Dr. Steven Tallant at the annual tree lighting ceremony. Over 500 man-hours and a total of 18,124 light bulbs are used to bring this unique tradition utilizing the scen-

ery of campus to illuminate the school but also brighten the spirits of students and faculty members getting through the final stretch of the fall semester. The palm trees that line University Boulevard are draped with bright lights to give off holiday cheer. Usually held later in the month of December this year’s tree lighting ceremony was moved up for students to enjoy before graduation and Winter Break. One student who was there to enjoy in the holiday cheer was Matthew Thonsgaard a sophomore in Mechanical Engineering who “definitely” enjoyed it and thought it was a “really nice” scene.

Students of campus activity stand with a representative from Toys for Tots.

The event also served for a purpose to donations received on campus to Toys for Tots, an organization that gives toys to local families in need during Christmas time. Loreal Robertson the coordinator for campus activity says, “They usually donate about 150 toys or one to two full boxes we give to the organization each year.“ A number of speakers from Miss Tamuk Tessie Ledesma, to President Tallant said a few words about what the holiday season means to them personally and to the campus. “This tradition embodies the spirit of the holidays not only just through the lights,” said Ledesma.

Photos by Bobby Puentes

Santa Claus was in attendance taking pictures and handing out candy canes.

President Tallant gives a few words on the holiday season with Miss Tamuk to the left.

Members of the Choir sung holiday songs before and after the ceremony.

Second showcase for senior artist Senior level art students participate in second art showcase getting ready for Senior Show

Alex Guerra Reporter @alexgrr Diverse in style and color, art students presented their canvas drawings, acrylic paintings and ceramic work in the senior exhibition show on Oct. 18 at the Henrietta Memorial Center. Glistening under the array of chandeliers, each masterpiece stood alone, framed on its own flat panel. Descriptions were not necessary as the art spoke for itself. Spectators circled the entire vicinity only to find themselves going back to the entrance to re-experience the creations a second time. Guests reacted to the art with both intrigue

and awe. Vibrant colors such fuchsia and indigo graced one section with similar artists, while another section similarly chose to remain within a gray color scheme. The artists, senior level students at Texas A&M University-Kingsville participated in their second exhibition in preparation for the ‘Senior Show’, an end-of-semester presentation where all art is on display in addition to a delivered statement. Marco Carbajal, art enthusiast and relative to one of the artist’s shared his thoughts. “My nephew is in the show. I love art and I also studied art. I think it’s great when people express themselves in

different ways. It gives you a chance to see the world through another person’s eyes,” Carbajal said. Monica Bravo, senior in fine arts and part of the exhibition revealed how she nurtured her talents and enjoys creating art. Her favorite is ‘throwing the wheel’ with clay to create plates and cups. Garcia finds pottery fun and believes art is more than what it seems. Cedric Guerra, senior in fine arts and exhibition participant, expressed that there’s so many ways to create art. Guerra’s favorite form of medium is painting. “Art allows you to have your own style, all the way down to the

details,” Guerra said. Moved by emotions channeled through various pieces, Nicolette Garcia, sophomore in fine arts, attended the show to see what it takes and where in a year’s time she will stand. “I’m an artist myself. It’s good for me to see what’s going on and how to prepare myself for the show…there’s a lot of diversity, you get to see the whole blend of everyone’s work together…that’s art,” Garcia said. The final Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) show will be hosted at the Ben Bailey Art Gallery and is open to the public on Dec. 6 from 6:30-9 p.m.

Photos by Alex Guerra

Kim Caughman designed and created the four different masks seen on the (above) for the art showcase. Stephanie Ortiz drew and painted the piece (left) for the art showcase.


#JAVLIFE southtexannews.com

Bobby Puentes

A weeklong celebration with information about the students on campus with international backgrounds A celebration and recognition of the international student body was on a weeklong display during International Education Week (IEW). TAMUK celebrated IEW during the days of Nov.14, 2016 through Nov. 18, 2016. This celebration had a variety of events, speakers, and food. This event helps celebrate and inform students about the different cultures and countries that mix within the TAMUK student body and included participation from people and institutions interested in international education. “Students from the U.S. as well as from other countries study and learn together and share various perspectives that can lead to improved international relations as well as cooperation, collaboration and diplomacy across the globe,” Elizabeth Laurence, Coordinator for International and Multicultural Services, said. The event kicked off on Monday, Nov. 14, at the

International Education Week flags. On campus 18.6 % of the student body is international.

@paperboybob

The annual Jazz bash was held in Jones Auditorium for the 33rd consecutive year to play and entertain the audience in attendance

International Education Week promotes diversity

Pavilion located next to the Memorial Student Union Building (MSUB) where the International Student Organization performed a flash mob. The event also had different booths supporting culture and international students. On, Nov. 16, Cultural Presentations by student presenters shared knowledge about their culture and country. With the TAMUK International Population at approximately 18.6 percent, there was a good representation of countries and cultures. TAMUK’s international students come from India, Nigeria, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Iran, China, Korea, Kuwait, Nepal, Taiwan, Colombia, Venezuela, Thailand, Guatemala, Uruguay, Russia, Poland, Niger, Uganda, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Syria, Macedonia, Japan and many more different countries with an estimate of about 45 different countries. The Cultural Presentations had guest speaker, Jonas Attilus, a first generation college student who won a United Nations award for an essay written in one of his second languages, Spanish.

