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New information technology vice president hired By Alec Trussell NEWS REPORTER

“Mostly, there are a lot of huge, beautiful trees that got knocked over or uprooted,” Deringer said. “We only have around eight to 10 cypress trees that are left down there along the riverbank. What was once a wonderful spot for swimming, fishing, or hanging out along the edge of the river is now halted due to detrimental weather.” The riverbank running through the campsite is littered with debris, he said. Staff members have found a hot tub, a vehicle and other wreckage washed up in the campsite area. “All of the picnic tables are gone, and some barbecue pits that were concreted into the ground are uprooted,” Deringer said. “All of our fencing around the area is gone.” Deringer does not think destruction from the flood could “get much worse.” “Even some of the neighbors’ houses that were built closer to the river are just slabs—there is absolutely nothing left there,” Deringer said. “Because of the enormous amount of debris, there will be quite a lot of

University officials tapped a new vice president for information technology in May. Kenneth Pierce will bring his tech expertise to Texas State officially assuming his position July 6 and will be succeeding C. Van Wyatt, who is retiring after serving since 2000 as vice president for information technology. As vice president, Pierce will oversee educational technology, technology resources and the university library. “I’m excited to be coming to Texas State,” Pierce said, “I believe that I can be of great benefit to the university, and that I can help everyone succeed.” Connectivity and cost efficiency are top priorities to Pierce. He hopes to make innovations to the university’s educational technology, such as implementing full lecture capture, and adaptive learning assessments and platforms. “There’s opportunity once I get on campus to try to bring in all different opinions and ideas, and people’s thoughts on where things should go,” Pierce said, “What they like, what they don’t like, what we need to do, what we need to stop doing—and get it from all different aspects.” For the past nine years, Pierce has helped innovate and advance the technology at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) as vice provost and chief information officer. Pierce previously held a similar position at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). “I’ve done several innovative projects to help with initiatives of the university, some in the areas of information security, educational technology or just helping to better manage the university using technology at a lower cost,” Pierce said. Pierce said he hopes to make similar achievements at Texas State. A Houston native, Pierce received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Houston and a Master of Science degree in Information Technology from Capella University. Pierce began pursuing a career in technology after he had a great experience programming in high school, when the field was not terribly advanced. He began his career as an engineer. Pierce realized, while designing aircraft, that he enjoyed the programs used to do his work more than the engineering aspect. Pierce said the necessary creativity and design are still there when working with technology. The new information technology vice president said he wishes to get a comprehensive view of what the student body, faculty and staff want for the university. “It’s an important thing for other people not to speak on behalf of others,” Pierce said. “People need to speak on behalf of themselves, and then you really get the true information.”

See CAMP, Page 2



Justin Furstenfeld, guitarist for Blue October, performs June 7 at The Marc as part of the BandTogetherTX benefit concert. By Sarah Bradley SENIOR LIFESTYLE REPORTER @sarah_bradskies


ommunity members of all ages gathered at The Marc June 7 to raise money for Central Texas flood victims. Omar Dawoud, owner of The Marc and applied sociology senior, said 1,100 people purchased tickets to the Band Together TX benefit concert. The concert featured Blue October, Aaron Behrens, Ray Wylie Hubbard and other local musicians working to raise money to be donated via United Way of Hays County. “It all started when I saw how severe the flood was via online news,” Dawoud said. “My immediate thought was to text the mayor and see what I can do, because I knew I could do something.” After reaching out to Mayor Daniel Guerrero, Dawoud said he was put in contact

with the band Blue October, who had offered to help. “From there it all made sense because I host concerts and they provide music,” Dawoud said. “The fact that I knew I could do something that could potentially help someone in some way really triggered my need to get this event up and running as soon as possible.” Dawoud said the combined efforts of Blue October drummer Jeremy Furstenfeld, Guerrero and many other supporters helped the concert to move seamlessly through the planning stage. “With the combined efforts of (Furstenfeld), the mayor and I, along with tons of other volunteers and sponsors, the event was able to come about rather smoothly,” Dawoud said. “It took only ten days for the event to come to life, and tickets were sold out in two days.” Dawoud said community

leaders met early on to discuss which local charity they should collaborate with. “Our top priority above all was to ensure the money raised went into the right hands and is utilized as much as possible, which is where United Way comes in,” Dawoud said. “The reason we selected this charity was because, out of all of the other presentations, they pledged to donate 100 percent of what we raise with no administration fee, and they promised to get the money out immediately.” Michelle Harper, president and CEO for United Way of Hays County, said the charity has a long history of delivering funds directly to the right people. “It just made sense that the charity selected was a charity that, for 30 years, has been in the business of raising funds and giving it to those in most need,” Harper said. Dawoud said the amount


Spanish shipwreck discovery leads to new insight, questions By Kasandra Garza NEWS REPORTER @KasGarza

