ACC Highland Point of Light for Take Back The Night

Written By Ruben Hernandez
Video By Nathaniel Torres

Austin Community College hosted its first ever Take Back the Night event, focused on the support of those who have undergone sexual assault or domestic violence. The event not only offered a variety of resources, but also a march through the main Highland Campus building and a speak out, where survivors were able to share their stories.

“Take Back the Night is a great event for students to get in contact with faculty, staff, and the community,“ Compliance Investigator Austin Wood said.
“It gives a platform for individuals to express themselves and share their stories. It’s also an opportunity to meet advocates and allies, connected with a population of support and passion. It’s a night of celebration and really making it through the hard and tough times.”

Take Back the Night maintained a high emphasis on the aspect of bonds and community, stating several times that those who have undergone assault or abuse aren’t alone. There are resources and people to help.
“It’s not something that anyone should have to deal with by themselves if they do feel that way,” Wood said. “It’s a really difficult thing that individuals have to go through, such trauma and such harm. But to know that there are resources such as this event and a community within the college itself, it really provides an outlet to know that they are not alone.”

Most notably during the Speak Out session, survivors were able to share their stories
and explain how far they have come since being abused or assaulted. Whoever wanted to share their story was welcome to walk up to the mic and start.
“The Speak Out began with an awesome keynote speaker,” Social and Civic Awareness and Student Life Coordinator Carrie Cooper said. “She shared her story about her leaving an abusive relationship while starting here at ACC. I think that was encouraging to other students and faculty staff members to come share their stories.”

Media has definitely played a part in spreading the message, but hearing it first-hand seems to have a different effect.
“It’s one thing to see statistics and news stories, but it’s another thing to hear someone’s actual story,” Cooper said. “It helps you put a person to the issue and realize why it’s so important for all of us to stand up against sexual and domestic violence. When you actually hear people’s stories, it spurs you on like nothing else will.”

ACC is one of the many campuses in the nation that holds a Take Back the Night event, but it is one of 10 campuses that will be featured by the Take Back the Night Foundation.
“The 10 Points of Light are 10 different campuses and locations that will be featured by the National Take Back the Night Foundation on April 25,” Cooper said. “I lead the TBTN planning committee, and after I applied, the national foundation reached out to me and asked if ACC would be interested in being featured.”

Victims of sexual assault or domestic violence can be anyone of any gender, skin color, race, or sexual identity. People are different, but the stories can be similar.
“What I learned from Take Back the Night is that everyone is different,” Riverbat Ambassador Jesse Fraga said. “These people were here sharing their stories, and expressing how they feel.”

Providing opportunities for victims is something that is widely emphasized, and resources such as counselors and the SAFE Alliance were there at Take Back the Night to emphasize that.
“What stuck out to me the most was how powerful it is to hear from other people who have been where you are,” Cooper said. “I think it is encouraging in a way that nothing else is encouraging. It’s good for students to be able to hear other peoples’ stories, and realize that they’re not alone and there’s nothing wrong with them.”

Fraga believes that support and encouragement are key to handling these types of situations.
“If that one person tells a friend about their situation, that friend needs to encourage that person to speak up,” Fraga said. “It’s really severe. That’s what Take Back the Night is about: how severe it can get and the support for those people. If you’re someone that has had a friend tell you about their tragedy, it’s our job to convince them to speak up or have them talk to a counselor because this can get very bad.”

With the recent #MeToo movement, sexual assault and domestic violence have become a more significant and serious topic. This was one of the things that started the effort to a better and more well-aware society.
“It’s a really hard and sometimes awkward thing to talk about,” Cooper said. “Obviously our culture has changed with the #MeToo movement. It still takes a lot to talk in front of a group of people in real life, which is a lot different than making a social media post. That still takes courage, but being present with people can make it healing in a way because you can see people who you see your own story in.”

People of all sorts of backgrounds have free access to these resources. No matter where you’re from or who you are, support is available for anyone in need of it.
“I think its a huge resource and shows that the college shows an emphasis on support,” Wood said. ”Everybody has a background and everyone goes through life experiences, and it’s important to know that there’s a place and an outlet for all individuals of diverse backgrounds. We all have different experiences and come from different places in life.”