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Jazz Bash delights for the 33rd time

JAZZ BASH

Xavier Aguilar Reporter

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Thursday, Nov. 17, an International Thanksgiving Luncheon was held at St. Thomas Aquinas Newman Hall. This potluck meal had different students brining food from there respected culture and our culture. Later in the day was a screening of “Weaving the Past: Journey of Discovery” which was held at the Office of Student Activities Social Hall located on Santa Gertrudis Ave. The film-follows filmmaker Walter Dominguez’s decade-long quest in finding crucial missing pieces in his grandfather’s life. While doing so, Dominguez learns about the wider historical forces that compelled his grandfather to emigrate from Mexico to the United States at the turn of the last century and also locate his long-lost family of origin in Mexico. This weeklong event had food, fun and different cultures being celebrated at TAMUK. “In an area where the dominate races are Mexican, White and African American it is good to see a celebration of different cultures,” says Marisol Castillo, an Architectural Engineering Major.

Photo from Google

Camila Peña Reporter The 33rd Annual Jazz Bash took place at Jones Auditorium and featured a variety of songs that captivated the audience, Nov.. 22 . The event started at roughly 7 p.m. and featured many Jazz ensembles. The concert was free to anyone who wished to attend. Many students who participated in the event that delighted the public with jazz music of different genres. “It was great seeing all the people who showed up to hear our jazz bands perform. All the hard work throughout the first semester was definitely worth it when the audience stood up to applaud,” said freshman student Rene Luna, who performed with Jazz Band 3.

Some of the Jazz groups that were present on the Jazz Bash included the Latin Jazz Bash directed by Glynn Garcia, Jazz Band I directed by Dr. Paul Hageman, Jazz Band II under the direction of Dr. James Warth, and Jazz Band III, Directed by Dr. Kyle Millsap. They performed some classics like Fun Time, I Got Rhythm, Samba De Orphee and many more, changing drastically from different styles of music such as fusion, Latin and ballads. Latin Jazz was the first band to present, playing four songs. The last song they played featured a vocal trio that sang an arrangement of Celia Cruz’s “La Vida es un Carnaval”. Jazz Band 3 performed afterwards, then came Jazz Band 2. Jazz Band 1 was the last band to perform. Three of the five saxophone players wowed

the audience by changing their instruments to two flutes and one clarinet. Their show also featured a tenor saxophone with a solo at the end. ”Seeing the top Jazz group perform was a great experience. The part I enjoyed the most was when Delle, the drummer, played Channel One Suite. The intensity and talent that she showed during the performance was something to marvel at,”added Luna. The event finished with a standing ovation from its public, showing their admiration for the jazz bands that participated. Freshman student, Abe Villareal said, “The Jazz Concert had a lot of great solos, some even gave me goose bumps. My favorite was the drum solo; she was playing extremely fast, I thought her hands were gonna fall off.”

Enjoy a ‘Night of Scenes’ with the theatre program

On Dec. 1, for one night only, the theatre students will perform three different pieces from Luis Valdez Bobby Puentes Reporter @papaerboybob Don’t miss out on the opportunity to check out three different pieces from three different plays written by the father of Chicano theater in the United States - Luis Valdez. Most known for the play Zoot Suit and the movie La Bamba, Valdez is a successful California playwrite. Scenes from three other Valdez plays will be performed on Dec. 1 at the Little Theater located in the Speech Bbuilding at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. The three scenes are “La Conquista de Mexico”, “Los Vendidos” and “Soldado Razo.” Each has a different

styles on how to approach and the performance. Director Dr. Patrick Faherty has been waiting for the right opportunity to perform these plays. “I’ve known about these pieces for decades and have always wanted to do them. This semester I wanted to do something that wasn’t so elaborate and these presented a very good chance for me to do so,” said Faherty. About half of the cast taking the stage on Thursday will be performing for their very first time on campus. The other half of the cast makes up for the experience. “I have a core of actors or the veterans in the show who are really helping me. The students are doing a lot of the work going above and

beyond what you would normally expect the actors to be doing,”Faherty said. One of the veterans is senior Luis Aguilar, who has been inmore than seven different plays during his years at TAMUK. With Valdez being a strong representative of the Chicano community Aguilar stated, “It is a really good thing to represent the Chicano culture on stage. We try and connect our shows with the community and most of our community is Chicano or Latino in our community.” Be sure to check out a “Night of Scenes” by Luis Valdez at the one and only performance of the show Dec. 1 at 7:30p.m in the Little Theater inside of the Speech Building.


