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On campus ATTACK SWIM FOR MVC
leaves UALR student injured and afraid
February 13th Valentine’s Spirit-Grams
12 p.m. - 2 p.m. DSC Foyer B
photo by Dallen Shields
Based on the UALR Department Public Safety crime log, the victim’s attack is the only aggravated robbery reported on campus so far this semester.
Kendrell Collins Editor KDCollins@ualr.edu
17th GRE Practice
7 p.m. - 9 p.m. DSC Meeting Room G
24th Donaghey Scholar Bake Sale
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. DSC Foyer C
don’t feel safe anymore.”
Those are the words of a UALR student who was mugged outside of Fribourgh Hall on Monday morning, Jan. 21. The victim - who wishes to remain anonymous - has been
at UALR for the past two years working toward her Ph.D. in astronomy. Campus was closed the day of her attack, on account of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Like many other graduate students, however, the victim came to campus to study and conduct research as she normally does. She shares an ofﬁce in Fribourgh Hall with one other graduate student.
Do you have a nonacademic event that you want posted on this calendar? If so, email firstname.lastname@example.org
FEATURES What constitutes as
See Attack, page 3
to SMOKE on campus
12:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. DSC Room 201T
fortable and I took my key and tried to open the outside door, but he was already there.” “He asked me, ‘Can I use your phone?’ I said, ‘I am already using it.’” Because the man could not see her iPhone, he did not seem to believe she was actually on it, she said. She was using earbuds and the phone was in her pocket.
NO PLACE for smokers
Study Abroad Informational Session
“My oﬃcemate was studying,” she said. “Since he was studying, my mom called, and I didn’t want to disturb him, so I went outside.” While talking to her mom, the student noticed two men walking toward her. “They were walking, they saw me, and then they separated,” she said. “One of them left; the other one started to approach me. Then, I got uncom-
being on campus?
What happens when you’re caught smoking on campus? See more on page
Welcome to UALR’s The Forum 2.0 or something along those lines. Enjoy your stay and watch your head
February 12 - February 26, 2014
Does the National
Security Agency overstep its boundaries? The NSA gives peace of mind to some, uneasiness to others
Your data or your life Shashank Avvaru Staff Writer SXAvvaru@ualr.edu
lot has been said about the clandestine surveillance being conducted by the National Security Agency. Calling their activities hateful would be an understatement and while there are no grounds for forgiveness, it is essential to understand the facts, the background and the reasons behind what is being dubbed by many as the “greatest unpunished crime in the history of the world.” We are living in a world that has gone from being a simple, self-suﬃcient global village to a powerhouse of technology and development. In the Information Age, a terrorist doesn’t have to plant a bomb or arrange an assassination to cause terror. He/she can cause anarchy, deploy nuclear weapons and even cause global annihilation using something as simple as a computer. General Keith Alexander of the NSA stated in a recent conference that “NSA’s surveillance has been instrumental in saving 54 countries from terrorist attacks.” The NSA, in one way or another, prevents thousands of crimes from happening each day and night. Everything from credit card fraud to mass murder is included in the list of crimes that the agency has prevented from occurring. It’s also important to separate fact from public opinion. Fact: every country’s government participates in surveillance. Every country has its crime detection radar blinking every minute of every day. In fact, Russia’s constitution (SORM and SORM-2, to be speciﬁc) allows the government to tap into phones and pri-
vate records without a warrant as long as there is justiﬁcation for the tapping. Surveillance and collection of intelligence are necessary if a nation wants to increase security on both domestic and international levels. It is the backbone of a country’s intelligence framework. It is also both a privilege and a responsibility that a nation’s government is entrusted with. In the US, however, without a warrant issued by courts such as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), surveillance isn’t even allowed. When Edward Snowden, an ex-analyst for the NSA caused a global uproar with what he claimed were revelations about the government’s illegal collection of information, most governments were so busy enveloped in the hoopla, they didn’t stop to wonder how much of it was actually true. What do we really know about the “records” that Edward says he possesses? In spite of the entire world demanding it, nothing – actual collected information, statistics, metadata – has ever been made public. This begs the question: how much of it is factual? Even how much of it can be considered factual is impossible to determine. NSA’s actions are horrendous but so are threats to governments through things such as religious extremism, terrorism and the ever-present threat of anarchy. Are the actions of the NSA unethical? Absolutely. But in a world where everything is unstable and anything can happen, a government indulging in surveillance and saving lives because of this surveillance– while abominable– is ultimately a necessity. Is privacy really worth the price of safety and security? If it came down to it, what is more valuable: your data or your life?
No Spying Allowed Ryan Guinee
Staff Writer email@example.com
illustration by Byron Buslig
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**Those who comment/tweet on our stories will be eligible for giveaways.**
Operations Manager Ryan Guinee
ou’re sitting at a coffee shop minding your own business, when a man approaches you conﬁdently and greets you by name. Slightly caught off guard, you respond, “Hello? Do we know each other?” He laughs, “Know each other? Why, I’m by your bed every night plugged into the wall. I’m with you for every question you’ve ever asked online, every message you’ve shared in email, any comment you post on a friend’s picture.” Confused, you reply, “I don’t understand.” “You don’t have to understand,” he says with a smile, “you just have to be a compliant citizen.” This is an emotional appeal to the argument that there should be no spying allowed on citizens. If you found yourself alarmed by this mysterious coffee shop patron, then, you too may believe there should be no spying allowed. Besides being creepy, it’s legally an intrusion on privacy and abatement of constitutional rights. NBC News reported last week that Federal judge, Richard Leon seems to agree, having ruled Monday, Feb. 3, that the National Security Agency’s phone surveillance violates protection against unreasonable searches. One would be hard-pressed to ﬁnd good reasons for this. Any information released from government agencies, including and especially the NSA, is likely ﬁltered or redacted to the point of no return. Equipping oneself for an argument for the NSA is like setting sail on a ship with holes in the bottom. Amy Davidson, a writer for The New Yorker, humorously wrote last December, “If the National Security Agency says that it is not ‘intentionally’ doing something— say, collecting records of the locations of Americans’ cell phones—then it is almost certainly taking that very action.” We needn’t any information divulging the depths to which the NSA is surveying citizens, companies, and organi-
Executive Editor Jacob Ellerbee
zations; we may simply bring into the light the indirect results of their handiwork. Look to the Wall Street Journal and its recent reports on the negative impact on the American economy the NSA has caused. An article from Tuesday, Feb. 4 investigates the results NSA spying has on technology companies offering services to other countries. Michael Hickins said, “Germany’s new governing coalition has issued a policy document that includes a call of using more technology developed in Europe…Lawmakers in Brazil have been debating a bill that would require data about Brazilians to be stored within that country’s borders.” As long as countries continue to displace trust in American technology companies such as Google, Salesforce, Amazon and Microsoft, citizens can expect that international trade will be harmed. An article from Sunday continues to address the waning relationships the United States has with other countries, such as Germany. Matthew Karnitschnig reports, “The outcry over NSA eavesdropping has been most pronounced in Germany… German media carry daily updates on the affair and Mr. Snowden, who two weeks ago appeared in a lengthy prime time interview with a public television broadcaster, is hailed by many here as a folk hero who should be granted political asylum.” And who can argue with Germany for crowning Edward Snowden? For a man that has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize on eight public occasions (see: freesnowden.is), it’s hard to reason that what the NSA is doing is honorable or necessary, nonetheless. In summation, when you consider the pros and cons of the National Security Agency, remember these points: the man who blew the lid on the agency deserves a Nobel Peace Prize, the actions of the NSA are weakening the American economy and the government is permitting the violation of your right to privacy guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment. If you’re not swayed by this, think back to the coffee shop. They’re watching.
Features Editor Alexis Williams
Photography Editor Dallen Shields
Chief Graphic Designer Byron Buslig
The Forum is the oﬃcial student newspaper at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. The Forum is funded in part by the student activity fee; members of the UALR community are allowed one copy per edition. When available, additional copies may be purchased for $1.25 by contacting The Forum’s business manager. Newspaper theft is a crime. Anyone who violates the single copy rule may be subject to civil and/or criminal prosecution and/or university discipline. The opinions expressed in The Forum are those of the staff and contributing writers and do not represent the oﬃcial views of UALR. Students enrolled in MCOM 3320 and other reporting classes sometimes serve as contributing writers for The Forum. Advertising inquiries should be referred to The Forum’s advertising oﬃce at 501-569-3319. The Forum is published 7 times in each of the fall and spring semesters, and once in the summer. The Forum’s executive editor can be reached at 501-569-3265. All material published in this newspaper is copyrighted.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
On campus attack Campus E-alert Continued from page 1 “He punched [me] and just grabbed my phone and ran away. It was so quick, even I didn’t have time to turn my key.” The victim said that she does not remember much after taking the blow. When she ﬁnally rose from the pavement, she said that she stumbled into the restroom. “I saw lots of blood, then I realized he really hit me. Then, I started to scream. Then, my oﬃcemate came outside and the guy from the library who was parking next to the library [heard] my scream.” “They asked something. I just said ‘someone attacked me.’ They said they saw my blood and they called 911.” According to an email sent out to all UALR employees, the call was made at 11:26 a.m. Police reportedly arrived at the scene at 11:28 p.m. Paramedics also evaluated the student’s condition and asked if she would like to go to the emergency room. “They said, ‘We advise you to go, but it seems OK.’ Then, I said, ‘I don’t want to go right now’ because I was alone. I didn’t have a phone. I needed to reach someone ﬁrst; so, I didn’t go with them.” “Then my friends came. Whenever I talked with my mom, we went to the emergency room and we understand that my nose is broken. It still is broken.” For an entire week, the student said she rested and kept ice on her face. “It was just one punch, but it was so strong. I wasn’t in the condition to talk or speak or write.” During that week, she said her roommates kept up with her emails. “They checked my email and they told me that they sent this email,” said
the student, referring to the email concerning her attack. “I told them to write, ‘I’m offended by that email.’ It wasn’t a small event. I have a broken nose. How can you say I am not injured?” The next morning two police oﬃcers visited her house. She gave them the tracking number for her phone, but they were unable to locate it. The student said her main concern is not the phone but the emotional trauma of her attack. She typically arrives at campus around 9 a.m. and parks at near Jack Stephens. The walk to Fribourgh Hall was very diﬃcult her ﬁrst week back. “I couldn’t go to the oﬃce. Just passing next to it makes me shaky. I was trembling.“ Her advisor noticed her condition and allowed her to take another week off. As of Feb. 3, nearly two weeks after the robbery, she was ﬁnally able to face going inside the oﬃce – though she remains apprehensive. “I heard a noise, I just jumped. I don’t know how I will study in that oﬃce. My research is all about my oﬃce. I need to be there to study.” The victim no longer comes to the campus on weekends and has decided to leave campus before dark. She recommends that the university install cameras and have more police walking through campus , at least, to make students feel safe. The student is grateful for the Good Samaritan who found her screaming that day. She has been unable to get his information from police, though, because the case is still active. “If there wasn’t any guy from the library, I’m not sure what would have happened to me.” If you have information regarding this case, please contact the Department of Public Safety at 501-569-3408.
