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Lab coordinator hopes 3-D printing lab in Alkek can become creative space Senator at Large Jake Herrel, President Andrew Homann, Chief of Staff Connor Clegg and Vice President Samantha Martinez pose for a picture inside the LBJSC teaching theater April 13.


New leadership plans to fix 'ineffective' Student Government By Bailey Buckingham SENIOR NEWS REPORTER @bcbuckingham

Some members of Student Government are hoping the new senate session, which begins Monday, will mark a new beginning for the institution. Andrew Homann, who will take his place as student body president at the Monday meeting, along with Senator Jake Herrel, will introduce two resolu-

tions aiming to change the functionality of Student Government. If successful, the bills will get Student Government working again, Herrel said. One of the bills will reorganize the Cabinet to make it more efficient. The second resolution will abolish committees and replace them with weekly commissions. “This way our senators can meet, work and brainstorm legislation with the

same consistent group every week and focus on really making a difference here at Texas State,” Herrel said. The first resolution will establish a new commission—the Student Services Commission, which will combine the marketing and programs commissions to make it easier for senators to coordinate and market out to everyone, Homann said. Homann said the second resolution was written

to restructure the committees to promote efficiency. “The committee restructure will allow for commissions to meet every single week,” Homann said. “And for us to establish committees on an ‘as needed’ basis, so that way we are getting rid of a lot of ‘dead time’ within the organization, and it will just make us a lot more efficient.” Herrel said he and Homann have been working on this together to

make effective changes in Student Government and increase the organization’s productivity. “President Andrew Homann initially approached me with the idea,” Herrel said. “I decided to author these pieces because it is the right move at the right time to make Student Government actually working again.” Homann said the inspi-



Students march for free tuition, advisory board By Richard Dray NEWS REPORTER @Richard_Dray

Chants against student debt and championing the concept of free tuition echoed across campus from Old Main to the LBJ Student Center Wednesday as students protested in the Million Student March. The widespread movement is divided between national and campus goals and focuses on calling for free tuition and giving students the opportunity to have a say in how their tuition dollars are spent. “We think that education is a right,” said Kennedy Swift, studio art freshman, who took part in the march. The march wound

around most of central campus and even went in to the student center itself, with students shouting slogans such as, “Banks got bailed out, students got sold out!” through megaphones. “We want transparency on how tuition money is being spent,” said Victoria Politte, communication disorders sophomore. “We don’t want our money going towards wow factors like new fancy buildings.” Some of the campus goals created by students for the Million Student Movement at Texas State involve a complete freeze in tuition rates and fees, a halt on all spending projects they feel are frivolous

See MARCH, Page 2

DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR Kristoffer Ian Celera, also known as Donald Tramp around campus, counter protests the Million Student March April 13 in front of the Vaquero Statue.

By Lesly De Leon ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR @leslyd28

Students and faculty can print a figurine of a pug, a working robotic hand or a sculpture of an individual in the 3-D printing lab on the fourth floor of Albert B. Alkek Library, a service that has been offered since January. The lab currently operates a Makerbot Z18 printer which uses PLA plastic filament, a nontoxic resin made of sugar derived from field corn, to print objects. The printer heats the plastic filament and designs the objects one layer at a time. The cost of a project depends the amount of material used and the time it takes to print the project. According to Alkek’s website, a prosthetic arm printed at a low resolution which takes 109.33 grams of material and 25.77 hours to print would cost $238. “This is going to turn into a maker-space,” said Scott Johnson, lab coordinator. “We’re looking at getting all kinds of new stuff.” Johnson said he’s working to expand the lab to include more 3-D printers and possibly a laser cutter, a plotter printer and a mini mill. “My hope is that this room will become a giant workspace and it’ll be nothing but creativity as far as the eye can see,” Johnson said. Johnson runs the lab with the help of two student employees: Adam Nwaozo, applied arts and sciences senior, and John Muehl, studio art senior. “I hope a lot more students know about the lab so they can actually start using it,” Nwaozo said. “And to make this into more of a collaborative space so people can work together and cre-

See PRINTING, Page 2


Town soon to be populated by 7-foot mermaids By Rae Glassford NEWS REPORTER @rae_maybe

Mermaids are set to make a comeback in San Marcos this fall, as 7-foot mermaid statues will be installed throughout the city. The mermaid legacy in San Marcos began as a tourist attraction in the mid-1900s, when the former Aquarena amusement park provided entertainment though underwater performances by women dressed as mermaids. However, a new plan—courtesy of the Arts Commission—is seeking to put the San Marcos mermaid back on the map. “The mermaid was born in San Marcos,” said Clay DeStefano, chair of the Arts Commission. “It’s part of our modern culture, and it’s a part of our local lore.” A design has been commissioned and will be re-

produced 10 times, said Lisa Morris, recreation programs manager. Rather than creating 10 individual statues, copies will be made of the original statue. “The (San Marcos city) council has approved a particular vendor for the job, the Fountain People, who have done similar work for cruise liner companies and Disney,” DeStefano said. “Luckily, they happen to be based in San Marcos, so we have not had to outsource.” The Arts Commission provided the Fountain People with a rough sketch in order to give a clear starting point. City officials currently await the completion of the final rendering. Each statue will be 7-feet tall, mounted on a rectangular “butter stick” slab of limestone, which is projected to increase the height of the installations to approximately nine feet. “The mermaids will be

“The mermaid was born in San Marcos. It’s part of our modern culture, and it’s been a part of our local lore.” —CLAY DESTAFANO, CHAIR OF THE ARTS COMMISSION standing upright on their tails, to make them more human, more approachable,” DeStefano said. “People connect with and like the mermaid. We’re ready to rally around this concept of the mermaid as the protector of our heritage and our river.” “Next, we have to issue a call to artists to reinterpret, decorate and rethink the mermaid,” DeStefano said. “Each proposed image will be presented to a community panel much like mural committee, for evaluation, to see if the image is aligned with what we’ve envisioned.”