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Thursday December 1, 2016

southtexannews.com

CAMPUS

Crystal Zamarron

@crystalsotex

Insight on Columbia 15 Regents Professors Peace treaty to end 50-year civil war

Dakota Roberts Reporter The Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) have begun the peace process to end a fifty-year civil war in their country. Texas A&M University-Kingsville’s International Affairs Group met with lecturer Consuelo Donato-Molina, a native of Colombia and award winning advisor, to discuss the opportunities and obstacles of the current peace deal. On Sept. 26, a peace treaty was signed between Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos and FARC leader Rodrigo Londono, better known as Timochenko. The treaty was to end all armed conflicts in Colombia; fighting that had spanned the nation since 1964. “Since the 60s we have had a wellarmed feud that has killed more than 200,000 people and has displaced more than 6 million people. These people have been displaced from rural areas to the seas, whenever you go to the country or the big seas it is really sad...,” said Donato-Molina. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia are an armed guerrilla movement which formed during the Cold War, often focusing on anti-imperialist ideologies. They implement tactics such as guerrilla warfare, kidnapping, drug dealing, and general acts of terrorism to spread their message and agenda. During their strongest days they had about 13,800 active members, in the last few years due to mass incarcerations and deadly conflicts, the

group has dropped down to less than 7,000 fighters, leading them to the negotiating table. A week after the treaty signing, president Santos held a referendum vote for the people, asking ‘Do you support the accord that puts an end to armed conflict and constructs a stable and durable nation?’ Of the 13 million voters, 50.2% voted against the deal. With a population of around 47 million, roughly 38% of the population ended up voting, the rest choosing to abstain. In the end the vote was split by a difference of a mere 54,000 votes. The actual peace process came about after four years of negotiating in Havana, Cuba, far away from the war-ridden jungles. Donato-Molina acknowledged, “One problem with that agreement was that the president was very confident that everybody would like to have the peace, that we would vote positive for the peace. The agreement was not socialized; people really don’t know what the agreement said.” After some time, the opposition found some problems with the deal. For instance, the deal guaranteed the FARC 10 seats in the Colombian Congress, giving them an unfair advantage, while also rewarding criminal behavior. After the negative outcome of the referendum vote, Santos and FARC leaders renegotiated the peace deal in Cuba. On Nov. 13, a new deal was reached and released to the public, the new agreement held over 100 different changes to the original document. Changes included: guerrilla fighters

whom confessed to their crimes and made reparations to their victims would only receive 5 to 8 years of “effective restriction of freedom,” the FARC would have to provide “detailed and exhaustive” reports about its former drug activity as well as a full inventory of current assets, and while FARC leaders can run for office, they no longer were guaranteed seats in Congress. Colombia still has a lot to do politically when it comes to the deal. The Supreme Court and Congress must both approve the agreement. Opponents of the agreement also call for a second plebiscite concerning the new agreement, the government has yet to decide if they will have a second vote. Currently, both the government and the FARC are adamant about implementing the accord as soon as possible. Finally comes the reconstruction of the rural areas of the country, some of the more damaged areas. The agreement envisions a regionally based land fund to dole out property to the land-poor, the development of rural infrastructure, and greater subsidies to small farmers, a plan which will take years to put into action. This luncheon was the last lecture the IAG will hold for the year and seemingly had a great effect on some of the students who attended. Jeffrey Tuck, a member of the department of mathematics and geology, stated, “I had a personal interest in the peace process of Colombia because I recently saw that this vote had negated the deal. [The meeting] was really informative and I was happy to have been here.”

Graduation is here

Fall 2016 commencement on Dec. 9

Xavier Aguilar Reporter

To all Texas A&M University – Kingsville graduating students the Fall 2016 commencement exercise will be held in the Steinke Physical Education Center (SPEC), located at 910 W Avenue B, on Friday December 9, 2016. There will be three ceremonies held that day at 10 am. , 1 pm. and 4 pm. The 10:00 am commencement ceremonies will consist of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences, Business Administration along with Education and Human Performance. At 1:00 p.m. commencement ceremonies for Arts and Sciences and at 4 p.m. the Engineering commencement ceremonies. The keynote speaker for the 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ceremonies will be State Rep. Todd A. Hunter from District 32. Dr. Stephan Nix, professor of environmental engineering and former dean of the Frank H. Dotterweich College of Engineering, will speak at the 4 p.m. cere-

mony. Maria L. Robinson, Chief Investment Officer and Treasurer for The Texas A&M University System, will bring greetings from The Texas A&M System. Students need to be at the SPEC one hour before their ceremony. There will be NO university-wide rehearsal for the ceremony yet you may check with your college to see if a rehearsal is planned. Cap and Gowns may be purchased at the Bookstore during regular store hours. If you need to purchase or rent a doctoral gown, contact the Bookstore as soon as possible. Please make sure to wear dark colored shoes, socks, and/or nylons and that your gown is pressed prior to the graduation ceremony. All grades for candidates for graduation must be in the Office of the Registrar by 12:00 noon, on Monday, December 12th. Candidates taking courses from other universities must arrange to meet this deadline. The deans will attempt to notify candidates who fail to complete their degree require-

ments. Please be available by telephone on Tuesday, December 13, 2016. Master’s candidates must arrange with their Research Advisor and/or Graduate Coordinator to complete their comprehensive examinations in time for a report to be submitted to the Graduate Office no later than December 7, 2016. All library fees or other fines due to the University must be paid before December 9. If it is not possible for you to attend the ceremony, your degree can be awarded in absentia provided you notify the Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs in writing by December 5 and give sufficient reason for non-attendance. Once grades are submitted, graduation verified diplomas will be mailed out within six to eight weeks after commencement All this and more information can be found on the university’s homepage, under events and calendar under the document titled Candidate’s Letter.