Illustration by Logan Sturgill
Staff Writer JMGoad@ualr.edu
he campus alert system is designed to keep students safe. But, how does it work?The RAVE alert system is the primary communication between UALR and its students. Several types of messages can be sent - texts, voice alerts, warnings and cautions - any time hazardous conditions arise on campus. The alerts also include other information such as fee payment deadlines. During inclement weather, Chancellor Joel E. Anderson, makes the decision on whether school will be delayed or closed. “We try to put out weather alerts by 5:30 a.m., if at all possible. Now, sometimes that’s not possible if it’s still a little uncertain, but our goal is to get messages out by 5:30 a.m.,” said Robert Adams, vice chancellor of ﬁnance and administration. If inclement weather approaches while classes are in session, Anderson has Adams alert the communications ofﬁcer to put out the alert to the students. Staff members from UALR drive the roads prior to the beginning of a school day during forecasted times of wintry weather. The UALR faculty also monitors the National Weather Service. “We also look at if the Governor is delaying or shutting down state oﬃces. We take all of that information and make our best effort to advise the chancellor on what we should do,” Adams added.
Panelists included from left to right: Roby Brock, Stephen Northington, Frank Scott, Jr., Monserrat Flores, Chris Smith
Panel of business leaders advise
College of Business students Ryan Guinee
Staff Writer firstname.lastname@example.org
eaders in the Little Rock business community arrived early to the UALR College of Business on Thursday, Feb. 6 to greet a group of students slowly trickling into their seats, coffee in hand. Lecture with the Leaders is an event planned each semester to give students the opportunity to hear from successful businessmen and women. Included in the panel this semester was Chris Smith of Circumference Group, Monserrat Flores of Golden Eagle Distributors, Frank Scott, Jr. of First Security Bank, and Stephen Northington of Northington Insurance Group. The moderator for this semester was
special guest Roby Brock, Executive Producer and Host of Talk Business Arkansas. He guided the questions and conversations between students and panelists. Talk Business Arkansas is a multimedia broadcast and magazine that regularly features business leaders in the state. “How does someone get a foot in the door in your industry?” Brock asked. Northington was the ﬁrst to respond saying, “In my industry [wealth management] you have to get licensed. From there, get to know older advisors that are retiring with no exit strategy. Find a mentor in a mature business, get to know them, and be in a position to take over when he or she retires.” Flores, or “Monty” as her colleagues know her, had more to say on getting your foot in the door. “Keep studying. Every organization has managers, but
we need leaders. Keep working, keep studying, keep doing research. That’s what leaders do.” One panelist used the question as an opportunity to drive home a major point about storytelling. “I look for your life story, education story, and experience story,” Smith said. “What is your sweet spot? It’s your passion, or what you enjoy doing. Pursue that with as much aggression as you can, and in a professional way. I look for quality, aggressiveness, and attention to detail. But, I want to know what you are really good at, not what you think you are good at.” The next question was from an audience member, who asked, “How would you suggest opening relationships with business people?” Scott had an answer that was all-to-
Crime warnings are another alert that is sent out to students. A crime warning means that there is an imminent threat and a dangerous situation on campus. This can be a person on campus armed with a weapon or just someone on campus that can be harmful to other students. When there is no imminent danger present, a crime alert is issued via the RAVE alert system. These alerts are sent out to let the campus know there is “no longer a threat,” Adams said. Not all cases are sent out in a text to students because they all do not provide a current imminent threat, he said. “The crime alert is “all a subjective analysis by me, the police department, our facilities people, anybody that has information bearing on that decision, is weighed and determined if there is any reason to send out a message,” Adams said. Adams is notiﬁed of situations via the Department of Public Safety. DPS immediately starts reacting to the event. Edward L. Smith, chief of police, then contacts Adams and gives Smith all information he has at that moment. “You know, you wish everything could be instantaneous and you had all the information in nano seconds, but the reality of it is, it just doesn’t,” he said. Adams notiﬁes communications and lets them know what to send in the alert and when to send it. The RAVE alert system is linked with students’ personal accounts found in BOSS.
Photo by Ryan Guinee
relevant in a town the size of Little Rock. “People are always watching. There’s a lot of ways you can leverage a relationship. But, be genuine. If it’s a real relationship, you won’t have to leverage it,” he said. One panelist focused on service. “What I like to see is people take on the motto of Rotary International: service above self. Work beside those individuals you want to have a relationship in a setting where they know you enjoy giving back,” Northington added. Among so many things to do, Brock wanted to dig deeper to ﬁnd out what students should not do. The panelists provided some anecdotes describing mistakes to avoid. Smith said, “Don’t be thinking, ‘I should be CEO when I walk out of college.’ You will have to pay your dues, make sacriﬁces, and work hard. You can never stop learning. Also, don’t think ‘I can control it all and don’t need to rely on people.’” Flores added, “I used to think, I want to change people’s behavior and them to be perfect. I wanted to be perfect! Don’t be hard on yourself. Focus on what you do best, or your sweet spot like Chris said.”
February 12 - February 26, 2014
Young Life sessions
now on campus
UALR to host annual
AAMI Conference Hillary Perkins
Staff Writer HDPerkins@ualr.edu
Victoria Hickey Staff Writer VXHickey@ualr.edu
re you looking for a way to make a difference in your community and even around the world? Do you want to meet new friends? Do you want to participate in a weekly Bible study? Do you want to play games and have a lot of fun? Then you should join Young Life at UALR! Young Life at UALR was started three years ago by a group of students- Ellen Brown, Art Slaton and Melissa Jones. However, Young Life is an international organization- in over 72 countries around the world. “The purpose of Young Life is to help students explore who they are and who God is and how that might all work together. It’s a safe place for students to be themselves and to be accepted in the context of a community where people from all segments of the campus can interact with one another,” Jud Jones. Young Life is a church based group in which you attend fun activities and events and also participate in service work. When attending a Young Life gathering you can expect to be welcomed with open arms. When the group meets, they play games, do a devotional lesson, talk, watch video clips and genuinely enjoy themselves as they get to know other college students and learn more about God and His purpose.
courtesy of UALR younglife
Jud Jones became a Young Life leader 33 years ago because he felt “it was the best way for me to have an impact on my community and hopefully the world.” Jud now leads UALR Young Life group, which meets Sunday nights at 9 in the DSC Leadership Lounge. There is also a large group that meets on Friday’s at noon is the Leadership Lounge, where you can hang out with other students and mingle and talk about God and what is happening in your life. Young Life is open for everyone--athletes, Greeks, nursing majors, etc. No one will be turned away! If you want to get more information about the Young Life program, you can download the UALR Young Life app from the App Store or the Google Play store.
High School students
get the UALR Experience Ryan Guinee
Staff Writer email@example.com
early a hundred high school juniors and seniors gathered at a chilly UALR campus on Thursday, Feb. 6 to become college students for the day. Joining them were their parents, who had the opportunity to glean information on how to keep their student happy, healthy and safe. Guiding the students into the campus was the task of Chancellor’s Leadership Corps volunteers, many of whom braved the cold to hold the signs showing the way. Between volunteers in CLC and staff among campus signing students in, there was clearly organization and eﬃciency. Much of the coordination was thanks to the preparation of Valerie Brashears and Katie Young. “We spent months, weeks…we started preparing for this back before the Christmas break,” said Brashears, Coordinator for Communications at the Oﬃce of Admissions. “Getting faculty signed up to teach mock classes. There’s a lot of preparation.” The students were guided into the campus by 1:00 PM and began signing in to receive a name badge at the Donaghey Student Center. The low buzz of student activity soon made its way into the newly built and dedicated Charles W. Donaldson Student Services Center. There, the students were greeted by Dean Kahler, Vice Chancellor for Enrollment Management, and Lauren McNeaill, President of the Student Government Association.
To prepare for the students today, McNeaill said, “I talked to a lot of my friends about what it is they wanted to know about college when they were in high school. I reﬂected on my time here and thought about what were those things that were really useful in making me into the person I am.” Not the students who attended Experience UALR had decided they were attending. This required a different, more carefully crafted message from the SGA President. “That’s the tough part, because to give a speech about UALR to students who’ve already committed is a whole other conversation. These students haven’t committed and they’re just here to see what it is like,” McNeaill said. For some students it wasn’t their ﬁrst time. Several in attendance for Experience UALR attended a recruitment event held during the fall. Brashears explained, “The recruitment event in the fall is called Discover UALR. So, it is more of a general, overall tour of UALR where they can get more information about us. I think this Experience UALR is a step further. It’s more personalized, and they get to see what it’s really like as a student.” For father and son Don and Luke Embry, they were among those that did attend the event in the fall and wanted to get to know UALR even more. “His mother brought him in the fall to preview the dorms, so I get to come this time with him to see the college. He was excited about today,” Don said. Luke had the opportunity to sit in on two mock engineering classes in the En-
he African-American Male Initiative program will hold its fourth annual conference at the UALR Student Services Center building from Feb. 27-28. Dr. Terrell Strayhorn and Dr. Glenn Jones will be the featured speakersfor the two-day conference. Strayhorn is an associate professor of higher education from Ohio State University. His topic of discussion will be “African-American Male College Success: Result-oriented Strategies from What We Know.” He will be speaking Fri. Feb.28 at the UALR Student Services Center Auditorium. Jones is the president of Henderson State University. His topic of discussion will be “African-American Males and College Success,” which will be held Thurs., Feb. 27 in Ledbetter rooms, A, B, and C of the DSC. “The purpose of putting the conference together is to talk about issues with African-American males and to look for the best practices to keep black males in college,” said Harvell Howard, the coordinator of the AAMI. Howard came to UALR as a graduate student and helped launched the program. The African American Male Initiative program was launched in the fall of 2009. The ﬁrst conference was held in 2010. Howard, along with former ViceChancellor Charles Donaldson, curent Vice-Chancellor Logan Hampton and Dean Darryl Mc Gee founded this program. Howard also mentioned that the way that they pick out speakers for this annual conference is totally different from other conferences. Instead of the speakers signing up and the committee choosing among the best proposals, they give
out invitations to various speakers all over the state, as well as nationwide experts asking if they could speak at this event. The structure of this conference has two separate tracks: one for students and the other for administrators and faculty. A workshop will be included for students to build leadership, better decision making and student development. This is also way for administrators to share different ideas for leading students to success. According to UALR’s AAMI website, there were 44 out of 58 members were in good academic standing by the end of the fall semester. Fifty-ﬁve percent of the members received no less than a 3.0 GPA. By the spring semester, the percentage of members rose to 91 percent. “Participants involved in the program will interact with other African American male students from across the state to be successful,” said Howard. Kalan Horton, one of the members of the AAMI said that this program has helped him become the person that he is today. “Unfortunately black men do need a little more focus and attention because a lot of us come to school unprepared for the responsibilities and the expectations that college hold.” Alex Mc Donald, another member of the AAMI said that this program is a means of building awareness and keeps young black males in college. The registration for the AAMI conference is free. The cost to attend, however, is $75 for non-UALR faculty and administrators and $25 for non-UALR students. To register for the AAMI conference, visit ualr.edu.