From there, 10 finalists will be selected to work on making each mermaid sculpture unique. “We’ll be sourcing from primarily local artists,” Morris said. “We’ll do an open call, but most of the artists will likely be from the Central Texas area.” The idea was inspired by a similar project done in Wimberley, where decorated statues in the shape of cowboy boots were placed around town. The idea was finalized around August 2015, and the Arts Commission hopes to have the project completed and ready for installation by

next fall, Morris said. “It’s like the guitars in Austin a few years ago. Lots of cities around the U.S. have had public art projects similar to this, but the concept is new to San Marcos,” DeStefano said. “The commission decided to use the mermaid image because it’s something unique and different—something that leads to dialogue.” The ultimate goal with any public artwork is to bring art to the people, and to create something positive to look at, Morris said. This particular project is expected to help drive tourism, and add to the prod-

ucts the tourism department can sell to visitors. “In past artworks, people have been very interested in depicting historical imagery, but right now we’re looking for something more imaginative and engaging,” DeStefano said. “As a result of that, the mermaid is our image of choice. She has a built-in wow factor.” In addition to being on the San Marcos Arts Commission, DeStefano also acts as co-founder for the Mermaid Society of San Marcos, a local collective focused on promoting the

See MERMAID, Page 2

2 | Thursday, April 14, 2016


The University Star Anna Herod, News Editor @annaleemurphy @universitystar

GOVERNMENT, ration for these resolutions came after being a member of Student Government for a year and a half and not seeing the senate accomplish substantial legislation. “I have never actually written or gotten any meaningful piece of work done in committee or commission time,” Homann said. “And I just thought it was time for Student Government to really evaluate ourselves

PRINTING, ate things.” The lab can be used for a multitude of different things and the possibilities are endless, Muehl said. “We’re going to be integrating a lot more stuff in here,” Muehl said. “It’s going to be a space where people’s imagination can just run wild; you can just make whatever you want.” To print a project, students can submit a 3-D design in .STL, .OBJ or .THING format. The lab has two scanners which can scan objects or people, and a computer

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and change the way we market ourselves and the way we go about doing our business, and I think this is a good first step to finally beginning to work more efficiently for the students.” Texas State students deserve better than what the current system allows for, Herrel said. These bills will allow Student Government to serve students much more effectively.

Senators passed nine bills at the at their April 11 meeting, which ended the 2015-2016 session. In comparison, thirteen bills were passed during the previous 2014-2015 legislative session. The resolutions passed at the last meeting focused on safety and diversity, among other issues. Samantha Martinez, vice president elect, said

she believes the momentum Student Government has gained comes from a culture change within the senate. She also believes the two resolutions will ensure efficiency within the organization. “I think (Student Government) has been and will be changing, as far as getting work done efficiently,” Martinez said. “The committees meeting more often


from front program such as Rhinoceros will turn the scan into a 3-D model that can be printed. Students can access the Thingiverse, an online platform that offers free and downloadable 3-D models. Not many individuals have used the lab, which is currently in the pilot phase, Johnson said. Johnson said he is testing the limitations of the printer by printing different objects, including objects found in the Smithsonian Museum. He recently printed an object that took

111 hours to create. “We were concerned whether the computer could handle something that long, whether or not the printer could handle running that long,” Johnson said. “And it handled it without a single problem, which is pretty cool.” Johnson said he hopes to make printing 3-D objects more affordable for students. “We just hope to continue to grow this into something that students and faculty can use and be creative with,” Johnson said.

will create better work ethic as far as the people getting to know each other and getting work done together.” After Herrel introduces the resolutions at the April 18 meeting, senators will have a week to review the pieces and an opportunity to debate and vote on them April 25. Herrel said he is confident the bills will be successful if approved, but

it will come down to the senators’ votes. He hopes his colleagues will support both pieces. “The only question left is whether our senators will get on board and vote to make Student Government work better for our students,” Herrel said. “A vote against these proposals is a vote to continue the paralysis and ineffectiveness of Student Government.”

Tramp” during the march. Donald Tramp has garnered substantial attention on social media, as Celera wears Donald Trump-esque wig, a suit jacket and no pants. Throughout the march Celera could be seen dancing and striking various provocative poses holding a sign stating, “Your debt, your choice.” Celera was not the only outspoken protestor against the march, as other Trump supporters made themselves heard at the end of the procession in the amphitheater. There were also other students present at the beginning of the march and at the

end who did not take part, but voiced concerns over the goals of the movement, discussing their views with its members. Robert McAlmon, a mathematics graduate student, said he agrees with some of their points, but thinks it is more important students know where tuition is going and how it is used. “I think we should make school officials more accountable for where our money is going,” McAlmon said. “I know that a lot of our money goes to sports and overpaying administrators which I don’t think is right.

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and the creation of a student tuition advisory board. The national goals of the movement are tuition-free public college, elimination of all student debt, $15 minimum wage for all campus workers and divestment from private prisons by all colleges and universities. Kristoffer Celera, computer science junior, said there are ways students can get a free education without demanding the government give it to them. Celera, who is a member of Young Americans for Liberty, did not support the protest. Celera was dressed up as his alter ego “Donald

LESLY DE LEON STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Scott Johnson, lab coordinator, runs the 3D printing lab on the fourth floor of Alkek.

DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR Students march down the Quad April 13 protesting for free education.

MERMAID, image of the mermaid as a facilitator of entrepreneurialism, environmentalism and river stewardship. DeStefano said the Mermaid Society has spoken with city council in order to discuss the organization’s overall vision and its importance to the community. During the course of one meeting, Mayor Daniel Guerrero purportedly suggested San Marcos be named the “mermaid capital” of Texas. In order for San Marcos to be officially declared the state’s “mermaid capi-

from front tal,” the motion has to be passed through state legislation, DeStefano said. Guerrero has spoken with state Sen. Judith Zaffirini, and it has been requested the item be addressed in the upcoming legislative session. “It was announced by Mayor Guerrero at our official launch in January that he was moving forward with declaring San Marcos the mermaid capital of Texas,” said July Moreno, founder of the Mermaid Society. The society wishes to

work with all of the arts community, but there are no shared projects currently on the radar, as far as a collaboration with the Arts Commission is concerned, Moreno said. Although the statues are specific to the Arts Commission and are by no means a product of collaboration with the Mermaid Society, Moreno remarked upon the welltimed coincidence. “It’s not one of our goals necessarily, but it is a wonderful opportunity for San Marcos to have,” Moreno said.

DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR Students march down the Quad April 13 protesting for free education.

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Vegan-friendly beauty products don’t have to break the bank By Vivian Medina LIFESTYLE REPORTER @vjmedia6

Maintaining a vegan lifestyle can be pretty difficult to manage, especially in this carnivorous world. However, it’s not impossible to find everything you need to continue your normal routine. Vegans aren’t only concerned about their food; any animal product is unacceptable. Luckily, there are vegan-friendly beauty products available, from shampoo to foundation. Madison Holt, psychology freshman, said it can be a challenge to pay attention to the labels of every makeup or hair product she buys to stay cruelty-free. “Having to double-check what is going in or on your body can be pretty timeconsuming and difficult at times,” Holt said. “I find that doing a lot of research before going shopping can help and prevent me from getting something that is not vegan.” Through doing research

online, Holt was able to find many beauty products that meet the requirements of a vegan lifestyle. “My favorite vegan-friendly makeup brand is e.l.f. Cosmetics,” Holt said. “The best thing about it is that they have great quality products for super cheap prices.” E.l.f. Cosmetics is known for being a cruelty-free brand, which means none of their products are tested on animals and all contain vegan-friendly ingredients. The makeup company is also well-known for bring inexpensive, selling cosmetics at $1, $3 and $6 collections. People think the lifestyle comes with expensive brands and products, but as proven by e.l.f. Cosmetics, being vegan does not have to break the bank. Erica Johnson, art sophomore, was concerned about becoming vegan and thought she would not be able to afford natural and organic products. “When I became vegan, I first thought that I was going to be spending a lot of money I didn’t have buying cruel-

KARINA RIVERA STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Vegan friendly beauty products are currently helping exclude all forms of exploitation regarding animals.

ty-free products, but that was not the case,” Johnson said. Johnson said she likes to shop e.l.f Cosmetics for makeup, but when it comes to hair and body products, she was able to find another affordable brand.

“For things like lotion and shampoo, I like to buy from the brand Yes To,” Johnson said. “However, you do have to watch out and read the ingredients, because some of their products are not fully vegan.”

Yes To is a drugstore brand that can be found in Target and Walmart. The company sells all-natural beauty products, containing various items such as makeup wipes and shampoo. The brand has seven col-

lections, and Johnson said she has tried at least one product from each. “My favorite is their Yes To Carrots collection,” Johnson said. “All of the items from the collection have a nice smell and they are very effective.” As the vegan lifestyle becomes more popular, many beauty companies are coming out with new cruelty-free products. Finding veganfriendly products is becoming more common where people least expect them. The San Marcos Farmer’s Market, which happens every Saturday, is seeing more vendors selling organic and natural products. Hannah Ferris, San Marcos resident, was surprised to find vegan products at the market. “I am a vegan activist, so I try and look for beauty products that I can recommend to other people,” Ferris said. “I am used to seeing Austin markets filled with veganfriendly products, but it was a nice treat to find that small towns like San Marcos are joining the cause.”

Selfies: the good, the bad and the ugly By Stacee Collins LIFESTYLE REPORTER @stvcee

According to the MerriamWebster dictionary, selfie is an actual word. Men and women around the globe take selfies, but are they narcissistic, or a symbol of a more confident generation? Stephanie Korenek, interdisciplinary studies freshman, said taking selfies can give people a boost of confidence. However, she said people can become jealous of others on social media and post selfies for selfish reasons. “If you have issues and are posting that selfie just so people can comment and so you can get reassurance of yourself, then you’re going to be jealous of others,” Korenek said. “You’re just posting that to get compliments and for the wrong reasons.” There is a new product out called LuMee, a smartphone case with LED lights for selfie-takin, proving people will go to extremes to get the perfect selfie. Korenek thinks products like these enforce the importance of how one appears. “I feel like it’s more of a negative thing,” she said. “You shouldn’t have to have the perfect lighting for you to feel perfect. Everyone has flaws, so I think the light is just a cover up.” Korenek said highly-edited selfies motivate people to change who they are. “If it is a boost of confidence, you should be good with how you look. Don’t edit so much,” she said. “You know all your flaws, and you’re trying to cover them up and not be yourself anymore.” Jordan Herrera, exploratory professional freshman, thinks selfies motivate young people to feel comfortable in their own skin. “I think selfies are definitely an indicator of a

more confident youth,” he said. “Being able to put yourself out there and feel good about it is a great thing, and something that I firmly believe can help with self-image, so as long as it’s reinforced with positive outlook.” Herrera said social media image is becoming an important characteristic.“I think that we view our image in a much different way than almost anyone else ever has, but I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing,” he said. “However, I recently have seen a mass influx of people who care more about online presence than real life, and I do believe that to be dangerous.” Herrera said social media is what causes jealousy amongst people, but the selfies posted are harmless. “I think selfies themselves promote higher selfesteem, while social media behaviors as a whole evoke jealousy,” he said. “Nothing is wrong with someone taking pictures of themselves. I think the issue exists when we add that in with a competitive atmosphere.” Halley South, marketing

freshman, said she is an avid selfie-taker when feeling confident.

“People don’t really do things for the experience anymore. They just do them to take a picture.”

Halley South Marketing

“We live in a world where we let everyone know what we’re doing all the time, and likes on a selfie are more meaningful than someone giving you a literal compliment,” she said. “I also feel like there’s those who need those comments because it makes them feel better about themselves.” South said higher selfesteem can stem from taking selfies, but over-editing the photo portrays a false image. “I think it’s bad when people go to such extremes to alter themselves,” she said. “There’s apps where people alter their bodies, lips and face. I think that’s problematic because it’s

sending out a wrong image of yourself. People just feel like they have to look different than they actually are in order to get confidence or likes.” South said people worry about their online reputations too much. “Especially on a college campus, you see people taking Snapchats at the dining hall, library and at parties,” she said. “People don’t really do things for the experience anymore. They just do them to take a picture. People are in competition ALYSSA DUGAN-RODRIQUEZ STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER (for) the coolest Instagram picture, and I don’t think Samantha Paul, international relations senior, taking a selfie with Kaysey that’s a good thing.” White, special education senior, and Erinn Hill , psychology sophomore, in the Quad on April 11.