Texas State alumni are among a group of archaeologists who identified a wrecked Spanish merchant ship, dating from the early 1680s, in the Chagres River off the coast of Panama. A team of archaeologists discovered the Spanish merchant ship named Nuestra Señora de Encarnación in 2008 while looking for remains of Captain Henry Morgan’s fleet. The colonial merchant ship, or nao, is a rare archeological find and only a handful have been found. “The entire wreck and its contents are significant,” said Frederick Hanselmann, research faculty and chief underwater archaeologist with The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State University. “Not only does it give us a snapshot of colonial Spanish life in late 17th century, but it allows us to gain insight into the world systems and networks of a budding globalization, which eventually leads to where we all are now.” The ship’s remains highlight Spain’s “financial woes” during their time, Hanselmann said. Spain was in debt at the time

of the ship’s demise and relied on the resources extracted from New World colonies. Items found in the shipwreck include sword blades, mule shoes, lead cargo seals, a wooden chest with scissors and unidentified tubular objects and a wooden barrel, the contents of which are still unknown, Hanselmann said. “There’s not much talk about Spanish-America from the late 17th century,” said Luis Vieira Filipe de Castro, archaeologist and member of the expedition. “So to have an artifact as complicated as a ship from the 1680s is an amazing opportunity to study what was happening then.” Throughout history, the Chagres River has served as a road of travel for countless explorers, including Christopher Columbus on his last voyage, Hanselmann said. The river has been, and continues to be, a major source of life-blood for maritime trade and economy. “Ships and shipwrecks are very important because they carry people, cargo and ideas,” de Castro said. There are approximately 30 historic ships known to have


of money raised exceeded his expectations. “When the idea of holding something like this came about, I figured we could make at least $30,000, which was amazing to me,” Dawoud said. “As of (June 7) we raised approximately $150,000.” Dawoud said he is confident the number will grow based on the amount of donations made at the event and the option to contribute online. “Donating everything from the bar, including tips, silent auctions, T-shirts and a ‘text to donate’ option during the show, makes me think we are almost certain to surpass the $150,000 we have already achieved,” Dawoud said. Dawoud said he and Blue October members both jumped at the chance to help the community. “Those affected are our neighbors, friends and family, so we are happy to contribute a helping hand,” Dawoud said.

“This is our hometown. I’ve been living here for 20 years now and Blue October has been here for over 20 years.” Furstenfeld said those involved in planning the event dropped everything to help their city. “People have given so much of their time, money and efforts,” Furstenfeld said. “Everyone involved was working late nights to organize this. These people have day jobs and families and yet still give so much, which makes me so grateful.” Furstenfeld said “San Marcos Strong” is not just a saying to place on a T-shirt. Residents proved their strength by pulling together in a time of crisis. “We really are a strong, tight-knit community, and that has been made obvious by our ability to come together in times of need,” Furstenfeld said.

See BENEFIT, Page 2


University Camp closed until further notice By Clayton Kelley NEWS REPORTER @ClaytonKelley

University Camp is temporarily closed due to damage sustained during extreme f looding over Memorial Day weekend in Hays County. University officials said the 126-acre recreational campsite located along the Blanco River in Wimberley sustained damages and will be closed until further notice. Professional staff will assess the area so the camp can reopen, said Daniel Vasquez, associate director of campus recreation. Anthony Deringer, coordinator of outdoor recreation, said 30 people trapped at the campsite were moved to a “safer” lodge located on higher ground during Memorial Day weekend. “I kept watching the gauges, and the rain just took a turn for the worst,” Deringer said. “So we made the decision to evacuate the people in the campground early in the night. The people that were evacuated first were able to get out safely and without a problem.”

Deringer had to act on behalf of campers’ safety after listening to the rain and tracking the weather on the night of the flood. “The two lodges we have are quite a bit higher uphill and away from the river, so we didn’t end up evacuating the lodges right away,” Deringer said. “By the time we realized the water was rising as fast as it was, it was too late to evacuate the lodges because of the low water crossings.” Deringer and his staff anxiously waited to see how high the flood level would get. Luckily, the water did not reach the lodges. The water rose to approximately 15 feet from Beretta, one of the lower of the two lodges available to campers, Deringer said. “Because we moved all of the people and their vehicles to the highest spot at the campgrounds, we didn’t really have any major damages as far as buildings or vehicles are concerned,” Deringer said. “However, we did have some major damage down along the river.” The entire edge of the river is “completely scalped,” he said.