The bond between community and victim is something that can make the world of a difference, and Take Back the Night was to serve as the connection between the two.
“I hear stories about how bad it can get without speaking up,” Fraga said. “I think that what the most important thing is: speak up no matter what. Whether you’re the friend or the victim, as a community we need to speak up louder and louder.”

Right to the First Amendment

While the freedom of speech is one major medium for students to actively use their voice, they can also consider their freedom of the press, a road that seems to be less traveled on. Student journalism is something that students might want to keep an eye out for or get involved in.

Written, photos & video by Ruben Hernadez

Throughout history, many people have taken a stand for their beliefs. Peaceful protests, assemblies, and petitions are all examples of ways that people have made the first steps towards starting a movement in favor of a change. We are able to take these steps because of the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

“There are many key areas that we can benefit from within the first amendment,” Journalism Professor Paul Brown said. “As somebody involved in journalism, I’m focused on freedom of the press and freedom of speech. Of course, you also have freedom of religion, freedom of assembly and the right to petition.”

While most citizens of the United States know the amendment itself, there seem to be some misconceptions on some of its entitlements. In regards to freedom of speech, some envision the cliché protest yells and chants.

“You can certainly go to the south steps of the Capital or be in front of a government building and be a part of a grand assembly,” Brown said. “You can chant and express yourself with signs, but with the use of social media you can utilize this right in an easier manner. Just by having a Twitter or Facebook account with X amount of followers, you have the potential to spread your message even further.”

The internet has evolved into our lives, more so now than ever before. Since the early 2000s, net neutrality has grown into a heated topic that is now in the government’s hands. Net neutrality raises many concerns among the American people, one is having an “open” or “closed” internet. This past December, Congress was set to vote on the Congressional Review Act, which could overturn the FCC’s repeal of the net neutrality rules set in 2015.

Utilization of the first amendment doesn’t have to be exclusive towards people outside of universities and colleges. We learn about our basic civil rights through the education system in our history and government classes, to know and understand them as we grow. These teach us the boundaries that we, as Americans, can legally live our lives in the U.S.

Student Government Association Director of Communications Lauren Ashlee said, “students need to know that if we don’t like something – if it’s negatively affecting us and [we] need help with a situation – we need to be able to use our voice. This applies to when we need to protest something, write news articles, or when we need to use media to get out the information when we feel like we’re being ignored.”

Freedom of speech often extends to freedom of the press. In the current political climate, media has taken heat for certain publications and questions. Fake news has been on the rise, according to President Donald Trump. However, according to Yahoo’s Daily Digit, trust in the American media by its citizens has seen an increase since 2016. It also states that 84% of Americans believe media to be “critical” for our democracy.  Student journalism is something that students might want to keep an eye out for or get involved in.

“We’re the boss of the government, the government is not the boss of us,” Brown said. “We want to make sure they’re doing the right thing we feel is the right thing for them to do. So, we need young people, especially in today’s digital age, where it is easy to get lost in the sea of journalism from all directions, to be the future leaders in this industry. Understanding the concepts of journalism now will help the industry thrive, but it all starts with student journalism.”

Since 2016, the amount of journalism degrees being earned is on the decline. However, students continue to be involved in their high school and college media outlets,f they exist, to share the opinions and views of other students.

The reason I think it is important for students to study journalism is because it’s the future of journalism,” Brown said. “We need to have journalists to conduct our democracy. That’s what the founding fathers envisioned; essentially an unofficial fourth branch of government to make sure that those who are in power are always beholden to us.”

There also may be students who want to voice their own thoughts and take action. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to do that; and it can start with those around you.

“Listen to your peers,” says Ashlee. “If you have a concern, get two or three of your peers and see what they have to say about it, especially if you don’t want to join an organization and don’t know where to start. Talk to a professor, for example, and see if they can lead you to a higher power.”

When it comes to issues at ACC, the Student Government Association (SGA) can act as a voice for the student body. Many may think that SGA is strictly political, that is not the case.