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The University Star


Brandon Sams, Opinions Editor @TheBrandonSams @universitystar


Homeless displacement rhetoric should be reconsidered Concerns regarding panhandlers being “too near” the University of Texas campus are nothing new, but since the senseless and brutal death of UT student Haruka Weiser April 3 those fears have been compounded. The debate has been reignited, and this time it burns bright with indifference disguised as worry. Tensions are understandably going to be high after the first campus murder of the millennium. While understandable, emotional fragility and fear are never excuses to devolve into aggressive reactionaries campaigning against a group of people, as if homelessness is a crime. In an April 12 Texas Tribune article many parents expressed their discontent with UT’s apparent homeless problem. From petitions to remove the homeless from Guadalupe Street to unsubstantiated rhetoric about the homeless’ inherent “criminal element,” parents and students are in an ideologically backward uproar. When all is said and done, this behavior is nothing more than a disgusting display of scapegoating. And in the grand tradition of condemnation, an entire group of people are buried deeper in the burrows where they unfortunately reside due to the isolated actions of an individual. People have been conditioned through social and cultural norms to disregard those who have become the victims of economic misfortune

and financial instability. America’s backward “bootstraps philosophy” has led many to see homeless people are nothing more than lazy beggars victimized by their own ineptitude. In actuality, their situations are a lot more nuanced. Substance abuse, lack of affordable housing and mental illness are among the leading causes of homelessness according to a 2008 U.S. Conference of Mayors study. Homelessness can be alleviated through expanded funding for treating the mentally ill, equal access to rehabilitation centers and affordable housing units. A conversation about how to address the homelessness epidemic is much more conscientious, especially when juxtaposed against the notion that officials should force them to less desirable parts of town, aka far from the vicinity of the privileged. Given the fact that the alleged murderer, 17-yearold Meechaiel Cremer, is reported to be mentally ill, redirecting anger and passion toward addressing overarching concerns seems to be necessary to securing long-term remedies. Placing a tattered Band-Aid on a bullet wound does not a solution make. Criminality is not solely relegated to those of socioeconomic disadvantage. There are just as many criminals on a given campus as there are in the bordering parts of town. Approximately 99 percent of sex offenders in single-victim incidents are male, according to a 1997 study. Ironically, when instances of sexual


assault occur on campuses across the country, no one is demanding the removal of men for being the disproportionate perpetrators. No matter the group, generalizations are wrong. It should go without saying that safety is important. The absolute wrong way to go about ensuring security, however, is by isolating homeless populations away from resources such as churches that offer panhandler services. These churches are the reason the homeless congregate on the Drag. Frankly, many of the

demands of some parents, students and worrywarts reek of entitlement. Just because these particular university students have the privilege of investing in an education—something majority of Americans are not afforded—does not mean that the landscape of the city should be altered in their favor. Especially when those alterations are reactions meant to demonize and other an already vulnerable community. A broken clock is right twice a day, and while the basis for the complaints waddles in a swamp of

classist hubris, other ideas such as increased patrolling and lighting are beneficial. Take Texas State for example, whose Student Government passed three pieces of legislation April 11 in hopes of making the university a bit safer. One requires additional 911 call boxes, including mandatory maintenance, at scarce locations and another will include additional lighting at Den Food Court and Bobcat Village. Legislation like this illustrates a productive method of mitigating safety concerns and offering students a responsive

sign of relief. Safety is important, but should never come at the costs of a group of people’s dignity and personhood. For all of those seeking to besmirch the homeless, channel that anger toward positive change. After all, homeless populations are not trash to be disposed of whenever unjustifiably offended parties deem them bothersome and general aesthetic displeasures. They are people, so treat them with respect. Rationality trumps reactionaries every time.

The Main Point is the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. Columns are the opinions of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the full staff, Texas State University Student Media, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Texas State University.


Universities need to better punish dishonest athletes and faculty By Mikala Everett ASSISTANT OPINIONS EDITOR @mikala_maquella

My level of interest in sports is equivalent to a slam dunk that gains the team a touchdown. However, I find motivation to care when the integrity of my degree comes into question. When universities allow coaches and student-athletes to partake in academic dishonesty, it does not only affect the perpetrators, but also regular students—especially those who couldn’t care less about sports. Recently, the National Collegiate Athletic Association has been cracking down on academic fraud. In

2014 alone, the NCAA uncovered 22 major violations and over 5,000 secondary infractions, the highest amount recorded at that point in time. The NCAA is responsible for punishment of academic dishonesty in college sports, but the schools need to be held accountable for allowing such misconduct to occur in the first place. Some universities of late seem more concerned with making money than ensuring a proper education for students. Winning the NCAA tournament will not matter if a degree from the school means nothing. Once a university allows academic misconduct to take place on campus, whether by “GPA

booster classes” or coaches asking favors from faculty, the integrity of degrees from the institution is at stake. It is not only unfair to the student-athletes, who now do not have a proper education and balanced work ethic, but the students who pay for these athletic programs with part of their tuition. Instead of lying for athletes or covering for them when they fail, coaches and athletic administrators should hold these students accountable. If student-athletes cannot pass a general education dance class, then perhaps they do not need to be students at the university in the first place. Duh. The NCAA is becoming

stricter when it comes to academic violations, but it is not doing enough. The organization’s credibility has grown shoddy as Division I universities are consistently found guilty of partaking in corruption. Kean University’s athletic teams were placed on probation after investigation of a former women’s basketball coach, while Syracuse’s men’s basketball coach was suspended for nine games with 12 scholarships taken and 108 wins vacated. Collegiate athletic corruption is an issue that continues to persist. Universities should acknowledge that money is not more important than the academic wellbeing of the students attending

colleges in our nation. But alas, we live in a capitalist society more concerned with the monetary value of education than the social and personal benefits of a well-educated populace. The sad thing is, many student-athletes receive degrees in ineffective fields and will not go pro. What can you do with a general studies degree? Work at Foot Locker—and if you’re lucky, you might be a manager. Many athletes do not have the time or resources to complete course-intensive degrees, so they end up with the short end of the stick upon graduation. This leads once again to universities hurting not only student-athletes, but also

other students’ chances of success after graduation. If it comes to light that Texas State is partaking in such devious behavior, not only will Boko the Bobcat’s name be tarnished, but so will that of every student who received a degree from our beloved institution. Come 10 years, I don’t want the burden of explaining at the water cooler why I attended a fraudulent school. I’d much rather talk about Janice’s new haircut and Bob’s choice of sandwiches. Just saying. —Mikala Everett is a mass communications junior