2 | The University Star | News | Wednesday, June 10, 2015


Meadows Center partners with REI Outdoor School to offer paddle boarding By Clayton Kelley NEWS REPORTER @ClaytonKelley

The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment is teaming up with the REI Outdoor School to provide recreational outlets at Spring Lake. The Meadows Center offers limited access to the lake through water activities such as scuba diving and glass-bottom boat tours. As a result of the partnership with REI Outdoor School, the Meadows Center now offers paddle boarding. “This new and exciting paddle program is a really unique way to get up, close and personal with a natural

resource that is otherwise protected,� said Shane Townsend, senior program advisor at the Meadows Center. Townsend said archeological evidence found on Spring Lake shows humans have lived around the lake consistently for about 13,000 years, making it the longest continually lived-on site in North America. “Even now, years later, Spring Lake is still a strong community center because the entire city of San Marcos is built around it,� Townsend said. “Because (the lake) is the head waters of the rivers in San Marcos, this makes it a perfect spot to program this new paddle boarding event.� He said San Marcos is a

fitting location for the new activity because while it is one of the fastest growing outdoor sports in the country, Central Texas is one of the fastest growing regions in the country. “Even with the current floods, Texas has been in an extended period of drought and that has tainted water resources,� Townsend said. “By teaming up with REI through this program, we plan to raise awareness to Texas’ growing population about the importance of water and its natural resources.� Cody Ackerman, the Outdoor Programs and Outreach Manager with REI, said some paddling courses were canceled as a result of the his-

BENEFIT, from front

toric floods that displaced over 1,000 Hays County residents. Some residents of San Marcos were able to take part in the activity before the May 24 flash floods occurred. “I took the paddling course and it was my first time being on the paddle board,� said Tom Wassenich, volunteer board member of the San Marcos River Foundation. “The Meadows Center had really good instruction, nice equipment and, above all, Spring Lake was a beautiful place to go paddle boarding.� Wassenich said he believes there should be limitations to the paddleboard project. He said it is important for students to understand the components

of Spring Lake while enjoying the outdoors. “I do appreciate that the instructors took the time to tell the paddlers about the importance of this natural resource,� Wassenich said. “I don’t like to see the lake used very heavily by humans because it cannot take a lot of pressure.� However, Wassenich said he would support the courses being offered every now and then. “It is a great learning experience for those interested in water resources,� Wassenich said. “However, I do think (the paddle board courses) should be done by a limited amount of people for each course.� Ackerman said along with

supporting the new paddling courses at the Meadows Center, REI is providing equipment to promote the Texas Stream Team project. “This project will encourage citizens to train in a safe learning environment at Spring Lake and will help bring about academic research,� Ackerman said. Townsend said the projects signify progress in water education in Central Texas. “We here at the Meadows Center are the stewards of Spring Lake, and part of being the stewards of Spring Lake means we must maintain the quality of the lake and preserve it,� Townsend said.

efforts at flood recovery here in San Marcos,� Krupinsky said. “In the first few days, we had groups that came into the neighborhood and helped people clean up.� She saw a lot of “encouragement and help� from Texas State students and groups, such as Bobcat Build. Vasquez urged those want-

ing to help in the recovery process to contact the Dean of Students office, where officials are contributing to volunteer efforts for Hays County. “As we are in this phase of recovery, we here at University Camp hope to get this place up and running again soon,� Vasquez said.

CAMP, from front

Guerrero said every person involved with the event played an instrumental role. “Whether you attended, donated, performed, volunteered

or what have you, the ability of the community to come together to raise money and the spirits of everyone affected is amazing,� Guerrero said. “This

event is truly a blessing.� Furstenfeld said people looking to help are encouraged to donate online even though the concert has ended.

people needed to help clean up the river.� DerryAnn Krupinsky, assistant director of community service for the City of San Marcos, recognizes the importance of citizens coming together to restore local flood-stricken areas. “Texas State students have been very much active in their


Texas State students have been very much active in their efforts at flood recovery here in San Marcos. In the first few days, we had groups that came into the neighborhood and helped people clean up.� ­—DERRYANN KRUPINSKY, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF THE COMMUNITY SERVICE FOR THE CITY OF SAN MARCOS

SHIPWRECK, from front


A local resident assesses the damage left behind at Five Mile Dam after flash floods hit Hays County during Memorial Day weekend.

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sunk in the Chagres River over the course of time, Hanselmann said. Chris Horrell, assistant project director and Texas State alumnus, said the archaeologists were able to pinpoint the exact location of the shipwreck using a magnetometer, a large metal detector that identifies changes in the Earth’s magnetic fields. “Panama is a very important piece of land in the history of the new world,� said de Castro. Fishermen and treasure hunters claimed to have taken treasures from the ship, but de Castro believes nothing


was stolen after examining the wreckage. Hanselmann found a series of guns on Lajas Reef during the first year of the exploration, that were “almost certainly lostâ€? when five of Henry Morgan’s ships vanished in 1671 near the reef. The team focused on searching for Morgan’s shipwreck in 2011 after recovering the guns, Hanselmann said. The EncarnaciĂłn was discovered during an overall study of the maritime cultural landscape of the Chagres River in Panama, Hanselmann said. Morgan was a member of the Welsh

Royal Navy, which played a key role in the “sackingâ€? of Panama during the later part of the 17th century. Horrell said the EncarnaciĂłn had wrecked 10 years prior to the sinking of Morgan’s fleet and is unrelated to those ships. Hanselmann said no evidence of Morgan or his privateers has been uncovered, despite the archaeological ruins of his ship found off the coast of Panama City. “The ship tells a story,â€? de Castro said. “It tells a story of a very interesting period. There are a lot of unanswered questions.â€?