photo by Byron Buslig
Executive Editor Jacob Ellerbee spoke to groups of high schoolers in The Forum’s office during the Feb. 6 session of Experience UALR. The event, which took place Jan. 23, Jan. 30 and Feb. 6, was put together to give high schoolers an idea of what an average day at UALR might be like. gineering and Information Technology building. In these mock classes, “professors are advised to give the lecture as if it were their last,” Brashears said. Luke had visited many schools including UALR. As an applicant for the Donaghey Scholars Program, he wanted to give the college and city of Little Rock as much consideration as possible. “I was looking at a lot of schools in state—I wanted to stay in the state—and
I went and toured a lot of campuses. This one stuck out to me as the best in my opinion,” Luke said. His father, Don, chimed in, “He likes the big city. There’s lots to do.” The students had plenty to do with the mock classes, dorm tours, and dinner at the Trojan grill. After the meal, they attended a Trojans’ basketball the same night to watch the men’s basketball team take on Georgia State.
No place for smoker to smoke on campus
photo by KenDrell Collins
The punishment for smoking cigarettes on campus is a fine for up to $500. Even more severe, misdemeanor or felony charges can be levied on those using marijuana.
Staff Writer JQCato@ualr.edu
he Arkansas Clean Air Act of 2009 prohibits smoking on state facilities. Such facilities include: hospitals, certain business, and school campuses.
For some students, the actual logistics and deﬁnition of campus grounds is a concern. Oﬃcer Jennifer Sibley, UALR’s Crime Prevention oﬃcer, stated that any part of Asher Avenue and University Avenue including sidewalks is still considered campus grounds. If any student, visitor, or member
of the faculty is caught smoking, then warnings or even citations can be issued. If a citation is issued the cost could range from $100 to $500. After receiving a citation, violators must take up the matter with the county courts, just as a traﬃc violator would if issued a traﬃc ticket.The issuing oﬃcer has the discretion to issue a warning instead of a citation, but they are not obligated to do so. If violators are caught smoking marijuana, they can be arrested, resulting in a misdemeanor and/or felony charges. Darryl McGee, UALR’s Assistant Vice Chancellor of Judicial Affairs, stated that a smoking violation will not result in a student being expelled from school alone. He said that student discipline is determined case by case. Oﬃcer Sibley states that the nonsmoking policy is diﬃcult to work with sometimes because her ultimate concern is with student safety. She also added as a mother she does not like asking students to cross the street to designated smoking areas to smoke. Her daughter was a smoker and attended UALR also. McGee states that most witnesses do
not report smoking violations on campus. This makes it diﬃcult to establish a pattern to enforce the non-smoking policy. McGee challenged the student body to step up and report the violations. He said he would also like to see a campaign or fundraiser to actively stop smoking on campus.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
Study abroad students share
experiences as deadline draws near
photo courtesy of Kelly Singer
Sophomore Kelly Singer stands in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Singer is currently studying abroad for a second semester.
Staff Writer JMGoad@ualr.edu
eadlines are right around the corner for students wanting to participate in the next study abroad experience. Applications are due by Friday, March 14 for the fall 2014 program and by Monday, Sept. 15 for spring 2015 program.UALR has a ﬁve-step program for those interested in participating in studying abroad. Information sessions are held once a week; the sessions cover everything from credit hours and program selection to ﬁnancial aid.
“Financial aid comes in by helping to re-calculate the students’ cost of attendance to include the study abroad experience.” Said Study Abroad Director Porntip Israsena. Students receive college credit hours for participating in programs abroad. Most programs last from a semester to year. There are faculty-led programs available, too. Prior to their trip, students ﬁll out a course pre-approval form with the department of the language in which they wish to study. “If [students] are studying French, it’s likely they will be studying in France,” said Israsena. Once students attend the information session, they have more of an idea of which country they would like to study. After arriving at their study abroad destination, students will attend university. Sophomore Kelly Singer is a linguistics major in the Donaghey Scholars Program. She departed for her study abroad experience on Aug. 30, 2013. She is currently living with a six-person host family in Orleans, France. Although Singer studied French for two years, she admits “it still has its communication challenges.” She said now she is nearly ﬂuent in the language. “When I arrived, I realized quickly how much vocabulary I didn’t know. Every other conversation was a game of Charades sprinkled with broken French,” Singer said. She starts her day off around 8 a.m. with a 45 minute tram ride to l’Universite d’Orleans where she studies. She said she knew she wanted to study abroad in France before she had ever taken her ﬁrst high-school French class. Singer said the French have a rich history that molds their work to live cultures. “Were I queen of the world, study abroad would be mandatory for everyone,” Singer said. “Foreign exchange has been such an enriching and gratifying experience because it has cultivated my appreciation for my language skills
and for the overwhelming humanity of the people I have met.” Singer was not alone in gaining fulﬁllment from studying abroad. Fifth-year senior Jalissa Willis studied from Aug. 30 to Dec. 21, 2013 in Costa Rica. She attended the Universidad Veritas in San Jose but said she spoke Spanish before going abroad. “Several of my classmates came abroad with no language whatsoever,” Willis said. “A lot of them were biology or health majors, people studying things that had nothing to do with Spanish. I can honestly say if you’re afraid to go abroad because of that, don’t be.” Willis visited many Costa Rican landmarks, including the Arenal Volcano, Baldi Hot Springs, a hand crafting woodshop, and an island called “Boca del Toro” where she saw dolphins. She learned how to make jewelry out of dried fruit. She patrolled the beach while volunteering at a sea turtle conservation. She found turtle eggs and saved them from poachers, and after
Fifth-year senior Jalissa Willis relaxes with her friend at a Costa Rica beach in 2012.
they hatched, she watched them return to ocean safely. “Every weekend was a vacation,” she said. Willis majors in both American Sign Language and English Interpretation in Spanish. She received the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship, which provides awards for undergraduate students that are receiving federal Pell grant funding at a two- or four-year college that participate in the study abroad program. The double major says her advice for students interested in studying abroad is to talk to people who have experienced study abroad and stop by the international oﬃce and ask questions. “College is one of the [only] times where you can literally write an essay about your life goals and someone pays your for it. Go!” Willis said. Students interested in learning more about studying abroad should contact Study Abroad Director Porntip Israsena or visit ualr.edu/studyabroad.
photo courtesy of Jalissa Willis
Valentine’s Day not a
couple’s holiday, student says Javari Burnett
Staff Writer firstname.lastname@example.org
ards. Bears. Candy. Every fourteenth of February, places across the world gather up sweet treats, bouquets of ﬂowers and extravagant gifts to be exchanged between loved ones in the name of St. Valentine. However, Valentine’s Day is a special day to be shared between two individuals that love one another, regardless of their relationship status. The month of February has been long celebrated as the month of passion and romance, and we are constantly reminded of this through advertisements. According to History.com, approximately 150 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas. We tend to forget that everyone does not have a signiﬁcant other with whom to share Feb. 14. So where does this leave the ones who missed Cupid’s arrow? Being single on Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean you lay in your own bed
of tears and sorrows; you can still enjoy yourself. There are many alternate ways to enjoy Valentine’s Day besides doing things the traditional way. On Feb.13, UALR’s Trojan Spirit Committee will be handing out Valentine’s Day cards to students. There will be decorative materials there for students to add their own creative touches to their cards. If you still end up without any plans, visit www.littlerock.com for more ideas on how to spend your day. Walk downtown, go to the River Market, or head to the spa for a day of relaxation. Sophomore Biology Major Qkeyoree Miller assures singles that their day can still be ﬁlled with love. “I’m going to shower my own self with gifts and appreciate those who love me,” Miller said. “Alter your Valentine’s Day and make it about self-love,” he advised singles. Alternate ways to enjoy your day include spending time with those you love and celebrating yourself. Spend time with your friends and your family. See a movie with some friends or eat dinner with some family. But whatever you do, be sure have love around you. You don’t
Illustration by Logan Sturgill
need to be in a romantic relationship to enjoy the holiday. Remember not to feel sorry for yourself. This will only make your day depressing and dreadful. Instead, turn your frown upside down and be excited for this day which only comes once a year. Also, avoid comparing yourself to other people. Just because someone is in a relationship and has a valentine doesn’t necessarily mean they are happy. You can also do something nice for
Notable dance troupe to
deliver African rhythm to UALR Paige Buffington
Staff Writer SPBuffington@ualr.edu
t is said that when Bernard Woma was born in a small village in northwestern Ghana, his hands were clenched in ﬁsts that looked as if he were holding mallets used to play the gyil, a native musical instrument resembling a xylophone. After consulting with a tribal elder, Woma’s father purchased his infant son a gyil. By the time Woma two years old, he was proﬁcient in the instrument and on his way to fulﬁlling his life’s mission: sharing the rhythm and dance of his native Ghana with the world. Today, Woma travels the globe performing and giving workshops with the Saakuma Dance Troupe, a group he organized to introduce his audiences to
both traditional and contemporary music and dance from his native land. The musical troupe’s repertoire includes a range of spiritual, ceremonial, and contemporary African music and dance. Art observers and critics say the group’s performances are joyful, expressive and highly participatory. “He’s a true ambassador of African music and culture,” said Kara Mathews, UALR Diversity Programs Coordinator. “His infectious spirit and obvious passion for his craft just light up audiences. His goal is not to just perform but to involve his audiences.” While Woma has performed for prominent ﬁgures like Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, and Queen Elizabeth II, his true passion is hands-on teaching of his native Ghanaian music and dance to normal, everyday people. “He says his main goal is to teach, so
his workshops are vitally important to him. They allow him to invite participants to drum and dance on stage with him and his troupe,” Matthews said. “When people actually start physically involving themselves in his world, the learning opportunities are multiplied.” Woma was recently honored as the cultural resource person for President Barack Obama’s family when they visited Ghana. His recent appearances in the US include a performance with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in New York City, performances and teaching at New York’s “AXF: African Xylophone Festival”, the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, and numerous elementary schools, high schools and colleges. Last year as part of Black History Month, Campus Life brought in Jabali Afrika, a music and dance troupe from
someone else. Surprise a friend or loved one with a gift or give back to the community by doing some community service. Even if you’re feeling down, lifting someone else will provide you with a sense of contentment. Remember, Valentine’s Day isn’t just a couple’s holiday. Even though the day is meant to celebrate romantic relationships, you can easily turn Valentine’s Day into a celebration of any friendship or celebrate the one person who’s always there: yourself. Kenya. Inclement weather postponed Woma’s concert scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 4 at UALR. Stay tuned for an update on when they might return. For more information or updates on Woma’s concert, contact the Oﬃce of Campus Life at 501.569.3308.