Dr. Kim Jones is recognized by A&M system

Samuel Galindo Chief Reporter @samgalindo37 Texas A&M University – Kingsville is now home to its fifteenth Regents Professor: Dr. Kim Jones. Dr. Jones earned his bachelor’s degree in general engineering from the United States Military Academy in West Point, and then went on to serve in the U.S. Army from 19741979, where he attained the rank of Captain. After serving his country, he then shifted his focus back to academics, by earning a master’s degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Texas, and concluded his time as a student by earning a master’s and doctoral degree in environmental engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology. Dr. Jones was one of eleven faculty members within the A&M system recognized for this award. Though the spotlight has been placed on Dr. Jones to honor him for his achievements, he insists on sharing the stage with his colleagues and students: “This is a nice acknowledgment and recognition by the A&M system for academic excellence and achievement at [Texas] A&M – Kingsville… [it’s] a chance for the system to weigh in and acknowledge some of the good things going on [here],” said Dr. Jones. In addition to the support of faculty members and students, Dr. Jones expressed his gratitude to the TAMUK Environmental Engineering Ph.D. program, saying, “A lot of my successes are linked to those [Ph.D.] student’s accomplishments. I wouldn’t have got the award if we didn’t have support to that program.”

Dr. Kim Jones

Courtesy photo

With just under seventeen years of experience as a faculty member, Dr. Jones has been heavily involved in the success of TAMUK’s highly respected Institute for Sustainable Energy and the Environment, where he has served as a professor and director. Dr. Jones is no stranger to prestigious awards in the field of engineering. During his professional career, he has won multiple awards for his academic achievement, including being nominated Professor of the Year for environmental engineering in 2012 by the Javelina Alumni Association.


CAMPUS southtexannews.com

Crystal Zamarron

Round Table, Continued From Page 1 students are forced to play a game of musical chairs in hopes of acquiring a spot. Tallant assured students that space would be available behind Cousins Hall, near the intramural fields, and catty-corner to the president’s house. At the beginning of the year, students were having trouble accepting financial

Merger, Continued From Page 1

Nov. 2 that the system board of regents was set to hear a presentation by Tallant regarding the idea. Indeed, a presentation was delivered during the board’s Nov. 10 meeting by Tallant and TAMUCC interim-President...Dr. Kelly Quintanilla. The presentation included numerous explorations of the potential benefits a merger could hold, especially the buckets of public money in which a more robust research institution could potentially qualify. Though the public discourse about a possible merger seemingly unfolded with lightning speed, it also quickly unraveled. All thanks to one of the attendees at that “secret meeting.”

A GOOD ‘OL BOY WHISTLEBLOWER

Philip C. Skrobarczyk, president of the TAMUCC Foundation and head of Fulton Construction, decided it was his duty to speak up—he was at the October meeting of local elites. He said he was shocked by the group assembled by Sharp— there were no faculty, staff or student representatives from either campus, save for Tallant. “He (Sharp) said if ya’ll are for it, a small group of 17, it’s a done deal,” Skrobarczyk said. “There wasn’t a single Hispanic in that room except for the legislators and their minons. There wasn’t a single woman in that room and the guy (Sharp) tells a rape joke,” Skrobarczyk added. The story Skrobarczyk tells about the origins of the merger push is far different than that shared by Sharp and Tallant, whom the chancellor called the best president in the A&M System. Skrobarczyk said discussions over a possible merger began to take a serious turn almost nine months ago. He said one major obstacle then was TAMUCC’s president, Dr. Flavius Killebrew, who didn’t like the idea. But then Killebrew announced his

awards, and so financial aid was also a topic for serious concern. A mass email was sent out to students soon after issues surfaced explaining how a system glitch was the cause. Tallant said, “[The system] is in the best shape it’s ever been in history.” After reassuring students

about financial aid, Tallant addressed a profane remark written inside a facility restroom earlier this month. He shared his disappointment and disgust as to how one could target an ethnic group. The president hopes that TAMUK will come together and stay united and supportive of diversity.

retirement in September, less than a month before the “secret meeting.” When confronted by an avalanche of questions after the Nov. 2 news story broke, Tallant sent an e-mail to faculty and students the next day saying, “Many of you may have heard a news report regarding a possible merger … As many longterm Coastal Bend residents know, this type of discussion is not new. Leadership changes at either campus often spur this type of talk.” Skrobarczyk told The South Texan that Killebrew was a casualty of the process, since he wasn’t willing to be a participant. “All of a sudden we have this opening, that happened on Sept. 14 or whatever, where Flavius resigned. All of a sudden we have this opening, and ‘bing!’ it brings up this brilliant idea that we are going to merge the universities,” Skrobarczyk said. “They’ve been talking about this for nine months. I will submit to you that Flavius was a casualty of war in this thing. Because he was never in favor of it. . . . They had to get him out of the way.”

note in my comments (to the board),” he said. “I’ve had three people call me and say, ‘Sharp thinks you taped it, it’s so accurate.’” Skrobarczyk laments that he had to write his letter to the A&M Regents. He claims he was simply galled by the “decisions” so few were poised to make that could affect so many. “The sad part about it is there are people in our community who think that they’re the decision-makers (and) that they’re going to dictate how we all do things around here. I take great exception to that,” Skrobarczyk told The South Texan. “If I hadn’t written that letter on Oct. 5, what would the conversation have been like? What would we be doing today? We’d be going directly to the legislature to deal with it. And those fights can get very, very expensive.” Skrobarczyk says TAMUCC has already lost $20 million in donor commitments as a result of the merger news.