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015 | The University Star | 3



Student credits Local resident grateful for benefit concert local beer for lifesaving escape from floodwaters HAYS COUNTY FLOOD

By Sarah Bradley SENIOR LIFESTYLE REPORTER @sarah_bradskies

As community members gathered to show their support for flood victims June 7 at The Marc, the outpouring

By Mariah Simank LIFESTYLE EDITOR @MariahSimank

A Texas State student credits his decision to stay up late and enjoy an Austin-brewed beer to saving his life after floods hit Hays County on Memorial Day weekend. Colin Iliff, environmental studies senior, was house-sitting for his aunt in Wimberley when the weather conditions began to deteriorate. “There is like a 25-foot difference between where the house sits and where the (Blanco) river is as far as height goes,” Iliff said. “The rain had started flowing down and the river was a little elevated, but it seemed completely fine.” Iliff said he considered going to bed after the power went out. But Iliff quickly changed his mind after noticing his favorite beer in the fridge. "I was debating whether or not I should go to sleep or stay up, enjoy a beer and hang out with the dogs, who were stressed out from the storm and everything,” Iliff said. “I eventually chose to stay up and have a beer with the dogs.” An hour after the home lost power, Iliff said a roaring sound coming from the backyard compelled him to check the river again. “I poked my head out the door and looked toward the river, and lo and behold it was right there,” Iliff said. “(The water) had already gotten up to the level of the house.” Iliff said the river rose almost 30 feet in 45 minutes. As Iliff rushed to move valuables and important documents to the second floor of the home, he realized he was already out of time. “I decided as I was moving items that I was already too late,” Iliff said. “I needed to grab the dogs and get out right then.”

“It's all super-important to my aunt, and luckily we have managed to pull out a bunch of heirloom silverware, quite a few pictures and some intact plates, which I find amazing.” Iliff said at times the neighborhood has seen as many as 100 volunteers helping to chainsaw fallen trees and use tractors to remove rubble. Three people remain unaccounted for after the floods that left 12 people dead. Iliff said their cleanup efforts have helped in the search for missing people. “As we clean up, we also search for the missing people as well because this little part of the river happens to be one of the primary deposits of debris,” Iliff said. “We're hoping to only find the good stuff, but we are always being cautious and vigilant about that.” Dustin New, creator of the Wimberley Lost and Found Facebook page, said he and his father have known Iliff’s family for many years. New said he dropped everything to help friends after hearing of the devastation in his hometown. “Several of my family friends were heavily affected by the floods,” New said. “The parents of two of my best friends that I have known my entire life lost everything. I consider those guys family, so it took priority over work and anything else I had going on.” New said the outpouring of support from people across the town has helped bring comfort to many of the flood victims. “The people here have been so amazing,” New said. “Before any government assistance got here and before HEB or any food assistance arrived, residents within the community came out in full force to help their fellow neighbors clean up.”

If I hadn’t decided to stay up with the dogs and have that beer, I would have been dead. I would have just been swept away with the dogs.” ­—COLLIN ILIFF, ENVINRONMENTAL STUDIES SENIOR

Iliff said he took the dogs and a few of their toys to the car. “I drove up the driveway and luckily the gate at the top of the driveway was uphill from the house, so I was able to turn around and use my headlights and see where the water was,” Iliff said. At that moment, Iliff said a huge wall of water, debris and his aunt's propane tank slammed into the side of the house, leaving only the foundation in its wake. “If I hadn't decided to stay up with the dogs and have that beer, I would have been dead,” Iliff said. “I would have just been swept away with the dogs.” Iliff said he and his family are currently working to recover items from the rubble. “Our main mission is to look for memories, treasures—like any heirlooms, jewelry, pictures, stuff like that,” Iliff said.

New said members of the community remained positive despite the loss many faced. “People’s sprits are pretty high considering what happened,” New said “When you go to these work sites, you have the people that own the homes right there—shoulder-to-shoulder with the volunteers—and everyone is listening to music and trying to crack as many jokes as is appropriate.” Iliff said the community is still in need of volunteers, and encouraged anyone living in Central Texas to show their support through community service. “I'm very lucky compared to a lot of people, and my story is uplifting in many ways and it's kind of funny because beer saved my life,” Iliff said. “While it's nice to hear good stories like that, it's the people who were less fortunate that really need the attention right now.”