Reflecting on the importance of Star Wars latest female leads By Libby Light OPINIONS COLUMNIST @LibbyvLight

Women around the world are shouting “Hallelujah!” because, for the second time in a row, Star Wars will feature a female lead. However, not everyone is excited about the franchise’s latest heroine. Last week’s the trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story released, and it featured Jyn Erso as the lead character. The embittered misogynists gave ecstatic fans plenty of material to roll our eyes at as articles, tweets and comments almost immediately appeared deriding the character as a “Mary Sue.” “Mary Sue” refers to a female character who is seemingly perfect and saves the

day through such unrealistic abilities to the point where she becomes annoying. This character is often onedimensional, so this phrase is used as an insult. The film hasn’t come out yet, so this accusation regarding Jyn Erso is particularly frustrating. Fans have only seen less than two minutes of a teaser trailer, yet some viewers have the audacity to assume, because she’s a woman, she’s going to be dull and uninteresting. Despite having an ironically similar reaction to the female lead, Rey, in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, misogynistic fans don’t seem to have learned from their mistakes. Rey turned out to be brave, powerful and funny while leading a narrative that made audience members

The University Star Editor-in-Chief...........................................Kelsey Bradshaw, News Editor........................................................Anna Herod, Sports Editor..............................................Paul Livengood, Lifestyle Editor......................................Carlie Porterfield, Opinions Editor..........................................Brandon Sams, Multimedia Editor..............................Daryl Ontiveros, Copy Desk Chief.................................Abigail Marshall,

yearn for more. Rogue One will take place between Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. The film will chronicle a band of resistance fighters as they unite to steal the Death Star plans. Clearly, Jyn is extremely vital in the narrative, which goes on to affect the series’ most famous characters. Unhappy fans conveniently fail to understand that strong female characters are vital for the empowerment of women and girls. All too often female characters are dependent on a male protagonist. Women are frequently stuck portraying wives or mothers. Of the highest grossing films in 2014, female protagonists only accounted for 12 percent. Smaller roles do not

fare much better, as women encompass merely 30 percent of all speaking parts. Such poor accessibility to female role models for young girls makes the few available all the more vital. Last year’s The Force Awakens gave us Rey, the empowering fighter and pilot we deserve. “The character of Rey is a game changer for the little girls around the world who have been disgracefully ignored by the Star Wars empire for decades,” said broadcaster Patricia Karvelas. “The dialogue between her and Han Solo finally provides the feminist punch-the-air moment we’ve all been desperately waiting for.” This isn’t to say that previous female characters are bad. Leia Organa and

Padmé Amidala are great, but their stories heavily involve men and romance. The two women, frankly, lacked the authority many viewers wanted. Rey, on the other hand, delivers a nice vacation from the constant yank of the over-played, straight relationships Hollywood loves to shove in audiences’ faces. She takes initiative, saves the people around her and builds friendships on her own terms. When Rey gets kidnapped she uses her own strengths to free herself. She doesn’t need her male friends to rescue her because she is never the damsel in distress. Movies reflect real life. Even franchises that take place “in a galaxy far, far away” reflect our culture and the way we view

women. If children only see vulnerable, weak women they will grow up believing those monikers epitomize womanhood. Through Rey’s influence, the female audience members gain a sense of girl power unprecedented in any previous Star Wars film. Disney stores are filled with Rey costumes, and this Halloween will most certainly be filled with precious little Jakku scavengers. Jyn will undoubtedly have a similar influence as the two-minute trailer has already made an impact. The first six Star Wars films had male leads—I think men can survive women taking over a few. —Libby Light is a journalism senior 601 University Drive Trinity Building, Room 101 San Marcos, TX 78666

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The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Monday and Thursday of the spring and fall and every other Wednesday in the summer semesters. It is distributed on campus and throughout San Marcos at 8 a.m. on publication days with a distribution of 6,000. Printing and distribution is by the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung. Copyright Thursday, April 14, 2016. All copy, photographs and graphics appearing in The University Star are the exclusive property of The University Star and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the editor in chief. The first five issues of each edition of the paper are free. Additional copies of the paper can be purchased at 50¢ per copy. Contact The University Star office at (512) 245-3487 to purchase additional copies.

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Thursday, April 14, 2016 | 5 Brandon Sams, Opinions Editor @TheBrandonSams @universitystar


A Million Dollar Solution for the #MillionStudentMarch Of the many burdens the modern student bears, the looming presence of student loan debt remains a cause of great concern. For many students, the experience of college lies somewhere between fantasy and harsh reality. At $1.2 trillion, student loan debt has even surpassed credit card debt. StartClass, an education data site, estimates that the national student loan debt increases at a rate of $2,726.27 per second. Despite the scrutiny regarding tuition and student loans, there exists another issue which has similarly captivated the attention of students and millennials alike: The living wage. Certainly, this concept resonates with many students. Achieving a living wage for all campus workers is one of the driving

forces behind the growing movement #MillionStudentMarch. On Nov. 12, 2015, students from a wide range of backgrounds at 110 campuses across the country partook in the endeavor of solidarity for the first time. The march took place once again Apr. 13—this time alongside the Black Liberation Collective, reflecting the increased interconnectedness and social consciousness of our generation. But herein, we must acknowledge providing a living wage for all campus workers cannot be achieved without an increase in tuition. The MSM alleviates this concern, however, by calling for cancellation of all student debt and free public college for all. Nevertheless, in its application, the living wage remains difficult to achieve through the administration’s

perspective. They cannot cancel debt nor make tuition free and also remain above water. Fortunately, the divisiveness between the left and right wing of politics is largely mitigated on this issue due to agreement over the root causes of increase in tuition. Thinkers from across the political field have denounced “administrative bloat.” Administrative bloat is a result of universities employing far more nonteaching administrators. Thomas Lindsay, director of Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Center for Higher Education, speaks to this phenomenon in “Finally, Bipartisan Agreement On Why College Is So Expensive.” Michelle Chen, liberal and contributing writer to The Nation, adds to this dialogue in “Why Is College