SHARP: ‘RELEASE THE TAPE…PLEASE’

“Philip, are you here? Let me ask you something, man. What in the world are you thinking? “That wasn’t a question,” Sharp told last week’s Robstown gathering—hoots and hollers from the crowd would eventually force the chancellor to cede the stage to Skrobarczyk, but only for a moment. Sharp would make the argument that the details of the Oct. 5 meeting Skrobarczyk released were inaccurate, all bits and pieces taken out of context. Sharp begged him to release a recording of the meeting if he’d made one. “If you taped the meeting, I beg you, turn the tape over to the media and let them see everything,” Sharp implored him. Skrobarczyk said he didn’t tape the meeting—but his letter was so accurate Sharp thought he did. “There is not one false, misleading, out of context

Thursday December 1, 2016

LOZANO OK WITH MERGER?

Skrobarczyk wasn’t the only target of Sharp’s defensive maneuver. At one point during his Robstown town hall, the chancellor excoriated Kleberg County’s local state representative, J.M. Lozano, for calling him a liar in a statewide news story. Lozano, who was among those at the October meeting, and after Skrobarczyk’s notes came out he suggested to the Texas Tribune that the chancellor’s behavior was bad enough to merit losing his position leading the university system. “The issue now is I want an explanation and an apology to the people of Kingsville and Corpus Christi for there not being transparency,” Lozano told the news website. “And I want the regents to investigate why this has happened to make sure that no future chancellor does this.” But Sharp very publicly called Lozano’s bluff. “When you called me a liar for saying that you did not say, ‘I’m for this as long as you protect (A&M-) Kingsville Engineering,’

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@crystalsotex

Provost Anderson stressed that college deans and higher authorities rely on course evaluations and comments from students to evaluate faculty and course offerings. Administration would like to further develop a more reputable way of knowing what motives a student may have when filing grievances and how to respond in an orderly manner.

Lelyn Adams, freshman business major brought up the topic of outdated computers within the College of Business and Engineering. According to Adams, the lack of software maintenance has posed itself as a problem. He hopes that a resolution will be formed and those needs will be met. “We have a plan to refresh computers whether it be updated programs or new

computers,” Riley said. David Barrera, SGA president, spoke on the advantages of having the semi-annual forums. “Any time to sit down and talk with the president or upper administration is a good time. I think it’s super important to be able to connect with these people… have everyone come together and at the end of the day, have students voice their opinions,” Barrera said.

that’s a lie,” Sharp told the Robstown gathering. Coincidentally, on the same day Lozano attended the October meeting with Sharp, Tallant and the others, he also participated in a debate in Jones Auditorium hosted by TAMUK’s Javelina Press Club and the Kingsville Record and Bishop News. Lozano said nothing during the debate about any merger plans, nor about his opposition to them. Skrobarczyk told The South Texan that he recalled the state legislator supporting the idea of a merger at the October meeting, so long as it wouldn’t negatively affect TAMUK’s growing engineering program. Lozano’s sudden opposition to the merger idea—just as Hinojosa’s and some others—developed the same day Skrobarczyk’s notes became public. Hinojosa, a Democrat whose District 20 seat covers most of Nueces County, as well as state representatives Todd Hunter, a Republican, and Abel Herrero, a Democrat, both from Corpus Christi, issued a statement on Nov. 10 suggesting they were against any merger, though Hinojosa didn’t communicate such sentiments when he made the plan public to KRIS-TV on Nov. 2.

intra-community conflict to stifle progress. Still, the whiff of backroom dealing hung in the air as the two-hour town hall meeting began to break up.

devolved. “We’ve underinvested in higher education of South Texas. We have an exploding population. I am very motivated to pursue funding to increase the size and the quality of our university,” Susser said. He hopes that the merger is not dead forever and both universities can still become an emerging research institution—the faster the better, he feels. He questions the motives of those who refuse to embrace the idea and allow access to millions of dollars.

CONTROVERSY BE DAMNED

Despite local politicians running for cover over their own roles regarding the merger plans, not everyone at the Robstown town hall was willing to let the “secret meeting” kill the merger outright. Multiple members of the audience voiced their support for a merger, particularly after Tallant reiterated the financial benefits of the idea. He told the crowd a more robust South Texas A&M could draw as much as $250 million to the area. One merger supporter, former longtime Corpus Christi state legislator Hugo Berlanga, who served the area from 1977 to 1998, gave a rousing speech about how the merger could transform the economic fortunes of the Coastal Bend. Berlanga said South Texas had for too long allowed

WHO CALLED THE SECRET MEETING?

One critical question remained unanswered: If Sharp didn’t call that October meeting, who did? Susie Luna Saldana, president of the Corpus Christi Association of United School Employees (CCAUSE), first raised the question. Sharp said he was merely invited to the meeting. Asked by whom, the audience chuckled when the chancellor said he couldn’t remember. “How do you not know who invited you to a meeting? [Skrobarcyzk] let people know what was going on… this thing wouldn’t have been stopped. I represent teachers, and a lot of them work for [TAMUCC],” Saldana said. Later, Skrobarcyzk told The South Texan who he thought was behind the “secret meeting.” “[Sharp] called the meeting. He called Samuel Susser and Mike Shaw and (asked them to call) a meeting, that’s what I was told. I had no idea about the invitation list…but it was absolutely on purpose that (TAMU) Corpus Christi was not represented,” Skrobarcyzk said, adding that he received an invitation on Susser’s letterhead. Reached by The South Texan, Susser confirmed that he and Shaw, who owns multiple car dealerships in South Texas, were directly involved in setting up the Oct. 5 meeting. Susser said he knew the chancellor had ideas about strengthening higher education, so he and Shaw pulled together people who have been “strong supporters of higher education” along with legislative delegation to meet and listen. Susser didn’t recall sending out invitations. “I don’t believe there was or is…not that I recall…but it was a private meeting,” Susser shared. The businessman lamented how badly the merger discussions have so far