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to grab two small boxes as she was evacuating the house. “We were only able to save, clean and restore two small cardboard boxes worth of items,” Castellow said. “We just grabbed what we could through the windows before

victims. “I follow Blue October, and saw them talking about this event online,” Castellow said. “I was so moved by them wanting to help.” Castellow said she hoped the concert would help her

Omar Dawoud, owner of The Marc and applied sociology senior, said he was one of the many people Castellow thanked. Dawoud said her story and gratefulness made him honored to have helped organize the concert.

I’m a firm believer in the healing power of music, especially from Blue October.”

of support overwhelmed one local resident. Susan Castellow, Wimberley flood victim, said she struggled to hold back tears of gratitude as she thanked event coordinators for putting together Band Together TX, a fundraising concert. Castellow said she was one of the many who lost everything May 24 when flah floods hit Hays County “Our house was off of River Road and was fully submerged, so we lost everything,” Castellow said. “Our house, car and belongings were gone overnight, along with so many others’.” Castellow said she was able


evacuating.” One of the items in the recovered box was a small patch from Blue October. Castellow has had the patch for over 10 years and carries it with her at all times. “The words ‘Hate Me’ written on it is a Blue October trademark and reference,” Castellow said. “They are probably my favorite band because their music means so much to me.” Castellow said she was overwhelmed with emotion when she learned her favorite band was assisting in the organization of a fundraising concert for local flood


start the healing process. “I’m excited to be here to enjoy their music and, hopefully, let it heal part of me like it always has,” Castellow said. “I’m a firm believer in the healing power of music, especially from Blue October.” She said the band’s decision to help the community strengthened the appreciation she has for each member. “Not only now am I able to attend the event to see my favorite band, but I’m also able to find those who are involved and thank them endlessly,” Castellow said.

FOR THE FOODIE The Eye of the Dog Arts Center will host a Salsa Festival from 3-8 p.m.June 13 to raise money for the organization. Experienced cooks and amateur salsa lovers will compete to win handmade trophies based on votes cast by community members. Admission is free and will include live music and free hot dogs. In order to taste the salsas, attendees must vote with cash. Winners will be announced based on whichever entry has collected the most cash by 6:30 p.m.

“When she came up to me, very obviously emotional by the event, it made everything that much more real,” Dawoud said. “I feel very fortunate to have been able to help in some way.” Jeremy Furstenfeld, Blue October drummer, said he was moved by Castellow’s story and pleased to help in her journey to recovery. “Hearing of her story is mind-blowing,” Furstenfeld said. “People like her are the reason we do what we do, and I’m happy to be able to be a band she loves and a band able to fundraise for her and everyone like her.”

FOR THE LIVE MUSIC FAN The Summer in the Park Concert Series will feature Walt Wilkins and the Mystiqueros June 11 at San Marcos Plaza Park. The concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m., is perfect for any country music fan looking to soak up some much-needed sun. The event is free and open to all ages.




The Art Squared Art Market will take place from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. June 13 on The Square. The event will include live music and feature various art mediums, including paintings, sculptures, jewelry and crafts. Admission is free and open to all ages.

Those looking to brush up on their Texas history can visit The Marc at 2 p.m. June 14 to view a screening of Edward Burleson: Soldier and Statesman. The documentary is the newest project from the Hays County Historical Commission. It aims to review two decades of history, including the early days of the Republic of Texas and founding of Hays County. Admission is free and open to all ages.

Cheatham Street Warehouse will host its weekly Songwriter Circle at 9 p.m. today. The event, which has been hosted by Kent Finlay since the venue opened its doors in 1974, offers songwriters the opportunity to perform their work in front of fellow musicians. Performers must arrive early to get their name on a signup sheet.


4 | The University Star | Wednesday, June 10, 2015




Blue Bell will undoubtedly make comeback despite setbacks T

he South’s favorite ice cream distributor, Blue Bell Creameries, recently got themselves into a world of trouble after an outbreak of the potentially deadly listeria organism cost the lives of three consumers and left seven in the hospital. Blue Bell is in a time of crisis as the recall has left profits in the red for the two months the ice cream has been off shelves. Yet, the company has managed to garner the support of countless people who have sworn loyalty to those gold-plated ice cream cartons. In fact, over 200 people gathered in Brenham, Texas to hold a prayer vigil for the creamery, awaiting its return. The Texasbased ice cream maker is apparently not going to lose any customers—however, it is wise for consumers to operate

with at least a minimal degree of caution. After all, the outbreak has been going on for five whole years according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Yet, it took the deaths of three people for Blue Bell to decide to recall products and actually do something about the lingering listeria in company facilities. While every company is redeemable, people should not forgo logic and reason for a fleeting taste of homemade vanilla and chocolate chip cookie dough. Everyone can support Blue Bell in its time of crisis—however, it would be wise to be cautious of any company that places profits over lives. Due to the controversy, the issue of increased transparency has once again come to the forefront. In order to