Stop asking senior students questions By Alysha Hurst OPINIONS COLUMNIST @prettylyshh As the semester comes to an end, seniors can’t help but think about their future after graduation. Achieving such an accomplishment calls for many stressful decisions and thoughts. Questions from peers and family members about post-graduation decisions add on to the stressors seniors face. The number of awkward small talks and networking conversations has increased exponentially, and every mention of graduate plans has me reaching for another glass of wine and scoop of ice cream. Movies lie and Hallmark cards deceive. Graduation is not a romantic tossing-of-caps moment. Instead, it is the part in the movie where the protagonist thinks of how old he or she has become and how unprepared he or she is for the real world. Every time I mention I’m a senior, I always get hit with the same questions, such as: “What are your plans after graduation?” or “Do you have a job lined up yet?” followed by various looks of concern and disapproval when they don’t hear the expected answer. I don’t know when I was supposed to

learn these answers, but I must have skipped the lecture that day. This is a public service announcement for everyone who wants to know what seniors are doing after graduation. Stop asking us so many anxiety-filled questions. We are still slightly in denial about the end of our college careers and wonder where the time has gone. Beyond the general sadness and nostalgia of exiting the only point in our lives when yoga pants and crop tops are appropriate everyday attire, graduating college is seriously stressful. Most of this stress derives from a major symptom of senioritis. The symptoms of senioritis include slowness, procrastination, lethargy regarding schoolwork and a tendency to participate in truancy. Responsibilities and obligations can wait while students go to happy hour instead. The questions conquer all. They keep us up at night, whispering of student loans that must be paid back, deadlines needed to be met and upcoming tests to study for. As the seconds tick by, the questions grow in volume and multitude. If I don’t answer, they ask again. They punish. They are relentless. The only future I fear is of going

to work everyday to a small cubicle plastered with family pictures of a lukewarm marriage ended by a heated divorce—a selfindulgent nightmare. The only questions people should ask seniors are “Do you need any money? Are you healthy?” and “How are you doing?” Instead of a one-word response, the conversation would then be endless. Seniors want to enjoy what is left of their last year without constantly being bombarded with questions about their impending future. Yes, it is okay we don’t have everything figured out. That is what life teaches us. Senior year is the time to reflect on the best years of our life. Whether it is how much you’ve grown over the years, relationships you’ve lost and found or academic success, this is the year to embrace the last walks across campus. Although we have more responsibilities than the average underclassman, we should be proud of our accomplishments thus far and wish for new successes in the future. The last chapter of this book is almost completed, but remember—there are still volumes that lie unwritten. —Alysha Hurst is a public relations senior.

So Expensive if Professors Are Paid So Little?” Chen explains, “The hyperinflated price tag of college has funneled toward another aspect of the higher education system: driving funds into administrative offices(...) twenty five years ago, a student at a public college(...) would see twice as many faculty as administrators on average; now the ratio is roughly equal.” As a result of these concerns, I’d like to offer a solution addressing administrative bloat, student debt, and the living wage for campus workers—without increasing tuition. As of now, publicly accessible data regarding all employee salary information exists at Texas State University. The Texas Tribune collects and publishes this data in its Government Salaries

Explorer, and the university reports it as a matter of law. This data can be downloaded onto a spreadsheet listing information such as name, job title, and monthly and annual compensation for all 3,529 university employees. According to this monthly compensation data, there are 218 employees (constituting the bottom 6 percent) who do not make a living wage. At $15/hour, assuming a 32-hour work week (factoring in part-time work), this amounts to $2,080/month, or $24,960/ year. There are 32 employees with 9-month employment durations making less than a living wage. They should be paid a total sum of $599,040 but are actually paid $419,719, a difference of $179,321. There are also 185 12-month employees

making less than a living wage. They should be paid a total sum of $4,617,600 but are actually paid $3,720,270, a difference of $897,330. This makes for a combined total of $1,076,651 in necessary appropriations. The question is, how should the university cover these costs? Well, interestingly enough, 5 percent of each of the salaries of the top 200 earners at Texas State, or the top 6 percent of employees, amounts to $1,430,083. As you can see, this is more than enough to ensure that all campus workers can earn a living wage. Call me what you may, but the solution seems simple. Sincerely, a Fiscal Liberal. -—Eric Martinez, political science junior


Stop whining about politics, please By Bridgett Reneau @bridgelynnn OPINIONS COLUMNIST With the promise of a new president in the upcoming year, it is impossible to ignore the sentiments the American society suggests regarding the presidential candidates. Republicans and Democrats alike will slather their social media newsfeeds with ornery opinions about the opposition. Additionally, both sides of the spectrum will heinously publicize their disgust for anything they despise with no regard for their own dignity. After all, it is someone else’s job to behave in a dignified manner. The American public refuses to take responsibility. Thrusting their burdens on the back of a presidential figurehead is merely a way for people to avoid obligation over their own personal success and failures. If the president didn’t do this or that, then people claim their own lives would somehow be vastly different and superior. This is simply a way for citizens to dignify their decision to continue trudging with a lack of liability for the state of their nation. Of course, the individual we elect as leader of the country ought to be qualified and adequate. The decision of who will ultimately

have a strong influence on the well-being of over 300 million people is not one to be taken lightly—but what about the voices of these millions of individuals? People often believe simply by voting, they are being heard. In a sense, this is correct. But truth be told, there is more that can be done, and I’m not talking about posting political woes on Twitter. If people feel inclined to be concerned about a certain issue, or about the state of the nation overall, they ought to take action in appropriate ways. Instead of depending on an authority figure to put a Band-Aid on the problem, people should open their eyes and recognize they are the problem. When claims such as, “Society is screwed up,” are made, what is really being said is, “I am screwed up because I am society.” People are quick to take themselves out of the equation. Blaming or trusting the president to take care of their every need is a simple way to do just that. Rather than waiting for a new nominee to enter office, the people of America would benefit from realizing their own atti tudes and actions are imperative in shaping the nation and world we inhabit. Maybe this claim doesn’t sound concrete enough. But