MERGER IS NOT DEAD

Despite the hand-wringing, however, even Skrobarcyzk says he doesn’t believe the merger idea is dead. He said he’s spoken to legislators Lozano and Hunter about the proposed concept being dead. Both told him that though they would not be the ones presenting any legislation this upcoming session, they do not believe the plan is dead, he said. “It sure as heck doesn’t sound like it is,” Skrobarcyzk said. “Sharp tried to spin it yesterday (Nov. 21) where it was such a great deal, that everybody was going to be Kumbaya. We were going to get all these great things, we were going to get all this extra money,” Skrobarcyzk said. Skrobarcyzk said meetings like October’s don’t happen unless something very serious is afoot. “You don’t forget the order of magnitude of what we were hearing in that room. You don’t forget it. Not when you’ve poured your life building this place.” Later he added: “I am an Aggie. All my boys went to A&M and it makes me sick to have him (Chancellor John Sharp) at the helm.” Whether the merger eventually happens or not, Skrobarcyzk is fairly certain about one thing — he’ll pay a steep price for his honesty. “I’m not sure I’ll ever work in this town again, but I wasn’t about to sit around and listen to that crap.”


OPINION southtexannews.com

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Thursday December 1, 2016

Angel Castillo

@thesouthtexan

Lack of Representation in Meetings Crystal Zamarron Editor-in-Chief From what we hear, the merger of Texas A&M University-Kingsville and A&M-Corpus Christi is dead. But is anyone going to speak about the “devil in the details,” “the elephant in the room,” about the people behind this plan. Philip C. Skrobarcyzyk made it clear that it was part of his concerns in the letter that women, Hispanics, and TAMU-CC faculty were not involved during the Oct. 5 meeting described in this week’s lead story. The “secret meeting” was held with only white men; not one woman was in sight. Perhaps the person that sent out the invitations included women but from the letter Skrobarcyzyk sent, the list included only seventeen men present at the meeting. Why wasn’t there a woman? We saw women on-andoff stage during the A&M System Board of Regents meeting on Nov. 10. We saw

women at the Robstown Town Hall meeting. And, as if not including women was already bad as it is, where was the Hispaic representation? Why were the majority of the men present Caucasian? Being in South Texas where the majority of the population is Hispanic, it stands to reason Hispanics would be included. Witth the few legislators who are Hispanic attending, there were four Hispanics present in the meeting out of 17 men. Merging the two schools would have made the school 7th largest university with Hispanics. But the Hispanic viewpoint on the merger would have been low. If none of these shock you yet. It surprised me that some overlooked Chancellor John Sharp’s rape joke at the Oct. 5 meeting. Why is this inappropriate behavior not being talked about? Has someone spoken to Sharp about his joke? This is your chancellor, ladies and

gentlemen. He was confronted about it during the Robstown meeting but Sharp moved on from Skrobarcyzyk to another question. No denial, no apology. Sexual assault is not a joking matter. The meeting was lacking plenty, but just like the students from TAMUCC’s main concern, there were no TA-

MUCC faculty at the secret meeting. There was no representation from TAMUCC. The island-locked school continued to be ignored throughout the planning of the merger. To end it all, the discussion of the merger still had no representation from the main audience, the students. Stephanie Martinez,

Cartoonist: Siddharth R. Tuplondhe

the student regent gave her two cents during the Board of Regents meeting toward the end. No student representation was present during the Oct. 5 meeting. And only one student was pointed out to ask a question during the Robstown meeting. I thought students were the priority, right?

Kaina Martinez: Transitioning to Graduate School

Student-Athlete Continuing her Education: “Closing a Chapter to Begin Another” Kaina Martinez Contributing Writer Spring of 2014 was the beginning of my journey as an undergraduate at Texas A&M University-Kingsville. My first days I felt like a lost child in an unfamiliar place searching for her parents hoping that they will embrace her needs. Success was my priority and the anticipation of how challenging and demanding it may be to adapt to my life as a student-athlete floods my analytic mind. It has been years, and it still feels like it was yesterday that my teammate Katy

willingly accepted me into her apartment and took me to Walmart to get the necessities to enter my room at Lucio Hall. Yes! I can still remember trying to figure out the map and timing for a week to make sure I was in the right class at the right time. I can still remember running around like a headless chicken working on adapting to my new life. Yes my new life, because I was not living the life of a student or an athlete two years prior to spring 2014. Despite how difficult some of my professors may have been, I can humbly say that every one of my profes-

Good Luck Javelinas! Angel Castillo Editorial Editor This Fall Semester has been an interesting one thus far. Each semester we finish is one semester closer to graduating and receiving our degrees. The effort we put in now will bring us the rewards later.