“SGA is the border between the student body and the board of trustees,” Ashlee said. “We are the middleman, we see the struggles and needs of the students and see how we can make our school better. We always try to see how the student council can better serve the students.”

The first amendment has stayed constant through different time periods since the passing of the U.S. Constitution. While times have changed, through a variety of eras and development of technology, the first amendment has never failed to be consistent.

“The first amendment is there for us to fall back on regardless of what era we’re in,” Brown said. “Of course, we’re in the digital era with smartphones and social media. The founding fathers could have never envisioned this, but they did envision the idea of the government’s ability to be flexible in letting the people express themselves in a democracy.”

While the first amendment is an outlet for many people to express themselves, we can also vote to have our voices heard. In the midterm 2018 elections, people were encouraged to vote for the change they wanted; whether it’s a vote or a speech given, there’s no one way to have your voice heard.

“If you don’t vote as a millennial in 2018, it’s not a big issue,” Ashlee said. “Just know that there is an older person that has different political views than you do that is going to vote. They will be your voice because you didn’t vote. If you don’t vote, someone else will do it for you. If you want your voice heard, do your research.”

While voting is separate from the first amendment and your freedom of speech, that is not to say that they don’t work hand in hand. Your voice can be in the form of anything from standing in front of a crowd to putting in a ballot.

“Voting and the freedom of speech should go hand in hand,” Ashlee said. “You voting is your freedom of speech. It is your right, and no one has the right to tell you who to vote for, or why. Do your research, and see who you like based on their ethics and what their stance is. You can also use your freedom of speech to get other people on the same boat as you when it comes to voting for candidates.”

Everyone has a duty to those around them to understand what issues are currently happening and seeing how it affects them. Understanding how to work with those around you, however, is also something to think about.

“You need to be a voice for the people,” Ashlee said. “If you see a problem, you need to stand up and not be afraid what other people think of you or how you’ll be taken. Two is always better than one, and 1,000 is better than ten. You need to unite with people who you think are fighting for the same things you’re fighting for.”

Fighting for change is something we see often, especially with the amount of reform that citizens of this country are calling for. Whether you want to join that cause is your right as an American citizen, even if it means no action.

“Take what life gives you, and change it,” Ashlee said. “Go on the path you think you should be going on. Don’t sit there and accept it because it’s the easier thing to do. People’s lives don’t change because they think they’re doing it easy. People’s lives change based off of work, ethics, and how much they’re willing to put in.”

The Rise of Vaping

The JUUL: Is it the cause for the rise in nicotine addiction across young adults?

Written & Photos by Sheridan Smith
Video by Ruben Hernandez

Juul Smoke GirlThe 1988 Surgeon General’s Report discovered that cigarettes and other forms of tobacco are addicting, the pharmacologic and behavioral processes that determine nicotine addiction are similar to those that determine addiction to drugs such as heroin and cocaine. Cigarettes were finally deemed

harmful as many began fighting nicotine addiction. In 2006, electronic cigarettes were introduced to the U.S. to wean people off combustible ones.

“I smoked cigarettes at first, and then I went to vaping,” says student, Axel Anderson.

“Since it was so portable and so easy to change the cartridge, I decided I’d just go to [the Juul].”

A Juul is a specific kind of e-cigarette released in 2015. However, on Nov. 13, 2018 Juul CEO, Kevin Burns, released a statement about stopping flavored Juul pod sales to all 90,000 + retailers, as well as ceasing their social media presence.

The Truth Initiative states Juul accounts for 71.2 percent of e-cigarette sales since Aug. 2018. In Sept. 2018, the Federal Drug Administration stated that e-cigarette use among youths has hit record highs. This called for the largest enforcement effort in the FDA’s history to issue warnings and fines to retailers – online and brick and mortar – illegally selling JUUL and other e-cigarette products to minors.

“I would say [I switched to the Juul] honestly because more people had the Juul,” says student, Kelsey Cantu. “It was like a thing, so I was like why not? It was more expensive, but it hits better.”