Your news. Your way.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
Online shopping gets PHYSICAL
“French Pressed” Life in America from the perspective of a French foreign-exchange student
VS By Pauline Mothu email@example.com
H Illustration by Paige Mason
Staff Writer firstname.lastname@example.org
he difference between online shopping and brick-and-mortar shopping has long been the focal point of retail business study. Between the ﬁnancial success of online shopping giants such as Amazon ($74.45 billion in 2013 revenue) and brick-and-mortar dominators like Walmart ($469.16 billion in 2013 revenue), it’s hard to tell where the future of shopping is going. One thing is for sure: businesses are looking to extract the most value possible from consumers. With over 90 percent of US shopping—68 percent at UALR—still happening in stores, it’s unsurprising to see online going oﬄine in an effort to glean more from shoppers. From paying for one’s boots and Starbucks latte to buying a book for a friend, the money transaction process is becoming easier thanks to our mobile phones. “I like having everything digital. If I want to return something, I have a digital receipt—not gonna lose that,” said Brett Clark, junior in molecular biology. The Wall Street Journal reported at the end of January that the increasingly crowded channel for mobile payments has made room for one more member. Amazon, Inc. is in the building phase of a new Kindle-based point-of-sale system for brick-and-mortar retailers that uses a built-in credit card reader. Amazon’s plans would ultimately lead to a mobile wallet interface similar to the ways consumers can purchase their coffee at Starbucks with their phone. One company that beat them to the punch is Isis. Consumers add participating credit cards to an app on iPhone or Android and use their phones to pay for goods at participating retailers. It seems stores and restaurants surround-
ing campus that accept Isis are slim, with McDonald’s being the only popular choice. The biggest hurdle for companies that offer mobile payments is larger than getting retailers to commit. There’s still a resistance from the consumer perspective, and UALR students are no exception. In a survey of 50 students, 54 percent said they would not use a mobile wal-
my money,” Lance Biggers said. Biggers is a post-baccalaureate in his ﬁrst year of the nursing program. Now, the question for Amazon is why. Why enter into an increasingly ﬂooded payment channel? Why offer what other companies, like Isis, Coin, or Square, do best? The Journal recognized the opportunity that Amazon has gained—not for additional revenue, but for coveted data
“I would probably end up wasting all my money.” - Lance Biggers
let provided by Amazon. Many cited the refusal to trust something like that on their phone. One student simply didn’t understand how it would work. “I don’t know how they would link money to your [Amazon] account. I know it’s linked to your card. How does it get paid though? I would need to understand the ﬂow,” Gregg Kollbaum said. Kolbaum is a nontraditional student majoring in information science. Others were quick to adapt to a hypothetical Amazon mobile wallet system regardless of details. “It would be direct to your credit card anyway. It would be easier. People are paying with Square and PayPal anyway,” Gerome S. said. Added to the mix is a product like Coin that allows the consumer to add any credit or debit card to an application. Your phone then syncs with a Coin card that, when swiped, charges the card with which you want to pay. With payments made so easy, some students worry about their personal spending habits. “I would probably end up wasting all
on in-store shopping habits. Hoping to use the information to better serve its retail business customers, or to use the information itself for predicting purchases and recommending products to shoppers, Amazon believes it has plenty of reason why it should do this. A December 2013 acquisition of San Francisco-based GoPago Inc. showed analysts and investors just how interested CEO Jeff Bezos is in mobile payments. According to MarketWatch. com, Wall Street was uninterested and distracted by the “par” earnings in 2013 Q4. This contributed to a sharp 15 percent decline in the late days of January and leading into February. Amazon continues to offer convenience to customers. Services like drone shipping, streaming, and possibly mobile payments all point to making the lives of consumers convenient. “Convenience is huge. Having [payments] on our phone is even more convenient,” Mac B. said.
Lunchtime diversity meeting explores US racism and stereotypes Pauline Mothu
Staff Writer PXMothu@ualr.edu
uring the ﬁrst Thursday of each month, the UALR Diversity Council organizes “Brown Bag Lunch and Learn” to bring awareness about diversity-related issues. This month’s meeting, entitled “Power, and Language, and Bias, Oh My!” occurred on Thursday, Feb. 6 in room G, Donaghey Student Center. Sharon Downs, director of the Disability Resource Center and the event’s keynote speaker, spoke about the hazards of stereotypes, bias, and the impact of language in shaping public opinion. In addition, the audience watched the short ﬁlm “Clown”. The ﬁlm follows the lives of three “Clown-Americans” who are facing stereotypes from others. Through these clowns, the ﬁlm explores and eliminates the realities of bias and racism in America. One of the clowns is a doctor and talks about what he experiences for being different; for instance, some patients would want a “real” doctor instead despite his experiences. His son also experiences prejudices at his school for being different from the other kids. The ﬁlm also features prejudice and stereotypes among the minorities with the story of a clown marrying a mime, causing misunderstanding among his family. The ﬁlm was followed by a discussion between Downs and the audience. The group explored the reasons why prejudice, stereotypes, and bias exist as well as how to address them. The discussion indicated that, although we all experience this at some point, we tend to get defensive when topics such as power and privilege are brought up in conversation. Moreover, when someone is different, people are uncomfortable with them and, unfortunately, this is a
learned behavior. The best thing to do to address this topic is to talk about it, but not in a hurtful and blaming way. “Saying to someone that what he said was hurtful to us is better than saying ‘watch your language.’ Things will not get better if we do not talk about them,” Downs said. “The role [of the Diversity Council] is helping promote dialogue, enhancing understanding, and fostering respect as well as giving voice to the UALR community about diversity-related issues,” said Diversity Council Co-Chairman John Miller. The council is also composed of faculty and staff from different backgrounds and experiences. Each “Brown Bag Lunch and Learn” consists of a presentation followed by a discussion between the audience and featured speaker. Diversity issues include ethnicity and race, but also disability, gender, and age. Everyone faces stereotypes, and the UALR community is no exception. The DC conducted a study last spring about perceptions of diversity and diversityrelated experiences at UALR. The survey showed that, although faculty, staff and students express a high level of comfort interacting with disabled, gay and different-raced people, 15 percent of students expressed unfair treatment based on their difference—mainly race. Moreover, 25 percent of the faculty and staff have experienced unfair treatment based upon gender or race. The survey also mentions that one out of ﬁve students does not know where to go to report these issues. Should they go to the Dean of Students? Tell a professor? Or a counselor? Downs said that she and Miller hope “Lunch and Learn” will help to “inform people about stereotypes, the power of language, as well as our [the UALR community] role in addressing the issue.”
Downs also wants students to know “we don’t need to be part of the minority to be concerned and involved with diversity-related issues.” “I am concerned with LGBT rights, even though I am not part of this com-
ere in the United States, going to college usually means moving out of our parents’ house and moving close to or on campus. It feels like most of American students cannot wait to go to college and live on their own. It is different in France: unless they live really far away, college students usually decide to stay at their parents’ house. In fact, almost 50 percent of the French students choose the college they will attend based on the proximity to their parents’ house. When I was a college student back home, I only lived at my parents’ house, even though it took me an hour to go to class using public transportation--and about thirty minutes driving. Many of my college friends lived with their families; some lived further than me. Some of you may wonder why. Why would we rather decide to stay with our parents who live far away than live closer to campus and alone or with friends? Several arguments can explain this choice. First of all, living on your own or with roommates--although students sharing an apartment is less common in France than in the U.S.--is more expensive than living with your parents. Indeed, when you have your own place, you need to pay rent each month, go grocery shopping, be more organized and, most of all, manage your budget. Many students living by themselves or with roommates need to work to make ends meet. If you read one of my past columns, you would know that in France students are only supposed to study, not work. When you live home with your parents, all you need to do is clean your room, do the dishes and other simple things. Another reason that French college students decide to remain at home is the lack of spots in the dorms. Indeed, students from a further city as well as international students are the ﬁrst ones to get a room in the dorms. This means that if other French students want a place on their own, they usually need to go through a rental agency. I have lived in the dorms at UALR and, although I have never lived in the dorms in my home university, I know from my friends back home that it is different from UALR. First, like I mentioned, students usually don’t share their rooms like in the U.S. Then, there is no Resident Assistant in the dorms. This means students can do whatever they want, but it also means no ﬂoor activities to know the other residents better. I experienced both living with my parents and living with roommates, I think both have advantages and drawbacks. Of course, living with your parents is cheaper, but on the other hand, living with roommates or on your own makes you more independent and responsible. I like both but I must admit that I like living with roommates better. Living close to campus also allows you to connect more easily with other students. And once you ﬁnd the right roommates, and connect with the right persons, living without your parents is not that hard. It is actually nice and rewarding. A bientot pour de nouvelles aventures! (See you later for other adventures!)