maybe that’s the problem— everyone is so obsessed with concrete thinking. Material evidence and factual information is imperative to mending the broken parts of our nation, and any presidential nominee must enter office armed with facts and figures. However, the American public should have a commitment to the true “American spirit.” This is a spirit of individualistic determination, not of relying on someone else to take action. We, the people, should hold ourselves to a higher standard. Rather than entrust one individual (who is only human) to solve decades’ worth of problems, voters should allow the weight of the load to be easier to bear. Instead of being quick to lash out with hatred and critique, people should be quicker to offer constructive criticism in a loving manner to the leaders of the political parties. What is important to understand is attitude is everything, even when it feels like that of one individual is irrelevant. Through small shifts in everyday actions, and in choosing to be less critical and more proactive, Americans can certainly make an immense difference in the political future. -—Bridgett Reneau is a psychology sophomore


6 | Thursday, April 14, 2016

The University Star


Paul Livengood, Sports Editor @IAmLivengood @universitystar


Fast Start gives Bobcats edge over Cardinals By Thomas Mejia SPORTS REPORTER @ThomasMejia79

After the first break from weekend games this season, Texas State’s softball team beat the Lamar Cardinals 4-0. Head Coach Ricci Woodard stressed hitting the ball this past week in practice. “Today we were looking for offense—that has been the whole focus for the last week,” Woodard said. “The team (has) been putting a lot of extra time in their swings and it was nice to see it pay off.” Extra practice paid off for Texas State and the team got nine hits. The Bobcats got to a fast start into this matchup. Kelli Baker, senior second baseman, got the hitting going with a lead-off double, putting her in scoring position. A sacrifice bunt advanced Baker to third base and a walk from Ariel Ortiz, sophomore shortstop, put runners on the corners for Texas State. Corrina Liscano, junior third baseman, scored Baker by hitting down the right field line giving the Bobcats an early 1-0 lead. Jaelyn Young, sophomore catcher, is a very important part to

the Bobcats’ offense, earning her way into the batting lineup. Woodard has taken note. “We got to get (Young’s) bat going. When she gets that going, she is dangerous,” Woodard said. “That’s why we brought her in here—to help us behind the plate a little bit, but really to swing the bat.” With bases loaded and one out, Young delivered an RBI double to extend Texas State’s lead to 3-0 in the top of the first inning. Woodard is expecting the Bobcats to keep up their fast start as the Sun Belt tournament approaches. “This team is much better once we get going right away,” Woodard said. “It all centers around our offense. If our offense swings the bat aggressively in the first inning, we tend to play a better ball game.” In the second inning, Baker got on base again to get the offense going for the Bobcats. Ortiz brought in Baker to make it 4-0 in the bottom of the second inning. Randi Rupp, sophomore pitcher, got the start for Texas State, looking to earn her 17th win of the season. Rupp was also seven strikeouts away for clinching 500

DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR A Lamar University player gets struck out April 13 at Bobcat Softball Stadium.

in her collegiate career, a milestone that has only been achieved three other times in school history. Rupp got both achievements in this game as she pitched in five innings and

only allowed two hits and no runs, striking out 10 batters. Quincy Charleston, junior pitcher, came in to relieve Rupp in the top of the sixth inning. Charleston

only gave up one hit and struck out two batters with her time on the mound. “(Charleston) has done a great job just keeping the ball down in the zone and attacking the zone,” Wood-

ard said. “That’s what you want from a closer.” With the win, the Bobcats improve to a 21-7 record against non-conference opponents this season.


Texas State head coach pulls Hays quarterback’s scholarship By Autumn Anderson ASSISTANT SPORTS EDITOR @aaatumn_

Braeden Kent, senior quarterback from Hays High School, was expecting to attend Texas State starting in 2017. Kent was recruited by former Texas State Head Coach Dennis Franchione and was planning on being grey-shirted, due to an ACL and MCL tear from last fall, coming into the 2017 spring season. However, Coach Everett Withers pulled the commitment to Kent, telling him there is no place on the

team for him. To Kent, this news was initially a shock, which turned into sadness and disappointment. Through a spokesperson, head coach Everett Withers declined comment for the Daily Record story, citing the fact that Kent had not signed a National Letter of Intent, and due to NCAA rules, the university cannot speak about prospective recruits until that happens. Texas State has more than five quarterbacks on scholarship for next year, ultimately overfilling the position. In addition to, the Bobcats are also acquiring

Missouri transfer Eddie Printz. "...It could have been handled a lot better by Withers. I still love Texas State. I just think that Withers handled this whole situation badly," Kent told the San Marcos Daily Record. The Hays senior reopened his recruitment via Twitter, stating, "(Withers) then promised me a grey shirt and the first scholarship of the 2017 class. After their game they invited me to, I was informed they were not going to honor their commitment with me. As a result, I am officially reopening my recruitment.


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Thank you for all who have supported me." When asked if he considered walking on for the Bobcats, Kent told the Record he doesn’t see that happening and the only way he would choose to come to Texas State is if he decided to not play college football.

"I still love Texas State and the school because my sister goes there," Kent said. "So that place will always have a place in my heart." After reopening his recruitment, Kent has started to draw attention from Sam Houston State of the FCS and certain Division II

schools. The Hays senior is keeping his options open, and is striving to play at a Division I or a FCS school. Kent said this situation gave him motivation to keep moving forward, and now he has a chip on his shoulder.