Juul versus a pack of cigarettes

The difference between the Juul and other vapes is the use of pods instead of a refillable tank. One Juul pod consists of about 5% nicotine, equivalent to a pack of cigarettes. But in vapes, the person may choose how much nicotine they would like in their refill juice.

Like other e-cigarettes, Juul’s intention is to help people who struggle with nicotine addiction – which it can – but it mainly attracts young adults and teenagers. The device has definitely made appearances on several school campuses, where it’s illegal to use. According to the National Youth Tobacco Survey, in 2017 over 2.1 million high school and middle school students used e-cigarettes. Another study from last year found that one-fifth of students have seen Juuls in their schools.

“At my [high] school, a good amount of people in my grade used them,” says Cantu. “We would all go in the bathrooms during class and hit them. Especially if we had study hall and out [of class], we would all go in the bathroom and stay there for like a good hour or two and just Juul in the stalls,” says Cantu.

Teenagers and young adults seem to be attracted to the JUUL because of its design, easy access, fruity flavors and lack of scent. These assets allow the device to be easy to hide when in plain sight – such as in a classroom setting.

“It’s definitely easy to hide because you just keep the smoke in, and they don’t smell. It’s discreet, and you can hide it easily like I always had it on me at school,” says Cantu.

The Juul’s accessibility and design is a concern of numerous health associations, including Truth Initiative. The effect nicotine has on an adolescent’s mind is also a concern of theirs. People are aware of the effects of cigarettes, but the effects of Juuls and vaping have never really been unmasked to the consumer.Juul pack of cigarettes

“I’m a coach for a living, so I run a lot and stuff. Because I vape so much, [the vape] would kind of affect me after a while because I was inhaling so much vapor. I [would feel it physically], and I don’t want to vape anymore, at least not as much, so I went to a different mod that I can actually regulate the [nicotine],” says Anderson.

Since so many people are attracted to the Juul, it’s also causing an increase in nicotine addiction across a generation that was supposed to be nicotine-free.

Cantu says, “Yes [I would say I’m addicted] because if I run out of pods, I always have to go get more because I feel the need to hit it more if I run out. I’ve tried to stop for like short periods of time, but then I’ll be like whatever and just do it again and buy more.”

Anderson says he switched from a Juul after three months after noticing he was going through a pod every few weeks.

“You can almost feel it because you’re inhaling all that juice, which is just vapor, and you can kind of feel it weigh you down for a little bit,” says Anderson. “It makes you take a break for a while, but then it’s super hard because of all the nicotine.”

There has been no concrete evidence as to the long-term effects e-cigarettes have on the human body. Individuals should be more educated on what they’re inhaling, to understand how it affects their body.

 

Dreaming of an American Education

Written and Filmed by Ruben Hernandez[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Living the American dream is something that many people have chased for years.  For those living in the United States, it can be achieved with a great amount of effort and relentlessness. However, those who have found their way into the states from another country have a few extra obstacles to overcome. Alex Albino, a Dreamer and DACA recipient, is one of these people.

“I was born in Celaya, Mexico,” Albino said. “More specifically in the state of Guanajuato. My family and I moved to a smaller town, but at the age of eight we relocated to the United States because my parents were having legal issues with a small business that we had. We came to the States to support ourselves and live a better life.”

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Act protects young immigrants from the risk of deportation. With the potential repeal of this act currently being discussed among political and governmental entities, Dreamers, like Albino, have to be aware now more than ever.

“While I have four siblings, my older brother, my twin brother and I are the ones protected by DACA,” Albino said. “There are some things you have to do in order to be eligible to be protected, which some people don’t know about. I’m not sure how much trouble a 16 year-old can get into, but part of the process was me having to undergo a background screening. My older brother was also drug-tested.”

Albino is one of thousands of immigrants with protection under DACA. However, that is only a first step towards the end goal of American citizenship.