photo courtesy of UALR
munity,” she said. “Changing things requires the involvement of everyone.” The Diversity Council was founded nearly two years ago and has accomplished a lot already, according to Downs. “It is great,” Miller said. “But I’m a dreamer. I want great things to happen at UALR, especially when it involves diversity-related issues.” The “Brown Bag and Lunch” event occurs every ﬁrst Thursday of each month in the Donaghey Student Center, room G. Everyone is welcomed to attend and participate in the discus-
sion, as it help the Diversity Council to improve the issues discussed. Students, faculty, and staff are also welcomed and encouraged to make a proposal through the UALR website www.ualr.edu/chancellor/diversity/proposal-form. The different ideas are then discussed among the Diversity Council members and one is chosen. The UALR community is encouraged to do so because the Diversity Council wants to discuss issues students, faculty, and staff are interested and concerned about.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
Calvin Ledbetter Legacy Lives on Shashank Avvaru Staff Writer SXAvvaru@ualr.edu
f there is something more profound than the Ledbetter halls, it is the story of the man after whom they were named. A professor of tremendous reputation, an eﬃcient politician, an incredible writer, a member of the army, and a philanthropist are only a few descriptions of Calvin Ledbetter, Jr. Born in Little Rock on April 29, 1929 to Virginia and Cal Ledbetter, Sr., Cal Jr. made education his cornerstone early in his life. After graduating from Central High School, his love for politics led him to graduate with honors from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. After earning his juris doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, Ledbetter served in Germany with the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General Corps from 1955 to 1957. He earned his Ph.D from Northwestern University in 1961. Ledbetter single-handedly revolutionized the political science department of UALR (then Little Rock University) after his entry in 1960. The next nineteen years saw a little department grow into a department that offered some of the most sought-after programs in the country. Most prominently, Ledbetter is remembered as leading the merger of the private Little Rock University with the University of Arkansas framework, a move that many educators believe was instrumental in establishing UALR as a benchmark for quality education. Whether it was a law enforcement program for Arkansan police oﬃcers that produced many of the top oﬃcials in the justice department today, or the introduction of new programs such as public history and technical writing, Ledbetter spearheaded the development of the department. His innovations in UALR directly contributed to the growth of the college and indirectly to the state of Arkansas. That was just the beginning for an ambitious Calvin Ledbetter. From the time he entered the House of Representatives as a Democrat in 1967 to the time he left in 1977, Ledbetter’s efforts were monumental in shaping the modern legislature and justice system of the state. He was a member of various organizations and conventions that fabricated
and amended a number of local and national laws. Ledbetter also held various positions in advisory boards both for the government and a number of colleges. “Dr. Ledbetter’s scholarship on Arkansas’s governors is a ﬁne legacy, exemplifying his devotion to the state and his love of history and political science. I will always remember seeing that tall, lanky frame, briefcase in hand, heading out to work in the archives,” said Margaret Scranton, professor of political science. If there was something as well known as Ledbetter’s work, it was his philanthropy. Ledbetter’s donations through grants and scholarships became a goal for students who wanted to pursue higher education. Over time the Ledbetter cumulative donation amount to UALR crossed one million dollars. Through this, Ledbetter aided many ﬁnancially disabled students in Arkansas. Apart from being a man of thought, Ledbetter made his mark as a man of words. He authored and co-authored a number of papers treasured by universities across the state. He wrote many books as well, the most prominent of which is “Carpenter from Conway: George Washington Donaghey as Governor of Arkansas, 1909–1913.” The book is a biography of George W. Donaghey, another reputed politician and wellknown UALR benefactor. Ledbetter also contributed vastly to journals such as Arkansas Historical Quarterly and The State Government. Ledbetter’s writing style, like his life, reﬂects thought, intelligence and determination. In spite of all things worldly occupying him, Ledbetter never forgot to return home; he continued working as a professor in UALR and retired as Professor Emeritus in 1997. Joseph Giammo, Chair and Associate Professor of the Political Science department explained Ledbetter’s post-retirement contributions. “Cal had already retired before I started working at UALR,” Giammo said. “But he remained a constant presence in the department, auditing classes, continuing to do research, playing tennis with his fellow ‘Iron Men’, and helping to take care of any extra cookies that happened to be laying around the oﬃce. He was an incredibly kind and generous man with a great sense of humor and he is greatly missed.” Even his untimely death on Aug. 10, 2013 did not stop his inﬂuence from spreading. He is the culmination of
Courtesy of UALR
hard-work, passion, and brilliance, which lives on through the political science department, his family and the Ledbetter halls. Political Science Professor Rebecca Glazier said, “Dr. Cal Ledbetter was a giant in political science and in Arkansas politics, but he also cared deeply about people and was an extraordinarily kind man. As a new faculty member joining the political science department ﬁve years ago, Cal made me feel welcome. He would stop by my oﬃce to see how I was doing and to share political insights. When my son was born in 2012, we gave him the middle name Calvin, which was my grandfather’s name as well, and Cal Ledbetter never tired of cooing and smiling at that little boy. Cal was a great man. His presence is sorely
missed but his legacy is enduring.” Non-interview information sources are Encyclopedia of Arkansas and The Calvin Ledbetter, Jr. Papers.
Cooper Honors Program application now available for eligible students Alyssa Causey
Staff Writer ARCausey@ualr.edu
he Willam G. Cooper Jr. Honors Program in the English Department is currently accepting applications for stipends. The application deadline this semester is Consultation Day, May 6. For 18 years, the Cooper Program has provided English majors with a more intense, personalized education in the English Department. Recipients of the William G. Cooper Jr. Honors Program receive a $1,300 stipend each semester for up to four semesters. The program can be completed in two semesters, but students are generally encouraged to complete it in three. The program also offers travel funds for research projects or conferences. Sometimes students are sent to Association for Writing Professional conferences. There are other beneﬁts of the program besides ﬁnancial stipends. Students’ educations are much more individualized. Due to small class sizes, students receive more attention from professors. There are generally about 18 students in the program at one time. Students work with faculty members one on one; usually they work with the same faculty member for as much as a year or longer. “They get to know your work and abilities very well,” said Paul Yoder, a professor in the English Department. “Because UALR is a commuter campus, it’s diﬃcult to develop a sense of community when people are coming and going. But in this program we build community.” Yoder said the Cooper Program is a
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very rewarding experience and that there is a sense of accomplishment in completing the program. The seminars are very small and often on topics that might not otherwise get discussed: pattern recognition in literature or a hybrid literature combination of creative writing and literature. Previously, applications for the Cooper Program were only accepted on a competitive basis once a year on Con-
sultation Day. When it was realized that talented transfer students were missing the opportunity to apply, a second application date was established in December 2013 for the next spring semester. This second deadline is anticipated to be permanent. Eligible students must be English majors, maintain a 3.5 grade point average in the English major, and have a general grade point average of 3.25. However,
students do not have to receive the stipend to participate in the program. In the past, English majors have completed the Cooper Honors Program without the ﬁnancial assistance of the stipend. Contact Dr. Paul Yoder at rpyoder@ ualr.edu for further questions about the William G. Cooper Jr. Honors Program or its application process.
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February 12 - February 26, 2014
Old-school meets new-school in
modern take on the traditional JRPG Caleb Mitchell
Staff Writer CFMitchell@ualr.edu
Disclaimer: This review is based on the demo version of the game, which differs slightly from the ﬁnal product. Because of this, some elements of the game were not able to be reviewed.
apanese role-playing games have been around since what seems like the dawn of time – and while they once reigned supreme, as the years have passed the genre has become muddled with a bevy of games ranging from mediocre to downright terrible, with only infrequent releases from series juggernauts like Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest to tide gamers over. Now developer Silicon Studio is hoping to change that with the brave new combat system that is the highlight of its latest game, Bravely Default, available for the Nintendo 3DS. Heralded as the spiritual successor to Matrix Software’s 2010 Nintendo DS game Final Fantasy: The Four Heroes of Light, Bravely Default is a fairly standard JRPG; players control four characters, Agnès, Tiz, Ringabel, and Edea, and utilize a job system that allows characters to switch between 24 different customizable classes. As the game is published by Square-Enix, the same company that publishes Final Fantasy, Bravely Default shares many similarities with games in the series past, including jobs. Characters can become everything from series staples like White, Black, and Red Mages, in addition to newer jobs, such as the health-
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draining Vampire and the stat-reducing Pirate. All of this is good and well, but by far the biggest draw to Bravely Default, and the system from which the game derives its title, are the new gameplay mechanics Brave and Default. This system is what differentiates the game from other JRPGs and makes combat so enjoyable. Each time a character takes a turn, they use up a Battle Point from a stock system; different commands use up different amounts of BP, and charac-
game’s brutally diﬃcult bosses. Players should also note that, while the combat shines, Bravely Default is a game where grinding is pretty much a necessity; this may be a turn-off for some, but Silicon Studio was at least kind enough to include an option to speed up battle anima-
illustration by Byron Buslig
ters can only use up so much BP per turn. However, players can choose to stockpile BP with the Default option, and then unleash a string of commands all in one turn with Brave. The system adds a much-welcome element of strategy to combat, as some method of mixing Brave and Default is usually necessary to win battles – especially against the
tions, which can help quicken the process of combat. Another nice touch is the ability to adjust the frequency of the game’s random enemy encounters, allowing players to encounter enemies at nearly every step or not at all. Sadly, other features included in Bravely Default are highly questionable;
in addition to a set of side missions that require the use of AR cards – the majority of which must be purchased separately – a variety of micro-transactions appear in the game, which is more than a little off-putting. Granted, none of this necessary to complete the main storyline, but for a game that will already set you back $40, it’s a shame any of this was included at all. Other elements of the game also don’t hold up quite as well as the gameplay. While the graphics are very good (character models in particular are adorable and welldetailed), the voice acting is rather questionable, with performances ranging from passable to laughably bad. Also, for a game made for a system with an analog stick, it’s a bit baﬄing why so many commands in Bravely Default require the use of the D-pad, which isn’t quite as smooth as its counterpart. At the end of the day, if you’re not already a fan of traditional turn-based JRPGs, Bravely Default probably isn’t going to change things for you. While the developers at Silicon were hoping to reinvent the wheel with the new combat mechanics in the game, they really just made it shinier and more fun to roll down the hill. Still, for those fans of the genre who’ve yearned for something reminiscent to the old-school games of yore, or those needing something new to pop into their 3DS, Bravely Default may be just the thing you’ve been looking for.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
‘Main Cheese’ plans to melt your heart with comfort food infused with local lore
Staff Writer ARCausey@ualr.edu
ittle Rock has exploded onto the culinary scene, gaining traction as a serious “foodie” town, with serious places to eat, with serious foods, which puts “The Main Cheese,” in a position succeed in this thriving market. Grilled cheese-centered restaurants are commonplace in already gastronomically savvy cities, so “The Main Cheese’s” appearance in Little Rock is not surprising, and is in fact, welcomed. The owners and operators of the establishment have recognized a niche in the community and plan to ﬁll the void in a unique way. As far as the process of opening The Main Cheese goes, “It has been a labor of love, without a doubt,” said Adam Kaelin, general manager of “The Main Cheese.” “Your dedication shows with the amount of work you put into it. We’ve
been dedicated. Six days a week. It’s been a learning experience.” For anyone who enjoys a good grilled cheese, it may be diﬃcult to discern a favorite sandwich on the menu. The full menu has yet to be released, but Kaelin anticipates their most popular sandwiches to be “The Main Cheese,” their original grilled cheese, and “The Pinnacle.” “The Pinnacle,” an homage to Little Rock and Pinnacle Mountain, is a chicken sandwich with cashews and sauce. “It’s like the crunch of the rocks under your feet when you’re climbing Pinnacle,” Kaelin says. Restaurants with the central focus of one food are becoming increasingly common. The Main Cheese has grasped this idea and ran with it. Exposed brick walls, cheddar colored walls and a sleek, modern design compliment the new concepts being implemented at their Cantrell Road location inside Pinnacle Station.
UALR Mobile app has too many flaws, needs direction Jacob Ellerbee executive editor Editor@ualr.edu
Version 3.0 of the app is currently only available for iPhone and iPad. (Note: At the time this was written, the Android version of the app had not been updated, however, version 2.0 of the app is still available for Android users to download.)