ensure optimal protection for consumers, food companies need to further increase transparency. They are making the things that people eat and digest—everyone should know what they are putting in their bodies, and in what condition they are being prepared. Along with increased transparency comes increased regulation. The CDC is not let off the hook in this case. There is no reason why an ice cream company can operate for five years with listeria lingering in some of its facilities. There should be an annual health inspection for all food companies. Upon discovery of something as serious as listeria, there should be a follow-up inspection within the same month. If contamination is found to still be in the facility, there should be a

forced recall. After the company rallies to put their products back on the shelf, its profile needs to be added to a national database for outbreaks and health ratings. This will let consumers follow their favorite brands and ensure the companies do their best to keep up with health codes, so as to not be put on the list of outbreaks with their integrity in question and profits down the drain. If this proposed plan were in effect back in 2010, Blue Bell would have been able to curb the current PR disaster they are going through due to their seemingly ambiguous health procedures. Nor would the company have to deal with the impending lawsuit of a Houston victim of their apparent negligence. While Blue Bell has its clear supporters, it is going

to take some time for the company to weasel back into the good graces of beloved consumers. This unfortunate controversy has not only left people sick or dead, but also resulted in the layoffs of 1,450 Blue Bell Creameries employees. According to Blue Bell CEO Paul Kruse, an additional 1,400 employees have been furloughed across 13 states, leaving about 1,000 employees with decreased salaries. The odds would be seemingly impossible for any other corporation to make a comeback, but it is clear Blue Bell will undoubtedly be welcomed back to the community with open-arms. There will be very few changes in marketing needed as everyone is waiting with bated breath for the return of the South’s favorite treat.

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, Texas State University or the advertisers.


Campus carry bill headed to Governor Abbott’s desk despite dissent

Jeffrey Bradshaw OPINIONS COLUMNIST @jeffbrad12


he Texas House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 11 (SB 11) by a vote of 98 to 47. The bill would allow concealedcarry license owners to bring their guns on college campuses if passed. The ensuing disaster will

be the undoing of Texas’ gun-obsessed culture. House Democrats tried their hardest to kill SB 11 but decided to strike a deal in order to pass a very watered-down version after a third reading by the Senate, the House and a conference committee. Being in the minority party greatly decreases what one can do, but the House Democrats showed Texas how to leverage power to get things done. House Democrats filed over 100 amendments in order to stall SB 11, hoping it would die in the process. Unfortunately, attempts were futile, and the gun legislation passed. The bill awaits Governor Greg Abbott’s signature to be put

The University Star Editor-in-Chief...........................................Kelsey Bradshaw, Managing Editor.......................Imani McGarrell, News Editor....................................................Alexa Tavarez, Sports Editor.............................................Quixem Ramirez, Lifestyle Editor.........................................Mariah Simank, Opinions Editor..........................................Brandon Sams, Multimedia Editor......................................Preslie Cox, Copy Desk Chief....................................Abby Marshall,

into effective law. The controversial bill has been in the news since it was first introduced. Students and administrators, the actual people affected by the law, begrudge the potential for campus-carry in a big way. In fact, according to a March 4 University Star article, Texas State University officials have stated the implementation of campus-carry would cost them about $408,516 for security improvements alone. As one would imagine, spending extra money is not something a university is going to be particularly happy about. The Texas State Faculty Senate even sent a “proclamation of opposition” to the State

Capitol in order to voice their opposition to the campus-carry bill, according to a Feb. 14 University Star article. When a bill goes before government representatives, constituents are afforded the right to voice dissent and approval. It is very hard for representatives to hear the opinions of a population as large as that of Texas. However, in terms of campus-carry, state legislators have been able to hear the overwhelmingly negative opinion of various university administrators who are against the bill. Not to say there are not some who are for SB 11, but a majority of public universities in Texas are against the bill. Rep. Jason Isaac

(R-Dripping Springs) voted for SB 11 despite the overwhelming dissent of Texas State students and administrators. Most representatives do not have a college in their district and therefore could not listen to their own constituents on this matter. Isaac, on the other hand, does have a pretty large university in his district—yet he still voted for his party over his people. The debate in Congress was extremely heated, showcased by several members yelling, “We do not want this.” While discussion will continue among Texans, the debate unfortunately will end in the legislature by Abbott’s pen stroke. Representatives should listen to their constituents

more often because they are the ones who elect them, after all. If representatives are not going to listen to their constituents, then perhaps they should listen to those most affected by the laws being proposed. Time will tell the damage SB 11 will have on the public universities forced to accommodate its impending approval. The overwhelming Republican majority in the State’s government has won again, regardless of the level of dissent from the people who would be most affected by the law. —Jeffrey Bradshaw is a political science sophomore