“They checked if we were going to school or not at that time,” Albino said. “They also checked things like what year we came into this country and how old we were. In the end, they gave us what is similar to an ID, but instead is basically a work permit. It lets me work anywhere in the United States.”
  Albino says that there is plenty to the process of becoming protected and keeping his DACA status, especially in the legal sense. However, when it comes to daily life in the U.S., Albino and his family want to live their American dream.

“We try not to stand out as much,” Albino said. “That’s especially due to the current administration, and because we aren’t from here. We just live life; we pay our taxes, work day-by-day, and strive. We also try to stay out of trouble, simply because we are trying to become good citizens of this country.”

  In his time since moving here, Albino believes that he has found a good place to start and make something of himself. He’s found many opportunities that he says wouldn’t have been presented in Mexico.

  “Socially, I think I’m striving,” Albino said. “I try to be as social of a person as I can. Also, some people think that it is difficult learning English, but I will say that English is one of my strongest subjects. Growing up here – for the most part – I’ve grown culturally attached to the language.”
Many DACA recipients have the common goal of wanting to live a normal, American life. While the political side of the DACA discussion may be a constant debate, no words are necessary to understand the peace that many immigrants are wanting to obtain for themselves.

“I’m personally appreciative,” Albino said. “I’m appreciative for every day I’m here, and I would not trade it for a moment in Mexico. In general, I think we’re all living for the American dream. I love being able to stay in the country and being able to enjoy the opportunities that others have.”

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Student Government Association Serves ACC

Written by Wes Eng

Since this past semester, the Student Government Association (SGA) has been working for you. SGA hosts events such as the talent show, DACA events, the Constitution Debate Day Celebration, book drives and more. The success of these events has been due to student contribution.

This semester brings some change to the structure of SGA. There will be a new Senate, promoting more student outreach to draw in more students. The new structure calls for Town Hall meetings on every campus. This will allow anyone to voice their opinions directly to SGA members. The intent of these meetings is to make easier for anyone at ACC to have their ideas heard. These ideas will then become the responsibility of the SGA.

This means SGA will take these ideas through the appropriate channels to make it a reality. The job of SGA has always been to ensure that every person at ACC has a voice and these Town Hall meetings will allow those who have not been heard to have their opportunity.

An ongoing project for SGA is the Open Education Resources. This project is working with the administration to supply classes with materials such as books and study materials, at no cost to the students. Several classes already offer this. “It’s still in the process, but every semester they add more classes,” says SGA President Richard Vega. “I’ve even taken one of these classes. It was a chemistry class where they used an open stacks chemistry textbook; which saves me $200 to $300. If you put this into the grand scheme of every student, that teacher might teach 4 or 5 sections, all those students are saving so much money. Those students
aren’t stuck working to pay off their textbooks, but instead, they are able to spend that time home studying instead. ”

Another ongoing project is opening of a 24-hour facility on the main ACC campuses. SGA hopes this will allow students an area where they can meet and study. SGA plans find how much an interest this has among the student population through a survey. The committee will also seek suggestions on what the students would like to be provided in these
24-hour facilities, if they do become a reality.

SGA members being sworn into their new positions
SGA members being sworn into their new positions

A Disguised Education

Written by Sam Douglas

Many students struggle with time management, motivation to attend class and the sheer will it takes to crack open a textbook. Even once the studying begins, the next momentous task is staying focused. It’s not rare to re-read a paragraph, again and again; this could be a sign of disinterest in a subject. Staying focused can be hard, but what if there was a way to make it interesting – to look at a subject in a different light. What about podcasts?

Image result
photo courtesy: dancarlin.com

Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History
Maybe history isn’t your favorite subject. Let Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History change the way you understand a history lesson by making the facts and stories a personal interaction. Carlin tells about historical figures, places and time as if he lives it. The series “Blueprint for Armageddon” gives the listener an in-depth look into the lives of soldiers and civilians on both sides of the first world war, painting a horrifying image of the carnage that took place. A great podcast for students who will be studying this period of time in a U.S. History class.

The Joe Rogan Experience
This is one of the most popular podcasts on iTunes and for good reason. Host, comedian Joe Rogan, invites guests from all walks of life; such as geologists, nutritionist, psychologist, neurosurgeons, athletes, comedians, business gurus and more. There are more than 1,000 free episodes of The Joe Rogan Experience available for download, spanning 2-3 hours each. It’d be hard to not find content relevant to your studies from the conversations with various professionals.