ALR announced late in January that the oﬃcial “UALR Mobile” app received its ﬁrst update since May and its third overall update since launching in September 2012. For iPhone users, many would expect the UALR Mobile app to match the aesthetic of Apple’s iOS 7 operating system, which launched in September and according to Apple, has been installed by 78 percent of all Apple devices, according to reports released at the end of 2013. This makes you wonder why the app developers would keep the app running on iOS 6 for a fraction of the remaining Apple products running on the old operating system. The overall look of the app hasn’t changed very much at all. In fact, casual users of the app will probably not even notice that the app icons are now black instead of a white color. Or, that some of the icons have been renamed. What was once called “Calendar” on the app has simply been retitled, “Events.” The “Images” icon is now listed as “Photos.” The Blackboard icon within the app is now generically listed as “Learn.” I don’t think the developers should claim to have a “Brand new design,” as they do on the app store under the “What’s New” in this version. The design changes are minor at best. Some of the other features listed under the “What’s New” section on the app store aren’t actually working or being used. The new “UALR Tour” icon works well, but it doesn’t ﬁt-in with most of the content in the app. Most of the content in the app seems to be catered toward current students.
A comic strip by Paige Mason
With there being an app to locate where you can hop on the trolley, ﬁnd out what kind of events are happening this weekend on campus and a portal for Blackboard, those seem to be for students who are already on campus. Current students don’t need to be able to take a tour of the campus. A simple map, which is already included in the app, is suﬃcient. Another missed opportunity in this update is the KUAR radio stream. After multiple attempts of tuning in, the broadcast was unable to stream. There were no error messages, buffering signals or anything. Simply radio silence. Another new feature the developers included in this app is a non-functioning “Polls” icon. Sitting within a 10-mile radius of the school and opening the “Polls” icon in the app, a message pops up that says “there aren’t any polls near you…Try searching above.” The Directory is not utilized eﬃciently, either. You can ﬁnd virtually any email address you want, as long as you know how to spell your recipient’s name. There is no predictive text feature to help you ﬁnd the right person you are emailing. There are no telephone numbers either, which would make sense to have since most people will be accessing this directory from a phone in which a quick phone call may be the most eﬃcient thing to do. Some of the ﬁrst videos you encounter under the “Video” icon take you to videos that were uploaded about 4 years ago. Overall, this could be a very helpful and useful app, but there are too many ﬂaws to keep students and faculty from using “UALR Mobile”. The application is opened more than 400 times per day (across Androind and iOS platforms) according to data provided by Erica Roy of Information Technology Services. If some of these ﬂaws are amended, the current user base could expand exponentially. The developers should go back to the drawing board and decide if this app is for current students or for potential students who may download an app to learn more about the university.
Photo by Alyssa Causey
The Main Cheese, located at 14524 Cantrell Road, is tentatively scheduled to have its grand opening on Feb. 24. More information will be released in the coming days and weeks on the restaraunt’s website: www.themaincheese.com Construction on “The Main Cheese” began just before Christmas in 2013, and is nearing completion now. Kaelin says he anticipates opening towards the end of February. Other than the obvious grilled cheese theme, “The Main Cheese” plans to set themselves apart from other restaurants in Little Rock by priding themselves on their customers and their experience. “The people inside, the faces, and the staff are passionate about the food and customers and the community. There’s an excitement around us. We’re cheese nerds,” Kaelin admits proudly. “Our guests we will value above all else.” No restaurant is complete without desert options and “The Main Cheese”
will be no exception. One of their desserts will be the much-anticipated “doughnut grilled cheese.” “That was exciting – seeing what we could do with dessert,” Kaelin says. Connoisseurs of beer and wine will certainly want to give “The Main Cheese” a try. Dishes may be paired with a wine that compliments the sandwich. “It seems like a natural thing to pair wine and cheese together. We want people to go and have an nice meal but to really just have that value too,” Kaelin said. Kaelin and his team have a goal to meet once the restaurant opens, and that, he said, is “to provide Little Rock with the perfect sandwich.”
Best Man Holiday movie review Victoria Hickey Staff Writer VXHickey@ualr.edu
n January 29th, UALR’s UPC showed the movie The Best Man Holiday in the Leadership Lounge. About 25 people showed up to see this sequel to the 1999 movie The Best Man. The Best Man told the story of a group of friends that were dealing with trust and relationship issues around the time that two of them were getting married. The Best Man Holiday came out in November of 2013, and tells the story of college friends- Lance, Mia, Harper, Quentin, Julian and Jordanthat reunite after 15 years. After college the group ran into some problems when there were loyalty issues. Harper slept with Lance’s wife, Mia, right before they got married and that broke up the group. They went their separate ways, for quite a while until Mia and Lance invite all of their friends to spend the Christmas holiday at their house. This movie shows the highs and lows of each family’s life. All of the friends are dealing with different issues but trying to act as though their lives are perfect to make their friends jealous. This comedic drama explores themes of honesty, trust, friendship and healthy relationships. Throughout the movie, Harper is dealing with money problems and marriage problems. Harper comes up with the idea to write a biography on Lance because he knows it will be very successful; however he is afraid to ask Lance to work with him on it. To the rest of the gang, Lance and Mia seem to be living the picture-perfect life, later on though Harper and the others come to realize that just because something is pretty on the outside does not mean the inside isn’t ugly. During the course of the movie, Lance and Harper start talking again and Lance begins to forgive Harper for sleeping with Mia. Harper becomes more comfortable around Lance and
Courtesy of best-man.com
apologizes for his actions 15 years ago. The characters have many arguments and ﬁghts but by the end of the movie, everyone makes up and starts to understand each other better. The main point to get out of the movie is that life is a very valuable and special entity and you should never take it for granted. After the events of the movie, the characters come to terms with their problems and they realize that every day is a gift they should cherish. The UPC will be showing Catching Fire on February 24th in the Leadership Lounge. There will be free food and drinks, all students are welcome!
Trojans drop two in a row at home, coach ‘certain these guys will bounce back’ Alton Young
he UALR Trojan men’s basketball team had a chance to improve their SBC conference record with two home games following a tough 6258 road victory against South Alabama Feb. 1. However, the Trojans went 0-2 in two very different games. Thursday, Feb. 6 The two-game home stand began with a conference rematch against the Georgia State Panthers. The Trojans were looking to even the season series after losing to the Panthers earlier this season in a 99-73 rout in Atlanta, but Panthers came in winners of 13-straight games. This time the Trojans played the Panthers much closer, but could never get the offense going. The Trojans suffered another loss to the Panthers, falling 68-57. The Trojans held the Panthers to 40 percent from the ﬁeld, but only managed to shoot 37 percent themselves, including 14 percent from three-point range. Sophomore James White, in his return from injury, led the team with 14 points and 7 rebounds. Senior Will Neighbour, the team’s leading scorer, was slowed by injury during the game, but managed to chip in 4 points and grab a team-high 10 rebounds. The Trojans managed to get the Panthers leading scorer R.J. Hunter into foul trouble and held him to 14 points, but guard Devonta White picked up the slack by scoring 22 points of his own- a testament to the depth of the team, according to UALR Trojan men’s head coach Steve Shields. “They’ve got four guys who can go for 25 or more on a given night. There’s a reason they’re 10-0 right now,” Shields said. The Trojans had their own backcourt foul trouble, with guards Devonte Smith and Ben Dillard picking up four and Josh Hagins fouling out of the contest, but the coach refused to use that as a crutch. “We can’t make any excuses,” he said. “That’s part of the game and you’ve got to have guys step up.”
photo by Alton Young
Redshirt sophomore James White dunks in two of his 14 points against WKU. He also led the team with 9 rebounds in 29 minutes of action. It was White’s second 14-point game in a row after missing the last four games due to injury. Saturday, Feb. 8 The Trojans took on the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, winners of ﬁvestraight games, in another conference rematch from earlier this season. The Trojans beat the Hilltoppers in overtime in the earlier road game with dramatic shots by Hagins and Neighbour. This time around, the dramatic shot belonged to Hilltopper guard Trency Jackson. His three-point basket at the buzzer gave WKU the win. The game featured double-digit leads by each team that neither could hold on to. In the ﬁrst half, it was WKU that built a 33-23 lead on three-point shooting, only to see UALR cut it to a 36-32 score by halftime. For the ﬁrst half, the Hilltoppers shot 7 for 15 from the three-point line and outrebounded the Trojans 17 to 13. The second half began with a threepointer from Will Neighbour, who was limited to 23 minutes in the game while still dealing with an injury, which cut the Hilltopper lead to one at 36-35. After exchanging baskets to begin the second half, the Trojans seemed to key off a technical foul from UALR Coach Shields and, after WKU free throws, pushed the lead to 13 points at 68-55 on
a 13-0 run with about 8 minutes left in the game. Turnovers, fouls and missed free throws from the Trojans allowed the Hilltoppers to creep back into the game and effectively steal it with the threepointer at the horn by Jackson, who led WKU with 20 points. The Trojans had ﬁve double-ﬁgure scorers led by Hagins’ 20 points and 7 assists. James White had 14 points and 9 rebounds, senior Leroy Isler added 13, and junior Ben Dillard and redshirt freshman Mareik Isom contributed 11 points each. Shields didn’t think that the loss was from any lack of effort from team. “I told our guys in the locker room that [the loss] wasn’t [due to] a lack of effort by any stretch. We built the lead and felt like we shouldn’t have been in that situation, but I’m proud of my guys’ effort and proud of their togetherness,” Shields said. “I feel certain these guys will bounce back.” The loss drops the Trojans to 12-12 overall and 7-5 (third place) in conference play. The Trojans will try to get back on the winning track in a road game Thursday Feb. 12 against Louisiana.