many times at the right timing. Yes, Dr. Flores is one of the professors who brings real-life situations into the classroom and he teaches beyond the school setting. Ms. Elizabeth, some call her the mom of international students, but for me she is my personal cheerleader. She is a woman who has inspired me in many ways to not only have a caring heart, but to see the importance of being accepting of differences and embracing it. I remember anticipating the completion of my program. Upon nearing completion, I found the inspiration to add another major and

challenge myself and to prolong my experience with the communications department as an undergrad. It has been a great experience that builds memories that will surely last a lifetime. Receiving the opportunity to work with the JBN, The South Texan, as well as other organizations on campus has helped me in many ways to grow beyond what I would have ever thought of. Graduation day is closing in, and the reality is hitting. Though I have eagerly waited for this day, it still feels hard to say goodbye to my life as an undergrad. It’s not finished. I am closing a

chapter of my life to begin another. Therefore, I’d rather not say farewell because I will continue to utilize all the learning and experiences I have received from the College of Arts and Science at TAMUK. Though your name may not be specifically mentioned, I want to thank each and every person that has impacted my life. You have helped one of the strongest persons in her weak moments. In your unique way you have helped make part of my journey bearable. The experiences I have with each one of my professors has taught me to utilize the value of education.

Raul Altamirano Managing Editor

to the ridiculous sentiment. Unfortunately, that statement is very true in my case. Except for me, it took me nine years. Yeah, I know. It’s sad and pathetic. But I’m here to let you know; the unconventional student, the ones out there who are just winging it; you’re doing just fine. It’s a cliché phrase to use but I’m going to say it anyways. It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon. That sentiment might not be shared by most people, but I’m not talking to those people. This is just you and me talking here.

Did it take me a while to find my way: definitely. But I would never change the way the events unfolded. I got to meet so many individuals, including all of those working at The South Texan right now who are infinitely way more talented than I could have ever hoped to be at their age. They challenged me to be a better writer, a better journalist, an overall better person every single day and I am truly indebted to them for helping me find my way. I also have to thank Dr. Manuel Flores and Mr. Matt Ward, The South Texan

advisors, for instilling the passion of journalism in my heart. For you, I swear I won’t let you down. But also, for you, the unconventional student, just winging it. It took me a long time to find my way, but I sincerely hope for you it doesn’t take you nearly as long. But if it does, please don’t feel discouraged. Learn to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and make yourself stronger for it. You owe it to yourself. Best of luck out there. I’ll see you all down the road.

A reporter ‘wings’ a fond farewell

I’ve always identified with the Chris Farley classic Tommy Boy. Feeling like the guy with a desire to do something really honorable, but not really quite sure how to execute it. Just winging it, figuring out situations as they present themselves. My favorite line from the movie is probably where Farley says it’s really not too uncommon for most people to take seven years to graduate college. “Yeah, they’re called doctors,” is David Spade’s smarmy comeback

We each have different degrees that we chose for different reasons. We all have one goal in common. That is to become educated and to give back to our communities. The knowledge and experiences that we take from college help us find ourselves in this world. With final exams coming up, it’s important to remember why we’re here. We are putting all this effort in so that we can succeed in life. No matter how stressful finals can be just remember that it’s all worth it. All the stress and late nights staying up to study are worth it. On that note, good luck to all my fellow Javelinas on your finals. The South Texan is a student publication produced by Texas A&M University- Kingsville students. The views, opinions and commentary do not necessarily reflect the views of the Texas A&M University system. The South Texan uses student fees in part to publish. The South Texan is part of the Art, Communications, and Theatre Department (ACT), The Javelina Broadcast Network (JBN), and the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association (TIPA).

sors has impacted my life in a special and unique way. Dr. Edwin Rowley was one of those professors I saw every semester, yet I could have never gotten tired of seeing him. He is one of those whose impact is beyond the classroom. He helps to inspire you to think beyond just receiving a degree and see schooling as a pathway to learn and be educated in every angle necessary. Dr. (Manuel) Flores, how can I forget him. “Mija everything will be alright.” “Just keep working, I understand it’s difficult but you can do it. I am, we are, proud of you.” His words came

Staff

Crystal Zamarron- Editor-in-Chief Raul Altamirano- Managing Editor/Campus News Editor Sebastyon Spencer- Advertising Manager

Bobby Puentes- #JavLife Editor/ Circulation Manager Frankie Cardenas- Sports Editor Angel Castillo- Editorial Editor Veronica Cepeda- Online Editor

Siddharth Tuplondhe- Cartoonist Samuel Galindo- Chief Reporter Alex Guerra- Reporter Robert Breedlove- Reporter Camila Peña- Reporter Matthew Ward- Adviser Manuel Flores- Adviser

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SPORTS southtexannews.com

Thursday December 1, 2016

Frankie Cardenas

7

@FrankieJ_Suckaa

Men’s Basketball struggles during Thanksgiving Classic

Photo By: Frankie Cardenas

Javelina Volleyball during pre-game festivities. The Hoggies are currently 26-9 on the season

Javelinas to play in NCAA Tourney Adrian Silguero Sports Reporter

Texas A&M UniversityKingsville (26-9, 14-6 LSC) will be heading to San Angelo to take on the San Angelo State Rams (31-3, 18-2 LSC) on Dec. 1 at 7:30 p.m. This will be the first game in the regional tournament for the Hogs, who are looking forward for redemption against a tough opponent they lost twice to in the regular season. The Javelinas look to keep doing what they’ve been doing all season, namely having good ball movement and answering when needed. “I’m so happy we’re going to play Angelo,” said Senior Ashley Bukowski about the tourney.