Radiolab Presents: More Perfect
Like everything Radiolab releases, More Perfect is a wonderfully, high-quality audio experience, focusing on Supreme Court cases that set precedent today. This can be a great tool to use when trying to remember the names of those court cases you know are going to be on the test in your government class.

startalk radio logo
photo courtesy: startalkradio.net

StarTalk Radio
Join host (and astrophysicist) Neil deGrasse Tyson and travel the galaxy with some of the most brilliant minds in science. Learn about new theories moving through the science community and contemplate the mysteries our cosmos has to offer. StarTalk Radio may be that little bit of extra help you needed in an astronomy or physics class.

A different interpretation of a subject may spark an interest in topics previously disliked. Thus, allowing the mind to retain information in an alternate way and, hopefully, encourage better study habits. With all the increase of podcasts out there, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find one, or a few, helpful to your studies and future career.

Pick this story up in the Spring 2018 Life4U magazine on campus.

Cosplaying Characters

Written by Marianna Foran

The sun is rising and your bank account suffers from cardiac arrest. The bathroom smells like Urban Decay makeup as the face staring back in the mirror is now a mask for the next 24 hours. This created identity allows many to practice, cosplay.

“I like it more as an escape,” psychology major Kai Arguelles says. “When you go to the convention it’s a three to four day weekend of just complete fun with strangers, that you connect with on a different level because you like the same thing.”

Dressing up, for many, has its pros and cons. “I like it more as a theatrical appeal,” theater major Tori McElroy says.

“The best way to decide what character you want to be, is to choose somebody you really connect with or admire,” Arguelles says. “Some people like to pick characters that are completely the opposite of them, because they get to be somebody else.”

The term cosplay was invented by Japanese reporter Nov Takashki. Looking to combine the words costume and play, Takashki introduced this term to the world while covering the World Con in 1984.

Cosplay has continued to grow, with the largest attendance on record in 2013 at Comiket with 590,000 players. Costumes vary at every convention in skill level.

McElroy says she chooses her characters for the fun of making a costume. “It’s something small…also, [I like] to see how it goes with my sewing skills,” she says.

And in fandom. Some of the more popular categories of fans focus on Anime (66.9%), video games (70.6%) and comics (36.1%), according to cosplaycalamity.com.

According to the Daily Dot, 32.1% of cosplayers spend between $100-$200 on their costumes, while 27.7% spend $200-$400 on each of their costumes.

Some cosplay to take a break from daily occurrences.

“My family was alright with cosplay as long as I’m happy. It’s another way to express my artistic self.” McElroy says.

Arguelles says, “My family thinks cosplay is a little weird but they’re OK with it, I guess.”

One thing cosplayers seem to have in common, is their love for stepping into someone else’s shoes for a day and walking out into public.

“I would love to keep cosplaying 10 years from now,” Arguelles says. “It’s such a great experience and a great pass time for all ages there. There is no restriction, which is what’s so nice about it. Plus the older you get, the more experience you get, and the better your cosplays turn out.”

“I think I will continue because it’s fun to be a completely different character or person,” McElroy says.

Cosplay Costume

Halloween in Austin

Written by Tracy Fuller

The Halloween season in Austin can be indulging. With the hustle and bustle of the academic life, it’s paramount that time is made to decompress, especially after midterms. There are several events in town to suit your social craving from cult classic horror screenings to traditional 6th Street shenanigans. But remember, Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year – so play enough to make it back to class.

Halloween At The Drive-In (10/23)

What better way to celebrate Halloween than at the drive-in! The 35th anniversary of the cult classic Poltergeist is on the big screen. Drive your car right in, sit back and enjoy this classic tale of ghosts and ghouls. Moreover, the Blue Starlite Drive-In will hook you up when you get your reservation ticket, good for $10 of saloon drinks or concession stand beverages while there.