Lady Trojans begin quest for consistency
photo by Alton Young
Junior Taylor Gault had a team-high 22 points and chipped in four rebounds in 36 minutes of play. It was the ninth time that Gault scored 20 points or more this season. The team has a 6-3 record in those games.
hough there was originally a game scheduled Wednesday, Feb. 5, the UALR women’s basketball team spent the day practicing instead as icy weather kept Georgia State away from Little Rock. The game has been rescheduled for March 4 at the Jack Stephens Center, according to an announcement made by the UALR Department of Athletics. Head coach Joe Foley didn’t seem to mind the change in the team’s schedule. “The way this worked out is we’re moving the game to where we had an open date the last week of the season,” Foley said. “I think it worked out pretty good for us, really. I’d rather be playing late in the year than practicing late in the year.” The Lady Trojans are still trying to
February 12 - February 26, 2014
establish a consistency between road and home play. The team boasts a 9-1 record at home, but only a 2-9 record away from the Jack Stephens Center. Coach Foley wants to see improvement in one area in speciﬁc. “We’ve got to get better defensively,” Foley said. Both coach and players are still looking for improvement heading into the second half of the conference schedule. The team has taken steps in the right direction after earning a 58-51 win against Western Kentucky University at the Jack Stephens Center Feb. 8. Junior Taylor Gault lead the way with 22 points. Senior forward Kiera Clark, who chipped in 10 points and 9 rebounds in the win at the Jack Stephens Center, has her focus on making improvements away from home court. “I would like for my team to do better on the road,” Clark said. The health science major also looks at the positive side of the schedule change. “We will be better prepared when
we play [Georgia State],” Clark said, citing the recent injury of senior Hanna Fohne. Fohne, also a health science major, was determined to do whatever she could for the team. “For me it’s whatever my team needs, if it’s two minutes or if it’s ten minutes,” Fohne said. Despite being limited in practice, Fohne set a new UALR record for blocks when she swatted three in the game against WKU, giving her 105 for her career at UALR. Like Clark, Fohne is ready to change the team’s road results and she said the solution is simple. “We need to come to play every game, whether it’s home or away,” she said. “We’re slowly working on it. It will be a process, it can’t just change overnight.” The team will get a chance to try again on the road when they travel to Lafayette, La. Feb. 12 to take on Louisiana.
By Alton Young
o, what happened a couple of weekends ago? There was some big game that I remember was supposed to be played. Some kind of Terriﬁc Bowl or Super Game or something? I know it was supposed to go on, but there was only one team on the ﬁeld from what I saw. Don’t get mad Broncos fans. I’m a huge Peyton Manning fan myself, but it is what it is. I hope Manning’s body holds up for a couple more chances. His season deserved a much better ending. But, now that football season is ﬁnally over, I can turn my full attention to my ﬁrst love: basketball- more speciﬁcally, NBA basketball. The season heats up with the All-Star festivities in New Orleans this weekend. What I really want to focus on, is the retirement of NBA commissioner David Stern, who is stepping down after 30 years at the helm of professional basketball. Stern stepped down Feb. 1, when he handed the reins to Adam Silver. The pundits have weighed in with different talking points about what Stern accomplished on the nationally and international level during his tenure as commissioner. Stern has made leaps and bounds to increase the image of the NBA. He took a sport that was seen on tape-delay during the Finals to a sport that has television contracts worth billions. Yes, billions of dollars. Another thing that Stern did for the league, was to grow the game internationally. Which was expedited by the exposure of NBA stars during the “Dream Team’s” historic 1992 Olympic games. This was the ﬁrst time that professional basketball players were allowed to compete in the games. The results of which can be seen today in that the league is made up of about 30 percent foreign-born players and players like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant are just as popular in countries like China as they are in the U.S. The most important thing that Stern did for the NBA was make it so African American coaches like Maurice Cheeks, who was ﬁred by the Detroit Pistons this week, can be ﬁred and there be no doubt that the next candidate for the position will be hired because of his ability to coach and not the because of the color of his skin. It’s appropriate, that during Black History Month, I can write that the employment ﬁeld in the NBA is as level as it could possibly be, especially for African American coaches. It may not be that people are judged by the content of their character - as the famous speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. goes- but, they are judged by how many wins they can lead the team to. And that’s the way that it should be. (Much respect to Missouri football player Michael Sam for coming out before the NFL Draft - may he be judged only by his play on the ﬁeld.) It should be this way not only in professional sports, but in all aspects of life. The rest of the big professional sports leagues, while improving, still lag behind when it comes to minority coaches. One of the worst offenders is the glacially stagnant college football hiring practices - and yes, I’m counting NCAA college sports as professional. Don’t get me started on that. I know that Stern had his ﬂaws during his run as Commissioner of the NBA. It was said that he was usually the smartest guy in the room and didn’t mind letting you know that. He was also said to be a tough negotiator, which may explain why the NBA had a couple of work stoppages on his watch. The yelling match that he got into with Miami Heat star Dwayne Wade during the last round of collective bargaining with the NBA Player’s Union is legendary. The NBA is the most diverse league when it comes to employment and ownership. In fact, the NBA’s ﬁrst African American majority owner, was none other than Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson. He later sold the Bobcats to Michael Jordan, making Jordan the second African American majority owner in the NBA. Stern’s involvement has also been crucial in the continuing existence of the WNBA, which has been in business for over a decade, and continues to give young women a place to play professional basketball at the highest level in the United States. As one of the only professional leagues available for women, Stern has been adamant about keeping that league alive. So was David Stern a perfect man? No. But his legacy goes beyond just making money for the NBA. He also made his league and in turn the world a little more color-blind. That’ll do commissioner, that’ll do.
February 12 - February 26, 2014
UALR hits seventh ‘Why not us?’ place in NCAA 6th Fan Contest Ryan Guinee
Staff Writer email@example.com
wo small schools in Arkansas, with expense budget that are dwarfed by the state’s athletic giant, have surprised many in the NCAA by reaching the top ten in a scholarship contest based on fan support called the NCAA 6th Fan. The contest started last month, and promises $100,000 in scholarships to the winning college. The colleges face off in a series of rounds similar to March Madness. Fans cast their votes online and via tweets for their school. With each vote colleges rise to the top. The fans have an opportunity to win prizes at each round as well. Arkansas State (2012 expenses of $15,307,308) and our very own University of Arkansas at Little Rock ($9,356,355) have surpassed the University of Arkansas ($82,470,473) by thirty places. AState in is ﬁrst place, while UALR is in eighth place (moved down from seventh last week). Both colleges are expected to continue to the Sweet Sixteen, as the contest calls it. Of course colleges can’t pay their way to the top, but they can certainly give considerable attention to how social media and marketing can contribute to the formula. Three members of the UALR Athletics Department began pushing the message about the contest in January. Led by Assistant Athletic Director for Communications Patrick Newton, aided by Associate Director Evan Drexler and assistant Cory McCune. The three staff members could not have expected how far to the top they would actually get. “If you had told me we would have been in the top ten [when we started], I would have been shocked,” Newton said. The Sun Belt Conference certainly had their hand in supporting the contest, which helped the group of sports information managers. “We’re no marketing department. The majority of schools have at least a dedicated department,” he said. It all began with an email from Gary Johnson. It was a standard email from an NCAA coordinator that was usually inbox fodder for the busy athletics department. The encouragement from long-time Trojan supporter and true 6th fan, Bob Landrum, helped to gather the Trojan community around the cause. “Our ﬁrst tweet about it went out on January 15th. It really took off from there,” Newton said. And take off it did -- with an average daily percentage increase of 300
percent, the growth was moving UALR into top 100, then 50, then 25. “It’s a lot easier to get excited when something is successful. People were on board and fearless about sharing,” Newton said. Unsure of how fast it would grow, or that it would at all, it wasn’t immediately clear what Newton would do with a newfound community of engaged, excited Trojan fans. “The big question is what to do after. We had a social media intern this semester, Kara Rainey from the swim team. She and I try to increase engagement, hoping that people share and spread the brand. This contest has helped the most with engaging though. We’ve added about one hundred followers since the middle of January,” Newton said. Helping the cause is men’s head
photo courtesy of NCAA
basketball coach Steve Shields. “The personality of the coaches has helped spread the contest. As individuals they have a lot of power and it increases our reach,” Newton said. “It’s an individual process, and a group of individuals will increase reach.” The athletics department hopes that this digital rallying will transfer to fans in the stands. “Ultimately, even if people don’t vote, we are getting activity and feedback. It would be great to use this growth in following and engagement and rally the fan base,” Newton said. Between the NCAA 6th Fan Contest going viral and a more energetic student section than ever before, the UALR Athletics Department is packing department-size punch at a three-man team price. Students, faculty, staff and fans of the Trojans can vote by tweeting “#6thfan” and “#UALR” in the same tweet, or by submitting a vote from 6thfan.ncaa. com. Look for the Trojan logo in 8th place and click “Vote.”
Photo by Antonio Gayden
The 2014 UALR baseball team in their first day of practice on Jan. 24. The team will play its home games in the newly renovated Gary Hogan Field. The team went 20-11 at home last season.
Antonio gayden Staff Writer AXGayden@ualr.edu
As the season opener Friday against Creighton approaches, the Trojans are more than ready. With a great senior class and a hard working team UALR baseball head coach Scott Norwood said he’s looking to add on to previous success. “From where we started, and this is my 6th year and where we are now, I feel like it’s an opportunity like everyone else to make it to Omaha (home of the college world series),” Norwood said. The Trojans won the 2011 Sun Belt Conference Championship, but lost to No. 1 Oregon and No. 3 Georgia in the NCAA Regionals. With newcomers like Tanner Rockwell, who made the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette All-Arkansas Team with Ar-
grade points Victoria Hickey Staff Writer VXHickey@ualr.edu
The UALR men’s golf team tees off its spring season on Feb. 21 in Palm Desert, California. Leading the team for the second semester is head coach Jacob Harrington. Coach Harrington joined the program last semester, moving here from South Mountain Community College in Arizona. Last semester the team placed fourth in the DA Weibring Intercollegiate tournament and ﬁrst in the Houston Baptist University Husky Invitational. The coach and players seem to agree that they got off to a shaky start in the fall, but they are prepared to come back and play strong the spring. “This is a team that will battle for the Sun Belt Conference Championship… If we get hot at the right time we could really win the Sun Belt Conference and go to the regional championship,” Coach Har-
kansas Baptist College in 2013, the Trojans have a lot to look forward to. Rockwell is a duel threat who can pitch and hit, said Coach Norwood. The Trojans will look to seniors like Austin Pfeiffer, Ben Crumpton and Bryson Thionnet to help lead the team this season. The coaching staff and seniors have been putting in the work to be better than the team that went 13 – 17 in conference play last season. “If you don’t believe you can do something you can never achieve it,” said Norwood. That’s something the coaches and players have talked about. It’s not necessarily a motto, but if you’re lingering around a Trojan game or hear players talking about the program, listen for the phrase: “Why not us.” They’ve seen other teams make it to Omaha and they feel just that way - why not us. The season begins Feb. 14
rington said. Leading the team on the course is senior Nick Zimmerman. Last year Zimmerman was an Academic All-American, meaning he had over a 3.5 GPA, and he also had a scoring average below 74.5. Nick hopes to become an Academic All-American again this year. Nick also plans on working hard to make sure the team has a chance to win the Sun Belt Conference. Another one of the teams top players, junior Alfred Kerstis, is also excited for the spring semester. Alfred’s goals for the season include the team winning the Sun Belt Conference and achieving high academically himself. Alfred believes that, though the team did not play their best in the fall, the team is very determined and will play well in their spring tournaments. Not only do these men worry about good scores on the course, but they are also very focused on academics. Zimmerman said that last semester he was ranked fourth in the conference, but towards the end of the fall season he had to miss a couple tournaments because of tests. “School comes ﬁrst,” he said.