The University Star

Thursday, April 14, 2016 | 7


Paul Livengood, Sports Editor @IAmLivengood @universitystar


Baseball: A family affair By Kier Rouse SPORTS REPORTER @KierRouse

It is safe to say baseball runs in the Lovejoy family. Returning senior outfielder Cody Lovejoy grew up with a bat and a glove in hand. From his grandfather, to his brother, the Lovejoy men feel the most confident and comfortable on the field. Cody Lovejoy’s love for baseball came from his grandfather. “He grew up playing baseball and encourages my brother and I to play,” Lovejoy said. “He even had a chance to play college ball but chose not to.” Even though the baseball gene skipped a generation and missed Lovejoy’s father—who ended up playing football in college—it called to both brothers. The Lovejoy brothers picked their baseballs up before ever touching a football. The athlete began playing ball at the age of four, starting with tee-ball. His passion grew from there. Lovejoy’s freshman year of high school was when he really felt baseball was his calling. After his freshman season, Lovejoy decided it was time to specialize in one sport and chose to quit running track and playing football after a shoulder injury. Lovejoy was recruited out of high school, and af-

ter a tour to Texas State, he decided to become a Bobcat. San Marcos proved to be a great fit for him. “It’s not uptight and stressful here,” Lovejoy said. “I love being in the water and doing outdoor activities, so San Marcos is a great place for me to live.” Not only did Lovejoy get the chance to play college ball, but his brother was fortunate enough to continue his career as well. The athlete’s brother, Dane Lovejoy, is a junior left-handed pitcher at Sam Houston State University. A little brotherly competition is expected with two brothers competing against each other in the same sport. “I hope to get a hit off of him the next time we play Sam Houston,” the Bobcat said. Texas State and SHSU play each other in the regular season, so the Lovejoy brothers look forward to matching up against one another on the field. Lovejoy’s baseball career didn’t always come easy to him. A year ago, the athlete’s baseball career hit a rough patch. After two surgeries on his elbow, Cody Lovejoy was out for 16 months of rehab, stalling his baseball career with the Bobcats. It hurt the senior to sit out for a season, and he knew it was important to take care and manage his health.


“You learn a lot from something like that,” Cody Lovejoy said. The Bobcat was out all last season due to his injury, however, he is back and better than ever this season as a fifth year player. Baseball has taught Cody Lovejoy a lot about himself and the game he has a passion for. “Baseball taught me to be humble, but confident,” the athlete said. “The second you think you are God’s gift to everything is the second he will knock you on your butt.” Cody Lovejoy expresses baseball has taught him to

be confident in his ability, but to also stay level headed and be a team leader. “My ultimate goal is to make a positive impact on people,” the senior said. On game day, the athlete feels that maintaining his health and caring for his rehabilitated elbow is the No. 1 priority. “If first pitch is at 6p.m., then I am usually in the trainer’s room about 1 p.m.,” he said. Since the injury has inhibited him in the past, Cody Lovejoy gets to the Bobcat Ballpark hours ahead of the first pitch to stretch and warm up his

elbow. “If we have practice, I am on the field at least an hour early just to work on my elbow,” the Bobcat said. This is not the only ritual the senior follows on game day. “When I am running on and off the field, I make sure to never step on the foul line,” he said. “It is bad luck.” Being a college athlete for the past five years holds a lot of weight for Cody Lovejoy. Neither long practices nor balancing a full work load to gain his degree in electrical engineering seem to phase him.

The athlete continues to work tirelessly to reach his goals and it shows. The outfielder expresses he has learned so much from baseball and from being a college athlete at Texas State. “I have taken away so much knowledge and so many life skills from this experience,” the Bobcat said. Managing a full schedule was on top of Cody Lovejoy’s “lessons learned” list. “To be a college athlete on one end and full time student on the other, I had to learn to be successful in both and manage the two,” the outfielder said. “I had to make sure that I didn’t let one take away from the other.” Cody Lovejoy knows he had to give things up for baseball. The athlete realizes he can’t love the typical college life like other guys his age can. With baseball and school, he is involved in activities that take up a lot of his time. The Bobcat mentioned that free time isn’t something he has a lot of. He has come a long way from tee-ball as a 4-year-old. Growing up in a baseball driven environment made its mark on Lovejoy and it is continuously a very positive one. “I wouldn’t have the career I do today if not for my grandfather and his encouragement,” the outfielder said.


Get to know: Esther Oyetunde, sophomore runner By Lisette Lopez SPORTS REPORTER @Lisette_1023

Lisette Lopez: Why did you choose Texas State? Esther Oyetunde: I chose Texas State because I wanted to be around a team and a coaching staff that were able to push me. I love my coaches, and I feel like I got it best here. LL: Do you have a big family? What are they like? EO: I do. They are all interested in sports, (and) they are really funny. Grace is the youngest one. Then it is Emmanuel, Gloria and then Elizabeth. LL: What would be your dream vacation? EO: Probably to go to Dubai. It sounds like a nice and relaxing place. LL: Who is your celebrity crush? EO: My celebrity crush would probably be Michael B. Jordan. LL: What do you do for fun? EO: I watch movies. I also like to do some cool things like go waterboard-

ing or paddle-boarding, stuff like that. LL: What do you hope to do in the health care field? EO: I want to be an ophthalmologist, so an eye specialist, or help manage a hospital. LL: What has your experience been like at Texas State so far? EO: It has been good. It’s good because I am an athlete, and I get a different but better experience than most students. We go out and travel and compete for them. They are also able to help me out with school when I miss it, so I am able to get tutoring. I am able to do everything to help me to succeed. So it has been pretty good being in an environment where all they want to do is help you to succeed. LL: Do you have any major influences in your life? EO: Definitely—my family for sure. LL: What is your favorite restaurant? EO: My favorite restaurant is Cracker Barrel. Their pancakes are awe-

some—they’re life. LL: What do you hope to bring to the team? EO: I hope that I can help encourage my team and get as many points for them as I can. I just want to be a reliable person on my team, that everyone knows that they can depend on me, and I also want to help them believe in themselves too. Be the type of person that—because I can do it, you can do it too. LL: Do you have any personal goals to reach for this outdoor season? EO: Really just to make it to regionals. LL: What is your favorite time of the year? EO: Summer. It’s nice outside, and I really just hate the cold weather. LL: Why did you choose a school so far away from home? EO: I wanted to get the experience, and I kind of wanted to be a little more independent. On top of that, Texas State offered me the best track team and track coaches—an environment to work with. LL: How do you bal-

ance track and school? EO: I really just have to keep a routine and just follow it. I do my morning runs, (and) from there I go straight to class, then practice, and if I have breaks I do my homework. We just can’t waste any time. LL: What is the hardest thing you have ever had to go through in your life? EO: When my mom died—it was my senior year, she passed. I guess getting back to the groove and getting past the fact that I was so blessed enough to have enough days—that I can still



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