Jewels In The Wasteland: They Live (10/25)

A special screening of John Carpenter’s cult classic They Live. Wrestling-turned-actor Roddy Piper plays a drifter who accidentally finds out first hand that people have become enslaved by an alien-like elite who lurk behind an advanced system of propaganda and deceits.

This screening includes a live introduction from Austin Film Society Founder Richard Linklater (Dazed & Confused, School of Rock). Following the screening, there will be a post conversation on stage with Mr. Linklater as well.

Stranger Things Season 2 Watch Party (10/27)

Taking you to the “Upside Down” at Buzzmill to celebrate the second season of your favorite 80’s themed thriller TV series. Hosting a costume contest, specialty cocktails and Buzz Mill waffles, plus a DJ spinning a Stranger Things playlist. Leave a mark at the photo booth, and watch the Season 2 premiere on the big screen.  Come out and get like any Demogorgon would because a portion of the proceeds is going towards Hurricane Harvey relief.

Alien Apocalypse Halloween Lock-In (10/28)

The Blazer Tag “Alien Apocalypse Halloween Lock-In” is the biggest Blazer Tag event of the season with tons of games, trivia, and all-night laser tag! Show up in your best Halloween costume, and you could have a chance at winning the Colossal Costume Contest. Not to mention, showing off in the arcade. There will be prizes and giveaways all the way until the sun comes up!

LCD Soundsystem with special guest Big Freedia (10/31)

Dance yourself clean with LCD Soundsystem at the Austin360 Amphitheater. After reuniting, the band is on their ‘American Dream’ tour with the Queen of Bounce, Big Freedia. It should be a boo-ty shaking time. Doors at 7, show at 8p.

House of Torment (9/22-11/11)

A Halloween staple for the Austin area is House of Torment. Every year people line up to get their fright fix. Even while standing in line, you will get a taste of what’s coming. It’s a unique experience for everyone due to the control room operators. They can trigger different effects for each patron, making it a complete and unexpected time for everyone. It is named as the number one haunt in America by Hauntworld Magazine.

 

Campus Viewpoint: What is Your Reaction to the Umpqua Community College Shooting in Oregon?

Story by Ryan Fontenette-Mitchell, reporter

Photo by Joseph Lee, photographer

Abby Castner (1)
Abby Castner – I think it’s a systemic sign of a larger problem within our society and how we deal with a lot of things from mental illness all the way down to isolation.

Fasih Hashmi (1)
Fasih Hashmi – It’s surprising and terrible because sometimes you never know how people can become dangerous about using guns at school. They can just shoot at each other. It’s not very safe to have guns at schools.

Brooklyn Terlinde
Brooklyn Terlinde – There is always a possibility of something bad happening anywhere. People would be more secure if they were taught the behaviors of people that may do that.

 

Joshua Valdez (1)
Joshua Valdez – The name of the shooter should be kept private. They shouldn’t get the publicity for what they’ve done. We know what happened in the shootings, but putting their name out there is unnecessary.

 

 

Hien Li (1)
Hien Li – I don’t think its appropriate to have gun with you in school someone can get angry and start shooting. Its not a need, because we have cops around to protect us.

 

Alec Rakoff
Alec Rakoff – There’s been suggestions, arming teachers, lettings students carry (guns) although that can lead to more shootings. All of those can be good ideas, but they’re all have consequences of their own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Campus Viewpoint: What Does Perseverance Mean to You?

Story and photos by Anthony DeVera, Reporter

Emily Marazzo
Emily Marazzo – It means sticking through with what you started to the end, even if you don’t like it. It’s important to me personally. I guess it’s the completionist trait that I have as a person. I try my best not to quit when I start something. If I don’t get something, I’ll always ask for help to get through it, even if I don’t want to.

 

Jordan Elcock
Jordan Elcock – It’s the will to keep going, like getting through school when times are hard and all that. School, work, and balancing whatever else you do, so I guess that’s that.

 

Jasmin Dale
Jasmin Dale – I’m the first generation in my family to actually go to college. My mom struggled a lot as a teen mom. She gave me the drive to go to school. I want for my little brother to be able to look up to me and say, ‘if my sister can do this, I can do this.’ I want to be a good influence for him.