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The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Tuesday, Wednesday 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 Wednesday, June 10, 2015. 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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After last week's NCAA West Preliminaries, six members of the Texas State track and field team qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Allie Saunders, senior jumper, will compete in the triple and long jump at the NCAA Outdoor Championships June 10 through June 13 in Eugene, Oregon. This will be Saunders’ second consecutive appearance in the outdoor championships. The stage is nothing new to her. Saunders' triple jump of

13.64 meters, a school record, gives her momentum going into the competition. "I think she focuses more on training for the triple jump and we just kinda let the long jump happen," said Coach Dana Boone. "I don't think she does much prep work for it ‘cause she tends to over-think that a little bit, so I think the coaches have just been working on her triple jump." Anicka Newell, senior pole vaulter, has been to the NCAA Outdoor Championships before with an appearance in last year’s meet. Newell has shown she is ready after tallying a height

of 4.28 meters in the women's pole vault at the Sun Belt Conference Championships, which was a Texas State record. Newell later recorded a height of 4.24 meters at the NCAA West Preliminaries to qualify for the outdoor championships. "With Anicka, my biggest thing for her is, ‘Hey, you're ready,’" Boone said. "’Just go out there and do your thing and see if we can't get on that podium.’ ‘Cause she's ready and that's what she feels she is capable of doing." The men's 4x400 relay team of James Hilliard (junior sprinter), Anthony Johnson

(junior sprinter), De'Marcus Porter (freshman sprinter), and De'Quad Binder (junior sprinter) narrowly qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships with their time of 3:06.08. "We talked to them before we competed earlier in that day. We said, ‘Hey guys, run for each other. Do your job so the next person doesn’t have to. If everybody does their job, and does what they’re supposed to do, we’ll be good,” Boone said. Johnson, Binder and Hilliard have been a part of the preliminaries before, but it was Porter’s first time competing in the preliminaries.

“The dude just has heart. He just works and competes,” said Sprints and Hurdles Coach Giles McDonnell. “You just don’t know what that kid is going to do because he is just that competitive." This will be the first time competing at the NCAA Championships for all the members of the 4x400 relay team. "Each one did their jobs, and that’s what made the difference,” Boone said. “That’s why we’re going to nationals. We’ve had some great halfrelays, three-quarters of relays, but never four legs on the same day at the same time. You see

what happens when that does happen. I think they understand the importance of that now." In preparation, Boone is trying to let the athletes work out on their own without saying too much so as to prevent unnecessary pressure. Boone does not want the team to second-guess themselves. "We definitely are enjoying that the fruits of our labor are finally coming together," Boone said. "At the same time, it's not over. We want to go to Eugene and see if we can't break the school record and possibly become first team All-Americans."



Anthony Johnson, junior sprinter, came a long way in order to compete for the Texas State track and field team. Johnson has traveled through 46 states on his journey, but said he feels right at home in San Marcos. Born in Arkansas, Johnson moved to Simmesport, Louisiana, with his mother when he was 2-years-old. His mother, Veronica Keller, had one dream in mind. “Growing up, I read and heard about beautiful places that would be amazing to travel to,” Keller said. “I decided I wanted to travel the world, and show my road dog (Johnson) what all is out there.” The two then drove all over the country when Johnson was about 3-years-old. They moved from their home in Simmesport to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, so Keller could go back to school and receive her master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh. They moved in with Keller’s brother in Pittsburgh, but he only had a one-bedroom apartment. Johnson was forced to sleep on the couch in the living room. This went on until Johnson was 6-years-old. The times were rough for Johnson, but he has shown he can handle adversity. The end goal for Keller was to find a good job and give Johnson a better life. “It was weird not having my own room, but I’m glad I was able to do it with my mom,”

Johnson said. “It’s helped me shape myself into the man I am today.” The two did what they had to do until Keller received her degree from Pittsburgh. Keller was involved in the college atmosphere, and saw an opportunity to let Johnson see what university life is all about. Keller took Johnson all over campus, and even brought him to classes. Johnson found himself witnessing a college course before even thinking about pursuing higher education. “He’s been around college life his whole life,” Keller said. “I even showed him the athletics department and he was in love ever since.” Keller received her degree when Johnson was 9-years-old. The two moved to Keller, Texas, after she graduated, where they have lived ever since. “We moved to Texas, and that is where I finally got my own room,” Johnson said. “Texas has by far been my favorite place to live.” Johnson found a home in Keller, where he thrived in athletics. He played basketball for Keller Central High School while also running track. His mother used her degree to find a job in teaching. Keller works with elementary school children and teaches a health class in the Irving school district. Keller remarried after