They’re a tough opponent and I like playing [games where] we’re considered underdogs because when we pull off a win it’s a sweeter taste. To be the best, you have to beat the best.” The Hogs are looking for a big game from Bukowski as she is a key player, performing well in the regular season. Coach Tanya Allen wants her team to stay confident and play the defense they’re capable of playing. “The girls have been practicing hard every day and know the opponent we are facing is tough, but I think that’s what’s been the spark during practice,” said Coach Allen on preparation. “Everyone is hustling and communicating well, so I think they’re more than

ready to play.” This is the first time the Hogs will be competing in the NCAA Division II South Central Regionals. The team is the No. 8 seed. “This team has done some amazing things this year, we have the most wins in school history and we are going to the postseason for the first time, too,” said power player Junior Krystal Faison about clinching a postseason berth. “To be a part of this program feels amazing and I’m so proud to be able to accomplish all these things with this group of girls.” The Hoggies will look to continue to make history on the heels of their best season in Javelina Nation history. For updates, follow @ JavelinaVB on Twitter.

LSC opener ends in defeat for women’s basketball Staff Reports

The women’s basketball team (3-2, 0-1 LSC) fell at the hands of the No. 8 Angelo State University Rambelles (4-0, 1-0 LSC) accounting for the teams first loss to open up Lone Star Conference play, 84-59. The game had minimal bright spots, but was highlighted by the play of Kaylee Kana and her astounding 16 rebounds, adding in two steals. Shaq Debose lead all in scoring with 10, sinking six shots from the free throw line and picking up two dimes. Kaylin Roher followed suit, chipping in eight points and four assists. Another notable performance came from Lily Hospers, who scored seven points and had two takeaways to her credit. Four other players on the squad had six points to their credit.

A strong defensive outing from the Rambelles prevented the Hoggies from being productive on the offensive end of the court. The Javelinas turned the ball over 22 times and shot 33.3 percent from the floor. They also struggled to shoot from beyond the arc, only drilling one of ten shots on the night. The Rambelles made the most of the Javelinas struggling defense, shooting 31 percent from the three-point line, and adding 28 points on turnovers. Angelo State also made the most of their size down low, accumulating 42 points in the paint compared to the Hoggies 34. The Javelinas will look to bounce back on Dec. 1, as they play a home game against Texas Women’s University, game time at 7:00 P.M. For updates over the break, follow @ TAMUKWBB on Twitter.

Photo by Juan Turrubiates

Head Coach Johnny Estelle talking with point guard Derrick Byrd during a free throw attempt. Andre Alfaro & Adrian Silguero Sports Reporters The Texas A&M – Kingsville Men’s Basketball team (4-2) almost pulled off a comeback victory against Ouachita Baptist (3-1, 1-1 GAC) the day after the Thanksgiving holiday but fell just short with the final score 83-80. Missed free throws played a big role in the Javelina’s loss, as the team led in all offensive categories except free throw shooting, shooting under 60 percent from the line (16 out of 27 made). The first half was tough for the Javelinas, as Ouachita Baptist went on an 8-0 run after the teams were tied up at ten. The Javelina’s did the best they could to catch up by the end of the half, but trailed the entire way through to end the half down 48-31. The second half was better for the Javelina’s, with junior Trey Sumpter leading the way with ten points while the Javelina’s opened up the half on a 28-19 run. Sumpter would end the night with a total of 12 points, and freshman Robert Christian added in 12 points of his own and collected seven boards.

Redshirt Senior Duan Wright led his team with a total of 19 points and drained a team-high three shots from beyond the arc. Junior Caelan Neal followed closely behind with 16 points and snatched the ball twice. The Hoggies would then take on Southeastern Oklahoma State University (4-3, 0-2 GAC) the next night, falling to the Savage Storm 64-59. This would be the last game of the tournament. The blue and gold were led by Trey Sumpter, who had 16 points. Duan Wright followed his lead, finishing the game with 12. Neal led the Javelinas in rebounds with six and also tallied eight points. “I hate losing so much especially to a team that you know you’re better than. We should’ve won this game. We played good defense but we just weren’t able to make the big shots when we needed them,” Sumpter said after the game. The Javelinas defense was huge in this game as they were able to set a new season high, getting nine blocks in the game and holding Southeastern Oklahoma to a low shooting percentage. The first half the storm came out hot behind the arc,

knocking down threes. They had an early lead 13-5 but a big offensive performance by Wright, who scored the next seven points for the Hogs. At the end of the first half the teams were going shot for shot and the Hogs were able to tie the game going into halftime, 32-32. The second half was slow at the start. As time was running out, the Hogs started to catch fire. Sumpter hit a huge three late in the game, knotting the scores up. But Nathan Jackson came up huge for SOSU and was able to knock down a three, giving his team the lead 62-59 with only 34 seconds left. The Hogs did not quit, though, and got two shots off behind the arc. They were unable to convert, suffering their second loss of the season. “Even though we came out with two losses this weekend, I think we learned something about ourselves and that was not giving up,” said Coach Johnny Estelle said after the game. “That makes me proud as a coach, but we still lost and have some adjustments to make. We will go over that when we watch film.” For updates over the break on the Javelinas, follow @JavelinaMBB on Twitter.


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