 

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Maleha Baset – It’s just fighting through. Basically it’s not giving up. I exhibit perseverance through my classes, and not changing my major. I’m taking basic classes. Everybody has to take basic classes. They’re not always easy and they’re not always fun, but I have to stick through it and remember that I need to get through this to actually take the classes that I want to take and actually enjoy.

 

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Jasmine Scott – Perseverance to me is never giving up. No matter what your struggles are, whatever you believe in, no matter what people say, just do not give up on what you’re passionate about. I’m a single mother. I work and I go to school. That in it’s own is perseverance because I have to take care of my daughter, I have to do good in school, I have to work. All of that I have to do just to provide for my daughter and make a better future for me and her.

 

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Shelby Kanpe – I have a learning disability, so I’ve struggled through school and I had to work really hard to get where I am. When I was in high school, our band was going through a really hard time because our band director was out. We had a really bad substitute and a lot of the band was quitting and so I was trying to keep the band going, telling them to stay in band.

 

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Flor Villegas – Perseverance means a lot to me. It’s a main goal in my life. It’s very important. Whenever my family and I moved from Mexico to Georgetown, it was a big change. [My parents] were always there with me, always making everything easier for me and for my brothers too.
 

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Nicole Castro – No matter what the obstacles that come your way, you are always set on getting to your goal. Don’t let anybody’s opinion, or what they say about you, shift you away from getting to your goal. My grandmother wanted to go to college so she went out of her way, got a job, and paid her [own way].
 

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Adrian Rodrguez – Perseverance is like staying on topic and just continuing and following your path. Whenever my sister was having trouble at work, she was getting too emotional from the comments she received from her clients being negative. She knew it wasn’t her fault, so she just took it. [It] got her down, but she still continued working through it.
 

 

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Daniel Woo – The will to keep going; maybe finding something in your life, on your own, with guidance. I want to get a job mainly because I want to help my parents since they’ve helped me through so much so far. I want to repay what they’ve done for me. I guess that’s what’s keeping me going. Also, coming across new people and new things. It gives me inspiration to want to learn new things with new people so I can put it forth to maybe helping other people like I’m trying to help my parents. I’m just trying to do what I can.

 

 

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Erin Daniel – I feel like it means going for what you believe in. When I have to make decisions on things, I base it on what I believe in, what I think is going to work best for me, and what’s going to help me go further into my future.

 

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David Clark – Life itself is about finding balance. Part of perseverance is you have to throw yourself into things that are uncomfortable. There’s an old proverb, a gem cannot be polished without friction, a human cannot be polished without trial. You have gotta throw yourself back into things. I’m older than most students. I took my first run at college.

 

Amber Galloway – Something along the lines of not giving up, continuing to keep going, keep trying. I would say school is persevering. Continuing to go through school regardless of hardships in your life, how hard your classes may be, or sometimes you just want to give up and do something else, but we continue to go to school and move forward.

 

Student “S.” – As a recovering alcoholic, [perseverance] is kind of everyday, just overcoming fear and daily obstacles. I’m quite a bit older than most of the people on campus. It was quite difficult to get back into, ya know, wanting to go back to school. I’ve been divorced, my kids are grown. Regarding my identity as mom or wife, I’ve had to figure out who I was as me, myself. With my struggles with addiction, it seemed appropriate to go get my license for counseling. It’s who I am now. I’m a recovering alcoholic that wants to help other alcoholics. Spirituality played a huge role in getting me where I am today. I believe in a higher power. I also believe you can’t do anything, any big huge struggle, on your own. You need a support group, people you can trust, talk to, not judge you, and help guide you through whatever your dilemmas are.

 

Alanah Patterson – You never give up, no matter what you do, at least attempt to do something. I went to a leadership academy for seven years. A big part of our mission statement was perseverance. Everyday, when I complete my homework, because it takes a lot for me to sit down and actually work. I always make myself do it, and I think that’s perseverance for myself.