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the move to Texas and gave birth to two boys named Benjamin and Keller Patterson. “Both of my two boys really look up to Anthony,” Keller said. “They love to come visit him and hang out in his dorm. I don’t care what they do, but my only rule is no broken bones or bloodshed.” Johnson loves to show his little brothers a good time, and hopes they can appreciate life as much as he does. The family continues to travel the world. They have recently been on cruises around the Caribbean and the Atlantic Ocean. The family drove all the way to Seattle,

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James Hilliard, junior sprinter, understands that you will only get out what you put in. Hilliard has been running track since elementary school, when he lived in Los Angeles, California, with his mother, Deborah Carr, who was a track star when she was younger. Growing up in a household where track and field was a large part of his life, Hilliard embraced the idea of setting and reaching goals. “I love the feeling of winning and the sense of accomplishment that you set a goal for yourself and you go out and accomplish it,” Hilliard said. Naturally, this creates a competitive drive within Hilliard. “I always want to get better,” Hillard said. “I always want to challenge myself. Motivation comes from within. I really don’t like to lose.” A memorable example of

Hilliard’s attitude dates back to when he competed in the junior Olympics as a decathlete. It was the first time Hilliard ever ran hurdles. Around the 300 mark in the 400 meter hurdles, Hilliard knocked down a hurdle and fell right on his chest. Hilliard did not miss a beat, though, rising to his feet and finishing the race in fifth place. “Even though he didn’t win that race, I was just so proud of him because of the tenacity, the drive, the motivation, the focus to get back up and keep running,” Carr said. “To fall where he did and the way he did, and continue the race with the same amount of passion as you started with was just amazing.” Hilliard’s hard work and dedication gives Giles McDonnell, sprints and hurdles coach, the confidence to have the sprinter in a leadoff role on the Bobcats’ 4x400 meter relay team, which qualified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

“We’re able to put pressure on him and say, ‘Here’s the baton. You have to put us in great position,’” McDonnell said. “He is able to focus in and understand, ‘If I don’t do what I’m supposed to do, then the whole relay is just done.’ That’s the importance of the leadoff guy. If he doesn’t do his job, especially at this particular level, there’s no catching up.” The Bobcats 4x400 relay team posted their best time of the season and second-best time in program history in order to secure a spot in the nationals. Hilliard is excited for the opportunity to compete in Eugene, calling it his greatest accomplishment in his track career. Carr, who will be in attendance, is looking forward to the experience of watching her son run against the best sprinters the collegiate level has to offer. “Win, lose, or draw, as long as they go out and do their best, that’s all I could ask for,” Carr said. “I’m definitely going to be there to enjoy the experience with them and to cheer them on.”





There are not many freshmen who have led their 4x400 meter relay team in a qualifier for the NCAA Outdoor Championships. De’Marcus Porter, freshman sprinter, ran the fastest split of the heat on the team, clocking in at 45.63. “It’s pretty crazy,” Porter said. “No one, including myself, thought that I would be running this fast this early. This just sets the bar for the upcoming years. I’ll need to work harder to continue to run faster.” Porter’s split aided Texas State in recording the second-fastest 4x400 time in school history. The 3:06.08 time pushed the Bobcats past TCU and Texas for 11th place, qualifying the team for the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon. Giles McDonnell, sprints and hurdles coach, said Porter has the heart of a competitor and it is hard to predict what he will

do on the field. “It’s evident,” McDonnell said. “He has something that you can't coach.” McDonnell played an important role in Porter’s progression during his freshman season. “The coaches were the main reason why I chose to come to Texas State,” Porter said. “I was doing some research on their backgrounds and I liked what I saw. They just want to see us succeed. They expect you to give your all, and if you do that there isn't much that can go wrong.” An Arkansas native, Porter moved to Texas at 8-years-old. It was in Texas that he started to put time into track and field through his high school’s summer programs. During his senior season at Southwest High School, Porter was awarded the Ann Brannon Award and recorded his career bests—10.6 in the 100-meter dash and a 21.4 in the 200-meters. Before committing to Texas State, Porter established himself as a prestigious sprinter with his success at the Junior Olympics.

He qualified in the 100 and 200-meter dashes. “When we recruited him we knew he could be a 100-meter, 200-meter guy,” McDonnell said. “But we also knew that he would have some 400-meter ability. He’s just versatile.” Porter said this season was unexpected. “I’ve just been working hard since we started back in September,” Porter said. “I just make sure I take care of my body, which includes ice baths twice a week and eating healthy. I’ve just learned to take it week-by-week, one track meet at a time.” Coach Dana Boone said the Bobcats understand being responsible for their own jobs. The NCAA West Preliminaries were the first time Boone felt all four sprinters had a successful meet as a whole, resulting in the qualification for the outdoor championships. Porter and the rest of the men’s 4x400 meter relay team have one more chance to improve their time before the season ends.

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June 10 2015  
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