Ben Crumpton: baseball player, piano man Pauline Mothu
Staff Writer PXMothu@ualr.edu
photo by Pauline Mothu
Senior Ben Crumpton started 41 games at third base last season, but he also tallied multiple starts at center field and at right field.
ince the ﬁrst time he played baseball, UALR senior Ben Crumpton, a native of Hot Springs, Ark. has never stopped. Baseball has always been a huge part of his life. He started playing at the age of 4. “My grandfather brought me into baseball,” the ﬁnance major said. “He used to play when he was younger, so he pushed me to play baseball as well.” Following in his grandfather’s footsteps, Crumpton was selected to the AllState and All-Conference teams while at Lakeside High School in Hot Springs. After graduating, he was approached to play professionally but turned the offer down. “I decided to turn it down to go to college,” he said, “but I plan to pursue a baseball career after graduating from UALR this coming May.” Crumpton joined the UALR baseball team in 2012 and led the Sun Belt Conference with 23 stolen bases. Last season, the third base player led the UALR team in runs scored and doubles. He was also the only UALR player to put together a 14-game hit streak last year. He
has been named to the Sun Belt Conference Honor Roll for two years in a row and was also named Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Student of the Week for the second week of December 2013. A resume like that leaves little doubt that Crumpton can pursue a professional baseball career after graduation. It is not always easy for a studentathlete to combine practice, games and a social life with having good grades, but Crumpton ﬁnds a way to be a good student, a good athlete and still have a social life. When he is not practicing, playing baseball or studying for school, Crumpton enjoys doing typical college activities such as hanging out with friends, watching movies, going bowling, and listening to music. Crumpton also enjoys playing piano. My grandmother taught me how to play, he said. I have been playing since I was a kid. Crumpton’s family has had a great inﬂuence on his life, especially his grandparents. He may not have been the person, or the baseball player, that he is today without his grandparents and his family’s support. Crumpton’s ﬁnal season as a Trojan baseball player begins Feb. 14 against Creighton.
12 Sports Swimming and diving set for
February 12 - February 26, 2014
inaugural MVC championship appearance Jacob Ellerbee executive editor Editor@ualr.edu
he UALR Swimming and Diving team is set to compete for a championship in the team’s inaugural season as members of the Missouri Valley Conference when the meet kicks of Feb. 13 in Carbondale, Ill. Like other UALR sports, the swimming and diving team has historically competed in the Sun Belt Conference, but after several schools left the Sun Belt Conference in the offseason, UALR was best suited to seek competition in another conference. In their ﬁrst year in the MVC, the team managed to collect three-team wins- two of which came against Maryville in St. Louis and the other coming against Ouachita Baptist University.
With this being UALR’s ﬁrst season in the MVC and with nine freshmen on the roster, head coach Amy Burgess said it was important to get the team in meets that would test their abilities and help get them ready to make a memorable appearance at their ﬁrst MVC championships. Burgess lined up meets against non-conference opponents such as those from Kansas University (the coach’s alma mater), Vanderbilt and Rice. “As we develop and grow as a team,” Burgess said, “our level of competition must grow as well and this season was a big step toward what we are becoming.” “I do think the team was successful in learning how to deal with tough competition and become stronger as a group.” Senior Kara Raney has been sharing her words of wisdom throughout the season to help
motivate this young, developing team. “(The freshmen) are experienced club swimmers and know what it’s like to swim at a big meet like this,” she said. “But conference is more competitive and (offers) a great chance for each swimmer to show off their hard work from the year.” Including Raney, there are 17 swimmers and divers on the team this year, compared to just 13 on last season’s squad. In addition to the tough competition faced during the season, Burgess said having more student-athletes on the roster would provide them with opportunities to compete in more events and score more points than in previous championship meets. “We are in a position to score more points than previous years, but we also have a few swimmers that can ﬁnish
photo by Jacob Ellerbee
Freshman Jinson Kang, a Bryant High School graduate, competes in the 200 yard butterfly and freestyle as well as the 500 yard freestyle. She also competes in the freestyle and medley relays. in the top 8 of their events. We also have relays to watch for that could place [in the] top 3.” Burgess said she expects her team’s hard work to pay off when the team competes Feb. 13 – 15 at Dr. Edward Shea Natatorium on the campus of Southern Illinois University “You will see some previous recorder holders better their marks, as well as some new
folks stepping up to change names,” the coach said. “The team has been looking great in practice and getting better every day.” The Missouri Valley Conference plans to stream live video of the championship, beginning 6 p.m. Feb. 13. Fans can also follow the events via Twitter, using the hashtag “#MVCSWIMDIVE.”
UALR wrestling club gets learning experience on the mats
Pictured from left to right (front): Evan Schrodel, Lance Biggers, (back):Noah Bailey, Luis Pena, Eric Yarberry, Chase Yarberry and Wade Bailey.
Staff Writer SRSavage@ualr.edu
here is no feeling that compares to an athlete seeing their hard work pay off after months of blood, sweat and sacriﬁce to accomplish a goal. The ups and downs of the process can cause some to feel so frustrated that they throw in the towel and move on. Junior Eric Yarberry built the UALR Wrestling Club in the fall as a way to continue his passion for wrestling. He said it took a lot of time to recruit new members, train them, and get funding for necessary equipment. He said it is “awesome” to see the club grow like it has.
“When I ﬁrst got started, I was having trouble getting funded for a wrestling mat, uniforms, you name it,” Yarberry said. “The Arkansas School for the Blind allowed us to practice there, use their mat, and things started to take off after that.” On Jan. 25, the wrestling club competed for the ﬁrst time at the Central Baptist College open tournament in Conway, Ark. Yarberry and ﬁve other members participated in the event. Evan Schrodel competed in the 149 weight class, Yarberry and Luis Pena in the 157 class, Lance Biggers in 174, Noah Bailey in 197, and Wade Bailey in the 285 class. Yarberry said the tournament was a learning experience for everyone. He said not
photo by Steven Savage
competing after so many years caused him to be nervous and lose focus on his technique. “Even though we lost, we have a lot more to learn and cannot stop training or promoting the club,” Yarberry said. “I learned that I need to work on more defense and speed because you get put in positions and the match is over before you know it.” He said that one of his competitors showed very good sportsmanship and helped him during the match. “He helped me to the mat and then he walked on the mat to wrestle me,” Yarberry said. “I didn’t know what to do. At the end of the match, he walked me off the mat, walked me to his coach to shake his hand and
Did you know?
Former UALR basketball player Pete Myers replaced Michael Jordan in the Chicago Bulls starting lineup when Jordan retired to play baseball for 2 seasons.
SPORTS UPDATE BASEBALL: Senior Dillon Moritz was named Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Student-Athlete of the week for the week of Feb. 3. TRACK: Sophomore Emma Dahl ﬁnished ﬁfth in the Samford Invitational 3K. The indoor track season comes to a close with the SBC Championship on Feb 24. SWIMMING: The season-ending MVC will be the ﬁnal meet for the team’s three seniors Kara Raney, Hope and Holly Myers. BASKETBALL (W): The Lady Trojans continue to dominate opponents at home and have a 9-1 home court record, but their next two games in Louisiana. BASKETBALL (M): The men lost consecutive home games for the ﬁrst time this season. Their next two games are on the road in Louisiana. GOLF: The women’s team will be in Texas this month for the Jim West Challenge and the men in California for the Wyoming Cowboy Desert Intercollegiate. The women end the month in Alabama’s USA Women’s Invitational Feb. 24-25. HALL OF FAME: Former baseball player Ron Sheﬃeld and former basketball player Vaughn Williams were both inducted into the UALR Athletics Hall of Fame at halftime of the Feb.8 basketball game at the Jack Stephens Center. Statistics good as of Feb. 9
it just blew me away.” Schrodel said he wrestled from 5th-grade through high school. It had been 9 years since he’d wrestled in a competition, but his love for the sport made him want to get back in it. He said in his ﬁrst match he felt outclassed, not by weight, by skill. “I felt old and was trying to survive, but that motivates me to improve my technique and training,” Schrodel said. “I learned that all those wrestling practice moves I did in high school such as core and back exercises really helped, but this time around, I know I need to focus on those. I learned it’s a lot harder than it was in high school.” Although Schrodel lost his ﬁrst and third match, he won his second against Arkansas Baptist. “I had a takedown, a couple back moves and a pin,” Schrodel said. “In my third match, I took the guy down with a headlock, rolled him to his back and the oldness kicked in, I got caught and loss.” “Overall, it’s impressive that Eric started this and we competed for the ﬁrst time, I would love to see it take off and be a sanctioned sport for the school. The sport does not require a lot of money because a wrestling mat lasts for years, the uniforms are not expensive
and everything else is up to the wrestler, it’s not like trying to start a football team,” Schrodel said. Biggers said it was his ﬁrst time to compete in a long time. He said he never wrestled when he was young, but participated in martial arts and amateur ﬁghting for a long time. “These guys have been very helpful because I have not grappled before and I know I got a lot of work to do because I’m still kind of out of shape,” Biggers said. “I sprained my ankle in my match and defending a takedown at that point became diﬃcult, and at my height, I think I should be a few weight classes lower.” “It was good for me to watch other wrestlers, see new techniques, and learn what I can incorporate next time I can wrestle,” he said. Luis Pena, Noah and Wade Bailey were unavailable to comment on their participation in the tournament, but Yarberry said Noah placed ﬁfth overall. Yarberry said he is currently working on ﬁnding another open tournament to participate. He said it has to be an open tournament, since they are just a club. Their matches can be found on YouTube at UALRWrestling.
SPORTS SCHEDULE FEB.12-BASKETBALL(W)
UALR AT LOUISIANA @ 7P.M.
UALR AT LOUISIANA @ 7P.M.
MISSOURI VALLEY CHAMPIONSHIPS @ ILLINOIS
UALR AT ULM @ 12P.M./2:00P.M.
UALR VS CREIGHTON
JIM WEST CHALLENGE
SOUTHEAST MISSOURI STATE
WYOMING COWBOY DESERT INTERCOLLEGIATE
FEB.21-23-BASEBALL* UALR VS BRADLEY
FEB.22-BASKETBALL (W/M)* UALR VS UT ARLINGTON @ 4:30 P.M./ 7 P.M.
SBC CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP @ BIRMINGHAM, ALA. *Home Games
In this issue: Introducing The Forum 2.0! We have completely redesigned our newspaper. Please let us know how you like it! We have a story...
Published on Feb 11, 2014
In this issue: Introducing The Forum 2.0! We have completely redesigned our newspaper. Please let us know how you like it! We have a story...